Category: Western Civilization

Revenge in World War II

In what ways did revenge manifest itself in the countries fighting in World War II?

Revenge played a major role in the ending months of the war. All of the countries, especially those who were invading, had some sort of revenge towards the other countries they were fighting. One example is Russia. The Soviets invaded Germany and committed horrible atrocities towards civilians. This was their misguided revenge for the time when the Germans invaded Russia.

Revenge was not limited to the Germans and the Soviets. The Allies also exhibited revenge towards their enemies. They committed atrocities too, though they were not as bad or extreme as the one the Soviets perpetrated.

There is always some sort of revenge in war. Each side wishes to revenge himself against the other.

I would like to include a quote from the lesson which I find somewhat humorous:

“Reply from American General Anthony McAuliffe to the German demand for surrender at Bastogne, Dec.1944: ‘Nuts!'”

Pearl Harbor

Pearl Harbor was the attack on the American Pacific fleet that was anchored in Pearl Harbor on the island of Oahu in Hawaii by the Japanese air force on December 7, 1941.

The entire fleet was bombed by the planes, and all the naval men were taken by surprise, but the soldiers acted with great courage, audacity and coolness under the conditions. The end result was 20,000 men either killed or captured.

The attack was wanted by Franklin D. Roosevelt, who was the officiating president. The Secretary of the Navy, after bringing the news of Pearl Harbor to FDR said this: “His face went white as a sheet. He had expected to get hit, but not to get hurt.”

There is controversy over whether or not FDR knew the Japanese were coming, whether he had pre-arranged it, or whether he was completely ignorant of the situation. There is evidence that he knew the Japanese were coming, and he planted the fleet under their noses in the hopes that they would attack. Like most North-Easterners, he doubted that an ‘inferior race’ like the Japanese could inflict much damage on him. He was just looking for an excuse to enter the war. (more…)

Q&A from Lesson 140

  1. Did World War II become more brutal as time went on?

Yes, World War II did become more brutal as time went on. There were very, very brutal killings on the part of the Germans, especially the incident of the Holocaust, in which millions of Jews and other harmless civilians were killed un-necessarily.

  1. In what ways?

In the way mentioned above, by the Germans. There were many, many needless bombings of cities and the superfluous killing of citizens all over Europe and America.

  1. Was the brutality on only one side?

No, there were the brutalities mentioned above committed on both sides, the Allies and the Germans. All the countries, really, took part in these horribly murderous means of exterminating their enemies.

Such were the conditions in World War II that it came to a point where men in the German Secret Service (SS) didn’t care anymore how many people they killed or how. It made no impression on them anymore. Men all over were going insane. And it’s no small wonder why.

 

Hi Hitler!

Adolf Hitler was the founder of the movement called the Nazis, a name derived from the German word version of the word ‘national.’ He became a dictator in 1933, and ended his tyrannical reign in 1945.

At the time of Hitler, the old German Republic was renamed Weimar Germany. It was the base on which Hitler was able to plan and carry out his political takeover plans.

Hitler was born in the German-speaking part of Austria-Hungary in 1889. His father was a lower middle-class citizen. He died when his son was still small. Hitler’s mother had cancer, and so she traveled with her son to Vienna for treatment. She died there, leaving Hitler orphaned while only an adolescent.

He was able to live on his inheritance and on a living made by painting postcards. Hitler, from an early age, was a part of the anti-Semitism movement (anti-Jew). Hitler moved to Germany just before World War I, whether from predesigned plots, or instinctual impulse, we do not know.

In World War I, he was a corporal, and never made it past that rank. He fought in the Western trenches, but was gassed and put in a hospital for the rest of the war.

After World War I he continued in the army, which at the time was investigating all groups who were not completely German, because they were suspicious after the treaties made against them in the Paris Peace Conference. That was how the NSDAP was founded. The NSDAP was a group of national socialists founded by Hitler. Through this group Hitler was able to take over. (more…)

World War I

World War I is a major event in the history of the world. It was a war that involved Russia, France, Britain, Italy, the United States, Japan, Romania, Serbia, Belgium, Greece, Portugal, Montenegro, Germany, Austria-Hungary, Turkey and Bulgaria. It lasted from 1914 to 1918. The total deaths of the war came up to eleven million.

The key starting point that triggered the war was the murder of Archduke Francis Ferdinand by a Serbian terrorist group called the Black Hand. The details are recorded here. This event gave the other Austrian politicians a perfect excuse to eliminate Serbia once and for all. So they thought.

In order to do this, they needed German support, because Serbia had Russian support. The Germans gave the Austrians a ‘blank check.’

Germany meanwhile, fearing a two-front war, developed the Schlieffen Plan

The Plan was simple: attack the French as quickly as possible, then turn and drive out the Russians. But it was too simple. There was no room for mistake, no room for delay. The Germans also counted heavily on the tardiness of the Russian army.

The plan turned out to be a failure. It started with the Germans marching through neutral Belgium. Belgium, unexpectedly, fought back. That delayed the march. In France, they met stout resistance. That further delayed the march. Meanwhile, the Russians were already in Germany. The plan was chaos, the Germans were dismayed, and the French and the Russians were jubilant. Eventually, the Germans and the French settled into trench warfare which lasted for four years. (more…)

The Factors Leading Up to World War I

World War I was started through many different circumstances. The main people who started the War were the Slavs.

There were the East Slavs, the Russians and the Ukrainians. There were the West Slavs and, mainly, there were the South Slavs. These last consisted of the Serbs, Bosnians, Croats and Slovenes. All the countries, namely Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia and Slovenia, were in the Balkans, an area within reach of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire.

The pan-slavism movement was made by the Slavic Russians to free the non-Slavic Russians from foreign rule.

Germany had, in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870, taken from France the territory of Alsace-Lorraine, which the French bitterly regretted. For this reason France went against the Germans in whatever they did. Germany’s Prime Minister, Otto van Bismarck, wanted to stall any possible alliance between the already powerful France and Russia. If that happened Germany would be fenced in on all sides, leaving no escape route.

So Bismarck created an alliance with Russia against France. But a while later, Emperor William II of Germany dismissed Bismarck and failed to keep the alliance with Russia. (more…)