Berkeley CSUA MOTD:Entry 12624
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2021/10/17 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular
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2004/3/11 [Reference/History/WW2/Germany] UID:12624 Activity:very high 80%like:12625
3/11    Did Germany ever have a chance of winning WWII?
        \_ Not after both the USA and USSR were involved, and after the USSR
           brought the German offensive to a stop. But before that happened,
           there were many possibilities that could have led to either victory
           or a peace arrangement by Germany. Without the USSR front, against
           just USA and Britain it seems like ultimately it still would have
           come down to Germany losing the air war, unless the Japan war went
           differently.
        \_ No. While they had superior technology, US had superior production
           power and relatively unlimited raw materials. The Yanks were
           cranking out their inferior Sherman tanks at a rate of 10-20X
           greater than the superior Panzer tanks, and even though 1 Panzer
           tank could take out about 3-4 Sherman tanks, it's the overwhelming
           number that wins. Same with P47/P51 vs. ME109s, etc. Germany
           attempted cheap/fast production towards the end of the war
           like the Volksjager but by then most of the German aces were dead
           and the Hitler Youths were too young to know how to fight.
                \_ same with the Chinese army. They have inferior weapons
                   but pushed into Korea with their fearless swarm of men.
                   \_ HA.  The main problem with the Chinese army (if you
                      mean the Nationalists) wasn't equipment but leadership.
                      Read "Stilwell and the American Experience in China"
                      by Tuchman if you care.
                      \_ Stilwell has a very one-sided view of things.
                         He is a military man, but had no idea of the
                         political side of things.
                         \_ Tuchman's political analysis in the book is
                            convincing.  Chiang Kai Shek was fundamentally
                            weak.
                            \_ Chiang Kai Shek has a very weak hand to
                               play.
                               \_ If Chiang Kai Shek had been a better
                                  politician and advocated some things
                                  like land reform, he probably would
                                  have beaten Mao. He just refused
                                  to compromise.
                                  \_ fat hopes.  CKS power base was
                                     in the coastal cities.  He had
                                     tenuous control over just a
                                     small part of China, and that
                                     was before the Japanese invaded
                                     and took that away.  And never
                                     underestimate the power of the
                                     idea of communism at that point
                                     in history, especially in a
                                     peasant society like China.
                                     Stilwell wants Chiang to fight
                                     the Japanese.  That's would be
                                     a dumb move.
                                     \_ Communism is ill suited for a peasant
                                        society whether in practice or in
                                        ideology.  Mao practiced and won with
                                        something else.
                                        \_ it didn't matter.  by the
                                           time the peasants realize
                                           that, the war was long over.
                                  \_ CKS had a very small army
                                     reasonably equiped (but far
                                     inferior to the Japanese) under
                                     his control.  The rest are
                                     ragtag troops pulled off the
                                     street.  There are also
                                     some warlords / generals
                                     fighting under his banner, but
                                     the troops under these people
                                     are loyal to these people, not
                                     to CKS.  They are often
                                     from the same province, etc.,
                                     and CKS could not ignore
                                     the views and interests of
                                     these warlords / generals.
                                     Outsiders way overestimated
                                     CKS's power.
                   \_ Germans had very good weapons.  Just not enough.
           \_ if they didn't attack Russia, maybe Germany would have
              consolidated their conquests.
           \_ if the Germans delayed enough, they could have had nuclear
              weapons
              \_ Frankly, My person take is that if Nazi didn't
                 1. attack russia, and 2. killing Jews, I really think they
                 got the chance to win.  I don't know if you noticed,
                 a lot of nuclear bomb scientist are jews escaped from Nazi's
                 insanity.
                 \_ Yeah, but without their racist ideas about Jews and
                    Slavs, it wouldn't have been Nazi Germany, it would
                    have been something more rational. Something more
                    rational would not have tried to conquer the world
                    against overwhelming odds.
                    \_ if they restricted themselves to a part of Europe
                        (like Poland and France), Hitler probably would
                        have had a longer career.
        \_ Possibly.  The most interesting counterfactual here is whether
           Stalin would have attacked had Hitler not.  Hitler believed Stalin
           was going to come get him once his military machine was up and
           running.  This was one of his main reasons for going in 1941 and
           surprising the hell out of the Red Army.  Stalin would have probably
           gone after Germany if he perceived weakness.  A fully rational
           policy on the part of Hitler would have taken all of Europe west
           of Poland and east of Great Britain, and stopping there, making it
           a very tough nut for Stalin to crack.  Russians had a hell of a
           time with the Finns, and Germans would have been 10 times worse.
           On the other hand, the Russians learned a lot from the Winter War.
           However, Hitler had other obsessions (autarky, jews, bolsheviks)
           which prevented rational policy.  Hitler also wasn't very smart.
             -- ilyas
           \_ I'm glad Hitler wasn't very smart -- he attacked Russia.
              But Stalin isn't that great either.
              \_ Stalin was regarded as brilliant by everyone who had
                 much dealing with him:
                 http://www.plp.org/books/Stalin/node138.html
                 \_ Stalin was a stupid peasant.  He was, however, unusually
                    ruthless, which explains his long tenure.  When the
                    Germans invaded in 1941 he disappeared for two weeks.  The
                    common theory is that he had a breakdown, and thought it
                    was all over.  The generals eventually convinced him to
                    return and head the war effort (by this time the Germans
                    had overran most of Ukraine and killed or captured many
                    millions of Red Army soldiers).  This link cites a bunch
                    of russian generals who knew better than to say something
                    other than what they said.  Also, the progressive labor
                    party's website?  Give me a break.  Ask a russian historian
                    instead. -- ilyas
                    \_ So Ilya, would you attribute Stalingrad simply to the
                       Russian soldiers solid unwillingness to give in?
                       \_ Stalingrad was the first time Stalin let Zhukov
                          handle the operation.  Stalin's big personal growth
                          during WWII consisted of realizing he should let the
                          professionals do their job (something Hitler never
                          learned).  Russian soldiers did many heroic things
                          during WWII, even considering the monstrous
                          compulsion imposed on them by the NKVD.
                          Nevertheless, Stalingrad was an operational, rather
                          than a tactical success.  People keep talking about
                          the street fighting, but the key to the operation
                          was the pincer maneuver which surrounded Paulus.
                          This was not something the Red Army could have pulled
                          off in 1941. -- ilyas
                 \_ I wasn't talking about Stalin as a military man.
                    I was talking about his human rights record.
           \_ frankly, I don't know who is more dumb, Hitler's obsession with
              bolsheviks, or our obsessioon with communism for the next 40
              years after Hitler is defeated.
              \_ Well, both Hitler and the US had legitimate concerns about
                 communism, since it was a bit of a hegemonising swarm object.
                 However, Hitler went further (and off the deep end) than
                 good policy dictated.  Whether the US policy of containment
                 was wise, or there was a better idea is still an open
                 question.  -- ilyas
                 \_ ilya, you deleted my comment.  You bad man! --ann coulter
                    \_ Not on purpose. -- ilyas
                    \_ Use motdedit and your stuff won't get deleted (as much).
                       \_ Dunno about that.  I did use motdedit.  It still got
                          deleted.  I'm pretty sure motdedit goes in the Kool
                          Aid category.  --ann coulter
        \_ maybe, but they lost so whats the point in discussing it now?
           \_ some people are interested in topics like this.
        \_ c.f. "war on two fronts"
           \_ If they didn't attack Russia, maybe they would have
              held on to more of Europe.
        \_ Hitler went in against a Sicilian when death was on the line.
           -geordan
        \_ Why so much random censorship on this thread?
        \_ Yes. Forget all of the BS about Russia and the second front. If
           Japan had managed to put down an invasion force in Hawaii, the
           US would never have approved a "Europe first policy."
           \_ very interesting thought.
2021/10/17 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular
10/17   

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www.plp.org/books/Stalin/node138.html
In fact, the men who had to endure this monster day after day for those four terrible war years offer a radically different picture of Stalin. Here is how Zhukov described his master: Though slight in stature and undistinguished in outward appearance, Stalin was nevertheless an imposing figure. Free of affectation and mannerisms, he won the heart of everyone he spoke to. His visitors were invariable struck by his candour and his uninhibited manner of speaking, and impressed by his ability to express his thoughts clearly, his inborn analytical turn of mind, his erudition and retentive memory, all of which made even old hands and big shots brace themselves and be on the alert. Stalin knew not only all the commanders of the fronts and armies, and there were over a hundred of them, but also several commanders of corps and divisions, as well as the top officials of the Peoples Defence Commissariat, not to speak of the top personnel of the central and regional Party and state apparatus.