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Old December 9th, 2012, 03:30 AM   #31

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Ah well. The Usual suspects have come up I see.

I am going to use my "diplomatic immunity" and be biased, nominating
Peter de la Billiere.

I would also nominate Israel Tal. He has to be mentioned at some point, imo.
Tal is definitely noteworthy as are Sharon and Allon, though I don't think any are top 5 (maybe Sharon is), but all are probably top 15.

DLB was certainly a good commander, but I'm not sure he'd be in the same league as some of the other commanders who were mentioned.
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Old December 9th, 2012, 08:13 AM   #32

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Tal is definitely noteworthy as are Sharon and Allon, though I don't think any are top 5 (maybe Sharon is), but all are probably top 15.

DLB was certainly a good commander, but I'm not sure he'd be in the same league as some of the other commanders who were mentioned.
I think DLB was a decent commander. He was a vastly experienced soldier, and he certainly had a lot of pull over Schwarzkopf, as the virtual second in command behind him.

As for Tal, he revolutionised tank warfare for his country, which allowed them to sweep all before them.

Giap was a very good strategist, but he depended upon the willingness of his men to become body counts imo. Iirc when he was a general in the Anglo-Vietnam war in '45. He was bested by the utterly ruthless British commander, Gracey Douglas, who's own men were expert and experienced jugle fighters.
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Old December 9th, 2012, 09:01 AM   #33
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Ah well. The Usual suspects have come up I see.

I am going to use my "diplomatic immunity" and be biased, nominating
Peter de la Billiere.
Rear Admiral Sandy Woodward
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Old December 9th, 2012, 09:16 AM   #34

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Rear Admiral Sandy Woodward
Yes, he put in a good shift during the Falklands
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Old December 10th, 2012, 06:39 AM   #35

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MacArthur's real "mess" was his own pride and hubris. His downfall was brought on by his many battles with Truman over exact policy and how to run the Korean War, which as it progressed, MacArthur seemed to be willing to expand it ever further while Truman was trying to keep it as a limited war...

That said, portions of MacArthur's actions in Korea were actually fairly brilliant. Especially if you look at the Inchon operation. It successfully defeated the North Korean Army and saved the troops on the Pusan Perimeter. In the aftermath of that, however, he ignored political realities of the Cold War, which would bring Communist China in and set up his battles with Truman.

Though, one thing I found interesting on Ridgeway's biography on wikipedia was that MacArthur actually mellowed with regard to treating subordinates when Ridgeway took over 8th Army. MacArthur was notorius for making it tough for anyone to get noticed under MacArthur's command without the approval and/or grace of Douglas MacArthur. Ridgeway's bio on wikipedia makes the mention that MacArthur gave Ridgeway an astonishingly free hand in handling 8th Army operations...

And while on the topic of Korean War commanders, would anyone know anything about Mark Clark's actions there? Clark took over from Ridgeway (I think when Ridgeway was promoted to be the head of the Allied forces in Europe).
The word I like to use to describe MacArthur's generalship is "schizophrenic." There was absolutely no consistency, and his personal flaws clearly undermined his military talents, which were genuine. He turned in real stinkers in the Philippines in 1941, and in North Korea in 1950, but also had some gems.
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Old December 12th, 2012, 07:27 AM   #36

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The notion that mao was a founding figure for guerilla warfare is so off base. Guerilla warfare has been used since men started fighting each other. If you want to give any credit, and there is not much of it, for the communist fighting against the Japanese it needs to be given to Peng Dehuai or Zhu De. They were the real implementers of China's fight in the northeast.
Mao gets credit because he put his theories on paper in a organized fashion.
The real guerilla leaders of history sure,viriathus and trang huang duo come to mind.Defied and defeated the roman legions and the mongol hordes the 2 most unstoppable killing machines of their day.
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Old December 12th, 2012, 01:19 PM   #37

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What was the name of the Vietnamese guy who planned the tet offensive?
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Old December 12th, 2012, 01:23 PM   #38

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What was the name of the Vietnamese guy who planned the tet offensive?
That was Giap, who I believe has already been mentioned. I don't think his exact strategies and tactics were real great. Espeically when you look at the casualty rates the Vietcong and the North Vietnamese army took in the war, and remembering that the Tet Offensive was a military disaster for the North Vietnamese...

But, Giap did manage to hold his forces together in the face of superior weapons and what was a superior force on paper. This largely allowed the North Vietnamese to take the casualties inflicted on them and keep going, while the US lost mommentum and the will to fight.
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