Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

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wm
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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by wm » 24 Jan 2022 17:14

It was fast because they weren't required to conduct the "methodical battle" - the (glacial) cornerstone of French military doctrine.

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by mezsat2 » 25 Jan 2022 12:13

To this day it's a matter of conjecture, but most of the captured German generals (not SS), stated unequivocally that if a large combined allied force had smashed it's way across Belgium into the Reich immediately upon the invasion of Poland, Germany would have been caught with her pants down as only a skeleton crew was manning down the Western Front. Yes, the Luftwaffe was formidable, but with the coordinated air support of RAF and France, it could have been suppressed long enough for the allies to absolutely destroy vital areas for Hitler, particularly the Ruhr.

Hitler, of course, realized fully that they would not launch such an offensive- not from sound military intelligence, but his uncanny ability to read the intentions of his enemies (at that time, at least).

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by ljadw » 25 Jan 2022 12:47

The skeleton crew that was manning down the Western Front was more than strong enough to stop a French (NOT ALLIED ) attack. What Jodl said after the war can be thrown under the bus ,especially that we know the motives for his claims .
It took Britain THREE weeks to send TWO divisions to France and it took France several weeks to have the needed forces for a small attack .
Strength of Heeresgruppe C on 1 September 1939
Reserves : 9 divisions
5th Army : 6 divisions
1st Army : 13 divisions
7th Army : 6 divisions
Total : 34 divisions .
And the OKH had also a reserve of 12 divisions that could be committed .
France had NOT 34 operational divisions on 1 September .
Source : Friedrich Stahl :Heereseinteilung 1939 PP 178-182
And about the LW :French air force was very weak and BC was in Britain,it would take weeks before it would be operational in France .
Besides : the LW was concentrated in Poland,while the Ruhr was defended by the FLAK,which was strong enough to deter allied air attacks .And when the RAF started its air attacks on Germany, the results were questionable :the Ruhr production continued to increase till the Autumn of 1944 .

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by ljadw » 25 Jan 2022 13:01

Sid Guttridge wrote:
08 Jan 2022 08:51
Hi ljadw,

You post, "Jackson is contradicting himself :he said that the ML was build in service of a defensive strategy and that France was preparing for the offensive which would ultimately win the war .
And the second part of this sentence is not correct .
"

No. The medium term French plan was to wait behind the Maginot Line until the British had mobilized. This would give them numerical parity at least and give time for their greater imperial resources to begin the bear. This was expected to take about two years, as in WWI. Thereafter the Allies could go over to the longer term strategic offensive. The Dyle Plan was a shorter term tactical fix if the Germans attacked through Belgium in the meantime. (The French had intended to extend the Maginot Line to the Channel, but has to divert the necessary resources to build the Alpine Line opposite Italy instead and never got round to it - hence the Dyle Plan).

The guarantee to Poland potentially disrupted this leisurely approach because it put pressure on France to attack almost immediately, for which they had not made preparations and which they proved unable to improvise beyond the token Saar offensive.

Cheers,

Sid.
A late reply :
There would be no great French attack in 1941 as the expectations were that already before this attack Germany would have collapsed due to the Allied blockade .
There was never an intention to extend the ML to the Channel,because there was no need for it, because it was politicallt impossible and because the needed manpower did not exist .Even without the Alpine line France could not fortify the border with Belgium .
On 10 May 1940 France had the following strength
AG 1 : 34 ID
AG 2 : 29 ID
AG 3 : 8 ID
Alpine Line : 5 ID
Total 76 .
The big problem was that the expectation that the ML would economize manpower turned out to be an illusion :the ML worked as a sponge and claimed additional manpower .
And I am not certain that it was not the same for the Westwall and the Atlantikwall

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by mezsat2 » 17 Feb 2022 10:17

A better question is why England and France didn't declare war on the USSR as well. It was the height of cynicism. Stalin also invaded Poland and was probably as evil in general as Hitler.

They both realized Hitler could not be defeated without the help of the USSR, despite it being just as dangerous to world peace. They calculated they could defeat Hitler and worry about the USSR later. It took 50 years, but the bet paid off- at the cost of bankrupting half the world.

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by ljadw » 17 Feb 2022 10:51

mezsat2 wrote:
17 Feb 2022 10:17
A better question is why England and France didn't declare war on the USSR as well. It was the height of cynicism. Stalin also invaded Poland and was probably as evil in general as Hitler.

They both realized Hitler could not be defeated without the help of the USSR, despite it being just as dangerous to world peace. They calculated they could defeat Hitler and worry about the USSR later. It took 50 years, but the bet paid off- at the cost of bankrupting half the world.
There was no reason for Britain and France to declare war on the USSR,because Poland also did NOT declare war on the USSR .
And, it is not so that they realized in 1939 that Hitler could not be defeated without the help of the USSR :they expected to win without the USSR.
And, about world peace : Britain and France were not concerned about ''world peace '' (a meaningless and wrong notion ),besides Stalin neither Hitler were dangerous to world peace .

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by mezsat2 » 17 Feb 2022 13:19

I hate to disagree with you, but Stalin and Hitler are proven psychopaths. Stalin's invasion of half of Poland and the Baltic states was no less aggressive than Hitler's invasions/annexations. You are seriously misinformed if you believe that Stalin and Hitler were not psychopaths.

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by Michael Kenny » 17 Feb 2022 13:27

mezsat2 wrote:
17 Feb 2022 10:17
A better question is why England and France didn't declare war on the USSR as well. It was the height of cynicism. Stalin also invaded Poland and was probably as evil in general as Hitler.
The guarantee to Poland was specific and only applied to a German invasion. There was nothing in the deal that applied in the case of a Soviet invasion.

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by wm » 17 Feb 2022 14:02

The alliance was against Germany. Its sole reason was to deter German aggression, preserve peace - not to save Poland.

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by ljadw » 17 Feb 2022 14:19

mezsat2 wrote:
17 Feb 2022 13:19
I hate to disagree with you, but Stalin and Hitler are proven psychopaths. Stalin's invasion of half of Poland and the Baltic states was no less aggressive than Hitler's invasions/annexations. You are seriously misinformed if you believe that Stalin and Hitler were not psychopaths.
I did not say that they were not psychopaths and you did not say that they were psychopaths.
And Hitler's and Stalin's invasions of Poland do not prove that they were psychopaths .Both are not related .Breznjev invaded Afghanistan,but this does not prove that he was a psychopath .As Clausewitz said : Wars (also aggressive ) are the continuation of politics by other means ,or better :politics is the continuation of war by other means .The aim of war is not to make the world safe for democracy .
There was a war between Germany and Poland, but no war between the USSR and Poland, thus there was no reason for the Wallies to declare war on the USSR .

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by NickA » 19 Feb 2022 23:00

wm wrote:
14 Aug 2021 11:49
To carry out this policy [to make Germany great]... we must stop at no sacrifice in our effort to destroy the French ... no sacrifice should be considered too heavy, if the final outcome would be to make it possible for us to overthrow our bitterest enemy. Mein Kampf (1925)
I can't take the prison manifesto very seriously - Hitler is leader of a significant movement and being put away on a significant charge of insurrection.

His followers needed to hear from him before Alfred Rosenberg (published Protocols of the Elders of Zion in German in 1923, 4 years after it appeared in the US) became settled in post as alternative leader.

Hitler (and his supposedly Jewish friend & later chauffeur Emile Maurice, then Rudolf Hess) proceed to plagiarise several chapters of Fords "The International Jew" before Hitler (or maybe his co-writers) gets into his/their stride with his own work on "My Struggle". He includes topical matters (including the sensational 1924 announcement of a gas chamber for killing people - I needn't tell you where that comes from).

Now, the strategic ideas (concerning friendship with Britain but a planned attack on France) should be much more important and dependable ... or maybe not ... this appears to be the first translation into English, in 1939:
Translator's note - https://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks02/0200601.txt wrote:... even though the second volume of MEIN KAMPF was written after Hitler's release from prison and was published after the French had left the Ruhr, the tramp of the invading armies still echoed in German ears, and the terrible ravages that had been wrought in the industrial and financial life of Germany, as a consequence of the French invasion, had plunged the country into a state of social and economic chaos. In France itself the franc fell to fifty per cent of its previous value. Indeed, the whole of Europe had been brought to the brink of ruin, following the French invasion of the Ruhr and Rhineland.
... If we bear all this in mind we can account for the emotional stress under which MEIN KAMPF was written. Hitler was naturally incensed against the Bavarian government authorities, against the footling patriotic societies who were pawns in the French game, though often unconsciously so, and of course against the French.
That he should write harshly of the French was only natural in the circumstances. At that time there was no exaggeration whatsoever in calling France the implacable and mortal enemy of Germany. Such language was being used by even the pacifists themselves, not only in Germany but abroad.
I don't want to be difficult - but what he tells his troops immediately before the battle may not be good history:
Hitler's Obersalzberg Speech (1939) wrote:I thought that I would first turn against the West in a few years, and only after that against the East. I wanted first of all to establish a tolerable relationship with Poland in order to fight first against the West. But this plan, which appealed to me, could not be executed, as fundamental points had changed. It became clear to me that, in the event of a conflict with the West, Poland would attack us.

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by ljadw » 21 Feb 2022 07:21

The great-grand father of Maurice was Jewish, but this does not mean that Maurice was Jewish .And Germans were not persecuted because one of their 4 great-grand fathers was Jewish .And no one knows how much Jewish was Schwartzenberger .

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by Aida1 » 02 Aug 2022 15:40

Michael Kenny wrote:
17 Feb 2022 13:27
mezsat2 wrote:
17 Feb 2022 10:17
A better question is why England and France didn't declare war on the USSR as well. It was the height of cynicism. Stalin also invaded Poland and was probably as evil in general as Hitler.
The guarantee to Poland was specific and only applied to a German invasion. There was nothing in the deal that applied in the case of a Soviet invasion.
Which is very significant. No real care about Poland as post ww2 events showed.

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by Michael Kenny » 02 Aug 2022 17:51

Aida1 wrote:
02 Aug 2022 15:40


Which is very significant. No real care about Poland as post ww2 events showed.
You always, always post in the exact same style across your many (30 when I stopped counting) fake IDs.

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Re: Was Hitler really surprised when England and France followed thru and declared war?

Post by Cantankerous » 02 Aug 2022 21:20

Aida1 wrote:
02 Aug 2022 15:40
Michael Kenny wrote:
17 Feb 2022 13:27
mezsat2 wrote:
17 Feb 2022 10:17
A better question is why England and France didn't declare war on the USSR as well. It was the height of cynicism. Stalin also invaded Poland and was probably as evil in general as Hitler.
The guarantee to Poland was specific and only applied to a German invasion. There was nothing in the deal that applied in the case of a Soviet invasion.
Which is very significant. No real care about Poland as post ww2 events showed.
The UK and France falsely assumed that Hitler who honor his pledge not to annex Czechoslovakia once he incorporated the Sudetenland into the Third Reich, and even though they were caught off guard by the dictator's annexation of the remainder of Czechoslovakia, Chamberlain and Daladier did not think that Hitler would consider invading other Slavic countries. Since Chamberlain declared war on Germany, as did France, Hitler may have been very surprised that the UK and France would begin to turn against him considering that the UK and France did not want Hitler to annex the Free State of Danzig to be swallowed by Nazi Germany, and were unaware of Molotov's negotiations with von Ribbentrop on a non-aggression pact.

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