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Author Topic: Presidential General Election News & Discussion Center 2016
theamazeeaz
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Sigh...

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-intersect/wp/2016/11/17/facebook-fake-news-writer-i-think-donald-trump-is-in-the-white-house-because-of-me/

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Heisenberg
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To an extent I agree with KoM here. My opinion sides with yours on his opinions and posts, but the instant that he pops up people just get *aggressive.* Throwing in offensive drive by posts. Bringing up shit that he said months or even years ago.

We can all disagree with him, but I honestly feel that the way that he gets treated around here ultimately says more about us then it does about him.

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Elison R. Salazar
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I bring up the stuff I do from "months" ago because it's a clear cut case of my interactions with him where he is objectively wrong and him just being profoundly ignorant and he just not only cut and run, but lies and pretends he didn't; and is now lying about that and now claims it was merely because it was beneath his oh so vaunted dignity to have responded to what he considered to be posting intellectually inferior to his.

So yeah, I have zero reason to ever respond to him about what he says "now" because there is no reason to ever suppose that he will ever stop lying or accusing you of being demons; it's far more principled, and effective, to just bring it up again and again until he slinks away from the forums again.

quote:

We can all disagree with him, but I honestly feel that the way that he gets treated around here ultimately says more about us then it does about him.

You're suggesting we treat him as though he were mentally ill; in which case this would be simpler, we should just ban him until he seeks help.
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Heisenberg
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Really? The mentally ill should be removed from political talking spaces? Does that sound particularly liberal to you, Elison?
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Elison R. Salazar
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quote:
Originally posted by Ron Lambert:
Elison, it looks to me like I did give you amply sufficient answer to your false assertion of historical facts.

No you didn't, I responded twice, in detail, to your baseless assertions.

quote:

All you or anyone else did in trying to oppose what I said amounted to no more than showing your ignorance. I spent several years wargaming WWII, especially the Russian Campaign, so I know what I am talking about.

What, the ever loving is this.

Um no, no amount of wargaming experience you personally claim would ever amount to being credible evidence. Wargaming for instance, tends to neglect logistics; a field of military operational art the Germans thoroughly neglected.

Like I am laughing at this notion that just because you've played Hearts of Iron 2 the one time that this would make you at all an expert.

I've actually spoken with Russian archivists and historian grad students whose main topic of research is the second world war and directly the debunking of the various myths that you've peddled; myths that I thoroughly discredited in my posts in that thread; I want you to read those posts, and actually respond to what I said.

Most importantly, the histiography of the second world war has moved remarkably in the last 16 years due to new evidence and documents found from recently opened Russian former Soviet archives; such as the complete discrediting of Wehrmacht kill ratios.

quote:

Give me a list of specific things you say I got wrong when I said Germany came close to winning WWII, and I will refute you point by point.

I did, I even gave you time stamps. My main updated response was at May 30, 2016 01:26 PM.

quote:


I already mentioned a number of arbitrary choices Hitler made that hindered the German war effort unnecessarily--like his decision to stop using the Fliegerkorps after they had been misused in the Mediterranean theater. I also mentioned the choices he made to invade Russia without adequate preparation for the German troops to cope with winter weather if they did not succeed in conquering Russia before winter. I mentioned also that at one point, German units were in sight of the Kremlin, just before bad weather set in.

This isn't true, German recon units got within 14 km of the Moscow suburbs; it's extremely doubtful they could've seen the Kremlin even with the use of visionary aids like binoculars.

You can look at any map and break out the rulers and do the math yourself

Also, the idea that the winter of was the most severe on the record is also a myth; but it's sufficient to say that if the Germans had actually been prepared for the Winter they likely would've been more competent in other matters, they weren't because if they WERE competent they wouldn't have been Nazi's.

Also the Soviets were tracking German orders for winter stocks for military purposes and is a major reason the German invasion was such a surprise, specifically because the Germans lacked winter provisions; and if they had made a major effort to prepare for the winter this would've resulted in tipping off the RKKA to their intentions in ways that would've convinced even Stalin.

You can't suppose and assert counter factuals in a vacuum and assume there are no other ramifications for what you suppose.

edit: I just realized you've claimed that the "bad weather" only occurred after the Germans got to Moscow; this is completely wrong. The mud season aka the "rasputitsa" occurred around October 7th, this massively slowed down the German advance, as did Soviet resistance in both the encircled pockets, partisan operations, and their increasingly effective and organized resistance during this time; aka Konstantin Rokossovsky did some of his best pre-Bagration work here saving Moscow; Guderian remarks in his memoirs that the Soviets were getting better organized, and better at fighting and reacting to them.

The worst of the cold was between November 30th and December 5th, not after as you are claiming.

Another thing to note is that by this time the Soviets had transfered 18 fresh divisions, 1,700 tanks, and had managed to build up 58 divisions in reserve by this time for the defence of Moscow prior to launching the 1942 Winter Counter Offencive.

The idea that the Germans could have taken Moscow is completely fictitious; the Soviets simply would've committed more troops to the defence instead of engaging in a massive large scale counter offensive across the whole front if that was even remotely possible; there's no evidence that more winter uniforms or an additional air corps or invading a couple of months early would have allowed the Germans to take Moscow.

quote:

I believe I also mentioned the judgment of qualified military historical analysts that Germany stopped its airborne attacks against England too soon so the bombers, fighters, and stukkas could be used against Russia--some have said that they had the British air force on the ropes, and if they had continued attacks against the British air force for only a few more days, they would have completely ended the effectiveness of the British air force. Do you recall any of these things? I did say them. [/qb]

I have already refuted this, plus you're not introducing a new argument you did not make before; you said nothing about transfering additional aeroplane formations to the east; but again, the logistics would've meant straining the German's supply lines even more; maybe if you played less video games you would know that you can't solve a military problem at the grand strategic level just by throwing more formations at the problem; mainly again, because of logistics.

Again see May 30, 2016 01:26 PM. Basically if the Battle of Britain was going as badly for Britain as you say, it's in the official record that strategically the RAF would've made certain moves as a result; but they didn't, ergo the situation is not as desperate as you claim.

At the end of the day though, you have provided no compelling narrative or historical evidence other than appeals to authority, that you leave nameless and without citation; that the Germans were close to "winning"; you fail to provide the necessary explanation as to how they could have succeeded.

[ November 17, 2016, 07:51 PM: Message edited by: Elison R. Salazar ]

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Elison R. Salazar
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quote:
Originally posted by Heisenberg:
Really? The mentally ill should be removed from political talking spaces? Does that sound particularly liberal to you, Elison?

I'm pretty sure we've done it before. For their own good; and I think we've argued this point before that you do Ron a disservice by implying he is a child and shouldn't be held to the same standard as any other poster.
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Heisenberg
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No, we haven't done it before. We've done it in the past with, for example, Lisa who was blatantly racist. (Although I do miss her perspective.)

We've done it with *me,* when my mental illness was in full form and people were in disbelief when I revealed that the current me and my posts were from the same person as that previous me.

But you're ascribing mental illness to a person who sneers at your arguments and ignores your rebuttals.

I'm saying that even *if* that was a result of mental illness, that it's not deserving of a ban or conduct that falls outside the TOS. I'm saying that people who are mentally ill should still get to have their say.

People on the Internet are *allowed* to be wrong, no matter how much it annoys you.

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Elison R. Salazar
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I think you misunderstood my point, I'll let Sam respond.

Specifically,

quote:

But you're ascribing mental illness to a person who sneers at your arguments and ignores your rebuttals.

No I didn't.
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Samprimary
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You wanna know what the problem is, here? Like, realtalk and with me making an effort to present it?

It is that people have essentially (out of inertia from Ron's literally over a decade of being a completely unfixably obdurate conspiracy theorist who blanket-condemns anyone who he sees as liberal) normalized ron's behavior to the extent that everyone's responses to ron become the only ever focal point of discussion about what people should or shouldn't be doing. Like ron's words are just some non-sapient meteorological event that are not accountable to anything.

That makes things expressly weird though, because just like with bean counter and malanthrop and reshpekobilgewater you cannot honestly expect people to simply not end up super done with treating him like a good faith participant in any contentious discussion, and then move straight to being the clutchers-of-pearl brigade over how people choose to respond to a poster who is strictly incapable of arguing in good faith.

If anyone here is sincerely worried about decorum, the way to make absolutely no progress is to skip past holding ron accountable for his tendency to move straight towards posting hot, aggressive, bigoted garbage all the time, and expect others to remain genteel and never have fun with it. You could remove me and multiple others entirely from the process and it would still happen.

The only action that will receive any dividends is if Ron is told that he cannot post hot, aggressive garbage in the first place. If he posts hot, aggressive garbage, any normative attempt to police the responses to it have already failed. "Don't Feed The Trolls," and all of its subcomponent truisms, hold the world internet record for most useless advice by volume ever.

*as a corollary point, nothing about this involves any sort of argument in favor of normalizing my behavior

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Heisenberg
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Dance all you want. You described him as mentally ill and implied that we should just shut him down for that. Leaving aside whether the mentally ill should or should not be shut up, your only apparent basis for him being mentally ill is that he doesn't respond to your posts in the manner you'd like, and that he is illogical.
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Heisenberg
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No, really. If he's that worthless and predictable, ****ing ignore him already. What, like the world reads Hatrack and the fate of the universe depends on proving him wrong?

Still saying the treatment of him says more about us then him.

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Samprimary
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To reiterate, if someone is a hot bigoted garbage-poster, it's a complete non-starter to focus on that people respond to hot bigoted garbageposting.

An effort to stop the bad posts matter, an effort to tell people 'whoa, definitely don't say anything in response to all these really bad posts' will never in pretty much any community of humans succeed.

Like and it's not to have fun at your expense, heisenberg, but to sort of shine a light on the weird aftereffects of this normalization, I could paraphrase you to "the instant that Ron starts provoking people, people are provoked! what is up with that!"

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Elison R. Salazar
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quote:
Originally posted by Heisenberg:
Dance all you want. You described him as mentally ill

No, I quite specifically did not. You however did, by suggesting it was in bad taste for us, through implication to be making fun of this person who so clearly in your view can't be expected of doing any better.

I was responding to your post by bringing it to it's logical conclusion. If Ron is not a mentally stable and mature enough individual to participate on these forums he should simply not be participating, period. It is up to you to decide whether he is or isn't, I was responding to your own implication.

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Samprimary
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All things considered, I think that if the forum at large wants, I can switch it up and try the anti-ron part of it rather than just having fun with him
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Elison R. Salazar
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I don't mind having more smart things to read.
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Samprimary
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well it will certainly be officious and samey.
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Stone_Wolf_
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I find it interesting who is dying on this particular hill...the guy who openly mocked me after learning I was depressed.
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Stone_Wolf_
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(Hint: his name rhymes w/ byesnberg)
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Ron Lambert
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Elison, it seems almost hopeless even trying to reason with you. But I will try to offer a few corrections to your assertions, on the off-chance that maybe your mind is not totally closed.

I just celebrated my 70th birthday. I have studied history for a long time, especially WWII. And my generation, be it noted, actually studied real history, not the watered down PC propaganda that passes for history these days. As for my wargaming experience, it was not merely a few games. I wargamed Milton Bradley's "The Russian Campaign" for several years, and at one point reached the top 50 list of those nationally ranked. At times I took the Russian side, and at times I took the German side. I usually won, with either side.

Anyone who has studied WWII who has more than two brain cells realize that the MOST OBVIOUS reason Germany lost was because of Hitler's stupid decisions at critical moments. (This in fact is why some of his generals conspired to try to assassinate him.) If he had just delayed Operation Barbarossa for a year, or at least not been so overconfident that he did not equip his troops with winter clothing, Germany's chances of winning would have been greatly increased.

Russia was extremely vulnerable at the start of Barbarossa, because Stalin had been lulled by the Nazi-Soviet Pact (where Germany and Russia promised not to attack each other, but divide up Europe together), so as a result the Russian forces were deployed along their border in attack formations--which are not good defensive positions. Thus the Germans with their Blitzkrieg attacks were able to surround and wipe out huge swaths of Russian forces, forcing them to surrender en mass. In at least 30% of the games I played as German, the Germans either took Moscow, or came close to it, in the first year. (Of course there is some debate as to just what would have forced Russia's war effort to collapse--but remember the Soviets were highly centralized in their command and control.) By the way, muddy weather slowed down the German advance, not just cold weather. Cold weather halved their combat capability, though. So winter really saved the Soviet Union. No one disputes that.

And if we look at hypotheticals, what real chance would the Russians or the Allies in general have had if not for the massive Lend-Lease supplies the USA shipped to Britain and to Moscow? And what if the Japanese had delayed a year or two in attacking Pearl Harbor, which is what gave Roosevelt the excuse to enter into the war against Germany?

Really, the close call Western Civilization had with WWII is so obvious, it seems unbelievable that anyone could be so uninformed as to even try to contend that Germany did not have a very good chance to win--if not for apparent Divine Intervention (or at least some very fortuitous timing), aided by the military incompetence of Hitler.

[ November 17, 2016, 11:51 PM: Message edited by: Ron Lambert ]

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NobleHunter
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Wargames are not primary sources. The only thing they tell you about history is what someone else thinks about it. Worse, a wargame is a model of history, which necessarily introduces distortions as things are simplified. They also need to be enjoyable more than accurate.
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Ron Lambert
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NobleHunter, the reason why Milton Bradley's The Russian Campaign was so popular among thousands of gamers is that it was so accurate, historically and technically. It gave you a realistic feeling for the tactical and strategic realities of the Eastern Front. The only drawback was that the game was so tedious to set up (the game was not computerized back then, and there were hundreds of game pieces), and took a long time to execute each turn or "impulse." (There were usually two impulses per month.) After a few years I finally got tired of all the time it was taking, and regretfully withdrew from competition, or I probably would have gone higher on the national ranking list.

When gaming by mail, we approximated die rolls by picking stocks for the following day, and then dividing the sales in hundreds by six, where zero equals six. Most of us preferred to go by the historical weather, though sometimes some of us would use the "die roll" to determine the weather. The drawback was that if the weather turned out to be dry and warm longer than was true historically, it was almost impossible for the Germans not to win. That's why most of us chose to go by the historical weather. Milton Bradley had some very clever ways of approximating the tactical and strategic realities.

One of my younger brothers liked to wargame another game that approximated the air war in Europe, and I played a few times with him--but I never liked it as well as The Russian Campaign, because the latter was so well thought out.

But I would add that wargaming was not my only source of knowledge of WWII. My father fought in WWII (he made it to the rank of top sergeant, and was a catcher in the Army All-Star baseball team before the war). And I found the subject of WWII interesting enough to read about it from historical sources. (My father was in the D-Day invasion of Normandy, though thankfully he was not in the first wave. He served in the motor pool, and sometimes chauffeured generals around. He was German by descent, but did not speak the language.)

The currently showing movie, Hacksaw Ridge, dramatizes the experience of the late Desmond T. Doss, a Seventh-day Adventist who became the first conscientious objector to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor, for his bravery in lowering down 75 injured soldiers on a rope over a steep, high cliff, while under fire from the Japanese. My church is very proud of him--even though my personal decision was that if I were sent to Vietnam, I would have carried a gun, because I felt it is righteous to oppose the evil of communist dictatorship. God has a place for warriors like King David. As it turned out, though I was drafted, I was granted an exemption based on my medical history of childhood asthma and pneumonia. My only concern was that my decision to carry a gun might make it harder for other members of my church who wanted to be conscientious objectors like Desmond Doss. So I was glad I was not placed in that position.

I met Desmond Doss once, when he visited my church a few years ago, before his recent death. He was a slightly built man, very unpretentious. Still married to the same woman.

I remember reading an account given by a former Japanese soldier who said that he had Doss in his sights for many minutes, but had trouble pulling the trigger, and when he did, his gun would not fire. So you can make of that what you will. God certainly has a place for people who are definitely not warriors, but still have real faith and courage.

[ November 18, 2016, 12:15 PM: Message edited by: Ron Lambert ]

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Elison R. Salazar
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quote:

And my generation, be it noted, actually studied real history

Your generation literally did not have access to accurate records. The study, analysis, and recording of history is an evolving and ever changing process that takes into account new theories from new evidence, unearthed documents, new records, and so on; regarding WWII, the largest source of new documents is literal mountains of documents, communiques, letters and so on, from Soviet archives that were completely sealed and unavailable for the entirety of the Cold War. Here's a blog that translates and posts some


quote:

. I wargamed Milton Bradley's "The Russian Campaign" for several years, and at one point reached the top 50 list of those nationally ranked. At times I took the Russian side, and at times I took the German side. I usually won, with either side.

And this is completely irrelevant, because a board game from 1974 does not make you an expert at history, it does not give you more insight (Well it does, in conjunction with a good education and understanding, it can help provide a hollistic perspective, but here you're just using it as a cudgel and ignoring all evidence to the contrary), particularly because you go to no effort to actually explain your position; you just state it as fact and expect me to take your word for it.

A board game experience is not evidence, period. Especially since if you were playing against a comparable opponent in terms of skill then by your argument the Germans should have always won. Just think about that, think about how that actually undercuts your argument.


quote:

Anyone who has studied WWII who has more than two brain cells

Somehow you keep saying these incredibly sweeping statements and expect us to take you seriously. It's essentially you admitting "I'm right and anyone who disagrees with me are idiots." You don't do anything to earn or deserve this arrogance.


quote:

MOST OBVIOUS reason Germany lost was because of Hitler's stupid decisions at critical moments. (This in fact is why some of his generals conspired to try to assassinate him.) If he had just delayed Operation Barbarossa for a year, or at least not been so overconfident that he did not equip his troops with winter clothing, Germany's chances of winning would have been greatly increased.

Nope, multiple times now I've refuted this.

1. Your argument basically comes down to "If Hitler wasn't Hitler"; well a LOT of things would've been different if Hitler wasn't Hitler. WWII might not have happened if Hitler wasn't Hitler; You might as well posit that Germany would've won the war if Hitler were gay or black or rode a Polish cavalry bear into battle.

2. If the Germans had procured the necessary winter provisions you forget that this was something the Soviet intelligence services were specifically looking at for and would've provided additional early warning for the Soviets to procure munitions and fuel to front line units and to disperse the Red Air Force. Even 48 hours notice would've made a critical difference here; contrast the Red Army's and Red Air Force's prepardness for war with the Red Fleet; the Soviet Navy in the Baltic and Black Seas were highly prepared and anticipated attack and came out of the opening days and air attacks of Barbarossa almost entirely unharmed. A majority of the Red Air Force was destroyed on the ground, had they dispersed and been prepared that would've made German air supremacy in the opening weeks impossible and the German panzer encirclements much difficult and slower; recall that a crucial tank battle in the Baltic States, the Soviets were forced from their positions because of dive bomber attacks.

3. Delaying Barbarossa for a year was impossible. The result would've been a massively better prepared Red Army, that was larger, better trained, and had more T-34's. An additional 500,000 to 1,000,000 soldiers in the Red Army, plus additional heavy equipment would've made the Wehrmacht's ability to defeat them improbable and sooner. It's doubtful the Germans even reach Smolensk.

4. Germany wasn't defeated because of a OBVIOUS reasons such as Losing X Battles; but because they were in a battle of attrition against superior enemy forces who made less mistakes in the long run. Germany's early victories set them up for critical failure.

quote:

forcing them to surrender en mass.

Actually the pockets took weeks, if not months to subdue; this why the Germans were ultimately doomed to failure; because each time they had to stop their advance in order to refit, resupply, and rearm the Panzer divisions while waiting for the infantry to advance, gave the Soviets time to bring up reserves and form new defencive lines closer to their supplies while the German logistical tether got longer; with less horses, carts, and trucks in which to bring forward those supplies.

By Dec 5th the Germans had lost a majority of their horses, carts and trucks and this was completely irreplaceable.

quote:

In at least 30% of the games I played as German, the Germans either took Moscow, or came close to it, in the first year. (Of course there is some debate as to just what would have forced Russia's war effort to collapse--but remember the Soviets were highly centralized in their command and control.)

This doesn't mean anything, they simply would've relocated further East, well outside the range of German bombers or land forces; taking Moscow likely would've doomed the Germans in 1942 instead of 1945 because the effort to take it would've made them vulnerable to the Soviet counter offencive; again your war gaming experience neglects the actual strategic situation, if you had read a history book published recently you would likely know this.

quote:

By the way, muddy weather slowed down the German advance, not just cold weather. Cold weather halved their combat capability, though. So winter really saved the Soviet Union. No one disputes that.

Actually lots of people dispute this; because the worst of the weather was between November 30th and December 5th; the Soviet counter attacks were from December 5th onwards; the attrition the Germans took was from october to november; you do not address this.

quote:

And if we look at hypotheticals, what real chance would the Russians or the Allies in general have had if not for the massive Lend-Lease supplies the USA shipped to Britain and to Moscow?

No one disputes that Lend-Lease was important, in fact Lend-Lease further refutes your overall and original claim that the Germans were "close" to winning; they were never close to winning.

quote:

And what if the Japanese had delayed a year or two in attacking Pearl Harbor, which is what gave Roosevelt the excuse to enter into the war against Germany?

You know the US sent Lend-Lease to the USSR before December 1941 yes? And that the US did not open a Second Front against the Germans until 1943?

quote:

Really, the close call Western Civilization had with WWII is so obvious

No it wasn't. The Germans were never close to winning the war; as I have no refuted multiple times. The Germans could not have taken Moscow; even if they did it would've been such a colossal overextension of their lines and logistics that the 1942 Winter Counter Offencive might have actually have shattered the Wehrmacht for Realz instead of the almost that actually happened.

quote:

it seems unbelievable that anyone could be so uninformed as to even try to contend that Germany did not have a very good chance to win--if not for apparent Divine Intervention (or at least some very fortuitous timing), aided by the military incompetence of Hitler.

I am obviously far better informed than you, you're like a Doctor that thinks leeches are good for your humours.

I love the arrogance and comedically uninformed condescension from your posting.

I'll repeat it again; introducing massive counter factuals to WWII does not make it good histiography; far better and more qualified historians and military professionals than you have already done so and concluded the opposite; the outcome was never in doubt.

quote:

NobleHunter, the reason why Milton Bradley's The Russian Campaign was so popular among thousands of gamers is that it was so accurate, historically and technically. It gave you a realistic feeling for the tactical and strategic realities of the Eastern Front. The only drawback was that the game was so tedious to set up (the game was not computerized back then, and there were hundreds of game pieces), and took a long time to execute each turn or "impulse." (There were usually two impulses per month.) After a few years I finally got tired of all the time it was taking, and regretfully withdrew from competition, or I probably would have gone higher on the national ranking list.

No military simulation; no matter how detailed, could possible accurately reflect all of the total complexity and realities of the war. And does not constitute a valid argument in support of your position; it's a complete non-sequitor.

To summarize;

"Hitler would have won if he wasn't Hitler", and other generalized counterfactuals like "delaying the war by a year" introduce so many potential "butterflies" that you might as well ask for a gay black Jewish Hitler. Because History, does not work in a vacuum; if the Germans delayed by a year the variables regarding Soviet preparedness and their relative strength would have certainly also changed drastically.

Taking Moscow also would not have ended the war; because again, you had something over 60 Soviet divisions built up for the Winter Counter Offensive that nearly shattered the Wehrmacht. 18 Divisions from the Far East and 60 Reserve divisions built up for Moscow; plus other divisions elsewhere that likely would've been deployed by STAVKA to the Moscow Front had the Germans inched closer.

Taking Moscow meant these forces would've been either committed to the city's defence early, in which case the Germans would've had Stalingrad happen to them at Moscow instead.

Introducing more winter uniforms and other provisions would not have prevented the sheer attrition and logistical difficulties they experienced in Barbarossa and Typhoon; in fact additional equipment might have just made it worse; as well would have additional air corps deployed to the East. This attrition was most notably between October and November, before the first snows.

Here, posted by Jobbo_Fett from SA, from Robert Kirchubel's "Atlas of the Eastern Front":

quote:

According to the book, the Germans had nearly 2 million men (78 Divisions), 14000 mortars and artillery pieces, 1000 tanks, and 1390 aircraft. The Russians had over 1.25 million men (95 divisions, 13 tank brigades), 7600 indirect fire weapons, 990 tanks, and 863 planes. (Edit: At the start of operation Typhoon)

Guderian attacked first, between Novgorod Seversky and Kursk and made some good initial gains, mainly because STAVKA wasn't sure what to make of his independent movement/attack. Two days after Guderian's attacks, the rest of Heeresgruppe Mitte joined the advance.

He notes a critical logistic problem for the Germans, which hampered their ability to take (or hold) ground. But the Russians were also suffering problems of their own in the form of massive losses. Between 30 Sept and 15 Oct they lost almost 2 million casualties (1.3 million captured, the rest dying in battle).

3.PanzerGruppe and 4.PanzerGruppe were the closest to Moscow, with 2.Panzer-Division being the closest German unit to Moscow. They had almost reached Lobnya, which is about 27 kilometers from Moscow.

Things settled down from there, before German fortune started reversing. During the month of November, the Germans began the month with 2.7 million men and received no notable reinforcements, whereas the Russians started with 2.2 million men and added another 2 million by the end of the month.

Kirchubel notes that the Nazis had 4 main problems: Troop Exhaustion, Personnel+Materiel Attrition, Anaemic Logistics, and Lack of Direction/Attainable Goals.

Kirchubel's criticizes Von Kluge (who wasn't the commander of Heeresgruppe Mitte at the time of Operation Typhoon) as a plodding, unimaginative general. In fact, he's talked about Von Kluge's ineptitude twice in just a few pages.

The Soviets had reinforced the Moscow Front with over 2 million men, you're not explaining how the Germans manage to overcome these reinforcements that were in reserve.

From poster Disintered from SA, his source is Operation Typhoon: Hitler’s March On Moscow, October 1941, written in 2013 by David Stahel.

quote:

There are probably three main themes the book really hits on consistently:

1) The Germans were totally unprepared for the reality of the conflict they would be fighting
2) The Germans were borrowing all the time from their own future, with reckless abandon
3) Huge problems, such as an overwhelming focus on the operational rather than the strategic level, distrust amongst high level commanders, and a strange flow of information prevented the Germans from learning well enough to deal with these problems.

So that the overall picture you get is that the German defeat is all the time being sewn in the manner and shape even of their biggest victories.

Big take-aways re: those themes.

1) Unprepared for reality.

We all know German intel re: the USSR was a joke. Canaris was regarded as a useless nepotist. But he wasn’t any worse than his precedessors, and indeed the French and Poles were just as bad at infiltrating the USSR. This was compounded by the fact that Jodl, who was head of the operational department, told Canaris not to bother with infiltrating deep in to the USSR or with getting information on the Red Army. As a result, once the border moved rapidly eastward, his agents became redundant, and it became even harder for him to place new ones because (a) the Germans were bad at it and kept producing agents with fake papers (b) the NKVD good at stopping them but was ridiculously over the top about the threat of infiltrators and summarily executed 10’s of thousands of Russians fleeing eastward to prevent it.

The Wehrmacht’s own head of intelligence, Col Eberhard Kinzel (later a highly decorated commander ominously replaced by Reinhard Gehlen), was appointed despite having no intelligence training, not speaking Russian, and not knowing the USSR. His primary source was radio intercepts of Russian forces. This made his efforts range limited, but also limited by the relative scarcity of radios compared to Germany. As a result he gave his commanders a fairly good picture of the frontline units for Barbarossa forward but painted no picture at all of the reserves at the USSR’s disposal, which, obviously, were vast. This is probably one reason that the Germans kept on assuming that, in vast encirclements, they had destroyed ‘the last good units’ the USSR had, and everything left would be rabble.

Moreover, although a lot of the commanders who fought in Typhoon professed to have been well versed in the classics, and to have read about Napoleon’s 1812 campaign in particular, it seems to have emerged that most of them were lying – many only began to read furiously after problems had already presented themselves. Most had absolutely no clue about the type of logistical, terrain and weather challenges that would be present in Russia; almost all of them consistently expected a snap victory after their initial operational successes, and their frames of reference were as bizarre as Konnigratz.

This naturally fed in to logistics problems. Sometimes a problem was anticipated, but only halfway: the Germans knew the Soviet rail gauge was higher, so they had teams dedicated to relaying the track for German locomotives. They didn’t factor that the larger Soviet locomotives on that gauge could pull more weight twice as far, meaning the existing halts the Soviets had for coaling + water were twice as far apart as German ones, and new ones could not be built quickly. Almost all the panzer and motorised units could not repair their own vehicles and frequently abandoned their vehicles to preserve their pool of fuel in order to continue offensive operations. By late October the 600,000 trucks that the Germans had for Typhoon was reduced to approximately 70,000, and the number of horses declined similarly. Horses are another good example: German draught horses are larger than Soviet draught horses. Resultantly, when they died, the Soviet captures couldn’t replace them for some of their most important duties of moving guns and heavy equipment; and, meanwhile, the mud multiplied the number of horses needed to move a gun, so that Bock himself personally records seeing 18 draught horses being needed to move a single gun. Everyone just had no idea what to expect, and the resulting logistics problems essentially demechanised the Wehrmacht irreperably – Stahel talks about a process of ‘demotorisation’. The same effect, mutatis mutandis, applies also to the outstanding professionalism of the army.

There’s a lot more said about 1), in terms of specifics.

As for 2) ‘borrowing from the future’ - to begin with, Germany in October of 1941 was already fielding over 80% of all of its prime male youth in its army. Production was strongly effected and they simply could not be replaced if they became casualties: the German replacement army before Typhoon consisted of only 350,000 or so men, or just over half of the German losses in the operation.

The operation also massed the single largest force ever under one commander, with 1.9 million men under Bock, and approx 1,500 tanks and 1000 aircraft. Yet the tanks (and aforementioned trucks and horses) were irreparably wasted away by Typhoon. From October-December, 1,229 tanks were lost while in the same period a little more than 1,000 were constructed in total (and for that time, that number was not increasing; indeed, Hitler had planned to cancel new Ostheer orders for replacement vehicles after approximately January/February 1942 and to focus on other priorities like ship construction). A large number of crack panzer divisions reported by the end of October as having low double-digit numbers of tanks left in their divisions. Moreover, their strength was dissipated: because of immediate operational success, Hitler insisted the Panzer forces continue to roll the front back on a wider and wider basis, preventing their effective concentration; moreover, because they had already outpaced the infantry to create the two big pockets at Viaz’ma and Briansk, they wound up having to split their strength to keep the pockets somewhat closed to the east. And, ever outpacing supply, they kept gaining ground while hemorrhaging the bulk of their vehicles to keep enough fuel and parts to remain moving. A single division was described by one commander, on seeing it, as being little more than ‘a strengthened armoured reconnaisance regiment’ by late October.

Yet, even though the strategic aim was to achieve a sudden victory and cessation of hostilities by the swift capture of Moscow and the shattering of remaining regular red army units, in actuality this was only sometimes reflected in planning. For example, Hitler withheld a large number of replacement tanks from the front in order to preserve them for future operations at an unspecified later date. Once early operational success was achieved, Hitler (and a number of his commanders) then drew up increasingly fanciful plans for his units (such as directing one of his Panzer units 200km north to Yaroslavl when it was notionally supposed to capture Moscow) before the units could consolidate the gains they had only just taken. The OKW/OKH were both utterly terrible at stopping this: it’s clear Halder in particular had basically just decided he was just going to forward orders from Hitler and wash his hands of them. On one occasion, however, Bock did outright refuse to retask Guderian’s Panzer ‘army’ in its offensive to take Tula and sent heated telegrams expressly refusing to pass on Hitler’s direct order, because it was total madness. He instructed Halder that Hitler could pass the order on to the army commanders directly if he wanted it done. This only, later, created further mistrust between Hitler and his field commanders, even though Bock won out on this occasion. Hitler would later insist Kluge come to him from the front to tell him the truth about whether conditions were as bad as written reports suggested, or if the army was being insufficiently wilful and sandbagging. Bock wryly noted: ‘He probably refused to believe the written reports, which is not surprising, for anyone who has not seen this filth doesn’t’ think it’s possible’.

Having thrown the Javelin as far as they could they still didn’t get close to Moscow, and the idea they were even close to investing it was fanciful – the units closest to it were utterly depleted. Instead, shattered units were sitting with no winter clothing and quarters in a desperate situation. Even in October the chief Quartermasters of the Wehrmacht were not just refusing requests for winter equipment but sending demands back to Bock that he stop his commanders sending new ones because making logistical plans for the future indicated you were insufficiently zealous about achieving a victory any day soon.

3) Terrible positive feedback loops.

Focus on operational success over strategic factors is a big one. The German command from top to bottom is overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of its tactical victories to the point that they keep on not realizing their operations haven’t achieved the desired tactical outcomes. To the Germans, the fact that they destroy almost all of the Soviet 1.2 million men on the Moscow front in October in pockets at Briansk and Viaz’ma makes them blind to the fact that the time and resources closing those pockets is consuming isn’t just costing them time to get to Moscow before winter but buying Zhukov and Konev time to reinforce and prepare the defence of the city proper. Vasilevsky says:

In appraising the outcome of the events in October it should be said that it was very unfavourable to us. The Soviet army had suffered severe losses. The enemy had advanced nearly 100 miles. But the aims of Operation Typhoon had not been achieved. One of Bock’s groupings had become hopelessly bogged down near Tula, another beyond Mozhaisk, and yet another in the upper reaches of the Volga [Kalinin]. The stauncheness and courage of the defenders of the Soviet capital stopped the Nazi hordes.

Meanwhile, the victories also encourage triumphalism at home. Goebbels and Hitler indicate to the German public the war’s outcome has been determined by the collapse of the aforementioned pockets, which the German people believe to indicate the war is won in all but formality. When this turns out not to be so, it is a giant and unrecoverable loss of face for the Nazi part from which it does not recover (this is when listening to British radio suddenly spikes), particularly since the letters home all indicate that the war is extremely hard even when they are optimistic, as many are.

What’s more, Goebbels seems to be the person in Germany with the best grip on the difficulties of the eastern front, but it doesn’t translate in to his propaganda, for obvious reasons. But not even Hitler seems to grasp that Goebbels is gambling by presenting such an optimistic picture – there’s a suggestion here by Stahel that Goebbels widely optimistic accounts of progress in the east are actually being believed as entirely true even by high ranking figures in the German government and command, further encouraging all of the people who should be treating the logistical challenges of the front as an emergency to take it rather lightly.

And, the thing is, all of these issues of logistics – if not weather – had been thoroughly exposed by Barbarossa, and nobody had made a major issue of them yet either – because everything was such a big operational success.

Wedded to the operational obsession was also an offensive obsession: ‘the notion of calling a halt ran contrary to everything this officer corps believed: the importance of will and aggression, and especially the importance of finishing a war in a single campaign.’ This is especially a Panzer commander problem: they’re always being accused of wanting to start new fights before the old ones are finished, while infantry commanders (and von Kluge) complain. Even in late October, with the panzer troops more or less flaming wreckage, Bock and others are still mostly asking for a pause in operations until the ground freezes in November, rather than prepping static positions and trying to find winter quarters.

There were other associated psychological phenomena, particularly this concept of ‘will’: people who complained too much about logistical issues or the need for their men to rest for coming fighting were regarded as defeatist (inasmuch as victory was assumed to be imminent) and also insufficiently lacking the will to victory: ‘will’ is taken to be capable of overcoming any obstacle or difficulty, and people who grumbled about difficulties or realities on the ground were regarded as lacking this crucial quality.

Basically the Germans were screwed once they stepped into Russia.

They made countless mistakes at all levels, tactical, operational, and strategic; that it is laughable that pushing the front another 100 miles would have ended the war in their favour, or that they just somehow wouldn't have also made worse mistakes if they delayed a year? Get real.

This all goes back to what I initially stated; the German victories were basically the gaming equivalent of them getting lucky and rolling Natural 20's early in the war and assuming via Gambler's Fallacy that they would keep rolling 20's and were completely unprepared for when they finally rolled a 1. At a point where even rolling a 19 would've still resulted in failure.

And you're wargaming simply cannot account for the real difficulties the Germans were facing, or the attrition that they had accumulated.

The standard you are using is not a reasonable one; one that the entire German war effort during WWII not make a single mistake ever while also insisting that the Allies likewise keep making mistakes; that's insanity and beyond unrealistic.

[ November 18, 2016, 09:05 PM: Message edited by: Elison R. Salazar ]

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Rakeesh
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Ah yes, the 'God has a place' for heroes such as Desmond Doss (a fair term for the man really). Which, alright, I do suppose that's nice and all but what isn't so nice is salesmanship of it. Because not unlike an athlete thanking god for scoring a goal, saying that God has a place for war heroes whether themselves violent and warlike or not is nice enough I suppose, but it leaves off the part where that place God has for men such as Doss comes at the expense of tens of millions of dead, many in lingering agony, and scores of millions more later born under tyrannies who would live out their lives in opppression.

It's convenient that the approach of politicized religion such as yours so often is 'god has a place' for someone who embodies an affirming story. But for the hundreds or thousands of others who die to make the ink for that story, so to speak, 'God works in mysterious ways' or 'man has agency and sometimes that means you're minding your own business and then die in agony or your kids are born into hopeless, grinding poverty'.

Pick one, goddamnit. You don't get to claim the good stuff and then shrug your shoulders and be opaque at the cost. Even at the remove of generations, you don't get to just avert your eyes from the cost in service to rhetoric.

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Elison R. Salazar
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AND THERES MORE (Also Mr. Disinterested, from the same book):

quote:

Relative Strength of Panzer troops June-October

Bock's 8 Panzer divisions on the 22nd of June totalled 1,530 tanks. On October 2nd he had a little more than this to use for Typhoon, despite having the greatest concentration of Panzer Units any German commander would have in the war. Where did those numbers come from?

Firstly, between June and October, however, Bock was assigned Hoepner's panzer group (the 4th) and 4 more Panzer Divisions in addition to his 8 panzer divisions under Hoth and Guderian, making 12. However, almost all the reinforced strength came from new production and 2 specific Divisions, the 2nd and 5th Panzer Divisions: as a result, 12 of Bock's Panzer Divisions contributed only half of the total number of tanks involved in operation Typhoon. And of the ones that he had rolled through from his original 8 panzer divisions, a number of tanks were only in a provisional state of repair.

If the strength of the 12 veteran Panzer divisions Bock had on October 2nd [the 8+4 new ones] is tracked from 22nd of June to 4 October the divisional strength had been reduced by 70%, from 2,476 to 750 tanks. Colonel Walther Charles De Beaulieu, the chief of staff of Panzer Group 4, noted that at the end of September: ‘what one referred to as a “division” was actually only half of a division”. Meanwhile, the shiny new divisions, the 5th and the 2nd, brought 450 tanks each.

Hitler was also terrible about reinforcing these depleted units. For Typhoon he released 300 tanks out of a production total of over 800 between Barbarossa and Typhoon, amounting to: 60 38(t)'s, 150 mk III's, 96 mk IV's, averaging out to only 25 new tanks per division. Hitler was so assured of victory though that the navy and airforce gained a greater share of production between July and December 1941: overall production of army weapons fell 29% in that period.

Tracking The Losses in Barbarossa

Hoth's 3rd Panzer Group is a good example. His 7th division after the first week of Barbarossa had lost 50% of it's Mk. II's and III's and 75% of it's Mk. IV's, more than half to logistical issues and breakdown rather than enemy action. Though, where Soviet forces could be used adequately, they were also devastating: Model's 3rd Division lost 22 tanks in a single action stemming from an ambush, to Soviet tank fire, in Zhoblin on July 6th.

Taking the Panzer groups as a whole by September 7th:

Guderian had 5 Panzer Divisions with 256 tanks, down from 904 on 22 June.
Hoth had 280 tanks, down from 707.
Hoepner had 250 tanks down from 626.

These were the formations whose only internal reinforcement of tanks was the aforementioned 300 (or 25 per division).

Not Just Tanks

To put those tank losses in the perspective of human loss, Guderian's 'panzer group' (around this time it becomes an army, and is swollen) had also lost 32,000 men as casualties.

The infantry often had it worse, since they were isolated and mobile support to assist them in defensive battles was minimal, so ever smaller units kept holding the same positions. Blumentritt wrote in this period:

In modern warfare infantry requires armoured support not only in the attack but also on the defense. When I say our lines were thin, this is not an understatement. Divisions were assigned sectors almost twenty miles wide, Furthermore, in view of the heavy casualties already suffered in the course of the campaign, these divisions were usually under strength and tactical reserves were non-existent’.

One idea of how bad it could be is the fighting at Yel'nya between 18th August - 5th September, where the 137th Infantry division lost 2,000 men in a defensive battle; the 263rd, in just one week of that fighting, lost 1,200. Kluge's army as a whole lost 38,00 men, Stauss 48,000; by 26 September the total casualties for Barbarossa across all army groups were 534,000, 15% of the initial force - while only 385,000 were in the replacement army. This is substantial when you consider that 85% of German men aged 20-30 were already in the Wehrmacht, whereas in July-August 1941 the Soviet Union added 27 new field armies to its total strength.

This attrition was a factor in the air war: Kesselring, who was the lead aerial commander for Typhoon with army group centre, was reduced from 1,200 to 1,000 aircraft despite replacements. Between 22 June and 12 July 550 German planes were destroyed and 336 were damaged, and the planes were moving away from good, secure bases in German territory to damaged or shoddy bases in Soviet territory.

In trucks, as already mentioned, this attrition was also a huge problem. There were 600,000 trucks available on June 22 for Barbarossa, largely within the 4 panzer groups. By late September, Panzer Group 2 reported a loss of 30-40% of all its wheeled transport. Exact numbers aren't available for all units, but if you can extrapolate from those losses elsewhere that's a loss of between 180,000 to 240,000 vehicles before Typhoon and before the Russian rain and cold had even started*. How many did Hitler release to the front when he ordered the release of 300 new tanks? 3,500. Barbarossa had begun a demotorisation of the German army that would only continue in to Typhoon.

You get the sense about the campaigns of 1941 as a whole that the Germans had thrust a brittle weapon in to the Soviet Union's gut only to have it snap off at the hilt.

Dun dun dun.

*Told You.

Notice Ron, that now I have found sources for you, that have done research from primary sources form both German and Soviet records that paint a desperate and bleak picture of the German army. You have not done so; there is no indication that the Germans were in any position to take Moscow.

Also note, that the book in general, is published in 2013; now extrapolate and imagine just how much of your knowledge, mostly it seems from a board game published in 1974 and history books from probably before that; is out of date.

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Ron Lambert
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Elison, I reject everything you say as untrue and proof of not only being ignorant, but of having unsound judgment. You pretend to quote from what you regard as historically "authoritative," but your sources are in fact unreliable and unsound. The authors whom you quote were just the kind of liberal scholar wannabes who try to make a name for themselves by seizing on any excuse to go against the established wisdom. It is sadly apparent that your teachers never taught you how to think critically and properly weigh evidence for yourself. You can only go by what someone else says, and you select only those who agree with you. You may claim you have refuted me a thousand times, and it will still not be true. I have given you sufficient evidence for you to see that your contention that the Germans never came close to winning WWII is absolutely stupid and contrary to what every really intelligent and informed person knows. (And historical sources do verify that advance units of the German army did reach the point where they could see the domes of the Kremlin.) You are a pitiable example of how irresponsible liberal teachers and authors can victimize students. I have tried to explain to you why what I said was reasonable and borne out by the real facts of history. But to you it is all just a matter of childish ego. You seem incapable of engaging in mature debate. It is all just a game to you. You do not seem to care about what is real and true. That is what is wrong with all liberals.

You liberals pretend you are righteous. But it is you liberals who are rioting in the streets, looting, burning police cars, parading around with signs that say, "Not Our President." Conservatives never did anything like that when Obama was elected.

You liberals preach tolerance of others' viewpoints--but you present irrational and unreliable and pretentious assertions in the place of logical arguments, and resort to insult and derision when better minds counter you with better arguments. It is you liberals who pull people out of cars and beat them bloody on the mistaken notion that they voted for Trump. Frankly, if you do not wise up, then you should turn in your birth certificates, and resign from the human race.

I suspect that some of you here in this forum are beginning to become aware of the actual intolerance and extremism and hypocrisy of liberal partisans, as they have expressed themselves here, and you are feeling ashamed of it. May I challenge you to study for yourself from wider sources, not just your comfortable, favorite liberal sources. Do watch Fox News Channel, not just MSNBC and PBS. Find out what the other side says--in their own words--don't just blindly accept what liberal propagandists say about conservatives. You might yet someday become wise. I will tell you honestly, right now you are not.

[ November 18, 2016, 11:03 PM: Message edited by: Ron Lambert ]

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Stone_Wolf_
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I kno thread drift is a thing and all...but y'all might want to start a WWII thread

ETA...I wrote this before seeing Ron's response...now I'd say why bother

[ November 18, 2016, 11:33 PM: Message edited by: Stone_Wolf_ ]

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King of Men
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In the interest of not giving a wrong impression, I will just mention that Ron is not arguing, he is asserting; and that drawing historical conclusions from a wargame necessarily designed for balance is not "careful reasoning and logic", it is laughable. The immediate segue into "lib'rals are awful and uneducated", without even an attempt at refuting Blayne's wall of text other than "I reject this as ignorant and proof of unsound judgement", reads almost like deliberate self-parody.
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Stone_Wolf_
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Ron doesn't do deliberate self parody...just ironic self parody
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Elison R. Salazar
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What, the Germans didn't actually lose 530,000 trucks by November 1941 and didn't lose 80% of their tank strength or did that not happen in your "wargames" and thus didn't happen in real life in your mind?

Hey look, lemme hop into my TARDIS and fetch someone for you, hey look, he wrote you a message, lemme relay it to you through my LIBERAL TIME MACHINE POWERS:

quote:

Often, a non-Christian knows something about the earth, the heavens, and the other parts of the world, about the motions and orbits of the stars and even their sizes and distances, … and this knowledge he holds with certainty from reason and experience. It is thus offensive and disgraceful for an unbeliever to hear a Christian talk nonsense about such things, claiming that what he is saying is based in Scripture. We should do all we can to avoid such an embarrassing situation, which people see as ignorance in the Christian and laugh to scorn.

The shame is not so much that an ignorant person is laughed at, but rather that people outside the faith believe that we hold such opinions, and thus our teachings are rejected as ignorant and unlearned. If they find a Christian mistaken in a subject that they know well and hear him maintaining his foolish opinions as based on our teachings, how are they going to believe these teachings in matters concerning the resurrection of the dead, the hope of eternal life, and the kingdom of heaven, when they think these teachings are filled with fallacies about facts which they have learnt from experience and reason.

Reckless and presumptuous expounders of Scripture bring about much harm when they are caught in their mischievous false opinions by those not bound by our sacred texts. And even more so when they then try to defend their rash and obviously untrue statements by quoting a shower of words from Scripture and even recite from memory passages which they think will support their case ‘without understanding either what they are saying or what they assert with such assurance.’ (1 Timothy 1:7)

Love, St. Augustine. WHO WAS TOTALLY BLACK GAY HITLER WOAH.
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Ron Lambert
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King of Men, Elison's "wall of text" is no more than a berm made of sand.

Stone_Wolf_, I don't see any point in continuing this discussion in another thread. But you are right that Elison's ridiculous attack on my innocent statement that the Germans came close to winning WWII is a diversion of the thread topic, for really no good reason. Just his personal prejudice.

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Elison R. Salazar
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quote:
Originally posted by King of Men:
In the interest of not giving a wrong impression, I will just mention that Ron is not arguing, he is asserting; and that drawing historical conclusions from a wargame necessarily designed for balance is not "careful reasoning and logic", it is laughable. The immediate segue into "lib'rals are awful and uneducated", without even an attempt at refuting Blayne's wall of text other than "I reject this as ignorant and proof of unsound judgement", reads almost like deliberate self-parody.

I just wanna point out that for you own practice for our Hoi4 game part of that wall of text contains really cool and interesting tid bits about the logistics of the Wehrmacht that is probably applicible given Hoi4's logistics system. Seriously it's cool stuff, I personally did not realize the scope of how screwed the Germans were even in 1941.

The general idea, that the Germans were losing the war because they couldn't take Moscow in time or didn't take Stalingrad, or because of a split focus or whatever, is all basically false; the Germans were screwed from the get go and had a catastrophe waiting above their heads ready to fall and crush them at any moment.

quote:
Originally posted by Ron Lambert:
King of Men, Elison's "wall of text" is no more than a berm made of sand.

Stone_Wolf_, I don't see any point in continuing this discussion in another thread. But you are right that Elison's ridiculous attack on my innocent statement that the Germans came close to winning WWII is a diversion of the thread topic, for really no good reason. Just his personal prejudice.

You could you know, actually attempt to prove me wrong by actually taking my counter arguments at face value and refuting them bit by bit. I am open to changing my mind if you can provide a logically well reasoned argument supported by facts; after all, St. Augustine says you should do so and to knock it off and to stop making a fool of Christianity.

Why won't you listen to St. Augustine? I went to the effort to time travel to meet him and he's a really cool guy (Even though he might also be Hitler).

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Elison R. Salazar
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quote:

It is all just a game to you

quote:

I spent several years wargaming WWII, especially the Russian Campaign, so I know what I am talking about.

Hrm.
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Ron Lambert
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One last time, because it is so obvious. Elison, can you answer the questions WHY the Germans "were screwed" and exactly what caused the "catastrophe waiting above their heads"?

What if Hitler had continued the air attack against the Royal Air Force for another couple of weeks?

What if Hitler had continued to use the Fliegerkorps against the Allies after the one bad experience in the Mediterranean, and perhaps had landed paratroops in England--perhaps following it up with their planned "Operation Sea Lion"?

What if Hitler had had better sense when he decided to launch Operation Barbarossa, and included cold weather clothing and supplies with his troops?

What if Japan had not bombed Pearl Harbor when it did, or at least waited a year, or even a few months--so the USA would not have entered the war as soon as it did?

Are you capable of understanding how to evaluate such hypothetical situations honestly, and what they really mean? Yes, the Germans lost because they screwed themselves (mainly Hitler did), but if they had not screwed themselves, they would have won. Right? Do you get it?

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Ron Lambert
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By the way, Elison, one more thing. You brought up Augustine in one of your snarky remarks. Apparently you think I should regard him as a spiritual authority. As a Protestant who knows church history, I am not high in my regard for Augustine, and do not believe he should be called a saint. It was his idea of the Roman church being obliged to use force to compel acceptance of its authority and teachings, as set forth in his book, The City of God, which Protestant scholars credit with being primarily responsible for the creation of the Inquisition. So well-meaning as Augustine might have been, he helped create one of the greatest evils in human history. Millions of martyrs were killed because of him--most of them because they believed in sound Biblical teachings that happened to contradict the pagan corruptions that had come into the Roman church; and the Protestant Reformation and long-lasting wars in Europe were required to break the persecuting power the Papacy had grown into, which resulted from his doctrine.

[ November 18, 2016, 11:47 PM: Message edited by: Ron Lambert ]

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Stone_Wolf_
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Ron, the way you went off on Ellison is inappropriate and reflects poorly on you
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Ron Lambert
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I stand by what I said. It is the absolute truth. Elison is unwise and needs to grow up. So do all you intolerant, persecuting liberals.

And remember, Ellison started this whole thread diversion when he attacked my innocent statement that the Germans had come close to winning WWII, an utterly stupid thing for him to do.

Now, if someone were to say that the Germans did not have a chance to win because God was against them, then with that I would have to agree.

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Stone_Wolf_
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Do I have a splinter in my eye Ron?
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TomDavidson
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quote:
So do all you intolerant, persecuting liberals.
And our little dogs, too!
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Ron Lambert
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Tom, I am a cat person myself. [Smile]

I saw a cute picture on Facebook--it showed two little "ankle-biters" behind a fence, and on the fence was a sign that said: "Warning: Death from the Ankles Down!"

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Elison R. Salazar
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quote:

What if Hitler had continued the air attack against the Royal Air Force for another couple of weeks?

They would have exhausted more of their planes and pilots who wouldn't have been able to fight in the East; the RAF would have relocated bases further north out of the maximum combat radius of the Bf-109. The RAF again, frequently held the sky after the majority of engagements with the Luftwaffe and were losing less pilots and planes than the Germans, the rate of attrition favoured the RAF; it was the Germans, not the RAF, that was running out of time.

quote:

What if Hitler had continued to use the Fliegerkorps against the Allies after the one bad experience in the Mediterranean, and perhaps had landed paratroops in England--perhaps following it up with their planned "Operation Sea Lion"?

The overwhelming literature about Operation Seelöwe was such a organization and intra ministry clusterf**k with no real plans, doctrine, or training for a forced landing of the British isles that even if they could successfully storm the beaches they lacked the lift capacity to supply the necessary minimum number of divions for advancing into England. And they couldn't have protected those supplies from the Royal Navy.

The Germans contracted out the construction of landing craft to a land based company with no experience making boats of any kind, and would have had to make do with river barges that weren't sea worthy.

The Germans never ever at any point held air superiority, and likely would never have been able to gain it to the point that the landings could be unmolested by air bombardment.

Only a handful of ports on the Channel coast had the capacity to supply the invasion and all of their facilities would've been sabotaged and demolished before the Germans could take them (Look at what the Germans did to Antwerp for example).

Most importantly; a committed invasion of the British Isles would've delayed Barbarossa to the point that the huge early successes would've been virtually impossible.

The Fliegerkorps in general just isn't capable of seizing anything the Germans would've needed to do; they would have had no locals or local intelligence to work with; the Germans would not have been able to relieve them in time even if they did take their objectives; what objectives would they have even taken that would've enabled to the Germans to successfully land and push in? Southern England isn't Northern France; and the Germans never had the same preponderance of air superiority in 1940 that the Allies did over Northern France in 1944. The British didn't have the same defencive strategy or organization that the Germans did for the Fliegerkorps to make sense in that context.

So basically the RAF would've relocated their airbases further north, but they still would have had the range to run interference with any naval landings; the Germans would not have been able to secure the landings from being molested by the Royal Navy; and even if all of this somehow succeeded you still end up delaying Barbarossa by at least 6 months to perhaps indefinitely which if you buy into the idea that war was inevitable or if the USSR attacks first then you just bought the Red Army enough time to finish its reorganization and requiping and supplying and the Germans have to deal with the 1943 Red Army without the 1941 and 1942 Red Army's losses to show for it; with their population and production facilities unharmed.

Like bro, the Germans were utterly dysfunctional with iner-service rivalries everywhere and this was deliberate; Operation Seelöwe was a mess in its inception and would've been a disaster in its execution.

Like at best the Fliegerkorps might have had tactical usefulness in Varsity style operations; but at the scale of the Eastern front and with the local Anti Aircraft capabilities the Soviets generally had they wouldn't have made any difference.

quote:

What if Hitler had had better sense when he decided to launch Operation Barbarossa, and included cold weather clothing and supplies with his troops?

How? Lets put aside the fact that the Germans were so absolutely confident in victory that to prepare for a drawn out struggle and issue winter uniforms would've been essentially admitting defeat how would they have been transported? On what available trucks? On what trains? On what transport planes? Would have the German soldiers wore them in the hot summer?

The supply channels were stretched to their breaking point supplying Barbarossa as-is; but it gets better! Here's a blog that explains better than I can

quote:

Anyone who has studied the documents (that is, the records of OKH) cannot fail to be impressed by the hundreds upon hundreds of orders, directives, and circulars concerning winter supplies that began to emanate from OKH from early August onward, covering every detail, from the reconnoitring of suitable shelters to the provision of freeze proof POL (petroleum, oil, and lubricants) from winter clothing to veterinarian care for horses.
It’s worth noting that required veterinary care for horses was a massive task because less than 20% of the German Army was motorized. 80% of German Army transport from moving the wounded to hauling cannon was done with horses. When the Germans invaded the Soviet Union, their invasion force had three and half million men and more than a million horses.

Basically the idea that Hitler decided that the troops shouldn't have winter uniforms because he thought the war would've been over too soon is a myth and comes down to a logistical inability to supply them to the front.

quote:

What if Japan had not bombed Pearl Harbor when it did, or at least waited a year, or even a few months--so the USA would not have entered the war as soon as it did?

FDR, LIBERAL COMMIE PRESIDENT sent Lend-Lease to the USSR BEFORE December 7th 1941, in fact the first shipments arrived at the front by November 1941; FDR would've still sent Lend-Lease to the Soviets.

But, most importantly, Operation Bagration, which completely shattered Army Group Center and brought the Soviet Army into Poland was on June 22 1944. Operation Overlord was June 5th 1944; a whole 17 days previously; which was too short for any significant formations of German troops to have been shifted from the East to France.

Basically, the war in the Eastern front was effectively already lost by the Germans by then.

Additionally, Montgomery had already defeated Rommel at El Almein in July 1942 and even without Operation Torch the Germans would not have been able to change the strategic situation in Africa; maybe they can hold up in Tunis, who knows; but that's still 100,000 troops not fighting in Russia either way.

quote:

Are you capable of understanding how to evaluate such hypothetical situations honestly, and what they really mean? Yes, the Germans lost because they screwed themselves (mainly Hitler did), but if they had not screwed themselves, they would have won. Right? Do you get it?

Are you capable of understanding that even if the Germans had made a couple of less "mistakes" the economic, logistical, geographical, strategic, operational, tactical, and political, situations were such that you are insisting that essentially the Germans would have had to have made zero mistakes ever, not have been the Nazi's while also insisting that the Allies have made the same mistakes, and more?

You are not making a reasonable argument. If the Germans get a mulligan, why don't the Soviets? Why don't the Allies? Where do you get off on thinking that everything was happening in a vacuum?

Not everything is Hitler's fault, OKW and the German military in general was also making bad decisions! The German was effort was dysfunctional at every level.

You don't get to pretend that if the Germans managed to make a few less mistakes that the Allies wouldn't have had some other oppurnity to rectify the score; that's the other side of counter factual hypotheticals that you're not acknowledging is cause-and-effect.

That for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction; other things would have also have gone differently; the Allies would also have reacted different and have made different decisions to compensate.

Like your hypothetical that the Germans could've taken Moscow would have resulted in them being disasterously over extended, more depleted, and more exhausted and likely would've resulted in the war being over for the Germans in 1942 because they truly might not have been able to withstand the 1942 Winter Counter Offencive.

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Elison R. Salazar
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Oh and Moscow has subways, that would've been fun for the Germans! Stalingrad with subways, fighting house to house and tunnel to tunnel from metro station to metro station. There's just no way. And just like Stalingrad had it got to that point the Winter Counter-Offensive would've crushed the Germans.

To repeat, the Germans barely prevented a total rout in 1942 through desperate measures; if they had exhausted even more of their limited reserves and strength trying to take Moscow and extended their lines even more it would've been catastrophe.

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Parkour
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I'm just posting to say that I was there for when Ron Lambert used his weeb wargame playing experience as something that makes him an authority in world war history over the "watered down PC propaganda" of actual historical study.

I was there. When nobody thought Ron could be more unintentionally hilarious, and then he acted dumber than he had acted before, I. Was. There.

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Samprimary
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as a longtime player of the original medieval total war i have to agree with ron that germany would have definitely won if the turks hadn't started pumping out Saracen Spearmen

it is insane to assert, in light of my intense knowledge of military reality given to me by playing entertaining war simulations, that the german military was beyond hope in world war 2. they were still in the fight ... up to the day i set up a five-stronghold manufactory of Janissary Heavy Infantry between Cyranaica and Propontis, as any historical record not blinded by amoral liberal PC nonsense propaganda can attest.

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Heisenberg
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Two things.

First, Ron, it is wrong for you to ascribe anti free speech aspirations to ALL liberals. I am as liberal as they come, and I am and always have defended your right to spout whatever nonsense you wish, without being attacked on the basis of "Oh look here's Ron," instead of the validity of your arguments.

Second, screw off, Stone Wolf. What, is this the part where you get to question the worth and word of professionals because you've spent ten ****ing minutes on the internet? Well, shit, if it's happening to me I guess I must really be part of the community now. How heartwarming.

But let me break it down for you, *as a person who has worked in the profession for years.*

There are, at the heart of it, two reasons why people are assholes or dumbasses. They either suffer from a learning disability, or a mental illness, or both.

OR.

They're ****ing assholes.

I frequently point out antisocial or idiotic aspects of my clients' behaviour, in blunt language, because when you are *truly* ill and *truly* want to act better an objective voice telling you what you're doing wrong is a *welcome* thing, and oftentimes the nature of what is causing the disconnect *requires* blunt language to get the message through.

And I will reiterate that my reviews both from supervisors *and clients* have been superb. I do a good job. Very likely, that owes in part to the scientific theory of "it takes one to know one."

But if I point out that you're being an idiot or a dick, Stonewolf, it's nothing personal. It's becsuse you are acting like a dumbass or a dick. You can do with that input what you wish. Unless, of course, you fall into the second category, in which case, you're just an asshole. In that case, what do I care what you think?

[ November 19, 2016, 08:02 AM: Message edited by: Heisenberg ]

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Ron Lambert
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Elison, do you deny that Germany easily and swiftly conquered Poland, then conquered the vaunted French army, and drove the British Expeditionary Force clear off the continent--and would have wiped them all out if not for the miraculous/heroic Dunkirk evacuation? Do you deny that at that point Germany, with its weaker Italian ally, had virtually unchallenged dominion of Europe? (They did not conquer Switzerland or Spain because they did not need to.) German defenders were so well dug in, that when the D-Day invasion of Normandy was launched, one source I read said that only three men survived the first wave landing at the section of the Normandy coast the Allies designated as "Utah Beach." And that invasion might not have succeeded were it not that two Panzer divisions had been diverted to ward against an invasion at Calais, due to Allied deception that it might attack there. Had those two Panzer divisions been backing up the dug-in defenders at Normandy, the Allied invasion probably would not have succeeded in establishing a beachhead.

Let me add this objection: When I challenged you to provide your arguments for your ridiculous claim that the Germans could not have won WWII, I meant for you to provide succinct statements IN YOUR OWN WORDS, not quote paragraph after paragraph from one incompetent would-be scholar who obviously did not know how to draw valid conclusions about the evidence he was looking at, and seems to have been motivated by a desire to make a name for himself by being an iconoclast. If you had any competent professors, they would have taught you that unless you can express a subject IN YOUR OWN WORDS, then you do not understand it well enough to discuss it.

You are the one who chose to attack me for innocently stating what virtually everyone knows, that Germany did come close to winning WWII, therefore the burden of proof is on you.

And by the way, I take great exception to your blatant lying about my response to your stupidity, and about your projection of your own dishonest behavior onto me.

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Ron Lambert
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Heisenberg, obviously there are some liberals who have enough remnants of civilized values not to engage in violence on the streets. But what you teach, your whole worldview, leads to the behavior of the uncouth youth who are acting on what you teach, following the very "Rules for Radicals" that Saul Alinsky taught in his book--who was a person highly admired by Hillary Clinton (she wrote her dissertation about him).

The fact remains that conservatives did not riot, nor did their example and teachings lead anyone to riot, at the election of Barack Obama--despite all the evidence against him (such as sitting in the pews for 20 years listening to the extremist rants of the IRreverend Wright, and launching his political career in the living room of the proven terrorist and murderer, Bill Ayers).

Conservatives are willing to allow force of sound argument to carry the day. We do not seek to use violence and blatant deception to prevail. To repeat: To make a conservative angry, tell him a lie. To make a liberal angry, tell him the truth.

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Heisenberg
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Ron, get off that shit. The people in the streets are not indicative of all liberals, and even most of the ones who are or were in the streets are *not* violent.

They're upset. They're making their views known to the public and the government. And there is very little that I could consider *more* American then that. I would have supported non violent protests every bit as much if Clinton had won.

As for Alinsky, I'd never heard his name before conservatives brought it up. I'm just not as *old* as you are, Ron. I have different views from you, certainly, but I hope that you can trust that I and many other liberals still value certain bedrocks; I.e free speech, democracy, and others, just as much as you do.

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TomDavidson
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quote:
But what you teach, your whole worldview, leads to the behavior of the uncouth youth who are acting on what you teach, following the very "Rules for Radicals" that Saul Alinsky taught in his book....
Have you actually read "Rules for Radicals," Ron? I ask because you don't seem to have understood anything Alinsky was actually suggesting.

quote:
The fact remains that conservatives did not riot, nor did their example and teachings lead anyone to riot, at the election of Barack Obama...
A week after Obama was first elected, Ron, I was at a festival in southern Indiana where one of the vendors (apropos of nothing, selling woodcrafts) chose to prominently display a gorilla suit in prison orange with a nametag labeled "President" -- swinging from a noose in a cage.

quote:
To make a conservative angry, tell him a lie.
No. In my experience, the most reliable way to make a conservative angry is to point out the actual consequences of conservative policies and hold him responsible for them.
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Heisenberg
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quote:
The fact remains that conservatives did not riot, nor did their example and teachings lead anyone to riot, at the election of Barack Obama...
A week after Obama was first elected, Ron, I was at a festival in southern Indiana where one of the vendors (apropos of nothing, selling woodcrafts) chose to prominently display a gorilla suit in prison orange with a nametag labeled "President" -- swinging from a noose in a cage.


To be fair, this counterexample isn't rioting. Idiotic, racist, and disheartening, sure. But it is not smashing in windows and setting fires to cars.

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Elison R. Salazar
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Ron, my argument has two thrusts.

1. That you can't just decide, and continuously insist. That everything goes right for the Germans, and assume that the Allies just are never doing anything in response, are never reprioritizing their resources, are never learning from the experiences, and will never at any point decide to change their own strategy and tactics in response to the Germans. Indeed, you seem to assume a situation in which not only do the Germans make less or in fact zero mistakes at all levels, but the Allies get no such allowances at any level.

2. But most importantly, my argument is to point out the broad economic, and logistical trends; this reinforcements point (1). Because it cuts right through the heart of your hypotheticals; like "What do you think would have happened HUH!? If the Japanese didn't attack for a year?"

This is actually a perfect microcosm of the flawed approach you are taking to this discussion. Because economically, the Japanese could not have possibly have afforded to wait a year; they were running low on their strategic reserves of fuel and other resources; the war effort in China would have ground to a half and the Japanese would have been forced to surrender to American demands; Pearl Harbour's entire purpose, was to enable the Japanese to capture the resources of South East Asia so that they could continue to fight unhindered in China.

You entirely neglect the economic and political situation of Japan, their own logistical burdens and geopolitical concerns; by doing so you have zero comprehension just how preposterous your "hypothetical" even is; that addressing it directly, would've been the least relevant to the overall argument I was writing in that post, because it was sufficient to point out even if the Japanese delayed for a year; it would have held zero effect for the European war.

You constantly neglect logistics, supplies, the politics, the strategic situation, constantly and it affects every argument you are making.

quote:

Elison, do you deny that Germany easily and swiftly conquered Poland, then conquered the vaunted French army, and drove the British Expeditionary Force clear off the continent--and would have wiped them all out if not for the miraculous/heroic Dunkirk evacuation? Do you deny that at that point Germany, with its weaker Italian ally, had virtually unchallenged dominion of Europe?

I do not deny that "event A, B, and C happened" I deny your fallacious reasoning that this is evidence for your argument; that this implied they could have taken Moscow, indeed recall that the Germans lost in real life; so clearly winning in Poland and France meant nothing for Russia in the long run; why should it imply anything? You seem to assign Hitler the blame for everything that happened in 1941 and beyond but none of the glory for what happened before that, and instead conveniently decide that it was the inherent suguiness of the German nation that results in their victories and none of their defeats.

The truth is more complicated; and the Prussian officer corps own biases originating from von Moltke had plenty on influence on the Germans complete dysfunctional disregard for logistics.

In the end though, war is not about being superior in every respect, but by being less worse than the enemy. "Do not interrupt an opponent when he is making a mistake."

quote:

(They did not conquer Switzerland or Spain because they did not need to.)

Spain was a nominal ally and sent volunteers to fight in Russia. Hitler wasn't just deciding to attack every nation as the opportunity comes up, but in response to the current geopolitical circumstances. For example he did not originally intend to invade Yugoslavia until changing diplomatic circumstances forced his hand.

quote:

German defenders were so well dug in, that when the D-Day invasion of Normandy was launched, one source I read said that only three men survived the first wave landing at the section of the Normandy coast the Allies designated as "Utah Beach."

Pretty sure you're thinking of Omaha Beach and certainly not the first wave, one or two of the companies that landed of the wave might have lost most of it's strength and ceased to exist as a fighting unit, but not the entire first wave; citation needed.

quote:

and that invasion might not have succeeded were it not that two Panzer divisions had been diverted to ward against an invasion at Calais, due to Allied deception that it might attack there.

I'd actually generally argue that the success of D-Day mainly shorted the war. Recall that Operation Bagration occurred June 22nd while Overlord was June 6th; the German war was already lost within the month and would've been a matter of time.

So again, you're focusing on a list of "Every Mistake the Germans Made", for an overall argument that the "war was close" when specifically here the outcome did not actually matter. There was zero ability for the Germans in 1944 to have changed the outcome of the war; it was lost.

Also even from the perspective of the Allies it isn't relevant, sure they fire Eisenhower perhaps if Overlord fails like Dieppe, but instead they'll just redirect resources to the landing in Southern France, aka Operation Dragoon, which was extremely unlikely to have failed based on a cursory look.

You're basically taking a shotgun approach here, this does not support your argument at all.

Like, the Allies in YOUR OWN WORDS deceived German intelligence, Hitler has nothing to do with that. OKW and Rommel made the wrong call.

quote:

Let me add this objection: When I challenged you to provide your arguments for your ridiculous claim that the Germans could not have won WWII, I meant for you to provide succinct statements IN YOUR OWN WORDS, not quote paragraph after paragraph from one incompetent would-be scholar who obviously did not know how to draw valid conclusions about the evidence he was looking at, and seems to have been motivated by a desire to make a name for himself by being an iconoclast. If you had any competent professors, they would have taught you that unless you can express a subject IN YOUR OWN WORDS, then you do not understand it well enough to discuss it.

1. I had twice posted approximately 6000 words in my own words in that thread, on pages 3 and 6 iirc; you had never responded to those words.

2. Additionally I am not posting their argument, I posted their post in its entirety so that the entire context of what I was actually interested would also be provided to you to avoid accusations of "cherry picking".

3. The numbers posted are irrefutable. The Germans had exhausted ~90% of their motorpool, and something like 70% of their total tank fleet by December 5th. You are free to provide sources to counter this claim; I'm sure it should be easy for you if you are correct; my posting Disinterested's and Boba_Fett's posts and their own paraphrasing of the books contents isn't relevant to you and basically makes you look salty; the numbers do not lie Ron.

The sheer attrition the Germans took by December 5th meant that the units nearest to Moscow were entirely exhausted and depleted of strength; your "wargaming" clearly did not prepare you for this historical fact; which means taking Moscow was patently not possible.

3. My argument is my argument, I have repeated it here in my own words, with slight tweaks depending on your responses because after all I am actually going to read your argument, weigh on them, and then respond if they are wrong; and my refutation will take any changes in your argument into account.

They're posts that I quoted does not actually make up my argument, they only provide me the hard numbers, and direct primary sourced quotes, to support my own argument.

So not only are you wrong in suggesting that I am plagiarizing my argument, but you continue to avoid the hard truth that those posts provide.

Perhaps you should actually step forth with your own citations if you disagree with mine so much.

quote:

You are the one who chose to attack me for innocently stating what virtually everyone knows, that Germany did come close to winning WWII, therefore the burden of proof is on you.

I have done so. I have provided my arguments and sources to back up my overall argument, the ball is in your court to actually refute my argument(s). Right now you seem focused on the overall claim that the Germans were dysfunctional and doomed to fail; but you never address the underlying arguments or my refutations of your individual assertions; perhaps you should start to do so.
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