De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

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ljadw
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by ljadw » 24 Dec 2021 21:00

Sid Guttridge wrote:
21 Dec 2021 23:56
Hi ljadw,

With almost the entire Polish Army facing the Germans, Stalin's attack on Poland was almost literally "a stab in the back". A similar rationale applies to Italy against France in 1940. That such "stabs in the back" are pragmatic, advantagous opportunism to the attacker is true, but these examples remain "stabs in the back"!

Cheers,

Sid.
''stab in the back'' is a moral judgement 'something we should avoid absolutely .
'' stab in the back '' means something wrong, but a military tactic is not wrong .
If the attacked side whines that it is a stab in the back and the attacker denies this, the conclusion is ......?

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henryk
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by henryk » 24 Dec 2021 21:08

Remember:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peace_of_Riga
The Peace of Riga, also known as the Treaty of Riga (Polish: Traktat Ryski), was signed in Riga on 18 March 1921, among Poland, Soviet Russia (acting also on behalf of Soviet Belarus) and Soviet Ukraine. The treaty ended the Polish–Soviet War.[2]
The Soviet-Polish borders established by the treaty remained in force until World War II.

Sid Guttridge
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by Sid Guttridge » 25 Dec 2021 08:38

Hi ljadw,

You post, " 'stab in the back'' is a moral judgement ' something we should avoid absolutely ." It is can also be a physical description of events that certainly applies in the Soviet and Italian cases that you cite. In both instances the armed forces of the victim of the attack was almost literally facing the other way already on the verge of being overwhelmed by a stronger opponent.

You post, "but a military tactic is not wrong ." That rather depends on the tactic concerned. There are internationally accepted laws that regulate the conduct of war. Are you suggesting they are inapplicable and carry no weight at all? That you are indifferent to the massacre of prisoners, for example?

You post, "If the attacked side whines that it is a stab in the back and the attacker denies this, the conclusion is ......?" ..... that one of them may be right and one of them may be wrong. What is your point?

Cheers,

Sid.

gebhk
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by gebhk » 25 Dec 2021 14:24

In 1938, Poland used the treaty of Munich to take back Teschen.
Absolute tosh being used to make sweeping genralisations. The Munich agreement or settlement (there was no treaty) had nothing to do with the Polish reclamation of Tesin/Cieszyn. This was based on a unlilateral offer of the Czechoslovak government to return the land to Poland which was given and accepted entirely independently of the Munich conference. The only impact of the conference was for Poland to demand an acceleration of the handover timetable proposed by the Czechoslovaks in response to the Munich decision to undo the Polish-Czechoslovak agreement already reached. The Polish ultimatum was not about Tesin per se, it was far more about saying that four gentlemen in Munich did not have the right to make decisions about other countries without consultation.

It is not about jingoism, it is about an accurate appraisal of the facts. And none of the above comes even close to any accepted definition of a 'stab in the back'. The attack of the USSR on Poland in 1939 clearly does, as does, for that matter, that of Czechoslovakia in 1920. The rest of the whataboutism is irrelevant. Let's leave whataboutism and ad personams in the playpen where they belong.

Still awaiting your evdence that
Poland was convinced/convinced itself that Hitler was bluffing.
.

Sid Guttridge
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by Sid Guttridge » 25 Dec 2021 17:03

Hi gebhk,

The Tesin issue was two decades old, but the timing of its resolution in Poland's favour was undoubtedly directly related to Czechoslovakia's need to clear its decks of other potential foes during the Munich Crisis. The Polish Ultimatum was delivered after the Czechs had prepared an offer on Teschen, but before it had been delivered to Warsaw and before the Czechs had reached a resolution with Germany. Leaving aside the rights or wrongs of the issue and accepting that Poland was by then certainly pushing at an open door, the proposition that "the Munich agreement or settlement ..... had nothing to do with the Polish reclamation of Tesin/Cieszyn" doesn't really stand up, at least as far as the timing and Czech preparation to make concessions are concerned. The Czechs hadn't undergone a change of heart, just a change of circumstance brought about by German pressure. This induced them to be pragmatic with Poland in the Munich moment after 20 years of stubborness on the issue.

Cheers,

Sid.

ljadw
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by ljadw » 26 Dec 2021 06:06

Sid Guttridge wrote:
25 Dec 2021 08:38
Hi ljadw,

You post, " 'stab in the back'' is a moral judgement ' something we should avoid absolutely ." It is can also be a physical description of events that certainly applies in the Soviet and Italian cases that you cite. In both instances the armed forces of the victim of the attack was almost literally facing the other way already on the verge of being overwhelmed by a stronger opponent.

You post, "but a military tactic is not wrong ." That rather depends on the tactic concerned. There are internationally accepted laws that regulate the conduct of war. Are you suggesting they are inapplicable and carry no weight at all? That you are indifferent to the massacre of prisoners, for example?

You post, "If the attacked side whines that it is a stab in the back and the attacker denies this, the conclusion is ......?" ..... that one of them may be right and one of them may be wrong. What is your point?

Cheers,

Sid.
In 1943 Italy changed sides,which was considered by the Germans as a stab in the back.For the Italians it was something legal and the Allies approved it .
The conclusion is not that one of them may be right and one of them may be wrong .If ''a stab in the back '' benefits country A , it is not wrong for country A .If it hurts country B ,country B will say that it is wrong .
Massacre of prisoners : in the past every one did it and no one protested against it .Now, it is temporarily not accepted by Western countries who have imposed their norms on the rest of humanity .

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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by gebhk » 26 Dec 2021 16:35

Hi Sid
The Tesin issue was two decades old, but the timing of its resolution in Poland's favour was undoubtedly directly related to Czechoslovakia's need to clear its decks of other potential foes during the Munich Crisis.
I am totally in agreement with that. As the old Polish saying goes, a sinking man will even grab for a razorblade.
The Polish Ultimatum was delivered after the Czechs had prepared an offer on Teschen, but before it had been delivered to Warsaw and before the Czechs had reached a resolution with Germany.
Here I have to disagree. Benes wrote to Moscicki proposing a rectification of disputed boundaries in Poland’s favour on 22nd September, that is a full week before the Munich meeting took place. Moscicki responded positively to Benes on 27 September, inviting the Czechoslovak side to make a practical proposal. This practical proposal (takeover to take place by 31st October at the earliest to 1st December 1938 at the latest) arrived more or less together with the 'Big Four' decision firstly that some of the territories the Czechoslovaks had offered to Poland were now to go to Germany and secondly, that residual minority issues (ie the rest of Tesin/Cieszyn, as far as the Poles were concerned) remaining unresolved after 3 months to be decided by the ‘big four’ at a subsequent meeting. It is with both documents in hand that the Polish senior political and military figures met to discuss Munich, later that day. They decided to accept the Czechoslovak offer but not the timetable and this was the genesis of the ultimatum demanding immediate handover.
The Czechs hadn't undergone a change of heart, just a change of circumstance brought about by German pressure. This induced them to be pragmatic with Poland in the Munich moment after 20 years of stubborness on the issue.
When we say 'the Czechs' and '20 years of subborness' it is probably fair to point out that we mainly mean Benes. Many in Czechoslovakia did not believe that Tesin was worth the discord with Poland but it was the events of 1938 that finally strengthened their hand sufficiently for them to have their way - alas too late for everyone. It is probably also fair to say that there was stubborness on both sides and that in Poland views were no more unanimous than they were in Czechoslovakia. Also, lets not be selective - the French, British and Italians too were free with their pressure on Czechoslovakia, as well as the Germans......

I therefore maintain that the annexation of the Tesin/Cieszyn area by Poland occurred in spite of and not because of the Munich Agreement. I am very happy to concede that it was only possible because of the whole situation Czechoslovakia found herself in, in 1938, and that Munich stimulated an acceleration of the handowver. However the handover had been agreed in principle before Munich had happened and Munich attempted to stand in its way rather facilitating it.

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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by ljadw » 26 Dec 2021 21:41

gebhk wrote:
26 Dec 2021 16:35
Hi Sid
The Tesin issue was two decades old, but the timing of its resolution in Poland's favour was undoubtedly directly related to Czechoslovakia's need to clear its decks of other potential foes during the Munich Crisis.
I am totally in agreement with that. As the old Polish saying goes, a sinking man will even grab for a razorblade.
The Polish Ultimatum was delivered after the Czechs had prepared an offer on Teschen, but before it had been delivered to Warsaw and before the Czechs had reached a resolution with Germany.
Here I have to disagree. Benes wrote to Moscicki proposing a rectification of disputed boundaries in Poland’s favour on 22nd September, that is a full week before the Munich meeting took place. Moscicki responded positively to Benes on 27 September, inviting the Czechoslovak side to make a practical proposal. This practical proposal (takeover to take place by 31st October at the earliest to 1st December 1938 at the latest) arrived more or less together with the 'Big Four' decision firstly that some of the territories the Czechoslovaks had offered to Poland were now to go to Germany and secondly, that residual minority issues (ie the rest of Tesin/Cieszyn, as far as the Poles were concerned) remaining unresolved after 3 months to be decided by the ‘big four’ at a subsequent meeting. It is with both documents in hand that the Polish senior political and military figures met to discuss Munich, later that day. They decided to accept the Czechoslovak offer but not the timetable and this was the genesis of the ultimatum demanding immediate handover.
The Czechs hadn't undergone a change of heart, just a change of circumstance brought about by German pressure. This induced them to be pragmatic with Poland in the Munich moment after 20 years of stubborness on the issue.
When we say 'the Czechs' and '20 years of subborness' it is probably fair to point out that we mainly mean Benes. Many in Czechoslovakia did not believe that Tesin was worth the discord with Poland but it was the events of 1938 that finally strengthened their hand sufficiently for them to have their way - alas too late for everyone. It is probably also fair to say that there was stubborness on both sides and that in Poland views were no more unanimous than they were in Czechoslovakia. Also, lets not be selective - the French, British and Italians too were free with their pressure on Czechoslovakia, as well as the Germans......

I therefore maintain that the annexation of the Tesin/Cieszyn area by Poland occurred in spite of and not because of the Munich Agreement. I am very happy to concede that it was only possible because of the whole situation Czechoslovakia found herself in, in 1938, and that Munich stimulated an acceleration of the handowver. However the handover had been agreed in principle before Munich had happened and Munich attempted to stand in its way rather facilitating it.
And WHY did Benes propose a rectification of boundaries in favor of Poland 2 weeks before Munich and not 2 months before Munich or in 1937,1936, etc,etc ?
If the rectification was needed 2 weeks before Munich, it was also needed 2 months, 2 years before Munich .
And WHY was there a Polish ultimatum demanding the immediate handover ? Was it not because otherwise the Germans would get Tesin ?
In 1944,Benes said that the Polish ultimatum demanding the return of Tesin decided him to accept the Munich settlement .While there is no proof for this ( Benes never was willing to fight ) ,the point remains that Poland decided to get back Tesin when the Czechs had problems;the Czechs did the same when they wanted Tesin when the Soviets were before Warsaw .
And the Soviets did the same when on 17 September 1939 Poland was defeated: they did not attack Poland before September 1939 .That would have been foolish,even suicidal .
Japan waited to make additional demands on French Indochina till France was defeated in June 1940.
The Reagan administration was first selling weapons to Iraq and when there was arising a favorable opportunity,it also sold weapons to Iran . Stab in the back ?
When the Soviets invaded Afghanistan,Carter stopped food deliveries to the USSR.Immediately Argentine (where the generals said that there was only one good communist = a dead one ) and Canada increased their food deliveries . Stab in the back ?
When there was a Civil War in Russia, Pilsudski went east to grab a much territory as possible . He did not do it in 1926 ? Stab in the back ?
While the OVRA was going after the communists, Stalin was selling oil to fascist Italy . Stab in the back ?
The Vlassov army attacked the Germans in Prague in May 1945 . Stab in the back ?

gebhk
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by gebhk » 27 Dec 2021 15:15

I think it is entirely obvious why Benes made his offer and both Sid and I stated it. So what? The Polish ultimatum was made because the Poles refused to accept the Munich Agreement. Again, so what? None of this makes it a stab in the back - I would recommend that rather than making up your own definitions, you consult some dictionaries on the meaning of the phrase 'a stab in the back'. That will answer all you whataboutist questions about what were and what were not stabs in the back.

Incidentally, still awaiting your evidence that
Poland was convinced/convinced itself that Hitler was bluffing.
.

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wm
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by wm » 27 Dec 2021 23:49

The Czechs accepted the Munich Pact and the Declaration to the Munich Pact (that promised "the problems of the Polish and Hungarian minorities in Czechoslovakia" would be settled - by arbitration if needed).
"Settled" meant the same treatment for the German and the Polish minorities, and the return of the territory to Poland (it was actually agreed between Poland and Britain earlier.)
The Poles were "guilty" of rejecting the arbitration (by Germany and Italy.)

The Poles didn't stab the Czechs in the back (as the Czechs stabbed Poland in the back during the Polish-Soviet War) because by accepting the Munich Pact Czechoslovakia surrendered to Germany and was dead already.

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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by wm » 28 Dec 2021 01:37

Amid all the nervous anticipation, the president calmly worked on his response to a letter Franklin D. Roosevelt had sent to him and the Fuhrer.
...
Beneš was disappointed that Roosevelt had sent identical texts to Prague and Berlin, thus implying moral equivalence between the respective causes of the Third Reich and Czechoslovakia. Roosevelt's plea that the conflict should not be solved by force was fine, but Czechoslovakia was not proposing to attack Germany. It was the Fuhrer who threatened to use violence to seize the Sudetenland and maybe more.
Beneš felt bitter about being put on the same level with Hitler. Later, he would describe Roosevelt's intervention in the crisis as a stab in the back and the "last heavy blow."
Czechoslovakia between Stalin and Hitler: The Diplomacy of Edvard Beneš in the 1930s by Igor Lukes

ljadw
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by ljadw » 29 Dec 2021 18:39

gebhk wrote:
27 Dec 2021 15:15
I think it is entirely obvious why Benes made his offer and both Sid and I stated it. So what? The Polish ultimatum was made because the Poles refused to accept the Munich Agreement. Again, so what? None of this makes it a stab in the back - I would recommend that rather than making up your own definitions, you consult some dictionaries on the meaning of the phrase 'a stab in the back'. That will answer all you whataboutist questions about what were and what were not stabs in the back.

Incidentally, still awaiting your evidence that
Poland was convinced/convinced itself that Hitler was bluffing.
.
As Poland was not involved in the Munich Agreement,it could not refuse it .
And about Hitler bluffing : til March 1939 he had no plans to attack Poland, this means that he bluffed .

gebhk
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by gebhk » 29 Dec 2021 19:02

As Poland was not involved in the Munich Agreement,it could not refuse it .
OK, it could refuse to accept what the agreers at Munich agreed to and she did. Just as Czechoslovakia could have chosen to refuse to accept but did not (probably wisely).
And about Hitler bluffing : til March 1939 he had no plans to attack Poland, this means that he bluffed .
That is soimewhat irrelevant to the question of evidence that
Poland was convinced/convinced itself that Hitler was bluffing.

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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by Sid Guttridge » 31 Dec 2021 10:53

Hi ljadw,

Poland did not attack Czechoslovakia, so there was "no stab in the back". It certainly threatened to stab a distracted Czechoslovakia in the back, as it issued an ultimatum. But Czechoslovakia conceded and Poland got its way without actually having to stab anyone.

Doubtless Poland's opportunism was of comfort to Germany, as was Hungary's, and both rode on the back of the Munich Crisis, but they stopped short of being a "stab in the back".

Cheers,

Sid.

Sid Guttridge
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Re: De Gaulle and French betrayal of Poland in Semptember 1939

Post by Sid Guttridge » 31 Dec 2021 10:58

Hi ljadw,

Poland did not attack Czechoslovakia, so there was "no stab in the back". It certainly threatened to stab a distracted Czechoslovakia in the back, as it issued an ultimatum. It also had the troops deployed to do so, including its only mechanized brigade, but Czechoslovakia conceded and Poland got its way without actually having to stab anyone.

Doubtless Poland's opportunism was of comfort to Germany, as was Hungary's, and both rode on the back of the Munich Crisis, but they stopped short of being a "stab in the back".

Cheers,

Sid.

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