ISF Logo   IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » History, Literature, and the Arts
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Tags adolf hitler , Josef Stalin , Robert Conquest , Soviet Union history , Tim Snyder , World War II history

Reply
Old 2nd May 2018, 01:54 PM   #281
Craig B
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 22,458
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
There is a bit about Stalin, and killings, in a book called Enemy at The Gates The Battle for Stalingrad by William Craig 1973:
Yes but the subject matter you describe in the book is not about killings perpetrated by Stalin. The battle of Stalingrad was the result of aggression committed by Hitler.

Stalin's fault here, if your author's thesis is sound, which it may not be, is military incompetence and excessive credulity. I think it may be agreed that such failings are not murders for which Stalin may be held to account; and if the millions of deaths in the Nazi-Soviet war are the responsibility of either of the two tyrants, then Hitler - in this case the clear aggressor - is the more obvious culprit.

This illustrates the main difference between the crimes of these people. Most of Stalin's victims were members of his own Soviet society, while the majority of Hitler's crimes were committed against people he defined as alien, or who were citizens of foreign countries.
Craig B is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd May 2018, 04:51 PM   #282
theprestige
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 28,321
Stalin was happy enough to carry the scorpion when its stinger was pointing the other way. For not being prepared for the day when the day when Hitler turned on him, I hold Stalin to be a fool.

For agreeing to the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, and participating in the conquest of Poland, I hold him to be a Nazi co-conspirator, sharing the blame for everything Hitler did to the Soviet Union afterwards.

Stalin tried to play both sides, partnering with Hitler when he saw advantages there, and then siphoning war materiel from the Allies when his partner stabbed him in the back.

And that's not even starting on the Soviet Union's enslavement of eastern Europe, and the human cost of that.

Last edited by theprestige; 2nd May 2018 at 04:53 PM.
theprestige is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 3rd May 2018, 09:31 AM   #283
lobosrul5
Muse
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 955
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Stalin was happy enough to carry the scorpion when its stinger was pointing the other way. For not being prepared for the day when the day when Hitler turned on him, I hold Stalin to be a fool.

For agreeing to the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, and participating in the conquest of Poland, I hold him to be a Nazi co-conspirator, sharing the blame for everything Hitler did to the Soviet Union afterwards.

Stalin tried to play both sides, partnering with Hitler when he saw advantages there, and then siphoning war materiel from the Allies when his partner stabbed him in the back.

And that's not even starting on the Soviet Union's enslavement of eastern Europe, and the human cost of that.
Lets also not forget: he decided to haphazardly go to war with Finland in the winter. That botched mess convinced Hitler than the USSR was ripe for invasion.

And then he happily gobbled up Bessarabia thereby ensuring Romania joining the Axis.

But the underlined: we were happy to send equipment to the Soviets so their people could die fighting the Nazis instead of ours.

Last edited by lobosrul5; 3rd May 2018 at 10:34 AM.
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 3rd May 2018, 03:08 PM   #284
TubbaBlubba
Knave of the Dudes
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 12,867
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
For not being prepared for the day when the day when Hitler turned on him, I hold Stalin to be a fool.
He did prepare for the day when Hitler would turn on him. He just expected it to be later than 1941. Nobody expected France to fall like a cardhouse. I'm not sure what you're suggesting he should have done, either.
__________________
"The presidentís voracious sexual appetite is the elephant that the president rides around on each and every day while pretending that it doesnít exist." - Bill O'Reilly et al., Killing Kennedy
TubbaBlubba is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 3rd May 2018, 03:44 PM   #285
theprestige
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 28,321
Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
He did prepare for the day when Hitler would turn on him. He just expected it to be later than 1941. Nobody expected France to fall like a cardhouse. I'm not sure what you're suggesting he should have done, either.
Not conspired with Hitler to divide Poland between them would have been a cracking good start, don't you think?
theprestige is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 4th May 2018, 01:10 AM   #286
Craig B
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 22,458
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Stalin was happy enough to carry the scorpion when its stinger was pointing the other way. For not being prepared for the day when the day when Hitler turned on him, I hold Stalin to be a fool.

For agreeing to the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, and participating in the conquest of Poland, I hold him to be a Nazi co-conspirator, sharing the blame for everything Hitler did to the Soviet Union afterwards.

Stalin tried to play both sides, partnering with Hitler when he saw advantages there, and then siphoning war materiel from the Allies when his partner stabbed him in the back.

And that's not even starting on the Soviet Union's enslavement of eastern Europe, and the human cost of that.
That makes Stalin guilty of his crimes against Poland in 1940 and 1945. In the first of these cases Stalin was an aggressor, and in the second an oppressor. But in the USSR 1941-45 it was Hitler who was the aggressor. Each man is guilty of his own own crimes.
Craig B is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 4th May 2018, 10:37 AM   #287
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Stalin was happy enough to carry the scorpion when its stinger was pointing the other way. For not being prepared for the day when the day when Hitler turned on him, I hold Stalin to be a fool.

For agreeing to the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, and participating in the conquest of Poland, I hold him to be a Nazi co-conspirator, sharing the blame for everything Hitler did to the Soviet Union afterwards.
Chamberlain and Daladier were Nazi co-conspirators when they turned their back on their ally and gave Germany green light to occupy Sudetenland, and factually also for occupying half a year later the rump of the Czech state. The governor of the Bank of England even rewarded Hitler for the latter with the Czech gold.

It's not exactly that Stalin could trust the UK and France after that.
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Stalin tried to play both sides, partnering with Hitler when he saw advantages there, and then siphoning war materiel from the Allies when his partner stabbed him in the back.
Oh, he damn well realized that Hitler would attack in due course. Hitler would have attacked Poland anyhow, Molotov-Ribbentrop pact or not. Until actually war developed, it was each for his own and alliances were forgotten with abandon. In that atmosphere, it was actually smart for Stalin to at least manage that the German-Soviet border was a couple of hundred kilometers more westward. How wide, east-west, was the Soviet-occupied part of Poland? And how close came the Wehrmacht to Moscow in December 1941?
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 4th May 2018, 02:22 PM   #288
Garrison
Illuminator
 
Garrison's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4,325
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
Chamberlain and Daladier were Nazi co-conspirators when they turned their back on their ally and gave Germany green light to occupy Sudetenland, and factually also for occupying half a year later the rump of the Czech state. The governor of the Bank of England even rewarded Hitler for the latter with the Czech gold.

It's not exactly that Stalin could trust the UK and France after that.

Oh, he damn well realized that Hitler would attack in due course. Hitler would have attacked Poland anyhow, Molotov-Ribbentrop pact or not. Until actually war developed, it was each for his own and alliances were forgotten with abandon. In that atmosphere, it was actually smart for Stalin to at least manage that the German-Soviet border was a couple of hundred kilometers more westward. How wide, east-west, was the Soviet-occupied part of Poland? And how close came the Wehrmacht to Moscow in December 1941?
I was actually about to write pretty much the same thoughts when I spotted your post.
__________________
So I've started a blog about my writing. Check it out at: http://fourth-planet-problem.blogspot.com/
And my first book is on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077W322FX
Garrison is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 5th May 2018, 03:55 AM   #289
TubbaBlubba
Knave of the Dudes
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 12,867
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Not conspired with Hitler to divide Poland between them would have been a cracking good start, don't you think?
Getting a buffer zone and depriving Hitler of immediate access to some areas was somehow a bad strategic decision, knowing that war would come?
__________________
"The presidentís voracious sexual appetite is the elephant that the president rides around on each and every day while pretending that it doesnít exist." - Bill O'Reilly et al., Killing Kennedy
TubbaBlubba is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 5th May 2018, 06:38 AM   #290
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
I was actually about to write pretty much the same thoughts when I spotted your post.
Thank you!

Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
Getting a buffer zone and depriving Hitler of immediate access to some areas was somehow a bad strategic decision, knowing that war would come?
Yep.

And to answer my own question: The Soviet-occupied part of Poland was ca. 200,000 sq.km., and eyeballing it, between 250 and 300 km wide from west to east. On 27 Nov 1941, the German 7th Panzer division came to within 35 km of Moscow.
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 5th May 2018, 10:28 AM   #291
lobosrul5
Muse
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 955
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
And to answer my own question: The Soviet-occupied part of Poland was ca. 200,000 sq.km., and eyeballing it, between 250 and 300 km wide from west to east. On 27 Nov 1941, the German 7th Panzer division came to within 35 km of Moscow.
I wonder if without Molotov Ribbentrop, would Germany have occupied the Baltic States? Estonia is rather close to Leningrad and makes a flanking maneuver on Belarus easy.
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 5th May 2018, 11:32 AM   #292
SpitfireIX
Illuminator
 
SpitfireIX's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
Posts: 4,446
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
Thank you!


Yep.

And to answer my own question: The Soviet-occupied part of Poland was ca. 200,000 sq.km., and eyeballing it, between 250 and 300 km wide from west to east. On 27 Nov 1941, the German 7th Panzer division came to within 35 km of Moscow.

Although I think that Stalin's having a buffer zone between him and the Wehrmacht was probably a good idea, I don't think that we can safely conclude that Moscow would have fallen even if the Germans had started on the Ukrainian [eta: and Belorussian] border.
__________________
Handy responses to conspiracy theorists' claims:
1) "I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question." --Charles Babbage
2) "This isn't right. This isn't even wrong." --Wolfgang Pauli
3) "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." --Inigo Montoya

Last edited by SpitfireIX; 5th May 2018 at 11:34 AM.
SpitfireIX is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 5th May 2018, 02:28 PM   #293
theprestige
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 28,321
Originally Posted by lobosrul5 View Post
I wonder if without Molotov Ribbentrop, would Germany have occupied the Baltic States? Estonia is rather close to Leningrad and makes a flanking maneuver on Belarus easy.
Without M-R, would Hitler have risked attacking France and leaving his eastern flank exposed to the Soviets?

Would he have risked invading Poland and triggering a paranoid Soviet response (c.f. your Baltic States gambit)? Leaving his western flank exposed to France?
theprestige is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 5th May 2018, 03:49 PM   #294
Craig B
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 22,458
Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
Getting a buffer zone and depriving Hitler of immediate access to some areas was somehow a bad strategic decision, knowing that war would come?
It makes sense at one level, but Stalin squandered the advantages he might have gained. He knew "that war would come" but when his intelligence services told him that a German attack was imminent, he refused to believe them.

He treated Polish POWs with unnecessary cruelty. He permitted German spy planes to overfly his territory. He launched an unnecessary and expensive war against Finland ... but I needn't go on.
Craig B is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 02:04 AM   #295
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by lobosrul5 View Post
I wonder if without Molotov Ribbentrop, would Germany have occupied the Baltic States? Estonia is rather close to Leningrad and makes a flanking maneuver on Belarus easy.
If I may go out on a limb, and do a what-if: if Hitler had attacked Poland alone, without M-R, then Stalin would have seized the Baltic states anyway.

If was only 20 years earlier that Soviets had fought with German troops there. IIRC, in Latvia there were considerable amount of German troops who at first posed as supporting the Latvian nationalists, but then pursued their own agenda which led to a three-way fight between Germans, Latvian nationalists and Bolsheviks.

Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
Although I think that Stalin's having a buffer zone between him and the Wehrmacht was probably a good idea, I don't think that we can safely conclude that Moscow would have fallen even if the Germans had started on the Ukrainian [eta: and Belorussian] border.
Fair enough. The dynamic would have been different. But the Germans wouldn't have had to invest, e.g., the Brest fortress.

Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Without M-R, would Hitler have risked attacking France and leaving his eastern flank exposed to the Soviets?
He risked attacking Poland with his western flank exposed to France.

Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Would he have risked invading Poland and triggering a paranoid Soviet response (c.f. your Baltic States gambit)? Leaving his western flank exposed to France?
Poland wasn't especially on speaking terms with the Soviet Union. The risk that the SU would come to the aid of Poland was negligible. Hitler would have attacked Poland without M-R, pretty sure.
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 03:05 AM   #296
caveman1917
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 5,821
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Would he have risked invading Poland and triggering a paranoid Soviet response (c.f. your Baltic States gambit)? Leaving his western flank exposed to France?
Yes, the invasion of Poland was committed to by Nazi Germany by March 1939. The Soviets knew this and this was a major impetus in them going for the M-R pact, since Germany would have invaded Poland before the end of 1939 anyway irrespective of what the USSR did. The other major impetus being the refusal of the Allies to commit to an alliance against Nazi Germany, seemingly more interested in praising Hitler's anti-communist potential (see the speeches at the Munich agreement etc).
__________________
"Ideas are also weapons." - Subcomandante Marcos
"We must devastate the avenues where the wealthy live." - Lucy Parsons
"Let us therefore trust the eternal Spirit which destroys and annihilates only because it is the unfathomable and eternal source of all life. The passion for destruction is a creative passion, too!" - Mikhail Bakunin
caveman1917 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 03:12 AM   #297
caveman1917
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 5,821
Originally Posted by Craig B View Post
He knew "that war would come" but when his intelligence services told him that a German attack was imminent, he refused to believe them.
Not the first couple of times. But after a dozen such warnings of imminent German attack had passed in the preceding months without anything happening, the credibility of the ongoing stream of such warnings did go down significantly, yes.
__________________
"Ideas are also weapons." - Subcomandante Marcos
"We must devastate the avenues where the wealthy live." - Lucy Parsons
"Let us therefore trust the eternal Spirit which destroys and annihilates only because it is the unfathomable and eternal source of all life. The passion for destruction is a creative passion, too!" - Mikhail Bakunin
caveman1917 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 03:52 AM   #298
TubbaBlubba
Knave of the Dudes
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 12,867
Originally Posted by Craig B View Post
It makes sense at one level, but Stalin squandered the advantages he might have gained. He knew "that war would come" but when his intelligence services told him that a German attack was imminent, he refused to believe them.
To agre with caveman1917 for once, the sheer amount of false alerts he received makes this somewhat understandable. Although he probably should have listened to the reports of decrypted messages cracked by the Swedes...

Quote:
He treated Polish POWs with unnecessary cruelty. He permitted German spy planes to overfly his territory. He launched an unnecessary and expensive war against Finland ... but I needn't go on.
The demands against Finland make some sense in light of the need to defend Leningrad. But yes, I agree generally.
__________________
"The presidentís voracious sexual appetite is the elephant that the president rides around on each and every day while pretending that it doesnít exist." - Bill O'Reilly et al., Killing Kennedy
TubbaBlubba is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 03:55 AM   #299
TubbaBlubba
Knave of the Dudes
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 12,867
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Without M-R, would Hitler have risked attacking France and leaving his eastern flank exposed to the Soviets?
Yes. Experiences from World War I led the Germans to severely underestimate the Soviet war capability.

Quote:
Would he have risked invading Poland and triggering a paranoid Soviet response (c.f. your Baltic States gambit)? Leaving his western flank exposed to France?
Yes, absolutely. He was able to get away with annexing the Sudetenland, he hardly expected the Allies to react this time either (although he probably hoped they would).
__________________
"The presidentís voracious sexual appetite is the elephant that the president rides around on each and every day while pretending that it doesnít exist." - Bill O'Reilly et al., Killing Kennedy
TubbaBlubba is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 04:10 AM   #300
Garrison
Illuminator
 
Garrison's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4,325
Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
Yes. Experiences from World War I led the Germans to severely underestimate the Soviet war capability.


Yes, absolutely. He was able to get away with annexing the Sudetenland, he hardly expected the Allies to react this time either (although he probably hoped they would).
And Stalin was hoping for that as well. One of the key strategic reasons why Stalin was willing to sign the M-R was to get Hitler focused on the west after Poland. What he, and everyone else, expected was a rerun of the 1915-17 Western Front(1918 is really the story of the end of trench warfare and the return of manoeuvre, but that's for a different thread). If the Germans had stuck to their original plan he would probably have gotten what he wanted and might have avoided war with Germany altogether.
__________________
So I've started a blog about my writing. Check it out at: http://fourth-planet-problem.blogspot.com/
And my first book is on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077W322FX
Garrison is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 04:13 AM   #301
TubbaBlubba
Knave of the Dudes
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 12,867
Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
And Stalin was hoping for that as well. One of the key strategic reasons why Stalin was willing to sign the M-R was to get Hitler focused on the west after Poland. What he, and everyone else, expected was a rerun of the 1915-17 Western Front(1918 is really the story of the end of trench warfare and the return of manoeuvre, but that's for a different thread). If the Germans had stuck to their original plan he would probably have gotten what he wanted and might have avoided war with Germany altogether.
Yep, I'm not sure everyone expected the return of trench warfare, but the collapse of France really should be understood as a freak accident in my opinion. There were so many things that just happened to fall into the right place for the Germans.
__________________
"The presidentís voracious sexual appetite is the elephant that the president rides around on each and every day while pretending that it doesnít exist." - Bill O'Reilly et al., Killing Kennedy
TubbaBlubba is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 04:41 AM   #302
caveman1917
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 5,821
Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
Yes. Experiences from World War I led the Germans to severely underestimate the Soviet war capability.
They were right though, in 1939 the Soviets were in no position to wage war with Nazi Germany. By the Soviets' own calculation it would only be by 1942 that they'd be able to withstand it, even in 1941 they barely managed to survive Barbarossa. Hence why the Soviets were, during the negotiations with the Allies, so insistent on specific commitments regarding a possible anti-Nazi alliance (such as the UK and France committing to providing a certain number of divisions etc).
__________________
"Ideas are also weapons." - Subcomandante Marcos
"We must devastate the avenues where the wealthy live." - Lucy Parsons
"Let us therefore trust the eternal Spirit which destroys and annihilates only because it is the unfathomable and eternal source of all life. The passion for destruction is a creative passion, too!" - Mikhail Bakunin
caveman1917 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 04:57 AM   #303
caveman1917
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 5,821
This one was just too funny not to share. WW2 as told by Tom and Jerry
__________________
"Ideas are also weapons." - Subcomandante Marcos
"We must devastate the avenues where the wealthy live." - Lucy Parsons
"Let us therefore trust the eternal Spirit which destroys and annihilates only because it is the unfathomable and eternal source of all life. The passion for destruction is a creative passion, too!" - Mikhail Bakunin
caveman1917 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 05:26 AM   #304
TubbaBlubba
Knave of the Dudes
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 12,867
Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
They were right though, in 1939 the Soviets were in no position to wage war with Nazi Germany.
Neither was Nazi Germany really in a position to fight a war with the Soviet Union at that point, though. And had they gotten bogged down in France for a while, they would indeed have been vulnerable.
__________________
"The presidentís voracious sexual appetite is the elephant that the president rides around on each and every day while pretending that it doesnít exist." - Bill O'Reilly et al., Killing Kennedy
TubbaBlubba is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 05:42 AM   #305
Garrison
Illuminator
 
Garrison's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4,325
Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
Yep, I'm not sure everyone expected the return of trench warfare, but the collapse of France really should be understood as a freak accident in my opinion. There were so many things that just happened to fall into the right place for the Germans.
I really meant he was expecting a long attritional struggle, mind you the French were certainly expecting something akin to trench warfare, hence the Maginot Line.
__________________
So I've started a blog about my writing. Check it out at: http://fourth-planet-problem.blogspot.com/
And my first book is on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077W322FX
Garrison is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 12:08 PM   #306
Craig B
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 22,458
Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
Not the first couple of times. But after a dozen such warnings of imminent German attack had passed in the preceding months without anything happening, the credibility of the ongoing stream of such warnings did go down significantly, yes.
Stalin was as well served as any other political leader by his intelligence services, and his contempt for their warnings was such that his corrupted or intimidated analysts finally stopped honestly reporting on the data they obtained, knowing that it would be dismissed as provocation. So much so that the USSR's front line troops were taken by surprise on the morning of the invasion of their country by the strongest invasion force ever assembled. So I disagree with you.

But I will be fascinated to see what sort of special pleading you will employ to exculpate Stalin from the other examples of his errors I enumerate.
Originally Posted by Craig B View Post
... He treated Polish POWs with unnecessary cruelty. He permitted German spy planes to overfly his territory. He launched an unnecessary and expensive war against Finland ...

Last edited by Craig B; 6th May 2018 at 12:10 PM.
Craig B is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th May 2018, 04:58 PM   #307
Jerrymander
Critical Thinker
 
Jerrymander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 385
So the American Holocaust Memorial Museum gives these numbers for the number of people killed by the Nazis. It adds up to roughly 17 million.

Quote:
Jews: up to 6 million

Soviet civilians: around 7 million (including 1.3 Soviet Jewish civilians, who are included in the 6 million figure for Jews)

Soviet prisoners of war: around 3 million (including about 50,000 Jewish soldiers)

Non-Jewish Polish civilians: around 1.8 million (including between 50,000 and 100,000 members of the Polish elites)

Serb civilians (on the territory of Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina): 312,000

People with disabilities living in institutions: up to 250,000

Roma (Gypsies): 196,000–220,000

Jehovah's Witnesses: around 1,900

Repeat criminal offenders and so-called asocials: at least 70,000

German political opponents and resistance activists in Axis-occupied territory: undetermined

Homosexuals: hundreds, possibly thousands (possibly also counted in part under the 70,000 repeat criminal offenders and so-called asocials noted above)
https://www.ushmm.org/wlc/en/article...uleId=10008193
Jerrymander is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th May 2018, 12:39 AM   #308
Craig B
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 22,458
Originally Posted by Jerrymander View Post
So the American Holocaust Memorial Museum gives these numbers for the number of people killed by the Nazis. It adds up to roughly 17 million.



https://www.ushmm.org/wlc/en/article...uleId=10008193
It is noteworthy that these are overwhelmingly people whom Hitler perceived as alien enemies. Stalin's victims, on the other hand, were mainly Soviet citizens, often belonging to the poorer classes, like working peasants; and even in many cases disfavoured members of his own political party. That's what makes comparisons between these tyrants so difficult to construct. One apologist for Hitler has said that he perpetrated no purges. That's true. Obedient Nazis were safe from persecution. His chosen victims were different kinds of people.

Another difference is that Hitler's victims were unambiguously put to death, while the largest single group of Stalin's victims died of hunger during a famine which was a by product, and very probably an undesired one, of Stalin's economic policies.
Craig B is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th May 2018, 01:41 AM   #309
TubbaBlubba
Knave of the Dudes
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 12,867
Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
hence the Maginot Line.
The Maginot Line worked as designed - it forced the Nazis to take the long way around. Then they made a crazy gambit that paid off.
__________________
"The presidentís voracious sexual appetite is the elephant that the president rides around on each and every day while pretending that it doesnít exist." - Bill O'Reilly et al., Killing Kennedy
TubbaBlubba is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th May 2018, 02:41 AM   #310
Henri McPhee
Master Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 2,760
Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
The Maginot Line worked as designed - it forced the Nazis to take the long way around. Then they made a crazy gambit that paid off.
You people talk as though all France and Britain and Soviet Russia had to do was attack Germany over their treatment of the Jews and Czechs, without mentioning that there are genocides going on in the world now which are never mentioned on this forum. There was quite a formidable obstacle to Germany being attacked at the time, besides the Luftwaffe, called the Siegfried line, which was a sort of German Maginot line:

https://m.warhistoryonline.com/world...fortified.html

Quote:
Despite hundreds of thousands of laborers and uniformed soldiers overseeing their work in the border regions, Hitler made no announcement of what was underway. Then, in 1938, he felt confident. The line had progressed enough for there to be no more need for secrecy. The existence of the vast defense network was announced.

Last edited by Henri McPhee; 7th May 2018 at 02:43 AM.
Henri McPhee is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th May 2018, 06:47 AM   #311
Garrison
Illuminator
 
Garrison's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4,325
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
You people talk as though all France and Britain and Soviet Russia had to do was attack Germany over their treatment of the Jews and Czechs, without mentioning that there are genocides going on in the world now which are never mentioned on this forum. There was quite a formidable obstacle to Germany being attacked at the time, besides the Luftwaffe, called the Siegfried line, which was a sort of German Maginot line:

https://m.warhistoryonline.com/world...fortified.html
The kindest conclusion is you posted the above in the wrong thread.
__________________
So I've started a blog about my writing. Check it out at: http://fourth-planet-problem.blogspot.com/
And my first book is on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077W322FX
Garrison is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th May 2018, 07:33 AM   #312
SpitfireIX
Illuminator
 
SpitfireIX's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
Posts: 4,446
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
<snip of irrelevant diatribe>

There was quite a formidable obstacle to Germany being attacked at the time, besides the Luftwaffe, called the Siegfried line . . .

The West Wall was anything but formidable in 1938. From The Siegfried Line: The German Defense of the West Wall, September-December 1944, by Samuel W. Mitcham, Jr. (retired professor of history and former US Army officer), p. 4:
On August 4, 1938, at the urging of General Beck, Brauchitsch called a conference of army and corps commanders in Berlin. Here General Adam [commander of Army Group 2, holding the Wall] told the generals that the West Wall was totally inadequate for its mission and was only partially manned. It could not hold out for long. . . .

After lunch, the dictator spoke for three hours. He told the officers that the French could not penetrate the West Wall. He was interrupted and contradicted by Gen. of Infantry Gustav von Wietersheim, the chief of staff of Army Group 2, and the senior officer present, who repeated Adam's assessment of the situation and his conclusion that the the West Wall could not be held for three weeks against a major French attack. Hitler immediately flew into a rage and called the generals defeatists and scoundrels.
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
. . . which was a sort of German Maginot line . . .

Mitcham, p. 7:
By the time Hitler's generals were ready to invade France the following spring, the West Wall extended more than 390 miles, from Cleve to Weil am Rhein on the Swiss frontier. Although not impressive when compared to the French Maginot Line, it included more than 18,000 bunkers and tank traps.
Note that this was after an additional 18 months of construction.

__________________
Handy responses to conspiracy theorists' claims:
1) "I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question." --Charles Babbage
2) "This isn't right. This isn't even wrong." --Wolfgang Pauli
3) "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." --Inigo Montoya

Last edited by SpitfireIX; 7th May 2018 at 07:45 AM. Reason: tpyo
SpitfireIX is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th May 2018, 07:41 AM   #313
Garrison
Illuminator
 
Garrison's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4,325
Originally Posted by SpitfireIX View Post
After lunch, the dictator spoke for three hours. He told the officers that the French could not penetrate the West Wall. He was interrupted and contradicted by Gen. of Infantry Gustav von Wietersheim, the chief of staff of Army Group 2, and the senior officer present, who repeated Adam's assessment of the situation and his conclusion that the the West Wall could not be held for three weeks against a major French attack. Hitler immediately flew into a rage and called the generals defeatists and scoundrels.
And this being 1938 the Generals still had the spine to tell Hitler he was wrong to his face and enough power to get away with it.
__________________
So I've started a blog about my writing. Check it out at: http://fourth-planet-problem.blogspot.com/
And my first book is on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077W322FX
Garrison is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th May 2018, 08:49 AM   #314
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
And this being 1938 the Generals still had the spine to tell Hitler he was wrong to his face and enough power to get away with it.
To be precise: this was 1938, one month before Munich.
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th May 2018, 09:05 AM   #315
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
You people talk as though all France and Britain and Soviet Russia had to do was attack Germany over their treatment of the Jews and Czechs, without mentioning that there are genocides going on in the world now which are never mentioned on this forum.
"Who talks about the Armenians these days?" - A. Hitler

What sense does this whataboutism make, especially from someone who regularly posts things that are most charitably called "casual racism/antisemitism". Of course, if you want to discuss other genocides, you're free to open threads on that. Interestingly, many people these days do talk about the Armenians; e.g., last month, Dutch parliament passed a motion recognizing it as a genocide.

I'm also at a loss why you lump the Czechs and the Jews in one sentence. Their cases are quite different, and the case we're primarily discussing here is that UK and France didn't defend the territorial integrity of their ally, Czechoslovakia, by giving away Sudetenland at Munich. The territorial integrity of an ally is a long-standing reason for going to war, see the Gulf War (1990/1991) for a more recent example; and the UK and France in Munich dropped the ball on that one.

Genocide, what happened to the Jews, has unfortunately never been a reason in international politics for going to war. The Rwandan genocide is a recent example in case: Clinton refused to support Dalllaire's request for more troops, and at the first inconvenience, the Belgian UN troops pulled out.
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2018, 05:44 AM   #316
caveman1917
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 5,821
Happy Victory Day!

__________________
"Ideas are also weapons." - Subcomandante Marcos
"We must devastate the avenues where the wealthy live." - Lucy Parsons
"Let us therefore trust the eternal Spirit which destroys and annihilates only because it is the unfathomable and eternal source of all life. The passion for destruction is a creative passion, too!" - Mikhail Bakunin
caveman1917 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2018, 02:05 PM   #317
dudalb
Penultimate Amazing
 
dudalb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 40,180
Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
The Maginot Line worked as designed - it forced the Nazis to take the long way around. Then they made a crazy gambit that paid off.
Problem was that the Maginot line cost so much, that France did not have enough money to modernize their army to meet the German attack through the Low Countries.
Fact is, the France was totally unprepared for modern warfare in 1940. They suffered from a horrid case of "Victor's Disease". And then you had the political situation in France,with the "better Hitler then Blum" mentality.
And when it came to actualy military doctrine..how to use your forces in combat,the French Army seems to have made every wrong choice possible. I give you there use of Armor.
__________________
Pacifism is a shifty doctrine under which a man accepts the benefits of the social group without being willing to pay - and claims a halo for his dishonesty.

Robert Heinlein.

Last edited by dudalb; 9th May 2018 at 02:14 PM.
dudalb is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2018, 02:28 PM   #318
lobosrul5
Muse
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 955
Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Problem was that the Maginot line cost so much, that France did not have enough money to modernize their army to meet the German attack through the Low Countries.
Fact is, the France was totally unprepared for modern warfare in 1940. They suffered from a horrid case of "Victor's Disease". And then you had the political situation in France,with the "better Hitler then Blum" mentality.
And when it came to actualy military doctrine..how to use your forces in combat,the French Army seems to have made every wrong choice possible. I give you there use of Armor.
Actually, I've come to the conclusion that it was a pretty good use of funds. France's biggest problem after WW1 was manpower. Nazi Germany had some 75% more people in 1939 than France. Once you throw in Italian manpower, which they knew was a potential enemy, they were in serious trouble if another WW1 style war started. Where they failed was not bringing the low countries into the alliance, spreading their tanks too thin, and well just generally bad leadership. Had Belgium been in the alliance, some halfway decent fortification in the Ardennes prevents an armored thrust, Germany loses the campaign. Or one decent reserve armored corps and De Gaule's counterattack is successful. The 1st and 10th Panzer Divisions are destroyed... Germany loses.

Last edited by lobosrul5; 9th May 2018 at 02:33 PM.
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2018, 02:39 PM   #319
Garrison
Illuminator
 
Garrison's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4,325
Originally Posted by lobosrul5 View Post
Actually, I've come to the conclusion that it was a pretty good use of funds. France's biggest problem after WW1 was manpower. Nazi Germany had some 75% more people in 1939 than France. Once you through in Italian manpower, which they knew was a potential enemy, they were in serious trouble if another WW1 style war started. Where they failed was not bringing the low countries into an alliance, spreading their tanks too thin, and well just generally bad leadership. Had Belgium been in the alliance, some halfway decent fortification in the Ardennes prevents an armored thrust, Germany loses the campaign. Or one decent reserve armored corps and De Gaule's counterattack is successful. The 1st and 10th Panzer Divisions are destroyed... Germany loses.
There's also the fact that the French did have decent forces in the Ardennes, but moved them to support operations in Belgium when the original German plan of attack leaked. If those formations had stayed in place, or the Germans stuck to the original plan their attack would likely have failed. Had it done so history would probably put Hitler in the same category as Mussolini, Stalin on the other hand would still be responsible for mass death even without WWII.
__________________
So I've started a blog about my writing. Check it out at: http://fourth-planet-problem.blogspot.com/
And my first book is on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077W322FX
Garrison is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 10th May 2018, 06:29 AM   #320
Craig B
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 22,458
Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
There's also the fact that the French did have decent forces in the Ardennes, but moved them to support operations in Belgium when the original German plan of attack leaked. If those formations had stayed in place, or the Germans stuck to the original plan their attack would likely have failed. Had it done so history would probably put Hitler in the same category as Mussolini, Stalin on the other hand would still be responsible for mass death even without WWII.
Of course that's right. Stalin's victims were mainly his own subjects, while Hitler's were residents of countries he invaded.

If Hitler's invasion career had been curtailed, his opportunity to commit murder would have been reduced, but Stalin's would have remained the same. In that case Stalin would without question have killed more that Hitler. But that's not how things worked out.
Craig B is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » History, Literature, and the Arts

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:32 AM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.