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Thread: War and histroy

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    Blitzkrieg tactics:


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    Strategy:


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    Battle for Leningrad



    When I was a teenager I read a lot spy books and novels as I used to read Agatha Christie a lot. There was a book on WWII spy work. There was Red Letter plot in which Hitler knew Stalin was paranoid so he forged letters to implicate General Zhukov as a conspirator. As he wanted to expand German territories in his "Lebensraum" strategy and he worked to weaken the Soviets. To get rid of the Soviet most brilliant general worked as Stalin had Zhukov sent to Siberia. So Hitler then decided to invade Russia.

    1938

    The Case of the Trotskyist Anti-Soviet Military Organization

    While Stalin was indeed the Boss, he was ever mindful to consolidate his power and squash any potential rivals. In 1938, he moved against the army. Stalin’s foe in the power struggle following Lenin’s death, Leon Trotsky, had controlled the army in earlier times. When Stalin had replaced Trotsky with Kliment Voroshilov in the 1920s, he also dismissed former commanders. He continued the process in the early 1930s, with 47,000 more dismissed. But there had been some commanders who had been too difficult to touch. They had been heroes of the Civil War against the Whites, praised vociferously in the Soviet history books. They also despised Stalin. They knew what a poor leader the Boss had been in the Polish campaign. They talked about him behind his back. Would they unite against Stalin? Out of a hunger for power? Or out of fear for their own survival? Stalin’s paranoia over took him. He devised a conspiracy where the high command, Trotsky and the German fascists had joined together against the Soviet Union. It was not too difficult to connect the Red Army leadership with Germany, since the former had previously had close connections with the Reichswehr.



    The first to fall was Marshal Mikhail Tukhachevsky, a tsarist officer, well-groomed and self-possessed. He shared a mutual contempt with Voroshilov. During World War I, Tukhachevsky was for some time in a German POW camp. In the period of military cooperation between the USSR and Germany after the war and before Hitler came to power, he had sung the Reichswehr’s praises. It would not be difficult to find compromising material in the impending investigation.

    At the same time, Hitler’s intelligence service had set out to weaken the Soviet army by forging a letter in which Tukhachevsky announced his intention of carrying out a Napoleonic coup. Whether this occurred to German intelligence spontaneously or was inspired by Stalin’s agents is a matter for conjecture. It is widely believed that the forged documents were probably superfluous, as many of them were not even used by the prosecutors against the generals.


    Marshal Mikhail Tukhachevsky was charged at his trial with taking part in a “right-wing-Trotskyist” conspiracy in which he collaborated with the Germans against the Soviet Union. Tukhachevsky shared a mutual contempt with Kliment Voroshilov, the People's Commissar for Defense.


    Tukhachevsky was arrested first and soon confessed. More arrests followed – Iona Yakir, Ieronim Uborevich, August Kork, Vitaly Primakov and many more. The head of the Soviet Air Force, Yakov Alksnis, once so valued for his insight on air doctrines, went from sitting on the tribunals to standing before them. More than a hundred military chiefs had been called in from the provinces because the ranks of the Military Council itself was thinned out catastrophically. A quarter of its members had been arrested as conspirators. It went on like this for the rest of the year. In September, Voroshilov would report that a total of 37,761 officers and commissars were dismissed from the army, 10,868 were arrested and 7,211 were condemned for crimes against the Soviet Union.



    The Soviet intelligence agencies were also targeted. Yan Berzin, the head of military intelligence, was tried and convicted. So it went with Genrikh Yagoda, the man responsible for the NKVD, the Soviet internal police agency. Lavrentiy Beria took over from Yagoda while Nikolai Yezhov replaced Berzin.

    Commanders had to be replaced as quickly as possible. This meant rapid promotions for those who lacked experience and who were not yet ready for the responsibilities that went with their ranks. For a country with plans for war and neighbors with hostile intentions, this was a terrible setback. Thankfully, promising up-and-comers – such as Zhukov, Ivan Konev and Vasily Chuikov – had been spared. But would it be enough?



    The Battle of Lake Khasan

    In July 1938, the tension between Japan and the Soviet Union exploded. The Japanese insisted that Soviet troops be removed from the border between Russia and the Japanese puppet state of Manchukuo, in the Lake Khasan area not far from Vladivostok. Moscow rejected the demands. The Japanese government had wanted to keep the incident diplomatic, but the Japanese army had little patience with diplomacy. It sent an infantry division under General Kamezo Suetaka to the scene with an order to await the outcome of the negotiations. The order, however, could apparently be construed to apply only to the initial situation, in which the Soviet occupation had been limited. By the end of the month, Soviet troops were now positioned in large numbers. Suetaka attacked and seized the entire ridge possessed by the Soviets.



    At that time, Marshal Vasily Blyukher was the Soviet military commander in the Far East. When he learned of Suetaka’s success, he ordered reinforcements to the Lake Khasan area, but they were slow to arrive due to poor roads south of Vladivostok. After the counterattack failed, Blyukher received an order from the Politburo to take command of the operations in person, only to be replaced by his second-in-command not long afterward. Soviet success was hindered due to an order that prohibited any incursion into Japanese territory, meaning that Soviet units had to move over terrain that heavily favored defense over offense. Though not immediately in danger but at a disadvantage in numbers, the Japanese relented and a ceasefire went into effect in early August.


    Soviet troops positioned atop one of the hills to the west of Lake Khasan, situated along the border between Russia and Japanese-occupied territory. Since entering Japanese territory was forbidden, Soviet units had to fight along the ridges, rendering armor useless.


    Although the Soviets had been victorious, the fact that the Japanese had not been ably resisted or pushed back drew harsh criticisms from Moscow. Blyukher was made the scapegoat. His command was taken away and he was sent to the Black Sea resort at Sochi for some rest and relaxation. He was arrested soon after and charged with having been a spy for the Japanese since 1921.


    Marshal Vasily Blyukher, a namesake of the famous Prussian marshal, had been an adviser to Chiang Kai-shek before assuming command in the Soviet Far East. He had been a member of the tribunal that had convicted Marshal Tukhachevsky; he himself was dismissed and arrested due to the unimpressive performance of Soviet units at Lake Khasan.


    Treason… The Good Kind

    Before 1938 came to a close, something unexpected happened. Colonel Juho Peltonen, an officer in the Finnish army, defected to the Soviet Union. This caused a scandal within Finland, where public opinion was sharply against the Soviets. The actual cause for the defection was disputed, with the Soviets saying Peltonen was escaping the “repression of Finnish socialism” and the Finns claiming Peltonen was an opportunist seeking advancement in the Soviet military.



    Peltonen had been a protégé of Vilho Petter Nenonen, the man responsible for devising artillery tactics for the army of General Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim. After several interviews, he revealed knowledge of using artillery against airborne targets – much of which was antiquated in other major countries, but as of yet unknown in the USSR. Not seeing much value to it, Stalin opted not to pursue using artillery in such a way, instead using Peltonen purely for public relations purposes.
    http://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/...nion-AAR/page2
    Last edited by oriental; 14-10-14 at 21:03.

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    Battle for Kursk

    Greatest tank battle in history


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    I read a lot of history in Europe and what`s happened in Poland (Oswicim) that`s everybody should see!!!

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    Your comments are very welcome. To be honest I do not know too much about Europe having never set foot on it. All my knowledge is book knowledge learnt at school, movies, documentaries, self-reading out of curiosity and hearsay from British and European friends

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    Rommel



    Invasion of France and Belgium

    On 10 May 1940 the Germans invaded Belgium, with von Bock's Army Group B moving into northern Belgium while von Runstedt's Army Group A with seven panzer divisions drove the hammer blow by coming through the rugged Ardennes forest. General Hermann Hoth's XV Army Corps, comprising the 5th and 7th Panzer Divisions, formed the northern portion of the advance and was intended to protect the flank.[30] Thus Rommel's role was to be supportive, but as was often the case with his commands, by taking sharp advantage of the opportunities that presented he made them more effective than his mission required.[30]By May 14 the 7th Panzer Division had reached the River Meuse near the Walloon municipality of Dinant. There the attack into France stalled due to destroyed bridges and determined artillery and rifle fire from the Belgian defenders. Rommel, present with the forward units, took direct command of the forces at the river, bringing up tanks and flak units to provide suppressive counter-fire. With no smoke units available, Rommel improvised by having nearby houses set on fire to conceal his forces with their smoke. He sent infantry across in rubber boats, appropriated the bridging tackle of 5th Panzer Division, and went into the water himself, encouraging the sappers and helping lash together the pontoons of their light bridge.[31] Once the bridge was functional, he was in the second tank across.[32] With the Meuse crossed the division moved out of the Ardennes and into France, with Rommel moving back and forth among his forces, directing and pressing forward their advance.
    Rommel's experiences in the First World War of successes gained by rapid forward movement, flanking opponents and attacking their rear areas, and catching the defenders by surprise were amplified with the mobility afforded to armoured formations. To augment his force at the point of attack he made use of the Luftwaffe as a forward mobile artillery. For a man who had been in command of armoured units for only a few months, he proved adept at applying the techniques of the "blitzkrieg" style warfare.[33] A major aspect of his success was his grasp of the psychological shock such attacks had upon the morale and fighting spirit of the enemy forces.

    Battle of Arras


    On 20 May Rommel reached Arras. Here 7th Panzer Division attempted to cut off the British Expeditionary Force from the coast. Hans von Luck, commanding the reconnaissance battalion of the Division, was tasked with forcing a crossing over the La Bassée canals near the city. Supported by Stuka dive bombers, the unit managed to cross. The following day the British launched a counterattack using two columns of infantry supported by the heavily armoured Matilda Mk I and Matilda II tanks in the Battle of Arras. The standard German 37 mm anti-tank gun proved ineffective against the armour of the Matildas. A battery of 105 mm howitzers stopped the first column. The second approached within 1,000 metres of where Rommel was rallying his division, who made use of a battery of 88 mm anti-aircraft guns against the attackers. Rommel and his aide went from gun to gun, with Rommel giving each gun its target. As the losses in the tank force mounted, the attack was broken off. This was the first time the 88 mm Flak gun was used in an anti-tank role.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erwin_Rommel

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    The Battle of France


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    The Battle for Russia


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    WWII Hitler's super tanks


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    India and Pakistan


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    WWII Atlantic Wall


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    Battle for Italy


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    Battle for the Mediterranean Sea


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    Movie: A Bridge too far 1977



    Arnhem Audrey Hepburn's hometown. In her autobiography she helped British paratroopers in the woods as a teenager.

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    Movie: The man in the grey flannel suit starring Gregory Peck and Jennifer Jones, Pier Angeli



    A veteran of the WWII finds it hard to adjust to civilian life after the trauma of the war in Italy. Greg gives spam cans to Pier Angeli who play a girl who meets Greg in a bar in Italy as there was starvation in Italy after the war.

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    The Maginot Line


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    The First world War. The Second World War was really a continuation of WWI as the Germans felt they did not lose but were betrayed. Of course, the Germans released Lenin to get Russia to quit the war and the USSR was formed. It was the Soviets that helped the Germans to secretly re-arm themselves with tanks.


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    Life in the trenches:


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    WWI secrets:


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    Ancient Indian weapons

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    10 Unusual Ancient Weapons

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    Top 10 Kungfu weapons

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    Greatest mysteries of War - Soviet War in Afghanistan

    Last edited by oriental; 22-11-14 at 00:24.

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