Camping on top of hills - good or bad?

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Unread postby Rommel » Thu Aug 12, 2004 6:57 pm

First I dont think that anybody here said that Ma Su was overrated. Where did you get the idea from? Secondly if you evaluate a person's talent based on the person's family background then you have a problem. Just because Ma Su was Ma Liang's brother Ma Su must be good too? Thirdly can you give us more details how to defend a huge army on flat ground. Without natural barriers such as steep mountain range or river how can you barricade the roads. What materials do you suggest to use for defense? Remember there is no mines, iron wires, tank teeth, machine gun.... Traps might stop the army for a while but for how long. How much time did Ma Su have to set up his defense. At least he needed time to build up a wooden fence, which requires certain amount of lumbers. If Ma Su set up camp on hill at least trees were around If he set up on road how many people were needed to transport the woods to the site? How tall will the fence be? Taller than his own defense men? then his men wouldn't be able to fire at enemy behind the wall. Shorter than his army? It would be very vulnerable to arrow attack. So FengChu please give us detail about u defensive plan.
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Unread postby PrimeMinister Bu Zhi » Thu Aug 12, 2004 7:02 pm

Liu Bei himself told Zhuge Liang about Ma Su. Yet he didn't listen. And I agree it was Ma Su's fault, but also Zhuge Liang for employing him.

PM Bu Zhi, can you back up your statements on troop numbers? Do you think that William's map is correct?

What's William's map? And I do think so. If Wei had 400,000 men, why would they put 250,000 on the Shu front, yet the Wu front is bigger. Also, If they attacked with 250,000, I don't think they have enough to defend agianst Wu and defend their city. If Shu had 100,000, and Zhuge Liang used 25,000, then 3/4 of his men are either in his cites or defending the main camp. It's not possible that a Wei army of 250,000 would attack Shu's 25,000. Zhuge Liang stands no chance agianst such odds. It's nearly impossible.
Lu Xun- "After much observation of how Liu Bei had been leading troops in his career, I see that he had more failures than success; hence, he is not much of a threat."
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Unread postby Exar Kun » Thu Aug 12, 2004 8:26 pm

Prime Minister BuZhi wrote:ZGL is known to have a bad eye for people.


Oh really?
And exactly where did this occur.Certainly not with Ma Su.The man was obviously a brilliant advisor to Zhuge.

robbyjo wrote:PM Bu Zhi, can you back up your statements on troop numbers? Do you think that William's map is correct?

-- Rob


Total troop numbers in the novel are exaggerated in every way.
There are some very obvious example.First is when Liu Bei leads a massive 700K army against Wu and Wu responds with 50K.Rather stupid when Wu has a larger population.
Additionally Shu's population in 263 was around a million with 100K standing troops and is historically recorded.10% conscription is very high and if you assume the same for all other kingdoms then you're looking at best for 800K troops total for all the kingdoms since the population was something like 8 million in 263.

Furthermore,assuming a Wei standing army of say 500K,how exactly can they afford 250K for Shu's western offensive.What about defense of Jing?The capital?Xuzhou?The northern Frontier?
The logistics is both impossible and ridiculous at the same time.
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Unread postby PrimeMinister Bu Zhi » Thu Aug 12, 2004 8:37 pm

Oh really?
And exactly where did this occur.Certainly not with Ma Su.The man was obviously a brilliant advisor to Zhuge.


Maybe he did, but why make him a commander when generals who proved themself much more such as Wu Yi and Wei Yan were in his army.

Total troop numbers in the novel are exaggerated in every way.
There are some very obvious example.First is when Liu Bei leads a massive 700K army against Wu and Wu responds with 50K.Rather stupid when Wu has a larger population.
Additionally Shu's population in 263 was around a million with 100K standing troops and is historically recorded.10% conscription is very high and if you assume the same for all other kingdoms then you're looking at best for 800K troops total for all the kingdoms since the population was something like 8 million in 263.

Furthermore,assuming a Wei standing army of say 500K,how exactly can they afford 250K for Shu's western offensive.What about defense of Jing?The capital?Xuzhou?The northern Frontier?
The logistics is both impossible and ridiculous at the same time.


Agreed.
Lu Xun- "After much observation of how Liu Bei had been leading troops in his career, I see that he had more failures than success; hence, he is not much of a threat."
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Unread postby ZhangBaihu » Thu Aug 12, 2004 11:25 pm

Wait, why is everyone saying Sima Yi's forces outnumbered Zhuge Liang's? According to the book, Zhuge's forces outnumbered the defending Wei forces in the battles of the first campaign.

From Chapter 96...

Fei Yi tried again, saying, "But with an army of one hundred thousand bold veterans, you can attack Wei again."

Said Zhuge Liang, "When we were at Qishan and Gu Valley, we outnumbered the enemy, but we could not conquer them. On the contrary, they beat us. The defect was not in the number of soldiers, but in the leadership. Now we must reduce the army, discover our faults, reflect on our errors, and mend our ways against the future. Unless this is so, what is the use of a numerous army? Hereafter everyone will have to look to the future of his country. But most diligently each of you must fight against my shortcomings and blame my inefficiencies. Then we may succeed, rebellion can be exterminated, and merit can be set up."
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Unread postby Exar Kun » Fri Aug 13, 2004 2:05 am

PrimeMinister Bu Zhi wrote:Maybe he did, but why make him a commander when generals who proved themself much more such as Wu Yi and Wei Yan were in his army.


Because this defense was not to be entrusted to sheer courage.While being of stout heart might make you a hell of a leader,a task like this is more suited to brains than brawn.Knowing Wei Yan and his ridiculous Ziwu plan he'd more likely abandon Jieting and try to lay some kind of stupid ambush or something.
A strategist was needed was direct the defense.
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Unread postby robbyjo » Fri Aug 13, 2004 2:21 am

ZhangBaiHu,

It's because the majority of that army was led by ZGL for a surprise attack for Chang An (200K). Ma Su's troops are 25K, Gao Xiang's 10K. How about Wei Yan's? Zhao Yun & Deng Zhi's? That makes sense IMHO.

-- Rob
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Unread postby PrimeMinister Bu Zhi » Fri Aug 13, 2004 3:07 am

Because this defense was not to be entrusted to sheer courage.While being of stout heart might make you a hell of a leader,a task like this is more suited to brains than brawn.Knowing Wei Yan and his ridiculous Ziwu plan he'd more likely abandon Jieting and try to lay some kind of stupid ambush or something.
A strategist was needed was direct the defense.


That's very good thinking, but what about Wu Yi. Deng Zhi, and even Wang Ping. They have experience in military as leaders, not as courageous fighters. They were loyal and skilled.
Lu Xun- "After much observation of how Liu Bei had been leading troops in his career, I see that he had more failures than success; hence, he is not much of a threat."
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Unread postby Exar Kun » Fri Aug 13, 2004 4:28 am

This is true but you'll remember that a lot of these guys hadn't proven themselves to be at the top level yet.Wang Ping comes to real prominence later on.
Also remember that Wang Ping DID come along and that provided the Jie Ting force with leadership at a commander's level whereas Ma Su would have been tasked to provide the plan.Zhuge obviously wanted someone who he thought would be a shrewd strategist and to this point Ma Su had proven himself as nothing but.
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Unread postby Rommel » Fri Aug 13, 2004 5:31 pm

Ma Su.The man was obviously a brilliant advisor to Zhuge.

Can anyone tell me what advices or suggestions Ma Su gave ZGL to affect/assist or to change ZGL's plan/policy? What idea did Ma Su give to have effects on Shu?
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