doogal wrote: ↑
28 Mar 2019 18:50
Is it not fair though when looking at Hitler and his social and cultural statements about the east from mein kampf onwards to suggest that (it's a very calculated assumption) he was the driving force and was considering the question prior to 1933...
I believe all the ducks line up to say that Hitler was the initiator of the Russia next
conversation on 21 July 1940. I, for one, do not buy into the Dirks and Janssen theory that Brauchitsch initiated that conversation. I am quite comfortable, and have posted such several times in this thread, that it was Hitler's decision to attack the Soviet Union. His initiative on 21 July 1940, his directive on 18 December 1940 and his final say that pantsers crossed the line the following June. If that's what you mean by "driving force
", then I consider it difficult for anybody to put together a credible counter-argument in the absence of any evidence.
However, being the initiator
and go-ahead decision-maker
is NOT the same as being the one who set the objectives of the military plan. Even after the pantsers had rolled across the border, Hitler was still opining his objectives of erasing the Soviet Union and Bolshevism from the geographical and political map and putting in place the tools to eliminate the Russian Slavic race. Unternehmen BARBAROSSA was never intended to deliver any of that - but as the planning process evolved, the Heer and others seem to have deluded themselves into the idea that perhaps it might deliver it. However, it is expicit in Weisung 21 and subsequent Weisungen that a Russian state, almost certainly Bolshevik in organisation, and without any doubt of Slavic blood, would continue to exist, function and present a very real threat on the post-BARBAROSSA eastern border. Some sanity existed within the delusion.
There is no evidence to show Hitler set BARBAROSSA's objectives. There is evidence to show the Heer set BARBAROSSA's objectives.
If somebody comes along with evidence that Hitler, on or prior to 21 July 1940, specifically asked the Heer to develop a plan to attack Russia to a line where Russian bombers cannot reach Germany, then I'll change my understanding.