Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 19 Jul 2021 22:23

glenn239 wrote:
19 Jul 2021 22:00
Tom from Cornwall wrote:
19 Jul 2021 21:16
Glenn,

If you look at the FDR documents I posted up there is a statement by the President which flatly contradicts this suggestion. FDR saw Germany as the principal component of the Axis and the one that needed to be confronted immediately - or at least as soon as shipping and training of troops allowed.

Regards

Tom
Yep, I see it, and you could be right. If the Allies decided to make their primar effort in Europe with Russia defeated, it would probably be something like TORCH.
I could see Tom being right too if, as Glenn suggests, the Allies don't try an all-out effort in the MidEast.

My sense, given the extreme British concern for the Northern Front and FDR's explicit contingency planning in July (detailed in Tom's linked source), is that the Allies thought defending the MidEast was the priority.

But it's entirely possible they'd reach a conclusion something like my own or Glenn's: that if SU fell and Turkey was Axis or acquiescent, it would have been either impossible to defend or would have required too great a proportion of Allied resources. That was Marshall's judgment in July '42, if not yet FDR's.

If FDR/Churchill reach that conclusion, then I can see Torchlite - combined with Canaries invasion - being the Allies' first European move.

Indeed, depending on the circumstances of Spain's entry (i.e. has LW reinforced it?), taking Morocco might be a prerequisite for a successful Canaries invasion that doesn't require air support from the Pacific Fleet, thereby delaying morale-raising success in the Pacific and/or risking further Japanese advances in the Solomons.
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by Tom from Cornwall » 20 Jul 2021 07:35

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
19 Jul 2021 21:25
What I'm getting at is, why does the US - even the UK - stay in the European war? What's the feasible to victory?
In Britain's case because it is a matter of survival, now of the home islands alone. In the American case, because Hitler declared war on Germany so they don't really have much choice!

Regards

Tom

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 20 Jul 2021 14:48

Tom from Cornwall wrote:
20 Jul 2021 07:35
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
19 Jul 2021 21:25
What I'm getting at is, why does the US - even the UK - stay in the European war? What's the feasible to victory?
In Britain's case because it is a matter of survival, now of the home islands alone. In the American case, because Hitler declared war on Germany so they don't really have much choice!
In Britain's case, Hitler would probably have offered terms so survival isn't at issue for them (unlike others). OTL Britain held out in '40, hoping that US entry would turn things around. So now let's consider ATL US's position:

Obviously how the US got into the war doesn't answer whether and how it leaves it.

ATL US raising an army large enough to invade Europe seems politically infeasible even if militarily feasible. US tolerating indefinite siege warfare is also dubious. With Japan in the mix and strengthened by contact with Germany over the TSRR, seems likely US will make peace with Germany.

Back to Britain, now facing either as US-less struggle against a much more powerful Germany or peace with Hitler. Latter seems most likely.

Of course it's possible that Hitler is so incensed in '43 by British bombing that peace is no longer an option; Sealion '44/'45 is the goal. Seems doubtful. Germans have their Lebensraum already; political pressure is probably for peace.
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by Terry Duncan » 20 Jul 2021 16:00

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
19 Jul 2021 21:25
What I'm getting at is, why does the US - even the UK - stay in the European war? What's the feasible to victory?
The UK have absolutely no reason to believe Hitler will keep his word, as he has only held to agreements he made for as long as they suit him. At Munich he assured everyone he had no more territorial demands to make, yet then annexed the rest of the Czech state and went on to demand The Danzig Corridor as well as Danzig effectively. He also had an agreement with the USSR and promptly broke that too. Why is he not going to turn against either this 'neutralised USSR' or Britain as soon as he has recovered from the war, making good losses and building up resources? The US has also had much the same problem with Hitler, indeed there is a lovely speech that was filmed where he promises Roosevelt all the nations he was not going to invade, but missed out Poland notably, as well as going on to invade some of the others he named also in the next couple of years. Attacks on shipping in US waters and attacks on destroyers have not endeared Hitler to the US government. They too have no reason to trust him.

Given the terms for the end of such a war would be for Germany to give up France, Belgium, The Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, Greece, and of course pre-war Poland. I dont see such a deal appealing to Hitler, even if people tried to negotiate over the states, so it is hard to see what can be agreed upon given the rather 'whimsical' nature of Hitler's promises.

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by glenn239 » 20 Jul 2021 18:24

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
19 Jul 2021 22:23
My sense, given the extreme British concern for the Northern Front and FDR's explicit contingency planning in July (detailed in Tom's linked source), is that the Allies thought defending the MidEast was the priority.
I'm not well read on the US high level decision making in the early war, (I'll defer to others that are), but my understanding was that in the "Germany First" debate, this happened early in Washington and was resolved quickly, (at least in theory), and a big part of the decision for Germany first was opening a second front in 1942 to help keep Stalin in the war. Stalin's not in the war here, so it's not clear how Germany vs. Japan first is going to shake out.

Once Germany first was decided, Marshall was 'all in' for an invasion in Europe in 1942. This was supposed to be France, but the British objected. It became North Africa because this was what the British were willing to do. Marshall didn't want TORCH, but he wanted nothing at all in 1942 even less. So the timing issue here is that Marshall commits to TORCH only after he's gone in for Germany first, and he went for Germany first on the assumption that Bolero would happen. But in your timeline, Marshall knows Bolero won't happen before the debate on Germany first has even occurred.

That being said, in terms of Torch vs. the Persian Gulf, I can see Tom's point that North Africa still had enough advantages that it might be a go. And, it's what they actually did in the war, which is compelling. I don't think a German occupation of Spain or not Eastern Front would deter an Allied invasion of Morocco. The disadvantage of "Japan First" was that the US navy wasn't ready for a big counteroffensive in 1942. So maybe Germany first wins the debate anyways, and Torch comes out as the invasion that will happen?

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by Tom from Cornwall » 20 Jul 2021 18:55

glenn239 wrote:
20 Jul 2021 18:24
I'm not well read on the US high level decision making in the early war, (I'll defer to others that are), but my understanding was that in the "Germany First" debate, this happened early in Washington and was resolved quickly, (at least in theory), and a big part of the decision for Germany first was opening a second front in 1942 to help keep Stalin in the war. Stalin's not in the war here, so it's not clear how Germany vs. Japan first is going to shake out.
IMHO FDR's point was that Germany was much more dangerous to the USA than Japan, TMP has quoted this paragraph from FDR's 16 July 1942 memo to Hopkins, Marshall and King before, but it bears repeating as my interpretation is that it was key to FDR's thinking in mid-42:
FDR - Germany First - 16 Jul 42.JPG
My interpretation is that FDR had brought into Churchill's 'Holding the Ring' concept here - stop German expansion into the Middle East, into Africa and into those unoccupied areas of Europe whilst building up the armed forces necessary to begin the task of pushing the Nazis back. In contrast, it looks to me that FDR (given his naval background) was happy to let the traditional naval policy of blockade slowly grind down the Japanese economy and ability to wage war. Clearly the latter thinking was somewhat over-optimistic, but given his background and the influence from Churchill it seems to make sense to me.

Regards

Tom
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 20 Jul 2021 21:01

glenn239 wrote:my understanding was that in the "Germany First" debate, this happened early in Washington and was resolved quickly, (at least in theory), and a big part of the decision for Germany first was opening a second front in 1942 to help keep Stalin in the war. Stalin's not in the war here, so it's not clear how Germany vs. Japan first is going to shake out
Yes in theory Germany First was decided at the first ABC conference even before US was in the war. In practice, Pearl Harbor and a perceived threat to Australia meant that more US personnel and tonnage went to Pacific than Atlantic in 42's first half. Plus King diverted resources of his own accord.

On perceptions of the SU's fate, there's potential butterflies even bigger than we've addressed: one reason FDR didn't make in '41 a deal allowing oil to Japan was concern it would allow Japan to attack SU. Maybe in this ATL, with Moscow and Leningrad gone in September, US and Japan reach some sort of temporary deal like the modus vivendi he proposed that fall. That delays - probably doesn't prevent - US/Japan war.
glenn239 wrote:But in your timeline, Marshall knows Bolero won't happen before the debate on Germany first has even occurred.
It is possible that, even after ABC, the chiefs no longer favor Germany First if SU looks a lost cause. FDR, ever the optimist, seems unlikely to change but maybe too. Marshall may well perceive Torch or MidEast as merely propping up Britian rather than a next-best step towards Berlin.
glenn239 wrote:The disadvantage of "Japan First" was that the US navy wasn't ready for a big counteroffensive in 1942. So maybe Germany first wins the debate anyways, and Torch comes out as the invasion that will happen?
It's a definite possibility; indeed it makes the most sense to me. To Tom I was only making the point about what FDR actually was saying were his priorities for contingency planning. He wasn't ready to concede the MidEast then but nothing focuses the mind like a crisis.

Torch-lite makes sense to make taking the Canaries easier, and as a shot in the arm to Allied publics seeing Germany conquer everywhere else. The size of the operation, however, shouldn't be underestimated. Presumably Spain will have reinforced Spanish Morocco heavily before declaring war; it'd be difficult to stop German reinforcement across an 8-mile strait even if you rapidly encircle Ceuta and evirons. Germany will rapidly overrun Algeria and can run at least Coastal shipping via a closed-off Med to excellent French ports. It's not clear Germany lacks powerful French allies either.
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 20 Jul 2021 22:04

Terry Duncan wrote:No reason to believe Hitler will keep his word
Obviously but geopolitical settlements are not based on trust. Did we trust Kim and Mao when we settled the Korean War with an armistice? Of course not. Did we trust Stalin would be nice to everybody when we let him keep half of Europe?

Settlements are a matter of power and rational calculation, backed by force. Here we'd want to liberate Europe but, rationally calculating our power (including internal political constraints), it's just not in the cards. What other interests could be served? There's an obvious interest in peace; there's also the interest in beating Japan ASAP. Fighting in Europe delays that goal; if Germany is supporting Japan via the TSRR and possibly Indian Ocean it may do so indefinitely.

A settlement would also rely on deterrence and preparations, just as did the postwar settlements in Europe and Korea. US would maintain bases and forces in UK - same as postwar Europe but a few hundred miles west.
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by Terry Duncan » 21 Jul 2021 07:44

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
20 Jul 2021 22:04
Terry Duncan wrote:No reason to believe Hitler will keep his word
Obviously but geopolitical settlements are not based on trust. Did we trust Kim and Mao when we settled the Korean War with an armistice? Of course not. Did we trust Stalin would be nice to everybody when we let him keep half of Europe?

Settlements are a matter of power and rational calculation, backed by force. Here we'd want to liberate Europe but, rationally calculating our power (including internal political constraints), it's just not in the cards. What other interests could be served? There's an obvious interest in peace; there's also the interest in beating Japan ASAP. Fighting in Europe delays that goal; if Germany is supporting Japan via the TSRR and possibly Indian Ocean it may do so indefinitely.

A settlement would also rely on deterrence and preparations, just as did the postwar settlements in Europe and Korea. US would maintain bases and forces in UK - same as postwar Europe but a few hundred miles west.
We trusted the Koreans and Chinese not to want nukes going off over their cities, so yes, we could trust them. We didnt trust Stalin but nobody was prepared to fight a few more years to liberate nations that in many cases had supported Hitler. We would have liked them out from under Stalin but selling a war against the great ally we had been supporting for several years wasnt going to be possible to sell to the people.

Germany is rather resource hungry, so has little to offer Japan compared to other nations. However, Japan is relatively backward with regards industry and unlikely to win a war against the western allied powers no matter what. Then it comes down to who can offer Stalin the most too, and I am betting it isnt Germany. The US would defeat Japan with relative ease no matter what, as even before Pearl Harbor Japan was going to have to fight 11 Essex class carriers, and after it 32 had the US decided to build as many as she ordered. In this case, if the US is really worried about Japan, perhaps it could offer peace in return for allowing Japan a free hand in China while it concentrates on Germany, or even just ignore Japan entirely other than defensive forces in the Pacific, and then turn on Japan once the far more dangerous Germany is defeated? Defeat Japan first and you still have years of war with Germany ahead, defeat Germany first and Japan will be defeated within a year or so of the US and Britain being able to transfer forces out of Europe.

By your calculation Britain should have negotiated peace in the Revolutionary War in about 1776 rather than fight a global war against France and Spain as well as a rebellion in the US. For Britain it proved far more worthwhile to take a lot of places worldwide from her major rivals than to try fighting a large land war thousands of miles from home, as to Britain, naval dominance was always more important. The same would apply in the Napoleonic Wars, Britain should have given up certainly by the end of 1805, but was quite happy to blockade Europe instead. In WWI it would appear Britain should have given up to the 1916/17 German peace suggestions of allowing them to keep what they already sat on, and that didnt work out either. The British are a very stubborn people once pushed into a war, and from the Anglo-Dutch Wars of the 17thC we have not lost that many overall, even if we did bribe others to doing a lot of the fighting for us.

In this case who can the US and Britain trust most, Stalin who was part of the very early Soviet state attempt to annex Poland in 1920, but who was quite happy to look for internal enemies to keep his grip on power from 1931 onwards, or Hitler who has broken every agreement he has made? British policy had always been to back the weaker power against the European hegemon, and the US will find it much easier to follow such a policy as the USSR has a lot of expendable manpower.

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by Peter89 » 21 Jul 2021 08:51

Terry Duncan wrote:
21 Jul 2021 07:44
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
20 Jul 2021 22:04
Terry Duncan wrote:No reason to believe Hitler will keep his word
Obviously but geopolitical settlements are not based on trust. Did we trust Kim and Mao when we settled the Korean War with an armistice? Of course not. Did we trust Stalin would be nice to everybody when we let him keep half of Europe?

Settlements are a matter of power and rational calculation, backed by force. Here we'd want to liberate Europe but, rationally calculating our power (including internal political constraints), it's just not in the cards. What other interests could be served? There's an obvious interest in peace; there's also the interest in beating Japan ASAP. Fighting in Europe delays that goal; if Germany is supporting Japan via the TSRR and possibly Indian Ocean it may do so indefinitely.

A settlement would also rely on deterrence and preparations, just as did the postwar settlements in Europe and Korea. US would maintain bases and forces in UK - same as postwar Europe but a few hundred miles west.
We trusted the Koreans and Chinese not to want nukes going off over their cities, so yes, we could trust them. We didnt trust Stalin but nobody was prepared to fight a few more years to liberate nations that in many cases had supported Hitler. We would have liked them out from under Stalin but selling a war against the great ally we had been supporting for several years wasnt going to be possible to sell to the people.

Germany is rather resource hungry, so has little to offer Japan compared to other nations. However, Japan is relatively backward with regards industry and unlikely to win a war against the western allied powers no matter what. Then it comes down to who can offer Stalin the most too, and I am betting it isnt Germany. The US would defeat Japan with relative ease no matter what, as even before Pearl Harbor Japan was going to have to fight 11 Essex class carriers, and after it 32 had the US decided to build as many as she ordered. In this case, if the US is really worried about Japan, perhaps it could offer peace in return for allowing Japan a free hand in China while it concentrates on Germany, or even just ignore Japan entirely other than defensive forces in the Pacific, and then turn on Japan once the far more dangerous Germany is defeated? Defeat Japan first and you still have years of war with Germany ahead, defeat Germany first and Japan will be defeated within a year or so of the US and Britain being able to transfer forces out of Europe.

By your calculation Britain should have negotiated peace in the Revolutionary War in about 1776 rather than fight a global war against France and Spain as well as a rebellion in the US. For Britain it proved far more worthwhile to take a lot of places worldwide from her major rivals than to try fighting a large land war thousands of miles from home, as to Britain, naval dominance was always more important. The same would apply in the Napoleonic Wars, Britain should have given up certainly by the end of 1805, but was quite happy to blockade Europe instead. In WWI it would appear Britain should have given up to the 1916/17 German peace suggestions of allowing them to keep what they already sat on, and that didnt work out either. The British are a very stubborn people once pushed into a war, and from the Anglo-Dutch Wars of the 17thC we have not lost that many overall, even if we did bribe others to doing a lot of the fighting for us.

In this case who can the US and Britain trust most, Stalin who was part of the very early Soviet state attempt to annex Poland in 1920, but who was quite happy to look for internal enemies to keep his grip on power from 1931 onwards, or Hitler who has broken every agreement he has made? British policy had always been to back the weaker power against the European hegemon, and the US will find it much easier to follow such a policy as the USSR has a lot of expendable manpower.
I believe that many in the British high political and military circles understood that the WW2 will be the last war of the empire. Even Eric Knight felt it when he wrote that Britain will not lose this war; but she will not win it either. The single best chance for Britain to defeat Germany was exactly the moment when the dying empire had the power for a last struggle before its dissolution. The British faced the reality of losing naval superiority and the dissolution of their empire, as well as anti-British revolutions everywhere where they did not want to or could not finance the occupation anymore. I think the fundamental problem of the "Britain gives the Axis more time to consolidate" scenario is the real possibility that in a few years the Raj would declare independence, the Middle Eastern colonies and LN mandates would revolt and Australia & New Zealand would turn their attention towards the Pacific (ie.: home defense), where their fates are tied. I believe that the British made the right decision when they stood and fought, but in my opinion, it happened for less glorious reasons than you described.
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by Terry Duncan » 21 Jul 2021 12:41

Peter89 wrote:
21 Jul 2021 08:51
I believe that many in the British high political and military circles understood that the WW2 will be the last war of the empire. Even Eric Knight felt it when he wrote that Britain will not lose this war; but she will not win it either. The single best chance for Britain to defeat Germany was exactly the moment when the dying empire had the power for a last struggle before its dissolution. The British faced the reality of losing naval superiority and the dissolution of their empire, as well as anti-British revolutions everywhere where they did not want to or could not finance the occupation anymore. I think the fundamental problem of the "Britain gives the Axis more time to consolidate" scenario is the real possibility that in a few years the Raj would declare independence, the Middle Eastern colonies and LN mandates would revolt and Australia & New Zealand would turn their attention towards the Pacific (ie.: home defense), where their fates are tied. I believe that the British made the right decision when they stood and fought, but in my opinion, it happened for less glorious reasons than you described.
I dont think there were entirely glorious reasons for fighting, it was a deliberate consideration. The Empire had ceased to be profitable from about 1890 and there were various thoughts by politicians about cutting it back, though this wasnt seen as acceptable by many at the time. As soon as nationalism started to rise the empire was finished, the only remaining question was really what form leaving the empire would take, would it be as some sort of dominion or commonwealth state, or fully removed and independent. Problems set in more due to the timescale desired by the US and due to a lack of money after WWII. We had plans to defeat Japan if she attacked in the east, and plans for war with Germany too, just not for both at the same time. We could do it, the far east just came a very poor third when it came to priorities.

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 21 Jul 2021 12:42

Terry Duncan wrote:We trusted the Koreans and Chinese not to want nukes going off over their cities, so yes, we could trust them.
As I said:
TheMarcksPlan wrote:Settlements are a matter of power and rational calculation, backed by force.
------------------------------------
Terry Duncan wrote:the same would apply in the Napoleonic Wars
Difference between 1776 and the Napoleonic Wars, versus WW2, is total war. I doubt UK/US remain at total war indefinitely, with no feasible path to final victory.
Terry Duncan wrote:Then it comes down to who can offer Stalin the most too, and I am betting it isnt Germany.
And I'm betting you so believe because you disagree with my contention that Germany have pushed Stalin behind the Urals by Fall '42. Which is fine, plenty of threads to have that military discussion.

--------------------------------------

To all thread-readers, I'm not certain that the US/UK make peace after losing SU, Med, and Mideast - how could I be? I do consider it feasible/likely, however. My question was "what is the feasible path to victory?" and, implicitly, "given perhaps no feasible path, why stay in the war?"

There are potential paths to Allied victory, feasible or not:

1. A-bomb, but not in '43 and not as a tool of maintaining political support for continuing the war because it's secret and speculative. Perhaps political myopia prevents a settlement until the bomb opens additional paths.
2. Complete strategic reorientation towards building a 400-division AEF. I'm pretty sure this is politically infeasible and I'm not sure it's militarily/economically feasible - especially not before Japan's defeat.

There are also potential answers to "why"?

1. We hate Nazism THAT much (but then why didn't the US do much about it voluntarily?)
2. We publicize the Holocaust (but then it wasn't THAT secret/surprising and 1940's US wasn't exactly philo-Semitic)

I invite discussion in a spirit of openness and inquiry.
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by Tom from Cornwall » 21 Jul 2021 13:32

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
21 Jul 2021 12:42
To all thread-readers, I'm not certain that the US/UK make peace after losing SU, Med, and Mideast - how could I be?
Are you more confident that Hitler, having defeated the SU, captured the Med and Mideast, linked up with the Japanese in the Indian Ocean, and having acquired bases to tighten the blockade on the British Isles (with submarines, surface ships and air forces) would think of making peace with either the UK or US? I personally am much less certain that the UK would have much choice in this situation - I guess Hitler might accept some bases in Canada and the entire RN as a bribe?

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 21 Jul 2021 13:52

Tom from Cornwall wrote:Are you more confident that Hitler, having defeated the SU, captured the Med and Mideast, linked up with the Japanese in the Indian Ocean, and having acquired bases to tighten the blockade on the British Isles (with submarines, surface ships and air forces) would think of making peace with either the UK or US?
Yes but, as I say upthread, it's possible he's so incensed about bombing and/or mad with power that maybe not. Hamburg/Cologne, e.g., are probably still largely destroyed by mid-'43, before the German shift from Heer to LW takes full effect. My sense is Germany kills thousands of Brittons in ATL '43 with its own inefficient bombing campaign; Hitler and the German public accept that as adequate revenge and are happy with European hegemony in the postwar settlement.

I base that judgment on the historical record of Hitler's statements - he explicitly framed Barbarossa as, in part, a means of obtaining peace with Britain and of keeping the US out of the war (assuming this is common knowledge or I'd cite). Those aren't the hopes of a man believing in "no sleep 'til London!" He lived for war in the East; merely accepted war with the West.

Churchill, meanwhile, once expressed a fear that Germany would take the MidEast and force peace upon us - something like that I don't have the quote at hand (does anybody?). All US military leaders considered Germany's position invulnerable in event of Soviet collapse; FDR privately believed it meant a lost war (see signature).
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by Peter89 » 21 Jul 2021 15:52

Terry Duncan wrote:
21 Jul 2021 12:41
Peter89 wrote:
21 Jul 2021 08:51
I believe that many in the British high political and military circles understood that the WW2 will be the last war of the empire. Even Eric Knight felt it when he wrote that Britain will not lose this war; but she will not win it either. The single best chance for Britain to defeat Germany was exactly the moment when the dying empire had the power for a last struggle before its dissolution. The British faced the reality of losing naval superiority and the dissolution of their empire, as well as anti-British revolutions everywhere where they did not want to or could not finance the occupation anymore. I think the fundamental problem of the "Britain gives the Axis more time to consolidate" scenario is the real possibility that in a few years the Raj would declare independence, the Middle Eastern colonies and LN mandates would revolt and Australia & New Zealand would turn their attention towards the Pacific (ie.: home defense), where their fates are tied. I believe that the British made the right decision when they stood and fought, but in my opinion, it happened for less glorious reasons than you described.
I dont think there were entirely glorious reasons for fighting, it was a deliberate consideration. The Empire had ceased to be profitable from about 1890 and there were various thoughts by politicians about cutting it back, though this wasnt seen as acceptable by many at the time. As soon as nationalism started to rise the empire was finished, the only remaining question was really what form leaving the empire would take, would it be as some sort of dominion or commonwealth state, or fully removed and independent. Problems set in more due to the timescale desired by the US and due to a lack of money after WWII. We had plans to defeat Japan if she attacked in the east, and plans for war with Germany too, just not for both at the same time. We could do it, the far east just came a very poor third when it came to priorities.
Yes, basically the British understood that they could not give up their empire as long as there are other colonial empires like the French and the Japanese, and continental powers like Germany. They also needed to get a seat at the table with the two rising superpowers in order to artifically prolong their influence in international affairs.

A compromise with any of these powers would mean that Britain lost the war without fighting. Churchill understood that Britain has to be the last major colonial power to fall, and any price must be paid to achieve that. National character and stubbornness had little influence in that consideration.
“And while I am talking to you, mothers and fathers, I give you one more assurance. I have said this before, but I shall say it again, and again and again. Your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars." - FDR, October 1940

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