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Greatest military system of all times

Discussion in 'World History' started by Ubik01, Sep 4, 2001.

  1. Ubik01

    Ubik01 Guest

    There is plenty o'discussion about it among all real warmongers: What was the best military system in history. For those who are not familiar with such terms, a "military system" is a form of organization for the army of a given nation, empire etc - any organized and stable state, that is kinda prototyped and used in excess - sometimes even copied by others. A military system is not barely the tradition of a warlike nation - two examples:
    The Roman Legion is a military system. The Mongol hordes are not. The Greek hoplite phalanx is a military system. The ravaging Gauls are not.

    So, here is the story. In the ancient era, two military systems are those considered "the greatest" by historicans: The latter Greek system ("Macedonian phalanx") and the Roman (Legions).

    Of those two I'd pick the Legions - because they were actually more consistant and they didn't require great leadership to be effective - good leadership would do the job.

    The phalanx, on the other hand, had two major drawbacks: The first is that it needed great leadership - a leader intelligent enough and experienced in combined arms, because the phalanx's flanks were very vulnerable. Alexander was all that (he used his cavalry and light infantry in the flanks of his phalanx (the latter was the mainstay of his army) and he achieved all those victories. And secondly, the phalanx consisted not of professional soldiers (as did the Roman Legion after Julius Ceasar) but of civilian conscripts - and that has some visible problems too.

    That's for the ancient times. Organized military systems were abandoned after the fall of Rome, but still some systems have risen that are quite memorable - I'd point out the Byzantine system and the medieval knights of the feudal states of Europe.

    In the "age of reason" (18th century) one of the greatest military systems of all times arose: The Prussian army created by Friedrich the great. Probably the best military system in history - tiny Prussia managed to become a great power in Europe, building an effective army out of nothing.

    The French military system in Napoleons era was also memorable - but there was the military genious of Napoleon himself involved.

    The greatest military system of the 20th century is undoubtely the German army of the WW2. Effective organization, discipline and great leadership the prime charactiristics - they lost the war fighting practically alone against the whole world.

    What do you think of the above? Memorable military systems I haven't mentioned?
     
  2. CornMaster

    CornMaster Romulan Commander Retired Moderator

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    Absolutely!!

    Germany in WW2. If it wasn't for the bumbling of the Austrian and Italian armies...Hitler could have easily had Europe. And had the Americans never entered the war then the Japs and Germans could have shared Asia (well....maybe that's stretching a little. <IMG SRC="http://forums.civfanatics.com/ubb/wink.gif" border=0>)

    But the German War Machine...was a ruthless war machine <IMG SRC="http://forums.civfanatics.com/ubb/biggrin.gif" border=0>. Well trained, displined, and well lead....until Hitler went insane, of course. What Hitler should have done is taken and fortified Europe and North Africa. Leave Russia and England for now.....then rebuild and take England....then Russia. Once they controlled all of Europe and Asia it's just a matter of time before America will fall. Of course...it would take Germany A LONG time to modernize all of Asia <IMG SRC="http://forums.civfanatics.com/ubb/crazyeyes.gif" border=0> but that would be another problem. And had they developed Nukes and the V2 Rocket (bomber?) ...... we wouldn't be here today.

    Anyway....Enough of that....

    ------------------
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    CivFanatics Moderator and Tech Support
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    [This message has been edited by CornMaster (edited September 03, 2001).]
     
  3. imperialman

    imperialman Admiral

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    Old thread (over 10 years) I know but I'm quite keen to discuss this, I'd argue that the Royal Navy of the 19th century was one of the finest military systems in human history, their organisation allowed for unprecedented expansion of the British Empire. The navy powered empire, empire powered the navy, empire powered technology, technology powered the navy.
     
  4. markantony

    markantony Chieftain

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    Imperialman! How could you commit such a crime! An old thread! What were you thinking?

    Anyway.

    I think it would be difficult to beat any modern Western army. The proffesionalism, training and discipline is far greater now than at any point in history.

    You would have to give honourable mentions to the Legions and Napoleons Corp D`armee.
     
  5. Tee Kay

    Tee Kay Challenge accepted

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    The Taliban are doing alright so far.
     
  6. markantony

    markantony Chieftain

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    Equivocation is a logical fallacy.
     
  7. Tee Kay

    Tee Kay Challenge accepted

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    Go on...?
     
  8. Mr. Dictator

    Mr. Dictator A Chain-Smoking Fox

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    But what really matters is: which army makes their nation the most money?
     
  9. Dachs

    Dachs Intelligence Officer

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    Schumpeter is dead. And we have killed him.
     
  10. markantony

    markantony Chieftain

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    It is self explainatory.
     
  11. Tee Kay

    Tee Kay Challenge accepted

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    Please do explain it. English is not my first language.
     
  12. G-Max

    G-Max Chieftain

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    After the fall of the USSR, the USA/NATO could have won a war fighting practically alone against the whole world.
     
  13. Ajidica

    Ajidica High Quality Person

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    Well yes, when you take the best militaries in the entire world and pit them against a bunch of aging, Soviet and American exports, it isn't very surprising they would win.
     
  14. G-Max

    G-Max Chieftain

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    Well, you also have to take population and natural resources into account, plus whatever developed countries aren't NATO members.
     
  15. Ajidica

    Ajidica High Quality Person

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    Well, in that case NATO is screwed, looking at natural resources. NATO simply doesn't have the oil reserves and capacity for an extended campaign. If they invaded anyone for oil, it would be easy enough for them just to set the wells on fire, a la Saddam.
    We have China, India, Russia (hardly in a position to do anything), some South American states, and the Arab states. Beyond that, I can't think of any country that could put up a half-decent resistance if it came to full-on war. Even then, it would be over very fast with a NATO victory.
    Numbers of the enemy don't matter when you have cruise missiles and nukes.
     
  16. G-Max

    G-Max Chieftain

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    But we have Canada. Canada has lots of oil, right?

    Japan, Australia, South Korea, Ireland, Austria, Ukraine, Sweden, Finland, Mexico, and a few other countries with pretty modern military hardware aren't NATO members.
     
  17. Ajidica

    Ajidica High Quality Person

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    In the oil sands, but I don't know to what degree the oil sands extraction was under way during the 90's, or if it has the capacity to handle the sheer volume of gas needed for a modern army to function in a sustained total war.

    The JSDF is incapable of waging offensive wars with any degree of experiance. They can safely be ignored.
    Okay, add another to the list of countries that could put up a half decent resistance.
    South Korea, Ireland, Austria, Ukraine, Sweden, Finland, Mexico, and a few other countries with pretty modern military hardware aren't NATO members.[/QUOTE]
    The rest are too tiny or old to be much of a threat. (And a few ICBMs from our SSBNs would resolve the issue nicely.)

    Anyhow, I'm not really sure why you are arguing against me when I am affirming your point, with some caveats.
     
  18. MilesGregarius

    MilesGregarius Half-baked Renegade

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    In the past few hundred years, when haven't the the combination of France/Germany/Italy/Spain/UK/US not had overwhelming material, technical, technological, financial, and logistical advantages over the rest of the world excepting (possibly) Russia, China, and Japan?
     
  19. JollyRoger

    JollyRoger Slippin' Jimmy Supporter

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    I'm not so sure I agree, but perhaps if you could elaborate a bit, I might get on board.
     
  20. MilesGregarius

    MilesGregarius Half-baked Renegade

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    I know I'm necro quoting here, but Jolly Roger brought it up:

    What?!?

    For the Third Reich not to have ended up at war with the Soviets sooner rather than later, it would have required someone to remove Hitler from the equation. Hitler may have contributed to Germany's early successes by taking risks no more sober-minded strategist would have, but his tendency to make decisions based on ideological rather than strategic/tactical concerns guaranteed that Germany and Russia would come to blows sooner rather than later.

    In addition, it was Hitler's bumbling as the war progressed, not the Italians, and certainly not the Austrians, that cost Germany the war.
     

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