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Department
Global Management Studies
Course
GMS 200
Professor
huang
Semester
Winter

Description
He who dreams of power with a great passion will let absolutely nothing get in the way of obtaining it. Similarly, by looking back in history at the Egyptians during the New Kingdom, Rome during Trajan’s empire and the Mongol empire; 3 great civilisations who all shared one common dream of ruling the world. The reason to how these 3 once great civilizations were able to prosper in their own time was due to their military, wealthy land and ambitious rulers. Throughout the history of human kind, the world has encountered various civilisations that rose to power and created absolute dominance in their own time due to their strong army, wealth of the land (or knowledge of the land in the case of nomads) and the ambitious rulers who took power; this dominance is portrayed through the Egyptians of the New Kingdom, Rome during Trajan’s empire and the Mongol empire. The Ancient Egyptians army contained thousands of highly trained men and used various strategies to achieve their military goals which resulted in making Egypt a dominant power in the time of the new kingdom. Every single soldier had a specific duty, in other words their army was extremely well organized. The Egyptians organized their mass army through divisions. Each division included several thousand men. Each division had 4000 infantry and 1000 charioteers. 1 A division was organized into 10 battalions of 500 soldiers each. A battalion was sub divided into groups; companies of 250 men, platoons 1 Eugen Strouhal, Life of the Ancient Egyptians (Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma, 1992), 132. of 50 men and 10 men squads. The Egyptians also organized the chariotry in a very sophisticated way. The chariotry was divided into brigades; each brigade had 2 or more squadrons. A squadron included 5 companies of 10 chariots which added up to 50 chariots in total. The Egyptians used sappers, which were soldiers whose main job was to construct trenches and tunnels. They also used shield bearers which were soldiers whose job was to protect a soldier. So for example a king would have 2 or 3 shield bearers. Due to the effectiveness and critical organization of the Egyptian army, Egypt during the New Kingdom defeated many enemies such as the defeat of the Hyksos under King Ahmose in 1550 B.C. and the defeat of the Hittites at the battle of Kadesh in 1299 B.C. under King Ramesses II. The Egyptian’s army clearly played an important role in their successful rise of power and were able to make Egypt a dominant power which nobody at the time could over power and this can be seen through the victories of many great battles such as the defeat of the Hyksos in 1550 B.C and the defeat of the Hittites in 1299 B.C. Something else that massively contributed to the superiority of the Egyptians was the wealth of the land which can be seen through Egypt’s agriculture. The Egyptians were blessed in a land which was rich in natural resources such as agriculture which ultimately contributed to their dominance in the near East. For a civilization to become a dominant power, there are several other factors involved apart from simply the aspect of having an 2 Ibid,. 112. effective military. Egypt had extremely fertile land which allowed the Egyptians to be able to produce more than enough food for everyone ultimately contributing to their dominance. First of all, the soldiers must have been well fed while they went on their campaigns. A very large supply of food was needed when the Egyptian went on their long expeditions conquering land. For example, during the battle of Megiddo in 609 B.C, every day the Egyptian army consumed 14 tons of grain and 25 thousand gallons of water. Not many civilisations at the time such as the Hyksos and Hittites were able to afford such expensive food costs at the time so clearly Egypt’s fertile soil allowed them to gain the advantage and they took advantage of it. Due to the wealth of the land, Egypt was able to produce enough food for their army to go on expeditions for several months conquering land without ever having to worry about running out of food; something that most other armies at the time could not do which ultimately contributes to their dominance. Lastly, one of the most important reasons the Egyptians were able to create dominance was due to the ambitious pharaohs who lead their country to success. The Pharaohs who took power majorly influenced the success of Egypt by their role of leadership, decision making and most importantly ambition; this ambition is portrayed throughout the reign of Ramesses the great who ruled from 1279 to 1213 B.C. There have been many great pharaohs in 3 Michael Woods, Ancient Agriculture from Foraging to Farming (London: Twenty First Century Books, 2000), 19. Egypt, but one pharaoh that stands out above the rest is Ramses II. Ramses the great was one of the most ambitious rulers Egypt has ever seen. He led several military expeditions and brought Egypt many victories such as the battle of Kadesh which was fought against the 4 Hittites in 1274 B.C. This was Ramsesses’ greatest accomplishment which resulted in giving Egypt absolute dominance in the Near East. The Battle of Kadesh was however no easy task, over 5,000 chariots were involved as seen on the temple of Karnak in Abu Simbel where major events were recorded at the time. Ramesses put a massive amount of time and an excruciating amount of effort on his conquest against the Hittites but at the end his hard work and great amount of ambition made Egypt the most powerful nation at the time which was the biggest reward of all. Ramesses the greats ambition and hunger for power made Egypt during the New Kingdom the most dominant state in the near East and this dominance is portrayed through some of the major victories Ramesses brought to Egypt such as the defeat of the Hittites in 1274 B.C. Rome during Trajan’s empire had an extremely powerful army and fought in many military campaigns which resulted in expanding the Roman empire to its furthest extent. During Trajan’s reign, Rome participated in many military campaigns such as the Dacian wars for example. The Dacian wars were two military campaigns fought 4Anton Gill, The Kingdom of the Pharaohs Brought to Life (London: Harper Collins Entertainment, 2003), 94. 5Ibid., 107. between Rome and Dacia. In 101, when the first war arose, Trajan 6 along with his army quickly advanced into Dacia. This was a war in which the Roman military's ingenuity and engineering were well demonstrated throughout the brutality of the war. The Roman army was spearheaded by two legionary columns, marching straight to Dacia, burning towns and villages in the process. The Roman army was ruthless and showed absolutely no mercy to their enemies. Trajan’s army killed a massive amount of Dacians during the battle of Tapae in 101 and showed no remorse. In 102, Decebalus, the King of Dacia had no choice but to surrender to the Romans after losing many 9 soldiers and was probably concerned about his own life. This is only one of many successful campaigns the Romans accomplished during Trajan’s 19 year rule. The Roman lifestyle mostly revolved around the military which is the reason why they were able to accomplish absolute dominance in the world. It is said that Romans were born with weapons in their hands which is a metaphor that is implying that the Romans held absolute power in their time. A key factor to understanding why the Romans were able to create dominance in their time is the fact that the soldiers did hardcore training daily; something that their enemies such as the Dacians probably didn’t do. Roman soldiers never took a break from their training and every day each soldier exercised 6 7Nigel Rodgers, The History of the Conquests of Ancient Rome (London: Hermes House, 2006), 28. 8Ibid. Ibid., 33. 9Ibid., 40. with as much intensity as he would in war. The strong sense of dedication and determination along with hardcore training let nothing get in the way of their victory and this is why the Romans were able to ruthlessly expand their empire to its furthest extent during the time of Trajan’s rule. Rome during Trajan’s empire possessed a very powerful, ruthless army which craved expansion and that no other army at the time could over power which resulted in absolute dominance. Something else that contributed to the dominance of Rome was the wealth of the land. Rome occupied lands such as Dacia which were wealthy in gold mines. One of the motives that led Emperor Trajan to invade Dacia was an economic motive, pointing to the great wealth of Dacia’s gold mines. 10It has been suggested that the Dacian gold mines saved Rome from financial disaster therefore the wealth of the land of Dacia was crucial for the Romans to maintain their dominance. The main reason Trajan wanted to get his hands on the gold mines of Dacia was so he would be a
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