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Old July 28th, 2006, 05:06 AM   #1

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What makes a great general?


What exactly makes a great General? What separates the great from the merely good? Are there certain qualities of the man or is it simply his ability to lead an army and win a war?
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Old July 28th, 2006, 08:09 AM   #2

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winning
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Old July 28th, 2006, 12:09 PM   #3
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A good general shapes his men by being a stiffneck hard on them, then when he has earned their respect he turns the tide by making the men believe the general is not only their commander but on their side. Someone they can depend on. Someone who spouts courage everywhere he may conduct his goings.
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Old July 28th, 2006, 12:46 PM   #4

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Professor Phantom
A good general shapes his men by being a stiffneck hard on them, then when he has earned their respect he turns the tide by making the men believe the general is not only their commander but on their side. Someone they can depend on. Someone who spouts courage everywhere he may conduct his goings.
A good general would make the men believe in him.

A great general would make the men believe in the cause.
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Old July 28th, 2006, 12:53 PM   #5
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Well said Commander, you lead the website in which you have depicted I do believe.
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Old August 2nd, 2006, 12:06 PM   #6
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I think he should also be willing to take risk's.
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Old August 2nd, 2006, 12:12 PM   #7

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Scipio Aemilianus always said a hard general helps his troops, while a soft general only helps the enemy. Many of Rome's best generals, Scipio Africanus, Aemilius Paulus, Scipio Aemilianus, Gaius Marius, Lucius Cornelius Sulla, Quintus Sertorius, Marcus Licinius Crassus, etc. were all very hard on their men. Paulus knew his sentries slept on the job, so he ordered that no sentry could bear a shield, which they always leaned their pila on in order to sleep while standing. Sertorius had many of his own men killed for disobeying his orders and showing the Iberian people the cruel side of Roman conquest. Crassus, of course, is alleged to have had his legions decimated after a disastrous rout, but really he probably only fined his men, because, afterall, Crassus had paid for the army, and Crassus would not waste money. A hard handed general seems to be a good one, but most generals were also looking to benefit their troops after victory, i.e. distributing land for veterans to settle, distributing spoils, etc.
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Old August 2nd, 2006, 03:07 PM   #8

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A General leads his men by his example. He expects his men to due their duty to fullest extent of the word. He will send no man to do what he himself would not do of his own accord. He will enforce discipline, and will establish that he is in charge. He must never hold himself higher than a diety, or have his men treat him as such. He must approach warfare from many angles, being flexible direct or aggresive as the situation warrants. He must also not be afraid of losing everything. The General who does not commit himself fully to victory with lose without honor.
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Old August 2nd, 2006, 03:10 PM   #9

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Also Hannibal would never make his soldiers do something he himself would not do, that is one great attribute of his leadership, he lost an eye to disease by enduring all the conditions he forced his men to endure.
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Old August 12th, 2006, 11:20 AM   #10

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sun-tsu said it best

Command is

Wisdom
Integrity
Compassion
Courage
Severity
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