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Alexander the Great vs. Napoleon (Round IV)

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  • #16
    Originally posted by grognard View Post
    Then why have you been hiding your light under a bushel? All you have discussed about Alexander have been the battles against the Persians.I've mentioned his actions in the mountains, on ther steppes and in India and you never commented one way or the other. I even mentioned how his crossing a guarded river is still studied and you didn't say, well, it wasn't that impressive and here's why.
    And? You never mentioned why it was impressive. We still study the battle of Teutoburg forest, but does that imply that Varus was particularly brilliant that day? Or, for an example that doesn't include a spectacular victory or a spectacular defeat, we still study Borodino, a tactical draw.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Alina View Post
      Napoleon! This is where the spoiled rich kid with daddy's army steps off.
      We agree completely on this one Alina! Hell, for some Armchair General contest I used that for my point as why Napoleon was better then Alex.
      And it's over the mountain and over the Main,
      Through Gibralter, to France and Spain.
      Pit a feather tae your bonnet, and a kilt aboon your knee,
      Enlist my bonnie laddie and come awa with me.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Zouave View Post
        A reformed army in bad shape.
        If that ain't the understatement of the century...or millennium as it were.

        Not to mention the Sarissa gives Alexander a nice offensive edge over his early opponents, if I'm recalling correctly.
        And it's over the mountain and over the Main,
        Through Gibralter, to France and Spain.
        Pit a feather tae your bonnet, and a kilt aboon your knee,
        Enlist my bonnie laddie and come awa with me.

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        • #19
          Defensive edge, actually. The companions were the offensive weapon, along with his other cavalry. His standard tactic was to use the phalanx as a holding force and the cavalry as the decisive weapon. In his victories over the Persians you see this a lot with his oblique advance, his center secured by the phalanx, and then his use of the companions to exploit gaps in the Persian lines to break a flank and envelop.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Alina View Post
            And? You never mentioned why it was impressive. We still study the battle of Teutoburg forest, but does that imply that Varus was particularly brilliant that day? Or, for an example that doesn't include a spectacular victory or a spectacular defeat, we still study Borodino, a tactical draw.
            There's a lot more to Alexander than you've been implying--how many generals win against regular armies--both Persian and Indian, win in the mountains, win on the steppes and successfully besiege previously untakable cities like Tyre? The question is what's not impressive about winning in all those circumstances, even in ones that his father never dreamed of--like facing an army with elephants in a place that was "off the map"?

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Alina View Post
              Defensive edge, actually. The companions were the offensive weapon, along with his other cavalry. His standard tactic was to use the phalanx as a holding force and the cavalry as the decisive weapon. In his victories over the Persians you see this a lot with his oblique advance, his center secured by the phalanx, and then his use of the companions to exploit gaps in the Persian lines to break a flank and envelop.
              Yea, and all Napoleon did was the manuver sur les derrieres when he won.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Alina View Post
                Defensive edge, actually. The companions were the offensive weapon, along with his other cavalry. His standard tactic was to use the phalanx as a holding force and the cavalry as the decisive weapon. In his victories over the Persians you see this a lot with his oblique advance, his center secured by the phalanx, and then his use of the companions to exploit gaps in the Persian lines to break a flank and envelop.

                I'll defer to you're expertise on this matter; I never really studied Alexander, sadly.
                And it's over the mountain and over the Main,
                Through Gibralter, to France and Spain.
                Pit a feather tae your bonnet, and a kilt aboon your knee,
                Enlist my bonnie laddie and come awa with me.

                Comment


                • #23
                  Napoleon for me.

                  The Louisiana sale was enough to earn my respect. Alexander has given me nuthin'.
                  History is the version of past events that people have decided to agree upon. Napoleon Bonaparte
                  _________
                  BoRG
                  __________
                  "I am Arthur, King of the Britons!"

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                  • #24
                    This was a hard one. Both of them had their shining moments and their low moments. Both of them used great tactics and conquered large tracts of land with their Armies. In the end I went with Napoleon.
                    "We Will Stay Here, If We Must All Go to Hell Together"
                    -Col. John R. Cooke, 27th NC

                    Avatar: My Grandfather on the right. His twin on the left. Their older brother in the middle. In their Navy Blues

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by grognard View Post
                      There's a lot more to Alexander than you've been implying--how many generals win against regular armies--both Persian and Indian, win in the mountains, win on the steppes and successfully besiege previously untakable cities like Tyre? The question is what's not impressive about winning in all those circumstances, even in ones that his father never dreamed of--like facing an army with elephants in a place that was "off the map"?
                      Amazing that you still think beating elephants is some kind of a massive feat. I'll put it to you this way - name one battle in which the side with elephants actually won! Or, to prevent you from naming half the battles in Indian history, name one battle in which elephants were the decisive factor for victory.

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                      • #26
                        I don't like Alexander's leadership style either. At Gaugamela, Alexander breaks through on the right, ignores the left, and starts pursuing Darius. Only after repeated messages does he break off the pursuit. By the time he gets back, the Persians have actually broken through his left flank, and started looting his baggage train. Had they been disciplined, they might have crushed his army then and there. However, they weren't, and Alexander returned and the battle was won. Still, how can you support a general who makes that kind of an error in judgment? It's ridiculous. He nearly threw away his army. The general who saved him, Parmenion, was the very one he would have murdered later.

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                        • #27
                          Oh, and sorry for the repeated posts, but I want to address Hydaspes, as you keep bringing it up. He made a demonstration to distract them, and crossed downstream. It worked, good job, but it's not unbelievably clever. I think I read the same thing in Xenophon. At any rate, it's the first thing that would have occurred to anyone.

                          Secondly, look at what Alexander did at Hydaspes - oblique advance to the right!!! Again! Every battle. This time, he made a flank around the left to hit the right, but still, hilarious that he has to use the same oblique advance and companions attack in every battle.

                          And then the battle of the Persian Gate is another good one. He was held for 30 days. It was the Persians' revenge for Thermopylae. Alexander did eventually win, but then again, so did Xerxes, and yet Xerxes is viewed as a butcher who threw men at a problem, and Alexander is credited with used a pincer movement. And yet, Alexander was stopped up ten times longer than Xerxes.

                          For me, I think the difference wasn't his tactics or his leadership, but his army and its doctrine of combined arms. And that credit belongs to Philip, not Alexander.
                          Last edited by Alina; 03 Apr 08, 23:31.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Alina View Post
                            Oh, and sorry for the repeated posts, but I want to address Hydaspes, as you keep bringing it up. He made a demonstration to distract them, and crossed downstream. It worked, good job, but it's not unbelievably clever. I think I read the same thing in Xenophon. At any rate, it's the first thing that would have occurred to anyone.

                            Secondly, look at what Alexander did at Hydaspes - oblique advance to the right!!! Again! Every battle. This time, he made a flank around the left to hit the right, but still, hilarious that he has to use the same oblique advance and companions attack in every battle.

                            And then the battle of the Persian Gate is another good one. He was held for 30 days. It was the Persians' revenge for Thermopylae. Alexander did eventually win, but then again, so did Xerxes, and yet Xerxes is viewed as a butcher who threw men at a problem, and Alexander is credited with used a pincer movement. And yet, Alexander was stopped up ten times longer than Xerxes.

                            For me, I think the difference wasn't his tactics or his leadership, but his army and its doctrine of combined arms. And that credit belongs to Philip, not Alexander.

                            Glad you finally covered most everything. Granted Philip forged the tool, how many other generals would use it properly no matter what the situation.

                            Actually, I'm down on Napoleon for some of the samew reasons you're down on Alexander. Too big an ego, same tactics too often.

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                            • #29
                              I gotta vote for Nappy!

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                              • #30
                                Napoleon for me. I can't vote for who Victor Davis Hanson refers to as a "Macedonian thug".
                                Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

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