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Who is the best commander out of Tywin, Eddard and Stannis?

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1 hour ago, StraightFromAsshai said:

Tywin isn't a commander, he is a steward. He is good at ruling and maintaining some high level of prosperity in the realm when he was the hand of the King (Aerys).

Of course he is a commander. Just because someone was a capable Hand does not mean that are also not a war commander. If he was just a 'steward' he would have gone to Kings Landing instead of Tyrion and chosen somone else to lead the Crown's armies in the War of the Five Kings. 

 

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Posted (edited)

I’m not sure how this is even a question.  Stannis is clearly #1.

He holds Storm’s End in the face of absurd odds.  In feudal politics, the charisma and ability of the lord/king/commander are paramount.  Being able to inspire the kind of loyalty that leads men to starve and die for you is intricately bound up in what good generalship is.  In the limited information we get, we see that Stannis’ men follow him to the literal ends of the earth out of loyalty to him and his cause, even when turning back might be easier (as some of them did post-Blackwater).  Being able to hold a castle like that is certainly important for a medieval commander.  Second, he wins one of the few victories we can chalk up to tactical ability alone at Fair Isle.  Never forget the importance of good seamanship in naval battles; for all that the ironborn are likely slightly outnumbered, they also are the finest sailors in Westeros, and Stannis crushes them resoundingly.  He also takes Dragonstone, a Targaryen stronghold which is actually garrisoned by soldiers.  While he likely has the advantage of force in this, it’s probably not as large of an imbalance as Tywin/Robert/Eddard have in taking the various Iron Islands after Fair Isle.  And as far as the political aspect of being a good commander goes, it’s quite clear that he has that down, as well.  He successfully wins the allegiance of a number of Reacher lords, not to mention his successful politicking in the mountain clans in the North, who have no reason to swear to him personally (unlike the Westermen to Tywin).  He suffers one defeat that we know of, at the Blackwater, and even then is only defeated because of a massive deus ex machina, and it’s a close run thing.  Oh, and it’s obviously worth pointing out that his outnumbered, hungry, cold, and tired army is almost certainly going to trounce the Bolton-allied army in Winds of Winter.

Tywin, on the other hand, seems to be something of a moron.  He has one victory to his name, which is crushing the Reynes and the Tarbecks.  And it’s unclear whether that was a reflection of his ability or just his ability to use extra-legal means to terrorize his father’s vassals into submission (remember, he didn’t raise Lannister forces, he hired mercenaries under his own name, IIRC, which is very illegal).  From there, what?  We have no record of him during the War of Ninepenny Kings save that he was knighted, so perhaps he saw some limited action and didn’t shame himself.  During the Wot5K, he completely shits the bed.  He’s outfought by Robb Stark at every turn.  Even the Battle of the Green Fork, a tactical victory but strategic defeat, is almost certainly as much due to Roose Bolton throwing the battle than it is his own brilliance.  So yeah, he’s fought off his feet at every turn.  Every person he appoints to a position of importance gets beaten, including himself, excepting only the son he tries to kill right before making him Hand.  From a higher viewpoint, it’s Littlefinger that negotiates the alliance with the Tyrells, and Tyrell armies (with an assist from Tyrion) that win the Battle of the Blackwater.  Mind you, he almost gets his grandson the King killed because he’s very clearly requisitioning supplies for his army that otherwise might have gone to feed King’s Landing.  He totally misreads the strategic objectives of Robb Stark by taking the bait and attacking into the Westerlands after Oxcross (though it might be argued he had no choice if he wanted to hold onto his vassal’s loyalty), and is only saved from a total disaster by being beaten, again, by Edmure Tully.  His entire political legacy is also falling to pieces without him there.  In the North, men fight on in the name of Ned Stark, because they bought into the political program he was selling.  No one seems willing to fight for Tywin’s.  His kids resent and fear him, his bannermen fear and maybe respect him, but no one likes him.  Best that can be said is he was a very able administrator.  And to Duranaparthur’s point about him being able to mobilize quickly, I don’t think this is true.  Eddard mobilizing the North for Robert’s Rebellion is quick mobilization.  Tywin was actively planning the invasion of the Riverlands weeks if not months before he actually moved out (he begins preparing when he hears of Tyrion’s abduction).  And when he crushes the Reynes/Tarbecks, he wins because he “mobilizes” faster, which is in quotes because really he’s running around with a highly illegal army, terrorizing various lords into submission.  I can mobilize faster than any single commander in history if I get to start the process 3 months earlier, too.

Ned is obviously the trickiest.  The only time we hear of him in war are Robert’s Rebellion, when he doesn’t do much (though I’ll note he rallies the North very quickly, speaking of considerable logistical ability, and without any dissenting we hear from, unlike Jon Arryn or Robert Baratheon, who encounter stiff resistance from their own bannermen), and the Greyjoy Rebellion, when his role is probably analogous to Robert and Tywin – mopping up.  Not that amphibious operations aren’t difficult, especially in the time period in question, but the war was over after the Iron Fleet was defeated off Fair Isle.  The crown has a strength that outnumbers the Greyjoys by an order of magnitude.  Only at sea were they a threat.  That being said, and again going back to the political aspect, Ned Stark’s legacy is alive in a way that Tywin’s isn’t.  His bannermen fight to restore his kids to his seat.  His kids remember the lessons he taught them, and that will likely end up saving the world.  Cersei and Jaime are awful people, largely because of Tywin, and have basically burnt the kingdom down in emulating his selfishness and lack of respect for other people, customs, and institutions.

So yeah.  I think it’s a pretty obvious win for Stannis, who has shown a mastery of feudal warfare, in all of the tactical, strategic, and political spheres.  He can point to battles won due to his tactical acumen.  He can point to wars won due to his ability to see the big picture. And politically/personally (the same, in feudal politics), he can point to the ability to inspire his men to follow him in the face of unimaginable hardship, which Ned/Tywin have not shown.  Tywin is the big loser.  Aside from his apparently successful tenure as Hand, and his extra-legal obliteration of the Reynes and Tarbecks, he doesn’t have a single notable victory to his name.  He is significantly outfought and outthought by Rob AND Stannis in the Wot5K, and succeeds only through GRRM intervening on his behalf to move the story forward.  And as we see in his appointments post-Blackwater and pre-trial, it’s quite obvious that the Tyrell’s are running the show, no matter who is in the driver’s seat.  Eddard, well, tough to tell, but I think his legacy will be better than Tywin’s.

Edited by cpg2016

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12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

He holds Storm’s End in the face of absurd odd.

This is something of an exaggeration. Stannis lasted as long as was expected of him. He expects Penrose to last a similar amount of time. It was a decent result from a young noble, but Storm's End is one of the most powerful castles in Westeros and is expected to last for a long time.

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

I In feudal politics, the charisma and ability of the lord/king/commander are paramount.  Being able to inspire the kind of loyalty that leads men to starve and die for you is intricately bound up in what good generalship is. 

Nope. We know that some of knights were willing to change sides. Though I find it odd that you are giving Stannis the credit for the loyalty of the troops and people inside House Baratheon. Were the people of Winterfell loyal to Bran or to House Stark in general? You are giving credit to Stannis for something that his family achieved, not him directly. 

 

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

  In the limited information we get, we see that Stannis’ men follow him to the literal ends of the earth out of loyalty to him and his cause, even when turning back might be easier (as some of them did post-Blackwater).

You mean the vast majority of them? Stannis comments on just how 'loyal' the men with him are. By the end of the ADWD he does have a few loyal men, he also has many that have no other choice, that have lost their lands and titles and are now enemies of the Crown. Their only option is to stay with Stannis and hope that he is successful. 

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 Second, he wins one of the few victories we can chalk up to tactical ability alone at Fair Isle.  Never forget the importance of good seamanship in naval battles; for all that the ironborn are likely slightly outnumbered,

lol slightly? Come on, he has the both the Royal and Reach Navy (including the Redwyne). He overwhelmingly outnumbered the Ironborn navy who wrongly assumed that the Reach would not support King Robert. 

It is a good victory, but lets not pretend that the odds were  safely in Stannis'/the Crown's favour. 

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 He also takes Dragonstone, a Targaryen stronghold which is actually garrisoned by soldiers. 

Your kidding, right? We know from Dany that the garrison were trying to sell her and her family to the Baratheons. There was no battle needed for this, the Targs fled and the garrison surrendered. 

 

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

He successfully wins the allegiance of a number of Reacher lords,

You mean his in-laws? The in-laws who chose Renly over him and only supported him in the confusion after Renly's death.

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not to mention his successful politicking in the mountain clans in the North, who have no reason to swear to him personally (unlike the Westermen to Tywin).

They have not sworn to him. They have a mutually exclusive agenda. In fact they seem to be getting their own way as it was the Northerners who insisted on marching onto Winterfell when Stannis' men opposed it. 

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  He suffers one defeat that we know of, at the Blackwater, and even then is only defeated because of a massive deus ex machina, and it’s a close run thing. 

The shadow baby is the biggest deus ex machina  of them all. Without that Stannis' war is quickly ended and Renly Baratheon sits the Throne. 

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

.  Oh, and it’s obviously worth pointing out that his outnumbered, hungry, cold, and tired army is almost certainly going to trounce the Bolton-allied army in Winds of Winter.

Ah, so Stannis is the best commander based on events that have not happened? The march on Winterfell was an awful decision from a commander. He did not have the supplies or the equipment for that kind of march and is losing men and heavy horse on a trip that does little for his quest to win the Throne or even protect the Wall. 

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Tywin, on the other hand, seems to be something of a moron.  He has one victory to his name, which is crushing the Reynes and the Tarbecks. 

That was four different victories. Four battles and one war won. If you are not counting individual battles then Tywin has been the winning lead commander in two wars. That is two more than Stannis. 

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

And it’s unclear whether that was a reflection of his ability or just his ability to use extra-legal means to terrorize his father’s vassals into submission (remember, he didn’t raise Lannister forces, he hired mercenaries under his own name, IIRC, which is very illegal). 

eh? Hiring mercenaries is not illegal. Dunk pretty much makes his living from this in the Dunk & Egg books while Stannis initial army at Dragonstone is built up of mercenaries from Essos. Of course hiring mercenaries is not illegal, however ignoring that Tywin's army was built up of Lannister, Marbrand and Prester vassals. Not mercenaries. 

Nor did he terrorise the Reynes and Tarbecks. He told them to come to court and not only did they refuse but they withdrew their fealty (and encouraged other to do the same) to House Lannister, an act of war in itself. 

 

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

We have no record of him during the War of Ninepenny Kings save that he was knighted, so perhaps he saw some limited action and didn’t shame himself.

Nope, he was knighted before the war. His actions in the war were thought of as quite admirable and he was chosen to knight the heir to the Throne, Aerys, during the war. 

 

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  During the Wot5K, he completely shits the bed.

You mean the war he won?

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  He’s outfought by Robb Stark at every turn. 

Whoa! I love how you simply choose to ignore the conquest of the Riverlands. All but the Mallister and Frey lands were dealt with and this was in a matter of weeks (possibly less). 

The Lannisters take down of the Riverlands is a pretty impressive command  manoeuvre. But lets get back to Robb, how exactly was he outfought by Robb at every turn? It was a stalemate. 

Now I agree, Robb could have pressed his advantage as Tywin was fighting a war on multiple fronts but Robb never did, so to say he was outfought is kind of ignoring what was actually happening.  Tywin was still sitting pretty in the Riverlands, the major settlements in the West still very secure and all Robb was doing was attacking shepherds and mines. If an enemy chooses to waste his own time doing inconsequential actions, then a decent commander allows him to. 

 

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Even the Battle of the Green Fork, a tactical victory but strategic defeat, is almost certainly as much due to Roose Bolton throwing the battle than it is his own brilliance.

Roose did not throw the battle. According to the author it was in Roose's best interests to win that battle. 

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From a higher viewpoint, it’s Littlefinger that negotiates the alliance with the Tyrells, and Tyrell armies (with an assist from Tyrion) that win the Battle of the Blackwater. 

Do you not realise that commanders delegate? That is part of command, in fact it is probably one of the key parts of the command. Tywin was the lead commander at the Battle of Blackwater, he trounced Stannis. The entire realm acknowledges this basic fact, from at the Wall

"If we let Stannis choose our Lord Commander, we become his bannermen in all but name. Tywin Lannister is not like to forget that, and you know it will be Lord Tywin who wins in the end. He's already beaten Stannis once, on the Blackwater."

to down south in the Citadel

"Tywin Lannister had smashed Stannis and R'hllor upon the Blackwater, and soon enough he would finish them and mount the head of the Baratheon pretender on a spike above the gates of King's Landing."

I'm sorry that you don't like this fact, but it is true

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Mind you, he almost gets his grandson the King killed because he’s very clearly requisitioning supplies for his army that otherwise might have gone to feed King’s Landing.

lol what? Kings Landing was being starved by the Rose road, not the River road. 

 

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He totally misreads the strategic objectives of Robb Stark by taking the bait and attacking into the Westerlands after Oxcross (though it might be argued he had no choice if he wanted to hold onto his vassal’s loyalty),

I think you are misreading what was actually happening. Tywin goes West because Stannis was laying Storm's End under seige. an action that should have taken half a year at least. That is why Tywin goes West, he has time to deal with Robb. 

"Both of them." Storm's End was strong, it should have been able to hold out for half a year or more . . . time enough for his father to finish with Robb Stark. "How did this happen?"

Once again a magical shadow baby (like the magical direwolf) comes to the aide of Tywin's enemies.

 

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and is only saved from a total disaster by being beaten, again, by Edmure Tully.

eh? How do you get that? You earlier claimed that it was the Tyrells who won on the Blackwater and it was Littlefinger who was repsonsible for bringing them in. Kings Landing would have been fine with or without Tywin. 

And of course there is nothing stopping Tywin receiving a messenger on the way to the West or even a raven at the Golden Tooth and simply turning around. 

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 No one seems willing to fight for Tywin’s.

eh? This is based on what?

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  His kids resent and fear him, his bannermen fear and maybe respect him, but no one likes him. 

lol this has what to do with command? Please read the title of the thread. 

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

  And to Duranaparthur’s point about him being able to mobilize quickly, I don’t think this is true.

It quite clearly is true. There are three wars were he has done so

  • The take down of the Riverlands
  • His beating the rebel army to Kings Landing despite being further away
  • The speed he dealt with the Reynes and Tarbecks, not giving them enough time to join forces

Three separate wars were Tywin's speed and logistics have been impressive. 

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Eddard mobilizing the North for Robert’s Rebellion is quick mobilization. 

Sorry, can I ask what exactly this is based on? We are  never told how long it takes Ned to do this. We do know that in the time that it took Ned to mobilise his force Arryn was able to call his banners and win the Battle of Gulltown, Robert was then able to sail  home, call his banners march to Summerhall and win those three fights, return to Storm's End where he spent an unknown amount of time hunting and hawking with his prisoners, before marching to the Reach and fighting the battle of Ashemark and then making his way to the Riverlands for the Battle of the Bells. 

We have no idea how quickly it took Ned. It may well have been a quarter of a year or even longer. 

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

And when he crushes the Reynes/Tarbecks, he wins because he “mobilizes” faster, which is in quotes because really he’s running around with a highly illegal army, terrorizing various lords into submission. I can mobilize faster than any single commander in history if I get to start the process 3 months earlier, too.

I'm sorry, but you have lost me here. What exactly is illegal about Tywin's actions? And which Lords is terrorising into submission?

Are you talking about the 500 Westerland knights who returned from the Nine Penny Wars?

All those lords who had engaged in private wars during the previous decade were summoned to court, to have their disputes adjudicated by their liege lord.   Five hundred knights, blooded and seasoned veterans of the Stepstones, were formed into a new company under the command of Ser Tywin’s brother Ser Kevan, and charged with ridding the west of robber knights and outlaws, and “assisting in the collection of unpaid debts due to his lordship, my sire.”

Nothing about that is illegal, nor is it enough to beat the Reynes and Tarbecks. And in fact the Reynes and Tarbecks started to prepare from that point onwards

But elsewhere, the collectors were met with sullen resistance and open defiance.  Lord Reyne reportedly laughed when his maester read him Ser Tywin’s edicts, and counseled his friends and vassals to do nothing.  “The cub will soon grow weary of chasing his own tail,” he said. . . yet he set about strengthening the defenses of Castamere as well.

And of course they chose to renounce their fealty to their Lord. They, wrongly, thought they could beat the Lannisters. That is on them, nobody else. 

 

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Ned is obviously the trickiest.  The only time we hear of him in war are Robert’s Rebellion, when he doesn’t do much

What do you mean he does not do much? He saved Robert at the Battle of the Bells, he saved Stannis at Storm's End and was a commander in the Battle of the Trident, even being trusted to go take Kings Landing.

Only Robert, and perhaps Arryn, played bigger roles in that war. 

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and the Greyjoy Rebellion, when his role is probably analogous to Robert and Tywin – mopping up.

lol mopping up. There are multiple islands. Ask the American who thought in the Pacific islands just how easy that is.

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Not that amphibious operations aren’t difficult, especially in the time period in question, but the war was over after the Iron Fleet was defeated off Fair Isle.  The crown has a strength that outnumbers the Greyjoys by an order of magnitude.  Only at sea were they a threat.

Wait, so them outnumbering the Greyjoys on their own islands were they are in their own fortresses should be ignored because they (likely) outnumbered them but the Stannis vastly outnumbering the Greyjoys on sea should not? I think you bias is a little telling here. 

Ned and Tywin, unlike Stannis, don't feel the need to brag about their exploits. 

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That being said, and again going back to the political aspect, Ned Stark’s legacy is alive in a way that Tywin’s isn’t.

Tywin's grandson is the King of Westeros. How exactly is Tywin's legacy not alive? The Westerlands is still firmly under Lannister rule

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His bannermen fight to restore his kids to his seat. 

What exactly is your point here? Tywin's bannermen have no need to restore his seat as they never lost it. This is some bizarre strawman argument you have going on here, that Ned's legacy is better because his heirs are having to fight to reclaim it. 

 

12 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 He is significantly outfought and outthought by Rob AND Stannis in the Wot5K,

You mean that Tywin faced two enemies at once and still won. And somehow you are claiming he was outthought and outfought. Command is all about winning wars, something neither Stannis or Robb have ever done. Of the three of them Tywin is the only one who has won wars. The other two has had some decent battle wins. 

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and succeeds only through GRRM intervening on his behalf to move the story forward. 

Tywin, Stannis and Robb. Which of the three did not have magic on their side?

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Still figuring out the quote system, so bear with me.

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This is something of an exaggeration. Stannis lasted as long as was expected of him. He expects Penrose to last a similar amount of time. It was a decent result from a young noble, but Storm's End is one of the most powerful castles in Westeros and is expected to last for a long time.

It is not an exaggeration.  The garrison is considering eating it's own dead.  That is NOT typical of a siege.  Usually, the defenders surrender long before they have to resort to mass cannibalism.  It's not the length of the siege that speaks to Stannis' resolve (and that of his men), it's the privations he and they endure, which are far beyond the norm.

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Nope. We know that some of knights were willing to change sides. Though I find it odd that you are giving Stannis the credit for the loyalty of the troops and people inside House Baratheon. Were the people of Winterfell loyal to Bran or to House Stark in general? You are giving credit to Stannis for something that his family achieved, not him directly. 

We know that three knights tried to change sides.  That's it.  And again, they were going to eat their own dead.  I would argue we don't see that sort of loyalty from ANYONE.  The people of Winterfell don't rise up to oust Theon, despite the fact that their significant numerical advantage would quickly win the day.  But they'd take horrific casualties in the process, so they don't.  We see Boros Blount surrender Tommen, despite being sworn to protect unto death.  At the end of the day, that kind of feverish loyalty is rare.  That garrison likely could have earned a pardon by turning Stannis & the castle over, and didn't.

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he also has many that have no other choice, that have lost their lands and titles and are now enemies of the Crown. Their only option is to stay with Stannis and hope that he is successful. 

They all could have bent the knee (and many did) and earned forgiveness, and they didn't.  Now they have no choice, of course, but in the aftermath of the Blackwater it could have been done for a pardon, and wasn't.

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lol slightly? Come on, he has the both the Royal and Reach Navy (including the Redwyne). He overwhelmingly outnumbered the Ironborn navy who wrongly assumed that the Reach would not support King Robert. 

It is a good victory, but lets not pretend that the odds were  safely in Stannis'/the Crown's favour. 

 

Both Victarion and Stannis think of it as a pretty complete victory, which they wouldn't if it was a foregone conclusion.  And the Royal Navy is pretty small, as we've seen, and the Redwyne Fleet numbers about 200.  Lets say 250 ships of various sizes, at the outside, and that's assuming they all come.  The Iron Fleet, presuming it was the same size back in the day, is 100 ships of the line (so to speak), and there are hundreds of smaller longships.  So in terms of large scale galleys, the Royal fleet outnumbered the ironborn, but in terms of sheer number of men and ships, not to mention skill of sailors and at seaborne combat, Victarion was likely to be reasonably close numerically.  Remember, the ironborn seem to fight more heavily armed and armored in marine combat (from what we've seen) and are certainly more experienced at it.

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You mean his in-laws? The in-laws who chose Renly over him and only supported him in the confusion after Renly's death.

This isn't quite true.  The Reach followed their Lord Paramount and followed Renly.  After his death, instead of sticking with the Tyrells, they jumped to Stannis.  Say what you will, but that is a diplomatic coup.

And the shadow baby isn't necessarily a deus ex machina.  Magic exists.  If Stannis sailed to Storm's End to kill Renly with magic, that isn't exactly a surprise or unusual ending for the plan.  Whereas, for the Blackwater to happen the way it did, a dozen improbably things have to go right at exactly the right time.  You can see GRRM leaning on the scales.

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Ah, so Stannis is the best commander based on events that have not happened? The march on Winterfell was an awful decision from a commander. He did not have the supplies or the equipment for that kind of march and is losing men and heavy horse on a trip that does little for his quest to win the Throne or even protect the Wall. 

He's the best commander based off events that have happened.  What we strongly suspect will occur in future books only burnishes that reputation.  And his decision is the best he could have made.  Nowhere in the North has the supplies to feed his host through the winter, and the allegiance of the Northerners is predicated on him marching at once.  If he takes Winterfell, it very much furthers his ability to protect both against the Others and winning the Iron Throne.  He gains the allegiance of the entire North, for one (or all of it that he doesn't destroy, e.g. the Boltons).  He gains a well fortified base of operations against the Others, and gets closer to the Wall.  So tactically and strategically speaking, it's the best possible decision.

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That was four different victories. Four battles and one war won. If you are not counting individual battles then Tywin has been the winning lead commander in two wars. That is two more than Stannis. 

It was four skirmishes and one war won, in which Tywin had an overwhelming preponderance of (highly illegal) force in every engagement.  I didn't realize you were counting minor encounters, in which case Stannis won victories at Deepwood Motte and (again, I'll point out) Dragonstone, where he explicitly "conquered" the isle.

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eh? Hiring mercenaries is not illegal. Dunk pretty much makes his living from this in the Dunk & Egg books while Stannis initial army at Dragonstone is built up of mercenaries from Essos. Of course hiring mercenaries is not illegal, however ignoring that Tywin's army was built up of Lannister, Marbrand and Prester vassals. Not mercenaries. 

Nor did he terrorise the Reynes and Tarbecks. He told them to come to court and not only did they refuse but they withdrew their fealty (and encouraged other to do the same) to House Lannister, an act of war in itself. 

 

Except that Tywin has no legal right to raise forces.  He has no right to call banners, no lordly rights, nothing, at the time.  He's the heir of Casterly Rock, which grants him no legal privilege.  The Reynes and Tarbecks are in no way required, or even necessarily expected, to answer his summons.  Any force that adheres to him is acting extra-legally, as Tytos has not declared his bannermen to be in rebellion, or even wrong.  Put simply, Tywin has no right to expect or demand loyalty, no right to engage in military action without his Lord's permission, and everything he does during the Rains of Castamere is highly illegal, and he's lucky it's treated as a fait accompli by the rest of the realm.

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Nope, he was knighted before the war. His actions in the war were thought of as quite admirable and he was chosen to knight the heir to the Throne, Aerys, during the war. 

Yep, this is my mistake.  Either way, he's not commanding or holding any position of tactical responsibility.  His uncle did that for the Westerland forces.

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You mean the war he won?

I mean the war Mace Tyrell won (or, Mace Tyrell's sons/vassals).  He goes on a massive chevauchee through the Riverlands, which is not the same as conquest.  In which, I'll point out, he has the advantage of having been preparing for such an action well before the River Lords were considering it.  Taking travel into consideration (which GRRM is notoriously bad with, but lets work with what we've got), for him to raise and get forces into the Riverlands as soon as he does, he has to start the moment Tyrion is taken.  He wins a bunch of minor victories over the scattered Riverland forces, which are deliberately not in any kind of army as Edmure disperses them to deal with the Mountain.  Jaime defeats a vastly outnumbered Tully force at the Golden Tooth, and another small Tully force at Riverrun.  That's it.  It's raiding and pillaging besides that.  Two victories against vastly outnumbered forces and some lands burned.

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It was a stalemate. 

Now I agree, Robb could have pressed his advantage as Tywin was fighting a war on multiple fronts but Robb never did, so to say he was outfought is kind of ignoring what was actually happening.  Tywin was still sitting pretty in the Riverlands, the major settlements in the West still very secure and all Robb was doing was attacking shepherds and mines. If an enemy chooses to waste his own time doing inconsequential actions, then a decent commander allows him to. 

 

It very clearly is not a stalemate.  Robb is winning handily.  He's captured Jaime, kept Tywin from being able to reinforce Kings Landing, and completely fools Tywin (or forces, depending on how you view the feudal contract) into marching West, which would have lead the falling of Kings Landing and the complete loss of all Lannister war goals.  Only Edmure being an idiot prevents this.  Tywin was NOT "sitting pretty" in the Riverlands.  He was effectively besieged in Harrenhal, knowing his only way of really beating Robb was to bait him into an assault on the castle.  And for what it's worth, Robb was doing far more than attacking shepherds and mines.  He obliterated the Lannister reinforcement army at Oxcross, a major win in an of itself.  He was taking castles.  And burning fields and mines is important, because it puts political pressure on Tywin to come home; much like Robb loses legitimacy when Winterfell falls, Tywin loses legitimacy when he cannot protect the lands of his bannermen.  Which is why he tries marching west, abandoning the capital, to confront Robb.  Every action shows this was an intelligent plan that worked on Robb's part, only to be thwarted by a glory-seeking commander exceeding his orders.

And the circumstantial evidence strongly suggests that Roose was not fighting to win.  He pulls the same play he does at Duskendale and Winterfell when he expects to lose; sends out the troops of other Houses so he's relatively stronger, no matter what happens.

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Do you not realise that commanders delegate? That is part of command, in fact it is probably one of the key parts of the command. Tywin was the lead commander at the Battle of Blackwater, he trounced Stannis. The entire realm acknowledges this basic fact, from at the Wall

Most of the realm thinks Catelyn Stark or Brienne killed Renly, too.  Common knowledge is often wrong.  And readers know the truth.  Littlefinger got his authority from Tyrion, not Tywin.  The Blackwater was fought and won by Tyrell troops, commanded by Tyrell nobles.  The exception to this are Tyrion's actions, and given Tywin hates and doesn't respect him, it's hard to give Tywin credit fro Tyrion's actions.

Tywin may be viewed by the power behind the throne by people not in the know, but we hear over and over that Tommen and Joffrey's regime are propped up by the Tyrell's, due to Lannister losses to Robb.  And as readers, we are privy to the fact that the Battle of the Blackwater was planned, fought, and executed by the Tyrells.  Tyrells fight in the van.  Tyrells wear Renly's armor.  The troops are vastly made up of Tyrell bannermen.

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lol what? Kings Landing was being starved by the Rose road, not the River road. 

This is exactly my point.  Two major roads lead in and out of Kings Landing.  The Tyrells cut off supplies from the Rose Road.  But given the distances involved, Kings Landing must get most of its (perishable) food from nearer sources, even in peacetime.  So why is no food coming into Kings Landing?  Because Tywin is burning the Riverlands.  So where is Tywin getting food from?  Given the hastily arranged nature of his campaign and the precedent of historical chevauchee's, he's almost certainly requisitioning it from lords in the Crownlands and Riverlands.  Hence, feeding his army at the expense of Kings Landing.

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Tywin goes West because Stannis was laying Storm's End under seige. an action that should have taken half a year at least. That is why Tywin goes West, he has time to deal with Robb

You should recheck the timeline.  If you read Ch. 39 (one of Catelyn's) it is very clear that Edmure is fortifying the Red Fork after Robb's victory at Oxcross.  Tywin heads west when he hears that Robb is despoiling the Westerlands, and is stopped at the Red Fork.  The timing could not be more clear.  Yes, he was holding at Harrenhal so he could keep an eye on both Stannis/Renly's forces and Robbs, but he clearly prioritizes the Westerlands over Kings Landing, because if he doesn't, his lords will leave to defend their homes and he'll have nothing.  Tywin could have headed west long before it was merely a matter of Stannis being stuck at Storm's End.  There is a very clear chain of events that sends him home.

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eh? How do you get that? You earlier claimed that it was the Tyrells who won on the Blackwater and it was Littlefinger who was repsonsible for bringing them in. Kings Landing would have been fine with or without Tywin. 

And of course there is nothing stopping Tywin receiving a messenger on the way to the West or even a raven at the Golden Tooth and simply turning around. 

 

It is made explicitly clear that the reason Tywin has time to get back to Kings Landing is because he is delayed at the Red Fork by Edmure.  And it is impossible to say whether Kings Landing would be fine with or without Tywin.  Tywin has much more to fight for, and rush for, than the Tyrells, and in any case it's clear it is his presence which cements the alliance, as he rides not to Kings Landing, but Bitterbridge, to meet with the Reacher forces.  And only from there on to Kings Landing.  Occam's Razor suggests he rode there to finalize an alliance (which Tyrell outriders brought him word of) and THEN marched to relieve Kings Landing.  Given that he made it to Kings Landing with barely hours to spare, it's impossible to say anything other than that he wasn't being taken in by Robb.

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It quite clearly is true. There are three wars were he has done so

  • The take down of the Riverlands
  • His beating the rebel army to Kings Landing despite being further away
  • The speed he dealt with the Reynes and Tarbecks, not giving them enough time to join forces

Three separate wars were Tywin's speed and logistics have been impressive. 

 

His take down of the Riverlands was an illegal assault on innocent people.  He mobilized his forces first because no one else was even aware a war was on.  Same with the Reynes and Tarbecks; he was running around with a highly illegal army terrorizing local lords into repaying debts they didn't even owe to him.  We have no idea if he's mobilizing quickly or not, because in both cases he's the ONLY one mobilizing.  As for Kings Landing (during Robert's Rebellion, I assume)... well, I don't remember any timeline for this, so any help you can give is appreciated, but it's worth pointing out that the rebel army had just fought a serious of battles and would very reasonably be expected to take a fair bit of time recovering, burying the dead, etc.  All I see are three separate occasions where Tywin has shed all respect for rule of law or the law of war and engaged in what amounts to large scale banditry, which in each instance has been accepted post-facto for reasons of political expediency.  It's like saying the ironborn mobilize faster when they raid the coast because they appear and no one is there to fight them.

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What do you mean he does not do much? He saved Robert at the Battle of the Bells, he saved Stannis at Storm's End and was a commander in the Battle of the Trident, even being trusted to go take Kings Landing.

Only Robert, and perhaps Arryn, played bigger roles in that war. 

 

He and Hoster Tully, at the Battle of the Bells.  Robert says Ned won the battle for him, though it's debatable whether that's accurate.  And Ned doesn't "win" anything at Storm's End.  Aerys is dead and the war is over; Mace Tyrell bends the knee without a fight, because there is nothing left to fight for.

As far as being "trusted" to take Kings Landing... who else is there?  Hoster Tully is wounded.  Robert is wounded.  The options are Ned and Jon Arryn.  I suppose you could argue that Jon was a better choice... but it's not a wide field to choose from.  Stannis plays a bigger direct role in the war, tying down Tyrell forces which might have swung the rebellion.  And after that... who, exactly, is supposed to be playing a bigger role?  Ned is a Lord Paramount; if Jon Arryn and Robert play bigger roles, then only Hoster Tully is left as a major player.  I'm not saying Ned is an idiot, but that his actions don't indicate any great talent one way or another.

 

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lol mopping up. There are multiple islands. Ask the American who thought in the Pacific islands just how easy that is.

So Tywin, Stannis, Ned, Barristan, Robert all get equal credit, then. Everyone who commanded the attack on an island.  And Stannis, who coordinated naval actions post-Fair Isle.

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Ned and Tywin, unlike Stannis, don't feel the need to brag about their exploits. 

Uh... Tywin commissions a whole song to be sung about his illegal destruction of the Reynes and the Tarbecks.  He's famous for boasting about it, if indirectly... he's good at propaganda, but that doesn't make it any less boasting.  It's why they sing the Rains of Castamere every time he's anywhere nearby.  If he wasn't happy that people were literally singing his praises, they wouldn't be doing it.

And I won't get into numbers again, because it's pretty clear that the ironborn and royal forces were relatively evenly matched in terms of numbers, with a number of qualitative advantages going to each side.

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Tywin's bannermen have no need to restore his seat as they never lost it. This is some bizarre strawman argument you have going on here, that Ned's legacy is better because his heirs are having to fight to reclaim it. 

Ned Stark's kids are going to save the world, and Tywin's kids are destroying it.

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You mean that Tywin faced two enemies at once and still won. And somehow you are claiming he was outthought and outfought. Command is all about winning wars, something neither Stannis or Robb have ever done. Of the three of them Tywin is the only one who has won wars. 

No, a thousand times no.  Tywin did not win.  The Tyrell's won, which is reflected in the fact that they have the only extant armies left (minus Stannis's rump force) and completely dominate the governance of Westeros.  And command isn't all about winning wars.  Not that I agree with the concept of always fighting fair, but in "winning" his wars, Tywin has completely destabilized the social and political order.  His illegal violence in the Riverlands, not excluding the Red Wedding, has led to the end of guest right, a hallowed tradition, and the hunting down of Freys and Lannisters.  His actions have made it impossible for his regime to maintain true peace; look at Brynden Tully, who rightly points out that Lannister promises are worth nothing.  He may have "won" the war, but he's ruined House Lannister, so in the long term, he will lose.

And again, it cannot be emphasized enough, the success of the Lannisters relies far more on luck than Stannis or Robb.  Stannis goes to Storm's End intending to magically assassinate Renly; to the extent that we need to accept magic is a real thing in Westeros, that's a perfectly valid strategy.  But think of all the dozens of events that have to happen just right for Tywin to win his war - Robert has to die, exactly then.  Ned has to not utilize the powers of the Hand.  Stannis has to appoint incompetents to positions of power.  The Tyrells have to be in just the right position.  Edmure has to (finally) fight competently at the Red Fork.

Tywin lost to Robb.  And the Tyrell's beat Stannis.  I'm not saying Tywin isn't a somewhat astute politician, because he is, but on the battlefield, he loses nearly every engagement in which he doesn't have a massive numerical advantage.

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17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

It is not an exaggeration.  The garrison is considering eating it's own dead.  That is NOT typical of a siege.

Considered, but never did. The author is pretty clear:

Storm's End is a hugely formidable castle, and should have been able to hold out much longer, as it did during Robert's Rebellion when Stannis was inside rather than outside. And both Tyrion and Tywin knew that Stannis was a methodical commander rather than a daring one, and therefore would be unlikely to leave an enemy stronghold untaken in his rear.

as is Stannis himself

"Let me tell you how it will go. Lord Velaryon will urge me to storm the castle walls at first light, grapnels and scaling ladders against arrows and boiling oil. The young mules will think this a splendid notion. Estermont will favor settling down to starve them out, as Tyrell and Redwyne once tried with me. That might take a year, but old mules are patient."

It was decent result, but you are exaggerating its greatness. Any capable commander should have been able to hold out a year, the teenage Stannis proved himself capable. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 They all could have bent the knee (and many did) and earned forgiveness, and they didn't.  Now they have no choice, of course, but in the aftermath of the Blackwater it could have been done for a pardon, and wasn't.

The majority did.

Infact Lord Florent, who made up the majority of Stannis' survivors, also wanted to sue for peace. He was executed for wanting this.  Had Lord Florent been less loyal and simply took his men and left, Stannis would be in an even worse position.

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Both Victarion and Stannis think of it as a pretty complete victory, which they wouldn't if it was a foregone conclusion.

A victory is complete no matter the odds. The vast majority of battles in Westeros are won by the larger or better trained/equipped side. This was no different. 

The odds were hugely in Stannis' favor, just like the odds were hugely in Tywin's favor on the Blackwater or Robb's at the Battle of the Whispering Woods. It does not stop them thinking of those victories as anything more than complete. 

There is this bizarre mindset in the fandom that somehow is you win with a larger force it somehow does not count. No one in Westeros thinks like this, victory is what matters. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 And the Royal Navy is pretty small, as we've seen, and the Redwyne Fleet numbers about 200.

According to the author all three navies are comparable 

However, as far as naval power goes, the only fleets comparable to that of the Greyjoys are the royal fleet (most of it destroyed on the Blackwater) and the Redwyne fleet, based on the Arbor. Besides the king, the Greyjoys and Redwynes are the traditional sea powers of Westeros.

Of course Stannis did not just have the Redwyne and Royal fleet but also the fleet of Oldtown. The odds were hugey in his favour and he won. 

Now let me reiterate, winning with larger numbers still counts, but trying to make out that Stannis only 'slightly outnumbered' his opponent is clearly wrong. It is something that a lot of fans do in this fandom, exaggerate the odds so the victories of their bias are more impressive. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

This isn't quite true.  The Reach followed their Lord Paramount and followed Renly.  After his death, instead of sticking with the Tyrells, they jumped to Stannis.  Say what you will, but that is a diplomatic coup.

Not really as they were directionless. The Florents (and their in -laws the Cranes) chose Stannis, who was married to a Florent and was about to appoint a Florent as his Hand and a Florent as his Admiral. In fact the prospect of the next ruler of Westeros being 50% Florent should have been enough for them to originally declare for Stannis. 

 

18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

And the shadow baby isn't necessarily a deus ex machina.

Yeah, it is. Quite literally so as there was no way for Stannis to defeat his brother without the help of the (Red) God. No one expected this, not Renly's war council, Cat or even Davos. 

It was the biggest deus of the series.

19 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

What we strongly suspect will occur in future books only burnishes that reputation.  And his decision is the best he could have made.  Nowhere in the North has the supplies to feed his host through the winter, and the allegiance of the Northerners is predicated on him marching at once.  If he takes Winterfell, it very much furthers his ability to protect both against the Others and winning the Iron Throne.  He gains the allegiance of the entire North, for one (or all of it that he doesn't destroy, e.g. the Boltons).  He gains a well fortified base of operations against the Others, and gets closer to the Wall.  So tactically and strategically speaking, it's the best possible decision.

 

What you think might happen in the future has no bearing on his conversation. I am not here to talk about fan fiction, but about what actually happened. So far Stannis has fucked up in the North. ADWD sees Stannis men starving and dying by the day. His only hope is another Deus, which the Iron Bank may have given him at the end of ADWD. 

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It was four skirmishes and one war won, in which Tywin had an overwhelming preponderance of (highly illegal) force in every engagement.  I didn't realize you were counting minor encounters, in which case Stannis won victories at Deepwood Motte and (again, I'll point out) Dragonstone, where he explicitly "conquered" the isle.

Which is it you are counting? If it is only Wars then Tywin has won two wars while Stannis and Robb 0. If it is battles, then Tywin and Robb have never came face to face. Tywin was at the Green Fork, Robb sent somone else, Tywin was at Harrenhal and Robb decided to head West and Robb's big plan in the Westerlands was to run away from Tywin and hope that he would be distracted while someone else took Kings Landing. 

And please, evidence for what was illegal about Tywin's actions. 

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Except that Tywin has no legal right to raise forces.  He has no right to call banners, no lordly rights, nothing, at the time.

What on earth are you talking about? You don't have to be a Lord to raise forces. As Kevan Lannister points out in AFFC

"I hold no lands, that is true. But I have certain incomes, and chests of coin set aside. My own father forgot none of his children when he died, and Tywin knew how to reward good service. I feed two hundred knights and can double that number if need be. There are freeriders who will follow my banner, and I have the gold to hire sellswords. You would be wise not to take me lightly, Your Grace . . . and wiser still not to make of me a foe."

Anyone can raise forces if they have the coin to do so. And you keep on repeating that this is illegal when the two authorities on the subject, the King and the Warden of the West, make no such call.

 

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The Reynes and Tarbecks are in no way required, or even necessarily expected, to answer his summons.  Any force that adheres to him is acting extra-legally, as Tytos has not declared his bannermen to be in rebellion, or even wrong.  Put simply, Tywin has no right to expect or demand loyalty, no right to engage in military action without his Lord's permission, and everything he does during the Rains of Castamere is highly illegal, and he's lucky it's treated as a fait accompli by the rest of the realm.

They renounced their fealty. They broke the Law and Tywin dealt with it. He has only broke the law if the King or his father said he did. Neither did, Tywin's action were entirely lawful. By all means quote a King or Warden of the West who disagrees with this as they are the only two powers who can label illegal. 

Furthermore the Reynes and Tarbecks did not think it was illegal, they did not petition either the King or Tytos, they instead renounced their fealty encouraged others to do so and paid the price. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Yep, this is my mistake.  Either way, he's not commanding or holding any position of tactical responsibility.  His uncle did that for the Westerland forces.

No one claimed he was commanding the Westerland forces. But can I have your source that he had no tactical responsibility? We know so little about this war that it is impossible to say either way. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

I mean the war Mace Tyrell won (or, Mace Tyrell's sons/vassals).

Tywin won it. He was the overall commander, when he Tyrells joined up the succeeded command to him. Something Mace acknowledges. 

I don't want to be rude, but you seem to not understand the chain of command. When the Redywne and Hightower fleets joined up with Stannis he had seniority and their victory of the Ironborn navy is accredited to Stannis as the overall commander. 

By all means, if you don't think Tywin was the overall commander of that battle provide a source as it simply coming off as sour grapes. You exaggerate Stannis accomplishments and seem to ignore Tywin and Ned's. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

He goes on a massive chevauchee through the Riverlands, which is not the same as conquest.

Gregor did the chevauchee before the war broke officially broke out before Tywin's forces conquered. We are at first given his plan by Robb's side

"but Galbart Glover says Lord Tywin is too smart for that, and Roose Bolton agrees. He'll stay close to the Trident, they believe, taking the castles of the river lords one by one, until Riverrun stands alone. We need to march south to meet him."

which is pretty much  confirmed to what had happened when Tyrion joins up with his father

"Your father and I have been marching on each in turn," Ser Kevan said. "With Lord Blackwood gone, Raventree fell at once, and Lady Whent yielded Harrenhal for want of men to defend it. Ser Gregor burnt out the Pipers and the Brackens …"

"Leaving you unopposed?" Tyrion said.
"Not wholly," Ser Kevan said. "The Mallisters still hold Seagard and Walder Frey is marshaling his levies at the Twins."
 
The Westerlands had all but conquered the Riverlands until the North showed up. They did this in weeks. It was an impressive military strategy that seems to be ignored by the fandom. 

 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

In which, I'll point out, he has the advantage of having been preparing for such an action well before the River Lords were considering it.

The Riverlands struck first. They kidnapped a Lannister and knew exactly what the consequences were. Tywin was more prepared than his opponents were.

Good commanders plan for such possible actions, GRRM reveals this when he states that Tywin's pikemen are amongst the best trained in the realm.

Although some lords do better than others. Tywin Lannister's infantry was notoriously well disciplined, and the City Watch of Lannisport is well trained as well... much better than their counterparts in Oldtown and King's Landing.

 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 He wins a bunch of minor victories over the scattered Riverland forces,

There you go downplaying Tywin conquering the majority of the Riverlands. They were clearly not minor victories as the Riverlands was defeated until the North showed up. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

which are deliberately not in any kind of army as Edmure disperses them to deal with the Mountain.  Jaime defeats a vastly outnumbered Tully force at the Golden Tooth, and another small Tully force at Riverrun.

Can I have a source on that being a small Tully force? Even if you ignore all the Riverland soldiers who died at the Golden Tooth, Riverrun and the battles with Tywin's host taking a number of Riverland settlements Edmure was still able to raise 11k soldiers. Where were they during all of this?

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

That's it.  It's raiding and pillaging besides that.  Two victories against vastly outnumbered forces and some lands burned.

It was more than two victories. Tyrion cut off Kevan as he was listing them, but the Riverlands, apart from the Mallister and Frey lands, were under his control. It was pretty fucking impressive. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

It very clearly is not a stalemate.

Sure it was. Robb was unable to take on Tywin at Harrenhal, his plan was to hope that he could distract him while either Renly or Stannis attacked Kings Landing. 

That is a classic stalemate, no side was able to achieve victory. As Robb points out, he lacked the strength

 "How can we talk of peace while the Lannisters spread like a pestilence over my father's domains, stealing his crops and slaughtering his people? I say again, we ought to be marching on Harrenhal."
"We lack the strength," Robb said, though unhappily
 
 
20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

He's captured Jaime, kept Tywin from being able to reinforce Kings Landing, and completely fools Tywin (or forces, depending on how you view the feudal contract) into marching West,

According to both Tyrion and the author that had nothing to do with Robb and everything to do with Stannis trying to take Storm's End. 

You seem to be accrediting Robb for an action he never did. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

which would have lead the falling of Kings Landing and the complete loss of all Lannister war goals.  Only Edmure being an idiot prevents this.

How does Edmure stop the Tyrells from going to Kings Landing?

And the idiot Edmure saved Robb's life. Robb was injured and bedridden at the Crag when Tywin was heading West. Not only would the Tyrells have won without Tywin's command but Robb would have been defeated in the West. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Tywin was NOT "sitting pretty" in the Riverlands.  He was effectively besieged in Harrenhal,

lol how do you figure that? His troops were free to come and go as they pleased. 

"I'll wager there were others who felt the same as Lord Karstark," her brother Edmure declared. "How can we talk of peace while the Lannisters spread like a pestilence over my father's domains, stealing his crops and slaughtering his people? I say again, we ought to be marching on Harrenhal."
 
That is not the sign of an army under siege. Strategically that was prime location for Tywin, a castle big enough to host and feed his army while he in a position to react to both the South and the West.
 
20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

  He was taking castles.

He took two castles. One of them, the Crag, is described as more ruin than castle. 

 The Westerling mines had failed years ago, their best lands had been sold off or lost, and the Crag was more ruin than stronghold. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

And burning fields and mines is important, because it puts political pressure on Tywin to come home;

But it didnt. There was no pressure on Tywin to go home, notice that he only goes West when he thinks Stannis is stuck at Storm's End and then after the Blackwater makes no effort to go home leaving Robb in the West for a bit longer. He was under no political pressure to move. 

In Robb's own words he could not threaten the major settlements like Lannisport and Casterly Rock. He was a nuisance, wasting his own time. He could have joined up with Renly or Stannis and won, instead he lost once Tywin won on the Blackwater. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

much like Robb loses legitimacy when Winterfell falls, Tywin loses legitimacy when he cannot protect the lands of his bannermen.

Winterfell falling is a hell of a lot different to robbing some mines. Casterly Rock was in no danger as Tywin, being a decent commander, knew better than to leave his capital and home exposed. 

 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

And the circumstantial evidence strongly suggests that Roose was not fighting to win.  

Wrong. There is simply no upside for Roose to try and deliberately get beat at that point. And clearly Robb saw nothing wrong with his performance in that battle as he leaves Roose to command the majority of his northern forces. 

 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Most of the realm thinks Catelyn Stark or Brienne killed Renly, too.  Common knowledge is often wrong.  And readers know the truth.  Littlefinger got his authority from Tyrion, not Tywin.  The Blackwater was fought and won by Tyrell troops, commanded by Tyrell nobles.  The exception to this are Tyrion's actions, and given Tywin hates and doesn't respect him, it's hard to give Tywin credit fro Tyrion's actions.

Mace Tyrell claims it was Tywin's victory. Dude, you are grasping at straws. Tywin was the lead commander. The Tyrells were not working independently of Tywin. If you can find a source that states that they were I would be grateful to hear about it. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Tywin may be viewed by the power behind the throne by people not in the know, but we hear over and over that Tommen and Joffrey's regime are propped up by the Tyrell's, due to Lannister losses to Robb.

We hear that time and time again? Then provide these quotes from the books. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 And as readers, we are privy to the fact that the Battle of the Blackwater was planned, fought, and executed by the Tyrells.  Tyrells fight in the van.  Tyrells wear Renly's armor.  The troops are vastly made up of Tyrell bannermen.

No one has disputed that. Tywin was still the lead commander. Being in the Van does not mean you are more in command, commanders like Tywin and Stannis choose to command from the rear

Stannis was watching too, Tyrion knew. He'd never had his brother Robert's thirst for battle. He would command from the rear, from the reserve, much as Lord Tywin Lannister was wont to do. - Tyrion

"Then do not court it so. Lord Tywin leads from the rear. Lord Stannis as well. You would be wise to do the same. A seventh death might mean the end of both of us." - Lord Beric

And the Tyrells serve the Crown and Tywin is the Crown's commander in the field. He was the lead commander at the Battle of Blackwater. There maybe more Northmen in Stannis' host, does that mean he is not the overall commander? If there were more Redwyne and Hightower ships than Royal in the victory over the Ironborn does that no longer count as Stannis' victory?

You seem to have one rule for Tywin and another for Stannis. 

 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

This is exactly my point.  Two major roads lead in and out of Kings Landing.  The Tyrells cut off supplies from the Rose Road.  But given the distances involved, Kings Landing must get most of its (perishable) food from nearer sources, even in peacetime.  So why is no food coming into Kings Landing?  Because Tywin is burning the Riverlands.  So where is Tywin getting food from?  Given the hastily arranged nature of his campaign and the precedent of historical chevauchee's, he's almost certainly requisitioning it from lords in the Crownlands and Riverlands.  Hence, feeding his army at the expense of Kings Landing.

Nope, he is feeding from the Riverlands. 

"True enough," Ser Brynden admitted. "And Tywin Lannister is no man's fool. He sits safe behind the walls of Harrenhal, feeding his host on our harvest and burning what he does not take. 

At no point in the books is it suggested that Tywin is taking food from the Crownlands. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

You should recheck the timeline.  If you read Ch. 39 (one of Catelyn's) it is very clear that Edmure is fortifying the Red Fork after Robb's victory at Oxcross.  Tywin heads west when he hears that Robb is despoiling the Westerlands, and is stopped at the Red Fork.

You should check with the author and Tyrion who state that Tywin moves West because of Stannis, not Robb. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 The timing could not be more clear.  Yes, he was holding at Harrenhal so he could keep an eye on both Stannis/Renly's forces and Robbs, but he clearly prioritizes the Westerlands over Kings Landing, because if he doesn't, his lords will leave to defend their homes and he'll have nothing.  Tywin could have headed west long before it was merely a matter of Stannis being stuck at Storm's End.  There is a very clear chain of events that sends him home.

Maybe tell GRRM that. Or maybe explain why Tywin does not bother going West after he is victorious on the Blackwater. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

It is made explicitly clear that the reason Tywin has time to get back to Kings Landing is because he is delayed at the Red Fork by Edmure.

It is not. We have Robb needing Edmure to marry a Frey and blaming him for Stannis' deafest on the Blackwater. 

There is three days of battle. Had Tywin been allowed to ride past it is entirely possible that a raven would have reached a Westerland settlement near the border and alerted Tywin to the danger. 

There are so many variables that blaming Edmure looks pretty self serving on Robb's part. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

And it is impossible to say whether Kings Landing would be fine with or without Tywin.

Not really. The Tyrells had 50k, Kings Landing had 8k. Stannis had 21k (much less after the chain). He would have easily been defeated without Tywin's leadership. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 Tywin has much more to fight for, and rush for, than the Tyrells, and in any case it's clear it is his presence which cements the alliance, as he rides not to Kings Landing, but Bitterbridge, to meet with the Reacher forces.

Nope. The Tyrell Forces had already travelled hundreds of miles from Bitterbridge (which is located  in the Reach). 

"Lord Tywin turned his host at once, joined up with Matthis Rowan and Randyll Tarly near the headwaters of the Blackwater, and made a forced march to Tumbler's Falls, where he found Mace Tyrell and two of his sons waiting with a huge host and a fleet of barges. They floated down the river, disembarked half a day's ride from the city, and took Stannis in the rear."

We know from Arya that Tumbler'S Falls is in the Riverlands. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

And only from there on to Kings Landing.  Occam's Razor suggests he rode there to finalize an alliance (which Tyrell outriders brought him word of) and THEN marched to relieve Kings Landing. 

The alliance had been finalised. Littlefinger had been granted the appropriate titles to give such an offer. 

As well as Gold, one of the Redwyne twins and an army of 340 Littlefinger also had it in writing. 

 "I'll want my commission in writing. A document that will leave Mace Tyrell in no doubt as to my authority, granting me full power to treat with him concerning this match and any other arrangements that might be required, and to make binding pledges in the king's name. It should be signed by Joffrey and every member of this council, and bear all our seals."

Occas Razor suggest that a 50-70k army does not travel hundreds of miles and execute and imprison Stannis' men if they had not already agreed to serve the Crown. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

He mobilized his forces first because no one else was even aware a war was on.

They were. No one was surprised that Tywin would take offence to his son being abducted. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Same with the Reynes and Tarbecks; he was running around with a highly illegal army terrorizing local lords into repaying debts they didn't even owe to him.

Where do you come up with this shit? I hate to be rude, but so much of your argument is based on events that had not happened in the books. 

There was nothing illegal about hiring knights, every one has that power, and there is not a single source that says he made people pay money they did not owe. Seriously, what have you based this on?

And do you know why Tywin had to hire those 500? Because years earlier the Reynes had slaughtered hundreds of Lannister troops.

Lord Tytos had commanded his good-father sternly not to involve the Reynes “for we have no quarrel with Castamere,” but that did not stop Lady Tarbeck from sending to her brothers.  Denys Marbrand and his knights were still two days ride from Tarbeck Hall when the Red Lion fell upon his camp in the night, slaying hundreds, amongst them old Marbrand himself. 

Dead soldiers have to be replaced.

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 We have no idea if he's mobilizing quickly or not, because in both cases he's the ONLY one mobilizing.

No, that is not true. 

But elsewhere, the collectors were met with sullen resistance and open defiance.  Lord Reyne reportedly laughed when his maester read him Ser Tywin’s edicts, and counseled his friends and vassals to do nothing.  “The cub will soon grow weary of chasing his own tail,” he said. . . yet he set about strengthening the defenses of Castamere as well.

Unluckily for the Reynes and Tarbecks they fought they could beat the teenage Tywin. 

House Tarbeck was the first to feel Ser Tywin’s wroth.  Secure in his own strength, and that of his numerous friends and allies, Lord Walderan had oft been heard to boast that he had “no fear of lion cubs,” but the Lannister host descended on him so quickly that his vassals and supporters had no time to gather. 

They underestimated him, but they were both preparing for war. 

20 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 As for Kings Landing (during Robert's Rebellion, I assume)... well, I don't remember any timeline for this, so any help you can give is appreciated, but it's worth pointing out that the rebel army had just fought a serious of battles and would very reasonably be expected to take a fair bit of time recovering, burying the dead, etc.

Sure, that is why a portion remained with the injured Robert. Tywin still beat them despite being further away and only reacting when he heard of their victory (which in itself would take time to reach him). 

The speed in which he took the Riverlands, took the Reynes and Tarbecks and took beat the rebels to Kings Landing and met up with thee Tyrells on the Blackwater is impressive. This is a consistent part of Tywin's command and you have shown zero evidence to prove otherwise. 

 

18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

He and Hoster Tully, at the Battle of the Bells.  Robert says Ned won the battle for him, though it's debatable whether that's accurate.

By who? Who in the books questions this? Give me a source. 

18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 And Ned doesn't "win" anything at Storm's End.  Aerys is dead and the war is over; Mace Tyrell bends the knee without a fight, because there is nothing left to fight for.

He still wins, saving Stannis in the process. 

18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

As far as being "trusted" to take Kings Landing... who else is there?  Hoster Tully is wounded.  Robert is wounded.  The options are Ned and Jon Arryn.  I suppose you could argue that Jon was a better choice... but it's not a wide field to choose from.

And? I'm not really sure what this has to do with discussion. Ned did it. 

18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 Stannis plays a bigger direct role in the war, tying down Tyrell forces which might have swung the rebellion.

But he doesnt. According to the author there is Reach forces with Rhaegar on the Trident. Nor did he prevent Reach forces from leaving the Stormlands. This was simply a tactical blunder on the part of Rhaegar who informs Jaime that there will be changes when he comes back. He simply believed his 40k was enough to beat Robert's 35k. 

And it simply crazy to say that Stannis played a bigger role in Robert's Rebellion than Ned did. For starters he saved both Stannis and Robert in two of his victories. Without him and his Northern host the Rebellion would have been over long ago.  

Stannis played a bigger role in the Greyjoy Rebellion, but Ned played a bigger part Robert's Rebellion. I have only seen extreme Stannis fans use this logic. 

 

18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

So Tywin, Stannis, Ned, Barristan, Robert all get equal credit, then. Everyone who commanded the attack on an island.  And Stannis, who coordinated naval actions post-Fair Isle.

 Robert is the overall commander, so he gets the most honour. Stannis, Robert's Master of Ships, gets the second most for the naval victory and then Ned and Tywin

 With his Wardens of the West and North beside him, Robert forced landings on Pyke, Great Wyk, Harlaw, and Orkmont, and cut his way across the isles with steel and fire. 

Barristan is part of Robert's entoruage with no host of his own so would come after the King and the Wardens. 

 

18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Uh... Tywin commissions a whole song to be sung about his illegal destruction of the Reynes and the Tarbecks.

Where is it said that Tywin commissioned the song?

Also who said it was illegal? King Jaehaerys II had no problem with it. Tytos, the Lord of the Westerlands and Warden of the West, had no problem with it, Please tell me how it was illegal. 

You are coming up with a lot of points that are simply not supported by the text. 

18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 He's famous for boasting about it, if indirectly... he's good at propaganda, but that doesn't make it any less boasting.  It's why they sing the Rains of Castamere every time he's anywhere nearby.  If he wasn't happy that people were literally singing his praises, they wouldn't be doing it.

It is a famous song. And it is good for propaganda, but Tywin is not famous for boasting. Please use evidence in the books to show when he does.

It is Stannis who likes to boast about his achievements, about how he should have been King or listing all his victories. 

18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

And I won't get into numbers again, because it's pretty clear that the ironborn and royal forces were relatively evenly matched in terms of numbers, with a number of qualitative advantages going to each side.

But you are wrong. The author is pretty clear in the links I provided. 

18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Ned Stark's kids are going to save the world, and Tywin's kids are destroying it.

Okay. Not sure what this has to do with either their command ability or even their fathers. The Stark kids have magical abilities. That has nothing to do with Ned's ability as a commander or even a father. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

No, a thousand times no.  Tywin did not win.  The Tyrell's won,

Tywin won. The Tyrells serve Tywin, chain of command. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

which is reflected in the fact that they have the only extant armies left

No, they don't. There was twenty thousand Lannisters left after the Battle of Blackwater. The Lannisters cleverly sent many of their men back home to prepare for winter, while keeping small forces(around 5k) that we have seen on Dragstone, with Jaime and with Daven. 

The war is over, paying for troops is a needless expense in peace time. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

and completely dominate the governance of Westeros.

After the Battle of Blackwater Tywin was Hand, Kevan was Master of Law, Tyrion Master of Coin and Jaime Lord Commander. While Tywin lived the Lannisters dominated the governance of Westeros. a year after his death that has changed. 

That is not on Tywin. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

And command isn't all about winning wars.  Not that I agree with the concept of always fighting fair, but in "winning" his wars, Tywin has completely destabilized the social and political order.  His illegal violence in the Riverlands, not excluding the Red Wedding, has led to the end of guest right,

Where is it said there is an end to Guest Rights? They are still an honoured custom

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 His actions have made it impossible for his regime to maintain true peace; look at Brynden Tully, who rightly points out that Lannister promises are worth nothing.  He may have "won" the war, but he's ruined House Lannister, so in the long term, he will lose.

He's won. His grandson sits the Throne and Lannister dominance in the Westerlands is still more secure than it was under his father's leadership (while Tywin was still a minor). 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

And again, it cannot be emphasized enough, the success of the Lannisters relies far more on luck than Stannis or Robb.

Not really. Without that magical direwolf Robb never enters the Westerlands and Tywin is in a pretty healthy position. That is pretty unlucky for Tywin. Without his magical shadow assassin Stannis is stuck at Storm's End for months. It is only bad luck which exposes Tywin's move West. 

Tywin has been pretty unlucky. His kids fucked up by cuckolding the King and his grandson executed a hugely valuable hostage. Tywin has had some shitty luck. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 Stannis goes to Storm's End intending to magically assassinate Renly; to the extent that we need to accept magic is a real thing in Westeros, that's a perfectly valid strategy.

But magic is not accepted. Look at Cat, Davos and Brienne's reaction to the shadowbaby. This is a new phenomenon in Westeros warfare, something that Tywin had no way of  strategizing against.

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 But think of all the dozens of events that have to happen just right for Tywin to win his war - Robert has to die, exactly then.

Not exactly bad for Tywin from his perspective. He expected his son-in-law to go easy on him and he planned it right. He sent Gregor in without banners so they could deny involvement and Tywin did not officially attack the Riverlands till they sent a 4k army to the Golden Tooth, Westerlands territory. 

Tywin was desperately unlucky that Cersei fucked on the one responsibility she had, create legitimate heirs. He was also unlucky when his son posted no scouts, sent no warning to his sleeping army at Riverrun and that Robb's direwolf found a hidden pathway into the Westerlands that their own people were not aware of. 

Like all commanders, Tywin has had his fill of good and bad luck. Like all good commanders, Tywin has been able to exploit his good luck.  

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Ned has to not utilize the powers of the Hand.

Which powers?

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Stannis has to appoint incompetents to positions of power.

That is medieval nepotism, Lords rely on their family members, It hurts Tywin (Jaime and Stafford) just as much as it hurts Stannis

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

The Tyrells have to be in just the right position.

But this is hugely unlucky on Tywin's part. The period in the war when he finally decides that Kings Landing is safe enough for him to deal with Robb is the moment Stannis attacks. This is bad luck on his part. 

In fact the odds were in Tywin's favour even without the Tyrells as it would have been 28k vs 21k with the Walls of Kings Landing adding an even better force multiplier for the Crown. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 Edmure has to (finally) fight competently at the Red Fork.

What did Edmure really do? Tywin was hard to contact because he was on the move, Golden Tooth or an even nearer Westerland settlement may have been able to get word to him before it was too late.

 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Tywin lost to Robb.

When did Tywin lose to Robb? They never faced each other on the battlefield and Tywin won the war. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 And the Tyrell's beat Stannis.

Under Tywin's command. This is not an opinion, it is a fact that is known from the Citadel to the Wall. Even Mace Tyrell acknowledges it.

The struggle that the maesters were calling the War of the Five Kings was all but at an end. Mace Tyrell had been heard complaining that Lord Tywin had left no victories for him.

As do the Riverlanders that are part of Robb's army

Ser Harys Haigh, who was a Frey on his mother's side, nodded vigorously. "If Lord Tywin could defeat a seasoned man like Stannis Baratheon, what chance will our boy king have against him?"

Not only is it the common consensus amongst in universe characters but it is so in the fandom. Now you can argue that would not have been possible without the Tyrells, but that does not change the fact that Tywin was the Overall commander in that battle. 

17 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 I'm not saying Tywin isn't a somewhat astute politician, because he is, but on the battlefield, he loses nearly every engagement in which he doesn't have a massive numerical advantage.

Well first of all that is pretty common amongst both the medieval warfare and GRRM's writing. The larger army (or sometimes better trained and equipped) will always win. 

Part of being a successful commander is knowing when to fight, a good commander wants to fight when he knows that not only will he win but he will take on as few casualties as possible.

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It was decent result, but you are exaggerating its greatness. Any capable commander should have been able to hold out a year, the teenage Stannis proved himself capable. 

Assuming they have time to garrison and provision it.  There is no indication this is the case.  Storm's End wasn't preparing for a war, Robert's Rebellion came on very aburptly; explicitly noted in the text that Stannis was left (a) a small garrison, and (b) that he was woefully underprepared in terms of supplies, due to the suddenness of the war.

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A victory is complete no matter the odds. The vast majority of battles in Westeros are won by the larger or better trained/equipped side. This was no different. 

The odds were hugely in Stannis' favor, just like the odds were hugely in Tywin's favor on the Blackwater or Robb's at the Battle of the Whispering Woods. It does not stop them thinking of those victories as anything more than complete. 

There is this bizarre mindset in the fandom that somehow is you win with a larger force it somehow does not count. No one in Westeros thinks like this, victory is what matters. 

 

This is explicitly not true on all counts.  Tywin "won" the Battle of the Green Fork, but the small tactical victory allowed Robb to win a much larger strategic victory at the Camps and the Whispering Wood.  Jon Connington "lost" the Battle of the Bells, but retreated in good enough order that his army could fight again at the Trident.  By contrast, it seems that Stannis won an overwhelming victory that essentially wiped out the Greyjoy fleet.  

And the question is who is a better commander.  Good commanders can offset numerical disadvantages.  Hannibal is one of the greatest generals in history because his consistently outnumbered troops consistently beat larger Roman armies, almost solely due to Hannibal's tactical brilliance.  Robb Stark uses surprise and the division of his enemies to defeat them in detail, despite being heavily outnumbered.  That's the mark of a good or great commander.  Of course a victory is a victory in most cases, but if I have a massive numerical and equipment advantage, I don't need to be a genius to beat you. 

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Of course Stannis did not just have the Redwyne and Royal fleet but also the fleet of Oldtown. The odds were hugey in his favour and he won. 

Now let me reiterate, winning with larger numbers still counts, but trying to make out that Stannis only 'slightly outnumbered' his opponent is clearly wrong. It is something that a lot of fans do in this fandom, exaggerate the odds so the victories of their bias are more impressive. 

 

Well, we do not know if he has the entire Redwyne and Royal Fleets.  Nor that of Oldtown or any other polity (except the Lannister fleet which is destroyed).  It would stand to reason that parts of the royal fleet would stay in the East to perform their traditional duties.  And moreover, as we see in Euron's (or Aeron's) chapters in the main novels, the Iron Fleet is only a small portion of the total strength of the ironborn.  Those are the 100 or so "ships of the line", with many times that number in smaller longships (which are nevertheless capable of naval action).  We have no idea what the odds were, numerically.  But it doesn't make sense that even idiot Victarion would attack 3 times his number.  The text implies that Stannis' victory was noteworthy and/or remarkable in how complete it was, and that it was the decisive encounter of the war.

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Yeah, it is. Quite literally so as there was no way for Stannis to defeat his brother without the help of the (Red) God. No one expected this, not Renly's war council, Cat or even Davos. 

It was the biggest deus of the series.

 

It is a world where magic exists.  Therefore, magic is not always a deus ex machina.  For all we know Stannis was planning to magically assassinate Renly from the beginning (FYI gonna start skipping quotes or this will get absurdly long).  Otherwise dragons being born, or any other quasi-magical event, should be considered ridiculous.  But the sheer number of unlikely events that needed to go right for the Lannister/Tyrell army to win at the Blackwater is astounding.

It is also debatable whether the Florents should have ever declared for Stannis.  Family ties are important, but so are feudal oaths.  Even Stannis says that going between his brother and his king was a tough choice.

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What you think might happen in the future has no bearing on his conversation. I am not here to talk about fan fiction, but about what actually happened. So far Stannis has fucked up in the North. ADWD sees Stannis men starving and dying by the day. His only hope is another Deus, which the Iron Bank may have given him at the end of ADWD. 

I disagree.  It's like saying that we have to assume Dany's role in the story is done, because last we saw she was stuck in the Dothraki Sea.  We can make educated guesses.  And for the record, Cersei bails Stannis out, by not paying the Iron Bank... which is totally in character for her and not a deus ex machina.  The character of the Iron Bank has been established as such that it isn't surprising they'll back Stannis, who is the rightful king anyway.  And so far, Stannis has executed his northern campaign perfectly.  He beat the wildlings at the Wall, which helps the meta-narrative in that it allows the Watch to focus on the Others.  He successfully recruits the hill clans.  He expels the ironborn from Deepwood Motte, gaining legitimacy in the eyes of the North.  And he marches on Winterfell, because that is his only option.  The Northerners, who are a significant portion of his army, are only with him if he rescues "Arya".  It is made explicit that Stannis cannot winter at Deepwood Motte because there isn't enough food for his host to survive.  So what does he do differently?  If he stays at the Wall he becomes a sitting duck for Roose Bolton to clear him out.  That's his only other option.

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They renounced their fealty. They broke the Law and Tywin dealt with it. He has only broke the law if the King or his father said he did. Neither did, Tywin's action were entirely lawful. By all means quote a King or Warden of the West who disagrees with this as they are the only two powers who can label illegal. 

Furthermore the Reynes and Tarbecks did not think it was illegal, they did not petition either the King or Tytos, they instead renounced their fealty encouraged others to do so and paid the price. 

 

I don't think this is true.  This is the chain of events.  Tywin comes home from the War of the Ninepenny Kings.  He demands that all lords repay their debts to his father.  Some comply, some don't.  However, none of them are actually obligated to do anything, since he isn't their liege lord, nor even the holder of their debt.  Walderan Tarbeck goes to Casterly Rock to petition Tytos, who does have legal authority, to "renounce" Tywin's proclamations.  Before he can, Tywin imprisons him.  Am I missing anything here?  Because at this point, Tywin has transcended even a veneer of legality and done exactly what King Aerys does a couple decades later.  Commits a crime on a loyal vassal.  So the Tarbecks capture some Lannisters in return, there is a tense standoff, and at the end of the day the Tarbecks are forgiven both their debt and the retaliatory kidnapping.  This time legally, of course, because its Tytos who does the proclaiming and not Tywin, who again it must be pointed out, has acted entirely outside the scope of his legal authority throughout the process.

Then, a while later, Tywin demands that the various Lords, who have done nothing wrong, come to Casterly Rock to answer for their "crimes".  Mind you, the last time someone came to Casterly Rock in peace, they were thrown in prison, so the Reynes and Tarbecks take this as a threat and rise in revolt.  Tywin immediately marches out with his army to enforce his idea of justice, without permission of his lord, so again... totally illegally.  He has no right to demand fealty or obedience from Lannister vassals yet.  He "butchers" a vastly outnumbered Tarbeck force (because once again, his illegal actions mean no one else is ready for him).

So yeah, the Tarbecks tried to petition Tytos, and got thrown in prison for their trouble.  What kind of idiots would they have to be to do the same thing again and expect a different result?

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Robb's big plan in the Westerlands was to run away from Tywin and hope that he would be distracted while someone else took Kings Landing.

This is explicitly refuted in the text.  When yelling at Edmure, Robb and Brynden are quite clear that the plan was for them to lure Tywin into the Westerlands, both so he couldn't help Kings Landing and because they had already laid out where they wanted to bring him to battle.  So yeah, he had a very clear, well thought out plan for defeating Tywin in addition to having Stannis take Kings Landing.

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No one claimed he was commanding the Westerland forces. But can I have your source that he had no tactical responsibility? We

I'm using this thing called logical reasoning.  Tywin wasn't in command in the first place, and was 18.  He may have been part of several battles but he wasn't commanding the royal forces.  Several commanders are mentioned ahead of him, and Roger Reyne is given credit for the Westermen victories.  You would think it would be mentioned that Tywin played a prominent role.

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The Riverlands struck first. They kidnapped a Lannister and knew exactly what the consequences were. Tywin was more prepared than his opponents were.

Actually this isn't true.  Tyrion was arrested for a very specific crime (of which he was innocent, of course).  There is a world of difference between the two.  Tyrion is arrested, and instead of doing the legal thing and petitioning the King for relief, Tywin begins burning the Riverlands.  Who, mind you... didn't really have anything to do with it.  He has a very specific plan, which is that Eddard will lead a party to bring the Mountain to justice (explicitly acknowledging that what he was doing was illegal, FYI), and then be captured.  After that, he would have traded Ned for Tyrion and perhaps some concessions from the crown, and trusted that Robert was too lazy and apathetic to do anything about it.

So basically, Tywin's entire strategy is illegal, even in the context of the iffy legality of arresting Tyrion in the first place.  He does the same thing he does with the Reynes and Tarbecks.  Someone opposes him in a legal, but largely noviolent manner, and he responds with a highly illegal degree of violence, trusting that the power of his House and the apathy of those of authority above him means that no matter what he does, it will be treated as a fait accompli.

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Can I have a source on that being a small Tully force? Even if you ignore all the Riverland soldiers who died at the Golden Tooth, Riverrun and the battles with Tywin's host taking a number of Riverland settlements Edmure was still able to raise 11k soldiers. Where were they during all of this?

Well it's only the forces of two lords, Piper and Vance.  Assuming they can raise as many men as the Frey's (which is not certain but we'll go with it), that means, at most, about 8,000 men, and probably significantly less (we know the Frey's are among the very strongest of Tully's bannermen).  Jaime has something in excess of 15,000, assuming he takes slight losses (seeing as he has 14,000-15,000 under Riverrun).

And Edmure's men are very specifically noted to be scattered across the Riverlands.  He disperses them in order to combat the depradations of the Mountain.

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There you go downplaying Tywin conquering the majority of the Riverlands. They were clearly not minor victories as the Riverlands was defeated until the North showed up. 

This just is not true.  Jaime is said to still be leading sorties against various Riverland lords even while besieging Riverrun.  The Frey's and Mallisters have not joined the fight.  Tywin has "defeated" the Riverlords in the sense that he won a couple small battles, but because most of their forces were scattered, he didn't manage to conquer most of the Riverlands.  He had yet to hold anything; conquest implies permanence, and the only reason Jaime and Tywin managed to conquer what they did is because they did it so fast (again, because they had been preparing for this illegal raid long before anyone else knew anything was amiss) that no one else could respond.

Yes, he's done a good job at terrorizing most of the countryside into submission, mostly thanks to Edmure's tactical stupidity, but it's pretty clear in Game of Thrones (the novel) that many of the more far-flung Riverlords are only just about the enter the fray(/frey haha).

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According to both Tyrion and the author that had nothing to do with Robb and everything to do with Stannis trying to take Storm's End. 

You seem to be accrediting Robb for an action he never did. 

 

Tyrion doesn't have access to Robb's thoughts.  You know who does? Robb.  He lays out what his plan was very specifically to Edmure.  I won't go back into this because GRRM is very clear.  Tyrion is not a reliable narrator in this sense, because he is hearing things at a distance and after a time lag.

Robb makes it clear that his purpose in attacking the Westerlands was to draw Tywin west.  After attacking the Westerlands, Tywin goes west.  Go back and reread SoS Ch. 14.  It completely contradicts your entire theory here.  Tywin heads west explicitly, explicitly, to fight Robb, and it is ONLY because Edmure delays him that riders from Bitterbridge (where the Tyrell's are camped) reach him in time to explain what was happening with Stannis moving on Kings Landing.  Given the timing, if Tywin had gotten even another day away from Bitterbridge, he would have been too late to save the city.

Yes, Tywin is sitting in Harrenhal inititally to keep his options open.  He moves west because Robb's plan goes off perfectly, but for Edmure screwing the pooch in his search for glory.  As Catelyn says, a lord's first duty is to defend his own people, and for Tywin that meant not letting Robb loot the entire Westerlands.  By the way, the fact that the Crag is in ruins doesn't really mean much.  So is Moat Cailin, and it is regarded as one of the strongest castles in Westeros.  Storming any kind of fortification is incredibly difficult.

And Tywin doesn't go west after the Blackwater because he's already arranged with Roose and Walder Frey to kill Robb.  He doesn't need to fight him yet.

Quote

Mace Tyrell claims it was Tywin's victory. Dude, you are grasping at straws. Tywin was the lead commander. The Tyrells were not working independently of Tywin. If you can find a source that states that they were I would be grateful to hear about it. 

Fine, lets accept that he was.  He's leading an overwhelmingly Tyrell army.  He surprises Stannis because of Tyrion's tactics in removing scouts and outriders from the Kingswood and around the city.  The part about dressing up as Renly comes from Littlefinger, IIRC.

I understand your point that a win is a win.  But Tywin outnumbers Stannis by many times over... how does it make him any kind of great commander if all he does is fall on surprised and outnumbered enemies?  To my earlier point about what makes a great general; we've only ever seen Tywin win a battle in which he has a commanding numerical advantage, and often through surprise because he is acting illegally.

Robb manages to win against superior odds by employing excellent tactics, whether that is by taking advantage of mobility, defeating an enemy in detail, etc.  Stannis is explicitly noted as having led an enemy into a trap in order to totally crush them.  Tywin is only ever referred to as holding an absolute advantage in fighting.

Quote

 

Where do you come up with this shit? I hate to be rude, but so much of your argument is based on events that had not happened in the books. 

There was nothing illegal about hiring knights, every one has that power, and there is not a single source that says he made people pay money they did not owe. Seriously, what have you based this on?

And do you know why Tywin had to hire those 500? Because years earlier the Reynes had slaughtered hundreds of Lannister troops.

 

Nothing illegal about hiring knights.  A lot illegal about using them.  I'm basing it on WOIAF.  At every turn, the text makes it clear that Tywin is acting without Tytos' blessing.  In other words, Tywin is a knight of House Lannister (and its heir, of course) with literally no right to demand anything of any of the Lords sworn to Casterly Rock.  WOIAF is also explicit that he demanded the various Lords pay back their debts to House Lannister.

You aren't being rude, but you are wrong.  You are making the reasonable assumption that Tywin, as the son and heir of House Lannister, has some kind of right to make demands of his father's bannermen.  This is explicitly untrue, both in real life and within the context of Westeros (as we see with Kevan, who has some independent wealth to raise household knights, but not call House Lannister's banners, or Tyrion, who doesn't have the legal rights against seizure a true Lord might, despite being the heir apparent).

Tywin Lannister has no legal rights to call in debts owed to his father.  He had no legal right to imprison Walderan Tarbeck, who came under a banner of peace, to protest Tywin's illegal enforcement of debt..  

He had no legal right to use armed force to compel obedience from his father's vassals.  Even after the Reynes and Tarbecks raise their banners in rebellion (which, I'll point out, is perfectly justified given Tywin's actions), Tywin is acting without the blessing/permission of Tytos in fighting them.  Again, this is all extremely illegal.  Go back and read that section of the Westerlands chapter of WOIAF.  You'll see I'm right.  And I cannot be more emphatic about this, because it sets the stage for every subsequent "victory" Tywin scores (minus the Greyjoy Rebellion fighting) until the Blackwater (or Green Fork, depending on whether you consider that a true victory).  It's all done because Tywin is acting outside the law.

 

I'll get to the rest of your post later.  But you cannot possibly be more wrong about Tywin's actions during the Rains of Castamere; the WOIAF is quite explicit, and in fact goes out of its way to mention, that Tywin was acting not only illegally, but unethically.  In fact, I see a lot of resemblance to the actions that precipitate Robert's Rebellion; the heir does something of dubious legality/probable illegality, the innocent/aggrieved parties are imprisoned when coming to peacefully, and legally, protest (Starks/Walderan Tarbeck).  Situation is temporarily resolved, until the psychopath in charge (Aerys/Tywin) demands that a number of other innocent parties (Robert and Eddard/Reynes and Castameres) come to answer for nonexistent "crimes", which given previous actions is an not-very-subtle cover for "you will be imprisoned or maybe killed".  Instead of turning themselves over for a crime they didn't commit, both sides raise their banners in rebellion against a tyrant.  Only difference is Robert won.

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If within a battle only than Stannis would beat them all with hands tied behind and eyes blindfolded. Eddard has no reason to be in the list, so I'll substitute him with his son, Robb.

Stannis >>> Robb > Tywin.

If commanding the entirety of war, military matters only, then; Stannis >>Tywin>>>>Robb. Robb sucks at war while being very good at battle for his age.

If commanding a war, in an out of battlefield and not just military matters, well, this is where Tywin shines. Tywin >> Stannis >...>>Robb. I can't put enough ">" to be honest about it. The page will simply not be enough.

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1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Assuming they have time to garrison and provision it.  There is no indication this is the case.  Storm's End wasn't preparing for a war, Robert's Rebellion came on very aburptly; explicitly noted in the text that Stannis was left (a) a small garrison, and (b) that he was woefully underprepared in terms of supplies, due to the suddenness of the war.

This is complete bullshit. Of course they were preparing for a war. the siege of Storm's End happened months into the war. Stannis had far more time to prep for war than Penrose did. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

This is explicitly not true on all counts.  Tywin "won" the Battle of the Green Fork,

lol using quotations marks. He won at Green Fork. Robb lost a quarter of his infantry that day. The fact that you are so petty that you can't even bring yourself to say Tywin won is pretty telling 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

but the small tactical victory allowed Robb to win a much larger strategic victory at the Camps and the Whispering Wood.

I agree, Robb's wins were strategically better. It opened the war up. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Jon Connington "lost" the Battle of the Bells, but retreated in good enough order that his army could fight again at the Trident.  By contrast, it seems that Stannis won an overwhelming victory that essentially wiped out the Greyjoy fleet.  

No idea what your point here is. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

And the question is who is a better commander.  Good commanders can offset numerical disadvantages. 

Sure. Good commanders also know to leave their capital well defended, they also know when not to fight and when not to march. Stannis' stubbornness has cost him many soldiers on the pointless march to Winterfell. In fact even the teenage Jon Snow has to point out how dumb Stannis is being in his strategy;

 The boy has shown me his throat. I mean to rip it out. Roose Bolton may regain the north, but when he does he will find that his castle, herds, and harvest all belong to me. If I take the Dreadfort unawares - "

"You won't," Jon blurted.

 It was as if he whacked a wasps' nest with a stick. One of the queen's men laughed, one spat, one muttered a curse, and the rest all tried to talk at once. "The boy has milkwater in his veins," said Ser Godry the Giant-slayer. And Lord Sweet huffed, "The craven sees an outlaw behind every blade of grass."

Stannis raised a hand for silence. "Explain your meaning."

Where to begin? Jon moved to the map...

Luckily for Stannis Jon was there to teach him.

 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Well, we do not know if he has the entire Redwyne and Royal Fleets.  Nor that of Oldtown or any other polity

Yeah, we do. It is in the World book

King Robert dared. Robert Baratheon, the First of His Name, had won everlasting glory on the Trident. Swift to respond, the young king called his banners and sent his brother Stannis, Lord of Dragonstone, around Dorne with the royal fleet. Warships from Oldtown and the Arbor and the Reach joined their strength to his.

Stannis greatly outnumbered his enemy. And there is nothing wrong with that, it just that some of you only value victories when it is against the odds. The majority of real medieval warfare was not like that, that is the reality GRRM is trying to show.

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 The text implies that Stannis' victory was noteworthy and/or remarkable in how complete it was, and that it was the decisive encounter of the war.

This is your issue. That you somehow don't think a victory is noteworthy if one side outnumbers the other. Of course it is. No one in Westeros thinks like you, they value a victory for what it is. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

It is a world where magic exists.

Few people believe in magic in Westeros. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Therefore, magic is not always a deus ex machina.

Yeah, it is. When nobody, not Cat, Renly, Tarly, Rowan, Davos or anybody else expected it, not even the reader. This was a classic deus ex machina. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 For all we know Stannis was planning to magically assassinate Renly from the beginning (FYI gonna start skipping quotes or this will get absurdly long).  

He may well have, but the reader nor any of the characters suspected what Stannis was about to do was even possible. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

It is also debatable whether the Florents should have ever declared for Stannis.  Family ties are important, but so are feudal oaths.  Even Stannis says that going between his brother and his king was a tough choice.

Sure, it is debatable. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

I disagree.

You can disagree all you want. It is pointless discussing what you think will or will not happen. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

And so far, Stannis has executed his northern campaign perfectly.

No, he really has not. He and his men are freezing and starving, the vast majority of their war horses are now dead. Do you really call that perfect?

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

I don't think this is true.

Prove it. Back it up with text. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 This is the chain of events.  Tywin comes home from the War of the Ninepenny Kings.  He demands that all lords repay their debts to his father.

Not straight away, but that they attemopt. It before they were refusing to pay back  their loans to House Lannister. 

Notice that Tytos never said no, never put a stop to the good work his sons were doing.

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Some comply, some don't.  However, none of them are actually obligated to do anything, since he isn't their liege lord, nor even the holder of their debt.

This happened for more than a year. There is no evidence that Tytos was against his sons actions, that he somehow disliked peace being brought to the Westerlands and his House being repaid the money they owed. 

Tywin used his initiative, Tytos could have put a stop to it any time he wanted. He clearly had no problem with it. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Walderan Tarbeck goes to Casterly Rock to petition Tytos, who does have legal authority, to "renounce" Tywin's proclamations.

You seem to have missed out an awful lot, like the execution of hundreds of Lannister men, like the Tarbecks stealing land by sword point from other nobles. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 Commits a crime on a loyal vassal.

 How was he loyal when he was encouraging other nobles to not pay back their loans to House Lannister?

“I will have the fat fool soiling his breeches and the boy leashed and muzzled before I take my leave of them,” he told his lady wife as he took his leave of Tarbeck Hall.

These are hardly the words of a loyal vassal. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

So the Tarbecks capture some Lannisters in return, there is a tense standoff, and at the end of the day the Tarbecks are forgiven both their debt and the retaliatory kidnapping.

Yup, so far so good. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Then, a while later, Tywin demands that the various Lords, who have done nothing wrong, come to Casterly Rock to answer for their "crimes".

If they had not committed any crimes why should they not come? 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Mind you, the last time someone came to Casterly Rock in peace, they were thrown in prison,

And were forgiven all their debts. You just wrote it. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

so the Reynes and Tarbecks take this as a threat and rise in revolt.  Tywin immediately marches out with his army to enforce his idea of justice, without permission of his lord, so again... totally illegally.

How is it illegal? Tytos can call it against the law, yet he never does. Nor does King Aerys. Tywin's actions were sanctioned both by the King and his father, neither had a problem, as far as we know, had a problem with what Tywin did. 

Please provide evidence from either Tytos, Jaehaerrys or any other source in the books that states that Tywin's actions i this war were against the law?

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

He has no right to demand fealty or obedience from Lannister vassals yet.

That is preposterous as we see both Edmure and Robb call their banners  and march to war without their fathers permission. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 He "butchers" a vastly outnumbered Tarbeck force (because once again, his illegal actions mean no one else is ready for him).

They thought they were ready. 

House Tarbeck was the first to feel Ser Tywin’s wroth.  Secure in his own strength, and that of his numerous friends and allies, Lord Walderan had oft been heard to boast that he had “no fear of lion cubs,” 

They knew what was coming for them, they just underestimated how quick and ruthless Tywin was. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

So yeah, the Tarbecks tried to petition Tytos, and got thrown in prison for their trouble.  What kind of idiots would they have to be to do the same thing again and expect a different result?

Dude, the one thing you actually got correct and you are ignoring it. Walderan was feed by Tyrtos, and had his debts restored. If he did nothing wrong then he should have petitioned his Lord, not renounced his fealty. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

This is explicitly refuted in the text.  When yelling at Edmure, Robb and Brynden are quite clear that the plan was for them to lure Tywin into the Westerlands, both so he couldn't help Kings Landing and because they had already laid out where they wanted to bring him to battle.  So yeah, he had a very clear, well thought out plan for defeating Tywin in addition to having Stannis take Kings Landing.

Except we know that was not the original plan. the original plan was to meet uoo with Theon and take the Westerlands. 

"By now Robb is at the Golden Tooth," Theon said. "Once it falls, he'll be through the hills in a day. Lord Tywin's host is at Harrenhal, cut off from the west. The Kingslayer is a captive at Riverrun. Only Ser Stafford Lannister and the raw green levies he's been gathering remain to oppose Robb in the west. Ser Stafford will put himself between Robb's army and Lannisport, which means the city will be undefended when we descend on it by sea. If the gods are with us, even Casterly Rock itself may fall before the Lannisters so much as realize that we are upon them."

Which lines up with what we are told  at Riverrun

"Yes, my lady. His Grace left Ser Edmure to hold Riverrun and guard his rear."

So at best Robb's plan was unclear to everybody else and at worst he is scapegoating Edmure because he is desperate for someone of high rank to marry a Frey. Everyone went along with Edmure's plan, all the Riverlords and yet Edmure is the only one that Robb chastises, doing so in private. 

 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

I'm using this thing called logical reasoning.  Tywin wasn't in command in the first place, and was 18.  He may have been part of several battles but he wasn't commanding the royal forces

Robb was younger, Theon and Stannis the same age. Nobles of high birth are used in commad in they are capable. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 Several commanders are mentioned ahead of him,

Several? Name them

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

and Roger Reyne is given credit for the Westermen victories.  You would think it would be mentioned that Tywin played a prominent role.

Dis you actually read what I said. I know he did not lead the Westerland forces I was asking you to back up your claim that he played no part in tactical decisions. We have no evidence that he did or did not. Wars with 40-50k troops will have hundreds of nobles making such decisions. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

Well it's only the forces of two lords, Piper and Vance.

Not that we know of. Try actually reading the books. They were given command, not that all those men were their vassals. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

And Edmure's men are very specifically noted to be scattered across the Riverlands.  He disperses them in order to combat the depradations of the Mountain.

And Tywin is noted to be taking the entire Riverlands bar the Mallister and Freys. You claimed there was only a small force at Riverrun. Then explain where these 11k were hiding?

And of course you are wrong, not all of Edmure's  men are scattered. many were at Riverrun and fought against Jaime

Edmure persisted. "Do we grow stronger sitting here? Our host dwindles every day."
"And whose doing is that?" Catelyn snapped at her brother. It had been at Edmure's insistence that Robb had given the river lords leave to depart after his crowning, each to defend his own lands. Ser Marq Piper and Lord Karyl Vance had been the first to go. Lord Jonos Bracken had followed, vowing to reclaim the burnt shell of his castle and bury his dead
 
I'd love to see you back up this claim of  a 'small' Tully army with actual quotes from the books
1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

This just is not true.  

Yes it is. The Riverlords petition Robb and Edmure to be allowed to go and try to win back their lands, somethinhg which Edmure allows them to do. 

i'm sorry, but the books are clear.

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Yes, he's done a good job at terrorizing most of the countryside into submission, mostly thanks to Edmure's tactical stupidity, but it's pretty clear in Game of Thrones (the novel) that many of the more far-flung Riverlords are only just about the enter the fray(/frey haha).

The only Riverlords who were not pinned down by Tywin were Frey and Mallister. It was right there in one of the quotes I gave you. I will supply it again. 

"Leaving you unopposed?" Tyrion said.
"Not wholly," Ser Kevan said. "The Mallisters still hold Seagard and Walder Frey is marshaling his levies at the Twins."
 
If you think there are other major Riverland Lords not affected please quote from the books.
1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Tyrion doesn't have access to Robb's thoughts.  You know who does? Robb.  He lays out what his plan was very specifically to Edmure.  I won't go back into this because GRRM is very clear.  Tyrion is not a reliable narrator in this sense, because he is hearing things at a distance and after a time lag.

You don't have access to Robb's thoughts either. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Robb makes it clear that his purpose in attacking the Westerlands was to draw Tywin west.

Nope, initially his plan was to meet up with the Greyjoys and take Lannisport and Casterly Rock. In fact we are told  at Riverrun that Edmure was supposed to protect Robb's rear

Would that it were. My brother commands in Riverrun?"
"Yes, my lady. His Grace left Ser Edmure to hold Riverrun and guard his rear."
Gods grant him the strength to do so, Catelyn thought. 
 
Notice how Robb needs to take Edmure away from Lords Mallister, Blackwood and Bracken, who all agreed with Edmure's plan? All the Riverlords thought they were obeying Robb's orders. 
1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

After attacking the Westerlands, Tywin goes west.

lol you mean two months after?

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 Go back and reread SoS Ch. 14.  It completely contradicts your entire theory here.

it is not a theory. It is the author and Tyrion',s words. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Tywin heads west explicitly, explicitly, to fight Robb, and it is ONLY because Edmure delays him that riders from Bitterbridge (where the Tyrell's are camped) reach him in time to explain what was happening with Stannis moving on Kings Landing.  

The Tyrells are camped in Tumbler's Falls, not Bitterbridge. Please actually read the post you are replying to as I quoted the passage from the books. 

Qyuotes from the books are in red. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Given the timing, if Tywin had gotten even another day away from Bitterbridge, he would have been too late to save the city.

Dude, did you not actually read the post? Tywin does not to to Bitterbridge. I supplied you with the quote, He met up with the Tyrells in the Riverlands. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Yes, Tywin is sitting in Harrenhal inititally to keep his options open.  He moves west because Robb's plan goes off perfectly, but for Edmure screwing the pooch in his search for glory.  As Catelyn says, a lord's first duty is to defend his own people, and for Tywin that meant not letting Robb loot the entire Westerlands.  

Dude, are you really going to ignore the authors own words? Or Tyrion's?

You were wrong. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

By the way, the fact that the Crag is in ruins doesn't really mean much.  So is Moat Cailin, and it is regarded as one of the strongest castles in Westeros.  Storming any kind of fortification is incredibly difficult.

lol even Robb labels it weak

"Of course I'll free him now, though he may not wish to join me. We wed without his consent, I fear, and this marriage puts him in dire peril. The Crag is not strong. For love of me, Jeyne may lose all."

It is a poorly protected and poorly built castle.

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

And Tywin doesn't go west after the Blackwater because he's already arranged with Roose and Walder Frey to kill Robb.  He doesn't need to fight him yet.

You claimed he was under political pressure, something which I claimed was bullshit (i was more polite before, but lets call it what it is).  Tyrion did not know about his plans for Robb, so I can't imagine he told all the Westerlands nobles about it.

Here is the timeline for the events in the books https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1ZsY3lcDDtTdBWp1Gx6mfkdtZT6-Gk0kdTGeSC_Dj7WM/edit#gid=8 It is not entirely accurate, but gives a decent estimation of when things take place. 

There is almost two months between the end of the Battle of Blackwater and Robb returning to the Riverlands. We see zero political pressure placed on Tywin to do something about Robb being in the Westerlands. You made a claim, back it up with evidence from the books. 

 

 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Fine, lets accept that he was.  He's leading an overwhelmingly Tyrell army.  He surprises Stannis because of Tyrion's tactics in removing scouts and outriders from the Kingswood and around the city.  The part about dressing up as Renly comes from Littlefinger, IIRC.

All excellent points from his subordinates. A good commander appoints the right people and allows the freedom to act. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

I understand your point that a win is a win.  But Tywin outnumbers Stannis by many times over... how does it make him any kind of great commander if all he does is fall on surprised and outnumbered enemies?

Because that is a fundamental part of command, knowing when the right time to fight is. Stuff like patience, speed and logistics seem to be less flashy than shiny firey swords, so get ignored by people like yourself who feel  the need to exaggerate the numbers. 

 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Robb manages to win against superior odds by employing excellent tactics, whether that is by taking advantage of mobility, defeating an enemy in detail, etc.  

Which battles has Robb won against superior numbers?

The Whispering Wood was around 6k Northern and Frey cavalry as well as the Mallsiters and other assorted Riverland troops against 2.5k - 3k Westerlands cavaly. Robb had the numerical advantage, yet that battle remains the one that is most boasted by his forces (as well it should). 

Battle of Oxcross was only possible due his magical direwolf findging a hidden passage into  the Westerlands that allowed him to bypass the heavily protected Golden Tooth and fight an untrained sleeping army. That had nothing to do with superior tactics. 

Battle of Riverrun has Robb's 6k + cavalry, an unknown amount of Riverland troops with the Mallisters, an unknown amount of troops from the earlier battle of Riverrun lead by Tyros Blackwood against 12k sleeping infantry.  We don't know which side outnumbered who. 

Please tell me, with numbers from the books, which battles Robb won against superior odds and tell me the excellent tactics he used?

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

Stannis is explicitly noted as having led an enemy into a trap in order to totally crush them.  

Yup.a trap where they were vastly outnumbered. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Nothing illegal about hiring knights.  A lot illegal about using them.

Really? According to who? Kevan has a litter of 200 hundred knights who work for him. That is not illegal 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 I'm basing it on WOIAF.  At every turn, the text makes it clear that Tywin is acting without Tytos' blessing.

And yet there is not one mention of these actions being illegal or wrong. Nothing says that Tywin was breaking the law. 

Tywin allows songs to be sung about it, he allows the history books to write about it. If his actions were against the law he'd silence both. Notice how the World book white washes Tywin's involvement in the deaths of Elian and the royal children? Because these are illegal actions, actions that Tywin would make sure is forgotten to history. 

Tywin was ruthless, but nothing that we have been told he did was against them was against the law. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 In other words, Tywin is a knight of House Lannister (and its heir, of course) with literally no right to demand anything of any of the Lords sworn to Casterly Rock.

Based on what? Please cite this Westerosi law?

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 WOIAF is also explicit that he demanded the various Lords pay back their debts to House Lannister.

You have changed your argument. You were earlier claiming he was making demands on Lords who did not owe him money. Good to see that you have abandoned that one. 

Tywin is the heir of Casterly Rock, like Edmure is the heir of Riverrun. Both can make demands of their father's banner man. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

You aren't being rude, but you are wrong.  You are making the reasonable assumption that Tywin, as the son and heir of House Lannister, has some kind of right to make demands of his father's bannermen.

I'm sorry, where did I say he demanded it? Where is it said in the books that he forced them? Tywin left with Lannister men and the support of his relatives in Houses Marbrand and Prester. The Reynes killed Tywin's grandfather, Lord Marbrand, while Lady Tarbeck had imprisoned  Stafford (Prester) Lannister. These Houses had their own reasons to want revenge on the Reynes and Tarbecks. 

And at no point does anyone call it illegal just like Robb Stark calling the North's banners in his father and mother's absence is seen as illegal. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 This is explicitly untrue, both in real life and within the context of Westeros (as we see with Kevan, who has some independent wealth to raise household knights, but not call House Lannister's banners, or Tyrion, who doesn't have the legal rights against seizure a true Lord might, despite being the heir apparent).

 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

Tywin Lannister has no legal rights to call in debts owed to his father.  He had no legal right to imprison Walderan Tarbeck, who came under a banner of peace, to protest Tywin's illegal enforcement of debt..

Of course he does. You have yet to provide a source to show this is illegal. GRRM was asked such a question about Cat's arrest of Tyrion

3. Do members of one Great House have a legal right to arrest and judge members of the other? I.e. was Catelyn's abduction of Tyrion, given all the incriminating evidence, legal?

GRRM: It was a bit dicey. A lord administers justice in his own lands. Catelyn would have had a much stronger claim if she had taken Tyrion in the north. Even in our own world, there are always dangers in taking on the rich and powerful, regardless of the legality of your auction or how much evidence you have... and the high lords of Westeros are a deal more prickly about their honor.

As you can see, the issue with Cat was being outside of the North and arresting someone the same rank as her. But even Cat's actions is not called illegal by the author. 

Heirs of Great Lords have certain responsibilities. Edmure does not have to seek out his father's permission every time someone commits a crime, he is able to act on his own initiative. His father (or even the King) has the power to undue what Edmure has done and call it illegal, but it only becomes illegal once the King or the Lord Paramount deems it as such.

 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

He had no legal right to use armed force to compel obedience from his father's vassals.

According to who? You are making up laws that don't exist in the books. 

Robb had a right to call men to help him with or without his father's knowledge. Kevan Lannister. as shown in the quote you seemed to have ignored, had the right. Cat Tully was allowed to use men sworn to her father when she abducted Tyrion Lannister in the Riverands

 It is not against the law. They can refuse, but there is no law to say that Tywin can not call Lannister banners. If there is provide it.  

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 Even after the Reynes and Tarbecks raise their banners in rebellion (which, I'll point out, is perfectly justified given Tywin's actions),

lol what actions? He asked them to come to court to answer for their crimes. They had in fact commited crimes. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

Tywin is acting without the blessing/permission of Tytos in fighting them.

It is not illegal for Tywin to fight them. Please show the law you are referring to.. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 Again, this is all extremely illegal.

Don't keep on stating this, prove it. Who in the books calls  it illegal? 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 Go back and read that section of the Westerlands chapter of WOIAF.  You'll see I'm right.

I have it right here. http://www.georgerrmartin.com/world-of-ice-and-fire-sample/ Please quote where his actions are called illegal. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

 

 And I cannot be more emphatic about this, because it sets the stage for every subsequent "victory" Tywin scores (minus the Greyjoy Rebellion fighting) until the Blackwater (or Green Fork, depending on whether you consider that a true victory).  It's all done because Tywin is acting outside the law.

Dude sorry to say, but you don;t know what you are talking about.  You have made up this imaginarly law that does not exist in Westeros. 

Tywin broke the law when he sent Gregor to raid the Riverlands (without his banner). He also broke the law as well as feudal etiquette when he took Kings Landing after being allowed in. There is nothing in the Reyne Tarbeck war he did that was illegal. Certainly unethical, especially to the last baby Tarbeck son, but nothing against the law. 

1 hour ago, cpg2016 said:

I'll get to the rest of your post later.  But you cannot possibly be more wrong about Tywin's actions during the Rains of Castamere; the WOIAF is quite explicit, and in fact goes out of its way to mention, that Tywin was acting not only illegally, but unethically.

I have already asked you to provide evidence of these illegal actions during this conflict. You have failed to do so. Neither the King of Westeros nor the Warden of the West considered his actions illegal. 

As for unethical, you may have a point but then he was dealing with Lords who stole land from other Westerland citizens and killed hundreds of sleeping Lannister men, including Tywin's own grandfather. 

Though I am not sure your point. The Reynes and Tarbecks did not seek justice from a higher power, they instead renounced their fealty and asked for war. They knew what was going to happen, the difference is that they thought they would be able to deal with it like they did Lord Marbrands sleeping army. 

 

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Stannis is the best commander of all three. His victories at Fair Isle, Storms End, Deepwood Motte, and the Wall trumps anything Tywin or Ned has done. 

The only other commander that comes close to his record is Dany and Robb. If it wasn't for an amazing string of luck for Tywin and bad decisions of his opponents, Tywin would have been defeated. If the Baratheon brothers had not fought each other and if Ser Edmure had allowed Tywin to cross the Red Fork to return to the west, KL would have fallen to Stannis.  

If Lady Arryn had authorized her levies to join the war on Robb's side, Tywin would have been facing the combined might of the Riverlands, Stormlands, North, Vale, and the Reach.  Dorne and the Iron Islands would have probably either joined the coalition against Tywin or sat out the war.  

The Tyrells won the battle of the Blackwater, not Tywin.  I will give Tywin credit for being able to leverage his wealth into buying victories (Red Wedding), but his record as a battle commander is shoddy. It took him paying lords to turn their cloaks for him to defeat an untested boy who repeatedly bested him despite being outnumbered in almost every engagement.

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1 hour ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Stannis is the best commander of all three. His victories at Fair Isle, Storms End, Deepwood Motte, and the Wall trumps anything Tywin or Ned has done. 

Stannis has won battles, Tywin has won wars. I'm actually not making an argument that one is better than the other, they both have achieved a lot and both are less than Robert. 

1 hour ago, Ser Snowflake said:

 Ser Edmure had allowed Tywin to cross the Red Fork to return to the west, KL would have fallen to Stannis.

That is debatable, but unlikely. Tywin had 20k, Tyrion 8k at Kings Landing and Stannis only 21k many of questionable loyalty. Between the larger force and the walls of Kings Landing it would have been a Crown victory. 

There is a reason why Stannis was desperate to take Storm's End quickly as he had heard that Tywin was marching West. 

1 hour ago, Ser Snowflake said:

 

If Lady Arryn had authorized her levies to join the war on Robb's side, Tywin would have been facing the combined might of the Riverlands, Stormlands, North, Vale, and the Reach.  Dorne and the Iron Islands would have probably either joined the coalition against Tywin or sat out the war.  

What does any of this have to do with command? You could also say if the Reach lord did not commit treason and stayed loyal to the Crown Tywin could have easily crushed the usurpers. 

1 hour ago, Ser Snowflake said:

The Tyrells won the battle of the Blackwater, not Tywin.

Tywin was in command of them. So the answer is both. Everyone in the realm acknowledges this, from people at the Wall

" Tywin Lannister is not like to forget that, and you know it will be Lord Tywin who wins in the end. He's already beaten Stannis once, on the Blackwater."

people at the Citadel

Tywin Lannister had smashed Stannis and R'hllor upon the Blackwater, and soon enough he would finish them and mount the head of the Baratheon pretender on a spike above the gates of King's Landing.

the Maesters in Kings Landing

"Since the night of the battle. Lord Tywin saved us all. The smallfolk say it was King Renly's ghost, but wiser men know better. It was your father and Lord Tyrell, with the Knight of Flowers and Lord Littlefinger. They rode through the ashes and took the usurper Stannis in the rear. It was a great victory, and now Lord Tywin has settled into the Tower of the Hand to help His Grace set the realm to rights, gods be praised."

To even Robb's army stationed at Harrenhal

Ser Harys Haigh, who was a Frey on his mother's side, nodded vigorously. "If Lord Tywin could defeat a seasoned man like Stannis Baratheon, what chance will our boy king have against him?" He looked round to his brothers and cousins for support, and several of them muttered agreement.

The Tyrells themselves

The struggle that the maesters were calling the War of the Five Kings was all but at an end. Mace Tyrell had been heard complaining that Lord Tywin had left no victories for him.

And even the survivors of Stannis' host

Did you know Lord Tywin, Kem?"

"The Hand. Once I saw him riding up the hill. His men had red cloaks and little lions on their helms. I liked those helms." His mouth tightened. "I never liked the Hand, though. He sacked the city. And then he smashed us on the Blackwater."
 
Now if you want to argue that Tywin might not have won without the Tyrells then fair enough, I'd disagree but at least that is debatable. But what is fact is that Tywin did win on the Blackwater, he was the senior commander of the Battle. 

 

 

1 hour ago, Ser Snowflake said:

. It took him paying lords to turn their cloaks for him to defeat an untested boy who repeatedly bested him despite being outnumbered in almost every engagement.

Which engagements was Robb outnumbered? 

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1 hour ago, Bernie Mac said:

Stannis has won battles, Tywin has won wars. I'm actually not making an argument that one is better than the other, they both have achieved a lot and both are less than Robert. 

That is debatable, but unlikely. Tywin had 20k, Tyrion 8k at Kings Landing and Stannis only 21k many of questionable loyalty. Between the larger force and the walls of Kings Landing it would have been a Crown victory. 

There is a reason why Stannis was desperate to take Storm's End quickly as he had heard that Tywin was marching West. 

What does any of this have to do with command? You could also say if the Reach lord did not commit treason and stayed loyal to the Crown Tywin could have easily crushed the usurpers. 

Tywin was in command of them. So the answer is both. Everyone in the realm acknowledges this, from people at the Wall

" Tywin Lannister is not like to forget that, and you know it will be Lord Tywin who wins in the end. He's already beaten Stannis once, on the Blackwater."

people at the Citadel

Tywin Lannister had smashed Stannis and R'hllor upon the Blackwater, and soon enough he would finish them and mount the head of the Baratheon pretender on a spike above the gates of King's Landing.

the Maesters in Kings Landing

"Since the night of the battle. Lord Tywin saved us all. The smallfolk say it was King Renly's ghost, but wiser men know better. It was your father and Lord Tyrell, with the Knight of Flowers and Lord Littlefinger. They rode through the ashes and took the usurper Stannis in the rear. It was a great victory, and now Lord Tywin has settled into the Tower of the Hand to help His Grace set the realm to rights, gods be praised."

To even Robb's army stationed at Harrenhal

Ser Harys Haigh, who was a Frey on his mother's side, nodded vigorously. "If Lord Tywin could defeat a seasoned man like Stannis Baratheon, what chance will our boy king have against him?" He looked round to his brothers and cousins for support, and several of them muttered agreement.

The Tyrells themselves

The struggle that the maesters were calling the War of the Five Kings was all but at an end. Mace Tyrell had been heard complaining that Lord Tywin had left no victories for him.

And even the survivors of Stannis' host

Did you know Lord Tywin, Kem?"

"The Hand. Once I saw him riding up the hill. His men had red cloaks and little lions on their helms. I liked those helms." His mouth tightened. "I never liked the Hand, though. He sacked the city. And then he smashed us on the Blackwater."
 
Now if you want to argue that Tywin might not have won without the Tyrells then fair enough, I'd disagree but at least that is debatable. But what is fact is that Tywin did win on the Blackwater, he was the senior commander of the Battle. 

 

 

Which engagements was Robb outnumbered? 

So what if people think Tywin was in command at Blackwater. The Tyrells was the power that broke Stannis, not Tywin.

Robb was in command during the battle of the camps and Oxcross.

 

Tywin was losing the war with Robb.....it was Littlefinger's brokering the alliance with the Tyrells that granted Tywin victory over Stannis.

KL was about to fall when Lord Tywin and the Tyrells fell upon Stannis' rear. 

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2 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

So what if people think Tywin was in command at Blackwater. The Tyrells was the power that broke Stannis, not Tywin.

They don't think, they know. Even the Tyrells acknowledge he was the lead commander of that battle. Could Robb have beat Jaime without the 1k Freys? Possibly not, but they, like the Tyrells were with Tywin, were subordinates to Robb. 

 

2 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Robb was in command during the battle of the camps and Oxcross.

And? Please tell me the numbers for each of those battles as the books do not supply them. 

2 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

 

Tywin was losing the war with Robb.....

Maybe in the TV show. In the books it was a stalemate and he was heading West to finish of Robb while Stannis was trying to take Storm's End. 

2 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

 

it was Littlefinger's brokering the alliance with the Tyrells that granted Tywin victory over Stannis.

Yup. You do realie that is part and parcel of command, delegating to your subordinates and sometimes trusting them to work on their own. 

The topic is about command. It is not about who the MVP was. 

2 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

KL was about to fall when Lord Tywin and the Tyrells fell upon Stannis' rear. 

Possibly. I'm not sure your point?

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4 hours ago, Bernie Mac said:

They don't think, they know. Even the Tyrells acknowledge he was the lead commander of that battle. Could Robb have beat Jaime without the 1k Freys? Possibly not, but they, like the Tyrells were with Tywin, were subordinates to Robb. 

 

And? Please tell me the numbers for each of those battles as the books do not supply them. 

Maybe in the TV show. In the books it was a stalemate and he was heading West to finish of Robb while Stannis was trying to take Storm's End. 

Yup. You do realie that is part and parcel of command, delegating to your subordinates and sometimes trusting them to work on their own. 

The topic is about command. It is not about who the MVP was. 

Possibly. I'm not sure your point?

Robb had 6000 men at the battle of the camps to 17000 Lannister men spread out in three camps. 

Ser Stafford had 10,000 untested men to 6000 of Robbs at the battle of Oxcross.

In the books, Robb was winning vs Tywin. He defeated every Lannister army sent against him. The only reason, why he couldn't finish Tywin is the fact that he needed a navy to assault KL or Casterly Rock. 

Tywin sat out most of the war helpless as Robb pillaged the Westerlands. Lord Tywin couldn't even defeat Ser Edmure, who was not well regarded by anyone. The Kingslayer shattered Ser Edmure host and took the Tully heir hostage with little effort......Tywin retreated with his tail between his legs when he tried to cross the Red Fork.

My point regarding the Battle of the Blackwater, is that it was more of a joint effort that enabled the Lannisters to win the battle. It took Tyrion's cunning, Littlefinger's scheming, and Tyrell men to win the battle more than anything Tywin did. 

Tywin didn't even broker the alliance....that was Littlefinger.

Stannis defeated the Ironborn at Fair Island at sea, while Tywin allowed them to burn his little fleet in it's home port. I thought the Lannisters paid their debts. They never paid back the Greyjoys for humiliating them during the Greyjoy Rebellion. Euron is King and the Lannisters are a spent force.

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7 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Robb had 6000 men at the battle of the camps to 17000 Lannister men spread out in three camps. 

Nope. 

Jaime had 15k to start with, battled in both the battle of Golden Tooth and then the battle under Riverrun. We have no idea how many men he had left after that.

The Battle of the Whispering Wood involved Robb with 5k cavalry, the 1k Frey Knights and an unknown amount of Mallisters and other Riverlanders

Their host was greater than it had been when they left the Twins. Lord Jason Mallister had brought his power out from Seagard to join them as they swept around the headwaters of the Blue Fork and galloped south, and others had crept forth as well, hedge knights and small lords and masterless men-at-arms who had fled north when her brother Edmure's army was shattered beneath the walls of Riverrun. 

So this force of 6-7k easily beat Jaime's 2,5k - 3k in the Battle of the Whispering Woods. 

The came the battle of the Camps were the sleeping Lannister infantry would have numbered just under 12k, though of that 12k there was 4k with Forley Prester who, due to the architecture of Riverrun, were cut off from the battle. So it was Robb's force of 6k+ mostly cavalry vs 8k infantry and on top of that Robb had the unknown amount of survivors of the battle under Riverrun led by Tytos Blackwood. 

It is unclear if Robb was outnumbered, he may well have even had the numbers advantage, he certainly had the technical advantage as Cavalry is  superior to Infantry. 

7 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Ser Stafford had 10,000 untested men to 6000 of Robbs at the battle of Oxcross.

There is no mention in the books of how many men Stafford had. Zero.

7 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

In the books, Robb was winning vs Tywin.

No, he was not. It was a stalemate. Robb points this out in his War Councils

"How can we talk of peace while the Lannisters spread like a pestilence over my father's domains, stealing his crops and slaughtering his people? I say again, we ought to be marching on Harrenhal."
"We lack the strength," Robb said, though unhappily.
 
And again in the explanation of why he could not get Lannisport or Casterly Rock
 
"So you did," said Robb. "But a bloody nose won't win the war, will it? Did you ever think to ask yourself why we remained in the west so long after Oxcross? You knew I did not have enough men to threaten Lannisport or Casterly Rock."
 
Robb simply did not have the men to win. His hope was that Renly or Stannis would attack the Crown for him. 

 

7 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

He defeated every Lannister army sent against him. The only reason, why he couldn't finish Tywin is the fact that he needed a navy to assault KL or Casterly Rock. 

Exactly. He needs more support to have any chance of winning. That is called a stalemate. 

7 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Tywin sat out most of the war helpless as Robb pillaged the Westerlands.

Ditto Robb with Tywin's forces in the Riverlands. Once again, a stalemate. 

And of course why could Tywin not move West? Because Tywin was not just fighting against Robb, he had multiple factions to deal with. 

7 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

My point regarding the Battle of the Blackwater, is that it was more of a joint effort that enabled the Lannisters to win the battle. It took Tyrion's cunning, Littlefinger's scheming, and Tyrell men to win the battle more than anything Tywin did. 

And? This is about command. The Tyrells and Tyrion are all subordinates to Tywin. 

7 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Tywin didn't even broker the alliance....that was Littlefinger.

You do realise commanders delegate, right?

Cat negotiated the alliance for the 4k Freys and Robb did not win a single battle without the assistance of Freys. That does not mean Robb is no longer the commander, he, as all leaders do. delegated. 

7 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Stannis defeated the Ironborn at Fair Island at sea,

Yup. Stannis with the help of the Redwyne and Reach navy. Notice how that is still regarded as Stannis being the commander despite the huge numbers supplied by the Reach. Stannis and Tywin

7 hours ago, Ser Snowflake said:

 

while Tywin allowed them to burn his little fleet in it's home port. I thought the Lannisters paid their debts. They never paid back the Greyjoys for humiliating them during the Greyjoy Rebellion.

Sure they did. The Ironborn were smashed by  Tywin's son-in-law the King, as well as himself and his own forces. 

With Balon's "moat" now undefended, King Robert had no difficulty bringing his host across Ironman's Bay from Seagard and Lannisport. With his Wardens of the West and North beside him, Robert forced landings on Pyke, Great Wyk, Harlaw, and Orkmont, and cut his way across the isles with steel and fire. 

I'm pretty sure they did pay them back. And can I ask, who in Westeros calls the burning of the Lannisport fleet in peace time a humiliation for Tywin? Do you think America  was humiliated when Japan attacked Pearly Harbpur with provocation? 

 

 

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5 hours ago, Bernie Mac said:

Nope. 

Jaime had 15k to start with, battled in both the battle of Golden Tooth and then the battle under Riverrun. We have no idea how many men he had left after that.

The Battle of the Whispering Wood involved Robb with 5k cavalry, the 1k Frey Knights and an unknown amount of Mallisters and other Riverlanders

Their host was greater than it had been when they left the Twins. Lord Jason Mallister had brought his power out from Seagard to join them as they swept around the headwaters of the Blue Fork and galloped south, and others had crept forth as well, hedge knights and small lords and masterless men-at-arms who had fled north when her brother Edmure's army was shattered beneath the walls of Riverrun. 

So this force of 6-7k easily beat Jaime's 2,5k - 3k in the Battle of the Whispering Woods. 

The came the battle of the Camps were the sleeping Lannister infantry would have numbered just under 12k, though of that 12k there was 4k with Forley Prester who, due to the architecture of Riverrun, were cut off from the battle. So it was Robb's force of 6k+ mostly cavalry vs 8k infantry and on top of that Robb had the unknown amount of survivors of the battle under Riverrun led by Tytos Blackwood. 

It is unclear if Robb was outnumbered, he may well have even had the numbers advantage, he certainly had the technical advantage as Cavalry is  superior to Infantry. 

There is no mention in the books of how many men Stafford had. Zero.

No, he was not. It was a stalemate. Robb points this out in his War Councils

"How can we talk of peace while the Lannisters spread like a pestilence over my father's domains, stealing his crops and slaughtering his people? I say again, we ought to be marching on Harrenhal."
"We lack the strength," Robb said, though unhappily.
 
And again in the explanation of why he could not get Lannisport or Casterly Rock
 
"So you did," said Robb. "But a bloody nose won't win the war, will it? Did you ever think to ask yourself why we remained in the west so long after Oxcross? You knew I did not have enough men to threaten Lannisport or Casterly Rock."
 
Robb simply did not have the men to win. His hope was that Renly or Stannis would attack the Crown for him. 

 

Exactly. He needs more support to have any chance of winning. That is called a stalemate. 

Ditto Robb with Tywin's forces in the Riverlands. Once again, a stalemate. 

And of course why could Tywin not move West? Because Tywin was not just fighting against Robb, he had multiple factions to deal with. 

And? This is about command. The Tyrells and Tyrion are all subordinates to Tywin. 

You do realise commanders delegate, right?

Cat negotiated the alliance for the 4k Freys and Robb did not win a single battle without the assistance of Freys. That does not mean Robb is no longer the commander, he, as all leaders do. delegated. 

Yup. Stannis with the help of the Redwyne and Reach navy. Notice how that is still regarded as Stannis being the commander despite the huge numbers supplied by the Reach. Stannis and Tywin

Sure they did. The Ironborn were smashed by  Tywin's son-in-law the King, as well as himself and his own forces. 

With Balon's "moat" now undefended, King Robert had no difficulty bringing his host across Ironman's Bay from Seagard and Lannisport. With his Wardens of the West and North beside him, Robert forced landings on Pyke, Great Wyk, Harlaw, and Orkmont, and cut his way across the isles with steel and fire. 

I'm pretty sure they did pay them back. And can I ask, who in Westeros calls the burning of the Lannisport fleet in peace time a humiliation for Tywin? Do you think America  was humiliated when Japan attacked Pearly Harbpur with provocation? 

 

 

Who said that Tywin had the command during the battle of the blackwater? He joined up the Tyrell host and marched on KL. The fact that the Tyrells led the Van makes me think that Mace had the command. 

And how did Tywin pay back the Greyjoys when Balon kept his seat, life, and his line. The Lannisters destroyed the Tarbecks and Reynes for less than that?

Robb was definitely winning vs Tywin. It was due to Ser Edmure's incompetence that Tywin was allowed to join up with the Tyrells to march on KL. Robb wanted Tywin to come west, and if he would have, Tywin would have fallen into a trap set by a superior commander.

Of course Stannis was in command at the Battle of Fair Isle....he was the Master of Ships. 

Robb's host numbered arouind 30,000 augmented by the Freys and Mallisters when he began his war against Tywin. Remember that most of the Rivermen were allowed to send their men home to defend their own lands. Tywin + Jaime + Stafford= at least 70,000 men.

Robb's hosts were vastly outnumbered during his campaign against the Lannisters and still he beat them in every encounter. The only reason why Tywin won was because of text. Tywin overextended himself when he started the war against the Tullys. He didn't have the strength to beat the Tullys, Starks, Tyrells, and Baratheons simutaneously, if all sides were united.

Renly vs Stannis helped him in that regards. Lysa staying out of the war helped him. And Edmure not allowing Tywin to retreat to the West helped.  All three of these events were the only reason Tywin won at the Blackwater. When Ned lost his head and Stannis sent his letter out questioning the legitimacy of the Robert's children, Tywin was in the most precarious position of anyone.

The only thing that Tywin did military during the WOFK was raid and pillage smallfolk in the Riverlands. I find it funny that the only victory that Ser Edmure wins in his whole life is against Tywin. Tully could have never defeated someone like Stannis, Robb, or even Dany.

 

I would have loved for Tywin to have been alive when Dany makes it over to the 7K. 

IMO the best commanders in the series goes something like Dany>Robb>Stannis>Ned>Tywin=Edmure

 

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45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Who said that Tywin had the command during the battle of the blackwater? He joined up the Tyrell host and marched on KL. The fact that the Tyrells led the Van makes me think that Mace had the command. 

Mace Tyrell did when he complained that Tywin had left no victories for him. 

And leading the Van has zero to do with being in overall command. Both Tywin and Stannis lead from the rear. 

"Then do not court it so. Lord Tywin leads from the rear. Lord Stannis as well. You would be wise to do the same. A seventh death might mean the end of both of us." -LordBeric

Who do you think was in command of Stannis army on the Blackater? Stannis or Guyard Morrigen, who had command of the Vanguard? The Blackfish led the Vanguard, is he the true commander or Robb?

 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

And how did Tywin pay back the Greyjoys when Balon kept his seat, life, and his line.

His Navy destroyed, the islands sacked, their main town still in ruin a decade later and Balon deprived of all his sons in one form or another. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

 

The Lannisters destroyed the Tarbecks and Reynes for less than that?

For less? The Reynes killed his grandfather along with hundreds of other Lannister troops and kidnapped Lannisters all the while telling the other Lords of the Westerlands to refuse to pay back their loans. All the Greyjoys did was burn some ships. How exactly is that less?

And of course the Ironborn eventually surrendered, the Reynes and Tarbecks continually refused to. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Robb was definitely winning vs Tywin.

You keep on saying that but seem to be ignoring Robb's own words. He is clear, he did not have the strength to win, it was a stalemate. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

 

It was due to Ser Edmure's incompetence that Tywin was allowed to join up with the Tyrells to march on KL. Robb wanted Tywin to come west, and if he would have, Tywin would have fallen into a trap set by a superior commander.

lol Robb was bedridden and injured at the Crag. Edmure saved his life. And Robb's big plan was to run away. It was a dumb plan and with little chance of success as Robb was hugely outnumbered in enemy territory. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Of course Stannis was in command at the Battle of Fair Isle....he was the Master of Ships. 

Of course Tywin was in command of the Battle of Blackwater.. he was Hand of the King

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Robb's host numbered arouind 30,000 augmented by the Freys and Mallisters when he began his war against Tywin. Remember that most of the Rivermen were allowed to send their men home to defend their own lands. Tywin + Jaime + Stafford= at least 70,000 men.

Tywin had 20k Jaime had 15k, and the green boys of Lannisport with Stafford is never given a number.  I think that 70k comes from the show, it does not come from the books. 

Robb had 20k, the Freys 4k, an unknown amount of Mallisters and around 11k Riverland soldiers. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Robb's hosts were vastly outnumbered during his campaign against the Lannisters

No, they were not. By all means quote from the books to prove it. 

Robb outnumbered Jaime in the Battle of Whispering Wood. In other battles there is no clear answer for the hosts on both side. I think, once again, you are getting your ideas from the show rather than the books. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

The only reason why Tywin won was because of text.

What does that even mean? 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Tywin overextended himself when he started the war against the Tullys. He didn't have the strength to beat the Tullys, Starks, Tyrells, and Baratheons simutaneously, if all sides were united.

Completely agree. There is not a single commander in all of Westeros who could have done so without the aide of Dragons. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

Renly vs Stannis helped him in that regards.

Renly fucked him up. Renly and the Reach Lords thought that Joffrey was Robert's son. Had they no usurped there would be no war of the Five Kings as Stannis and Robb would have been quickly beaten. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

 

Lysa staying out of the war helped him.

Sure. I am not sure your point., She is not a vassal of Robb's, she does not need to be part of the war. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

 

And Edmure not allowing Tywin to retreat to the West helped.

It helped Robb more than it helped Tywin. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

All three of these events were the only reason Tywin won at the Blackwater. When Ned lost his head and Stannis sent his letter out questioning the legitimacy of the Robert's children, Tywin was in the most precarious position of anyone.

Hardly. His position was precarious because Renly rebelled, which had nothing to do with the legitimacy of Cersei's children or Stannis'letter. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

The only thing that Tywin did military during the WOFK was raid and pillage smallfolk in the Riverlands.

He won the war. You can ignore all the smaller victories at Harrnehal, Raventree Hall, Piper Hall etc. if you want. The most important part of a commander's job is winning the war. Tywin did. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

I find it funny that the only victory that Ser Edmure wins in his whole life is against Tywin. Tully could have never defeated someone like Stannis, Robb, or even Dany.

Of course he could. I am sorry, but you seem to know zero about actual command. Any one with the right resources and circumstances could beat another commander. The idea that Edmure could never beat Robb or Stannis is, frankly, idiotic. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

 

I would have loved for Tywin to have been alive when Dany makes it over to the 7K. 

Sure. Me too. Varys had Tywin and Kevan killed because he wanted the realm weakened. In fact it is one of the main selling points for the Golden Company, that Tywin is dead and the realm weaker. 

45 minutes ago, Ser Snowflake said:

IMO the best commanders in the series goes something like Dany>Robb>Stannis>Ned>Tywin=Edmure

 

Well your username is apt as that opinion is as unique as a snowflake. 

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On 5/11/2017 at 8:44 AM, LionoftheWest said:

...

Reyne-Tarbeck Rebellion - organizational skill, talent for planning and ability for creative solutions to problems, all good things in a military commander

...

lol....

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6 hours ago, StraightFromAsshai said:

lol....

Laugh all you want. For men who are small can never stand tall while lions still walk in the light.

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20 hours ago, LionoftheWest said:

Laugh all you want. For men who are small can never stand tall while lions still walk in the light.

Indeed. Might have been overkill but there were no further generations of Reyne's and Tarbecks to take revenge. Also next time someone got uppity all he had to do was send a singer and have him play the Reigns of Castamere aka why one doesn't fuck with Tywin Lannister song.

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On 5/25/2017 at 7:25 PM, Bernie Mac said:

I have already asked you to provide evidence of these illegal actions during this conflict. You have failed to do so. Neither the King of Westeros nor the Warden of the West considered his actions illegal. 

We have almost no idea, at all, what is legal or illegal in Westeros.  I'm basing it off what actual feudal contracts and relationships in our world (in other words, what GRRM is basing it off of) would consider legal or illegal.

And yes, everything Tywin does in the Westerlands is illegal.  It doesn't matter if Tytos is silent on the matter; only Tytos has the authority to call debts, summon bannermen, or punish them for their refusal to do the former.  Tywin has no more right to demand repayment of debt to his father than you have a right to demand I pay back a loan to someone.  And yes, the Reynes assaulted the Lannister/Marbrand force, which is certainly illegal.  But they get pardoned for it, so from Tywin's perspective, all of his actions in regards to the Reynes and Tarbecks are still illegal.

And again, the Reynes and Tarbecks have committed no crimes that they should be asked to answer for, and they have very good reason to suspect that their appearing in person will result in their unlawful detention, just as it had for Walderan Tarbeck.  In many ways, what Tywin does is similar to what all the other vassals are doing; using Lord Tytos' unwillingness to act or demand obeisance to get away with murder, both literal and figurative, by ignoring convention.  The difference is that while the Reynes and Tarbecks are not paying back loans and essentially exploiting the power vacuum, Tywin is actively reneging on the feudal contract by assuming legal powers he has no right to.  The WOIAF is also meant to be written from a pro-Baratheon (and therefore pro-Lannister) perspective, so it's unlikely that we'd head of Tywin's actions being portrayed particularly negatively.

And also, since this has all gotten rather far off the original topic, I'll point out that you claim Tywin loses battles, but wins wars.  Well, it's worth noting that you have to take an equally narrow definition of "winning" a war to say that he's won wars.  Since, you know, all the things he's fought for, all his life, will eventually come crashing down, meaning he'll have lost all his wars, while someone like Ned, who planned for a post-Robert Kings Landing very poorly, will eventually win all his, because all the things he fought for will end up becoming reality.  Willing to table this and come back to it when TWOW and ADOS are published.

PS - You can't give Tywin credit for Littlefinger and the Tyrell marriage contract.  That was Tyrion's idea, full stop.  And Tywin hates Tyrion, and only sends him because he can't trust anyone else to do the job, not because he thinks he's going to do a superlative job.

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