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Stalin's Contributions

Discussion in 'Prelude to War & Poland 1939' started by kowalskil, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. Jenisch

    Jenisch Member

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    Playing the devil's advocate here: there's also the perspective of the things. One patriotic American can attack the Communist crimes, but a Communist can say that all the people who died and were dying in horrible conditions in Africa without a major effort from the capitalist countries to save them are as victims as the detractors of Communism considerate the victims of such type of political regime.
     
  2. Karjala

    Karjala Don Quijote

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    Quite the contrary.

    Stalin had his way exactly like he wanted to. If Stalin did nothing Hitler would not/could not have attacked Poland because of the soviet threat and possible war on two fronts - something the Germans wanted to avoid at all costs in 1939. On paper both France and the USSR were very strong, not to mention the British navy.
     
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  3. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    No :Hitler would attack,unless Stalin became an ally of Poland and would fight for the survival of Poland as an independant state .If he did nothing,and Hitler attacked ? What than ?
     
  4. Jenisch

    Jenisch Member

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  5. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    And I disagree with it .
     
  6. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    As others have pointed out not really.

    No he was not. 2 or variants of it were still possible.

    Ruins it??? No it brings a needed dimension to it.

    I disagree emphatically.

    They may have interest but what those interest are can vary tremendously and in some cases the morality of those interest can also vary. Your second senence I found incoherent

    Many apparently think there is and with some merit. The questions shouldn't stop there it is true but this question provides a good focus into looking at the origins of the war.
    But proceeding in such a way often lacks focus and may not account for the relative importance of the various reasons.
     
  7. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Which neither clarifies your statement nor makes it any more correct. For one t hing some ends are better than others and not all ends justify all means to some.

    Not only say it make a very strong case for it.

    What about it? Certainly it was very different from the actions of Hitler and Stalin that get them labled as "monsters". What is more it was within the conventions of war at the time which carries a certain moral weight as well as a legal one.

    We've already agreed Stalin was a monster haven't we?


    There is no question that most if not all countries have skeletons burried (and some in vary shallow graves) in their closets. That doesn't make them the equivalant of the Nazis or the Stalinists. Nor does the actions of a government with regards to its own citizens necesarily require action on the part of other countries. Although that looks to be more and more likely.
     
  8. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    There's a limit to how many quotes so here's the rest:

    Are they? Your one example is hardly convincing. There are human rights issues that are furthered by supporting the Saudis for one thing. Then there are other cases where Hiuman Rights have been the primary interest. Often it's a matter of the costs both interms of cash and people not to mention international agreements that are the overriding concern.


    That's where you are abdicating a responsibility then. Countries may be wrong or right as may individuals for persuing certain courses and in many cases it's not a black and white call but it still should be examined.


    This is the "moral equivalancy" argument and it has been pretty throughly discredited. For one thing the empires indicated above were hardly morally equivalant. What's more the west was generally dismantleing thiers for various reasons.

    One can argue that being part of a group means one is subject to some level of domination by it a family, a clan, a vilage, a city, a state, or an empire. The question is what ofsets this? The Axis countries as well as the Communist ones of the time gave little in return except for the ruling class/race.

    And this should not be swept under the rug either. Of course the actions of the various left wing governements shouldn't either (both the positive and negative need to be brought to light).

    If that was the case why didn't the US just occupy those countries and absorb them? Or make them colonies?

    Your frist sentence is correct if not as strong a statement as it should be. The second phrase of the second is where you go wrong. That's like saying if it's ok to toss a penny down a wishing well it's also ok to do the same with your life savings. Good and bad are not binary options where 1 is always equal to 1 and 0 to 0. There is a scale and Hitler and Stalin were at the far end of the "bad" side of the axis where most people are not to for from the 0 point on the good side.

    ???? I found that almost toatlly incoherent.

    Why shouldn't we see the development of new "EU" like structures in other places in the world? I do agree that at least to some extent man on earth and peace on earth seem mutually exclusive. On the other hand we are seeing progress over most of the planet and have been for decades at least.

    ???? Again could you try to say this more coherently?
     
  9. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Which ignores the difference between acts of ommissin and acts of commission. It also ignores the fact that the Communist would at least be equally guilty and that there were major efforts in this regard. A number of other problems with this that I'll not go into now.
     
  10. Jenisch

    Jenisch Member

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    You cannot refute what I have said, LWD, because what I have said is true. I already know people of your sort, and I don't need to say again that things like the carnage the Anglo-American bombers inflicted in the Axis cities bringed equal or more suffering to the affected civilians than the Soviet rapes in Berlin or some policies the Germans implemented to the peoples they occupied. Stay living in your world of democracy, human rights and "good and bad". I live well attent of the interests of people, and this has never bring me any problem - actually it spared and spares me from several ones. Now if I started to act with naiveness, then everything changes (for worst!). You are trying to persuade me to belive in the Western euphemism in regard to their political Maquiavelism, you will never succeed in that. I have my personal political interests, but actually for practical reasons for a better life quality for myself and my familiy. Apart from that: US, Britain, URSS, Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, Saudi Arabia, etc, they were all viewed with the same skeptical eyes by me.
     
  11. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Is it? I guess it depends on exactly what you are talking about but most is opnion at best and some is in deed refuteable and I beleive I've done a decent job of doing so.


    And what "sort" would that be?

    Perhaps. That's rather a selective phrasing though isn't it? It rather ignores the situation as well. Definitly form the "moral equivalancy" school of thought which, as I've stated, has been pretty well discredited in the eyse of most of humanity.

    Thank you I will. Morality is one of the things that seperates humans from monsters.


    Waxing incoherent again I see.

    Then don't! That doesn't mean that you have to reject morality.


    Am I? Actually what I was trying to point out is that the situation is more complex than your gross simplifiation allows for. That the colonial powers were serving their own interest is clear. Those interest included their financial and political gain obviously, however they also included more benevelont interest some misguided some not.

    What a sour religion and your revel in your closed mind. OH well. Scetisism is a good trait but that doesn't really appear to be the way you look at things. You've already judged them. Part of scepticism is keeping an open mind.
     
  12. belasar

    belasar Court Jester Staff Member

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    Let us not catagorise one another with labels, We are all good sorts here, the very best.
     
  13. Karjala

    Karjala Don Quijote

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    As I wrote before the Germans wanted to avoid the two-front war at all costs in 1939. Hitler would not have taken the risk without the sure knowledge of the USSR keeping out. After all the soviets had the biggest army and more tanks than the rest of the world combined.
     
  14. Totenkopf

    Totenkopf אוּרִיאֵל

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    You make a statement of absolute certainty in your first sentence, and follow it up with saying you are immune to persuasion and have your own agenda in your last three? Those people who enter a discussion with the truth already attained, and are dead set about not changing their views are often the first ones to be excluded from the discussion for that very reason.

    Why are you critical of morality though? I am not a believer of absolutes, but surely you would agree that as a social species a sort of morality would have to be imbued in us through natural selection?
     
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  15. Jenisch

    Jenisch Member

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    I was trying to say that Realism is the most accepted theory of international relations, due to the constatation that in most times countries act according to this theory. This doesn't mean that moral issues should not be discussed (actually the opposite). It simply means that caution is needed in order to avoid Stalin and Hitler become scapegoats for democratic governments conduct realpolitik.
     
  16. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    IMO you go well beyond that when you make statements like:

    That's a pretty black or white statement that puts everyone in the same box as Hitler. Then there's the question of where:
    "Stalin and HItler" have "become scapegoats for democratic governments"?
     
  17. Jenisch

    Jenisch Member

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    I expressed myself incorrectly.

    And by "scapegots", I mean people not giving the due importance to abuses conducted by democracies simply because Hitler and Stalin were "worst". Being worst is one thing, another is try to have practically an amnesty for immoral or even criminal actions that democracies conducted or conduct simply because their scale was smaller than those of dictatorships. Detractors of Communism do this a lot, like if the West didn't turned a blind eye for human rights abuses or even formented them during the the Cold War. The Communists of course, also also acted in similar manner. Clearily this is part of the speech for people with a political agenda, but it's something harmful for those who really want to learn lessons from history, since the "politicized history" is not so uncommon, and affects specially the popular knowledge of history, which by itself can avoid or bring problems to a nation (e.g. a good understanding of the leaders of the past can avoid contemporany ones who are conducting the same mistakes remain in power).
     
  18. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    OK, That was not clear to me. I am not used to seeing scapegoat used in that way but a quick look google of the defintions shows your usage is not unreasonable. However I'm not seeing much of that on these boards at least IMO.

    If we are talking WWII one of the problems here is there were few or no "criminal" actions by the democracies. That's not to say that individuals or even organizations operating under thier control didn't commit such. Often they were punished for said actions though. Immoral is another matter. Churchill was articulated it pretty well when he stated something to the effect of praising the devil if he would oppose the Nazis. There's also the question of what is immoral and what is not. For instance what impact would it have had if the West insisted that Easter Europe be free of Communist control post war? Could they have forced it short of war? Would it have justified a war?

    Both sides justified such actions as being for what they considered the "grerater good". I personally view Communism as one of the greater evils that have plagued man especially in the 20th century. This was due to a considerable number of factors and I understand that a devout Communist would differ with me but the toll of human casualties that can be layed at the feet fo Communism exceeds that of any other. While their oppositon must bear some of the blame the fact that most of those casulaties were internal and that it's on going rather lends credance to the necessity of defeating Communism. That's not to say that the democracies didn't go too far on occasion though.

    There is a difference between acknowledging criminal or immoral acts and accepting them as necessary or as reasonable given the situation at the time and ignoring them completely. Although often in the former case people don't take a close enough look at things to determine were they really necessary and was there a better way. I've seen much more of that in the West though than elsewhere.
     
  19. Jenisch

    Jenisch Member

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    What about the unrestrict submarine warfare against Japan?

    Certainly,


    One can say the same of the USSR supporting the capitalist states in WWII. The end justifies the means when the interests of the state are relevant.



    In many cases. The US supported regimes in Latin American that made thousands of victimins, and the Americans were aware of this. But Communism should not enter in the hemisphere, isn't? In the same way that capitalism should not enter in Eastern Europe...

    If you see, that also happened in the USSR. Kruschev changed the things significantly from Stalin, and Gorbachev changed them even more. The "humanitarian" stuff is not only for a supposed wish of benelolence, but actually for practical reasons as well, and is not only with the USSR. See the British Empire, WWII only accelerated it's decline. The fact is that things change from times to times.

    There are situations when democracies would not allow independent policy to be pursuited. In theory the Americans advocated freedom, but they would not tolerate Latin American being Communist during the Cold War (and very likely also today, given the CIA actions in Venezuela in the last 10 years). Of course that the Soviets would not enjoy Eastern Europe with a free market. The so-called democratic regimes can find other ways to intervene in the affairs of other countries, even if the popular support or law in their countries do not allow it. See the case of the Contras in Nicaragua, that Reagen found a way to support them by the Argentina Military dictatorship. This kind of smartness always happened and always will happen in the world, no matter what the nature of the interventor regime in question is. Only naive people will not belive on this. It cannot be said that democratic governments are in the same level of violence as Hitler, but they are able to do or planned to do many "evil" things abroad and even internally (e.g. Operation Northwoods). This why I give the same skeptical treatmment either to a democracy or a dictatorship. You never know what they are really doing or thinking to do. The story that "democracies don't fight democracies" is just related to formal wars. During the Cold War, every single democratic regime in South America was overtrow with American support and a right-wing dictatorship installed. The Americans had their reasons? Yes, of course. It still doesn't change the fact that realpolitiks take over the scene when national security and/or other relevant interests are in game, and this is not an exclusivity of the US, but something done by all countries if necessity appears.
     
  20. Jenisch

    Jenisch Member

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