Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Non-naval discussions about the Second World War. Military leaders, campaigns, weapons, etc.
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Karl Heidenreich
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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by Karl Heidenreich » Sat May 21, 2011 1:59 pm

Alex:
Unfortunately, when someone is telling you to be decent, that means you've already passed beyond decency. And it gets a little worse, as you are also a hypocrite, by not judging the Communist massacres by the same standards you judge the nazist ones.
Correct. That's the double standard of allied hypocrisy. Specially the western one, because soviets were soviets, they were not civilized. But the western ones always claimed to be figthing for civlization as the raids on Dresden prove.

Trying to justify torture and mass murder is just as bad, no matter if it was perpetrated by Italians, Japanese, Germans or russians.
No need to justify anything if you are throwing incendiary bombs over civilians. But still Guernica is brought as a great crime but no mention of Hamburg.

you're trying to justify communist opression, mass torture and mass killings by some anachronistic interpretation of hsitory as "punishment" or "reward" for fighting "for" or "against" various enemies, in this case occupation being punishment for attacking USSR.
The allies didn't have a reason, for later generations, to justify why they fought mainly because they started "defending Poland" and at the end they left it alone, betraying it. Later they had to acknowledge that their soviets "allies" were no more than a real time enemy, a tyranic opression that didn't abide the signed treaties and occupied half of Europe, changing one dictatoship for another one. How to justify that they started fighting for Poland only to leave it in the hands of a dictator such as Stalin and afterwards that "allied" dictator becomes your worst enemy AFTER you have given him money, weapons, support and your trust? So that's why the Holocaust is so important for the alllies, even if they knew nothing of it during the days of war, because it is the justification. But the allies didn't fought for the jews (and those that were liberated were almost all in the soviet sector), there were other original reasons that, once obsolete, required for a new one to come. THe outcome of a war for freedom was sending those countries to be liberated into slavery again. Of course, the real purpose of fighting for the US (FDR and Eleanor) was to help Stalin against the "fascists" that were an enemy for leftist ideologies. All the allied leaders knew that no single allied country could fight and won Germany on their own, which is why the strategic diversion of Western Europe, to pin down one million german soldiers there instead of fighting the soviets in their way to ensalve eastern Europe.
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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by RF » Mon May 23, 2011 7:58 am

alecsandros wrote:And another thing, Duncan: by the very type of judgment you made above, you are very close to justifying Communism
I don't necessarily think it does. And I am certainly no communist or socialist sympathiser.
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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by RF » Mon May 23, 2011 8:09 am

alecsandros wrote:......justifying Communism, which is very offensive and illegal in several countries, including my own. Communism was officialy condemned here in 2006 and its torturers and executioners (the ones that are still alive at least) are slowly but surely put on trial.
I feel a sense of cynical irony here. Ceaucescu was no more a genuine communist than Milosovic. These despots used communism as propaganda, like Napoleon the pig in George Orwell's Animal Farm. The reality was that Romania under Ceaucescu was not a workers paradise, the Marxist-Leninist dictum of ''the dictatorship of the proletariat'' was really ''the dictated to of the proletariat'' with comrade Ceaucescu far more equal than all other Romanians put together. But he in the end rode the tiger and got his thoroughly justified come uppance. That he did, and that his followers are now being brought to justice, is far more significant than a ritual condemnation of what was really a red fascism.
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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by alecsandros » Mon May 23, 2011 8:26 am

RF wrote: I feel a sense of cynical irony here. Ceaucescu was no more a genuine communist than Milosovic. These despots used communism as propaganda, like Napoleon the pig in George Orwell's Animal Farm. The reality was that Romania under Ceaucescu was not a workers paradise, the Marxist-Leninist dictum of ''the dictatorship of the proletariat'' was really ''the dictated to of the proletariat'' with comrade Ceaucescu far more equal than all other Romanians put together. But he in the end rode the tiger and got his thoroughly justified come uppance. That he did, and that his followers are now being brought to justice, is far more significant than a ritual condemnation of what was really a red fascism.
No cynical irony at all. I wholeheartidely agree on your comments above. What made you think otherwise ?

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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by RF » Mon May 23, 2011 6:15 pm

The irony was mine.
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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by mike kemble » Tue May 24, 2011 12:08 am

I seriously think that the Allies could not have won in both the Atlantic AND the Pacific without US intervention. Japan would have taken over the Pacific even if it had not declared war on the USA simply on economic grounds. Japan needed raw materials so badly, it would have taken them regardless from the British Empire in the Far East, thus drawing the UK into a Far east conflict which they could not have won, on their own. The USA could not, in all reality, have looked on with isolationist ideals intact.

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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by neil hilton » Tue May 24, 2011 11:59 am

Bgile wrote:
PS: Where did I say 'fanatical troops are better'?
What you said, after describing how wonderful German troops were and how they would fight to the death (as though that was somehow an advantage) was that Soviet troops became fanatical while US troops cared about survival as though the latter is somehow a disadvantage. The clear implication through the paragraph is that fanatical is good.
I think you have misunderstood my meaning or I was not eloquent enough to accurately portray my meaning.
I did not mean to say that fanatical troops are better. Fanatical troops are blinded by their fanaticism and will take stupid risks to defeat their enemies and as a result will usually end up dead themselves, however in battle such fanaticism is intimidating and will often work, providing victory when it seemed impossible. German troops in ww2 were more like this than US or Commonwealth troops, they were more willing to risk their lives to achieve victory (mostly not so far as to throw away their lives like some suicide bomber). Mostly due to the effects of propaganda "Enjoy the war now for the peace will be terrible" (Nazi propaganda poster).
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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by neil hilton » Tue May 24, 2011 12:06 pm

lwd wrote:
neil hilton wrote:... The quote from the US infantry training manual I made was from a TV documentary about infantry weapons and tactics 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 Sicily and Italy). It described how German infantry and armour were organized 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.....
Interesting. Probably not lying but probably not a field manual. http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USA/ref/FM/index.html has a list of most of the WWII field manuals and has some of them as either PDF's or hyper-linked documents. They all seem to be a bit more generic than that. I think the US did have some sort of "lessons learned" publication that was circulated on a frequent basis. It's also worth noteing that as a rule the attacker wants to have better than 2:1 odds in any case. 3:1 is often listed as the "magic number" so it would stand to reason that you wouldn't want to attack well regarded opponents at 1:1 in most circumstances.
Excellent link. Thanks.
Does seem likely that my quote came from an update to a field manual. The link only seems to contain manuals for battalion and regimantal officers not for more junior officer like platoon COs, I wonder if they had such things? If anyone needs a manual its a lieutenant! :lol:
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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by mike kemble » Tue May 24, 2011 12:51 pm

.................. and a book on Map reading for Dummies

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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by RF » Tue May 24, 2011 1:13 pm

mike kemble wrote:I seriously think that the Allies could not have won in both the Atlantic AND the Pacific without US intervention. Japan would have taken over the Pacific even if it had not declared war on the USA simply on economic grounds. Japan needed raw materials so badly, it would have taken them regardless from the British Empire in the Far East, thus drawing the UK into a Far east conflict which they could not have won, on their own. The USA could not, in all reality, have looked on with isolationist ideals intact.
Japan was under severe logistical difficulties anyway, even if the US wasn't at war with them. Seizing the British and Dutch colonies was a substantial undertaking, requiring a large volume of shipping space in then keeping Japan supplied with fuel and raw materials. The British and Dutch would have to fall back on to bases in India and Australia - with substantial indigenous forces there. They would fight Japan from a distance and use submarines to attack Japanese shipping and in time it would have an effect on the Japanese, who are very heavily engaged in China and face a Soviet threat to Manchuria. Add to that the threat of US intervention on US timing and Japan is in a very exposed and overstretched position.
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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by lwd » Tue May 24, 2011 3:47 pm

neil hilton wrote: ... Excellent link. Thanks.
A lot of good stuff on that web site. One of those involved goes by the username of Opanapointer and posts on some of the other WWII forums.
Does seem likely that my quote came from an update to a field manual. The link only seems to contain manuals for battalion and regimantal officers not for more junior officer like platoon COs, I wonder if they had such things? If anyone needs a manual its a lieutenant! :lol:
That's what senior noncoms are for. :)
Seriously I believe that's a complete list of official field manuals. That doesn't mean that there weren't other manuals. In partucular I seem to recall reading that the US published a (monthly?) bulletin that was essentially full of "lessons learned". The quote about US officers and doctrine may also be pertinant to this i.e. http://www.militarywisdom.net/page3.html
One of the serious problems in planning the fight against American doctrine, is that the Americans do not read their manuals, nor do they feel any obligation to follow their doctrine...
- From a Soviet Junior Lt's Notebook
I searched around a bit but can't find any references to the publications. Will continue to look.

*** edit for ***
I may have found the potential source. Problem is I don't see the entire documents on this site only covers and a brief description of contents.
http://www.wartimepress.com/archives.as ... =39&FID=36
http://www.wartimepress.com/archives.as ... =37&FID=36
http://www.wartimepress.com/archives.as ... 548&FID=13
The whole documents may be available eslewhere I haven't looked yet.

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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by Guesser » Sat Aug 04, 2012 5:57 am

The British were stretched as it was and couldn't even spare carrier support for Singapore beyond the one carrier that ran aground,this of course left the force un-protected and sacrificed one of their 5 new battleships with little hope of success without air support. If you look at British carriers in 42 they would have had to have deployed twice the carriers the Americans did and their carrier born aircraft were totally outclassed by the Japanese equipment; it would have been another bad day for the RN.
Bgile wrote:I've seen a number of posts in the last few years to the effect that US participation in WWII was superflous, and that the Commonwealth could have defeated the Axis by itself. They have themes centering on the superiority of anything British to anything US. For example, how much better a British fleet would have done at Midway.

What do you guys think? Could the US have just stayed out of WWII if the Japanese hadn't attacked Pearl Harbor?

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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by mike kemble » Sat Aug 04, 2012 5:20 pm

Would the US have stayed out but for Pearl. Impossible to answer but I would guess No. Even if Europe had been over run, The UK conquered, Russia, Africa too and the Middle East. Hitler would not have been satisfied. Roosevelt was already at war with Hitler by supplying the UK with its food, weapons, fuel. America may not have been 'in' the fight but were already in the war. American soldiers and pilots had volunteered with service with the British Armed Forces, most notably pilots. American citizens had been drowned by the U Boat in the Battle of the Atlantic and the US Navy was active in the Atlantic. The Pacific got all the publicity but the brave American lads were helping the UK in a big way.

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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by RF » Sun Aug 05, 2012 4:28 pm

Indeed. Just as Americans were among the volunteers in the International Brigades in the Spanish Civil War. And also American pilots were serving in China against the Japanese before even the European war started.
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Re: Was US participation in WWII superfluous?

Post by RF » Sun Aug 05, 2012 4:33 pm

Guesser wrote:The British were stretched as it was and couldn't even spare carrier support for Singapore beyond the one carrier.......
The Japanese were stretched in their attack on Singapore as well, and the outcome was not influenced by the presence or not of a British carrier.

Yamashita bluffed it out and got the surrender. That wasn't down to the RN but General Percival deciding to jack it all in and ordering the garrison to surrender.
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