The top ten worst decisions in history

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Byzantine fanatic, Nov 21, 2018.

  1. Byzantine fanatic Pasha of the Rumistan beylik

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    Why will the Russians win? I thought the Ottomans were winning against Russia OTL? Will moving a few units make that much difference?
     
  2. Grey Wolf Writer, Poet, Publisher, Cat-sitter

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    Do you think the British conjured up divisions for Gallipolli? They mainly came from Egypt where they had been sent or were intended to be sent.
     
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  3. cmakk1012 Well-Known Member

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    No, the Russians were advancing right up until Brest-Litovsk shattered their army’s unity, and even then the independent Armenian units held their own to some extent. Less Ottoman troops in the Caucasus could be very, very dangerous for them.
     
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  4. Byzantine fanatic Pasha of the Rumistan beylik

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    Why were the Ottoman units not doing better? Was it due to lack of preparation before the war? Lack of equipment, perhaps?
     
  5. cmakk1012 Well-Known Member

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    I’m not the most knowledgeable about WWI, but a quick search suggests that bad equipment did a number on Ottoman troops during the Caucasian winters. It may have also been due to less-than-stellar leadership...
     
  6. SealTheRealDeal Well-Known Member

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    Facing a competently lead Russian force is harder said than done, Nikolai Yudenich was probably Russia's second best general durring WWI (maybe even the best given that I know some people don't like Brusilov). In comparison the Pashas were quite out matched.
     
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  7. Oxander Stepping Lightly

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    How many of those have any hugely lasting impacts? Cannae didn't kill Rome and didn't save Carthage. Were it not the Goths, it would've been someone else. Crassus is but one of many lost Eastern Adventures. Khwarezm was doomed anyhow. Ottoman days were numbered. That's half that - really - probably don't change too much broadspectrum stuff down the line. Not to down on you at all, or the list, but just looking at their immediate impacts versus the "worst in history" dichotomy.
     
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  8. Koprulu Mustafa Pasha Sadrazam of the Roman Empire

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    For one battle in 1914, before Sarikamish disaster. And that was defensively. What they should have kept for some time...
     
  9. cmakk1012 Well-Known Member

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    I suppose in this alternate scenario the Ottomans would start off on the defensive in order to go off and invade Egypt. Wouldn’t the lack of units hurt more than starting off on a defensive mindset, though?
     
  10. Koprulu Mustafa Pasha Sadrazam of the Roman Empire

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    Depends on. Do you mean in the invasion of Egypt or the defense of the Caucasus.
     
  11. S. Marlowski Writer of an upcoming fantasy series

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    How about the Best Decisions that never been materialized.
     
  12. cmakk1012 Well-Known Member

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    I meant in the Caucasus. I guess if being defensive in the Caucasus was the game plan for, like, a decade, they could have built some serious fortifications that could have mitigated the lower troop numbers? Obviously the Caucasus has excellent defensive terrain.
     
  13. Koprulu Mustafa Pasha Sadrazam of the Roman Empire

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    Between 1878 and 1912 the Balkans were a priority, as the remainder of Rumelia was pretty indefensible in case of war (liks in the Balkans. The revenue was low and the idea to fight Russia again was not popular considerinh the Risks.
     
  14. Hegemon of words and thoughts

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    In hindsight, the events leading up to the Vandals settling in North Africa and the western islands.
     
  15. Pugzley Well-Known Member

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    Talk about own goal.
     
  16. Byzantine fanatic Pasha of the Rumistan beylik

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    A great example of this is when Hitler was presented with a proposal for the USSR to join the Axis as a full member in November 1940. If he had accepted, Germany would have won the war.
     
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  17. Unknown Member

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    JFK, IIRC, didn't want the dome because it wasn't raining at the time and he wanted the public to see him (it was the beginning of the leadup to the 1964 election and he needed to win Texas). That was a fatal mistake, IMO...

    In an example of Tempting Fate, Mrs. Connally said to JFK right before the shooting "You can't say Dallas doesn't love you, Mr. President?" JFK said "No, I sure can't." A few minutes later...
     
  18. Unknown Member

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    Hitler hated the Soviet Union and wanted to take them out, as well as Britain. If this had happened, this would be an instance of buying time (on both sides)…

    With regards to worst decisions, Stalin's ignoring evidence that the Germans were planning to attack before the German invasion...
     
  19. alexmilman Well-Known Member

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    They more or less did it (see map below showing situation as of September of 1917) but they did not have enough troops on that theater to make it into something substantially greater than occupying most of Armenia: an overwhelming majority of their forces had been engaged against Germany and A-H.

    [​IMG]

    Just an idle thought: what if the Allied operations were better coordinated and instead of Galliopoli the troops had been sent to, say, Mesopotamian (or Palestinian?) theater with a purpose to squeeze the Ottomans between the Russian and British offensives?
    [​IMG]
     
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  20. Zulfurium Well-Known Member

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    I personally would nominate Gavril Princep’s decision to go for a sandwich after failing to assassinate Frank Ferdinand. That led to him being present when the Archduke and his wife passed by and his assassination of them. That triggered the July Crisis, which led to the Great War. Princip himself died in prison before he could turn 25 and unleashed the horrors which would go on to engulf the world I er the course of the following century.

    Granted there were a lot of ancillary aspects to the Great War and what followed, but this has to be one of the most disasterous decisions taken by anyone in its impact on him personally, on his nation (leading to the death of a large percentage of his own ethnic group and worsening the inter-Balkan relations considerably, setting the stage for all the Balkan horrors to follow) and on the world as a whole.