Jump to content
UNRV Ancient Roman Empire Forums
  • Time Travel Rome

Corburlo

Alexander: Great?

Recommended Posts

I think that whilst Alexanders feat in itself was incredible, he is overrated. His tactics are simple and consist of a pinning action with his infantry then a crushing cavalry charge. I agree Gaugamela was an incredible battle, but it still consists of very simple tactics. However I feel as if i am missing an aspect of his 'greatness' if it exists so if someone could please enlighten me on said topic I would greatly appreciate it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

He was invariably successful in every form of warfare... disciplined Greek Armies. Iranian and Indian hosts. mountain tribesmen. steppe horse archers, fortified cities, inaccessible strongholds in remote mountains and deserts, guerrillas in every geographic environment - all were overcome by his genius.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would recommend reading Arrian. You will not come to this conclusion that he had a simple tactical repertoire.

 

This being said, I think your underestimating the Oblique Attack.... works till this day, and modern militaries, from large unit movements to the smallest formation, prepare themselves against this maneuver. Well.... the good armies at least. Over reliance isn't an issue if it works either time and time again.... being a one trick pony is what is worrisome.... unable or unintelligent enough to change when needed. But given Alexander's record shows a diverse array of methods, we can hardly discredit him on this basis.

 

If we took your position as the historic reality, that he only used this one method to win all his battles, then the focus would quickly swing to just how on earth.... despite all those cultures, with some great minds like Chanakya (the equal to Aristotle) resisting him, no one figured this out. You would think natural chaos, variability and local specialization would of caused someone, somewhere to call him on his technique and smash his otherwise worthless army....

 

Why do you assume greatness has to align with the sensation of variable, complex newness? This is a cognitive question, seeking to know why you expect this pleasurable affirmation.... by now a conditioned response, to occur each time you read up on the tactics and strategems of historic figures?

 

This pleasurable impulse will contort and sort your understandings if your not aware of what it is doing. Be a good Stoic, and get a hold of this vice.... it's bad to be unaware of our interpretive impulses when approaching history.

 

Arrian is a good author as he was also a well educated Stoic. He delved deeply into the psychology of Alexander. It's all too often the case I have to examine how classical historians filtered and focused on aspects of subjects, and get a feel for them as writers and thinkers before I get a serious feel about the subject they are presenting. They inevitably impresse their own outlook on the subject matter at hand. In Arrians case, you know very well his outlook, and just how deep his competency runs. The Stoics had by his era developed the best understanding of how the mind works. Be handles both fronts well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/27/2014 at 7:18 PM, Corburlo said:

I think that whilst Alexanders feat in itself was incredible, he is overrated. His tactics are simple and consist of a pinning action with his infantry then a crushing cavalry charge. 

Actually when greats do something, the don't use or invent new techniques. Rather, they use simple techniques successfully. This is true for any field such as sports.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Map of the Roman Empire

×