Why have conservatives lost hope in the future?

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JamesStone:

Saelune:

runic knight:

Where in this thread has anyone else said an entire political party is literally the nazi?

You ignore my point here, YOU were the only one here making such horrible claims, and YOU are the only one trying to justify those claims as acceptable because of what someone else somewhere else did while you also try to hypocritically condemn them for doing it.

You do what you argue others should be condemned for with no self-awareness and a child-like sense of gross entitlement to be allowed to do it.

You again try to imply I accept or am happy when republicans do the same, but no, I do not and am not. There is a world of difference between arguing something is similar to and saying something outright is as well, a distinction that changes a comparison made from an outright insult and demonizing accusation.

I tend to defend concepts, not the right or left. The problem is, in these forums, there is few right-wings, and no extreme ones I see. But on the left, we have more than a few radical idealists like yourself, so I tend to argue against you and yours a lot more often.

Perhaps rather than presuming that is because of my political lean (the assumptions about which never cease to make me laugh in how wrong they are on average), it would be better to realize that you are so radicalized in your view that they affront even a leftist like myself, the sort who was so left he actively railed against the like of Bush even right after the 9/11 blowback of popular culture towards more right-wing tendencies.

And it is things like you have done here, the actively claiming people are nazi based entirely on your own warped political spectrum and your rejection of any notion of complexity, nuance, or common sense in order to do so.

To you, everyone who disagrees is a nazi.

To mean, that behavior is exactly the sort of extremist drivel that the nazi utilized to get into power in the first place.

Not every republican is a racist, nationalistic nazi. Not ever leftist is a sexual deviant, authoritarian commie.

The fact this needs to be said, let alone explained to you like this...

That is why I argue against you so often.

I am not the one arguing against demonizing an entire political party. You are the one saying that demonizing an entire political party is bad, BUT only when the left does it. If you think it is not ok for anyone to demonize an entire political party, then you have to hold the right accountable too. Do you? I mean, you defend Nazis demonizing the Jews, you defend the KKK demonizing black people, why can they do it?

You argue against me because my left wing values oppose yours.

He did not. People call you out in these forums Saelune because you tend to be the person doing these things IN THESE FORUMS. When Zontar gets uppity with his factless arguments and tacky, nonsensical comparisons everyone piles up on him too. Why are you assuming this guy doesn't oppose the Republicans just because he opposes you in particular?

I'm a good example of this. I keep up with American news and everything the Republicans do makes my stomach turn. Had I been an American Citizen at the time, I'd have voted for Hillary against my wishes, and I'm probably farther to the left than you'll ever be, and I still think your arguments are pointless, confrontational trife that rely on extremist, near-satirical comparisons to Nazism, passive-aggressive ad-hominens that are just passive enough to avoid a banhammer falling on you, and an arrogant declaration of moral high ground when you yourself engage in the symmetrical versions of the acts you condemn.

The people who 'call me out' tend to be right-wingers who claim to be left-wingers, yet never seem to want to criticize those right-wingers they supposedly are not.

Saelune:

JamesStone:

Saelune:
I am not the one arguing against demonizing an entire political party. You are the one saying that demonizing an entire political party is bad, BUT only when the left does it. If you think it is not ok for anyone to demonize an entire political party, then you have to hold the right accountable too. Do you? I mean, you defend Nazis demonizing the Jews, you defend the KKK demonizing black people, why can they do it?

You argue against me because my left wing values oppose yours.

He did not. People call you out in these forums Saelune because you tend to be the person doing these things IN THESE FORUMS. When Zontar gets uppity with his factless arguments and tacky, nonsensical comparisons everyone piles up on him too. Why are you assuming this guy doesn't oppose the Republicans just because he opposes you in particular?

I'm a good example of this. I keep up with American news and everything the Republicans do makes my stomach turn. Had I been an American Citizen at the time, I'd have voted for Hillary against my wishes, and I'm probably farther to the left than you'll ever be, and I still think your arguments are pointless, confrontational trife that rely on extremist, near-satirical comparisons to Nazism, passive-aggressive ad-hominens that are just passive enough to avoid a banhammer falling on you, and an arrogant declaration of moral high ground when you yourself engage in the symmetrical versions of the acts you condemn.

The people who 'call me out' tend to be right-wingers who claim to be left-wingers, yet never seem to want to criticize those right-wingers they supposedly are not.

Just like Sargon and Dave Rubin!

JamesStone:
Why are you assuming this guy doesn't oppose the Republicans just because he opposes you in particular?

Well, possibly because we've been sharing a forum with the guy for years, and have seen hundreds of his posts. We've read a lot of his thoughts in his own words. There's context here; it's not a conclusion drawn from a single thread.

Saelune:
The people who 'call me out' tend to be right-wingers who claim to be left-wingers, yet never seem to want to criticize those right-wingers they supposedly are not.

These are usually about people who are totally right wing except that they support the odd thing like socialised healthcare and some welfare programs. Particularly if American (where such things seem terrifyingly socialist), although to just about everyone else in the world, that makes someone centreist.

It comes from the increasingly modern idea that "right wing" is an economic descriptor; historically, however, that is not how right wing has commonly been used. It's also about rhetorically attempting to distance themselves from the far right elements they oh-so-often seem to end up siding with.

Silvanus:

JamesStone:
Why are you assuming this guy doesn't oppose the Republicans just because he opposes you in particular?

Well, possibly because we've been sharing a forum with the guy for years, and have seen hundreds of his posts. We've read a lot of his thoughts in his own words. There's context here; it's not a conclusion drawn from a single thread.

Fair enough, I don't lurk nearly enough on this forum to know the less spoken regulars. I still stand my ground on most other points. Outside of some right-wingers' unnaddresseable lunacy, Saelune's rudeness and ridiculous ad hominem arguments is still what jumps more to my attention.

Agema:

Saelune:
The people who 'call me out' tend to be right-wingers who claim to be left-wingers, yet never seem to want to criticize those right-wingers they supposedly are not.

These are usually about people who are totally right wing except that they support the odd thing like socialised healthcare and some welfare programs. Particularly if American (where such things seem terrifyingly socialist), although to just about everyone else in the world, that makes someone centreist.

It comes from the increasingly modern idea that "right wing" is an economic descriptor; historically, however, that is not how right wing has commonly been used. It's also about rhetorically attempting to distance themselves from the far right elements they oh-so-often seem to end up siding with.

It has been the 'social' aspect of politics that has dictated policy for...ever actually, but certainly atleast since Reagan's Evangelicalizing of the Republican party. Though it was also such 'social issues' that ended up rearranging the Dems and Reps into what they are now. 'Fiscal Conservatives' really need to let go of the label.

And anyone who can support a party's bigotry purely cause of their economic policy, well they are literally selling out.

JamesStone:

Silvanus:

JamesStone:
Why are you assuming this guy doesn't oppose the Republicans just because he opposes you in particular?

Well, possibly because we've been sharing a forum with the guy for years, and have seen hundreds of his posts. We've read a lot of his thoughts in his own words. There's context here; it's not a conclusion drawn from a single thread.

Fair enough, I don't lurk nearly enough on this forum to know the less spoken regulars. I still stand my ground on most other points. Outside of some right-wingers' unnaddresseable lunacy, Saelune's rudeness and ridiculous ad hominem arguments is still what jumps more to my attention.

Not everyone on the left on this site agrees with everything I say, or how I say things that they might even agree with, but they do not demonize me nor twist my words to defame me. They also see that some 'crazy left-wing radical who means well but was just pushed too far and needs to vent on the internet' is probably not as big a problem as the President of the US.

I am sure if I ever directly influenced US national and international policy, particularly if I did it even half as poorly as Trump, they would be more keen to take issue with me.

But a lot of people for some reason really want to downplay that Trump is the fucking leader of this once less terrible country.

Addendum says

and in 28 years defeated the Wehrmacht

Tell me...what happened in the initial moments of the war between Germany and Russia? What was the single most deciding factor that ultimately doomed the German invasion?
I'll answer that for you. First, Germany steamrolled their way into Russia. Second, it was the Russian winter and Hitler not learning any lessons from Napoleon and thus not preparing his army for said Russian winter that ultimately doomed the German invasion.

rebuilt half of Europe,

I suppose the other half that also got rebuilt doesn't merit a mention? Ya know, the half that the people from the Russian controlled half were so desperate to sneak into?

, won the Space Race

Won? Says who? By what metric? The Soviet lunar programs were abysmal failures.

created a greater ratio of technicians, educators, engineers and scientists to unskilled labour that has never been replicated before or since...

Assuming this is true (you don't provide a citation), while you're so busy sucking the Soviet Union's cock, you don't mention that such a thing came about because of an incredibly brutal regime that spat in the idea of personal freedom.

Free university... universal healthcare ... public housing ... cheaper electricity ...

And who provides this free tuition, healthcare and housing? Who pays for it? Who gives it to you? Of what standard or quality is it?

RikuoAmero:
Addendum says

and in 28 years defeated the Wehrmacht

Tell me...what happened in the initial moments of the war between Germany and Russia? What was the single most deciding factor that ultimately doomed the German invasion?
I'll answer that for you. First, Germany steamrolled their way into Russia. Second, it was the Russian winter and Hitler not learning any lessons from Napoleon and thus not preparing his army for said Russian winter that ultimately doomed the German invasion.

rebuilt half of Europe,

I suppose the other half that also got rebuilt doesn't merit a mention? Ya know, the half that the people from the Russian controlled half were so desperate to sneak into?

, won the Space Race

Won? Says who? By what metric? The Soviet lunar programs were abysmal failures.

created a greater ratio of technicians, educators, engineers and scientists to unskilled labour that has never been replicated before or since...

Assuming this is true (you don't provide a citation), while you're so busy sucking the Soviet Union's cock, you don't mention that such a thing came about because of an incredibly brutal regime that spat in the idea of personal freedom.

Free university... universal healthcare ... public housing ... cheaper electricity ...

And who provides this free tuition, healthcare and housing? Who pays for it? Who gives it to you? Of what standard or quality is it?

Taxes of course or you opposed to that and are ok with giving tax breaks to the wealthy? Cuz you know corporations need the extra help to create jobs which never works.

evilthecat:

Fieldy409:
The idea that conservatives will dissapear is wrong. Its part of human nature. It will simply change. Being conservative is part of human nature as much as progressives.

Isn't that a pretty pointless statement? If being "conservative" will change, then conservativism as we know it is doomed to extinction.

Coincidentally, I heard recently about a book that touches that topic (The Reactionary Mind by Corey Robin). Conservativism has changed repeatedly in the past, rejecting old ways (like monarchy or slavery) and adopting new popular trends and tactics while keeping the core fundamentals intact. It has happened before, and it will happen again. Conservativism doesn't die; it only sheds its skin.

RikuoAmero:
I'll answer that for you. First, Germany steamrolled their way into Russia. Second, it was the Russian winter and Hitler not learning any lessons from Napoleon and thus not preparing his army for said Russian winter that ultimately doomed the German invasion.

I'm always a little amused at this myth that the Wehrmacht (and Hitler personally, of course) just somehow forgot that Earth has seasons.

The problem wasn't that noone knew winter was going to happen and were shocked and surprised to discover that things were suddenly really cold, the problem was that the Nazis believed that operation Barbarossa would be a simple repeat of the battle of France on a bigger scale. They thought the war would be over (or effectively over) before winter became a problem (specifically, around mid-November).

Like, the Germans didn't lose Barbarossa because they were idiots who didn't know how weather worked. They correctly believed that they had overwhelming superiority at the point the invasion began. They had a fully mobilized army of aggression supported by a war economy, while the red army was still mobilising and the economy was not militarized enough to compete. The mistake was to assume that this would translate into the Blitzkrieg ideal of a decisive victory causing a total collapse of the red army and subsequently of the Soviet Union itself, but in reality resistance was far more determined than expected and Soviet counter-offensives took a heavy toll, which slowed down the advance.

And the problem wasn't that the Germans didn't have enough warm coats and blankets. Sure, individual soldiers suffered and even died from the cold, but not enough to seriously blunt the fighting ability of the entire Wehrmacht. Rather the winter effectively halted the advance for several months, until it resumed again in the summer campaign of 1942. By this time, the Soviets were in a far better position and were able to mount far stronger resistance. Thus, the German summer offensive ended in defeat at Stalingrad, and from then on it was mostly the Soviets doing the steamrolling.

RikuoAmero:
Won? Says who? By what metric? The Soviet lunar programs were abysmal failures.

Right, but all lunar programs were abysmal failures. We don't send people to the moon any more because it's astronomically expensive and, frankly, worthless. It accomplishes nothing beyond making pretty video footage.

The single lasting legacy of the space race is the ISS, which was built mostly using Soviet technology and is a successor to the Soviet-built space station Mir. Astronauts travel to the ISS in a Soyuz module. The rocket which powers them there is basically a modern version of the R7 rocket which put Sputnik and Yuri Gagarin into orbit.

The space race itself was a waste of time. It was a pointless dick measuring contest between superpowers which, for the most part, got in the way of real scientific progress. However, from the late-1960s onward the Soviets basically realised this and focused on developing practical technologies for living and doing research cost-effectively in space, and the result is that we overwhelmingly rely on that technology to this day.

In this sense, the Soviets lost the race to the moon, but they won the space race.

evilthecat:

I'm always a little amused at this myth that the Wehrmacht (and Hitler personally, of course) just somehow forgot that Earth has seasons.

The problem wasn't that noone knew winter was going to happen and were shocked and surprised to discover that things were suddenly really cold, the problem was that the Nazis believed that operation Barbarossa would be a simple repeat of the battle of France on a bigger scale. They thought the war would be over (or effectively over) before winter became a problem (specifically, around mid-November).

Like, the Germans didn't lose Barbarossa because they were idiots who didn't know how weather worked. They correctly believed that they had overwhelming superiority at the point the invasion began. They had a fully mobilized army of aggression supported by a war economy, while the red army was still mobilising and the economy was not militarized enough to compete. The mistake was to assume that this would translate into the Blitzkrieg ideal of a decisive victory causing a total collapse of the red army and subsequently of the Soviet Union itself, but in reality resistance was far more determined than expected and Soviet counter-offensived had already which meant progress was slower.

And the problem wasn't that the Germans didn't have enough warm coats and blankets. Sure, individual soldiers suffered and even died from the cold, but not enough to seriously blunt the fighting ability of the entire Wehrmacht. Rather the winter effectively halted the advance for several months, until it resumed again in the summer campaign of 1942. By this time, the Soviets were in a far better position and were able to mount far stronger resistance. Thus, the German summer offensive ended in defeat at Stalingrad, and from then on it was mostly the Soviets doing the steamrolling.

Just a little caveat... the winter thing concerning operational failures of the Wehrmacht is actually a fallacy. The Germans had decent winter gear, particularly those that debarked during Barbarossa. Moreover, Southern Russia (where Hitler originally commanded the thrust of the conflict and reinforcemenrs should be sent, only to be undermined and countermanded by the ever-clusterfucking Halder) is not as cold as German/Swiss alpine.

For the most part the Greater Caucasus region, barring the truly mountainous regions themselves, are chilly... but ultimately not that cold. -5?C ~ -10?C at night in winter, and 12?C during the midday during late spring and summer.

It's a solidly temperate/sub-temperate environment below 3000M.

But the treacherous nature Russian seasons is that spring and autumn are the real dangers to a mechanized infantry army group and tanks. They call it 'Swamp season' colloquially, in Russian it's Rasputitsa. It's not winter chills that kill, it's getting bogged down, straining logistics for both spring and autumn that sandwich that winter season. You're actually better off fighting in either summer OR winter, not trying to wage a war of movement in spring or autumn.

It's one of those things in history that really fucking annoy me. The myth of the Russian winter... No, what really hinders an invasion of Russia is autumn and spring.

And yes, the Wehrmacht knew how seasons worked. But people seem to actually have a false narrative and all too often construct an anti-Slavic bias concerning the true fighting strength of Soviet forces as well as pretending like Soviets were somehow utterly unconnected to their victories. It fucking baffles me.

The Battle of Stalingrad is one of the most impressive, dogged, downright courageous of any Allied forces engagements. The fact that it was a decisive victory is a feat of arms worthy of comprehensive examination by officers as a combination of skillful understanding of geography, logistics, and sheer tenacity to continue the fight and compel beleagured soldiers who had seen countless horrors to not break in the face of it and just try to survive one more day.

The whole mythology that Western historians intermixed with popular culture and media have constructed tends to fabricate such endeavours as if merely Soviet brute strength, as opposed to recognizing so many casualties were suffered by a a numerically inferior Soviet force forced to rely on trickles of soldiers, tanks and guns as Soviets prioritized the Soviet counter-offensive rather than the meat grinder of Stalingrad proper....

Like the aforementioned Battle of Stalingrad... Germans and their allies had an initial effective fighting strength far more superior than the Soviet defenders. Operation Uranus that ended Paulus was not characterized by Soviets mindlessly flinging themselves at the vastly outnumbered Germans... they expertly encircled them and inflicted greater Axis casualties than they suffered in the process.

Fun fact, the Axis combined forces entered the Soviet Union with twice as many personnel than the Soviets could even effectively muster to meet them in battle.

The Soviet victories were well earned, and if any nation found itself in the face of an invasion with a similarly vast gulf of fighting strength, one could only hope to achieve a similar result as the Soviets managed to perform.

The numbers are there. So either people are just wrong, or my guess is systematic anti-Slavic bias that has always been a fixture of Western historiography in general. Maybe Westerners are feeling more than a little insecure in the fact that the Soviets defeated fascism so decisively? You know, despite inherent early disadvantages making all other actions by Western participants pale in comparison rustles more than a few jimmies...

Kind of like how an Australian civil engineer basically managed to do in 90 minutes what all other Entente leadership couldn't in 2 years rustled more than a few British jimmies...

Or how the British blame Gordon Bennett for the fall of Singapore ... for reasons... when you actually tell them the order of battle that 22nd Brigade managed to fend off two divisions of Japanese soldiers before having to withdraw that seems to rustle more than a few British jimmies.

History isn't written by the victors. It's written by ego irrespective of victory. Victory just helps that ego survive.

Like how a single Indian motor group (3rdIMB), vastly outnumbered, continued to fight in order to protect a British flank from one of Rommel's kampfgruppen ... yet are routinely badmouthed at the time by staff officers for whom so many of their soldiers were not casualties because of their efforts. Whose actions, independent courage and skill are worthy of 5 star Hollywood epics alone.

How many war movies featuring such incredible fighters? Pfffh... I haven't seen one. Which is a shame, because Indians were and are the routinely overlooked steel of British war efforts worldwide in terms of historical analysis and their multitude of actions across the globe.

Addendum_Forthcoming:
But the treacherous nature Russian seasons is that spring and autumn are the real dangers to a mechanized infantry army group and tanks. They call it 'Swamp season' colloquially, in Russian it's Rasputitsa. It's not winter chills that kill, it's getting bogged down, straining logistics for both spring and autumn that sandwich that winter season. You're actually better off fighting in either summer OR winter, not trying to wage a war of movement in spring or autumn.

It's one of those things in history that really fucking annoy me. The myth of the Russian winter... No, what really hinders an invasion of Russia is autumn and spring.

Second that, when things freeze solid you can drive on them. This also applies to bodies of water, when Lake Ladgoa froze over the Soviets supplied Leningrad by trucks and later rail over the ice.

Mind you, the Germans had poor intelligence and kept underestimating Soviet strengths, kept thinking that one more big push would crush them decisively.

And, of course, the USSR was very big and gets bigger north to south as you go east, and the only maps available to invaders were Soviet ones made in the knowledge that they'd be the only ones available to invaders, so they had some interesting ideas about accuracy.

Addendum_Forthcoming:
The Battle of Stalingrad is one of the most impressive, dogged, downright courageous of any Allied forces engagements. The fact that it was a decisive victory is a feat of arms worthy of comprehensive examination by officers as a combination of skillful understanding of geography, logistics, and sheer tenacity to continue the fight and compel beleagured soldiers who had seen countless horrors to not break in the face of it and just try to survive one more day.

Getting a bit off-topic, but would you say more than Leningrad?

Thaluikhain:

Second that, when things freeze solid you can drive on them. This also applies to bodies of water, when Lake Ladgoa froze over the Soviets supplied Leningrad by trucks and later rail over the ice.

Mind you, the Germans had poor intelligence and kept underestimating Soviet strengths, kept thinking that one more big push would crush them decisively.

And, of course, the USSR was very big and gets bigger north to south as you go east, and the only maps available to invaders were Soviet ones made in the knowledge that they'd be the only ones available to invaders, so they had some interesting ideas about accuracy.

I mean, ehh ... what defeated the Axis was the Soviets. There were fundamental problems with the Axis advance into Russia. Namely Halder, but that doesn't exactly nullify the brilliance of many Soviet actions. It's not as if accommodating geography and meteorology is somehow not a part of battle strategy. It's not like the Soviets were somehow being devious using the terrain and climate to their advantage.

People seem to forget... initial manpower alone, the Axis forces often doubled the Soviet defenders in key cities like Stalingrad, Leningrad and Moscow. And that is nothing compared to its initial armoured strength, artillery and air dominance.

Commanders like Chuikov and Zhukov were easily superior to their Axis counterparts. What they did with what they had (and arguably when they were allowed independent agency) was an incredible display of warcraft from a position of obvious disadvantage. And it really is a major double standard of history that we so easily attribute Soviet victories to 'German failures'.

Chuikov was reduced to hugging tactics ... which is where if you are deficient in total strength, and lack fundamental artillery and air support, sometimes it's best to maintain as close lines of battle as possible so as to reduce th enemy's capacity to inflict casualties from afar. And many idiots interpret that as 'mindlessly throwing soldiers at machine guns' ... no, it's a valid tactic of desperation--and it proved effective.

When we look at Soviet actions, there is a myopic bias there that rears its ugly head constantly. Soviet victories become framed as 'Axis weaknesses', and it's baffling to me.

We don't do it in any other context, even when it is more deserving. like the incredible fuckwittery of Neame and Cyrenaica Command or Percival at Singapore, or Gavin (where he fucking should have been 10 hours before he started blaming everyone else) at Nijmegen... 'credit where credit is due', in short.

As much as I love A Bridge Too Far, Gavin's idiocy and slothfulness of command had been transformed into 'British drinking tea' ... despite the fact that they would have reached Arnhem IF American paratroopers did their job.

The true 'failure' of the Wehrmacht was Halder's belief that like Russia's European counterparts, if you destroyed Moscow (or a capital city) somehow the U.S.S.R would fold. It was fucking insanity, Russia was not going to be like France. Russia covers an eigth of the world's land surface. But he dedicated an intial fighting force of about 1.8 million.

Stalin never anticipated Halder's allocation of forces to Moscow, but rather interpreted correctly Hitler's wishes that the bulk of the forces would instead be trying to oust the Soviets out of the Greater Caucasus. So the defence of Moscow was already in poor form even in comparison to that mammoth deficiency of fighting strength that was in total available to begin with.

Addendum_Forthcoming:

Getting a bit off-topic, but would you say more than Leningrad?

Leningrad is kind ofdifficult to gauge ... personally I think Stalingrad and the subsequent Operation Uranus was more meaningful and showed just what the Soviets were actually capable of once they managed to pin down the Axis advance somewhere. Moreover, it also best displays just the mammoth power difference and better displays just how huge the Wehrmacht actually was in fielding a force in comparison to Soviet defenders.

The Soviets won their war. The Germans didn't just lose it. The Germans weren't as if magically superior on some esoterically personal way ... no, the Soviets were incredibly disadvantaged, and despite that, won victories that came down to the quality of many of its fighting forces being used in conventionally and unconventionally brilliant ways by the quality of many of its commanders.

And that is an infinitely more honest interrogation of Soviet action than all the bullshit jargon and mythology many historians or people in popular culture or media have constructed about Russian winters, and noble Paulus fighting against the Russian horde. Didn't fucking happen. Germans didn't win because they were bested. And they were bested in conventional and unconventional methodology by an enemy that should never have been underestimated.

It's fucking childish if not downright racist to pretend otherwise, to put it bluntly.

And keep in mind ... this is stuff that was contemporaneously seen with their efforts, and considered signs of Soviet heroism and capability. Eisenhower didn't promulgate blatantly racist bullshit about the Aryan soldier facing hordes of Slavs. Contemporaries of the conflict recognized Soviet warcraft as besting the Wehrmacht. Hell, Eisenhower had nothing but glowing praise of Soviet commanders like Zhukov...

But, you know, combination of Anglo-centric racism mixed with anti-communist rhetoric, and boom. Historical revisionism of the worst form...

Well, before we go to far on the pro Russia could win the war on their own, let's remember that they received massive amounts of aid from the United States. Something like 11 Billion in aid coming from three directions. In fact, the Americans had to build a truck factory in Tehran because instead of just unloading the trucks of supplies, the Soviets took them to fill their mechanized divisions. I did a research paper for my degree on Roosevelt as a wartime leader and I remember one statistic, the supplies coming up from Tehran or about 25% of the total aid to the Soviets could fully supply 60 divisions.

World War II was a truly global affair that required unity of effort amongst the allies to win. The Soviets won incredible victories, as did the other allies. Nobody won any of it alone. The Soviets killed more Axis soldiers than any other nation, but a large amount of the equipment came from the United States, and two of the three routes were largely protected by the British. Poles, Indians, French, Algerians, Australians, New Zealanders, Italians, South Africans, Americans, British, Canadians, Moroccans and Gurkhas amongst others all fought in North Africa, Italy, France and Germany. All of their stories and their sacrifices should be remembered and acknowledged. The idea that the Soviets or the Americans won the war is far to simple for the reality of how interconnected the war effort really was.

Saelune:
I am not the one arguing against demonizing an entire political party.

Exactly, you are the one arguing FOR demonizing an entire political party, as you openly did. Your justification for demonizing an entire political party was called out for being both trying to justify horrible behavior because of some nebulous "other" person also did it, and was hypocritical as you condemn what others did while doing it outright yourself. I am the one calling that out for being horrible behavior and intellectually childish.

You are the one saying that demonizing an entire political party is bad, BUT only when the left does it.

Bullshit.
I am saying it is bad. Period. You are the only one trying to add conditions to that stance in order to justify yourself.

Stop lying about me just because you don't like being called out for your own horrible behavior.
I am saying it is bad to call an entire political party literally nazi in response to you doing exactly that.
I have never said it was morally right and ok if one side did it but the other cannot not, and I actively call YOU out for trying to use that exact same argument to justify your own positions. I called you out for it in this very thread where you tried to justify demonizing an entire political party with a behavior that you then condemned in others doing.

If you think it is not ok for anyone to demonize an entire political party, then you have to hold the right accountable too.

That is absolutely right. And I do.

When I see the far right or religious extremists, or ideological extremists calling an entire party nazi, or saying an entire half of the population deserves to be locked up. Just because I call you on here and now doesn't mean I don't call out your foes elsewhere too. It just means you are the only one calling an entire political party the fucking nazi in this thread at the moment.

Perhaps you should apply that ideal of consistency to your own beliefs and stop trying to justify your notion of "no bad tactics" that you seem to have close to your heart at the moment.

You called an entire political party nazi
That is bad.
Others do the same thing.
That is also bad.
But they aren't here right now. You are.
And you are trying to justify your position and actions here on people who are not here. You are trying to defend your action of a behavior that is bad, that you know and call bad, and that which you openly and unapologetically committed yourself.

You are in the wrong here.

Do you?

Yes, I call out people calling an entire political party literal nazi regardless which one. Hell, I call out gross demonizations of entire groups in other regard too. Such as people calling all atheists amoral baby killers. Or people calling all white people racists. Or people calling all black people criminals.

I mean, you defend Nazis demonizing the Jews, you defend the KKK demonizing black people, why can they do it?

Excuse me, what?
When the hell did I EVER defend nazi demonizing others or the kkk demonizing black people as it was something morally right?
When the hell did I EVER say that was right of them to do? Where did I EVER say that was good or proper?

You have a lot of balls to try to make that sort of accusation about me Saelune. And that it was done because you are upset I called you out for literally calling an entire political party nazi is outright contemptible. An outright disgusting character attack.

Or is this you unable to understand that I can defend the right of all people to speak freely without having to agree with what thy say? Is this gross dishonest misrepresentation of my position and my character just a horrendous twisting of my position on free speech being a human right in order to try to attack my character for calling out your own hypocrisy and horrible behavior?

I never once claimed or implied it was morally acceptable, or they were correct to demonize people Saelune. Not once.

That I acknowledge it is their right to hold their own opinions and speak them freely is not an never has been an endorsement of them. The same as my acknowledging and defending YOUR right to speak your usual arguments and spite is not an endorsement of you. Respecting someone's ability to speak and agreeing with what they say is not the same thing. Intentionally misrepresenting the one as the other to attack a person's character is the sort of underhanded slander that would make Joseph Goebbels proud. Congrats on hating the nazi so much you willfully do the same tactics they do. How about you drop all pretenses and just start telling me that my defending of the jew's right to exist means I support their hatred of Germany. They would both be the same level of intellectual dishonesty at this point.

You argue against me because my left wing values oppose yours.

Yes, your left wing values oppose my left wing values, exactly.
I value freedom, opposing authoritarianism, opposing war, opposing censorship, support equality, support equal rights, and support individual choice in how one wishes to live their life. I support not judging someone based on their sexuality, the right to freedom of religious choice by the individual (including no religion at all), and the rights of the consumers over that of corporate interests. I support an ethical free press, and government transparency and accountability not based on what party they belong to.
Your opposition to those left wing values is why I argue with you so much, you are absolutely Right.

JamesStone:

Silvanus:

JamesStone:
Why are you assuming this guy doesn't oppose the Republicans just because he opposes you in particular?

Well, possibly because we've been sharing a forum with the guy for years, and have seen hundreds of his posts. We've read a lot of his thoughts in his own words. There's context here; it's not a conclusion drawn from a single thread.

Fair enough, I don't lurk nearly enough on this forum to know the less spoken regulars. I still stand my ground on most other points. Outside of some right-wingers' unnaddresseable lunacy, Saelune's rudeness and ridiculous ad hominem arguments is still what jumps more to my attention.

I tend to defend the right a lot when the lean of the forums is so far left that the political range only vary from radial left-leaning extremists to moderate on average. But when you oppose tactics and behaviors you tend to be lumped in with "the enemy" and demonized for not going with the crowd on the matter.

Notice what arguments they use to justify their positions and defend their friends and come to your own conclusions on the matter though.

They aren't wrong in mentioning a history of posts and exchanges, and I invite you to flip through my history if you are curious just what positions they see as "right wing". Go back years if you wish, most of my posts on this site are exchanges and arguments with them and their friends so you'd likely be able to throw a dart and get an exchange that would be a microcosm of our conflicting perspectives.

CaitSeith:

evilthecat:

Fieldy409:
The idea that conservatives will dissapear is wrong. Its part of human nature. It will simply change. Being conservative is part of human nature as much as progressives.

Isn't that a pretty pointless statement? If being "conservative" will change, then conservativism as we know it is doomed to extinction.

Coincidentally, I heard recently about a book that touches that topic (The Reactionary Mind by Corey Robin). Conservativism has changed repeatedly in the past, rejecting old ways (like monarchy or slavery) and adopting new popular trends and tactics while keeping the core fundamentals intact. It has happened before, and it will happen again. Conservativism doesn't die; it only sheds its skin.

I wonder if you could call those who wanted to return to Roman and Greek philosphy and values in the middle ages conservative? Might be a great example of when conservatives were good guys.

RikuoAmero:
Tell me...what happened in the initial moments of the war between Germany and Russia? What was the single most deciding factor that ultimately doomed the German invasion?

Kaiser Wilhelm II didn't exactly have much trouble toppling Russia. Hmm, wonder why?

What stopped Hitler is the fact that he was dealing with Stalin's Russia after a decade of absolutely brutal state enforced industrialization with the aim of maximizing military readiness rather than Romanov feudalism. The apparent necessity of pursuing socialism in one country rather than a worldwide revolution put Stalin in the position of having to maximize military preparations to compete internationally (this is where the idea that Stalin's centrally planned economy is actually a form of state capitalism, see e.g. Tony Cliff). Eighty percent of Germany's casualties happened on the Eastern Front; most of them didn't freeze to death. Most, indeed, occurred due to the power of Soviet industry, well-executed maneuver, and the commitment of the Soviet people to winning the war.

The fact that Russia is geographically large helped quite a bit too; that gave the Soviets time to recover from the surprise attack.

Well to be fair, Kaiser Wilhelm did smuggle in a revolutionary firebrand with the express idea of toppling Russia. It becomes a lot harder to fight an external war when you also have a civil war going.

Also, that decade of brutal military preparedness did not serve the Russians all that well against the Finns in the Winter War. Sure the Soviets won, but had a terrible cost far outstripping what it should have been. Their poor performance here gave Hitler a belief he could beat the Soviets.

The Soviets were never some unstoppable force fueled by a command economy operating in a vacuum. They benefited tremendously from American material aid and supply routes maintained by the British Empire, both of whom were fighting a whole other war on the other side of the globe.

Addendum_Forthcoming:
And yes, the Wehrmacht knew how seasons worked. But people seem to actually have a false narrative and all too often construct an anti-Slavic bias concerning the true fighting strength of Soviet forces as well as pretending like Soviets were somehow utterly unconnected to their victories. It fucking baffles me.

Exactly, this is what I was trying to imply, but should probably have outright said.

mrglass08:
Well, before we go to far on the pro Russia could win the war on their own, let?s remember that they received massive amounts of aid from the United States.

I don't think anyone (other than official Soviet history) is seriously suggesting that the Soviets could have won the war on their own. With a year or two to prepare, it's possible, but yes, there is no way the Soviet Union of 1941 could have matched the industrial power of a fully mobilised Nazi Germany, which let's not forget also controlled much of the resources and industry of Europe. Militarily, Britain was certainly an annoyance, and thanks to Italian failures German troops had to be pulled off the Eastern front to reinforce North Africa and the Balkans.

I think the reason we are discussing this is:

Firstly, Without the brutal forced industrialization of the Stalin era, the the Soviets wouldn't have stood a chance. Addendum Forthcoming pointed out earlier, correctly I think, that we give people like Churchill a free pass because their genocidal actions were "pragmatic" despite history bearing out that they were unnecessary, but we don't extend the same luxury to Stalin, whose actions probably did save Europe from Nazi victory (and the unimaginable horror that would have resulted). This indicates a kind of hypocrisy.

Secondly, Western historical narratives enormously downplay the actual accomplishments of the red army or the Soviet Union during the war in favour of presenting them as acts of God, or extraordinary or baffling failures by the Nazis. My personal suspicion is that the sheer bloodiness of the eastern front invokes a kind of revulsion which biases the perception of the situation. We tend to assume that a successful or competent strategy will produce few casualties, and view massive casualties as a sign of failure or a lack of strategic imagination. In reality is that in modern warfare the reverse is true, relatively bloodless victories like the battle of France speak to profound failure on the part of one side. The Eastern front was bloody precisely because neither side made those kinds of catastrophic mistakes. Where the losses were massively one sided, as in the initial period following the invasion, it was usually because one force was vastly stronger.

And personally, I think this is important even today because by missing this we miss a very important lesson about modern war which continues to shape our perception of war today. We cling to the clauswitzian relic of the Schwerpunkt and to idea of a relatively bloodless victory by means of maneuver or technological supremacy, to the point that we believe it is possible even when it blatantly isn't. We assume everyone plays by the same rules, that everyone just accepts that a "good" strategy avoids casualties or attrition and that everyone will concede defeat to spare lives. The bloodiness of the eastern front is not evidence that there was no thought or strategy, or the Soviets were merely reacting, it illustrates something about the nature of modern war which we really need to learn before everyone gets lubed up over the idea of "intervening" in North Korea or Iran.

evilthecat:

Addendum_Forthcoming:
And yes, the Wehrmacht knew how seasons worked. But people seem to actually have a false narrative and all too often construct an anti-Slavic bias concerning the true fighting strength of Soviet forces as well as pretending like Soviets were somehow utterly unconnected to their victories. It fucking baffles me.

Exactly, this is what I was trying to imply, but should probably have outright said.

mrglass08:
Well, before we go to far on the pro Russia could win the war on their own, let?s remember that they received massive amounts of aid from the United States.

I don't think anyone (other than official Soviet history) is seriously suggesting that the Soviets could have won the war on their own. With a year or two to prepare, it's possible, but yes, there is no way the Soviet Union of 1941 could have matched the industrial power of a fully mobilised Nazi Germany, which let's not forget also controlled much of the resources and industry of Europe. Militarily, Britain was certainly an annoyance, and thanks to Italian failures German troops had to be pulled off the Eastern front to reinforce North Africa and the Balkans.

I think the reason we are discussing this is:

Firstly, Without the brutal forced industrialization of the Stalin era, the the Soviets wouldn't have stood a chance. Addendum Forthcoming pointed out earlier, correctly I think, that we give people like Churchill a free pass because their genocidal actions were "pragmatic" despite history bearing out that they were unnecessary, but we don't extend the same luxury to Stalin, whose actions probably did save Europe from Nazi victory (and the unimaginable horror that would have resulted). This indicates a kind of hypocrisy.

Secondly, Western historical narratives enormously downplay the actual accomplishments of the red army or the Soviet Union during the war in favour of presenting them as acts of God, or extraordinary or baffling failures by the Nazis. My personal suspicion is that the sheer bloodiness of the eastern front invokes a kind of revulsion which biases the perception of the situation. We tend to assume that a successful or competent strategy will produce few casualties, and view massive casualties as a sign of failure or a lack of strategic imagination. In reality is that in modern warfare the reverse is true, relatively bloodless victories like the battle of France speak to profound failure on the part of one side. The Eastern front was bloody precisely because neither side made those kinds of catastrophic mistakes. Where the losses were massively one sided, as in the initial period following the invasion, it was usually because one force was vastly stronger.

And personally, I think this is important even today because by missing this we miss a very important lesson about modern war which continues to shape our perception of war today. We cling to the clauswitzian relic of the Schwerpunkt and to idea of a relatively bloodless victory by means of maneuver or technological supremacy, to the point that we believe it is possible even when it blatantly isn't. We assume everyone plays by the same rules, that everyone just accepts that a "good" strategy avoids casualties or attrition and that everyone will concede defeat to spare lives. The bloodiness of the eastern front is not evidence that there was no thought or strategy, or the Soviets were merely reacting, it illustrates something about the nature of modern war which we really need to learn before everyone gets lubed up over the idea of "intervening" in North Korea or Iran.

You realize you just downplayed the victories of the British in North Africa as some kind of failure of their opponents.

My point is that the Second World War was a WORLD WAR, all of the parts were essential, nothing should be diminished. The Soviets did not have an industrial advantage, they were tremendously supplied by the Americans on routes that were defended and maintained by major parts of the British Empire. It was not the forced industrialization of the Soviets, because they lost a large portion of that very early in the conflict. Did they rebuild their tattered supply base, yes and that was an incredible achievement. But that period of brutal industrialization did not save the Soviets, being a part of the Allies did. And all nations will play up their own role in the struggle. I'm fairly sure most Russian histories downplay the campaign in Italy or the actual importance of the campaign in North Africa, never mind the difficulties of the amphibious assault into France. Or how Germany basically stripped their defenses in the East to try and win a decisive victory in the West and then through everything back against the Soviets.

Also, it is not just the West that favors wars of maneuver, Sun Tzu favors this ideal. This has always been the favored idea pretty much everywhere. Cathal Nolan dissects this idea in The Allure of Battle, how grand battles on the field always strike the imagination but wars are actually won through the slow grind of sieges and forcing through defensive lines.

The idea that the Soviets had this great industrialization drive that lead them to victory over the Nazis is a myth. It needs to be deconstructed just as much as the idea that the Americans won the war and just kind of dragged the western Allies along for the ride. Both of those ideas are wrong and need to be critically examined.

mrglass08:
Also, that decade of brutal military preparedness did not serve the Russians all that well against the Finns in the Winter War.

That decade was mostly about industrialization, which is necessary but not sufficient for military preparedness. The Soviets essentially compressed a hundred years of normal capitalist social transformation into ten years; they cleared peasants off the land and put them in cities to become industrial laborers and they had higher proportions of their economy invested into the creation of capital than in the history of any capitalist country. The ultimate purpose was global military competitiveness, but industry alone doesn't get you that. Soviet industrial development was a matter of rapid growth, not initially of weapons production so much as iron and coal: the earlier in that development, the fewer weapons that could be produced.

evilthecat:

mrglass08:
Well, before we go to far on the pro Russia could win the war on their own, let?s remember that they received massive amounts of aid from the United States.

I don't think anyone (other than official Soviet history) is seriously suggesting that the Soviets could have won the war on their own. With a year or two to prepare, it's possible, but yes, there is no way the Soviet Union of 1941 could have matched the industrial power of a fully mobilised Nazi Germany, which let's not forget also controlled much of the resources and industry of Europe.

There are some serious historians suggesting that, or very nearly that, as well.

https://warisboring.com/lend-lease-saved-countless-lives-but-probably-didnt-win-the-eastern-front/

mrglass08:
You realize you just downplayed the victories of the British in North Africa as some kind of failure of their opponents.

Sure, I also downplayed the genius of Heinz Guiderian's plan which won the battle of France by pointing out that it only succeeded due to the failure of the British and French to mount a successful response. The main difference is that I am referring to individual operations, not to the conduct of the war as a whole. There were plenty of disastrous or failed operations on the Eastern front, for both sides.

In short, I think you've mistaken this for an issue of national "honour", like the issue is one of respect for the individual sacrifice of soldiers of all nations, and that's not really it. I'm sure Russian historians don't often get misty eyed thinking about D-day, but I don't think you'll find anyone saying "the Germans steamrolled their way into Western Europe, but Hitler didn't learn the lessons from Harold Godwinson so his plans were foiled by the sea".

mrglass08:
The Soviets did not have an industrial advantage, they were tremendously supplied by the Americans on routes that were defended and maintained by major parts of the British Empire.

The primary mistake here is to assume that industrialisation literally just means building factories.

I mean, I'll give one example.. let's say some supplies have come through the Persian corridor into the soviet union. How do they get to troops on the front line who need them? Maybe some kind of machine for locomotion.. perhaps running on fixed metal rails for efficiency.. if only such wonders existed, and if only there was a reason to build them..

I don't quite understand what you're defending here, but it sounds like you're claiming that a decade of intensive industrialisation had absolutely no bearing on the ability of the Soviets to resist the German invasion, that the disastrous period of 1941 was completely unaffected by pre-war levels of military production, that the pace of soviet mobilisation would have been the same in 1928, and that American aid was the only meaningful factor. That is.. not something I can get behind.

mrglass08:
Also, it is not just the West that favors wars of maneuver, Sun Tzu favors this ideal.

Right, but Sun Tzu was writing at a time when an army consisted of a few thousand people roaming around the countryside.

The armies of the eastern front consisted of millions of soldiers spread along a vast front. Individual battles could be tens or even hundreds of miles wide. Defensive lines could be tens of miles deep. In that environment, a "war of manoeuvre" takes on a fundamentally different character. A "manoeuvrable" attack can be easily counterattacked by "manoeuvrable" reserves, but this results in two concentrated forces smashing into each other. On the eastern front, this happened constantly, which is what lead to high casualties.

runic knight:

Saelune:
I am not the one arguing against demonizing an entire political party.

Exactly, you are the one arguing FOR demonizing an entire political party, as you openly did. Your justification for demonizing an entire political party was called out for being both trying to justify horrible behavior because of some nebulous "other" person also did it, and was hypocritical as you condemn what others did while doing it outright yourself. I am the one calling that out for being horrible behavior and intellectually childish.

You are the one saying that demonizing an entire political party is bad, BUT only when the left does it.

Bullshit.
I am saying it is bad. Period. You are the only one trying to add conditions to that stance in order to justify yourself.

Stop lying about me just because you don't like being called out for your own horrible behavior.
I am saying it is bad to call an entire political party literally nazi in response to you doing exactly that.
I have never said it was morally right and ok if one side did it but the other cannot not, and I actively call YOU out for trying to use that exact same argument to justify your own positions. I called you out for it in this very thread where you tried to justify demonizing an entire political party with a behavior that you then condemned in others doing.

If you think it is not ok for anyone to demonize an entire political party, then you have to hold the right accountable too.

That is absolutely right. And I do.

When I see the far right or religious extremists, or ideological extremists calling an entire party nazi, or saying an entire half of the population deserves to be locked up. Just because I call you on here and now doesn't mean I don't call out your foes elsewhere too. It just means you are the only one calling an entire political party the fucking nazi in this thread at the moment.

Perhaps you should apply that ideal of consistency to your own beliefs and stop trying to justify your notion of "no bad tactics" that you seem to have close to your heart at the moment.

You called an entire political party nazi
That is bad.
Others do the same thing.
That is also bad.
But they aren't here right now. You are.
And you are trying to justify your position and actions here on people who are not here. You are trying to defend your action of a behavior that is bad, that you know and call bad, and that which you openly and unapologetically committed yourself.

You are in the wrong here.

Do you?

Yes, I call out people calling an entire political party literal nazi regardless which one. Hell, I call out gross demonizations of entire groups in other regard too. Such as people calling all atheists amoral baby killers. Or people calling all white people racists. Or people calling all black people criminals.

I mean, you defend Nazis demonizing the Jews, you defend the KKK demonizing black people, why can they do it?

Excuse me, what?
When the hell did I EVER defend nazi demonizing others or the kkk demonizing black people as it was something morally right?
When the hell did I EVER say that was right of them to do? Where did I EVER say that was good or proper?

You have a lot of balls to try to make that sort of accusation about me Saelune. And that it was done because you are upset I called you out for literally calling an entire political party nazi is outright contemptible. An outright disgusting character attack.

Or is this you unable to understand that I can defend the right of all people to speak freely without having to agree with what thy say? Is this gross dishonest misrepresentation of my position and my character just a horrendous twisting of my position on free speech being a human right in order to try to attack my character for calling out your own hypocrisy and horrible behavior?

I never once claimed or implied it was morally acceptable, or they were correct to demonize people Saelune. Not once.

That I acknowledge it is their right to hold their own opinions and speak them freely is not an never has been an endorsement of them. The same as my acknowledging and defending YOUR right to speak your usual arguments and spite is not an endorsement of you. Respecting someone's ability to speak and agreeing with what they say is not the same thing. Intentionally misrepresenting the one as the other to attack a person's character is the sort of underhanded slander that would make Joseph Goebbels proud. Congrats on hating the nazi so much you willfully do the same tactics they do. How about you drop all pretenses and just start telling me that my defending of the jew's right to exist means I support their hatred of Germany. They would both be the same level of intellectual dishonesty at this point.

You argue against me because my left wing values oppose yours.

Yes, your left wing values oppose my left wing values, exactly.
I value freedom, opposing authoritarianism, opposing war, opposing censorship, support equality, support equal rights, and support individual choice in how one wishes to live their life. I support not judging someone based on their sexuality, the right to freedom of religious choice by the individual (including no religion at all), and the rights of the consumers over that of corporate interests. I support an ethical free press, and government transparency and accountability not based on what party they belong to.
Your opposition to those left wing values is why I argue with you so much, you are absolutely Right.

Easy there cowboy, don't be so harsh! Though I do agree with you that villifying your opponents like that doesn't win the left any battles. Even if the right wing tends to stoop to such dirty tactics. Being a partisan hack is never good anyway.

1. I am well aware that industrialization means more than just buildings and factories. The building of railroads is a major part of the process, as is the development of sophisticated mining and smelting operations. Building up cities and moving people out of subsistence agriculture into industrial centers and consolidation of agriculture into large scale operations.

2. Did the Soviet industrial drive have no benefit, of course not. Without it the Soviets might have collapsed before any meaningful assistance could have reached them. Did the industrialization mean that the Soviets could fight the Nazis without aid, also of course not. The war required the efforts of all the nations involved. It should be remembered in total, not as individual pieces in isolation from each other. The idea that the Soviets beat the Germans because they created the ultimate industrialization system that shot them up to par is as insufficient an understanding of what happened in the war as the idea that the Americans saved the day.

3. If Sun Tzu doesn't count because the Art of War was written before these huge armies existed, then Clausewitz's On War should be in the same category. Nobody before the First World War had any kind of experience with these kinds of armies on this kind of scale.

evilthecat:
I don't think anyone (other than official Soviet history) is seriously suggesting that the Soviets could have won the war on their own.

Hey, that is how i learned it originally at school when we were still a Soviet sattelite. Ah, childhood memories.

Firstly, Without the brutal forced industrialization of the Stalin era, the the Soviets wouldn't have stood a chance. Addendum Forthcoming pointed out earlier, correctly I think, that we give people like Churchill a free pass because their genocidal actions were "pragmatic" despite history bearing out that they were unnecessary, but we don't extend the same luxury to Stalin, whose actions probably did save Europe from Nazi victory (and the unimaginable horror that would have resulted). This indicates a kind of hypocrisy.

They were both horrible. But Stalin started his crap even earlier and also didn't really stop after the war, which makes the war a pretty feeble excuse.

Secondly, Western historical narratives enormously downplay the actual accomplishments of the red army or the Soviet Union during the war in favour of presenting them as acts of God, or extraordinary or baffling failures by the Nazis.

Hollywood certainly does. And i am always surprised about British claims to have won the war. But i don't actually thing the "Western" historical narrative as a whole is that unaware of the Soviet contribution, depending on what you count as western, of course.

And personally, I think this is important even today because by missing this we miss a very important lesson about modern war which continues to shape our perception of war today. We cling to the clauswitzian relic of the Schwerpunkt and to idea of a relatively bloodless victory by means of maneuver or technological supremacy, to the point that we believe it is possible even when it blatantly isn't. We assume everyone plays by the same rules, that everyone just accepts that a "good" strategy avoids casualties or attrition and that everyone will concede defeat to spare lives. The bloodiness of the eastern front is not evidence that there was no thought or strategy, or the Soviets were merely reacting, it illustrates something about the nature of modern war which we really need to learn before everyone gets lubed up over the idea of "intervening" in North Korea or Iran.

I don't think so. Both Stalin and Hitler meddled leading to unnecessarily bloody defeats because they didn't like retreats. Also the limits of Clausewitzian ideas of maneuver warfare had been thoroughly shown in the first world war just twenty years earlier. You could still try too pull it off, but if it failed, it became really bloody. And third, looking how fast frontlines advanced on the eastern front, the idea that any side there didn't favor maneuvers and moving warfare is pretty ridiculous. The only thing that didn't move were basically sieges and that is kind of their nature.

evilthecat:

Exactly, this is what I was trying to imply, but should probably have outright said.

Oh, not really your fault ..actually mine. I didn't mean you personally, I meant the ugly streak of revisionism you see in popular culture, media, and even some historians from the late 50s till even now that displays an anti-Slavic bias akin to Western historiography in general in terms of various Slavic people.

Part and parcel of the problem was and is that the Soviet accounts were often secretive and simply weren't translated until the end of the Cold War when the fmr Soviet archives were cracked open and people could (semi) freely access them. But even accounting for that, there is a tone deaf degree of anti-Slavic attitudes that crop up and create a mythology of things like the Russian winter, or 'Paulus' last stand', or other similar garbage.

Chuikov was, in all honesty, just a better soldier and commander than his Axis counterparts. Vasilevsky, Zhukov and others as well truly deserve a place of noted examination whether in terms of history or military science today.

Chuikov was the complete package of the type of commander soldiers would want to experience Hell with if they had no choice. And yet his actions and capabilities, and his fighting spirit against incredible adversity and making the most of their soldiery in creative and conventionally adept displays of command, are downplayed in favour of that mythology of the Aryan soldier facing a 'horde of Slavs' or the 'Russian winter', or whatever feigned nonsense.

It never happened, but that mythology persisted.

Any attempt to undermine Chuikov's brilliant understanding of terrain, mechanics, and gun laying and pre-sighting artillery for close-quarters artillery engagement against tanks that they couldn't engage at range due to enemy armour or visual obstructions or lack of verticality of their possible deployment is a villain of basic respect, common decency, and intellectual honesty.

The guy was hands down one of the best minds of his era.

Nations should thank their fortunes if they had access to such an obvious intellect in its darkest hours. The guy used German bombing runs to create the terrain necessary, and lead enemy forces into, tactical and strategic level winnable engagements despite a deficiency of fighting strength on the ground. It was a feat of desperation, but it transformed an unwinnable fight into a successful defence of the city (or what remained of it).

Yet how does his hugging tactics and close quarters engagement of tanks and such things get presented by lay people and the media? As Soviets mindlessly flinging themselves against German armour and machine guns. Despite the fact that the Soviets were denied conventional warcraft and wouldhave been destroyed if they fought assuch in the early days of Stalingrad. They did not have the soldiers, materiel, or support to fight a war of range, and they would have lost if they tried.

And this mythology that people have constructed to misconstrue the genius and fighting capability of many professional Soviet soldiers and commanders has even gone so far as to colour people's perceptions of actual numerical fighting strength... No, the Axis invaded the Soviet Union with every conventional advantage in abundance. Numbers, MBT strength, artillery strength, aerial dominance, and more...

There were truly no commanders like Chuikov in the world, and the fact that his actions and his personal cunning and bravery gets dismissed by people trying to rob the Stalingrad defence away from him is truly criminal in terms of historiography and intellectual honesty.

The Axis did not falter of their own accord. Mistakes were made, and mistakes happen. But they faltered because the Soviets fought well, owing to both conventional and creative agency of its commanders and the growing professionalism of their forces, mixed with a dogged ruthlessly necessitated by the extreme threat facing them.

Zhukov, for instance, broke the Kwantung army in a month when the Japanese strength of arms was at their peak in 1938 and '39, as well as displayed masterful incorporation of tactics and materiel such as underwater bridges for which the rest of the world simply would never of imagined using tanks as he did.

Zhukov at the battle of Khalkhin Gol was a major constituent to bluntening the expanse of the Empire of Japan, and would later be the instrument of Japan's downfall ... and it ranks as one of the very best displays of how to handle combined arms tactics on the defensive.

As I was saying to Thaluikhan ... the Soviets won their war, the Germans didn't just lose it. And commanders like Chuikov were people for whom won the war against fascism and did so with exemplary agency.

To pretend otherwise is historical revisionism on the basis of sentiment and sentiment only, and often downright racist.

Satinavian:
They were both horrible. But Stalin started his crap even earlier and also didn't really stop after the war, which makes the war a pretty feeble excuse.

It wasn't about WW2, but about military readiness in general. Stalin believed with ample justification that the Soviet Union needed to be ready for war.

evilthecat:
They had a fully mobilized army of aggression supported by a war economy...

Well, only somewhat. Germany hadn't hugely ramped up production of war material after 1939, and it was therefore at quite a modest level. It wasn't until 1942 that Germany started to heavily divert production to the military; by 1944 with the war effectively lost it was producing about 4-5 times as many AFVs and aircraft as it had been in 1941.

Undoubtedly that limited activity in key years significantly contributed to the rate that Germany was overtaken and overpowered in industrial war production.

Addendum_Forthcoming:

And this mythology that people have constructed to misconstrue the genius and fighting capability of many professional Soviet soldiers and commanders has even gone so far as to colour people's perceptions of actual numerical fighting strength... No, the Axis invaded the Soviet Union with every conventional advantage in abundance. Numbers, MBT strength, artillery strength, aerial dominance, and more...

Yes and no.

The Axis were stronger than the frontline strength of the Soviet Union right at the start in terms of manpower, but not in planes and AFVs. In July, with reserves and second-line troops moved in, the Soviets had numerical superiority in men on the frontline, although this dissipated after more colossal defeats. In the air, the Luftwaffe trashed the (frontline) Soviet air force in the first week, but the Soviet airforce was so huge and the Luftwaffe so poorly supplied that the Luftwaffe couldn't maintain clear air superiority for more than a few weeks.

The Axis made huge advances because of they were far superior at battlefield tactics, and had far superior control and organisation at the highest level. That remained until Stalin sacked the incompetent cronies he'd left in high command, and the Soviet army learned better fighting tactics the hard way, through practical experience.

Agema:

The Axis were stronger than the frontline strength of the Soviet Union right at the start in terms of manpower, but not in planes and AFVs.

That is factually false. We literally have the numbers of total fighting strength in terms of manpower, and the fighting strength of the Axis were clearly numerically superior. Also, at the start of the war, the Soviets had only obsolete early T & B-series light tanks.

They would not start having the capacity to mass produce the 'war-winning' T-34 until later. When people talk about talking '300,000 POWs' we are literally talking people like aged reservists for whom many weren't even armed or trained. And this would be a problem even until Chuikov at Stalingrad who at total strength had somewhere between 50-70K soldiers to face against the Sixth Army, who backed by 11 Panzer Army vastly outnumbered them.

When Soviets could field professional armies to meet the Wehrmacht, they often surpassed the capabilities of ther Axis counterparts. The numerical advantage in all conventional measures of the Axis approach and infiltration of Stalingrad was met by disciplined and professional Soviet soldiers ... and this explains why Stalingrad was such a meat grinder for the Axis despite that huge difference in strength.

The fuss about 'Stalingrad snipers' for instance. They weren't conventionally trained sharpshooters ... they were just conventionally trained soldiers skilled at urban warfare and night fighting.

Gordov's theatre of operations faced up to 2000 bombing runs a day, and could not meet man for man, tank for tank, artillery for artillery, the Axis approach to Stalingrad. They had a handful of ferry yards and required reinforcement from across the Volga and at night in paddle boats. It was physically impossible. While a lot of fuss is made about the Stalingrad Tractor Factory producing tanks even as the Axis where kicking down their doors, much of Stalin's tank plants had literally been boxed up and shipped to the Urals. Tools, materiel, engineers and line fabricators were basically just mass-evacuated east to rebuild military industry.

That 70K soldiers under Chuikov were literally all the could reasonably allocate ammunition and logistical support. And they were facing an Axis offensive on two salients that outnumbered them 5 to 1.

So, uh ... no. Factually false.

The Soviets would quite literally not be fielding true army group-level deployments until Operation Uranus.

The Axis made huge advances because of they were far superior at battlefield tactics, and had far superior control and organisation at the highest level.

Organizational, yes ... strategic thinking? No. German officers were a catty bunch who routinely lied to Hitler about their efforts or their effects, and routinely shifted blame onto others. Halder, for instance, was a joke. The Axis forces prioritizing the North and Centre Army Groups rather than the South meant that the casualties that Soviet commanders like Chuikov inflicted on Paulus and Hoth took months to replace.

Even the vaunted Manstein was a lying piece of shit who outrightly fibbed about his involvement in the failure of Fall Blau and Stalingrad.

By late 1942, that deficit in leadership capabiliies had well and truly shifted. By Operation Star, the momentum shift of Stalin ordering constant counter-attacks (because what else are you going to do with reservists?) had transformed into skillfully planned operations and maneuvres.

As the Soviets started mass producing things like the T-34 andthe operational capabilities of individual Soviet armies improved, andcould count on effective aerial support, air logistics, and routine medium tank deployments... the operational skill shift was observable.

Axis officers truly believed that the Soviet Union would be 'dead in a matter of weeks' after Kiev. Which represented basically the short and long capability of Axis officers of foresight to truly perceive what they faced getting into Russia-proper was everything the Soviet Union could do. By the end of 1942, the morale of the Axis forces had plummeted as they began to face that operational shift in Soviet capabilities.

The factories were back online. The Soviet soldiers battlehardened. The Soviet officers they met wits with had true strength at their disposal, and often had a ruthless cunning and brought new ideas to face the stolid, inflexible German idea of warcraft.

By the end of 1942 the strategic engagement of leaders to their officers had shifted. Stalin began (slowly) allowing his commanders more operational liberty to properly plan and co-ordinate their efforts, and Hitler on the other hand ... supremely disappointed by things like Fall Blau, began to watch his commanders with an eagle eye because he knew his offiers had been lying to him and their own throughout the failure of Barbarossa and beyond.

Addendum_Forthcoming:
That is factually false. We literally have the numbers of total fighting strength in terms of manpower, and the fighting strength of the Axis were clearly numerically superior. Also, at the start of the war, the Soviets had only obsolete early T & B-series light tanks.

The German invasion of the USSR started in 1941. The battle of Stalingrad that you keep referring to was late 1942.

Organizational, yes ... strategic thinking? No. German officers were a catty bunch who routinely lied to Hitler about their efforts or their effects,

I don't really care about that sort of trivia.

The Russian army was in the hands of idiots like Semyon Budyenny (a man honest about his own incompetence) who couldn't organise a piss-up in a brewery. It doesn't matter how catty the German generals were, they could at least point their troops in approximately the right direction. No one would doubt that some Soviet units performed very well, but on average, tactically they sucked compared to the Germans in 1941. As did the French and the British in 1940. And - when they arrived later in 1942, the Americans. Overall, their troops were poorly trained and inexperienced, and not adequate to carry out dramatic and successful tactical coups.

Agema:

The German invasion of the USSR started in 1941. The battle of Stalingrad that you keep referring to was late 1942.

Yeah? And? We have evidence the total fighting strength, manpower included, the Axis entered the Soviet Union with was far superior to Soviet fighting strength. Almost double to be precise.

Even by late 1942 this deficit hadn't been matched and we have proof of that. It would take until 1943 before this deficit began to reverse.

I don't really care about that sort of trivia.

Apparently you don't care about basic numbers, either. Sorry, but Halder was a joke, and German officers were routinely found inept and incapable once power parity and later superiority had been established. To put it simply, it took 7 German staff officers to lose Stalingrad in the face of two Soviet masterminds to hold it (barely, but credit where credit is due).

How many German staff officers does it take to kill a Chuikov? Just how many tanks would they need? How many bombing runs? Just how much artillery and manpower?

Apparently not enough, regardless.

Do you know what the Soviets pulled off with a meagre fraction of the fighting strength disparity the Axis had in 1941 and '42?

Operation Bagration...

It took 2 weeks to roll up a 1.1 million strong German Army Group, and forced half of it into an uncontrollable rout. The attack had been costly, but in terms of actual territory gained and just how quickly it would allow the Soviets to end the war, it was ultimately the greatest victory the 'Allies' had ever seen.

It was more impressive than anything the Germans conjured. Soviet commanders like Rokossovsky by '44 simply showed more creative energy and lateral thinking than German officers could summon even when they had operational superiority.

Rokossovsky and Vasilevsky basically schooled the Germans on how they ought to have invaded Russia.

Hell, people crow on about fucking Manstein... he required the single largest artillery formation in history to break a single formation at Sevastopol. And just to highlight how much of a disadvantage Soviet forces were at, despite that monumental advantage of firepower Germans waltz into the Soviet Union with, Manstein would later whine and whinge like a petulant child about losing some of his bombers to the Kharkov offensive during the latter stages of the Crimean theatre of 1941.

The concentration of artillery fire thrown against the defenders of Sevastopol was the largest in history. In essence, the 'glories of Manstein' were incredibly wasteful, such as the construction of the 'Dora' railcannon. For which the sheer scale of engineers and support personnel to create it and manage that one supergun represented, alone, about 4% of total Soviet personnel at Sevastopol it was designed to harass.

That one gun represented about one twentieth of the number of possible targets it needed to inflict damages upon in an attritional conflict.

That's the type of power difference we're talking about.

Also, might I add, Soviet officers were routinely just shot if they failed. Axis commanders had a nasty habit of surviving just to blunder again. Axis commanders treated their jobs as if careers rather than duties, and routinely lied about their abilities or their faults and shifted it to other people. Like Manstein and the failure of Stalingrad rewrote dates in logs and journals in order to evade recognition of his failures.

Which comes to another problem ... Axis forces (or more so Germans specifically) have comically horrible bookkeeping compounded by staff officers lying about their casualties, suspected enemy resistance, and munitions stores. So being fair to Halder, this was also a big reason why Axis reinforcements to North, Centre and South Army Groups were so messed up. Honest staff officers did not get the reinforcements and support they needed, because lying staff officers were cooking their books and field reports.

This is why Hitler began to distrust them.

A tragic example and nature of this is that staff officers who told Hitler they hypothetically could support Paulus from the air was taken they could support Paulus from the air, and that Paulus could hypothetically maintain their position was taken as they could maintain their position ... and Manstein's and other people's lies come back to bite other people in the arse ... though thankfully for him, his lying at least protected his arse from not being bit.

It was Manstein that got Paulus captured by recommending any breakout attempt be delayed. You wouldn't know it by all the rampant bullshit he writes after the war, but we know from transcripts he truly believed Paulus could be reinforced from the air.

So much for the 'military genius' of Manstein who was there and should have known better. I mean, the only real accounts we have about Manstein being apparently secretly brilliant but 'underappreciated' was because of Paris ... and then everything after that which was his personal memoirs he wrote.

It was Manstein, not Hitler, that got Paulus captured. For starters Hitler wasn't there, Hitler took the advice of Luftwaffe commanders they 'could' supply Paulus from the air, Goring confirmed that (in error, and often a blunder of historians whobelieved it was Goring's idea or Goring's confirmation alone), anditwas Manstein's idiotic assessment of Paulus' situation that reinforced in Hitler's mind Paulus should simply 'fight harder'.

And yet Manstein had the gall to later write Paulus and his corp commanders were to blame for not breaking out of Stalingrad... despite he himself writing they didn't need to at the time.

So much for the 'strategic thinking' of German officers.

And that is what many historians took as the basis of understanding Stalingrad was Manstein's nonsense despite evidence as the years rolled on that he was and is routinely talking bullshit. You know how people say 'German intelligence was incomplete'? ... What they mean to say is German staff officers are liars.

The mythology of 'hordes of Russians' at Stalingrad, for instance, is in part because the West had access to detailed, but fabricated field reports by Axis commanders ... but Soviet archives were often more complete details of actions and intelligence on Axis forces but were left untranslated or still kept as 'confidential' in Soviet archives and lost in the bureaucracy of following decades until the archives were properly cracked open in 1991.

1991, ironically, has given us some of the best accounts of the Eastern Front and the reality of it 70 years after it was waged.

Addendum_Forthcoming:

Yeah? And? We have evidence the total fighting strength, manpower included, the Axis entered the Soviet Union with was far superior to Soviet fighting strength. Almost double to be precise.

Initially, in manpower. In aircraft and AFVs, no. In the first week alone, the Axis destroyed about as many Soviet aircraft as the Luftwaffe had aircraft themselves, and yet the Soviet airforce still existed in sufficient numbers to reasonably contest the skies just a few weeks later.

The Soviets rapidly mobilised their second line and reserve troops, and basically erased the Axis manpower advantage temporarily, before continued defeats rapidly made them significantly inferior again by August.

Even by late 1942 this deficit hadn't been matched and we have proof of that. It would take until 1943 before this deficit began to reverse.

The Soviet army overtook the Axis in size in end 1941 - early 1942 in manpower. By 1942 the USSR was producing something like 4x as many tanks and planes per year as the Germans ever had on the frontline at any one time. Obviously it had numerical superiority there.

Apparently you don't care about basic numbers, either. Sorry, but Halder was a joke,

I wasn't aware that Halder was a number.

The simple fact is that throughout Barbarossa and even into 1943, there are countless examples of Soviet counterattacks with local numerical superiority - sometimes by a considerable margin - that utterly failed. These lessen over time - consistent with the notion that the Soviets learned to use their military resources much more effectively, starting from a very low point indeed in 1941.

How many German staff officers does it take to kill a Chuikov? Just how many tanks would they need? How many bombing runs? Just how much artillery and manpower?

You're talking about the intense defense of a city which provides superb defensive terrain; rubble for cover, defensive lines, full of buildings that can be turned into fortifications. The Volga prevented encirclement, the Axis were at the limits of their supply lines. Close city fighting rendered the tactically superior German armoured formations minimally advantageous. Nor let's forget that the Soviets chucked troops into that meat-grinder like crazy - and they evidently had enough men to shoot an estimated 10,000 of their own. Not to take anything away from Chuikov, he did brilliantly. But, y'know... great defensive position and plenty of reinforcements.

Hell, people crow on about fucking Manstein...

Yeah, probably because he won a shit-ton of battles very handily indeed. The overall career is the real measure of a general, not tl;dr frothing rants over a couple of their less glorious moments, by which any general could be made out to be a moron and we learn nothing.

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