• Who is your candidate for this topic?


  • Patton.

  • '17

    Maybe Admiral Nimitz?

    I have nothing negative to say about him, but a significant portion of his success can be attributed to the cracking of Japanese naval codes.

  • '21 '20 '19 '18 '17 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    My pick would be Winston Churchill, on the basis of the difference between his public image and the actual reality of the man.  He was unquestionably determined to fight for Britain’s survival, sincere in his utter loathing of Hitler, relentless in the pursuit of his efforts to bring the US into the war on Britain’s side, and a formidable stiffener of British resolve at a dark time in that country’s history.  He did, however, have a number of failings – some of which were countreproductive to the British war effort, and some of which would have provoked a public outcry if they had been known outside of his immediate circle during the war.  In the latter category was his private flouting of the wartime rationing system: he supposedly had daily breakfasts of pheasant or partridge which exceeded the weekly protein allowance of British schoolchildren, and the war did not interrupt his lifetime habit of drinking a daily pint of champagne (on top of his other forms of liquor consumption).

    In the former category, he had a habit of meddling with military matters in ways that were controversial, sometimes with disastrous results.  One example was Churchill’s insistence that Wavell – who had managed to reach Libya – send substantial forces to Greece, a move which not only wrecked Wavell’s advance but also failed to save Greece and led to another humiliating Dunkirk-like evacuation for Britain.  Churchill preached magnanimity towards one’s enemies, but showed little enough of it towards his own commanders: the ill and elderly Admiral Sir Dudley Pound was one of the victims of Churchill’s bullying (notably at the time of the Bismarck operation), and Sir John Dill (briefly Chief of the Imperial General Staff) was another senior officer with whom Churchill had a very fractious relationship.


  • Tough to choose here because most of the famous people from WWII were fairly good at what they did or they wouldn’t have been in a position to be famous.

    Perhaps General Montgomery?  Admiral Halsey?  Herman Goring?

    This is a tough one.


  • Montgomery for sure

    He won north Africa because he had more men not because he was skilled. He just mopped the depleted, over extended, out of supplies Afrika Corps.

    Also Market Garden was a big fail and was a really dumb plan. It diverted/wasted a lot of resources. Plus it slowed Patton’s advance into Germany. Allies could afford loss of material but not the main thing this operation wasted.

    TIME

    If those resources were used for a big push into Germany by Patton’s army, the US Army would have been in Berlin before the commies.
    Cold war would have been a lot different (maybe it would have never happened)

  • '17 '16 '15 Organizer '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    Yes definitely Monty. What a joke. The guy needed like 4:1 in every battle and lots of time to make his plan work. He should be tied with Herman Goering for joke leader.

  • '17

    What about Charles de Gaulle?

  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    Admiral Yamamoto.

  • Customizer

    @Tavenier:

    Patton.

    No way! I used to think that as well, but after some research Patton did more with less casualties than any other American general, and far exceeded in results versus resources. Patton did what he said he would do and had he not been held so tight by Ike he may have changed history dramatically in favor of the allies.

  • Customizer

    BTW, my vote is Rommel. A lot of better generals than him and even though he was later implicated by Hitler in plots against his life. Rommel was just as in love with Hitler as many other Nazis. He is made, by many, to be some hero just doing what was good for his country and was just a good German soldier. Nope. Rommel while no slouch is definately over-rated.


  • @Imperious:

    Yes definitely Monty. What a joke. The guy needed like 4:1 in every battle and lots of time to make his plan work. He should be tied with Herman Goering for joke leader.

    Perhaps you can give me the force ratio for say COBRA?

    The  irrational  obsession with denigrating Monty is indeed a great puzzles


  • @texasranger97:

    .

    Also Market Garden was a big fail and was a really dumb plan. It diverted/wasted a lot of resources. Plus it slowed Patton’s advance into Germany. Allies could afford loss of material but not the main thing this operation wasted.

    Patton failed/stalled  completely at Metz and it showed that when the Germans turned and fought he was not as good as he thought he was.


  • If Patton was such a horrible general why did the Germans fear him so much? I would vote for Monty only because every battle he had a huge numerical advantage and casualties were rather high. Herman Goering was a great pilot but a poor leader as head of the German air force. Walter Modell was right behind him though. Nagumo was overrated for the Japanese. Should’ve kept going at Pearl and ostensibly lost the war for the Japanese at Midway.


  • @GoSanchez6:

    If Patton was such a horrible general why did the Germans fear him so much?

    There is no proof they feared him.

    @GoSanchez6:

    I would vote for Monty only because every battle he had a huge numerical advantage and casualties were rather high.

    Monty’s casualties were not ‘high’ and name me 1 Allied General who did not have a huge numerical advantage.


  • There is proof watch A bridge too far or Patton for that matter. I highly doubt that would’ve been put in there had it been untrue. I get the fact in Patton they are trying to glamorize him but in A bridge too far the German generals were convinced Patton would lead the charge into Holland. It is also in the book A bridge too far by Ryan. It’s the way it was accept it. BTW when the Germans were winning they had numerical superiority as well.


  • @GoSanchez6:

    There is proof watch A bridge too far or Patton for that matter.

    Really?
    Is that what you call  proof?

    see

    http://www.hoover.org/publications/policy-review/article/106656

  • Liaison TripleA '11 '10

    Dr. Lazarus is overrated.


  • Read about the Normandy invasion. We built a fictional army in England around Patton for the reason I just described. The Germans were convinced the Allies would have their best general Patton lead the allied invasion at Calais. Get in the last word because I know you will but I am right on this one.

  • '22 '21 '20 '19 '18 '17

    Oh no. Here we go again. We have 13 pages of debate on this right here:

    http://www.axisandallies.org/forums/index.php?topic=16779.0

    And that includes an elaborate discussion about Montgomery versus Patton.

  • Customizer

    Well,

    ––I would respond to this question with a short list, with the “Most Overrated” from top to bottom:

    1.) Bernard Montgomery……Head and shoulders above the rest of the “Overrated”. Although I concede that “Monty” was an excellent commander at lower levels, and played an important part in securing the beachhead during the withdrawal at Dunkirk, he was an embarrassment at the high levels of command that he attained. This was not simply an American observation, but most importantly by many of his fellow British Generals/Admirals as well. I’ve read many�accounts by British Generals who had a very low opinion of “Monty’s” generalship.

    2.) Omar Bradley……While a great American General at the Division/Corps level, he was elevated beyond his talents and was an extremely hesitant commander with none of the daring or improvisational skills needed to shorten the war. I understand that “Operation Cobra” was his idea, and a great one at that. But the American Forces in Europe suffered from his lack of overall leadership talents. Patton would have done a much better job if it weren’t for the ‘politics’ of the time.

    3.) Hermann Goering……While I agree that he was a true WW1 hero and deservedly so, he was an utter joke and embarrassment in the WW2 Nazi leardership. Just reference his politically motivated boasts that the Luftwaffe alone could kill the English at Dunkirk, and resupply the Germans at Stalingrad. His flawed leadership deprived the Luftwaffe of a heavy bomber force among many other vital mistakes he personally made.

    4.) Isoroku Yamamoto……While the best of the IJN Admirals, it was his highly complex operation plan that doomed the Japanese Navy at Midway. I’ll accede to his being the victim of the way the Japanese Navy trained their leadership and believed their navy should be fought. However, after being at war for over 6 months with the Allies I feel he should have been able to “adapt” his strategy & tactics to accommodate the realities of war with the Americans. I will concede the point that the Coral Sea and Aleutian Island operations were NOT his ideas and were forced on him by a the IJN General Staff as the price to be paid for allowing his Midway operation.

    5.) MacArthur……While truly a Brave and talented General earlier in his life, I completely despise him for his defectiveness in WW2 like:
    A.) Allowing his air force to be destroyed on the ground after having heard of the attack on Pearl Harbor 9 hours previously when his air force general was screaming for permission to recon and attack the Japanese.
    B.)moving all of the ammo & food from inside the Bataan area to the forward beach areas in Luzon before this was anywhere near being an acceptable plan and then refusing to let it be returned to Bataan because it would be “bad for moral”.
    C.) Receiving a Congressional Medal of Honor in recognition of his inept leadership in the Philippines and re-assignment to the SWPA in Australia simply so as NOT to return to America and be a vocal opponent of FDR’s policies and potential political rival.
    D. His “leadership from the far rear” and complete mis-understanding of the realities being faced in the Buna campaign and his use of suicidal frontal attack strategy. This is where the statement “no more Bunas’s” came from.
    E.) His assumption of the “Island-hopping” strategy as his own idea, which is was NOT. It was originated by a MARINE General and first put to use by Admiral Halsey in the South Pacific.
    F.) His total and complete EGO, accomplished through his own “PR” officers that allowed no other “heroes” other than himself. Just read about General Eichelburger and his CMH being downgraded with no accompanying press simply because of “Mac’s” EGO! This is only one of MANY documented examples.

    ----I may have misspelled some names or whatever in the above, but I feel that this discussion is between students of military history who understand what I’m saying and not “nit-pick” my grammer as I’m very tired at the moment.
    ----And BTW, seeing a movie, doesn’t usually qualify as imparting HISTORY, because many times movies are only out for ticket sales irregardless of facts. And the same can be said of many “Revisionist History” books where the author tries to bend history into agreeing with his already determined agenda instead of letting the history determine the lessons to be learned.

    “Tall Paul”


  • @GoSanchez6:

    Read about the Normandy invasion. We built a fictional army in England around Patton for the reason I just described. The Germans were convinced the Allies would have their best general Patton lead the allied invasion at Calais. Get in the last word because I know you will but I am right on this one.

    If you had bothered to read the link I gave you in my last post

    http://www.hoover.org/publications/policy-review/article/106656

    then you would know that despite you claiming 'I am right on this one’ you are in fact, dead wrong.

    'The same applies to Patton’s role as commander of the fictional U.S. 1st Army Group in Kent, designed to create the impression that the invasion would occur at Calais rather than Normandy. In Yeide’s view, Farago’s assertion that the Germans concentrated on Patton as the general likely to command American forces in the invasion of France is mainly based on a misinterpretation of an entry in the German High Command’s war diary and on a routine Air War Academy paper entitled Invasionsgenerale. In fact, says Yeide, in a copy distributed in February 1944 Patton is “the only senior Allied general in Britain and the Mediterranean not profiled with a brief, one paragraph summary.” Bradley appears and so does Montgomery, but no Patton. Yeide does not rule out his inclusion from a later version now missing, but anyway, such papers were standard products with the all services, from which nothing much can be inferred.


  • @Tall:

    1.)I’ve read many�accounts by British Generals who had a very low opinion of “Monty’s” generalship.

    Much of US the venom seems to date from post war attempts to blacken Montgomery. Wartime views are much more positive.

    from D’Este:

    The First Army staff, already resentful of the change of command, is alleged to have been less than pleased to be under British command. Such resentments, and many seem to be of postwar creation, were not evident to James Gavin, the 82d Airborne commander, when he dined with Hodges and his staff several days later. “The staff spoke of Montgomery with amusement and respect. They obviously liked him and respected his professionalism.” For his part, Gavin was impressed with Montgomery as a soldier. “I took a liking to him that has not diminished with the years.”

    Bradley, A Soldier’s Story, p. 326:

    “For another four weeks it fell to the British to pin down superior enemy forces in that sector [Caen] while we maneuvered into position for the U.S. breakout. With the Allied world crying for blitzkrieg the first week after we landed, the British endured their passive role with patience and forbearing. . . . In setting the stage for our breakout the British were forced to endure the barbs of critics who shamed them for failing to push out vigorously as the Americans did. The intense rivalry that afterward strained relations between the British and American commands might be said to have sunk its psychological roots into that passive mission of the British on the beachhead”.

    more?

    W. D. Ellis and
    T. J. Cuningham, jr., Clarke of St.  Vith, The Sergeant’s General .

    http://www.amazon.com/Clarke-St-Vith-Sergeants-General/dp/0913228087/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1369084047&sr=1-1&keywords=Clarke+of+St.++Vith%2C+The+Sergeant's+General

    during the critical defense of St. Vith. Montgomery paid several visits to the 7th
    Armored front: “General Montgomery was impressive to me,” Clarke later said,
    “Very cool in battle"
    Before Montgornery’s order to withdraw, Clarke said, “lt
    looks like Custer`s last stand to me."

    and:

    J. D. Morelock, Generals of the
    Ardennes; American Leadership in the Battle ofthe Bulge 1993

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1410203956/ref=dp_bookdescription?ie=UTF8&n=283155

    " Morelock points out while Bradley and Patton were angry at Monty`s receiving command in the north, many lower level American commanders were delighted to have the British Field Marshal take charge of the confusing situation in the northern sector of the Bulge. Monty’s “timely assumption of command in the north,” writes Morelock, was welcomed by Hodges, Simpson (9th U.S. Army commander), and their subordinate commanders who were fighting desperately to stop the German drive. He comments, “it cannot be denied that Montgomery brought much needed order and discipline to a confused and chaotic situation.

    You will find much more of the same if  you try.

  • '12

    I saw this movie u-571 where the US navy captured a german submarine.  The movie made a great deal of money.  Obviously, in the movie the US navy was very heroic and therefore it all must be true, cause it was in a movie see……

    From wiki on that incident…

    U-571 is a 2000 film directed by Jonathan Mostow, and starring Matthew McConaughey, Bill Paxton, Harvey Keitel, Thomas Kretschmann, Jon Bon Jovi, Jack Noseworthy, Will Estes, and Tom Guiry. In the film, a World War II German submarine is boarded in 1942 by disguised United States Navy submariners seeking to capture her Enigma cipher machine.
    The film was financially successful and generally well-received by critics in the USA[1] and won an Academy Award for sound editing.[2] The fictitious plot attracted substantial criticism since, in reality, it was British personnel from HMS Bulldog who first captured a naval Enigma machine (from U-110 in the North Atlantic in May 1941), long before the United States entered the war. A German U-boat crew is portrayed in a negative light (See the U-852 story below.) The anger over the inaccuracies even reached the British Parliament, where Prime Minister Tony Blair stated that the film was an “affront” to British sailors.[3]
    The real U-571 was never involved in any such events, was not captured, and was in fact sunk in January 1944, off Ireland, by a Short Sunderland flying boat from No. 461 Squadron, Royal Australian Air Force.


  • I think Patton was one of the worst, but Clark beats him out.  For how he conducted the war in Italy he should have been court marshalled and shot.  As they were approaching Rome his vehicle was stopped and the soldiers told him that they would have the Germans cleared out in a few hours.  He told them they had 1 hour.  Why?  Because he wanted “good light” to get his picture taken in Rome.  Someone should have fragg’d his ass.

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