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It was the Soviet and Chinese sacrifice that made WW II victory possible ! [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2005-5-11 06:03:27 |Display all floors
We must not forget how World War II was won. WW II victory was a victory of the united anti-fascim front including the Soviet and Chinese.

Every American as well as other westerners should read --

Richard Overy: It was the Soviet and Chinese sacrifice that made victory possible

Saturday May 7, 2005
The Guardian

Imagine for a moment that around half the population of Great Britain - men, women and children - died in the second world war. What kind of extraordinary trauma would this represent? How would "victory" in 1945 now be viewed, or even celebrated? Yet 27 million is the estimate of Soviet deaths by the end of the war. Actual British losses represented around 0.6% of the population; American losses were smaller, around 0.3%. But Soviet losses, from war, starvation and repression, represented about 14% of the pre-war population.

These losses were the brutal product of German invasion in 1941 and the Soviet determination to resist that aggression and expel the Germans from their territory. The scarcely credible level of sacrifice exposes just how vast and savage the war on the eastern front was. It was here that the great majority of German casualties occurred. It was here that the war was won or lost, for if the Red Army had not succeeded against all the odds in halting the Germans in 1941 and then inflicting the first major defeats at Stalingrad and Kursk in 1943, it is difficult to see how the western democracies, Britain and the US, could have expelled Germany from its new empire.

By 1945 the material strength of the allies was, of course, overwhelming. The critical point came in the middle years of the war, with the Soviet Union teetering before Stalingrad, Rommel poised to take Egypt, the battle of the Atlantic not yet won and American rearmament in its early stages. Victory was not automatic. Soviet resistance meant the difference. Uncertainly, sometimes incompetently, the Soviet armed forces learned the lessons imposed on them by Germany's panzer armies in 1941. A hasty, improvised set of reforms and an economy geared almost exclusively to armaments turned the feeble efforts of 1941 into the vast setpiece battles from the summer of 1943, every one of which the Soviet side won.

German forces were defeated not by the sheer numbers (by 1943 millions of Soviet soldiers were dead or captive and the Red Army was desperate for men), but by the inventive tactics and sturdy technology of their enemy. If this had not been the case, Hitler's armies would have gone on winning, and a huge German-dominated economic empire in Eurasia would have confronted the western allies with a strategic nightmare.

Of course, it is now argued in the west that Soviet victory left a sour taste. Rather than the liberation brought by the western powers, Soviet liberation ushered in the trappings of the Stalinist state. The cold war after 1945 made it difficult to integrate the Soviet contribution into the collective western memory of the war, while it also allowed the Soviet Union to write the contribution of its allies out of the script.

In reality they needed each other. Soviet efforts required the flow of resources under the "Lend Lease" programme. Weapons were few, and the Soviets regarded them as second-rate. But the supply of raw materials, food and communications equipment was essential. It allowed Soviet industry to concentrate on weapons to fight back with. Without Lend Lease the rail system and food supply might well have folded up as they had in the first world war.

The sour taste has become more marked with the fall of communism 15 years ago. The opening up of Soviet archives has shown a system that for some critics makes it almost indistinguishable from the totalitarian enemy it was fighting. This makes it more difficult to embrace the Soviet contribution to victory. The ordinary Soviet people were not only numberless victims of war, but they failed to achieve any political reform as a result of their triumph. Yet it is their exceptional sacrifice that we should remember as we look back over 60 years. And in the end the peoples of eastern Europe were unquestionably better off under the new communist regimes than under German imperial domination. German plans by the middle of the war foresaw the deliberate starvation of at least 35 million people in the east as "useless eaters", and the genocidal destruction of the Jewish and gypsy populations. The eastern peoples were described in German documents as the "helots" of the new empire. This grotesque imperial fantasy was won or lost on the eastern front, and who can regret its defeat?

The Soviet Union is not the only state to be written out of the victory story in the west. The Chinese people also lost an estimated 20 million as a result of Japanese aggression. Just as the Soviet armed forces held down the Germans, so the less effective but numerous Chinese armed forces kept the Japanese bogged down in Asia. This is a record that is still almost unknown in the west, yet if Japan had achieved quick victory in China, large resources would have been released for an assault on the rear of the Soviet Union, or a larger military presence in the Pacific. In this case, too, western allied casualties would have been much greater without the stubborn resistance of their Asian ally.

In the end, the western freedom to plan and execute a global strategy depended on the ability of the Soviet and Chinese forces to hold the main enemies at bay while western air forces bombed the Axis motherlands flat. When victory is celebrated tomorrow, it is important that we pause to remember the almost 50 million Soviets and Chinese who perished to contain the imperial aggression of Germany and Japan.

Nor should we forget, when condemning Soviet repression in eastern Europe that allied airforces bombed German and Japanese cities up to the very end of the war, inflicting the deaths of more than 600,000 civilians and opening the nuclear age. After 1945 Britain and France re-imposed undemocratic imperial rule in Africa and south-east Asia. None of the victors has anything to feel smug about. The pursuit of victory made all the allies do things they might never have imagined themselves doing.

One question that almost certainly will not be asked as the world indulges in what is probably the last great bout of victory nostalgia is why those states that viewed themselves as the bearers of progress and the modern age descended between 1914 and 1945 into a hideous orgy of war, civil conflict, repression and genocide. Mercifully, 1945 marked a real break with that 30-year crisis, but the nagging issues remain. If they could do it then, what are the restraints that prevent the developed world from once again plunging into the madness of mass war and state violence? Perhaps 1945 is a lesson learned, but those restraints need to be well understood. Next time the millions of dead may not be for our allies alone to bear.

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Post time 2005-5-11 11:16:01 |Display all floors

Reply: It was the Soviet and Chinese sacrifice that made WW II victory possible

Since half of Europe was virtually enslaved by the Soviet Union and significant parts of western Asia, I'm not sure if the war was really won?

Also, can you name a single battle China won during the war?

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Post time 2005-5-11 15:19:19 |Display all floors

Tai Er Zhuang Battle was a great victory for China in anti-Japanese war

whitedevil,

I have noticed your post here is a short version of the longer one on my Iris Chang thread, so I am coping what I wrote there.

Please read my statement including the article to make sure you understand what I have said. I have never claimed China and Russia had won WW II alone. What has been said is that "It is the Soviet and Chinese sacrifice that made the WW II victory possible." Can you tell the difference?

China and the Soviet lost most people in the war, it was also in this two areas that both German and Japanese lost most of their forces, didn't that mean something to you?  

Of course I can name one battle that China won. For example, in Tai Er Zhuang battle Chinese army won a decisively resulted in more than 10,000 Japanese casualties. Read this link which gives every details of the battle:

http://jczs.sina.com.cn/nz/trzdj/index.shtml


By the way, do you know how many years we Chinese fought the Japanese? How many strategic stages? Do you know Japan invaded China long before WW II erupted in Europe?

Chinese army was not better equipped and less efficient but that doesn't mean we Chinese didn't fight the war, we fought bravely and never stopped if you really know anti-Japanese war. Have you heard Chinese people fought guerrilla war against Japanese?

We in general say WW II is a united front of people from the world against fascism, 世界反法西斯战争. We consider this united people who fought for justice as allies. We don't play name games. It was what one did matters. Fascism or nazism or militarism, all played evil role in WW II -- they are the cause of death for millions of people.

Stalin certainly had his ambition in WW II, in fact, China was a victim too, but this didn't change the fact that the Soviet army fatally wounded German army in the largest quality. The Soviet army played an important role. Using Putin's words -- that part of history (Stalin) has closed.   

I must advise you to open the link I provided in my last post and read the article or read it again. I don't feel you have read it at all. This is about WW II, not a European war history. Also, please note this words in the article "....Yet it is their (The Soviet people) exceptional sacrifice that we should remember as we look back over 60 years. And in the end the peoples of eastern Europe were unquestionably better off under the new communist regimes than under German imperial domination." after arguing what happened in Staline state.

My main point here is that: WW II victory is not just about D-Day or the few allies Americans know, such as Britain, US, France etc.. The Soviet and China are big contributors who made great sacrifice.

Have you heard German Chancellor is making apology to the former Soviet people?

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Post time 2005-5-11 19:59:48 |Display all floors

That's retarded...

The Soviets should in turn apologize to the East Germans for making them follow such a ridiculously flawed ideology.

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Post time 2005-5-11 22:28:49 |Display all floors

Beating the Germans in WW2

Sure it was a joint effort and no single member of the allies would have stood a chance  1 to 1 against the Germans.

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Post time 2005-5-12 16:01:29 |Display all floors

mmm

Er, yeah, WW 2 was basically won on the Eastern Front (by that I mean Soviet) with a large amount of American equipment...

But I've never heard of the Chinese fighting particularly well.  Maybe 30 million casualties or whatever but can you name a second victory the Chinese had?  

The world's Jewish population was decimated by about 30% due to the Holocaust, but that doesn't mean they had much to do with winning the war.

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Post time 2005-5-12 16:03:52 |Display all floors

mmm

ANZAC forces (Australia and New Zealand) were/are regarded highly.  They could've gone 1 to 1 with the Wehrmacht.

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