Punic War Essay, Research Paper
The Second Punic War was lost because General Hannibal did not have the right engineering to conquer Roman Cities. If General Hannibal could not conquer Roman cities then he would never be able to conquer the Roman Empire. Hannibal had the right leadership and a large enough army to defeat the Romans. He still did not have the necessary resources and engineering to take over Roman cities.
General Hannibal was a man with great leadership abilities and a hunger to conquer the Roman Empire. He is considered both an ancient and a modern military genius.1 His father, Hamilcar, made Hannibal swear eternal hostility to Rome at a young age.2 Hannibal can be defined as one of the great military leaders of antiquity who commanded the Carthaginian forces .2
By 218 BC Carthage (Hannibals home town) had built a wealthy and powerful empire.3 That winter Hannibal was planning his attack on the Romans. According to Polybius, Hannibal had gathered 90,000 infantry, 12,000 cavalry and 38 elephants. The number of elephants seemed to low for 102,000 people.
In September of 218 BC Hannibal was faced with crossing the Alps. What Hannibal did not know was he would run into a terrible winter-like storm. The storm made crossing the mountains difficult. Many men and elephants fell to their deaths. He also faced problems with the Allobroges and other Celtic groups.4 After crossing the
Alps Hannibal was left with only 20,000 infantry, 6,000 cavalry, and 3 elephants.
3 http://www.wsu.edu:8080/ dee/ROME/PUNICWAR.HTM
After Hannibal would almost defeat armies the rest would run back to their cities and hide behind city walls. Hannibal did not have the essential equipment required to conquer those cities. He would just move pass the cities and fight another battle on an open battlefield where he was sure to outmaneuver and defeat the Romans. Hannibal had much better war tactics than the Romans. He would simply attack them from the back most of the time. The reason he lost the Second Punic War was due to the fact that he could not conquer Roman Cities because he lacked the right engineering.
Hannibal lost most of his elephants in the Alps. Therefore he did not have enough elephants to gather materials to build artillery. As a result he could not reach beyond any Roman City walls. Hannibal also lacked the knowledge of how to build weapons that could help him conquer cities. He did not have the skilled craftsmen to design or construct weapons that could destroy cities.
I can not jump to conclusions because I was not there to witness the war. Maybe, Hannibal did not want to take the extra time to build weapons that could overtake cities. Maybe, he thought he was just going to kill off the Romans by fighting them on battlefields. Maybe, Hannibal s mission was to kill off every Roman. Maybe, Hannibal did not want to conquer the small Roman Cities. Whatever the reason, he could have easily been the next Roman Emperor.
Hannibal had never lost a battle with Rome but he lost the war. After Hannibal had fought the first few battles he just roamed around what is now the Italian countryside.5
5 http://www.wsu.edu:8080/ dee/ROME/PUNICWAR.HTM
He probably could have used that time to make the essential weapons and artillery that would have helped him conquer cities. He had the power and the army to easily defeat the Romans but it was not taken advantage of and Hannibal failed.