Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

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lahoda
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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by lahoda » 29 May 2020 15:14

History Learner wrote:
26 Jan 2019 20:14
The German plan for Czechoslovakia envisaged two pincers closing from the north and south, with massive paratrooper drops being dropped to cut internal Czech lines of communication. The Czechs themselves didn't envision the defenses lasting more then a few months. The fortified frontier was found by German examinations to be poorly suited to stop the exact sort of massed armored assault assisted by dive-bombers and artillery the Germans envisioned.
Czechoslovak defense strategy was to avoid being pinced and I think it is quite safe to assume they'd succeed in this. The fortification on the north was strong enough to protect "the corridor" for the Czechoslovak army to escape encircling, had the German attack went that far. First they'd need to get through, which is easier to be said than done. Even if they'd succeed, they would have very high casualties (possibly higher than what they are able to accept and would seek the armistice) and still would face the core of the Czechoslovak army, but now on a much shorter front, in another mountaineous terrain on Slovak border. Even if Germany won in 1938, which is far from sure thing, it would be severely damaged and in no shape to attack in the west.
History Learner wrote:
26 Jan 2019 20:14
While Germany's panzer divisions were made up mainly of Panzer I and II tanks in 1938 (and Panzer IIs still made up the majority in 1940), at least Germany had panzer divisions, grouped and organized in a logical manner. Compared to the four Panzer divisions Germany possessed in October of 1938 (with a fifth forming in November) France had... none.
Czechoslovak army had some 350 panzers with cannons able to pierce any German tank, while majority of German panzers can't do the same to LT-35 (except about 100 of III and IV) models. Panzer I would have difficult time to get around gun fire of the light fortification pillboxes. Czechoslovak army had the tanks concentrated in the dedicated divisions, and were trained to use them at concentrated level. They'd use them to plug any holes in the fortification lines, would be interesting to see how this power vs. power would work. Nobody really knows.
History Learner wrote:
26 Jan 2019 20:14
The Moraine MS.406 was a decent enough fighter, but the numbers in service with the French Air Force in late 1938 were tiny, with each aircraft basically hand crafted. Yearly production in 1938 stood at a paltry 65 aircraft. [Goldstein, "The Munich Crisis," p.142] While you can argue that the 109D did not significantly outclass the MS.406, in September of 1938 Germany had over 500 Messerschmitts (along with about 60 early model Bf.110s and a smattering of 300 or so older biplane fighters), while France had just a few dozen Moranes - basically just an extended run of prototypes. It wasn't until late 1938 that the French began ordering new planes in large enough numbers for mass production, and the first production MS.406 didn't fly until January of 1939. In October of 1938 by far the most common French fighters the Germans would have faced would have been the obsolete Dewoitine D.500s and D.501s, which had fixed landing gear and open cockpits. Even then the French fighter squadrons were badly outnumbered, with only about 300 Dewoitines in frontline service as of August 1938. Similarly the RAF had only one operational Hurricane squadron (16 planes) at the time of Munich, as that type was also just entering service, with just four more squadrons forming. [Isby, "The Decisive Duel,"] This is ignoring the gross deficiency in the ADA's organization and training compared to the Luftwaffe.
Many of the "over 500 Messerschmitts" were the B models, with just two 7,65mm guns. All early Bf-109 had relatively weak Jumo engines. About 200 of them were allocated to Reich defense, 300 along with old Ar-68s and He-51s were designated to face 350 Avias B-534, obsolete biplane design, but having 4 MGs, much stronger engine, and thus performance gap not as big (especially better climb rate would be handy, as well as manoeuvrability), so the air superioriry over Czechoslovakia was not given, but had to be fought (with possibly substantial casualties)
There were three different Messerschmitt models, just rushed to service, causing a logistic nightmare with spare parts and main problem of Luftwaffe in 1938 it was drastically understaffed, and to get some squadrons operational, the training was reduced to minimum. While the Luftwaffe bombers looks like a formidable force with sheer numbers on paper, they only had about 500 squads. Given the terrible weather in October/November 1938, the casualties would be high, even further magnifying the sore point of Luftwaffe. They simply needed that extra year to be effective on new Bf-109Es and other equipment as it was a case in Poland.

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by maltesefalcon » 29 May 2020 18:35

One final thought from myself. IRL the Munich crisis took place over September. That would mean combat as a result, would take place in October.

Since the Germans would have neither the Czech tanks nor their facilities to build more over 2 years, it may take substantially longer to conquer Czechoslovakia than it did Poland IRL. Especially since USSR will not join in against the Czechs.

So combat vs Czechs likely until onset of winter. Not the best situation to launch a new campaign in France immediately thereafter. Note OP only indicates WWII breaking out in 1938 without a timeline for the revised Manstein plan itself.

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by lahoda » 30 May 2020 11:32

maltesefalcon wrote:
29 May 2020 18:35
One final thought from myself. IRL the Munich crisis took place over September. That would mean combat as a result, would take place in October.

Since the Germans would have neither the Czech tanks nor their facilities to build more over 2 years, it may take substantially longer to conquer Czechoslovakia than it did Poland IRL. Especially since USSR will not join in against the Czechs.

So combat vs Czechs likely until onset of winter. Not the best situation to launch a new campaign in France immediately thereafter. Note OP only indicates WWII breaking out in 1938 without a timeline for the revised Manstein plan itself.
Good observation. Perhaps it is worth noting:

- Germans had no plan of attack against fully mobilised Czechoslovakia (which was a case in late September 1938) Famous "Fall Grün" only expected sneak attack before the mobilisation, giving Wehrmacht the numerical advantage it needed for attack. Otherwise the gap in forces size was not that big, which doesn't favor an attacker.

- Germans were not ready to start on October 1st, which was a wish of Hitler. Reality might force them to postpone the start of the offensive.

- The weather in October was awful, many days it would be difficult to fly at all. Not great if your doctrine relies on a close air support.

- Winter 1938/9 was cold in general. Was Wehrmacht ready to fight in such conditions

To me it is more likely that fighting would carry into 1939. If Czechoslovak Army managed to avoid being encircled in Bohemia (which was the plan, they were ready to forfeit Prague, the capital) and moved the bulk of the army towards Slovakia, Germany would either have to fight a decisive battle against enemy in favorable terrain for defense (yet again), with their supply lines stretched on much shorter front, thus against much more concentrated forces. Even in case of German victory they would either need to chase the rest of the army into the Slovak mountains, or let it fleece to Romania.
While someone here proposed Germans had no interest in Slovak teritory, not sure if they would be comfortable moving forces to face France, when undefeated army, of a size that is comparable to your own army (Germany would suffer higher rate of casualties, by the mere fact it was attacking against prepared defense lines) is next to your frontier. It would be very difficult to move towards France, otherwise liberation of Bohemia was likely, and even Berlin was some 300km away. They had to finish off the Czechoslovak army, which would take much more than just quick advance in the first couple of weeks.

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by ljadw » 02 Jun 2020 09:22

One point : what would be the benefit for the Czech army if it was forced,to avoid encirclment,to give up the territories inhabited by the Czechs,territories that were the industrial core of CZ,and to withdraw to the agricultural lands of Slovakia, where the Czechs could not expect a big willingness of the population to fight for the preservation of the Czech dominance .No one had asked the Slovaks in 1918 if they agreed to become the junior part of the new CZ state .
IOW : if the Czechs were not willing to fight to die for Prague,why should the Slovaks fight and die to liberate Prague ? Or, if the Czechs were not willing to accept the destruction of Prague, why should the Slovaks accept the destruction of Bratislava ?
And ,about the so-called Czechoslovak army: the officers and generals were Czechs ,thus it was mainly a colonial army .

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by lahoda » 02 Jun 2020 20:39

ljadw wrote:
02 Jun 2020 09:22
One point : what would be the benefit for the Czech army if it was forced,to avoid encirclment,to give up the territories inhabited by the Czechs,territories that were the industrial core of CZ,and to withdraw to the agricultural lands of Slovakia, where the Czechs could not expect a big willingness of the population to fight for the preservation of the Czech dominance .No one had asked the Slovaks in 1918 if they agreed to become the junior part of the new CZ state .
IOW : if the Czechs were not willing to fight to die for Prague,why should the Slovaks fight and die to liberate Prague ? Or, if the Czechs were not willing to accept the destruction of Prague, why should the Slovaks accept the destruction of Bratislava ?
And ,about the so-called Czechoslovak army: the officers and generals were Czechs ,thus it was mainly a colonial army .
The benefit from the military point of view would be to shorten the front, and increase the concentration of units in area. Germans would still have to fight that army, but without luxury of being able to attack on any point of very long border. Czechoslovak defense doctrine counted with the help of their ally, France, and having the entire Wehrmacht and Luftwafe engaged on the Slovak broder would be a golden opportunity to help their ally.
The army wouln't be retreating to Bratislava, so your point there is moot.
There were less officers of Slovak descent by mere fact that they were in much worse situation when they were under Hungarian part of Austro-Hungarian empire. It also explains their motivation to enter Czechoslovakia, and nobody held gun to their head to do so. Slovaks wanted more autonomy in 1938, not a separate state. They would fight for their homeland. Your arguments doesn't reflect reality of 1938.

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by maltesefalcon » 03 Jun 2020 02:19

I have a couple questions to pose.

What was the state of the Austrian portion/contribution to the Wehrmacht? They had only been in the Reich since March of the same year.
Also would there need to be a successful Polish campaign prior to the dealing with the French?

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by ljadw » 03 Jun 2020 13:09

lahoda wrote:
02 Jun 2020 20:39
ljadw wrote:
02 Jun 2020 09:22
One point : what would be the benefit for the Czech army if it was forced,to avoid encirclment,to give up the territories inhabited by the Czechs,territories that were the industrial core of CZ,and to withdraw to the agricultural lands of Slovakia, where the Czechs could not expect a big willingness of the population to fight for the preservation of the Czech dominance .No one had asked the Slovaks in 1918 if they agreed to become the junior part of the new CZ state .
IOW : if the Czechs were not willing to fight to die for Prague,why should the Slovaks fight and die to liberate Prague ? Or, if the Czechs were not willing to accept the destruction of Prague, why should the Slovaks accept the destruction of Bratislava ?
And ,about the so-called Czechoslovak army: the officers and generals were Czechs ,thus it was mainly a colonial army .
The benefit from the military point of view would be to shorten the front, and increase the concentration of units in area. Germans would still have to fight that army, but without luxury of being able to attack on any point of very long border. Czechoslovak defense doctrine counted with the help of their ally, France, and having the entire Wehrmacht and Luftwafe engaged on the Slovak broder would be a golden opportunity to help their ally.
The army wouln't be retreating to Bratislava, so your point there is moot.
There were less officers of Slovak descent by mere fact that they were in much worse situation when they were under Hungarian part of Austro-Hungarian empire. It also explains their motivation to enter Czechoslovakia, and nobody held gun to their head to do so. Slovaks wanted more autonomy in 1938, not a separate state. They would fight for their homeland. Your arguments doesn't reflect reality of 1938.
Slovaks wanted independence in 1918, in 1939,in 1992 .
Masaryk, OTOH,said that there was no Slovak nation ,that it was an invention from the Hungarians .
The Slovaks were disdained by the Czechs and were considered as inferior .
Of the 11820 career officers of the army of CZ,there were only 422 Slovaks .
Of the 139 generals,there was ONE Slovak.
Of the officials in the central ministries,there was only 1.1 % Slovaks .
In the ministry of Slovakia only 11,86 % Slovaks .
The Slovaks never constituted a state with the Czechs till 1918,and the ''reunification '' ( better Anschluss ) in 1918 happened without the agreement of the Slovaks .
And, my point is not moot : the fact that the Czech army would not retreat to Bratislava,would not save Bratislava : the Czechs had decided,in case of a German invasion, to give up the armament industries in Bohemia and Moravia AND Prague,to save the city , and to continue the fighting in Slovakia ,the result would be : no destruction in Bohemia and Moravia and big destruction in Slovakia ,this was for a lot of Slovaks the proof of the contempt of the Czechs for the Slovaks .
This tactic would fail ,because
1 the Slovaks ( military/civilians ) would not fight for the Czechs
2 the French would declare war on Germany ,but that would be all :there were Czech leaders who believed that the French army would march to Berlin, but they lived in a dream land .
France had not the means for a big offensive, it had never promised a big offensive,its ''alliance '' with CZ had as aim only to prevent a German attack on France .
After their DOW,Britain and France would start WWII,and in 1945 Germany would be defeated,and CZ would be free,after 7 years of German occupation. But in 1938,the Czechs were on their own.

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by ljadw » 03 Jun 2020 13:15

maltesefalcon wrote:
03 Jun 2020 02:19
I have a couple questions to pose.

What was the state of the Austrian portion/contribution to the Wehrmacht? They had only been in the Reich since March of the same year.
Also would there need to be a successful Polish campaign prior to the dealing with the French?


There was no need for the Germans for a dealing with the French : the French did not oppose German hegemony in Eastern/Central Europe as long as it happened without war .

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by lahoda » 27 Sep 2020 13:59

ljadw wrote:
03 Jun 2020 13:09
Slovaks wanted independence in 1918, in 1939,in 1992 .
Masaryk, OTOH,said that there was no Slovak nation ,that it was an invention from the Hungarians .
The Slovaks were disdained by the Czechs and were considered as inferior .
Of the 11820 career officers of the army of CZ,there were only 422 Slovaks .
Of the 139 generals,there was ONE Slovak.
Of the officials in the central ministries,there was only 1.1 % Slovaks .
In the ministry of Slovakia only 11,86 % Slovaks .
The Slovaks never constituted a state with the Czechs till 1918,and the ''reunification '' ( better Anschluss ) in 1918 happened without the agreement of the Slovaks .
And, my point is not moot : the fact that the Czech army would not retreat to Bratislava,would not save Bratislava : the Czechs had decided,in case of a German invasion, to give up the armament industries in Bohemia and Moravia AND Prague,to save the city , and to continue the fighting in Slovakia ,the result would be : no destruction in Bohemia and Moravia and big destruction in Slovakia ,this was for a lot of Slovaks the proof of the contempt of the Czechs for the Slovaks .
This tactic would fail ,because
1 the Slovaks ( military/civilians ) would not fight for the Czechs
2 the French would declare war on Germany ,but that would be all :there were Czech leaders who believed that the French army would march to Berlin, but they lived in a dream land .
France had not the means for a big offensive, it had never promised a big offensive,its ''alliance '' with CZ had as aim only to prevent a German attack on France .
After their DOW,Britain and France would start WWII,and in 1945 Germany would be defeated,and CZ would be free,after 7 years of German occupation. But in 1938,the Czechs were on their own.
Not sure where your opinion that Slovaks were forced into Czechoslovakia comes from, but it doesn't reflect the reality. Slovaks faced the same problem as Czechs, they had a massive Hungarian minority, thus uniting with Czechs were mutually beneficial. Yep Germans and Hungarians could have a feeling that they would prefer being independent, but a) this was a traditional territory of Bohemian Kingdom (in the case of Sudeten Germans) and b) the Entente was against any plans of greater Germany or unification of germany and german-speaking parts of the A-H Empire.

Your data about the numbers of Slovak officers in the Czechoslovak army only proofs my point that Slovaks were treated wery poorly by Hungarians in the A-H Empire, and there were simple not enough people with education to make a a career in army. But Czechoslovakia was a massive upgrade for Slovaks in terms of quality of life and they were loyal to the Republic.

Czechoslovak Army faced uneasy task to protect a very long border with Germany, and their conclusion was that front needed to be shortened at the expense of forfeiting industrial base (Pilsen) and losing the capital. But it wouldn't be a reason to end the war, quite contrary. Bratislava would be damaged to the same extend as Prague, the army would spread on the entire front on Moravian Highlands and later on Slovak Carpathian mountains, and Bratislava won't be any military important stronghold in that defensive line, thus there won't be any major battle and no major damage (similar to damage caused to Prague). The new capital would be Turčianský Svetý Martin, and it would be fiercely defended.

France had a treaty with Czechoslovakia. They failed to honor the treaty in OTL, and could fail to honor it in this scenario too, but it be as short-sighted decision as it was OTL. But with majority of the German forces tied in exhausting war on the eastern front, they would be in great position for counter attack. They managed to do the attack from the Maginot line in 1940 and were surprised how easy it was to pierce a weak German defence line (they just did not know what to do with their success).

Anyway, it doesn't make the German attack westwards less unrealistic. Germany would have no force for this. Heck, even Manstein could meet his fate while trying to knock Czechoslovak army out.

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by lahoda » 27 Sep 2020 14:09

ljadw wrote:
09 Jan 2019 07:34
Besides, if there was an Oster conspiracy in 1938 ,why was there no Oster conspiracy in 1939 ?
This is a very good point. The reason for that is that Hitler's position in 1938 was not as strong as it was in 1939. He gambled that weak governments of France and UK will give him Czechoslovakia without a fight, where his general staff knew Wehrmacht was not ready for war in 1938 and would most likely deposit Hitler if the war would cause substantial casualties (as it would). When France and UK (Chamberlain especially) exceeded all Hitler's expectations, German reaped the benefits of getting the entire industrial base of Czechoslovakia and all of their armament, all of this helped to unite the army behind Hitler and be loyal to him. 1938 was the latest date the WWII could be avoided.

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by maltesefalcon » 27 Sep 2020 14:22

ljadw wrote:
03 Jun 2020 13:15
maltesefalcon wrote:
03 Jun 2020 02:19
I have a couple questions to pose.

What was the state of the Austrian portion/contribution to the Wehrmacht? They had only been in the Reich since March of the same year.
Also would there need to be a successful Polish campaign prior to the dealing with the French?


There was no need for the Germans for a dealing with the French : the French did not oppose German hegemony in Eastern/Central Europe as long as it happened without war .
Just noticed this, so sorry for delayed reply. This entire thread's premise is dealing with the French-hence the Manstein plan discussion.

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by ljadw » 29 Sep 2020 18:01

lahoda wrote:
27 Sep 2020 13:59
ljadw wrote:
03 Jun 2020 13:09
Slovaks wanted independence in 1918, in 1939,in 1992 .
Masaryk, OTOH,said that there was no Slovak nation ,that it was an invention from the Hungarians .
The Slovaks were disdained by the Czechs and were considered as inferior .
Of the 11820 career officers of the army of CZ,there were only 422 Slovaks .
Of the 139 generals,there was ONE Slovak.
Of the officials in the central ministries,there was only 1.1 % Slovaks .
In the ministry of Slovakia only 11,86 % Slovaks .
The Slovaks never constituted a state with the Czechs till 1918,and the ''reunification '' ( better Anschluss ) in 1918 happened without the agreement of the Slovaks .
And, my point is not moot : the fact that the Czech army would not retreat to Bratislava,would not save Bratislava : the Czechs had decided,in case of a German invasion, to give up the armament industries in Bohemia and Moravia AND Prague,to save the city , and to continue the fighting in Slovakia ,the result would be : no destruction in Bohemia and Moravia and big destruction in Slovakia ,this was for a lot of Slovaks the proof of the contempt of the Czechs for the Slovaks .
This tactic would fail ,because
1 the Slovaks ( military/civilians ) would not fight for the Czechs
2 the French would declare war on Germany ,but that would be all :there were Czech leaders who believed that the French army would march to Berlin, but they lived in a dream land .
France had not the means for a big offensive, it had never promised a big offensive,its ''alliance '' with CZ had as aim only to prevent a German attack on France .
After their DOW,Britain and France would start WWII,and in 1945 Germany would be defeated,and CZ would be free,after 7 years of German occupation. But in 1938,the Czechs were on their own.
Not sure where your opinion that Slovaks were forced into Czechoslovakia comes from, but it doesn't reflect the reality. Slovaks faced the same problem as Czechs, they had a massive Hungarian minority, thus uniting with Czechs were mutually beneficial. Yep Germans and Hungarians could have a feeling that they would prefer being independent, but a) this was a traditional territory of Bohemian Kingdom (in the case of Sudeten Germans) and b) the Entente was against any plans of greater Germany or unification of germany and german-speaking parts of the A-H Empire.

Your data about the numbers of Slovak officers in the Czechoslovak army only proofs my point that Slovaks were treated wery poorly by Hungarians in the A-H Empire, and there were simple not enough people with education to make a a career in army. But Czechoslovakia was a massive upgrade for Slovaks in terms of quality of life and they were loyal to the Republic.

Czechoslovak Army faced uneasy task to protect a very long border with Germany, and their conclusion was that front needed to be shortened at the expense of forfeiting industrial base (Pilsen) and losing the capital. But it wouldn't be a reason to end the war, quite contrary. Bratislava would be damaged to the same extend as Prague, the army would spread on the entire front on Moravian Highlands and later on Slovak Carpathian mountains, and Bratislava won't be any military important stronghold in that defensive line, thus there won't be any major battle and no major damage (similar to damage caused to Prague). The new capital would be Turčianský Svetý Martin, and it would be fiercely defended.

France had a treaty with Czechoslovakia. They failed to honor the treaty in OTL, and could fail to honor it in this scenario too, but it be as short-sighted decision as it was OTL. But with majority of the German forces tied in exhausting war on the eastern front, they would be in great position for counter attack. They managed to do the attack from the Maginot line in 1940 and were surprised how easy it was to pierce a weak German defence line (they just did not know what to do with their success).

Anyway, it doesn't make the German attack westwards less unrealistic. Germany would have no force for this. Heck, even Manstein could meet his fate while trying to knock Czechoslovak army out.
A lot of questionable claims .
Thus here some replies .
1 The Slovaks : they were not loyal to the Czechs : they wanted to become independent in 1939,the Czechs sent their army to prevent this and Hitler used this to invade CZ.
2 The French : they did NOT fail to honour the treaty with Prague : the treaty mentioned that France would help CZ if it was attacked;as it was not attacked ,the French had no reason to help CZ. But ,if it was attacked, France would have declared war on Germany .
3 There is no proof that a war between Germany and CZ would be exhausting and that this would give France the occasion for a counter attack .Besides, the French Maginot offensive of 1939 was not a success .
The reality is that France had no reason to declare war on Germany in 1938 and that a French DOW would not help CZ,which was the reason why CZ preferred to yield to Hitler's demands .
From a strategic PoV the disappearance of CZ in 1939 as an independent state was not negative for France .France had already given up CZ in 1929 when it decided to build the Maginot line against a possible German attack ,such attack was only possible if Germany was rearming. Thus France admitted implicitly in 1929 the rearmament of Germany and it knew very well that a strong Germany would eliminate CZ.
From a moral PoV : if there was a war between Germany and CZ ,France would declare war on Germany, but not for CZ, but for the principle that a war of aggression was no longer tolerable .
4 Britain : it had no obligations to CZ, a country that did not exist before WWI,and no one in Britain protested because CZ was a part of the AH empire . Thus no one in Britain would protest if it now became a German satellite, on the condition that this would happen without fighting . Halifax told this to the German leadership in November 1937 .

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by lahoda » 30 Sep 2020 22:40

ljadw wrote:
29 Sep 2020 18:01
A lot of questionable claims .
Yep, agree, I see lot of your claims to be very questionable (or just lies), not based on any facts.
ljadw wrote:
29 Sep 2020 18:01
1 The Slovaks : they were not loyal to the Czechs : they wanted to become independent in 1939,the Czechs sent their army to prevent this and Hitler used this to invade CZ.
This is your total fabrication. Can you provide some source for this proposed "events"? You can check what really happened for instance here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slovak_Re ... 1939–1945)
ljadw wrote:
29 Sep 2020 18:01
2 The French : they did NOT fail to honour the treaty with Prague : the treaty mentioned that France would help CZ if it was attacked;as it was not attacked ,the French had no reason to help CZ. But ,if it was attacked, France would have declared war on Germany .
France (and Britain) actively pressed Czechoslovakia to accept Hitler's claims over border territories. Let's leave this out, but I find your definition of what it means to honour the treaty rather hilarious.
ljadw wrote:
29 Sep 2020 18:01
3 There is no proof that a war between Germany and CZ would be exhausting
There is also no proof that a war between Germany and Czechoslovakia would be a piece of cake for Germany, as their propaganda claimed. We will never know since this is "what-if" scenario. But some facts like that Germany was not ready for war, has no plan of attack against Czechoslovak army after it completed its mobilization (which actually happened in 9/1938) and the difference in size and equipment of the armies of both countries were not that big (given the defender had certain advantages from the fact it was defending pre-arranged positions) support my opinion that it would lead to long, exhausting war, which would drag into 1939.
ljadw wrote:
29 Sep 2020 18:01
and that this would give France the occasion for a counter attack .Besides, the French Maginot offensive of 1939 was not a success .
The reality is that France had no reason to declare war on Germany in 1938 and that a French DOW would not help CZ,which was the reason why CZ preferred to yield to Hitler's demands .
From a strategic PoV the disappearance of CZ in 1939 as an independent state was not negative for France .France had already given up CZ in 1929 when it decided to build the Maginot line against a possible German attack ,such attack was only possible if Germany was rearming. Thus France admitted implicitly in 1929 the rearmament of Germany and it knew very well that a strong Germany would eliminate CZ.
From a moral PoV : if there was a war between Germany and CZ ,France would declare war on Germany, but not for CZ, but for the principle that a war of aggression was no longer tolerable .
France was actively preparing for the war resulting from honouring the treaty it had with Czechoslovakia. There are plenty of evidence availaible, such as quite substantial amount of French bombs and ammunition disposed on airfields in Czechoslovakia (in 1938) - why would France do that if they decided, as you say "Maginot line is enough defence". Do you have any sources that can back this questionable claim of yours?
ljadw wrote:
29 Sep 2020 18:01
4 Britain : it had no obligations to CZ, a country that did not exist before WWI,and no one in Britain protested because CZ was a part of the AH empire . Thus no one in Britain would protest if it now became a German satellite, on the condition that this would happen without fighting . Halifax told this to the German leadership in November 1937 .
Yes, Britain had no treaty with Czechoslovakia, but it doesn't mean it was in their interest that Germany would swallow Czechoslovakia. Britain wanted to avoid to be dragged into war on their treaty with France, so their active engagement in events before and at Munich 1938 was a result that they fully expected France would honour the treaty it had with Czechoslovakia. You are contradicting yourself.

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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by ljadw » 01 Oct 2020 09:19

That there were French bombs and ammunition on Czech airfields is not a serious argument : there were also French tanks in China on BOTH sides : China and Japan .France sold also weapons to Romania and Turkey.
France sold war material to Argentine, which Argentine used in the Falkland war, to KSA which KSA used in Yemen,to Gadaffi, Saddam , to everyone who was willing to pay .
Czechoslovakia was in the thirties one of the biggest arms exporters,it sold arms to everyone who was willing to pay them .And without any political intentions .
Thus that France was selling arms to CZ already in 1919 does not prove ant political intentions .CZ sold also arms to China and Japan .The Chinese-Japanese war was good for Skoda, for Schneider, for Krupp, etc ...
During the Cold War West Germany was buying manganese from the Soviets who were buying grain from the Argentine generals who persecuted the Argentine communists...

lahoda
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Re: Was a successful Manstein Plan possible if WWII breaks out in 1938?

Post by lahoda » 01 Oct 2020 10:39

ljadw wrote:
01 Oct 2020 09:19
That there were French bombs and ammunition on Czech airfields is not a serious argument : there were also French tanks in China on BOTH sides : China and Japan .France sold also weapons to Romania and Turkey.
France sold war material to Argentine, which Argentine used in the Falkland war, to KSA which KSA used in Yemen,to Gadaffi, Saddam , to everyone who was willing to pay .
Czechoslovakia was in the thirties one of the biggest arms exporters,it sold arms to everyone who was willing to pay them .And without any political intentions .
Thus that France was selling arms to CZ already in 1919 does not prove ant political intentions .CZ sold also arms to China and Japan .The Chinese-Japanese war was good for Skoda, for Schneider, for Krupp, etc ...
During the Cold War West Germany was buying manganese from the Soviets who were buying grain from the Argentine generals who persecuted the Argentine communists...
Those were not bombs and MG magazines France sold to Czechoslovakia. These were supplies that France owned and had them allocated on Czechoslovak airfields as they planned to to do swing raids over Germany. There was also french presonel. They were preparing for such a camapign quite seriously.

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