George Washington Classical Sun Tzu Strategist and Master in the Art of War The American defeat of the British during the Revolutionary War was a direct result of George Washington's incredible leadership and generalship which epitomized the greatness of Sun Tzu's "Art of War" Introduction The key to the success of the American Revolution was the George Washington himself. Faced with a near impossible task of defeating a tremendously powerful enemy, Washington was required to defy the odds. So how does Washington's accomplishment of this task relate to Sun Tzu and his teachings of "The Art of War"? There crucial points come to light: (1) Washington's selection as to command the Continental Army and inherent command capabilities, (2) Washington's strategy for winning the war against the Empire of Great Britain, (3) The art of maneuver that eventually lead to the critical defeat of Cornwallis and the British at Yorktown. Washington as a Commander Washington's selection to be the leader of the Continental Army was the wisest choice that the newly formed Continental Congress could have made. Washington's selection as Commander of the Continental Army did more to win the Revolutionary war than any other decision made during the conflict. His personal character epitomizes perfectly the five traits required in a successful general: wisdom, sincerity, humanity, courage, and strictness. (Sun Tzu p. 65) These five crucial traits will become apparent and Washington's strategy to win the War of Independence is elaborated on further Washington was the embodiment of everything fine in the American character. He had no delusions of grandeur and was second only to Benjamin Franklin as a diplomat with the French. In caring fo... ... middle of paper ... ...dependence. He was a master in the arts of war. Bibliography: Bibliography Handel, Michael I. Masters of War. Portland: Frank Cass & Company Limited, 1996. Middlekauff, Robert. The Glorious Cause. The American Revolution 1763-1789. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1982. Morison, Samuel E. The Oxford History of the American People, vol 1. New York: Penguin Books USA, Inc. 1994. Sun Tzu. The Art of War. Translated by Samuel B. Griffith. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1963. Von Clausewitz, Carl. Translated and edited by Sir Michael Howard and Peter Paret. On War. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1976. Weigley, Russel F. The American Way of War. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1973. Weigley, Russel F. History of the United States Army. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1st Edition, 1984.
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During the War for American Independence, 78 men were commissioned as general officers into the Continental Army by the Continental Congress. Many of these generals commanded troops with differing levels of competence and success. George Washington is typically seen as most important general, however throughout the war a number of his subordinates were able to distinguish themselves amongst their peers. One such general was Nathanael Greene. At the end of the Revolutionary War, Greene would become Washington’s most important subordinate, as demonstrated by Edward Lengel’s assessment of Greene as “the youngest and most capable of Washington’s generals.” Washington and Greene developed a strong, positive and close relationship between themselves. Greene began his life in the military after having been raised a Quaker. With limited access to literature and knowledge in his younger years, Greene became an avid reader which equipped him with the knowledge necessary to excel as a general during the war. Through his devoted study of military operations, firsthand experience and natural abilities as a soldier, Greene became an excellent military commander. He would become known for his successful southern campaign, during which, he loosened British control of the South and helped lead the war to its climax at Yorktown. Throughout the war, he was involved in a number high profile battles where he built a reputation of being an elite strategist who also understood unconventional warfare, logistics, and the importance of military-civil affairs and had a natural political/social acumen. The thesis of this paper is that Greene’s proven reputation of being a soldier, strategist and statesman would cause him to become the second greates...
He suffered from stage fright and often “blushed and faltered”, (18) even at his inauguration as President, “he trembled and several times could scarce make out to read his speech” (18) This weakness of his is often glossed over as it doesn’t seem to fit in with his image as the towering, imposing “founding father”. Yet today, it is essential for a President to be able to deliver impressive and clear speeches to the whole country. Finally there are some criticisms that he was not as effective General as is often believed. Thomas Paine claimed that he was a bad general whose strategy consisted of “doing nothing” (19). Although Paine had a personal agenda in condemning George Washington as he resented not being appointed Postmaster-General, and then later by not being rescued from French persecution by the government, it is true that George Washington did lose more battles than he won (20) and often did seem to do nothing for long periods of time. There is also the issue of his harsh treatment towards his own soldiers, any who were caught deserting or plundering were “flogged” (21) and he even a “Gallows near forty feet high erected” to terrify the rest into obedience.
George Washington was very determined throughout the American victory of the Revolutionary War. One example of determination was when Washington organized a group of spies to keep him and his men safe. This was also shown in The Crossing when it stated, “...Washington now made sure he had some very good spies prowling the countryside.” Clearly, Washington kept his determination because without these spies, the American would have been clueless as to what the British were planning.
George Washington showed amazing leadership skills while remaining aware that he is not greater then everyone else. When Washington was first brought the idea of presidency he declined not wanting to be viewed as a king or anything greater then the people around him. He didn't want to and didn't become president for power or anything other then to be a leader and guide the country through the good and bad. Washington was the respectable general of an army and was a strong leader through many important historical battles that changed the course of history.
Not only a hard working individual, but George Washington was also a great commander. He was the commander of the Continental Army. His had experience in only frontier warfare, involving small numbers of soldiers. He had no experience ma...
It was during the years of 1775 and 1783 when Washington guided America to a victorious triumph over a defeated Britain within the American Revolutionary war. It was under Washingtons strong leadership that American's aquired independence. Through Geory Washingtons status as General he steered the Continental Army to their intended goal; victory. His exptional accopmlishments and military performance exceed that of any one else. General Washington's military profession constructed an excellent example of leadership skills, and stategic approach. In regards to his position of commander and chief over the continental army, Washington along with his achievements pushed America to grow into its own thriving nation. George Washington's great contribution to the movement of the American Revolution, military leadership, and victory, explifly his outstanding qualities as a political leader and military leader.
...tly after the president's death, an Episcopal clergyman, Mason Locke Weems, wrote a fanciful life of Washington for children, stressing the great man's honesty, piety, hard work, patriotism, and wisdom. This book, which went through many editions, popularized the story that Washington as a boy had refused to lie in order to avoid punishment for cutting down his father's cherry tree. Washington long served as a symbol of American identity along with the flag, the Constitution, and the Fourth of July. The age of debunking biographies of American personages in the 1920s included a multivolume denigration of Washington by American author Rupert Hughes, which helped to distort Americans' understanding of their national origins. Both the hero worship and the debunking miss the essential point that his leadership abilities and his personal principles were exactly the ones that met the needs of his own generation. As later historians have examined closely the ideas of the Founding Fathers and the nature of warfare in the Revolution, they have come to the conclusion that Washington's specific contributions to the new nation were, if anything, somewhat underestimated by earlier scholarship.
George Washington is one of the most well-known historic figures of the United States. American Patriots, during his presidency, and time as a war general worshipped the hero. When America was separating from Great Britain, General Washington was a major factor in winning the war against Britain. Washington perfected his military tactics prior to the revolutionary war and during the French and Indian war. Washington’s heroic character during these wars kept troops moral at an all-time high. His ability to give confidence to colony soldiers led them to independence. It all started with his political beliefs and Great Britain heavily taxing the thirteen
Throughout the French and Indian War, it was known that George Washington had immense power but little patience. For instance, in “George Washington and the patience of power” written by David Hein quote from Edmund S. Morgan, “Washington’s genius lay in his understanding of power, both military power and political power, an understanding unmatched by that of any of his contemporaries.” When General Washington led the army to fight the British he had lost more battles than he won. But, the most important lesson he learned from those lost battles was patience, which he gained as a quality of leadership. Moreover, the attributes of being patient helped General Washington learn to understand the limitation of his powers and what his subordinates needed to press forward. To illustrate, General Washington declared that “Patience is a noble virtue, and, when rightly exercised, does not fail of its reward” As General Washington continues to define himself as a man with patience of power, he achieved nobility which earned him the title as the best person to be Commander-in-Chef during the Revolutionary
The translation of the “Sun Tzu: The Art of War” ancient Chinese text has been given by many different writers. Samuel B. Griffith, Brigadier General, retired, U.S. Marine Corps; is a proven strategist that studied the English commandoes war fighting skills as a Captain. As a Major, Griffith was hand picked to serve as Executive Officer under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Merritt Edson of the 1st Raider Battalion, one of the battalions that perfected the amphibious landings during World War II. Samuel B. Griffith gives his in-depth study on “Sun Tzu: The Art of War” and how Mao Tse-tung used the strategies and teachings of Sun Tzu while commanding the Red Army of China. Griffith’s translation of Sun Tzu’s work is written in three parts: Introduction, Translation, and Appendix.
“I hope I shall possess firmness and virtue enough to maintain what I consider the most enviable of all titles, the character of an honest man.” - (George Washington.) George Washington was a very intelligent and clever man. He was a great leader of the continental army, lead America off on a great foot to win Independence, and became a founding father of the United States of America. His greatest friend was Henry Knox, and James Madison served under Washington and later became his secretary of state. But behind his fighting background, who was he really? Why was he important? Who has he influenced for us today? In this essay, I will be covering these very topics.