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#14648435
Starman wrote:Shirer IIRC.


I don't remember any such statistic from his book but anyhow he is dead wrong. As I said France didnt had 100 divisions in may 1940 and that is when French army size increased from September 1939 and this is coming from like every single source on the conflict. You can easily check wiki or French oob online for the relevant time period.

Still had to have been a much bigger and stronger force than what Germany had available in the west at the time.


Of course in sheer numbers. Remember a large part of French army at this time was not even regular. It doesn't necessarily meant that they could had easily overcame Germany. Germany still maintained a large number of reserves even when under the command of Army Group North in east, which could had been easily deployed in west. And what if Germany defeats Poland and turns her full might towards west, what will France do then, outnumbered and outclassed in every way. Because a war plan must look for the long term, there was absolutely no chance that France could deliver a crippling blow in 2-3 months while there was a good possibility of a quick war in Poland, the rationale of France is perfectly understandable.

IIRC Shirer also wrote that an all-out bombing of the Ruhr might've proved disastrous to the Germans. IIRC he wrote: "This was the one great worry of the German generals in September as many of them admitted later."


Better said than done. Prior to war everyone exaggerated the effectiveness of bombers. Remember, "The bomber will always get through". How can allies successfully bomb Germany, the Luftwaffe was already very strong, the Brits would had needed time to transfer their assets and command in France. I find this speculation to be completely unworkable.
#14660300
Pretty surprising in light of testimony from German generals Shirer quoted on pages 634-35
e.g.

"...if we did not collapse in 1939, it was due only to the fact that during the Polish campaign the approximately 110 French and British divisions in the West were held completely inactive agains the 23 German divisions."
#14667114
starman2003 wrote:Pretty surprising in light of testimony from German generals Shirer quoted on pages 634-35
e.g.

"...if we did not collapse in 1939, it was due only to the fact that during the Polish campaign the approximately 110 French and British divisions in the West were held completely inactive agains the 23 German divisions."


Ah, what might have been... As it was, Poland's brave army actually conducted itself better against the Germans than France of England did in May 1940
#14667146
there was a big belief in the strategic bombing, "the bomber always gets through" and this belief was that cities could be levelled wit huge civilians casualties. while the french army was stronger than the german covering forces, it was strongly believed that ending the phone war would result in German air raids and massive civilian casualties. the french air force was still playing desperate catch. both the British and the french were just pushing their better modern designs into service. not the only reason but it was part of the thinking. the belief was the a quick knock out was Impossible and the every delay would see their superior industry come more and more into play and that by 1941 Germany's defeat would be certain.
#14667212
annatar1914 wrote:Ah, what might have been... As it was, Poland's brave army actually conducted itself better against the Germans than France of England did in May 1940


I don't think the Germans were very impressed by any of the resistance they encountered on land until the Russian campaign. The conduct of the Soviet soldiers was in marked contrast to that of the Poles and western allies.
#14667231
starman2003 wrote:I don't think the Germans were very impressed by any of the resistance they encountered on land until the Russian campaign. The conduct of the Soviet soldiers was in marked contrast to that of the Poles and western allies.


Hitler Reichstag 1941 wrote:For the sake of historical truth I must verify that only the Greeks, of all the adversaries who confronted us, fought with bold courage and highest disregard of death.


On 10 April 1941, after the capitulation to Germany, the northern forts of Greece surrendered. The Germans expressed their admiration to the Greek soldiers, declared that they were honored and proud to have as their adversary such an army and requested that the Greek commander inspect the German army in a demonstration of honor and recognition! The German flag was raised only after the complete withdrawal of the Greek army. A German officer of the air force declared to the commander of the Greek Eastern Macedonia division group, lieutenant general Dedes that the Greek army was the first army on which the stuka fighter planes did not cause panic. "Your soldiers" he said, "instead of fleeing frantically, as they did in France and Poland, were shooting at us from their positions."


Image
#14667237
noemon wrote:"Hitler Reichstag 1941" For the sake of historical truth I must verify that only the Greeks, of all the adversaries who confronted us, fought with bold courage and highest disregard of death.


The Greeks may have been courageous but I don't think they really impressed the Germans in the sense of being a great adversary. They didn't last long nor inflict such great losses on the Germans. Soviets self sacrifice was unsurpassed and ultimately far more effective. Soviet pilots deliberately crashed their planes into German aircraft, while ground forces fought with similar suicidal courage.
#14667240
The Nazis were quite explicit themselves in their admiration for the Greek soldiers(they had the Greek commander inspect the German army, and had the Greek officers released bearing arms) so your own thinking is quite irrelevant, Crete is the graveyard of the German elite paratroopers, and lastly the Greeks pinned down 1.3 million Axis forces with a half-million army.

Hitler himself blamed the Greek ordeal for his failure in the Soviet Union and the Soviet Union thanked the Greeks for delaying the German army long enough to enable them to make adequate preparations. The Allies and General Eden himself thanked the Greeks for the success of the final outcome of the War.
#14667433
noemon wrote:Crete is the graveyard of the German elite paratroopers,


British defenders did that.

and lastly the Greeks pinned down 1.3 million Axis forces with a half-million army.


Not for long. And the Yugoslavs probably contributed as much if not more in the short (1941) and longterm.


Hitler himself blamed the Greek ordeal for his failure in the Soviet Union and the Soviet Union thanked the Greeks for delaying the German army long enough to enable them to make adequate preparations.


Yugoslavia deserves much of the credit for delaying barbarossa. In a sense there were "adaquate preparations" already but the USSR wasn't particularly effective at the start of barbarossa.
#14667492
starman2003 wrote:
British defenders did that.


wiki-Cretan Front wrote:United Kingdom:
15,000
Greece:
11,451[4]
Australia:
7,100
New Zealand:
6,700
Total:
40,000–61,800[5] (10,000 without fighting capacity)[6]


The 11,500 Greeks refers to official soldiers and officers alone, it does not include civilians who:

wiki Cretan-Front wrote:Cretan civilians joined the battle with whatever weapons were at hand.[81] Civilians went into action armed only with what they could gather from their kitchens or barns and several German parachutists were knifed or clubbed to death in olive groves. An elderly Cretan man clubbed a parachutist to death with his walking cane, before the German could disentangle himself from his parachute.[82] A priest and his son broke into a village museum and took two rifles from the era of the Balkan Wars and sniped at German paratroops at landing zones. The Cretans used captured German small arms and civilians joined in the Greek counter-attacks at Kastelli Hill and Paleochora; the British and New Zealand advisors at these locations were hard pressed to prevent massacres. Civilians also checked the Germans to the north and west of Heraklion and in the town centre.[83]

Massacres of Greek civilians
See also: Viannos massacres, Massacre of Kondomari and Alikianos executions

Massacre of Cretan civilians at Kondomari, Crete, 1941
This was the first occasion that the Germans encountered widespread resistance from a civilian population and were surprised. After Alikianos was taken, the Germans began a series of collective punishments against civilians, from 2 June – 1 August, killing 195 persons from the village and the vicinity, in mass shootings known as the Alikianos executions.[84] After the war, Student, who ordered some of the shootings, avoided prosecution for war crimes, despite Greek efforts to extradite him.[85] The Viannos massacres (Greek: Ολοκαύτωμα της Βιάννου and the Massacre of Kondomari (Σφαγή στο Κοντομαρί) were massacres of civilians from around 20 villages east of Viannos and west of the Ierapetra provinces. The killings, with a death toll in excess of 500, were carried out from 14–16 September 1943, by Wehrmacht units. They were accompanied by the burning of most villages and the looting and destruction of harvests.[86] The massacres were some of the deadliest of the Axis occupation of Greece during World War II. The massacres were ordered by Generalleutnant Friedrich-Wilhelm Müller, in retaliation for the involvement of the local population in the Cretan resistance. Müller, "the Butcher of Crete", was killed after the war for his part in the massacre. As most Cretan partisans wore no uniforms or insignia such as armbands or headbands, the Germans felt free of all of the constraints of the Hague Conventions and killed armed and unarmed civilians indiscriminately.[87]


starman2003 wrote:Not for long. And the Yugoslavs probably contributed as much if not more in the short (1941) and longterm.


Long enough.

Historical Quotes wrote:Regardless of what the future historians shall say, what we can say now, is that Greece gave Mussolini an unforgettable lesson, that she was the motive for the revolution in Yugoslavia, that she held the Germans in the mainland and in Crete for six weeks, that she upset the chronological order of all German High Command's plans and thus brought a general reversal of the entire course of the war and we won."

Sir Robert Antony Eden
Minister of War and the Exterior of Britain 1940-1945, Prime Minister of Britain 1955-1957 - British Parliament on 24/09/1942)

"It would not be an exaggeration to say that Greece upset the plans of Germany in their entirety forcing her to postpone the attack on Russia for six weeks. We wonder what would have been Soviet Union's position without Greece." Sir Harold Leofric George Alexander


starman2003 wrote:Yugoslavia deserves much of the credit for delaying barbarossa. In a sense there were "adequate preparations" already but the USSR wasn't particularly effective at the start of barbarossa.


It does not change the fact:

noemon wrote:Hitler himself blamed the Greek ordeal for his failure in the Soviet Union and the Soviet Union thanked the Greeks for delaying the German army long enough to enable them to make adequate preparations.


Also Hitler himself considered the Greek Salonica army as the one who changed the tide in World War I as well.

Hitler-Reichstag 1941 wrote:[b]Greece, which least of all required such a guarantee, was offered her share to link her destiny to that of the country that provided her King with cash and orders.

EVEN TODAY I FEEL THAT I MUST, AS I BELIEVE IN THE INTEREST OF HISTORICAL ACCURACY, DISTINGUISH BETWEEN THE GREEK PEOPLE AND THAT THIN TOP LAYER OF CORRUPT LEADERS WHO, INSPIRED BY A KING WHO HAD NO EYES FOR THE DUTY OF TRUE LEADERSHIP, PREFERRED INSTEAD TO FURTHER THE AIMS OF BRITISH WAR POLITICS. To me this is a subject of profound regret.

Germany, with the faint hope of still being able to contribute in some way to a solution of the problem, had not severed relations with Greece. But even then I was bound in duty to point out before the whole world that we would not tacitly allow a revival of the old Salonica scheme of the Great War.

Unfortunately, my warning was not taken seriously enough. That we were determined, if the British tried to gain another foothold in Europe, to drive them back into the sea was not taken seriously enough.

The result was that the British began in an increasing degree to establish bases for the formation of a new Salonika army. They began by laying out airdromes and by establishing the necessary ground organization in the firm conviction that the occupation of the airdromes themselves could afterward be carried out very speedily.

Finally a continuous stream of transports brought equipment for an army which, according to Mr. Churchill's idea and plans, was to be landed in Greece. As I have said, already we were aware of this. For months we watched this entire strange procedure with attention, if with restraint.

The object of this [Salonika] army was to attack Germany from the south, inflict a defeat upon her, and from this point as in 1918 turn the tide of the war.


Salonica army in World War I(1918) that Hitler is referring to:

wiki-Macedonian Front wrote:On 30 May 1918, the Allies launched an offensive on the heavily fortified Skra salient, commencing the battle of Skra-di-Legen. The battle marked the first major Greek action on the Allied side in the war.[21] Utilizing the cover of heavy artillery a Franco-Hellenic force made a rapid push into the enemy trenches, conquering Skra and the surrounding system of fortifications. Greek casualties amounted to 434–440 killed in action, 154–164 missing in action and 1,974–2,220 wounded, France lost approximately 150 men killed or injured. A total of 1,782 soldiers of the Central Powers became prisoners of war, including a small number of German engineers and artillery specialists that served in Bulgarian units; considerable amounts of military equipment also fell into Entente hands. The plan for a Bulgarian counterattack against Skra remained unfulfilled as the Bulgarian soldiers refused to take part in the operation. Both the Greek and the French press used the opportunity to extol the efforts of the Greek army, favorably influencing the Greek mobilization.[22][23][24]

The fall of Skra prompted Bulgarian prime minister Vasil Radoslavov to resign on 21 June 1918. Aleksandar Malinov who assumed office immediately afterwards pursued secret negotiations with Britain, offering Bulgaria's exit from the war with the condition that Bulgaria fully retains eastern Macedonia. However, British prime minister David Lloyd George rejected the proposal, assuring the Greek ambassador in London Ioannis Gennadius, that Britain would not act against Greek interests.[25]


The battle which led to the collapse of Bulgaria and opened the flanks of the Germans:

wiki-Battle of Skra wrote:The Battle of Skra di Legen (Skora di Legen) was a two-day battle which took place at the Skra fortified position, located northeast of Mount Paiko, which is north-west of Thessaloniki, on May 29–30, 1918, on the Macedonian front of World War I. The battle was the first large-scale employment of Greek troops on the front, and resulted in the capture of the heavily fortified Bulgarian position.

The Allied force comprised three Greek divisions of the National Defence Army Corps under Lieutenant General Emmanouil Zymvrakakis, plus one French brigade. The three Greek divisions included the Archipelago Division under Major General Dimitrios Ioannou, the Crete Division under Major General Panagiotis Spiliadis, and the Serres Division under Lieutenant Colonel Epameinondas Zymvrakakis. The 5th and 6th Regiments from the Archipelago Division were in the center, the 7th and 8th Regiments from the Crete Division were on the right flank and the 1st Regiment of the Serres Division was on the left flank.
#14667705
noemon wrote:United Kingdom:
15,000
Greece:
11,451[4]
Australia:
7,100
New Zealand:
6,700
Total:
40,000–61,800[5] (10,000 without fighting capacity)[6]



It would be interesting to know what percentage of the German casualties were inflicted by the Greeks.

Long enough.

"It would not be an exaggeration to say that Greece upset the plans of Germany in their entirety forcing her to postpone the attack on Russia for six weeks. We wonder what would have been Soviet Union's position without Greece." Sir Harold Leofric George Alexander


The failure of the reich in the USSR can be attributed to the delay due to Yugoslav and Greek resistance or the failure to prioritize Moscow as an objective.
#14706098
I love Adolf Hitler, he had more style then Darth Vader.

No. No he didn't.

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