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Of course their powers may have doubled since that time, but Hanzou level may be around that of Hizuren or Raikage, and there are few who would survive a long fight with them.
@empeethree Ok, I'm not going to hold the wars against him, since all parties involved were losers. He did fail to stand up to Kumogakure in the Hyuga fiasco though. Hizashi's life was given up because if it wasn't him, it would of been Hiashi. Somebody had to die. Besides, the decision never should have been theirs to make. Kumogakure was the one that broke the treaty with their assassination attempt. Instead of pursuing retribution, Hiruzen concedes the life of one his most powerful fighter. That is weakness. Hiruzen spared Orochimaru out of love, but that does not excuse him. Orochimaru killed more people and did more sick things than other character in the story!
@skidmore I doubt Hanzo spared the Sannins because he was afraid of Hiruzen. If he was, he wouldn't have fought a war with Konoha in the first place.
I guess I'm alone on this one. Hiruzen was just too timid for my liking. He never took a stand on anything. He gets pushed around by Kumogakure, the Konoha Elders, and even his student Orochimaru. Good guy, but just a bad leader.
Last edited by chilibun; July 28, 2010 at 12:46 AM.
Actually, I think the incident with Kumogakure shows that Hiruzen was a great leader. The fact is, Konoha was still recovering from the Third Shinobi War, The Nine-Tails' rampage, and the recent war with Kumogakure. The village was most likely in no shape to continue the war, and by sacrificing Hizashi the village was kept safe. Sure, it isn't the most glamorous thing to do, but it saved potentially hundreds of lives.
As for Hiruzen being pushed around by the Elders, the exact power afforded to the Hokage and the Elders has never been explained. For all we know, the Elders act as a check for the power of the Hokage to insure he or she acts in the best interest of the village, which would explain why they have so much sway. But since we don't have all the information, we can't really say for sure.
As I see it, his one glaring failure was Orochimaru, and in the end he attempted to correct his mistake.
From what I remembered...the Hokage names their successor, but it is ultimately voted on by the Jounin. The Daimyo seems to have the ultimate power in the situation as he can bypass the vote? You would assume that the Elders play the role of Advisor and have no "real" power, but if they have a strong influence over the citizens and shinobi of their village, and an equally strong tie with the Daimyo, then they could possibly force the Hokage to retire and have them replaced.
But, anyway...more onto topic:
I don't believe that the Third was a crappy leader. Yes, he made mistakes, and yes he should have absolutely killed Orochimaru, but ultimately he did more good than bad.
How many years did he lead Konoha? Close to 50? It's really not fair that the majority of things we've seen him do have cast a negative light on his leadership abilities. Ultimately though, I believe you have to look at the village as a whole...Konoha is one of the strongest hidden villages in the world. Even if the First and Second are the ones who lead it to such power, if the Third was a terrible leader, it probably would have lost a lot of it's power. A bad leader generally leads to the ruin of their country.
Last edited by jsing992; July 28, 2010 at 04:04 AM.
I have to say, his only genuine and intentional mistake was allowing Orochimaru to live when he should have killed him 10 years ago in the earliest stages of his experimentation.
It doesn't mean Sarutobi is at all means a "crappy leader." His overwhelming compassion for others is a character flaw, but at the same time it is a complete asset. For example, Sarutobi was the only elder who would have rather negotiated with the Uchiha Clan rather than downright killing him.
Sarutobi respects each and every member of the village, trusts them with his complete word, and therefore those very same people trust him. People look up to Sarutobi as a great leader, a mentor for all future ninja.
The problem was, Sarutobi's ideals of maintaining peace went against the ideals of the ninja at the time. Instead of building up power like the other Five Great Nations, Konoha instead resorted to resolving its own conflicts within the country. That mistake could have lead to the Invasion by Sunagakure or against Pein, where in both situations the village was heavily destroyed.
Many foreign nations believe that Konoha is a "weak nation," and that Sarutobi could have been the one who really mobilized the peace movement in the village. Sarutobi made mistakes, we all make mistakes. It doesn't mean he is a "crappy leader." His mistakes did lead to some huge complications, but at the same time his actions made the people in the village much closer to one another.
I get the impression people here think sarutobi was some sort of absolute monarch who was to weak to impose his authority or something. Sarutobi gets a lot of heat in the forums for the hyuga incident but didn't he make the harder decision by a mile? It wasn't cowardice that made him give up neji's dad, he was strong enough to know a the lifes of all who would have died in a shinobi war would weight more than the life of one man. The options the village had at the moment were either to give up a single man to avoid a ninja war or go to a ninja war. Not giving up neji's dad while not going to war was not precisely an option and if it was it was the chances of getting that outcome were close to 0.
And how was sarutobi weak with the uchiha business? He did what he had to do, basically try to find a peaceful solution but things slowly but surely scalated. Once that happened, what was he supposed to do? Would he have been a good leader by letting the uchiha start the coup? I doubt that, he had itachi attack before the uchiha could make their own move which is by far the best strategy in A WAR.
The only real weakness sarutobi has shown in the manga, the only real mistake, was that he allowed orochimaru to live. Other than that he has never shown to be a weak leader at all. The hokage is not an absolute ruler of any kind, he has power but there are also other people who have power which in this case are the other elders. Sarutobi being the hokage does not mean he can just dismiss what the other elders say, they have their own political power and influence.
Besides the incident with Orochimaru, and the Uchiha Clan, I think that Saru show weakness against Kumogakure.
1) Hinata attempt to kidnap
2) Kushina Kidnaped
How in the hell can you allow that this guys come to your village twice and kidnap important people like this without doing anything..
Also, he was weak enough to follow the "orders" or "advices" from the elders.. Just take Tsunade as an example, she even yells them if she want..
Last edited by DanielKnoT; July 28, 2010 at 02:16 PM.
How is either kushina's or hinata's kidnapping the third hokage's fault? It's not like he saw the kumo ninja getting in the village and hid behind a tree in fear. They are ninja, they do sneaky stuff all the time and don't act without preparation. The hokage is not an absolute ruler or anything of the sort, quite frankly he is nowhere near that and never will be. If the hokage was something even remotely resembling an absolute ruler the very positions danzo, and the other 2 old dudes have would not exist. The hokage's authority comes from the fire lord and guess what, the fire lord does not limit authority to the kage as we saw given that there were plenty other people diciding on who would be the next kage. Not to mention we have no reason to believe sarutobi showed weakness to the uchiha. He would have shown weakness had the coup actually been attempted.
The FACT is that danzo and the elders had authority in the village and did not hesitate to use it. That does not mean in any plausible or concievable way sarutobi was anything even vaguely resembling a weak leader. seriosly how can an overly stupid notion such as sarutobi being a weak leader even exist? He was a shinobi feared by the enemies of konoha, loved by his followers, pretty much stated to have been the strongest hokage and vastly respected by other villages. Surely he had his flaws (as anyone else would) but that is not the sort of respect a weak leader has.
Last edited by kkck; July 28, 2010 at 03:29 PM.
But I have to give him the reason Here.
Sarutobi was too weak with the Orochimaru, Suna and Kumo Villages incidents and that could lead to the destruction of Konoha.
If Kumo would succesfully kidnaped Kushina they will have the 2 most powerfull weapons in Narutoverse.. (Hachibi and Kyubi)..
Thank God that Minato was a Konoha Ninja... lol
Am not questioning if he was respected in Konoha, but it seems that he lacked authority sometimes to deal with those problems
Last edited by DanielKnoT; July 28, 2010 at 03:56 PM.
The way I see it, Hiruzen was more ahead of his time than anything. If he were to be put in a world where peace was the norm, I imagine he would shine. As it was, his compassion and mediating was out of place in the ninja world. He tried to make the world a better place, but one man can only do so much.
It was not that sarutobi lacked authority but rather he was not the only one who had it. He was never the only one to make decisions as people here seem to believe.
@kkck The reason why I say the Hyuga incident is a failure is because as the leader of the village you cannot show weakness and make concessions when pressured. If you give a bully a dollar today, he'll know he can get another dollar from you tomorrow. Kumogakure is clearly wrong here by breaching the peace treaty with the kidnapping. You can't reward bad behavior or else they'll keep doing it. Perhaps I'm just rationalizing it too much with real life scenarios.
From my understanding, Hiruzen did not support the Uchiha massacre. He just couldn't prevent Danzou and the rest of the elders from carrying it out. He was more of a bystander here than a decision maker.
You might have a point on how much power he actually had though, but from my understanding, the Hokage has the final say. The elders and Danzou may have a lot of political power, but the Hokage still has authority over them. The jounins, anbu, and pretty all the ninjas in the village follows the Hokage above anyone else.
Last edited by chilibun; July 28, 2010 at 08:30 PM.
I don't think Sarutobi is a crappy leader. He was close with many people, and fought for them. If it weren't for his resolve, Orochimaru may succeeded in destroying Konoha. Sarutobi, like his predecessors, sought peace and despite being one of the strongest, did not seek to gain more power. He considered Konoha his family and sought to defend it, inheriting Shodaime and Niidaime's will of fire. He passed on that will of fire to almost everyone in Konoha, especially during death.
He did all he could to protect Konoha, which apparently was successful enough since Konoha's still bustling. Unless it's stated otherwise, I still think Hiru fought Kyuubi, which isn't too bad considering his age.
hiruzen tried to reach a truce with the uchiha and failed.
What happens when a truce is not reached? You strike first and you strike hard without sparing a single one of them. Hiruzen might have been against this in principle but he allowed it to happen because even he did not see a way around it.