What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

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ljadw
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by ljadw » 30 Sep 2018 18:07

Sid Guttridge wrote:
29 Sep 2018 16:00
Hi ljadw,

Neither you, nor I, have any idea what Alexander's moral principles were, so we cannot presume to know how they influenced his analysis, if at all.

If one had to be in the position of the protagonists to be able to comment, no military history could ever be written that wasn't autobiography, which is necessarily the most subjective and unreliable type of all!

Surely, if French actions did not concern Britain, Alexander is more likely to be a dispassionate observer than either a Frenchman or a Pole, who might have vested interests?

Cheers,

Sid.
Alexander is not dispassionate, a dispassionate observer does not use words as cynicism,deception, lack of candour, blatant misleading .
A dispassionate observer remains neutral ,does not take sides of Poland and condemns France,although Poland was also cynical,deceptive,without candour and misleading .
Besides ,a good diplomat must be without candour, must mislead, must be cynical and deceptive .
The truth is that already in 1929 France had "abandoned 'Poland and that Poland knew it and did not ask a honest answer, because it would know the truth .The policy of both countries was to let sleeping dogs lie .
Only a Frenchman who lived in 1939 could understand the French reasons who were dictated mainly by the memories of WWI : a big part of France was destroyed during WWI and 7 % of French males had died . No British regions were destroyed and only 3,5 % of British males were killed . This is something only a Frenchman can understand .
Churchill said that Britain and the US were separated by the same language, and Britain and France had not even the same language .
Gamelin was not lying ,otherwise he would not become chief of staff, he was economical with the truth ,which was a requirement to become chief of staff .
At the mobilisation France had 60 divisions in the Nord-East Theater of Operations ( Northsea -border with Switserland ) , but the majority of them were not available for an offensive against Germany,as they were located at the French -Belgian border and at the French-German border : a division in Strabourg was not in the Sarre .Gamelin promised an attack with the majority of his available forces, and,as he attacked with 11 divisions, the conclusion is that 11 divisions were the majority of his available forces .
About Vuillemain :the first allied bomber who attacked Berlin was a French one on June 7 1940 .

South
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by South » 30 Sep 2018 18:38

Good afternoon Sid,

Yes; my connection focuses to Ljadw's nationality of a(n) historian determining "bias".

I'm injecting other aspects that could determine "bias" such as the writer's political philosophy ot theological philosophy.

All writers have biases but not necessarily based on nationality.

~ Bob
eastern Virginia, USA

MarkN
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by MarkN » 01 Oct 2018 10:35

ShadowWave wrote:
08 Sep 2018 01:03
What would have happened if Germany seized Danzig by force, but didn't advance any more into Polish territory and immediately declared a willingness to sign an armistice after Danzig was annexed?
Probably little different to what happened historically - slight delay to German invasion of the rest of Poland.
Futurist wrote:
08 Sep 2018 01:15
I suspect that Britain and France would have--perhaps reluctantly--let this go and pushed the Poles to accept this new status quo. Had Hitler limited his conquest only to Danzig, I'm just not sure that there would have been anywhere near as much of a willingness among the British and French publics to go to war with Nazi Germany.
The 'public' didn't decide to let Hitler take the Sudetenland, nor the rest of Czechoslavakia later that year. The 'public' didn't get to decide on the 'Polish' guarantee nor the declaration of war. Their "willingness" or otherwise to the declaration of war is irrelevant. Their attitude may have had an effect on what comes next, but I doubt it would have been any greater than happened in reality.

The answer, I believe, resides entirely within the thinking of the two governments and, in particular, their leadership and the motive for offering the guarantee in the first place. Britain's guarantee to Poland was not about defending Poland per se; defending Poland was impractical. Moreover, Poland had been almost equally guilty as Germany after Munich when it decided to steal a bit of Czechoslovakia too. Britain's guarantee was all about drawing a line in the sand over which it would no longer tolerate German expansion. Hitler thought Britain was bluffing and called it. They weren't. If Danzig was written into the guarantee, then the line is crossed.

MarkN
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by MarkN » 01 Oct 2018 10:44

Sid Guttridge wrote:
29 Sep 2018 09:48
Hi ljadw,

If he is a real historian, then his nationality shouldn't be relevant.

If you have evidence of bias on the basis of his nationality, please tell us. Otherwise, let's move on.
ljadw seems to be on a mission at the moment to discredit any writer who uses the English language as his/her medium. :roll:

ljadw
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by ljadw » 01 Oct 2018 11:35

MarkN wrote:
01 Oct 2018 10:44
Sid Guttridge wrote:
29 Sep 2018 09:48
Hi ljadw,

If he is a real historian, then his nationality shouldn't be relevant.

If you have evidence of bias on the basis of his nationality, please tell us. Otherwise, let's move on.
ljadw seems to be on a mission at the moment to discredit any writer who uses the English language as his/her medium. :roll:
Some people think that any historian writing in English is a leading historian . :roll: :roll:
Opposite to what some people think, civilisation does not stop at Dover.
The nationality of a historian is very relevant : what historians are writing is influenced,dictated for a large part by their nationality :look at the contempt with which American historians write about Europe ,and European historians write about America;if one reads a book about WWI written by a British historian, the conclusion is that Britain won the war on its own and that Grey was the central person in the period immediately before the war ; if one reads a book written by a French historian,the conclusion is that France won the war on its own and the central person before the war was Poincaré,etc,etc.

Sid Guttridge
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 01 Oct 2018 13:50

Hi ljadw,

How are you proposing your "dispassionate observer" describes "cynicism, deception, lack of candour, and blatant misleading" when they feel the evidence indicates that? Hitler practiced all these things, but are we not allowed to mention it by your standards?

All these things clearly exist in the world and must be addressed when they are come across.

No, a dispassionate observer does not necessarily remain neutral. They follow the evidence dispassionately and, if they feel that such things as "cynicism, deception, lack of candour and blatant misleading" occur, it is their duty to call them out, not cover them up, as you seem to advocate.

You also seem to be suggesting that only a Frenchman alive at the time could write a history of those times. Does this mean that the writing of the history of 1939-40 dies with the last of them?

You are, I presume aware that history is the study of the past, most of it so dim and distant that there are no survivors today?

Cheers,

A perplexed Sid.

ljadw
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by ljadw » 01 Oct 2018 14:57

Sid Guttridge wrote:
01 Oct 2018 13:50
Hi ljadw,

How are you proposing your "dispassionate observer" describes "cynicism, deception, lack of candour, and blatant misleading" when they feel the evidence indicates that? Hitler practiced all these things, but are we not allowed to mention it by your standards?

All these things clearly exist in the world and must be addressed when they are come across.

No, a dispassionate observer does not necessarily remain neutral. They follow the evidence dispassionately and, if they feel that such things as "cynicism, deception, lack of candour and blatant misleading" occur, it is their duty to call them out, not cover them up, as you seem to advocate.

You also seem to be suggesting that only a Frenchman alive at the time could write a history of those times. Does this mean that the writing of the history of 1939-40 dies with the last of them?

You are, I presume aware that history is the study of the past, most of it so dim and distant that there are no survivors today?

Cheers,

A perplexed Sid.
Why should one call out things as cynicism,deception, lack of candour, blatant misleading ? Politics and diplomacy can not subsist without deception, cynicism, lack of candour,blatant misleading . The FO has a tradition of such things,and even Americans, who talk about honesty ,candour, etc,are not averse from cynicism, lack of candour, hypocrisy,etc :some 25 years ago, at the end of the First Gulf War, Old Bush had exhorted the Kurds to revolt against Saddam, and when they revolted, he looked the other way while Saddam was gazing, because the political situation had changed .Why should one blame Old Bush ?
About your assumption that I said that only a Frenchmam living at the time could write about these events ,I did not say this : I said that those who write about these events 70 years later,should be very careful by judging the past, because
what would they have done if they were the actors in 1939 ?
because they can't understand why the actors of 1939 did what they did ,because for Gamelin, Bonnet, Daladier,practically all French the memories of WWI were still living ,and they knew that the public expected that they would be very economical with the lifes of the French soldiers .
And, a general comment : as a lot of Anglosaxon historians, Alexander fails to understand the French foreign policy after the war : why did France have an alliance with Poland? For 3 reasons :
1 to keep the SU out of Europe
2 to prevent Germany from attacking France
3 to have the aid of Poland if France was attacked by Germany ,
But NOT to aid Poland if it was attacked by Germany ,which was also very improbable,: think on the slogan : Mourir pour Danzig ?
Most French did not care about the fate of Poland, they only did care about the fate of France,and that's why a bold offensive to help Poland was out of the question .
And final point, which I suspect Alexander also fails to understand : it was irrelevant if there was a French offensive or no offensive : France could not save Poland .The German Westheer could easily stop a French offensive without asking reinforcements from the Ostheer .Thus what was the benefit of a bold offensive ?

ljadw
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by ljadw » 01 Oct 2018 16:35

About the meeting of May 1939 (15,16 and 17 ) : Gamelin promised "une offensive de secours franche " and I doubt that the translation from Alexander " a bold offensive '' is correct .
Source is :Contre-témoignages sur une catastrophe .
And, from the same source ,( P 828) Gamelin said the following : " Nos moyens actuels ne peuvent nous permettre de rompre la ligne Siegfried que sur une faible étendue "
Translation : With our present means , we can break the Siegfried line on a small length only .
And, also from the same source, the Protocol between Gamelin and K. mentions the following meaningless words ,which were accepted by Poland , but which are not accepted 70 years later by a British histoprian .
I En cas d'aggression allemande contre la Pologne ( blahblah .....) l"Armée Francaise déclencherait automatiquement une action de ses diverses forces :
1 La France execute immédiatement une action aérienne dápres un plan fixé d''avance .
2 Des qu'une partie des forces francaises sera prête,(vers le troisieme jour )la France déclenchera progressivement des actions offensives á objectivs limités.
3 Des que l'effort principal allemand s'accentuerait sur la Pologne,la France déclencherait une action offensive contre l'Allemagne avec le gros de ses forces ( á partir du quinzieme jour ) de la façon suivante .
Translation :
If Germany attacks Poland,the French Army will automatically start an action with its different forces .
1 French air force will start immediately an action following a plan elaborated in advance .
2 .When a part of French forces will be ready (after 3 days ) France will start progressively offensives actions with limited objectives.
3 When it will become clear that the principal German effort is directed against Poland,France will start an offensive action against Germany with the majority of its forces (starting from the 15th day ) in the following way .

I will comment later .

ljadw
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by ljadw » 01 Oct 2018 17:17

On point 1 : one can not accuse Vuillemain of not keeping his promises,as he did not promise an air attack against Germany .
On point 2 : also somethinng meaningless ,which was accepted by Kasprzycki :
when a part of the French forces will be ready : what part ?
France will start progressively offensives actions : what is the meaning of progressively ?
limited objectives : how much limited ?
On point 3 : The majority of its forces = the majority of its available forces , and who will decided which forces are available ?
The French words are : le gros de ses forces,the meaning of which no one knew except Gamelin .
About the words between ( ) : it was not decided if it would be the third/15th day after the declaration of war,or after the mobilisation .
All this was accepted by Poland , OTOH ,the Polish promises if France was attacked, were on the same level : meaningless, nothing concrete .
The French said : we will do as least as possible, and if possible : nothing and Poland knew it .
Poland said : we will do as least as possible and if possible : nothing and Gamelin knew it .
It was all only keeping up appearances .If Gamelin was serious, he would have said : I will attack with 20, 22,etc, divisions .He never memtioned a number of divisions, thus .....

MarkN
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by MarkN » 01 Oct 2018 17:28

The message I'm getting from your last three posts is never trust a Frenchman or a Pole when he speaks.

Did I miss anything?

Sid Guttridge
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 01 Oct 2018 19:16

Hi ljadw,

You ask, "Why should one call out things as cynicism, deception, lack of candour, blatant misleading?" Well, because it would be self censorship if the evidence trail led to these conclusions and they were not then publicized!

You might have a stronger case in objecting to the exposure of these things if you did not then go on to accuse the British FO and the US of the same things yourself! (Incidentally, I have absolutely no objection to you raising these matters, whatever your nationality. If that is where the evidence trail leads than that is where it leads and it it should be up for debate, not suppressed.)

A fiction writer might reasonably address the What-If question, "What would they have done if they were the actors in 1939". However, it is not a historian's job become an "actor" and engage in such fantasy role play. Historians are the observant but passive passengers in the back of the history's bus, not its proactive driver!

Everything you write about French sensitivities between the wars is not some hidden secret unknown in the Anglo-Saxon world, as you seem to think. You will note from some of my earlier posts that I have been explaining France's population limitations that allowed it to train only one conscript for every two Germans and that France's allies had unreasonable expectations of her. You will also note that I have also posted that nothing France did in September 1939 was likely to save Poland, because Poland proved less robust and the Germans faster and more efficient than anyone had anticipated.

In not allowing foreigners to criticize French actions you are telling us more about your own personal nationalistic prejudices than the supposed national biases of foreign historians.

Why not just engage with their arguments rather than question their professionalism. Play the ball, not the mam!

Cheers,

Sid.

ljadw
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by ljadw » 01 Oct 2018 20:05

MarkN wrote:
01 Oct 2018 17:28
The message I'm getting from your last three posts is never trust a Frenchman or a Pole when he speaks.
Wrong message : the message is : never trust a politician when he speaks , and never trust the electorate .
Did I miss anything?

ljadw
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by ljadw » 01 Oct 2018 20:08

Sid Guttridge wrote:
01 Oct 2018 19:16
Hi ljadw,

You ask, "Why should one call out things as cynicism, deception, lack of candour, blatant misleading?" Well, because it would be self censorship if the evidence trail led to these conclusions and they were not then publicized!

You might have a stronger case in objecting to the exposure of these things if you did not then go on to accuse the British FO and the US of the same things yourself! (Incidentally, I have absolutely no objection to you raising these matters, whatever your nationality. If that is where the evidence trail leads than that is where it leads and it it should be up for debate, not suppressed.)

A fiction writer might reasonably address the What-If question, "What would they have done if they were the actors in 1939". However, it is not a historian's job become an "actor" and engage in such fantasy role play. Historians are the observant but passive passengers in the back of the history's bus, not its proactive driver!

Everything you write about French sensitivities between the wars is not some hidden secret unknown in the Anglo-Saxon world, as you seem to think. You will note from some of my earlier posts that I have been explaining France's population limitations that allowed it to train only one conscript for every two Germans and that France's allies had unreasonable expectations of her. You will also note that I have also posted that nothing France did in September 1939 was likely to save Poland, because Poland proved less robust and the Germans faster and more efficient than anyone had anticipated.

In not allowing foreigners to criticize French actions you are telling us more about your own personal nationalistic prejudices than the supposed national biases of foreign historians.

Why not just engage with their arguments rather than question their professionalism. Play the ball, not the mam!

Cheers,

Sid.
Why would it be the mission of a historian to criticize ?

Sid Guttridge
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 01 Oct 2018 20:14

Hi ljadw,

I haven't maintained that it is the mission of a historian to criticize, so I don't have to defend it.

But if you don't like the word "criticize", try "critique" instead, if you prefer.

Cheers,

Sid.

ljadw
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Re: What would have happened if Hitler seized Danzig and only Danzig?

Post by ljadw » 01 Oct 2018 20:21

Sid Guttridge wrote:
01 Oct 2018 19:16
Hi ljadw,

You ask, "Why should one call out things as cynicism, deception, lack of candour, blatant misleading?" Well, because it would be self censorship if the evidence trail led to these conclusions and they were not then publicized!

You might have a stronger case in objecting to the exposure of these things if you did not then go on to accuse the British FO and the US of the same things yourself! (Incidentally, I have absolutely no objection to you raising these matters, whatever your nationality. If that is where the evidence trail leads than that is where it leads and it it should be up for debate, not suppressed.)



Cheers,

Sid.
You don't get my question : there is no reason to call out cynicism,etc,because politics are founded on cynicism,etc,..
Everyone did it : Winston, FDR, etc,etc and everyone is still doing it .
The fact is that French politicians and military tried to do what they thought was good for France, not for Poland, they had no obligations to Poland .
The fact is also that Alexander is blaming them using moralising phraseology as deception,cynicism, ...but that he fails to propose an alternative that is better for France .
You are talking about evidence as if Daladier,Bonnet,... are comp[aring before a court : this is not so .
We should stop to judge /condemn people from the past by using our norms .

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