tv Lectures in History World War II Leadership CSPAN February 6, 2021 8:00pm-9:45pm EST
defeat nazi, germany. in two hours a collection of films from 1980 produced by the occupational safety and health administration osha during the carter presidency that were recalled the following year when ronald reagan came into office. okay. we're going to continue with this notion of masters and commanders starting in an antiquity with a pamelandis caesar alexander. pericles and going into the civil war and then now we're at world war ii and before we start with the allied commanders masters i should say churchill and roosevelt. last week we went over the before in total though. we didn't talk about muslim just stalin hitler churchill and roosevelt. i thought we could have a review of what the situation is. at the beginning of world war ii up to the critical change in
1942. oh july to december primarily because of the radical turnaround in the submarine campaign where the allies get the upper hand. the check of rommel at llmaine and the german disaster at stalingrad okay, let's look at this map for a second. world war ii is it's hard to know when it actually starts in europe it starts on september 3rd when the allies declare war on germany after they've invaded poland along with russia two weeks later but the chinese have been invaded by the japanese since 1937 and manchuria since 1931. the ethiopians have been invaded. abyssinians by italy since 1936. so there's a lot of wars going on. russia has gone in it will go into finland and all of these wars today are going to coalesce into this concept of world war
ii's everybody understand that. but that's us looking back at that at the time. nobody said we're in world war ii when germany went into poland. there was a finnish war. there was a polish war. there was a norwegian war. there was a abyssinian war. there was a manchurian war and they all coalesced by 1941 42 and were seen as a whole we in the united states say world war ii the british say this. second world war all of that is again in context of the first world war which wasn't known as a first world war whoever thought the great it was called the great war which we don't use anymore because it's no longer the great war. it's the second greatest war great being a carb term for most casualties. so we're going to look at this and in this area and we don't have the pacific up but 50 to 70 million people are going to be killed from 1939 the officials start in europe to the end and 1945. i say 50 to 70. we don't know really we still
don't know the exact amount that will be the greatest man-made disaster. in the history of civilization maybe with the exception of what mao did during the cultural revolutions in the 1960s when there may have been 70 million killed for sure. so it's going to be a disaster. that's no one imagined when the war broke out. affects everybody in europe a hundred million people are going to take part in this war. nothing's ever been seen like it before so it's going to affect everybody in the united states. for example, who's not going and we aren't going to enter until almost halfway through it's going to affect anything. i'm thinking in my own family that was out in rural, california. and was mining its own business going broke farming. and my mother and her three sisters were growing up on a farm and suddenly the war breaks out five years later. she and oliver sisters have gone to stanford university because the economy has radically
changed women are in the workforce men are off at off at war. there's openings in universities. my father's flown on a b-29 40 times over tokyo the person i'm named after victor. hansen was killed on okinawa sort of shattered. my uncle's family my first cousin holt cather was killed in normandy and that whole family is just turned upside down on this event that when they were in the 30s they thought it was so far away raising prices are going to go from a ton to 250. as my grandfather told me before he died. i never made a dime farming except during world war ii. so it's going to get the united states out of the depression. i don't mean the stimulus or just all the borrowing but the the irony that the world is going to be destroyed. so to speak in a 1946 the united states is going to have this enormous industrial base and be the only industrialized hypercapitalist power that can supply the world for the next 10
years with everything from washing machines to cars and pay off that debt. so, where are we? well hitler starts. here invading poland and just think for a minute how thick and fast events follow. he's going to invade poland. and then there's going to be a declaration of war but there's going to be a sitzkrig a phony war along the border france isn't going to do anything. all britain's going to do is put a third of a quarter to a third of a million troops to help the french. they're going to have a numerical superiority on this flank of germany of about three to one and they're going to do nothing. nobody at this time feels that poland is going to lead to a war that there might be some way to adjudicate things. especially because neville chamber represents the tories the conservatives and their member within that click and shouldn't use that derogatory term, but there's members within britain that think that they can still do business with hitler.
because after all he's been very, he's much more praiseworthy praising the british empire than franklin roosevelt. for example, or joseph stalin. he admires the british empire. so invades here. nothing happens he's already carved off large parts of czechoslovakia here. east prussia has now been joined to germany. the rhineland has been militarized. austria doesn't really exist. it's part of the germany. look how enormous that area is germany had this second largest economy to begin with traditionally in the world after the united states and now people think he surely he'll be happy with that no in april of 1940 just six months later. he's gone into denmark. i shouldn't say gone into it. he just burped and swallowed it in three days. he's gone into norway.
he doesn't have to do anything in sweden. my ancestors are happily selling him iron ore at a discount and providing free transportation in the in the bargain to make money out of it. finland has settled. it'll be fighting with the soviet union soviet union. it was kicked out of the league of nations over it but it will be neutral now. i should say the soviet union is pro german. i don't mean neutral. right before hitler went into poland. remember he had the non-aggression pact, but that's the the icing on the cake. as early as 1937 they had trade agreements. so hit hitler being supplied now. in critical areas like bauxite oil wheat coal iron ore from the soviet union. there's a series of fascistic movements and romania bulgaria. you could slavia hungary all of this area of eastern europe is supplying as well. a germany with iron ore at a
very admintageous rate. we all know about mr. mussolini since the late 20s. there's been mid-20s. there's been an italian expansionary government. they've gone all the way over around we can't can't see it to somalia libya. in march on march 10th 1940. he invades france and he does in 40 days. what? his the fathers of the vermark were not able to do in four years. that is they take not just the alsatial rain, but all of france belgium and and holland and luxenberg at this point. algeria morocco the french colonies fall to a sphere of influence controlled under vichy and allied with germany. spain they fought on the half of the fish forces under franco and the spanish civil war just five years earlier four years earlier portugal is same.
turkey long ally of germany and world war i neutral but supplying germany as it can. so let's look at the map. where is the bright news for britain? by 194 one i haven't quite finished remember. without warning hitly italy has invaded greece thinks it's going to be easy, but anybody's been on the northern balkans knows that it's not has been repelled hitler has sent troops in not only to say the italians in libya who were fighting not too well against the british but to occupy greece and he does that in a matter of weeks the first parrot fruit drop on crete very bloody. but ultimately successful. so now let's look at the map. there's a british presence in cairo and alexandria and up to the libyan border the british have had some success keeping iraq and lebanon.
sort of autonomous everything else is under the control of hitler, this is almost like a nightmarish version of the european union six or seven times over everything that hitler had ever dreamed of he has he's obtained in just two years. starting to ethnically discriminate or expunge and ultimately kill the jews he's starting to integrate the economy not very effectively but still he's starting to integrate it on in a manner that will serve germany and you've got ireland that's probably either at best mutual and it worse pro german and you've got great britain so in april of 1941, there's nobody else there. the united states is still isolationist. we haven't been attacked by anybody yet, russia as i said nominally a new tool is actually aiding hitler and the war is all over with.
there's no reason for it to continue because there's nobody really to fight them. they've the only check on german power has been a failed air campaign. in the latter part of 1940 and up until spring of 41 against britain. but the odds are not good for the british because the airfields are not in germany now, they're being they're in in holland and france and belgium and they have a direct route to england and the u-boat campaign is starting to reach a real effective level of cutting off supplies. britain what has to be done to end the war a couple of things? you've got take alexandria and cut off the suez canal and they're almost there after the italians re-energize and rommel is there and they're pushing the fall of their back up to here and all they have to do is cut off that and that essentially ends a third of all the oil
imports the middle east to britain. they've got to do a little bit more on the submarine. so campaign so that imports can't come from canada in the united states. and they've got to get britain. leave the war and leave the war not defeated but leave the war with its empire intact and that's what hitler is continually giving these very strange speeches that he has no problem no acrimony with the british that he's willing to cut a deal with him he's allowed quarter million british perhaps another 100,000 french to escape it dunkirk and all of that sets the stage for the biggest blunder of the entire war which is probably the biggest blunder in the history of military operations the june 22nd. three million man invasion of the soviet union at that point everything is off the table. and why does he go into russia and we'll have some questions in a minute, but as we said last
time most likely. for a two-part reason one. it's it's in accordance with what he said in mind comp that the marxist leninist jewish bolshevik presence has to be eradicated we need living space german settlers will turn this into a paradise there will be six lane roads from germany all the way down over here to the crimea sort of a utopian fantasies on his part and second he was not able to get written to reconcile themselves to an armistice and he thinks that once he's conquered russia and done to russia what he's done to eastern europe. just the sheer weight of the opposition will be so much that there will be people. within the british government that will see the light and he has some encouragement of that. there are members of the royal family. is late as 1939 that had had peace feelers out to the germans or as a strong conservative
shouldn't say conservative reactionary antisemitic presence in britain, and he thinks he can work with these people and have an armistice. so that's a general situation that we're at. and before we go on to the two leaders because this class after all is called masters and commanders. anybody have a question, but the status of world war ii. as we see it. this is all going to change now because the unforeseen will happen the united states will get into the war. it'll have the most effective aid program to russia russian industry will be relocated and weather will turn traitor on the the british and japan will enter the war accepted but right now the war for all practical purposes is over and one any questions. yes, how independent are the commonwealth nations of
britain's like decision making it's very good question because on our map we don't have the commonwealth nations such as australia, new zealand and canada. the thing to remember is a couple factors are going on one. they don't have a good taste in their mouth after world war. i commonwealth forces in australia, new zealand canada etc were put on south africa who were put on command largely a british officers and were bled white. and there's a lot of resentment against the empire and that means that especially after pearl harbor that new zealand and australia who've had two divisions to three divisions fighting the european war announced to the british. hey, this is another war now. we're gonna and we want all of our troops out of libya and we want them back to protect australia which you know, darwin is going to be bomb french. canada i mean that's a problem because normally now vichy france is on the side of germany. so what are people in french canada going to do are they going to die for?
killing people in north africa that happened to be french speakers. so in this particular war most of the commonwealth is going in india is a real question is whether it's going to survive as part of the british empire. it's going to be a specific contribution for the commonwealth the great exception to that rule is canada canada's got the third largest navy. it has about 150 to 200,000 soldiers and they fight very well. they participate they don't complain. they don't demand an independent military's command. they're very compliant. they're bitter to this day because they're not giving recognition for which they deserve the canada is essential to the british war effort special in terms of trade natural resources. that's a good question any other question? okay. just a couple of remarks on stalin and hitler. it's very funny. is there very alike and that
their totalitarians hitler's about 50 when the war breaks out stalin's 61. they've had a similar. career, i think you read in the warlords that stalin admires hitler for the liquidation of his enemies. they both. tend to admire people like mussolini. and they both have a very cynical view of one another they both think that ultimately there's going to be a war between them and one of the other will start it, but for now they see that there's advantages in having peace. now, what do we mean by that? russia has fought. and inconclusive slightly. a positive in its results war would japan in 1939, but does not want troops. on its western it doesn't want all of its troops here facing germany and then having to fight japan so after the japanese war the non-aggression pack seems
like a gift from heaven. that he will just as hitler is willing to trade turn i should say on his axis partner. japan russia will take advantage of it. he can be it can move some troops over from japan. japan is not going to be outdone. remember among thieves. there's there's no honor. so japan in turn. will have a non-aggression pact in april 1941 with russia and that will allow russia to take its troops back again and notice the timing it couldn't have come as a worse time to hitler and it's indicative that these axes mussolini hitler tojo and to a lesser extent stalin don't trust any of any one of the other and they are not at all integrated as we'll see as a case with england the united states. so in germany's way of thinking everything is turned out. well the german people didn't sign up for all this they signed up. because they bought the
propaganda that they had never. lost world war i they had surrendered 70 miles here. in the belgium and parts of france. they were stabbed in the back by communist in jews are so hitler and the fascist and nazi party told them and they were treated very poorly at versailles. it's a very bad idea to be harsh in word and then soft indeed and that's what the versailles treaty. did it humiliated the germans without affecting their ability to come back or to make war they were not occupied as well happen in world war ii. so the german people are delighted. about poland whom they thought grew at their expense after world war i they have no problem with denmark because it was easy. they have a little bit of problem with norway. these are similar nordic aryan peoples. they're scared stiff of a war in france because of what happened
in world war one four years 70 miles. so when hitler starts talking about going into france they think oh no another four years two million dead in world war one on the german side and then in 40 days when he absorbs france, they're just delighted and they because the war is either one or lost in france as it had been a world war ii it's over now and now there's no problem with russia. because russia's a partner with germany so to speak and if there was going to be a partner just as russia fell in two years in france held out for fourth if they do have to fight it france. under that paradigm 40 days. so therefore the next time russia will fall in 10 12 days. why that two to one or three to one rate time ratio they have italy. is it as a stalwart ally and they're just tickled paint that everything has worked out perfectly. they're a little worried and angry at the british keep persisting but then their imperialist there's been a a very effective propaganda
campaign by goebels that these that we are socialists that were and we're not capitalist. is not quite like communism, but it's very effective and to suggesting that the british are holding out because they're always been greedy and they like to have an empire. russia is delighted. turn of events stalin who still resents the western democracy's participation in trying to choke off the bolshevik revolution in 1920 had wanted germany. after the non-aggression pact of august 1939 they had wanted them to turn their attention. france and holland and belgium and britain and in his fantasies these bourgeoisie capitalist societies were just tear each other apart the only thing they're mad about is i said when we were reading the warlords is what the war only lasted 40 days they didn't do enough damage or kill enough people as far as stalin is concerned this is this
is wonderful at this point stalin hates britain and america much more than he does germany so from 1939 september 3rd until december. and actually tenth in the case of your written is all alone. it doesn't think it can win the war its whole strategy is to hold out. until two things happen the united states can be brought in and inevitably these two people. stalin and hitler will turn on himself churchill's convinced of that, but they have to they have to last why doesn't he make peace because churchville has not just a practical idea that it would mean the end of britain as he knew it he's an idealist, too. and he believes it for all the jews and for all the people in europe who believe in constitutional government for all the people who are being murdered every day that britain
alone the bbc british intelligence british propaganda british food is the only beacon of hope now we're going to talk about. the allies and in this class on masters and commanders. we're going to see why it is at britain and the united states work so well together. hitler doesn't think that we're going to get along too well because he'd seen world war i and how difficult the french and the british. and the americans work taken as a given. you would all think that it would be a natural relationship because america was a colony of britain were both english-speaking countries. we fought together in world war i in fact how they were able to coordinate their efforts and how they survived as friends as beyond me to this day. given the obstacles that they had to overcome. and at the heart of this relation ship is a two or three or four. factors, that will make it very
difficult for them to communicate well. the first is the memory of world war i we in america in 1941 have a very different idea of the first world war than did the british. remember the british? are right next to it if you're in britain you can take a boat in the morning and visit the battlefield your douglas haig and you can go back and talk with lloyd george in the afternoon britain will lose 970,000 dead and another million and a half casualties and we'll get nowhere from 1914. to may june of 1918 it won't really move. it's the death camps of the first world war so to speak. they have a very very bitter memory of it. france will lose almost two million. germany itself will lose about two and a half million in the british mind when this war starts out, there's one thing
you don't want to do. and that is have a million or two million people fighting the german army. there's never been anything like it. the german army whether it's the frontal prussian war of world war i is the most murderous effective competent infantry pores in the world. and anytime the french army or the british army tries to fight it alone. it will lose. so when churchill who was first lord of the admiralty world war i? and who himself was a battalion commander in 1916 1917 and his way of thinking when we fight this war we are not going to put a million men right here. and as a corollary of that. remember when he declared war chamberlain's government declared war? in germany on september 3rd 1939 they did put men into. belgium and northern france the british did and they didn't do
anything until the actual invasion of france on may 10th, and then they were trapped at dunkirk 100,000 of them were wounded or captured are missing and the bulk of them survived but in the british way of thinking the last thing we want to do is either get everybody killed in world war i fighting these highly effective german stormtroopers or two. we want another dunkirk where an ally lures us in. and then abandons, and now remember one thing because this issue is going to be very important about a second front. britain because it's been a war longer the united states when the war breaks out has a lot more soldiers on their arms than we do. on their way of thinking that's going to mean us but these are just larger factors that we're going to get to when we get to the issues. the second is that the geography and strength. there's going to be a very different relationship.
over 19 41 to 45 when the war breaks out britain is mobilized it's been a war it knows a lot about how to fight germans it's fought them in 1940 it's been bombing them and the americans don't know anything they think that they can send bombers over in daylight these wonderful b-17 for flying fortresses it can shoot down you know any 109s at will in broad daylight they think that the american stewart tank or the lead tank is wonderful it's us we're very exuberant we're excited we want to go in there and win and the british have more experience and they have a bigger munitions industry and then world war one is important too world war one we had no tanks british supply than we had no real effective planes the british supplied them. so the war starts out with churchill going to america as a senior advisor, and we're the junior partner. but as this thing starts to gear up there's a real question the
united states whether we're going to fight this war as we do crew later later, did korea or vietnam or iraq or really going to mobilize. you could have fought world war ii with four million men under arms and let russia and britain fight or do you want to be the primary arsenal of democracy? so to speak and we decide that we're going to go. for lack of a better word whole hog. so we're going to gear up and put 14 million men under arms. we're going to be the biggest producer of ships of planes of tanks artillery platforms. and is this really starts to become evident in 1943-44 the united states is going to be the senior partner. so in this relationship between churchill and roosevelt. roosevelt's going to absorb churchill's criticisms, but by 1943 we're going to hear again and again, whether it's marshall to allenbrook or roosevelt the church will wait. wait, wait wait, we're the guys. we're the commanders now. we're the ones that are putting most of the men on the field most of the supplies.
and we're going to make the decision not just you and later. it's going to be we're going to make the decision and not you at all. along with world war ii then that gives very different views of how this war should be fought. the third thing is and by the way, britain is more exposed. we have two oceans. so when we make a decision that seems reckless. there's not going to be immediate consequences to us in new york or san francisco. if we make a decision about bombing or the use of fighter aircraft are going across the channel and that proves to be stupid or disastrous. there can be immediate consequences. if we say we don't really think there's going to be a v1 or v2 program. and if there is we don't really want to waste. resources bombing it. they're not going to send a v2 into san francisco. or indianapolis, they will into london so in the british way of thinking the americans always tell us what to do. they didn't know anything about
world war. i they're not ready to fight this war. and the consequences are mostly born by us if there's a mistake but there's another issue to this relationship and that is america's coming out of the the largest social political transformation its history. after the great depression in 1929 and the failure of the hoover administration to correct that economic downturn and remember hoover is not some reactionary laissez-faire capitalist as he somewhat somehow portrayed. he's tried stimulus. he's tried deficit spending. he's tried balancing stride everything. it didn't work roosevelt comes in with an idea. that the war the depression was caused by a concentration of wealth. he's going to change the tax code he's going to absorb private industry. he's going to create jobs. he's going to borrow money. he's gonna have deficit spending. he's going to inflate the currency. he's going to get america back to work.
and by 1938 now america is unemployment still 19% this country is very unsure of itself, but it has made a decision because of the that charismatic approaches of franklin roosevelt the sincerity the wonderful rhetoric that's going to stick with roosevelt is going to be elected for the third time in 1940, but he's he's a man of the left. churchill is a 19th century relic this is a man who fought. various times in the sudan for empire in india for empire south africa for empire. he's been to cuba. he's written about empire. he's a direct descendant the duke of marlboro. he's wealthy he's educated he was a military officer he's been first lord of the admiralty twice there's no person on either side of the war no leader. not hitler not stalin not mussolini who is better educated. more versed in military affairs
more experienced more knowledgeable than winston churchill the problem and the american way of thinking is he's a right-wing reactionary apologist for the british empire. so just thank for a minute it would be as if george bush was a lot more far right than he is. and tony blair was a lot more far left than he was and they were supposed to work together in iraq as it was bush was a conservative. and blair was a liberal. would be as if we find ourselves in a war with obama very very hard left in a european nationalist party person almost. with a eurocentric view of the world be very hard for those two people to work. and how is that going to translate out? it's going to mean that every time churchill suggests something to. roosevelt people like harry hopkins or harold ick is always going to be suspicious and say they you know, he's just trying
to promote a hypercapitalist imperialist point of view and every time somebody's going to suggest something to church he's going to say, these are very naive americans who really do believe that you know socialism is going to solve all our problems. and then they have a very so world war i and the geography relative strength their own politics are going to affect this relationship. also this idea of russia. now remember that when they start bombing britain right after the fall of france. you're a british. subject and you look up in their hinkle bombers and there's stuka dive bombers and joker the whole bit is going to kill 40,000 people in the blitz. and the papers are starting to see that in 1940. let's say in august. these guys are laughing about it and they have direct rail links into the rural all the way into eastern and even to western germany and the materials of the german vermark are coming from
russia in some part. this is part of stalin's sort of. land that they're going to destroy each other. the british are going to have a very distrustful view of russia. because russia wanted them to be destroyed. russia was an active participant in some sense with the german effort to bomb them to smither reins. and the more imperialist churchill thinks is the more anti-bolshevikia. if you read the british communicase of the war office, they know all about the show trials. they know about the execution of somewhere between 600,000 dissidents military officers intellectuals in russia. they know about the great famine. the late 20s under stalling they know that 20 million people. so for them. it's a real question whether you want to give a lot of aid to russia because it's nominally. useful but ultimately there's
not a lot of difference between hitler and stalin so you can see what this is going to do in this relationship. this is the world war ii version of let iran kill iraqoff and vice versa in the 1980s 1980s and the american point of view. america and the other hand there are a lot of people we don't want to get near that topic on a class on war about mccarthyism communism whether alger hist was a communist late just be said there are a number of naive americans involved in this transformation of american society who look on the soviet union as sort of an unhappy or unfortunate excess not necessarily evil not killing more people than hitler did but sort of socialism gone too far, but it could come back it had the right idea, but it's a natural partner if you look at howard zinn's history of world war ii the chapter on world war ii's called a people's war very favorable to the soviet union.
and that will affect this relationship. before we go on to how these. differences in culture history are going to affect the actual mechanics of the war policy. anybody have any questions at this point? none okay. so the war breaks out in churchill in roosevelt and you want to know how to beat hitler and beat mussolini and beat tojo the japanese co-prosperity sphere and what we actually did is not the way it necessarily had to happen. we could have tried to invade amsterdam we could have tried to invade norway. we could have landed troops in portugal. we could have gone from the suez and had an american fleet and gone into greece or laterals or
roads or we could have had the pacific fleet or something go into the persian gulf and come in here and try to help russia we did actually when the annexation of iran, but there are a lot of different strategies. nobody says we have to have 14 million men mobilize. nobody says we have to have these enormous transformations in american society. we were very effective in world war one, but we didn't quite do what we did in world war ii. so these are going to be decisions that are made at the highest levels of the american government and the british government on how they can best. fight the first big issue is europe first? and as i said, all of these differences that are fundamental and existential are going to play out here. why should europe be first for the united states we were not attacked by germany, we were attacked. by the japanese on december 7th. the japanese are close.
to the pacific coast, they're all in the waters of hawaii. they've attacked american-held soil. they've taken over or they're trying to take over the philippines. we're going to attack wake island. they've taken over the marianas there are encroaching american spheres of influence. america will never be attacked by germany in the sense of a german bomber or shall japanese will even shell the coast in one case. they'll send balloons with bombs away. so in america's way of thinking. japan is a problem is it somewhat of a racial element the japanese look different than we do a lot and there's not a lot of japanese in the united states except in the west coast. there's a lot of germans it places like michigan here. so and there's a lot of people in the 1930s amid the depression whose thought you know. charles lindbergh father coughlin germany was just trying to find an ideology. it's not really nazism. it's not that bad. they were just trying to
mobilize. the people build autobahns create dams industrial sectors give people apartment buildings. national health care, this is what he did was really about he gave people back their pride we feel guilty about versailles the united the league of nations was never a good idea. so there's a lot of remember, this is not the war people don't really know. it's only been about five months. fighting in russia. so people really don't know the full horrors of germany. so an american way of thinking there are a lot of people who think gee, whiz let's give aid and let's step up the aid for russia. privately we'd like russia to fight hitler and get rid of both of them. but let's give aid to russia through iran and let's help the british. give aid to the arctic sea, and let's really help britain why we turn our attention militarily to the pacific coast and crust japan. we have a very soft spot in our hearts for china, which has been
occupied since 1931. let's free the chinese and then once we solve that problem. we can turn our attention to hitler if he's even there. he may be finished off by the bolsheviks. he may be bombed by the british but let's not. fight a two front war. there's a great myth about world war ii that hitler lost because he fought a two front war. no we fought a two front war remember when this war from 1939? to 1941 it was a brilliantly diabolical one-flunt war. this the molotov ribbon trop agreement is designed to have a one front war and it works. and then people say well, why did he started a second war up front in 1941? well, he started his second front because there was no war going on. he'd won it written was being bombed. britain had no ability to land troops. so hitler had a one front war a different one from law.
we we think we're so smart. we ended up with the two front war and people are saying let's not do this. so there are elements within the american government and military who are trying to say especially ernie king chief of naval operations let's not fight and get sucked into the british war we have our own war. fortunately for the europe first strategy roosevelt sees that hitler is has the greater strength the greater resources perhaps even the greater evil and he has to be done dealt with first and that will free up the united states russia may fall if we have a pacific first. strategy and the you know hitler's like a snake the more animals. he swallows he needs time to digest it, but then gets stronger and bigger. so you don't really have a lot of time. but this issue is going to be very important because britain
will be pushing for a first front war first front war because it's almost ready to be obliterated. it has interest in the pacific. but even as much as it wants to hold india and singapore and all of those jewels of the empire, it's willing to not to put them second in comparison with the british homeland. that's going to be a issue all of 1942. to what degree do we put? resources and how is it going to be solved? it's going to be solved in a very brilliant way that may have been inadvertent. the americans are going to learn a couple of things given the vast 3000 mile expanse of the united states. and given the fact that most of the industry in the united states is bilateral. in the sense that the great lakes region and the east coast naturally can can turn its attention to europe why the
pacific great centers of commerce and seattle and oakland and san francisco and los angeles san diego can turn to the pacific. so yes, we have a two front war but one way of looking at it is there's two united states. each one is fighting their own war. it's more likely that a lot of if you go up in, california. it's not certain but it'd be very likely you would fight in the pacific more likely doesn't mean it always is true if you're in a factory, it's very likely you'll be making produce. it'll largely be used for the pacific. so that's one way that we we solve that dilemma that the country is so big and vast and the industrial centers are on the coast and the population bases even in the 40s tend to be on the coast that we can divert western resources. the second is the nature of the theaters. think about it for a minute. the japanese empires spread all over the pacific. so if george marshall wants to make eight million people and make an eight million man army.
three 400 divisions in combat divisions tanks artillery the whole thing how are you going to use them in the pacific we've got to transport them all around. so that effort to create this monstrous army is going to be designed to function on the european continent not on a little island like iwo, jima or taroa, or even in the philippines or okinawa those will be prop mostly amphibious operations and you can create a force for that. there will be army divisions in the pacific, but it's largely going to be the first marine division the six marine division the second marine division. and the pacific fleet the pacific fleets battleships will finally get up to about 50. it'll get 78. carriers heavy and medium, but they're mostly going to be in the pacific. there's going to be a few battleships. but there's no german navy. and there's going to be artillery support in italy. there's going to be artillery support that you need at d-day
you're going to meet destroyers to guard the convoys that are providing key supplies to britain, but the navy is going to have to be in the wide open theater. in the pacific why because the second largest navy in the world after the united states will not be britain very quickly. it'll be japanese. so in the american way of thinking they handle they finesse that problem by saying okay, we're going to say it's european first. but we're going to have the west coast be assured all those politicians governor warren out there. they're going to know that most a lot of their resources are going to go to what's next to them and more importantly we're going to spend put the navy and the marines and the pacific largely and the army and the heavy bombing campaigns at least in the beginning the liberator and b17 campaigns. they're going to be in europe and north africa. and that's a brilliant way of solving the british are delighted because they have interest in the pacific. and they have the existential
question of protecting the homeland the third grade issue is after the war and i want to put a dash here we talked about this last time and that's the empire. in the american way of thinking one of the great evils. in the american liberal conscious of 1930s 40s early forties is a british empire. especially because we did not want to be part of it. we rebelled and we look at the united states and we say see what can happen when you're free of britain. we're not very magnanimous and we don't really appreciate brace institutions british culture british lineage it makes america so unique everybody, you know. john locke to edmund burke, but nevertheless there's a resentment of the british empire. there's a lot of continental immigrants in the united states specially german speaking families that don't like the british empire. and how that works and as men of
the left the roosevelt administration is very suspicion is how does that work out? well, it reflects all of these issues that we talked about world war one and the left right dichotomy and especially russia. so there's going to be another great debate and that is i'm skipping ahead a little bit. i want to get to the second front in a minute. what do you do with the british empire? and how do you fight when we know that everything from the dutch east indies to burma to india are all there to protect british oil british natural resources rubber and especially the crown jewel in india and you are you really going to tell an american that he died in burma trying to preserve india for the british? or he died in indochina, so he's going to fight for the french empire. no. so what happens is in a very brilliant move and you remember the letter that andrew roberts
quotes when roosevelt sort of divides up the sphere of influence. the americans are going to say you know what we're going to go as americans. we always like to find the enemy and mobilize and destroy him and get home. so we're going to target our efforts on the japanese mainland. we're not going to go up to burma. we're not going to will help you with a burma road burma airlift etc except but not going to operate. and that part of the pacific we're going to try to island hop. and we specially want because of our historic ties the philippines or restore the philippines but we're going to outsource that part of the pacific to you and your imperial interest and we're going to build aircraft carriers in a long-range bomber which will eventually be the b-29 and we're going to destroy the japanese mainland and the british are delighted at it because if americans want to cut off the head of the octopus the tentacles in burma that threaten india will fall to us. so that issue is an issue about
the british empire. but as it works out in the pacific there's an easy solution. just as there is among us whether we should have. europe japan first policy in europe it's a problem. and i'm kind of conflating this russia here post-war here stalin here. but and now we get to the second front all of these issues are involved. and that is okay so we've got some kind of agreement that will fight in europe that the americans will fight a full-blown fully mobilized two front war that nominally at least they'll concentrate on europe. but there will be large elements of their. amphibious forces marines navy that will deal with japan and that we have a way or an accord or a protocol with dealing japan that will not infringe on the british empire and yet not think not give the appearance at the
americans are fighting for colonialists. that we're fighting against the people who attacked us on pearl harbor. but we still have this other problem. the british do not want a second front as we said that seems to be the theme of the entire andrew roberts masters in commanders and be frank also the warlords that one issue. they don't want a second front. and we talked about it because of for passion dale the battle of somme later 1940 dunkirk that's one issue they're going to have to at least until 1942 in 1943 they would have to put the bulk of the troops but there's another issue and this is what i want to get at. based i mean hitler i mean churchill can say all he wants that. i'll help the devil if it's to be defeat hit or i'll help i'll help stalin if i have to but deep down the british rightly so deeply resent what stalin did to them in 1939 1940 1941.
so stalin is very rude to say the british ambassador ambassador chris, and then suddenly he's attacked on june 22nd. and he says now i want to be your friend and as we said when we discussed alan earlier the modus operandi of the stalin mind, is that whatever i have done to other people. i'm convinced they're going to do to me. so just as i assigned a non-aggression pact with hitler trying to thwart him to destroy england, i know that they'll do the same thing with him to destroy me. so stalin is going to call. for a second front immediately and the americans a having a very different view as i said earlier world war one one year 117,000 dead. same thing will happen world war ii. ii. they're really americans who believe. hey john pershing got a million men on the continent from april 1917 to october 1918 one million americans went over to britain
we lost zero in transit they provided the big push they didn't get involved in verdun or passion help they won the war so. these people marshal after all had been on the chief of staff at pershing they said to themselves can happen again within one year. we'll have this enormous army will send them over there. they'll probably be in the same battlefields. they were in world war. i the only difference this time is that we're not going to have an armistice we're going to occupy and humiliate and transform germany and the british are saying all you're going to i shouldn't say sane. they're saying it in private communications. all you guys are going to do is get us all killed. by these horrific german divisions and all you're going to do is be help is to help stalin. because he's the one that wants it install and wanted it to destroy us. so just on a minute. and let's get some experience. and so from 1941.
in december all the way until 44 in june there's kind of this kobuki dance between george marshall and alanbrook and churchill and roosevelt. and the americans ring in the british and say okay, we're ready to land. france and the bridge said we are. and they say give us a date and they say yeah, and then they say, how about 42 and if you insist and the breach go home and say i think we've got them stalled another year. they come in 42 and they say okay we want to go in 43 and everybody. and so what's behind the american idea? got to save russia. it's going to kill two out of three germans if they lose a war then we'll suffer the kind of losses. they do it's the moral thing to do. we did it in world war one ulysses us grant taught us at the strategy of the american military is klaus witzian.
you find the enemy target him and you destroy him. and that means land right here at calais and go right into the river and destroy german commerce and the war is over. and the british are saying no amphibious capability 10 to 15 american combat divisions. you'll be slaughtered. we couldn't do it with 300,000 at dunkirk. you're eventually going to have to do if you're going to have a million men. you need a million men. you don't have air superiority. you have not crippled. german industry yet. the bombing campaign is very problematic. the german army is even though it's 1942 the high watermark. of the russian campaign is not failing at moscow but being very successful down here and they're all the way remember the volga and out to stalingrad all the way to here and the british were saying let's think about this.
second thing the new dealers are not that suspicious of state and post socialism. and they think this i think some of you brought up that quote where stalin roosevelt says. my attitude was stalin is i just give him everything and don't ask for anything in return and i immediate his behavior. and that's not the british idea. they understand that the home office is saturated with spies that the soviet union's methodology of conducting wars analogous to hitler and so the way that they get around this remember there's going to be the theme here is that there's these irreconcilable differences that hitler thinks will tear apart the alliance. as i said they're here. and yet it doesn't they work perfectly well, and that's because they're able because of the personalities of roosevelt the master politician. churchill brilliant strategist educated aerodite guys, they're able to have these solutions as
we just talked about. europe for specific theater and the solution they get is rather than just going through the jugular and getting the death to death 50/50 chance of winning or losing. let's soften germany up. how are we going to soften germany up? we're going to do it in six or seven ways. first of all we've got to destroy the u-boat fleet. why because the british tell us we are sending. lynn very critical supplies to stalin north of norway down here the arctic circle into the white sea to archangel and they're losing 25% of them as they get off the coast of norway where there's a lot of new book pin so let's get american destroyers. american long-range bombers british destroyers, and let's make sure that we don't lose any more on the convoy system and the highest level will be up in 1942.
in the british say we're not going to be able to stockpy operation bolero remember to make britain and american supply depot. we're not going to be able to have enough resource. so let's do that first. so america engages in a massive c building. and this is a great strife with king does not want to commit specific naval resources here, but he loses that battle finally. belatedly, but finally the second thing that the british convinced us. hey you guys you built the world's best bomber the b-17 you've had it since 1937 you not us you call it the flying fortress. let's use air power on day one of this war we were flying in with halifax and we've got a big lancaster bomber in the works and we will we will bomb germany and that will be a second front. by the way, they're going to lose 65,40,000 brits and 25,000 americans. so it's going to be a bloody battle. and once again, this is very
important. i think you should make a note of it in this relationship because you can see what a second landfront would have been like in 42 and 43 had. the british allowed us to do what george marshall and roosevelt wanted to do you can see that through the air campaign. because we go over there confident swaggering. say we have a b-17. we have a b-24 that going to come out their precision. we have something called the norden bomb site that you don't have you have a cruise of three. we have crews of nine ten. we fly in formation. they're absolutely a fortress and that really say don't. don't tell us that we've been losing. 10 to 15% of our cruise is a bomb because what the germans do is you leave, england. they pick you up on radar and they have 20 to 30 bases here and here and they just pass you
off from 109 squadron to 109 and it's good as plain as a spitfire and the new farqua 190 is better and they're excellent pilots and they'll shoot you down like you will not believe and we're doing this at night. and we're doing it in singular formation. we don't come announce where we're going if you think you're going to stack up 100 200 bombers. and it's going to be in broad daylight and then you're going to be up at 20,000 feet and drop individual bombs. it's a prescription for suicide and it is and we don't know anything what we're doing in 42 and 43. it's a testament to the people like the 8th air force. they don't give up. but in typical american ingenuity and know-how and learning from error a group of brilliant people jimmy doolittle help arnold curtis lamay. they look at the situation. they say this is winnable. if we start acting smart.
we develop a fighter that can escort us over to germany first the p-47 and the p-51 if we develop drop tanks so that they have a law a long operational capability over enemy territory, especially as we take back france. we have home soils who are not bailing out all the time on enemy soil and there's not enemy. of fighter bases all along our route, especially as we give up the idea that we're going to bomb so high and maybe we'll have to heaven forbid use incident dairies like the british, but finally it starts to pay real dividends and mid to late 1944, but you can see that american attitude what it would have done with a second front. it would have been a disaster the other thing that churchill insist on is. so we have this submarine campaign. and we have the bombing campaign.
and let's peel off. german sphere of influence the only problem with this is that since germany is engaged with three million men in russia. it's actually pretty good for germany to get out of these places. when the war ends are going to have 30,000 to over two divisions up in norway doing nothing. but as you can see, there's german planners who are telling hitler. we're being attacked like this. we don't want to be spread. let's have interior lines of communication like we did in world war one and let's not be spread over but the irony is that the british do convince us, okay. you guys want to have a european first? we we convince you that you want to go into germany. you can't do this yet. you can't meet these. ss divisions head on so let's go into morocco. november 1942 montgomery will
turn the tide at llamane alamaine though. you can learn your craft against second-tier german divisions that haven't been on the russian front front we can do this. and we can expel the germans out of north africa once we do that malta is safe oil supplies are safe. they cap and we do that very well and we're by. late spring 1943 that's over. then we go, and they say then we can go into sicily. we do that. i don't know quite look at the map. i don't know quite what sicily does for you. you take an island. okay, but we might as well take crete. we never do that until the war is over i don't know what sicily gives you really i guess it helps knock italy out of the war. but if you knock italy out of the war, that's wonderful and we'll do that. by 1944 but you still are going through a mountainous 500 mile long peninsula, and that seems to me if you want to go here.
this is a very bad way to do it. but as you know, the british are telling us at least you're not invading france in the wide open area against the german vermont and more importantly. is this issue that we talked about russia? at stalingrad between november 42 and 1943 by february end of january. 600,000 germans surrender missing loss killed in that larger campaign. and there's not really going to be a chance again that hitler's going to win the war quickly. it's going to to be a war of attrition. and by that period in 1942 all of us lynn lease all of us direct aid from the north arctic circle through iran and soviet industry command economy. russia's really now japan's got
its hands full so divisions are have all come from the opposite coast russia is a very good position. and it's starting. to not only be in a good position but to worry far seeking people seeing people like the british. and when they start to see the red army churchill and others think you know what? we saw what they did when they were on hitler's side and when they divided up poland and when this thing comes across like this and they get into germany, there's not going they turned germany on their side. there's nothing to be anything. so if you land the americans land here boy there's nothing stopping the red army. this is an announcement to us the idealist. so churchill says we'll go up through the soft. underbelly, there's that's not very soft. i don't know if it's an underbelly. but then let's even go over here to roads and leros and i don't know what that would do get turkey and go along the black sea and then meet the russians i think churchill's ideas that the
americans in 1944 are here in poland and they say okay stop you did a great job. you got the germans out. let us take care of them and then we tell the germans. we're on both sides of you now. we'll let these russians come in. so just quit. and then all of this area here is not going to fall to communism. of course the americans to see this as absolutely diabolical. and another way of the british imperialist trying to finagle a post-war. advantage for themselves and so the second front is going to be a fierce issue and how is this dilemma going to be solved between churchill and roosevelt? it's going to be solved as i said is the under the guise at the american army is feeling itself out. it's learning. it's getting re-equipped. it doesn't have really good tanks. the sherman tank is not as good as the best german tanks, but it's good enough. to function i suppose in europe.
it's going to have a million man forces. that didn't world war i and by 1944 it's going to have some people like the first armored division that have fought in morocco. they fought in sicily. they fought in italy. they're going to be pretty good veteran people. they're going to have air superiority. they're going to have taken a toll on the bombing campaign and there's a chance. and what's wondrous about this it works? once again, just like it was the right decision to have europe first and they solved the problem of dividing up the pacific theater and they solved the problem of american public opinion more worried about japan so too with the second front they did take the pressure off stalin stalin would have lost that war had there not been american and british pressure through bombing for example let me just give you a couple of examples he the vermarkt will transfer 10,088 millimeter platforms to protect their cities and bombers each one of
those was one of the most superb anti-tank weapons a german army had german labor german transportation will be severely hard pressed by bombing that takes a load off. a load office soviet union the germans have about 40 divisions in north africa and at various times in italy. it's sicily that are not committed. to the western front so to the eastern front, so it's a very it does work and by the time we get there think of the results. the tide supposedly turns when the german army is stopped army group center stopped 26 miles outside of moscow in late december. americans invade june 6 1944 the distance from normandy here to berlin if you look on the map. like this it's about 900 miles and from here to soy unions
about 1100 miles so the americans are going to go with the british and the canadians are going to go from here all the way into the center of germany and nine months. and the russian army is going to take four years i know you're going to say there's better troops more german resources but it's much harder to land an army and supply it on a coast when you're 3000 miles away as the united states than to fight right here. we are industrial base and fighting with the elan that comes from defending your homes and so that achievement is absolutely brilliant. what the american and british the shape. overlord planning did in nine months they ended that war just absolutely brilliant. it's never been repeated. and out of that. some of the best commanders and either side of the war. we always think of zuka over konyev as he's brilliant guys, but there's never been a army group commander quite like george patton and there hasn't
been some divisions first armor division. for example, they were absolutely superb. and that solves the problem then of the so-called second front. and the result of all this is and now we'll take some questions. is that an alliance that hitler knew that would break up? and he knew that because of the differences between britain and america and he admired britain by the way much more than he did us. and he knew that in his own experiences with the japanese. he had tricked the japanese into one non-aggression impact with the germans and they tricked him with another and that mussolini had attacked greece without telling buddy in other words suspicion distrust lack of cooperation characterized his tripart alliance, and he projected that to ours he was absolutely wrong. we not only got along with the british the british go along with us. we kept the mass murdering stalin. as a third part of the of the alliance and that the result of it was absolutely amazing to end that war in four years.
before we go on in the second half of the class. does anybody have any questions at this point? i know that we covered a lot of material. i want to stop for a second. go ahead. was was solving the u-boat problem or ending the about dominance critical to the success of operation bolero. it was operation bolero. is that amorphous term? not for a second front per se but just for making the british isles scotland all the way down to wales as a depot for american material then you could find out what you wanted to do it, but you got to get it over there and you were losing by june to august 1942. you were losing in some convoys 25 to 30 percent of the material was being blown apart by u-boats. and there didn't seem to be a way around it. because there was large expanses off the map and in the atlantic. that air power either from the
east coast of america are from ireland and the western parts of britain could not reach remember a u-boat is very very vulnerable 90% of the time. that's when it's above. water it has batteries electric batteries underneath the water. it can't stay down there more than a few hours, so they have to surface or almost completely defenseless. they have a small little gun and that's when you want to attack them, but the problem is they have a very low silhouette you can't see them and they're lethal whether they're under the ground or under the water or on the surface. they can shoot torpedoes and when you don't have air cover in large areas, so how what's the solution to it? you crack the german naval codes, which they do tells us where these wolf packs are going to congregate you get long range b17s with extra catalina flying boats for reconnaissance the british have mosquito obama you get special designed aircraft that have no blank spots and you
start to really master the convoy system. convoy system as you put a lot of destroyers. around the convoy then the the british and then the german u-boat commander has to make a decision. is he going to discharge his torpedoes at a war at a very minor warship and let all of the they're very key transport vehicles. go transfer chips get into britain or is he going to forget about the destroyers and wait till we can get a shot in between. and he knows that whatever he does. he's going to be subject to an increasing. response some depth charges and they're going to be much more sophisticated. they were 1941 the result of all this. by 1944 the u-boat threat is pretty much ended and with the conquest of western france and americans in belgium and amsterdam that base of u-boat shelters some of you saw dust boot the movie it's ended with
and so then the threat diminishes very important remember what hitler tells his commander just hang on because we have a super u-boat. that has a snorkel. that sucks air. from the surface and sucks it down into the compressor chambers of a diesel engine and it can operate then 24 hours 24/7. it's almost like a nuclear sub all the time and if it's under water all the time. nobody can see it that's going to come on and then we can reverse this. it's the same argument. he uses with the v1 and v2 rocket and the jet aircraft. just hang on. and technology will change. the pulse of the battlefield gap but yeah, that's you look at the communications with marshall and brooke. and supply supply we americans didn't make the best as i said last time we didn't make the
best tank. we didn't make the best artillery. we made pretty good fighters and bombers, but we surely made the best transportation. in heavy trucks jeeps we made the best. food best quonset huts best everything as far as supplying the men in the field with just a sheer. food water fuel where nobody was like us and that would have been impossible had we not solved the yubal problem. and think of where we started we started in 19 late 1941 with new jersey coast people out there dancing them at midnight with all the hotels and the resorts lit up and with 50 u-boats off the shore waiting for us to load up a transport plant ship with its two stacks. it gets 10 miles off in new jersey or even down to the florida coast the u-boat commander sends his periscope. he sees the big hotels and neon lights and right in front of it
as a big fat ship and then they sink it right off the coast. that's one of the reasons that hitler declared war in the united states. he was convinced that as you both commanders. it kept saying to him. we can't attack these american convoys. they're supplying england if you declare war in the united states and let us go we will destroy england by starving it and they almost did but it was a great motivation that explains inexplicable why hitler declared war on somebody else had a question. yes. here do you think that germany would have been able to take out the soviet union had they taken moscow because napoleon invaded in 1812 and they just left the city of yes, the question is that in december? of 1941 army group centers right here, and it's very it's of all the three army groups remember that? army group north has not taken liningrad. it's surrounded it army group south has been in some ways the most successful, but they have
diverted an august. they made that big encircling movement and taken kiev and now they're they pretty much they will take the uk the ukraine and the crimea, but had they taken moscow would that have made a difference? and you make a good point that napoleon took it and nothing happened. i'm not sure it would have i think that the soviets could have evacuated it which they were ready to do. they could have evacuated the city in the week. they were prepared. they'd already transported their heavy industry the german high command believed that the symbolic value was such that it would cause a loss of will among russian resistance. i don't think it would have i think it would have helped them, but i don't see if you what won the ward. let's put it this way. what won the war is if you take a chart and you look at tank production plane production artillery production small arms production transport production and you put america.
britain russia germany italy japan, well, it's going to go from about four to one to ten to one by 1943. we were producing we the allies were producing so many goods and services very hard to see. how the germans were going to catch up. there's another thing that is very important. and that is that hitler is a brilliant political strategist. he understands to the tea the rot and the weakness in the 1930s democracies. he knows that they won't do anything. they'll talk. day long about peace and human rights and freedom and democracy, but when it comes to actually stopping them whether it's the rhineland or the suitland or austria or czechoslovakia, they won't do a thing. and that they're not able to. to fight the german army at least for a while, but where he's absolutely wrong is that he
translates that domestic and foreign brilliant insight into foreign relations. it's innate because he's not educated. it's he's an autodidact. but he translates that into strategic sense, and he doesn't have any. so when these we know that by the stupid idea of invading the soviet union as i said three classes ago if you look at german supplies from the soviet union and not one month of occupation of four years did levels of russian imports ever exceed what stalin sold often with credits to the vermont in other words the third right got much more. from russia for its war effort by being part of a packed with it than it did by occupying. given the disruption that happened and so what really makes that question important as it given who hitler was when he diverts army group center to the
south when he says not, you know, no more surrender. no retreat it stalingrad when he pursues curse. when he we leaves some very good generals like guderian all they're not going to win with him and when stalin after stalling shoot shoot shoots his commanders it lose. he finally gets to a guy like cornea of in zukoff, and he basically says, i'll settle with them after the war but they're going to be famous during the war and their brilliant strategist and i'm gonna to let them run the war and roosevelt does the same thing? but hitler doesn't so i don't think that the the capture of moscow would have made a difference because it would it would presume that it would be of such symbolic value that they would have quit and don't see them quitting. and the united states was going to be in the war within. well, it was in the war but it was going to be really in the war within a matter of months. anyway, given japan. what would have changed?
the war where you can see very easily how the germans and the italians and japanese could have won the war very quickly before the mass productive capacity of russia and the united states and britain kicked in and how would that have happened? i think you all know it. that would have meant that on june 22nd 1941. hitler did not go into russia. but he only had 75,000 german troops and about 200,000 italian. there was only 150 british. he had taken of that three million. he'd taken a million and a half and put them right here and he could have because he had all of this occupied. he had the greek ports. he had air cover at crete. they had sicily and italy he had taken that enormous force. they had not done what ronald only had when a time of llamane was over. he had 26 tanks.
there was 3,000 tanks up here. had they gone in and swept into egypt and they'd taken the suez canal that would have done more to crippled britain than the convoy battle then they could have swept in up here to trans jordan peeled off british possessions vichy, france and syria, and then they're into iraq and the persian gulf and they have the oil and they meet up with the japanese coming up from india and at that point. with the soviet union neutral. i don't know how england would have continued especially that. enormous forest then could have been put back here and they could have probably invaded so that was the first big mistake that hitler and it was a fatal mistake. the second is and we've talked about this and declaring war in the united states because given our propensity to want to fight japan. i think there's a good chance. it was a 50/50 question whether
we would have declared war on germany and that would have meant we would have given supplies, but we wouldn't have been doing things in north africa or sicily or italy as we did. take those two decisions away and they dwarf the occupation of moscow. and i think there's been a really good chance and you can see that would have ended. because by 1945 germany had a sophisticated jet the me-262 they had a guided. not a v1 sort of scut. it's not even a scud missile. i guess it was a primitive cruise missile without a guidance system, but it had finally the v2 which was an intercontinental ballistic missile and they had effort they had designs that might have made something like a v3 and we we were at the stages of developing a bomb so you can see if the war had of lasted into 1946-47 48 and hitler said would go to 46. it would have been cataclysmic.
other questions yes, we have a lot of them right here. it seems like hitler's generals did have a lot of strategic sense. did they advocate at all for any sort of cooperation with say japan or was that just completely high command? yeah. the question was did the german high command. agitate for greater integration i think that in that particular case the answer was they didn't have time to think about it ribbon trop was worried about it, and they he tried to get the japanese to stop. the pacific campaign and go back and fight russia as they had in 1939 because as you know, what saved moscow going back to your question was the transference on the trans-siberian siberian of at least 40 crack divisions from the japanese front. so ribbon trop is saying get those divisions back over there and you can do that by invading
russia through manchuria. and the japanese are saying no we fought them. we lost 8 or 9,000 people. there's a diminishing returns. we have a non-aggression of pact. we don't want two front war. we remember bitterly when we were at war with russia right in the middle of it. or shortly after you signed and non-aggression pact and freed up russian defense. so we're going to we don't have special loyalty to you. and it's there were efforts to send a facquif 190 a german u-boat, see if they could somehow go around the cape of good hope and get to -- and coordinate it but pretty much when hitler woke up on december 8th. he had no idea that japan was going to attack pearl harbor. he was delighted because he didn't have a navy and he was delighted because he had been brought up that oblivion came from two front wars. he was not in a two front war and now both britain and america were in two front wars and he was just convinced.
oh my god. they have a two-front war and the japanese had the great navy. i don't have to worry about a navy now. they'll tie the british navy down. they'll they'll try the american navy down. and everything's great let's declare warm and finishing them up we're still december 7th they're about 30 miles outside of moscow. so it was all. optimism but you're absolutely right had the tojo and mussolini and hitler had the relationship. of roosevelt and churchill even stalin that would have been quite frightening because the axis had complementary strengths the japanese navy the japanese sources of resources the german military on land even italy had a very sophisticated navy and air force had it been given a sphere of operations had the germans said to italy. please don't go into greece don't go into the balkans just forget about that don't go into the any of that your sphere of
influence. is you concentrate on libya and tying the british down and maybe take malta and and this is what you do and then the japanese you attack russia from one side. we attack it. we're going to do that. or better yet. let's not tack russia at all. you take indian come up from suez will do none of that existed. part of it's because when you have an ideology that says that japanese are asian supermen and ties and koreans and vietnamese and china there's subhuman and when you have an ideology that says arians in germany are better than nordics and scandinavian a lot better than southern europeans and a lot lot better than slaves and jews etc then each of these people have this exalted view of themselves. that makes it very hard to have. relations with other people that they're not prone to it and then autocracy and dictatorship by nature seems to a very
suspicious system. we had a question back there. was japan focused too much on their eastern empire to invade us while they were in europe or were they simply just not sorry didn't hear that. okay. i was japan focused too much on their empire on the mainland in order to invade the us while we were in germany, or were they just not strong enough to have been us. well, japan had got themselves. i'm sorry. i don't have the pacific not and as early as 1931 they'd gone into manchuria and by 1937 remember? they had taken they were on their way to take shanghai they were going to kill several hundred thousand civilians and nan king and they got bogged down. they took. most of the industrialized populated sector of china, but they got themselves in. insurgency of the first order with both shanghai check and mao and so they were tied down they were tied down in korea and the pacific block or the specific
lobby within a japanese military went to the emperor and said look they told us they were going to annex china and we were going to have this great land empire and what do they do? they've been fighting here for 10 years. and what do we see? we just see japanese bodies. there's no way you can go and now they have they fought russia and it didn't work. so this is what we to do. they told us that we had to make peace with the united states and we had a diplomatic effort and we lied and we we subverted we did everything but we didn't go to warby united states and we gave them a decade and they had nothing to show for now. it's our turn. what we want you to do is force the army just to stand down and occupy. and make peace with russia. and then that will allow us to have our chance yamamoto, especially the architect of this and we will run a pacific war and we will take on america and one front war because china will be static and we will do two
things very quickly and it happened. we will get all the rubber and oil from the bankrupt dutch and empires we want we will sole threaten india that it will have a mass insurrection. it will break off and there were nationals movements. they read all about gandhi and boasts in all these people and then we will hit the united states so hard at these gangsters in chicago that are in the middle of a depression won't know what hit them. they were imbued with the hitler stereotype of us that they'll sue for peace within six months and then we have this enormous specific naval empire and then after that maybe from our victory and our brilliance we can help the army. and that prevailed and looking back with the benefit of hindsight if you were in neutral strategist, you would have probably said that there was more opportunity for japanese expansionism by concentrating on korea on indochina on burma and
on manchuria. that was much better because they were as far as japan and making a non-aggression pack with the united states but that was what the problem was the japanese army interest and navy interest clashed. and the navy may the argument the army had first choice and they blew it and now it was their turn. and that's how it happened the way it did and then the irony of the whole thing is as soon as we got into the war the army front heated up. and we started to supply china and china was re-energized manchuria was much more difficult. we were supplying the nationalists through the so-called burma road or over the burma hump the british got involved in defending india, and we started to be so successful that the land front heated up again. a couple of things to remember before we had somebody else had
a question. i saw somebody. before we stop for a break remember how this is all going to work out in the post-war era. and we're going to get to that next class the war from 4344 and 45. today's class was thirty nine forty forty one with and commanders but remember what the position of the united states is going to be in it's very ironic and unenviable. so what churchill and roosevelt are starting to envision is so they're going to win. as george patton says we went to war for totalitarianism to be destroyed in eastern europe, and we ended up ensuring that it would be in eastern europe. change the name from nazism to soviet communism that's a simplistic analysis, but there's something to it. and when this war is going to end i want to preview the problem that churchill and roosevelt dash truman are going to have dash.
anthony eden and his successors because as you know clement atli and all. churchill will be gone for a while. but so the war is going to end. and we've empowered. the soviet union and the soviet union took a vacation on the pacific war until the very end the last two weeks and they're going to go supply mao and we're going to be ambiguous about that and shanghai is going to lose in china is going to turn communal. this is going to be very quick. 1946-47 and then what do we do? we inherit the axis? they're devastated and they're facing communist occupation overthrow subversion in places as diverse as japan philippines, korea. for most italy germany all of western europe. so here's what the united states is asked to do then. this is something that a historian like howard zinn has no appreciation for much less sympathy.
so we win and we we lose a half a million people and we've got this full mobilization then with britain the empire is exhausted there's no support in britain for the empire. there's going to be nationalist social health care all of this social program that's going to throw churchill out and at its basis is let's not spend money on the empire. let's spend money at home in britain. so we're going to inherit the british empire's responsibilities, but we have the worst pr in the world. because we now have to save italy. and we have to save germany at least the french american and british zones of occupation and rebuild them. and we're going to have to save japan and we're going to have to go into korea and you know what we go into a place like korea who's been occupying it the japanese who's keeping order and we're going to have to tell the korean people. hey. you know, we just feed it the
japanese, but we're going to have to make sure that the communists don't come in. the communists are saying see. they're rebuilding japan the fascist and they're opposing us who fought the fascist. and we're going to have to say to eastern europe and everybody you want a strong germany. you don't want to complete destroyed. so by 1947 if you want to know why all of eastern europe is going communist and korea. the korean war is going to break out and china's gonna go come and it looks hopeless for the united states think of the burden of that. public relations the two worst countries in the world have been japan and germany. we defeated them in almost immediately. we're going to occupy them create democracies rebuild their economies and tell the world. that was then hitler and tojo acceptor. they're gone, but it wasn't the fault of the japanese people. it wasn't the father of the german people. they're good people and now there are allies and we're going to arm them so that they can be
bulwarks against whom our former allies. the communist chinese and the communist russians. so now americans just remember those good guys uncle joe the roosevelt had his arm around mao that we can they're bad now. and then we have to tell millions of koreans and millions of eastern europeans and all these other people we have to say to them. i know that there was a little bit of excess that japanese like to cut your heads off or they shot your mother in yanking or there's german vermont officers who shot people, but they didn't really mean that they're not that bad people and they're saying to us it was a japanese people. it was the german people and they're saying that from indonesia to korea and they're saying that from bulgaria all the way to finland and the russians are saying yes see. see the americans the british imperialists. they just fought this war not
for freedom. not for democracy. not as self-defense, but to hurt people people's war the average. hoi polloi so that's a terrible thing to have to do and then in the early cold war is to rebuild the enemy and convince the world that they're no longer the enemy and then fight the friend and tell the world that they were never really our friends but they were useful and it's it doesn't get worked out until 1980 to be quite candid any final questions before break we have one. yeah. do you think that the allies made a mistake by supplying russia so much so that they survived over so we make a mistake by supplying stalin that's going to be fought all through the 50s. somebody's gonna stand up in the senate and say as we speak in korea american boys are killed near the yellow river and you know how the chinese killed them. they were on gmc trucks. and there even they even had radios that they were
communicating and their two t-34 tanks to mig 15s in the sky and they're on those radio that says made in usa. so, yeah, but i've once this semester i quoted toky and i know there's some tokian people at hillsdale and i'll quote him again. i think there's a line somewhere in the last of the trilogy where he says. they say wow can't we employ solomon to use against sauron or something or count and they're thinking of all this things and finally gamoff says we're just we just do the best we can. in our time in our station we try to win in 1941. it was very clear that hitler was going to win and of hitler was going to win it would mean the extension of not six but 12 to 15 million jews and 40 to 50 million slaves. he was going to kill them all and he was going to create a monstrous. hideous civilization and we were
going to do anything we could to stop it and at that point we said to ourselves. these are russians are not communist stalin said irel i call on everybody to support the fatherland ten days after invading. he didn't say communism. so we're going to dilute ourselves into saying they're not communist and we're going to do that and there were i mean americans were not all naive there were people in the state department and the military that said, okay, we're going to do that and then as soon as we do that, we've got to have to i mean, you're not all like george patton that said give me those bear marked officers and i can be equipped them and we can get to moscow kill those sons of -- and i want to keep going and it'll be a lot cheaper here. remember he said i will be a lot cheaper here when i got the army than take them home and bring them back. but the point i'm making is that you do what you can at the time. and you always take the bad choice rather than the worst choice the bad choices arming
stalin with the idea that that russian people or people and jews are at stake and the world is facing it existential evil. and then worry about what happens after that with the next generation. that's what we did. and i think as i look back at it, it was a right decision. i wish that we were not so naive and glorifying stalin harry truman thank god was a great american and understood that almost immediately in a way that roosevelt had not in fact truman understood stalin and the russians probably is better than even eisenhower. so we learned but in that last analysis even though we conducted. a submarine anti-submarine campaign a strategic bombing campaign a campaign in north africa, sicily italy western europe all over the pacific and we supply the russians with billions of dollars as i said
two out of every three. land soldiers in the german army, which was really the the tool of terror for the german reich were killed by the soviet union and they were killed in part because we helped them a lot of it was a courage of the red army, but they were the ones that broke the back of the vermont we broke the back of the german air force we destroyed the german navy we freed a lot of people's we took the pressure off but the actual physical thing of getting in a trench and shooting a german shoulder was a russian and i'll just finish and we'll have our break i've spoken too long but remember one other thing this is all. philosophical theory theorizing if you're 1944 1943 and you say you want to defeat the german army, that means that you or me you not me. i'm 57 you young kids are going to be given a rifle. and you're going to be given a uniform and you're going to be
put on the opposite side from the german soldier. and he has been fighting for four years and he's imbued with a military tradition in general from great-grandparents were the formation of the german state and a nazi ideal ideology in particular and he's going to be equipped. with the best machine guns the best infantry rifles the best pistols the best tanks by far maybe except for the t-34 superior aircraft the best generals the best mid-level officers so when you're sitting in that, foxhole whether at the battle of the bulge or the battle of kursk and a german division like doss reich or herman gurring or the adolf hitler division or gross deutsche, whatever they are. they come at you. there's going to be tiger 75-ton tanks and there's going to be veterans you can call them nazis
you can call many name you want but these are sophisticated killers like the world's never seen and how do you stop them it means that x number of you are going to have to run up out of your foxhole with inferior bazookas or anti-tank and try to stop that tiger because in theory there's nothing that can stop it. you take a tiger tank and you take it through the hillsdale campus. you can do all you want you can't stop it. you can go right through down the stair. you can do anything. you cannot stop it. it requires somebody to walk right up to it. and a point blank range shoot a anti-tank weapon into it that person's going to die or it takes somebody in a t-34 sherman to get right next to it and shoot that person is going to die. same thing with a german soldier is going to be a better shot until 1943 at least he's going to be better trained he's going to have better and that's going to be hard how does one kid growing up in america or a soviet peasant deal with them and so it's very tragicism this when he invades russia and hitler's at zenith you look at this as an outsider if you're
from mars and you knew anything about military strategy you would say to yourself. okay. take the third reich. nine and a half million people in arms and the most sophisticated productive capacity in the world were and things like falk wolf 190s and 88 millimeter artillery platforms and tiger tanks and to take that so it can't hurt anybody else that's going to take 10 million dead. there's no way around it. and i shouldn't come up with something like the atomic bomb there's no way it's like invading japan everybody says we should shouldn't have dropped the bomb how do you go into japan when there's seven million people who fought of the same caliber that fought at okinawa and killed 50,000 wounded 50,000 50,000 total casualties american you can it just do the arithmetic and so yeah, whatever. we think the soviet union. 20 million of them were willing to go right up against the german armored division pretty
amazing. a lot of americans were in british, too. let's take a break and we'll come back at at the half hour for the last hour. thank you. you can watch lectures in history every weekend on american history tv. we take you inside college classrooms to learn about topics ranging from the american revolution to 9/11 that saturday at 8pm at midnight eastern on c-span 3 the c-span cities tour travels the country exploring the american story since 2011. we've been to more than 200 communities across the nation like many americans our staff is staying close to home due to the coronavirus. next a look at one of our city's tour visits. welcome to the south dakota