Best Generals of World War I

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,197
SoCal
#1
Who were the best generals for each country during World War I?

Since we have such a thread for World War II generals here: http://historum.com/war-military-history/81561-best-generals-world-war-ii.html , I figure that World War I generals should have their own thread about this as well.

As in that World War II generals thread, for this thread, naval officers are excluded unless they also fought on land in World War I.
 
Feb 2014
527
South Carolina, USA
#2
Britain- I've read on Haig a bit and I'm not sure on the guy yet. Some people here will claim he was a genius, but for now I'll just say Plumer, Allenby, and Byng were all great.

France- I'd say Foch for a generally effective job as Allied commander, and Petain for the defense of Verdun.

Germany- The victor of Riga, Hutier, sounds like a good choice. Also Lettow-Vorbeck for accomplishing his goals in his little secondary theater.

Austria- probably Svetozar Boroevic despite his ultimate defeat.

Russia- Brusilov fits the bill for delivering the Entente one of their most important victories of the war, and Yudenich for victories fighting the Turks.

Commonwealth- Currie and Monash apply for the success of the 1917/1918 Canadian/ANZAC forces.

Serbia- Probably Zivojin Misic.

America- Probably Liggett, I'm not really that keen on Pershing.

For the Ottomans and Bulgaria nobody really comes to mind.
 
Dec 2011
4,894
Iowa USA
#3
Warehouse: you want to go with Diaz or another Italian general?

For Bulgaria, whoever had tactical command at the Cerna Bend battle in early '17 would be a logical choice.
 
Feb 2014
527
South Carolina, USA
#4
Warehouse: you want to go with Diaz or another Italian general?

For Bulgaria, whoever had tactical command at the Cerna Bend battle in early '17 would be a logical choice.
I knew I was forgetting some country. Diaz seems like the logical choice for Italy unless you want to give Cadorna the crown. (Pro-tip: I wouldn't.)
 
Dec 2011
4,894
Iowa USA
#5
I'm also stumped for Bulgaria since the commanders at Cerna Bend were German rather than Bulgarian after looking that up.

Joffre of France deserves a mention since the impact of the First Marne was so large.
 

Larrey

Ad Honorem
Sep 2011
5,638
#9
As ususal, it also seems a matter of what level of command one might be looking.

And me thinking about the French:

People in successful in higher command:

P├ętain
Joffre
Foch


Successful commanders on somewhat lower levels:

Nivelle (yes, really, and for the stuff he showed prior to 1917, which was why he got a crack at the stratospheres of command, where it eventually all came unstuck)
Debeney
d'Esperey
Fayolle
Gouraud
 

Belisarius

Forum Staff
Jun 2006
10,359
U.K.
#10
Plumer and Byng, definitely for the UK; honourable mentions for Rawlinson, who developed as the war went on and Haig, who was C-in-C of the BEF and made it into what it became in 1918
 

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