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cancerballs69420 t1_j7le898 wrote

Hitler thought Britain would make peace at some point during the blitz


Nyghtshayde t1_j7mcbok wrote

All we remember now is Britain's resistance, but there were absolutely people who wanted to sue for peace. It's understandable but it's fortunate that Churchill really had a handle on Hitler and knew that this was basically a war to the end, either now or later.


cancerballs69420 t1_j7menl5 wrote

Say what you will about Churchill but he really nailed the whole WW2 thing


unknownintime t1_j7mltgp wrote

Some folks know how to deal with bullies.

It's just unfortunate that it's incredibly difficult for them to stop treating everyone that way once the bully has been beaten.


hallofmirrors87 t1_j7mxw9v wrote

Considering Churchill LOVED bullying the colonized, he’d know Hitlers playbook to a t.


kawhi_2020 t1_j7moz3y wrote

His highest priority was the preservation of the British Empire. The whole Mediterranean campaign from North Africa to Italy was about British control of the routes to India, not about defeating Germany. Churchill wanted US-UK joint attack to go through the Balkans and try to hit Germany from the southeast to get there before the Soviets did. America had to negotiate to attack Italy instead, which was not strategically relevant to the main war.

It was also Churchill's decision to continue exporting food from India to build stockpiles while people in India starved to death. There wasn't a food shortage in Britain but he helped make one in India.

He deserves credit for the things he did like keeping Britain engaged but he did not "nail' the whole thing. He made plenty of mistakes and oversights.


quarky_uk t1_j7msocl wrote

I am pretty sure the Med campaign was because Italy was much easier to assault (and an easier place to open up a second front, which the Soviets were crying out for), and also because I think there was oil in the Middle East.

No need to make up conspiracies.


Fireantstirfry t1_j7mpufy wrote

It's always really nice seeing a balanced and objective comment regarding Churchill. So refreshing.


the_better_twin t1_j7ms9rw wrote

I mean you just have read about Gallipoli to know he wasn't infallible and made plenty of mistakes. It is very easy to judge someone with the benefit of hindsight however.


Nonions t1_j7mwmi6 wrote

In fairness about Gallipoli, I don't think they actually followed through with Churchill's actual plan. If they had steamed through and just taken the losses in old obsolete battleships it might have worked with considerably fewer deaths.


kawhi_2020 t1_j7mxcis wrote

Roosevelt judged Churchill accurately at the time. Churchill was an imperialist and Roosevelt (while certainly always pushing American political and commercial interests) did support the independence of India and other colonial territories.

De Gaulle was another imperialist that Roosevelt didnt like too much, but agreed to work with (though certainly not at the level of Churchill, for practical reasons).


Andrew5329 t1_j7mrr5v wrote

> exporting food from India to build stockpiles while people in India starved to death.

In fairness, 70 years after the end of the British Raj this hasn't really changed. About 40% or children under 5 in India still experience stunted growth from malnutrition, about 20% experience wasting from starvation, and about 800k children die from starvation, double that if you include malnutrition related disease.

Roll back to 2000 and the figures were much higher.


Jackanova3 t1_j7mx1qm wrote

You're making the opposite point you think you're making.


Kronzypantz t1_j7mneg6 wrote

This is still just nostalgia baiting.

No British government was going to make peace with Hitler on any terms that made Britain second fiddle to Germany. No Greater Germany, no Lebenstraum, no colonial concessions. Any of these would mean Britain being eclipsed as the leading superpower in Europe.


thebardbecoming t1_j7muid0 wrote

>All we remember now is Britain's resistance, but there were absolutely people who wanted to sue for peace. It's understandable but it's fortunate that Churchill really had a handle on Hitler and knew that this was basically a war to the end, either now or later.

The foresight required to make that decision.. incredible.


cavendar t1_j7msn44 wrote

I’m not sure that’s entirely accurate. There was a debate amongst the Nazis about how to proceed. One side wanted to attack both East and west. The other wanted to set up a treaty of sorts with Britain while they attacked to the east. Hitler in his hubris made the grievous error of attacking both at once, severely diluting his attack forces. Read the story of Rudolf Hess and his daring escapade into Scotland. He was the second in command (basically the equivalent of vice president) under Hitler and then after he defied Hitlers wishes he was basically written out of the story. If Hitler had thought or wanted Britain to make peace he wouldn’t have attacked them the way he did and the whole Hess incident never would have happened.


Wheredoesthetoastgo2 t1_j7mljt8 wrote

That's forcing submission. The question asks more of a ,"yep, that's enough Europe..."


cancerballs69420 t1_j7mndxu wrote

Pretty sure there were some cases where hitler wasn’t trying to force submission. In the period before the blitz I remember reading hitler wanted to end the war in the west so he could focus on the east. Then the blitz was an attempt to force that submission when England didn’t do it on their own


SigerMakkerMeget t1_j7mq8c3 wrote

The blitz was intended to force the RAF to fight the Luftwaffe, in the hopes of destroying it. That would have given Germany free reign over the English Channel, opening a route for a naval invasion.

But since Germany couldnt break the RAF, there would be air cover for the Royal Navy, making an invasion utter suicide.


Arkslippy t1_j7mx7j2 wrote

That's what they teach kids in school history in Britain, but the actual fact is that Germany had no way of crossing the channel, especially with the Royal navy fully in the game, the luftwaffe was worn from the campaign in France and Poland as well as mechanically stretched after the first few weeks of the Battle of Britain, tye narrative has been, the raf were struggling and were saved by the change to bombing cities, but they actually had more aircraft available then than they did at the start, no hitlers error was attacking them at all, instead of pausing for a while and trying to negotiate, but Britain had Germany blockaded too.

Lots of ifs and buts


Wheredoesthetoastgo2 t1_j7mnkjf wrote

Either way with him on the upper hand. Can't have a messiah complex and get a bum deal, now.


cancerballs69420 t1_j7mnsey wrote

Messiah complexes are lit tbh. Must be a hell of a life thinking that way all the time


Wheredoesthetoastgo2 t1_j7mo17c wrote

I mean if I survived an active bomb assassination I might start having some thoughts...


Stormfists t1_j7mqkfo wrote

And he almost won. The RAF was on the brink of collapse when Hitler ordered the blitz to be reduced significantly. A lot of experts say that another 4 months of massive bombardment would have eventually crippled Britain's air defences and meant a land invasion was potentially possible, supported by massive air drops.


Hattes t1_j7mte5j wrote

It's fascinating to me that their intelligence was so bad, they didn't even know this (if it's true).


Stormfists t1_j7mtue8 wrote

I'm English and have watched a LOT of WW2 documentaries. This factor has always fascinated me. If Britain had capitulated then Churchill would have had zero influence over Roosevelt. I'd probably be speaking German now if they'd have persisted.


TRex19000 t1_j7mv2td wrote

Doubtful, Soviet Union and USA still existed and partisans.


Stormfists t1_j7mvqiw wrote

The US wouldn't have got involved without the persistence of Churchill's personal relationship with Roosevelt, even despite Pearl Harbour - the US would have just focused on Japan. And by that time Hitler would have directed every resource to the Russian offensive, and even probably paid Britain for their tanks, resources, and aircraft... bare in mind the total capitulation of the French essentially bolstered the German war machine significantly - the same would have happened with Britain. Also, Mussolini would have probably supported too given Italy wouldn't have had issues in the Mediterranean, and Franco could have been pursuaded to throw the Spanish navy behind the German offensive. People underestimate just how significant Britain holding out made such a difference to WW2. It really is a remarkable story, albeit I wish it was just a story... Unfortunately it actually happened.


raymondcy t1_j7mxer2 wrote

> the US would have just focused on Japan

I don't buy that. By the time Pearl Harbor happened the entire world knew what was at stake. Hitler had to be defeated at all costs. Japan was formidable and not to be taken lightly but I think the main US goal was always Germany / Europe.


Stormfists t1_j7mxrfw wrote

I have contemplated the same but for me my opinion comes down to the question of... how would have the US waged a war with no European foothold?... there is zero way they could have staged a landing such as Normandy without a significant allie like Britain had they folded to German rule.


sean_psc t1_j7mxg0u wrote

This is not at all true. The Blitz wasn’t even targeting British air defence, and it was extremely ineffective at anything beyond killing civilians.


External_Zipper t1_j7lhir1 wrote

Perhaps humanity is lucky that Hitler was uncompromising and deluded by his belief in the so called "force of will". Had he been more strategic and connected to facts rather than believing his own propaganda, he may have found a way to some sort of compromise to pause the war in the west while he retooled Germany for a world war before Barbarossa. The outcome be may have been different, a stronger Germany, perhaps a more developed nuclear program. I'm sure that this has been the subject of numerous dime store novels.


FreeNoahface t1_j7mkh88 wrote

At the end of the day basically every alt history scenario where the Germans are more successful in WWII boils down to "if only the Nazis weren't Nazis, then they could have won."


Reynbuckets t1_j7mmhfd wrote

Yeah. You would need an entire philosophical retooling in order to have them take different actions. Otherwise they wouldn’t be the Nazis as we know them.


SgathTriallair t1_j7ms5e5 wrote

This is the core problem with authoritarians. They rule by giving everyone to say that they are the smartest person in the world. This leaves them insane to gather new facts or challenge their assumptions. This eventually they hit the wall of reality and fail.


VegaIV t1_j7mfkvu wrote

I don't think you got this right. Hitler actually wanted to make peace with england, after france was defeated. Thankfully enlgand was smart enough to not make Peace.


WhenceYeCame t1_j7mipsm wrote

You'd have to go further back to the point before Hitler broke so many treaties that his word became worthless. At which point... he's probably too constrained by treaties to do what he did. I wouldn't discount things going different if he'd done everything slower though.


Swamp_Dweller t1_j7mlkav wrote

Well, it would be harsh to leave Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland fighting alone. Though they would have the commonwealth to help.


TyroneLeinster t1_j7mthfh wrote

If I’m not mistaken, Hitler wanted Britain to make concessions in said peace, not just cease fire and maintain the status quo. Though I could be wrong


Wonckay t1_j7mhr76 wrote

No, there was basically no way Germany could do what it did without its control of Europe being unacceptable to Britain. People need to remember that Britain in 1940 was not just another European power like it is today, it was an international superpower and the largest and most populous country on earth.


PM_ME_UR_THONG_N_ASS t1_j7mjzqj wrote

Somehow I picture today’s Britain being on Shark Tank:

“And for that reason, I’m out”



UnscarredVoice t1_j7mug5f wrote

The British version of Shark Tank is called The Dragon's Den if I remember correctly.


MazzyStarsBiggestFan t1_j7mtjx7 wrote

Wow Britain at one time controlled 23% of the worlds population, or more than 412 million people. Thats insane!


PartyLikeAByzantine t1_j7mkyln wrote

Germany's nuclear program was a disorganized shit show. It wasn't even a program, so much as a funding source for various unconnected (and competitive) research groups.

The only way you get a German bomb before the Allies glass Alamogordo is by going a lot further back than the battle of France. Even then, I don't see how the Nazis don't chase out all of their best scientists, kneecapping themselves from the get go.


skylinenick t1_j7mqpny wrote

We’re definitely ‘lucky’ that his ego overshadowed his advisors, virtually all of whom were more competent than him.

A Nazi Germany led in spirit by Hitler but actually commanded by the generals would have been… very very bad for everyone else


moxiejohnny t1_j7mf1g8 wrote

All the meth probably didn't help him. That and peer pressure are amazing at showing a person's true colors.


shalol t1_j7mru56 wrote

Germany got to the point it did in the war *because* Hitler was ruthless. But they couldn’t turn back and just make peace, because of it.


TyroneLeinster t1_j7mtyu2 wrote

I have wondered if Hitler had been able to anticipate the power of atomic weapons, if he would have waged the war differently. The German bomb program was missing resources but had plenty of brain power. There’s easily an alt history where they prioritize maintaining just enough peace to work on that unencumbered, and then the Cold War takes place with Germany rather than USSR as the main nemesis to the west


iMattist t1_j7limil wrote

Maybe if they didn’t attack Russia they could have forced UK to negotiate a peace ,that was Hitlers’a plan, but after the involvement of Russia was clear that the UK could endure longer, when the US got involved the Allies victory was a certainty, just a matter of time.

Said that, some Allied Generals didn’t want to destroy Germany, they were much more preoccupied with Communist Russia than with the Germans.

At the end of the war it was a mad rush to take as much territory as possible before the Russians.


MrMoogyMan t1_j7lmfpy wrote

I think the UK's unwillingness to surrender was the key. Even if the USSR did not get invaded by Hitler (an unrealistic scenario given Hitler's ego), the UK would hold on with logistical support from the Anglosphere and material from the Americas. Germany would have had to escalate naval presence to prevent this, and that would provoke the US into involvement. I think had not Japan done Pearl Harbor, I believe it was only a matter of time before German u-boats and public outrage drew the US into active conflict with the Nazis. Escalation did really seem inevitable.


Doortofreeside t1_j7lpkii wrote

The what if I'm particularly curious about is if the Japanese attacked the Soviets instead of Pearl Harbor


Raging-Fuhry t1_j7miqyc wrote

They did attack the Soviets at Khalkin Gol.

The poorly equipped and led IJA (which had been stripped of a lot of funding and manpower by the IJN) got totally obliterated by Soviet far eastern forces.

Japan immediately brokered a ceasefire with the Soviets, which the USSR held until they invaded Manchuria and the Kurils in '45.


OrangeSlimeSoda t1_j7mk91r wrote

The Japanese also simply didn't have the manufacturing base to create tank and anti-tank weaponry that could go toe-to-toe with the Soviets. The air forces performed well and the Soviets were unnerved by the ferocity of the Japanese infantrymen (even if they were less than impressed by Japanese army tactics), but Japan's logistical and manufacturing limitations meant that they simply could not succeed in a prolonged offensive against the Soviets on land.


Raging-Fuhry t1_j7mmbsi wrote

It's worth noting that the VVS still lost less airmen than the IJA, and the otherwise outdated I-16 fighter was a good match against Japanese planes since it's light armament could still damage the lightly armoured IJA planes, and it was just as maneuverable.


MrMoogyMan t1_j7lr0vc wrote

They had planned on it iirc but realized that they would be not have a strategically viable position because of their overextension and the threat from the US. I don't think it's easy to speculate what a IJA invasion of eastern USSR would look like. Would it take pressure off of Hitlers Wehrmacht? Or would it have pushed the US to strike first? The IJN surely would have been very upset about it, and had already thrown their weight around to get rid of Matsuoka in Jul 1941. Japanese military internal rivalry sabotaged a lot of strategic ground operations and planning. I think it would have been disastrous for Japan, regardless of the Soviet response.


cliff99 t1_j7m7imu wrote

Plus attacking the Soviet Union wouldn't have done anything for one of their major problems, which was getting a reliable source of oil.


[deleted] t1_j7mb9yu wrote



MisterBadGuy159 t1_j7moygu wrote

There's an account that Admiral Yamamoto, who led the attack on Pearl Harbor, told his higher-ups that he could guarantee six months where he could actually take home victories, and if the war went on past that, they were screwed. Six months to the day after Pearl Harbor, Japan lost four fleet carriers at the battle of Midway.


treetown1 t1_j7mp0ip wrote

They were working off of the Russo-Japanese war experience - where Tsarist Russia stopped fighting after Mukden and Tsushima.


MrMoogyMan t1_j7mbl83 wrote

I agree. There are oil fields in eastern Russia but they weren't well developed then. They would have never been able to sustain an occupation of the territory in the USSR while holding the rest of their gains in China and SW Asia against the Allies. Maybe the US may have just entered the war on its own at that point. Roosevelt was certainly convinced that war was on the way, and prepared as well as he could for it. Pearl Harbor was basically a gift to the US government for public support against Japan.


TheLateHenry t1_j7m34hx wrote

Yeah, the Japanese Army was stretched thin because of how big China is already, the Soviet Union would have been an impossibility for them to conquer much of.


[deleted] t1_j7mf2l5 wrote



OrangeSlimeSoda t1_j7mjsfp wrote

A lot of colonial subjects in Southeast Asia were cautiously optimistic about the Japanese invading and granting them independence, even if they were satellite states to the Japanese Empire. The quickly learned the unfortunate lesson that the Chinese and Koreans had learned in prior decades.


ErrolFuckingFlynn t1_j7mkecr wrote

I'm very curious as to your reasoning on this. Being shitshow bastards to the Chinese was a pretty integral part of the reasoning behind invading China in the first place.


SirJudasIscariot t1_j7ml7jp wrote

I highly doubt the Chinese would’ve willingly rolled over and accepted Japanese occupation. The Western colonial powers had been repeatedly humiliating them for a century, the British especially, pushing drugs on them so the British could sustain their local and national economy. The two Opium Wars were fought for this reason. And then Japan and China fight for Korea, which had always been in the Chinese sphere of influence, and when Japan won, the other nations began raping their country even more. The last Emperor lost his reign, a new leader became a tyrannical despot, warlords ruled the country and did their own thing, Chiang Kai-shek and Mao Zedong had their political and military battles, and most of Eastern China was a war-torn or corrupt mess. The Japanese just stepped in and played whoever would let them have their territorial conquests. Would the Chinese accept Japanese rule? Only at gunpoint, and only because the Japanese were strong enough and terrible enough to enforce it. Most of the Japanese war crimes were committed in this country because they adopted Western ideas of racism and applied it to the Chinese. It’s a complicated situation, and those Chinese that bowed to Japan did so for power, wealth, security, or because they had no choice, and Japan brutally oppressed them anyways.


Alexexy t1_j7muzly wrote

Japan could have assumed the centuries old imperial China bureaucratic structures, cut deals with warlords/the republic, and as long as they left the peasantry alone or at least let them do whatever they want i doubt they would have a mass uprising. It's not like the republic of China was a very popular political force among the peasantry either.


Aanar t1_j7mlub3 wrote

Good point. Japan already had Manchuria set up as a puppet for themselves in 1936.

China got a lot of arms sent to them. If Japan hadn't been so ruthless, they probably would haven't been sent so many.


Masterzjg t1_j7mq6gq wrote

You can't separate Japanese culture and society from the way they treated conquered peoples.


Kaiser8414 t1_j7mlwmt wrote

Just because Poland keeps getting conquered doesn't mean they were rolling out the red carpet for Germany and Russia in 1939.


Alexexy t1_j7mue1c wrote

Of course most people weren't gonna be ok with it, but the Japanese can probably assume the old diplomatic structures and most normal people would have been ok with whatever is going on unless affects their day to day lives.

But nope, they gotta rape women and bayonet babies.


Vilrek t1_j7mujro wrote

I think the unspoken point was that China's history of being conquered was like, eventually they eclipse their conqueror/assimilate them anyway, such as the Mongols or Manchurians, though I don't think that would happen here, as those two were intent on incorporating China as a whole, while the Japanese mostly just wanted the resources/manpower, like India was to the UK, except a "bit" harsher


treetown1 t1_j7mpbi7 wrote

Often times people forget this - but ironically computer wargames like Strategic Command World at War shows the massive comittment of troops and material to China and how it dwarfed the IJA committment elsewhere.


TyroneLeinster t1_j7mt7q8 wrote

I think at best it would have sped up Russia’s capitulation had the Germans been more successful and pushed Stalin past the urals as he had anticipated. But given that the Wehrmacht stalled where it did, I don’t think a Japanese eastern front would have moved that needle significantly


SirJudasIscariot t1_j7mib25 wrote

They did and it didn’t fare well for them. There’s a reason Southeast Asia was called the Southern Resource Area. Manchuria, Siberia, and parts of Mongolia were the Northern Resource Area. For seven years, sporadic conflicts and fighting broke out between the Soviets and the Japanese, and while the Soviets suffered more casualties, the Japanese were repeatedly defeated and had to sign a neutrality pact once they lost all the Soviet and Mongolian land they had taken. Nearly 60,000 people became casualties in this border conflict. It was also where Georgy Zhukov gained his first experience commanding large formations of troops in battle.


Aanar t1_j7mkny9 wrote

I realize it's a game and not the most historically accurate, but I've been trying things in Hearts of Iron IV to help whet my imagination for "what if X did this instead?

If you play Japan, it's hard to put enough pressure on the Soviets if you go into Vladivostok into Siberia. There's just so little infrastructure and supply that there isn't a way to push quickly. A small enough army to not have supply issues, and it can't push. Big enough to push quickly or blitz and you quickly leave your supply lines behind.

There's also not a whole lot there that helps Japan and Japan really is hard pressed for resources, not just oil and rubber, but even just steel. Yes there is oil in Siberia now, but it wasn't discovered/developed in that era.

Rather than Siberia, it works better as Japan to attack the Soviets through Iran and then push into the Caucasus. It gets oil for you and your friends and takes most of the Soviets away, crippling them. Iran itself has a little developed, and the caucuses are the next best source after Texas.

Edit: can't reply since the thread is locked. In response to Masterzig, yeah I should have added attacking Iran only really works as Japan if you do it without getting bogged down in a war with China and stay at peace with Britain as long as possible (since British controlled Pakistan borders Iran). Take Iran, then just wait until Germany launches Barbarosa. You're right you aren't taking on the Soviet army by yourself, but it's enough to tip things toward forcing the Soviets to surrender. I don't see it being very realistic for the Axis and Japanese to cooperate that closely though - they never did IRL.

I don't know what Japan's landing craft capabilties were like. They captured many of China's ports while at war with them, so must have had something. Iran doesn't have much in 1936-1945, so invading Iran is pretty doable. I don't see any situation where Japan would have done that thoguh since they were just focused on thing nearer to them in the Pacific. Iran does have some oil fields though, which Japan really needed. Biggest issue is it's so mountainous it takes a while to get through to the Soviet border and British India/Pakistan is then in between your forces there and Japan. The oil fields Iran does have are enough to get Japan by for a while. And the politics (in the game at least) are such that nobody really cares if you take Iran in 1937.


Masterzjg t1_j7mr1gd wrote

Japan doesn't have the capability to attack USSR through Iran. It's "better" in a tabletop sim kind of way.

The real problem is that the Japanese Army was no match for the Soviet Army.


sly0824 t1_j7mhpsk wrote

What would the reason have been for Japan to attack the USSR instead of America at Pearl Harbor? The Americans (and to a lesser extent the British) were threatening Japan's goals of conquering the resource rich areas of southern Asia and the south Pacific. Attacking and destroying the Soviet Pacific fleet - which was puny compared to the American one - wouldn't have achieved anything for the Japanese.


TyroneLeinster t1_j7msj97 wrote

Japan’s land army was no match for the Soviets. Even being stretched thin in the west, it likely wouldn’t have taken much commitment to severely limit japan’s gains in the East.

I suspect it’s quite likely that as Japan decimated its own resources trying to invade Russia, Roosevelt would have eventually found a casus belli and started a war in the pacific on his own terms. The fear of this exact thing is why Japan attacked Pearl Harbor in the first place.


tigre200 t1_j7m0588 wrote

Most persons forget that the UK was not just the set of islands it is now. The war would hinge on North Africa and the middle east. If the germans got a secure hold on egypt and palestine, the British would eventually be forced to surrender to stop the bloodshed.


MrMoogyMan t1_j7m6z7p wrote

I disagree. Even if Hitler and Mussolini succeeded in holding North Africa and the Middle East, the UK would have continued resistance. Hitler would have needed to take naval superiority from the UK and somehow dissuade international support to the isles without provocation. Hitler also failed to sustain an effective strategic bombing campaign over the British isles and did not succeed in pressuring the British through direct flights over their homeland.


MarcusXL t1_j7mdxvr wrote

Luftwaffe was built to support the ground troops, not conduct strategic bombing campaigns. Hitler demanded it do both, and it cost them dearly.


MrMoogyMan t1_j7mew0m wrote

It also didn't help that instead of smartly attriting the UK's air-military-industry to gain total air superiority, Hitler ordered a campaign of terror against the people of Britain, who were far more resilient than what Hitler believed.


SirJudasIscariot t1_j7mmd6q wrote

When the Battle of Britain began, the Luftwaffe focused exclusively on the RAF, hitting airbases, shooting down aircraft, knocking out air defenses, basically trying to gain air superiority. The RAF was pushed to the breaking point, and it wasn’t until Bomber Command struck Berlin that Hitler changed priorities from striking military targets to bombing London on a daily and nightly basis. This is when the Luftwaffe lost the battle. They had almost gained air superiority and had to throw it away to strike at civilian targets.


MrMoogyMan t1_j7mr4h4 wrote

It wasn't that close to defeat; British production was still out producing German in aircraft and the notion that the RAF was going to fall was bad intel, wishful thinking by the German high command or deliberate mildec. I think it's a bit overdramatic to claim the RAF was at its breaking point when most airfields remained operational and the military industry still buidling replacements. The British had solid air defense and early warning radar, international pilots, and plenty of juice left to punish the Luftwaffe.


Tianxiac t1_j7mxr9i wrote

The RAF at the breaking point but hanging on and defeating the germans in a miracle is part of UK ww2 myth and romanticism.


Masterzjg t1_j7mrr1v wrote

It was the first war to allow for mass destruction via air power - hindsight 20/20 on what was a "bad" idea and what was a "good" idea.


MrMoogyMan t1_j7mtdh9 wrote

Some maxims military strategic theory transcend accessible technologies, and the fact that Hitler (thankfully) sucked at military strategy was no secret to his own high command. There's no hindsight to be had here when his own contemporaries saw the looming failure of his military operations.


Masterzjg t1_j7mtzwo wrote

>There's no hindsight to be had here when his own contemporaries saw the looming failure of his military operations.

Except the Allies also debated whether strategic bombing worked. So yes, you're defining hindsight bias.

As for "the generals", of course they blamed Hitler for any mistakes. What are they going to do, blame themselves? Lol.


MrMoogyMan t1_j7mwdz4 wrote

Are u here to have a productive and informed conversation or can I just block u now?


Cetun t1_j7m5zzk wrote

Great Britain itself probably could have eventually defeated the Nazis regardless of how much territory they gained in Russia. Given their colonial Empire and the support of the Commonwealth and the industrial backing of the United States, they just had too many men and resources that Germany couldn't have matched. In a war of attrition Britain would have won no matter what, at tremendous costs of course.

What Great Britain ended up doing was going into debt to the United States and giving up half of Europe to the Soviet Union so they could mostly sit the war out. At the end of 1941 the Polish government in exile was still in London and the Soviets had installed their own government. Britain's guarantee of Independence of Poland had little to do with Britain's concern over Polish sovereignty and had more to do with a grudge between them and Germany. In the end they didn't care who defeated Germany as long as Germany was defeated. So in 1939 they had this enormous Empire and strategic allies in Eastern Europe, and 20 years after World War II they were still in debt to the United States, had lost most of their empire because of promises made to the United States to decolonize, and the The entire Eastern Europe was now occupied by Soviet forces with various public governments.


the_better_twin t1_j7miv4f wrote

The claim that Britain "mostly sat out the war" is possibly one of the most egregious claims I've read on Reddit. Well done.


ErrolFuckingFlynn t1_j7mkwkp wrote

Indeed. The Commonwealth nations were killing fascists at just about every latitude on the planet. Not sure what the hell this argument is supposed to be.

I'm not a Churchill fan but he sure did throw everything but the kitchen sink at Hitler and Mussolini to be fair.


Cetun t1_j7mkbvn wrote

Yea? Besides retreating from Europe what major invasion of continental Europe did they attempt without the additional support of US troops?


dplafoll t1_j7mmwty wrote

How many US troops were at Sword, Gold, and Juno beaches at Normandy? How many RAF personnel were lost over Europe during the bombing campaigns? How many RN personnel were lost in the Battle of the Atlantic?
That's just three examples. Yes, the US participated in all of them, but so did the British. To only give them credit where they did something alone is just... willfully ignorant and asinine.

The British most certainly did not "[sit] out the war", and saying as much is a grave disservice to the millions of British and Commonwealth citizens who fought and died against the Nazis, military or civilian.


Cetun t1_j7mszek wrote

They were in the war from 1939 to 1945 and had less casualties than the United States who was in the war, effectively from 1942 to 1945. The British took part in no major offensive operations or invasions outside of North Africa before the US entered the war, and then every major operation was in conjunction with the US and allied divisions.

It's not a disservice to say they sat it out, it's facts, they were playing a defensive war of attrition against Germany. Does that mean they wouldn't get bombed? No. Does that mean their ships wouldn't get attacked? No. Does that mean no British person died, just that they weren't really interested in fighting Germany on mainland Europe unless they had other people to do the majority of the work.

Over half their army consisted of colonial or Commonwealth troops. Over third of all their casualties were from either the commonwealth or colonies.

More Soviets soldiers died in Operation Bagration from combat than British from all causes including British civilian and commonwealth combat personal combined. 2,000,000 Bengali died of starvation because of British war policies that prioritized denial of food to the impending Japanese invasion over the people living in the area.

They were as passive as they could be, you act like responding attack = offensive action. They minimized their casualties until someone else came along and held their hand or just did the work themselves. The Soviets would be marching into Paris if the US hadn't come along and held the British hands in Italy and France.


michael_harari t1_j7mn232 wrote

You get your entire knowledge of history from call of duty, don't you


Cetun t1_j7mtev4 wrote

Oh yea, educate me on their planned retaking of Europe by themselves. I'll wait.


michael_harari t1_j7mtym9 wrote

I'm fairly certain there's a wide range of options between "sat out the war like the US" and "single handedly planned to retake Europe"


Cetun t1_j7mwcqi wrote

I'm looking at WWI and the British seemed to unilaterally attempt to take on the Ottoman empire in the middle east and Gallipoli. At Passchendaele the British proffered 50 divisions to an offensive compared to the 6 French divisions. In WWI we see the British taking the initiative and taking the fight to the enemy well before the US entered the war.

We do not see that in WWII. We see mostly defensive holding actions and retreats until the US enters the war.


the_better_twin t1_j7mqdmp wrote

Well before the US joined the war, Britains army was focused on the Mediterranean, mostly north Africa (because of the oil) and Greece/ Malta to secure the passage of their fleet. They were also involved in campaigns in east Africa against Italy though. The air force was obviously preoccupied by the Battle of Britain so a full scale assault on Europe at this time would have been a ridiculous undertaking, nevertheless, the defeat of the Luftwaffe, meant that the invasion of a German occupied Europe was now a possibility.

Now we get onto when the US joined the war. When pearl harbor happened, you might also be unaware, that Japan simultaneously attacked the British in East Asia, for example in Burma. It was British troops who eventually repelled these gains the Japanese had made.

Meanwhile in Europe, Britain and the Commonwealth were landing troops on three beaches alongside their American allies, defeating Germany's best General in the deserts of North Africa, landing almost as many troops in Italy as the US did, and more.

British scientists were contributing to the Manhattan project (and were subsequently stabbed in the back when the US refused to share the outcomes with their ally but anyway...) and British intelligence was shared from bletchley park to the US and the soviets which undoubtedly helped win the war.

We could get into little things like British engines in American planes but now I feel like I'm being petty. The point is the war truly was an allied effort and to dismiss the contributions of anyone is just naive.

Also for the record when I say British I mean British and Commonwealth. It truly was a world war, soldiers from India, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Africa, Nepal and many many other countries fought and died to stop the biggest maniac the world has seen. It certainly was not a team America film.


MRCHalifax t1_j7md3ng wrote

> At the end of the war it was a mad rush to take as much territory as possible before the Russians.

It was kind of the opposite in general. Eisenhower was urged by a number of his people to keep heading east, but he was pretty content to mostly stop at the previously agreed upon demarcation line. The end of the war might have been less bloody if he has pressed on. At the end, the Germans were surrendering to the Allies in the hundreds of thousands, and in some cases fighting their way west specifically to surrender to the Allies rather than to the Soviets. But the Germans fought to the bitter end against the Soviets.


Hattes t1_j7mu3uu wrote

When I was in Berlin on a tour of an old air raid shelter, they told an old joke from that time - that the pessimists in there brought a Russian phrasebook, while the optimists brought an English one.


cylonfrakbbq t1_j7mteg7 wrote

A British commando that was captured and brought before Rommel told that Rommel had mused it was too bad they couldn’t ally against the Soviets vs fighting each other.

If you look at post WW2 Europe and even Operation Paperclip, the US and Uk knew quite well the USSR was the next enemy. There was even discussed plans to immediately launch an attack on Soviet held territory, although that never moved anywhere considering how taxing the conflict with the Axis had been.


Haffrung t1_j7lrtfs wrote

>Said that, some Allied Generals didn’t want to destroy Germany, they were much more preoccupied with Communist Russia than with the Germans.

A handful. But that was hardly the typical view. Unconditional victory over Nazi Germany was the overriding goal of all the Allies in top policy-making roles. George Marshall actually wanted to deindustrialize Germany so it would be a half-starved agrarian society for a generation or two.


PhasmaFelis t1_j7mffvc wrote

I'm curious what might have happened if Germany had decided to surrender wholesale to the Western Allies instead of trying to fight to the end. Certainly would have been easier on the civilians, relatively speaking. Is there any chance the Soviets would have respected that? Or would it have rolled straight into a war of Germany+Western Allies vs. USSR?


iMattist t1_j7mfzre wrote

Well it worked for Italy.


dplafoll t1_j7mn88u wrote

Ehh.... Italy didn't have a border with the USSR (I know, it was really Poland, but still), so that's pretty different.


Aanar t1_j7mmmwl wrote

Sure, but there weren't any Soviets knocking on their border either though.


sanehamster t1_j7msw8x wrote

Nearest thing to a shooting war across the future iron curtain was around trieste in Italy. Russian backed yugoslavs blocked from seizing the city by, I think, a Canadian armoured division.


INITMalcanis t1_j7lesxj wrote

Most unlikely. The Nazis had conclusively and repeatedly demonstrated that the only pathway to peace was through allies victory, because their attitude to peace treaties - much like the fascists in Russia now - was contempt towards those who would agree to them, and a clear intent to return to war and conquest as soon as they felt they'd regained an advantage.

It was clearly better and actually less dangerous to keep fighting them until they were completely defeated.


TheGreatOneSea t1_j7ln0g4 wrote

Basically this. Hitler had simply lied too much for anyone to believe him, and Germany desperately needed the oil in USSR territory, without which Germany would be hard pressed to even defend itself in the future.

It's also important to remember that Germany was influenced by its past: Germany had bled itself dry fighting France in WW1, so the idea that defeating France might be effectively irrelevant to the actual outcome of war was difficult to accept. It was much easier to tell themselves that Germany was on the brink of total victory, especially with North Africa and Barbarossa seeming to go so well...


Cluefuljewel t1_j7lo7l7 wrote

I actually never read that hitler needed Russias oil. It makes sense though.


Top_Explanation_3383 t1_j7lw2il wrote

Lack of oil was Germany's biggest problem. It could produce plenty of planes but didn't have the fuel to train pilots properly.

If they still had a decent airforce in 44 Normandy would've have been far far worse


MansfromDaVinci t1_j7mbq29 wrote

The Berlin-Baghdad railway was mostly about getting Germany access to oil, initially for it's navy but by WW2 for it's airforce and army as well. The actions that the British empire took to stymie this are a major contributing reason for WW1


Top_Explanation_3383 t1_j7mmlkq wrote

From what I've read even if Rommel took Egypt and then Iran the oilfields there wouldn't be ready for years. Presumably the same in Iraq.


lorgskyegon t1_j7mvyfn wrote

It's the same reason Japan attacked Pearl Harbor. Japan, having little in the way of natural resources on the Home Islands, needed to keep conquering territories in the South Pacific. They hoped to bomb the US and then count on anti-war Congress to make peace and keep the US out of Japan's business in the war.


PaulusRex56 t1_j7m8tz7 wrote

The movie The Darkest Hour has an interesting (and accurate, as far as I know) take on this. The movie takes place around the time of Dunkirk, and shows the machinations of the UK cabinet as they decide whether or not to continue the war. Thank God for Churchill.


svarogteuse t1_j7ljxgl wrote

As of the Casablanca Conference Jan 1943 the Allies via Roosevelt publicly announced they would not accept anything other than unconditional surrender. There were several reasons for this and possible dissention over the decision, but it would have been pretty hard to back down from it afterwards.

One of the main reasons for it was to preempt a WWI situation where Germany surrenders before Germany itself gets damaged and the resultant "stabbed in the back" mentality of the German people. It was also done to keep the Soviets in the war because if the Soviets negotiated a separate peace the U.S. and U.K. would not have been able to finish defeating Germany.

>have led to a truce being called during the war before axis lost

  • Before Casablana, Hitlers death or overthrow by his own generals. * A defeat of the Soviets, like the capture of Moscow, Leningrad and the Baku oil fields and their withdraw from the war prompting the rest of the war into a stalemate and eventual peace.

>Would there have ever been any reality in which axis just decided they had conquered enough land and people and that point in time was a good time to quit?

Hitler didnt want to be at war with the U.K. Yes taking the entire Eastern portion of the Soviet Union would have been enough... for a while but eventually a new war would start. The Nazi economy was reliant on new conquests and not set up for a peace.


the_quark t1_j7ms4fv wrote

This is the answer. The Allied leadership - and respecially FDR - felt very clearly that WWII came out of not really beating Germany to the ground in WWI. There was a very conscious desire on the part of American leadership at least to get an absolutely unconditional surrender from both Germany and Japan in order to restructure those countries in ways intended to prevent WWIII from just inevitably coming along twenty more years later.


Kraagenskul t1_j7mwxrh wrote

>U.S. and U.K. would not have been able to finish defeating Germany.

It would have either taken much longer but Germany was going to lose its naval and air superiority with or without the Soviets help. It would have turned into a horrible grind but they would have had no effective counter to the US industrial juggernaut and British intelligence as well as facing attacks from the west, north, and south. Couple that with a continuous massive bombing attack to eliminate Germany's manufacturing and transportation infrastructure I don't see how the Allies couldn't have won.

And then US just drops a really big bomb on the Eagle's Nest one sunny August afternoon and Germany most likely surrenders.


Cetun t1_j7m53wa wrote

No, before France even surrendered Britain made it clear that they would never seek peace with Germany. There was some rumbling about accepting peace with Germany that some other redditors may mention. But really this was just one member of a cabinet who simply brought up the idea and it was struck down immediately by Churchill. Great Britain and France even considered declaring war on the Soviet Union during the Winter War, so you can understand how "all in" they were. When's the United States entered the war there was no chance in hell, all allies had come to the agreement that complete unconditional surrender or nothing, infact Germany made several overtures to the western allies about the possibility of white peace in exchange for continuing their war with the Soviet Union which was rejected without discussion.


External_Zipper t1_j7lffpv wrote

Stalin apparently would have accepted an armistice in 1941after losing a lot of territory, I think before the Kyiv encirclement. This was likely before he realized that it was a war of annihilation. I think that I read about this in Montefiore' s book Red Tsar.


TyroneLeinster t1_j7muhhj wrote

The thing is, that would have been a bad deal for Germany. They don’t acquire all the resources they wanted, they have this powerful land army with nobody to use it against, and they’re letting their strongest enemy recover. Waging a war of annihilation was likely the correct strategic move on Hitler’s part, he just couldn’t get it done


MattMBerkshire t1_j7lfkxf wrote

Huge shortcoming with these questions.

Even when most of France was occupied, there was still a huge resistance movement internally. It's not like they went in, took France and all went quiet until D Day landings.

And no, you don't think the allies would have ignored the death camps and let Hitler carry on with his industrialised murder camps?

You're also speaking as if Germany didn't go East.. The Soviet Union was never ever going to stop at the border and everyone knew that the USSR was another party to watch in the war.


ZenoxDemin t1_j7m0p43 wrote

They are current industrialised death camp that we simply ignore because they aren't pushing borders and we want to keep commercial trade open.


Bedbouncer t1_j7m6d4o wrote

>And no, you don't think the allies would have ignored the death camps and let Hitler carry on with his industrialised murder camps?

I don't think any of us want to know the honest answer to this question. I'm happier not knowing.


cookiebasket2 t1_j7m8s5r wrote

My understanding is most people weren't a big fan of the Jews during the time period in the first place, and just down played the camps.


Eurymedion t1_j7lqcn7 wrote

There's a saying (can't remember by whom) that conquerors are like cannonballs in that they need to keep barreling forward. The moment they come to a halt, they're finished.

The Axis powers wouldn't have stopped. Japan would've continued trying to chomp away at China and eventually turned to India and Germany would've directed its attentions to Africa and the Middle East.


MavriKhakiss t1_j7lmlz2 wrote

There was a real mindset that once the US was in the war, victory was inevitable.

Your scenario would have been possible after the conquest of France and Acis victory at Dunkirk.


MrMoogyMan t1_j7lo2kb wrote

I'd make the bolder claim that once it became evident that the Axis was facing a long-war, that the inevitability of their defeat were set. Nolan makes this argument in "The Allure of Battle". Both empires simply lacked the industrial and manpower capacities to sustain their combat losses against the Allies. I'd argue that even after the blitz of Poland and France, the events that followed were mostly inevitable due to the Axis' geopolitical posturing. They were victims of their own fanaticism and delusions of racial and cultural superiority.


Sunlight72 t1_j7m6qa7 wrote

I think the only likely point would have been with the annexation of the Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia, and Austria. Once Germany (and thereby Italy) invaded and over ran Poland, I think war in Europe was inevitable within a year.

In East Asia I don’t know. I think Japan could have stopped in about 1938 and perhaps retained the portions of the mainland they had taken, but if China is counted as an Ally, then no, within about 2 years I think China would have countered to reclaim their territory.

But certainly after 1938 Japan was so aggressive that they would not be ‘ignored’.


MrMoogyMan t1_j7lf8vo wrote

I don't think the nature of WW2 and geopolitical reality would have just permitted the Axis to simply "stop". Those empires had military momentum and strategic goals that prevented a clean end to expansion or conquest. Much of this was material demand. Fanaticism was also a major factor. Thus, I can't see many realistic scenarios in line with what you are asking about, even if for some reason the US never got involved in the war.


Aetylus t1_j7ligtj wrote

The most feasible scenario for this that I can see goes something like:

- Barbarossa is a huge success, the USSR collapses in late 1941. Stalin ousted. USSR surrenders. German Eastern front troop divert to middle east.

- Britain agrees to peace rather than lose remaining imperial territories. Churchill ousted in the process.

- Japan immediately after agrees to peace with Britain and France.

- With the scale war significantly reduced Japanese and American tension reduce. War seems avoidable and the Japanese don't launch Pearl Harbour.

- The US negotiates with Japan to cease the war in China and cease further expansion. Possibly cede back a few territories.

But given the manpower and in the industrial power of the USSR and the USA, I don't see a realistic scenario where they sue for peace rather than continue a war which they will eventually win.... other than some sort of massive internal collapse, which seems unlikely in both cases.


Tuga_Lissabon t1_j7llzzh wrote

Without Stalin the USSR had much greater odds of breaking politically as the leadership lost nerve and/or control. He was a pivotal piece in that resistance, despite his MANY other flaws.


samdc1985 t1_j7m6snx wrote

Hitler could have kept everything he took in the beginning, his major problem was when he turned against Stalin and thought he was gonna be able to keep Paris! I think if he didn’t do either of those things he would been around a lot longer! Greed got him


TarienCole t1_j7ma4t3 wrote

As this is exactly what Hitler tried in the Sitzkrieg and again both with England and Russia at various points up to 1943?



ApatheticHedonist t1_j7meisx wrote

Germany was seeking a truce with Britain after the fall of France. They even imagined they could ally with them against the Soviets.


Kraagenskul t1_j7my5dj wrote

I always thought the Germans messed that entire scenario up. They could have done nothing, let the Soviets invade Poland (which I believe they knew was going to happen) and been like "We will save you Poland!" and attacked the Soviet Union. Everyone in the West would have been like "Eh, have at it." And Germany would have had a one front war.


Matti-96 t1_j7mf6br wrote

Napoleon also tried to stop the multiple wars and coalitions he and his French Empire had to fight once he had achieved his aims. Britain decided they didn't like that idea so they kept forming new coalitions against Napoleon and were fighting the French Empire were reasonably possible (Portugal/Spain in the Peninsular Wars).

Different century, different country, same principle. Once Churchill rallied the UK, it became a war to death with Britain having more experience at winning those wars.

Plus, the German economy would have imploded by 1941, which is why they had to start the war by 1939, conquering new territory and sacking it to keep their economy running. Britain could fight a long war, Germany couldn't.

In 1940 the UK had 2 paths ahead of them in fighting the war, slowly by trading within the British Empire and the Sterling area or quickly by buying from the USA. Buying from the USA also had the advantage of influencing the US towards helping the UK, similar to WW1. They chose the quick path, gambling that Hitler would do something stupid by 1942, such as declaring war on the Soviets or Americans.


ThomasEdmund84 t1_j7mfa88 wrote

I'm no expert but I believe the military strategy of the time was to disarm/demilitarize/occupy as necessary to ensure that a hostile enemy was unable or unlikely to be aggressive. So for the allies it probably would have been unlikely to accept a truce because there would be this forever issue of worrying about aggression.

Germany had already shown themselves to not only be unappeased but also unpredictable - its not inaccurate that Hitler was shown to be delusional and foolish in his decisions. Germany should of surrendered much earlier but instead sent children to defend Berlin because Hitler was that adverse to any admission of defeat.

Hitler had a weird perspective on Britain, he kinda liked the UK and probably would have considered a truce while I imagine he continued to push Russia - but again hard to trust.


Rasmoss t1_j7mg636 wrote

The allies had an agreement to only accept unconditional surrender from Germany


Stiggzy66 t1_j7mh7xs wrote

At the end of the war Russia was supposed to turn around and go home but they decided to stay. Taking over most of Central and Eastern Europe. Although the nazi’s were more diabolical in their attempt the Russians did most of what the nazis set out to do.


emcdunna t1_j7mkc54 wrote

It got close during early 1941 when Britain was calling for Churchill to sign a peace treaty but there's no way Russia would have signed a peace deal after barbarossa


Sparlingo2 t1_j7mlf98 wrote

"unconditional Surrender" was the term first stated by Roosevelt in 1943 for the end of the war, which somewhat bothered Churchill due to lack of wiggle room, as he mentions in his memoirs. In retrospect Roosevelt's unconditional surrender might have been a mastercraft in shaping the 20th Century.


Powerful_Artist t1_j7mmlqf wrote

I think this would be a great question for r/AskHistorians

They would give a comprehensive answer there.


Kronzypantz t1_j7mmqfb wrote

Probably not.

This kind of did happen for the Pacific theater and the US just refused any peace deal short of total surrender.

In Europe, Nazi Germany tried to open negotiations with Britain after conquering France, but were just told no. Maybe if Germany laid out some wild offers like de-occupying France and making an anti-Soviet alliance, there could be a ghost of a chance. But that would dive into some wild alternate history.


D0fus t1_j7mq7f9 wrote

Hitler made overtures after the fall of France. At a ceremony creating new Field Martials, IIRC.


LordMayorOfCologne t1_j7mqrmp wrote

Historical records show that the answer to your question is a definitive no. As discussed in Michael Thomsett's book, The German Opposition to Hitler, diplomat Ulrich von Hassell contacted British citizen James Lonsdale-Bryans, with an offer in 1940. Due to Londsale-Bryans' relationship with Edward Wood, it got to the highest levels of government. The offer was that if there was a successful coup of Hitler then Germany would be allowed to keep Austria, Poland, and the Sudetenland.

That offer was quickly shutdown and not taken seriously as means for peace.


patterson489 t1_j7mr1pi wrote

That's literally what happened, the Axis kept trying to get peace but the UK refused as they were hoping to starve Germany with their blockade and win the war that way. Even in 1939, they had a policy of avoiding English and French ships as they were hoping to get peace.


Spineynorman67 t1_j7mrb42 wrote

The invasion of Russia was the Nazis biggest error, but also, their main objective. So it's too unlikely that that would have happened.


TyroneLeinster t1_j7mrdh4 wrote

The USSR and the West were essentially racing to partition the axis. If either one had made peace it would have assured the other achieved total regional (and therefore probably global) dominance. So even if Germany had offered some kind of deal in say 1944, like restoring the French government and making peace with the non-Soviet allies, that would have just allowed Stalin to control the fate of Europe. Also, it would have risked Hitler staying in power should the Soviets also waver.


kawhi_2020 t1_j7mrhdw wrote

There would never be a truce between Germany and the USSR after the war began. The German war aim was conquest in the east, and all they did was in preparation for commitment there. It was a war of extermination by the Germans and a war of survival for the Soviet Union. The USSR always expected that war was coming but thought they could buy more time. Germany struck as hard as they did because it was perhaps their only chance to win.

There would also never be a truce between China and Japan. That wasn't a war of extermination like the invasion of the USSR, but it was a war for the survival of a Chinese state.

Britain could have sued for peace but it would mean the end of the British Empire from defeat in war, rather than what happened which was imperial exhaustion. So that was never really an option.

The US has no justification that would satisfy the American public to go to war until Pearl Harbor. After that, no chance of a premature end to the war.

Japan had imperial ambitions that clashed with Britain and America. Their war goal was to seize as many resource-rich zones as they could before they burned through their supplies. They attacked Pearl Harbor specifically to try and force the US to accept Japanese imperial domination in Southeast Asia, not because Japan had any intent to invade the US. So there's no real way for them to stop either. If possible they would have extended to take over India as well.


Safantifi_nani t1_j7mrirm wrote

I don't think the Nazis would've stopped, their ideology was inherently expansive, making conflict with Britain (over African territories) or the USSR (over central/eastern Europe) basically inevitable. (Think of the Napoleonic wars and how peace was esencially untenable with France being so powerfull.)

However, asuming that they somehow changed motivations, it would be very a very stupid foreign policy for either Britain or the USSR to allow any nation to dominate Europe so thouroughly, even without taking into account the ethnic clensing and expansionist retoric.


SaltySandSailor t1_j7muog0 wrote

Maybe in the early years after France fell and Britain was basically fighting alone. There was a very real possibility of them losing the Battle of Britain and being forced to capitulate. Once the US entered the war and Hitler attacked the USSR there was no hope of the Axis winning. They would never have let Hitler stay in power let alone keep the territories he had taken.


checco314 t1_j7muqor wrote

You're gonna want to read "War" or "The Shortest History of War" by Gwynne Dyer.

He has some discussion about the theory that, once total war became a thing and the whole population was motivated to join the war effort, the old game of settling on compromise peace and treaties just didn't fly anymore. The governments put a lot of effort into convincing people that the enemy wasn't just the enemy, but was completely inhuman. And, once convinced, a lot of people suddenly weren't okay with compromise.


FoeHammerYT t1_j7mvn9s wrote

The obvious answer is yes, because that is what actually happened. Germany tried many times to make peace with the allies. Germany never wanted France or any of the western nations, their goal was to conquer the east.


hoopsmd t1_j7mvypa wrote

Not a chance.

After Pearl Harbor, the US would not (and never needed to consider) negotiation with Japan.

Churchill made it pretty clear they would never surrender.

The only thing that could have made both sides want to negotiate a peace would have been deadlock at the front as in WW1. But WW2 was a war of mobility so that wasn’t going to happen.


Fiona_12 t1_j7lrkwy wrote

I think absolutely not. Hitler didn't just conquer territory, he enslaved people and committed genocide. He brainwashed much of the German population into believing they were superior. He had to be eliminated.

As far as Japan goes, the US at least had to ensure that they were subjugated to the point they could not be a threat to the US again any time soon.


I_might_be_weasel t1_j7mi7ub wrote

Yes. Japan tried that. The allies decided they prefered unconditional surrender by way of atomic kablooey.


warren_stupidity t1_j7mooqo wrote

Hitler probably could have gotten a peace deal if he hadn’t started his war in the east and convinced the Japanese to not attack the US. But then again the Nazi were basically clowns who got their hands on power so blundering was inevitable.


xl_RENEG4DE_lx t1_j7mt8fq wrote

If concentration camps were not a thing, who knows? But the moment soldiers started seeing the senseless violence towards the women and children, it was never an option to fail.


tannieth t1_j7lgf8z wrote

Uuummm... Sorry. My father fought in WW2 amd my mother also lived through it. her brother shot down in 1942.... So I'm a little bit knowledgeable....

Anyway. plenty knew of the jewish holocaust. My parents both did. Mum said by 1943 it was well accepted. The thing is? No one could really get their head around it ... Face reality sort of?? Mum said it was on one hand accepted? But on the other everyone was sorta in denial.

As my parents told me? Very very wierd times... But most knew and certainly the governments knew. Spys had reported back to them for years. The Brits most definitely knew.

Mum recalled conversations with her parents & family about where all the jews and others were? It was clear they had been removed and there were plenty reports of them being put on trains etc... People knew alright.