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Old 11th May 2018, 03:39 AM   #1681
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Originally Posted by Klimax View Post
Based on article (https://www.scribd.com/document/9402...ations-of-1938) Henri so helpfully linked, French seemed to be more ready in 1938 then 1939.
Can't read that here, but considering the biggest problem the French had was their "upper management", and that was (as far as I can remember) pretty much the same in 38 as it was in 39, I'm not sure in what way they were better prepared?
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Old 11th May 2018, 03:48 AM   #1682
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Originally Posted by Tolls View Post
Can't read that here, but considering the biggest problem the French had was their "upper management", and that was (as far as I can remember) pretty much the same in 38 as it was in 39, I'm not sure in what way they were better prepared?
It would be page 199 when you get to it. (Gamelin said they had 1,5m of soldiers mobilized and they would advance into Germany till serious resistance encountered and then withdrawing behind Maginot line.)

Note: C&P not possible.
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Old 11th May 2018, 05:16 AM   #1683
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But wasn't that the plan in 39?
That was the Saar offensive.
And they scarpered back to Maginot when they encountered bits of the German defences.

I don't see the mobilisation in late September '38 being any earlier or faster than in '39. It was the same mobilisation plan.
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Old 11th May 2018, 05:24 AM   #1684
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Originally Posted by Tolls View Post
But wasn't that the plan in 39?
That was the Saar offensive.
And they scarpered back to Maginot when they encountered bits of the German defences.

I don't see the mobilisation in late September '38 being any earlier or faster than in '39. It was the same mobilisation plan.
It gives completely different impression. I guess that since it would be in our defense it would go differently. (France really liked us apparently)
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Old 11th May 2018, 05:40 AM   #1685
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Possibly, but you still have Gamelin to contend with and the limitations of French mobilisation, which were no different in '38 than '39. So a force would not have been available for about a fortnight.
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Old 11th May 2018, 10:50 AM   #1686
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Originally Posted by Tolls View Post
Possibly, but you still have Gamelin to contend with and the limitations of French mobilisation, which were no different in '38 than '39. So a force would not have been available for about a fortnight.
That's the thing, it's Gamelin who is so active in our support. Those parts where are quotes from French are so unlike what we know from 1939.
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Old 11th May 2018, 10:53 AM   #1687
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Originally Posted by lobosrul5 View Post
And absolutely positively needlessly wasted lives taking Peleliu. And his "defense" of the Phillipines was an amateurish shambles.
Pelielu was a shared reponsiblity;Nimitz, in one of his few mistakes, also felt that taking Peleliu was necessary. Ironically Halsey, who had the reputation of being over aggressive ,is the one who recommended bypassing it.
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Old 11th May 2018, 11:31 AM   #1688
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Henri, we're still waiting for you to explain, in detail, how the Germans were going to conquer France and Britain in 1939, assuming that they were able to conquer Czechoslovakia in 1938.
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Old 11th May 2018, 12:32 PM   #1689
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Originally Posted by Klimax View Post
That's the thing, it's Gamelin who is so active in our support. Those parts where are quotes from French are so unlike what we know from 1939.
Perhaps the events of Autumn 1938 simply undermined French resolve? And of course in 1938 they would have been facing defences barely worthy of the name.
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Old 12th May 2018, 05:50 AM   #1690
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
a brutal Autumn campaign,taking nearly two months, fought largely by Canadian Troops,when in early September it could have been done very quickly and at little cost.
No.

Opening the Scheldt was never going to be quick or easy because of Walcheren Island.

Walcheren was an Atlantic Wall fortress with a large number of large calibre naval guns, anti-aircraft guns, a Fortress Regiment and support from various 7th Army divisions moving from coastal defences further south.

It couldn't be ignored as its guns covered the minefields in the Scheldt, FAAA refused to carry out an airborne assault, and the landward approach was along a very narrow 1km+ causeway. A seaborne assault needed the specialist craft that were involved in the capture of Le Havre and then needed refitting.

Walcheren might have been isolated earlier, making the final assault by the Canadians easier, but it was never going to be a quick or easy battle.

Best book on it is Moulton's Battle for Antwerp.
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Old 13th May 2018, 06:22 PM   #1691
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I made it to the library yesterday, and I ordered Australia and Appeasement on Interlibrary Loan. Plus I checked out Wages of Destruction, on the basis of the recommendations in this thread.

Of more immediate interest, however, I also checked out The Change in the European Balance of Power, 1938-1939: The Path to Ruin, by Williamson Murray, whose Strategy for Defeat: The Luftwaffe 1933-1945 I've previously quoted.

I skimmed the chapters on Munich and its aftermath while I was at the library; I'll read them and take notes when I get a chance. From what I've seen so far, Murray is very much against the "Chamberlain gained time for rearmament" argument.

The book has an entire chapter on how the war would likely have developed if Britain and France had backed Czechoslovakia; Murray's conclusion is that that war would have been won by the Allies at a significantly lower cost than the war that started in 1939.
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Old 14th May 2018, 04:04 AM   #1692
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Originally Posted by Klimax View Post
That's the thing, it's Gamelin who is so active in our support. Those parts where are quotes from French are so unlike what we know from 1939.
Well, he did promise a major offensive 2 weeks after the declaration of war to the Poles...and we got the Saar.
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Old 14th May 2018, 04:44 AM   #1693
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Originally Posted by Tolls View Post
Well, he did promise a major offensive 2 weeks after the declaration of war to the Poles...and we got the Saar.
I wonder how enthusiastic were French about Poles and if there was anything different in France between 1938 and 1939.
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Old 14th May 2018, 09:14 AM   #1694
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Originally Posted by Klimax View Post
I wonder how enthusiastic were French about Poles and if there was anything different in France between 1938 and 1939.
The French High Command was in a bad state in 1938 and 1939. The political situation was chaotic there as well. General Juin was a good general but he was not in control. There is a bit of information about the matter at this website:

https://ww2-weapons.com/french-armed-forces-1939/

Quote:
The French military establishment had its critics, and there was a small but vociferous school of thought which condemned the reliance on static fortifications.

The French Army, based on conscription, was of variable quality; reserve divisions especially were often considered a liability, and observers, including the British General Brooke, were shaken by their insubordination and slovenly appearance.
The French Army was mobilised on 1 September 1939: about 5,000,000 reservists were to be added to the standing army of 900,000 men.

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Old 14th May 2018, 09:33 AM   #1695
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Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
The French High Command was in a bad state in 1938 and 1939. The political situation was chaotic there as well. General Juin was a good general but he was not in control. There is a bit of information about the matter at this website:

https://ww2-weapons.com/french-armed-forces-1939/
I'd be quite surprised if this is new info for anyone here.
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Old 14th May 2018, 10:17 AM   #1696
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Originally Posted by lobosrul5 View Post
I'd be quite surprised if this is new info for almost anyone here.
Minor correction
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Old 14th May 2018, 10:23 AM   #1697
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Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
Henri, we're still waiting for you to explain, in detail, how the Germans were going to conquer France and Britain in 1939, assuming that they were able to conquer Czechoslovakia in 1938.

Still waiting.
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Old 14th May 2018, 12:07 PM   #1698
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Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
Still waiting.
as am I.....
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Old 14th May 2018, 01:35 PM   #1699
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Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
The French High Command was in a bad state in 1938 and 1939. The political situation was chaotic there as well. General Juin was a good general but he was not in control. There is a bit of information about the matter at this website:

https://ww2-weapons.com/french-armed-forces-1939/
Well, at least this time you got half right. Now if there was something about 1938...
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Old 14th May 2018, 02:35 PM   #1700
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Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
Still waiting.
....ah how many decades of your life span do you have remaining?
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Old 14th May 2018, 02:56 PM   #1701
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Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
I made it to the library yesterday, and I ordered Australia and Appeasement on Interlibrary Loan. Plus I checked out Wages of Destruction, on the basis of the recommendations in this thread.

If more immediate interest, however, I also checked out The Change in the European Balance of Power, 1938-1939: The Path to Ruin, by Williamson Murray, whose Strategy for Defeat: The Luftwaffe 1933-1945 I've previously quoted.

I skimmed the chapters on Munich and its aftermath while I was at the library; I'll read them and take notes when I get a chance. From what I've seen so far, Murray is very much against the "Chamberlain gained time for rearmament" argument.

The book has an entire chapter on how the war would likely have developed if Britain and France had backed Czechoslovakia; Murray's conclusion is that that war would have been won by the Allies at a significantly lower cost than the war that started in 1939.
In 1938 Allied fighters had superior performance to the early mod ME 109

Such as the Hawker hurricane MK1 (which suffered from wood 2 blade fixed
prop in first version - the metal 3 blade 2 pitch props improved performance)

Export version of American fighters like the Hawk 75 (export version P 36) or
Brewster B239 (export version of F2A Buffalo) were available and out performed the early ME 109

It wasn't until end of 1938 that ME 109 E with Daimler 1200 HP DB600 series
engines started production . Also ME 110C with Daimler engines in early 1939
There was a narrow window in 1938-esrly 1939 where Allied fighters had the edge over the LUFTWAFFE

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Old 14th May 2018, 04:18 PM   #1702
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Originally Posted by Aber View Post
No.

Opening the Scheldt was never going to be quick or easy because of Walcheren Island.

Walcheren was an Atlantic Wall fortress with a large number of large calibre naval guns, anti-aircraft guns, a Fortress Regiment and support from various 7th Army divisions moving from coastal defences further south.

It couldn't be ignored as its guns covered the minefields in the Scheldt, FAAA refused to carry out an airborne assault, and the landward approach was along a very narrow 1km+ causeway. A seaborne assault needed the specialist craft that were involved in the capture of Le Havre and then needed refitting.

Walcheren might have been isolated earlier, making the final assault by the Canadians easier, but it was never going to be a quick or easy battle.

Best book on it is Moulton's Battle for Antwerp.
Walcheren, yes,would have been a tough nut in any case and I have read Moulton's book.
But there seems little doubt that a quick move to isolate the Scheldt right after the fall of Antwerp before the German reinforcements poured in would have speeded up the campaign considerably. They would not have had the bloody battle to clear the areas to get into a position for the assault on Walcheran.
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Old 16th May 2018, 06:45 AM   #1703
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Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
Henri, we're still waiting for you to explain, in detail, how the Germans were going to conquer France and Britain in 1939, assuming that they were able to conquer Czechoslovakia in 1938.

Still waiting. . . .
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Old 16th May 2018, 08:53 AM   #1704
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Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
Still waiting. . . .
There are some sensible and realist opinions about this matter at this website:

http://www.city-data.com/forum/histo...-1938-a-2.html

Quote:
The reality in Britain was that, much like France, from a strictly military standpoint, Britain was not in a position to prevent Germany from taking aggressive action against it’s neighbors. Britain had an extensive empire that she could barely protect, and security treaty obligations to other nations that she would hard pressed to meet should war break out. The post World War One army was relatively small and the air force was not sufficiently developed to provide adequate protection against German air attacks. The only sizable force at Britain’s disposal was the Royal Navy, which of course was of no value in the instance of Czechoslovakia. The situation was such that the British Chiefs of Staff concluded that “No military pressure we can exact by sea, or land, or in the air can prevent Germany either from invading and overrunning Bohemia or inflicting a decisive defeat on the Czechoslovakian army. If politically it is deemed necessary to restore Czechoslovakia’s lost integrity, this aim will entail war with Germany, and her defeat may mean a prolonged struggle. In short, we can do nothing to prevent the dog getting the bone, and we have no means of making him give it up except by killing him by a slow process of attrition and starvation”.

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Old 16th May 2018, 08:59 AM   #1705
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Now your quoting a post on.... city-data.com a website that compiles crime and living statistics.

But hey, there ARE sensible opinion there.

The czechs had a variety of advantages that the poles did not. First, rather than trying to defend an essentially flat country with two few numbers, they would have been defending mountains that had been fortified, ideal to stop the blitzkrieg. Second, they were better armed particularly in terms of AFV. The German panzers in contrast, had serious problems it was later revealed with reliability in 1938 and of course did not have the huge number of czech tanks they gained.

Two other "advantages" are less certain. Many historians believe that the commander of the german armed forces (not then a non-entity or Hitler himself) was planning a coup if war began and had signficant support in the officer corps. Additionally, the Russians had offered military support, although this was declined.

The RAF would have a period to build up as it would have taken a signficant period of time to conquer Czechoslavkia.

Read more: http://www.city-data.com/forum/histo...#ixzz5FgIVGPT0
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Old 16th May 2018, 09:00 AM   #1706
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Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
There are some sensible and realist opinions about this matter at this website:

http://www.city-data.com/forum/histo...-1938-a-2.html
So you keep putting up other people's opinions - their opinions aren't anymore interesting or of value than your own.

All you are doing is restating your same failed ideas using other voices who may or may not be your own posting from other websites, over and over again while avoiding questions.

yawn.....
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Old 16th May 2018, 09:40 AM   #1707
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Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
There are some sensible and realist opinions about this matter at this website:

http://www.city-data.com/forum/histo...-1938-a-2.html

Continuing evasion noted. Kindly answer the question I asked, rather than the question you wish I'd asked. Regarding the quotation, as has been pointed out to you repeatedly, and you have repeatedly ignored, the idea is not that Czechoslovakia could necessarily have been saved. The idea is that Britain, France, and Czechoslovakia were in a far stronger military, diplomatic*, and economic position with respect to Germany in the fall of 1938 than Britain, France and Poland were a year later. So how was going to war over Poland a good idea, but going to war over Czechoslovakia a bad idea?
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*I've been using the word "political" to refer to the views of other countries about the situation, but I've decided that "diplomatic" is a better word for that.
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Old 16th May 2018, 01:46 PM   #1708
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Originally Posted by lobosrul5 View Post
Now your quoting a post on.... city-data.com a website that compiles crime and living statistics.

But hey, there ARE sensible opinion there.

The czechs had a variety of advantages that the poles did not. First, rather than trying to defend an essentially flat country with two few numbers, they would have been defending mountains that had been fortified, ideal to stop the blitzkrieg. Second, they were better armed particularly in terms of AFV. The German panzers in contrast, had serious problems it was later revealed with reliability in 1938 and of course did not have the huge number of czech tanks they gained.

Two other "advantages" are less certain. Many historians believe that the commander of the german armed forces (not then a non-entity or Hitler himself) was planning a coup if war began and had signficant support in the officer corps. Additionally, the Russians had offered military support, although this was declined.

The RAF would have a period to build up as it would have taken a signficant period of time to conquer Czechoslavkia.

Read more: http://www.city-data.com/forum/histo...#ixzz5FgIVGPT0
There is just one error. To my knowledge we never refused help of SSSR. (We signed defense pact with SSSR after all)
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Old 16th May 2018, 02:03 PM   #1709
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Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
Continuing evasion noted. Kindly answer the question I asked, rather than the question you wish I'd asked. Regarding the quotation, as has been pointed out to you repeatedly, and you have repeatedly ignored, the idea is not that Czechoslovakia could necessarily have been saved. The idea is that Britain, France, and Czechoslovakia were in a far stronger military, diplomatic*, and economic position with respect to Germany in the fall of 1938 than Britain, France and Poland were a year later. So how was going to war over Poland a good idea, but going to war over Czechoslovakia a bad idea?

I honestly think Henri's entire position springs from the fact that he detests Churchill, Churchill was against Chamberlain's appeasement policy, hence Chamberlain and appeasement must have been right. That's why his arguments in this thread have been so weak and his evidence non-existent, it has nothing to do with reason or facts, just his visceral dislike of Churchill.
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Old 17th May 2018, 12:50 AM   #1710
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
They would not have had the bloody battle to clear the areas to get into a position for the assault on Walcheran.
To open Antwerp, you need to:
  • take Walcheren
  • eliminate the remnants of the 7th Army south of the Scheldt, which is where most of the German reinforcements came from
  • advance north of Antwerp to the Maas (and probably the Rhine) to ensure that you have enough strategic depth to protect the port.

With hindsight, one option is an immediate advance to Breskens, and also to cut off the Beveland peninsula to isolate Walcheren. The final assault still has to wait on the availability of amphibious assault assets tied up off Le Havre.

This still leaves 2 large battles to be fought, one south of the Scheldt (the equivalent of the Breskens pocket but in a different place) and one north towards the Maas (the equivalent of Market Garden and the subsequent battles to clear the area between the Maas and the Scheldt).

I don't think that Montgomery has enough forces to do all of this before the Canadian Army has finished opening the Channel ports. In short there will still be long bloody battles needed. just different ones to OTL.
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Old 17th May 2018, 02:26 AM   #1711
Henri McPhee
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Originally Posted by Klimax View Post
There is just one error. To my knowledge we never refused help of SSSR. (We signed defense pact with SSSR after all)
I just think its all a bit more complicated than that and its unfair to blame it all on Chamberlain. That all depended on France marching on Berlin which was dead off in 1938, and most unlikely in 1939:

https://link.springer.com/chapter/10...-349-24124-8_4

Quote:
Soviet assistance was, however, conditional upon France, which also had a mutual assistance treaty with Czechoslovakia, simultaneously fulfilling its aid obligations — a clause inserted in the Soviet-Czechoslovak treaty of 1935 at the suggestion of Benes/ , the Czech President.

Last edited by Henri McPhee; 17th May 2018 at 02:27 AM.
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Old 17th May 2018, 02:36 AM   #1712
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Why did it depend on France marching on Berlin?

is it because


"It's just that a leopard cannot change its spots. The Germans are either at your feet or at your throat."

?
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Old 17th May 2018, 08:53 AM   #1713
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Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
I just think its all a bit more complicated than that and its unfair to blame it all on Chamberlain. That all depended on France marching on Berlin which was dead off in 1938, and most unlikely in 1939:

https://link.springer.com/chapter/10...-349-24124-8_4
And French were eager to help us. Not a problem. (Even if it would be bit ineffective, it would fulfil condition in treaty)
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Old 17th May 2018, 10:38 AM   #1714
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Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
Why did it depend on France marching on Berlin?

is it because


"It's just that a leopard cannot change its spots. The Germans are either at your feet or at your throat."

?
And if Henri truly believes that, how does that square with appeasement, which encouraged Hitler to wrap his hands around Europe's throat.
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Old 17th May 2018, 06:34 PM   #1715
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Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
I just think its all a bit more complicated than that and its unfair to blame it all on Chamberlain. That all depended on France marching on Berlin which was dead off in 1938, and most unlikely in 1939:
Nope another strawman by our good friend Henry. Hitler could have been stopped in his track by the French opposing the re-occupation of the Rhine - and more importantly the industrial Ruhr - in March 1936.
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Old 18th May 2018, 02:47 AM   #1716
Henri McPhee
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Originally Posted by Hans View Post
Nope another strawman by our good friend Henry. Hitler could have been stopped in his track by the French opposing the re-occupation of the Rhine - and more importantly the industrial Ruhr - in March 1936.
Well what about America then, and also Australia and Canada and New Zealand? They didn't want to know about the Rhineland, or the Sudetanland.

There is a bit of historical background to the matter at this website:

https://erenow.com/ww/churchill-hitl...sary-war/7.php

Quote:
When visiting French foreign minister Flandin asked what Britain would do if France marched against the German battalions in the Rhineland, Baldwin told him: “[i]f there is even one chance in a hundred that war would follow from your police action I have not the right to commit England. England is simply not in a state to go to war.”

A.J.P. Taylor describes how Baldwin explained Britain’s impotence:
Tears stood in [Baldwin’s] eyes as he confessed that the British had no forces with which to support France. In any case, he added, British public opinion would not allow it. This was true: there was almost unanimous approval in Great Britain that the Germans had liberated their own territory. What Baldwin did not add was that he agreed with this public opinion. The German reoccupation of the Rhineland was, from the British point of view, an improvement and a success for British policy.

Baldwin believed and hoped Hitler’s ambitions might be directed to the east. In July of 1936, he met with a deputation of senior Conservatives that included Churchill.

Baldwin told them that he was not convinced that Hitler did not want to “move east,” and if he did, “I should not break my heart.” If there was any “fighting in Europe to be done,” Baldwin would “like to see the Bolshies and the Nazis doing it.”

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Old 18th May 2018, 04:09 AM   #1717
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Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
Well what about America then, and also Australia and Canada and New Zealand? They didn't want to know about the Rhineland, or the Sudetanland.

There is a bit of historical background to the matter at this website:

https://erenow.com/ww/churchill-hitl...sary-war/7.php
As has been pointed out to you numerous times with respect to 1938 - and it is even MORE applicable to 1936 - the German military was in less shape for operations than the Western Allies were. The lack of appetite for war is what held the West back, coupled with a propaganda loss resulting in the impression that, perhaps we'd been too harsh with Germany after WWI, and that despite Hitler's bombast he could be worked with like other national leaders.

The collective wisdom was wrong.
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Old 18th May 2018, 05:23 AM   #1718
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Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
Henri, we're still waiting for you to explain, in detail, how the Germans were going to conquer France and Britain in 1939, assuming that they were able to conquer Czechoslovakia in 1938.

Still waiting . . .
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Old 18th May 2018, 05:28 AM   #1719
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Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
Still waiting . . .
I'd like to know how Germany could have conquered Britain in a week when it takes Henri longer than that just to answer a simple question.

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Old 18th May 2018, 01:51 PM   #1720
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Originally Posted by Border Reiver View Post
As has been pointed out to you numerous times with respect to 1938 - and it is even MORE applicable to 1936 - the German military was in less shape for operations than the Western Allies were. The lack of appetite for war is what held the West back, coupled with a propaganda loss resulting in the impression that, perhaps we'd been too harsh with Germany after WWI, and that despite Hitler's bombast he could be worked with like other national leaders.

The collective wisdom was wrong.
Added to which there was the likes Lloyd George feeding into the 'stabbed in the back' myth by suggesting it was the collapse of the home front that led to the collapse of the German army on the Western Front rather than the other way round.

In 1936 had the French responded to events in the Rhineland with force the German troops were under orders to retreat, a humiliation Hitler may not have survived. Anti-Communism, distrust of the French and the sense Versailles had been to harsh all played into a series of bad decisions, compounded later by a massive overestimation of German capability.
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