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  #81  
Old 03-10-2016, 10:00 PM
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Weird Harold Weird Harold is offline
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Originally Posted by fionwe1987 View Post
I dunno. Morghase, or Siuan, or one of the Bordelanders (not Tenobia) would have done better, I think. They had way more experience at this sort of thing.
The Queen of Andor and Cairhein has a lot more precedence in protocol than any other candidate save Tuon and Tuon is a foreigner.

The minor detail that the QoA&C happens to be Elayne when the balloon went up is just as the Pattern decreed.
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  #82  
Old 03-11-2016, 03:07 AM
GonzoTheGreat GonzoTheGreat is offline
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I dunno. Morghase, or Siuan, or one of the Bordelanders (not Tenobia) would have done better, I think. They had way more experience at this sort of thing.
Both Siuan and Morgase had lost a lot of status. They had the experience and competence to do it, but not the authority. Technically they might have been better, but politically they weren't the right choice.
The Borderland monarchs were more or less in the same situation, with the added issue that they didn't have the skill to deal with (southern) politics well enough. Militarily they could manage, but that was only half the job, and the less relevant half at that (since there were the Great Captains to handle that side of the problem).

What was needed was someone who could handle the political side of things, had enough stature to be instantly acceptable to all, and was also trusted well enough to let that person try. This last, obviously, excluded any (former) Amyrlin Seat, since no monarch would want to give such a woman any more power than she already had.
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  #83  
Old 06-08-2016, 10:05 PM
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So I finally finished my backwards re-read. I finished Eye of the World just the other day. I think it took me about a year to read the whole series that way.

I must say, the first book felt very different from any of the others. Even more different than usual. The uniqueness of the storytelling in book 1 really stood out. I can't tell if it was mostly because the characters were so young, and RJ needed to concentrate so much on getting us acquainted with them, or if RJ hadn't really decided the course of the story until the end of the book. Moiraine seems almost naive in the first book, but that could also just be the newness of the character and RJ's need to keep pace with the reader.

Reading the books in reverse order made it easier to pick up on all the foreshadowing as well. It was kind of cool to be reminded just how far in advance certain characters were introduced. Like Dain Bornhald, for example. I had forgotten we first meet him in Baerlon in book 1. One of the earliest important minor characters in the series from outside the Two Rivers.

And last but not least, I understand Egwene haters a little better now. I had forgotten just how much RJ had set her character up in the beginning as the embodiment of what frustrates men about women. I had even forgotten exactly why she left the Two Rivers in the first place (to see the world, as if Emond's Field hadn't just been attacked by Trollocs, and "Don't try to tell me you're not leaving for the same reason, Rand!") I usually only think of her character post-Seanchan, post-Aiel.
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  #84  
Old 06-09-2016, 06:30 PM
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Default On the Supreme Commander of the Light

It seems that the Dragon's Peace was Rand's no. 1 priority in the Merrilor Conference. He wanted Elayne to sign the treaty; and for that he gave her supreme command. Rand pitched Elayne as a leader to the core (acceptable, since she was groomed for a few years to rule Andor after her mother), and as the one who taught him everything about being a leader. That was a clear lie since she only instructed him on leadership during their 4 days of Tear and kissing. Whereas Moiraine drilled him in leadership, rule, and the game of houses for weeks and months. Bashere was his personal advisor for months. And Cadsuane, a few rungs above Elayne, was his Aes Sedai advisor. And he had a few centuries worth of memories as the Supreme Leader in the Age of Legends (ref. his chat with Tuon).

As to the duties of the supreme commander, they were more military than political in my opinion. After all, the leader was to lead the armies of the Light in the Last Battle. And we see that most of Elayne's decisions were military ones, not political.

But what choices did the Light have for Supreme Commander? It doesn't seem that any candidate stood out above all the others. But Elayne was at the lower end of the candidates in my opinion. She just lost her capital; and if not for Rand's ploy to bring the armies of the Light to Merrilor, she would have lost most of her army as well. And she had ample warning from darkfriends that an invasion of Caemlyn was pending. As a queen she bears responsibility for that failure.

Mat's absence made any choice as good as any other. Because in the end, Mat was the one that needed to lead the armies of the Light.

And that brings me to another point, did Graendal start manipulating the Great Captains before their great, fragmented plan of 4 armies for 4 battle fronts? Because I think that fragmentation of the forces of the Light played well into the Shadow's hands.

The ability to send 100,000 cavalry to Tarwin's Gap to save Lan could have been easily used to send 300,000 and 1000 channelers to annihilate the Shadow army at the gap, then Travel to Kandor and eradicate the army there with the same combined forces.

Leave the Trollocs holed up in Caemlyn. Their purpose was to draw attention south (as Rand rightly guessed). They were the smallest army; and could have been pinned down in Caemlyn with a small mobile force and dragons, with some channelers for gateways.

The Trojan horse would be Demandred if he decides to make an appearance anywhere. And to counter any surprise, the Light should have combined 3 armies and kept the 4th as reserve. The armies of Bashere, Bryne, and Agelmar to Travel and defeat the Shadow in Tarwin's Gap, then Kandor, then Caemlyn. Rodel's army a reserve.

Even though hindsight is 20/20, I still feel that the battle plan that was drafted after the Merrilor Conference was very, very deficient and didn't utilize the strengths of the Light, channelers and Traveling.

And what's ironic is that darth-Rand had that plan when he chatted with Nynaeve on their way to meet the borderlanders. He planned to use gateways to Travel and defeat different Shadow armies.

Last edited by maleshub; 06-09-2016 at 08:35 PM.
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  #85  
Old 06-10-2016, 04:10 AM
GonzoTheGreat GonzoTheGreat is offline
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Originally Posted by maleshub View Post
And what's ironic is that darth-Rand had that plan when he chatted with Nynaeve on their way to meet the borderlanders. He planned to use gateways to Travel and defeat different Shadow armies.
It was basically a scaled up version of his campaign against the Seanchan.

On the other hand, there are a few things that could have gone wrong with it:
The Shadow could have retreated at Tarwin's Gap. Then either the forces of the Light would have to pursue them into the Blight (while leaving the other Shadow armies to do as they wished), or they would have had to station a holding force in the Gap and gone after the next target.
The Shadow could have decided not to keep the Kandor army in one piece. Split it up into hundreds of independent groups of roaming Trollocs and send those in all directions, and the forces of the Light would've faced years of tracking them all down.
Dreadlords could have attacked the troops besieging Caemlyn from the rear, thus giving the Trollocs an opening to break out and start ravaging Andor. Why they didn't do that anyway is a mystery to me; 300 fists of a hundred Trollocs each (making a total of 30,000) could have very seriously messed up the logistics on which the Light depended.
The Shadow could have send Trolloc raiding parties all over the world using Portal Stones. Wouldn't win the war on its own, perhaps, but it would make the situation for the Light a lot more desperate than it was now.
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  #86  
Old 06-10-2016, 04:10 PM
maleshub maleshub is offline
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Originally Posted by GonzoTheGreat View Post
It was basically a scaled up version of his campaign against the Seanchan.

On the other hand, there are a few things that could have gone wrong with it:
The Shadow could have retreated at Tarwin's Gap. Then either the forces of the Light would have to pursue them into the Blight (while leaving the other Shadow armies to do as they wished), or they would have had to station a holding force in the Gap and gone after the next target.
The Shadow could have decided not to keep the Kandor army in one piece. Split it up into hundreds of independent groups of roaming Trollocs and send those in all directions, and the forces of the Light would've faced years of tracking them all down.
Dreadlords could have attacked the troops besieging Caemlyn from the rear, thus giving the Trollocs an opening to break out and start ravaging Andor. Why they didn't do that anyway is a mystery to me; 300 fists of a hundred Trollocs each (making a total of 30,000) could have very seriously messed up the logistics on which the Light depended.
The Shadow could have send Trolloc raiding parties all over the world using Portal Stones. Wouldn't win the war on its own, perhaps, but it would make the situation for the Light a lot more desperate than it was now.
I can see where the Shadow could have pulled a more grand version of Sammael's Shaido plan with its Kandor army. But the problem with the Shadow fragmenting its forces is that it allows local defenses to be more effective. For example, armies of a thousand or so Trollocs would not have breached any defended city or town in the borderlands. The borderlander civilians would have been at an advantage defending against them from behind fortifications.

Still, Trollocs cannot Travel; and a fist of Trollocs only needs 1 Ashaman to handle it. So, the Shadow fragmentation might have allowed the Light to easily finish off its Kandor army with a combination of local defenses facing smaller enemy forces and teams of 1-2 channelers.

As to the Shadow retreating into the Gap, I don't think that could have been possible if the Light hit them with its full might. The rescue sent to Lan hit the Shadow army out of the gap while it was forming its battle lines. But even in the Gap, a concentrated effort of Ashaman and Aes Sedai with conventional backup would have been enough to render that army too weak to destroy Shienar.

As to the enemy dreadlords, they were much less than the Light's, even minus the Seanchan. Egwene dealt them a tremendous blow; and Taim and his cronies were too exhausted with their stupid "males Turning males". The Light could have outnumbered any Shadow dreadlord deployment prior to Demandred's entrance, and even afterwards. It is beyond me why Lan's army had 5 Ashaman only after the rescue; while Elayne had the kin at her disposal.

Spoiler:
What about the Ogier; the Companion says that they numbered 500,000 in population in Randland. An army of 100,000 ogier with Ashaman would have probably handled 5 times its number of Shadow forces

Last edited by maleshub; 06-11-2016 at 04:30 PM.
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  #87  
Old 06-24-2016, 12:14 PM
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Weiramon Weiramon is offline
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//

Because I think that fragmentation of the forces of the Light played well into the Shadow's hands.

The ability to send 100,000 cavalry to Tarwin's Gap to save Lan could have been easily used to send 300,000 and 1000 channelers to annihilate the Shadow army at the gap, then Travel to Kandor and eradicate the army there with the same combined forces.

//
Bah, that's ridiculous.

Any Lord worth his salt knows to hit with fingers spread, not as a fist. Perhaps a treatise on proper combat strategy that isn't 1,700 years old needs to be done. It can be called "Sa'vron - Caba'drin!"
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  #88  
Old 06-25-2016, 03:27 PM
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Bah, that's ridiculous.

Any Lord worth his salt knows to hit with fingers spread, not as a fist. Perhaps a treatise on proper combat strategy that isn't 1,700 years old needs to be done. It can be called "Sa'vron - Caba'drin!"
LOL!!! Why did RJ have to write you as a friend of the Dark? The Light would have been so much better with Saniago Weiramon leading the Black Tower; bringing destruction on his foes, and a healing touch on his captured Aes Sedai
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