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May 9: with tears of happiness

in Crisis 2018 · EN · Europe 2018 · Nation 2018 · Politics 2018 · Skepticism 2018 · VICTORY DAY 11 views / 5 comments

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GEOMETR.IT  cbc.ca

* May 8, 1945, was a day to celebrate. It was VE-Day, the long-awaited moment when the Allied forces triumphed over Nazi Germany to claim victory in Europe. But the joy brought by news of peace was dampened by the memory of fallen comrades and the ongoing war in the Pacific.

 

From the liberation of Holland through the German surrender, celebrations in Canada and the servicemen’s return, CBC Archives follows Canadians as the war ends in Europe.

The end of the war in Europe is in sight. But how can the world’s nations keep the peace once the Second World War is over? At a conference in San Francisco, representatives from 50 countries are looking beyond the inevitable German surrender, the redrawing of national boundaries and the problem of millions of refugees displaced by war.

Their goal is to prevent another world war by drafting the charter of the United Nations. Planning for peace is crucial, says host Malcolm Wallace of the CBC Radio program Citizens’ Forum. Since the start of the war almost six years earlier, scientists have developed increasingly destructive weapons. Those weapons could be used at the outset of any subsequent world war, devastating the human race. By cooperating as the United Nations, the countries represented in San Francisco hope to stop wars before they start.

  • The publication is not an editorial. It reflects solely the point of view and argumentation of the author. The publication is presented in the presentation. Start in the previous issue. The original is available at: cbc.ca

GEOMETR.IT

WWII echoes down the decades

in Army · Crisis 2017 · Economics 2017 · EN · Europe 2017 · EX-USSR · History 2017 · Nation 2017 · Person 2017 · Victory Day 2017 53 views / 7 comments

GEOMETR.IT  theconversation.com

At approximately 1.30 am in the night of September 11 1939 two police officers walked into the offices of the Daily Mail with instructions to seize all of its early editions. This action was repeated at newspaper offices and wholesale newsagents across the United Kingdom. A road block was set up in Fleet Street, trains from London were stopped, and members of the public had newspapers confiscated.

The war had begun eight days earlier. And this chaotic situation 12 hours earlier. At midday on 11 September, an official radio broadcast in Paris had wrongly announced that British troops were engaged in offensive action against Nazi forces. The whereabouts of British troops had been kept strictly secret since the beginning of the war. So the announcement led to serious discussions within the British government.

The Ministry of Information believed that there was little point suppressing a story which had already broken. The fact that reports of the broadcast had been picked up in the United States suggested that they would also have made their way into enemy hands.

It was eventually agreed that the government should confirm the arrival of British troops in France. But the War Office remained wary that more important information might be accidentally disclosed. It became even more worried when government censors began to receive colourful stories about troops being welcomed with flowers and partaking in bayonet charges.

The War Office responded by instructing the Ministry of Information’s censorship division to recall the news. When this attempt at retrospective censorship failed, an unnamed civil servant in the Home Office instructed the police to take “all possible steps” to protect “the national interest”. The resulting blockade led to scenes of “complete chaos”.

The events of 11-12 September 1939 became a defining moment for British censorship during World War II. They led to intense criticism. Newspaper editors accused the Ministry of Information of acting in a “true Gestapo manner” while opposition politicians spoke of a “muddle of the worst possible kind”. An opinion poll undertaken on behalf of the government also found that more than half of the public believed censorship was too tightly applied.

The fact that the Ministry of Information was responsible for both the issue and censorship of news exacerbated the criticism. Newspapers simply could not understand why the ministry had ended up censoring itself. It had been designed to act as the government’s mouthpiece and its press releases were supposedly vetted in advance. The very fact that one of these stories had been repressed suggested that the system did not work. This led to the ministry being stripped of its responsibility for censorship on October 9 1939.

This episode demonstrates the challenges caused by censorship in an otherwise “open” society. It also resonates with more contemporary concerns. Recent debates about press regulation – reignited by Sir Alan Moses’s statement that the industry-funded Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO) is not “a joke” – show that the perception of any regulatory body remains crucial to its success.

It’s not yet clear how IPSO will work in practice. And it’s unlikely that it will ever be embroiled in events as dramatic as those outlined here. But if there’s a lesson to be learned from the experience of the Second World War, it’s that the system linking the production and regulation of news must be made clear.

https://theconversation.com

GEOMETR.IT

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2017.TOP 15 MARCH

Они ничего не поняли и ничему не научились? Украина – 01.03.2017

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Как мы теряли Крым. Воспоминания Турчинова — 10.03.2017

Павел Милюков. Англофил на русском поле – 10.03.2017

Пенсию нужно заработать, но дожить до 60 лет не просто.Свежа украинская мысль! – 10.03.2017

Чем украинские РЕФОРМЫ отличаются от европейских ? – 10.03.2017

Америка. НЕ С ИНТЕЛЛЕКТАМИ придеться иметь дело Московии – 13.03.2017

Что происходило В ФЕВРАЛЕ 1917 года? – 13.03.2017

ЕС. Германия — главный член предложения. Остальные — второстепенные? – 14.03.2017

Генерал разведки и МЗДА УКРАИНСКАЯ – 17.03.2017

Европа — зад Запада. Мюнхен – 31.03.2017

Польша — гнилой скотомогильник. Прощай, подмытая Европа! – 31.03.2017

Как выжить В ЭПОХУ ТРАМПА? – 31.03.2017

Ле Пен в лицо Меркель: МАДАМ, Я ТЕБЯ НЕ ПРИЗНАЮ! – 31.03.2017

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1. О.Скрипка — не полу-дебил.Он — Шариков нашего времени! — 25.04.2017

Эстония. «Бронзовая ночь». Молодежь не забудет подлость власти — 25.04.2017

Ленин создал одно из самых Интеллектуальных Правительств — 25.04.2017

II wojna światowa — 25.04.2017

1. II Wojna Światowa: Wspólnota pamięci — 25.04.2017

Der Weg in den zweiten Weltkrieg -1 — 25.04.2017

2. POLEN sagt NEIN — 25.04.2017

Did WWI Lead to WWII? — 25.04.2017

GEOMETR.IT

1. WWII: What if it had ended differently ?

in Culture 2017 · EN · Europe 2017 · EX-USSR · Nation 2017 · NATO 2017 · Person 2017 · Politics 2017 · Skepticism 2017 · Victory Day 2017 17 views / 7 comments

GEOMETR.IT io9.gizmodo.com

Decisions during wartime are monumental things. Each move and countermove has the potential to change the course of history. Here are ten shocking ways the Second World War could have unfolded differently than it did.

Listed in rough chronological order.

  1. Germany Invades Britain Instead of the Soviet Union 

Hitler’s invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941 proved to be his undoing, but it didn’t have to unfold in the way it did. After the fall of France a year earlier, Hitler seriously considered invading Britain. In fact, he even had his military chiefs come up with a plan, an operation dubbed Sea Lion. Preparations began in earnest, with both the British and Americans convinced that an invasion was imminent. What’s more, with the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact securely in place (a treaty of non-aggression between

Hitler’s invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941 proved to be his undoing, but it didn’t have to unfold in the way it did. After the fall of France a year earlier, Hitler seriously considered invading Britain. In fact, he even had his military chiefs come up with a plan, an operation dubbed Sea Lion. Preparations began in earnest, with both the British and Americans convinced that an invasion was imminent. What’s more, with the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact securely in place (a treaty of non-aggression between Germany and the USSR), Hitler didn’t have to worry about a Soviet incursion; Stalin was content with his share of Poland, and he had his sights set on Finland.

Operation Sea Lion. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

But Hitler nixed the plans to invade Britain. For starters, it became painfully obvious that more time and preparations were needed. An invasion in 1940 would have been met with utter failure. Britain’s navy controlled the Channel, and as the Battle of Britain revealed, the Luftwaffe could not dominate the skies in the way needed to support the attack. What’s more, Hitler was unreasonably impatient about wanting to attack Russia. Some historians say Hitler convinced himself that he’d die young, precluding him from seeing his ultimate dream come true. History’s most notorious gambler decided to make his move.

But instead of invading Britain in 1940 or the Soviet Union in 1941, one of two things could have happened differently. For one, Hitler could have delayed his attack on Russia until 1942 or 1943 (Stalin would have been none-the-wiser). Or, Germany could have continued its air assault on Britain while continuing its naval blockade around the Isles. Then, after an appropriate period of preparation, an amphibious landing could have commenced on British shores in either 1941 or 1942. This isn’t ridiculous considering how long it took the Allies to prepare for its invasion of Normandy — something that wouldn’t happen until mid-1944. Then, with Britain knocked out, Germany could have started its preparations for an attack on the Soviet Union.

Had Sea Lion been successful, a likely scenario would have seen the British government and monarchy relocated to Canada. From there, working with the Americans, the Allies could have planned for an invasion of Africa, which in turn could have led to further incursions in Italy and the Balkans. One thing’s for sure, however, it wouldn’t have been easy — especially if Germany’s subsequent invasion of the Soviet Union turned out to be successful.

  1. Japan Refrains From Invading Pearl Harbor

The isolationist movement in the United States was alive and well in 1941. It was not a foregone conclusion that the country was going to enter into the war — especially after its harrowing experience in the Great War. But with Japan’s invasion of Pearl Harbor, the President’s hand was forced.

Aviator Charles Lindbergh was so vocal about his opposition to U.S. involvement in World War II that he became an unofficial leader of America’s isolationist movement. Credit AP.

Japan’s fateful decision to confront the United States stemmed from its need to secure oil and rubber reserves from the Dutch East Indies and southeast Asia. Had it not attacked Hawaii, its expansionist policies would have likely drawn in the United States eventually, say, after an invasion of the Philippines.

But for argument’s sake, let’s assume that the U.S. were never given a reason to formally enter into the war. In such a scenario, Britain and her colonial allies would have been left in the lurch. America’s support for Britain and the USSR would have consisted exclusively of material aid. Britain’s RAF would have struggled in Africa, likely never achieving the ability to invade Italy or some other «soft underbelly» region. No Western Front would have emerged. The Soviet Union would have likely still defeated Germany, but it would have taken considerably longer. And under those conditions, Stalin would have likely claimed all of Europe for himself.

  1. The Germans Take Moscow in 1941 

A longstanding debate among historians is whether or not Operation Barbarossa could have actually succeeded. Several mistakes were made during the operation, including a 38-day delay to start the invasion and Hitler’s catastrophic decision to divert the main thrust southwards to help Army Group South capture Ukraine, thus delaying the attack on Moscow. By the time Army Group Central reached the outskirts of Moscow in early December 1941 — a teasingly close distance of 15 miles (German soldiers could actually see the spires of the Kremlin) — winter had set in, forever thwarting Hitler’s plans to take the nation’s capital.

This is one of the most significant events of the Second World War, if not the most significant event. Things would have turned out quite differently had the Soviet Union fallen. First, it would have knocked out a significant military power. Then, armed with Russia’s vast resources (including the oil regions to the south and the breadbasket regions of Ukraine), the Third Reich would have converted into the autarchy of Hitler’s fantasies. Nazi Germany would have likely emerged as a superpower, eventually defeating Britain and claiming all of the Middle East (probably linking up  with Japanese forces). It would have eventually developed nuclear capabilities, kindling a Cold Warwith the United States.

Credit: Hugo Jaeger.

Frighteningly, the Nazis would have succeeding in murdering all the Jews and Romani of Europe. And through the diabolical Hunger Plan, they would have starved tens of millions of slavs to death as well, «cleansing» the occupied territories of its native peoples (Hitler was a big fan of the American pioneering model). Needless to say, this would have been a humanitarian catastrophe of the highest order, possibility setting the stage for a totalitarian dark age (though as history has since shown, even the Soviet Union eventually collapsed).

  1. Russia and Germany Make a Separate Peace 

Imagine a scenario in which both Hitler and Stalin came to a mutual agreement to cease hostilities on the Eastern Front. With the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact restored, Germany could focus its efforts on defeating Britain.

Vyacheslav Molotov and Joachim von Ribbentrop shaking hands, Moscow, Russia, 28 Sep 1939. Credit C. P. Chen.

This one’s a bit of a stretch for at least two reasons. First, Germany desperately needed Russia’s oil reserves to continue its war effort. Second, Stalin would have been extremely hesitant at allowing Germany to continue running roughshod around Europe; the Third Reich would continue to pose a

serious existential threat to the USSR. Still, the possibility that this could’ve happened is quite frightening.

  1. The Nazis Develop the Bomb Before the Allies

Given Hitler’s penchant for so-called «wonder weapons,» there was no doubt. This is the same regime, after all, that has developed a precursor to the intercontinental ballistic missile. The Nazis even used mosquitoes as biological weapons.

Needless to say, it would have been. It would have resulted in a victory for Germany on all fronts. Mercifully, the Nazis never appreciates the potential for a weapon.

http://io9.gizmodo.com

GEOMETR.IT

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2017.TOP 15 MARCH

Они ничего не поняли и ничему не научились? Украина – 01.03.2017

Бабель и маркиз де Сад — паровые котлеты Русской революции – 01.03.2017

Заговор Великих Князей – 03.03.2017

Как мы теряли Крым. Воспоминания Турчинова — 10.03.2017

Павел Милюков. Англофил на русском поле – 10.03.2017

Пенсию нужно заработать, но дожить до 60 лет не просто.Свежа украинская мысль! – 10.03.2017

Чем украинские РЕФОРМЫ отличаются от европейских ? – 10.03.2017

Америка. НЕ С ИНТЕЛЛЕКТАМИ придеться иметь дело Московии – 13.03.2017

Что происходило В ФЕВРАЛЕ 1917 года? – 13.03.2017

ЕС. Германия — главный член предложения. Остальные — второстепенные? – 14.03.2017

Генерал разведки и МЗДА УКРАИНСКАЯ – 17.03.2017

Европа — зад Запада. Мюнхен – 31.03.2017

Польша — гнилой скотомогильник. Прощай, подмытая Европа! – 31.03.2017

Как выжить В ЭПОХУ ТРАМПА? – 31.03.2017

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II Wojna Światowa: Wspólnota pamięci— 26.04.2017

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WWII echoes down the decades — 26.04.2017

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GEOMETR.IT

WWII «We should never forget »

in Army · Conflicts 2017 · Crisis 2017 · Economics 2017 · EN · Europe 2017 · EX-USSR · History 2017 · Nation 2017 · Person 2017 · Politics 2017 · Skepticism 2017 26 views / 6 comments

GEOMETR.IT independent.co.uk

‘An estimated 26 million Soviet citizens died during World War II, including as many as 11 million soldiers’

In the Western popular imagination — particularly the American one — World War II is a conflict we won. It was fought on the beaches of Normandy and Iwo Jima, through the rubble of recaptured French towns and capped by sepia-toned scenes of joy and young love in New York. It was a victory shaped by the steeliness of Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, the moral fiber of British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and the awesome power of an atomic bomb.

But that narrative shifts dramatically when you go to Russia, where World War II is called the Great Patriotic War and is remembered in a vastly different light.

On 9 May, Russian President Vladimir Putin played host to one of Moscow’s largest ever military parades to mark the 70th anniversary of the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany. More than 16,000 troops participated, as well 140 aircraft and 190 armored vehicles, including the debut of Russia’s brand new next-generation tank.

It was a grand moment, but few of the world’s major leaders attended. The heads of state of India and China will look on, but not many among their Western counterparts. That is a reflection of the tense geopolitical present, with Putin’s relations with the West having turned frosty after a year of Russian meddling in Ukraine. When Russia’s T-14 Armata tank broke down at a parade rehearsal on 7 May, the snickering could be heard across Western media.

Robert Capa’s images of the Second World War

Unfairly or not, the current tensions obscure the scale of what’s being commemorated: Starting in 1941, the Soviet Union bore the brunt of the Nazi war machine and played perhaps the most important role in the Allies’ defeat of Hitler. By one calculation, for every single American soldier killed fighting the Germans, 80 Soviet soldiers died doing the same.

Of course, the start of the war had been shaped by a Nazi-Soviet pact to carve up the lands in between their borders. Then Hitler turned against the U.S.S.R.

The Red Army was «the main engine of Nazism’s destruction,» writes British historian and journalist Max Hastings in «Inferno: The World at War, 1939-1945.» The Soviet Union paid the harshest price: though the numbers are not exact, an estimated 26 million Soviet citizens died during World War II, including as many as 11 million soldiers. At the same time, the Germans suffered three-quarters of their wartime losses fighting the Red Army.

Russian soldiers defend Moscow from Gorky Park during the Second World War

«It was the Western Allies’ extreme good fortune that the Russians, and not themselves, paid almost the entire ‘butcher’s bill’ for [defeating Nazi Germany], accepting 95 per cent of the military casualties of the three major powers of the Grand Alliance,» writes Hastings.

The epic battles that eventually rolled back the Nazi advance — the brutal winter siege of Stalingrad, the clash of thousands of armored vehicles at Kursk (the biggest tank battle in history) — had no parallel on the Western Front, where the Nazis committed fewer military assets. The savagery on display was also of a different degree than that experienced farther west.

Hitler viewed much of what’s now Eastern Europe as a site for «lebensraum» — living space for an expanding German empire and race. What that entailed was the horrifying, systematic attempt to depopulate whole swaths of the continent. This included the wholesale massacre of millions of European Jews, the majority of whom lived outside Germany’s pre-war borders to the east. But millions of others were also killed, abused, dispossessed of their lands and left to starve.

Soviet troops climb out of a trench during the Battle of Stalingrad

«The Holocaust overshadows German plans that envisioned even more killing. Hitler wanted not only to eradicate the Jews; he wanted also to destroy Poland and the Soviet Union as states, exterminate their ruling classes, and kill tens of millions of Slavs,» writes historian Timothy Snyder in «Bloodlands: Europe between Hitler and Stalin.»

By 1943, the Soviet Union had already lost some 5 million soldiers and two-thirds of its industrial capacity to the Nazi advance. That it was yet able to turn back the German invasion is testament to the courage of the Soviet war effort. But it came at a shocking price.

In his memoirs, Eisenhower was appalled by the extent of the carnage:

When we flew into Russia, in 1945, I did not see a house standing between the western borders of the country and the area around Moscow. Through this overrun region, Marshal Zhukov told me, so many numbers of women, children and old men had been killed that the Russian Government would never be able to estimate the total.

A lone German soldier hobbles round a waterlogged crater in which are reflected the devastated buildings of Stalingrad.

To be sure, as Snyder documents, the Soviet Union under Stalin also had the blood of millions on its hands. In the years preceding World War II, Stalinist purges led to the death and starvation of millions.

The horrors were compounded by the Nazi invasion.

«In Soviet Ukraine, Soviet Belarus, and the Leningrad district, lands where the Stalinist regime had starved and shot some four million people in the previous eight years, German forces managed to starve and shoot even more in half the time,» Snyder writes. He says that between 1933 and 1945 in the «bloodlands» — the broad sweep of territory on the periphery of the Soviet and Nazi realms — some 14 million civilians were killed.

By some accounts, 60 percent of Soviet households lost a member of their nuclear family.

For Russia’s neighbors, it’s hard to separate the Soviet triumph from the decades of Cold War domination that followed. One can also lament the way the sacrifices of the past inform the muscular Russian nationalism now peddled by Putin and his Kremlin allies. But we shouldn’t forget how the Soviets won World War II in Europe.

http://www.independent.co.uk

GEOMETR.IT

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2017.TOP 15 MARCH

Они ничего не поняли и ничему не научились? Украина – 01.03.2017

Бабель и маркиз де Сад — паровые котлеты Русской революции – 01.03.2017

Заговор Великих Князей – 03.03.2017

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Павел Милюков. Англофил на русском поле – 10.03.2017

Пенсию нужно заработать, но дожить до 60 лет не просто.Свежа украинская мысль! – 10.03.2017

Чем украинские РЕФОРМЫ отличаются от европейских ? – 10.03.2017

Америка. НЕ С ИНТЕЛЛЕКТАМИ придеться иметь дело Московии – 13.03.2017

Что происходило В ФЕВРАЛЕ 1917 года? – 13.03.2017

ЕС. Германия — главный член предложения. Остальные — второстепенные? – 14.03.2017

Генерал разведки и МЗДА УКРАИНСКАЯ – 17.03.2017

Европа — зад Запада. Мюнхен – 31.03.2017

Польша — гнилой скотомогильник. Прощай, подмытая Европа! – 31.03.2017

Как выжить В ЭПОХУ ТРАМПА? – 31.03.2017

Ле Пен в лицо Меркель: МАДАМ, Я ТЕБЯ НЕ ПРИЗНАЮ! – 31.03.2017

* * *

О.Скрипка — не полу-дебил.Он — Шариков нашего времени!— 25.04.2017

Эстония. «Бронзовая ночь». Молодежь не забудет подлость власти — 25.04.2017

Ленин создал одно из самых Интеллектуальных Правительств — 25.04.2017

II wojna światowa — 25.04.2017

II Wojna Światowa: Wspólnota pamięci— 25.04.2017

Der Weg in den zweiten Weltkrieg -1 — 25.04.2017

POLEN sagt NEIN— 25.04.2017

Did WWI Lead to WWII? — 25.04.2017

GEOMETR.IT

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