[lit-ideas] Re: Sherman paralleled to Gore/Obama

  • From: Eric Yost <mr.eric.yost@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 21 Jun 2008 16:20:10 -0400

A military historian friend (offlist) gave this opinion:


Sherman and Grant were a team by 1864 carrying out a joint strategy, S. the hammer in the southeast tearing the guts out of the slaver empire and G. the anvil in Virginia holding down the best slaver troops ... all those names are great, but probably get too much attention ...

one of our greatest generals was probably Winfield Scott in the Mexican War, but nobody pays any attention to him anymore ... his campaign from Vera Cruz to Mexico City was a masterpiece of maneuver against superior forces, ending in a crushing victory - but against a nimrod like Santa Anna...

of course you have to look at who the opposition was that made these generals great ... Rommel was facing British and American incompetents (Fredendall!) who made him look good by comparison ...

the only really evenly matched generals on that list were probably Scipio and Hannibal, so that makes Scipio's victory at Zama more impressive ... Basil L-H is probably overrated too; Churchill was a great believer in bhl's strategy of the indirect approach (trying to avoid the trenches by grand operational level maneuver) but it ended up in fiascos like Narvik and Dieppe, and even the Italian campaign ... eventually you have to close with the enemy main strength and destroy it


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