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Forgotten battles of WWII

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Captain Vancouver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Nov 2010 at 23:01
Originally posted by Constantine XI Constantine XI wrote:

Pikeshot makes a very good point about the New Guinea campaign, where the Japanese were for the first time successfully defeated strategically on land by the western Allies. It truly was an intense campaign, against a fanatical enemy in difficult terrain with nightmarish logistical considerations.

Speaking of forgotten battles, how about forgotten campaigns? One such is the Mid eastern campaign fought by Commonwealth troops (with Australians again making up a large part of the forces) to keep Iraq compliant and overwhelm the turncoat Vichy French forces in Lebanon and Syria. This campaign was strategically important. It relieved the Commonwealth forces in Egypt of the threat of fighting a two front war against their erstwhile French allies, and also ensured the supply of Mesopotamian oil.

However, the campaigns received zero to minimal coverage in the media at the time, and has received little recognition since. Publicising a campaign against a small player in Iraq on the one hand, and the formerly allied French on the other (we were trying to regain French cooperation with the Allies at this point so we could not be too triumphant in our attitude to besting them) was not seen as politically wise. But the professionalism of the troops involved and the strategic achievements they made for the war remain a solid fact.
 

Yes, the war against the Vichy French must be one of the most odd, and the most “forgotten” parts of WW2.

 

Some of these battles were quite serious, and lasted months. Commonwealth and later US forces fought the French in Dakar, Iraq, Syria, Madagascar, and North Africa. This was minimized at the time and for quite a while after the war.

 

This book provides a comprehensive history:

 

http://www.amazon.com/Englands-Last-War-Against-France/dp/0753827050/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1288997865&sr=1-1-fkmr0

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Captain Vancouver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Nov 2010 at 23:24

Surely one of the most bizarre and also forgotten episodes of WW2 was the employment of Japanese troops to “keep order” in Indochina and Indonesia at the end of the war. Although they were savage foes only days before, British and Commonwealth forces, spread perilously thin on the ground, rearmed the Japanese and used them in those locations.

 

By keeping order, what was really meant was that the Allied forces feared local insurgent movements, often with communist leanings, and certainly anti-imperialist leanings, taking over in the former European colonies. The British, French, and Dutch meant to have their colonies back at the end of the war, not only from the Japanese, but also from the various nationalist guerilla forces that had sprung up to fight the Japanese. There was a period of extreme uncertainty at the very end of the war as the Europeans were very much weakened, and East Asia was in turmoil.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Nov 2010 at 04:13
Hello to you all
 
One of the most forgotten campaigns was the British Ethiopian and Somaliland campaign against Italy. This was a big one involving tens of thousands of troops from both sides and even when the Italians were defeated they resorted to a long guerilla war making it one of the few bright spots in Italy's war record.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Nov 2010 at 15:45
Captain Vancouver, I don't think that post-war operations count as 'forgotten battles'. Besides, the Japanese were 'enlisted' in peace keeping operations only south of the 16th Parallel in Indochina (and south of the 38th Parallel in Korea).  As for the British wishing to keep their colonies, they were already committed to India's (ergo Pakistan and Bangladesh's) independence. And indeed, that was the major reason they were anxious to turn Indochina over to the French and get back to India. Japanese troops there were not only used in crowd control and security operations against guerrillas, but also against die-hard Japanese holdouts. There are a few reports of arriving French units running into Japanese die-hards in Indochina, but most such activity appears to have been outside Indochina, i.e., places like Burma and various Pacific islands. A fair number of Japanese believers in the Greater East-Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere did join the Vietnamese communists, and these included a small number of small tactical units. One reason underlying the use of surrendered troops was the rationale that: "Hell, we've got to provide for them until we can get the shipping to send them home, so we might as well get some use out of them."  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Captain Vancouver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Nov 2010 at 20:05

You may enjoy reading the book linked below lirelou. It documents the strangle machinations that took place as Japan crumbled, and the Europeans struggled to regain their previous hegemony. I was surprised by the extent that Japanese troops were co-opted to European purpose, and in how many countries.

 

 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Forgotten-Wars-Britains-Empire-History/dp/0713997826

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Nov 2010 at 15:50
Captain Vancouver, would that be "Forgotten Wars" by Christopher Bayly and Tim Harper?

I'm not sure that Japanese troops were 'co-opted for European purposes' considering that China too was an Ally, and involved in post-war pacification operations. I believe it would be more correct to state that Japanese troops were 'co-opted' for Allied purposes, though there is no record of the Chinese having used them.

I have not read "Forgotten Wars", but it certainly looks interesting. I assume the authors have explained that the unexpected capitulation of Japan (the bomb ended the war a year or two earlier than Allied planners had expected), coupled with the surrender of large components of an Army that had previously refused to surrender, placed the Allies in the position of stepping into a political vacuum that, the Americans at least, were totally unprepared for. In the case of Korea, they had no Korean linguists available to even interface with the populace, and of nineteen trained Vietnamese linguists, only one was in Indochina with the OSS.

To take Korea, as an example, In early August 1945, the Xth Corps under LTG Stillwell, a Chinese speaker, was earmarked to head up the occupation army in Korea. A month later, however, as the U.S. moved troops into Korea, the decision had been made to use XXIVth Corps instead. Several historians have noted that its commander, LTG Hodge, while an excellent combat general, was a poor choice to head up a military government in an former Asian colony on the cusp of independence.


Edited by lirelou - 07 Nov 2010 at 15:52
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sarmat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Nov 2010 at 18:27
Originally posted by Captain Vancouver Captain Vancouver wrote:

You may enjoy reading the book linked below lirelou. It documents the strangle machinations that took place as Japan crumbled, and the Europeans struggled to regain their previous hegemony. I was surprised by the extent that Japanese troops were co-opted to European purpose, and in how many countries.

 

 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Forgotten-Wars-Britains-Empire-History/dp/0713997826

 
Thanks for bringing this interesting subject in, Captain Vancouver. I was totally unaware of these events.
 
BTW, another interesting subject would be the use of Japanese colonial subjects like Koreans and Taiwanese at war.
 
This topic is also forgotten. I know that about 200 thousand Taiwanese Chinese were enlisted in Japanese armies during WWII.
 
 
Japanese also created commando units from Taiwanese aborigines to fight in jungles of SE Asia.
They were particularly useful since Taiwanese aboriginal languages belong to Austronesian group, so they were able to communicate effectively with locals in Phillipines and Indonesia. Also, possessing perfect survival skills they were indispensable for jungle warfare.
 
Some of those Taiwanese commandos stayed in junge until 1970th.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sarmat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Nov 2010 at 18:33
Here is an article I found about Koreans in Japanese army during WWII.
 
Seems that they got notoriety for cruel treatment of PoWs.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Captain Vancouver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Nov 2010 at 19:16
Originally posted by lirelou lirelou wrote:

Captain Vancouver, would that be "Forgotten Wars" by Christopher Bayly and Tim Harper?

I'm not sure that Japanese troops were 'co-opted for European purposes' considering that China too was an Ally, and involved in post-war pacification operations. I believe it would be more correct to state that Japanese troops were 'co-opted' for Allied purposes, though there is no record of the Chinese having used them.

I have not read "Forgotten Wars", but it certainly looks interesting. I assume the authors have explained that the unexpected capitulation of Japan (the bomb ended the war a year or two earlier than Allied planners had expected), coupled with the surrender of large components of an Army that had previously refused to surrender, placed the Allies in the position of stepping into a political vacuum that, the Americans at least, were totally unprepared for. In the case of Korea, they had no Korean linguists available to even interface with the populace, and of nineteen trained Vietnamese linguists, only one was in Indochina with the OSS.

To take Korea, as an example, In early August 1945, the Xth Corps under LTG Stillwell, a Chinese speaker, was earmarked to head up the occupation army in Korea. A month later, however, as the U.S. moved troops into Korea, the decision had been made to use XXIVth Corps instead. Several historians have noted that its commander, LTG Hodge, while an excellent combat general, was a poor choice to head up a military government in an former Asian colony on the cusp of independence.
 

Yes, that’s the book. In the broadest sense, I guess you could say that the Japanese troops were being used for allied purpose, but the French and the Dutch really didn’t mince words: they intended to return to a colonial regime, and wanted Britain to hold their place for them. Both of those countries were of course devastated from the war in Europe, and needed some time to get rolling. As things turned out, it was British and Commonwealth forces that ended up being the first into areas like Indonesia and French Indochina at the Japanese collapse.

 

The agreement, whether implicit or explicit, was that Britain would act as a temporary occupying force until the original colonial power returned. This was a problem however, as British forces were spread all over the world, and many in the ranks just wanted to go home. Not surprising really, five years of brutal war was enough. Diving into a new colonial conflict remote from national interests more than a bit of a stretch.

 

So rearming Japanese troops at that time may have seemed like an undesirable, but least worse choice to the powers that be. The mindset at this point was still that there would be colonial empires in the postwar world. The Americans were actually not too keen on this, although they were not keen on communism either.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2010 at 17:59
Captain Vancouver, in re:  "the French and the Dutch really didn’t mince words: they intended to return to a colonial regime"

That is not correct. Yes, there was support for just that in right wing French political circles. And there was support for an Independent Indochina in left wing circles. The center was divided. The real problem lay in France's post-war governments. Leclerc advised DeGaulle that, while Ho Chi Minh was a Communist and no friend of France, the fact that he was Vietnamese was enough to get him the support of enough of the population to make the war longer and more expensive than France could afford. DeGaulle's position was that, as head of a provisional government, he had no authority to determine Indochina's future. Legally, the Indochinese states were colonies or protectorates, and any political settlement needed to be in accord with the Constitution of the - then forming - 4th Republic's constitution.

The cold war took care of the rest, and many of the lines drawn on Indochina were oriented to mix of the Parties then in (very temporary) power. The French government did recognize Indochina's right to independence by 1950, and were hoping to keep them in association with France. After 1950, they were struggling to guarantee the existence of a non-Communist Vietnamese state, which the managed to do even after Dien Bien Phu.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2010 at 18:04
Originally posted by Captain Vancouver Captain Vancouver wrote:

"the French and the Dutch really didn’t mince words: they intended to return to a colonial regime"


That is not correct. Yes, there was support for just that in right wing French political circles. And there was support for an Independent Indochina in left wing circles. The center was divided. The real problem lay in France's post-war governments. Leclerc advised DeGaulle that, while Ho Chi Minh was a Communist and no friend of France, the fact that he was Vietnamese was enough to get him sufficient enough support among the population to make the war longer and more expensive than France could afford. DeGaulle's position was that, as head of a provisional government, he had no authority to determine Indochina's future. Legally, the Indochinese states were colonies or protectorates, and any political settlement needed to be in accord with the Constitution of the - then forming - 4th Republic's constitution.

The cold war took care of the rest, and many of the lines drawn on Indochina were oriented to mix of the Parties then in (very temporary) power. The French government did recognize Indochina's right to independence by 1950, and were hoping to keep them in association with France. After 1950, they were struggling to guarantee the existence of a non-Communist Vietnamese state, which the managed to do even after Dien Bien Phu.


Note that De Gaulle was out of power by early 1946 (the war did not break out until very late 1946) and, if memory serves, there were 36 governments overturned in the 8 years of the war, only 20 of whom actually managed to take power. That was hardly a stable base upon which to rest a foreign or even war policy.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2010 at 18:12
Just finished a most excellent book by David Glantz on operation Mars. The gigantic nature of this operation and how the Soviets managed to keep it hidden from historians for so long is just perplexing. The Red army was only a battalion away from a crushing victory that would have changed the course of WWII but the resiliance of the Germans was just amazing. The Soviet's determination to fight to the last man was also admirable particularly the cavalry division that refused to surrender and lived isolated behind enemy lines in the snows and forests of Central Russia untill they broke out a month later.
 
Truely a forgotten battle of WWII.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Jan 2014 at 13:28
Originally posted by Two Tail Lion Two Tail Lion wrote:

Here is an amazin battle:

Battle of Wizna also called Polish Termopylae.

720 Polish soldiers against 42 200 Germans.

40:1 video (60:1 is more true number).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AoQj8GGHNxU


I was sure to find these battle hereLOL
Forget about what you have heard. If you are Polish I would recommend you to read Dr Tomasz Wesołowski about it. I don't know his book, but just parts from it and it seems to be quite close to reality. Who ever counted the German troops included everyone nearer than 100s of kilometres. The german attack was interrupted by the Wizna river, due to the lack of bridges, which were destroyed and a lack of available engineer bridges. When this problem was solved, the German troops rolled on and the bunker line was destroyed within a day by relatively small German troops. The Polish defender in great majority escaped. Ragunis, the commander, was maybe even killed by his own soldiers.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Goral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Jan 2014 at 00:48
Originally posted by beorna beorna wrote:


Originally posted by Two Tail Lion Two Tail Lion wrote:

Here is an amazin battle:

Battle of Wizna also called Polish Termopylae.

720 Polish soldiers against 42 200 Germans.

40:1 video (60:1 is more true number).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AoQj8GGHNxU



I was sure to find these battle hereLOL
Forget about what you have heard. If you are Polish I would recommend you to read <span ="st">Dr Tomasz Wesołowski about it. I don't know his book, but just parts from it and it seems to be quite close to reality. Who ever counted the German troops included everyone nearer than 100s of kilometres. The german attack was interrupted by the Wizna river, due to the lack of bridges, which were destroyed and a lack of available engineer bridges. When this problem was solved, the German troops rolled on and the bunker line was destroyed within a day by relatively small German troops. The Polish defender in great majority escaped. Ragunis, the commander, was maybe even killed by his own soldiers.</span>

Well, what a good example of misleading information.
Just for the record;
1.     To my best knowledge no book of dr Tomasz Wesolowski has been ever published. There was same rumble by provincial historian who, most likely wanted to make his name to be noticed and used David Irving methods. But it must be said that the Battle of Wizna was a minor engagement in comparison to other Battles of September 1939.
2.     There is no river “Wizna” in Poland so the German advance could not be interrupted by such a river. So author of above post even did not bother to look at the map to familiarise himself with the terrain. look at; http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1a/Battle_of_Wizna.png

Just for clarification, Wizna is a town on the northern shore of Narew ,not a river.
3.     The German advance was stoped by river Narew after Poles blowed the road bridge (Narew is rather small tributary of Vistula river, with unusual low level of water due to exceptionally dry weather in 1939, approx. 30-50 m wide) . Due to limited frontage, only part of German force could be deployed, most likely 4000 to 5000 troops maximum, probably less. Remaining German troops were idling waiting for construction of the bridge. So 700 (or similar) vs 40000 is out of proportion, however entire German XIX (aprox 420000 strong) corps was stopped for 3 days as a result of the blockade of crossing across Narew River.
4.     German could not build the pontoon bridge as the river was under fire from Polish   bunkers. Guderian XIX Corps (comprising 4 divisions-3 Panzer Division, 10 Panzer Division, 2 motorised Infantry Division, 20 motorised Infantry Division). Each German panzer division has attached Pioneer Battalion comprising 3 Pioneer Companies and 1 motorised Bridge Column. Each Bridge Column included 2 pontoon platoons. The two platoons together could assemble 130 m of floating bridge supporting 4 ton load ,80 m 8 ton floating bridge or 50m of 20 ton bridge. Guderian had to his disposal 2 of such Bridge Columns in each panzer div and 2 Eng, Battalions (one in each Motorised Div.).
5.     The pontoons could be also assembled in 16 or 20 t ferries providing that the crossing was unopposed.
6.     Frustrated by delays in bridge construction, Guderian took personal control of the advance   and used method as per quote below;

“Guderian surrendered himself to the Americans on 10 May 1945. Although he remained a prisoner until 1948, he was not tried for war crimes, though the Polish government protested. At the Battle of Wizna, Guderian threatened to execute Polish POWs if the Polish commander did not surrender; since none were actually executed, the incident was dismissed as a bluff employed by Guderian.”
After this threat, the Polish garrison capitulated.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1a/Battle_of_Wizna.png


Edited by Goral - 24 Jan 2014 at 00:55
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Jan 2014 at 12:40
Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:



Well, what a good example of misleading information.
Just for the record;
1.     To my best knowledge no book of dr Tomasz Wesolowski has been ever published. There was same rumble by provincial historian who, most likely wanted to make his name to be noticed and used David Irving methods. But it must be said that the Battle of Wizna was a minor engagement in comparison to other Battles of September 1939.

I can't remember the name. But I tried to order it and it was possible, but only in Polish. I can read some Polish, but a whole book was too much for me. may I find the title.
All those who ever wrote about the battle are historians, influence by Polish nationalism or communism. They should be blamed, not Weselowski. But you are right, Weselowski was heavily attacked, especially by nationals for his book.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

2.     There is no river “Wizna” in Poland so the German advance could not be interrupted by such a river. So author of above post even did not bother to look at the map to familiarise himself with the terrain. look at; http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1a/Battle_of_Wizna.png

Yes, I beg one's pardon. of course only the towns name was Wizna and the river the Narew.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

Just for clarification, Wizna is a town on the northern shore of Narew ,not a river.
3.     The German advance was stoped by river Narew after Poles blowed the road bridge (Narew is rather small tributary of Vistula river, with unusual low level of water due to exceptionally dry weather in 1939, approx. 30-50 m wide) . Due to limited frontage, only part of German force could be deployed, most likely 4000 to 5000 troops maximum, probably less. Remaining German troops were idling waiting for construction of the bridge. So 700 (or similar) vs 40000 is out of proportion, however entire German XIX (aprox 420000 strong) corps was stopped for 3 days as a result of the blockade of crossing across Narew River.

The first part is indeed correct. But the 3rd Tank division e.g. was more than 70km away. So the attack of Guderian's corps was delayed, but due to the destruction of the bridges and a lack of pontoon bridges, not because of the bunker line. For the main attack on the bunkers, the germans used only I/IR86, parts of the PR 8 and the 2/FlakAbt 71. So rather a several hundred men, an Infantry battalion, a few tank companies with PzI and II and some AAs.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

4.     German could not build the pontoon bridge as the river was under fire from Polish   bunkers. Guderian XIX Corps (comprising 4 divisions-3 Panzer Division, 10 Panzer Division, 2 motorised Infantry Division, 20 motorised Infantry Division). Each German panzer division has attached Pioneer Battalion comprising 3 Pioneer Companies and 1 motorised Bridge Column. Each Bridge Column included 2 pontoon platoons. The two platoons together could assemble 130 m of floating bridge supporting 4 ton load ,80 m 8 ton floating bridge or 50m of 20 ton bridge. Guderian had to his disposal 2 of such Bridge Columns in each panzer div and 2 Eng, Battalions (one in each Motorised Div.)
 5.     The pontoons could be also assembled in 16 or 20 t ferries providing that the crossing was unopposed. .

Problem was not hostile fire, but the lack of the engineer units at the river. And there were several different places which had to been crossed. There were as well heavy fights at Lomza.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

6.     Frustrated by delays in bridge construction, Guderian took personal control of the advance   and used method as per quote below;

“Guderian surrendered himself to the Americans on 10 May 1945. Although he remained a prisoner until 1948, he was not tried for war crimes, though the Polish government protested. At the Battle of Wizna, Guderian threatened to execute Polish POWs if the Polish commander did not surrender; since none were actually executed, the incident was dismissed as a bluff employed by Guderian.”
After this threat, the Polish garrison capitulated.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1a/Battle_of_Wizna.png

maybe, he threatened this, maybe it was a bluff, maybe it was an Polish invention.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Goral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Jan 2014 at 17:44
sorry that I did not answer sooner but the other posts were more important to attend.
I'm somehow surprised that you have so low opinion about such German Ggenerals as Guderian-XIX corps commander and his divisional commanders;
3 Panzer Division Generalleutnant Leo Geyr von Schweppenburg
10 Panzer Division Generalleutnant Ferdinand Schaal
2 motorised Infantry Division General der Artillerie Paul Bader
20 motorised Infantry Division General der Infanterie Mauritz von Wiktorin.
If I would have to believe your posts, they put their bridging and engineering units at the ends of their columns of advance. This will be a drastic violence of basic tactical rules unworthy of such commander as Guderian and his divisional peers. They obviously knew about such obstacles as Narew River with covering fortified regions only about 50 km from German/Polish border and they knew that they will have to exercise opposed crossing of this obstacle and still leave their bridging equipment at the end of column? Unbelievable.....

Additionally, you mention about same additional crossing in the XIX corps line of advance. Could you be more specific? could you name this place(s)?


Edited by Goral - 26 Jan 2014 at 17:48
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Jan 2014 at 19:00
Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

sorry that I did not answer sooner but the other posts were more important to attend.
I'm somehow surprised that you have so low opinion about such German Ggenerals as Guderian-XIX corps commander and his divisional commanders;
3 Panzer Division Generalleutnant Leo Geyr von Schweppenburg
10 Panzer Division Generalleutnant Ferdinand Schaal
2 motorised Infantry Division General der Artillerie Paul Bader
20 motorised Infantry Division General der Infanterie Mauritz von Wiktorin.
If I would have to believe your posts, they put their bridging and engineering units at the ends of their columns of advance. This will be a drastic violence of basic tactical rules unworthy of such commander as Guderian and his divisional peers. They obviously knew about such obstacles as Narew River with covering fortified regions only about 50 km from German/Polish border and they knew that they will have to exercise opposed crossing of this obstacle and still leave their bridging equipment at the end of column? Unbelievable.....


The 10th PD was first at Lomza region and got on morning september 8th the order to take the bridge at Wizna. The 3rd Army sended already short before the ALA to Wizna.

At 4.50 the ALA arrived at Kosaki after heavy fighting. The ALA reported 9 KIA and 26 WIA. They also lost 10 scout cars.

At 6.30 the 10 PD started to attack Wizna. I/Rec.Rgt 8 tried to cross the Narew but was struck back.

Before the 10P could arrive, the bridge was destroyed by the Poles.

In the afternoon Infantry and engineers of the 10 PD crossed the narew and build a bridgehead. They were supported by 2/FlakAbt 71 which fired with their 2cm AA at the bunkers.

At the morning of september 9th I/IR86, after an air attack on the bunkers, attacks since 6.30 the bunkers and is able to take some bunkers, but not those of the main bunker line.

On september 9th around 7 o'clock the 10PD and the brigade Lötzen were commanded to Guderian's XIX AK.

At 8 o'clock it was reported to Guderian, that the attack of I/86 was stopped.
Guderian ordered to bring the PR 8 across the Narew. But the bridge was not ready, so the PzI and PzII was carried by ferries across the river, while the PzIII and IV had to wait, untill the 16to-bridge was ready.

Since 14 o'clock the attack went on. Already at 17 o'clock the bunkers at Kurpicki were taken. At 18 0'clock the most bunkers were taken too and I/86, parts of PR 8 arrived at a line Kurpicki-Perkusy.
At the same time other parts of the PR 8 had taken a bridge at Strekowa Gora. On september 10th the 10PD crossed that bridge to continue the attack southwards.

For the building of the bridges:
The brige was started on september 8th, during the night and it was ready at 11 o'clock a.m. on september 9th. But because the attack of I/86 failed in the morning already at 8 o'clock, Guderian ordered the PzI and II to be transported by ferries. A bridge for the PzIII and IV, which were given to the 4th and 8th company was not build till that time.

The PR 8 was not the only one which had to cross a river. I don't know if it was in this situation, but it was at that time and in Guderian's corps, that a bridge was ordered to be built and another commander ordered the bridge in his area. So the bridge was rebuild and when Guderian came to cross the bridge at the place he ordered, he was not amused. So such things happen.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

Additionally, you mention about same additional crossing in the XIX corps line of advance. Could you be more specific? could you name this place(s)?

I don't know what you want. Can you explain it?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Goral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Feb 2014 at 06:40
Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

6.     Frustrated by delays in bridge construction, Guderian took personal control of the advance   and used method as per quote below;

“Guderian surrendered himself to the Americans on 10 May 1945. Although he remained a prisoner until 1948, he was not tried for war crimes, though the Polish government protested. At the Battle of Wizna, Guderian threatened to execute Polish POWs if the Polish commander did not surrender; since none were actually executed, the incident was dismissed as a bluff employed by Guderian.”
After this threat, the Polish garrison capitulated.



Beorna wrote;
maybe, he threatened this, maybe it was a bluff, maybe it was an Polish invention.




Well, the 10 Panzer Division  at Battle of Wizna tretened to shoot al polish POW (Gen Guderian leading formation at this battle). They  used similar treatment of opposing forces during crossing of Meuse in May 1940. (we can say that it was somehow "refined")
To conquer the French strongpoint, they use human French POW shield. These episode is very well documented by historians  but you will probably discard it as a French "invention" anyway.


Edited by Goral - 13 Feb 2014 at 23:12
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Feb 2014 at 08:09
Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

6.     Frustrated by delays in bridge construction, Guderian took personal control of the advance   and used method as per quote below;

“Guderian surrendered himself to the Americans on 10 May 1945. Although he remained a prisoner until 1948, he was not tried for war crimes, though the Polish government protested. At the Battle of Wizna, Guderian threatened to execute Polish POWs if the Polish commander did not surrender; since none were actually executed, the incident was dismissed as a bluff employed by Guderian.”
After this threat, the Polish garrison capitulated.



Beorna wrote;
maybe, he threatened this, maybe it was a bluff, maybe it was an Polish invention.




Well, the 10 Panzer Division  at Battle of Wizna tretened to shoot al polish POW (Gen Guderian leading formation at this battle). They  used similar treatment of opposing forces during crossing of Meuse in May 1940. (we can say that it was somehow "refined")
To concuer the French strongpoint, they use human French POW shield. These episode is very well documented by historians  but you will probably discard it as a French "invention" anyway.

feel free to show your evidence!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Goral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Feb 2014 at 22:56
There is a lot of sources but you could refer to "Dunkirk_The Fight to the last man" by Sebag-Montefiore. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Arlington Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Feb 2014 at 00:17
Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

There is a lot of sources but you could refer to "Dunkirk_The Fight to the last man" by Sebag-Montefiore. 
 
It's a good source but any of the work done by Ian Kershaw, Hans Mommsen, RJ Evans and Omer Bartov; all noted era historians, also enumerate the brutalities of the Nazi thugs. And deflect the revisionist's homage (Sturmer-Nolte-Hillgruber) still ascribed to the post 80-90's syndrome of the Whermacht as the 'good force'.
 
The Wehrmacht were implictiy involved in the perpetration of warcrimes and violations of the GHC to include the use of human shields. For those who incline to believe other review the sources.Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Arlington Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Feb 2014 at 00:21
Originally posted by Arlington Arlington wrote:

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

There is a lot of sources but you could refer to "Dunkirk_The Fight to the last man" by Sebag-Montefiore. 
 
It's a good source but any of the work done by Ian Kershaw, Hans Mommsen, RJ Evans and Omer Bartov; all noted era historians, also enumerate the brutalities of the Nazi thugs. And deflect the revisionist's homage (Sturmer-Nolte-Hillgruber) still ascribed to the post 80-90's syndrome of the Whermacht as the 'good force'.
 
The Wehrmacht were implictiy involved in the perpetration of warcrimes and violations of the GHC to include the use of human shields. For those who incline to believe other review the sources.Wink
 
ps. there is also the work done by Jurgen Forster and Christain Leitz.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Goral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Feb 2014 at 04:42
Originally posted by Arlington Arlington wrote:

Originally posted by Arlington Arlington wrote:

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

There is a lot of sources but you could refer to "Dunkirk_The Fight to the last man" by Sebag-Montefiore. 
 
It's a good source but any of the work done by Ian Kershaw, Hans Mommsen, RJ Evans and Omer Bartov; all noted era historians, also enumerate the brutalities of the Nazi thugs. And deflect the revisionist's homage (Sturmer-Nolte-Hillgruber) still ascribed to the post 80-90's syndrome of the Whermacht as the 'good force'.
 
The Wehrmacht were implictiy involved in the perpetration of warcrimes and violations of the GHC to include the use of human shields. For those who incline to believe other review the sources.Wink
 
ps. there is also the work done by Jurgen Forster and Christain Leitz.

We should also add Jochen Bohler - German historian of the new generation.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Arlington Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Feb 2014 at 05:00
Another good source. Indeed and thanks for reminding me. For those who dont know him he is in wiki; but here's another site ref him. http://www.ucd.ie/warstudies/publications/jochenbohler/
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Feb 2014 at 08:54
War crimes of the Wehrmacht are well known and part of a lot of research and as well widely discussed in public. The literature above is just a little part of it. Even if it not allways the best.
That doesn't avoid the question, what of the alleged war crimes did really happen, what was common, what single exceptions and at least which war crimes were committed in the same way by allied troops.
Newest research by historians from former allied countries, such like Antony Beevor, Pullitzer-price winner Rick Atkinson, James J. Weingartner, Bradley A. Thayer, John W. Dower, Justin M. Harris, Niall Fergusson, Simon Harrison, and several other has shown, that the number of war crimes by western allies was huge. It just seems, that these research has till now not became common knowledge of the public. Indeed, a denial and palliation of crimes by the own side is widely outlawed in Germany, while it is still widespread in western countries, Poland, Russia and other countries.
Because these claim will come certainly, my statement doesn't mean, that western allied war crimes were on the same level as those of Nazi-Germany, even those of the soviet Union did not match with crimes of Nazi Germany. Nevertheless follow the most war crimes of all wwII soldiers the same rules, dehumanisation, frustration, brutalization. Human shields, the deliberately killing of civilians, forced labour, rape, killing of POWs is not limited to Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS or other German units, but was committed by all armies. The only exception here is mutilation and trophy hunting, which is AFAIK limited to mainly US units.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Arlington Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Feb 2014 at 11:17
I do not dispute your central premise. Never have. I've known better for a long time.
otoh you do admit that the level and numbers commited by allied forces pale in comparison to the Nazi's and Japanese. So at this point at least your not in the revisionist camp.
 
As for trophy hunting etc...that then becomes a matter of definiton as their remain inummerable sources stating that the Japanese did it China and Korea and elsewhere if you define it as forced sexual slavery-rape and mutilations are concerned. Like wize there are sources that indicate the Soviets did it as well.
 
 
So it is not exclusively and American sin. Nor is it unique to that era. This stuff has been going on a very long time. And that's the problem with revisionists and naysayers. They dont want to admit it nor generally do they look at the history of it in context or objectively. But generally only to promulgate an agenda that suits their own viewpoint.
 
A few sources:
 
 
see also: The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II by Iris Chang
 
 
 
 
For those who haven't looked at Weingartner's work:
personal.psu.edu/faculty/c/a/caw43/.../Weingartner,%20James%20J..pdf
 
 
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Feb 2014 at 12:57
Originally posted by Arlington Arlington wrote:

I do not dispute your central premise. Never have. I've known better for a long time.
otoh you do admit that the level and numbers commited by allied forces pale in comparison to the Nazi's and Japanese. So at this point at least your not in the revisionist camp.

If we look to the evidence historians were able to collect, then we generally have to differentiate between more or less three main wars. First the war in the west, then the war in the east and the Pacific theatre.
The western war is as well divided into a first phase in 1939 and mainly 1940 and a second phase in 1943/44 (if I may include Italy). During the first phase the crimes were relatively low and both sides. of course were allied soldiers not in the situation to face civil resistance. So the crimes in that phase are a very few brutalities against civilians and some atrocities against POWs. Here it is difficult to say who did what first. Did germans react on mainly by colonial troops committed crimes or is it the other way around?
The second phase was far more brutal. The fights were much more lethal, so the frustration grew, especially Germans and Americans who fought in the east and the pacific theatre were disinhibited and brutalized. Dishumanisation by politicians on both sides did the rest. In these phase the resistance in France and Italy grew as well, so that germans committed more and more crimes as well against civilians, which became victims of retalliation. POWs were shot. Here it meanwhile seems, that the Allied crimes outnumbered those of the germans.
The pacific theatre and the eastern european theatre, as well the balkans are completely different. On the pacific theatre the Japanese had already fought for years a brutal war against the Chinese and Koreans, which they considered as less worthy. So when the americans came, they faced already brutalized Japanese and the racist attitude of Americans against "Japs" let it escalate, so that the Pacific theatre is not unlike the eastern european theatre.
The best-known war is probably those of the eastern theatre. It is as well the most brutal war. The people inside the Soviet Union were already brutalized by decades of soviet repressions and terror waves. When the germans attacked the SU both sides didn't spare the enemy and the civilians. The soviets destroyed or brought away the food and cattle. The Germans weren't interesting in feeding a hostile population. Both sides killed from the beginning POWs.
The greatest difference between the Germans and the allies is the extermination program, mainly against the Jews, Sinti and Roma and as well a more or less brutal politics against some slavic populations (not all), e.g. as well in combination with the anti-partisan fights.
When I went to school I learned, that germans killed 1.7 million Yugoslavians e.g. Today we know, that these number was exaggerated. Today we know, that it was around a million that died. And from these number one has to subtract the few hundreds of thousands of victims of the Ustasa itself and the victims of Ustasa and Italian warfare, together with victims caused by the Cetniks and the Tito partisans.
 
Originally posted by Arlington Arlington wrote:

As for trophy hunting etc...that then becomes a matter of definiton as their remain inummerable sources stating that the Japanese did it China and Korea and elsewhere if you define it as forced sexual slavery-rape and mutilations are concerned. Like wize there are sources that indicate the Soviets did it as well.
 
 
So it is not exclusively and American sin. Nor is it unique to that era. This stuff has been going on a very long time. And that's the problem with revisionists and naysayers. They dont want to admit it nor generally do they look at the history of it in context or objectively. But generally only to promulgate an agenda that suits their own viewpoint.
 
A few sources:
 
 
see also: The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II by Iris Chang
 
 
 
 
For those who haven't looked at Weingartner's work:
personal.psu.edu/faculty/c/a/caw43/.../Weingartner,%20James%20J..pdf
 

I know, that it shall have happened among Japanese too. I am not aware of such trophy hunting by Soviets. So I would still support my claim, thattrophy hunting was mainly an american custom.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Goral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Feb 2014 at 13:35

I can not and I will not accept the attitude of comparing, even remotely, German crimes vs allied crimes.

1. The scale of crimes were incomparable and never should be put om the same line of any historical discussion.

2. The German crime was committed by State. The participants were actively encouraged to commit these crimes with assurance of impunity.

3.Western Allied war crimes were committed by individuals and they were subject to punishment. If the punishment not always was executed, it was mostly due to enormous German crimes witnessed by Allied  commanders.

4.Rusian crime are incomparable to the orgy of   killing and destruction experienced by Soviet citizen from German invaders.

 

 

But the most important is the basic fact that it was Germany who started this war and it was Germany to start the mass killing of conquered nation. Saying that so many Yugoslavian has been killed by  Ustashi forces is misleading. They will be not created without German aggression and destruction of Yugoslavia as well as active German support for this ethnic cleansing..

In General, there will be na war crimes without German aggression on neighbouring countries.

There will be no destruction of German cities without destruction of Warsaw, Coventry and many other cities in Europe.

Finally, there will be no Hiroshima without Pearl Harbour.

 

There is a proverb in my country “he who sows the wind, reaps storms” .

 

Germany and Japan are fully responsible for starting the war and  they are fully responsible for everything what happened afterwards. It is as simple as that.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Feb 2014 at 15:06
Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

I can not and I will not accept the attitude of comparing, even remotely, German crimes vs allied crimes.

In total I do not disagree with you. The holocaust and the brutal warfare in the east with its great cnsequences for the population, the killing of Soviet POWs are indeed exceptional. I don't think that this is disputed.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

1. The scale of crimes were incomparable and never should be put om the same line of any historical discussion.

Here I agree widely. Incomparable is indeed the number of victims and concerning the holocaust and the anti-partisan warfare they are as well incomparable in the methods. I disagree if we look on the common war crimes. The mass killing of POWs was common in the east for both sides. And as we become aware now seems, was it very common among western allies. There is no doubt, that germans did it too, but there are just a few cases known and that maybe by Waffen-SS.
Concerning POWs only ca. 8000 western allied POWs died in german camps, a great number during the marches in the end of the war. The numbers for dead German POWs in western allied captivity are between 30 and 80.000. And in the east 3.3. million Soviet POWs died in german captivity (out of a number of 5.7m), while it were 1.1 million germans out of ca. 3 million.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

2. The German crime was committed by State. The participants were actively encouraged to commit these crimes with assurance of impunity.

Yes, that is widely correct. One question would be then of course, what is more condemnable? Crimes of criminal regimes or those of democratic states?

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

3.Western Allied war crimes were committed by individuals and they were subject to punishment. If the punishment not always was executed, it was mostly due to enormous German crimes witnessed by Allied  commanders.

That is absolutely not correct. These crimes against germans were usually neither persecuted nor was it due to German crimes before. In general allied soldiers had the same motives for war crimes as Germans had.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

4.Rusian crime are incomparable to the orgy of   killing and destruction experienced by Soviet citizen from German invaders.

That is as well not disputed. What we must say is, that the vast majority of crimes was indeed committed by a few units. The Einsatzgruppen e.g. were just a few thousands. Of course there were thousands of policemen and units from the Waffen-SS and the Wehrmacht as well.

 

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

But the most important is the basic fact that it was Germany who started this war and it was Germany to start the mass killing of conquered nation. Saying that so many Yugoslavian has been killed by  Ustashi forces is misleading. They will be not created without German aggression and destruction of Yugoslavia as well as active German support for this ethnic cleansing..

That is partly true. But we have to seperate here between guilt and responsibility. germans are not guilty for Ustasa and Italian crimes on the Balkans. They are guilty for their own crimes and responsible for all.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

In General, there will be na war crimes without German aggression on neighbouring countries.

Yes, that is true. But it is no excuse for war crimes of the allied nations.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

There will be no destruction of German cities without destruction of Warsaw, Coventry and many other cities in Europe.

If you mean that german cities would not have been destroyed, if Germans hadn't start the war, then you are right. If you use the bombing of cities like Warsaw, Rotterdam, Coventry and others as excuse for the bombing of German cities, you are wrong. British bombers attacked German cities from the first day of the war and it were the allies who first deliberately chosed civilians as main target.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

Finally, there will be no Hiroshima without Pearl Harbour

yes, and this is an excuse for the nukes, although the war was already won by the USA and the japanese ready for surrender?

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

There is a proverb in my country “he who sows the wind, reaps storms” .

 Sorry, that is a stupid attempt to palliate the own behaviour.

Originally posted by Goral Goral wrote:

Germany and Japan are fully responsible for starting the war and  they are fully responsible for everything what happened afterwards. It is as simple as that.


Responsibility is something else than guilt!


Edited by beorna - 14 Feb 2014 at 15:24
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Arlington Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Feb 2014 at 05:30
Actually responsibility and guilt are not synomous. Responsibility springs from individual, state or collective actions that can be contextually defined as being in violation of individual or state and or collective codes of conduct, treaties, conventions and international law; in this case, prescribed for an armed conflict.
 
Guilt is a psychological condition based on violations of moral and or ethically recognised standards of behavior.
 
For more on Russian atrocities see either Jan T. Gross or Carroll Quigley.
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