Allied aid to the Soviets was ongoing as of 1940 (to build them up for an eventual war) and continued into 1945.
Why would the western allies send aid to a country that invaded half of Poland?
Lend lease started in 1940 to help anyone who was fighting the Germans, which did not include the Soviet Union till the middle of 1941, and even then decisions about extending lend lease to include the Soviet Union were not made till August or September. Most of the first material to arrive in the Soviet Union was indeed material from the 1940 period as it was stuff the Brits weren't using so they passed it on to the Soviets.
They certainly accepted it, but it was hardly critical to their survival.
The problem with the western view was Soviet secrecy... for most of the post war period most in the west knew of the eastern front from west german military men... who claimed it was numbers and the winter and hitlers orders that prevented them from winning in the East. All the same ignoring that the Soviets had to fight in the same winter conditions too and Stalin made rather more stupid mistakes than Hitler ever did.
Most westerners thought the best Soviet fighters of the war were kittyhawks and hurricanes and that the only main Soviet fighter was the Polikarpov... which they thought was based on an American trainer aircraft.
All of course wrong.
And, in short, the answer is that Lend-Lease allowed the Soviets to focus their own production almost solely on the production of weapons and ammunition. I'll show just how critical was the Lend-Lease connection below.
When your daughter is getting married and you are organising... if you pay someone to do the flowers do you grow some of your own as well, or do you focus on all the other things?
Lend Lease was Paid for, it wasn't aide or charity. There was very little good will involved.
If the west truly wanted to help the Soviets they should have opened a second front in Europe instead if killing old men and children in air raids.
No respected WW2 historian (like some serious Russian works by Military Historians, or a respected western author like Glantz) would agree that the USSR was screwed without allied aid, or that they had no war economy.
The people of the west don't get it... 20 million Soviet civilians dead wasn't incompetance by the red army, it was an attempt at extermination, but the only extermination you hear about in the west is of the jews because they have a loud voice.
The Soviets fought and won not because of lend lease, or Stalin, they fought because the Germans gave them no other choice... there was never going to be an occupied Soviet Union... the people would be eliminated except a few to work the land for the new German land owners.
Jason Long's conclusion that the "system would have collapsed" ignores that even his data shows most of the deliveries were well past the "critical" stage of the war, when the USSR survival was all but assured (barring military catastrophe).
Echos the western and german belief that if Germany had just taken Moscow that the Soviet resistance would have collapsed. The strange thing is that Napoleon captured Moscow... and it didn't do him much good.
If Hitler had gone into the Soviet Union and treated the locals with a bit of respect like he did in France then I am sure many Soviets would have preferred German rule to Stalins rule, but Hitler was just as big an ahole as Stalin.
Ironically the Germans and Soviets were friends till Hitler took power... before 1933 most of the Blitzkreig tactics that both the Germans and Soviets developed (Zhukov displayed them in Mongolia before the fiasco in Finland that largely overshadowed his achievement) were developed and largely based on the fluid moving battlefield experience on the eastern front in WWI where unlike the static trench warfare of the western front was much more mobile.
Ironic that German experience in the trenches and experience against tanks made them realise they make trenches ineffective, combined with the experience on the eastern front probably taught them about the shock of a fast mobile attack and they put it together and created a force that defeated western europe in a couple of weeks.
Actually my appraisal of the situation is that Russia will probably say, "enough is enough, we cannot permit this to continue" and will do something major if the USA blasts their way into Iran, especially if the USA uses nuclear weapons against Iran...
I really don't know... after their reaction to the Georgian invasion of South Ossetia and the Russian reaction to that aggression I really don't think I could guess the US actions regarding Iran. Just to say that an attack on Iran by Israel or the US would be very very counter productive and most likely lead to Iran striving to get what they think they are trying to get now. If Iran really did want nukes there is very little israel and the us can actually do about it. Attacking Iran will only make things much worse... especially if they use nukes themselves... because once that line is crossed I am sure Iran will do everything it can to return the favour.
Pakistan launches major nuclear attacks against Israeli population centers. It is also possible the Pakistani government will refuse to help Iran or go after Israel, in which case it will be toppled by radicals who will then launch the attacks.
Pakistan, like Saudi Arabia are Sunni muslim countries and would rejoice at Iran being attacked because it is a Shia muslim country. The majority of the population in Iraq is Shia and will likely kick US personel out or just murder them, and Iranian aide to the Taleban will likely start which will result in US forces leaving immediately with Afghanistan falling to the Taleban fairly quickly without outside interference.
If things get to this point, there's little reason to believe that Russia won't intervene in a nuclear war going on just south of its borders.
Except Pakistan will not get involved and therefore India probably wont either. Iran will block traffic in the persian gulf which will mean the US will have to send in vessels to keep it open which makes them targets for Iranian forces, but otherwise there will be a lot of international talk, which mostly controlled by the west will mostly be about how Iran no complying led inevidibly to this situation... damn those persians for making us attack them... you know the BS.
Basically Israel has the potential to start the next world war. There is absolutely no reason to believe that Iran's leaders want to develop a handful of nuclear weapons so they can immediately use them against the West.
I don't fully agree... I think the most plausible reason for Iran to actually want nukes is so they don't have to use them... nukes aren't something you use, they are something you have that gives you bargaining power so you are treated with respect at the table. A kid comes to the table with a slingshot and you give him a clip around the ear... he turns up with a handgun and you pull the chair out for him to sit down and offer him a drink.
I don't believe the media that a nuclear armed Iran will be an existential threat to any nation, let alone the USA (or even Israel for that matter, a nation I regard as a "bandit state" and a truly "rogue state" but one which is kept afloat and in power by the king of rogue states, the USA). A nuclear armed Iran will be a positive force for peace in a region rife with conflict and strife.
If we look at recent history it has been the US undermining democracy in Iran with the Shah in the 1970s, and all the embargoes and BS since. The way the US acts you'd think they were the victim of all that crap.
Russia is one of the few powers that can draw a line and enforce it. I think Russia and China should communicate to America, in very simple terms, "if you invade or otherwise attack Iran it will require a nuclear response against the continental United States."
But that is the problem. Russia sees the west as something it needs to deal with... even if they will never be friends, they still need to get along. Russia doesn't want the wests white cowboy hat and shiny star. They don't want to rule the world... they just want to live in it. They see the west breaking rules left right and centre for their own selfish needs, but don't see it as their business or their problem except when it effects them directly.
Russia doesn't want to be world policeman... the US has taken that job itself and it can have it.
Israel is the greatest threat to world peace.
Israel would be nothing without the unwavering support it gets from most of the west. It is in many ways a mini US in the middle of the Middle East. Such a small country would be very vulnerable to WMD attack however, unlike the US.
In the event of an invasion of Iran along the lines of what was done to Iraq, Iran would be morally justified in doing whatever it could do wreck America's ability to wage war against it.
I agree, but there are a few problems... first... if they actually had nuclear weapons they could prevent any risk of an attack simply by withdrawing from the NPT and then detonating a nuke and then work at developing their own nuclear potential... the problem is that they don't want nuclear weapons, they want stable reliable electricity supplies that don't use their main source of export income, and having nuke weapons means they have to withdraw from the NPT which means no more Russian built civilian nuclear reactors to help them develop as a country.
Nothing damages a growing economy like power cuts 5 times a day.
The other problem is that even if the Israelis attack or the US attacks they can easily claim Iran blew something up or in some way started it. Look up the Gulf of Tonkin incident from a non American source. I mean how long was it that Russia invaded South Ossetia and then Georgia according to the western media?
Even if they call for the death of the US government or burn the American flag, think of it this way, the USA government has stated that it has not removed the option of a NUCLEAR STRIKE against Iran from the "table of options." If somebody has stated they are not averse to the idea of hitting your country with nuclear weapons, why wouldn't you hate their government?
I agree... the US gets a chip on its shoulder over countries that didn't actually do anything against the US, and it demonises them to the point where the fight becomes rather irrational.
Iran, Cuba, North Korea are just three countries I can think off that have been cornered and isolated and squeesed by economic, political, and military pressure from the US and her allies.
The huge irony is that with economic prosperity and growth the people of these countries are more likely to demand more rights and priviledges and the creation of a consumer society is the likely result.
Like it or not, but the best way to defeat a communist government is to give the average joe public a taste of wealth and the opportunity to achieve it. I would say a free market economy, but we know a properly regulated economy is much better because a free market economy is like having a 12 year old kid planning the meals for the family... there are only so many weeks you can survive before the scurvy sets in.
Anyway, I didn't mean to rant. I just hope Russia, China, and other nations assert themselves and stand up to the USA before the USA destroys the world.
I just hope the US realises it doesn't need to be the worlds policeman and moral centre of the universe and that growth and progress in other countries is actually a good thing.
I believe Germany was at the least capable of forcing a stalemate in the East up until August 1944 with Operation Bagration and the destruction of Army Group Center.
The German Army was seriously crippled in Stalingrad and was not the same army again. They were beaten in urban combat, which didn't suit their manouver and combined forces attacks (on open ground with airsupport they were formidible). By the time of Kursk they had all their best brand new uber weapons and they were still defeated in open combat and never really recovered.
I think people over-emphasis the impact of Stalingrad. The surrender/destruction of the German forces in North Africa in Tunisia in 1943 resulted in the instant loss of no less than 300,000 of their most seasoned and battle-hardened men. Kursk was yet another blow, and Operation Bagration was, in my opinion, a mortal wound.
Stalingrad was their first real defeat. The gates of Moscow was really an over reach problem, and north africa was a little excursion... a gamble to get oil supplies. Stalingrad was a real defeat... a trap in fact that the Germans walked into with their eyes open. It was carefully planned and baited trap where Soviet forces were fed into the city at a rate that was just enough to keep the Germans focused on the prize and when the reserves were ready they weren't wasted in an attack into the city, they were used to trap the enemy forces in a ring they could not escape from.
Stalingrad was a major blow, but it did not leave them "down for the count" it was something from which recovery was capable, but the necessary steps for recovery were not taken.
Before Stalingrad the Germans were cocky and undefeated. Afterwards they were still very skilled but much more wary.
In the East, major victory was possible as late as mid 43, and a stalemate was possible as late as mid-44 (August 1944 to be precise).
I disagree. German treatment of the locals meant by 1943 the resistance behind the lines was becoming more and more powerful and the Soviet air force had changed from ineffectual to a force of substance and was only going to become more and more of a problem. By 43 it was clear Germany was going to lose, the question was how long and how many lives they will take with them.
I have documentary evidence from the 1920s-1940s (original documents) that demonstrate and show that nations such as Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria, etc, had undertaken extreme anti-Jewish measures/laws. I believe that those nations were handed over to the Soviets, to become part of the Com-Bloc, so that they could be punished for raising their fists against their Jewish populations.
I think it is rather more mundane that that... the Soviets were not projewish at all, so that wouldn't make much sense. It was Germany that had the "Jewish Problem" fixation and often accused the communists of being Jewish too. It is like saying lots of Nazis had white skin therefore Nazism is a white thing. There were people of all religions and races that were communist, that doesn't make communism jewish or any particular race either.
Eastern Europe became part of the communist block because Stalin was adamant that Germany be split in two to prevent its rise and a repeat of WWII. To keep Germany split the Soviets needed a presence there and also needed direct access so a Soviet presence in eastern european countries facilitated that. Later Stalin realised that would offer a buffer from what became NATO, but I doubt he wanted control of those countries because he needed more land... he had plenty. Churchill agreed because he needed the Soviet Union in the war fighting Germany and was in no position to change the deal. He also realised that fighting in Germany will be costly so the less fighting in Europe that Britain and her allies had to do the more western allied lives would be saved... and he knew the soviets would want revenge...
Basically the Red Army was brought in to put down Romanians who wanted Romania to be kept for Romania, Hungary for Hungarians, Bulgaria for Bulgarians, etc.
Well no, not really. When the Red Army moved to each of these countries they tended to change sides and help the Red Army fight the Germans and as the Soviets moved through they maintained forces in each of these places and didn't leave till the late 1980s early 1990s.
The Jews (Lenin, Trotsky, Uritisky, Zinovieff, Kamenev, etc) who hijacked Russia, killed the royals, massacred a huge portion of the Russian/Ukrainian/Polish/European Christian population, established a massive state that was able to operate as an enforcer to enforce Communist/Jewish will in Eastern Europe.
There might have been people of jewish descent that were involved, but I am sure there were just as many christians and athiests and muslims and other faiths... a communist takeover is largely athiest and has little to do with religion... it is mainly the Nazis that try to suggest a jewish link to communism... which is silly because communists is an athiest political system.
This state used its forces, the Red Army, to crush Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria, etc, and other patriotic Eastern nations. If Romanians had not risen up against the usury oppression of the bankers, but had instead willingly gone along with socialism-communism, it would not have been invaded. But the Romanians cast their lot in with those who were in favor of national sovereignty.
The red army entered those countries as liberators and stayed. None of those countries lost their nationality and were ruled by local communist party members. These locals got their instructions from Moscow... just like Saudi Arabia gets its instructions from Washington today.
No doubt a controversial theory, but one for which a great deal of evidence exists. It is prett well-established that Stalin was likely a Jew from Georgia (an area with a high Jewish population), it is known that all three of his wives were Jewish, his children married Jews, his top advisers such as Lazar Kaganovich were Jews, the NKVD elite (Yagoda, Beria, etc) were Jews or probably Jews.
Jewish ethnicity and a practising jew are two very different things. You might have evidence that Stalin was ethnically a jew, but he was an athiest in practise.
My basic view of WW2 is that it was a conflict between those who favored national sovereignty, the idea of a nation being for the volk who inhabited the nation and for their benefit, not the benefit of capitalists and internationalist bankers, and those who wanted a globalist New World Order. The New World Order won.
It was more a fight of the colonial powers part two. The first fight, known in the west as WWI, was about destroying the powerful austrohungarian empire and a few other empires, and ended in a chance for Britain and France to pinch colonies of Germany and other european countries.
WWII actually led to the independence of many of the British commonwealth countries, and of course France lost control of territories later to include indochina... you know Vietnam?
One of the demands of the US entering the war was to break up the trade protectionism of the British commonwealth, but that is another story.
It speaks volumes that at least one MILLION Eastern Europeans, be they Soviet/Russian POWs, Ukrainian Cossacks, etc, willingly signed up with the Germans. I only wish that there had been more German officials who were in favor of extending friendship and kindness, and building a genuine free and anti-communist Russia and Ukraine, instead of those who wanted to conquer, exploit, and take resources.
Hitlers ideology was a package... you can't separate the racist hatred from the economic and military growth. Would hitler have made it into power if he was not so driven by his hatred? If he never made it to power Germany would probably still be paying reparations to France and the UK for WWI... a war they were no more responsible for starting than France or the UK.
In Deutsche Soldaten sehen die SOWJET-UNION, letters written from German soldiers in the Soviet Union, written from June 1941 to December 1941 (during the war, from hundreds of different soldiers in different units in different locations- not post-war propaganda revisionism after the fact), the picture/theme is clear. Everywhere the Germans went they were hailed as liberators and found people who had suffered miserably under the Soviets.
What revisionism? It was the German forces following behind that murdered and raped and stole and turned many of these people against the Germans. There were no consequences for murder for Germans in the Soviet Union. In such an environment what sort of reaction would you expect from the locals. When first seen... they are taking control from the communists... hooray... but then they turn out to actually be worse than the communists...
If Germany had conducted a mass recruitment effort in July-August of 1941, with the sincere promise of creating a free Russia and a free Ukraine, run by Russians and Ukrainians, they would have had seen several million people sign up within weeks of the announcement being made.
Except the German treatment of to locals actually turned out to be worse than the communists treatment.
There are plenty of accounts of the atrocities on the eastern front, and from German accounts it was all the commies... the problem is that we know the locals rose up against the Germans and not against the commies, so you tell me who was worse?
Now of course German loss did not seem inevitable to everyone post Stalingrad, so in essence I do agree that is is incorrect when people look at the war post Stalingrad as a "given".
At the time it was not a given because the effect of Stalingrad was not known or recognised till later what a serious blow it really was.
The invincible army was no longer invincible... or is confidence not important in war?
If the Gestapo and SD had been able to vigorously root out the traitors, such as Oster and Canaris, in 1942-1943, things would have improved. It is hard to achieve major victories when the leaders of Abwehr (Army/Military Intelligence) are traitors who are trying to bring down the government.
Where there is one traitor there will likely be more. No intelligence agency in the world relies on one source alone... except the US with Iraqi WMDs and look how that turned out. There were entire networks of sources, including within British intelligence at Bletchly park that supplied intel to the Soviets... the Gestapo and SD could not catch them all and even if they could they can be replaced...
Germany could have used a purge of the intelligence agencies, it would have greatly helped things.
Would it? A massive purge could be used by the Soviets to frame patriots and to get more moles into place and actually make things worse. A few planted files and an accusation here and there... I would think espionage is a world of intrigue and deception... if it was that easy to fix all the major powers would have done it.
In 1941 he had wanted Leningrad to be the main priority, believing that the capture of Leningrad was the most important, Leningrad and Kiev were to be the two primary objectives for the summer of 1941, with a drive on Moscow (via Minsk-Smolensk road) to follow only after Kiev and Leningrad were taken.
Based on what evidence? What exactly stopped him trying to take Leningrad... I mean if he actually wanted to?
If the purpose was to capture Leningrad then why besiege it? Why not roll in with armour and take it by force rather than set up blockading forces that surrounded it and dig in for a long siege? They even used forces from Finland to complete the circle... it was clearly a siege and not an attempt to capture.
However the generals were able to sway him into going for broke against Moscow, even though Leningrad was arguably more important than Moscow.
Leningrad was isolated from the rest of the Soviet forces for about 900 days... if it had been captured on the first day there would have been very little difference for the rest of the Red Army... except the german losses would have been higher because when fighting inside large cities they lose their air power advantage.
Moscow on the other hand is a political and communications and transport hub that connects northern, central and southern forces.
The capture of Leningrad no later than say October 1941, instead of the costly siege, would have freed up 400,000 to 600,000 German soldiers for deployment elsewhere to aid in operations for October-December.
Or would it have resulted in a costly urban battle that the Germans were keen to avoid... there is no reason why the Soviets could not have done in Leningrad what they did in Stalingrad, except feeding more forces into the city with no pincer movement to end it... just an ongoing meat grinder to tie German forces in place and chew them out.
Taking Russia in a single campaign, by a western approach, is greatly difficult. The two blow/two campaign method is likely what is needed. All the first blows need to fall between May and August, then forces on both sides will use the next 6-12 weeks to recover and rest and prepare for phase two. Phase two is the winter phase.
It doesn't help. The main problem is the sheer distance from Poland to Moscow. It doesn't matter how you time your attacks it is the distance for supply that is the issue and moving in bounds doesn't change that. You talk about two movements a year... well that happened... the Germans didn't really get much say in the matter... and it still didn't help them.
Taking Moscow in a single operation is hopelessly optimistic. Moscow should be a target for the second phase, the winter campaign. The summer campaign needs to see the capture of Leningrad (above all), followed by Kiev, Minsk, and as an added bonus, Smolensk and Kharkov.
Lots of people in the west claim that Hitlers no retreat policy when german forces were at the gates of moscow was a mistake, but the reality is that in such winter conditions German rifles didn't fire properly because the oil froze. Moving in such temperatures is just as lethal as enemy bullets. If you have to spend the night in the open because you are retreating then the cold will kill you as sure as any Soviet Soldier. At minus 30 degrees you survive... you don't fight. You certainly don't try to drive around in a German tank with its narrow tracks and petrol engine...
A lot of generals went out of their way to sabotage Operation Barbarossa by convincing Hitler to go all-out for Moscow when his original thoughts were on Leningrad.
The force sent to Leningrad was never big enough for taking the city... it could only ever besiege it.
Hitler was more interested in resources than in leningrad or moscow... both of which would be token targets that wouldn't improve Germanys position.
But that didn't really happen, so it is all just speculation...
The problem with that speculation was that all of Germanies forces were retreating... not just the front line units. The rear units neither had the time or resources to build or reinforce large fortifications and even if they did they would likely be attacked by resistance forces. Also as they retreated they found former allies changing sides on them... not really conducive to building big fortifications. Equally if they couldn't complete the atlantic wall what makes you think they could build any fortifications worth a damn while retreating?
A big concrete structure on the western bank of a deep river... the Soviets could simply cross the river further up stream or down stream and attack it from the sides and rear...
I'm not so sure a Russian would attack somebody over such statements...
27 million Soviets killed by those cuddly friendly Germans... and America lost quarter of one million and Britain lost three quarters of a million on both fronts in the war.
Bare in mind that the Soviets fought on Soviet ground so it was german soldiers and their allies and soviet soldiers and Soviet civilians that had to live through this. For the west... particularly Britain the war was about British soldiers fighting in the Pacific and in Africa but most of the real fighting was British airmen over Germany and occupied Europe, so a minor threat from german airpower against British citizens vs major British threat of airraids against Germany. In fact the British and Americans with their bombing campaign probably killed more german women and children than the Soviets did, while those cuddly Germans easily killed more soviet civilians that were killed in any other area of the war. Second place probably went to the number of Chinese civilians the Japanese killed from about 1932 onwards, with japanese and german casualties next... even being occupied western europes losses pale in comparison.
It is a very strange world where we find thousands of Germans waving the Red Flag in May to celebrate their defeat in a war,
They are not celebrating the defeat of Germany, they are celebrating the defeat of Nazi Germany, which was as bad for Germans ultimately as it was for the rest of Europe.
while hundreds of thousands of young Russians talk about Mein Kampf and carry banners/flags that are clearly influenced by the Swastika.
Russian nazis should have some sense kicked into them like any other nazis.
Russia seems to value genuine free speech while Western Europe only values gov't approved speech.
Russia is not Utopia... I think that is half of the US's problem... its morals and ideals are so high it has no chance to achieve them... the other half of their problem is that currently they apply them to everyone but themselves, but that is another discussion.
In much of Europe the swastika is banned, and considering the cost and pain and suffering the organisation it represents caused I can see why. Free speech is a loaded gun and no one can really say anything they want... and really in most situations you wouldn't want that anyway.
Manys a time I have sat on a bus thinking the kids up the back swearing and bragging about how many drinks they had and how wasted they are need a good smack around the head. I realise to actually do that would cause more problems than it would solve but really I don't think they have the right to say anything they want when they want.
Freedom of thought and belief is something different and we all already have that...
Unless my understanding is very flawed, in Russia you can find all sorts of political parties, all sorts of political newspapers, with views on just about everything, many views that would result in a long prison sentence if you tried to promote them in Germany or Britain.
From what I can see from here there are a much broader range of political parties in Russia than there are in the US... which seems to have two. I wouldn't say they have more political freedom as many of the extra parties are nutjobs or just deluded and are not really viable opponents to Putins party.
It wont change overnight, but it will change.
Of course having lots of viable political parties is like having two captains and two crews on a ship crossing the atlantic. To be viable captains and crews each has to offer something different so the passengers can decide to vote for one or the other... in a real democracy one captain and crew wants to sail to America and one to Europe or Africa and South America if you prefer... the problem is that one period in office is not enough to reach any useful destination so you have to make promises and when you take power you turn the ship around and spend most of your time in office undoing what the previous captain did. By the time you get the trust of the passengers and stay in office long enough to get to the port you were headed for you had promised some sort of utopia and it turns out to be a sht hole, so the other captain gets command and you sail to his port which also turns out to be a shthole... as anyone will tell you most ports are. So the other captain gets command with promises of a different port where things will be better, but they never are... and you become disolusioned with the whole process... especially because there are not enough passengers to make a viable third or fourth crew, so you are stuck with the two big incompetent options that make lots of promises and lots of changes but rarely if ever deliver.