A possibility to meet with a great military leader of the past is certainly a most exciting one, and I would have a hard time, choosing from plenty of options. After some deliberation, I would pick George Washington – the person who, through his military achievements, was able to accomplish a huge task of building a new country. The great personality of Washington and his ability to motivate is what draws me to him and inspires to want to talk to him in this imaginary meeting.I read once that if one were to compile the list of top 100 military leaders relying on their battles and campaigns, Washington would not make it to the top of the list (CarpeNoctem, 2003).
However, he is recognized as one of the most influential military leaders of all times because the scope of what he accomplished is dazzling.In the first place, he was able to turn a ‘ragtag’ army of civilian soldier into a unified force that won battles against the well-armed and equipped British troops. His soldiers, in his own words were “sometimes half starved; always in rages, without pay and experiencing, at times, every species of distress which human nature seems capable of undergoing” CarpeNoctem, 2003). To achieve success with such a dishevelled army, a person needs to be a great motivator, and this is exactly what I would like to learn from Washington – the ability to turn a body of individuals into a strong force.Washington was long considered not just a military and revolutionary hero, but a man of great personal integrity, with a deeply held sense of duty, honor and patriotism. He was upheld as a shining example in schoolbooks and lessons: as courageous and farsighted, holding the Continental Army together through eight hard years of war and numerous privations, sometimes by sheer force of will; and as restrained: at War’s end taking afront at the notion he should be King; and after two terms as President, stepping aside.I also respect Washington for his modesty and ability to keep his ambitions in check. In my view, this is exactly what a great military leader should be like: motivated by a common cause rather than willingness to grab a larger share of the pie for himself.
I believe that such attitude has a huge motivational impact on soldiers and contributed to Washington’s success in defeating one of the most advanced armies of the time.Washington also won my respect and admiration for his courageous conduct under fire, for instance, during the disastrous Braddock expedition when he had two horses shot under him but was able to organise the retreat in an organised manner. His courage, as well as his analytic ability that allowed him to see the shortcomings of the British troops are highly important for a military leader.For these reasons, I admire George Washington as one of the greatest military leaders of all times and would be thrilled to meet with him in person.ReferencesCarpeNoctem.
George Washington: The American General. Retrieved February 7, 2006, from http://www.carpenoctem.
tv/military/wash.htmlGeorge Washington — The Commander in Chief, Prepared for the U.S. George Washington Bicentennial Commission, Submitted by Mrs.
Franklin B. Wildman, The Picket Post, The Valley Forge Historical Society. April 1966.
Retrieved February 7, 2006, from http://www.ushistory.org/valleyforge/washington/george2.
htmlWikipedia. (2006, February 3). George Washington.
Retrieved February 7, 2006, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Washington