What WW2 commander do you most admire, and why?


  • I wanted to do this as a poll and place several choices, but I knew yanni, f_alk, and cystic (at least) would find some other obscure commander and throw off my whole study. besides I don’t know of any famous canadian commanders to be fair to our northern neighbors. these are my tops

    1. manstien, 2) guderian, 3) zhukov, 4) rommel, 5) kesselring 6) patton 7) bradley 😎 monty 9) mac arthur 10) clarke (he did eventually break the ghustav line) 11)chuikov and auchenlick deserves noteable mention. he could have won africa before the germans arrived, but was robbed of troops for greece.
      I’d like to know who your favorite is, and who do you play the game most like ( if that’s possible).
      I like manstein the most. he was an expert tactician, he was also commander of the post war german army. he designed the ardennes offensive. he took sevastapol ( at too great a cost), he nearly cut off the oil fields in the caucases, nearly relieved stalingrad (but paulus wouldn’t break out), saved the eastern front by retaking kharkov, and had the deepest penetration during kursk.
      unfortunately there’s no real way to simulate his style of offense. but he’s definately my numero uno.
      I’d like to think I manage my resources more like guderian though. attacking enemies at weak points to facilitate major offensives. but in game terms what does that really mean???-

  • my favorites are

    1. Zhukov
    2. Patton
    3. Manstein
    4. Rommel
    5. Bradley
    6. Kesselring

    i must admit, Manstein was a beast. the one thing he didn’t do is take Leningrad. i’m pretty sure he was up by leningrad up unitil stalingrad or a little bit before that, but i may be wrong about that. but why couldn’t he take it? did the russians just have so many troops there that he couldn’t do it? and why didn’t the Finns attack Leningrad from behind through that 12 miles or whatever that separates Leningrad and the Finnish border? Or did Hitler tell Manstein to just siege the city and not try to assualt it? these are questions i have long thought about.

    i like Zhukov, mainly just beacuse he was the general of the ragtag russians, and somehow he managed to push the germans back to Berlin (wouldn’t have happened without US and UK, or if the russian winter of '41 wasn’t so bad, but whatever)


  • actually I believe genaeral leeb was in charge of army group north - and that hoth’s 4th panzer army had the best last chance at capturing lenningrad.
    the finns did attack from the north, but both the germans and the finns found they had difficulty assaulting zhukov’s city defenses.
    leeb gave it one last shot in sept or october of 41, but all of his armor was subsequently stripped to help capture kiev. hitler decieded to (and rightly so ) just to starve the city.
    manstein was always attacked to army group south, although I don’t think he actually was in command of the whole army group until after stalingrad. his army gruops objective’s were all met, taking oddessa, the crimea, sevstapol, rostov, and he even moved on grosney. but over extension doomed his army group.
    there was I believe a finnish commander named MANNERHEIM though, and I’ll wager that’s who you are thinking of. nice of a youngster to show some interest though. I figured you’d probably go for rommel. I liked and or admired him greatly- but after el alamein he realized that the war was lost, and no longer fought with his previuos vigor.


  • Rommel all the way. I have issues with German Commanders in Russia due to their dealings with SS policy. Patton next, you gotta love him! Zhukov, you have to admire a guy who launches major offenses in blizzards and sub-zero temperatures! Lastly, Auchenlick. He did alot of good in Africa, Monty stole alot of his credit…


  • actually when I said auchenlich I meant ritchie, both were decent and both were stripped of troops- ritchie for greece and auchenlich for the far east.


  • but who do you think were the WORST generals? (this might be harder, since nobody talks about the bad generals)

    maybe some would be

    1. von Paulus
    2. the guy from anzio… i can’t remember his name, but he should’ve advanced but he was too cautios or something

    i don’t know about too many bad generals, but how many can you think of?


  • the us commander from anzio (italy) was clark- and I think if D-Day hadn’t over shadowed his taking rome, many would think differently of him. I put him at #10. it wasn’t really that he sucked so much as kesselring was just that much better.
    paulus was definately down there though. let’s look at some Italian generals (early in the african campaign) when they outnumbered and out gunned the british and still lost. or some of the french high command. during the first few weeks of the war. or how about the american commander at the kasserine pass- obviously IKE but I think alexander actually commanded this group of troops. if it wasn’t for german infighting the americans would likely have reconsidered helping the british.


  • yeah, the italian/french (for the first few weeks; they weren’t bad near the end considering their troops had lost all interest in defending their country) commanders were awful. here’s a startling statitic: right after the fall of france, there were 350,000 italians in africa opposing 21,500 british, and the british DESTROYED the italians, hence the germans sending troops to north africa


  • I definately admire Patton. He saved a lot of lives during the Battle of the Bulge.


  • yes, but he had a huge ego, and he was a little bit insane; he thought that he was a re-incarnation of caesar and achilles and some other heroes of antiquity.


  • Field Marshal Walther Model, the Fuhrer’s fireman (a damn good general). Rommel is good but in my opinion he is a bit overrated.


    1. Rommel/Patton 2)Model 3)Zhukov 4) Manstein -1) Peiper. -1 = highest. i thought of him after i typed the first and iw as 2 lazy to redo all the #s

  • My favorite general would have to be Patton (you can’t beat what he did during the Bulge and across the Siegfried line (he sustained the lowest number of causalities of an army of his size, while inflicted nearly a million German losses).

    Oh, and in case you’re wondering, my sister’s favorite general is General of Fighters, Aldolf Galland. Pretty obvious why.


  • Could it be the Mustache?


  • I know very little about WW2 commanders.

  • '19 Moderator

    I think we had this discution once before. I remember that I was one of the few that liked MacArthur.

    I have a hard time ranking who I think was the best. I don’t think it is possible to realy say definatively “he is the best”. But since it is an oppinion I will go ahead. First, I like offencive generals they are just more interesting to me. I like boldness, and I think a good general should be arogant, but only if he has the stuff to back it up with. I nevercared for Russian Generals, I don’t know why I guess I’m just a child of the cold war. 😉

    I like Patton, Mac Arthur, and Rommel, not in any order. I like the fact that Patton would claim unatainable objectives and then make them obtainable. I like MacArthur’s Island campains and his methods of cutting off enemy supplys. I think he saved alot of lives in the Pacific by fighting smart. The thing I like most about Rommel is what he did in WWI. That guy had balls of steel, and he didn’t get to be a General by sucking up to hitler like some did. I know Hitler liked him but everyone did, he was a badass.

    As for least liked Generals, I can not stand Bernard Montgomery. I think he was a blow hard, and I think that his arogance cost way to many lives durring Market Garden. I think he risked his men’s and other men’s lives just to try to stroke his ego. Patton risked mens lives, but I think he was a driven warrior. He as arogent, but it was deserved.

    I know these are probably not very original oppinions but the old standard are the old standards for a reason.

  • '19 Moderator

    By the way my all time favorite General is Thomas (Stonewall) Jackson Different era though. 🙂


  • Hahaha, I don’t think anybody could ever disagree of Stone Wall Jackson. Smashing three Union armies with just one during the Valley Campaign. 😉


  • yea Good old Stone wall is going to be played by Stephan Lang in the movie Civil War movie Gods and Generals. which i find amussing for it was Stephan Lang who was Picket in GettysBurg. so he is 2 confed Generals in his acting career. most interesting.


  • @DasEwokSS:

    -1) Peiper. -1 = highest.

    Peiper???
    Are you serious???

    I guess you are, but Peiper was successful not because of his military genius, but only because of his total lack of respect to human lives. And that is what he became infamous for.


  • As for least liked Generals, I can not stand Bernard Montgomery. I think he was a blow hard, and I think that his arogance cost way to many lives durring Market Garden. I think he risked his men’s and other men’s lives just to try to stroke his ego. Patton risked mens lives, but I think he was a driven warrior. He as arogent, but it was deserved.

    Not to mention in Normandy! He was so cautious he gave the Germans time to regroup, instead of advancing into an undefended Caen. The extra half a day gave the Germans time to take up positions in Caen, and a huge battle costing many Canadian and British (and German) lives erupted.

    He was a great General in Africa though. He held out vs Rommel!


  • right but that cuatiousness also worked very well for him in defeating rommel in the desert. I too felt his tactics were far to consevative, but never the less in africa he was good. I liked model too, until I read guderians panzer leader. guderian and model did not agree on many things.
    patton is an obiously good american choice, but I had to rate hom lower because A) he wasn’t fighting on the eastern front against those battle hardened german troops. B) the anglo american forces were only opposed by 20-25% of the less trained soldiers. and C) he tried to liberate a concentration camp where his son in law was being held, the raid failed and cost people’s lives for “personal reasons”. I will agree though that he was my favorite american commander. and only behind zhokov on the allied side. zhokov not only for defense, but he did crush the sixth army. he learned well from the germans.


  • I would rate rommel higher, but after el alamein, and his power struggles with the duce, hitler and kesselring, he just kind of gave up the war for lost. and quitting on your troops is unacceptable. even if you don’t believe you can win, you can’t let your troops down.


  • Rommel knew the war was lost after Alamein, but he hardly gave up on his troops. He did what could with what he had. Monty fought “safe” battles of attrition at Alamein, no magic there…


  • He held out vs Rommel!

    Yes… with three times the number of troops and twice the number of tanks (not sure if I accidentally switched those 2 numbers). Not to mention his great advantage of air cover and protected supply lines… :-?

    A) he wasn’t fighting on the eastern front against those battle hardened german troops.

    Ummm… are you forgetting that Patton took on Rommel’s hardened 10th (or 12th) Panzer in Africa and elite, Herman Goering Division in Sicily…? :-?

    he tried to liberate a concentration camp where his son in law was being held, the raid failed and cost people’s lives for “personal reasons”.

    That is still debated on. Try reading Frederick Ayer’s “Before the Colors Fade” on this…

    zhokov not only for defense, but he did crush the sixth army. he learned well from the germans.

    Not to mention his major disaster in Operation Mars… :-?

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