Claremont McKenna College
The Conquest of Gaul
"Leadership is a constant theme and emphasis at CMC. In fact, one of the ways we describe CMC students is "Leaders in the Making." Identify and discuss a person, fictional or nonfictional, who has helped shape culture and thought. You may select someone from any field: literature, the arts, science, politics. history, ahtletics, business, education, ect.
It was early morning in Alesia. Gleaming rays of red-orange light danced on the wheat fields of southeastern France. Suddenly, three hundred thousand Gallic soldiers blotted out the horizon. Vercingeterix's reinforcements had arrived to fight against Caesar's paltry forty thousand men. The days following the enemy's arrival saw one of the greatest battles in European history-a battle that defined the fate of Western Europe. Caesar reacted gracefully when faced with the determined Gallic opposition, and fought bravely to defend against advances on two fronts. His performance displayed marked qualities of leadership, most notably those of reliance and battle strategy.
To understand Caesar's plan is to understand Alesia, the heavily fortified Gallic stronghold perched atop a French hilltop. Caesar had never intended to attack this zenith directly-doing so would lead only to defeat and the loss of Caesar's entire Gallic campaign. Rather, Caesar dug his-and his troops'-heels into the brittle French soil surrounding Vercingeterix, severing Vercingeterix supply lines and effectively forcing him into open battle. Vercingeterix, himself a man of great cunning, knew to resist initial temptation of glory and await...
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