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View Full Version : Nukes didn't beat Japan - Stalin did.



Stasi
05-30-2013, 05:49 PM
http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2013/05/29/the_bomb_didnt_beat_japan_nuclear_world_war_ii?page=full

LineDoggie
05-30-2013, 05:56 PM
Cant access it unless signed up. Anyway the titles crap be nice to see the article itself to see if its crap as well.

TheKiwi
05-30-2013, 06:01 PM
Didn't we mass-debate this less than a year ago? Yes we did, may have even been the same article.

The Soviet entry into war against Japan was one of several major shocks that just (just) managed to convince the Japanese rulers that there was no further point in fighting on. Others included the atomic bombs, and the completely unopposed B-29 bombing of Tokyo that took place two days after the first bomb.

Mordoror
05-30-2013, 06:05 PM
Didn't we mass-debate this less than a year ago? Yes we did, may have even been the same article.

The Soviet entry into war against Japan was one of several major shocks that just (just) managed to convince the Japanese rulers that there was no further point in fighting on. Others included the atomic bombs, and the completely unopposed B-29 bombing of Tokyo that took place two days after the first bomb.

^^This
Multifactorial effect
In fact peace proposals were already written or asked by some members of the Japanese cabinet before soviet offensive and nuke bombs
What defeated Japan first and foremost were subs on one side and lack of escort DDG for their merchant fleet on the other

TheKiwi
05-30-2013, 06:11 PM
Yes there were peace proposals. And what proposals they were too.

Japan would keep Taiwan and Korea and Manchuria. There would be no allied forces in Japan. Any war crimes trials would be done by the Japanese themselves.

In other words they were quite deluded as to what peace would involve...

LineDoggie
05-30-2013, 06:15 PM
And don't forget the Soviets invaded the Kuriles in a full blown invasion 3 days after Hirohito announced their surrender to the Allies.

Laworkerbee
05-30-2013, 06:16 PM
Pretty sure my grandfather would have disagreed.

LineDoggie
05-30-2013, 06:18 PM
Didn't we mass-debate this less than a year ago? Yes we did, may have even been the same article.

The Soviet entry into war against Japan was one of several major shocks that just (just) managed to convince the Japanese rulers that there was no further point in fighting on. Others included the atomic bombs, and the completely unopposed B-29 bombing of Tokyo that took place two days after the first bomb.Where did that thread go I cant find it?

TheKiwi
05-30-2013, 06:22 PM
Where did that thread go I cant find it?

Well there was this one...


http://www.militaryphotos.net/forums/showthread.php?218937-Nuclear-weapon-against-Japan-not-to-end-war-or-save-lives-but


EDIT: And this one...

http://www.militaryphotos.net/forums/showthread.php?215930-Soviet-offensive-in-Manchuria-in-1945

LineDoggie
05-30-2013, 06:45 PM
Well there was this one...


http://www.militaryphotos.net/forums/showthread.php?218937-Nuclear-weapon-against-Japan-not-to-end-war-or-save-lives-but


EDIT: And this one...

http://www.militaryphotos.net/forums/showthread.php?215930-Soviet-offensive-in-Manchuria-in-1945Fcuk me I need to get a Helper Monkey, completely missed those...

Kitsune
05-30-2013, 06:58 PM
Even in the case that the Sovietunion did beat Japan - it was the United States of America that reaped the fruits of that defeat.

harryc
05-30-2013, 07:12 PM
They did - by taking out Manchuria - According to "Soviet Storm: WWII in the East" War Against Japan (http://www.hulu.com/watch/386283)

I'd recommend the series some little know (in the West) stuff and familiar themes from a different angle.

TheKiwi
05-30-2013, 07:18 PM
I find it interesting that it is suggested that a single campaign resulting in a Japanese defeat caused them to surrender after a vast series of defeats - non-stop since mid-1942 - did not.

I've found that most of the "it wasn't the bombs" theories are simply strawmen for attacking the use of the atomic bombs rather than a serious proposal.

harryc
05-30-2013, 07:22 PM
I find it interesting that it is suggested that a single campaign resulting in a Japanese defeat caused them to surrender after a vast series of defeats - non-stop since mid-1942 - did not.

I've found that most of the "it wasn't the bombs" theories are simply strawmen for attacking the use of the atomic bombs rather than a serious proposal.

Watch the show above - basic argument is that the Americans took over tropical islands and bombed a vacated mainland - all the heavy industry was in Manchuria and had been for a long time.

Hard to say their contribution was so insignificant as to be totally ignored in the US.

TheKiwi
05-30-2013, 07:27 PM
Manchuria as a whole provided about 15% of Japan's industrial capacity with Korea adding another 15% or so. The remainder was in Japan itself.

I don't argue that the Soviet attack on Manchuria was insignificant. But it wasn't significant because it took territory or industry or destroyed armies - which had been going on for far longer than that. It was significant because an important part of the Japanese government had hoped to use the USSR to negotiate a peace agreement with terms as per my second post in this thread. The Soviet declaration of war took them by surprise and destroyed that hope.

LineDoggie
05-30-2013, 07:31 PM
Watch the show above - basic argument is that the Americans took over tropical islands and bombed a vacated mainland - all the heavy industry was in Manchuria and had been for a long time.

Hard to say their contribution was so insignificant as to be totally ignored in the US.Nagasaki was home to Mitsubishi Heavy industries. The Imperial Japanese navy's ship builders. It also had the Mitsubishi aircraft factory and their Tank arsenal . 90% of the city was employed at these works. Hiroshima in addition to a major defence of japan headquarters (2nd army) it was the home of the Naval academy(Etajima Island) and Okunoshima island- the Japanese Chemical warfare depot

harryc
05-30-2013, 08:00 PM
Manchuria as a whole provided about 15% of Japan's industrial capacity with Korea adding another 15% or so. The remainder was in Japan itself.

I don't argue that the Soviet attack on Manchuria was insignificant. But it wasn't significant because it took territory or industry or destroyed armies - which had been going on for far longer than that. It was significant because an important part of the Japanese government had hoped to use the USSR to negotiate a peace agreement with terms as per my second post in this thread. The Soviet declaration of war took them by surprise and destroyed that hope.

Thank you for the numbers - and insight.

[WDW]Megaraptor
05-30-2013, 08:16 PM
Watch the show above - basic argument is that the Americans took over tropical islands and bombed a vacated mainland - all the heavy industry was in Manchuria and had been for a long time.

That statement shows no understanding of the strategic issues of the Pacific War.

Japan had already written off Manchuria in August 1945 as most of its troops and almost all of its armor had been withdrawn to defend the Home Islands from the expected American invasion.

What was left in Manchuria were barely trained raw troops, Chinese and Korean auxiliaries, with no armor support, limited artillery, no mobility and sometimes didn't even have weapons.

Obviously not a great surprise to anyone that crack mechanized Soviet shock armies steamrolled them in a month.


I've found that most of the "it wasn't the bombs" theories are simply strawmen for attacking the use of the atomic bombs rather than a serious proposal.

Or RUSSIA STRONG!!!111 chest thumping.


I don't argue that the Soviet attack on Manchuria was insignificant. But it wasn't significant because it took territory or industry or destroyed armies - which had been going on for far longer than that. It was significant because an important part of the Japanese government had hoped to use the USSR to negotiate a peace agreement with terms as per my second post in this thread. The Soviet declaration of war took them by surprise and destroyed that hope.

Yup. The Japanese had already given up holding Manchuria in the case of Soviet invasion.

Japanese strategy in the summer of 1945 was to throw the Americans into the sea when they landed on Kyushu and hope that popular opinion and war-weariness in the United States would force the Americans to pursue a negotiated peace.

The atom bomb changed that...the US could have sat back and nuked Japan until there was nothing left. Of course, we couldn't have actually done that as it would be several months before we had enough plutonium for another bomb, but they didn't know that.

blastjet
05-30-2013, 09:24 PM
It wasn't just the US which reaped the fruits of that Soviet invasion. It also helped arm Mao Zedong and his communists, helping to weaken Chiang Kai Shek. The Soviets gave a good deal of captured weapons to communists.

TheKiwi
05-30-2013, 09:25 PM
Yes, but I doubt that was an objective of the invasion. Stalin and Mao didn't get along very well to say the least...

PATTO
05-30-2013, 09:31 PM
Stalin saw an oppotunity to do what he had done in the west, grab more territory, particulary what the Japanese has taken in the Russo-japan war 04-05.
Japan feared the loss of the Northern island to the Soviets.
Regardless of the quality of forces arrayed against each other, from a logisitcal point of view, the Soviets showed an impressive capabilty to showcase their deep pentration theory and affect it.
Mao wasn't even on the radar for Stalin at the time.

asgnr
05-30-2013, 10:12 PM
Mao wasn't even on the radar for Stalin at the time.

That’s a pretty inaccurate assessment. Mao and Stalin had been working together for years by 1945. Stalin was very much the boss though clearly Mao wanted to be as independent as possible. The Chinese Communists were very much a satellite of the Soviet Union up until the 1950s. In China the Communist controlled area was always called “the Soviet Zone” up until the declaration of the PRC. The Chinese Communists contributed some 250,000 troops to the Soviet invasion of Manchuria and when the Soviets withdrew the transferred control over Manchuria and captured Japanese weapons to the Chinese Communists.

PATTO
05-30-2013, 11:04 PM
That’s a pretty inaccurate assessment. Mao and Stalin had been working together for years by 1945. Stalin was very much the boss though clearly Mao wanted to be as independent as possible. The Chinese Communists were very much a satellite of the Soviet Union up until the 1950s. In China the Communist controlled area was always called “the Soviet Zone” up until the declaration of the PRC. The Chinese Communists contributed some 250,000 troops to the Soviet invasion of Manchuria and when the Soviets withdrew the transferred control over Manchuria and captured Japanese weapons to the Chinese Communists.

Agreed it was, I should have gone inot a bit more elaboration, as the Soviet declaration wasn't so much to help Mao as the priciple reason. That was a handy by product and certainly a catlyst for tipping the scales in Maos favour.

harryc
05-30-2013, 11:09 PM
Megaraptor;6730549']That statement shows no understanding of the strategic issues of the Pacific War.

Japan had already written off Manchuria in August 1945 as most of its troops and almost all of its armor had been withdrawn to defend the Home Islands from the expected American invasion.

What was left in Manchuria were barely trained raw troops, Chinese and Korean auxiliaries, with no armor support, limited artillery, no mobility and sometimes didn't even have weapons.

Obviously not a great surprise to anyone that crack mechanized Soviet shock armies steamrolled them in a month.



Or RUSSIA STRONG!!!111 chest thumping.



Yup. The Japanese had already given up holding Manchuria in the case of Soviet invasion.

Japanese strategy in the summer of 1945 was to throw the Americans into the sea when they landed on Kyushu and hope that popular opinion and war-weariness in the United States would force the Americans to pursue a negotiated peace.

The atom bomb changed that...the US could have sat back and nuked Japan until there was nothing left. Of course, we couldn't have actually done that as it would be several months before we had enough plutonium for another bomb, but they didn't know that.

I am not disagreeing with you - not at all - I had not heard of the Manchurian battles before I watched the Russian series I cited above.
Good to see it is getting some play in the West, the more history we know the better we get at repeating it.

PATTO
05-30-2013, 11:23 PM
I am not disagreeing with you - not at all - I had not heard of the Manchurian battles before I watched the Russian series I cited above.
Good to see it is getting some play in the West, the more history we know the better we get at repeating it.

It is a campaign that does need more hightlighting. how the Soviet armies used airdrops to resupply their units alone whislt advancing is fascinating beacuse of the scale they did it for example.

TheKiwi
05-30-2013, 11:25 PM
Agreed it was, I should have gone inot a bit more elaboration, as the Soviet declaration wasn't so much to help Mao as the priciple reason. That was a handy by product and certainly a catlyst for tipping the scales in Maos favour.

Mao and Stalin had been at odds for many years. You'll note that the assistance the Soviets provided in Operation Zet (tanks, fighters, money) went to the Nationalists, not to the Chinese communists. It was only after the US had decided that the Nationalists were worthless that the Soviets also started to support the CCP.

PATTO
05-30-2013, 11:50 PM
Mao and Stalin had been at odds for many years. You'll note that the assistance the Soviets provided in Operation Zet (tanks, fighters, money) went to the Nationalists, not to the Chinese communists. It was only after the US had decided that the Nationalists were worthless that the Soviets also started to support the CCP.

Can you point me in the direction of some more literature on this campaign, clearly what I have access to is pretty sketchy at best. Thank mate

TheKiwi
05-30-2013, 11:54 PM
If you can find it, I throughly recommend Max Hasting's Nemesis as a good basic coverage of the last two years of the war against Japan. It includes coverage from the Soviet, Nationalist and Communist Chinese perspectives as well as those from western sources. A fair bit of it is devoted to how the US fell out of love with the Nationalists - and how it was largely self inflicted and caused by them forcing the Nationalists armies to do things they weren't capable of instead of letting them do what they were good at. (eg defend the B-29 airbases against the Japanese advances instead of low level capaigning and training).

PATTO
05-30-2013, 11:57 PM
If you can find it, I throughly recommend Max Hasting's Nemesis as a good basic coverage of the last two years of the war against Japan. It includes coverage from the Soviet, Nationalist and Communist Chinese perspectives as well as those from western sources. A fair bit of it is devoted to how the US fell out of love with the Nationalists - and how it was largely self inflicted and caused by them forcing the Nationalists armies to do things they weren't capable of instead of letting them do what they were good at. (eg defend the B-29 airbases against the Japanese advances instead of low level capaigning and training).

He's a good author and writes well. I've a couple of others of his. Thanks for that mate, I'll try and track that one down.

thounaojamtom
05-31-2013, 12:14 AM
the concepts of "Hey, there is another story to that".

Erebusjr1.5
05-31-2013, 12:46 AM
A bit OT but I've always wondered if the Soviets ever got their hands on Japanese bio-weapons research...the unit was located in Manchuria correct ?

ParanoidMoron
05-31-2013, 06:09 AM
Meeeh. I'll leave this here, not really interested in a debate, but food for thought, I guess.


"In 1945 Secretary of War Stimson, visiting my headquarters in Germany, informed me that our government was preparing to drop an atomic bomb on Japan. I was one of those who felt that there were a number of cogent reasons to question the wisdom of such an act. During his recitation of the relevant facts, I had been conscious of a feeling of depression and so I voiced to him my grave misgivings, first on the basis of my belief that Japan was already defeated and that dropping the bomb was completely unnecessary, and secondly because I thought that our country should avoid shocking world opinion by the use of a weapon whose employment was, I thought, no longer mandatory as a measure to save American lives." -Dwight D. Eisenhower


"The use of [the atomic bombs] at Hiroshima and Nagasaki was of no material assistance in our war against Japan. The Japanese were already defeated and ready to surrender because of the effective sea blockade and the successful bombing with conventional weapons... The lethal possibilities of atomic warfare in the future are frightening. My own feeling was that in being the first to use it, we had adopted an ethical standard common to the barbarians of the Dark Ages. I was not taught to make war in that fashion, and wars cannot be won by destroying women and children." - Fleet Admiral William D. Leahy, Chief of Staff to President Truman


"There is little point in attempting precisely to impute Japan's unconditional surrender to any one of the numerous causes which jointly and cumulatively were responsible for Japan's disaster. The time lapse between military impotence and political acceptance of the inevitable might have been shorter had the political structure of Japan permitted a more rapid and decisive determination of national policies. Nevertheless, it seems clear that, even without the atomic bombing attacks, air supremacy over Japan could have exerted sufficient pressure to bring about unconditional surrender and obviate the need for invasion.
Based on a detailed investigation of all the facts, and supported by the testimony of the surviving Japanese leaders involved, it is the Survey's opinion that certainly prior to 31 December 1945, and in all probability prior to 1 November 1945, Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, even if Russia had not entered the war, and even if no invasion had been planned or contemplated." -Paul Nitze, Vice Chairman of the Strategic Bombing Survey

Pitchup
05-31-2013, 06:25 AM
Stalin saw an oppotunity to do what he had done in the west, grab more territory, particulary what the Japanese has taken in the Russo-japan war 04-05.
Japan feared the loss of the Northern island to the Soviets.
Regardless of the quality of forces arrayed against each other, from a logisitcal point of view, the Soviets showed an impressive capabilty to showcase their deep pentration theory and affect it.
Mao wasn't even on the radar for Stalin at the time.

But Stalin planed to do this in the next year, or at least wait a half year to see, if or when US start transfer own troops from Europe to Pacific, and if they plan use this troops as threat in raised 'Polish issue'.

Read about the 'Hopkins mission' to Moscow in '45 which settled down Japan and Polish issues. Truman sending the very ill, almost dying man, as only respected by Stalin US diplomat in USSR to save agreement about war with Japan, after it was ruined with unexpected land-lease stop and demand to place back in Poland London-based polish gov'mt. So, US actually sold democratic Poland for Manchurian Offensive Operation.

asgnr
05-31-2013, 06:38 AM
I'll leave this here, not really interested in a debate, but food for thought, I guess.

Note that all the people who had reservations about dropping the bombs didn’t express any of them until the mid 1950s when it became clear the USA and USSR were close to destroying all life on Earth and Atomic Paranoia broke out. Before then they were widely acknowledged as a great testament to human ingenuity that ended the war.

It was bombing the crap out of Japan AFTER strangling their imports that ended the war without an invasion of Japan. Everyone else is just un-factual revision trying to push a political horse. If the Soviet Union invaded Manchuria in 1944 before any serious bombing of Japan there is no way they would have surrendered straight away. Which is the only measure that would prove correct the initial subject of this thread.

ParanoidMoron
05-31-2013, 07:10 AM
Note that all the people who had reservations about dropping the bombs didn’t express any of them until the mid 1950s when it became clear the USA and USSR were close to destroying all life on Earth and Atomic Paranoia broke out. Before then they were widely acknowledged as a great testament to human ingenuity that ended the war.

It was bombing the crap out of Japan AFTER strangling their imports that ended the war without an invasion of Japan. Everyone else is just un-factual revision trying to push a political horse. If the Soviet Union invaded Manchuria in 1944 before any serious bombing of Japan there is no way they would have surrendered straight away. Which is the only measure that would prove correct the initial subject of this thread.


In 1945 Secretary of War Stimson, visiting my headquarters in Germany, informed me that our government was preparing to drop an atomic bomb on Japan. I was one of those who felt that there were a number of cogent reasons to question the wisdom of such an act. During his recitation of the relevant facts, I had been conscious of a feeling of depression and so I voiced to him my grave misgivings, first on the basis of my belief that Japan was already defeated and that dropping the bomb was completely unnecessary, and secondly because I thought that our country should avoid shocking world opinion by the use of a weapon whose employment was, I thought, no longer mandatory as a measure to save American lives."

Seems as if, D. Eisenhower voiced his reservations prior to 1950.

TheKiwi
05-31-2013, 07:18 AM
Eisenhower in 1945 was not in the loop as far as Japan was concerned. He still had all of Europe on his plate which was more than a full time job. He most certainly would not have known the full nature of the atomic bomb.

All of the other quotes you provided were post-factual attempts to justify a particular approach to warfare and should be read in the context of the severe budget cuts the armed forces were going through. Naturally senior service members would state that their own approach to the defeat of Japan was the one that would have bought them down anyway - whether through blockade or conventional strategic area bombing.

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 07:33 AM
Seems as if, D. Eisenhower voiced his reservations prior to 1950.Not really he could be making claims to it later. UNlike Einstein Szilard Franck, etc. who raised misgivings before where is the notes that Ike actually had this belief then? when was this quote from him printed 1963?

asgnr
05-31-2013, 07:40 AM
Seems as if, D. Eisenhower voiced his reservations prior to 1950.

In a book published in 1963... I don’t recall him making such public statements during his election campaign or in 1945 or 46.

The White House Years: Mandate for Change: 1953-1956: A Personal Account (New York: Doubleday, 1963), pp. 312-313.

Do we have the minutes of that meeting (the one in 1945)? Did he really express such reservations?

And doesn't everyone here informed about WWII know that the basic claim in his statement is total BS? Japan may have been defeated but they were ye to surrender. Was all military action against Germany after mid 1944 “completely unnecessary”? Germany was well and truly defeated by this time but the war wasn’t over. By forcing Japan to surrender without having to occupy Tokyo by force saved hundreds of thousands of lives (mostly Japanese). This is hardly unnecessary.

ParanoidMoron
05-31-2013, 07:53 AM
Let me rephrase - the quote implies he made that statement at the time. Atleast it seems to me, that it does.

Acheron
05-31-2013, 08:52 AM
Megaraptor;6730549']
The atom bomb changed that...the US could have sat back and nuked Japan until there was nothing left. Of course, we couldn't have actually done that as it would be several months before we had enough plutonium for another bomb, but they didn't know that.
You are assuming that the Soviet Union would have stood by and watched while the US (which was hesitant to invade) was lobbing nukes every few months at Japan. The fact is, the SU had no qualms in invading Japanese mainland and would have done so.
As it was already pointed out by other members, it was a combination of military/economic/geopolitical factors that forced Japan to surrender. Despite what the USA STRONG!1!!!1! crowd likes to believe, masterfully executed Soviet offensive in Manchuria was definitely one of those factors, and a major one at that.

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 09:01 AM
You are assuming that the Soviet Union would have stood by and watched while the US (which was hesitant to invade) was lobbing nukes every few months at Japan. The fact is, the SU had no qualms in invading Japanese mainland and would have done so.
As it was already pointed out by other members, it was a combination of military/economic/geopolitical factors that forced Japan to surrender. Despite what the USA STRONG!1!!!1! crowd likes to believe, masterfully executed Soviet offensive in Manchuria was definitely one of those factors, and a major one at that.BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA go on pull the other one...

Pitchup
05-31-2013, 09:37 AM
BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA go on pull the other one...

15 Aug 1945 - admiral Umashev sent report to marshal Vasilevskiy with operative plan for taking Hokkaido island.
17 Aug 1945 - marshal Vasilevskiy reporting to Stalin about readiness to operation.
22 Aug 1945 - Stalin made decision: from the landing operation on the island of Hokkaido desist, but with part of intended manpower and resources to take the southern part of the Kuril Islands. This goal was achieved by the end of September 1, 1945. Acceptance of the surrender of most of the small garrisons Habomai was completed on September 4.

[WDW]Megaraptor
05-31-2013, 09:46 AM
You are assuming that the Soviet Union would have stood by and watched while the US (which was hesitant to invade) was lobbing nukes every few months at Japan. The fact is, the SU had no qualms in invading Japanese mainland and would have done so.

USSR did not have the naval and amphibious assets to invade Honshu or Kyushu. They might have taken Hokkaido, but that's because the Japanese had already withdrawn most of their forces from Hokkaido in order to defend Kyushu and Honshu.

Hmm...I'm seeing a pattern here. Something about Stalin being a craven opportunist seizing lightly defended Japanese territory. Allowing generations of Russia Strong to claim that USSR could have defeated Japan in weeks instead of the four years it took the United States.

Pitchup
05-31-2013, 09:53 AM
Megaraptor;6731243']
Hmm...I'm seeing a pattern here. Something about Stalin being a craven opportunist seizing lightly defended Japanese territory. Allowing generations of Russia Strong to claim that USSR could have defeated Japan in weeks instead of the four years it took the United States.

Stalin was against taking Hokkaido, same marshal Vasilevskiy was not a fan of this operation. It is believed that Vasilevskiy's negative attitude and decided the case. It was the fleet admirals who wanted invasion in Japan.

JCR
05-31-2013, 10:02 AM
This "opportunist" theory pretty much overlooks that even Stalin couldn't conjure Red Hordes out of his moustache.
Operations the size of what the Soviets undertook in August 1945 required months of preparation.
And regarding "second class" military units, while the Japanese did withdraw some manchurian formations for the Phillippines and Japan, some were still there.
In fact, regarding equipment, training and doctrine, no japanese unit whatsoever stood any chance of withstanding a red army armored thrust in 1945 in open terrain.
They had learned to fight island battles but as the Battle of Luzon against the US Army (the only corps/army sized US-IJA engagement of the Pacific War) showed, they could not hope to stand against a modern army in large scale ground warfare.
I mean even if you look at the mere technical side, the best anti-tank gun the japanese had could penetrate the T-34 from the side at short distances and not at all from the front. They had no way of knocking out tanks apart from suicide attacks.
This might work somewhat on a constricted island where the attacker has no choice but to overcome you, but in open maneuver warfare, the soviets could simply bypass such positions or pound them to oblivion with artillery and air attacks.
So even if the whole cream of the IJA had remained there it wouldn't have changed anything.

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 10:09 AM
Actually I question Then Soviet navy's Amphibious capability at a combined arms level. Naval Infantry could land in small groups but where was the LST type ships? the Soviet navy only got 26 Smaller LCT's via lendlease. The USN Lost 26 LCT at Normandy alone.

JCR
05-31-2013, 10:19 AM
Actually I question Then Soviet navy's Amphibious capability at a combined arms level. Naval Infantry could land in small groups but where was the LST type ships? the Soviet navy only got 26 Smaller LCT's via lendlease. The USN Lost 26 LCT at Normandy alone.

Could well be that they used all of them in those operations.
Also the Soviet Navy had considerable experience in littorial island invasions with small boats from both the Black Sea and the Barents Sea.
From what I read, the Pacific Fleet almost exclusively relied on US Lend-Lease ships for those operations.
Either to avoid "friendly fire" from US air power (soviet ships with their italian inspired lines looked nothing like US ships) or to conserve them for the postwar navy.
Stalin was very restrictive on the use of fleet assets since the loss of three destroyers to Stukas in a botched operation in the Black Sea in late 1943.
The cruisers and destroyers of the Pacific Fleet (they had 2 heavy cruisers and about a dozen destroyers, roughly half of them modern) stayed largely inactive, but they lost a lend-lease patrol boat to a Kamikaze.

The Pacific Fleet also recieved LCIs and used them here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Shumshu
Seems to have been the only major battle in the Kurils campaign.

[WDW]Megaraptor
05-31-2013, 10:40 AM
Yes, the Soviets could land 8000 troops in the Kurils with a navy of 12 destroyers, and 149 LCIs and minesweepers.

Compare to the planning for Operation Olympic which called for 42 aircraft carriers, 24 battleships, 400 destroyers, and amphibious landing of 14 divisions.

The US lost over 300 ships sunk or damaged in Okinawa alone.

The Soviets could carry out small scale amphibious operations. They had absolutely no capability to stage anything on the scale of Okinawa, Olympic or Coronet.

JCR
05-31-2013, 10:44 AM
Megaraptor;6731298']Yes, the Soviets could land 8000 troops in the Kurils with a navy of 12 destroyers, and 149 LCIs and minesweepers.

Compare to the planning for Operation Olympic which called for 42 aircraft carriers, 24 battleships, 400 destroyers, and amphibious landing of 14 divisions.

The US lost over 300 ships sunk or damaged in Okinawa alone.

The Soviets could carry out small scale amphibious operations. They had absolutely no capability to stage anything on the scale of Okinawa, Olympic or Coronet.

They didn't need to.
Also Shumshu was comparable in size to Iwo Jima, at least regarding ground troops, though the soviets did use a much smaller fleet (but had the advantage of coast artillery)

Pitchup
05-31-2013, 10:55 AM
They didn't need to.
Also Shumshu was comparable in size to Iwo Jima, at least regarding ground troops, though the soviets did use a much smaller fleet (but had the advantage of coast artillery)


Yes. Look on Novorossiysk landing style and other big landing done by Soviets.

Hokkaido landing was planed with taking and using existed port infrastructure, Naval Infantry did a lot of landing like that in Black Sea, Baltics, etc. First they land small forces ( foothold for 300-1500 men) in really many places near ports, plus 2000-3000 paratroopers in rear, then taking ports and land main invasion forces under heavy enemy fire.

If such plan failed it will fail in really bad style. So, General Staff and Stalin was not happy with such chances of losing and heavy losses in the end of war.

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 10:56 AM
Could well be that they used all of them in those operations.
Also the Soviet Navy had considerable experience in littorial island invasions with small boats from both the Black Sea and the Barents Sea.
From what I read, the Pacific Fleet almost exclusively relied on US Lend-Lease ships for those operations.
Either to avoid "friendly fire" from US air power (soviet ships with their italian inspired lines looked nothing like US ships) or to conserve them for the postwar navy.
Stalin was very restrictive on the use of fleet assets since the loss of three destroyers to Stukas in a botched operation in the Black Sea in late 1943.
The cruisers and destroyers of the Pacific Fleet (they had 2 heavy cruisers and about a dozen destroyers, roughly half of them modern) stayed largely inactive, but they lost a lend-lease patrol boat to a Kamikaze.

The Pacific Fleet also recieved LCIs and used them here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Shumshu
Seems to have been the only major battle in the Kurils campaign.And they lost 5 of the 16 LCI in the first wave to Japanese Artillery fires. See here's the problem an LCT could only carry 150 tons so wondering how all those T-34's would be landed. Even with all 26 serviceable they could land only 150 T-34 You cant land them from LCI's So the Soviet Amphibious landing capability was mainly a foot infantry capability. Their experience with landing Tanks was Minimal. IIRC the one operation with tank landings that was moderately successful used Lend lease M3/M3A1 Stuarts at Novorossiisk Against Romanians

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 11:07 AM
They didn't need to.
Also Shumshu was comparable in size to Iwo Jima, at least regarding ground troops, though the soviets did use a much smaller fleet (but had the advantage of coast artillery)So foot naval infantry and a bde of tanks for Hokkaido? ORBAT http://usacac.army.mil/CAC2/CGSC/CARL/nafziger/945PEAB.pdf

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 11:10 AM
Now compare the units needed for Downfall/Coronet: http://i65.photobucket.com/albums/h222/linedoggie/MP%20Net/Operation_Downfall_-_Map_zps16d04422.jpg

Pitchup
05-31-2013, 11:20 AM
So foot naval infantry and a bde of tanks for Hokkaido? ORBAT http://usacac.army.mil/CAC2/CGSC/CARL/nafziger/945PEAB.pdf

so only 8-9 full force regiments, that was doable. Naval infantry and paratroopers only to take ports, then usual motorizes regiments with tanks from barges and cargo ships.

JCR
05-31-2013, 11:24 AM
Here's an aritcle about Project Hula, the transfer of a large number of amphibious and escort craft to the USSR via Lend-Lease to encourage the USSR declaring war on Japan.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Hula


And they lost 5 of the 16 LCI in the first wave to Japanese Artillery fires. See here's the problem an LCT could only carry 150 tons so wondering how all those T-34's would be landed. Even with all 26 serviceable they could land only 150 T-34 You cant land them from LCI's So the Soviet Amphibious landing capability was mainly a foot infantry capability. Their experience with landing Tanks was Minimal. IIRC the one operation with tank landings that was moderately successful used Lend lease M3/M3A1 Stuarts at Novorossiisk Against Romanians

The Novorossisk operation was pretty much a disaster (they packed a battalion of Stuarts on a floating workshop pontoon), which prompted the Soviet Navy to give up on using large ships and use infiltration by boats instead, a tactic they used successfully in the following years.
Actually the Ozoreika Bay main landing was a total fiasco which cost the soviets 2 brigades of Infantry, while a diversion on Mount Myashako turned out to be successful, with the germans being unable to dislodge the soviets.

[WDW]Megaraptor
05-31-2013, 11:24 AM
Yes. Look on Novorossiysk landing style and other big landing done by Soviets.

Hokkaido landing was planed with taking and using existed port infrastructure, Naval Infantry did a lot of landing like that in Black Sea, Baltics, etc. First they land small forces ( foothold for 300-1500 men) in really many places near ports, plus 2000-3000 paratroopers in rear, then taking ports and land main invasion forces under heavy enemy fire.

If such plan failed it will fail in really bad style. So, General Staff and Stalin was not happy with such chances of losing and heavy losses in the end of war.


They didn't need to.
Also Shumshu was comparable in size to Iwo Jima, at least regarding ground troops, though the soviets did use a much smaller fleet (but had the advantage of coast artillery)

I'm sorry but this is absurd.

8000 men on Shumshu not expecting to be attacked and poorly organized for defense is not comparable to seizing the fortified ant hill called Iwo Jima.

The Battle of Attu might be a better comparison.

Landing 1500 men on Hokkaido, not to mention Honshu or Kyushu, would have led to 1500 dead Russians.

Good grief, it's like people don't even realize that it took the USA 8 months and 38,000 casualties to take Luzon. And 62,000 casualties to take Okinawa. Where the Japanese were actually expecting to be attacked, the depth and preparation of their defense was incredible.

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 11:37 AM
so only 8-9 full force regiments, that was doable. Naval infantry and paratroopers only to take ports, then usual motorizes regiments with tanks from barges and cargo ships.FFS did you see the opposition? discounting IJN subs intercepting the invasion you faced the 5th Area Army. that doesn't include Japanese air assets or naval assets. and please Soviet Airborne operations were a tragedy during the war. basically a Jolly Hunting party for Wehrmacht troops

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 11:40 AM
Here's an aritcle about Project Hula, the transfer of a large number of amphibious and escort craft to the USSR via Lend-Lease to encourage the USSR declaring war on Japan.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Hula



The Novorossisk operation was pretty much a disaster (they packed a battalion of Stuarts on a floating workshop pontoon), which prompted the Soviet Navy to give up on using large ships and use infiltration by boats instead, a tactic they used successfully in the following years.
Actually the Ozoreika Bay main landing was a total fiasco which cost the soviets 2 brigades of Infantry, while a diversion on Mount Myashako turned out to be successful, with the germans being unable to dislodge the soviets.Again Notice no LCT. No LCM, No LST's, No LSD's that land the heavy stuff. LCI's had two footramps at the bow no vehicles could land from them.

Pitchup
05-31-2013, 11:41 AM
Megaraptor;6731332']
Landing 1500 men on Hokkaido, not to mention Honshu or Kyushu, would have led to 1500 dead Russians.

main invasion force on Hokkaido was 87 Rifles Corpus (87 CK), with 3 Rifle Divisions, and 2 air divisions - bombers and fighters.

JCR
05-31-2013, 11:42 AM
IJN subs?
Were there any left at the time?
The few that were were either kept in reserve for the invasion, ran supplies to isolated outposts or tried to sink US ships with Kaitens.
The IJN had its hands full in other theaters, and keep in mind US submarines operated there as well.
As a offensive force, the IJN was finished in 1945, especially since it lacked any shallow water capability not suicidal, like MTBs.
The Soviets could afford to leave their cruisers in port, because in the area they were contesting, the IJN didn't even have any destroyers left. The US built frigates were in fact capable of handling anything the IJN had on a more than equal footing, even discounting soviet naval aviation which was quite good and accounted for a lot of german losses.

Re soviet airborne attempts, there never was a mass landing apart from the crossing of the Dnjepr in 1943.

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 11:48 AM
IJN subs?
Were there any left at the time?
The few that were were either kept in reserve for the invasion, ran supplies to isolated outposts or tried to sink US ships with Kaitens.
The IJN had its hands full in other theaters, and keep in mind US submarines operated there as well.
As a offensive force, the IJN was finished in 1945, especially since it lacked any shallow water capability not suicidal, like MTBs.

Re soviet airborne attempts, there never was a mass landing apart from the crossing of the Dnjepr in 1943.46 IJN fleet subs amnd hundreds of smaller Kaiten and 5 man minisubs. Also Japanese Torpedoes of WWII were the best in the world with extreme long range

Pitchup
05-31-2013, 11:49 AM
FFS did you see the opposition? discounting IJN subs intercepting the invasion you faced the 5th Area Army. that doesn't include Japanese air assets or naval assets. and please Soviet Airborne operations were a tragedy during the war. basically a Jolly Hunting party for Wehrmacht troops

I'm not supporter of this operation, just making things clear :)
In '47 admiral Umashev asked Stalin why he stopped him with Hokkaido. Stalin said - we informed Americans, and they were strongly against it.
Then Stalin said: "You could not asked me in that time. Everything were in your hands. If you made success in taking Hokkaido, we will made you hero, if you would fail - we will made you responsible. So, not asking me now."

JCR
05-31-2013, 11:54 AM
46 IJN fleet subs amnd hundreds of smaller Kaiten and 5 man minisubs. Also Japanese Torpedoes of WWII were the best in the world with extreme long range

Of those 46, most were obsolete types used for training, the number of actual operational fleet subs was very low, probably 5 or 6.
And those subs were not exactly suitable for the type of shallow water operations they would have engaged in.
Also there were US submarines in the area who preyed on anything japanese and were informed of IJN subs by ULTRA.

And all those suicide subs were simply not effective weapons.

Hisroyalhighness
05-31-2013, 11:58 AM
Nukes didn't beat Japan-Stalin did.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FopyRHHlt3M

[WDW]Megaraptor
05-31-2013, 12:14 PM
main invasion force on Hokkaido was 87 Rifles Corpus (87 CK), with 3 Rifle Divisions, and 2 air divisions - bombers and fighters.

And what were they going to do, swim there? Drift across the Sea of Japan with arm floaties?


IJN subs?
Were there any left at the time?

It's not the subs that were the main ship killers, it was the kamikazes. And without aircraft carriers, the Russian fleet would have been sitting ducks.


The Soviets could afford to leave their cruisers in port, because in the area they were contesting, the IJN didn't even have any destroyers left.

Leave their cruisers in port? And make an amphibious landing against an entire Japanese Army in defensive postures with no naval gunfire support whatsoever? Are you insane?

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 12:18 PM
Of those 46, most were obsolete types used for training, the number of actual operational fleet subs was very low, probably 5 or 6.
And those subs were not exactly suitable for the type of shallow water operations they would have engaged in.
Also there were US submarines in the area who preyed on anything japanese and were informed of IJN subs by ULTRA.

And all those suicide subs were simply not effective weapons.Guy we're talking about the Japanese Military, not the Kreigesmarine, these guys were willing to die for the Emperor god until the day he announced the surrender. Some held out for 40 year still fighting. Any usable military equipment would be used to counter a invasion of Japanese soil. And a Japanese Fleet boat and US Fleet boat had similar parameters. The advantage the IJN had was its torpedoes, best in the world. On Saipan during the Banzai some Japanese Soldiers had Bayonets tied to bamboo poles instead of rifles and still almost forced the US forces into the sea, in fact the US navy beach Bn's there wound up that night as infantry fighting just inside the treeline. The Japanese Soldier in 1945 was still in high morale, and more than willing to attack any enemy in sight. On Okinawa, one U.S. Army tank battalion, the 193rd, supporting an infantry battalion of the 27th Division, suffered extremely from a lack of tank-infantry coordination during a one-day attack. Of thirty U.S. Army M4 medium tanks, three were stopped by mines or road hazards and five were shot by Japanese anti-tank guns enroute to the village objective. In the village, fourteen more tanks were disabled by mines, anti-tank guns, artillery, and close assault units. Six more tanks were attacked by suicide attackers who swarmed the unprotected tanks and destroyed them with satchel charges. At 1330, the tanks withdrew. Only eight vehicles of the original thirty made it back to the start point. The tanks had operated wholly without infantry support.

JCR
05-31-2013, 12:21 PM
Megaraptor;6731376']And what were they going to do, swim there? Drift across the Sea of Japan with arm floaties?



It's not the subs that were the main ship killers, it was the kamikazes. And without aircraft carriers, the Russian fleet would have been sitting ducks.



Leave their cruisers in port? And make an amphibious landing against an entire Japanese Army in defensive postures with no naval gunfire support whatsoever? Are you insane?

No carriers necessary as the landings were well in range of land based airpower.
1. Why are we discussing amphibious landings only?
The author makes a case for the soviet ground offensive in Manchuria being decisive, not any proposed or real landing on japanese islands.
2. Of course the Soviets couldn't have pulled off a landing opposed in the style of Okinawa, but they didn't have to and probably wouldn't have needed to.
The Japanese had left their defenses against the soviet side weak, as they didn't have the resources to cover all fronts simultanously.
The defensive strenght of Japan was concentrated in Kyushu and the Kanto area, the likely landing sites, not on Hokkaido.

What always strikes me is that the Japanese facing the USSR seemed to have lacked the Bushido spirit to fight to the last, both on the islands and in Manchuria. I wonder why.
Probably either because the troops were not first rate and in some cases not japanese at all, or war weariness had set in even with the Japanese. Probably also because it was very obvious that the war was over.

Re the navy, willingness to die is one thing, but having the tools to damage the enemy while dying is another.
The common thing about japanese naval suicide weapons is their total ineffectiveness, no matter wether high tech (Kaiten) or low tech (Shinyo EMBs and suicide frogmen).
The japanese lacked the sort of littorial navy all other sides had developed during world war two, motor torpedo boats, small gunboats and the like.
Their suicide boats were clumsy things, badly built and slow in any sort of sea.

LineDoggie
05-31-2013, 12:23 PM
1. Why are we discussing amphibious landings only? Because they weren't going to walk to Japan...

JCR
05-31-2013, 12:29 PM
Because they weren't going to walk to Japan...

According to the foreign policy article, they didn't have to.
Their ground invasion was enough for the general staff to consider surrender, because these generals and politicians did not care about the suffering of civilians, but did care about the loss of Manchuria and Korea.
It is revisionist history, but good revisionist history, especially putting Hiroshima and Nagasaki into perspective with the overall bombing campaign.
Japan never had the sort of Rebel Historians Germany had with the MFGA who pretty much dispelled all of the myths like "General Winter" and such in the 70s allready, in connection with the revelation of ULTRA and the release of german files to german historians.
The japanese simply stick to the immidiate postwar version of history.

Pitchup
05-31-2013, 12:32 PM
Because they weren't going to walk to Japan...

There were actually battle order given by admiral Yumashev in August 19, if you interested I can quote it.

[WDW]Megaraptor
05-31-2013, 12:40 PM
No carriers necessary as the landings were well in range of land based airpower.

Land based air power is not always there, unlike carrier based top cover, and would therefore be ineffective against kamikazes.


2. Of course the Soviets couldn't have pulled off a landing opposed in the style of Okinawa, but they didn't have to and probably wouldn't have needed to.

They would have had to if they wanted to seize Japan.


The defensive strenght of Japan was concentrated in Kyushu and the Kanto area, the likely landing sites, not on Hokkaido.

Yes. Kyushu and Kanto were the places Japan put significant effort into defending, and the places that would have to be taken to convince them to surrender.


What always strikes me is that the Japanese facing the USSR seemed to have lacked the Bushido spirit to fight to the last, both on the islands and in Manchuria. I wonder why.
Probably either because the troops were not first rate and in some cases not japanese at all, or war weariness had set in even with the Japanese. Probably also because it was very obvious that the war was over.

Most of the above.
None of these factors would have applied to Japanese troops defending the Home Islands.


According to the foreign policy article, they didn't have to.
Their ground invasion was enough for the general staff to consider surrender, because these generals and politicians did not care about the suffering of civilians, but did care about the loss of Manchuria and Korea.

If they cared about it so much, why didn't they put more effort into defending it?

The Japanese high command obviously did not care all that much about Manchuria and Korea in 1945. Which means that losing those areas is not what convinced the government to surrender.

JCR
05-31-2013, 12:48 PM
Megaraptor;6731404']

If they cared about it so much, why didn't they put more effort into defending it?

The Japanese high command obviously did not care all that much about Manchuria and Korea in 1945. Which means that losing those areas is not what convinced the government to surrender.

It was a calculated risk.
The soviets had a neutrality treaty only expiring in 1946, so the japanese thought they could neglect that front in 1945 at least.
There simply were not enough forces to go around and the soviets had painstakingly stuck to neutrality during all the pacific war, so the Japanese hoped they would remain so. It was wishful thinking since the Soviets had stuck to neutrality because they could not afford a two front war, not out of principle.
But it was the only hope the Japanese had. If you don't have enough forces, you can't afford to keep a large portion of them idle.
Manchuria and Korea were the reason Japan was like it was, it was Greater Japan. Keep in mind that the Japanese militarists considered the Japanese the master race of Asia, and these territories were to be settled with Japanese and turned into japanese soil.
Also, they provided Japan with most of its not so exotic raw materials, with coal and iron and food. Without them, Japan would simply starve even if neither the Soviets nor the Americans attempted any landing.

[WDW]Megaraptor
05-31-2013, 12:57 PM
It was a calculated risk.
The soviets had a neutrality treaty only expiring in 1946, so the japanese thought they could neglect that front in 1945 at least.
There simply were not enough forces to go around and the soviets had painstakingly stuck to neutrality during all the pacific war, so the Japanese hoped they would remain so. It was wishful thinking since the Soviets had stuck to neutrality because they could not afford a two front war, not out of principle.
But it was the only hope the Japanese had. If you don't have enough forces, you can't afford to keep a large portion of them idle.
Manchuria and Korea were the reason Japan was like it was, it was Greater Japan. Keep in mind that the Japanese militarists considered the Japanese the master race of Asia, and these territories were to be settled with Japanese and turned into japanese soil.
Also, they provided Japan with most of its not so exotic raw materials, with coal and iron and food. Without them, Japan would simply starve even if neither the Soviets nor the Americans attempted any landing.

That was already happening. The Japanese merchant fleet was at the bottom of the Sea of Japan.

The Japanese knew time was not on their side. Their goal was to hold the main islands, or at least cause enough casualties that the Allies would pursue a negotiated peace that they hoped at least would allow them to exit the war with some shred of dignity intact.

It wasn't a bad plan or a crazy idea, and if not for the atomic bombs it might well have worked.

But when you're making the Home Islands the scene of the decisive battle, things on the periphery like Manchuria are by definition of lesser importance. Hence losing them was not the decisive blow that convinced the Japanese that further resistance was hopeless.

Stasi
05-31-2013, 04:58 PM
sorry for the lack of input in this thread, I am moving and have problems with my connection, and as much as I would love to get into this interesting discussion, I also have to work 24/7 lately... nice conversations everyone, informative and thanks!

TheKiwi
05-31-2013, 06:39 PM
And they lost 5 of the 16 LCI in the first wave to Japanese Artillery fires. See here's the problem an LCT could only carry 150 tons so wondering how all those T-34's would be landed. Even with all 26 serviceable they could land only 150 T-34 You cant land them from LCI's So the Soviet Amphibious landing capability was mainly a foot infantry capability. Their experience with landing Tanks was Minimal. IIRC the one operation with tank landings that was moderately successful used Lend lease M3/M3A1 Stuarts at Novorossiisk Against Romanians

Never mind landing all those T-34's. How about keeping them supplied with fuel and ammo once you'd landed them. That's going to require trucks - lots and lots of trucks and logistics support staff. More than enough of each to completely overwhelm the available shipping. I'd suggest instead that any landing by the Red Army is going to have to be an infantry based operation with maybe a dozen or fewer tanks to support - Land Lease M3/M5's or the like with their lower support requirements are still more than adequate to deal with anything Japan can throw at them.

An infantry based operation isn't going to be a high speed combined arms op where you're landing on day 1, broken though the beach defences on day 2 and by day 4 your in Sapporo drinking Saki and eating Sushi.

If the Soviets land before the US does, a large number of those Japanese aircraft held back for the US landings are going to be used on the Soviet one instead. (Keep in mind that the Japanese leadership were vehemently anti-communist and were one of the first to sign up to Germany's anti-Comintern pact). The USSR doesn't really have the shipping numbers to sustain large scale losses of ships - and unlike the US there aren't going to be many warships to distract the Kamakazi's from hitting troop and supply ships. Limited radar coverage is going to make it very difficult to intercept the Japanese aircraft and by that stage the Kamakazi's had evolved tactics to try to overwhelm a defenders fighter control system.

In short, while I beleive that the Red Army had the capability to make an amphibious landing, I doubt it's capability to support it for very long. Either they swiftly (as pointed out by Pitchup) seize an operational port, or it fails with a small bridgehead and a long infantry battle to break out of it - Anzio style.


It was a calculated risk.
The soviets had a neutrality treaty only expiring in 1946, so the japanese thought they could neglect that front in 1945 at least.
There simply were not enough forces to go around and the soviets had painstakingly stuck to neutrality during all the pacific war, so the Japanese hoped they would remain so. It was wishful thinking since the Soviets had stuck to neutrality because they could not afford a two front war, not out of principle.
But it was the only hope the Japanese had. If you don't have enough forces, you can't afford to keep a large portion of them idle.
Manchuria and Korea were the reason Japan was like it was, it was Greater Japan. Keep in mind that the Japanese militarists considered the Japanese the master race of Asia, and these territories were to be settled with Japanese and turned into japanese soil.
Also, they provided Japan with most of its not so exotic raw materials, with coal and iron and food. Without them, Japan would simply starve even if neither the Soviets nor the Americans attempted any landing.

The Soviets had already notified Japan they would not be renewing the neutrality agreement. It is ironic that the Japanese of all people who had opened every modern war with a surprise attack would be taken by surprise themselves when the Soviets attacked...

JCR
05-31-2013, 07:32 PM
The Soviets had already notified Japan they would not be renewing the neutrality agreement. It is ironic that the Japanese of all people who had opened every modern war with a surprise attack would be taken by surprise themselves when the Soviets attacked...

Probably not by surprise but by wishful thinking colliding with reality. Much like Stalin was in 1941.
The article isn't as revisionist as it first sounds, Max Hastings argues similarly but less blatantly in "Nemesis".
Have to re read it though to be sure, but the soviet invasion was much more important than usually thought it was.

asgnr
05-31-2013, 11:05 PM
The importance of the Soviet entry into the war on the Japanese high command was more the realisation they couldn’t use the Soviets as a party to achieve a negotiated settlement. So there options case went from annihilation, unconditional surrender and negotiated settlement to just annihilation and unconditional surrender. I don’t think anyone would argue that this was not important.

But this is very different to saying that the invasion of Manchuria was more decisive or even remotely on the same scale as than the blockade of Japan and the destruction of Japanese cities from their air. It is the later assaults on Japan which put them into the mood for considering ending the war. It was the entry of the Soviet Union into the war in late 1945 which limited their war ending options.

The simple test for judging the comparative effects of these inputs would be what would happen if they happened in different times. If in mid 1944 – before the USAAF and USN had started launching major attacks on the Japanese homeland – the Soviets had invaded Manchuria what would have happened? They probably would have driven the Japanese out of northern China by the end of the year but there is no way Japan would have surrendered. The Japanese would have pounded the Soviet coastal cities in return and maybe even invaded parts of the Russian far east that the Red Army couldn’t reach.

Such a Soviet attack would certainly be welcome by the Allies and severely harm Japans military situation but their homeland would remain untouched and still struggling to get supplies. But just like in 1945 when it actually happened it would not have been decisive.

Hollis
05-31-2013, 11:40 PM
Stalin did not do anything, his purges of the Red Army made the SU very very vulnerable to the nazi invasion. It was the Soviet People who save the SU and defeated hitler and his boys. The best thing ever happened for Stalin was Hitler. Sadly the defeat of nazism by the SU is credited to Stalin. Other wise Stalin would have gone down as a megalomaniac butcher in the history books of the SU.

beNder
05-31-2013, 11:47 PM
Stalin did not do anything, his purges of the Red Army made the SU very very vulnerable to the nazi invasion. It was the Soviet People who save the SU and defeated hitler and his boys. The best thing ever happened for Stalin was Hitler. Sadly the defeat of nazism by the SU is credited to Stalin. Other wise Stalin would have gone down as a megalomaniac butcher in the history books of the SU.

I believe it is hard for us here to comprehend the suffering and sacrifice that the Russian people endured in WWII.

Hollis
05-31-2013, 11:55 PM
I believe it is hard for us here to comprehend the suffering and sacrifice that the Russian people endured in WWII.

Imagine driving down a remote country road, miles for any city. Around the corner there is a extremely well maintained war memorial, no graffiti or grime and it is 30 feet by 20 feet high. Even more amazing, the amount of fresh flowers laid there. This was in '89, when I was in the SU. You right, the Russian people paid dearly, 1 in 4 died. Any credit should go to the Soviet people.

Africanadian
06-01-2013, 02:43 PM
Other wise Stalin would have gone down as a megalomaniac butcher in the history books of the SU.

Arguably Khrushchev did try, I think eventually Russian history will fully deal with Stalin without glossing over anything. Even though it has been almost 70 years since the war ended Stalin still enjoys a little too much sacred cow status with some Russians (I consider any view of him other than a murderous bastard to be too much). Thanks to the sacrifice of the Russian people, and some good leadership from a few generals the Russians were key to defeating the Nazis, Stalin was an impediment to achieving victory not an aide in any way.

Easo
06-01-2013, 03:05 PM
Russian forums have come here, i see.
That was just one of the last blows, nothing else.

Acheron
06-02-2013, 12:47 AM
Arguably Khrushchev did try, I think eventually Russian history will fully deal with Stalin without glossing over anything. Even though it has been almost 70 years since the war ended Stalin still enjoys a little too much sacred cow status with some Russians (I consider any view of him other than a murderous bastard to be too much). Thanks to the sacrifice of the Russian people, and some good leadership from a few generals the Russians were key to defeating the Nazis, Stalin was an impediment to achieving victory not an aide in any way.

Although it was the heroism and suffering of the Soviet people that led to the victory over Nazi Germany, one should not discount the role of Stalin in this victory (despite his other very questionable and sometimes outright horrible domestic policies). It was his policy of the rapid industrialization via the 5-year plans that contributed greatly to victory. If these plans were not incorporated and the Soviet Union remained an undeveloped and agrarian economy, rather than seeing a victory over Nazi Germany we would most probably see a WW1-type Red Army routed and Soviet Union utterly defeated within a few months of the start of Barbarossa.

"IndustrializationThe Russian Civil War and wartime communism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wartime_communism) had a devastating effect on the country's economy. Industrial output in 1922 was 13% of that in 1914. A recovery followed under the New Economic Policy (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Economic_Policy), which allowed a degree of market flexibility within the context of socialism. Under Stalin's direction, this was replaced by a system of centrally ordained "Five-Year Plans" in the late 1920s. These called for a highly ambitious program of state-guided crash industrialization and the collectivization of agriculture.


http://bits.wikimedia.org/static-1.22wmf4/skins/common/images/magnify-clip.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Stalin_kanal.jpg)
Stalin on building of Moscow-Volga canal (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moscow_Canal). It was constructed from 1932 to 1937 by Gulag (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulag) prisoners.


With seed capital unavailable because of international reaction to Communist policies, little international trade (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_trade), and virtually no modern infrastructure, Stalin's government financed industrialization both by restraining consumption on the part of ordinary Soviet citizens to ensure that capital went for re-investment into industry, and by ruthless extraction of wealth from the kulaks.
In 1933 workers' real earnings sank to about one-tenth of the 1926 level.[citation needed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Citation_needed)] Common and political prisoners in labor camps (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Labor_camp) were forced to perform unpaid labor, and communists and Komsomol (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Komsomol) members were frequently "mobilized" for various construction projects. The Soviet Union used numerous foreign experts to design new factories, supervise construction, instruct workers and improve manufacturing processes. The most notable foreign contractor was Albert Kahn's (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Kahn_(architect)) firm that designed and built 521 factories between 1930 and 1932. As a rule, factories were supplied with imported equipment.
In spite of early breakdowns and failures, the first two Five-Year Plans achieved rapid industrialization from a very low economic base. While it is generally agreed that the Soviet Union achieved significant levels of economic growth under Stalin, the precise rate of growth is disputed. It is not disputed, however, that these gains were accomplished at the cost of millions of lives. Official Soviet estimates stated the annual rate of growth at 13.9%; Russian and Western estimates gave lower figures of 5.8% and even 2.9%. Indeed, one estimate is that Soviet growth became temporarily much higher after Stalin's death.[99] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Stalin#cite_note-99)[100] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Stalin#cite_note-100)
According to Robert Lewis, the Five-Year Plan substantially helped to modernize the previously backward Soviet economy. New products were developed, and the scale and efficiency of existing production greatly increased. Some innovations were based on indigenous technical developments, others on imported foreign technology.[101] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Stalin#cite_note-101) Despite its costs, the industrialization effort allowed the Soviet Union to fight, and ultimately win, World War II."