The World War II Discussion Thread.

edited July 2014 in General Discussion Posts: 19,339
To counter-balance the WWI thread ,this is a discussion thread concerning all things WWII.
There is a Bond link of course,with Fleming being involved in his pre 007 days.

So any comments about the war or Hitler,Mussolini,Churchill,Roosevelt,Chamberlain et all or any questions about the period of 1939-1945,please feel free to post.


  • edited March 2018 Posts: 19,339
    Hitler thought he was put on Earth as divine providence from God himself,especially after the numerous failed assassination attempts.

    Not surprising as he was one lucky individual,leaving early from his speech when the pillar bomb went off,the non exploding bomb in the brandy box on his aircraft,the fact that many Nazi salutes blocked off an assassins view as Hitler walked during the Pusch anniversary,the exploding bomb moved to behind a table leg in Hitlers 'Wolf's Lair' (Operation Valkyrie) etc.

    Even Speer's admission (dubious though in my opinion) that he was going to gas the Fuhrerbunker,only to find the air vent chimney was extended heightwise when he was checking the area.

    Having studied Hitler and the Third Reich for approaching 2 years now,his luck is a BIG factor.

  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 23,637
    I think Hitler also found the right words to convince the masses of what he perceived as the "truth". He could sell his ideas like the best vendor. His speeches were nothing short of impressive and he was smart enough to bring in a powerful element of show. Hitler was not 'just' the face of a big machine, he was in full control of that machine. He had his helpers of course, but he had the showmanship too.

    Unfortunately, he also had the wrong ideas...
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 40,566
    @DarthDimi, exactly, I think that's what a lot of people fail to realize: was Hitler a great leader, in a sense? He came in at the right time preaching the right words and managed to gather a following, of sorts. Were his ideals viciously misaligned and dark? Absolutely. Great leader, terrible human being.
  • 4EverBonded4EverBonded the Ballrooms of Mars
    edited July 2014 Posts: 12,459
    I get what everyone is saying, I just prefer the words "charismatic" and "persuasive" leader to the word "great." Saying great has a positive connotation, at least at first. There was nothing positive about Hitler, who was evil and twisted. He was thoroughly charismatic and came along at a time when the general population were vulnerable to being swayed.
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 40,566
    The last thing I want is to have my words misinterpreted as me saying Hitler was "positive" in any sense. I think he was good at leading, but his views were evil.
  • 4EverBonded4EverBonded the Ballrooms of Mars
    Posts: 12,459
    Oh, Creasy, I know you meant he was not positive! I'm just maybe sensitive about the word, that's all.
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 40,566
    Oh, Creasy, I know you meant he was not positive! I'm just maybe sensitive about the word, that's all.

    Don't worry, I understand how it can be interpreted in a different way. As long as you lot don't think I'm pro-Hitler, then I'm fine!
  • Posts: 1,817
    I'm also very interested on discussing about WWII as it is one of my favorite subjects on history (along with the Crusades and the Roman Empire).
    I've just finished reading Prelude to War, a book on the famous Time Life collection.
    What I like the most are the military aspects and the political strategies. My biggest knowledge gap is on the Pacific front.
    About the discussion you were having, I think that Hitler's charismatic qualities are a little overrated. In my opinion, he had more fortune than virtue. Mussolini had a more powerful rethoric and look that he managed to stay longer in power.
  • Posts: 2,341
    Good idea for a thread @barry007, gives us history buffs a chance to share our thoughts

    Britain was never in any real danger of invasion in 1940. Germany had no experience in large amphibious operations (at the time Japan was the only country that knew the first thing about the subject). The Kriegsmarine had suffered so many losses during the invasion of Norway the the British Home Fleet was a formidible force that the Germans could not contend with.
    They thought about doing a submarine blockade and starve Britain into submission but this undertaking would require 200 U-boats and at the time Germany had 17....

    Lets not overlook the Pacific War. World War 2 was global and fought on six continents. It was the worst war in the 5,000 year history of the human race.
  • edited July 2014 Posts: 615
    Some of the most fascinating campaigns of WWII (in my opinion):
    - "Fall Gelb": Hitler's invasion of France and the Low Countries (1940)
    - Operation Compass: British forces destroy the much larger Italian Army in North Africa (1940)
    - German airborne assault on Crete (1941)
    - Guadalcanal (1942-43)
    - Rommel's DAK in North Africa (1941-43)
    - "Manstein's Miracle": German counteroffensive, southern Russia (Feb.-Mar. 1943)
    - Caen: France (Jun.-Jul. 1944)
    - Operation Bagration: The destruction of German Army Group Center (Russia-Poland, Jun.-Aug. 1944)
  • Posts: 2,341
    The airborne assault on Crete was daring and a great victory for Germany. The downside:
    the German airborne divisions suffered such appalling losses that Hitler cancelled all airborne training and Germany never undertook any more of these for the duration of the war.

  • edited July 2017 Posts: 19,339
    Hitler knew how lazy Goering was re the Luftwaffe among many other things so he did lose respect for it,and him, as the war went on.

    But the Blitzkrieg's they performed at the beginning of the war were,to say the least,impressive.
  • Posts: 12,506
    Seeing as History was my favourite subject at school i was very disappointed that i did not get the opportunity to learn about it at school. Thank goodness for the History channel. :-bd
  • edited July 2014 Posts: 19,339
    If you get the 'Yesterday' channel,i find its the best for WWII,3rd Reich etc....they put on many documentaries during the night that i record.

    Also 'Discovery History' is pretty good.
  • Posts: 12,506
    barryt007 wrote:
    If you get the 'Yesterday' channel,i find its the best for WWII,3rd Reich etc....they put on many documentaries during the night that i record.

    Also 'Discovery History' is pretty good.

    Good call on that one Barry007, have caught some on their too!
  • WalecsWalecs On Her Majesty's Secret Service
    edited July 2014 Posts: 3,157
    This article about Operation Bodyguard might be very interesting:

  • Posts: 315
    I would suggest reading the extensive bio on German super commando-Otto Skorzeny. During my Ranger and Special Ops training, Skorzeny's missions and methods are taught. He did some pretty incredible things.
  • Posts: 1,817
    History Channel was great when I was in school. Now it just shows pseudo-cientific crap. But back then you could see WWII everyday.
  • Posts: 2,341
    Pacific War origins can be traced back to 1600 when Japan isolated itself from the rest of the world. In 1854 American naval squardron forced them to open up to trade and the Japanese were shocked to see they were 300 years behind the rest of the world. From that time on they began a mad scramble to catch up. They were impressed with Great Britain, an island country like them but a world superpower.
    Japan built up its navy and modernized its army and by 1898 they began down a road of imperialism and conquest in the far East that would culimate with the attack on Pearl Harbor, 1941.
  • Posts: 2,341
    Forgive the double post.
    But a myth that had been spread was that Germany (and Japan) wanted to conquer the world. That is such bullshytt.
    Neither country had any plans for world domination. Germany simply wanted to expand at the expense of Eastern Europe while Japan only wanted to follow the European colonial practices. they felt that Asians should have been ruled by other Asians, and since they fancied themselves as culturally and racially superior, then why not them?
  • Posts: 19,339
    From The Telegraph :

    German neighbourhood evacuated as collector's WWII grenades explode in summer heat

    A neighbourhood in Germany had to be evacuated after World War Two-era grenades bought by a collector at a car boot sale began exploding in the early summer heat.

    Authorities were called after an explosion on Monday afternoon in the town of Hennef, east of Bonn, police said on Tuesday.

    They arrived to find a garage in flames, and more explosions followed after munitions bought at a flea market ignited in the warming temperatures.

    They cleared a wide area around the home, shutting a stretch of railway and highway as experts were brought in. The munitions were secured and destroyed in a controlled explosion in a field.

    The 51-year-old collector who bought the firearms, and is now under investigation for weapons law violations, had been at work as the explosions began.

    He is reported to live in the house with his parents, who were the first to call the emergency services. There were no injuries.

    A neighbour told the Bild newspaper: “It was banging and it didn’t stop banging.”

    A police spokesman said: “At around 3.20pm several residents rang the emergency line and reported that there had been several detonations in a garage.”

    Bild reported that the munitions collector regularly goes searching in the fields with a metal detector for old war weapons.

    Unexploded bombs from the Second World War are often discovered in Germany.

    Earlier this month, an estimated 50,000 people had to be evacuated from Hanover to allow a series of World War Two bombs to be defused.
  • Posts: 19,339
    This just in :

    British treasure hunters find chest that could contain Nazi gold worth £100m in sunken cargo ship.

    British treasure hunters are seeking permission to recover a mysterious chest from a German ship's watery grave amid claims that it could contain £100m worth of Nazi gold.

    The box was found by UK-based Advanced Marine Services inside the post room of the SS Minden at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean off Iceland.

    There have been claims that the cargo ship was transporting gold from South American banks to Nazi Germany when it sank in September 1939.

    The ship was intercepted by the Royal Navy's HMS Calypso and scuttled by its own crew so the vessel couldn't be captured by Britain just weeks after the start of World War II.
    It was claimed that the chest contains up to four tons of metal, and the British firm is now applying to Iceland's government for a permit to cut a hole in the ship's hull and remove the box.

    The crew of the Sea­bed Constructor was previously stopped by Iceland's Coast Guard in April for not having permits to conduct research in the country's waters.
    Advanced Marine Services want to bring the chest back to Britain, claiming the contents belong to the finder, the Sun reported.

    The company is awaiting a decision from Icelandic officials on who owns the wreck and its contents.
    The SS Minden left Brazil on September 6, 1939 - five days after the war broke out - and there were claims that officials from Banco Germanico, a subsidiary of German Dresdner bank, helped load its cargo.

    The ship was sunk by its crew nearly three weeks later on September 24.

    The crew was rescued by the HMS Dunedin and taken to a British naval base.

    That's a nice little bonus for someone !!!
  • Posts: 12,506
    Always wished to learn about the first and second World Wars at school as history was without doubt my favourite subject at school. Alas I educated myself in the end.
  • ThunderfingerThunderfinger Das Boot Hill
    Posts: 45,489
    What you learn in school is very slanted, anyway.
  • Posts: 12,506
    All I got was Romans, Normans and Saxons which I did enjoy, but then it went off into the Industrial revolution...........etc.
  • Posts: 19,339
    Same here,you never really learn the depth of history at school...just the general basics.
  • Posts: 12,506
    Sad really, as with today's world we could learn a lot from the past now more so than ever!
  • Posts: 19,339
    As far as I know,history is being phased out in some schools,which really annoys me.
  • ThunderfingerThunderfinger Das Boot Hill
    Posts: 45,489
  • CommanderRossCommanderRoss The bottom of a pitch lake in Eastern Trinidad, place called La Brea
    Posts: 8,029
    hahahaha true. It's rather worrysome how lack of knowledge makes people so apathic, even though they have far more information at their fingertips. But it's just more interesting to know what jacky said about tom then your rights beeing infringed or taken away of course. And as you haven't learned from the past, because you failed to learn about it, there's really no problem at all.

    About that treasure hunter's tale, I'm really curious what the icelandic government will say. Thing is, when it's a boy and his metal detector, you're inclined to give the lad the prize. If it's a high tech organisation with bored investors who want a ROI it just doesn't sit right.
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