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Hitler Invading Russia [Please Help]

Discussion in 'Western Europe 1943 - 1945' started by Orcaman, Apr 28, 2013.

  1. Orcaman

    Orcaman New Member

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    So my history teacher told me today as well as many others saying that the biggest reason Hitler fell was because Hitler invaded Russia.


    So this made me ponder a bit and I thought, well what if he had not invaded Russia?

    There is a reason for everything though

    1) Why did hitler want to invade Russia?

    2) If he just ignored Russia and didn't attack them so then he could have all his troups in normandy where the allies invaded he could have easily stopped that invasion.

    3) Could hitler have controlled western europe than took over britain and then USA? Then eliminate Russia and have world control?

    4) What if the scientists weren't taken and they got control of the nuclear bomb? Then it's all over right the germans would nuke everything.

    Some of the stuff above may be false because I am not an expert, sorry
     
  2. belasar

    belasar Court Jester Staff Member

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    Orcaman, welcome to the forum!

    There is a lot on this within our forum and you can go though great detail on your questions by using our search engine on the top right of any page.

    To give you some idea of answers to your questions I will try to give your the 5 cent tour.

    Question 1,

    There is no single answer, but the primary reason was a desire by Hitler to gain control of the natural resources in the Soviet Union. Commonly called Lebensraum, a variation of what American's called Manifest Destiny. Hitler also hoped that a Russian defeat would demoralize Great Britain and forestall a Soviet pre-emptive attack on his empire.

    There was also desire on Hitler's part to eradicate his two greatest fears, Communism and any ethnic group he considered inferior to the Aryan race. In his demented mind the Soviet Union was the very heart of the "Great Jewish-Communist Conspiracy" out to destroy European/Aryan civilization.

    Madness can have no boundaries.

    Question 2,

    It would be impossible to put his "whole army" in Normandy, but it would have made more troops available to defend his "Festung Europa" or European Fortress. Would this be enough against a combined Anglo-American Invasion? Yes and no. Against the historical D-Day of June 6th, 1944, quite possibly, but if you change one part of history, that decision has a ripple effect.

    America had originally planned to field an army of 200 Divisions, but scaled this back to one of slightly half that number, so they could have eventually matched Germany Division for Division with the help of the British/Commonwealth army. Germany would have to defend from Norway to Greece, whereas the Anglo-Americans could land where they chose to a great extent.

    Then there is the Atomic Bomb. There is a good chance it would have been used in Europe first if the war lasted long enough. Germany had no counter to this.

    Question 3,

    It is conceivably possible Hitler might have retained control of some portion of his empire, if he could wear down the Anglo-American attack, but dominating Britain, America or both is pure fantasy.

    Question 4,

    Answered above I think. It was conceivable he could have developed a Atom Bomb of his own, but did not have a platform like a B-29 Superfortess to deliver it, and could not match the Anglo-American industrial base either to build one first or in equal numbers.

    I hope this gives you a small idea of the complexity of your query's and you can find much more within the forum.

    Good hunting!
     
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  3. Orcaman

    Orcaman New Member

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    Thanks for the response, but the USA wouldn't get the atom bomb if they didn't lose in the first place because then their scientests wouldn't be taken from Germany? Germany could infact have gotten the atom bomb first right
     
  4. belasar

    belasar Court Jester Staff Member

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    I am a little confused by your response, but I will take a stab at it anyhow. :)

    It is correct that a number of European scientists aided in the development of the Atomic Bomb, some of them German. You seem to be confusing however the post war "collection" of Nazi Scientist's with the Manhattan Project, which developed the Atomic Bomb.

    When Hitler rose to power in the 1930's his actions, both within Germany and without forced many Jewish scientist's (as well as those non-Jews who opposed his world view) to flee Europe for England and the United States. With the Battle of France May 10th to June 22nd, 1940 forcing the then Allies (Britain, France, Belgium and Holland) out of Europe, the migration of refugees slowed to a trickle.

    President Roosevelt was first approached in August 1939 (before the actual start of the European war) by a committee of ex-patriot scientists to begin development of an Atomic device before Germany could do so. The Einstein-Szilard Letter as it was called was the catalyst for America to begin what was to be known as the Manhattan Project, which designed, tested and built the first Atomic bombs.

    In the pre-war period much general research had been done in Germany and this was the concern of these scientists, but overall the German work had been largely theoretical and somewhat diffused, lacking focus to create a workable weapon. As Germany was a police state in the second half of the 1930's these scientists did not know this clearly, so they feared the worst.

    When America entered the war in late 1941, it was decided to merge both the American and British (who had made great strides) projects into one unified effort to create the first Atomic Bomb. This made sense as the United States had both the money and industrial/technical base to make it a reality. Having vast areas in the American southwest to develop the "Gadget" as it was known, away from prying eyes, was another benefit to having the US design and produce it.

    While both Germany and Japan did have Atomic weapon projects, it never was much of a race to be first to build one. Neither Germany or Japan had the necessary technology, industry, money or materials (fissionable minerals) to seriously risk over-taking the American led Manhattan Project. There is some speculation that late in the war Germany might have tested a "Dirty Bomb", a conventional bomb laced with radioactive materials, but not an actual Atomic bomb. There is, however, little hard evidence to prove it. Japan did not get as far as Germany and it is also speculated that the atomic project in Germany was undermined by German scientists who opposed Hitler getting the bomb.

    Another problem was how to deliver such a weapon. Now they are fairly small and we use missiles and rockets, they can even fit into a suitcase, but then they were large, heavy and bulky. A large 4 engine bomber with great power was needed to transport and drop the device. Neither Germany or Japan ever developed a effective aircraft that came close to matching the B-29 Superfortess which dropped the first two bombs.

    In short, the only way Hitler could build a workable Atomic bomb before the Anglo-American's was if the Allies chose not to.

    The collection of German Scientist's post-war, Operation Paperclip, was done to learn as much as possible about a whole host of Nazi wartime projects in many fields such as aeronautics, rocketry, and many other technical innovations in weapons development made by Germany during the war. While German Atomic secrets were sought out, they had no impact on the development of either design (Known as "Fat Man" and "Little Boy") of Atomic Bomb made by the US.

    They did however have a great influence on post war development of aircraft and what became the Apollo Project to land a Man on the Moon.
     
  5. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    It should also be pointed out that the B-29's that dropped the bombs had to be modified to do so. Furthermore the cost of the B-29 development and the Manhatten project were withing an order of magnitude or so of each other. Germany couldn't afford one of them much less two.
    Also, I'm not sure where I read this but I think I read somewhere that the electrical power used on the Manhatten project exceeded the total electrical power generated by Germany.
     
  6. belasar

    belasar Court Jester Staff Member

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    I thought the electricity used at the Oak Ridge facility was exceptional myself, but was unsure about its impact.
     
  7. brndirt1

    brndirt1 Saddle Tramp

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    What scientists are you talking about when you say;"taken from Germany"? The German scientists who left Hitler's Europe for the UK and USA contributed greatly to the development of the fission bomb. Germany had an incorrect idea of not only "how" to build the thing, they were on the wrong track for moderators for the development of a controlled fission reaction, which is the first step in creating the atomics. Heavy water was used post war for plutonium production, but boron free graphite as used in the Fermi (Italian) reactors was the winning path to take time wise.
     
  8. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Actually how many German scientist did help on the Manhatten project? Einstein cosigned the letter that helped get the project started but doesn't seem to have had much to do with it afterwards. Of course it's not always trivial to assign a nationality to some of the scientist. Take Klaus Fuchs for example. If we look at:
    http://inventors.about.com/od/fstartinventors/p/Klaus_Fuchs.htm
    He emmigrated to England when he was ~22, however he retained his German citizenship and appraently was a Soviet spy.
    Looking at:
    http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/media-arts-and-sciences/mas-961-networks-complexity-and-its-applications-spring-2011/assignments/MITMAS_961S11_Networkpaper.pdf
    it lists 12 foreign contributers to the bomb (and mentions that 11 were Jewish) on page 6. Here's the quote:
    Of th ose Szilard and Teller were Hungarian. Fermin Italian.

    On page 8 that paper lists a breakdown of birth nations for 62 Manhatten scientist. Only 4 were German but another 9 were Austro-Hungarian and 47 were born in the US.

    Here's a hall of fame list from the Manhatten project. If someone is up to the task they could check the individual bios for them and come up with some decent numbers on national origin.
    http://www.mphpa.org/classic/HICC/HICC_HF3.htm
     
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  9. Kevinadams327

    Kevinadams327 New Member

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    In response to the original post I can recommend two separate sources of information.

    first off there is a book entitled 'Fatherland' that is a fictional story based around what the Germans would have done if they had won and so it can tell you alot about the world the National Socialists were trying to create, though it is a bit overboard for just a few casual questions. In short the book speaks about (historically speaking) Germany's Europe if they had won the war. Lebensraum is often referred to as "aquiring living space for the German people", a term coined by Hitler himself I believe, that proposed a direct German annexation of all territories to the west of a theoretical line that stretched from Astrakhan to Arkhangelsk and the creation of a puppet state for all lands eastwards. Then Slavs, Communists and other undesirable folk would have been deported to the East and the west would be 'Aryanised"

    Secondly, (I promise tobe less long winded about this one) there is a fascinating miniseries call Hitler: The Rise of Evil. it is actually a movie that shows Hitler's life and how he came to hate Communists and Jews because of his upbringing in a very Germanic way in addition it also features his demonicly charismatic rise to power as a saviour of the working class and how he went from being germany's greatest hope, to being its greatest threat. It is also told not in documentary form, but in a stylised depiction of the events.


    ( On a final note I realise that it is unlikely anyone will see this given the rather large disparity between posting dates, but i just wanted to share my thoughts anyway.)
     

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