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  •  How exactly would England have done that? (3+ / 0-)

    With the Army of zero men they had posed in position to fight back against a Nazi invasion?

    With the zero combat aircraft at their disposal within range to provide air cover?

    Without a doubt Chamberlain was a fool to believe that Hitler ever saw any treaty as more than a temporary means to an end.

    Equally beyond doubt - it would have taken England at least six months to deploy any forces remotely capable of assisting against a Nazi invasion of the Sudatanland.

    French forces had less than no mobility, were entirely trained and armed for defensive purposes, and as we saw not long later were so poorly led that they would have made little difference.

    The mostly likely outcome would have been British forces cut off hundreds of miles from the sea, captured and used as leverage to extort a settlement.

    Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

    by JesseCW on Fri Feb 28, 2014 at 07:04:56 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Yes, Chamberlain bought necessary time. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kevskos, sjbob, JesseCW, Major Kong

      I don't think that was what he was deliberately doing, but that's the way it worked out.

      Art is the handmaid of human good.

      by joe from Lowell on Fri Feb 28, 2014 at 07:17:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  England had the name number of (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Jackson L Haveck, riprof

      men in position to help against an invasion of Poland. And the same number of aircraft that could reach Warsaw, zero. Yet Britain and France went to war then. When they were is a worse position compared to where they were vis-à-vis Germany a year earlier.

      Had Germany tried to invade Czechoslovakia, they would have taken losses, and would not have had all that Czech hardware to used to invade Poland in 1939.  

      They would not have gotten the Skoda works intact and producing for them for a year. They would not have had several million more people.

      The terrain there was much more difficult, and Poland could have joined the coalition against Germany. Could Germany have handled England/France/Czech/Poland at the same time?

      •  And had Chamberlain been blessed with the common (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        unfangus

        sense of the average goose, he'd have returned home talking about the need to arm to resist a rising German threat instead of babbling about "peace in our time".

        But that wouldn't have changed the situation on the ground

        Germany wouldn't have had to face England.  England had nothing in the theater with which to face Germany.  

        France was simply not willing to launch a war over Czechoslovakia and I see no strong case that Poland was either.  Trapped between the USSR and Germany, the Poles weren't much looking for war.

        But even if France was willing, what did they really have to offer?  Poorly led troops who - whatever their personal merits as men may have been - had been trained almost entirely for defensive warfare behind well prepared defenses (WWI).

        What Germany would have faced would have been Czechoslovakia.  And once Hitler had lost 100,000 men crushing through the border and raced across the plains to conquer the rest of the country, not all that much would have turned out differently except that the USSR may not have entered the war at all.

        And the USSR inflicted 4 of 5 casualties suffered by German forces.  They won the war while the West helped out.

        Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

        by JesseCW on Fri Feb 28, 2014 at 08:32:55 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  France being unwilling to (0+ / 0-)

          take the offensive was always the problem. Up through 1939 they had a huge advantage on the ground. Germany would have needed all it's strength go take on the Czechs.

          The Germans had less than 50 divisions available iirc and most would have had to go on the attack, leaving a handful to guard the east and west frontiers. But France had no Napolean who would have known what to do.

          Letting them have it just made the Germans stronger and put the Allies in a worse position by 1940.

        •  They already were arming (0+ / 0-)

          England was already in the process of rearming in 1938 but they were just starting to get production of modern aircraft ginned up.

          Regardless of Chamberlain saying "Peace in our time" it was fairly obvious that there was going to be a war with Germany, the only question was when.

          If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

          by Major Kong on Sat Mar 01, 2014 at 07:38:55 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  German army in 1938 wasn't particularly impressive (0+ / 0-)

      either.

      •  Right, Hitler wasn't ready for war in 1938 (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FG, Jackson L Haveck

        And invading Czechoslovakia, with it's tough natural borders and well-trained and equipped army, would have been a far more difficult nut to crack than wide-open Poland, which actually sent guys on horses with lances to fighting German panzers the following year.

        But Neville fucked it all up.

        •  Poland did have some tanks as well. But by then (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Jackson L Haveck

          German army was much stronger. And they got a lot of tanks in Czechoslovakia. Terrain issue is important as well.

          •  Oh, I know they did have tanks (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            FG

            The Poles weren't in the Dark Ages or anything, but they were badly ill-equipped compared to the Nazis. Big army, but not a lot of modern weaponry compared to what was coming at them.

        •  At least, that's what all the 9th grade world (0+ / 0-)

          history teachers have to say.

          Hitler could have started the war within six weeks.  There would have been fuck-all the UK could do effectively for several months.

          Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

          by JesseCW on Fri Feb 28, 2014 at 08:23:44 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm not arguing that... (0+ / 0-)

            ...but Hitler was in a much weaker position in 1938 than he would be the following year.

            And as I said, Czechoslovakia was a much tougher nut to crack. A German invasion of Czechoslovakia could have been like the disastrous and bloody Soviet invasion of Finland a couple years later.

            •  Hitler hadn't purged his officer corps. (0+ / 0-)

              Not to impugn the legendary bravery of the Finns.

              Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

              by JesseCW on Fri Feb 28, 2014 at 08:33:53 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  Yes, but it shouldn't be forgotten that... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              unfangus

              ...Sudetenland was heavily ethnically German (a quarter of Czechoslovakia was German-speak) and there were many irredentists there who wished to be joined to Germany and not happy with the central government in Prague. Having that kind of opposition inside the nation would have been most unhelpful to the Czech army.

              Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

              by Meteor Blades on Fri Feb 28, 2014 at 09:31:34 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

      •  The German Army in 1938 was a lot (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FG

        closer to the scene with internal lines of supply and communication.

        Welcome to the Whole Foods of the blogosphere.

        by JesseCW on Fri Feb 28, 2014 at 08:21:37 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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