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Napoleon Bonaparte: The Exception to the Rule. . .Why?

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posted on May, 9 2014 @ 07:57 PM
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edit on 5/9/2014 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)




posted on May, 10 2014 @ 03:21 AM
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"O mighty Caesar! dost thou lie so?

So the Emperor was considered Royalty?

I have never heard that before. Is that why he retained his head? Recall, the royal executor could not 'off with his head' if the Cheshire cat's head was not attached to his body.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 05:45 AM
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a reply to: hounddoghowlie

Under Nappy the French Army foraged in a disciplined manner, from the moment the march started. Therefore they had shorter supply trains resulting in them moving much faster than other European Armies of the time.

Napoleon's tactics were revolutionary(What he did with artillery had never been done before.). His men were mostly professionals soldiers. Against conscript armies the French were invincible. And by 1812 this all had changed.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 06:15 AM
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a reply to: hounddoghowlie



originally posted by: 8654drp
a reply to: hounddoghowlie

Under Nappy the French Army foraged in a disciplined manner, from the moment the march started. Therefore they had shorter supply trains resulting in them moving much faster than other European Armies of the time.

Napoleon's tactics were revolutionary(What he did with artillery had never been done before.). His men were mostly professionals soldiers. Against conscript armies the French were invincible. And by 1812 this all had changed.



He is right, it was Napoleons undoing.

The living off the land worked wonders in the rich and fertile field of central Europe.

Soon as it hit Spain and Russia it fell apart!

We all know Russia so no point going into that except to say its was what crumbled his Empire.

But look at Spain. Not only were the lands poorer but the stealing off the locals made the already hostile population hate the french even more. Individual and small groups of French could not go far from the main army to forage without risking being tortured to death by the guerrillas lurking everywhere.

Wellington Army on the other hand although slower went to great pains to ensure proper supply routes and good relations with the locals (With the exception of the slash and burning in the early Portugal campaign), food was paid for by the locals for or supplied by England, theft was severely punishable. Yes his army crawled at a snails pace but it was always supplied and fed, didn't have to worry about guerrillas and better yet got good solid intel from the locals. And he won the peninsula war.

Napoleon obviously was not smart enough to realise that living off the land may have been a good idea in central Europe but useless elsewhere.

Ironic that the man who recognized that good supplies was vital ended up losing both the Russia and Spanish theaters of war due to terrible logistics.
edit on 10-5-2014 by crazyewok because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 07:42 AM
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a reply to: crazyewok

I agree with what you say.

To add that Napoleon is in some regards over-rated as a military commander. Clearly, he won some astonishing battles e.g. Battle of Austerlitz and conquered and subdued most of Europe, thus demonstrating singular focus and brilliance. However, he failed to win the key campaigns that would have consolidated his position and he was also out matched by some contemporaries when it mattered.

Like all dictators, Napoleon's reign came to nought, but only after huge amounts of misery had been given out the millions who found themselves under his jack-boot and the guns of his Grande Armee. His reign of warring - spread over 20 years - destroyed a generation, and he should be remembered for that. His civil achievements, like the Napoleon Code are no consolation to the misery he inflicted.

However, on the bright side, Napoleon gave the British some of our finest military victories, so it was not all bad. For example:

Battle of Salamanca
Battle of the Nile
Battle of Trafalgar
Battle of Waterloo

Regards

edit on 10/5/2014 by paraphi because: typo



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 07:56 AM
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a reply to: paraphi

Dont forget:
Battle of Bussaco
Battle of Vitoria
Battle of Fuentes de Oñoro

Plus minor battles such as:

Battle of Barrosa
Battle of Nivelle
As well as the many offensive and defensive sieges:
Siege of Cádiz
Siege of Ciudad Rodrigo (1812)
Siege of Badajoz (1812)


As for Trafalgar is showed one of Napoleons most idiotic attitudes and that was his detain for the French Navy. Because of Napoleons lack of comprehending the importance of it Britain was able to all but block trade to France as well as have free run of the seas. It was that freedom that helped Wellington keep his supply routes open and short in Spain.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 08:13 AM
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Another interesting thing which allay has raised question is what was behind British victory's?

In east of Europe against Prussia, Austria and Russia the French were normal out gunned and outnumbered yet won.

In Spain the British were normally out gunned and out numbed and with the exception of Battle of Corunna the British (with Portuguese allies) always won in open battles.


In some way I personally put it down to the UK volunteer force against french conscription, better small arms +powder and training coupled with better military intelligence and logistics. Also the still recent defeat in the America Revolution taught the UK valuable lessons in skirmishing tactics and flexible warfare with fighting India giving Britain a pool of experience NCO and officers like Wellesley (Wellington ) who learned his trade fighting mysore and the Maratha Empire.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 09:30 AM
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Books I recommend:

Rifles: Mark Urban
Redcoat:Richard Holmes
To War with Wellington: Peter Snow
Blundering to Glory Napoleon's Military Campaigns: Owen Connelly

And for a bit of fun historical fiction the Sharpe series by Bernard Cromwell! Although fiction they do give a fun and quite detailed account of some of the famous and not so famous events of the peninsular war and some fun and pretty good characterization of real people at the time. Also the Horatio Hornblower books are good for the same reason but instead give a good account of the royal navy side of things.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 02:49 PM
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a reply to: paraphi

In no way is Napoleon an overrated military commander, period. Maybe in the eyes of the British. I will say that if he controlled the seas he would have dominated the entire region easily.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 03:03 PM
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originally posted by: JDmOKI
a reply to: paraphi

In no way is Napoleon an overrated military commander, period. Maybe in the eyes of the British. I will say that if he controlled the seas he would have dominated the entire region easily.


But he did not dominate the seas and failed. IF he was the genius he was cracked up to me he would have understood that.

Not only that but Britain repeatedly smashed French army's using Napoleons tactics like waves against rocks.

Napoleon had strengths as showed that in his central European campaigns against disorganized and bickering foes (Prussia, Austria and Russia) who used out of date tactics and idea.

But as soon as his army's went up against British and later Portuguese troops trained in modern (at the time) trained troops who were flexible and had organized and well trained officers the French army's fell apart. Napoleon failed to adapt, he failed to take certain threats seriously and he neglected certain theaters and areas.
edit on 10-5-2014 by crazyewok because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 03:22 PM
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why??

Because Napoleon, understood,
Alexander's Secret.
In Egypt.
And so all the nobility, had too treat him as one of the family.
A Black Sheep, but Family none the less.






posted on May, 10 2014 @ 04:24 PM
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originally posted by: JDmOKI
a reply to: paraphi

In no way is Napoleon an overrated military commander, period. Maybe in the eyes of the British. I will say that if he controlled the seas he would have dominated the entire region easily.


Napoleon was totally overrated.
He never invaded Britain because he knew he would have got a bloody nose.
Every battle he fought involving the British......He lost.

Arthur Wellesley The First Duke Of Wellington was a far superior commander. However we British are more reserved in " Bigging Up" our national heroes. Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson was far superior on the sea, and Napoleon felt the full force of that.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 05:46 PM
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a reply to: alldaylong

Well Britain did sort of lose one battle and that was the Battle of Corunna. Though that was mainly down to the Spanish screwing up there end of the battle. a trend that carried on to the Battle of Talavera though we pulled a victory out of that one despite the Spanish dropping the ball big time.

Its funny our official spanish "allies" probably did more damage than the french army due to there uncooperative nature, poor motivation, dissmal officers and non existant training coupled with their arrogant refusal to learn our adapt. Thankfully the unofficial allies of spanish partasians made up for that in a big way!

And dont forget the portugese who at the start were worse off than spain but actually had the humility to take leasons on board.
edit on 10-5-2014 by crazyewok because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 07:21 AM
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Nice write up there! I hadn't ever given thought to why Napoleon would be treated so differently than others after losing high title, it's an interesting question for sure.
I never quite understood his "son of the revolution" identity given that he was commanding a section of cannon charged with clearing revolutionary peasants from the streets near the Bastille. Before Madison avenue Napoleon was a master of public image-making.
In all fairness I don't believe the outcome of Waterloo was a foregone conclusion. Ney's early charge with the cavalry ruined much of his chance of succeeding and was done without his approval. Wellington was shrewd enough to do everything possible to simply slow down the French until Blucher's arrival.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 08:21 AM
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a reply to: Asktheanimals

Actually Wellignton himself quotes about waterloo that it was "the nearest run thing you ever saw in your life..."

Right before Blücher arrived on the horizon and before the British repealed the final charge of the Imperial guard wellington ordered the colours taken to the rear and packed away and the baggage ready for a retreat. Wellington really was on the verge of withdrawing.

It was a very close battle that could have gone either way.[

Neys charge was just beyond stupid. The first charge I can understand if he thought the British were retreating but to continue the charge over and over even though he knew the British had formed squares? For a experienced Field Marshall it still bewilders me as the incompetence of that was staggering. Maybe a conspiracy there? Was Ney a plant to help the British? haha
edit on 12-5-2014 by crazyewok because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 09:28 AM
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Blundering to Glory Napoleon's Military Campaigns: Owen Connelly


The reviews of this work are all outstanding. Next on my list-I have never heard of Owen Connelly is he a Brit?



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 09:32 AM
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a reply to: spooky24

Nope American.

Was recommend by my History lecturer back at college before I hopped off into the world of Biology. The book got me my A in A levels History He gave some very good points and you learn a lot more detail about Napoleons marshals.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 12:30 PM
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a reply to: alldaylong

I'm not discrediting Wellington or Horatio (who was the greatest navel commander of that time). Im stating the fact that Napoleon was a land commander and was very naive when it came to the importance of sea dominance. Also, napoleon had very little part in the Spanish theater. Secondly, Napoleon only faced Wellington once at Waterloo, already depleted of his veterans and lost nearly 400k troops in Russia due to attrition. At Waterloo, Wellington would have lost for two reasons, if the Prussians never showed, and if Grouchy would have showed up with a large chunk of his forces. Although, Napoleon would have lost the war in my opinion even if he won at Waterloo.

Also, Wellington was the smartest commander in opposition to Napoleon. He was very aware of his tactics and adapted to them at Waterloo and Spain.

My point is that Napoleon revolutionized warfare while other commanders had to adapt to his tactics in order to succeed. Just because Wellington "figured it out" doesn't discredit his military genius.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 12:42 PM
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Good job Wrabbit. A history thread! Well written as well. I've always felt that Napoleon was misrepresented by the victors. It would have been interesting to see if Napoleon hadn't been defeated but merely held in check, how things would have turned out for Europe.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 12:55 PM
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originally posted by: crazyewok
a reply to: spooky24

Nope American.

Was recommend by my History lecturer back at college before I hopped off into the world of Biology. The book got me my A in A levels History He gave some very good points and you learn a lot more detail about Napoleons marshals.


I recommend 'Napoleon' by David Chandler. Superb book with excellent maps and diagrams.







 
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