You wrote, "Sir Smith certainly did not command the siege of Acres, nor did Phélippeaux.
Djezzar pacha lead the garrison with an iron hand."
Somebody who only bothers to read the French history of the Siege of Acres would indeed come away with that impression. It's pretty clear you are only bothering to read one side or at least ignoring what the other side has to say.
Read the history of Sir Sidney Smith, If you did, then you would know that Smith was given the right to exercise the supreme power of the Sultan to command.
The real mastermind behind N.'s defeat at Acre is Phélippeaux. His work there is proof that a capable engineer could provide the key advantages to enable a weak and undermanned location to resist the attacks of a superior force. Of course, being a French Royalist, the French history books have little good to say about him; some I've read are downright vicious calling him a traitor and celebrating his death.
I love the way that N. managed the propaganda of his first defeat and turned it into a great victory. That man had a genius.