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#1 世中豪杰

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Posted 30 September 2009 - 09:11 PM

To most people around the world, especially to those whose understanding of history is little, most will say that WW2 ended because of American intervention.

USA had saved the world from the War of World war 2 ! America is the saviour to the world & the world owe their peace & freedom to USA ! This will be a very common lay man understanding.

Now, my question will be, If USA back then did not choose to enter into the war, is it totally impossible for the war to come to an end? what is the most likely outcome & how will history of today most likely be if USA had never ever enter the war in the 1st place & all the way to the very end?

was it a mistake for Japan to attack pearl harbour & the philippines? would it be that USA will never ever enter the war if Japan never attacked this 2 places?

Was Germany's failure because:
1) they did not wipe out London when they could ?
2) Germany should not send renforcements to Italy ?
3) Germany should never attacked Russia in the 1st place?

DO the Axis power of that time stand any chance of winning the war against the Allies?

It is totally impossible for Europe, Asia & Africa to win the war on their own without American intervention? Should China be greatful to America that She was saved from the war by Japan because of America?

Was America & Russia trully that undefeatable back then?
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#2 mrclub

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Posted 30 September 2009 - 09:57 PM

Was Germany's failure because:
1) they did not wipe out London when they could ?
2) Germany should not send renforcements to Italy ?
3) Germany should never attacked Russia in the 1st place?


i believe attacking Russia was a big big mistake Germany and Hitler made during WW2.

It is totally impossible for Europe, Asia & Africa to win the war on their own without American intervention? Should China be greatful to America that She was saved from the war by Japan because of America?


now, have you seen China being grateful and thank US for saving China from Japanese hands ? no right ?

i dont think China will care so much
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#3 GettingTHEFACTSRITE

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 06:39 PM

America's entry into WW2 definitely served advantageous for Allied countries fighting on the front line against the Axis powers. However, in order to discuss whether the U.S. involvement helped defeat the Axis power first the one must eliminate all instances of involvement on the part of U.S. including economic sanctions, trade embargo, and other non-military aid either given to the Allies or against the Axis powers.

If all forms of U.S. involvement never occured, there is a highly possible chance of the Axis power winning the war. The current standing world super powers involved was the United Kingdom, Soviet Union, Germany, Italy, and Japan. Spain at the time was headed by Francisco Franco, who himself rose to power with support from Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler. As such, Spain was of a neutral stance during that war, which essentially left the British Empire and French Resistance (de Gaulle in Britain, standing French Colonies in Africa and the Pacific) to contend with the Axis power. In addition, after the fall of France, a large number of British troops were forced to evacuate France ASAP leading to loss of enormous heavy infantry and military equipment. In a sense, the only task left for Britain at that time was to defend itself from being defeated.

In addition, even though the Soviet Union entered the war it was flanked by the Japanese in Asia and the Germans in Europe, so one can only imagine the strain it would have caused on the Soviets to fight on both flanks. While, fighting on both flanks was also true for the Nazis as well. However, by this time, Britain's European power was pretty much compromised and damages done during the Battle of Britain left the British in no position of an immediate military assault on German occupied land. Also, while a large part of China was not occupied by the Japanese, there was considerable internal division between the Communist and Nationalist factions manifesting in what would be short of a 3 way war with the Japanese.

All these factors involved pointed to the Axis powers of having a very high chance of winning. In addition, while resistance movements occurred history as well as current situations have shown repeatedly that resistance, guerrilla and terrorists tactics though helpful, are not strong enough factors to allow the overthrow of invading armies.

#4 GettingTHEFACTSRITE

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 07:29 PM

was it a mistake for Japan to attack pearl harbour & the philippines? would it be that USA will never ever enter the war if Japan never attacked this 2 places?


Yes it was a costly mistake. However, judging from the current actions of the U.S., it was highly likely that they would've entered the war even if Japan never attacked those two places. Already before the Pearl Harbor attack, U.S. placed embargo on key metal and oil exports to Japan to indirectly cripple their imperialistic efforts. Consequently, this lead to Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor. From military standpoint since it was pretty obvious the U.S. frowned on Japan's military aggression, it was a significantly clever strategy to launch an attack so that time as it allowed Japan to acquire Indo-china from the French allowing access to energy and raw material supplies.

Was Germany's failure because:
1) they did not wipe out London when they could ?
2) Germany should not send renforcements to Italy ?
3) Germany should never attacked Russia in the 1st place?


1) Yes because Britain later served as base for British and U.S. troops to launch an attack.
2&3) Attack on Russia was inevitable. Seeing the Axis consolidating all of Europe west of Russia, one can only assume they're next. Also, it wasn't the Russian military might that helped them repel German advances. In fact, when the Allies took control of North Africa, it allowed for subsequent dismissal of Mussolini and splitting German forces across several fronts thus relieving Russian forces.

Should China be greatful to America that She was saved from the war by Japan because of America?


Before answering whether China/Korea/East Asia should be grateful to America in the context of being saved, let's first discuss motives. What motivated the U.S. to place embargo measaures on the Japanese. Was it to condemn the actions of Japanese Imperialist? If so, then one needs to ask how come no such actions was placed when European powers such as Britain, France, and the Netherlands had territorial interest, formal colonies, or sphere of influence in East Asia? Additionally, during this time Asian affairs was of little interest to Western powers. Before World War II, the occupation of Korea and Taiwan were not met with opposition from Western countries. However, only after Japan encroached upon Western powers' Asian and Pacific territorial holdings had it alarmed the U.S. and the League of Nations.

Also, I'm not sure of American military forces' views on the Chinese after the surrender of Japan. However, in the case of Korea, the Koreans were treated as defeated enemies and no different from the Japanese. Eventually, U.S. and Soviet had political stand-off that resulted in a dangerous war game of chess resulting in the division of Korea.

So then the question should be should China be grateful to America not as a Savior but as a military ally?

Was America & Russia trully that undefeatable back then?


Russia undefeatability is already talked about in this post and the previous post. X_X. As for America, before the Atomic Bomb was made, they never really experienced a full-out assualt on an equally powerful country whose base was close to the U.S. So, if Germany was stationed not in Europe but in North America, a very different scenario might have been played out as well.

#5 haidao

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 06:47 PM

Before World War II, the occupation of Korea and Taiwan were not met with opposition from Western countries. However, only after Japan encroached upon Western powers' Asian and Pacific territorial holdings had it alarmed the U.S. and the League of Nations.


When it came to the Japanese Empires occupation of the Korean Empire, the Japanese and US representatives did agree in 1905 in the so called "Taft-Katsura Agreement", a secret diplomatic memorandum signed between the US and Japan, that the US would recognize Japans sphere of influence in Korea. In return Japan would recognize US sphere of interest in the Philippines. Seems some in the US were worried about possible Japans expansion into the Philippines after Japans victory over the Russians in 1905.

They say the "Taft-Katsura" Agreement violated the “Korean-American Treaty of Amity and Commerce" of 1882.

This on the Taft-Katsura Agreement. Include actual copies of the memorandum. Parts of the agreement seem to have been blanked out:
http://www.dokdo-tak...ft-katsura.html

Edited by haidao, 02 October 2009 - 06:50 PM.


#6 GettingTHEFACTSRITE

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 09:30 PM

The Taft-Katsura Agreement was definitely an agreement between the U.S. and Japan regarding the occupation of Korea, however, it wasn't an opposition (as in any political, economic, or military action taken) to Japan's suzerainty of Korea. It was merely a understanding/agreement between both sides where each could get a slice of the pie without taking the other. However, once the Japanese Empire have begun to attack China, it became increasing threatening to their territorial and economic interest in East Asia that they've begun to take opposition stances and publicly condemning the actions eventually invoking economic sanctions.

Edited by GettingTHEFACTSRITE, 02 October 2009 - 09:31 PM.


#7 keetaiskee

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 10:48 PM

i tell you something that china will never be grateful to the americans because when the americans defeated the Japanese , millions of hans ppl have already died under the japanese
yes , hilter made the most stupidest mistake thinking he can used the same quick and fast tactics he used on the french against russians forgetting that the russian is well known in throughout the whole of their history to lure their enemies into nowhere like they did against napolean
soon many germans were dying form the freezing weather of russia and many were abandoning their camp

#8 brightness

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Posted 14 October 2009 - 01:40 AM

Now, my question will be, If USA back then did not choose to enter into the war, is it totally impossible for the war to come to an end? what is the most likely outcome & how will history of today most likely be if USA had never ever enter the war in the 1st place & all the way to the very end?


Major shooting wars usually do not last very long. If the US did not enter WW2, the most likely outcome would have been a stalemate, as both sides warred to exhaustion. Neither side had the power projection capacity deep into the other's territory (after German failure in 1941, which took place before US entry or any substantial aid reached the soviets), in the absence of massive numbers of American trucks providing logistic support to the advancing armies of the winning side.

was it a mistake for Japan to attack pearl harbour & the philippines? would it be that USA will never ever enter the war if Japan never attacked this 2 places?


The FDR administration was looking for ways to enter the war, in order to expand its own domestic power and help the UK and the USSR. The real question is:
(1) whether the US would have launched the unrestricted submarine warfare, in violation of then existing international law, against Japan, if Japan had not attacked Pearl Harbour;
(2) whether the US would have persisted on total unconditional surrender after a bloodbath such as Tarawa instead of coming to terms with Japan, and allow Japan to keep some of its conquests, such as those on the Asian mainland.

Was Germany's failure because:
1) they did not wipe out London when they could ?
2) Germany should not send renforcements to Italy ?
3) Germany should never attacked Russia in the 1st place?


One of Luftwaffe's biggest mistake was switching targetting from airfields to London. They never had the means to wipe out London. Bombing a city into oblivion with conventional bombs turned out to be much harder than the Dohetians thought. The bomb load of HE-111 was only 1/2 to 1/5 that of B17, B24 and B29. Even the concentrated bombing by the B17, B-24 and B-29 over multiple years, eventually culminating in late 1944 thousands of American bombers against scant German fighter opposition, did not wipe out Berlin from the air. Germany had to reinforce Italy, because British toehold in either Greece or Italy would have meant interruption of Romanian oilfields in Ploesti. If Germany did not attack Russia, then Stalin probably would have attacked Germany later that year.

The principle German error was in not concentrating on Moscow in 1941 . . . and fighting to take Stalingrad at all when the defensive posture from Vronezhe on the Don should have extended to Astrakhan but left Stalingrad on the Volga alone. The Russian river transportation along the Volga could and was cut off further down stream of Stalingrad. Without burning up the Panzer formations in the city fighting for Stalingrand, Germans would have had enough reserve to conduct a mobile defense all the way down to Astrakhan, while focusing the logistic effort on supplying an effective thrust into the Caucasus and seizing Baku.

DO the Axis power of that time stand any chance of winning the war against the Allies?


If the German effort focused on capturing Moscow in 1941, they had a decent chance of accomplishing that and throwing soviet rail network and logistics into utter disarray.

It is totally impossible for Europe, Asia & Africa to win the war on their own without American intervention? Should China be greatful to America that She was saved from the war by Japan because of America?


Africa only supplied allies with some rifle formations for the French army, plus the two South African divisions serving under British overall command in North Africa. Asian allies had very little power projection capability. Europe was where the war was decided, especially if the US wasn't even going to be involved in a Pacific War. It's hard to describe China as having been saved from the war because most of China's developed areas were occupied by Japan even in our time line with US intervention. On the other hand, China's presence among the big-5 in the post-war settlement was largely the result of American policy; as a way of checking Russians, Brits, French and Japanese ambitions in the far east all at the same time.

Was America & Russia trully that undefeatable back then?


America was quite invincible because of the manufacturing prowess and unique geography. It would be impossible for any European power to organize a successful invasion of the continental US by the 20th century. Russia was not as invincible. Much of the soviet pre-war aircraft and tank inventory was obsolete, despite the enormous numbers (more tanks and combat aircrafts than the rest of the world combined, on paper anyway); troop morale was extremely low, and logistics capability were exceptionally poor. However, the soviets had the advantage of defense in depth (space) and weather in winter. So long as soviets could trade space for time and not losing Moscow before the first winter, there was hope. Unlike the time of Napoleon, Moscow had become an industrial and rail transportation center of Russia. The loss of Moscow in 1941 would have been quite irrecoverable for the soviets, as Germans would be able to enjoy interior lines of communication utilizing the radial rail lines shooting outwards from Moscow.

#9 Lu Su

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Posted 17 July 2010 - 01:26 AM

Major shooting wars usually do not last very long. If the US did not enter WW2, the most likely outcome would have been a stalemate, as both sides warred to exhaustion. Neither side had the power projection capacity deep into the other's territory (after German failure in 1941, which took place before US entry or any substantial aid reached the soviets), in the absence of massive numbers of American trucks providing logistic support to the advancing armies of the winning side.



The FDR administration was looking for ways to enter the war, in order to expand its own domestic power and help the UK and the USSR. The real question is:
(1) whether the US would have launched the unrestricted submarine warfare, in violation of then existing international law, against Japan, if Japan had not attacked Pearl Harbour;
(2) whether the US would have persisted on total unconditional surrender after a bloodbath such as Tarawa instead of coming to terms with Japan, and allow Japan to keep some of its conquests, such as those on the Asian mainland.



One of Luftwaffe's biggest mistake was switching targetting from airfields to London. They never had the means to wipe out London. Bombing a city into oblivion with conventional bombs turned out to be much harder than the Dohetians thought. The bomb load of HE-111 was only 1/2 to 1/5 that of B17, B24 and B29. Even the concentrated bombing by the B17, B-24 and B-29 over multiple years, eventually culminating in late 1944 thousands of American bombers against scant German fighter opposition, did not wipe out Berlin from the air. Germany had to reinforce Italy, because British toehold in either Greece or Italy would have meant interruption of Romanian oilfields in Ploesti. If Germany did not attack Russia, then Stalin probably would have attacked Germany later that year.

The principle German error was in not concentrating on Moscow in 1941 . . . and fighting to take Stalingrad at all when the defensive posture from Vronezhe on the Don should have extended to Astrakhan but left Stalingrad on the Volga alone. The Russian river transportation along the Volga could and was cut off further down stream of Stalingrad. Without burning up the Panzer formations in the city fighting for Stalingrand, Germans would have had enough reserve to conduct a mobile defense all the way down to Astrakhan, while focusing the logistic effort on supplying an effective thrust into the Caucasus and seizing Baku.



If the German effort focused on capturing Moscow in 1941, they had a decent chance of accomplishing that and throwing soviet rail network and logistics into utter disarray.



Africa only supplied allies with some rifle formations for the French army, plus the two South African divisions serving under British overall command in North Africa. Asian allies had very little power projection capability. Europe was where the war was decided, especially if the US wasn't even going to be involved in a Pacific War. It's hard to describe China as having been saved from the war because most of China's developed areas were occupied by Japan even in our time line with US intervention. On the other hand, China's presence among the big-5 in the post-war settlement was largely the result of American policy; as a way of checking Russians, Brits, French and Japanese ambitions in the far east all at the same time.



America was quite invincible because of the manufacturing prowess and unique geography. It would be impossible for any European power to organize a successful invasion of the continental US by the 20th century. Russia was not as invincible. Much of the soviet pre-war aircraft and tank inventory was obsolete, despite the enormous numbers (more tanks and combat aircrafts than the rest of the world combined, on paper anyway); troop morale was extremely low, and logistics capability were exceptionally poor. However, the soviets had the advantage of defense in depth (space) and weather in winter. So long as soviets could trade space for time and not losing Moscow before the first winter, there was hope. Unlike the time of Napoleon, Moscow had become an industrial and rail transportation center of Russia. The loss of Moscow in 1941 would have been quite irrecoverable for the soviets, as Germans would be able to enjoy interior lines of communication utilizing the radial rail lines shooting outwards from Moscow.



Interesting. =) You know your history well. =) However, I have a few small corrections.

I shall reply to one of your statements, as well as your battle theories, contained here -

"If Germany did not attack Russia, then Stalin probably would have attacked Germany later that year.

"The principle German error was in not concentrating on Moscow in 1941 . . . and fighting to take Stalingrad at all when the defensive posture from Vronezhe on the Don should have extended to Astrakhan but left Stalingrad on the Volga alone. The Russian river transportation along the Volga could and was cut off further down stream of Stalingrad. Without burning up the Panzer formations in the city fighting for Stalingrand, Germans would have had enough reserve to conduct a mobile defense all the way down to Astrakhan, while focusing the logistic effort on supplying an effective thrust into the Caucasus and seizing Baku."


I am very sorry, but this is simply untrue, and impossible. It is irrevocably true that Stalin understood that war was inevitable with Hitler, and was simply buying time with the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. However, there is strong evidence only in favor of attack plans at earliest in Fall of 1942, and ideally, in March 1943. The only other plans existing were plans drawn up by Zhukov, in case of the news of an impending German attack, and the need to immediately have counter offensive plans made. Stalin was fully aware he could not trust Hitler, although it was Zhukov who initially offered the plans.

The first reason by logic, is that there was no legitimate reason for Stalin to make this deal, unless he wanted to avoid war with Hitler for a time to rebuild his own forces. Germany reaped all the logistical benefits of the Soviet Union, while any promised returned goods to Russia were never on time, often a fraction of the supposed amount, and never properly honored. IN fact, Germany offered little at all in return for the agreement, although it promised 'equal support'. If Stalin had the capacity, he would of struck well before then. Another reason is that after the infamous 'purges' of the 30's, which were still continuing, his staff officers were less than 14% the previous initial strength (1926-29), his division and battalion commanders at 24% strength based on the same year ratios, and his forces horribly broken down to only 44% counting all red army members, and only 24% being direct combat units. Russia at the time had a number of internal problems that yet needed fixed and attended to as well. If Stalin would have tried to attack later that year, assuming Germany didn't break truce first (as obviously it was simply a question of who and when), it would have been a disaster, much like it was when Operation Barbarossa did happen, and Stalin ordered his troops not to return fire hoping to keep the truce on. Additionally, there was no sufficient new field equipment, and many new weapons only in development stages, or just getting through pre-testing, and not yet in production. There is no way considering Russia's economic and domestic state, and rate of possible rebuilding of forces, that 6 months would be enough to accomplish all this on a level that would stand a decent chance against the Wehrmacht. and As you said, they were horribly outgunned in every sense of the word. But, they fought so ferociously, and in many notable ways at Moscow, that it was a truly remarkable victory for Russia, albeit a bittersweet one. You are correct that the Germans should have concentrated on Moscow for many reasons, however -

You mention a seizure of Baku to hold through the oil fields of the south. I do not think this would be a smart choice. Germany's reserves may have been enough, but it would be very foolish to commit that many troops leaving other borders undefended, as well as stretching already questionable supply lines, which were logistically already showing signs of possible failure at that time if overstretched, especially due to reserves at home. Although Hitler was doing well in North Africa, the American 1st infantry Division was on its way to Oran, (with George Patton no less in tow, and anxious to duke it out with Rommel). The Nazis had captured little in the way of oil or resources, since they did not effectively take the middle east. That was Hitler's main idea for the drive through Volgograd, as it would stretch the resources, and manpower the least. Though it was risky and foolish, Hitler badly needed fuel sources to continue his expansive and elaborate campaigns, above all. At this time other theaters were active, an aside from all this, any general knows that to commit his reserves away from his homestead into a foreign campaign of immense proportions, would only expose weaker flanks and make easy targets for other Allied strikes, as well as putting more men at risk. Russia bares a huge front - more immense than any campaign ever attempted, and requires careful consideration. This is very different from the Allied western front. Though battles were very fierce there as well when they broke out in large proportion in 1944, the land size is incomparable. Even after conquering all of Europe, Hitler had only taken roughly 1/8 of a proportional estimate to the whole of Russia. While victory would be possible without conquering the whole country, if any divisions leak a hole on a front that large, it spells un-repentable trouble and becomes difficult to correct. When lines and battles are much closer, it is easier to try and correct or reinforce failing divisions and strongholds. If you would have stretched your lines to Baku, holding a strong defensive front, the Allies, although not yet ready for such an offensive, (They began official training as early as January '42 for D-Day), could still have potentially posed a threat (with the knowledge Hitler had, which was obviously not our foresight) and he would not risk that. Also, it was fairly popular rumor in Germany now that the Allies had broken the Enigma code to an extent, which is actually very true. A few war refugees had cracked the main codes, and also replicated the different daily replacement wheels. It was simply a matter of figuring out which code wheels were to be used that day, which obviously still provided some difficulty - however, success was often noted. While it is still secret to this day how the American and British Allies used this information, it is clear that as early as 1942, after planning for Operation Torch in Africa began very early in the year, the 'Yanks & Brits' would begin periodically launching fake invasions with small armadas of inflatable tanks, and other silly sorts of things at a variety of differing ports through the Atlantic. This was to throw off any German scent of where an actual landing would take place and confuse German deductions of their strategies, and would continue with each major allied invasion, including before D-Day especially. It is a rather humorous, but still tactically useful part of the war, be it a very small one, and one that kept Hitler guessing, as it would any of us. Intelligence across the Atlantic from America was not something the Germans had good luck with despite their pre-war efforts to receive information.

There is also another problem. On a line that huge, there would be a serious weak point eventually in a number of locations, even in presumably ideal conditions for the expenditure of available resources and manpower. It's an excellent and lengthy discussion, but in short form, a push at Kharkiv or Leningrad, or a number of other places, where the siege would have to be weakened, as well as to hold against the additional time it would take to make it that far down to the port town of Baku, would break the Wehrmacht in half with a few well coordinated strategies following the attack to circle in and establish defenses similar to the success of the later Operation Mars, although much better coordinated to German weaknesses. The Russians excelled at two things immensely throughout the war - logistics, and intelligence. They knew about the atomic bomb well before we (US) mentioned anything to them, even though they could not yet build one, for example. Your push to Baku, even with the call in of reserve forces, would demand a much larger amount of necessary supplies, as well as time, while leaving vital flanks far too exposed given the distance. It would be as risky, if not more so, as the push to Volgograd (Stalingrad)

Some of these reasons are also why Stalin would not attack right away. Even Zhukov's 'counter-offensive plans' were set for a quick victory and encircling rush, and then a strong hold on Russian land without advancing any further than necessary, and to hold the borders till strength could be properly rebuilt. A last ditch effort was of course necessary considering Russia's military, domestic, and economic conditions, and Hitler's unpredictable nature, which Stalin simply wnated to cull long enough to stand a fighting chance against him.

In other terms of the topic, if the US had not supplied the large lend-lease products to the USSR, those first years would have been far more difficult than they already were. However, given the American lend-lease (as it proportioned a greater majority of the total allied lend-lease to Russia), I think Russia would have stood a chance. After routing the Third Reich, after all, Russian troops would only but around two weeks later pour over the Mongolian borders to assist China and the US's struggle against the Japanese Imperial Army, and succeed with another roughly two weeks time. After facing Hitler's best, the Japanese were no match for the seasoned Russian forces, and the rout of the Kwantung army was complete as one of the most successful Russian airborne landings additionally took place all along China's coast as inland forces pushed the Japanese back. This is often overlooked by many historians, and was the single decisive factor in the rout of Japanese mainland forces in China, save the obvious US pushes beating back the Japanese to their own islands, and also the destruction of nearly the entire Imperial Navy, leaving little to no naval or mainland air support for the Japanese.

These are a few of my reasons. I am constantly up to date as well with the research still being conducted on the Eastern Front, for which new evidence surfaces daily, and will likely continue so for 300 years or more, given the number of research teams and efforts currently working it professionally according to scientific and historical approximations.

#10 Lu Su

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Posted 17 July 2010 - 02:43 AM

I would like to add, however, that this in no way should belittle the efforts of the amazingly brave and steadfast civilian resistance forces in a number of Chinese regions during WWII (and well before it), whose stories I am actually beginning serious study for my own historical endeavors. I realized that with my mention of Russian and US forces in the rout of the Imperial Army, that although not intentional, it could possibly be seen as though I neglected to mention their efforts. China has a unique story all its own for those dreadful years in human history. And, one filled with valor and courage amidst horrors only elsewhere experienced in Russia and the Ukraine.

Also, I am not saying that with American lend-lease Russia would have for certain won the war on their own, as obviously many factors would change and leave new and endless variables for consideration, and it could go either way. If they did lose though, I still maintain a high chance of a narrow victory at best on Germany's behalf, and possibly Russia as well if they did win.

Edited by Lu Su, 17 July 2010 - 02:44 AM.


#11 Lu Su

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Posted 19 July 2010 - 10:40 AM

I would like to add something else. In early to mid 1942, although the Germans made great successes in the Soviet Union, this was when Russia was finally beginning to mobilize effectively. And many of their forces (somehow despite the staggering losses) would refill, and eventually get to around 70% on all levels, except for better equipment. Stalin kept moving his industry backward, expending resources in the tow to perform this. However, it payed off, since Moscow held its own. (and as you mentioned, some of its vital railways) And thus, industry was just resetting itself in newer locations joining with local efforts. And in 1943, this surge became unstoppable. Especially, as somewhat less Russians were losing their lives to win a battle. (although still many, of course, sadly, but a noticeable difference, be it small one)

In turn of this, if you could have taken and held Baku, quelled any local resistance with good policy to prevent guerrilla attacks, and say, used all the troops of Operation Blau's combined forces, it would be a strengthened position offering likely some oil, which would give some more mobility to northern forces if properly transported. However, its a widely stretched front, on top on an already widely stretched front. Due to a very large insurgence of Ukrainian and Belorussian partisans, maybe 40% percent would arrive of these shipments, averaging off effectiveness in 42 through the lines these supplies would have to travel. Going around through Istanbul and Turkey would take far too long, and expend more fuel than the forces would gather to simply transport it. And, even along a curved front, well defended, that long of a stretch, even with extreme reserves called in from German eastern frontiers, it is still too far of a distance to properly monitor in all locations, and possible sabotage and/or a spearhead attack is very likely to occur in a number of places. I think you underestimate the large effect many partisans had on the war in these areas, both, during occupation and major control battles once the start of 42, and especially as they grew through 43. Plus, Russian intelligence would begin taking its place around this time, offering a number of insights, even if Stalin couldn't take advantage of them yet, or made poor choices regarding the information.

Once again, though, your strategy is an interesting theory by someone well thought, which would require a lengthy discussion. I still maintain it would not be a good choice, although the advantages you seek by this move are interesting, and beyond the tactical fortitude of most. =)

#12 nee

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 05:40 AM

I just finished a class on WW2, and one of the discussions involved the viability of the Nazi regime.

Dr Goerdeler, an economist working for Hitler and eventually slated to be the next Chancellor had the July 20 succeeded, had voiced his concerns over the Nazi's handling of Germany's economy before and during the war. A friend of mine commented on this, that to paraphrase his remark, the Allies could have simply sit back and watched Germany crumble under itself. The bureaucracy, he says, was so inefficient that sooner or later, regardless of how Germany manages to get through the war, would collapse because of this. The totalitarianism of Hitler and his followers was in the inside cronyism: although Hitler had the reigns, he often leaves it to his subordinates to deal with. Himmler headed the SS, Goering the Luftwaffe, and Goebbels the propaganda machine. Hitler's own interests was advancing his personal visions through conquest, and interests in the economy, even during war, shows his disinterest, if not ineptitude, in running a country in a non-military manner. It wasn't until roughly 1943 that Albert Speer took control of the war economy and began to gear the country for total war- until then Germany was in a pre-war phase producing primarily consumer goods. Goerdeler remarked that the vision of autarky- economic independence from other nations- was making slow progress at best, and simply not working at worse in its present conditions. His proposals' rebuffs by Nazi bureaucracy (IIRC Goering dismissed his critiques purely on his faith of Nazi ideology) convinced Goerdeler that the Nazis were simply not suitable for Germany.

Because of this, many of us were convinced that such conditions for Germany would have more or less inevitably led to its own downfall. After all, with the invasion of the Soviet Union, the lions share of resources for Germany was being devoted to the Eastern Front, and technically, it was Hitler that declared war on the US. The question of whether the US entered WW2 revolves around several issues:
-"enter" as in Normandy or other indirect contributions such as Lend-Lease and aid to Russia?
-A great deal of American activity before Normandy was bombing, though technically ineffective at the industrial/military and even morale level, was a considerable effort that required a lot of American resources. Is the air campaign over Europe considered part of American entry?
-the relationship between Britain and the US more or less made the Americans an ally, even if it was not a de facto enemy of Germany. Would this relationship be taken into consideration?
-as said before, it was Hitler that declared war on the US; the US had declared war only on Japan in response to Pearl Harbour. The question of whether the US would commit to a war they were only indirectly involved needs to be answered before we start assuming yes. This besides Hitler's declaration is the linchpin of the thread's topic.

Ultimately, I've come to believe that short of the Nazis gearing for world domination (it was not, at least in the military sense) it would largely be a matter of time before Germany collapses, even if it "won" WW2. Its policies towards Lebensraum targets were inefficient and surely made long-term solutions difficult to achieve, its inability to fight the Allies when it was clear that a peaceful resolution was not possible, and regardless of war-time outcomes Nazi Germany was looking only to fulfilling Mein Kampf objectives and other far-fetched visions of German hegemony. Germany was geared for short-termed wars and lacked the resources and structures to provide otherwise, short of some amazing luck on the account of economy and military successes or innovations. The Germany Hitler set up was after all simply was meant to be a temporary state to provide the transition to a European power like a reborn Rome, but the government set up was far too immature to make it a reality. It was all still in Hitler's dream and the means to make it a reality were not yet in place, means that Hitler and the Nazis more or less sabotaged at nearly every turn with policies towards certain people groups (ie the brain-drain of expelling Jewish and other intellectuals or the treatment of Slavs).

#13 Tibet Libre

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 08:16 AM

Personally, I don't think that the Allies (GB and SU) could have won the war without the US even if in Dezember 1941 it had become apparent that Russia was not to be blitzed like France. Although Russian manpower was seemingly inexhaustible, it should be remembered that as late as 1945 for one German casualty there were 4-5 Russian dead, and the loss ration was similar in terms of tanks and other heavy equipment. Without US military aid, the SU would have found great difficulty keeping their own on the battlefield, while Germany's material mobilization peaked only in 1944, showing its great potential unrealized before. And in the West, the GB would have been unable to cross the channel alone. Therefore, the most likely scenario without US intervention would be a long-term stand-off between Nazi Germany and Russia on Russian soil, like two boxers too tired to win but also to give up.




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