wm wrote: ↑
06 Jan 2022 23:47
The problem with that is the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia could have become permanent (assuming Hitler wouldn't attack the Allies later).
And with time the majority of its citizens would be German.
Yes, that's a possibility. But if everybody keeps saying that they would have lost anyway, it's six one way half a dozen the other. Without a war, there's less destruction, more people live.
wm wrote: ↑
06 Jan 2022 23:47
As far as I know, Beneš was a sociopath (generally nothing wrong with it) who only cared about himself.
Beneš was above all, a Czech intellectual. Which means that he was certainly very smart, and also thought of himself as very smart as perhaps the smartest in the room.
So someone like Hitler simply offended him.
Now Beneš was _not_ aristocracy but educated bourgeoise which in fact arguably made him hate Hitler even more: "Oh come on man, if you just tried to become more educated rather than content yourself to be a bum / hooligan."
Now there is also a _very Czech_ characteristic that honestly goes all the way back to the beginnings of its history, that Czechs always thought that "if only [they did / acheived] _____" they achieve respect / parity.
So ... one of the primary motivations of becoming Christian was "well, if we become Christian, they'll let us be."
Then (Czech) Bohemia became actually one of the elector states of the Holy Roman (German) Empire. So here was King Otakar II, who works really hard to make Bohemia _the most powerful_ of the elector states of the Holy Roman Empire, and then is _shocked_ that THE OTHER electors chose to elect a "young upstart" named Rudolf von Habsburg to be Holy Roman Emperor rather than him!
. Why did they pick mere Duke Rudolf rather than King Otakar as the H.R.E.? Precisely because Otakar was strong and Rudolf was weak
Afterwards, the Czechs actually get a King elected H.R.E., King Charles IV, who builds then builds (Charles) University in Prague because _that was the rage_ in the 1300-1400s to build Universities. Well, soon _just like universities elsewhere_ (notably in Paris' Sorbonne) the theologians start getting radical. Well, one radical Czech theologian, John Hus, comes around. And he's being proudly _just as annoying_ as the best / most annoying of them at the Sorbonne. EXCEPT ... well, the Popes can't get at the annoying French theologians at the Sorbonne (who are protected by the French King). Instead, the only one that they get their hands on (and make an example of) ... is the lonely Czech theologian John Hus, who they burn at the stake.
Fast forward more modern times. You have the national awakeners (buditele) who after two centuries of bohemia being a backwater, start raising the Czech national consciousness -- heck if the German Romantics are raising their national consciousness at this time, why not us too, we have good stories, we have plenty of good legends, every rock in our country also has its story ... -- and they run initially run into a brick wall:
Austrian Emperor Franz Josef decides to give the Hungarians equal rights, the Czechs _expect the same_ but then the Austrians (Germans) realize that if they gave the Slavs equal rights the Slavs were practically the majority of the Empire. So they don't.
When Czechoslovakia achieves its independence, the Czechs want to be as liberal as possibly they can. Yes, the 1/3 German minority starts complaining -- "Hey we are 1/3 of the population, why aren't we at least partly named in the country." The Czechs respond, "well we (slavs) lived in a country named AUSTRIA - HUNGARY and were a higher percentage of the population than you are, and NOBODY talked about calling the country something other than Austria-Hungary... so stop whining. But hey, EVEN NOW we give you more rights than you gave us. And remember you are a minority in this country now."
But then when it comes to the other states, the Czechs are ABSOLUTELY STUNNED that while they are a democracy, and there are NO "Dachau's" or Buchenwalds in the CSR, the Brits seem to feel closer to the goose-stepping (German) Nazis.
Masaryk the Czechs founder spent most of his adult life in the United States, Benes studied and grew up in France. And yet, the Brits prefer the Germans ... well partly because the Brits themselves thought of themselves as superior to the Irish, Scots, to say nothing of the Indians or various African peoples. And the Brits thought of the Czechs as basically like the German Scots or perhaps even the German Cherokees.
And that's the problem. Benes and the entire Czech leadership class of the CSR simply could not believe that the Brits would have really preferred the Germans to them.
"But we're liberal, we're building all these things. We even drive on the left side of the road (a vestige from Austrio-Hungarian Days), why don't you like us?"
And then Benes (and most of the Czech leadership class) thought Hitler was an idiot, and frankly that Chamberlain was an idiot as well.
And yet, Benes was standing up to fight Hitler and NEEDED silver spoon in his mouth Chamberlain's help.
And thee it is, the great Czech complex (Masaryk, Benes, Havel for that matter Klaus ... none of these were idiots) ... "We're the smartest people in the room, and we're stuck being dominated -- don't get us talking about the "shoe banging kholhoz raised" Russians... -- by brutes and rich-legacy morons."
It's really hard being a Czech
... so "smart" and yet NO ONE SEEMS TO CARE