Was the 6th Coalition Winnable?

Feb 2019
1,009
Serbia
As the title suggests, do you think that Napoleon could've won the War of the 6th Coalition? If so, how could he achieve this? Victory meaning he keeps his throne and the land at least directly controlled by France. What could've Napoleon done differently to to win, if he could win at all that is.
 
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johnincornwall

Ad Honorem
Nov 2010
7,849
Cornwall
No.

He tried hard but the damage was done by catastrophic strategic errors in Spain and Russia. Despite these ranking as two of the biggest errors anywhere anytime by anybody, some still rate him as their greatest leader.
 
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Kotromanic

Ad Honorem
Dec 2011
5,033
Iowa USA
Several of the familiar "what ifs" would need to be fulfilled, what if a wholly different approach to Spain, avoiding a large scale campaign, appears first on my list. That is to say, I think cornwall stated it exactly right above.
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,733
SoCal
It very hard to see that. Britian, Prussia and Russia are all very keen to see the end of the regime.
What about Austria?

No.

He tried hard but the damage was done by catastrophic strategic errors in Spain and Russia. Despite these ranking as two of the biggest errors anywhere anytime by anybody, some still rate him as their greatest leader.
What would have happened had Nappy never invaded Spain and Russia, in your honest opinion?
 

Maki

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
3,743
Republika Srpska
No.

He tried hard but the damage was done by catastrophic strategic errors in Spain and Russia. Despite these ranking as two of the biggest errors anywhere anytime by anybody, some still rate him as their greatest leader.
A ton of famous generals and leaders actually lost in the end. Hannibal, Napoleon, Lee, Rommel, Cao Cao etc. It seems that quite a few of history's most celebrated leaders actually ended up as losers. I wonder if it has to do with the fact that losers sometimes tend to be glorified as "noble sacrifices" and things like that.
 
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johnincornwall

Ad Honorem
Nov 2010
7,849
Cornwall
What about Austria?


What would have happened had Nappy never invaded Spain and Russia, in your honest opinion?
He had the potential and some of the qualities to be a truly great, lasting Emperor. But these people get delusions, over-ambitious and make bad decisions.

A ton of famous generals and leaders actually lost in the end. Hannibal, Napoleon, Lee, Rommel, Cao Cao etc. It seems that quite a few of history's most celebrated leaders actually ended up as losers. I wonder if it has to do with the fact that losers sometimes tend to be glorified as "noble sacrifices" and things like that.
Hannibal I've never been over-impressed with his strategy in Italy. But you could argue he was fighting a losing cause with little support from home and whatever he did wouldn't be enough

Lee - whatever he did wouldn't have been enough

Rommel - maybe the same? lack of support/supplies

My point about Napoleon was it was self inflicted almost entirely.
 

pugsville

Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
9,756
What about Austria?
The Austrians were worried about Prussian and Russian power and influence growing. Austrian views were more malleable. Some Negotiation was possible.

The Prussians were absolutely opposed to Napoleon and wanted to hang him and totally, more the Army and influential opinion as the anger and passion of the "war of liberation" was something the King could not control or shut down. They was no scope for Negotiation with the Prussians.

The Russians well it was all up to Alexander, there was no other effective focus of power and influence. (no one fancied Constantine, who was totally uninterested anyway, and there simply was no real other option) Policy was firmly in Alexanders hands. A complex and not easily read man, Napoleon totally under estimated Alexander. It's fairly certianb Alexander would not finish his push acrosss Eruope until Napoleon was gone.

The British too were pretty much opposed to a continuince of the Napoloenic regeime.

Diplomatically there was little room to maneuver. Napoloen failure to take any realistic negiotating position in the truce was many mistake Napoleon made in 1813. He repeatedly fluffed his chances to signicnatly damage the Colaition forces, and failed to work an effetcive strategy, dancing the coalitions tune. It was not his best cmapaign, he outnumbered the colaition before the truce, he was presneted with good chances that he fluffed. Unwilling to give up any cities, he dommed their garrsins, and unwilling to give up any territory he had no realistic negotiating position and being unwilling to admmot that defeat woudl be the outcome of day 2 of Leipzig he mad ethe defeat all the greater. In 1813 Napoleon lacked the objective judgement he needed both Politically and Militarily in order to make the best of a bad situation.
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,733
SoCal
The Austrians were worried about Prussian and Russian power and influence growing. Austrian views were more malleable. Some Negotiation was possible.

The Prussians were absolutely opposed to Napoleon and wanted to hang him and totally, more the Army and influential opinion as the anger and passion of the "war of liberation" was something the King could not control or shut down. They was no scope for Negotiation with the Prussians.

The Russians well it was all up to Alexander, there was no other effective focus of power and influence. (no one fancied Constantine, who was totally uninterested anyway, and there simply was no real other option) Policy was firmly in Alexanders hands. A complex and not easily read man, Napoleon totally under estimated Alexander. It's fairly certianb Alexander would not finish his push acrosss Eruope until Napoleon was gone.

The British too were pretty much opposed to a continuince of the Napoloenic regeime.

Diplomatically there was little room to maneuver. Napoloen failure to take any realistic negiotating position in the truce was many mistake Napoleon made in 1813. He repeatedly fluffed his chances to signicnatly damage the Colaition forces, and failed to work an effetcive strategy, dancing the coalitions tune. It was not his best cmapaign, he outnumbered the colaition before the truce, he was presneted with good chances that he fluffed. Unwilling to give up any cities, he dommed their garrsins, and unwilling to give up any territory he had no realistic negotiating position and being unwilling to admmot that defeat woudl be the outcome of day 2 of Leipzig he mad ethe defeat all the greater. In 1813 Napoleon lacked the objective judgement he needed both Politically and Militarily in order to make the best of a bad situation.
What position do you think that Nappy should have taken in negotiations in 1813?
 

pugsville

Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
9,756
What position do you think that Nappy should have taken in negotiations in 1813?
Well argeeing to the truce looks a mistake.

At the very least something that would have put some conflicting choice he offered no concessions at all until thee time was up. He needed a big bold offer that gave a lot to at least one party. The Coalition agreed on almost nothing other than putting Napoleon down,. he needed to focus them of things they disagreed about. He made it all so easy, The Coalition had offered pretty generous terms, terms they did not really accept themselves, but they offered knowing Napoleon would refuse it.

Restoration of All Austrian territory lost in 1805/1809, restoration of all Prussian terroritory, Abolition the Duchy of Warsaw, France giving all territory over the Rhine. He some non french confederation of Rhine.Wastphaila.

his complete dominatin and reduuctionof puppet states to hollow shells was part of the harvest he had sowed that came how to roost.
 
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