Page 4 of 56

Unread postPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2007 1:54 pm
by Dong Zhou
Elitesh, let me run this theory by you. When launching an offensive campaign, I would think the right thing to do as your going to be busy for awhile is to have somebody run your lands (Jing) in your stead, someone able to handle the domestics and punishment of officers for you. Yet why didn't Guan Yu have that? Micro managing? A simple inspector could have done the punishment job for him for example though Guan Yu could give certain instructions but did he try to take on too much here?

Unread postPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2007 2:22 pm
by Elitemsh
Dong Zhou wrote:Elitesh, let me run this theory by you. When launching an offensive campaign, I would think the right thing to do as your going to be busy for awhile is to have somebody run your lands (Jing) in your stead, someone able to handle the domestics and punishment of officers for you. Yet why didn't Guan Yu have that? Micro managing? A simple inspector could have done the punishment job for him for example though Guan Yu could give certain instructions but did he try to take on too much here?


You mention a good point. Perhaps Guan Yu wasn't given the right kind of talent. Maybe there was no one fit to govern Jing in his absence.

On the other hand we know Guan Yu treated his soliders well but didn't trust the officials. Hence he didn't delegate enough authority to them. In this instance Guan Yu may have been at fault. Is it not true that Guan Yu had some capable officials with him? I think there were people like Ma Liang. Here I think Guan Yu's flawed attitude is to blame. He didn't respect the officials and therefore he didn't use them as he should have. Was not the strengths of Ma Liang and his like in political and domestic affairs? If so then Guan Yu made a fatal error here and his personality is to blame.

Unread postPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2007 11:08 pm
by Lu Kang
Guan Yu was a poor general. This can be attributed to many reasons but overal he just was not a good general. Some argue that he is a good leader, but few if anyone fought to the death under him. In the end he was left with just dozen soldiers. Numerous officers rebelled from under him with little more than a drop of a hat. He was overly arrogant and soiled relations with Sun Quan.

Now to take a little blame off of him, he should never have been in charge of Jingzhou in the first place. Liu Bei was playing favorites when he should have put the most talented person in charge. Guan Yu launched a campaign that came at a fortuitous time and bungled it. He ended up setting Shu back so far that Zhuge Liang could accomplish nothing with what he had.

Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 2:24 am
by Tan_Binrui
elitemsh wrote:Fair enough. It was indeed never proved that Huang Zhong didn’t have the ability to govern a province so it is just a matter of opinion whether he would have done a good job or not. Our opinions here are both equally valid.

Agreed.

elitemsh wrote:This is one thing we agree on completely. I have a great amount of respect for the historical Zhao Yun and i rate him very highly. I think it is obvious from his SGZ bio that Zhao Yun had excellent judgment and he had a good attitude and hence he may have done a better job running Jing than Guan Yu did. Although it is arguable whether Zhao Yun could have built up the strength of his army to extent that Guan Yu did. Still I do believe that Zhao Yun would have done a better job than Guan Yu if given the chance.

Agreed. I do think, though, that you give credit to Guan Yu for the force he mobilized during Fan Castle undeservingly. If I remember correctly, his force was not so large, and it was really the activities of bandits and rebels that Guan Yu mobilized that put Wei into

elitemsh wrote:Sorry, I didn’t mean to offend you. I just feel that your comments towards Guan Yu are a bit too insulting and that you are belittling him.

I realize that I may be rather harsh in my initial responses to topics or opinions. I try to make up for my initial outbursts by cooling off, and I do apologize for reacting so personally.

elitemsh wrote:It is said that a good general will reward a soldier for a deed well done and punish for incompetence or failure... Guan Yu made regarding the two traitors was that he warned them that he would punish them and that was folly.

Agreed. My issue with his punishment was not that he was going to do it, but that he foreshadowed the punishment at such a horrid time.

elitemsh wrote:I do believe that he was wrong to surrender to Cao Cao as he didn’t know that Liu Bei was alive. I do not think this was cowardice though but rather pride. I think that Guan Yu wanted to make more of a name for himself before perishing.

I’ve heard this argument before, and I must say that I don’t disagree with it. It’s an interesting perspective that I often use when viewing Guan Yu’s actions. His pride and self-worth seem to override any other meaning in his activities, as it is very possible that he simply sought to become a famous warrior/general. I’ve heard the same argument applied to Jiang Wei, and I do not see it as inaccurate.

elitemsh wrote:Also, the only reason Liu Bei was with Yuan Shao was because he had nowhere else to go. Therefore was it really that dishonest for Guan to fight against Shao?

I believe it was with Yuan Shao’s assistance that Liu Bei revolted in the first place. If I’m correct, then you’re point is well taken. However, I believe their alliance was previous to Guan Yu’s capture (thank you for looking that up, Dong Zhou).

elitemsh wrote:It is slightly unfair to say that Guan Yu was incompetent because he couldn’t take Fan Castle after the flooding etc. More credit should be given to the spirited defense put up by Cao Ren. I would rather complement Cao Ren here than criticize Guan Yu but to each his own.

I agree that praise should be shoveled onto Cao Ren in heaps, if only for his amazing defensive career. First it was Yan Province against Lu Bu, then Jing Province against Zhou Yu, and lastly Fan Castle against Guan Yu; every time against overwhelming odds. It is these overwhelming odds, though, that make me place blame on Guan Yu. He could have won if he were any more competent. Perhaps he could have brought more arrows, or more ships. More men, or plans for reinforcements. There are many things that could have tipped the balance to the breaking point that he didn’t do.

elitmsh wrote:I think that the way that Guan Yu insulted Sun Quan is similar to way that you are insulting him. I am not offending you here I just feel a need to point this out. I agree though that Guan Yu’s diplomatic ability was very poor and had he treated Sun Quan with more humility and respect then Quan would have been far less reluctant to attack. Also when did Guan Yu threaten Lu Meng?

The difference is I’m not insulting Guan Yu to his face. Nor am I insinuating that I don’t need him as an ally to survive. However, I see your point. Also, here’s the passage about Lu Meng’s attempt at assisting Guan Yu at Fan Castle:
Dian Lue wrote:When Guan Yu surrounded Fan City, Sun Quan dispatched his messenger to offer help. He instructed the messenger not to approach in haste, but sent a high ranking civil officer (éÂïÎ) ahead first to Guan Yu. Guan Yu was angry with the slowness, moreover, he had personally captured Yu Jin, thus he rebuked, “If you little octopuses dare to attack Fan City, do you think I cannot destroy you?”


I see that it was, instead, a messenger of Sun Quan's, not Lu Meng himself. My apologies for the misinterpretation, but my point is not so changed.

elitemsh wrote:I agree that Guan Yu’s faults should be acknowledged and not ignored. Did he really have overwhelming faults? I guess we must agree to disagree here.

If they were not overwhelming, wouldn’t they have not led him to his death? But I agree that, here, we must agree to disagree.

EDIT: Dong Zhou, the report of fires came from Records of Wu, in Lu Meng's SGZ.
Records of Wu wrote:Earlier on, there was a fire in the city of Nanjun, and much military accessories were destroyed. Guan Yu reproached Mi Fang for that, and Mi Fang became fearful of him from then on.

Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 7:20 am
by simple
If I m not wrong, Liu Bei never order Guan Yu to attack Fan Castle, He justed got Han Zhong. At that point in time, Shu's forces were not in a good shape to start another war front. If Guan Yu had waited another 2-3 years, he might even had support fr Liu Bei. Guan Yu also might had rushed into the attack to gain frame, cos he felt that he can't lose out.

Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 9:38 am
by Elitemsh
Tan_Binrui wrote:EDIT: Dong Zhou, the report of fires came from Records of Wu, in Lu Meng's SGZ.
Records of Wu wrote:Earlier on, there was a fire in the city of Nanjun, and much military accessories were destroyed. Guan Yu reproached Mi Fang for that, and Mi Fang became fearful of him from then on.


So the fire was indeed real. I think then that Guan Yu had twice as much right to want to punish Mi Fang and surely now Fang's competence should be brought more into question.


simple wrote:If I m not wrong, Liu Bei never order Guan Yu to attack Fan Castle, He justed got Han Zhong. At that point in time, Shu's forces were not in a good shape to start another war front. If Guan Yu had waited another 2-3 years, he might even had support fr Liu Bei. Guan Yu also might had rushed into the attack to gain frame, cos he felt that he can't lose out.


Too true. Liu Bei never ordered the attack. Guan Yu simply felt annoyed that he had gained no glory in the Yi campaign and the conquest of Han Zhong. To make it worse there were generals like Huang Zhong (who Guan Yu believed inferior to him) gaining much fame and being ranked equally with Guan. It is the pride issue again. Guan Yu wanted some credit and he no doubt wanted to achieve more glory so he could be ranked above the others. I read that Guan Yu was extremely annoyed when the 'clod' Huang Zhong was ranked on equal times as Guan felt that he should be given extra distinction.

I agree that Guan Yu should have waited for a while and built up his strength further before attacking. However, Guan Yu was about 57 years old at the time and he may have felt that his time was running out. It was now or never, this may have been what Guan Yu thought.

Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 10:06 am
by Dong Zhou
Fires happen, the Han seemed to be suffering nasty ones quite a bit under Huan. He was suited for minor office, as a governor or as a supporting general or as a hunting companion.

Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 12:53 pm
by Shi Tong
I've always maintained that, yes Guan Yu wasn't some amazing Godlike general that we all see in SGYY, but as Dong Zhou said before, I think Guan Yu really lacked any talent with him in Jing Zhou, and people like Mi Fang/ Fu Shi Ren were really a thorn in his side and not an assistance at all.

There is a thread, I started called (I think) "Who was with Guan Yu in Jing Zhou?" to address this issue, but I cant find it for searching (there's a lot of threads starting with Who!)

I guess I consider Guan Yu was human and therefore subject to human flaws and traits. I dont think he was excessively arrogant, though I think he probably was a bit arrogant, and though he made mistakes I personally think that was because he lacked the back up of a sound mind.

From what I can remember Ma Liang was his adviser, but I dont even remember him giving Guan Yu much advise anyway, and Mi Fang and Fu Shi Ren were his subordinate generals.

Seems very little for someone in command of a whole province when Liu Bei was with his huge amounts of capable advisers and generals in Shu!

Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 2:12 pm
by Elitemsh
Shi Tong wrote:From what I can remember Ma Liang was his adviser, but I dont even remember him giving Guan Yu much advise anyway, and Mi Fang and Fu Shi Ren were his subordinate generals.

Seems very little for someone in command of a whole province when Liu Bei was with his huge amounts of capable advisers and generals in Shu!


Guan Yu was said to have treated the officials arrogantly. Any advice Ma Liang may have given, Guan Yu would not have listened to because for whatever reason he didn't respect politicians/diplomats like Ma Liang. Perhaps that is why Liu Bei did not give Guan Yu more advisors because Guan didn't respect them and Bei knew this having been with Guan for so long. I think it is true though that Guan should have been given more loyal and competent subordinates.

So while i agree that Guan Yu lacked talent under him, the little he was given he did not use well.

Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 3:28 pm
by Shi Tong
Guan Yu was said to have treated the officials arrogantly. Any advice Ma Liang may have given, Guan Yu would not have listened to because for whatever reason he didn't respect politicians/diplomats like Ma Liang. Perhaps that is why Liu Bei did not give Guan Yu more advisors because Guan didn't respect them and Bei knew this having been with Guan for so long. I think it is true though that Guan should have been given more loyal and competent subordinates.

So while i agree that Guan Yu lacked talent under him, the little he was given he did not use well.


Sorry..

You think that Liu Bei was aware that Guan Yu wouldn't take advice from anyone, but put him into the leadership position in Jing Zhou? Surely this is folly?!

I mean, I personally have thought for a long time now that Guan's position in Jing Zhou was untenable because of Liu Bei being stupid with him (not giving advisers, not giving enough support etc), but actually putting someone who he knows will not take advise is stupid IMO.

Also, this is no excuse as to why he doesn't send MORE advisers.

Surely if you have a leader who is looking after something for you, you'd send them as many advisers as possible, and if they dont get along with one adviser, send someone they will get along with. He needed the aid, and Liu Bei not seeing these faults is just plain stupid, if you're right about what you said!

I also agree that he didn't use his advisers very well, but I cant remember any mention of advise which was given by Ma Liang.

Not that I'm trying to unnecessarily defend Guan Yu, but maybe it's Ma Liang who wasn't such a great adviser??