Britain's completely underrated role in WWII

Memoirs of Nikita Khrushchev edited by Sergei Khrushchev published in 2004. The whole converstaion could be just a fruit of imagination of the 'editor'.
It is not trustworthly source. The son of former Soviet leader Sergei Khushchev emigrated to the USA in 1991 and in 1999 received US citizenship.
No one independent source confirms that such a conversation ever took place. And note, that 'edited' memoirs appeared almost 60 years after the end of the war.
Okay, that's a stretch. I'm sure your latest version of history books will have something to say about that.


How about Zhukov? Or is he not a trusted source?
Today [1963] some say the Allies didn't really help us ... But listen, one cannot deny that the Americans shipped over to us material without which we could not have equipped our armies held in reserve or been able to continue the war

The Significance of the Allied Lend-Lease Program and Soviet Victory during the Second World War
Also mentioned here, along with a telling snippet, which explains your stubborness:
Marshall Zhukov according to Weeks even goes on further to state that the Soviet government engaged in the calculated use of propaganda to systemically demean the importance of the Allied Lend-Lease Program, believing that it distracted from the heroism and sacrifice of the Soviet soldier and people.

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13518046.2014.963410?src=recsys
Of course we can see where your ideas come from. My bold:
It is telling of how Marxist ideology shaped the memory of Lend-Lease that one of the few organizations that still marginalizes or ignores US wartime aid to the Soviet Union is the Communist Party. On 21 July 2004, the communist Web site, In Defence of Marxism, published an article espousing the traditional Soviet ideological view of World War II. ‘In order to belittle the role of the USSR in the war’, the article argued, Western historians ‘exaggerate the importance of things like American Lease-Lend [sic] to the Soviet Union. This falsification is easy to answer’. Ignoring Stalin’s words to the contrary, the article went on to claim that ‘the Red Army had halted the German advance and begun to counterattack by the end of 1941 in the Battle of Moscow—before any supplies had reached the USSR from the USA …’ Thus, Lend-Lease ‘importance was marginal’. The Soviet’s victory was due to ‘the superiority of a nationalised economy and central planning …
Source: D-Day and the truth about the Second World War


I'm sure you'll say otherwise and that Khrushchev, Zhukov et al said no such thing and of course the Communist revision is correct ......
 
Yes, the Soviet unions badly needed food. By the way the main external source of meat (and also wool, winter clothes) was Mongolia.
Without external food supplies the situation would be critical but mainly for civilians - especially for the old and disabled. The army would receive enough food anyway as in happened during the siege of Leningrad, where hundreds thousands civilians died from hunger while fighters on the front line had food. Absence of any external food supplies would result in additional millions deaths of civilians.
In this context lend lease supplies were pricless as they saved millions of lives.

If the Soviet union would fight with Germany alone then the war would be 2 or 3 years longer. At summer time the Red army would be in strategic defence with winter offensive operations because at winter the German army was much weaker. Later or sooner Germany would consume its not bottomless resources.
If you had fought Germany alone, then you would have lost the war.
Similarly if you had surrendered, then the UK and America alone would have struggled to win.
The Germans and Japan were simply too formidable for any nation alone to have defeated.
 
If you're on Twitter you'll enjoy this account

Take a look at Pike Grey 1914-1918 (@PikeGrey1418): Pike Grey 1914-1918 (@PikeGrey1418) on Twitter
Thanks for that. I'm not actually on twitter but may give it a go.

I never met him (or grandad at all, they were both long dead before I was born) but great grandad's period in the AH army is likely to be end of 19century but can't be sure. Mum was born in 1914 and passed away in 2005 and it's one of those questions that arises after they've gone and you kick yerself for not thinking of them sooner.

Their village was in the AustroHungarian part of what is now Poland and, tbh although I haven't tried, I would guess records are long gone. Though with my retirement in a few years it could be the new found hobby I'll get into, looking these things up.

As an aside, mum always claimed she could remember from an early age and swore blind she could remember dejected AH army soldiers camped or billeted nearby during WW1.

And one which could have been a link to great grandad but now long lost, was that she gave away his medals to some others in the village for their kids to play with. Grrrr. But hey ho.

They may have been lost anyway during WW2 during the long trek away from the front as it rolled west.
 
Mussolini actually started with an invasion of France, but an interesting concept, what if Italy had remained neutral, no Greece or Balkan involvement and no North Africa either.
Indeed. I recall from World at War (I think) Italy invading France after the Germans rolled in which I guess distracted the French a bit.
 
Well Grandad (English) was off fighting Johnny Turk In Messopatamia ostensibly. ( Grandad) German did both the Eastern and Western Fronts on rotation as a was the norm in the first lot. So both sides of my family did have a lot to talk about. Dad married Mum in 1950, called my Grandma "Duchess" the family got on famously. The English side hardly spoke to each other anyway and they are proving fascinating to research. Since I have the AhnenPass on the German side, their family trees are on the wall in front of me. In fact I have a potted history of the last hundred and fifty years in my records.
You're fortunate in that you've been able to get all this info. As per my post above, I haven't tried digging through records since I haven't the foggiest where to start and what with both my parents coming from villages in what were AustroHungary and Russian Empire, I think it likely there won't be much left.
 
If you had fought Germany alone, then you would have lost the war.
Similarly if you had surrendered, then the UK and America alone would have struggled to win.
The Germans and Japan were simply too formidable for any nation alone to have defeated.
Berlin and Hamburg, maybe Frankfurt etc. would have met the same fate as Nagasaki and Hiroshima:
Tube Alloys - Wikipedia
 
Berlin and Hamburg, maybe Frankfurt etc. would have met the same fate as Nagasaki and Hiroshima:
Tube Alloys - Wikipedia
Aye, but if we didn't nail Hitler the war would have continued, IF the soviets had caved as I don't think the americans had enough bombs until 47-48. Didn't the dreadful little corporal actually point out in the bunker (Speer), that the German people did not deserve to survive, a lost war and hence Clausewitz.

I think we should be thankful for the red army, though I am concerned they have started to believe their own bulls**t and think they could have won the war alone. On that score, another fliegerkorp, or 3-5 more German Divisions from France would have made a world of difference at the outset of Barbarossa.
 
so why one and not the other as plausible? Just asking
It should be said that Khrushchov was not a key figure during Stalin's times. He was merely Stalin's clown and apparently Stalin didn't regard him as a real political contender (real ones were executed). But Khrushchev just was wearing a mask to fool others and being skilled in dirty political games reached the top postion quite unexpectedly for the political elite.
Is it possible that Stalin had confidentional conversations about important matters with Khrushchev without presence of others? Highly unlikely. Being removed from power by Brezhnev, Khrushchev tried in his memoirs to present himself as more important figure than he really was.
Anything in Khrushchov memoirs that was not confirmed by independent sources is not trusworthly for this reason especially taking into account the figure of the 'editor' who had own agenda being an American.
 
Memoirs of Nikita Khrushchev edited by Sergei Khrushchev published in 2004. The whole converstaion could be just a fruit of imagination of the 'editor'.
It is not trustworthly source. The son of former Soviet leader Sergei Khushchev emigrated to the USA in 1991 and in 1999 received US citizenship.
No one independent source confirms that such a conversation ever took place. And note, that 'edited' memoirs appeared almost 60 years after the end of the war.
I don't know of any reviewer who thought that Nikita Khushchev's memoirs were reliable. It is believed that they were created (dictated on tape actually) by Khushchev to settle scores and polish his image after he fell from power, much of it recorded decades after the supposed events. In his memoirs he is conveniently absent when any decisions which might reflect badly on him were made, he is courageous in the face of danger when others panic and cower in fear, and had no knowledge until long after the fact of events he didn't want to be known to be associated with. He was full of excuses as to why those things under his own command which went wrong were not his fault but instead would lay the blame for everything at the feet of Stalin. When there was a success however, he would claim credit for it.

This reviewer also believes that the memoirs were extensively edited and tampered with by other establishment figures, either in the Politburo or the secret police.
Khrushchev Remembers

In this document you can see some excerpts from the memoirs, including the section where he mentions aid which the Soviet Union received from the west (see the last three pages). To me what he appears to be doing there is to present himself as a truthful and modern reformer by giving credit to the western allies, while presenting Stalin (and by implication Brezhnev) as being churlish and untruthful in not doing so. He uses the opportunity to direct criticism at the current (after Kruschev's fall from power) leadership, which I suspect was the real intention of what he was writing about in this instance.
http://jfk.hood.edu/Collection/Weis...K Disk/Khruschev Memoirs Life etc/Item 24.pdf

I have quoted the relevant text below. Pay particular note to two things. One is "I don't think it's ever too late for a new generation which will soon replace the current leadership of our country". He is clearly talking about the end of the leadership of the people who drove him from power. His reasons for writing what he did are almost certainly as a means of directing criticism at them.

The other is the closing paragraph where he says that the western allies provided that aid to both "pulverize the enemy and weaken ourselves (the USSR) at the same time". This was almost certainly put in to provide "balance" so he would not be seen as offering too much praise to the western allies.

Nevertheless we must still give credit to the Allies for their contribution ot the common cause. In order to avoid excessive haughtiness, the people and the Party of the Soviet Union must be properly informed. Unfortunately our historical works about World War II have perpetrated an illusion. They have been written out of a false sense of pride and out of a fear to tell the truth about our allies' contribution - all because Stalin himself held an incorrect, unrealistic position. He knew the truth, but he admitted it only to himself in the toilet.

Telling the truth needn't have been a humiliation. Recognizing the merits of our partners in the war need not have diminished our own merits. On the contrary, an objective statement would have raised us still higher in the eyes of all peoples, and it would not in the least have diminished our dignity. But in this case truthfulness was unthinkable for Stalin. He tried to cover up our weaknesses. This was stupid. The enemy can always see for himself and analyse on his own. It's also possible that Stalin feared openness about the history of the war might have backfired on him personally. That's a different matter.

I don't think it's ever too late for a new generation which will soon replace the current leadership of our country to cast objective light on the beginning of the war. We must study the past in order not to permit in our own time those mistakes which were permitted earlier. To acknowledge the material aid we received in the past from our adversaries of the present doesn't have any bearing on the situation of today. We shouldn't boast that we vanquished the Germans all by ourselves and that the Allies moved in only for the kill. The English helped us and at great peril to themselves. They shipped cargo to Murmansk and suffered huge losses. German submarines lurked all along the way.

As Mikoyan confirmed to me after the war, we received military equipment, ships, and many supplies from the Americans. After Stalin's death, it seemed that all our artillery [still] was mounted on American equipment. I remember proposing "Let's turn all the automotive equipment we're producing over to the military because all the tractor mounts in our parade are American-made." Almost all the artillery in the G.D.R. (East Germany) was mounted on American Studebakers. I wanted only to stress how many cars and trucks we received from the Americans. Just imagine how we would have advanced from Stalingrad to Berlin without them!

In addition we received steel, aluminium, and food products in great quantities. I can't give you the figures because they're all locked away in Mikoyan's memory. There were many jokes in the army, some of them off-colour, about American Spam. It tasted good nonetheless.

I repeat, the Allies gave us this help neither out of compassion for our people, nor out of respect for our political system, nor out of hope for the victory of Socialism. They were facing a matter of their own life or death. They helped us so that our Soviet army would not fail, and so that, supplied with modern weapons, we would pulverize the enemy and weaken ourselves at the same time.
When Kruschev included something in his memoirs, it was there for a reason other than just out of a desire to record history. Later alterations by third parties would have added another layer of motivations on top of the original ones. Dates would have been altered, events fabricated or left out, and conversations conjured up out of thin air.

The memoirs likely give good insight into how Kruschev thought, but are a poor guide to objective history.
 
It should be said that Khrushchov was not a key figure during Stalin's times. He was merely Stalin's clown and apparently Stalin didn't regard him as a real political contender (real ones were executed). But Khrushchev just was wearing a mask to fool others and being skilled in dirty political games reached the top postion quite unexpectedly for the political elite.
Is it possible that Stalin had confidentional conversations about important matters with Khrushchev without presence of others? Highly unlikely. Being removed from power by Brezhnev, Khrushchev tried in his memoirs to present himself as more important figure than he really was.
Anything in Khrushchov memoirs that was not confirmed by independent sources is not trusworthly for this reason especially taking into account the figure of the 'editor' who had own agenda being an American.
Bearing in mind Kruschev was a Political Commisar on the front line, it’s certainly true that Stalin was psychotic enough to use him to fry the bigger fish. I’m old enough to remember K as president. The point is that Russia always approved what was for public consumption. According to wiki, his memoirs in part were smuggled to the west in 1970. In other words unexpurgated. However he was responsible for the Stalinist purges in the Ukraine and waited for Stalin to die to denounce him. Course you can always claim the Berlin Wall wasn’t his work.
 

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
I’m old enough to remember K as president
Do you remember,

There's a hold-up in the Bronx.
Brooklyn's broken out in fights.
There's a traffic jam in Harlem
That's backed up to Jackson Heights.
There's a scout troop lost a child.
Khrushchev's due in Idlewild.
Car 54 where are you?
 
Okay, that's a stretch. I'm sure your latest version of history books will have something to say about that.


How about Zhukov? Or is he not a trusted source?
Today [1963] some say the Allies didn't really help us ... But listen, one cannot deny that the Americans shipped over to us material without which we could not have equipped our armies held in reserve or been able to continue the war

The Significance of the Allied Lend-Lease Program and Soviet Victory during the Second World War
Also mentioned here, along with a telling snippet, which explains your stubborness:
Marshall Zhukov according to Weeks even goes on further to state that the Soviet government engaged in the calculated use of propaganda to systemically demean the importance of the Allied Lend-Lease Program, believing that it distracted from the heroism and sacrifice of the Soviet soldier and people.

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13518046.2014.963410?src=recsys
Of course we can see where your ideas come from. My bold:
It is telling of how Marxist ideology shaped the memory of Lend-Lease that one of the few organizations that still marginalizes or ignores US wartime aid to the Soviet Union is the Communist Party. On 21 July 2004, the communist Web site, In Defence of Marxism, published an article espousing the traditional Soviet ideological view of World War II. ‘In order to belittle the role of the USSR in the war’, the article argued, Western historians ‘exaggerate the importance of things like American Lease-Lend [sic] to the Soviet Union. This falsification is easy to answer’. Ignoring Stalin’s words to the contrary, the article went on to claim that ‘the Red Army had halted the German advance and begun to counterattack by the end of 1941 in the Battle of Moscow—before any supplies had reached the USSR from the USA …’ Thus, Lend-Lease ‘importance was marginal’. The Soviet’s victory was due to ‘the superiority of a nationalised economy and central planning …
Source: D-Day and the truth about the Second World War


I'm sure you'll say otherwise and that Khrushchev, Zhukov et al said no such thing and of course the Communist revision is correct ......
I had read Zhukovs memoirs 2 times - being a pupil and later being about 30yo. My views were shaped mostly by this book. In fact it is a history of the war from Soviet side told by the man who made the history himself.
Let's read Zhukov's book.
НА --[ Мемуары ]-- в Г. К. оминания и размышления
Касались мы в разговоре с Д. Эйзенхауэром вопроса о поставках по ленд-лизу. И здесь тогда все было ясно. Однако в течение многих послевоенных лет буржуазная историография утверждала, как и продолжает утверждать до сих пор, что якобы решающую роль в достижении нашей победы над врагом сыграли поставки союзниками вооружения, материалов, продовольствия.
We were talking in a conversation with D. Eisenhower question about the supply of lend-lease. And then everything was clear. However, for many post-war years, bourgeois historiography asserted, as it continues to assert until now, that the supply of weapons, materials and food by the allies played a decisive role in achieving our victory over the enemy.
Действительно, Советский Союз получил от союзников во время войны важные поставки для народного хозяйства— машины, оборудование, материалы, горючее, продовольствие. Из США и Англии было доставлено, например, более 400 тысяч автомобилей, большое количество паровозов, средств связи. Но разве все это могло оказать решающее влияние на ход войны? Я говорил уже о том, что советская промышленность достигла в годы войны огромного [385] размаха и обеспечила фронт и тыл всем необходимым. Повторяться нет смысла.
Indeed, the Soviet Union received from the allies during the war important supplies for the national economy — machines, equipment, materials, fuel, and food. For example, more than 400 thousand cars, a large number of locomotives, means of communication were delivered from the USA and England. But could all this have a decisive influence on the course of the war? I have already spoken about the fact that during the war years Soviet industry reached a huge [385] scale and provided the front and rear with everything necessary. There is no point in repeating.
Относительно вооружения могу сказать следующее. Мы получили по ленд-лизу из США и Англии около 18 тысяч самолетов, более 11 тысяч танков. К общему числу вооружения, которым советский народ оснастил свою армию за годы войны, поставки по ленд-лизу составили в среднем 4 процента. Следовательно, о решающей роли поставок говорить не приходится.
Regarding weapons, I can say the following. Under the Lend-Lease, we received about 18 thousand aircraft, more than 11 thousand tanks from the USA and England. To the total number of weapons with which the Soviet people equipped their army during the war years, lend-lease supplies averaged 4 percent. Consequently, the decisive role of supply cannot be said.
If the translation of Zhukov's book is correct and complete then you may find respective quotes in chapter 23.
 
I had read Zhukovs memoirs 2 times - being a pupil and later being about 30yo. My views were shaped mostly by this book. In fact it is a history of the war from Soviet side told by the man who made the history himself.
Let's read Zhukov's book.
НА --[ Мемуары ]-- в Г. К. оминания и размышления

If the translation of Zhukov's book is correct and complete then you may find respective quotes in chapter 23.
Zhukov’s quote I used is from an interviewer and the ‘4%’ I believe has been debunked. 30% of aircraft, 8% of tanks, nearly 50% of aviation fuel etc.

If you think it was negligible, that’s up to you.
 
I had read Zhukovs memoirs 2 times - being a pupil and later being about 30yo. My views were shaped mostly by this book. In fact it is a history of the war from Soviet side told by the man who made the history himself.
Let's read Zhukov's book.
НА --[ Мемуары ]-- в Г. К. оминания и размышления






If the translation of Zhukov's book is correct and complete then you may find respective quotes in chapter 23.
I see you are doing your normal trick of dumping lots of info in the hope that you will overwhelm the point, which was you said Soviet Russia could have beaten the Nazies on their own. But your own posts point out that they could not have as the technology and infrastructure was not advanced enough yet and Stalin's habit of killing the brains behind any needed advance in tech.

What happened to all those engineers who were working with the German tank school in Russia?
 
Zhukov’s quote I used is from an interviewer and the ‘4%’ I believe has been debunked. 30% of aircraft, 8% of tanks, nearly 50% of aviation fuel etc.

If you think it was negligible, that’s up to you.
Its probably 4% overall if you take it by number of units produced - After all if you compare 2700 Vaentine tanks against 2850525458525855 rounds for the Nagant? rifle - UK contribution of 0.0001004%** of war production is insignificant


**I didn't really do the maths
 
I had read Zhukovs memoirs 2 times - being a pupil and later being about 30yo. My views were shaped mostly by this book. In fact it is a history of the war from Soviet side told by the man who made the history himself.
Let's read Zhukov's book.
НА --[ Мемуары ]-- в Г. К. оминания и размышления






If the translation of Zhukov's book is correct and complete then you may find respective quotes in chapter 23.
Personally, I always thought Rokossovsky was the better general, than Zhukov. But anything written in the soviet era, will be subject to political considerations and as such can't be relied upon.

Your enemy constantly highlighed the massively improved mobility of the Soviet soldier by 1943 and whatever the good and bad qualities of the kit sent over i.e. matilda, valentines, airacobras. They freed up your own manufactured kit to equip your elite guards and armoured units.

The supplies, jeeps and trucks as you say fed the people and the tinned stuff would have ended up with your mobile troops. The crucial point I think you miss, is without that logistics your offensives would not have been able to go so deep, so quickly and in such large numbers and sustain that attack over a period of weeks and even months..

In a sense the german army lost mechanisation for most of its forces by 1942-1943.
The Soviet Army gained massively mechanised and became a copy of the German army with the added doctrine of deep battle, now actually possible.
 

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
In a sense the german army lost mechanisation for most of its forces by 1942-1943.
The Soviet Army gained massively mechanised and became a copy of the German army with the added doctrine of deep battle, now actually possible.
I've said this before. About 45 years ago I read an item that posited that German mechanisation peaked in 1943 around 50%.
 
I've said this before. About 45 years ago I read an item that posited that German mechanisation peaked in 1943 around 50%.
The vast open spaces and an army fast going backwards to WW1 static formations... The UK contribution is vastly underrated by both the americans and the russians, because they only see the finale, whilst we had endured every campaign season and stumbled over the finish line exhausted.
 

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