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"Who Won the Battle of Kadesh?" Topic

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Comments or corrections?

Deucey09 Nov 2020 4:14 p.m. PST

Ramses? (by his bold heroics)
Muwatillis? (by his strategic cunning)
Nobody (a draw)

The Hittite Infantry? (they never fought!)
Egyptian Sculptors? (they had an artistic subject for the next half century)

Perris070709 Nov 2020 4:25 p.m. PST

I would go with a draw. The Hittites occupied the area after the battle though.

mquarmby09 Nov 2020 6:56 p.m. PST

I'd call it a draw – they both stopped each other's expansion

Dn Jackson09 Nov 2020 8:47 p.m. PST

Well, Ramses didn't take the city, so I'd give it to the Hittites. Despite what Ramses' sculptors said. :-)

ZULUPAUL Supporting Member of TMP10 Nov 2020 2:10 a.m. PST

The crows & vultures

Dervel Fezian10 Nov 2020 6:03 a.m. PST

History is written by the winners, or the dudes that chisel their version of it in stone so that people find it thousands of years later.

From all accounts and the fact that no territory changed hands, seems like a draw at best or a minor loss for the Egyptians.

However, a propaganda victory for Ramses :)

Dave Jackson Supporting Member of TMP10 Nov 2020 7:36 a.m. PST

Ramasses always said "I won A LOT!"

Dave Jackson Supporting Member of TMP10 Nov 2020 7:40 a.m. PST
Andrew Walters10 Nov 2020 10:31 a.m. PST

The marketing people. Spin won.

As far as I know this is the first case of public misinformation on this scale. Ramses absolutely lost, and he succeeded not only in convincing his people that he won, but created enough of an impression that there is still ambiguity today. This would be a good joke for a "river in Egypt" joke. "Leaders" absolutely can lie on an epic scale and get away with it.

I say Ramses lost for the same reason the Germans clearly lost Jutland. Battles are not a sport, there is no score, tactical performance is not the criteria for victory. Campaigns and battles either accomplish their political or strategic purpose or they don't. The Royal Navy under performed and lost more ships, but the German High Seas Fleet remained bottled up for the rest of the war and a non-issue. Jellicoe accomplished his objective and Scheer did not. Ramses meant to capture Kadesh, it was explicit. The Hittites wanted to keep Kadesh. The Hittites won.

You can say tactically it was a draw, but tactics are not the point. You can win tactically and lose the war, that happens plenty.

Personal logo Herkybird Supporting Member of TMP10 Nov 2020 3:01 p.m. PST

I, too think Ramesses II lost Kadesh, but his army escaped largely intact.
I think the Hittites probably were impressed enough with the Egyptian army that a peace deal was the way to go.
Ramesses' propaganda was for domestic consumption, to prevent discord at home.

I agree wholeheartedly with ZuluPaul's comment though!!!

LORDGHEE15 Nov 2020 10:42 a.m. PST

Andrew what a great comparison. Jutland vs Kadesh. Mind if I quote you in the future.

Lord Ghee

Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP25 Nov 2020 5:14 a.m. PST

SWMBO won, last night.

She had Seti I's forces, so it was the Battle of Kadesh before the Battle of Kadesh everyone is talking about (kind of like "which war in Afghanistan?").

In this case the Egyptians "won" by taking the city, except not really since they lacked the presence and resources to hold it, hence Ramses II's need to retake it.

Our criteria are also, not so much the tactical victory as the state of your forces once the battle is over. Last night, SWMBO got the tactical victory and was so able to crush the Hittite forces that by our scoring, we project they never would have had the will/popular support to revolt later.

Marcus Brutus25 Nov 2020 11:39 a.m. PST

Peace between the Hittites and Egyptians after Kadesh seems to have primarily been inspired by the rise of Assyria under Shalmaneser I. Nothing like a common enemy to bring peace to two warring nations.

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