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Irrational enemies, a nice "feature"

Discussion in 'Military Training, Doctrine, and Planning' started by DarkLord, Mar 15, 2021.

  1. DarkLord

    DarkLord Active Member

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    Something I have noticed about history and regimes… When a regime’s ideology overrides facts; they’re screwed.

    You can see this all through history, but since this is WW2… The axis were ideologues and fanatics about their ideals. So much so, they were unable to deal with facts that flew in the face of the pre-existing ideology. They became victims of their own “confirmation bias”, and it hurt them badly.

    When your enemy ignores facts they don’t like, that’s a very nice “feature” to have in your enemy. Everyone does this a little bit, but the Axis did it a LOT.

    As an example, the US continued to believe the Japanese to be inferior people who would just be quickly swept aside. But after a few severely bloodied noses from “rolling in full retard”, we stopped repeating such nonsense and got about the business of fighting the war smart.

    Meanwhile the Japanese rhetoric said the US soldier and citizen just wasn’t as “tough” as their Japanese counterpart. The Japanese, right up to the end, kept believing they could shock the US into giving up. They kept thinking the US would see the Japanese as just too dedicated to their cause, and that would be the ultimate deterrent… While the US “mostly” adapted their views to match reality (not always though), the Japanese leadership never really did.

    And of course, you can say the same for Germany and Italy. The Nazi leadership consistently ignored the warnings of the Wehrmacht and as such never had a very realistic overall view of how the war as really going until it was way too late.
     
  2. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    I recall Yamamoto said he could storm the front for a year or two, but the rest was unknown. He knew the Japanese forces would be losing after that.

    Hitler considered that the generals betrayed him, and that is why the war was lost. He also got surrounded by 'yes' men so the truth was lost in decision making. He made several awful decisions of which I think Barbarossa and declaring war to the USA december 1941 were the worst.
     
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  3. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    The people of the US knew Japan had been fighting hard in China since 1937. The Soongs made sure this was widely known.
     
  4. DarkLord

    DarkLord Active Member

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    Yamamoto thought war with the US was suicide.

    "In the first six to twelve months of a war with the United States and Great Britain I will run wild and win victory upon victory. But then, if the war continues after that, I have no expectation of success." - Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto
     
  5. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    The Imperial Army and Imperial Navy had wildly different expectations about the whole Great Pacific War.
     
  6. DarkLord

    DarkLord Active Member

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    While that may be true, both were completely unrealistic and quite impossible. The Army was a little crazier than the Navy, but the Navy made some MASSIVE mental leaps that proved to be completely wrong. Both were driven by an ideology that was in conflict with reality, and the end result was rather predictable.
     
  7. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    I get a different impression. Dai-Nippon Teikoku Kaigun, "Navy of the Greater Japanese Empire", or 日本海軍 just tried to do the best they could, while knowing their vision of "The One Great All-Out Battle" would never materialize. Without that they knew they'd have to soldier on to inevitable defeat. Midway confirmed this.
     
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  8. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    If the Japanese had fought Pearl Harbor to its fullest details by sinking the carriers and destroying the oil reserves the Fleet would have to flee back to the US continent by many authors. So it was many things that went bad but many things like the carriers were saved.
     
  9. DarkLord

    DarkLord Active Member

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    As an example of irrational thinking...Been reading more about the Japanese. They had no central leadership. The PM handled domestic affairs, and "official" foreign policy...but the Army and Navy could pretty much do whatever they want, and often not even advise the PM. As an example, the Army pretty much started the war in China, and the PM hadn't even been briefed. In fact, the PM would issue statements saying they wouldn't advance any further, and then the Army would just advance as they pleased...And the PM could do NOTHINIG about it.

    Like Germany, Japan didn't have a viable model for government.
     
  10. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    The Constitution revision of 1932 (or 1937?) changed the requirements for the War Minister and Navy Minister. These men were drawn from the active duty officer pool and put on special assignment for the duration of the Cabinet that requested them. If the Army or Navy didn't like the way the current government was going they could reassign those Ministers, breaking the Cabinet and bringing it down. From that point no Japanese government ruled without the sufferance of the Military.
     
  11. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    The Japanese government was viable for the military, the civilians were just rubber stamps. The law back then was that the government Cabinet had to have a serving Army & Navy officer, if the Government did something the Army or Navy did not like...Well, they simply retired their respective officer and collapsed the government, lezading to a new government having to be formed. This was compounded by Japan's Government by Assassination in the 1930's.
     
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  12. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    Government by Gekokujo.
     
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  13. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ..US logistics and firepower overwhelmed the Japanese....the Japanese did adapt--as we see in Iwo and Okinawa ....same with the Germans ...they were good......they defeated 2 big powers ''quickly'' .....then they fought the 2 largest powers, with the US having overwhelming war making logistics .
    ....the Germans did adapt--in many ways.....it wasn't so much a ''culture'' problem as it was a megalomaniac problem, being outnumbered in all categories and '''surrounded''
    ..every country had its ''stupid'' generals/etc..but the Germans and Japanese had their share of ''smart'' generals/etc...

    ....the Japanese did not have many options post Midway--and the outcome of the war was decided Dec 7 1941 ....and the military that defends everything defends nothing..the US could bypass fortified bases-----and they did...so it really didn't matter what the Japanese did
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2021
  14. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ...let's explore and compare:
    .. the US had overwhelming superiority in WW2 and Vietnam ....if any war shows irrationality and ideology '''loses''' a war, it would be Vietnam [ there was no way to win in Vietnam by the way ] = and--that's it = there was no way to win, yet we kept wasting lives -American and Vietnamese
    -------point is, wars are very complicated
     
  15. DarkLord

    DarkLord Active Member

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    Yeah Vietnam is a good example of the same principle applied to a different situation. I 100% agree, Vietnam was unwinnable, and we knew it LONG before Johnson started committing large numbers of troops. And it kind of proves my point. We ignored the FACTS on the field, and paid a massive, dear price for it.

    The Japanese bought into their own propaganda, and we did much the same in Vietnam. The actual experts all knew we could never win in Vietnam. But the politicians painted themselves into a corner by over-selling the Domino's theory and working Americans into an anti-communist frenzy.
     
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  16. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ..I've researched that a lot......for one , of many, examples, Morley Safer said something like ''we can win the battles, but can't win the people/war/etc''--in like 1965!!!!!..I could get the actually quote--it's amazing
     
  17. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    It's not that amazing...

    The quote.

    Today's operation is the frustration of Vietnam in miniature. There's little doubt that American firepower can win a military victory here. But to a Vietnamese peasant whose home is a - means a lifetime of backbreaking labor, it will take more than presidential promises to convince him that we are on his side.

    Said, while he watched Marines burn down the hamlet of Cam Ne(sp?) on the orders of the South Vietnamese Distric Chief.

    If you want to get the people on your side, you don't go around destroying their homes for no good reason.
     
  18. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ..yes it is---he's foretelling the future ---while the '''experts'''--like Westmoreland, McNamara, and many, many others screwed it up........when the writing was on the wall, years after Safer's quote, then McNamara came around and saw it ...
    etc
     
  19. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ..it's like the movies--only it's real...like when the cog in the wheel knows something bad will happen, but the higher ups won't listen....--like in the movies Jaws/Earthquake/etc
     
  20. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Umm
    Ummmm....He is telling the present(1965). If he was predicting the future, he would have said it in 1865.

    Do you have a quote from 1865?
     

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