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Legitimate_Bastard

Biggest Mistake Made by Robb

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2 hours ago, Enuma Elish said:

Robb executing Karstark was a very bad political move.  Here is a man who followed him to war and his sons died for the Stark cause.  Sometimes you let things go.  And this is one of those times.  It is hypocrite to make a big deal out of the killings of two POWs when they kill so many on the battlefields.  

A big deal of 2 murdered children prisoners of war? You dont kill POW, not even the Nazis did that. Its immoral and illegal, akin to breaking guest rights. Karstark had to go in order to save Robbs honor and any prisoners (Manderly, Sansa, etc)

2 hours ago, Enuma Elish said:

No king should be scared of his vassals but then a king should keep his oaths to his vassal.  He should never have lain with Jeyne in the first place.  Damage control after the deed should have been to marry the Frey girl and keep financially supporting Jeyne and their bastard.  

If a king is required to keep his oath then hes no true king. Frey doesnt rule, Robb does. 

1 hour ago, The Sunland Lord said:

Marching south.

After all, his marching south didn't save Ned, and didn't harm Sansa and Arya. Their fates were determined by other factors anyways. 

He saved Edmure, his mothers brother.

1 hour ago, Angel Eyes said:

Would have liked to have been inside the Greatjon’s head when he suggested that... 

It probably went along the lines of...

He reached back over his shoulder and drew his immense two-handed greatsword. "Why shouldn't we rule ourselves again? It was the dragons we married, and the dragons are all dead!" He pointed at Robb with the blade. "There sits the only king I mean to bow my knee to, m'lords," he thundered.

.

Hes right, the dragons are dead. If the Targaryen age is over that means the old way is back. Balon thought this as well and despite you saying

22 hours ago, Angel Eyes said:

Well, maybe they thought that there wouldn’t be much the Ironborn could do. You can’t conquer the North with the manpower of the Iron Islands. I wonder why Balon tried, considering that he doesn’t have the forces to take and hold it. 

Balon did have the forces to conquer and hold the North as he did exactly that

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2 hours ago, Enuma Elish said:

Robb executing Karstark was a very bad political move.  Here is a man who followed him to war and his sons died for the Stark cause.  Sometimes you let things go.  And this is one of those times.  It is hypocrite to make a big deal out of the killings of two POWs when they kill so many on the battlefields.  

No king should be scared of his vassals but then a king should keep his oaths to his vassal.  He should never have lain with Jeyne in the first place.  Damage control after the deed should have been to marry the Frey girl and keep financially supporting Jeyne and their bastard.  

I suspect the thinking at this point was, now that they no longer have Jaime, they need to punish the murderer of Lannister boys or else Sansa's life is in jeopardy. That's what Catelyn is thinking at any rate:

Quote

Will they lay Sansa down naked beneath the Iron Throne after they have killed her? Will her skin seem as white, her blood as red?

 

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Taking the throne, he set himself up big time on the basis of some minor lords. If he denied the throne he would probably be the main character.

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Allowing himself to be crowned King of the North was probably his biggest.  That effectively eliminated the chance of an alliance with either Renly or Stannis, which allowed the Lannisters to fight their enemies one-by-one, resulting in their defeat.

Marrying Jeyne was another big mistake.  It alienated the Freys, whose forces were essential.  He should have been suspicious of their willingness to have anything to do with him, considering that they were vassals of Tywin Lannsiter.

While sending Theon had serious consequences, he had no real reason to think that he would be betrayed, much less that anything might happen to Winterfell.  By the way, the Iron Islands did not have the forces to take and hold the North.  It's too big and spread out.  Even Asha had to admit that much.

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On 11/2/2018 at 12:20 PM, Legitimate_Bastard said:

I am going with sending Theon back to the Iron Islands. The Red Wedding was bad for Robb, but Theon was bad for Winterfell and everyone in it. I think Theons actions have had more of an impact in the long run than the Red Wedding.

1

The Entire Theon debacle really doesn't matter on the long run. Balon Was going to Declare War on the North, He was going to Pillage, and rape to his heart's contents because fuck the Starks, he didn't care if Theon Died or lived because of his actions. Robb Sending anyone else would have resulted in their deaths because Once again, ironborn, do whatever they please and say fuck off to any Greenlander who says anything. 

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Making Roose his Field General & giving him control of half his army.  Bolton was sending his most loyal & staunch men to die on the front-lines

 

Should've sent a force under Glover to bait Tywin West while keeping the majority of his soldiers massed with him

 

it does mitigate many failures that stem from having Roose as the head of his army. No rampaging into the Crownlands or decimating forces on meaningless objectives; i. e Duskendale, marching through the night & rushing Tywin instead of shadowing his movements and harrying him, hunting wolves, being rearguard 'attacked' by Gregor on the Trident to name a few

 

Now that i think on it..was there ever a good person for Robb to pick as a General? Keep in mind he didn't have Brynden Tully or the River-lords at his disposal yet, only Northerners (& the Freys i think?).

 

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On 11/2/2018 at 4:01 PM, John Suburbs said:

If you think on it, does it seem likely that Lady Sybell and Lord Tywin would put the two of them together and just hope they hit it off? Seems like a rather iffy plan considering what's at stake.

 

I think I misunderstood you the first time I read your comment.

I think that it is 'iffy' as far as plans go for Tywin. Falling in love is so subjective - truly out of his control. But what did he have to lose at that point?

This quote is what convinces me:

Quote

A Feast for Crows - Jaime VII

"Your lord father promised me worthy marriages for Jeyne and her younger sister. Lords or heirs, he swore to me, not younger sons nor household knights."
Lords or heirs. To be sure. The Westerlings were an old House, and proud, but Lady Sybell herself had been born a Spicer, from a line of upjumped merchants. Her grandmother had been some sort of half-mad witch woman from the east, he seemed to recall. And the Westerlings were impoverished. Younger sons would have been the best that Sybell Spicer's daughters could have hoped for in the ordinary course of events, but a nice fat pot of Lannister gold would make even a dead rebel's widow look attractive to some lord. "You'll have your marriages," said Jaime, "but Jeyne must wait two full years before she weds again." If the girl took another husband too soon and had a child by him, inevitably there would come whispers that the Young Wolf was the father.
"I have two sons as well," Lady Westerling reminded him. "Rollam is with me, but Raynald was a knight and went with the rebels to the Twins. If I had known what was to happen there, I would never have allowed that." There was a hint of reproach in her voice. "Raynald knew nought of any . . . of the understanding with your lord father. He may be a captive at the Twins."

It is nicely put together here as well:

Sorry for belated reply I was out of contact all weekend

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On ‎11‎/‎2‎/‎2018 at 5:20 PM, Legitimate_Bastard said:

It has to be between, pissing off Walder by taking up with Jeyne Westerling and the resulting Red Wedding.

OR

Sending Theon back to his father.

I am going with sending Theon back to the Iron Islands. The Red Wedding was bad for Robb, but Theon was bad for Winterfell and everyone in it. I think Theons actions have had more of an impact in the long run than the Red Wedding.

Anyone got any others? What do you think?

Theon was neither here nor there.  Balon would have attacked anyway. 

Marrying Jeyne Westerling was an act of spectacularly bad judgement.

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1 hour ago, Legitimate_Bastard said:

 

I think I misunderstood you the first time I read your comment.

I think that it is 'iffy' as far as plans go for Tywin. Falling in love is so subjective - truly out of his control. But what did he have to lose at that point?

This quote is what convinces me:

It is nicely put together here as well:

Sorry for belated reply I was out of contact all weekend

Sure, but do you honestly think that the plan was to put Robb and Jeyne together and just hope they hit it off? Or is it more likely that Sybell had grandma Maggy's love potion recipe to make certain that they hit it off? Knowing Tywin, I'd vote for the latter, but others may disagree.

And then as time goes by and Robb becomes more distant, is this just because he's under a lot of pressure, or has the potion worn off? Again, I vote for the latter since newlyweds rarely fall out of love in a matter of months, especially a love so strong that he sacrificed a kingdom for it.

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9 minutes ago, John Suburbs said:

Sure, but do you honestly think that the plan was to put Robb and Jeyne together and just hope they hit it off? Or is it more likely that Sybell had grandma Maggy's love potion recipe to make certain that they hit it off? Knowing Tywin, I'd vote for the latter, but others may disagree.

And then as time goes by and Robb becomes more distant, is this just because he's under a lot of pressure, or has the potion worn off? Again, I vote for the latter since newlyweds rarely fall out of love in a matter of months, especially a love so strong that he sacrificed a kingdom for it.

Love potion 100%.  Yes, love potion wore off toward the end.

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Robb acted selfishly and married the woman he loved.  It's pretty straightforward.  He placed his own interests above his concern for his allies.  It's ok in war to betray the enemy but it is not ok to betray your allies.  It was ok for Rickard Karstark to execute the Lannister lads.  It's war.  But it is stupidity for Robb to execute Karstark for killing the enemy.  It was suicide for Robb.  But the biggest mistake is breaking his oath to Walder Frey.  

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23 hours ago, lrresistable said:

Making Roose his Field General & giving him control of half his army.  Bolton was sending his most loyal & staunch men to die on the front-lines

 

I think this might have been the biggest mistake in the actual causality, because Bolton was sabotaging him since the beginning, even when they were winning (technically, Bolton's sabotaging his regional rivals, but Robb's hurt all the same). Sending Glover and his forces to Duskendale might have been the tipping point where Roose and the Freys consider the Red Wedding numerically possible. However, despite the severity of the consequences, I'm not sure Robb made a mistake in judgment given the information that he had at the time.

The other competitor for biggest mistake to me is sending Theon to Balon, something both Ned and Catelyn were against. Interestingly, the consequence they should have foreseen is not the consequence that occurred. They both wanted to keep Theon close to keep Balon from rebelling. However, we saw that Balon had written Theon off to die and was going to attack anyway. The big difference (apart from Robb not having to execute Theon in retaliation), is that the Ironborn would otherwise have not attacked Winterfell (Asha gives the reasons why it's a poor strategic target; Theon goes for the "big prize" because he's got daddy issues), and would likely not have the inside knowledge to lure Rodrick out for the gambit anyway. Without Winterfell falling, everything changes: Roose probably doesn't decide to betray Robb full-time, the Freys aren't looking for a way out of the war, and Robb might not sleep with Jeyne Westerling (we don't yet whether there was a love potion, but Bran/Rickons' deaths trigger the need for "comfort").

The other big mistake I think Robb made was not giving more information to Edmure. Robb may or may not have known that Edmure was a hot-head with insecurity issues, but being gone in the field for a time and having limited access to communication, you'd think that individual commanders would have some discretion in their mobilization. If Robb left Riverrun with the knowledge of what he was going to do, he should have clued in Edmure a little bit more because he would not know what circumstances would arise in his absence, and would want to make it crystal-clear about the reason for his instructions.

The one-two punch of losing Winterfell and his brothers, and having Tywin defeat Stannis (because Edmure gave him the opportunity) is what causes the Freys and Roose to decide to switch sides. If King's Landing had fallen to Stannis, the Lannisters were basically done at that point, and would not be attractive conspirators. Even if Robb had married Jeyne after that, the Freys would be livid but may not have resorted to the Red Wedding without the promise of Lannister assistance. Of course, without marrying Jeyne the Freys would be looking for a way out, but wouldn't have the cover/justification of "being dishonored" for performing the Red Wedding.

 

Edit: I don't think killing Rickard Karstark was a mistake. In addition to killing the Lannisters, Karstark's men killed some of Edmure's guards. Failing to deal with Karstark at that point would make Robb look weak in addition to not performing justice. Also, I don't think there's much of a political problem for executing him at that point, as Karstark's men had already secretly dispersed through the night to go hunt Jaime. Failing to kill him would only make Robb look weak to his other bannermen, and wouldn't have retained any more of his army.

Edited by Lluewhyn

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12 hours ago, Silver Bullet 1985 said:

I don't know about a love potion.  That would remove part of the responsibility from Robb Stark and I don't think that is what the author intended.  

It would make him a truly tragic figure, which I think is what the author intended. :)

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On 11/3/2018 at 8:28 PM, Hugorfonics said:

A big deal of 2 murdered children prisoners of war? You dont kill POW, not even the Nazis did that. Its immoral and illegal, akin to breaking guest rights. Karstark had to go in order to save Robbs honor and any prisoners (Manderly, Sansa, etc)

If a king is required to keep his oath then hes no true king. Frey doesnt rule, Robb does. 

 

The Nazis did kill POWs. Soviet POWs alone saw close to 3.5M deaths in custody due to German mistreatment. Up to half a million of them were direct murders/executions in concentration camps. They did treat British and American POWs reasonably well, as long as they weren't Jews, who would then be treated... less well.

I do agree that what lord Rickard Karstark did merits punishment, but I think that Robb was a fool to execute him. He should have done what someone suggested (can't recall who atm) and held Rickard hostage to guarantee the continued service of his men.

The Seven Kingdoms is a feudal state. Feudalism is based on mutual loyalty between liege lord and subject. For a liege lord, even the king, to break an oath was a grievous offense. The king who does whatever he wants is an absolute monarch, not a feudal monarch. Absolutism was a later development in European history.

PS. If Robb had truly been an absolute monarch and not a feudal monarch, he would have been equally free to (give the order to) kill POWs as to break oaths. Both would have been regarded as bad behavior by most, though.

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On 11/5/2018 at 11:15 AM, John Suburbs said:

Sure, but do you honestly think that the plan was to put Robb and Jeyne together and just hope they hit it off? Or is it more likely that Sybell had grandma Maggy's love potion recipe to make certain that they hit it off? Knowing Tywin, I'd vote for the latter, but others may disagree.

And then as time goes by and Robb becomes more distant, is this just because he's under a lot of pressure, or has the potion worn off? Again, I vote for the latter since newlyweds rarely fall out of love in a matter of months, especially a love so strong that he sacrificed a kingdom for it.

I could see it I guess, when Robb got injured taking the Crag Jeyne was the one to patch him up. So her slipping an aphrodisiac to Robb isnt that crazy.

What I dont see is Tywin knowing Robb would take the crag, and get injured and then marrying Jeyne instead od leaving her with a basterd like his father's son. But there was collusion so you may be on to something.ye

3 hours ago, Karlshammar said:

 

The Nazis did kill POWs. Soviet POWs alone saw close to 3.5M deaths in custody due to German mistreatment. Up to half a million of them were direct murders/executions in concentration camps. They did treat British and American POWs reasonably well, as long as they weren't Jews, who would then be treated... less well.

I do agree that what lord Rickard Karstark did merits punishment, but I think that Robb was a fool to execute him. He should have done what someone suggested (can't recall who atm) and held Rickard hostage to guarantee the continued service of his men.

The Seven Kingdoms is a feudal state. Feudalism is based on mutual loyalty between liege lord and subject. For a liege lord, even the king, to break an oath was a grievous offense. The king who does whatever he wants is an absolute monarch, not a feudal monarch. Absolutism was a later development in European history.

PS. If Robb had truly been an absolute monarch and not a feudal monarch, he would have been equally free to (give the order to) kill POWs as to break oaths. Both would have been regarded as bad behavior by most, though.

Yeesh, fucking Nazis.

I think it was Edmure. Politically you want them on your side, but Lannister holds many hostages as well. Its one thing to gamble with Manderly heirs, Sansa another.

Absolutism thrived in later Europe with your Louis' and Romonovs and such but it has roots in its early history of Caesers and Pharaohs and may have draws inspiration from Persian and Chinese and other ancient eastern civilizations.

I would say Feudalism started around Charlemagnish, in Westeros it started with Aegon I, or maybe the III.

Before Conquest it was the Old Way, Stark owns Bolton and other future rebals, they made Bolton bend the knee and replaced the rebal lord with Karstark, no compromises. When Reed swears their ancient fealty to Bran they demand protection and for that theyll offer everything, similarly Manderly always swears to be Stark men. Life was simple, get ready for war against the rival kings and trust your king has the best intention. 

After Conquest these kings with best intentions became scheming Westeros lords, the game was created and feudalism was somewhat born, thanks to Aegons dragons their rule was still absolutish, after Aegon III that all changed. It took till Aerys II to realize that they weren't in an absolute monarch.

But did they? Did Robert ride with the warhammer in one hand and the magnacarta in the other? What rights to lords have? Let alone minor lords. When Greatjon threatened to leave Robbs army he threatened to hang him. 

When Walder and Cat discussed terms, it was out of the ordinary, not a regular conversation between a man and his liege.

Melisandre reminds Stannis that he is an absolute monarch as Cersei acts like she is too

Ps. Joffrey broke his vow to Sansa, its good to be the king

 

With regards to this whole Roose taking half the army, obviously not great. Maybe a Dustin or something would have been better, but whos to say they wouldnt betray Robb as well? Robb lost Winterfell before his army started to abandon him, do you really think Walder cares about his daughters honor? Or about being on the winning side of the war?

Robb lost to Theon, again the real blame should be on Ramsay and Ser Rodrick

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I gotta admit that I'm a little bit confused by your latest post, Hugorfonics. I'm not 100% sure what point you are trying to make, but I _think_ you are saying that the Targaryens were absolute monarchs?

They weren't, though. As GRRM once mentioned, when you have dragons, you can get away with a lot. People are less likely to resist when they risk facing a hungry, fire-breathing monster, heh. But even Aegon the Conqueror had to concede a lot. He adopted the local religion of the Seven, accepted the abolition of slavery (a mainstay of Valyrian civilization, and a major foundation of the entire Freehold and its colonies), After him polygamy virtual ceased to exist, and the incest was drastically dialed down.

The breaking of Joffrey's vow to Sansa is a perfect example of how the monarchy was feudal rather than absolute. Sansa's original liege, her father Ned, had been executed as a traitor to the crown. Her next liege, her brother lord and then king Robb, had also turned traitor to the crown and broken his fealty, even going to outright war against the crown.

Despite this, Joffrey was _still_ considered bound by his vow. He had to put on a huge public show and get the blessing of the High Septon and his confirmation that the gods considered him no longer to be bound by his vow (which wasn't even his vow, but his parents, and he wasn't even of age yet).

The Seven Kingdoms never practiced absolutism, and even less so after the death of the dragons.

Edited by Karlshammar

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1 hour ago, Karlshammar said:

As GRRM once mentioned, when you have dragons, you can get away with a lot. People are less likely to resist when they risk facing a hungry, fire-breathing monster, heh.

Yep.

Quote

The territory of Westeros is huge, and the fact of survival of the local royal houses (like the Starks) suggests a relatively loose connection (more loose than that of a 14th century France, for example, where the Dukes - as independent and selfish as they were - were all in fact blood relatives of the Crown). The position of a Targaryen king reminds me somewhat of that of a Holy Roman Emperor - a monarch of course, but ruling over the more or less cohesive federation of territories with their own local ruling dynasties. It doesn't mean that such a monarch has no power - it means that his power is much more dependent on the strength of his personality than that, say, of a king of France.

There's a certain amount of truth to this, yes. Although the early Targayens also had the advantage of dragons, which the Holy Roman Emperor lacked.

 

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