View Poll Results: Best US General

Voters
26. This poll is closed
  • George Washington

    4 15.38%
  • Winfred Scott

    0 0%
  • Andrew Jackson

    0 0%
  • Ulysses S Grant

    2 7.69%
  • William T Sherman

    2 7.69%
  • Robert E Lee

    10 38.46%
  • Stonewall Jackson

    5 19.23%
  • Albert Sidney Johnston

    0 0%
  • John Perishing

    0 0%
  • George Patton

    1 3.85%
  • Douglas MacArthur

    1 3.85%
  • Other

    1 3.85%
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 55

Thread: Best American General?

  1. #1
    Old Town Road Senior Member Strike For The South's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Between Louis' sheets
    Posts
    10,369

    Default Best American General?

    Well who was it?

    I have always been partial to Lee but lately I am open to suggestion as I find Lee has a massive cult of personality and no one says anything bad about him, He is on the historians good list
    There, but for the grace of God, goes John Bradford

    My aim, then, was to whip the rebels, to humble their pride, to follow them to their inmost recesses, and make them fear and dread us. Fear is the beginning of wisdom.

    I am tired and sick of war. Its glory is all moonshine. It is only those who have neither fired a shot nor heard the shrieks and groans of the wounded who cry aloud for blood, for vengeance, for desolation.

  2. #2
    Shadow Senior Member Kagemusha's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Helsinki,Finland
    Posts
    9,546

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Stonewall Jackson. He was both amazing Corps commander and maybe even better in independent role as his valley campaign proved. The man really understood the principle of warfare, by showing up at the right place at the right time, with right amount of force. At Valley he was fighting enemy thrice his own and still kept the initiative completely to himself.
    Ja Mata Tosainu Sama.

  3. #3
    Useless Member Member Fixiwee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Austria
    Posts
    509

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Lee was a brilliant tacticians. He is probably the "best" american general. But the thing is, the list urges to compare different people from different timespans in different wars with unique situation.

  4. #4
    Vermonter and Seperatist Member Uesugi Kenshin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    The Mountains.
    Posts
    3,868

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Omar Bradley was pretty good.

    I'd say he was equal to Patton in a lot of ways, not because Bradley was a great general, but because Patton had so many personal foibles and you could say Patton sort of fell into the cult of the attack attitude. I don't know how the man would fare if he were put on the defensive. I could be wrong though, anyone have any thoughts on this?
    "A man's dying is more his survivor's affair than his own."
    C.S. Lewis

    "So many people tiptoe through life, so carefully, to arrive, safely, at death."
    Jermaine Evans

  5. #5
    A Member Member Conradus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Going to the land where men walk without footprints.
    Posts
    948

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Where's Ike?

  6. #6
    L'Etranger Senior Member Banquo's Ghost's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Hunting the Snark, a long way from Tipperary...
    Posts
    5,604

    Default Re: Best American General?

    In my opinion, the test of a great general is his strategic, not tactical ability. A notable general should win his campaign, not just the odd engagement.

    I have never really understood the devotion to General Lee, except as a romantic attachment. His mistakes at Gettysburg were born of hubris and his exceptional tactical ability actually led him astray in this three day modern battle and subsequently.

    I would cast my vote for Washington. He started with a rabble and over a long campaign and despite awful setbacks, managed to forge an army and fight the pre-eminent power in the world to a standstill and thus victory.

    Eisenhower would also be high on the list.
    "If there is a sin against life, it consists not so much in despairing as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this one."
    Albert Camus "Noces"

  7. #7
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    6,407

    Default Re: Best American General?

    I have always admired the tactics of Robert E. Lee, and that is who I voted for, but I still much prefer Eisenhower.

  8. #8
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Latibulm mali regis in muris.
    Posts
    11,238

    Default Re: Best American General?

    I'd add a few more for consideration:

    Nathan B Forrest

    John Buford

    Zachary Taylor

    Benedict Arnold

    Francis Marion

    Lewis B. Puller

    Smedley Butler

    Dwight Eisenhower

    Roy Geiger

    Thomas F. Meagher
    "The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -- Milton Friedman

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." -- H. L. Mencken

  9. #9
    Old Town Road Senior Member Strike For The South's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Between Louis' sheets
    Posts
    10,369

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seamus Fermanagh View Post
    I'd add a few more for consideration:

    Nathan B Forrest

    John Buford

    Zachary Taylor

    Benedict Arnold

    Francis Marion

    Lewis B. Puller

    Smedley Butler

    Dwight Eisenhower

    Roy Geiger

    Thomas F. Meagher
    No idea whom these men are. I feel so unprepared.
    There, but for the grace of God, goes John Bradford

    My aim, then, was to whip the rebels, to humble their pride, to follow them to their inmost recesses, and make them fear and dread us. Fear is the beginning of wisdom.

    I am tired and sick of war. Its glory is all moonshine. It is only those who have neither fired a shot nor heard the shrieks and groans of the wounded who cry aloud for blood, for vengeance, for desolation.

  10. #10
    Kanto Kanrei Member Marshal Murat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Eye of the Hurricane (FL)
    Posts
    3,372

    Default Re: Best American General?

    It's difficult (as it always is) to pick between generals, to get a good debate. Years ago I tried, but the results gravitated usually to the better-known generals. That's beside the point however.

    George Washington
    A general who was able, with the help of his subordinates, to obtain victory in America despite a foe who possessed supreme naval and land power. While he didn't win every battle that came his way, his strikes against the British, when they succeeded, were key to winning French support and the American Revolution.

    Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson
    Here was a general whose skills ensured victory in the Shenandoah Valley, at Chancellorsville, Manassas, at Fredericksburg, and elsewhere. He outfought, outskilled, outmaneuvered, and out-prayed the Union forces with his troops.

    Robert E. Lee
    Robert E. Lee was a smart and capable commander. He kept together an army that otherwise would've crumbled, especially before the Gates of Richmond. Lee was definitely served by his commanders (see Jackson), but he knew what he was doing. In defeat, he knew that the guerrilla war was dangerous and destructive, and helped prevent this from occurring in the East. He successfully defeated the Union at Manassas, Chancellorsville, Fredericksburg, and elsewhere. He forced U.S. Grant to commit his men into suicidal marches at Cold Harbor or Petersberg.
    "Nietzsche is dead" - God

    "I agree, although I support China I support anyone discovering things for Science and humanity." - lenin96

    Re: Pursuit of happiness
    Have you just been dumped?

    I ask because it's usually something like that which causes outbursts like this, needless to say I dissagree completely.

  11. #11
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Latibulm mali regis in muris.
    Posts
    11,238

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Buford was a cavalry commander in the Army of the Potomac. Hooker later stated that Buford should have been given command of the cavalry instead of Pleasanton. Buford was the man who fought a good delaying action against Heath on Day 1 at Gettysburg, finally allowing the Union to have the good ground for a change. His resilience was a fair part of what got Lee's "blood up" and helped contribute to that victory for the North.


    Francis Marion "the swamp fox" fought a surprisingly successful guerilla war in the Carolinas during the revolution. The inability of the British to bring him to heel was a source of frustration throughout the middle of war. The excesses of his most noted opponent, Col Tarleton, backfired in terms of local morale (though to be fair, Marion was no saint).


    Roy Geiger was a USMC aviator flying combat in WW1 and between the wars. He then commanded the Marine Air Group that fought in the Southern Solomons and then commanded amphibuous assault groups on Bougainville and Okinawa. Needless to say, he was one of the best at close air support etc.


    Thomas Meagher was an Irish-born rabble-rouser who, having been exiled from the Old Sod, eventually wafted onto the shores of America. He commanded the Irish Brigade during the Civil War (ACW) and is often considered one of the premier brigadier generals of that conflict. He had great big brass ones that clanked when he walked.
    "The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -- Milton Friedman

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." -- H. L. Mencken

  12. #12

    Default Re: Best American General?

    This poll could really just be cut to two options, Lee and Jackson. If you wanted to spice it up, you could add some of the other distinguished Southern commanders such as Longstreet, Johnston, etc, and even Forrest for his asymmetrical approach. Its funny, the best American commanders came almost exclusively from the CSA. Really though, it comes back to Lee and Jackson.

    Opinion has vacillated back and forth on these two. For the longest time Lee, being the superior, was considered the master. Lately, opinion seems to have reversed. As we all know, historians love nothing better than to challenge popular assumptions. As such, many have reassessed the historical record and have asserted that Jackson was, in fact, the superior tactician.

    Personally, I'm not sure. Both men demonstrated a level of martial expertise far superior to their peers in America, and arguably equal or greater than their European counterparts. Jackson certainly showed more daring, but he was also in a more appropriate position to do so. Also, Jackson died before the devastating attritional effects began to take hold among the Southern forces.

    To be honest, that’s it.

    Before the ACW, American commanders performed fairly poorly against real opposition. Washington was a great leader. He was politically savvy, persistent in the face of adversity, charismatic, and knew how to best take advantage of his circumstances. A great general, though? He lost a number of engagements, and the ones he won were not exactly brilliant military victories. While the crossing of the Deleware was quite coy, it was microscopic in scale. The leadership wasn't much better during the War of 1812 aside from some bright spots like Jackson in New Orleans. Again, though, in a battle that resulted in only 46 British dead. The Mexican-American war was the proving ground for many of the great Civil War generals, but I'm not really sure how much credit Zach Taylor deserves for that victory considering the opposition. Then again, the overall strategy culminating in the taking of Mexico City was well planned and executed, so he may deserve another look.

    After the ACW, American commanders in general again failed to demonstrate any particular special abilities, but for completely different reasons - they didn't have to. In every major conflict in this period the Americans have held extreme numerical advantages. When victory is assured, generalship becomes more about politics and personalities than strategy and tactics.

    Patton gets a lot of praise, not undeservedly either. Like Washington, he had the special ability to drive his men harder than other commanders all the while gaining more of their respect and admiration than his peers. Honestly, though, he did not have much competition among other Allied commanders. Further, he did not demonstrate any special martial ability. While his ideas on combined arms operations were somewhat revolutionary among the allies, they would have been considered child's play by the Germans.

  13. #13
    Kanto Kanrei Member Marshal Murat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Eye of the Hurricane (FL)
    Posts
    3,372

    Default Re: Best American General?

    One could argue both ways on Washington.
    While he wasn't a "great" military leader a la Alexander of Macedon, he did win the battles that counted. The concept of "winning all the battles and the war" or "winning the important battles and the war" probably won't ever be resolved. You hear the same thing about Ho Chi Minh. He lost the Tet Offensive, but won the war. Was he a great?

    One could call William Henry Harrison a great leader simply because he was able to drive out the Natives, and the same could be said on Winfield Scott. He presided from 1810-1861 in the Army, either drilling them or establishing the Anaconda plan, also expanding US influence westward.



    Lee and Jackson were both great in their own spheres. I've read some stuff that says "Jackson could've won the war after Shenandoah Valley", others praise Lee for setting Burnside up for Fredericksburg and turning around the Peninsula Campaign. When they were in their element, both generals were successful. The Shenandoah Valley campaign was a strategic and tactical success for Jackson. No doubt about it.
    Once Lee assumed control of the Army of Northern Virginia, he beat the Yankees both on the battlefield and mentally.

    I would also say that Sherman would be a serious candidate. His leadership at Shiloh ensured at least one regiment wasn't running around like headless chicken. He continued to provide serious leadership that culminated in his destruction of the Southern will to wage war against the US forces.

    Once the US could wield overwhelming numbers against a smaller and less-advanced foe, until WW1, we were like all other Imperial nations.
    "Nietzsche is dead" - God

    "I agree, although I support China I support anyone discovering things for Science and humanity." - lenin96

    Re: Pursuit of happiness
    Have you just been dumped?

    I ask because it's usually something like that which causes outbursts like this, needless to say I dissagree completely.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Senior Member Fisherking's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    East of Augusta Vindelicorum
    Posts
    5,575

    Default Re: Best American General?

    I want to know how you could leave out this man when discussing American Generals..

    George Rogers Clark

    He fought the Western Campaign of the War of Independence alone and was the only American Commander to defeat Arnold in the field.

    Nathanael Greene deserves mention also. He is considered by most to be the best strategist of the American Revolution and one of the greatest military minds the United States has ever produced.


    Education: that which reveals to the wise,
    and conceals from the stupid,
    the vast limits of their knowledge.
    Mark Twain

  15. #15
    master of the wierd people Member Ibrahim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Who cares
    Posts
    6,073

    Default Re: Best American General?

    well, I randomly picked Sherman. they are all good on there, and i had a hard time picking one. lots of others did not make it to the poll as well.

    But washington is not a tactically brilliant general-his genius was strategic: hold the army long enough to win the war.
    Last edited by Ibrahim; 03-04-2009 at 18:42.
    I was once alive, but then a girl came and took out my ticker.

    my 4 year old modding project--nearing completion: http://www.twcenter.net/forums/showthread.php?t=219506 (if you wanna help, join me).

    tired of ridiculous trouble with walking animations? then you need my brand newmotion capture for the common man!

    "We have proven, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that if we put the belonging to, in the I don't know what, all gas lines will explode " -alBernameg

  16. #16
    Swarthylicious Member Spino's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Brooklyn, New York
    Posts
    2,604

    Default Re: Best American General?

    I must chime in with the Stonewall cheerleaders and voice my support for Thomas Jackson as well. Few generals of the Civil War could exploit an enemy's strategic position as well as Jackson and his ability to lead by example went beyond all expectations of a high ranking officer of that era. Jackson had few faults and an extraordinary war record to back it all up. One has to wonder how much longer the war would have gone on had he not been tragically killed by friendly fire? Jackson was to Lee what Davout was to Napoleon, an astoundingly capable & irreplaceable subordinate.

    Also rans would be Lee, MacArthur, Sherman & Patton (in that order). As much as I love Patton the more I think about it the more I feel compelled to acknowledge MacArthur as the better commander. His island hopping strategy in WW2 and his astounding landing at Inchon were a combination of sheer brilliance and balls of hi-grade titanium.

    Regarding Washington, he was a great leader by means of his force of will and charisma but his tactical shortcomings were simply too great for him to be considered in the 'best' category.
    Last edited by Spino; 03-04-2009 at 20:26.
    "Why spoil the beauty of the thing with legality?" - Theodore Roosevelt

    Idealism is masturbation, but unlike real masturbation idealism actually makes one blind. - Fragony

    Though Adrian did a brilliant job of defending the great man that is Hugo Chavez, I decided to post this anyway.. - JAG (who else?)

  17. #17
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Latibulm mali regis in muris.
    Posts
    11,238

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Quote Originally Posted by PanzerJaeger View Post
    ....The leadership wasn't much better during the War of 1812 aside from some bright spots like Jackson in New Orleans. Again, though, in a battle that resulted in only 46 British dead. ...
    You're referring only to the spoiler attack before Christmas.

    Dec. 23/24: British 46 dead, 167 wounded, 64 captured; USA 24 dead, 115 wounded, 74 captured.

    This was a draw, despite Jackson's choice to launch a night attack. It did, however, accomplish his purpose of pinning the British in place while he moved troops into the rougher terrain to the North. This effectively blocked the British from anything but the Frontal assault they later made or a withdraw.

    Jan 8: British 385 dead, 1186 wounded, 484 captured; USA 13 dead, 58 wounded, 30captured.

    THIS was the battle of New Orleans, and it was a signal defeat. Pakenham should not have accepted a frontal assault and should have withdrawn. He did not survive his mistake.

    Of the British expeditionary force of 11,000, roughly 7500 troops were deployed forward to capture New Orleans. Of those 7,500, 431 died, 548 were captured, and 1353 wounded. Since, given medical standards for the era, roughly half of those wounded would die of wounds or be unable to return to service, we're talking about 1655 of 7500 men or 22%. By way of comparison British & Allied forces at Waterloo suffered roughly 23% casualties and British Imperial forces during the first day of the Somme Offensive suffered 9.5%. The Battle of New Orleans was a serious engagment by the standards of the era.
    "The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -- Milton Friedman

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." -- H. L. Mencken

  18. #18
    Poll Smoker Senior Member CountArach's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    9,029

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Lee should get this title. I don't see how someone can win a battle like Antietam and not be counted as the greatest.
    Rest in Peace TosaInu, the Org will be your legacy
    Quote Originally Posted by Leon Blum - For All Mankind
    Nothing established by violence and maintained by force, nothing that degrades humanity and is based on contempt for human personality, can endure.

  19. #19
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Latibulm mali regis in muris.
    Posts
    11,238

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Quote Originally Posted by CountArach View Post
    Lee should get this title. I don't see how someone can win a battle like Antietam and not be counted as the greatest.
    Antietam? That was McClellan's victory (if anybody's). I'd call it a bloody stalemate that Lincoln and Seward "spun" for all they were worth.

    Lee's best were 2nd Bull Run and Chancellorsville. Some would add Fredericksburg, but I'd put that down to Burnside dooming his own army. The M2TW AI could have outfought Burnside that day. The attack up Marye's Heights truly is among the epitomes of military idiocy. In fact, if we were seeking to determine the WORST ever yank general, Burnside would win by a mile.
    "The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -- Milton Friedman

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." -- H. L. Mencken

  20. #20
    Poll Smoker Senior Member CountArach's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    9,029

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seamus Fermanagh View Post
    Antietam? That was McClellan's victory (if anybody's). I'd call it a bloody stalemate that Lincoln and Seward "spun" for all they were worth.
    I don't know. I personally would call it a slight tactical victory for Leee because he was outnumbered close to 2-1 and managed to deal out more damage than he received. Strategically wiki hands it to the Union, but I don't see how Lee could have fought it much better.
    Quote Originally Posted by Seamus Fermanagh View Post
    Lee's best were 2nd Bull Run and Chancellorsville. Some would add Fredericksburg, but I'd put that down to Burnside dooming his own army. The M2TW AI could have outfought Burnside that day. The attack up Marye's Heights truly is among the epitomes of military idiocy. In fact, if we were seeking to determine the WORST ever yank general, Burnside would win by a mile.
    2nd Manassas would get no arguments from me as a brilliant victory.
    Rest in Peace TosaInu, the Org will be your legacy
    Quote Originally Posted by Leon Blum - For All Mankind
    Nothing established by violence and maintained by force, nothing that degrades humanity and is based on contempt for human personality, can endure.

  21. #21
    Kanto Kanrei Member Marshal Murat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Eye of the Hurricane (FL)
    Posts
    3,372

    Default Re: Best American General?

    While Lee did lose to McClellan, he didn't win either. His withdrawal from Maryland definitely prevented an early end to the war.

    Burnside was an okay general, he didn't win many, but he did win some. His maneuver into Fredericksburg was just because he felt pressured into advancing, even into the guns of Lee. He's like Haig and other WW1 generals, following "doctrine" even if it cost them thousands of dead.
    "Nietzsche is dead" - God

    "I agree, although I support China I support anyone discovering things for Science and humanity." - lenin96

    Re: Pursuit of happiness
    Have you just been dumped?

    I ask because it's usually something like that which causes outbursts like this, needless to say I dissagree completely.

  22. #22

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seamus Fermanagh View Post
    You're referring only to the spoiler attack before Christmas.

    Dec. 23/24: British 46 dead, 167 wounded, 64 captured; USA 24 dead, 115 wounded, 74 captured.

    This was a draw, despite Jackson's choice to launch a night attack. It did, however, accomplish his purpose of pinning the British in place while he moved troops into the rougher terrain to the North. This effectively blocked the British from anything but the Frontal assault they later made or a withdraw.
    Nice catch on the casualties, Seamus. There seems to be more to the battle than I remembered. I had thought that the Brits launched their disastrous assault on their own, but Jackson forcing them into it indeed demonstrates strong generalship.
    Last edited by CBR; 03-06-2009 at 14:15. Reason: Removed quote from another deleted post

  23. #23
    Member Member Rufus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Virginia, USA
    Posts
    332

    Default Re: Best American General?

    I wouldn't put him up there with Washington, Lee and Eisenhower, but Gen. David Petraeus now deserves to be in the discussion, even though he's still serving. He played a huge role in taking what appeared to be a likely strategic defeat in Iraq and putting it on the path to stability. He is also the first U.S. general to implement a successful (so far) large-scale counterinsurgency campaign in the Middle East.
    An E:TW AAR on the American Revolution: The Long March of Liberty

  24. #24

    Default Re: Best American General?

    George Washington
    A general who was able, with the help of his subordinates, to obtain victory in America despite a foe who possessed supreme naval and land power. While he didn't win every battle that came his way, his strikes against the British, when they succeeded, were key to winning French support and the American Revolution.
    Naval, yes. Land, no - a common myth. The British Army doctrine in 1775 was woeful due to years of inaction, additionally, both the Rebel Militia and Regulars combined outnumbered the British Army in America considerably.

    I don't respect Jackson much mainly because his victory at New Orleans was brought about by a typically British trait - Suicidal charges against heavily fortified positions. This more or less characterised the British set backs during the War of 1812. Had Jackson taken his force and routed the British in open battle akin to what the British did at Cryslers Farm then he'd get my respect. But that is probably testament to his wise thinking, he knew his army stood no chance against the battle hardended Highlanders so he camped behind earth works accordingly.

    Robert Lee got my vote. Pretty much broke and outnumbered he still had the US/Union Army beat on many occasions.
    Last edited by TenkiSoratoti_; 03-17-2009 at 15:52.
    "I know that the French soldier advances to meet the British bayonet with more hesitation, I will not say trepidation, than he would meet any other enemy. The British soldier rejoices in his bayonet."

    General Thomas Dyneley, Royal Horse Artillery.

  25. #25
    ex Lord Member Melvish's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    In a chair
    Posts
    108

    Default Re: Best American General?

    I like Ike
    I destroy my enemies when I make them my friends. ---Abraham Lincoln

  26. #26
    Bureaucratically Efficient Senior Member TinCow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Posts
    13,729

    Default Re: Best American General?

    I'm a bit of a late arrival to this thread, but I think MacArthur should get some more credit than he seems to. MacArthur is often disparaged for his failure to hold the Philippines, his decision to leave the Corregidor, and for not anticipating the Chinese attack in Korea. Of these, I think only the third is really valid. MacArthur accurately predicted the invasion plans the Japanese would use and quickly enacted a defensive plan that was designed to respond to it as best as he was able. I blame the failure of the defense of the Philippines on general American reluctance to supply the level of forces necessary to hold the islands in the first place. The units available were simply not capable of the task, and it's to MacArthur's credit that they held out as long as they did.

    The criticism of his abandonment of Corregidor is not really a military criticism but more of a point of honor. Many felt he should have taken the Army equivalent of going down with the ship. This is, frankly, absurd. MacArthur was one of the few generals who had an intimate knowledge of Japanese tactics and culture and his loss would have been a major blow to the Army's campaign in the Pacific. His escape was the proper thing to do under the circumstances.

    This is then countered by a very strong claim that he was the best US general of WW2. MacArthur was very careful in his defense and then advance across the Pacific, picking targets that were always strategically signifiant and bypassing everything else. The end result was a campaign that did vast damage to the Japanese war effort at a relatively minimal cost of American lives. The contrast with the Marines' campaigns was startling, with the Marines suffering significantly higher casualties for objectives that had far less strategic impact on the outcome of the war.

    Into Korea, MacArthur's response to the North Korean attack was decisive and inspired. Inchon was an incredibly bold move and the success of the attack and the subsequent offensive routed the North Koreans so quickly that it the campaign deserves to be rated with Patton's Third Army advance in the annals of great break-out moves. MacArthur's main criticism is in his failure to anticipate the Chinese response to the defeat of the North Koreans. While this is an entirely valid point, it is worth noting that even Truman did not believe the Chinese would attack. In any case, this is a failure that is heavily political in nature, and not one that I believe should be ranked up there with strategic or tactical errors.

    In general, I see MacArthur's performance as being very similar to Lee's. Both were masters of strategy who used extremely limited resources to maximum effect. They both have cults of personality that impact their historical view to a great extent. They both also made incredibly significant errors; Lee on Day 3 of Gettysburg, and MacArthur's failure to anticipate the Chinese attack. Of these two, I think Lee's order of the charge is the more egregious, as it is a pure military decision and was simple folly. Lee made a battlefield error at a deciding moment of a battle that could have changed the course of the entire war. In contrast MacArthur's error, while also massive, was to a great extent political in nature and thus is of less merit when discussing his actual skill as a general.

    I do not think that MacArthur should necessarily win the title of Best American General, but he should certainly be one of the leading contenders.
    Last edited by TinCow; 03-18-2009 at 20:17.


  27. #27
    Member Member Fwapper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    Posts
    202

    Default Re: Best American General?

    This guy. :P

    Self proclaimed loser of 'User Who Looks Most Like His Avatar' competition.

  28. #28
    Lord Saika Magoichi Member Seign Thelas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    358

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Jackson or Sherman. Neither side had a shot without them.

    Even though Sherman was a war criminal by today's standards and Jackson was a Jesus freak.

    But Sherman did what he had to do. Without his March to the Sea or his Total War strategy, the war could have dragged on for years more. And if Jackson had lived a bit longer, I wouldn't be surprised to have seen Lee winning the war and the CSA being an established country and ally to the USA.

  29. #29
    Vermonter and Seperatist Member Uesugi Kenshin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    The Mountains.
    Posts
    3,868

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seign Thelas View Post
    Jackson or Sherman. Neither side had a shot without them.

    Even though Sherman was a war criminal by today's standards and Jackson was a Jesus freak.

    But Sherman did what he had to do. Without his March to the Sea or his Total War strategy, the war could have dragged on for years more. And if Jackson had lived a bit longer, I wouldn't be surprised to have seen Lee winning the war and the CSA being an established country and ally to the USA.
    I would be very surprised to see an amicable relationship between the CSA and USA. If the CSA had one the war through some terrible miracle I expect the two states would have been bitter rivals and probably fought a war or two more.
    "A man's dying is more his survivor's affair than his own."
    C.S. Lewis

    "So many people tiptoe through life, so carefully, to arrive, safely, at death."
    Jermaine Evans

  30. #30
    Enlightened Despot Member Vladimir's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    In ur nun, causing a bloody schism!
    Posts
    7,906

    Default Re: Best American General?

    Washington; because without him none of the others would have existed.


    Reinvent the British and you get a global finance center, edible food and better service. Reinvent the French and you may just get more Germans.
    Quote Originally Posted by Evil_Maniac From Mars
    How do you motivate your employees? Waterboarding, of course.
    Ik hou van ferme grieten en dikke pinten
    Down with dried flowers!
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 



Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO