Your Garage Summer Reading Amazon Fashion Learn more Discover it $5 Albums Fire TV Stick Sun Care Patriotic Picks Shop-by-Room Amazon Cash Back Offer AnnedroidsS3 AnnedroidsS3 AnnedroidsS3  Amazon Echo  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Amazon Echo Starting at $49.99 All-New Kindle Oasis Best Camping & Hiking Gear in Outdoors
Customer Discussions > History forum

2 WWII questions


Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 26-50 of 118 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on Jan 6, 2013 4:01:14 AM PST
Debunker has answered question number 1. As for question number 2, an awful lot of people will claim that the Versailles treaty justifies German aggression in WWII. If that is the explanation for Germany's actions from 1939, I can't quite see how it explains the actions of Japan and Italy, both on the winning side at the end of WWI.

Hitler developed a concept of "Lebensraum", "living space", although "killing space" would have been more apt. The existing inhabitants of Poland, Ukraine and Belarus were to be killed, or starved to death (and the English "to starve" is cognate with the German "sterben" - "to die"), to make way for German settlers. That was the primary aim of Hitler's war in the east. The plans still exist of the city that was intended to be built at Auschwitz. Those plans preceded the infamous death camp.

I think Timothy Snyder argues very persuasively in "Bloodlands" (given its subject matter, a pretty harrowing read) that genocide of Jews was always a nazi objective, but started off at the bottom of the check-list of Hitler's aims, when he launched Barbarossa. That's not to deny that mass-murder of Jews took place right from the start, but it became the one "achievement" which nazism could extricate from the eastern front, where the original plans envisaged massive conquests, wholesale colonisation and killing on a scale that would have dwarfed even the Holocaust. As Germany faced defeat, genocide was the only one of Hitler's war aims still accessible.

I recommend Snyder's "Bloodlands".

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 6, 2013 8:06:33 AM PST
Debunker says:
That's an excellent book. Highly recommended. Discusses the atrocities of both of those awful regimes.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 6, 2013 12:57:20 PM PST
Yog-Sothoth says:
Susanna: "Jewish children were not taken from their parents as were the Native Americans in order to become Americanized,..."

This "civilizing" (forced assimilation) of Native peoples pretty much ended in the US by the early 20th Century...and continued in Australia until 1970, and in Canada until 2008.

Posted on Jan 6, 2013 9:20:44 PM PST
John

Thanks for that post. It is very accurate, the move west is comparable in no way to Hitler's move east. Not unless it is a joke.

Posted on Jan 7, 2013 5:32:19 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 7, 2013 6:15:06 PM PST
Hi, IGS - Good to see you commenting on this thread. Answer: I am definitely not joking.

John M. Lane, good to hear from you again. I read your excellent post carefully and gave it a lot of thought. Yes, I will agree that the US policies were not blatantly homocidal and assimilation was certainly an intended policy.

I was all ready to post a long, detailed defense of my position, but then I remembered the words of a very wise person: "Never explain. The people on your side don't need it and your opponents won't listen."

While I'll grant that America's policies and actions were considered by their proponents to be relatively benign, (to quote once again,) "The road to hell is paved with good intentions." It's the result that matters.

Therefore, I'll cut to the bottom line result. 1) Hitler wanted living space, 2) he saw it in an Eastern Europe populated by what he considered "inferior people," 3) He tried to take it, destroyed societies, and did a lot of horrible things to try to get it, 4) other nations got mad, encircled and destroyed him, and forced him back into Germany proper.

1) America wanted living space, 2) we saw it in a Western North America populated by what we considered "inferior people," 3) We decided to take it, destroyed societies, and did a lot of horrible things to get it, 4) nobody stepped up to stop us, so we took it and kept it.

I believe in some absolute truths: It's always bad to go into someone else's house and steal their property deed and all their stuff.

I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. Thanks for contributing to an excellent thread!

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 7, 2013 7:47:46 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 7, 2013 7:49:06 PM PST
John M. Lane says:
Those wide open spaces out west were populated by numerous tribes of Indians engaged in a shifting patterns of conflict with each other compounded by European meddling, High Plains Drifter. I live in Montana next to an Indian reservation. This area, however, was claimed by France and Imperial Spain before that.

The British Empire claimed much of the territory northwest of the original thirteen colonies and even Imperial Russia claimed territory down to Fort Ross, just north of San Francisco. Most of our land area was acquired by purchase and most of it was purchased several times. Had the United States not moved West, the territory would have maintained British, French, Spanish, or Russian.

Warfare on America's frontier was bloody at times and it didn't follow any Marquiss of Queensberry rules. Some historians note that our military tradition was influenced by the warrior societies we met on the frontier. Local militias, for example, preferred to fight "Indian style" hunting enemies down and picking them off with rifles. That's where the American "Ranger" tradition came from insofar as I can tell from reading about it.

Thank you for your thoughtful post, High Plains Drifter. There are a lot of areas in which we agree, but some in which we disagree.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 7, 2013 9:09:43 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 7, 2013 9:11:10 PM PST
patrick says:
I can't quite see how it explains the actions of Japan and Italy, both on the winning side at the end of WWI.

Both were effectively "hired guns" in WW1, not any kind of ideological allies at all..although Italy was not yet Fascist, not sure what its style of government was back then apart from monarchy,both basically went with the sides that offered them the most to gain from victory on that side..
Perhaps Italy also felt hemmed in or threatened by the Austro-Hungarian,and wanted to see that dismantled, not sure..

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 7, 2013 9:14:55 PM PST
patrick says:
I cant speak for other countries, but what is conveniently glossed over or not permitted to mentioned in Australia's case, is that a lot, more like most of the so-called forced assimiliation of people regarding removal of children, has far more to do with their appalling family situation gross rock-bottom parental neglect or even outright rejection, than any sinister plot to culturally genocide them and make them all melt without trace into white society..

of course, it is spun otherwise...as it would, wouldnt it, these days??

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 8, 2013 5:56:05 AM PST
<<Perhaps Italy also felt hemmed in or threatened by the Austro-Hungarian,and wanted to see that dismantled, not sure..>>

Italy's entry into World War I was engineered in secret by three individuals--Prime Minister Antonio Salandra, Foreign Minister Sidney Sonnino and King Victor Emmanuel III. The grim details are discussed in Denis Mack Smith's book "Modern Italy," Univ. of Michigan Press (1997) pp. 255-267. Modern Italy: A Political History

Italy had joined the Triple Alliance in 1882, partly in reaction to the French occupation of Tunis in 1881. This was a defensive treaty, therefore Italy had the right to remain neutral when war broke out in 1914. When Salandra decided that intervention would mark Italy as a great power, negotiations were conducted with both sides to see who would make the best offer.

"On February 16, 1915, despite concurrent negotiations with Austria, a courier was dispatched in great secrecy to London with the suggestion that Italy was open to a good offer from the Entente. [ . . .] The final choice was aided by the arrival of news in March of Russian victories in the Carpathians. Salandra began to think that victory for the Entente was in sight, and was so anxious not to arrive too late for a share in the profits that he instructed his envoy in London to drop some demands and reach agreement quickly. [. . .] The Treaty of London was concluded on April 26 binding Italy to fight within one month. [. . . ] Not until May 4 did Salandra denounce the Triple Alliance in a private note to its signatories . . . " [p. 262]

The Italian military commanders were informed of the treaty in early May. Since all the Italian military plans were based on a war against France, new plans had to be improvised in a few weeks, with disastrous consequences for Italian soldiers. Gabriele D'Annunzio, who was hiding in southern France to evade his Italian creditors, was brought back to Italy to participate in the propaganda campaign for intervention. War was declared against Austria, but not against Germany, on May 23. War against Germany, which was a requirement of the Treaty of London, would not be declared until August 1916.

In October 1915, Salandra made the public statement that his motives were based on "sacro egoismo" [sacred egoism]. This can be viewed as a mini version of America's "manifest destiny"--that Italy should reach her natural Alpine boundaries of the Trentino/South Tyrol, Trieste, the Dalmatian coast and Adriatic islands that had been part of the Republic of Venice until 1797, and parts of the Ottoman Empire.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 8, 2013 7:42:01 AM PST
F. Gleaves says:
"sacro egoismo" - or 'Sacred Self-interest' as my history book described it 50 years ago.

So similar to Mussolini's entry into the war 25 years later.

Which had such brutal consequences in 1943 for Italian troops whose loyalty was to King and Country rather than Il Duce when he was ousted.

Hitler took it as a second betrayal of Germany.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 8, 2013 7:55:05 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 8, 2013 8:34:11 AM PST
John

I think that your point is the thing. The American native was a self-aggrandizing slaughtering bunch. For example, there is a reason the Cheyenne are one of the plains tribes. They did not start there. They were shoved out of the Great Lakes areas toward the West by expansionist tribes (not white folks) moving west. They had no ancient history in the West. Nor did they have ancient way of life that the white man interrupted. Heck none of the plains tribes even used a horse until the white man brought it. Moreover, they practiced savage barbaric warfare upon each other ... and naive whites. These were not nice people as the Crow/Cheyenne wars bears out. We were as much a part of their traditional war patterns and lifestyle as anything else. The difference being that we were far better at it. They were a thinly populated open space people and they ran into a population of higher density and lost a territorial war.

But, in a way we are the same as the Germans. A "civilized" people expanding into the land of their "inferiors". But the Russians were tied to the land, that land, they were differently, an ancient culture of fixxed identity and ancient architectural works, not migratory people with continually shifting land patterns that were not fixxed. It is also worth pointing out that Russia was vastly populated with hundreds of millions of peoples and the plains tribes in toto numbered less than 300,000 ... max. Perhaps the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few?

But I do see your point.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 8, 2013 8:02:04 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 8, 2013 1:59:53 PM PST
patrick

I think that Versailles provides an underpinning for the violence of WWII, but it does not justify it, nor does it justify the 50 MILLION (typo) deaths due to Germany's temper tantrum. And as you say patrick, messianic belief and self entitlement are what explain Italy & Japan's actions. In Italy's case it came from the very nature of facism and in Japan's, national self-image as the Yamato people, predestined by god to dominate. It even exists today in Japan.

And as to WWI, they were both essentially mercs.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 8, 2013 12:14:28 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 8, 2013 12:15:56 PM PST
patrick says:
yes, thats how Ive come to view it re WW1.

I guess Japan , riding high on high value consumer trade, high value companies and rapidly economically colonizing the United States notably, as well as other places, in late 1980s, was feeling as smug and pleased with itself then as at the end of 1941/beginning of 1942..
Yamato was not a false prophesy after all, where the bayonette had failed to deliver, the cheque-book seemed to be succeeding.
I wonder if theyre just as astonished by their bewildering downfall since, even though Japanese brands are probably actually just as prominent as they ever were.

There are a couple of interesting books out there that attempt to explain whats gone wrong since, arguing for example that the Japanese obsession with modernity, and its image as one of the most modernised states on earth, are actually illusory, that it never really modernised at all, in certain critical ways.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 8, 2013 12:19:06 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 8, 2013 12:20:54 PM PST
patrick says:
Not only that but there was an incredibly annoying entitled one on "Operation Repo" the other night, when they attempted to repo a truck which resides on a Reservation and was well behind on its payments--:) .

Posted on Jan 8, 2013 8:59:35 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 8, 2013 9:04:16 PM PST
DarthRad says:
A few very important points not raised yet in this discussion:

1. The Americas were fully occupied by multiple thriving Indian cultures prior to 1492. Yes, they had nasty brutish wars with each other, but no more so than the nasty brutish wars of the Europeans throughout the Roman Empire, Dark Ages, the Enlightenment, on and on into the Twentieth Century WWI and WWII.

2. The general historical consensus is that European explorers brought with them various disease to which the Indians had never been exposed and this wiped out vast numbers of the Indian population. Some believe that as much as >90% of the American Indian population were wiped out. This started happening with the very early explorers, who, besides accidentally re-introducing horses to the Americas, also introduced wild pigs, rats, and other animals, who were probably the carriers that spread these diseases like wildfire.

There is a reason that the later European settlers were thus greeted a few hundred years later with vast herds of buffalo and enormous flocks of passenger pigeons and trees from coast to coast - the Indians who had previously kept those animal populations under control and cut down the trees had died out.

The Americas were NOT originally empty lands wide open for the taking by the Europeans. They were depopulated by accidental germ warfare.

Some excellent books that go into the gory details:

1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus

Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies

3. Germany and Germans suffered much post-WWII, something that few people care to read about. Silesia, once part of East Prussia, was given to Poland, and the Germans were deported. Literally told to take what they could carry with them and start walking westward. The Soviet Army committed mass rape on the German women as they conquered Germany. A few good books to read on this topic:

A Woman in Berlin: Eight Weeks in the Conquered City: A Diary

German Boy: A Child in War

And this interesting book by an ex-Soviet officer, now living in the U.S. - the last chapters describe his experience in Silesia, enforcing the edict to evict the Germans from their land, including his German girlfriend and her family:

Through the Maelstrom: A Red Army Soldier's War on the Eastern Front, 1942-1945 (Modern War Studies)

Posted on Jan 8, 2013 9:11:13 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 8, 2013 9:11:53 PM PST
DarthRad says:
patrick,

re: Japanese peak in 1988. I remember that moment well, because I was at a party, and everybody was talking about how the Japanese were buying up everything in the U.S. and were soon going to surpass the U.S. I said, "You know, I think this is their peak, and they're gonna take a fall". One of the few times I actually called a market top correctly.

The biggest problem that Japan faces is that they are not reproducing anymore. At their current very low birthrates, they are going become extinct as a race of people in a few hundred years or so. It is very hard to grow your economy when your population is declining, and you live right next door to the most populous country in the world, China.

China basically took over all the low and medium level manufacturing that used to be in Japan. China didn't just eviscerate the US manufacturing base, it did the same to Japan and Taiwan, probably even worse, because the US has a much larger and more diversified economy than Japan and Taiwan.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 9, 2013 11:18:34 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 9, 2013 11:23:07 AM PST
Darth

Since we are talking North America. In a word, No. They were not massively populated deeply advanced cultures, and no native histories substantiate it nor is there any architectural evidence of such. In other words the evidentiary record does not support such statements. That is a figment of a reconstructionist "Dances with Wolves" imagination. The cultures in North America were just a step above hunter-gatherer societies. They were not at all in the same class as their Central & South American brothers. And since it is North America we were talking about, the vastly more advanced cultures in the South are not relevant. The closest thing to a deeply advanced society in the NA is the Zuni and Navaho. It does not apply to the sparsely populated area that made up the majority of the US. And the number bandied about, in toto, 300,000 max, all tribes, all peoples, combined. That translates into sparsely populated.

Although, I must admit, this is very tangential to a WWII question.

I'm outta here for a couple of weeks.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 9, 2013 11:35:49 AM PST
Mickey says:
IGS,

I do not subscribe to political correctness and I am well aware Native Americans are humans with the same failings as the rest of humanity. But:

"The white man does not understand the Indian for the reason he does not understand America. The white man is still troubled with primitive fears . . . And he still hates the man who questioned his path across the continent."
Luther Standing Bear, "Land of the Spotted Eagle", 1933

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 9, 2013 2:04:13 PM PST
Hope you are going somewhere for fun. Good luck and be safe.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 9, 2013 3:57:20 PM PST
patrick says:
Yes, they had nasty brutish wars with each other, but no more so than the nasty brutish wars of the Europeans throughout the Roman Empire, Dark Ages, the Enlightenment, on and on into the Twentieth Century WWI and WWII.

yes, they had nasty brutish wars which may have been no more nasty etc than europes incessant wars, Darth.

But that actually isnt admitted in the Political-correctness narrative on such things..it always goes that along came Europeans and turned a bunch of swell peaceful folks lives upside down..it doesnt really go that they added White vs Native mayhem and savagery to long-running Native Vs Native savagery and mayhem.
I never see Indian tribes claiming compensation from EACH OTHER.
Perhaps thats partly because, when they did Genocide,as exampled by Iroquios vs Blackfeet, they did it right, to its actual conclusion, so the victims simply arent around to lay guilt trips on the perps generations and generations later.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 12:27:01 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 10, 2013 12:39:49 PM PST
Laker Fan says:
High Plains Drifter wrote:
"I was all ready to post a long, detailed defense of my position, but then I remembered the words of a very wise person: "Never explain. The people on your side don't need it and your opponents won't listen."

Nice post. I largely agree with the quote. However, I think sometimes it might be worthwhile to explain, because some people on your side just might pick up some useful information. And those in the middle sitting on the fence (if any), just might be swayed by a well-reasoned argument. You don't want to concede those people to the other side by default.

That's one of the reasons why I have argued so long and hard in the atomic bomb discussions, against overwhelming opposition. I accept that I have not and I never will make a dent in the opposition. But maybe, just maybe, I am helping someone make a better argument against the atomic bombing of civilians in their high school debate, or swaying someone who is not completely decided.

"I believe in some absolute truths: It's always bad to go into someone else's house and steal their property deed and all their stuff."

Agreed!

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 12:37:52 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 10, 2013 12:41:18 PM PST
Laker Fan says:
DarthRad wrote:
"The Americas were NOT originally empty lands wide open for the taking by the Europeans. They were depopulated by accidental germ warfare.
Some excellent books that go into the gory details:
1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus
Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies"

I have read Guns, Germs, and Steel and found it very interesting. I wonder how sparsely populated a land has to be, or how primitive the indigenous culture had to be, to justify more advanced cultures in conquering them and taking their land. To many Americans, it appears that the indigenous cutures of America were not advanced enough to merit land ownership. Since they didn't "own" the land, taking it from them cannot be construed as stealing. To me, the question is, even if they were only one step above hunter-gatherers, does that justify a more technologically advanced society to come in and conquer the land they live on? I guess they should have developed the European concepts of nationhood and land ownership.

"Germany and Germans suffered much post-WWII, something that few people care to read about."

I suspect few people care to read about it, because few people care, period. To most Americans, they were the enemy, and deserved what they got.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 1:29:18 PM PST
F. Gleaves says:
What's Undeniable is that the US kept making treaties with the Indians which were promptly broken when the Frontiersmen found that the Indian land wasn't worthless after all.

But then look back to the Old World - the Europeans were no better when it came to taking prime territory from weaker neighbors. I think the multiple partitions of Poland provide the ultimate example.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 10, 2013 3:49:32 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 10, 2013 3:51:00 PM PST
patrick says:
oh, "guns Germs and Steel" is a UK lefty black-armband "oh, shame on we wicked white western imperialists" diatribe.

Posted on Jan 10, 2013 4:27:55 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 10, 2013 4:29:15 PM PST
DarthRad says:
Dodger Fan,

Well then this is definitely a must read for you:

German Boy: A Child in War

Because this book was written by a German boy who lived through the ravages of WWII and the postwar starvation, his mother marrying an American sergeant who brought them to the promised land of America. He went on to join the US Air Force as an enlisted man and became an officer.

So it's a unique perspective, because you accept him as an American who served his country, and yet he started life as a German child during WWII, the enemy, undeserving of sympathy or mercy, worthy of being firebombed and starved, even though he had absolutely nothing to do with Hitler or the Nazis (Samuel's ancient ancestors may even have been Jewish, something he suspected given his non-Aryan last name).
[Add comment]
Add your own message to the discussion
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Prompts for sign-in
 


Recent discussions in the History forum

  Discussion Replies Latest Post
Announcement
Amazon Discussions Feedback Forum
440 16 days ago
JFK Assassination Part VI 1885 2 minutes ago
notoriously incompetent international butchery 85 30 minutes ago
Will America go metric? 91 2 hours ago
David Cameron Falls On His Sword 10 6 hours ago
Trump assassination I 201 6 hours ago
A Place For Pro-Israel Posters IV 754 9 hours ago
Explaining Hitler 252 10 hours ago
History of the Palestinian Nation (Part IV) 7804 14 hours ago
Masada 101 16 hours ago
Snata Anna Dead 1 1 day ago
First Passage of Expanded Lane of Panama Canal Today 0 1 day ago
 

This discussion

Discussion in:  History forum
Participants:  30
Total posts:  118
Initial post:  Jan 2, 2013
Latest post:  Mar 30, 2016

New! Receive e-mail when new posts are made.
Tracked by 8 customers

Search Customer Discussions