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> Soviets preparing their own invasion of Europe, Myth or reality?
Victor
Posted: May 18, 2005 05:43 am
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QUOTE (Indrid @ May 18 2005, 06:36 AM)
oh yeah, what a modern army. too bad he did not say" a modern army is a 10 million soldier army"...much closer to the truth.....

On 22 June 1941, the Red Army was 5.5 million strong, with 2.68 million deployed in the Western military districts, less than the Axis had near the Soviet frontier. The number of mobilizable personnel was around 12 million. A country that is preparing to invade its powerful neighbour would mobilize its entire forces available. Stalin had no intent to make war with Germany in June 1941. Several years later probably, but not then. Many of his divisions lacked the equipment they were supposed to have on paper and just a part of the thousands of tanks were actually serviceable.

The rapid success of the Germans on the frontiers were not dued to the fact that the Red Army had no defense plans. That is absurd. Any army has one, if not at least ten. During the first days of Barbarossa, the Germans managed to actually cut off communications between the Soviet command centers, jam their radio links and create a general state of confusion. This, coupled with the efficiency of the Wehrmacht and its slight numerical superiority, made possible the success of the initial border battles.
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Imperialist
Posted: May 18, 2005 06:37 am
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QUOTE (Dénes @ May 18 2005, 03:45 AM)
Here is a quote from an important speech of Stalin, done in front of the graduates of the military academy, at Kremlin: "The Red Army is a modern army and a modern army is an attacking army."
The date of speech: May 5, 1941.

It's not the proverbial 'smoking gun', but it pretty much sums up the would-be Generalissimus' strategical thinking six weeks prior to the war on East to start.

Gen. Dénes

The quote reflects the prevailing doctrine of the '30s, doctrine reenforced by the german successes.
The speech could be seen as something directed for foreign ears, but it certainly is not a political directive to start aggressive actions.

Also, the german preparations for Barbarossa show more preoccupations about eliminating an uncomfortable long term threat and the economic exploitation of the occuppied areas than about preempting an imminent attack.
If documents surface about soviet political decision to attack in 1941, then indeed by the weirdest coincidence Hitler could have beaten Stalin to the punch, but he certainly didnt do it on purpose. He had his own agenda.
Thats maybe why I dont get Suvorov's intention. This summer I'll read his book to see clearly what he wants to imply.

take care

This post has been edited by Imperialist on May 18, 2005 06:38 am
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Dénes
Posted: May 18, 2005 12:43 pm
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Force comparison between the Soviet forces on the Western front (under build-up) and the Axis forces on June 22, 1941.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Category Axis Soviet Ratio
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Manpower 3,300,000 German+600,000 Small Axis 2,900,000 1.3:1

Divisions 190 (153+37) 170 1.1:1

Of this nr. armoured div. 19+1 Rumanian (11% of div.) 60 (35% of div.) 1:3

Tanks 3910 (3648+262) 14,200 1:3.6

Airplanes 3576 (2598+978) 9200 1:2.5
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Total no. of Soviet armed forces on June 22, 1941: 4,901,852 men.
No. of additional Soviet divisions, under build-up: 66.

Of course, the quality of Soviet and Axis matériel was not always identical. Nevertheless, the table gives a good overall idea of the forces facing each other on the day Operation Barbarossa started.

Gen. Dénes

This post has been edited by Dénes on May 18, 2005 12:46 pm
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Dénes
Posted: May 18, 2005 03:21 pm
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QUOTE (Imperialist @ May 18 2005, 12:37 PM)
If documents surface about soviet political decision to attack in 1941...

I believe such a document won't surface, at least not in our times. The cause is that it would demolish the whole thesis of the so-called 'Great Patriotic War' Russian history is built upon. Therefore, no Russian historian would want/dare to release such a document. Even if such a direct order would somehow be published, it would be immediately labeled as a forgery and thus descredited.

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then indeed by the weirdest coincidence Hitler could have beaten Stalin to the punch, but he certainly didnt do it on purpose. He had his own agenda.

As I noted earlier, I don't think Hitler's attack plan was "pre-emptive", neither was Stalin's. In my perspective, it was not a "weird coincidence", but rather two plans running in parallel.

Gen. Dénes
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Imperialist
Posted: May 18, 2005 03:35 pm
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QUOTE (Dénes @ May 18 2005, 03:21 PM)

I believe such a document won't surface, at least not in our times. The cause is that it would demolish the whole thesis of the so-called 'Great Patriotic War' Russian history is built upon.

In my perspective, it was not a "weird coincidence", but rather two plans running in parallel.

Gen. Dénes

I agree with your first statement, the implication would be important.
On the second part, yes I too think the soviets would have eventually switched sides, but I think they still waited for the germans to commit their forces to something new. I dont know, maybe another Sealion attempt, or to try to carve out their colonies in North Africa/Middle East...
The soviets are pretty patient and shrewd, they knew they had a lot of aces in their hand, so they would have waited for the other side to make a move (good or bad).

Anyways, like I said, I cant wait to read Suvorov's case, and I'll post anything interesting or contradictory that I'll find.

take care
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Imperialist
Posted: May 19, 2005 05:14 pm
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There is certainly an influx of "what ifs" concerning WWII:

http://www.historia.ro/index.php?id=338
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Indrid
Posted: May 19, 2005 05:21 pm
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is Historia a reliable source of information?
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Imperialist
Posted: May 19, 2005 05:23 pm
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QUOTE (Indrid @ May 19 2005, 05:21 PM)
is Historia a reliable source of information?

I dont understand the question, Historia has nothing to do with it:

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istoricul rus Valentin Falin vine cu nişte investigaţii personale şi explicã motivele pentru care cel de-al Doilea Rãzboi Mondial a durat atât de mult şi cum ar fi putut el fi oprit, încã din 1943


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Indrid
Posted: May 19, 2005 05:28 pm
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well i believe it has a lot to do....i wanted to know if it is reliable. just a question. what's so difficult?
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Imperialist
Posted: May 19, 2005 05:50 pm
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QUOTE (Indrid @ May 19 2005, 05:28 PM)
well i believe it has a lot to do....i wanted to know if it is reliable. just a question. what's so difficult?

I thought you knew Historia... well, its reliable as Magazin Istoric or Lumea. People with some know-how publish there, or they publish foreign researcher's articles.
The question of reliability has to be asked for those that publish there and about what they publish, Historia simply hosts them there. I guess...
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Indrid
Posted: May 19, 2005 05:53 pm
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i knew it. the fact that it has cristoiu as director worried me and i never paid any atention to it, hence the question
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Imperialist
Posted: May 19, 2005 05:59 pm
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QUOTE (Indrid @ May 19 2005, 05:53 PM)
i knew it. the fact that it has cristoiu as director worried me and i never paid any atention to it, hence the question

Shouldnt worry about Cristoiu being the director. I bought several of his previously directed historical magazines, and there was nothing wrong with them.
Dosarele Istoriei No.8/2000 "1940-1945.Apa si Foc" was pretty interesting and well documented. A whole issue dedicated to the Romanian Navy in WWII.
From Historia I didnt buy any issue, true, but this time I will, after I saw its summary on the net. That "what if" intrigues me... :D

take care
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Iamandi
Posted: May 20, 2005 06:43 am
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I doubt about a preemptive german/axis attack, even if some writers try to convince the world, when in realitty they want to obtain attention, good selling and "senzational".
But, russians had prepared for war. This, i think nobody can say "no". Reasons are obviously a lot.

Iama
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Indrid
Posted: May 20, 2005 06:49 am
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they had prepared, ok. but were they any good at preparing?
with most of theri elite grinded by stalin, what was to prepare. and of course preemptive scenarios are ok these days given the american pushing the paradigm, but was it available back then as a political strategy? i do not believe that Hitler attacked russia becasue he was afraid of it, but becasue it was part of the greater plan. i think that Poland and western fronts were only a diversion from the greater pla, which was the eastern expansion, leading all the way to the Urals
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Iamandi
Posted: May 20, 2005 07:08 am
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think that Poland and western fronts were only a diversion from the greater pla, which was the eastern expansion, leading all the way to the Urals


Of course!

And, about

QUOTE
with most of theri elite grinded by stalin, what was to prepare


They had a large/huge mass of people, a lot of secaond wave leaders under the microscope. They had a lot of possibilitys, and manny mans to be choose as new leaders. I think Stalin had "brainhunters" who follow from "shadow" some capable people to elect from they rows new leaders.

Iama
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