Yue Fei vs Genghis Khan

Discussion in 'Military History' started by solarz, Feb 9, 2010.

  1. solarz
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    solarz Senior Member

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    Here's an interesting scenario: what if Yue Fei was born 100 years later (or Genghis Khan 100 years earlier), would he have been able to stop the Mongol Horde from invading Song?

    On a related note, we all know the advantages of the Mongol army, but what were some of the technological advantages that the Song army had? Under a good general, such as Yue Fei, would the Song army have been able to compete with the Mongol army?
     
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  2. rhino123
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    rhino123 Pencil Pusher

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    I seriously doubted it. It is not always the will of one man. The entire country's unity should be there. As we could see, Yue Fei is a good general, but the overall Song's management from the emperor down, is already shaky. That is why, the Song with all their technological advancement couldn't stop the Liao, then the Jin from taking more than half of their country.

    Plus... I think the Mongol's cavalry (which was practically equivalent to present day's MBT) was faster and more flexible... they could get to places much quicker as compared to Yue Fei's infantry. Although Yue Fei's army had lots of anti-cavalry weaponries, but I seriously doubt that it would be an easy task to defend against quick cavalry strikes from a number of different locations at once.

    Actually it was basically like today's warfare, whereby an armoured unit charge is basically very difficult to withstand even with the defenders' armed with anti-tank rockets or missiles.
     
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  3. solarz
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    solarz Senior Member

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    First, the Mongol cavalry is more of a skirmisher than an MBT. In any situation where they have to fight heavy cavalry head on, they suffered heavy casualties. Their specialty is hit-and-run and ambush tactics.

    Secondly, the reason Yue Fei is legendary is because he was able to achieve his victories DESPITE a corrupt, ineffectual, and ultimately even hostile government. Had the Song emperor not recalled Yue Fei, it is quite possible that he would've rewrote the history of China.
     
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  4. In4ser
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    In4ser New Member

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    Isn't most of the expansion of Mongol Empire attributed to Kublai Khan not Chinggis?
     
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  5. maozedong
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    maozedong Banned Idiot

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    Genghis Khan has never sent troops to attack the Song Dynasty, therefore, no matter when Yue Fei was born, he was impossible to compete with Genghis Khan.
    if Yue Fei was born 120 years later, he would be possible with the contest of Kublai Khan.

    so, the thread title should be " Yue Fei vs Kublai Khan".

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    Last edited: Feb 10, 2010
  6. rhino123
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    rhino123 Pencil Pusher

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    I will not contest with you on the cavalry tactics in this case. Not at this moment until I have the time to think things over.

    But what I am more interested in was your second point right now. We all agreed that Yue Fei is a great general and a great tacticians. But Song is declining and the government is downright useless.

    What make you think that half way through the campaign, Song government will not recall Yue Fei and history will rewrite itself?
     
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  7. vesicles
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    vesicles Senior Member

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    People say that an empire has to collapse from within before being toppled by others. So yeah, it's not the effort of one man, but the condition of the entire nation. If Genghi Khan was born in the early Song, he would have no chance of doing anything because Song generals would have such a tight grib on the Mongol tribes that any minor uprise would be crushed in no time. Same would be said of the Qing dynasty. If the same Manchurian cavalry that destroyed the Ming dynasty decided to attack Ming dynasty in the 1400's when Yongle was the Emperor, they would be crushed easily. The reason that they succeeded is that the Chinese dynasties, be it Song or Ming, were so corrupt and weak, they had so much to worry about within China and did not have time to pay attention to those tribes. This would give these tribes ample time to grow and mature. eventually, they were able to gather enough force that no one could stop. The same would also be true in ancient Roman empire. I don't believe for a second that the Huns would have any chance if they attacked Rome with Julius Caesar in power.
     
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  8. solarz
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    solarz Senior Member

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    Not all Southern Song emperors were corrupt and useless. Some, such as Gao Zong's son, wanted to recover the lost territories, but they had no good generals under their command.

    In any case, the political aspect is irrelevant. What I'm interested in is the military aspect. Suppose Yue Fei was given free rein of his army, and he met the Mongols in a fair campaign, how would his army fair against the Mongol horsmen that conquered half of Europe? It doesn't matter if it's Genghis or Kublai at their lead, as both are excellent generals.
     
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  9. xywdx
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    xywdx New Member

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    Corruption is ultimately the cause of the fall of Song, but more immediately it's because they underestimated the Mongols.
    The mongols had no chance of winning with their standard equip, the Song knew this and thought they were safe.
    But Mongols recruited defected Song generals and Middle Eastern engineers, they adapt to naval warfares as well as bringing in heavy Siege from the middle east, which turned the battle in their favor.

    If they Mongols actually gave battle then they would have been overwhelmed by the Song under Yue Fei.
    The problem is Mongols are highly mobile and have nothing better to do, they can't do anything constructive so they spend their lives(no lives) harassing defenseless civilians, that's why they are so hard to counter.
     
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  10. solarz
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    solarz Senior Member

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    Heh, that's an interesting way to put things. However, can you elaborate on why the Mongols would've been overwhelmed by Song under Yue Fei? After all, we're talking about the same Mongols who swept across the entire Middle East and Eastern Europe with only 20 000 men.

    This actually brings me to another question: why did the Jin and Middle Eastern states fold so quickly under the Mongol army, while the Song resisted for over 10 years?

    If it was just an issue of fortification, I would say that the Middle Easterners also had access to advanced fortification and technology, not to mention that the Jin had access to all the fortifications of northern China, in addition to the technological know-how of the Song.
     
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