Jump to content
Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Recommended Posts

I'm not at all a fan of "what ifs" normally but I did happen to wonder something recently that I thought might make an interesting topic.  A lesser known aspect about the war was that the French (and British) had a plan for a large scale attack on Germany once hostilities began.  And in fact they did move large numbers to the border and in some cases across the border in what is known as "The Saar Offensive".  Now obviously it was not carried out in such a way to make a difference.  But some top German officers said after the war that had they indeed acted as they planned, the German army could have collapsed within just a couple of weeks!   So that brings me to the what if...

Germany invades Poland but so do the Soviets don't forget.  But this time the French and British do carry out their plans and come across the border in force (40 divisions) and Germany does collapse.  But now what?  Are the western allies now content to restore half of Poland to their democratic government?  Could Germany (without Hitler) now be a part of a coalition to force the Russians out of Poland?  Would there have been a large scale second world war in Europe at all?  Or would it have taken on a much different look with the main goal being the restoration of Poland? 

Again, I'm not normally a fan of this sort of thing.  But this is something that I can at least see happening (unlike "what if the USA had been an axis nation-for example).  And I thought it might make for some interesting discussion. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Jon M Brown said:

Germany invades Poland but so do the Soviets don't forget. 

Stalin did not invade Poland for over two weeks after Hitler's invasion, which made the latter quite nervous judging from the correspondence between German and Soviet diplomatic corps at the time. In the meantime, Stalin disseminated via Comintern channels his talking points justifying his pact with Hitler with the expectation of another war that would exhaust Germany and the Western allies (former CalState professor Richard Raack published a few works on that). Whether or not that was Stalin's genuine thinking, it obviously would not quite pan out as planned.     

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

George, 

I appreciate the reply but to be honest, I'm not sure I follow.  Insofar as my hypothetical, you're saying that if Germany was knocked out early and the Western allies did then move to drive the Soviets out of Poland, then things would have not gone to plan from Stalin's point of view?  Apologies if I've misunderstood.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, Jon M Brown said:

George, 

I appreciate the reply but to be honest, I'm not sure I follow.  Insofar as my hypothetical, you're saying that if Germany was knocked out early and the Western allies did then move to drive the Soviets out of Poland, then things would have not gone to plan from Stalin's point of view?  Apologies if I've misunderstood.

No, his expectations were that it would be an exhaustive war in the west and he would benefit toward the end. You probably assume the US involvement from the get-go, but in 1939 US Army was woefully unprepared for any conflict. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, George Collins said:

No, his expectations were that it would be an exhaustive war in the west and he would benefit toward the end. 

By him, I mean Stalin, of course - to be clear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now




×