The Instigator
Kenostic
Con (against)
Losing
30 Points
The Contender
J.Kenyon
Pro (for)
Winning
40 Points

Hector is a better leader than Achilles in the book The Iliad by Homer.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 12 votes the winner is...
J.Kenyon
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/15/2010 Category: Entertainment
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 11,826 times Debate No: 11202
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (29)
Votes (12)

 

Kenostic

Con

NOTE: Only The Iliad by Homer can be quoted in this argument!

Hector and Achilles, the proud leaders of the Greeks and the Trojans dominate the battle field throughout The Iliad. Hector wins people's hearts, he is brave, strong, he cares for his family, he protects his people, he leads his soldiers into battle! Achilles, on the other hand, is a cry baby, he stays in a corner when Agamemnon steals his slave girl and causes countless deaths on the Greek side.

How can one argue that Achilles is a better leader when he acts so childish? To provide a base to my argument i will bring in some examples: Caesar: he conquered much of Gaul and Alexander the Great: he defeated the mighty Persian empire. What do each of these leaders have in common? They won. A good leader will win, because at the end, winning is all that matters.

""You will wander the underworld blind, deaf, and dumb, and all the dead will know, "This is Hector, the fool who thought he killed Achilles.""

As can be seen, Hector, the Trojans greatest hero, lost and brought only loss to the Trojans in the end. A great leader is one that is not idealized by people who care too much about 'kindness' and 'honour,' but the one who 'brings home the bread'
J.Kenyon

Pro

I thank my opponent for proposing this debate topic. Hopefully it will be a good one!

Military leadership - the art of direct and indirect influence and the skill of creating the conditions for organizational success to accomplish missions effectively.[1]

Achilles possesses none of these traits. Indeed, as my opponent rightly points out, "[Achilles] is a cry baby, he stays in a corner when Agamemnon steals his slave girl and causes countless deaths on the Greek side." I add that Achilles refused to fight Hector when he issued a direct challenge to any Greek warrior who would accept; he was still nursing his hurt feelings *sniffle.* It was Ajax who ultimately accepted.

Hector, by contrast, fits this description perfectly: "[He] wins people's hearts, he is brave, strong, he cares for his family, he protects his people, he leads his soldiers into battle." All of these attributes contribute to his superior skill in leading his troops.

My opponent uses a poor definition of leadership. The victor is not necessarily the better leader. Any number of factors which the leader has no control over ultimately affect the outcome of battle, such as terrain, equipment, size of force, weather, and simple luck.

Moreover, Achilles was not in fact the leader of the Greeks. If anyone is to be compared with Hector, it is Agamemnon. The fact that Achilles killed Hector does not make him a better *leader,* but merely a better *warrior.*

Finally, Achilles, did not *win* the war. What ultimately secured Greek victory was Odysseus' brilliant plan to infiltrate the city via the wooden horse. At this point, both Hector and Achilles were already dead.

The resolution is affirmed. I eagerly await my opponent's response.

-- References --

1. Field Manual 22-100: Leadership and Command at Senior Levels, HQ, Department of the Army, Washington, D.C., June 1987, p. 3.
Debate Round No. 1
Kenostic

Con

There is one point that I would like to negate here at the beginning, ONLY the Iliad may be cited. Odysseus' plan is never mentioned, in fact, the book ends with Hector's death. Because of this, your last point is moot.

Second, sorry to be a semantic, but I never said "military leadership." Hector trumps Achilles in military leadership but not as a leader. Leader:

"leader
noun
1 the person who leads or commands a group, organization, or country : the leader of a protest group."

In the end, all that matters to the person leading is that they did better for their country. If we use your train of thought, then Hitler is one of the best leaders ever. He gained so much through cunning, and political stratagems. However, what did he do for Germany in the end? Almost nil. Achilles turned the tide of war when the Greeks were on the verge of defeat (see book: Battle on the ramparts) and from there led the Greeks to victory.

Agamemnon was not the leader in the sense that he was the coward who constantly wished to turn tail and flee, Diomedes, the two Ajaxs and Achilles were the real leaders because they actually fought.

Let me reiterate my points in case they were muddled:
1. Your point about Odysseus is not in the Iliad, in fact Zeus says in book 15 that Patrokles would die, then Achilles would be able to kill Hector and because of that the Greeks would capture Ilion.
2. A leader is only the figure head, and the best figure head will do what is best for his/her country, win, which Achilles did, and Hector did not.
3. Agamemnon was not the leader, in all but one of the books he shows himself to be a coward, the other heroes take up the mantel (such as in book 2 when Diomedes claims that if Agamemnon leaves he will fight with all who remain, this convinces Agamemnon to stay)

Finally I want to say that you should not have accepted this debate. Not only have you demonstrated that you have not read the Iliad, but you have no direct references or quotes.
J.Kenyon

Pro

My opponent owes me an apology for his ad hominem. I have indeed read The Iliad (prose, translated by E.V. Rieu, paperback, Penguin Classics Edition, 1950) as well as The Odyssey, The Aeneid, and Metamorphoses. I did not require a great deal of citations since my opponent provided me with the majority of the evidence I need.

The conclusion involving the Trojan Horse IS found in certain versions of the Iliad, which, in any case, is irrelevant. If a good leader is the one who ultimately wins, then it cannot be said that either Hector or Achilles "won" since the war never concluded. Thus my opponent's argument, stemming from his definition, is moot.

I am glad CON has decided to define leader, however, Achilles still fails to meet this since he does not command a group, organization or country. Even if, as CON claims, Agamemnon is not the "true" leader of the Greeks, it is not Achilles but the other, more dutiful heroes.

CON gives two conflicting criteria for what constitutes a *good* leader. In his first round he states "a good leader will win, because...winning is all that matters," yet in round two, he claims "all that matters to the person leading is that they did better for their country." This demonstrates his failure to fulfill his prima facie burden as the instigator of the debate.[1] His Hitler comparison is also fallacious.[2]

CON claims that Achilles turned the tide of war when the Greeks were on the verge of defeat, ignoring the fact that it was a combination of Achilles' childish behavior and Hector's heroic leadership that put them in this position to begin with.

Conclusion: CON gives conflicting definitions of what constitutes a great leader. He takes issue with my definition of leader, yet fails to meet even his own. CON's answers to my contentions ultimately undermine his own case.

-- References --

1. Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law, http://dictionary.reference.com...
2. http://www.fallacyfiles.org...
Debate Round No. 2
Kenostic

Con

Thanks the debate so far

First I would question your truthfulness concerning your supposed knowledge of the Iliad. I have taken ancient Greek and have translated much of the Iliad. In the Homeric The Iliad (which was supposed to be the only source of evidence, which you have not used even once) there is no reference to the horse, meaning that any point that you may have made based upon it is not viable, and brings to question whether you read the book that we are discussing.

Additionally, I do not know what point you were trying to make when you said "[I have read] The Odyssey, The Aeneid, and Metamorphoses" so have I, but it doesn't make me know the Iliad more in any significant way. Any one can say they read a book.

Next you said that the war was never concluded, but as I said and you chose to ignore, in book 15 Zeus lays out what will happen in the war and states that the Greeks will win because Achilles came back into the war.

Next, I do not know how doing what is best for the country and winning are contradictory, I was trying to imply that winning is doing the best for your country. Hector lost and brought ruin to Troy (Troy was fated to fall only after Hector is killed) while Achilles brought victory (I will say it again because you ignored it in my second argument, Troy fell because Achilles killed Hector) (see book 15!)

Next, what you said with Hitler was clever, but ignored what I was saying. If you listened to my argument I said Hitler gained allot (like Hector when he almost defeats the Greeks) but loses it all in the end, making him the worse leader in the end (again like Hector).

Finally, Achilles is a leader, as you would have known if you read the Iliad. (I'm sorry, but based upon your arguments you have given me no choice but to believe that you are lying) First of all he is known as the leader of the Myrmidons. Additionally, as can be seen in both book 22 and 23, he LEADS the Greeks to the very gates of Troy where he kills Hector
J.Kenyon

Pro

Even assuming Hector's death was a *necessary* condition for Greek victory, it is not a *sufficient* one[1]. To compare it to a basketball game, suppose the captain of one team scores 30 points and makes numerous assists, but they still lose by 1. The captain of the second team, by contrast, sat out most of the game because of a personal feud with the coach and only scored 7 points. The second captain did, however, make the game winning shot. His game winner was *necessary* for victory, but it was not sufficient. Every point leading up to that shot was equally important. Moreover, even if we grant that the second captain is a better *player,* the first captain has done a great deal more for his team, though they ultimately lose.

This comparison is not merely hypothetical. Indeed, CON has even conceded that Hector was the better "military" leader! What other area of leadership can we possibly be discussing given the context of the debate? Is Achilles a better choir leader? A better Boy Scout leader? If it is moral leadership, than clearly Hector excels. Achilles is vain, vindictive, and unforgiving. Prior to the battle on the ramparts, in Book I, Achilles asks Zeus to help Hector defeat his fellow Greeks![2] Any good he ultimately does for the Greek cause is motivated purely by his personal anger at the death of Patroclus.

CON's schizophrenic criteria for a "good" leader ARE in conflict. Returning to the basketball analogy, a children's team coached by Larry Bird would still be crushed by an NBA team coached by Larry Flynt. It would be an absurd conclusion that the paraplegic publisher of Hustler was the better coach, yet it is the one we reach following my opponent's logic: the better leader is the one who wins.

The resolution is strongly affirmed. Vote PRO.

-- References --

1. http://plato.stanford.edu...
2. http://www.uoregon.edu...
Debate Round No. 3
29 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Puck 3 years ago
Puck
Shakespeare's play, Troilus and Cressida is worth reading for the numerous humorous allusions to that very thing.
Posted by J.Kenyon 3 years ago
J.Kenyon
Indeed.
Posted by Loserboi 3 years ago
Loserboi
Hector's brother is a pu$$Y
Posted by Aesius 4 years ago
Aesius
Ah, actually, I think I'll be defending myself and what I see as a community building exercise. If you wish for this to stop, then please do.

The "have a life" comment was made in reference to a comment he had made to allow him to seem the error of his thought. I obviously said t to make a point, and I did not award all 7 points based on a personal vendetta.

I will defend logic, and those who wield it, when such cases are of interest to me. I'm sorry this is causing you distress.
Posted by Frish 4 years ago
Frish
Aesius, I have had enough.

I have respectfully asked that we discontinue this argument, as it is not relevant to the debate at hand. At first glance you come across as respectful and intelligent, but now I see that you are neither. By clinging to your vanity and continuing to harass me, you have demonstrated a level of maturity that my 9 year old sister has surpassed.

At first, I could see where you were coming from. The original comment that I posted was, in fact, insulting. I made no effort to hide that. The mere fact that you first had to instigate and then could not let go demonstrates your unprofessionalism.

As for the "absolutely zero constructive criticism" and "worthless comment," who do you think you are? I was navigating this website when you arrogantly hate-voted, claiming that you "have a life outside of this website (http://www.debate.org...)" as justification. Do you think that you provide constructive criticism?

I wish to put this matter to rest. I apologize for speaking ill about the debaters. It was rash and unprofessional. I consider this to be a learning opportunity, and will make sure this error is not repeated.

Aesius, please stop. Enough time has been wasted on this already.
Posted by Danielle 4 years ago
Danielle
I haven't read this debate, but I awarded points to Pro for sources (as Con didn't have any) and conduct since Kenostic obviously is using multiple accounts to vote bomb. Maybe I'll get around to reading this sometime soon :)
Posted by Aesius 4 years ago
Aesius
Insulting both the pro and te con, and providing absolutely zero constructive criticism for a debate is a worthless comment.

And a username is the business of the community when it is obvious a user is abusing the system to their advantage.
Posted by Frish 4 years ago
Frish
It is not my place to judge another's username.

You are right, I am participating in a comment thread. You are also right about me insulting both the pro and the con. The nature of comments is not always neutral, and in this case I chose to comment upon the attitudes expressed in the debate. Maybe you consider yourself the guardian of the comments thread, but that is your business. My intentions, however, are not. Please stop judging my comments and motives. They were not directed toward you, and you did not expand on their meaning, merely dispose of them as insidious "trolling" remarks.

In any case, these comments no longer pertain to the debate, and I would appreciate if they would cease. I apologize for any distractions to the debate, let us carry on and put this matter behind us.
Posted by Aesius 4 years ago
Aesius
Because that is an obvious attempt to vote bomb. If you look closely, you'll notice their usernames are very similar.

You are not merely observing, you are participating in a comment thread. And your comment insulted both the pro and the con, in an obvious attempt to get a reaction.
Posted by Frish 4 years ago
Frish
Maybe they just agree with him. Is that so far-fetched?

And I am not trolling, just observing. You did not deem to comment on J.Kenyon's inflammatory remark about the users Kaylitsa and Khaylitsa.
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Vote Placed by Octavius 4 years ago
Octavius
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Vote Placed by Aesius 4 years ago
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Vote Placed by kaylitsa 4 years ago
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