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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/17/2008 6:49:58 PM   
Wirraway_Ace


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quote:

ORIGINAL: ILCK

This is a lot of latter day morality as well. At the time you had the following realities:

1. A total war environment. Everyone was helping fight the war. They were either shooting at you, making the bullets to shoot at you or growing the food to feed the people shooting at you or making the bullets to shoot at you. Draw the line between civilian and combatant. Is it better to wipe out a Panzer factory that makes 100 tanks a month or shoot 100 tanks on the battlefield?
2. There were no non-military targets since even (the two biggest crying points) Dresden was a major rail transport city that the Russians badly wanted bombed and Hiroshima had thousands of Japanese solidiers and other facilities. That is as good as it has ever gotten for the revisionists.
3. Non-precision weapons. Even the vaunted Norden did not allow you to precisely drop on "military" targets. There was just no way to "only" attack military targets.
4. Distributed manufacturing. The Japanese farmed out large chunks of their manufacturing ensuring that "civilian" areas were necessary targets but the Germans began to do so as well. If you could not hit a factory complex there's no way to target a single house.

The simple fact is that, in WWII, everyone bombed and targeted "civilian" areas  - good guys and bad guys. It was, as Lucien Febvre, would say about atheism in the 16th century, almost impossible to conceive of not bombing in this way and not using the weapons at your disposal.


I agree with points 1,2 and 4 and your final point about the inertia of having certain weapon systems at your disposal. My concern is with point 3. The Allied leaders knew approximately how inaccurate these attacks (particularily the Brits) were, but continued to commit truly massive resources to these campaigns. I question the wisdom and morality of this in the context of what was otherwise a fully justified war to defeat a trio of countries that had to be dealt with. I have led soldiers in combat a few times (as I suspect many of you have these days), and believe that war must be fought within a reasonable set of moral rules established by leaders, or many humans quickly desend to a level of cruelty that defies reason, military need, etc.

While not unjustified or unreasonable in the context of WWII, it appears to me the Strategic Bombing Campaign included a wide streak of "punishment" in its unstated rationale that reminds me to question its morality from time to time. As an American, I think this is healthy. My wife and one of my parents are foreign born, and I am constantly reminded as I interact with extended family living outside the U.S., that the world views us very differently than we view ourselves.

As a humorous anecdote, my wife (an australian), believes strongly that the U.S. occupies Korea to exploit it...It is difficult to describe to her that in 1951, there wasn't much to exploit. The Japanese had already pretty much taken care of that.

(in reply to ILCK)
Post #: 31
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/17/2008 7:46:50 PM   
tocaff


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Good point about how the world views the USA differently.  I live in Brazil and though they copy the culture of the US and like the people they dislike the current government.  When the US invaded Iraq I was visiting Brazil and there were posters on almost every street corner of Bush with a Hitler-like 'stash.  It was upsetting to me that my country would be viewed this way.  When people tried to engage me in discussion about this I told them that I was from Canada.  Nothing is perfect and war shatters civilized rules.  

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Post #: 32
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/17/2008 7:52:56 PM   
Ike99


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no comment.



< Message edited by Ike99 -- 2/17/2008 8:06:57 PM >

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Post #: 33
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/17/2008 9:28:04 PM   
tocaff


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Now that's a first! Correction a second!

< Message edited by tocaff -- 2/17/2008 9:29:04 PM >


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Post #: 34
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/17/2008 9:40:02 PM   
Ike99


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quote:

Now that's a first! Correction a second!


I´m not being baited into this topic Todd. We´re not allowed to talk about this here.

You know how we feel. Walk out onto your street corner and ask someone if you don´t.




< Message edited by Ike99 -- 2/17/2008 9:41:06 PM >

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Post #: 35
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/17/2008 11:47:04 PM   
tocaff


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Who is we in the "You know how we feel"? Ask people on my street corner about what? Feel about what?





< Message edited by tocaff -- 2/18/2008 12:24:17 AM >


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Post #: 36
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 1:16:07 AM   
Ike99


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quote:

Who is we in the "You know how we feel"? Ask people on my street corner about what? Feel about what?


Nothing Todd.

quote:

Wirraway_Ace- I not sure I agree with your use of "the numbers" in this way. I am an economist by training, and all this really tells you is that Germany was able to increase production of key weapon systems in spite of the bombing. It doesn't tell you what their potential production was if their industries had been left alone.


Well it would be impossible to put a number on what German production would have been without strategic bombing but we can compare their rate of expansion with someone who wasn´t bombed at all.

Germany, total aircraft produced by year.

1942-12,822
1943-20,599
1944-35,076

So from 42´ to 43´ German aircraft production rose
by around 60%. From 43´ to 44´around 57%

USA, total aircraft production by year.

1942-46,907
1943-84,853
1944-96,271

So their expansion went 54%, from 42´to 43´. Then
from 43´to 44´ they had a growth rate of just
around 1%. I suppose the industrial base was
maxed out.

So as far as aircraft production is concerned I
would think the strategic bombing campaign had
at most a very minor effect if any at all. Germany
was able to expand it´s aircraft production by
actually a larger percentage than the USA who was
not being bombed at all.

I´m thinking what is effecting this a lot also is
simple manpower numbers. Getting pilots.

If you move over to armored vehicles etc, you will
find comparable numbers.

Take strictly tanks. Germany produced give or take
20,000 tanks during the war. The USA produced
61,000. About a 3-1 margin.

So by comparing tank production 3-1 total. Aircraft
production close to 3-1, I would conclude the
strategic bombing had about zero effect on German production, at least in these two categories.

You have Germany being bombed daylight and dark with the USA not being bombed at all and the production figures in these 2 areas, adjusting for the size of their respective industrial bases seems just about identical.

Now this does not take into account every single
item of war, artillery, etc., and I don´t feel like looking it up right now but unless you can show
me something else I still say the strategic bombing
campaign was a waste of resources. It didn´t do
much from what I see as far as reducing war time production.

One could say, well the Allies had to build all those
ships too so that used up a lot of their industrial
capacity but they would have had to build them
anyways.

I think I got all my numbers right. If not I´m sure I´ll be corrected.

(in reply to Wirraway_Ace)
Post #: 37
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 1:34:06 AM   
Wirraway_Ace


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Ike,

I will take a look into this further and see if there is some more complete measure of industrial output over time.

As a working hypothesis, how would you argue that having most of your major industry centers bombed to rubble did not affect industrial output?

< Message edited by Wirraway_Ace -- 2/18/2008 1:35:38 AM >

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Post #: 38
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 1:38:55 AM   
ILCK

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Wirraway_Ace

While not unjustified or unreasonable in the context of WWII, it appears to me the Strategic Bombing Campaign included a wide streak of "punishment" in its unstated rationale that reminds me to question its morality from time to time. As an American, I think this is healthy. My wife and one of my parents are foreign born, and I am constantly reminded as I interact with extended family living outside the U.S., that the world views us very differently than we view ourselves.



Right but, we'll dig up Clausewitz here, the goal of war is to break the will of an opponent to resist. The theory of strategic bombing wasn't about killing people, per se, but about collapsing the will of the civilian population to support a war. The strategic bombers were trying to recreate the German collapse in WWI on the homefront during the war. the problem is that the Germans and Japanese government were not that fragile because unlike the Kaiser's authoritarian regime they'd gone full on totalitarian.

The strategic bombing campaign in WWII shares the same flawed assumptions that make such popular use of embargoes today (Cuba, Iraq) - that in a totalitarian state :
1. The people have a voice to change policy if they become angry enough
2. The government can be moved by suffering to change policy.
Neither is true and so Strategic bombing was not going to be able, using conventional means, to achive it's aim anymore than an embargo of Iraq was ever gonna get rid of Saddam.

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Post #: 39
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 1:49:58 AM   
Ike99


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quote:

Ike,

I will take a look into this further and see if there is some more complete measure of industrial output over time.

As a working hypothesis, how would you argue that having most of your major industry centers bombed to rubble did not affect industrial output?


Well I haven´t researched in detail but I´ve seen with the ME262 the Germans had it´s production dispersed and almost entirely underground.

I´ve seen where whole plants where put underground and in caves. Japan being a mostly hilly and mountainous country did the same. I´ve read Tokyo was ringed with caves full of war production. I know they never had a Zero shortage. They had no fuel and no pilots for them but there was no Zero shortage.

If your cities are going to be leveled the first thing going to be done is disperse the industries and attempt to hide and bomb proof them.

(in reply to Wirraway_Ace)
Post #: 40
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 2:01:31 AM   
tocaff


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As usual Ike won't answer a question directed at him.  

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Post #: 41
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 2:11:17 AM   
Ike99


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Here is a good example Wirraway_Ace why I think the bombing didn´t effect production much. An entire V2 plant in underground cave.






Attachment (1)

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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 2:38:58 AM   
Joe D.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: ILCK

... so Strategic bombing was not going to be able, using conventional means, to achive it's aim anymore than an embargo of Iraq was ever gonna get rid of Saddam.


Especially w/the UN's "Oil for Food" scam then in effect.


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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 2:48:49 AM   
Joe D.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Ike99

...Germany, total aircraft produced by year.

1942-12,822
1943-20,599
1944-35,076

... So as far as aircraft production is concerned I
would think the strategic bombing campaign had
at most a very minor effect if any at all. Germany
was able to expand it´s aircraft production by
actually a larger percentage than the USA who was
not being bombed at all.


Later in the war, Germany out-sourced much of its wartime production to other countries, i.e., fighter production went to Budapest, where the Allies bombed every bridge leading into the city, at least according to my Hungarian tour guide.

Anyway, this out-sourcing may help account for the larger German production numbers in '44.


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The best fighter-bomber of World War II

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Post #: 44
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 2:57:06 AM   
Wirraway_Ace


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quote:

ORIGINAL: ILCK


quote:

ORIGINAL: Wirraway_Ace

While not unjustified or unreasonable in the context of WWII, it appears to me the Strategic Bombing Campaign included a wide streak of "punishment" in its unstated rationale that reminds me to question its morality from time to time. As an American, I think this is healthy. My wife and one of my parents are foreign born, and I am constantly reminded as I interact with extended family living outside the U.S., that the world views us very differently than we view ourselves.



Right but, we'll dig up Clausewitz here, the goal of war is to break the will of an opponent to resist. The theory of strategic bombing wasn't about killing people, per se, but about collapsing the will of the civilian population to support a war. The strategic bombers were trying to recreate the German collapse in WWI on the homefront during the war. the problem is that the Germans and Japanese government were not that fragile because unlike the Kaiser's authoritarian regime they'd gone full on totalitarian.

The strategic bombing campaign in WWII shares the same flawed assumptions that make such popular use of embargoes today (Cuba, Iraq) - that in a totalitarian state :
1. The people have a voice to change policy if they become angry enough
2. The government can be moved by suffering to change policy.
Neither is true and so Strategic bombing was not going to be able, using conventional means, to achive it's aim anymore than an embargo of Iraq was ever gonna get rid of Saddam.



Agreed. Breaking the will was a reasonable assumption of the effect of a massive bombing campaign, though it proved to be untrue.

(in reply to ILCK)
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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 4:29:06 AM   
borner


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You tell them you are from Canada?  That is pretty good. (respect to the people that make up the 20% approval rating)


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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 5:09:41 AM   
tocaff


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I never thought that doing an AAR would be so time consuming and difficult.
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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 6:53:04 AM   
Scrappy1


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Worked for me; last time in 'gay Paris' ....ah, je suis Canadien......then I walked into La Legion Etrangere (I know, what the heck was I thinking...lol). Well, at least I got to see Mylene Farmer in concert!! Then on to Aubagne (outside that filthy, nasty city of Marseilles) for the Legion Etrangere selection center.....ah, La Mafia Anglaise!!!

So, I see everyone is still agreeing to disagree.....sorry, gotta put my two cents in after watching these forums spiral into quite the negative.....guys, I know debate can be healthy, but some of these threads are really bringing me down....I came on here to find some players and have a little fun....what happened? Almost 70 years later and some of these threads are quite hostile.......it's over, what's done is done......why spoil it for the rest of us, especially some of us new guys, who just want to play this game?

Yeah, I had quite a few relatives serve in the 'big one'; one in the 1st Mardiv from Guad till the end (one of those lucky ones) and also one in the 8th Air Force (I have his in-flight flask..damn alcoholic...lol). Did they ever talk about it? Not once, and I tried, being the young historical type; never said a word. One was on the Arizona before Pearl and got transferred right before the attack....I have his silk neckerchief with the Arizona in the middle (kind of an early silk screen....ish)!

Anyway, I guess I just want these threads to get back into the normal, friendly ones that they were before the A-Bomb or strategic discussions.....I hate seeing games end or heated, personal issues from something that happened over 60 years ago.....let's get back to UV guys

Btw, here's a view from just outside of Brest, France back in 1988......no, those 16's weren't aimed at Les Phoques; oops, sorry, I mean the French !!
I burned through a few rolls to get this shot!!! Notice the VW being launched out of the rear turret...oops, I mean projectile....lol!





Attachment (1)

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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 11:55:30 AM   
vonCommander


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Scrappy1

Worked for me; last time in 'gay Paris' ....ah, je suis Canadien......then I walked into La Legion Etrangere (I know, what the heck was I thinking...lol). Well, at least I got to see Mylene Farmer in concert!! Then on to Aubagne (outside that filthy, nasty city of Marseilles) for the Legion Etrangere selection center.....ah, La Mafia Anglaise!!!

So, I see everyone is still agreeing to disagree.....sorry, gotta put my two cents in after watching these forums spiral into quite the negative.....guys, I know debate can be healthy, but some of these threads are really bringing me down....I came on here to find some players and have a little fun....what happened? Almost 70 years later and some of these threads are quite hostile.......it's over, what's done is done......why spoil it for the rest of us, especially some of us new guys, who just want to play this game?

Yeah, I had quite a few relatives serve in the 'big one'; one in the 1st Mardiv from Guad till the end (one of those lucky ones) and also one in the 8th Air Force (I have his in-flight flask..damn alcoholic...lol). Did they ever talk about it? Not once, and I tried, being the young historical type; never said a word. One was on the Arizona before Pearl and got transferred right before the attack....I have his silk neckerchief with the Arizona in the middle (kind of an early silk screen....ish)!

Anyway, I guess I just want these threads to get back into the normal, friendly ones that they were before the A-Bomb or strategic discussions.....I hate seeing games end or heated, personal issues from something that happened over 60 years ago.....let's get back to UV guys

Btw, here's a view from just outside of Brest, France back in 1988......no, those 16's weren't aimed at Les Phoques; oops, sorry, I mean the French !!
I burned through a few rolls to get this shot!!! Notice the VW being launched out of the rear turret...oops, I mean projectile....lol!







Best post in this needless thread

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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 2:00:57 PM   
tocaff


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What starts as a friendly discussion degenerates to debate and then slides into the depths around here all to often lately.  It seems that it's usually the same character at the center of it and he's like a bulldog who can't let go.  Of course it's everyone else's fault and maybe it is because we let him do this to us instead of ignoring him.  

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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 3:36:00 PM   
Joe D.


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Green button time?

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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 3:52:38 PM   
Joe D.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Scrappy1

... Anyway, I guess I just want these threads to get back into the normal, friendly ones that they were before the A-Bomb or strategic discussions.....I hate seeing games end or heated, personal issues from something that happened over 60 years ago.....let's get back to UV guys


I've seen some heavy, heated discussions over UV issues as well, but worse on the WitP forums where games can go on forever and gamesmanship gets very intense.

Arguments happen among alpha-male gamers all the time, taboo topics or not. The UV forum was never that utopian; recall that the thread that spawned this one was titled "Peace".

Maybe what we need is a distraction, i.e., another patch or a CS demo, but don't hold your breath.


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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 4:33:27 PM   
Wirraway_Ace


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Scrappy1

So, I see everyone is still agreeing to disagree.....sorry, gotta put my two cents in after watching these forums spiral into quite the negative.....guys, I know debate can be healthy, but some of these threads are really bringing me down....I came on here to find some players and have a little fun....what happened? Almost 70 years later and some of these threads are quite hostile.......it's over, what's done is done......why spoil it for the rest of us, especially some of us new guys, who just want to play this game?



Scrappy, thanks for the great pic.

For what it is worth, I think such discussions have value for two reasons:
1) While I rarely change my position, I almost always learn something new.
2) When playing a game about war, one should be a little more introspective than when playing a game about less deadly topics.

(in reply to Scrappy1)
Post #: 53
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 5:51:48 PM   
Ike99


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quote:

What starts as a friendly discussion degenerates to debate and then slides into the depths around here all to often lately.


Hmmm...what starts as a friendly conversation, you mean like this?
quote:


Tell It to the Marines, A PROPOSAL TO RENAME GUADALCANAL’S AIRPORT DOESN’T FLY.


&

quote:

If it offended the Japanese that the Enola Gay would be displayed that's just too bad...


To start with, this got started by you posting a thread that has nothing to do with Uncommon Valor. You were simply wishing to express a controversial political opinion, your own.

Second, other country´s are free to name their airports, cities and towns, etc., whatever they choose. They are under no obligation to consult the US Marines or you and probably don´t really care what you or they think anyways. Sorry, but it´s like this.


So if Trolls tweedle dee and tweedle dum would like to hit their green buttons now, please do.

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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 5:55:58 PM   
Ike99


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And BTW, this thread was started to get away from you remember? So do us the favor.

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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 6:39:15 PM   
Wirraway_Ace


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Ike99

Tell It to the Marines, A PROPOSAL TO RENAME GUADALCANAL’S AIRPORT DOESN’T FLY.

&

quote:


To start with, this got started by you posting a thread that has nothing to do with Uncommon Valor. You were simply wishing to express a controversial political opinion, your own.

Second, other country´s are free to name their airports, cities and towns, etc., whatever they choose. They are under no obligation to consult the US Marines or you and probably don´t really care what you or they think anyways. Sorry, but it´s like this.




Ike, your are possibly being unfair. Since Quadalcanal plays a key role in UV, pieces of current news about it don't seem completely out of place with the various threads.

Additionally, while sovereign nations certainly have the right to name airports what ever they want, since the original airfield complex was predominantly built by the USN and heavily consecrated with Marine blood and sweat, it seems reasonable that they at least be consulted before renaming it (though the Korean labor battalions that did the initial clearing might get a vote too).

Also, I thought this was an Allied Bombing thread...

< Message edited by Wirraway_Ace -- 2/18/2008 6:41:03 PM >

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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 7:08:16 PM   
Prince of Eckmühl


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This discussion is lacking something in the way of context:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqH47MIpuoA

It's sorta PG13, so you may have to login to watch the video.

PoE (aka ivanmoe)

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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 7:52:42 PM   
Wirraway_Ace


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Thanks for the link Prince. Powerful imagery. However, it still brings me back to the question: do the attrocities of your opponent morally justify a bombing campaign that you know is causing significant deaths to a civilian population? The pictures of Koln, Dresden, Toyko after a major bombing are pretty horrific.

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RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 8:09:23 PM   
Dixie


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Wirraway_Ace

However, it still brings me back to the question: do the attrocities of your opponent morally justify a bombing campaign that you know is causing significant deaths to a civilian population?


I would say not, but I would also say that the civilian deaths do not make the bombing campaign any less right.

People are often quick to condemn the WW2 bombing campaign, but how else could the war have been prosecuted against the enemy?

PS, the second part of the post is not intended as a swipe at you Wirraway_Ace, rather a general comment to the world at large.

< Message edited by Dixie -- 2/18/2008 8:37:09 PM >


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(in reply to Wirraway_Ace)
Post #: 59
RE: WWII boming debate - 2/18/2008 8:29:24 PM   
anarchyintheuk

 

Posts: 3948
Joined: 5/5/2004
From: Dallas
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Ike99

anarchyintheuk- . . who was charged under that specific phrase for aerial bombardment?

To repeat, no individuals or countries were ever tried for aerial bombardment of civilians/cities/etc.

Your using a lot of thread.


I don't know what that means.

quote:

No one was charged with any specific word, phrase, sentence or paragraph nor or they ever charged with any one specific word, phrase, sentence or paragraph from a law.


I meant to say article.

quote:

You charge, try and convict by Articles. In this case, Article 6. You can´t go through and strike words, sentences and paragraphs out of a law because you don´t like them.


Where did I strike through words or sentences? You were the one who quoted only a section of Art. 6 in the other thread.

quote:

A lot of war criminals at Nuremberg would have looooved to have been able to do that.

Article 6 is Article 6. You take it all or reject it all.


I did take it all. I'm still waiting to see who was charged under Art. 6. Let me know how the double standard was applied. This is the 4th supposed law or rule that you've quoted to show that bombing civilians was either illegal or a war crime. You started out in the other thread saying that bombing civilians was illegal and that Hiroshima and Nagasaki were war crimes. Now you're down to only Nagasaki being a war crime. What gives?

Edited for aesthetics.




< Message edited by anarchyintheuk -- 2/22/2008 1:19:35 AM >

(in reply to Ike99)
Post #: 60
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