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D-Day 65 years on




Malbekh

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Anyone reading Antony Beevor's book?

Am half way through it. Eye watering.
Not yet - saving it for the holiday read. Thanks for the reminder.
 

Green eyed monster

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There is a bit of a controversy waging at the mo, concerning the decision not to directly invite the British Queen to the commemoration of the D-Day landings. It strikes me as strange and amusing when big nations who are allies with well oiled diplomatic systems make such gaffes, the gaffe of not inviting her (or at least smoothing the decision properly beforehand) was compounded by Obama seemingly rebuking Sarkozy for the no-invite and stating that pressure was being exerted on Sarkozy to reverse his decision. Sarkozy initially blamed G Brown's government for the gaffe by hinting invites had been issued and it was a British decision not to pass one on to her.

I think she deserved an invite, considering the role her nation played in liberating France, perhaps there is some personal friction there and a clash of personalities... Sarkozy strikes me as someone who does what he wishes, a 'brat' is how he has been described... In personality similiar perhaps to Berlusconi whose outbursts are notorious and whose shouting at the G8 meeting... 'Obama' apparently caused QE2 to turn around and ask 'why does he need to shout?'...

Which can be seen here....

[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PFgCthVSUwo"]YouTube - Queen tells off Berlusconi[/ame]
 

EarlyBird

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Dec 20, 2008
Messages
324
There is a bit of a controversy waging at the mo, concerning the decision not to directly invite the British Queen to the commemoration of the D-Day landings. It strikes me as strange and amusing when big nations who are allies with well oiled diplomatic systems make such gaffes, the gaffe of not inviting her (or at least smoothing the decision properly beforehand) was compounded by Obama seemingly rebuking Sarkozy for the no-invite and stating that pressure was being exerted on Sarkozy to reverse his decision. Sarkozy initially blamed G Brown's government for the gaffe by hinting invites had been issued and it was a British decision not to pass one on to her.

I think she deserved an invite, considering the role her nation played in liberating France, perhaps there is some personal friction there and a clash of personalities... Sarkozy strikes me as someone who does what he wishes, a 'brat' is how he has been described... In personality similiar perhaps to Berlusconi whose outbursts are notorious and whose shouting at the G8 meeting... 'Obama' apparently caused QE2 to turn around and ask 'why does he need to shout?'...

Which can be seen here....

YouTube - Queen tells off Berlusconi
Tis a good job the horny old goat didn't do this to the old hag:

[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ww9YkEqyfa4]YouTube - Silvio Berlusconi.[/ame]

That would have been a real gaffe.
 

lapsedmethodist

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Jun 15, 2008
Messages
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Anyone reading Antony Beevor's book?

Am half way through it. Eye watering.
I think that it should be read in conjunction with Clive Pontings " 1940: Myth and Reality."
Otherwise there's a tendency to look on it as revisionist.
 
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I intend to read it, I read Stalingrad and the one on the Spanish Civil War, he's a great historian. Heard him on Simon Mayo's show yesterday, very interesting. Only quibble is that he goes into too much detail in his books, sometimes obscuring the greater narrative. There is no need to know about the precise trajectory of every bullet fired...
 

EarlyBird

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I intend to read it, I read Stalingrad and the one on the Spanish Civil War, he's a great historian. Heard him on Simon Mayo's show yesterday, very interesting. Only quibble is that he goes into too much detail in his books, sometimes obscuring the greater narrative. There is no need to know about the precise trajectory of every bullet fired...
I have always been interested as to why the 'Third Reich' didn't invade Britain ("flamboyant" Goerings glaring and blatant incompetence is too obvious an excuse).. At its pinnacle of success the string pullers of that system decided not to invade Britain during 1940 and instead decided invade the mammoth that was the USSR a year later. When you look at who funded the 'Third Reich' into existence it is not surprising that events played out as they did.
 
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I have always been interested as to why the 'Third Reich' didn't invade Britain ("flamboyant" Goerings glaring and blatant incompetence is too obvious an excuse).. At its pinnacle of success the string pullers of that system decided not to invade Britain during 1940 and instead decided invade the mammoth that was the USSR a year later. When you look at who funded the 'Third Reich' into existence it is not surprising that events played out as they did.
They did attempt to invade, albeit without much enthusiasm from Hitler. The Royal Navy was massively superior to the German one. The only hope for the Germans was to gain air supremacy over the RAF, thus being able to knock out the navy. They failed, thanks to the Spitfires and Hurricanes. Hitler was never massively serious about invading Britain anyway, but not doing so enabled a war on two fronts and the eventual introduction of the Americans, plus allowed massive arms supplies and intelligence info to be given to the Russians.
 

Catalpa

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I have always been interested as to why the 'Third Reich' didn't invade Britain ("flamboyant" Goerings glaring and blatant incompetence is too obvious an excuse).. At its pinnacle of success the string pullers of that system decided not to invade Britain during 1940 and instead decided invade the mammoth that was the USSR a year later. When you look at who funded the 'Third Reich' into existence it is not surprising that events played out as they did.
They didn't have the Operational means to invade Britain in 1940 unless and until the gained Air Superiority.

The RAF blocked that threat for long enough until the weather turned and Sealion was cancelled.

As for D-Day

OK if the Allies want to commemorate it well and good but what in hell is RTE on about it for?

This State was neutral in WWII - Montrose should learn to live with that fact!

RTE even got the scale of the D-day landings wrong

- it was not the largest amphibious Invasion of WWII

- that particular accolade belongs to the Invasion of Sicily in August 1943.


Although overshadowed by the Normandy invasion a year later, Operation HUSKY was actually the largest amphibious operation of World War II in terms of the size of the landing zone and the number of divisions put ashore on the first day of the invasion.

http://www.history.army.mil/Brochures/72-16/72-16.htm
 
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This State was neutral in WWII - Montrose should learn to live with that fact!
The State was not neutral, it was non-combatant but it was heavily biased towards the Allies, providing all sorts of assistance to them that was not provided to Germans. Many Irish fought in British, Canadian, and American uniforms during the War, including at Normandy.
 

Catalpa

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The State was not neutral, it was non-combatant but it was heavily biased towards the Allies, providing all sorts of assistance to them that was not provided to Germans. Many Irish fought in British, Canadian, and American uniforms during the War, including at Normandy.
Sure they did - as private individuals.

- and sorry the State was Neutral.

See Dev's speech of 2 September 1939:

Now, the policy of the Government, as indicated by the amendment of the Constitution, because it does indicate it indirectly, does not, I am sure, come either upon the members of the House or upon the public, as a surprise. Back in February last I stated in a very definite way that it was the aim of Government policy, in case of a European war, to keep this country, if at all possible, out of if. We have pursued that policy, and we intend to pursue it. On another occasion, when speaking in the House of that policy, I pointed out how extremely difficult it was going to be. In a sense, it brings up for the Government of a nation that proposes to be neutral in a war of this sort problems much more delicate and much more difficult of solution even than the problems that arise for a belligerent.
It is not, as some people appear to think, sufficient for us to indicate our attitude, or to express the desire of our people. It is necessary at every step to protect our own interests in that regard, to avoid giving to any of the belligerents any due cause, and proper cause, of complaint. Of course, when you have powerful States in a war of this sort, each trying to utilise whatever advantage it can for itself, the neutral State, if it is a small State, is always open to considerable pressure. I am stating what every one of you knows to be a fact. Therefore, I stated, when I was speaking of our policy of neutrality on a former occasion, that it was a policy which could only be pursued if we had a determined people, people who are determined to stand by their own rights, conscious of the fact that they did not wish to injure anybody, or to throw their weight, from the belligerent point of view, on the one side or the other.


http://historical-debates.oireachtas.ie/D/0077/D.0077.193909020003.html
 
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Sure they did - as private individuals.

- and sorry the State was Neutral.

See Dev's speech of 2 September 1939:

Now, the policy of the Government, as indicated by the amendment of the Constitution, because it does indicate it indirectly, does not, I am sure, come either upon the members of the House or upon the public, as a surprise. Back in February last I stated in a very definite way that it was the aim of Government policy, in case of a European war, to keep this country, if at all possible, out of if. We have pursued that policy, and we intend to pursue it. On another occasion, when speaking in the House of that policy, I pointed out how extremely difficult it was going to be. In a sense, it brings up for the Government of a nation that proposes to be neutral in a war of this sort problems much more delicate and much more difficult of solution even than the problems that arise for a belligerent.
It is not, as some people appear to think, sufficient for us to indicate our attitude, or to express the desire of our people. It is necessary at every step to protect our own interests in that regard, to avoid giving to any of the belligerents any due cause, and proper cause, of complaint. Of course, when you have powerful States in a war of this sort, each trying to utilise whatever advantage it can for itself, the neutral State, if it is a small State, is always open to considerable pressure. I am stating what every one of you knows to be a fact. Therefore, I stated, when I was speaking of our policy of neutrality on a former occasion, that it was a policy which could only be pursued if we had a determined people, people who are determined to stand by their own rights, conscious of the fact that they did not wish to injure anybody, or to throw their weight, from the belligerent point of view, on the one side or the other.


Dil ireann - Volume 77 - 02 September, 1939 - First Amendment of the Constitution Bill, 1939—First Stage.
Oh jeebus... Of course de Valera said we were neutral, he was hardly going to say otherwise was he? We weren't neutral, as virtually any serious historian will tell you, we were simply non-combatant. If you want me to list the numerous areas in which we gave preferential treatment, plus info and intelligence, to the Allies, I will happily do so.
 

He3

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Was it not a very finely managed form of neutrality? It involved giving men and several forms of practical support to the UK while not p1ssing off Herr Hempel.
 
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Was it not a very finely managed form of neutrality? It involved giving men and several forms of practical support to the UK while not p1ssing off Herr Hempel.
Yes, it got the name 'benevolent neutrality', but to me that is sophistry, we weren't neutral despite the official position. Sorry, by the way, didn't intend that this thread be dragged away from D-Day to yet another argument about neutrality...
 

Catalpa

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Oh jeebus... Of course de Valera said we were neutral, he was hardly going to say otherwise was he? We weren't neutral, as virtually any serious historian will tell you, we were simply non-combatant. If you want me to list the numerous areas in which we gave preferential treatment, plus info and intelligence, to the Allies, I will happily do so.
Every Combatant State considered us as Neutral

- this 'we weren't really Neutral' nonsense only started to gain traction decades after the War ended.

On that basis no State in Europe was 'Neutral'

- the term would become meaningless if the relations we had with the Allies were used as a template upon which to gauge what 'Neutrality' meant.

For instance the Swedes allowed Iron Ore shipments to Germany to continue right up until 1944 - a huge boost to Germany - was Sweden not then Neutral?

Spain allowed thousands of its soldiers to fight in Russia - was it not Neutral?

The Swiss allowed War material to be transported across its territory to supply the German Army in Italy + also sold weapons to them.

Were they not Neutral?

etc etc

By the standards of the time we were indeed Neutral and Internationally recognized as such.

Revisionist History is skewing the Historical Record here I'm afraid!:(
 

droghedasouth

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RTE even got the scale of the D-day landings wrong

- it was not the largest amphibious Invasion of WWII

- that particular accolade belongs to the Invasion of Sicily in August 1943.


Although overshadowed by the Normandy invasion a year later, Operation HUSKY was actually the largest amphibious operation of World War II in terms of the size of the landing zone and the number of divisions put ashore on the first day of the invasion.

WWII Campaigns: Sicily
True but misleading.

There were just under 2600 vessels in the Sicily Armada but 6500 vessles in the Normandy invasion.
Sicily Day One was largely uncontested but the Allies faced determined opposition and an array of obstacles in Normandy.

The number of troops put ashore in the month following invasion was approx 500,000 in Sicily but from memory over 1 million crossed the D-Day beaches.

Italy was a sideshow - D-Day deserves its status as the decisive invasion in the west.

THe role of our Belmullet weather station in helping Eisenhower to decide to risk the landing on june 6th is reasonably well known.
Whay would that sober pillar of respectability, Maura Harrington, have to say abou that? ;)
 

Odyessus

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May 16, 2007
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Every Combatant State considered us as Neutral

- this 'we weren't really Neutral' nonsense only started to gain traction decades after the War ended.

On that basis no State in Europe was 'Neutral'

- the term would become meaningless if the relations we had with the Allies were used as a template upon which to gauge what 'Neutrality' meant.

For instance the Swedes allowed Iron Ore shipments to Germany to continue right up until 1944 - a huge boost to Germany - was Sweden not then Neutral?

Spain allowed thousands of its soldiers to fight in Russia - was it not Neutral?

The Swiss allowed War material to be transported across its territory to supply the German Army in Italy + also sold weapons to them.

Were they not Neutral?

etc etc

By the standards of the time we were indeed Neutral and Internationally recognized as such.

Revisionist History is skewing the Historical Record here I'm afraid!:(

Quite right. We were recognised by the belligerents as neutral, to their satisfaction or annoyance as the case might be.
 

weepee

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I seen a bit of the DDay commemorations on BBC today. It certainly was a defining moment in modern European and US history, and, they also said it was the single largest
amphibian landing in history.


PS: Seen Tom Hanks there also.
 
Joined
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19,085
Every Combatant State considered us as Neutral

- this 'we weren't really Neutral' nonsense only started to gain traction decades after the War ended.

On that basis no State in Europe was 'Neutral'

- the term would become meaningless if the relations we had with the Allies were used as a template upon which to gauge what 'Neutrality' meant.

For instance the Swedes allowed Iron Ore shipments to Germany to continue right up until 1944 - a huge boost to Germany - was Sweden not then Neutral?

Spain allowed thousands of its soldiers to fight in Russia - was it not Neutral?

The Swiss allowed War material to be transported across its territory to supply the German Army in Italy + also sold weapons to them.

Were they not Neutral?

etc etc

By the standards of the time we were indeed Neutral and Internationally recognized as such.

Revisionist History is skewing the Historical Record here I'm afraid!:(
Whether Hitler himself thought we were neutral or not is irrelevant, we weren't. Neither, if you want to discuss from a relativist point of view, were, for example, the Swedes (whom in my view were collaborators). I would argue, in fact, that the Germans were well aware we weren't neutral (some would argue that the bombing of the North Strand was no accident). It's not revisionist history, it's just history, the truth.
 

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