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Old 01-19-2010, 12:16 PM
1,308 posts, read 2,642,635 times
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Perhaps I was not clear so I will restate my position.

1) The Sudentenland was primarily made up of lands taken from Autria-Hungary not Germany. Only a very tiny piece of land came from Germany. Thus the dispute in 1938 did not revolve around Germany regaining lands, because the vast majority of lands being debated had never belonged to Germany.

2) The primary treaties disolving the Autrian state, which included the Sudentenland, were not versailles but the other ones you mentioned.

Thus the 38 dispute did not primarily involve the Versailles treaty or lands taken from Germany. They involved the lands taken from Autraia-Hungary and the treaties that did so.
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Old 11-05-2012, 05:53 AM
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This notion is absolutely absurd. Have any of you read of any actual invasions of Bohemia? A good case study would be the War of the Bavarian Succession, or the Silesian Wars, or the Austro-Prussian War. The Austrians never contested the passes against the Prussians even though the Austrians were in greater numbers and the Prussians could only move as fast as their feet could carry them, and even though the Prussians could only use the passes over the Erzgebirge and the Riesengebirge. The Germans would be in superior numbers in 1938, and could use the passes to the South and West that the Prussians could not use. The Germans would also be moving much faster than the Prussians had moved in 1742, 1778, or even in 1866. The Austrians regarded it as impossible to prevent the Prussians from crossing the mountains, how much worse it would have been for the Czechs who were facing an opponent who could use several more points of entry, who was more numerous, and who was capable of moving much more quickly. The Czechs could only realistically concentrate in the centre and wait for the main German force to show itself. In such conditions the Czechs would lose. As for France and Britain, what would they do? France told Poland that it could only operate 15 days after mobilisation. In practice that meant that the French were not ready for large scale operations until the 18 of September, by which time the Polish Army had been destroyed and Russia had invaded from the East. The Czechs would have been lucky to last 5 days, let alone 15. As for Britain, they only got a measly 100,000 men across the Channel by October, by which time the Polish Army not only ceased to exist, but Germany and the Soviet Union had actually physically occupied the entire Polish Republic. Czechoslovakia would be gone long before the French or British did anything. On top of that, the Hungarians and even the Poles were lusting after Czech territory and would likely have invaded to acquire it from a collapsing Czechoslovakia that was already hard pressed to face Germany. It was in a terrible position, I'd give the Czechs a week tops before they were destroyed. But the most damning evidence to the arguments that they could have fought, is the fact that they didn't fight. They didn't fight because they knew they couldn't win.

EDIT: I also see a lot of people arguing about Czech fortifications. The Czechs could not hope to adequately guard every pass stretching from Glatz to Preßburg, they'd just spread themselves out and allow themselves to be defeated in detail. Contesting the passes was the stupidest thing they could have done. Since they couldn't adequately guard every pass, it was pointless to guard any pass. So Sudetenland or not, the Germans were getting over the mountains, just like the Prussians did every single time. And once there, they'd defeat the Czech Army in the field where superior German mobility, superior armaments like the 88 (which could knock out any Czech tank with ease), and uncontested air supremacy would hold all the advantages and the Czechs none of them.

Last edited by Graf von Erdnuß; 11-05-2012 at 06:02 AM..
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Old 10-09-2014, 02:02 PM
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Mr. Smart,
Im from the Czech Republic and I know that we should defend. Our president Beneš surrended without assembeling the parliament, so it wasnt even legal. Czechs and slovaks werent minority.

Here are some reasons:
1) We had army about the same size as Germany.
2) Soldiers had huge morale and had desire to defend their motherland.
3) Our commanders were good as German comm.
4) Our military technology was even higher.
5) We had allied agreement with Romania.
6) We had network of bunkers all over the borders.
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Old 10-09-2014, 03:34 PM
Location: NW Indiana
1,412 posts, read 1,316,516 times
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Originally Posted by j_k_k View Post
For one thing, the Poles weren't a pushover. They were outnumbered and outgunned, but made up for equipment and tactical deficiencies with great valor and determination. They were in a terrible operational position with fewer natural bastions than the Czechs had, although Adolf's absorption of Austria seriously weakened the Czech situation.

The betrayal of Czechoslovakia resounds as one of history's most sordid moments. If only the French had a leader who would say to Chamberlain: "Our allies, the Czechs, are menaced. We have advised them to mobilize and send their troops to forward defensive positions. If they are attacked, we march. Do you, our allies, march with us? A simple yes or no will suffice. The time for equivocation is past." And they would have gotten: "Well, come now, old chap, surely we must discuss this...", and they should have answered: "Non. Discuss nothing. Will you, our allies, march with us? This is the crisis of Western democracy, round two; round one, in Spain, is already winding down and we have lost it. Decidez." Obviously, I speak with full hindsight, but in that hindsight, oh, how different things might have been. Because the German army of the time could not have taken down Czechoslovakia, France and Britain at the same time. Hitler would have been deposed, probably assassinated, and uncountable horrors likely averted.

Poland was nearly as great a betrayal. The Allies declared war and then did almost nothing warlike, certainly not the sort of assault that would have drawn off German troops from the Vistula. Again, with full hindsight, it's no wonder that later some Czechs and Poles were willing to work with the USSR after the way France and Britain handled themselves. And the United States, self-described flagship of democracy? Actively disinterested. If I had been a young person of those times, I'd probably have decided that the West was a broken reed and made my peace with the system that did the most to consume and destroy the majority of the German military and reconquer the bulk of German conquests, for all its glaring faults.
I do not understand your point about Poland being willing to work with USSR "after the way France and Britain handled themselves". When Germany invaded Poland, France and Britian declared war against Germany. Russian did not declare war on Germany, they waited 16 days and then Russia invaded Poland! Russia did not oppose Germany, they allied with it and seized Polish territory.

As far as "making peace with the German system", realize that Hitler turned on most of his allies, including the Russians.
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Old 10-11-2014, 07:32 AM
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The Czech fortifications might not have been as formidable as hoped. In 1940 the Germans took Ebon Emal in 1 day. This was the most important Belgian fort and probably the strongest fort in Europe. It had taken the Germans a whole week to take it in WWI.

In WWI the Germans started development of the shaped charge. They needed something to counter British tanks. Most of the force of a shaped charge explosion goes in one direction instead of going all over the place. This makes it able to penetrate armor much better that regular munitions could. They used it to great effect against Ebon Emal, demolishing pillboxes, ramparts and gun emplacement that could withstand all but the heaviest artillery.

Czech fortifications might not have fared any better.
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Old 10-11-2014, 07:53 AM
Location: Peterborough, England
472 posts, read 832,791 times
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Originally Posted by Six Foot Three View Post
If memory serves me correct from my HS History days was that the Czechs actually had an standing army that wasn't such a pushover as the Poles were and while i still don't understand all the politics inside Czechoslovakia and from the other major Euro countries attitutde towards that country back then however my question is that should they have never allowed the Munich Agreement to go thru and fought Germany if they had invaded in 1938?

Any thoughts ?

What would they have gained?

A year later the Poles actually did what some think the Czechs should have done in 1938. Result - about three million killed, and Warsaw totally destroyed. The Czechs lost about 200,000 dead, and Prague survived the war intact. Which was the smarter course?
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Old 10-12-2014, 01:56 AM
Location: Aloverton
6,564 posts, read 13,024,525 times
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Originally Posted by MyTarge13 View Post
I do not understand your point about Poland being willing to work with USSR "after the way France and Britain handled themselves". When Germany invaded Poland, France and Britian declared war against Germany. Russian did not declare war on Germany, they waited 16 days and then Russia invaded Poland! Russia did not oppose Germany, they allied with it and seized Polish territory.

As far as "making peace with the German system", realize that Hitler turned on most of his allies, including the Russians.
You are responding to things I was not saying, and are even misquoting me.
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Old 10-12-2014, 02:52 AM
Location: London
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Firstly, Czechoslovakia was taken apart by Poland, Hungary and later Germany.

In 1938 the Royal Navy was on full alert as was the USSR. If the Germans went into Czechoslovakia in 1938, they would be fighting, French, British, Czech, Soviet and most probably Polish forces, "all at once", on two fronts. It was diplomatically put to Hitler that if he wanted war he had it. Hitler backed down. Chamberlain and France inexplicably gave the Sudetenland to the Germans. They gave away a part of someone else's country. That is not the common view of Munich in 1938.
Adam Tooze: Wages of Destruction:
Page 273
"If Hitler had wanted war on 1 October 1938, he could have had it. The French and British had reached the point at which they could make no further concessions. The armies of France and the Soviet Union had mobilized. The Royal Navy stood at full alert. On 9 September 1938 it was Hitler who stepped back not his opponents"

Page 274
"Hitler backed down and accepted the extraordinarily generous settlement on offer at the hastily convened conference in Munich. In so doing, he almost certainly saved his regime from disaster."
In 1938 Hitler wanted to march into Czechoslovakia against his general's views. The Czechs had a strong army and good mountain defences. Czechoslovakia would be difficult to overcome and were allied to the USSR. The Germans also feared that if Britain, France or the Soviet Union joined the Czechs, Germany would be badly defeated fighting on two fronts, despite have a very modern air force. The British and French gave away the Sudetenland to Germany. This area contained nearly all the country's strong mountain fortifications the Germans feared and fell into German hands. Czechoslovakia was no longer able to defend herself.

In March 1939:
German industry had made the German military stronger. Hungarian troops were fighting the Czechs from October 1938. The pro Germany party in Czechoslovakia announced separation and that it was a part of Germany. On March 15th, Hitler met with the Czech President Hacha, and informed him that Germany desired all of Czechoslovakia. Hacha reluctantly agreed. German troops and Hungarian troops, immediately walked in and took over several Czech provinces, and eventually Czechoslovakia itself. There was no rolling tanks and massed bombings like in Poland.

The USSR said to the Czechs, they wanted to use rail to take troops in via Romania - the Czechs had a defence pact with the USSR from 1935, France from 1919, the UK none. Poland scuppered an alliance between the UK, France, USSR, by refusing to allow Soviet troops on their soil.

Slovak-Hungarian "war" of March 1939 lasted less than two weeks. Which resulted in no international intervention to rescue Czechoslovakia, despite the Czechs alliance with the USSR (secret negotiations between the USSR and Germany were from April to July 1939 resulting in the August 1939 German-Soviet pact, which may have had a baring on the USR not intervening). Poland and Hungary were happily helping Germany dismember Czechoslovakia in October and November 1938 and the Hungarians are at it in March 1939, and there was no international intervention - with widespread fighting occurring.

Czechoslovakia ceased to exist, divided among Germany, Hungary, Poland, and an independent Slovakia. The French & British immediately guaranteed the borders of Holland, Belgium, Romania, Poland, Greece and Switzerland. If the Poles, a benefactor of the Czech carve up, rolled over the German border the UK would not intervene as this was aggression. The Czechs could not fight being carved up and their strong mountain points given to Germany at Munich. So German ensured all fighting with the major powers would be on the western front with a stronger German military than in 1938.

The dismemberment of Czechoslovakia:

May 1938 -
Hitler mobilized his army to annex Czechoslovakia's German-speaking Sudetenland. When Britain, France, and the USSR diplomatically threatened war, Hitler backed down, but continued pressing the issue.

September 15 -
Chamberlain visited Hitler in Munich for a peaceful solution.

September 22 -
Chamberlain agreed the annexation of the Sudetenland but refused to allow immediate entry for German troops. Hitler remained dissatisfied.

September 23 -
Czechoslovakia mobilized its military and war looked imminent.

September 27 -
Poland makes its move taking advantage of Czechoslovakia in crisis as the Germans prepared to invade. Poland issued an ultimatum demanding that Czechoslovakia cede the Tesin (Teschen) district to Poland. An area of 625 squ miles and a population of 230,000. Poland had been first to share in the spoils, after an ultimatum to the Czechs.

September 29 -
France, Britain, Germany, and Italy sign the Munich Agreement ceding Czech territory to Germany, Poland and Hungary. Hitler could annex the Sudetenland in exchange for "guaranteeing" Czechoslovakia's borders. However only after Poland and Hungary, who had by now joined in, had taken their shares.

November 5 -
Czecho-Slovakia, appeased the Polish and Hungarians within the Munich agreement. The Czechs asked for the promised guarantees from Italy and Germany to the agreement. Germany refused until the frontiers were defined. Hitler did not guarantee the new borders, taking advantage of Czecho-Slovakia's internal divisions. Hitler encouraged Slovakia to declare independence, to ease annexing the remaining Czech region.

March 1939 -
Hitler promised Slovakia that if it declared independence, he would give protection from Hungarian and Polish aggression.

After Poland annexed Czechoslovakia's Tesin district, Hungary took a part of Czechoslovakia's Sub-Carpathian Ruthenia region. They claimed it had been stolen from Hungary after WW1 in the 1920 Treaty of Trianon.

Czechoslovakia rolled over without a fight, as it was being dismembered, mainly because it was facing secessionist demands from its Slovakian region. Czechoslovakia agreed to grant more autonomy to Slovakia. The country's name was hyphenated becoming Czecho-Slovakia.

Abandoned by its allies and threatened with civil war, the Prague government hoped that Germany, Hungary, and Poland would be satisfied with their immediate territorial demands.

Last edited by John-UK; 10-12-2014 at 03:13 AM..
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Old 10-12-2014, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by newhandle View Post
Hardly possible when a good percentage of their population was Sudentenland Germans. Only the USSR gave any hints of help and that fell through.
this thread is ridiculous. by 1939 the Slovaks were separate and with Mussolini
firmly in the German camp (thanks to the blunders of British diplomacy), there
was no way the Czechs alone would have "fought". why "fight" when you absolutely
know that thousands of men will unncecessarily die ? wars end in a few years.
the goal for the common man is to just make it through and get back to living.
war is not a sporting event.
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