View single post by CleburneFan
 Posted: Tue Mar 18th, 2008 02:23 pm
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Joined: Mon Oct 30th, 2006
Location: Florida USA
Posts: 1021

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This is a thought provoking question, Joannie Reb. I need time to give it due consideration. Right off the bat, my first thought is that Sherman, for instance, would be as effective in Iraq or Afghanistan as he was in the Atlanta Campaign and beyond, but my second thought immediately yells out that the demands of today's generals are different than those of the Civil War and even antiquity.

Today's wars break down into two major areas (according to Cleburne Fan's Theory of Modern Warfare). One type is the massively technological war in which vast superiority in modern weapon systems makes demands for a certain type of leadership unknown in past history.

But in stark contrast, guerrilla warfare (ex: FARK, Colombia and Abu Sayaf, The Phillipines)  and terroristic tactics (ex: Basque seperatists, Spain and Al Queda, various countries) fought anywhere and everywhere demand a totally different kind of leadership philosophy and expertise.

I don't know how well Sherman or Lee would deal with the War on Terror. In fact, Lee tried to discourage his army from breaking down into partisan units and retreating to the hills to fight on indefinitly after his surrender.

One must ask, for example, how would Alexander the Great have fared today trying to put down FARK or hunt for Osama bin Laden?  He was an absolute ruler, after all. Men had to do what he said. In the US that kind of leadership just doesn't fly. Another thing. Alexander was both the head of state and the head of his military.

Thus as times change, so do generals. But are the principles of great leadership timeless? I need more time to think. I'm certain convincing arguments can be made for both positions.

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