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WW II Nations strategy

 
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WW II Nations strategy - 12/3/2011 5:47:50 PM   
doomtrader


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I was reading some magazine and in the article about kamikazes, there was an interesting statement about strategies of some countries.
Germans: To kill and to win
Soviets: To win at all cost
Americans: To win and to survive at all cost
Japanese: To die and win at all cost

What do you think abut that? Can you agree with the above?
What do you think about such division of ideologies? Does it makes sense? Does some of above fits to other countries?
Do you think something might be added to the above?
Post #: 1
RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/3/2011 9:40:40 PM   
SeaMonkey

 

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You forgot "at all cost" for the Germans too. That was pretty much the common thread(other than "win"), even for the democracies, only difference was the democracies embraced totalitarianism because they had to, but it took them awhile to come around to that philosophy. Later, they were able to recapture the "high ground".

I think it was a little more complicated than your stated conclusion, but generally, applicable. I would add, "and make the other guy die" and what about the Britains? UK = To win at all cost with class.

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RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/4/2011 5:29:40 AM   
zer0sum

 

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The Germans weren't out just to win. Hitler literally wanted to create a 1000-year Reich that spread from the Atlantic to the Pacific. He wanted to be the next Caesar, and he wanted a pure race to rule.

So this is what they wanted to do, and they wanted to do it at all costs.

The Americans, well, they were in it also to protect, not just to survive. France and Britain needed US aid, and that also drove them.

The Japanese, I think, they valued honor.

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RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/5/2011 1:10:24 AM   
sulla05

 

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I think the kamikazes are viewed in the wrong light by a lot of people including historians.

By the time they had started there was absolutely no way for a standard aerial attack from the Japanese to come anywhere near let alone close enough to damage the American Navy.

Had the kamikazes not been employed all you would have seen is more of the Marianas Turkey shoot taking place.

The Japanese armed forces did not have the pilots, the aviation gasoline or the weapons to be able to take on the US Navy after 1943.

I believe that some Japanese admirals new this and therefore allowed the kamikazes to go ahead because it was there only hope.

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RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/5/2011 3:23:19 AM   
Perturabo


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From what I've read, kamikaze lost their effectiveness as soon as they have lost good pilots.

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RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/5/2011 4:28:06 AM   
UniformYankee


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quote:

ORIGINAL: doomtrader

I was reading some magazine and in the article about kamikazes, there was an interesting statement about strategies of some countries.
Germans: To kill and to win
Soviets: To win at all cost
Americans: To win and to survive at all cost
Japanese: To die and win at all cost

What do you think abut that? Can you agree with the above?
What do you think about such division of ideologies? Does it makes sense? Does some of above fits to other countries?
Do you think something might be added to the above?


First, I'm not sure "countries" had strategies, especially when they first went to war. Many germans, russians, americans and japanese did not want war. A few individuals in those counties did want war. So war happened.

Hitler's initial strategy included "resolving the polish question" with the ferverent hope that Britain and France would not intervene. Of course Hilter did not really view this as his initial strategy for WWII, because he was not trying to start WWII at that point. He did have a plan to have a war, at some point, like maybe 1942, but hopefully on the Eastern Front only. In which case his strategy would amount to "capture most of European Russia" with minimal cost/investment and then enjoy the fruits. Killing per say, was not part of the plan, though in hindsite we can say that was much of the effect. Between Hitler and Stalin together their actions resulted in the deaths of more humans that probably any other two people we can name.

Stalin's initial strategy also included avoiding war, at least until 1942. He felt so strongly about this, that when war came, it took him some weeks to personally recover and realize that his strategy had failed and he needed a new one. Stalin then tried a very aggresive strategy, attacking here, there and everywhere. All of these attacks failed to achieve their objectives. It wasn't until after Kursk, that Stalin realized he was better off letting his Generals run the war. So, in summary, we might say STAVKA's strategy was really a strategic defense, both during and after the war, but this defense included acquiring enough "buffer space" to enable the usual "trade space for time" in the event of a subsequent attack. This strategy was successful in the event.

Roosevelt's strategy was to get USA into the war, before either Russia or Britain were defeated. He succeeded, but barely. The nominal "Germany First" strategy was, in reality not implemented until late 42 or even early 43 as King was able to get "exceptions" approved to ensure the "defense" of critical locations, such as the lifeline to Australia. Certainly Pearl Harbor meant that in the Pacific, the USA strategy was, after Pearl Harbor, one of "unconditional surrender". But, there were still some who questioned the war in Europe. Hitler's declaration of war against USA was a major aid to Roosevelt. It is hard to imagine what would have happened had Hitler NOT taken this step. The debate could rage forever, but we will never know.

The Japanese Generals and Admirals collectively, started the war in the (slim) hope that they could capture the SRA quickly enough and establish a defensive position strong enough that would cause the Allies to accept the Japanese occupation without extended hostilities. The Japanese leaders were trying to fight a "limited war". These military leaders were not following any sort of "die and win" strategy. They were following a "grab and hope" plan. Had PH not happened and had the PI not been attacked, again we enter an arena of "what if" that cannot be addressed. Probably Roosevelt would have gotten USA into the war, but without the "Rosie the Riveter" affect. Meaning without the strong emotional support of the populace. In which case, war weariness might have set in, prior to the victory that was obtained historically. Hecque, even in the real war, the USA people were getting tired by early 1945 and the Iwo Jima "flag" photo really was a morale booster.

In the second half of the war, the "face saving" issue, did cause the Japanese to sacrifice a large amount of people and material. This could be construed as some sort of "die/win" idea. But, the idea was not to die, so much as to delay to the point that the Allies would quit. It almost worked. But just as Sherman's "March to the Sea" ensured that Lincoln would be re-elected and the North would keep fighting the ACW, the Iwo Photo ensured the USA would keep fighting in the Pacific, dispite the Japanese suicide tactics (which actually were not seen in full force until Okinawa, where these tactics were devastating).

So, first, typcially "countries" do not have stratgies, especially before a war. A few leaders do, but this should not be confused with thinking all or most of the citizens are aligned.
Second, as wars progress, there may be more alignment, but often there are two camps. The "stop" camp and the "continue" camp. The battle for the "morale" of the people, is often what can determine the outcome, but not always. Sometimes the military must be truly crushed (as it was in German in 1945). But the reality is hardly as simple as the words posted by the OP. At least not IMHO.



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RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/6/2011 9:16:04 PM   
doomtrader


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UniformYankee, I think that was an abbreviation, calling those behaviors as strategies.

But I think this pretty well describe how the armies of those countries acting during the war.

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RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/6/2011 10:37:23 PM   
sulla05

 

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Actually the kamikaze attacks really weren't that devastating. Mostly they hit the picket destroyers because even they new they wouldn't get through the curtain of fire to get to the carriers.

Horrific for the individuals on said picket destroyers but none the less just pinpricks against the might of the US navy. Especially when you figure in just how many planes were flown in suicide missions and the amount of hits they achieved.

Now had the Japanese the time to iron out the okha bombs that is quite another matter. Those were fast enough to get through the CAP and to make them hard to hit with the directional controls then in place in the guns.

The only caveat I would add is that all armed forces enter wars with strategies. They might be useless or formed on the last war but they have strategies.

Right now all armed forces have plans to attack and defend against all their neighbors.

< Message edited by sulla05 -- 12/6/2011 10:40:17 PM >


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RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/9/2011 4:18:46 AM   
seikialice88

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: SeaMonkey


You forgot "at all cost" for the Germans too. That was pretty much the common thread(other than "win"), even for the democracies, only difference was the democracies embraced totalitarianism because they had to, but it took them awhile to come around to that philosophy. Later, they were able to recapture the "high ground".

I think it was a little more complicated than your stated conclusion, but generally, applicable. I would add, "and make the other guy die" and what about the Britains? UK = To win at all cost with class.


I also think so.

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RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/9/2011 5:54:15 PM   
wodin


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America came out of it all in the best position after both Wars.

I don't belive it was thier original intention to become such a world power by the end of the War but I'm sure to god they realised at some point and made damn sure it happened. I'm not really buying the "to protect other nations" bit more like to protect their own interests, unlike Britian who went into both Wars protecting a lesser nation, we had nothing really to gain far more to loose. Both Wars they weren't interested until they were either under a precieved attack or attacked also money and loans had a big part to play aswell.

So America was to Win and to be the World power by as little cost as possible.

< Message edited by wodin -- 12/9/2011 5:57:24 PM >

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RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/10/2011 12:16:09 AM   
warspite1


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quote:

ORIGINAL: wodin

America came out of it all in the best position after both Wars.

I don't belive it was thier original intention to become such a world power by the end of the War but I'm sure to god they realised at some point and made damn sure it happened. I'm not really buying the "to protect other nations" bit more like to protect their own interests, unlike Britian who went into both Wars protecting a lesser nation, we had nothing really to gain far more to loose. Both Wars they weren't interested until they were either under a precieved attack or attacked also money and loans had a big part to play aswell.

So America was to Win and to be the World power by as little cost as possible.

Warspite1

Wodin, you don't really believe that do you? Countries - or the politicians that run them - always act out of self interest. The United Kingdom did its bit and more to get rid of Napoleon, the Kaiser and Hitler, but do you really believe there was nothing to gain in so doing?
Stopping Spain, France or Germany having hedgemony in Europe has been policy for hundreds of years.

Of course America acted in her interests - why wouldn't she? Doesn't mean we can't be grateful - same as the Europeans we helped to save should - and in many cases do - show gratitude to us British.

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RE: WW II Nations strategy - 12/10/2011 8:52:29 PM   
ezz

 

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Wodin.
If America wanted to win and be THE world power, why were they the only major power to have Neutrality enshrined in law?
Would a land grabbing, imperialist, colonialist power attempt to take over the world with a military force smaller than that of Romania?
The USA army in 1940 was under 200,000 men. By contrast Germany had 6.5 million armed forces personnel.


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Post #: 12
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