Author Topic: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?  (Read 2768 times)

Offline CubaLibre

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Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« on: June 29, 2012, 05:36:03 AM »
Did the Allies absolutely need the help of the Soviets to beat Hitler? Personally I always felt it would have been useful to let Hitler and Stalin beat each other to a pulp, until whichever side won was too weak and tired to be of any effect. Was this feasible, or was there something else at work which required cooperation with the Soviets?

Offline mdgiles

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2012, 08:45:25 AM »
Did the Allies absolutely need the help of the Soviets to beat Hitler? Personally I always felt it would have been useful to let Hitler and Stalin beat each other to a pulp, until whichever side won was too weak and tired to be of any effect. Was this feasible, or was there something else at work which required cooperation with the Soviets?
Nothing that required it, just a vast network of Soviet agents in the West that were demanding it. Oh yes, and Hitler's stupidity in declaring war on the US. I wonder what would have been the effect if on the day the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, the British government had sued for peace based on a return to 1939 borders in the west.  Of course the Nazis would have accepted, since that peace left them all of central Europe, and a free hand to deal with the Soviets. Why, they could have had the first American oil shipments arriving at German ports within weeks, and German (and Soviet) troops riding to war in "deuce and a half's" within months.
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Offline mdgiles

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2012, 09:05:35 AM »
You know it occurs to me, about the British and Gasmans being at peace, that if the Nazis were really smart they would have contracted out their tank building to some US firms. You know the Americans would have streamlined the process, along with correcting any flaws in the automotive side of the tank. Oh and also stealing the designs. With Britain at peace with Germany, they could have shipped them right across the Atlantic. Meanwhile on the west coast, Soviet ships could have been picking up cargoes to go to Vladivostok. If we played this right, we could have kept both fighting until they collapsed in exhaustion.
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tbone0106

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2012, 09:31:18 AM »
Did the Allies absolutely need the help of the Soviets to beat Hitler? Personally I always felt it would have been useful to let Hitler and Stalin beat each other to a pulp, until whichever side won was too weak and tired to be of any effect. Was this feasible, or was there something else at work which required cooperation with the Soviets?
I think it was very much the other way around -- the Soviets needed our help, and badly. Remember that until Barbarossa kicked off in June 1941, Hitler and Stalin were buddies, at least on paper. In fact, that relationship was the determining factor in the timing of Hitler's war of aggression. He waited until he had a treaty with Stalin before he ordered troops into Poland in 1939. For his benevolence, Stalin received eastern Poland as a prize, something he no doubt treasured as something of a buffer between him and his "buddy."

But the German onslaught in June 1941 pretty much caught the Soviets with their pants around their ankles. They were not in any way prepared for invasion. For months, it was all they could do to retreat faster than the Wehrmacht was advancing. The Soviet air force was a joke, their tanks were obsolete and no match for the German panzers. Hell, they didn't even have enough rifles and ammunition for the infantry. (The Lend-Lease 1903 Springfield rifles they eventually got were a godsend.) The Soviet army was mostly raw recruits, largely the result of mandatory service rules and short enlistments.

On the other side, the German divisions behind the panzers were battle-hardened veterans, conquerors of Belgium, France, Luxembourg, Poland, Norway, Holland, Czechoslovakia, and more. They came with the finest armor and most advanced warplanes in the world at that time.

No, Stalin needed us a hell of a lot more than we needed him.

Offline CubaLibre

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2012, 09:55:50 AM »
You know it occurs to me, about the British and Gasmans being at peace, that if the Nazis were really smart they would have contracted out their tank building to some US firms. You know the Americans would have streamlined the process, along with correcting any flaws in the automotive side of the tank. Oh and also stealing the designs. With Britain at peace with Germany, they could have shipped them right across the Atlantic. Meanwhile on the west coast, Soviet ships could have been picking up cargoes to go to Vladivostok. If we played this right, we could have kept both fighting until they collapsed in exhaustion.
I wonder what the course of the past 60 years would have looked like had that been the case. Would Leninism be a bad joke?

tbone0106

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2012, 06:44:09 PM »
You know it occurs to me, about the British and Gasmans being at peace, that if the Nazis were really smart they would have contracted out their tank building to some US firms. You know the Americans would have streamlined the process, along with correcting any flaws in the automotive side of the tank. Oh and also stealing the designs. With Britain at peace with Germany, they could have shipped them right across the Atlantic. Meanwhile on the west coast, Soviet ships could have been picking up cargoes to go to Vladivostok. If we played this right, we could have kept both fighting until they collapsed in exhaustion.
Okay, you have me confused. When could this scenario possibly take place?

Offline mdgiles

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2012, 06:19:57 AM »
Okay, you have me confused. When could this scenario possibly take place?
See my point above about the British suing for peace on the day of Pearl Harbor. Were that to happen there is no reason for Germany to declare war on the US, two days later, in hopes of gaining Japan's help against the Soviets. With peace in the West, and neutral France and the Low Countries as a buffer. They can now move those troops east to deal with the Soviets. Along with the Italian and German troops fighting in Africa, and the troops in Norway. In addition, with peace, they would now have unfettered access to British and American products. Oh course, this is sort of hard on the Japanese because it means that not only would they be the focus of attention for America, but British ships that were in the Atlantic and Med, and troops that were in Britain and North Africa, are now on their way to the Far East. I would guess that the fly in the ointment of this scenario, is Churchill and all the communist agents and sympathizers in the British and American governments.
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tbone0106

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2012, 08:56:22 AM »
See my point above about the British suing for peace on the day of Pearl Harbor. Were that to happen there is no reason for Germany to declare war on the US, two days later, in hopes of gaining Japan's help against the Soviets. With peace in the West, and neutral France and the Low Countries as a buffer. They can now move those troops east to deal with the Soviets. Along with the Italian and German troops fighting in Africa, and the troops in Norway. In addition, with peace, they would now have unfettered access to British and American products. Oh course, this is sort of hard on the Japanese because it means that not only would they be the focus of attention for America, but British ships that were in the Atlantic and Med, and troops that were in Britain and North Africa, are now on their way to the Far East. I would guess that the fly in the ointment of this scenario, is Churchill and all the communist agents and sympathizers in the British and American governments.

Well, I think that's a pretty fantastic scenario. Germany received its first military defeat in the skies over England, whether they liked to admit it or not. Hitler did not dismantle Sea Lion with a happy face. To imagine Churchill's government would even make such an offer after whipping "unstoppable" Nazi Germany -- and abandon Poland and the rest of eastern Europe in the process -- is pretty dreamy stuff.

There was certainly no love lost between Stalin and Churchill, but Churchill knew the only hope for Europe -- including Great Britain -- was to get the United States into the war with both feet, and effectively abandoning the Soviet Union, into which we were already pumping billions of dollars worth of Lend-Lease hardware, would hardly have been the way to go about it. Hitler's bizarre declaration of war on the U.S. was one of the best gifts Churchill ever received.

To imagine that Germany (Hitler) would willingly give up Norway, the Netherlands, Denmark, Luxembourg, Belgium, and especially hated France is a bit farther than I can stretch my imagination. They had been relatively cheap conquests, but they had not been free (well, maybe Luxembourg). What would keep "neutral France" neutral, if not troops and/or a puppet government? Militarily, Hitler had been a corporal, not a general, and his ideas of military strategy proved disastrous later in the war. (By this time, he had already made what I think was his cardinal mistake -- launching Barbarossa. Stalingrad was right around the corner.) But his troops were already capturing American rifles and the Luftwaffe was shooting down Bell P-39s. Even Hitler could figure out which side the U.S. was likely to join, and even he could visualize a seaborne invasion of Europe from the west; why else had he built the Atlantic Wall? Why then turn around and provide a "neutral" invasion beachhead the size of France?

But Hitler was nothing if not a politician, even an ideologue. War for him was a way to achieve political and ideological goals, such as Lebensraum and the Final Solution to the Jewish Question. Ceding all that territory is, I think, just about the last thing he would have done under any circumstances.

Offline mdgiles

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2012, 09:44:58 AM »
Well, I think that's a pretty fantastic scenario. Germany received its first military defeat in the skies over England, whether they liked to admit it or not. Hitler did not dismantle Sea Lion with a happy face. To imagine Churchill's government would even make such an offer after whipping "unstoppable" Nazi Germany -- and abandon Poland and the rest of eastern Europe in the process -- is pretty dreamy stuff.

There was certainly no love lost between Stalin and Churchill, but Churchill knew the only hope for Europe -- including Great Britain -- was to get the United States into the war with both feet, and effectively abandoning the Soviet Union, into which we were already pumping billions of dollars worth of Lend-Lease hardware, would hardly have been the way to go about it. Hitler's bizarre declaration of war on the U.S. was one of the best gifts Churchill ever received.

To imagine that Germany (Hitler) would willingly give up Norway, the Netherlands, Denmark, Luxembourg, Belgium, and especially hated France is a bit farther than I can stretch my imagination. They had been relatively cheap conquests, but they had not been free (well, maybe Luxembourg). What would keep "neutral France" neutral, if not troops and/or a puppet government? Militarily, Hitler had been a corporal, not a general, and his ideas of military strategy proved disastrous later in the war. (By this time, he had already made what I think was his cardinal mistake -- launching Barbarossa. Stalingrad was right around the corner.) But his troops were already capturing American rifles and the Luftwaffe was shooting down Bell P-39s. Even Hitler could figure out which side the U.S. was likely to join, and even he could visualize a seaborne invasion of Europe from the west; why else had he built the Atlantic Wall? Why then turn around and provide a "neutral" invasion beachhead the size of France?

But Hitler was nothing if not a politician, even an ideologue. War for him was a way to achieve political and ideological goals, such as Lebensraum and the Final Solution to the Jewish Question. Ceding all that territory is, I think, just about the last thing he would have done under any circumstances.
There was a "peace movement" all along in Britain. And Hitler still confidently expected the British to "come to their senses", realize their "Nordic" brotherhood with Germany and go to war against the inferior Bolshevik Slavs. As for "giving up France and the Low countries, peace with Germany would have strengthened the collaborator and Teutonophiles  in these countries, Don't forget, the Germans were able to raise military units of sympathizers out of these countries, even when they were conquered. How popular would the Germans be after an easy peace and withdrawal. And why the assumption that after being beaten so badly, the French and Low countries would have turned right around and attacked Germany. One of the reasons for their defeat was "war weariness" left over from WW1. What's in it for them, getting between the Soviets and the Germans? And so Germany let's the France and the Low countries go, did the USSR have to occupy Finland to have a voice in their affairs? Look up the term "Finlandization". Do you realize that with France and Britain neutralized, the original "Final Solution" of shipping all the Jews to Madagascar or Southwest Africa, becomes easily attainable. And the Atlantic Wall was there because Great Britain and the US were still at war with Germany. As I said, the only problem would be Churchill and the Communist agents and sympathizers in the West. You know they would start an uproar to force the West to come to the rescue of the USSR. Of course the answer to that would be to let the sympathizers  ship out as volunteer troops for which ever side they preferred.
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tbone0106

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2012, 04:24:00 PM »
There was a "peace movement" all along in Britain. And Hitler still confidently expected the British to "come to their senses", realize their "Nordic" brotherhood with Germany and go to war against the inferior Bolshevik Slavs.

Well, Adolf had his ideas and Winston had his. There was also a peace movement in the United States -- the "America Firsters" and their spinoffs -- which evaporated like morning dew on December 7, 1941.

As for "giving up France and the Low countries, peace with Germany would have strengthened the collaborator and Teutonophiles  in these countries, Don't forget, the Germans were able to raise military units of sympathizers out of these countries, even when they were conquered. How popular would the Germans be after an easy peace and withdrawal.

The Germans weren't passing out "easy peace," and it would have required a rather fantastic leap of faith to believe that they were suddenly offering such a thing. With the possible exception of Luxembourg, Germany had taken every nation in western Europe at the cost of considerable blood, some German, most not.

And why the assumption that after being beaten so badly, the French and Low countries would have turned right around and attacked Germany. One of the reasons for their defeat was "war weariness" left over from WW1.

I didn't make that assumption, or any other assumption like it. Actually, I asked a question, what's to keep "neutral France" or any other "neutral" country neutral, without the occupation troops that were, in fact, used?

What's in it for them, getting between the Soviets and the Germans? And so Germany let's the France and the Low countries go, did the USSR have to occupy Finland to have a voice in their affairs? Look up the term "Finlandization".

Here you wander a bit. On the surface of it, it's hard to imagine how The Netherlands or France, for example, could somehow have been "getting between the Soviets and the Germans." I will admit that my understanding of what the heck went on in Finland isn't all it should be, but I understand enough about it to know that it was complicated, and that is a massive understatement.  I'll have to do a bit of research to confirm my ideas on this, and I'll get back to you.

Do you realize that with France and Britain neutralized, the original "Final Solution" of shipping all the Jews to Madagascar or Southwest Africa, becomes easily attainable.

I don't think shipping the whole of European Jewry to an island or to the African subcontinent was ever a viable solution to the problem the Nazis created. I don't think they ever thought it was either.  I'm pretty sure that idea was given up early in the game, and never seriously pursued, before or after Pearl Harbor. It is fact that multiple Einsatzgruppen specifically assigned to identify and assassinate socialists, communists and Jews (along with sundry other groups, such as gypsies, homosexuals, and practically anyone involved with local government) had been attached to the forward formations of the Wehrmacht and deployed as an integral part of Barbarossa. The die had already been cast by June 1941. It awaited only the super-secret Wannsee Conference less than a year later to put the stamp of officialdom on the extermination of Europe's Jews.
 
And the Atlantic Wall was there because Great Britain and the US were still at war with Germany. As I said, the only problem would be Churchill and the Communist agents and sympathizers in the West. You know they would start an uproar to force the West to come to the rescue of the USSR. Of course the answer to that would be to let the sympathizers  ship out as volunteer troops for which ever side they preferred.

Again, you're a bit confusing to me. It's not a mystery that the Atlantic Wall was built -- not started, but vastly reinforced -- by Germany to protect the northern coast of Europe against invasion. A HUGE swath of that wall was in occupied France. It is simply beyond my ability to comprehend that a dictator who was something close to sane in 1941 -- Adolf Hitler -- would voluntarily abandon the wall and the territory behind it in order to secure an unsecured "peace" with a nation -- Great Britain -- which would never have offered such a peace in the first place.

Offline Ford289HiPo

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2012, 04:50:40 PM »
Did the Allies absolutely need the help of the Soviets to beat Hitler? Personally I always felt it would have been useful to let Hitler and Stalin beat each other to a pulp, until whichever side won was too weak and tired to be of any effect. Was this feasible, or was there something else at work which required cooperation with the Soviets?
Germany was already on it's way to ultimate defeat by the Soviets when we invaded in 1944. Germany could not match the industrial might of the USSR.
OTOH, if we didn't intervene, all of Europe could have been entirely under the thumb of Moscow.
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tbone0106

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2012, 06:19:06 PM »
Germany was already on it's way to ultimate defeat by the Soviets when we invaded in 1944. Germany could not match the industrial might of the USSR.
OTOH, if we didn't intervene, all of Europe could have been entirely under the thumb of Moscow.

Gotta disagree. Given the time and the circumstances and the balance of power, had we not intervened, the folks in Moscow -- and Copenhagen and Paris and Antwerp and the Hague and Helsinki and London could very well be speaking German today. But you need to understand that our "intervention" began long before 1944, even before Pearl Harbor and our "official" entry into the war.

Yes, the Soviets moved to consolidate their hold on eastern Europe at the end of the war, especially their share of partitioned Germany, but who could blame them? Until June 1941, the Soviets and the Germans enjoyed the peaceful terms of a non-aggression pact, the one that allowed them to essentially partition Poland (and to a lesser extent Finland). Operation Barbarossa, Hitler's unilateral and massive attack on the Soviet Union, was completely unexpected, the bone-snapping come-uppance that Stalin, honestly, deserved. But it was Germany in the aggressor role.

The Soviets had not fought a war of aggression, but rather a war of defense, defending the Motherland against the invading German hordes. It had cost them something like 20 million citizens. Most importantly, without Allied help, i.e. Lend-Lease and the opening of fronts in northern Africa, western Europe, and so on, the Soviets would never have been in a position to dictate anything to anybody.


Offline mdgiles

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Re: Allying with USSR against Hitler-was it worth it?
« Reply #12 on: July 02, 2012, 07:41:00 AM »
Quote
The Soviets had not fought a war of aggression, but rather a war of defense, defending the Motherland against the invading German hordes. It had cost them something like 20 million citizens. Most importantly, without Allied help, i.e. Lend-Lease and the opening of fronts in northern Africa, western Europe, and so on, the Soviets would never have been in a position to dictate anything to anybody.
Indeed. The Soviets and our Leftist academia don't want to recognize how much the victory in the East depended on the US. The Red army rode to victory in US trucks. And their aircraft depended upon US aviation fuel, which the Soviets couldn't refine. And their communications depended upon US telephone wire which the Soviets couldn't make. And the fact that most of the Luftwaffe was over Germany defending the Fatherland against the Allies - as opposed to over Russia where it was originally. Not to mention the thousands of 88's and millions of troops involved in air defense as opposed to blowing T-34's to metal fragments.
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