Russian Article Downplays Allies WW2 Contribution

#1
Russia's and ex Soviet states' 9 May celebrations contrasts sharply with what seems to have happened in Britain and they take great pride in their victory over Nazi Germany. And so they should with all the endeavours they made and suffering they endured. On one RT programme I saw recently a hisorian's estimate of their war dead was about 26 - 31 million (I hope I remembered that correctly) which is up from the 22 million figure that was always the one I trotted out with.

A few articles have appeared in the Russian press some of which touch on the western allies contribtuion.

This one seems to downplay the western allies contribution:

http://english.pravda.ru/russia/history/113332-0/

I wondered if anyone knew how widespread this view was and if maybe KGB Resident could give us any comments.

This one here is give the allies more credit but as it's written by a Canadian I don't think it counts as a Russian view:

http://www.themoscowtimes.com/opini...lliance-of-spam-and-powdered-eggs/405539.html

Whilst we're at it, there may be resistance by the generals in reducing the number of skeleton formations and officer numbers.

http://www.themoscowtimes.com/opinion/article/preparing-for-world-war-iii/405767.html
 
#2
Pravda, now that's what I call a trustworthy source of information!
 
#3
No one can deny the sacrifice made by the USSR, however the Molotov–Ribbentrop secret shenanigans would make one think that the USSR had its own agenda regardless of the West's actions.
 
#4
Seems on the face of it a reasonable viewpoint....we, the western allies, would have had a bigger army to fight...but hey! There was only one nuclear power in the latter days. Would it have made a difference? Who knows? Would the Spams have used it in Europe? The pity of this argument is that the allies defeated the Nazis together and we should all recognise that fact, "let's not bicker about who killed who."

...and an old sailor friend of mine in the Merchant wouldn't have been sunk TWICE delivering material to Murmansk ....just when the Soviets needed it. Ok Seaman L**** T*** you did your bit, time to launch the Carley floats again.

Oh! And let's not forget the Russian collapse of 1917 when the whole of the German Army moved west and was defeated by...........the Western Allies.
 
#5
What do you expect from a state that denies the existance of WW2 for almost 2 years?

According to the Russians, the war only started in June 1941 when their allies the Nazis turned against them. Until then, they were enjoying the spoils of invasion and occupation.

The Russian people paid a heavy price in blood for the decisions of their leadership.
 
#7
What can I say? The author - Sergey Balmasov, a writer. I hear about him for the first time.

During Soviet times Pravda was a very influental newspaper but now it is a private owned tabloid. Something like the Sun or News of the World.

This photo is to the left from the text and likely illustrates the main theme of the newspaper.



As for the article itself then I haven't found factual mistakes. And some points made by the author are reasonable.

Each and every member of the anti-Hitler coalition made its priceless contribution to the victory. Former US Secretary of State Cordell Hull (1933-1944) said once that the USSR’s heroic struggle against Nazi Germany saved the allies.
Zemlyak said:
I wondered if anyone knew how widespread this view was and if maybe KGB Resident could give us any comments.
I believe that the mojority of the Russians (including me and the author) believe that

Each and every member of the anti-Hitler coalition made its priceless contribution to the victory.
As for the apparent fact that a contribution of the Soviet Union was the biggest, that the loses were huge then the Russians and all sane people agree with it.
 
#8
...Or "British press plays down Russian contribution", or "US press plays down everybody else's contribution and fails to explain why they turned up three years late", "French press makes excuses and blames the UK"...

All stories are ultimately local so the press write to match their readership. KGB Resident puts it well: Pravda is the local red top and, when the USSR did join in, I'm glad it was on our side
 
#9
KGB_resident said:
Each and every member of the anti-Hitler coalition made its priceless contribution to the victory.
As for the apparent fact that a contribution of the Soviet Union was the biggest, that the loses were huge then the Russians and all sane people agree with it.
Only a country coming into the war against Nazi Germany AFTER the Soviet Union could come up with that one. I'm not sure anybody living in western or eastern Europe would think similarly while the Soviet Union and Nazi German were frollicking hand in hand for almost 2 years.
 
#10
One of the great What If's? of History: who would have won if it had been a straight fight between the Ivans and the Nazis, with no other country involved?
 
#11
oldnotbold said:
...Or "British press plays down Russian contribution", or "US press plays down everybody else's contribution and fails to explain why they turned up three years late", "French press makes excuses and blames the UK"...

All stories are ultimately local so the press write to match their readership. KGB Resident puts it well: Pravda is the local red top and, when the USSR did join in, I'm glad it was on our side
If the Soviets hadn't been on the their side in 1939, Herr Hitler may not have marched into the Low Countries in the first place!
 
#12
Who cares, history is history, the boxheads lost, end of story.
 
#13
Wehrmacht losses on the Eastern front are reputedly claimed to be 75-80%, the Red banner was also the first allied flag to fly in Berlin so one can hardly blame Ivan for emphasising his role in the Great Patriotic War, theirs was fought on a vast scale. Kursk et al makes our efforts look quite superfluous.

Our greatest contribution to their victory was trucks & boots.

~D.C.
 
#14
KGB_resident said:
What can I say? The author - Sergey Balmasov, a writer. I hear about him for the first time.

During Soviet times Pravda was a very influental newspaper but now it is a private owned tabloid. Something like the Sun or News of the World.

This photo is to the left from the text and likely illustrates the main theme of the newspaper.



As for the article itself then I haven't found factual mistakes. And some points made by the author are reasonable.

Each and every member of the anti-Hitler coalition made its priceless contribution to the victory. Former US Secretary of State Cordell Hull (1933-1944) said once that the USSR’s heroic struggle against Nazi Germany saved the allies.
Zemlyak said:
I wondered if anyone knew how widespread this view was and if maybe KGB Resident could give us any comments.
I believe that the mojority of the Russians (including me and the author) believe that

Each and every member of the anti-Hitler coalition made its priceless contribution to the victory.
As for the apparent fact that a contribution of the Soviet Union was the biggest, that the loses were huge then the Russians and all sane people agree with it.
Hate to piss..not really..:D..on your fire..but as your G/Father/Father..??..(nothing personal) did my Paternal G/Father at Katyn I find your 'bullshit' boring..fact..you entered WW2 on the Nazi side...(I'll keep it simple...for the simple 'minds')...and were happy to go along with the division of Poland/Europe..but Hitler made his move(his mistake) you changed it to the war against 'Facisim' you did Poland(amongst others) no favours after '45'...no suprise that I feel little sympathy for the 'Russian sacrifice'..you might fool the 'idiots' on ARRSE but there are still enough 1st. generation Eastern Europeans alive to challenge your 'Soviet' lies..have a nice day, you Russian cnut..!!
 
#15
From Chris Donnelly, in 1979, I learned that in the last 6 weeks of WW2, the Red Army lost more dead than did the combined armed forces of Britain and America in the entire 6 (or 4?) years of the war.

I'd say they've got a point.
 
#16
What percentage of those losses were due to Suicidal Frontal Attacks backed by NKVD guns?

Or not allowing units to withdraw to more defensible lines?
 
#17
Werewolf said:
One of the great What If's? of History: who would have won if it had been a straight fight between the Ivans and the Nazis, with no other country involved?
I think that Germany will be defeated. Let's recall that Italy, Romania, Finland, Hungary, Slovakia sent its troops to the Eastern front. Even Spain sent so called "Blue division".

But German troops were defeated near Moscow in 1941 even being supported by their allies. It was the first strategical failure of German army in the WW2. That time the Soviet Union was not helped so hugely as later by US/UK. And Hitler had an ability to concentrate almost all his forces on the Eastern front.

But it happened. The German troops were defeated.

I guess that in our imaginaroty scenario only Germany vs USSR, the Soviet union would win. Likely the war would last longer. Soviet union I suppose would not be able to conduct so big offensive operations as in 1944/45. But step by step German military machine would be destructed.

I compare Germany with a sprinter who could run fast but would tire on big distancies. The Soviet union was much more better prepared to long run.
 
#18
An oft-rehearsed argument, this. Leaving aside dates, losses, arctic convoys, allied bombing of German industrial base, etc I think the best indication is the effort Germany had to put into maintaining the Eastern Front against the West.

See below:

http://www.axishistory.com/index.php?id=7288

I don't think the Russians are downplaying the Allied effort at all. Although not by choice, the Soviets bore the brunt of the fighting and had most to do with defeating Germany. I hate to think how long it would've taken to win if the divisional split had been reversed.
 
#19
BlueDanubeWalt said:
Hate to piss..not really..:D..on your fire..but as your G/Father/Father..??..(nothing personal) did my Paternal G/Father at Katyn I find your 'bullshit' boring..fact..you entered WW2 on the Nazi side...(I'll keep it simple...for the simple 'minds')...and were happy to go along with the division of Poland/Europe..but Hitler made his move(his mistake) you changed it to the war against 'Facisim' you did Poland(amongst others) no favours after '45'...no suprise that I feel little sympathy for the 'Russian sacrifice'..you might fool the 'idiots' on ARRSE but there are still enough 1st. generation Eastern Europeans alive to challenge your 'Soviet' lies..have a nice day, you Russian cnut..!!
Dear friend thank you for you thoughtfull, respectfull and polite message.

It should be said that my Grandmother Malwina Swarcewicz was born in Siberian village of Polozovo (there were about 80 polish families). In 1938 some her relatives were arrested and execute by NKVD as "members" of underground Polish military organisation - "Polska Organizacja Woiskowa"

Among them are Ivan Swarcewicz and Ignat Swarcewicz

http://www.uznal.org/book_of_memory.php?bukva=17&name=26&surname=114&repression=0
http://www.uznal.org/book_of_memory.php?bukva=17&name=26&surname=114&repression=1

By the way my Great-Grandfather was also Ignat Swarcewicz. He came to Siberia more than a century ago from Vilno region.

Yes, it happened. Yes it took place. But is it right that Russians should bear responsibility for Stalin's oppressions even more than half century after his death. I don't thnik that it is right.

Many my relatives (including polish ones) served in the Red army during WW2. My Grandfather who married a polish lass dies near Stalingrad. A brother of my Ukrainian granmother died near Polish city of Sandomir. Two other relatives both were badly wounded in East Prussia (one of then died shortly after that). Maybe it happened in the land that it belong to Poland now.

I don't think that it is right to use only black colour toward 600 thousand of Soviet soldiers (including my relatives) that rest in Polish land.

Let's ask ourselves, what would happen with Polish people if Hitler would defeat the Soviet union? Germanisation, enslavement, gettoisation, destruction.
 
#20
whitecity said:
oldnotbold said:
...Or "British press plays down Russian contribution", or "US press plays down everybody else's contribution and fails to explain why they turned up three years late", "French press makes excuses and blames the UK"...

All stories are ultimately local so the press write to match their readership. KGB Resident puts it well: Pravda is the local red top and, when the USSR did join in, I'm glad it was on our side
If the Soviets hadn't been on the their side in 1939, Herr Hitler may not have marched into the Low Countries in the first place!
Hi Whitecity!

In turn Poland was on the side of Germany then it invaded Czechoslovakia in 1938. Poland even annexed a part of Czechoslovakia.

Sorry it is in Russian (but the facts are well known)

http://www.hrono.info/sobyt/1938pol.html

May 1938. Poland deploy 3 divisions and a regiment of border guards on Czech border during conflict between Germany and Czecholsovakia.

21 May 1938. Polish ambassador in Paris told US ambassador that Poland would declare a war to the Soviet union if the USSR would attempt to sent troop to help Czechoslovakia.

27 May 1938. French FM told Polish ambassador that plans to divide Czechoslovakia between Germany, Hungary and Poland is not a secret.

19 September 1938. Polish ambassador in Berlin told Hitler that Polish government wish to liquidate Czechoslovakia as "an artificial entity".

20 September 1938. Poland and Germany signed an agreement about coordination of military actions against Czechoslovakia

22 September 1938. Poland declared an ultimatum to Czechoslovakia with demand to join to Poland lands with 'polish population'
Czechoslovak FM ask the Soviet union to influence Poland and help Czechoslovakia.

23 September 1938. The Soviet union warned Poland that non-agression pact between the countries would be nullified if Polish troops would enter Czechoslovakia.

30 September 1938. Germany, the UK, Italy, France sign Munich accord. Sudetes are transfered to Germany. Territorial claims by Hungary and Poland should be satisfied within 3 months.

1 October 1938. New Polish ultimatum. At evening polish troops enter Czechoslovakia.

2 Jctober 1938. Poland annexed the Czech territories with predominantly polish population.

Let's look at these events. Poland exposed itself as an ally of Germany. Now we know how it happened in the real life. But in 1939 it was quite possible that Germany could attack the Soviet union with Poland as an ally. Why not?

So without Soviet-German pact it was quite possible that Germany with Poland, Hungary, Italy, Slovakia, Romania would unleash a war against the Soviet union and from old Polish-Soviet border that was much close to Moscow. And what the UK and France would do? Declare a war to Germany? Unlikely.

Whitecity, that time territorial claims, usage of force was something usual in European politics. And polish politicians were not angels with snowwhite wings. They were able and even didn't try to hide it that the Soviet union is their natural enemy. Poland reserved right to annex territories with polish population. Thus it gave a moral right to the same actions toward itself, toward lands with not polish population.

WW2 began 1 September 1939. The countries that unleashed WW2 were Germany and Slovakia (with its 50000 troops).

The Soviet union acted in the Same way as Poland acted in 1938 toward Czechoslovakia. It annexed lands with predominantly Belorussian and Ukrainian population. Slovakia and Lithuania also participated in the division of Poland. Lithuania got Vilno area.
 

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