Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Non-naval discussions about the Second World War. Military leaders, campaigns, weapons, etc.
User avatar
Karl Heidenreich
Senior Member
Posts: 4808
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 3:19 pm
Location: San José, Costa Rica
Contact:

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Wed May 18, 2011 2:06 am

But still the US can comercialize movies like:

Pearl Harbor in which some dude pick ups a telephone whilst the Japanese attacked Pearl and said: "World War II just started!" An abominable insult for the world that was fighting since 1939, for the russian allies that by Dec. 7, 1941 already lost 3 million soldiers.

Or the Inglorious Bastards in which some US soldiers go merrily by all France killing inept Germans in a way that is an insult to the airborne troops that tried to even land alive in Normandy or Arnhem.

Or the U-whatever movie in which the US steals the merit of getting the Enigma machine from the brits.

That is how History is teached to the masses in the US. That's why they think they won WWII alone, no Russians and bit of help of the Brits that were starving and fighting with a bunch of planes against the Luftwaffe. And basically the real fight was for a country and a front that has never been "public" to the US media: Russia.
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.
Sir Winston Churchill

User avatar
José M. Rico
Administrator
Posts: 815
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2004 10:23 am
Location: Madrid, Spain
Contact:

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby José M. Rico » Wed May 18, 2011 2:34 am

Karl Heidenreich wrote:This statement is foolish in extreme.

Be nice!! :x

User avatar
Karl Heidenreich
Senior Member
Posts: 4808
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 3:19 pm
Location: San José, Costa Rica
Contact:

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Wed May 18, 2011 2:50 am

Be nice!!


Of course, you are right. I apologize for the ill used and unnecesary terminology, when I wrote it I was disturbed by the offensive and historical incorrect statement.
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.
Sir Winston Churchill

Bgile
Senior Member
Posts: 3658
Joined: Wed Mar 09, 2005 7:33 pm
Location: Portland, OR, USA

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby Bgile » Wed May 18, 2011 6:02 am

It was not historically incorrect. I suggest you read "With the Old Breed at Peleliu and Okinawa" by Eugene B. Sledge. Particularly you might want to focus on the lack of R&R, other than in insect infested jungle while waiting for reinforcements. The movie "Pacific" doesn't come close to doing it justice.

Karl, I just don't believe you have any idea what you are saying with respect to their ordeal.

User avatar
Karl Heidenreich
Senior Member
Posts: 4808
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 3:19 pm
Location: San José, Costa Rica
Contact:

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Wed May 18, 2011 12:19 pm

I know what happened at Peleliu as with many other heroic ordeals from the Marines (I think that it was there where some idiot forgot sending fresh water supply for the troops). And I'm not implying that other branches of the US Armed forces didn't made their brave and heroic part too as the bomber crews over Europe, the pilots at Coral Sea and Midway or the Rangers hitting the beaches of Normandy.

But you made an extremely incorrect statement that the "The closest they came to the conditions the USMC had to fight in was at Stalingrad, and they lost. The Marines had to fight in conditions like Stalingrad in almost every single battle they fought in." I made the point of how incorrect that was. The Germans lost millions of soldiers whilst inflicting tens of millions of casualties upon their enemies in the most hostile fighting enviroments humankind has ever seen. Not a single US soldier ever had to fight in numerical inferiority, at sub sero temperatures for 107 days with no food, water or ammo replenishment against 2000 Soviet attacks or were able to take twice a city like Karkhov, or fight Kursk or kicked superior numbers at Kasserine. There is no doubt that the Germans faced the greatest military feats of the war and were the best army only comparable with Napoleon's Grande Armee, the Roman Legions and Alexander's Phalanx.
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.
Sir Winston Churchill

lwd
Senior Member
Posts: 3810
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 2:15 am
Location: Southfield, USA

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby lwd » Wed May 18, 2011 1:31 pm

You could probably do a better job of making your case if you didn't pull in irrevant and/or points that don't support your case. Take for example:
Karl Heidenreich wrote: ... or Arnhem also in an almost 1:1 ratio against the bravest british warriors of the 1st Airborne Division.., and they won.

Indeed if you are defending and have even odds you should win. When the other side is lightly equiped such as airborne troops are it makes it even more likely.
The Germans fought against MILLIONS of russians for four years!

And your point is? Note it could also be said that the Soviets fought against millions of Germans for 4 years as well with the futhrer point being that they won.
What about the glorious Operation Cobra?
2547 US tanks vs. 190 German tanks
8 US infantry divisions (fresh) vs 2 German infantry divisions (depleted) and a parachute division (on name only)

Singling out tanks is rather misleading as is mentioning the numbers but not the terrain or the logistical constraints.
And Kasserine? Good fighitng there, isn't it? 30,000 US troops vs 22,000 germans! And the Germans won!

Did they? While admittedly poorly led green American troops were intially routed Rommel was back at his start line less than a week after the attack started.
...But man by man the Germans made greatest military feats than the US in WWII. Just take a look at the casualties!

You need to calm down a bit. You are getting excited enough that your English is degrading. Casualties don't necessarily make for great feats by the way.
Give us a break with those US myths!

Which ones? I don't think I've seen anyone posting any. I'm guessing you are not asking us to posts some as a break from the current line of discussion.

lwd
Senior Member
Posts: 3810
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 2:15 am
Location: Southfield, USA

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby lwd » Wed May 18, 2011 1:42 pm

Karl Heidenreich wrote:But still the US can comercialize movies like:

That's not the US that's Hollywood. There is a big difference. And if it's the movie I think it is it's widely regarded here in the US as trash as well.
Pearl Harbor in which some dude pick ups a telephone whilst the Japanese attacked Pearl and said: "World War II just started!" An abominable insult for the world that was fighting since 1939, for the russian allies that by Dec. 7, 1941 already lost 3 million soldiers.

But of course it isn't. There are numerous dates that can reasonably be considered the start of World War II. Dec 7 is one of them although not the one I would choose as the best.
Or the Inglorious Bastards in which some US soldiers go merrily by all France killing inept Germans in a way that is an insult to the airborne troops that tried to even land alive in Normandy or Arnhem.
Or the U-whatever movie in which the US steals the merit of getting the Enigma machine from the brits.
That is how History is teached to the masses in the US.

No this is how hollywood makes and markets films. Now it might be good to have a thread where we pick apart various movies or discuss the problems with the US educational system but I don't think this is the thread or the forum that we should do it in.
That's why they think they won WWII alone, no Russians and bit of help of the Brits that were starving and fighting with a bunch of planes against the Luftwaffe.

I can assure you that it would be a very small segment of the American public that thinks we wond WWII alone not to say there aren't some though.
And basically the real fight was for a country and a front that has never been "public" to the US media: Russia.

That is more of an insult to most of the participants in the war than the debate over what constitutes the start of world war 2 could ever be. There was real fighting on all fronts, what's more referring to the war on the Eastern Front as being for Russia is also misleading and could be considered insulting by some. Afterall the German goal was to claim the Ukraine and the Red Army was composed of soldiers from all over the Soviet Union (as well as some from other countries).

lwd
Senior Member
Posts: 3810
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 2:15 am
Location: Southfield, USA

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby lwd » Wed May 18, 2011 2:14 pm

I think one of the serious problems here is people (myself included) read something one way and if it hits a nerve tend to get emotional about it without ever taking the time toreally think about it. Let's take a look at one of these a little less emotionally.
... an extremely incorrect statement that the [i]"The closest they came to the conditions the USMC had to fight in was at Stalingrad, and they lost.

Let's examine this part first. If you look at the conditions that the Marines were fighting in was Stalingrad the closest? If not what was? I'd argue that the invasion forces around Narvik were fighitng under conditions that were closer. The Germans didn't do particularly well there though they didn't do badly. The British basically abandoned the fight due to the strategic situation. Various other city battles might be considered parallels as well as Stalingrad indeed Lenningrad comes to mind. In both cases you have a well dug and determined defender in a postion where armor is only going to play an ancillery roll. In both cases I'd say that the Germans failed to win however rather than loss (Stalingrad was lost because the force was surrounded and the siege Lenningrad abanded due to the strategic situation.
In summary I wouldn't say that it is "extrmely incorrect" but as an analogy it needs some refinement.
The Germans lost millions of soldiers whilst inflicting tens of millions of casualties upon their enemies in the most hostile fighting enviroments humankind has ever seen.

The Germans may have lost milions inflicting 10's of millions but what's the point? Is that saying the smaller armies of the past that inflicted smaller losses were not as challenged? Furthermore I'd take iss ue with the "most hostile fighting environments humankind has ever seen" having read some about wars in the Pacific and Southeast Asia. That's not to say that North Africa or the northern portions of the Soviet Union wouldn't be on the list as well.
Not a single US soldier ever had to fight in numerical inferiority, at sub sero temperatures for 107 days with no food, water or ammo replenishment against 2000 Soviet attacks

The problem with this is that you can break it into individula sections and it's false or you can come up with similar ones that US soldiers faced and the Germans didn't.
or were able to take twice a city like Karkhov,

I'm not sure this is correct. I seem to recall at least one city that the US took the Germans retook and the US took back. St Vith perhaps.
or fight Kursk

Similarly the Germans didn't fight at Tarawa or Gaudalcanal or Iwo Jima, Okinawa, or .... Listing battles one side fought in that the other didn't doesn't add much to the converstation.
kicked superior numbers at Kasserine.

Not at Kasserine but elsewhere so again what does this add.
There is no doubt that the Germans faced the greatest military feats of the war

This is incredibly subjective. For instance I could point out that the Germans were completly incapable of such feats as Overlord or even Tarawa or military feats like Midway or the Marriannas or Leyte Gulf.
were the best army

That very much depends on how you define best. Certainly the late war German army was no match for the late war US and Soviet armies. There is some question if the early war German army would have had any where near the success it did if faced by late war allied armies.
only comparable with Napoleon's Grande Armee, the Roman Legions and Alexander's Phalanx.

Really? Was the British army of the Napoleonic wars inferior to the French Army? I'd argue only once you got to the high command. Likewise some of the Greek armies were at times as good as Alexander's army. The Roman Legions were also defeated by opponents with inferior numbers a number of times. Even countries with relativly poor military repucations have produced some very good armies and soldiers. For instance if you look at the Mexican American war the Mexican soldiers actually performed incredibly well again they were let down by ineptitude in their command staff. I suspect Napoleon would have been thrilled to have them under his command. And how about the Spanish army of the Tercio period? They dominated Europe from what I've read. Or if you want an army that won multiple fights against supperior opponets how about Montrose's army?

Bgile
Senior Member
Posts: 3658
Joined: Wed Mar 09, 2005 7:33 pm
Location: Portland, OR, USA

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby Bgile » Wed May 18, 2011 4:29 pm

How about Lee's army in the US Civil War? Outnumbered most of the time and won.

User avatar
Karl Heidenreich
Senior Member
Posts: 4808
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 3:19 pm
Location: San José, Costa Rica
Contact:

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Thu May 19, 2011 1:59 am

Bgile:

How about Lee's army in the US Civil War? Outnumbered most of the time and won.


What's the point in this comment? It's completely irrelevant. You said the Germans were inferior to the Marines in WWII because the only comparable fight was at Stalingrad and I prove you wrong (whatever your pal have say do not reverse that). And now you came with Bobby Lee at the Civil War. Can you show me how that affects the previous discussion or is just of the usual smoke screens?
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.
Sir Winston Churchill

User avatar
Karl Heidenreich
Senior Member
Posts: 4808
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 3:19 pm
Location: San José, Costa Rica
Contact:

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Thu May 19, 2011 2:06 am

Lee,

I know you like to makie yours Bgile's arguments and mistakes when he is under flak, but in this particular case you should leave him alone. He made an incredible unaccurate statement that you curiously choose to ignore and instead started your misleading tactics against my points.

I am NOT going to fall in your caustic trap and will deny the oportunity of Bgile and you of playing tweedledum y tweedledee.

As for the points done, they stand and they are quite explicit and clear. Also I brought forward the respective links for the reference. If you want, read them and if you concurr then it's OK, if it's not, then you can STATE it and not play your tricks. This time this is the answer.

Historical facts show something you don't want to see becuase will destroy yoour hollywoodian world and that's it.

Best regards,
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.
Sir Winston Churchill

Bgile
Senior Member
Posts: 3658
Joined: Wed Mar 09, 2005 7:33 pm
Location: Portland, OR, USA

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby Bgile » Thu May 19, 2011 3:20 am

Karl Heidenreich wrote:Bgile:

How about Lee's army in the US Civil War? Outnumbered most of the time and won.


What's the point in this comment? It's completely irrelevant. You said the Germans were inferior to the Marines in WWII because the only comparable fight was at Stalingrad and I prove you wrong (whatever your pal have say do not reverse that). And now you came with Bobby Lee at the Civil War. Can you show me how that affects the previous discussion or is just of the usual smoke screens?


I'm sorry you didn't understand the point of my statement. This argument is pointless. It also has nothing to do with the topic of this thread.

User avatar
Karl Heidenreich
Senior Member
Posts: 4808
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 3:19 pm
Location: San José, Costa Rica
Contact:

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Thu May 19, 2011 3:38 am

Bgile:

I'm sorry you didn't understand the point of my statement. This argument is pointless. It also has nothing to do with the topic of this thread.


I am sorry that you started an argument by making one of the most outstanding false statements ever done in this forum and then, when evidence shows up the magnitude of it, you start launching smoke screens, coming with descontextualized remarks and at the end decide that it has nothing to do with the topic at hand. Instead of blaming me for your misplaced patriotic feelings you should be reading about Demiansk, Cholm, Kursk, Arnhem (the taking of the northen bridge portion and not the defense of the area, which can also be raised as a matter of fact), Operation Cobra, Kasserine, Overlord, etc. etc. etc. The paper from Glantz has excellent comparison tables that will facilitate it's reading.

I will like to continue because just found a lot of material to finish smashing the unacurate and ofensive statement Bgile did but tomorrow have to work since very early.

Good reading and good night.
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.
Sir Winston Churchill

User avatar
neil hilton
Senior Member
Posts: 334
Joined: Tue Apr 27, 2010 2:31 pm

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby neil hilton » Thu May 19, 2011 11:07 am

Good Lord! Sorry for causing such an uproar (it is a good argument though isn't it)?

The quote from the US infantry training manual I made was from a TV documentary about infantry weapons and tatcics from ww2, can't remember what it was called but it was part of a series. I remember the program showing pages of the manual, it was a junior officer training manual from 1944 (for the invasion of France and including lessons learned in North Africa and Scicily and Italy). It described how German infantry and armour were organised into 'battlegroups' and how they attacked and defended positions etc. And how the US infantry should act or react according to the situation.
The manual stated that US infantry should never attack German infantry unless they had clear numerical superiority and tactically advantageous terrain.
I rememder it because the quote surprised me but when I thought about it it clicked 'Superior Firepower Doctrine'. Overwhelm the enemy with superior numbers and firepower. Always take into battle more than sufficient forces to absolutely ensure defeat of the enemy. The Soviets used a similar doctrine called the Human Wave doctrine. It makes sense when you consider the generally poorer quality and training of the troops, conscript armies or those given only basic training or those with poor motivation (troops spending most of their time thinking about going home are not motivated at all. Understandable). German doctrine in ww2 was that of quality over quantity, thus generally better quality troops, better trained and motivated, more 'up for it'.
Of course the program could have been lying through its teeth, but it was a serious documentary and I assumed the researchers had done their homework otherwise they'd have been sued or something.

From what I've read the USMC island hoping campaign in the Pacific, I can't think of an instance where they didn't go in without Superior Firepower Doctrine in mind, except during the middle part of the Guadalcanal operation (which was the only time as far as I know where the Japanese ever outnumbered the US, which they promptly blew by doing a ww1 style frontal assault into MGs). In all the other island invasions of the Pacific the US massively outnumbered the defending Japanese and always had 16" naval gun support and large numbers of naval aviation support.
If somebody can find an example where this wasn't the case I like to hear it.

On another note: Dauntless vs Barracuda (1943) weren't the USN still using Dauntlesses in '43? When did the Helldiver replace it?

PS: Where did I say 'fanatical troops are better'? What I actually said is that 'fanaticism doesn't stop bullets or artillery from turning you into jam' How you get the former from the latter I don't know, fanaticism makes them more willing to fight to the death for a cause however lost it may be.

Regarding my opinion on British carrier design being superior to American design, I think I have been misunderstood. I did not mean just the armour or speed or range or airgroup capacity (in that regard its swings and roundabouts, British carriers have advantages and so do the American ones.) What I menat was the shape of the hull its effectiveness and efficiency at carrier operations in all kinds of weather. British carrier design seems to me to be more efficient. Their flight decks are longer than the hull and are integrated into it, like a modern carrier design except for the angled deck, whereas US designs from ww2 look like the flight decks were just sat on top on pylons like Japanese designs.
Veni, vidi, verrimus!
I came, I saw, I swept the floor!

alecsandros
Senior Member
Posts: 3990
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 2:33 pm
Location: Bucharest, Romania
Contact:

Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Postby alecsandros » Thu May 19, 2011 11:51 am

I think the matter of |superflous involvement of the US| is rather silly. Without the US, the USSR would have lost quickly and definitively the war.
They were supported by huge amounts of raw materials, equipment and even caned food by the US...


Return to “World War II”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests