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Old 11-24-2018, 06:02 PM
 
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Two of history's greatest generals were Napoleon and the Duke of Wellington. In their day once the armies got into position they were relatively static, other than cavalry charges. Would Napoleon and Wellington have been able to adapt to modern mechanized warfare, including the added dimension of air forces?
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Old 11-24-2018, 06:11 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
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What are the specifics of your scenario? Is this Napoleon and Wellington suddenly yanked from their time and placed in command of a modern day army? Or is it Napoleon and Wellington, having been born in our time and gravitating to military careers?

If the former, then who can say what trauma the sudden cultural and technological changes might cause? How are they supposed to command air forces having never even seen mechanical flight? The sudden exposure to so much change would likely put the zap on their heads and they would be useless.

If the latter, then I suppose the same qualities of imagination, determination, intelligence and ambition would translate well in any modern day endeavor, including modern war.
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Old 11-25-2018, 12:12 AM
 
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I am sure they can. I dont think shock will be much of a problem. People lived generally harder lives back then. The most shocking thing to them is simply the luxury we have now. That is their only weakness.

If a modern day male can join the army after the life they lived in the suburbs and be able to adapt to modern warfare, how can someone like a Napoleon taken out of time not be able too?
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Old 11-25-2018, 08:19 PM
 
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Let's say yanked out of time, Dr Who style. Do you think they would have been able to adapt to new and totally unfamiliar tactics and weapons with the same brilliance the exhibited in their own time?
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Old 11-25-2018, 09:55 PM
 
Location: San Diego CA
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No. But itís just a guess.
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Old 11-26-2018, 06:24 AM
 
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Originally Posted by tommacebb View Post
Let's say yanked out of time, Dr Who style. Do you think they would have been able to adapt to new and totally unfamiliar tactics and weapons with the same brilliance the exhibited in their own time?
Of course not. The natural abilities for leadership and command would be there but not the training and education. Napoleaon and Wellesly did not wake up one day and become a general, they were trained, mentored, learned for decades the arts of war in accordance with the technology of the day, as junior officers and ensigns...as successful modern generals still are. Those learned skills are not transferrable.
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Old 11-28-2018, 10:14 AM
 
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The battles themselves were somewhat static because of the necessity of massed infantry fire. But I think both were masters of the offensive, so they would have immediately grasped the possibilities of it.



Grasping the intricacies of modern-day logistics and techniques, of course, would have taken much longer.
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Old 11-28-2018, 11:43 AM
 
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Originally Posted by MinivanDriver View Post
The battles themselves were somewhat static because of the necessity of massed infantry fire. But I think both were masters of the offensive, so they would have immediately grasped the possibilities of it.



Grasping the intricacies of modern-day logistics and techniques, of course, would have taken much longer.
Wellington was NOT a master of the offensive. Almost all of his victories are defensive battles.

If the OP is talking about WWII style tank warfare then I think Napoleon and some of his marshals would be great at it. Their style of warfare is all about maneuvering and exploiting breakthroughs and that's what Blitzkrieg is about. I don't know what 21st century conventional warfare would be like but it's probably going to be very different from WWII.
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Old 11-28-2018, 02:10 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mkwensky View Post
Wellington was NOT a master of the offensive. Almost all of his victories are defensive battles.

If the OP is talking about WWII style tank warfare then I think Napoleon and some of his marshals would be great at it. Their style of warfare is all about maneuvering and exploiting breakthroughs and that's what Blitzkrieg is about. I don't know what 21st century conventional warfare would be like but it's probably going to be very different from WWII.

Wellington was a superb defensive general. But he was also a superb all-around general. Wellington drove the French out of Portugal. What about Salamanca? What about Vittoria? What about his advance into France? These were all offensive operations.
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Old 11-29-2018, 11:09 AM
 
Location: San Diego CA
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Probably any Napoleonic commander who was adept at cavalry operations could have been successfull at mechanized warfare. Mobile units moving ahead of infantry and striking enemy strong points. Tanks or men on horses. The basic concept is identical.
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