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The Truth About World War II

The neocons who control brain-dead Biden tell us over and over that World War II was the “good war.” Didn’t we have to stop Hitler from conquering the world? They say this in order to justify their plans to start a nuclear war against Russia and China. If you look at the facts rather than neocon propaganda, World War II looks very different.

Jacob Hornberger points out some of these “discomforting facts” in an article written in 2019: “Given the predictable accolades regarding the 75th anniversary of D-Day in World War II — it’s important for Americans to keep in mind some discomforting facts about the so-called good war:

  1. Prior to U.S. entry into World War II, the American people were overwhelmingly opposed to entering the conflict. That’s because of two things: (1) the non-interventionist foreign policy that was the founding policy of the United States and that had remained the foreign policy of the United States for more than 100 years; and (2) the horrible waste of men and money that had been expended on America’s intervention into World War I, not to mention the massive destruction of liberty that came with that war.
  2. It was only because President Franklin Roosevelt intentionally provoked and maneuvered the Japanese into attacking at Pearl Harbor, where U.S. destroyers were conveniently based (FDR had wisely removed the carriers), that the U.S. ended up entering the conflict. Even many Roosevelt apologists now acknowledge what he did but defend it by arguing that his actions were for the greater good, i.e., preventing the Nazis from supposedly conquering the world. But what does it say about a democratic society in which people are overwhelmingly opposed to entering a particular war and in which their president circumvents that will by provoking and maneuvering a foreign regime into attacking the United States?
  3. Hitler never had the ability to conquer the United States, much less the world. After all, his forces proved unable to cross the English Channel to conquer England. At the risk of belaboring the obvious, it would have been militarily impossible for Hitler’s forces to have crossed the Atlantic Ocean and successfully invade and conquer the United States.
  4. Mainstream historians and newspapers have long pointed out that defeating Germany saved Europe from Nazi control. But it was always clear from the beginning that Hitler was moving east, not west — toward the Soviet Union, whose communist regime he considered the real enemy of Germany (just as the U.S. would consider the Soviet Union to be the real enemy of the United States after the war was over). It was England and France that declared war on Germany, not the other way around. If England and France had not declared war on Germany, it is a virtual certainty that the war would have been between Germany and the Soviet Union — i.e., Nazism versus communism, while the Western powers stood aside and let them fight it out among themselves.
  5. The reason that England declared war on Germany was to honor the guarantee that England had given to Poland. But it was an empty guarantee because England knew that it lacked the military capability to free the Poles from German control. At the end of the war and ever since, mainstream historians and newspapers have waxed eloquent about how ‘we’ defeated the Nazis. The operative word, however, is ‘we’ because ‘we’ included the Soviet Union, which was ruled by one of the most brutal communist regimes in the world. It was the Soviet Union that ended up controlling Poland … and Czechoslovakia … and all of Eastern Europe … and also the eastern half of Germany. So, yes, the Poles were freed from Nazi tyranny at the end of the war, only to be made to suffer for the next 45 years under communist tyranny. U.S. officials and mainstream historians and commentators have always called that a ‘victory’ for freedom. The Poles and Eastern Europeans have always felt differently about such a ‘victory.’
  6. Virtually no Jews were saved by the war. By the time the war was over, almost all of them were dead. Of course, it should be kept in mind that when Hitler offered to let German Jews leave Germany in the 1930s, the Roosevelt administration, like all other nations around the world, said that they could not come to the United States. The reason? Anti-Semitism, the same anti-Semitism that afflicted Nazi Germany. Google ‘Voyage of the Damned’ for more information.
  7. After the war was over, U.S. officials immediately converted Hitler’s enemy (and America’s wartime partner), the Soviet Union, into America’s new official enemy, which, Americans were told, was an even bigger threat to the U.S. than Hitler had been. The fierce anti-communist mindset that had driven Hitler was now adopted by U.S. officials. Their Cold War against their wartime partner and ally was used to convert the federal government from a limited-government republic to a national-security state, a type of totalitarian structure that brought coups, assassinations, regime-change operations, alliances with dictatorial regimes, installation of dictatorial regimes, and ever-increasing budgets and power to the Pentagon, the CIA, and the NSA. In fact, the national-security branch of the federal government ultimately became the most powerful branch. Additionally, there was the entire anti-communist crusade engaged in by U.S. officials and the mainstream press against anyone who had socialist, communist, or even leftist leanings. (“Have you now or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?”)
  8. The Cold War brought U.S. interventions in North Korea and Vietnam, which cost the lives of more than 100,000 American men as well as countless injuries, not to mention the massive death and destruction that U.S. forces wreaked on the people of North Korea and North Vietnam. U.S. officials claimed that absent intervention, the dominoes would fall to the Reds, with the final domino being the United States. Despite the stalemate in Korea and the total defeat of U.S. forces in Vietnam at the hands of the communists, the dominoes never fell and the United States is still standing.
  9. Mainstream historians and newspapers claim that Hitler would have ultimately conquered the United States and the world had he not been stopped. Of course, that’s impossible to say but it’s a problematic assertion given that Germany would have been just as weak and devastated as the Soviet Union was by the end of the war. War makes a nation weaker, not stronger. What we do know is that after the war, U.S. officials said that the Soviet Union, Hitler’s enemy and America’s wartime partner, was hell-bent on conquering the United States and the world. They never succeeded or even came close. If the United States could survive the communist Soviet Union, there is no reason to conclude that it couldn’t have survived a Nazi Germany.

A U.S. president surreptitiously embroils the country in a war that the American citizenry overwhelming opposed, a war that left Eastern Europe and half of Germany under communist control for 45 years and that also gave us the Cold War, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War as well as the conversion of our government to a totalitarian-like national-security state, along with the anti-communist crusade, assassination, coups, regime-change operations, and alliances with dictatorial regimes. That’s quite a ‘victory.’”

Let’s look at the biggest theater of the war, the conflict between Russia and Germany. As the brilliant Ron Unz notes, there is substantial evidence that Stalin planned to attack Germany and conquer Western Europe in 1941. “For many years I maintained far too many magazine subscriptions, more periodicals than I could possibly read or even skim, so most weeks they went straight into storage, with scarcely more than a glance at the cover. But every now and then, I might casually browse one of them, curious about what I had usually been missing.

Thus, in the summer of 2010, I happened to leaf through an issue of Chronicles, the small-circulation flagship organ of the marginalized paleoconservative movement, and soon began reading a blandly-titled book review. But the piece so astonished me that it immediately justified all the many years of subscription payments I had sent to that magazine.

The reviewer was Andrei Navrozov, a Soviet emigre long resident in Britain, and he opened by quoting a passage from a previous 1990 book review, published almost exactly twenty years before:

[Suvorov] is arguing with every book, every article, every film, every NATO directive, every Downing Street assumption, every Pentagon clerk, every academic, every Communist and anti-Communist, every neoconservative intellectual, every Soviet song, poem, novel and piece of music ever heard, written, made, sung, issued, produced, or born during the last 50 years. For this reason, Icebreaker is the most original work of history it has been my privilege to read.

He himself had written that earlier book review, which ran in the prestigious Times Literary Supplement following the original English publication of Icebreaker, and his description was not overblown. The work sought to overturn the settled history of World War II.

Icebreaker‘s author, writing under the pen-name Viktor Suvorov, was a veteran Soviet military intelligence officer who had defected to the West in 1978 and subsequently published a number of well-regarded books on the Soviet military and intelligence services. But here he advanced a far more radical thesis.

The ‘Suvorov Hypothesis’claimed that during the summer of 1941 Stalin was on the very verge of mounting a massive invasion and conquest of Europe, while Hitler’s sudden attack on June 22nd of that year was intended to forestall that looming blow. Moreover, the author also argued that Stalin’s planned attack constituted merely the final act in a much longer geopolitical strategy that he had been developing since at least the early 1930s.

Following the Bolshevik Revolution, the new Soviet regime had been viewed with extreme suspicion and hostility by other European countries, most of which also regarded their own domestic Communist Parties as likely fifth columns. So to fulfill Lenin’s dream and carry the revolution to Germany and the rest of Europe, Stalin somehow needed to split the Europeans, and break their common line of resistance. He allegedly viewed Hitler’s rise as exactly such a potential ‘icebreaker,’ an opportunity to unleash another bloody European war and exhaust all sides, while the Soviet Union remained aloof and bided its strength, waiting for the right moment to sweep in and conquer the entire continent.

To this end, Stalin had directed his powerful German Communist Party to take political actions ensuring that Hitler came to power and then later lured the German dictator into signing the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact to divide Poland. This led Britain and France to declare war on Germany, while also eliminating the Polish buffer state, thereby placing Soviet armies directly on the German border. And from the very moment he signed that long-term peace agreement with Hitler, he abandoned all his defensive preparations, and instead embarked upon an enormous military build-up of the purely offensive forces he intended to use for European conquest. Thus according to Suvorov, Stalin ranks as ‘the chief culprit’ behind the outbreak of World War II in Europe, and the updated English edition of his book bears that exact title.

Suvorov’s reconstruction of the weeks directly preceding the outbreak of combat is a fascinating one, emphasizing the mirror-image actions taken by both the Soviet and German armies. Each side moved its best striking units, airfields, and ammunition dumps close to the border, ideal for an attack but very vulnerable in defense. Each side carefully deactivated any residual minefields and ripped out any barbed wire obstacles, lest these hinder the forthcoming attack. Each side did its best to camouflage their preparations, talking loudly about peace while preparing for imminent war. The Soviet deployment had begun much earlier, but since their forces were so much larger and had far greater distances to cross, they were not yet quite ready for their attack when the Germans struck, and thereby shattered Stalin’s planned conquest of Europe.”

The great Murray Rothbard tells us the real lesson we should learn from World War II, in contrast to the neocon mythology of the “good war.” “There are two further, amplifying general observations of importance which I am moved to by this scintillating book. [A.J.P. Taylor’s The Origins of the Second World War]  One is the perniciousness of the typical ‘hard line’ mythology, a mythology that has been especially beloved in the United States and Great Britain. It is a mythology that has consistently failed and consistently plunged these ‘great democracies’ into one war after another. This is the mythology of conceiving the enemy as, not only a ‘bad’ guy; but a bad guy cast in the mold of Fu Manchu or someone from Mars. The bad guy is out, for some obscure reason, to conquer the world, or at the very least, to conquer as much as he can keep conquering. This is his only goal. He can be stopped only by force majeure, i.e., by ‘standing firm’ on a ‘tough line.’ In short, while irredeemably evil, the Bad Guy is a craven at heart; and if the noble Good Guy only stands his ground, the Bad Guy, like any bully, will turn tail. Rather than Fu Manchu, then, the Enemy is a Fu Manchu at heart but with all the other characteristics of the Corner Bully, or of a movie Western. ‘We’ are the Good Guys, interested only in justice and self-defense who need only stand our ground to face down the wicked but cravenly bluffing Bad Guys. This is the almost idiotic Morality Play in which Americans and Britons have cast international relations for half a century now, and that is why we are in the mess we are today. Nowhere in this Copybook nonsense is it every conceived that (a) the Bad Guy might be afraid of our attacking him (But Good Guys never attack, by definition!); or (b) that the Bad Guy might, in his foreign policy demands, have a pretty good and just case after all — or at least, that he believes his case to be good and just; or (c) that, faced with the defiance, the Bad Guy might consider it loss of self-respect if he backed down — and so to war. Let us all give up this childlike game of international relations, and begin to consider a policy of rationality, peace, and honest negotiation.”

We should do everything we can to counter the neocon mythology about the good war and promote peace and non-intervention.