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Thread: Stalin guilty for the war

  1. #31
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Chevan View Post
    i subscribe,nice worlds Although our "franсo-phile" Nick may not to agree.
    I jast have to add more. The French politicans were totally untrustworthy. We have an triple-side agreement signed with France and Chehoslovakia in 1935.This agreement gives the guaranties to Chehoslovakia against the external invasion ( mind German) and was planned as the political barrier against German's expansions to the East. But in 1938 the Frace suddenly has shoked Stalin- when Hitler clamed the Chehoslovakia the France not just "forgot" about signed previously agreements , but even has enforced the Edward Behes ( the chech president) to admit all the nazis territorial demands. In result the Hitler got all the chehoslovakia ..for free and now Germany is getting the major industry and military power of Europe at once.Plus the way to Poland and Russia was opened. After that deal, i guess, Stalin finally comes to conclusion - no more deals with France and Britain ( which he believed stood behind the "dastard" Frech policy) . So we comes to the shamefull Molotov-ribbentrop pact.
    But more seriously, why would you say I disagree? BTW, all nations had assclowns in their political and military ranks. If Stalin didn't trust the French anymore, perhaps rightly, he sure trusted Hitler right up until his panzers and Landsers were pouring over the Soviet fronts...

  2. #32
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Chevan View Post
    who know? you might be civilian until the uncle sam will have again wanted you
    Note, with sort of shit the hollowod propogand feeds you...
    Nope! I'm too old. Strictly Homeguard material now.

    Oh God, that film sounded awful when it came out. The original script had the Chinese invading the U.S. rather than, chuckle, the North Koreans. But the producers were pussies and afraid of pissing off their Chinese market so they made a completely laughably implausible piece of shit rather than a slightly less implausible piece of shit film...


    WOLVERINES! Die you commie bastards!
    Last edited by Nickdfresh; 09-21-2013 at 11:48 AM.

  3. #33
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Nickdfresh View Post
    The very term 'Methodical Battle" implies a slow, localized and intricate unfolding of the battle, a notion that was obsolete in the age of reliable automotive transport as you correctly point out.
    Actually, I'm not so sure about that - rather I'd say that it involved all arms working together and well co-ordinated. Given the technology of 1918 (and indeed what the French had in 1940), that was necessarily slow. The solution wasn't to jettison the doctrine, however, but to speed up the communication. I'd actually go so far as to suggest that this doctrine is closer to modern combined-arms doctrine than what the Germans were using.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nickdfresh View Post
    Didn't Gamelin not even have one in his HQ for fear of SIGNIT OPSEC!?
    He had no radios, but I don't think that was the reason - he didn't have any telephones either!
    I have neither the time nor the inclination to differentiate between the incompetent and the merely unfortunate - Curtis E LeMay

  4. #34
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Rising Sun* View Post
    Might I, with some trepidation as not a close student of the European War, suggest that in WWII the Germans succeeded in their so-called blitzkreig to the west in the first stage of that War by the then novel process of primarily armoured and mechanized infantry warfare, rather than the much slower and tactically different infantry supported tank attacks in the closing stages of WWI which developed new tactics for the defeat of static and entrenched troops and artillery. Lesser minds in the English and French forces were, as usual, thinking about fighting the last war so far as tanks and entrenched positions were concerned, which produced the Maginot Line.

    The 'blitzkreig' wasn't something which quite fitted the notions of infantry and fort / redoubt based thinking which produced the various fortifications which were easily bypassed and or overrun by German armour.

    Nor was the use of armour in its own right as a spear rather than supporting the infantry as the spear.
    I wouldn't say that's true at all. The Maginot line has had a bad press - it was always intended to enable the French to economise on men defending that frontier, and to force the Germans to come through Belgium. In that, it worked perfectly (although probably absorbing more men than intended - the interval divisions could probably have been made part of a more general reserve than they were) - the Germans did come through Belgium.

    The French also had the strongest tank forces in Europe, and arguably possessed the best tank in the world at the time (Somua S.35). Unfortunately, their tactics were poor and their best divisions were in the wrong place. The BEF were also the only fully mechanised army in the world - indeed, during the invasion they saw a lot of German Army horses with British Army brand marks - having been sold to them in the late 1930s as the British mechanised.
    That's the premise of the story I'm writing - instead of committing to the Dyle-Breda plan, Gamelin keeps First Army in reserve around Amiens. Instead of the battle being a disaster for France, it's a disaster for everybody...
    I have neither the time nor the inclination to differentiate between the incompetent and the merely unfortunate - Curtis E LeMay

  5. #35
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Nickdfresh View Post
    ...If Stalin didn't trust the French anymore, perhaps rightly, he sure trusted Hitler right up until his panzers and Landsers were pouring over the Soviet fronts...
    What makes us to think Stalin actually trusted Hitler?
    Otherwise he didn't order to concentrate 100+ of soviet infantry deivisions on the Soviet-German border since mid 1940, accurate when Hitler ordered to start "Barbarossa" plan.

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  6. #36
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Nickdfresh View Post
    Nope! I'm too old. Strictly Homeguard material now.
    You stil migh hope to be an ... paramilitary partisan, blowed up the chinese/korean trains in homeland
    Oh God, that film sounded awful when it came out. The original script had the Chinese invading the U.S. rather than, chuckle, the North Koreans. But the producers were pussies and afraid of pissing off their Chinese market so they made a completely laughably implausible piece of shit rather than a slightly less implausible piece of shit film...
    But those produces still didn't fear to lose a profit in russian market , entering in this implausible piece of shit the "russian ultranationalists" I'm just puzzled , how those nutfa..rs in hollowood dream to tie the N.korea and russian nationalists if the first agenda of russian nationalists are the fight of "yellows" !!
    WOLVERINES! Die you commie bastards!
    Oh , seems that matter a classic that never dies

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  7. #37
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by pdf27 View Post
    Actually, I'm not so sure about that - rather I'd say that it involved all arms working together and well co-ordinated. Given the technology of 1918 (and indeed what the French had in 1940), that was necessarily slow. The solution wasn't to jettison the doctrine, however, but to speed up the communication. I'd actually go so far as to suggest that this doctrine is closer to modern combined-arms doctrine than what the Germans were using.
    I don't disagree with your last point fundamentally. The problem was that the French endemically viewed warfare as a localized matter of a static frontage incrementally changing, not in terms of rapid breakthroughs or battles of annihilation, which is why things were to proceed slowly. Remember, they were also obsessed with conserving manpower and keeping casualties down as well. There are lots of hints of the problematic system. For instance, French officers were trained to behind their troops in bunkers rather than leading from the front as did the Germans. The French felt that this prevented leadership casualties and rash, emotive decision making based on the sights of blood and suffering. The German notion of "mission to tactics" held quite the opposite. The Heer did in fact suffer some horrendous junior and even senior officer losses, but their decision cycle was not only much faster, but more realistic and based directly on the tactical situation.

    Another anecdote I've read is that the French medical system essentially broke down with the rapid pace and average French casualties suffered higher than expected death rates because the hospital system could not cope with the pace of events...


    He had no radios, but I don't think that was the reason - he didn't have any telephones either!
    I heard something about a telephone a couple of miles from his HQ? I think that was his main excuse...

  8. #38
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by pdf27 View Post
    I wouldn't say that's true at all. The Maginot line has had a bad press - it was always intended to enable the French to economise on men defending that frontier, and to force the Germans to come through Belgium. In that, it worked perfectly (although probably absorbing more men than intended - the interval divisions could probably have been made part of a more general reserve than they were) - the Germans did come through Belgium.
    Then why didn't the French defeat the Germans coming through Belgium in accordance with the French plan?

    And, more obviously, why didn't the French make an arrangement which avoided Belgium, quite reasonably when Belgium was on a hiding to nothing, deciding to save itself which then exposed the French to defeat? What sort of strategic and or military idiot creates a magnificent and supposedly impregnable line of defence to funnel an attack into a neighbour when that neighbour lacks the ability and neighbourly affection to the point of self-sacrifice to defend that end of the line, which allows the enemy to bypass the magnificent and supposedly impregnable line of defence?

    Quote Originally Posted by pdf27 View Post
    The French also had the strongest tank forces in Europe, and arguably possessed the best tank in the world at the time (Somua S.35). Unfortunately, their tactics were poor and their best divisions were in the wrong place.
    What were the poor tactics which allowed France, as the strongest tank force in Europe, to lose?

    Why were France's best divisions in the wrong place if the French were so successful in diverting the Germans through Belgium and it was all going according to plan?

    Don't those questions suggest that, along with carefully funnelling the Germans around the Maginot Line and being unprepared for the consequences, the French planning was somewhat deficient?
    ..
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  9. #39
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Rising Sun* View Post
    Then why didn't the French defeat the Germans coming through Belgium in accordance with the French plan?
    Well when the Germans turned up where the French expected them, it was roughly even. Indeed, Hannut and Gembloux could be described as French victories. The problem is, the French were expecting them to come through northern Belgium, and they came through the south of the country.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rising Sun* View Post
    And, more obviously, why didn't the French make an arrangement which avoided Belgium, quite reasonably when Belgium was on a hiding to nothing, deciding to save itself which then exposed the French to defeat?
    Prior to Munich, the Belgians and French were allies and so the French were expecting to fight the Germans in the Ardennes and along the Albert Canal line. When the British and French betrayed the Czechs, Albert III got cold feet, and decided he was better off cosying up to Hitler. In the process, he completely cut the French out of his military planning, to the extent that they didn't know that the defences on the Dyle line didn't even exist.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rising Sun* View Post
    What sort of strategic and or military idiot creates a magnificent and supposedly impregnable line of defence to funnel an attack into a neighbour when that neighbour lacks the ability and neighbourly affection to the point of self-sacrifice to defend that end of the line, which allows the enemy to bypass the magnificent and supposedly impregnable line of defence?
    The Maginot line pre-dated the end of the Belgian alliance by some years. When that alliance ended, the French rapidly started building defences along the Meuse. Problem is, they were trying to do a lot else at the same time and were also trying to build up a strong field army in northern Belgium. As a result, the defences around Sedan were too weak for the job they faced (although at places like Monthermé the Germans were stopped dead for some time).

    Quote Originally Posted by Rising Sun* View Post
    What were the poor tactics which allowed France, as the strongest tank force in Europe, to lose?
    Dispersing them in penny packets, so that whenever the Germans turned up they outnumbered the French tanks locally.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rising Sun* View Post
    Why were France's best divisions in the wrong place if the French were so successful in diverting the Germans through Belgium and it was all going according to plan?
    Wrong bit of Belgium. Gamelin essentially bet his country that the Germans would come through northern Belgium as they had in 1914 - and to be fair to him that was the German plan until early 1940. Problem is he committed everything to it, including what should have been his reserve. When the Germans turned up elsewhere, he couldn't adapt fast enough.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rising Sun* View Post
    Don't those questions suggest that, along with carefully funnelling the Germans around the Maginot Line and being unprepared for the consequences, the French planning was somewhat deficient?
    No, they suggest it was wildly deficient. The long run grand strategy was right (funnel them north into Belgium to fight them as far from France as possible, and guarantee British involvement). The rest of it was awful though.
    I have neither the time nor the inclination to differentiate between the incompetent and the merely unfortunate - Curtis E LeMay

  10. #40
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by pdf27 View Post
    Actually, I'm not so sure about that - rather I'd say that it involved all arms working together and well co-ordinated. Given the technology of 1918 (and indeed what the French had in 1940), that was necessarily slow. The solution wasn't to jettison the doctrine, however, but to speed up the communication. I'd actually go so far as to suggest that this doctrine is closer to modern combined-arms doctrine than what the Germans were using.


    He had no radios, but I don't think that was the reason - he didn't have any telephones either!
    My recollection is that the French high command in 1940 was carefully ensconced in a centre remote from the battlefields with limited communications, and intentionally so, which caused a predictable failure to appreciate the situation on a rapidly moving and fluid battlefield and to deal with it.

    My reasonably detailed knowledge is limited mainly to some Australian commanders to a slight degree in WWI and to a greater degree in Australian and American commanders in WWII in the Pacific. In every case in those wars (Monash in WWI, Blamey and MacArthur in WWII) the failure of senior commanders to go forward to appreciate the ground (the usually excellent Monash in aspects of assaulting the Hindenburg Line in WWI and Blamey and MacArthur in Papua - New Guinea on countless occasions from August 1942 onwards) resulted in tactical failures and or unnecessary casualties under pressure from ill-informed senior commanders remote from the battlefields when those commanders were, to a greater or lesser degree, pursuing wider personal motives to retain or advance their own positions.
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  11. #41
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Chevan View Post
    What makes us to think Stalin actually trusted Hitler?
    Otherwise he didn't order to concentrate 100+ of soviet infantry deivisions on the Soviet-German border since mid 1940, accurate when Hitler ordered to start "Barbarossa" plan.
    I think he trusted that he was smarter than Hitler, and refused to believe he had been bamboozled.

    He forbid his commanders to go on alert lest upsetting the Germans until at the very last moment and it was too late...

  12. #42
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Nickdfresh View Post
    I think he trusted that he was smarter than Hitler, and refused to believe he had been bamboozled.
    Hitler was smart? Can you believe the smart guy will start a two-front campain which he couln't win on definition.At least Stalin was enough smart to unite with former enemyes and join the alliance.
    He forbid his commanders to go on alert lest upsetting the Germans until at the very last moment and it was too late...
    He forbid them to be caught on german provocation, coz it was clear the Hitler was searching the pretex to attack. Yet don't forget the US made the same mistake( specially or not) - you too been caught by Japaneses in PErl Harbour.

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  13. #43
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Rising Sun* View Post
    Might I, with some trepidation as not a close student of the European War, suggest that in WWII the Germans succeeded in their so-called blitzkreig to the west in the first stage of that War by the then novel process of primarily armoured and mechanized infantry warfare, rather than the much slower and tactically different infantry supported tank attacks in the closing stages of WWI which developed new tactics for the defeat of static and entrenched troops and artillery. Lesser minds in the English and French forces were, as usual, thinking about fighting the last war so far as tanks and entrenched positions were concerned, which produced the Maginot Line.

    The 'blitzkreig' wasn't something which quite fitted the notions of infantry and fort / redoubt based thinking which produced the various fortifications which were easily bypassed and or overrun by German armour.

    Nor was the use of armour in its own right as a spear rather than supporting the infantry as the spear.
    I think the Germans and the French/British were not as far apart as has typically been accepted in the past. All of them had different classes of tanks and indeed the Germans also assault guns solely for infantry support. The desperation of the situation forced the Germans to essentially design what was a giant end around coup de main attack through the Ardennes. The Maginot was bypassed because:

    The French hadn't finished constructing the portions which were to border the Ardennes and Belgium.

    The Belgian forts such as Eben-Emael were supposed to have held out for at least a week giving time for the Belgian Army to retreat to a redoubt and maintain their gov't while maximizing German casualties. Emael fell after only a few hours because of specialized commando type sappers flying in on gliders in a daring surprise attack upsetting the entire lynchpin of their defense. If the Belgians had been more alert with more anti-aircraft guns, it could have been very different. The situation gave no respite to the Allied forces and the Germans were able to sow maximum confusion and sap the fuel reserves of the British and French forces sortieing into Belgium. The Allies also wasted much of their air forces sortieing over Belgium while much of the Luftwaffe was massed over the Ardennes. Despite propaganda for public consumption, neither the French nor Belgians had any illusions about fortified areas stopping the Germans, even the Maginot would eventually be compromised. They were to give time to mobilize and the real error was not fortifying the Meuse River Valley and Sedan enough, and manning it with second rate troops because of the belief that the Ardennes Forest acted as a natural barrier. Bigger, better, and more numerous fortifications inside the forest along the access roads almost certainly would have severally disrupted sickle-cut and the vehicles were in a very vulnerable traffic jam and unable to maneuver the logging roads were essentially funneling choke points. The belief that major rivers took one to two weeks to cross in anger as military theology was also a major hindrance to the French realizing the unfolding disaster quickly enough as they assumed the Germans would still be pinned down for a bit if the guessed wrong about Belgium.

    As for France, the panzers were often far out ahead of the infantry but were only encountering fracturing resistance for the most part after some desperate early battles like Stonne. Once they had broken through the Sedan, the French had only piecemeal units to stop them with which were easily bypassed and their tanks were in the famous phrase "in penny packets" and wasted in small numbers against the panzer formations. There were cases where panzer troops had almost no infantry with them. They typically bypassed areas of resistance, then German infantry would follow along and essentially lay a mini-siege until the French forces were out of ammo. Towards the end, too little too late, General Weygand worked out a "hedge-hog defense" where stores and provisions were set in fortified towns and they were able to hold out and tie down large formations of German infantry for extended periods and interfere with the movements of panzers. It worked more or less. The problem was it essentially didn't matter at that point because there was no armored strategic reserve to counter attack with. The second German plan of Fall Rot was sort of part two, and initiated a more conventional infantry and artillery battle to crush what remained of organized French resistance. Again, they met with some setbacks and fierce resistance in the hedgerows of the bocage.

    Some say that the panzers outrunning the infantry is partially what allowed Dunkirk to be evacuated, because the areas around the port were marshy and tanks typically need infantry support for extended urban fighting...
    Last edited by Nickdfresh; 09-21-2013 at 04:27 PM.

  14. #44
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by pdf27 View Post
    ...
    That's the premise of the story I'm writing - instead of committing to the Dyle-Breda plan, Gamelin keeps First Army in reserve around Amiens. Instead of the battle being a disaster for France, it's a disaster for everybody...
    I think this quite likely if that's the case...

  15. #45
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    Default Re: Stalin guilty for the war

    Quote Originally Posted by Rising Sun* View Post
    Then why didn't the French defeat the Germans coming through Belgium in accordance with the French plan?

    And, more obviously, why didn't the French make an arrangement which avoided Belgium, quite reasonably when Belgium was on a hiding to nothing, deciding to save itself which then exposed the French to defeat? What sort of strategic and or military idiot creates a magnificent and supposedly impregnable line of defence to funnel an attack into a neighbour when that neighbour lacks the ability and neighbourly affection to the point of self-sacrifice to defend that end of the line, which allows the enemy to bypass the magnificent and supposedly impregnable line of defence?



    What were the poor tactics which allowed France, as the strongest tank force in Europe, to lose?

    Why were France's best divisions in the wrong place if the French were so successful in diverting the Germans through Belgium and it was all going according to plan?

    Don't those questions suggest that, along with carefully funnelling the Germans around the Maginot Line and being unprepared for the consequences, the French planning was somewhat deficient?
    I think pdf covered it well and I agree with most of what he says, so I'll add this: You're thinking logically sir! In pure military logic, you are correct. The problem was that Gamelin had many political constraints on him. It would have been unacceptable for the French to simply abandon Belgium and the low countries. Gamelin also wanted to insure that he had access to the Dutch road networks and bridges and needed to secure them for what he eventually envisioned as a "grand" offensive in 1941 where a built up Anglo-French force would roll into Germany in a plan not dissimilar to Monty's Market Garden operation.

    Also, one thing that needs to be discussed in conjunction with the Maginot Line is the French imperative to keep casualties down while maximizing the ones on the Germans because of their lower birth rate necessitated this in a war of attrition.

    The Germans did send some armor into Northern Belgium to hold the Allies there and pin them down, the metaphor most often used is the 'cape and sword' matador reference with France being the charging bull at the cape and the Ardennes offensive being the sword in the gut of France...
    Last edited by Nickdfresh; 09-21-2013 at 04:43 PM.

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