Monday, August 11, 2014

Politics: How many Opportunities did the Western Powers Have for Stopping Hitler, the Isis of the 1930s, before the Outbreak of World War II?

"You got to stop them at the beginning. Like they shoulda stopped Hitler at Munich, they should never let him get away with that, they were just asking for big trouble when they let him get away with that.”1
1Mario Puzo, the Godfather. G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1969. Page 119.

I agree with Peter Clemenza.  I think that Hitler had to be stopped at Munich.

Tragic Lesson from History

Actually, the Western powers (Great Britain and France) could have and should have stopped Hitler long before the Munich Crisis of 1938, which enabled Hitler to gain the Czech Sudetenland. The Western powers had the opportunity to force Hitler to retreat when he reoccupied the Rhineland.

At that moment, Hitler confided to someone that he would have ordered his forces to retreat back to Germany had the Western powers made the effort to stop him then. Instead of forcefully ordering him back, the Western powers sent a feeble protest. Then, there was the Anschluss in which Germany annexed Austria. Again, the Western response was merely to state another feeble protest at this action.


The Danger of Cuddling up to a Homicidal Maniac with Power

How was Hitler supposed to feel when he made suchbold moves and the only response from those parties whom he initially feared was a series of feeble protests?
Then came the Munich Crisis. In this situation, both the Neville Chamberlain and Edouard Daladier, who were at that time the Prime Ministers of France and Great Britain, had the opportunity to put Hitler in his place.

They could have let Hitler scream and yell about the mistreatment of the Sudentenland Germans by Czechs as much as he wanted but when he began demanding territory beyond what he already had under his belt, their answer to him should have been no. What do they do instead?

They sacrificed Czechoslovakia. They forced this country’s government to cede the Sudetenland, a large part of that country, to Germany based on Hitler’s lie of not seeking further territorial grabs.

Setting a Bad Example

This was a golden opportunity for the Western powers to show the world, to show both Russia and Nazi Germany that international law was not something to be played with frivolously. As a consequence of the weakness, Russia which would have earlier on stood up to Hitler with military force, instead made a deal with Hitler; the bloody mess of Europe followed was made.
Had the Western powers’ leaders put their feet down and stopped Hitler there and then at Munich, it is very possible that there would have been no second world war.

The weakness, the reluctance of these two leaders of these two democracies who could have put Hitler down, instead demonstrated a pathetic lack of leadership, a cowardice that emboldened him greatly; as a consequence millions of people died unnecessarily.
Thus, Peter Clemenza, the fictional character in the Godfather novel the one who remarked that they should have stopped Hitler at Munich demonstrated great insight and hindsight.
Toward the end of the Godfather novel, you end up with a mafia conference of numerous crime families’ heads gathered. In that meeting, the first to address that meeting is Don Vito Corleone. He began his speech by asking, “How did things get so far?”

There are countless quotations that would explain how the weakness and reluctance of a powerful would be rescuer cripples the rightful commitment to stop evil from being done.


Fast Forward to Threat of the Hitler of Today, Yes, ... Today

Now, as this article is being writen – there has arisen a new threat called Isis. It is a new Islamic terrorist organization currently murdering with gun and blade - Christians in Iraq and Syria. They impaled Syrian soldiers and have shot, stoned to death, crucified, and slashed heads off of Christian Iraqi men, women, little children, and babies.

Many of these Christian Iraqis have been forced to flee from their homes in the Iraqi city of Mosul. Countless Christian Iraqis have been murdered, beheaded or even crucified by these Isis monsters simply because they would not convert to Islam.

A small percentage of Iraqi Christians did convert to Islam. But most fled to areas of Iraq currently under Kurdish control. In my estimation, this terrorist organization, Isis, is the Third Reich of the 21st century.

What shall we Civilized People Do about this New Threat?

Who dares to step forward to stop this murder spree now being waged by the Isis terrorists? The only person who is doing a little bit is Obama, the American president. He ordered a series of airstrikes against the advancing Isis terrorists. He however has ruled out deploying US ground troops. 

How inferior has been Obama's reaction to that of former President Bill Clinton, a fellow Democrat leader who stepped in to halt lesser murder campaigns in Bosnia and later in Haiti. 

What benefit will this series of military actions,  these airstrikes, accomplish? At this point it’s too soon to tell. But airstrikes are inadequate as a deterrence to halt such an aggressive and motivated people such as the Isis terrorists. As soon as the US jets leave, Isis will resume the bloodbath.

What Now, what Do We Do?

After having listened to one of the attorneys at the law firm where I work. I concur when he stated that a coalition of nations including, but not limited to the United States - should be formed to put an end to this murderous crusade of Isis.
The coalition should include the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation and China: whatever other country has stakes to lose should Isis triumph in its quest for first Middle Eastern domination, and then world conquest. Russia's southern areas are particularly vulnerable to Islamic infiltration.

According to an article written in the website of and 2, "Russia's Muslim trouble resembles Pakistan's more than it resembles that of the United States." 

Putin has more to worry about within the internal borders of the Russian Federation than he does with the Ukraine. 

Moreover, China is having a Muslim trouble in Xinjiang, one of its provinces where there are much Muslim rumblings. It  could get out of hand for China if Isis infiltrates that province.

According to the Washington Post article dated 5/22/2014, in Urumqi, capital city of  Xinjiang, there occurred a terror attack with explosives which resulted in 31 deaths.
Now there is much handwringing worldwide about Isis. Back during the pre-World War II eve, there was also much handwringing about Hitler's policies and aggressiveness.

Hitler with great boldness seized some territory that was not his to take.  The great Western powers did nothing in the early stages of his land-grabbing campaign to stop him. 

When they then could no longer ignore his aggression, war resulted - a worldwide conflagration costing between 50 to 70 million lives - of which 22 million or even more of these killed were lives of Russians alone. Poland, the first country to be devoured by Hitler through force, lost fewer lives lost than the Soviet Union.

However, Poland, in proportion to her total population lost a far greater percentage of her population in terms of lives lost than did Russia.

Moreover, beginning on September 17, 1939, an portion of that huge percentage of lives lost that Poland on its Eastern regions suffered - was caused by the Soviet Union's military forces as the consequence of the Nazi Soviet Pact signed on August 23, 1939.

This war, World War II could have been prevented at a much earlier stage but vacillation on the part of decent men who only want peace  and surrendered honor for it - failed to achieve it in the end because they had to declare war on Nazi Germany after all.

Moreover, Neville Chamberlain left the British Government a broken man when the Parliament forced him to resign after the fiasco in Norway.

Today, with this situation regarding the Isis terrorists

The world has a parallel dilemma at hand - in some ways similar to that of Chamberlain and Daladier in 1938 and 1939. Christians and Jews are being murdered by the thousands and tens of thousands worldwide, especially in the Islamic controlled regions of the world.  The world does nothing. 
I remember very well how resolved was the world to pressure the Government of Praetoria in South Africa to end Apartheid until at last, that government finally relented. Nelson Mandela who was originally condemned to die and then made to serve a long prison sentence was released and won the presidency of the country that wanted to get rid of him.
That which the world did was a noble thing.  Apartheid was brutal and inhuman. Eventually, something will have to give.
How long will it be for the world to respond forcefully enough to the murderous jihad now being waged by Isis?  Will we let them conquer us? Or not. If not, then there will have to be war.
It’s understandable and honorable for people to hate war. It’s honorable and good to hate to kill other people. Sane people hate killing other people.
A person has got to be mentally sick in the head and with a stone heart to permit himself or herself to do murder.

Sometimes You Do War just to Stay Alive

But then, to kill a horde of murderous terrorists before they get to kill you, amounts to self-preservation. Killing in order to defend yourself is not a right but an obligation, a most moral duty.
To kill an aggressor who comes to kill you or oppress you and do harm to you, your family, your children, your friends, to destroy your community – is self-preservation, is a duty of the highest morality, is the only correct decision to be made in the event of moral crisis.

We're Now Repeating the Mistakes of the Past Since We Didn't Learn from History

Just as it was morally obligatory for the Western powers to put an end, by military force, to the military aggression of Adolf Hitler until the military establishment of Nazi Germany surrendered unconditionally to the Allied Powers, so is it morally obligatory for what is left of the civilized world today to act in union to destroy, totally destroy -  no, not just contain, this diabolical organization, this Isis. 

Like Hitler, like Isis

Monday, August 4, 2014

How to Understand the Dates of World War II Events


World War II took place in two different areas of the world roughly at the same time - It began in 1937 in the Asian-Pacific Theater between the Japanese Empire and its first enemy in Asia: China.

Later on, World War II in the Asian Theater spread to become the Asian-Pacific Theatre because the fighting spread from Asia to vast areas of the Pacific Ocean basin as the Japanese sought to enlarge their empire by seizing more and more territories and colonies all over the Pacific.

But then, there was also another World War II taking place at  the same time - in Europe - the European Theater - this World War II took place between two blocs or alliances of nations - Italy and Nazi Germany were allied together as the European Axis countries or Axis Powers. Japan was the Asian Axis ally of the European Axis Powers.

In the European Theater of World War II, these two fought against the Allied Powers which was pretty much just about everybody else in Europe except for Switzerland, Spain, Portugal, Sweden, and Turkey - these few countries managed to stay out of the war.

These neutral countries, although they didn't directly participate in the fighting, such as Spain, Portugal, and to a lesser extent Sweden, and Turkey were on friendly political terms with the Axis. Sweden sold iron ore to Germany and Turkey sold chrome to Germany.

Spain's government under General Francisco Franco was in power, thanks to military and economic help from both Germany and Italy when he was struggling to win the Spanish Civil War.

The sole aim of this article is to help people understand the order of events and dates and  places as they happened in these two separate areas where World War II was fought.

World War II in Asia and the Pacific or the War against the Japanese

Escalating the Asian War from a war between two Asian countries to a full-scale world war in both Asia and the Pacific

In Asia, World War II began in 1937 as a conflict between China and Japan only.  It stayed a conflict between these two countries strictly until the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and a number of Asian countries and islands in the Pacific that were colonies of Great Britain, the Netherlands, and France as well as the Philippines which at this time an area controlled by the American military.

After Pearl Harbor, after December 7, 1941, it’s full-fledged World War II in Asia and also in the Pacific. It's Asian because the Japanese Empire fought against the Chinese who were their original enemies as of the year 1937.

It's also the Pacific because in the war between the Japanese and the British, the Americans, the New Zealanders, the Canadians, the Filipinos (as guerrillas), and the Australians - much of the combat took place in Pacific Islands in the open Pacific Ocean. 

End of the War against the Japanese Empire

 Also, near the end of the War in Asia and the Pacific, the Japanese got themselves a brand new enemy: Russia or the Soviet Union – in addition to all the enemies they already had that are listed above.  

Officially, the period of World War II in Asia and the Pacific which began on December 7, 1941 with the attack against Pearl Harbor (against the Americans) lasted until September 2, 1945 when the representatives of the Japanese Government surrendered to the Allies on the American ship, USS Missouri. 
For the Americans, September 2, 1945 is known as Victory over Japan Day or VJ Day. 

However, because it was announced on August 15, 1945 that the Japanese now agreed to surrender, the British celebrate VJ Day on April 15, 1945 instead of September 2, 1945 which is the day in which the surrender ceremony in Japan took place. This explains the War against the Japanese.

World War II in Europe or the War against the European Axis


Beginning of World War II in Europe

The War in Europe, the War against Germany and Italy, physically began on September 1, 1939 when the Germans invaded Poland.

So far, for the first two days, it’s a war strictly between Nazi Germany and Poland. 
At this time, the Axis Powers in this War are Nazi Germany or just Germany, Italy, and Russia which is an ally of Germany because of a special treaty both countries signed: the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Treaty in which both countries made a special deal to carve up Eastern Europe between them.

Including Poland.

The Soviets invaded Eastern Poland on September 17, 1939, two weeks after the Germans invaded it from the west side.

Escalating the European war from a war between two countries to a full-scale world war

Two days later, both Great Britain and France issue an ultimatum to Germany: Get out of Poland or else there’s war between Germany versus England and France united.

The Germans did not comply with the ultimatum so both Great Britain and France declared war against Germany.  
Also Canada, New Zealand, Australia which are allies of Britain all declare war against Germany but not against Russia.

Russia is at this point still the ally of Germany. Italy is also the ally of Germany. But then Great Britain and France declared war against Germany only even though Russia is an ally of Germany and even help split up and occupy half of Poland.

Italy declared war against England and France the following year, in 1940.

Nazi Germany then betrays Russia (also known as the Soviet Union) on June 22, 1941. 

This betrayal, in the form of a military invasion of Russia by both German and Italian armed forces, turns Russia from ally of Germany into enemy of Germany and at the same time into an ally of Great Britain and France.
Up to now, the United States which is helping Great Britain and also now, Russia, but only with military supplies and equipment and financial loans, is still a neutral country.

After the Japanese attack against Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 – Germany and Italy both declare war on the United States so now the United States becomes an enemy of Germany, Italy, and Japan – all three of them at the same time.
This inclusion of the United States into this war now makes the United States a military partner and ally of Great Britain and Russia, and all the other countries that are allied to Britain such as Canada, New Zealand, Australia, etc.

The Allies: the United States, Russia, Great Britain along with Canada, Australia, etc. – now begin to take back countries that were occupied by Italy and Germany, including Italy herself. 

Later, in 1944, the Allies take back France which had fallen to Germany in 1940. Now France becomes one of the Allied Powers at war against Germany.

Italy by now, pretty much can longer help Germany and so Germany pretty much fights alone as the only Axis Power in Europe.

The End of World War II in Europe

The war continues and Germany can no longer fight the Allies. The country itself is full of enemy soldiers. Even Berlin falls. So in the end, Hitler, the dictator of Germany kills himself on April 30, 1945.

On May 7, 1945, the German generals surrender to the Western Allies in the first of two surrender ceremonies. This first one takes place in Rheims, France.

The next day, there was a repeat German surrender ceremony Berlin in which the Russians were also present to accept the German surrender. The Official Victory in Europe Day is May 8, 1945.

In summary, if you want to know when World War II began and ended, you need to know which theater, European or Asian-Pacific is being asked about?

There were two World War II's being fought approximately at the same time and so the dates that apply for the European Theater don't apply for Asian-Pacific Theater -- and vice verse.