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Old Jun 25, 2013, 5:32pm   #1
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Default Ghosts of the Ostfront

Does anyone post here anymore?

A few years ago, Killcrazy and I had a discussion about the turning point of WWII. Regardless of what most Americans probably think, I suggested that the battle of Stalingrad was the pivot point, completely changing the course of the war.

I just finished listening to one of my favorite podcasts, Dan Carlin's Hardcore History. He has a four part series called, Ghosts of the Ostfront, which reminded me of our previous conversation. I highly suggest listening to it. Just the story of Stalingrad alone is mind blowing. I believe this particular series is now only available from his website for $6, which is completely worth it.

He has other episodes available for free. My other favorites are "Logical Insanity" and "Globalization Unto Death."

Ghosts of the Ostfront YouTube preview
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 7:47pm   #2
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Cool, thanks for the info. I may check this out. Kind of fascinated by WWII stuff.
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Old Jun 28, 2013, 10:51pm   #3
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I post here, but I think it's dead unfortunately, so no point in posting if no one reads it.

About all I know about world war II is involving the development of the atomic bomb, so my point of view would be too skewed to answer intelligently. Crazy that the Russians completely infultrated the US and made a copy cat Fat Man.

Anyway, that said Stalingrad was pretty important, I agree with you there. I don't know if one can give a definitive pivot point though.

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Old Jun 30, 2013, 1:33pm   #4
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Anyway, that said Stalingrad was pretty important, I agree with you there. I don't know if one can give a definitive pivot point though.
germany lost almost a million men at stalingrad.

granted the russians lost more than a million, but most of them were boys who were grabbed off the farms and shoved in the back of a van three days ago, with a lottery to determine which lucky few would get to hold a rifle.

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Old Jul 01, 2013, 5:14pm   #5
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Anyway, that said Stalingrad was pretty important, I agree with you there. I don't know if one can give a definitive pivot point though.
germany lost almost a million men at stalingrad.

granted the russians lost more than a million, but most of them were boys who were grabbed off the farms and shoved in the back of a van three days ago, with a lottery to determine which lucky few would get to hold a rifle.

Kc
Germany had basically steamrolled everyone before Stalingrad. They lost more in that battle for one single city than they had lost during the entire campaign at that point.
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Old Jul 02, 2013, 4:51am   #6
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The pivotal point of the war was in late 1940 when Hitler officially signed off to German high command that operation Barbarossa was a go. His fate was basically sealed after that.

Had the Germans rolled through Stalingrad it would have just delayed the inevitable Soviet turning point. The Germans were overstretched and facing an enemy with basically unlimited manpower.

If instead in late 1940 Hitler had entertained Soviet proposals for Soviet entry into the Axis who knows what could have happened. Or if the winter war had lasted a little longer France and Britain might have carried through with their plans for intervention in Finland that also could have led for soviet entrance into the axis.

Probably Great Britain was not falling to Germany even with Soviet support but you can imagine ugly scenarios where Germany uses the resources earmarked for Barbarossa instead to shore up Western Africa, +invasions of Gibraltar (with or without Spain),+ Malta , and eventually Egypt. Meanwhile the Soviets invade Iraq through Iran and engage British India.

While I am at it lets say that Stalin somehow convinces Mao and the Japanese to come to a separate peace and the communists enter the Axis. All of Eurasia with the exception of GB , + parts of india and china could be under Axis rule by 1943.

Now of course it would be an alliance where everyone pretty much both racially and ideologically hates other and almost certainly would have led into another war + but they could have won WW2.

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Old Jul 02, 2013, 3:27pm   #7
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Originally Posted by Hustlr View Post
Germany had basically steamrolled everyone before Stalingrad.
*cough* battle of britain *uncough*

Quote:
Originally Posted by joey
The pivotal point of the war was in late 1940 when Hitler officially signed off to German high command that operation Barbarossa was a go. His fate was basically sealed after that.
i think your definition of turning/pivot point is substantially different to everyone else's.

by this logic, the turning point of the war came before the war started; germany knew it had to invade russia before the order was signed, and so on all the way back to the time of hammurabi.

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Had the Germans rolled through Stalingrad it would have just delayed the inevitable Soviet turning point. The Germans were overstretched and facing an enemy with basically unlimited manpower.
the word i usually reserve for statements like this is "woolly".

firstly, looking back on it with the information we have now, it seems that stalingrad may have been unwinnable for germany. if this is so, then speculating about the consequences of alternate outcomes is akin to speculating about a world where rain falls up.

however, if we assume that germany somehow prevails, then what did russia have left? they were pouring untrained boys into stalingrad. what were they going to use to defend moscow? their little sisters?

Quote:
If instead in late 1940 Hitler had entertained Soviet proposals for Soviet entry into the Axis who knows what could have happened. Or if the winter war had lasted a little longer France and Britain might have carried through with their plans for intervention in Finland that also could have led for soviet entrance into the axis.
this all seems like meaningless speculation, given that we are asking about what did happen, not what might have happened. germany was winning, but germany lost. at some point they had to go from winning to losing, and that point was stalingrad.

incidentally i'm far from convinced that the talks between russia and germany were conducted in good faith on either side, and it's highly unlikely we're ever going to discover what was actually going on in the heads of the various people involved.

Quote:
Probably Great Britain was not falling to Germany even with Soviet support but you can imagine ugly scenarios where Germany uses the resources earmarked for Barbarossa instead to shore up Western Africa, +invasions of Gibraltar (with or without Spain),+ Malta , and eventually Egypt. Meanwhile the Soviets invade Iraq through Iran and engage British India.

While I am at it lets say that Stalin somehow convinces Mao and the Japanese to come to a separate peace and the communists enter the Axis. All of Eurasia with the exception of GB , + parts of india and china could be under Axis rule by 1943.

Now of course it would be an alliance where everyone pretty much both racially and ideologically hates other and almost certainly would have led into another war + but they could have won WW2.
yes. if absolutely everything had fallen perfectly into place for germany, they would probably have had much more fun in the mid to late 1940s than they did.

of course, if neville chamberlain hadn't been a craven fool then germany would never got out of the blocks.

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