Discussion in 'Prelude to War & Poland 1939' started by harolds, Jul 28, 2012.
Given his strained relations with the unions,Winston as minister of defence,would not be very wise.
Fifth Attempt: About Vansittart and Eden:Vansittart was fired because from his POV,politicians were ignoramus and had to follow the advice of the FO(=the orders of the POSS),while Eden wanted to be his the Foreign Office and not the Bertie Wooster of Vansittart .
A few months after Eden returned in december 1940,Van was definitively eliminated and moved to the house of the living deaths: the Lords
First attempt:about Eden and Chamberlain:Eden resigned,not because he disagreed with Chamberlain(both were appeasers),but,because,during his absence,Chamberlain had taken a decision on foreign affairs,without consulting Eden .
Chamberlain wanted to be his own foreign secretary,and had a low estimation of Eden.
Interesting as to why folk still today think Vanisttart was primarily a politican....
Harolds, I'd suggest you go back a lot further..pick up a copy of Ambassador Dodds Diary 1933 to 1938..Written in early 40's. It may enlighten you to a little more than a few appeasers on this side of the Atlantic alone. And others to the what was known about the Jewish problems during this time. The American loans figure highly in why some folk were not confronted on issues. The names of the time are all there Coar on his meeting with Hitler and Hess and Hitlers threats to Jews for example, world wide. it was all there for all to see not juist England and France and Winston Chruchill...Taken with Sir Neville Hendersons Failure of a mission..the British Ambassador you will see pacafists, appeasers and excusers did not just frequent one side of the Atlantic.
Urgh, I never said the appeasers were on one side of the Atlantic. Over here we had Joe kennedy and Lindburgh. My original point was that Churchill was spot on as far as the nazi menace was concerned. I contrast him to the liars and flip-floppers i see in my country and believe me, despite all his faults, Churchill comes out looking pretty shiny!
You'll get no argument from me on Churchill being the right man for the job...May 1940 without Churchill would have been a disaster for this country.
But as a Churchill fan, I'm well aware of his faults. If not for the likes of Allenbrooke his 10 days in May would have been worth nothing in the end run.
As for his politics...1926 says it all for me on his other lifetime.
I thought we had already had a thread on this subject.
Anyway, I think criticism of Chamberlain overlooks the fact that he had a twin track approach. Yes there was disgraceful appeasement but at the same time he was re-arming as fast as budgetary limits allowed and he did pour money into the right area - aircraft. On the other hand Churchill whilst the only man for the job in 1940 and 41, would have been better put out to grass and the War left to the Generals and Alanbrooke for the remainder of the War. I struggle to think of one of his brainwaves which did not end in disaster.
Whilst some might say it was realism, Churchill's policy was appeasement when it involved Japan in early 1941 and over the Polish question in 1944 where both he and (especially) Roosevelt could and should have taken a tougher line with Stalin.
That appeasement was disgraceful,is questionable .
I think it can be fairly said that a country's military fortunes are usually inversely proportional to the amount of meddling done by its head of state. Fortunately for Britain, its generals (some of them) resisted and pushed back. German generals couldn't or wouldn't and paid the price.
I was thinking of the treatment of the Czech Government but I am prepared to accept a different adjective.
PS If you are having problems with posting, I suggest you try CHROME - works wonderfully with this site.
The Czechs had nothing to complain :B+F,who had no obligations to the Czechs,told them that if there was a war because of the SD,they would not help the Czechs,and,as the Czechs were not willing to fight for the SD,there was no war,to the annoyance of Adolf .
If the Czechs were fighting,there was a big chance that B+F would be involved .
Sorry If I came out sounding antagonistic Horolds...I did not mean to. Its an interesting subject, covered a few times on here. I only ever take issue with the vein that usually comes out in this area, i.e. Britain and France should have known better...What I say is ALL should have known better. The causes of ww2 etc, do not lay at the door of appeasment alone and certainly not at Britains door alone. For that reason I love to refer to Dodd's own work. THere is enough in there in his words to in 1933 to make all of us shout loudly...Kennedy and Lindburgh on your side were but the tip of the iceberg...The bankers names in his history are the same names of today's bankers.
The ruling class of Britain and the conservatives also viewed Hitler and Nazism as the stalwart against Communism. They though Hitler would keep Stalin in check, and many in Britain's conservative class were sympathetic to Nazism and favored it more than Stalin or the Soviet Union's system of Communism.
he stood, practically alone, warning of Hitler's menace
Everybody was aware of Hitler's menace, but nobody had a good solution to the problem, "practically alone" is fake history.
Hitler was a good politician and practically unstoppable considering the dire economic conditions of France and Britain.
The Allied trusted too much in the Maginot line. Then again Hitler needed to win fast. He did not have enough ammunition to fight like in WW1. Thus the Manstein plan saved the German offensive which was the same as the ww1 plan orinally but a Storch plane with the attack plans landed to the Allied hands and in the end Hitler had to change plans.
Hitler took another gamble starting with the Rhineland area remilitarization
On the 12th of February Hitler informed his War Minister, Field Marshal Werner von Blomberg, of his intentions and asked the head of the Army, General Werner von Fritsch, how long it would take to transport a few infantry battalions and an artillery battery into the Rhineland. Fritsch answered that it would take three days organization but he was in favour of negotiation, as he believed that the German Army was in no state for armed combat with the French Army. The Chief of the General Staff, General Ludwig Beck warned Hitler that the German Army would be unable to successfully defend Germany against a possible retaliatory French attack. Hitler reassured Fritsch that he would withdraw his forces if there were a French countermove.
Remilitarization of the Rhineland - Wikipedia
So Hitler did not know the end result but he was becoming a gambler not a politician. Every step from Anschluss to taking Czechoslovakia were like a chess game. And at the same time his economy was almost kaput. Invading countries gave him money and gold and factories, on its own Germany would have not been able to create the kind of Army it did. If Hitler was forced to withdraw from Rhineland it would have been a major blow to his military planning.
It must be also remebered that Hitler´s deal with Stalin angered Mussolini, and Benito was ready to leave the pact of steel. The start of Winter War and Hitler´s approval of it made Mussolini even more angered because he did not consider at the time Hitler a true fascist but a coat turner. Mussolini tried to send planes and guns through Germany to Finland but the trains were stopped which made the relationship to Italy even more fragile at that time.
It wasn't such a gamble.
Rhineland was German territory, the Austrians wanted to join Germany (as demonstrated by their enthusiasm when it happened), similarily the Sudeten Germans.
The right of self-determination of the Austrians or the Sudeten Germans would be a terrible reason to fight a major war.
Hitler knew that and believed his actions were morally right.
It's should be remembered it was at the height of the Great Depression - governments had lots of other problems, and people simply didn't want to die by millions for another idiotic Sarajevo.