Does history repeat itself because people become power hungry? In
the years from 58 B.C. to 1821 A.D., two infamous generals led armies to
great success, yet met with similar fates. It is my belief that through the
use of similar tactics, one general fell victim to a fate shared by another,
earlier general. Could this fate have been avoided, if he'd carefully
studied his predecessor's mistakes?
There have been several great military geniuses to come from Europe.
Edward Rommel won a lot of victories against the British in World War II
primarily because he didn't have awful teeth, and he spoke German.
Alexander the Great wasn't called Great just because he encouraged people
to call him that, he was actually great warrior on the field of battle'and
he was well over 6 feet tall. And Hannibal showed us that elephants
couldn't fly, but they could climb mountains. Unfortunately, none of these
men were as successful as Julius Caesar, and France's own mighty giant
Napoleon Bonaparte. Well, maybe they were'I don't know, I was only covering
Caesar and Napoleon.
Napoleon Bonaparte's success as a military leader and conqueror can
clearly be seen in Julius Caesar. Caesar achieved great glory by bringing
his country out of turmoil, as did Napoleon. Looking to the past, Napoleon
knew what steps to take in order to achieve success. Napoleon devoured
books on the art of war. Volume after volume of military theory was read,
analyzed and criticized. He studied the campaigns of history's most famous
commanders, but his favorite, and the most influential on his strategies,
was none other than Julius Caesar . It was Caesar that Napoleon modeled
himself after the most. He wanted to be as great, if not greater than,
Caesar. But he'd never get taller than Caesar.
Julius Caesar was the Roman leader who changed the course of
history for the Greco - Roman world. Caesar was able to create the Roman
Empire because of his strength in war strategies . Julius Caesar was to
become one of the greatest generals ever to rise from Europe, conquering
the whole of Gaul. In 58 B.C., Caesar became governor and military
commander of Gaul, which included modern France, Belgium, and portions of
Switzerland, Holland, and Germany west of the Rhine. For the next eight
years, Caesar led military campaigns involving both the Roman legions and
tribes in Gaul who were often competing among themselves. Julius Caesar was
a Roman general and statesman whose dictatorship was pivotal in Rome's
transition from republic to empire . He could also make a mean salad.
Caesar's principles were to keep his forces united; to strike
speedily at critical points; to be vulnerable at no point; to rely on moral
factors, such as his reputation and the fear he inspired; and political
means in order to insure the loyalty of his allies and the submissiveness
of the conquered nations. He made use of every possible opportunity to
increase his chances of victory on the battlefield and, in order to
accomplish this, he needed unity of all his troops . And maybe a good salad
to feed them.
Beginning at the time that he first faced battle in Gaul and
discovered his own military genius, Caesar was fascinated and obsessed by
military and imperial problems. He gave them an absolute priority over the
more delicate, but no less fundamental task, of revising the Roman
constitution. There was a need in the latter for a solution; this solution
would introduce such elements of authoritarianism, which were necessary to
check corruption and administrative weakness .
The story of all his battles and wars has been preserved in
Caesar's written account, Commentaries on the Gallic Wars, originally
published in 50 B.C. For this period, Caesar is the only existent source
providing first-hand descriptions of Britain. While no doubt self-serving
when written, Caesar's account is nevertheless regarded as accurate and
historically reliable . Caesar was appointed dictator for a year starting
in 49 B.C., for two years in 48 B.C., for ten years in 46 B.C. and finally
dictator for life in 44 B.C. Taking over as Dictator for Life enabled
Caesar to gain unrestricted power. He was able to run a strong military,
and even though he was considered a dictator, he wrote laws that actually
made him have the same powers as a king. But there were those who found his
ambitions to have absolute power too much; the Senators decided that they
had had enough. They planned the murder of Caesar on the Ides of March.
Caesar was killed and there was another triumvirate formed. Caesar was a
str ong military leader that had showed strength and courage to take over
the town and he was able to form a civilization that was strong militarily
and politically .
Caesar was one of the great generals of history; his name became
synonymous with leadership, hence the titles Kaiser, Tsar, Czar, and
Czarina. Later rulers of Rome were referred to as "Caesar" in honor of him.
Of course, his name was also synonymous with salads, a certain medical
problem where you shake a lot, and a type of childbirth, but that's not the
point. He influenced Napoleon's military and political careers greatly.
Having been promoted over the heads of older officers, Napoleon's
unbroken run of victories over the armies of both Austria and Piedmont
established his credibility as a commander, while his concern for his
previously ill equipped soldiers won their loyalty. During the storming of
a bridge at Lodi, he fought alongside his troops, and earned from them the
nickname of "the little corporal" . Under the new government Napoleon was
made commander of the French army in Italy. During his campaign the French
realized how smart Napoleon was. He developed a tactic that worked very
efficiently. He would cut the enemy's army in to two parts, then throw all
his force on one side before the other side could rejoin them . Thus,
Napoleon had the troops' ...
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