Best World War One Leader



  • I know WWI doesn’t get much love on this site, but who are your favorite WWI commanders?



  • I’d have to reply my favorite is General Pershing of the USA:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Pershing

    who held the highest rank of any American military commander:

    In 1919, in recognition of his distinguished service during World War I, the U.S. Congress authorized the President to promote Pershing to General of the Armies of the United States, the highest rank possible for any member of the United States armed forces, which was created especially for him and one that only he held at the time (General George Washington was posthumously promoted to this rank by President Gerald Ford in 1976). Pershing was authorized to create his insignia for the new rank and chose to wear four gold stars for the rest of his career, which separated him from the four (temporary) silver stars worn by Army Chiefs of Staff, and even the five star General of the Army insignia worn by Marshall, MacArthur, Bradley, Eisenhower, and H. ‘Hap’ Arnold in World War II (Pershing outranked them all).

    Otherwise, I don’t have a real choice I can call my favorite.  The technology of the machine gun, and how this made former military techniques completely obsolete, was completely misunderstood by the commanders during the entire war.  This, or course, resulted in needless massive casualties.


  • '10

    I think Pershing was the one that insisted that U.S. Army units serve as distinct U.S. units instead of being split up among French and British units under their command.



  • Otherwise, I don’t have a real choice I can call my favorite.  The technology of the machine gun, and how this made former military techniques completely obsolete, was completely misunderstood by the commanders during the entire war.  This, or course, resulted in needless massive casualties.

    By the second half of the Great War both sides had developed tatics to reduce casualties in theroy. The Allies use of infanty, tanks and artillery on the Western Front. The Germans used storm troops with quick heavy artillery concentrate to break gaps on the Eastern, Western and Italian Fronts.

    My favorite WWI leader is Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck; his 3,000 guerrilla warriors tied up 300,000 British troops in Africa. He surrender two weeks after Germany’s defeat.



  • @ABWorsham:

    By the second half of the Great War both sides had developed tatics to reduce casualties in theroy. The Allies use of infanty, tanks and artillery on the Western Front. The Germans used storm troops with quick heavy artillery concentrate to break gaps on the Eastern, Western and Italian Fronts.

    that is true, I should retract my statement “during the entire war”.  Still, there were literally hundreds of thousands of needless deaths as the generals sent waves of infantry across no mans land into machine gun kill zones.  This continued long, long after they should have known better. The tank appeared at the end and showed promise of breaking the stalemate, but then war ended.



  • @ABWorsham:

    My favorite WWI leader is Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck; his 3,000 guerrilla warriors tied up 300,000 British troops in Africa. He surrender two weeks after Germany’s defeat.

    You beat me to this.

    The man even made the British (Yes, the British) pay his former African soldiers.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017

    Of the primary commanders of World War I, my vote would go to Marshal Ferdinand Foch of France. While far from perfect, he typically did much better than his contemporaries.



  • I wonder how a Franco-Italian front would have played out if Italy had joined the Central Powers. How would this effected the Western front?



  • Well considering Italian troop quility of the time, Italy may have decended into revolution even before the Russins in this case. 😮


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