There are still heroes left...

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lwd
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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby lwd » Tue Jun 03, 2008 6:52 pm

Karl Heidenreich wrote: .... Neither Alexander nor Caesar commited the mistakes that later Bonaparte did. ....

Well Alexander pretty much destroyed his army by the end of his one big campaign. As for Caesar in most if not all his battles he had a superior army or a superior position. He made his rep beating up on outnumbered Gauls then inflating the numbers. :D

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José M. Rico
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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby José M. Rico » Tue Jun 03, 2008 8:43 pm

If we put Napoleon in a list of bad Generals for his invasion of Russia, then we could put Rommel as well for invading Egypt after the fall of Tobruk in 1942.

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Karl Heidenreich
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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:01 pm

Well, Rommel has been over rated as Corps commander. He was a fine divisional commander, a charismatic character and a gentleman.
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.
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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby Bgile » Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:13 pm

Bonaparte didn't just win decisively against poor odds. He was daring and was the master of defeating his opponent in detail. At Waterloo, all Wellington had to do was stay put. Bonaparte was forced to attack a good position, and if he couldn't dislodge him, Wellington wins because Blucher is coming with overwhelming force to assist him. Wellington was a very good general, but IMO he wasn't really tested at Waterloo. He knew that if he could only keep his commanders from doing something stupid, he would win.

There is some small similarity to Lee's position at Gettysburg, except that Lee wasn't forced to attack and Bonaparte was.

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Karl Heidenreich
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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Wed Jun 04, 2008 3:04 am

Blucher arrival came when Wellington had all day resisting attack after attack from Napoleonic forces. The Imperial Guard was defeated by Wellington´s forces alone, which was quite a feat all by itself. And this defeat marked the tide of the battle. Blucher simply sealed Bonaparte´s fate.

About Lee´s paralelism at Gettysburg I agree with you: Lee wasn´t forced and his best officer, Old Pete Longstreet kept reminding him that disengaging in order to find a better position was the option. Napoleon was tempted to attack from the begining, since the day before at Quatre Bras.

About:

He knew that if he could only keep his commanders from doing something stupid, he would win.


As a matter of fact one of his commanders, the Prince of Orange, dedicated the whole day to do stupid things, almost endangering the complete allied position.
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.
Sir Winston Churchill

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RF
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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby RF » Wed Jun 04, 2008 8:01 am

Karl Heidenreich wrote:
Solano López was posibly a good representative of the Latin American banana republic´s dictator but his behaivor was not worse than that of Mexico´s Santa Ana, who managed to lose half his country´s territory due to an ambitious, ill coincived and terrible lead military campaing first against Texas and then against the US expedicionary forces invading his mainland. In one expression: bad general.



Look at the end result.

A pyrrihic victory at the Alamo and losing at San Jacinto just don't compare to the absolute defeat Paraguay faced in 1870. And Santa Anna did at least take on one enemy at a time, not everybody at once.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

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RF
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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby RF » Wed Jun 04, 2008 8:16 am

Karl Heidenreich wrote:

I believe RF´s remarks about von Schlieffen are not fair. At last we must blame von Moltke (the young) for the ill execution of a workable plan. Schlieffen was given a quite difficult task of creating a plan that must deal with imposible odds. And, let´s face it, it could have worked if Moltke´s didn´t lost his nerve and weakened his right flank in order to protect his left one. The whole idea, anyway, couldn´t have worked because neither side had enough forces and resources to outmanouver the other. Schlieffen wasn´t that bad, at the least.



Lets leave aside Moltke, who mishandled what was a misconceived plan in the first place.

Schlieffen devised what he saw as a solution to Germany's strategic problem: war on two fronts. His solution was a quick knockout blow on France before Russia could properly mobilise.
His plan involved an invasion of France via both Belguim and Holland. This ignored political and strategic consequences, principally the British reaction, because he did not consider war against the British, to which his plan could not answer. In the outcome Moltke cut out the invasion of Holland, so the Germans got held up by General Lamond at Liege - throwing the plan out of kilter....

Coming back to Schlieffen I think he came up with the wrong set of priorities. The border on Alsace-Lorraine is easily defensible against concentrated French attack; Schlieffen should have planned a defensive posture against France and a fast mobile war against Russia, to knock Russia out and let France bleed itself battering the German border, while the British remained neutral. Result: no seaborne blockade of Germany, the HSF is free to operate on the high seas against the French, and ultimately German victory.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

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RF
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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby RF » Wed Jun 04, 2008 8:29 am

Karl Heidenreich wrote:

About Hitler I won´t be his advocate (so don´t mis interpret me) but we must face some things. A problem with this guy is that he died before he can speak to western interrogation (even if he lived is difficult to know what would have become of him being a prisioner of the comies and Uncle Joe). In the book about Kursk from Glantz and House there is question opened in which some or total blame for faulty operations must be placed over the shoulders of sacred cows as Guderian or Manstein themselves. If something went wrong then there was Hitler to blame, anyway he was:
1. Evil
2. Political dead
3. Defeated
Who´s the best to carry out the burden of defeat?
In the first campaigns he wasn´t that bad a general: he wiped Poland which wasn´t an easy target; he commited his forces against the low countries and Norway with inferior naval resources and got away with it; and for last he gave the French the kick of their lives. At the Battle of Britain he believed the word of his "expert" in aerial warfare Goering who guaranteed him the Luthwaffe could wipe English air defenses. It was Goering´s advice, not Hitler doing that defeat.
About Barbarossa we see that one mistake was to open it in June and not in May: not Hiter´s doing but his ally, Mussolini´s lousy and chaotic campaing against in the Balcans.
Again: he could have waited a year. Can he? From hindsight we know he could. But back then I would have believed that Stalin was ready to strike also. Anyway we know he was considering the move.



I don't think you have quite grasped the point I was making. Hitler was a poor decision maker, had no understanding of economics or logistics or of strategy.
Had he read and thoroughly applied himself to Guderian's book ''Achtung Panzer'' he would have been a very good general.
But Hitler's gifts were as a party politician, not military general. It was these gifts which largely accounted for the early and easy victories of 1939 and 1940.
The biggest flaw in Hitler as a military commander was his absolute refusal to give ground when the situation demanded it. That in itself largely decided the outcome on the Russian front - he would not countenance a war of movement that encumbered retreat as well as advance. And when he could not advance, he did not know what to do. He declared war on the USA without having any idea of how he was going to defeat them.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

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RF
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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby RF » Wed Jun 04, 2008 8:35 am

José M. Rico wrote:If we put Napoleon in a list of bad Generals for his invasion of Russia, then we could put Rommel as well for invading Egypt after the fall of Tobruk in 1942.


Rommel's invasion of Eygpt in fact made good military sense. Where Rommel came unstuck was in attacking immediately at the first battle of El Alamein without first reconnoitering the ground he was assaulting. Instead of stopping to consolidate his position he got involved in attacking a strongpoint and was bogged down, incurring irreplaceable losses.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

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RF
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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby RF » Wed Jun 04, 2008 12:37 pm

Karl Heidenreich wrote:
George Armostrong Custer: Little Big Horn´s main participant.


Custer only made one tactical error: splitting his force into three at the Little Big Horn without first ascertaining true enemy strength and firepower.
Custer's record prior to that, particulary in the Civil War, was I believe pretty good.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.

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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby aurora » Thu Dec 11, 2014 2:54 pm

FIELD MARSHAL THE VISCOUNT SLIM
KG. GCB. GCMG. GCVO. GBE. DSO. MC


As commander of the 10th Indian Brigade, Slim took part in the conquest of Abyssinia (1940-41) where he was again wounded. Promoted to major-general in June 1941, he led 10th Indian Division during the Iraq expedition, the Syria-Lebanon campaign, and the invasion of Iran. In March 1942 he was promoted to command Burma Corps, which had been chased out of Rangoon by the Japanese. Heavily outnumbered, Slim was forced to withdraw to India, but he made sure the 900-mile (1400 km) retreat did not turn into a rout, leading a controlled military withdrawal. Slim then took over XV Corps of the Eastern Army in the Arakan in April 1943. The campaign was a disaster, partly because General Noel Irwin, the Eastern Army’s commander, sidelined Slim. The subsequent fall-out led to Irwin’s dismissal and Slim’s appointment as commander of 14th Army.

Slim emphasised the need for jungle warfare training and the use of more aggressive tactics that included the formation of defensive 'boxes' by surrounded units that were supplied by air. Perhaps his greatest contribution though was that of talking to soldiers and restoring their morale. He was a fine manager of men and able to get them to do his bidding. Slim undertook a partially successful attack in the Arakan in February 1944, and then, in the battles of Imphal and Kohima, repelled a Japanese invasion of north-east India. Both campaigns demonstrated that his new approach worked. The Japanese were able to encircle the formations of 14th Army, but could not defeat them, losing over 60,000 men and exhausting themselves in the process.

Slim now drove them south. Fighting through the monsoon and supplied by air, his men crossed the River Chindwin, took Akyab in the Arakan, and won bridgeheads across the Irrawaddy. After fierce fighting Meiktila and Mandalay were captured in March 1945. The route south to Rangoon now lay open and 4th Corps was only 30 miles (48 km) away when the city fell to a combined air and seaborne operation in May. It was a victory won through the courage and endurance of the troops and the superb generalship of Slim.

After the war he was Commandant of the Imperial Defence College (1946-48) and then Chief of the Imperial General Staff (1948-52).
Between 1953 and 1960 Slim was governor-general of Australia.
Quo Fata Vocant-Whither the Fates call

Jim

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Re: There are still heroes left...

Postby lynn1212 » Mon Dec 15, 2014 5:23 am

I believe that Napoleon, as important as he was (even a cannon was named after him--- point of history the napoleon cannon was not named after this napoleon. it is named after its inventor napoleon the third


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