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"The 10 Worst Continental Army Generals" Topic

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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP18 Jun 2022 9:44 p.m. PST

"…The Continental Congress faced an almost overwhelming challenge in appointing leadership to command the new army. While my research and calculations show that fully 85% of the men ultimately appointed as general had some type of prewar military experience, either professional or militia, most was at a low level of command. This forced the Congress to commission senior leaders based more on reputation and expectations than relevant experience. Foreign generals owed their appointments mostly to international politics and claimed, but sometimes unverified, credentials. The ever present politics of command affected both initial appointments and promotions throughout the entire conflict…"

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Gus Fring18 Jun 2022 10:09 p.m. PST

Had James Wilkinson risen higher in rank in the AWI, he could have topped the list.
Arguably, he set up Arnold, contributing to his, err, pissed-offed-ness.
He attained high rank AFTER the AWI, rising to the highest ranking general, twice.
He was also more steeped in treachery than Arnold, seeming to embrace it gleefully.
Arguably, he also set up Aaron Burr; he certainly betrayed him.
He was in the pay of the Spanish.
Famous as the general who never won a battle, and never lost a court martial. He did material damage in the War of 1812.
His career is too long to sum up in a short TMP post. Google him.

doc mcb19 Jun 2022 7:54 a.m. PST

Gus is correct about Wilkinson, as slimy a piece of work as they come.

doc mcb19 Jun 2022 7:56 a.m. PST

They didn't send us their best, did they?

Gus Fring19 Jun 2022 1:26 p.m. PST

"They" sent us guys who were looking for work.

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP19 Jun 2022 3:49 p.m. PST



Bill N20 Jun 2022 4:33 a.m. PST

If George Washington had been sacked after Fort Washington fell, Washington would have been on that list even though he had forced the British to evacuate Boston. Gates was not the military genius his supporters claimed he was in the aftermath of Saratoga. He also wasn't the bumbler his critics colored him as in the aftermath of Camden. A number of things Gates did in the southern campaign were sound, or at least made sense given the information available to him. Plus Gates wasn't the only Continental general to disappear from the battlefield at Camden when the militia bolted.

Gus Fring20 Jun 2022 6:16 a.m. PST

I find it hard to rehabilitate Lee's reputation, but some people can make a good try. I don't necessarily agree with them. 😄

doc mcb21 Jun 2022 3:03 p.m. PST

Gus, yes, looking for work. LOL

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP21 Jun 2022 3:28 p.m. PST



Old Contemptible24 Jun 2022 11:54 p.m. PST

If you judge Arnold by his military accomplishments and abilities alone, he is actually in my top five best Continental Generals. He maybe in the top ten of British Generals. He certainly wasn't any worse than the other British Generals save Cornwallis. He never had much of an opportunity to demonstrate his abilities with the British. Such a tragic figure.

Bill N25 Jun 2022 1:23 p.m. PST

What about in Virginia OC?

Old Contemptible25 Jun 2022 5:10 p.m. PST

His raid on Richmond was successful despite difficulties on the withdraw from Richmond. But what else did he do as a British commander?

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