Talk:World War II/Archive 35

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Archive 34 Archive 35 Archive 36


The "Allies gain momentum" section.

The section is rather confusing. It starts with March 1944 events, then jumps to May 1943, then goes to March 1944, them back to July 1943, then to January 1944, then to early summer 1943, then to Nov 1943, and finishes with January 1944. It is just a list of the events without any attempt to preserve a chronological order or to show interconnection between different theatres.
The connection between the events is broken even when it is obvious. Thus, it is well known than the Battle of Kursk preceded the invasion of Sicily. It is also well known that Husky was the reason (although not the sole and not the major one) to cancel Zitadelle. It is also known that Husky lead to withdrawal of considerable part of Luftwaffe from the East.
Going back to Eastern front, the wording:

"On July 4, the Germans launched their attack, though only about a week later Hitler cancelled the operation.[142] The Soviets were then able to mount a massive counter-offensive and, by June 1944, had largely expelled Axis forces from the Soviet Union and made incursions into Romania." is awkward. It:
  1. Represents Hitler as a frivolous girl: On July 4, the Germans launched their attack, though only about a week later Hitler cancelled the operation. (in other words, Hitler ordered to commence the largest tank battle in history, but a week later changed his mind for unclear reason)
  2. Ignores the fact that the counter-attack was planned by the Soviet from the very beginning of the battle ("The Soviets were then able to mount a massive counter-offensive")
  3. The story about German attempts to stabilize EF along a heavily fortified line along Dnieper river is completely omitted. In other words, the battle of Dnieper, that involved 2,650,000 Soviet and 1,250,000 Axis troops, and caused more than a million casualties, is completely ignored. (I even don't propose to mention another titanic battle, the Battle of Smolensk (1943))

My proposal is to think about rearranging the section to restore a chronological order where it is possible and about giving a more adequate description of Eastern front events.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 17:44, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

Your suggestion seems sensible and uncontroversial. Just do it? Hohum (talk) 17:52, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
It's a fine point, but the Red Army's counteroffensive at Kursk was planned in April, months before the Germans attacked. But your main point is entirely valid. Regards, DMorpheus (talk) 18:31, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
--Paul Siebert: We all have our theaters of greater interest that we would like to see emphasized. But this is a survey, an overview of the Second World War, written for an Anglophone audience. We have already included Kursk, although it changed nothing - the Soviets continued pushing the Germans out of Russia. Is an unsuccessful attempt to fortify along the Dnieper River important? As the Panther-Wotan line article mentions, Hitler was already turning his attention to the more important Allied threat in west. Yes, American, Canadians, etc. should be more aware of the history of other parts of the world. But this is already a long article, and seemingly un-ending relation of battles in unheard of places may discourage reading of the article. I have put in a mention and links to the Battle of Smolensk and the Panther-Wotan line. Do you think this is adequate?

Finally, "Hitler as a frivolous girl?" Is that PC? StevenWT (talk) 06:37, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

I am not sure what does "PC" mean. One way or the another, to my opinion, it is incorrect to present Hitler as a frivolous girl, whereas the present text does so.
With regards to anglophone audience, the article's task is not to please the anglophone reader, and not to support common stereotypes. The article must present correct and balanced information, and the situation when more attention is given to the battle that involved 40 divisions to the battle that involved 140 divisions is neither balanced nor correct.
In addition, your conclusion about relative importance of the western and eastern theatres needs to be supported by factual evidences, because the facts available for me tell the opposite: if western theatre was so important, why majority of Axis troops continued to fight in the East until the very end of the war?--Paul Siebert (talk) 18:57, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
PS. I agree that the balance between the truth (I mean the fact that WWII was fought mostly in the East) and the alglophones' ability to accept it should be observed (otherwise the reader would refuse to trust to the presented facts). probably, your change is sufficient, however, I have to think about that a little bit more.--Paul Siebert (talk) 19:34, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "...although it changed nothing - the Soviets continued pushing the Germans out of Russia". It is equally valid for other theatres and other periods of the war: "...it changed nothing - the Americans continued pushing the Japanese out of Pacific", or ... it changed nothing - the British continued pushing the Germans out of Africa". Such an approach is intrinsically flawed: it represents the eastern front events as a background for more important events. This is unacceptable. Since anglophone readers are unfamiliar with EF, additional stress should be made on the latter. Similarly, it would be more correct to make additional stress on Western front in Russian WP.--Paul Siebert (talk) 21:13, 1 August 2009 (UTC)


Below is the draft of the section where I tried to fix some errors, chronological inconsistencies and to link some events together (where it was possible).

Allies gain momentum

Following the Guadalcanal Campaign, the Allies initiated several operations against Japan in the Pacific. In May, 1943, American forces were sent to eliminate Japanese forces from the Aleutians,[1] and soon after began major operations to isolate Rabaul by capturing surrounding islands, and to breach the Japanese Central Pacific perimeter at the Gilbert and Marshall Islands.[2] By the end of March, 1944, the Allies had completed both of these objectives, and additionally neutralized another major Japanese base in the Caroline Islands. In April, the Allies then launched an operation to retake Western New Guinea.[3]

In the Soviet Union, both the Germans and the Soviets spent the spring and early summer of 1943 making preparations for large offensives in the region of the Kursk Bulge. The Soviets anticipated the German offencive and spent their time fortifying the area[4] with layered defenses and positioning large reserve forces for a strategic counterattack.[5] On July 4, Hitler launched the attack. Within a week the German forces had exhausted themselves against the in-depth defenses and Hitler canceled the operation.[6] This decision was partially affected by massive invasion of Sicily, launched by the Western Allies on July 9th, 1943. The attack on Italian soil, compounded with previous failures, resulted in the ousting and arrest of Mussolini later that month.[7] Soon after that, the Soviets mounted a massive and successful counter-offensive pushing the Axis troops to the hastily fortified Panther-Wotan line stretched along the Dnieper river. This line was broken, however, during titanic Smolensk and Lower Dnieper Offensives that began on August 1943 and lead to liberation of almost all Ukraine by the end of 1944.

In early September, the Western Allies invaded the Italian mainland, following an Italian armistice with the Allies.[8] When this armistice was made public on September 8, Germany responded by disarming Italian forces, seizing military control of Italian areas,[9] and setting up a series of defensive lines.[10] On September 12, German special forces further rescued Mussolini who then soon established a new client state in German occupied Italy.[11] The Western Allies fought through several lines until reaching the main German defensive line in mid-November.[12]

German operations in the Atlantic also suffered. By May 1943, German submarine losses were so high that the naval campaign was temporarily called to a halt as Allied counter-measures became increasingly effective.[13] In November 1943, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill met with Chiang Kai-shek in Cairo and then with Joseph Stalin in Tehran. At the former conference, the post-war return of Japanese territory was determined and in the latter, it was agreed that the Western Allies would invade Europe in 1944 and that the Soviet Union would declare war on Japan within three months of Germany's defeat.

In January 1944, the Allies launched a series of attacks against the line at Monte Cassino and attempted to outflank it with landings at Anzio, whereas the Soviets expelled the German forces from the Leningrad region[14], ending the longest and most lethal siege in history. The following Soviet offensive was halted on the pre-war Estonian border by the German Army Group North aided by Estonians hoping to re-establish national independence. This delay retarded subsequent Soviet operations in the Baltic Sea region.[15]

By late May the Allied offensives in Italy had succeeded and, at the expense of allowing several German divisions to retreat, on June 4 Rome was captured.[16]

British troops firing a mortar during the Battle of Imphal.

In mainland Asia, however, the Allies weren't so successful. The Japanese launched two major offensives there. The first, started in March, 1944, was against British positions in Assam, India[17] and soon led to Japanese forces besieging Commonwealth positions at Imphal and Kohima;[18] by May however, other Japanese forces were being besieged in Myitkyina by Chinese forces which had invaded Northern Burma in late 1943.[19] The second was in China, with the goal of destroying China's main fighting forces, securing railways between Japanese-held territory, and capturing Allied airfields.[20] By June the Japanese had conquered the province of Henan and begun a renewed attack against Changsha in the Hunan province.[21]

I believe this version better presents the course of the WWII battles in the global scale describing the interconnection between the Allies' efforts and uncovering the roots of the Axis' failures.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 22:34, 2 August 2009 (UTC)

Yes Paul, this is good. Should there be more of an effort at the beginning of the article to explain to Westerners the importance of the EF? I wonder what kind of balance the German wiki has.StevenWT (talk)
Seems OK after a first read. My only criticism would be the linking of confusingly innocuous phrases to important events. "May 1943" going to "Black May" for instance, why not use "Black May, 1943" - same for "launched the attack". Hohum (talk) 22:54, 3 August 2009 (UTC)
Can you provide a version indicating changes (strikethroughs/underlines)?Mosedschurte (talk) 05:55, 4 August 2009 (UTC)
I like it overall. A few minor comments: I don't think the word 'massive' in relation to Operation Husky is appropriate. It was a tiny operation that engaged two german divisions and a larger number of Italian ones; even the Allied force was not large. This word is especially jarring when it comes right after the Kursk section. Also, I am not sure whether Husky was a real reason or merely an excuse for cancelling Zitadelle. I think we should be cautious in making that statement; the Red Army's Orel counteroffensive, the halt of the northern pincers and the slowing, very narrow progress of the southern pincer at Kursk must also be cited. We needen't take a position here, just be cautious about making any strong statement.
I think following the link to the eastern Front can answer questions folks may have about how important it was. At least I hope so ;) Regards, DMorpheus (talk) 18:03, 4 August 2009 (UTC)
To StevenWT. In my opinion, the "War becomes global" and "Allies close in" sections are fully balanced, the "Axis collapse" needs some minor modifications, whereas the "Tide turns" should be modified more significantly. With regards to German WP, the WWII article's structure is completely different there, so it is not so easy to compare the English and German articles. Interestingly, the latter has a separate section devoted to partisan warfare as a part of the course of the war section.
To Hohum and DMorpheus. I would appreciate if you made the changes you are talking about directly in the proposed text. I agree with Hohum that using innocuous phrases or words is not the best option, however, this is a general article's style. I personally agree that this style should be changed, however, to do that, we have to discuss the issue in general and come to some consensus on that account.
I also agree with DMorpheus regarding the word "massive". I used it because it was a really massive invasion in the Mediterranean theatre's scale. However, if you think that the word massive looks odd, I support its removal. With regards to the Hitler's decision, the sources state clearly that Hitler claimed he would cancel Zitadelle in the case of the Allied invasion. I see no reason to remove this statement, because the new text states clearly that "the German forces had exhausted themselves against the in-depth defenses" and it was a primary reason for cancellation of the operation. Husky was just a straw that broke a camel's back, and the proposed text seems to state that clearly enough. However, if you feel you are able to propose a better wording, feel free to do that directly in the text.
To Mosedschurte. It is not easy to do. I can describe the changes in general. Firstly, I moved Burman story to the very end, because chronologically it should be there. I made no modifications neither in that paragraph nor in the para telling about the Pacific. Secondly, I merged Kursk and Husky, added the Battle of Lower Dnieper and added few words about liberation of Ukraine. Thirdly, I removed mentioning of incursions of Romania because chronologically they belong either to the very end of that section, or to the next one. In addition, by their scale and strategic implication these battles hardly deserves mentioning in such an article. Fourthly, I merged Monte-Cassino and Leningrad.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 21:28, 4 August 2009 (UTC)
Paul, I understand having a section on “partisan warfare” in the German Wiki, because it affected the Germans noticeably in the SU and Yugoslavia. From an Anglophone viewpoint, it is of less interest. Were the partisans of Western Europe of any significance?
Is this our criteria for inserting material: “by their scale and strategic implication these battles hardly deserves mentioning?” Or should we have in mind the interest of our likely readers? Perhaps both approaches should be our guides. I see the article does mention El Alamein, and the siege of Malta which were hardly on EF scales.
You mention that "Tide turns" should be modified. How would you do that? More emphasis on the EF?StevenWT (talk)
Re partisan warfare. I didn't propose to include it here. It is just my observation that seems to be interesting.
Re: "should we have in mind the interest of our likely readers?" I agree that El Alamein and Malta are both important and interesting. However, I don't understand why the incursion into Romania was more interesting and important than, for instance, the battle of Crimea (not in the article)?
Re: "Tide turns". Let's finish with this section first.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 21:45, 5 August 2009 (UTC)

Second time: CAN WE GET A COMPARE TEXT VERSION (with strikethroughs and underlines) TO REVIEW PLEASE? So we can see changes to the current section.Mosedschurte (talk) 01:52, 5 August 2009 (UTC)

With no guide as to changes (will wait to see that), I would still suggest the following with:
(1) more use of the active voice (and some grammar cleanups)
(2) more efficient text and a more expedient prose style for the summary article
(3) added Glantz citation to spot with no cite.
(4) added Polley cite to spot with no cite.
(5) added Iriye cite to spot with no cite.
(6) added Weinberg cite to spot with no cite.


Allies gain momentum

Following the Guadalcanal Campaign, in May 1943, American forces began eliminating Japanese forces from the Aleutians,[22] followed by major operations to isolate Rabaul by capturing surrounding islands and to breach the Japanese Central Pacific perimeter at the Gilbert and Marshall Islands.[23] By March 1944, the Allies had completed both of these objectives, and additionally neutralized another major Japanese base in the Caroline Islands. In April, the Allies launched an operation to retake Western New Guinea.[24]

On July 4, 1943, Germany attacked Soviet forces in the region of the Kursk Bulge. Within a week, German forces had exhausted themselves against the Soviets' layered defenses and large reserve forces[25] and Hitler canceled the operation.[26] This decision was partially affected by the Western Allies' invasion of Sicily launched on July 9 which, combined with with previous Italian failures, resulted in the ousting and arrest of Mussolini later that month.[27] A Soviet counter-offensive pushed Axis troops to the hastily fortified Panther-Wotan line along the Dnieper river, which was later broken at Smolensk and by the Lower Dnieper Offensives.[28] By June 1944, the Soviets had largely expelled Axis forces from the Soviet Union and made incursions into Romania.[29]

In early September 1943, the Western Allies invaded the Italian mainland, following an Italian armistice with the Allies.[30] Germany responded by disarming Italian forces, seizing military control of Italian areas,[31] and creating a series of defensive lines.[32] German special forces then rescued Mussolini, who then soon established a new client state in German occupied Italy.[33] The Western Allies fought through several lines until reaching the main German defensive line in mid-November.[34]

By May 1943, as Allied counter-measures became increasingly effective, the resulting sizable German submarine losses forced a temporary halt of the German Atlantic naval campaign .[35] In November 1943, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill met with Chiang Kai-shek in Cairo[36] and then with Joseph Stalin in Tehran.[37] The former conference determined the post-war return of Japanese territory[36] while the latter included agreement that the Western Allies would invade Europe in 1944 and that the Soviet Union would declare war on Japan within three months of Germany's defeat.[37]

In January 1944, the Allies launched a series of attacks in Italy against the line at Monte Cassino and attempted to outflank it with landings at Anzio.[38] Soviet forces expelled German forces from the Leningrad region[39], ending the longest and most lethal siege in history. The German Army Group North and Estonians hoping to re-establish national independence halted the following Soviet offensive at the pre-war Estonian border, retarding subsequent Soviet Baltic Sea region operations.[15]

By late May 1944, Allied Italian offensives succeeded while several German divisions retreated. On June 4 Rome was captured.[40]

British troops firing a mortar during the Battle of Imphal.
In March 1944, the Japanese launched the first of two invasions, an operation against British positions in Assam, India[41], which soon led to Japanese forces besieging Commonwealth positions at Imphal and Kohima.[42] By May, Chinese forces that had invaded Northern Burma in late 1943 then beseiged Japanese forces in Myitkyina.[43] The second Japanses invasion attempted to destroy China's main fighting forces, secure railways between Japanese-held territory and capture Allied airfields.[44] By June, the Japanese had conquered the province of Henan and begun a renewed attack against Changsha in the Hunan province.[45]

The Allies gain momentum. Continued

Re: "Second time: CAN WE GET A COMPARE TEXT VERSION (with strikethroughs and underlines) TO REVIEW PLEASE?" Rather odd request (BTW, the capitalized sentence in bold is a request in a very rude form), taking into account that, as a rule, you don't care about other editors' convenience.
Re: "more efficient text and a more expedient prose style for the summary article." Don't think your changes are a considerable improvement. You removed the explanation of the Soviet and German plans, that were important for understanding of the course of the events. You removed the word "titanic", although such an epithet is absolutely necessary to demonstrate a dramatic difference between the scales of the battles in the East and the West. You mechanically re-inserted the sentence: "By June 1944, the Soviets had largely expelled Axis forces from the Soviet Union and made incursions into Romania.", although it violates a chronological order of the events, and, in addition, is simply incorrect, because before Bagration the German troops weren't expelled from the Soviet territory. The "Soviet forces expelled German forces from the Leningrad region" is simply awkward.
Re: "added Glantz citation to spot with no cite" Although your attempt to introduce citations is appreciated, I wouldn't put such a great emphasis on this activity. According to the rules, only challengeable or disputable statements have to be supported by the sources, and the sources are not obligatory when the facts are obvious, especially in such summary style article.--Paul Siebert (talk) 21:20, 5 August 2009 (UTC)

Re: "Rather odd request (BTW, the capitalized sentence in bold is a request in a very rude form), taking into account that, as a rule, you don't care about other editors' convenience."
Wow. Asking for a simple compare for proposed changes is an "odd request"? With the incredible personal attack that as a rule, you don't care about other editors' convenience, when I actually have provided this countless times? How are we to know what this changes without such a simple comparison?
Re: "Don't think your changes are a considerable improvement."
This appears to be both nondescriptive and wrong for all of the reasons laid out above.
Re: "You removed the explanation of the Soviet and German plans"
There was actually virtually no explanation for the plans in long meandering sentences, just that each were making them in the summer of 1943 and that the Soviets were planning an offensive (which was by the way misspelled). I actually kept in the substantive information that the Soviets had set up layered defenses and large reserve forces.
Re: "The "Soviet forces expelled German forces from the Leningrad region" is simply awkward."
Huh? The prior phrase in your proposed text was nearly exactly the same, except that it was in a long run-on sentence, contained a bizarre "whereas" in front of it and a superfluous article before "German forces," with ", whereas the Soviets expelled the German forces from the Leningrad region".Mosedschurte (talk) 01:46, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "Asking for a simple compare for proposed changes is an "odd request"?" It is really odd for the person who used to edit articles unilaterally and massively with minimal explanation of the changes on the pages.
Re: "This appears to be both nondescriptive and wrong for all of the reasons laid out above." It is descriptive. The rest of my post is an explanation of this claim.
Re: "There was actually virtually no explanation for the plans in long meandering sentences" There was. This meaningless sentence tells us that both sides used the spring 1943 for preparations for titanic battles, and explains what these preparations were consisted in.
Re: "nearly exactly the same" For me the meaning of that phrase is quite obscure, probably, because I am not a native English speaker. Exactly and nearly are mutually exclusive. It this concrete case the new and the old vesrsions are nearly the same, and the difference between them is a wording. In the latter case it is awkward.
I think, we should stop the discussion now and to pass to the next step of the dispute resolution.--Paul Siebert (talk) 16:22, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

Inconsistency between sections

The graph of Deaths by Country is interesting for the high civilian casualty count for China, showing 20 million - approaching that of Russia's - which seemed curious. Looking at the notes on the chart, the statistic for China include the claims of civilian deaths beginning in 1937 during the Second Sino-Japanese War between Japan and China, but this article on WW II states that the war began in 1939. Has that chart been reviewed for consistency with the article's text? I'm not a historian, but the basis of the 20 million claim also seems pretty weak.69.37.68.117 (talk) 08:59, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

Number of Casualties

So now it's over 70 million?? Is the war still going? Are more yet to be killed? The total number is under 60 million. --222.155.50.85 (talk) 10:06, 26 July 2009 (UTC)

Assuming an equal amount of casualties per day for the five and half years of war from Sept 1939 through mid 1945 that would result in an average of almost 34,900 dead a day. Taking into consideration that real hostilities did begin until Britain started getting serious in Dec 1941, the daily total from then on would need to be considerably higher. The American death toll from the 5 weeks of the Battle of the Bulge was 19,000. The Japanese death toll from the 5 weeks of defending Iwo Jima was 20,000. Even the immense Kragujevac massacre would have to happen 4 times daily to account for this number. Taking into account occasional large scale massacres like the 30,000 people killed in an hour and half during the bombing of Rotterdam and even assuming the majority of killed to be civilians, I fail to see how anything even approaching this number is possible. If "ONLY" 6 million Jewish civilians of several European countries were killed with the intentional deportation, transport to extermination camps, or "visits" by Einsatz gruppen, I don't see how 10 times that number could be killed in either accidental collateral damage or without facilities to dispose of the huge amount of bodies. U.S. DoD cites some 405,399 American deaths including non battle deaths. Citation requested. My personal feeling is someone placed this number here with the intent to minimize Jewish casualties. One comment below refers to the "the ridiculous number of 6 Million Jews". Source other wikipedia please. Estimates by Dr.Rudiger Overman are also suspect. The notion that more German POWs died in custody, i.e., 459,475 than the sum of the American death total, somehow does not ring true. The wikipedia articles also list deaths from famine during and after the war in counties that really were not involved in WW2 as we know it. 10-20 million chinese, 3 million east indians, half a million Fillipinoes, Half a million Koreans, Methinks this number is artificailly inflated. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Pikipiki (talkcontribs) 09:04, 15 October 2009 (UTC)
Please familiarize yourself with the World War II casualties article. Your comment seems to be a result of unawareness of the subject. Of course, by using in your analysis such moderate scale battles as the Battle of Iwo Jima one cannot obtain 70 million dead. You seem to completely ignore Eastern Front (World War II), the theatre where both the Axis and the Allies sustained more than a half of all military losses (~10 million Soviets vs ~5 million Axis). To demonstrate my point, it is sufficient to compare the iconic Battle of Iwo Jima or Battle of Guadalcanal with almost unknown Second or Third battles of Kharkov. Both by the amount of troops involved and losses sustained even these battles, almost forgotten by both Western and Russian historians, exceed all battles in Pacific. If you sum up military and civilian losses in China with those in the Eastern Front you get ~60 million, and all the figures you provided do not add much to that. Again, the number is absolutely correct.--Paul Siebert (talk) 17:15, 15 October 2009 (UTC)

Why is there a huge paragraph on tiny Canadian POW camps

Just noticed that buried at the bottom of the "Concentration camps and slave work" section is a huge 2.3kb paragraph on what appears to be four tiny Canadian POW camps holding at most a few thousand people (if even that).

What possible reason could there be for even mentioning these camps in such a summary article -- much less get a huge paragraph -- in an article that doesn't even mention Auschwitz or the specific camps in which over 5 million Soviet POWs died in German captivity (they literally get a sentence fragment)? This appears to have dodged notice for some time at the bottom of this little read section.Mosedschurte (talk) 07:22, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

Actually, the para has been discussed repeatedly here, and as no-one has supported keeping it in the article it's over-due for removal. Nick-D (talk) 09:02, 30 July 2009 (UTC)
Okay. That takes care of that.Mosedschurte (talk) 10:28, 30 July 2009 (UTC)
Support.--Paul Siebert (talk) 10:52, 2 August 2009 (UTC)

Sub-headings

I've just reverted the large number of sub-headings and {{main}} links recently added to the article. These sub-headings made the article difficult to read by breaking it up into lots of small sections (many of which were only short paragraphs) and the {{main}} links were already in the text of the article. The article's structure is the result of extensive discussions, and shouldn't be greatly changed like this without consensus support. Nick-D (talk) 08:31, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

First, I just noticed that you mass reverted a huge number of typo and source fixes and adds to unsourced sentences by me and others, which are in no way significant changes and not under any kind of article policy. Please do no do this again citing article policy, as many of these are simple conventional Wikipedia source and typo fixes. In addition, I've just replaced the subheadings (and "see" tags, not "main" tags) as they made zero substantive change to the article (no text change at all, in fact) and substantially added to the ease with which a large summary article can be navigated. Such as at the similar summary article Cold War or World War I, which employs even deeper level subheadings. I examined the Talk sections and saw no such prior discussions of merely adding more subheadings.
I specifically refrained from making significant article changes, or really anything substantive more than a source here and there, just to avoid issues with the article's policy. For such changes, such as the suggestions to reduce the size of discussions in sections, I started Talk page discussions (including the two above this section). If there is an actual problem with merely adding subheadings (again, zero substantive change to the article), I would of course be more than willing to discuss it, but none has been raised so far, including in the above paragraph and several other editors have edited the article with the subheadings without apparent problems.
Note that I am also adding years and publication dates to several books which lack such information, correcting a few typos and adding a source or two for unsourced sentences if I happen to know of one in which to quickly look.Mosedschurte (talk) 09:44, 30 July 2009 (UTC)
I didn't change the article's text as you accuse me of - I manually removed the sub-headings and duplicated links and left the text unchanged. This is clearly demonstrated by the diffs of my edits. Nick-D (talk) 10:27, 30 July 2009 (UTC)
I have to say, I really don't like the new subheadings. It is immaterial that the "actual text" hasn't been touched, the whole shape and structure of the article has been changed, for the worse in my opinion. The table of contents is now stretched with far too many sub-headings, there are sections that only have one or two sentences in them. While I know that the length of section headers is not codified, it is generally consensus that extremely short sections should be merged. I strongly suggest the subheadings are reverted back (and I will do soon unless consensus says otherwise). Woody (talk) 11:26, 30 July 2009 (UTC)
I also don't like the new headers; very ugly, a backwards step for the article IMO. Skinny87 (talk) 11:59, 30 July 2009 (UTC)
Perhaps there is a middle ground where many of the new subheadings could be bold list elements ";", so that they may aid the reader about the content, but don't break the flow of text as severely, nor pad out the TOC unreasonably? Hohum (talk) 17:34, 30 July 2009 (UTC)
I agree with Hohum about seeking a happy middle ground, but lean toward a more complete TOC as more helpful. We must remember that most readers will not have the knowledge of the subject that we do and may find a detailed TOC of more help. Any one uninterested in the TOC’s details can just skip it.
Also, I appreciate the work Mosedschurte is doing with the refs, which obviously took a great deal of time. His efforts should not be treated so callously. StevenWT (talk) 18:49, 30 July 2009 (UTC)
I am not diminishing the reference work, it is appreciated, but this is a discussion about the section headers and flow of the article. Using ";" does not help the flow of the article and is the same as section headers in this sense. I understand that the vast majority of readers will not know about this topic which in my opinion is why we should have more expansive section headers. I don't think the less informed reader will be more informed if the article has a plethora of section headers. The TOC is not there to provide an overview of the article, it is meant to break up the text into manageable chunks. Woody (talk) 19:10, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

Subheadings reduced & TOC issue fixed

Sounds like the idea of more descriptive headings for easy of article navigation are supported but the number of subheadings may have been too high, with a lengthy TOC particularly disliked by Woody. I reduced the number considerably. Is this better for those that wanted fewer? The idea of descriptive navigation subheadings is fairly common in such high-level summary articles covering large complex topics, such as World War I and Cold War.

Also, the long TOC issue Woody did not like was fixed -- it now looks as it did before (note: I preferred the more detailed TOC). In terms of mechanics, this was done by adding back the original "Course of War" level 2 section heading, meaning the other levels therein were increased while the TOC limit tag was added. Consequently, like with World War I, there are now several specific level 4 subheads available for reader navigation that do not appear in the TOC. Thus, the TOC is back to its old short self.Mosedschurte (talk) 00:08, 31 July 2009 (UTC)

I don't see consensus support for having more sub-headings - 3 editors (including me) oppose this and 3 (including you) support it. The article's previous structure had also been developed through extensive discussions, so that previous consensus may also be relevant here. In my view, the problem is that the new headings break the article up into lots of small two and one para sections which makes it harder to read. Suppressing headings from the TOC means that they cease to have any navigational value and only serve to break the article up. Nick-D (talk) 23:44, 31 July 2009 (UTC)
I agree with Nick; there seems little point in suppressing the TOC when the organisational nature of the subheadings is their main attraction. I also think that breaking the article down in such a detailed way is taking things a step too far for what's basically a broad-brush overview of the war. EyeSerenetalk 09:22, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
To claify, the TOC's brevity is because of a simple added TOC limit tag -- a built in function in Wikipedia used in numerous articles-- to suppress the level 4 (or whatever is desired) headings, as done for the article covering the most similar even to World War II: World War I (and many other articles). We can easily add them back into the TOC (and they were 2 days ago) by taking out the TOC limit tag, but I added it because Woody seemed to not like a longer TOC (note that I actually preferred the more descriptive TOC). Such a descriptive TOC is included in several other summary articles like this one, such as Cold War , Roman Republic, War of 1812, American Revolutionary War, Japanese invasions of Korea (1592–1598) and Wars of Alexander the Great. Virtually all of them have at least somewhat descriptive subheads (whether or not in the TOC) every 2-5 paragraphs or so.
Particularly problematic for this article is that, without subheadings, you get disasters like 8 huge paragraphs in a row titled with someting utterly nondescriptive, like simply "The Tide Turns" (that was the actual "descriptive" title -- it's still the Level 3 title). This seems to be the worst of all worlds, TOC limit or not. Long sections, headings with virtually no indication of events therein that happened literally 12,000 miles away from each during different months and years (and many times with completely different actors) jammed together with the reader having no idea where to get information on any event or area without reading the entire article (or at least some large sections thereof). Nor am I merely picking o the "Tide Turns" as a separate contiguous level 3 heading is also the also non-descriptive "Allies gain momentum" (again, over a page long and stretching across planets, times and actors with no description of text therein). Does anyone truly prefer these page long sections with no descriptive header, or is it more a case of not liking aspects of the descriptive subheadings (frequency, see tags, etc), which incidentally are like those of nearly every other major summary article on similar topics.
The real navigational value isn't just the TOC (though I would prefer a more descriptive and detailed TOC) -- it's being able to quickly view the general content by topic within each of the very long level 3 article section heads (which also contain no descriptive text) by looking at the more descriptive level 4 subheads evrery 2-5 paragraphs or so. Most people who come to the article are simply not going to come remotely close to reading all 9,240 Prose words of it (I would guess less than 2% would do that). This is why many other summary articles describing complex events across wide georgraphical areas, such as Cold War , Roman Republic, War of 1812, American Revolutionary War, Japanese invasions of Korea (1592–1598) and Wars of Alexander the Great and others have descriptive subheadings every 2-5 paragraphs or so. I'm not sure why long 8 paragraph sections under titles such as "The Tide Turns", with no mention of even time, continent of the planet or actors involved (in fact, some of these long sections contained items spanning the entire planet and peoples over long time periods) would be better.Mosedschurte (talk) 14:15, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
Although the article in its previous form wasn't optimal, new headings are inaccurate, and this inaccuracy looks like an attempt of POV pushing. We can see that from very beginning: War breaks out in Europe. Invasions of Poland, the Baltics and Finland - is a direct attempt to equate German attack of Poland (that triggered WWII) with Soviet actions in Baltic. Although Soviet occupation of Baltic countries was illegal, it had no direct relation to WWII outbreak: no countries declared a war on the USSR and the USSR declared a war on noone. With regards to Finland, it also was a separate war (at least, the Finns themselves used to think so).
Splitting the War becomes global onto two sections is not optimal. The section in its present form gave a panoramic picture of development of the events in a global scale - and now it became split onto two local events. The new section's name (Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact broken) is ridiculous - it has no direct relation to the Japanese attack of Pearl Harbour. The section telling about the Battle of Kursk has now the name Soviet advances to the Baltics and Romania, i.e. it creates an impression that Mosedschurte either is too focused on some Eastern European countries or that he simply didn't think enough about optimal subsections' names.
In addition, the present text is written in such a way that it is impossible to split it onto theatre-specific sections, for instance, some Asia-Pacific sections contain Eastern front related sentences and vice versa.
My conclusion is, the old structure should be restored, the new subheadings scheme should be presented on the talk page, and, when the consensus is achieved, introduced into the article.--Paul Siebert (talk) 18:42, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
PS. I disagree with Nick-D's "3 editors (including me) oppose this and 3 (including you) support it". Some of those who support a new sections' structure do that conditionally, or in general, whereas those who oppose the new structure do that more categorically. One way or the another, we have 4 to 3 now...--Paul Siebert (talk) 19:21, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
I restored the old heading structure, and I propose to continue a discussion about a new sub-sections' scheme on the talk page, in other words, I propose to follow the normal bold-revert-discuss procedure.--Paul Siebert (talk) 10:14, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
(1) After your subhead change there is ZERO subhead level 3 changes. They are exactly the same, so this criticism is quite false. As is the ridiculous statement "Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact broken) is ridiculous - it has no direct relation to the Japanese attack of Pearl Harbour. " (talk) which is based upon the falsehood that the Japanese attacks were in this section -- they were, of course, not.
(2) More to the point, and getting back to the primary issue, no reason was provided why descriptive suheads every 2-5 paragraphs or so -- like virtually every other major Wikipedia summary article on broad events such as World War I, Cold War , Roman Republic, War of 1812, American Revolutionary War, Japanese invasions of Korea (1592–1598) and Wars of Alexander the Great -- are not preferable to no descriptive subheads at all for page long sections.
(3) If there is disagreement on the text of some subheads, then that should be a subject for discussion, and clearly NOT a pretext for complete reversion. Thus, they have been restored after the mass unilateral revert.Mosedschurte (talk) 15:28, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
Your understanding of the BRD is funny. In actuality, you did the first step by unilateral introduction of the subheadings into the article. Then Nick-D reverted your changes. That was the step number 2. The third step implies a discussion of the changes proposed by your without making any changes in the article. Instead of that, you undid Nick-D's changes and preferred to focus on the details of your proposal as if your changes had been already accepted in general by majority editors. That is not the case, however.
Before talking about the modifications proposed by you it consensus must be reached about the need of the new sub-headings scheme. Obvoiusly, the new scheme is not supported by majority editors. Therefore, we need to discuss two questions:
1. Is the new subheading scheme needed?
2> If yes, what this scheme should be? (The headings proposed by you are misleading and incorrect.)
I strongly suggest you to refrain from changing the old scheme until the consensus about #1 and #2 is reached.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 17:22, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
Please refrain from WP:Edit Warring and discuss and/or change any subheading text with which you have issues rather than wholesale reverts. With regard to the edit history you raised above, the original subheadings were significantly reduced and the TOC issue raised before was fixed.
More to the point, and getting back to the primary issue, during the last mass revert, no reason was provided why descriptive suheads every 2-5 paragraphs or so -- like virtually every other major Wikipedia summary article on broad events such as World War I, Cold War , Roman Republic, War of 1812, American Revolutionary War, Japanese invasions of Korea (1592–1598) and Wars of Alexander the Great -- are not preferable to no descriptive subheads at all for page long sections. Unlike those other Wikipedia articles on such summary topics across broad regions and times, the version after your revert here had huge over one page long sections literally titled with only such nondescriptive titles as "The Tide Turns" and "The War Goes Global" and no subheadings, providing the reader with zero clue as to what place, actions or actors are involved in any of the sometimes over page long text therein.
Please discuss the issue at hand rather than a mass revert.Mosedschurte (talk) 17:59, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
It is not me who should be blamed in edit warring. Let me remind you again that you already violated a normal BRD procedure by reverting changes made by Nick-D: after he reverted your changes the next step had to be a normal procedure of dispute resolution, not restoring the new subheading structure. The change proposed by you weren't supported by at least three editors: Nick-D, Woody, Skinny87 and EyeSerene. I also consider the idea of subheading to be not optimal (although I believe that some consensus about a new heading structure can be achieved after discussion on the talk page). In other words, the issue #1 has not been resolved yet. However, you claimed that "the idea of more descriptive headings for easy of article navigation are supported" and went to the issue #2. It is absolutely unjustified.
I don't mind to discuss the structure of subheadings on the talk page, however, I insist the old article's structure to remain unchanged until the consensus about the new structure is achieved on the talk page. This article is not your personal sandbox.--Paul Siebert (talk) 20:26, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
PS. More concretely, before we continue the discussion of the new subheading structure, I would like to know that Nick-D, Woody, Skinny87 and EyeSerene support it in principle.--Paul Siebert (talk) 20:35, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
PPS. With regards to other WP articles, WP is not a source for itself, and one WP article may serve just as a non-obligatory guideline for the other. Again, I agree to discuss modifications, however, any changes of the main text should be done only after the consensus is achieved on the talk page.--Paul Siebert (talk) 20:57, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
Firstly, you should both stop reverting, and I mean stop. For the sake of argument we have two versions: Lots of sub-headings, Not many sub-headings. Essentially this is a clash of styles.
Procedurally, before you make large-scale edits (and changing the structure is large) then you need to get a consensus on the talkpage, particularly on a high traffic article that is already subject to existing consensus.
Personally I don't find the plethora of sub-headings particularly helpful, in terms of navigation or in terms of readability. If the user wants an outline of World War II with easily accessible links then they will go to the outline of World War II article. This is meant to summarise the whole war and if it is to do that then we have to accept that the paragraphs are going to be big. They have to be to include all the neccessary information. Regards, Woody (talk) 22:04, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "Firstly, you should both stop reverting". In other words, you propose me to leave the new (unsupported) section's structure to be implemented in the article while we are spending our time in discussions about the need of this modification? This is against the normal BRD...--Paul Siebert (talk) 22:17, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
Yes, in terms of BRD, it was reverted, now we should discuss it. In the end though, I am saying stop arguing over the semantics of how it happened, it is just wikilawyering. What is done is done; that it shouldn't have been done is immaterial, we should now concentrate on coming to a consensus. Anything else is a distraction, Woody (talk) 22:25, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
Agree.--Paul Siebert (talk) 22:29, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "Firstly, you should both stop reverting, and I mean stop. " (Woody)
I have.
Paul Siebert just wholesale reverted again and I'm not getting dragged into WP:Edit Wars here with him under the laughable guise of "BRD". I'm pretty much done attempting to deal with him. If he wants no subheadings at all and others disagree, someone else can deal with him. As stated, this differs from nearly every other Wikipedia article on such broad geographic and timescale issues, such as World War I, Cold War , Roman Republic, War of 1812, American Revolutionary War, Japanese invasions of Korea (1592–1598) and Wars of Alexander the Great -- NONE of which follow Paul Siebert's no subheads model, and all of which contain at least somewhat descriptive subheads every 2-5 pargraphs or so. As it stands now, the version after his latest mass revert here had huge over ONE PAGE LONG SECTIONS literally titled with only such nondescriptive unhelpful titles as "THE TIDE TURNS" and "AXIS ADVANCES" (neither of which are even particularly accurate as well, but that's a different issue) and no subheadings. As someone who actually attempts to improve articles through grammar edits and source provision, writes significant portions of articles and starts new articles rather than just engage in constant POV obstinacy, I'm done dealing with him. As usual, it devolves into a frustrating mass revert with ZERO discussion of the actual issues at hand. His ridiculous charge "this article is not your personal sandbox" (Paul Siebert) in conjunction with the mass reverts and refusal to engage in any discussion on topic could not be more telling.(Mosedschurte (talk) 05:12, 3 August 2009 (UTC)
I made several concrete commentaries regarding the new subheadings, however, they were completely ignored by you. I think the new subheading scheme at least deserves a discussion on the talk page, however, is would be premature to introduce them into the article right now. Note, other editors are much more categorical: they dislike your idea at all.
The charge in dealing with the article as your personal sandbox is not as ridiculous as you try to represent: you tend to made inaccurate, incorrect or premature changes directly in the article, exactly what the others do in their sandboxes.--Paul Siebert (talk) 07:21, 3 August 2009 (UTC)
Given that this article has had a remarkably stable structure for the last year, it seems only reasonable to discuss proposed changes to it before making them and to discuss the changes on the article's talk page if they're made but then reverted. The current edit war over this is pretty unproductive. Nick-D (talk) 08:08, 3 August 2009 (UTC)
(E/C)Mosed, he reverted before I told you both to stop, he reverted to the status quo which is what should happen. But as I stated above, this is all semantics and irrelavent now. Paul has tried to initiate discussion about the content of your edits but you haven't responded, nor did you respond to my concerns. Could you do that please? Thanks, Woody (talk) 08:30, 3 August 2009 (UTC)

Discussion about subheadings

I agree that the reversions need to stop while this is under discussion; had I not commented earlier I would have fully protected the page by now. If doing so would help to take the heat out of the debate, it might be worth requesting. To clarify my position (in response to Paul Siebert's post somewhere above), while I think sub-subheadings can be potentially helpful in concept, I also believe the article's current chronological organisation doesn't lend itself to being broken down in such a detailed way. As it stands, stopping at level 3 subheadings seems to me to be adequate; for meaningful subdivisions of these I think we'd need more content, and this would be getting away from summary style and overlapping with Timeline of World War II. EyeSerenetalk 08:27, 3 August 2009 (UTC)

The reversions have stopped now, I think we need to move on to discussion of the issues. Woody (talk) 08:30, 3 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "nor did you respond to my concerns. Could you do that please? Thanks," (Woody)
I think your concerns were the following:
(1) "The table of contents is now stretched with far too many sub-headings, there are sections that only have one or two sentences in them. . . . The TOC is not there to provide an overview of the article, it is meant to break up the text into manageable chunks. " (Woody)
  • I introduced a TOC limit meaning only sublevel 3 headings were included specifically to address this issue.
(2) "While I know that the length of section headers is not codified, it is generally consensus that extremely short sections should be merged."
  • I merged several subheadings specifically to address this issue. Before Paul Siebert's mass reversion, each section was from 2-5 paragraphs long, which is roughly standard for such articles.
(3) " I understand that the vast majority of readers will not know about this topic which in my opinion is why we should have more expansive section headers. I don't think the less informed reader will be more informed if the article has a plethora of section headers. . . . Personally I don't find the plethora of sub-headings particularly helpful, in terms of navigation or in terms of readability." (Woody)
I have looked at the article from both perspectives and I disagree with your main assumption that the section headers should provide a quick outline of the article: I don't think they should. The article has been through rewrite after rewrite after a lot of discussion that came to the consensus that the chronological format for the history section was best. Fundamentally, you think the section headers should be a narrative, I fundamentally disagree.
You are incorrect when you say "each section was from 2-5 paragraphs long". The phony war section has 1 para, (and phony should be spelt Phoney) Axis pact only has 2 but one of those is only a sentence long, Asian stalemate is 2 short paras so is effectively 1 para when considering the readability. I could go on but I have made my point.
In terms of descriptive section headers, perhaps we can reword them a little bit, make them slightly more decriptive but we have to remember the structure of the article.
Saying that otherstuffexists is a flawed argument, we are discussing this article, what is best for this article, and what works for this article, not others. Regards, Woody (talk) 10:42, 3 August 2009 (UTC)
To clarify, I have never stated or even implied that the subheaders should provide a comprehensive "outline" or "narrative". Rather, I think that they should merely roughly describe in some fashion the text therein, whether by actions, place or some other manner. I would argue that this version with no subheaders and sections over a page long with titles like "The Tide Turns" simply does not do that. Nor does it come even close.
The version before the Paul Siebert's mass revert with descriptive subheaders provided place or action subheaders roughly every 2-5 paragraphs, as do World War I, Cold War , Roman Republic, War of 1812, American Revolutionary War, Japanese invasions of Korea (1592–1598) and Wars of Alexander the Great. This is not an "otherstuffexists" argument, but rather a comparison to how other summary articles on complex large regional issues -- including the most analagous in World War I -- effectively provide reader aids through such subheadings. That a single subheader (Phony War) preceded a one paragraph section could be fixed with simply one merge.
Also, [as demonstrated by example, the idea that the structure of the article is chronological provides no impediment to simply providing subheadings that describe some sort of place or action. Most of the summary articles referenced above are also chronological (or at least roughly so) and provide such helpful subheads easily, as did the prior version before the mass revert.Mosedschurte (talk) 10:59, 3 August 2009 (UTC)

Changes to the article's text

I'm getting a bit concerned about the amount of changes to the article's text which Mosedschurte is making as part of their admirable effort to improve the article's referencing. For instance, edits such as [1], [2], [3] are adding different interpretations of the statements made in the article. These changes have not been discussed here and are not mentioned as part of the edit summaries. Given that single sentences in this article covering Eastern Europe have sparked lengthy discussions here (in which Mosedschurte has been highly involved), these changes should be discussed before being made. Nick-D (talk) 10:52, 3 August 2009 (UTC)

Different interpretations? What different interpretation is made? The only contradiction from prior facts was to change the Versailles Treaty percentage from 14% to 13%. When looking through sources for the prior unsourced sentence, the sources I saw all said 13%, so this change was made, along with the provision of a source for the previously unsourced sentence. It was also mentioned that they lost their colonies -- maybe a 6-7 word clause added to a sentence -- which came fromthe source. How is this a "different interpretation", or in any remote way "significant" to require some sort of detailed discussion on the Talk Page? Another cited the Russian Civil War but mistakenly wikilinked the Russian Revoluton of 1917, so I changed the Wikilink to the correct article, Russian Civil War. Again, how is this simple fix a "different interpretation"? Mosedschurte (talk) 11:01, 3 August 2009 (UTC)
In the first diff that the Soviets invaded 'Polish areas ceded to them under the Molotov-Ribbentrop Act' rather than just 'Poland' (this adds unneeded complexity and seems to imply that Poland was a German-Soviet play thing rather than a nation), in the second a percentage is changed with no explanation and its added that Germany was stripped of her colonies (true, but of limited relevance given that almost all their territory had been occupied during the war and possibly not something which needs to be included here), and in the third its stated that the Soviets 'protested' against China rather than being merely 'displeased' (probably true and better wording, but not explained anywhere). Again, given the very lengthy discussions over relatively minor parts of the article above, it's surprising that you didn't discuss these changes first or note that you'd made them in the edit summaries. Nick-D (talk) 11:07, 3 August 2009 (UTC)
The Soviet displeasure with China was not changed (it is still there), and that they both protested and cut off military aid was in the source. After reading the source page, the sentence was changed from "The Soviet Union was displeased by this course of action and as a result suspended all military aid to China" to "A displeased Soviet Union protested and suspended all military aid to China." How does this in any way change the "interpretation" of the facts therein? The only substantive change was the addition of "protested and" -- literally two words not contradicting any prior language and coming from the source. Two entirely noncontroversial words! Nor is this change remotely "significant."
The Treaty of Versailles property loss percentage was changed from "14%" to "13%" because this is what the sources I reviewed stated and the sentence was, in fact, entirely unsourced before. Thus, when I added a source for the unsourced sentence, this change of 1% (14 to 13) was made in the text. This is precisely what is supposed to be done on Wikipedia, and not any kind of "significant" change that requires some sort of long pre-change consultation. If this insignificant one character change turned out to be incorrect (it is not), simply correct it with a proper source or raise the incorrect nature of it on the Talk page. The source, again for a previously completely unsourced sentence, stated that Germany was stripped of its colonies by the Versailles Treaty so this 5 word clause was added to the sentence: ", stripped Geramny of its colonies," as well by the way as the armed force "size and makeup" was restricted, not just size, which was also from the source. The source also stated that the Soviets invaded their areas under the Pact, and not Poland as a whole -- they did not, for instance, cross into western Poland with German forces. Again, where is the "interpretation" change? Not only is there none, but these tiny few word changes (none even amount to a sentence) from the sources as provided for prior unsourced sentences are entirely noncontroversial to boot. Even while tiny, these small few word changes assure that the article conforms to the actual sources, which is the function of Wikipedia, not the other way around.Mosedschurte (talk) 11:19, 3 August 2009 (UTC)t
I see no problem with this edit [4], although I am not sure if new wording is an improvement.
With regards to [5], the reference to the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact seems redundant in such an article. In addition, the new text is simply incorrect: it is well known that no territories were ceded to anyone under the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact. With regards to the secret protocol, it also didn't mention any concrete annexation explicitly. Obviously, this change is a POV pushing. Other changes seem ok.
The edit [6], [7] also contains a redundand reference to the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact. I would like to know why we need to refer to the pact so many times if the appropriate link is already in the article? Why do we need to mention the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact again in the next sentence in the context of Finland? I see no reason to waste the article's space for such repetitions. In addition, the phrase "Resistance by Finland, which had also been ceded to the Soviet sphere of influence under the Molotiv-Ribbentrop Pact, to similar ultimatums by the Soviet Union in late November preceded ..." is simply incorrect, because the ultimatum was quite different in that case: the USSR just suggested that Finland would lease the territories near Leningrad for naval bases. Other proposed territorial changes would be a territorial exchanges. No unequivocal evidences exist that the USSR's goal was occupation or annexation of Finalnd from very beginning.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 22:20, 3 August 2009 (UTC)
PS. The POV is clearly seen when we look at this fragment:"On September 1, 1939, Adolf Hitler launched his invasion of Poland and World War II broke out. France, Britain, and the countries of the Commonwealth declared war on Germany but provided little military support to Poland other than a small French attack into the Saarland.[46] On September 17, 1939, after signing an armistice with Japan, the Soviets launched their own invasion of Polish areas ceded to them under the Molotov-Ribbentrop Act.[47] " When the article tells about German invasion of Poland, no Molotov-Ribbentrop pact is mentioned. However, MRP is being mentioed every time when the article tells about the Soviet actions.--Paul Siebert (talk) 22:36, 3 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "When the article tells about German invasion of Poland, no Molotov-Ribbentrop pact is mentioned. However, MRP is being mentioed every time when the article tells about the Soviet actions." (Paul Siebert)
You're actually right about not mentioning it re Germany, and probably also the continued mention of it for Poland, Finland, Baltics, Romania -- it doesn't need the repetition . It would be easier, quicker and more efficient to just add a short clause to the one initial sentence mentioning the act to make clear the countries spheres, e.g.,

Change this:This treaty included a secret protocol to split Poland and Eastern Europe into separate spheres of influence.[48]

to this:This treaty included a secret protocol to split Poland and Eastern Europe intoplacing western Poland in the German sphere of influence while placing eastern Poland, Finland, the Baltic States and part of Romania in the Soviet sphere of influences.

This would make unnecessary the following clarifying stricken through text, and also clarify the areas in which each army invaded (now it looks like they all got together throughout Poland):

Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union began moving troops into the Baltic States, which had been ceded to the Soviet sphere of influence under the Molotiv-Ribbentrop Pact, following Soviet ultimatums to those states]].

Resistance by Finland, which had also been ceded to the Soviet sphere of influence under the Molotiv-Ribbentrop Pact, to similar ultimatums by the Soviet Union in late November preceded a Soviet attack of Finland, ending with Finnish concessions.

On September 1, 1939, Adolf Hitler launched his invasion of western Poland and World War II broke out. France, Britain, and the countries of the Commonwealth declared war on Germany but provided little military support to Poland other than a small French attack into the Saarland. On September 17, 1939, after signing an armistice with Japan, the Soviets launched their own invasion of eastern PolandPolish areas ceded to them under the Molotov-Ribbentrop Act.
As a separate matter, maybe we should also clarify the first time the word "Baltic States' is used in the article that this reers to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, especially given that that each of those countries are named individually later in the article. Same thing when the term "Low countries" is used later in the article (make clear this is the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxemborg). I doubt most novice readers know these shorthand geographical terms. Mosedschurte (talk) 05:14, 4 August 2009 (UTC)
Generally agree. However, some problems still remain.
Firstly, the words "invasion of western Poland" create the impression that the initial German's goal was just to occupy a part of Polish territory, not to destroy the Polish state completely. That is incorrect. In addition, this article states that " Germany invaded France and the Low Countries" (not "North-Eastern France"), it tells about "a Soviet attack of Finland" (not an attack of "Eastern Finland"), etc. In addition, could you please tell me how could the German troops from East Prussia invade Western Poland? The "western Poland" should be changed to "Poland".
Secondly, you ignored my comment on the profound difference between the Soviet ultimatum to the Baltic States and the Soviet request to the Finns. I already explained my point so I will not repeat myself here. (If you need a source, here it is: D. W. Spring. 'The Soviet Decision for War against Finland, 30 November 1939'. Soviet Studies, Vol. 38, No. 2 (Apr., 1986), pp. 207-226)
Thirdly, the para proposed by you creates an impression that the USSR, like Germany, declared a war on Poland, so it is unclear for the readers why the USSR remained neutral until 22 June 1941 and why didn't France and the UK declared a war on both Nazi Germany and the USSR.
Fourthly, chronologically, occupation of the Baltic state coincides with the overwhelming victory of Germany over France. Some scholar believe that the decision to occupy Baltic states was affected by the fall of France. Therefore, occupation of Baltic states belongs to the next section. Let's think how to do that.--Paul Siebert (talk) 22:09, 4 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "Firstly, the words "invasion of western Poland" create the impression that the initial German's goal was just to occupy a part of Polish territory, not to destroy the Polish state completely. That is incorrect."
Of course, "western Poland" is more accurate than "Poland" as a whole as that is the actual area they invaded -- with "western" not being capitalized; not a proper noun, but just an adjective -- and it clarifies that the Germans and Soviets didn't invade the entirely of the country together. But to make your point clear, I would have no problem adding the line "to eliminate the Polish state."
Re: "Secondly, you ignored my comment on the profound difference between the Soviet ultimatum to the Baltic States and the Soviet request to the Finns. I already explained my point so I will not repeat myself here"
The word "similar" has been in the article for a long time, but I don't have a problem deleting it.
Re: "Thirdly, the para proposed by you creates an impression that the USSR, like Germany, declared a war on Poland, so it is unclear for the readers why the USSR remained neutral until 22 June 1941 and why didn't France and the UK declared a war on both Nazi Germany and the USSR."
That's incorrect on a number of levels. First I'm not proposing a paragraph, but a few word changes in single sentence clauses in different paragraphs. Second, the Soviet separate Poland-Soviet war declarations with regard to Soviet neutrality has never been clarified in the article and the proposed word changes don't change a thing in this regard.
Re: "Fourthly, chronologically, occupation of the Baltic state coincides with the overwhelming victory of Germany over France. Some scholar believe that the decision to occupy Baltic states was affected by the fall of France. Therefore, occupation of Baltic states belongs to the next section. Let's think how to do that."
Without getting into the "some scholars" quagmire, I wouldn't have a problem to maintain chronological order of moving the last sentence re the June 1940 NKVD/Red Army Baltic invasions into the next section after the Battle of France, with a few modifications.Mosedschurte (talk) 02:06, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "Of course, "western Poland" is more accurate than "Poland"". Don't think so. The examples provided by me demonstrate the opposite.
Re: "have no problem adding the line "to eliminate the Polish state." " Such a text would be awkward and ridiculous. Just compare the text you proposed with the existing text about invasion of France.
Re: "That's incorrect on a number of levels... etc" The only thing I understand from your arguments is that I was wrong because my arguments were incorrect. Could you be a little bit more specific, please?
--Paul Siebert (talk) 21:35, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
This whole refusal to say "western Poland" is confusing. Are you seriously suggesting that German forces went into eastern Poland with the Soviets? Don't we (and usually you on every other Wikipedia article) want to make very clear that that DID NOT happen? And isn't that shorthand much easier to say than "Polish areas ceded to them under the Molotov-Ribbentrop Act"? If you also want to make clear that Germany wanted "to eliminate the Polish state", then why not just add those five words? After raising this issue yourself, bizarrely concluding that these five words are "awkward" and "ridiculous" is frankly so laughable, it's beyond seriously addressing. You yourself earlier phrased it as "destroy the Polish state completely".
And the article current simply does not address Soviet-Polish war declarations. I'm not stating that it could not, just pointing this out and that the text does nothing to change that.Mosedschurte (talk) 02:14, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
The article tells that "On June 22, 1941, Germany, along with other European Axis members and Finland, invaded the Soviet Union in Operation Barbarossa." (Not Western Soviet Union) It also states that "Germany invaded France and the Low Countries."(Not Northern France) It states that "Soviet attacked Finland" (Not Eastern Finland). So far, I got no reasonable explanation why the word "western" is needed in that concrete case.
With regards to "bizzare", try to compare "Germany invaded France and the Low Countries." with "On September 1, 1939, Adolf Hitler launched his invasion of Poland, to destroy the Polish state completely, and World War II broke out." For me, as a non-native English speaker, the last sentence is a pure example of hardly readable awkward prose.--Paul Siebert (talk) 16:45, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

Changes to the article's text-2

The sentence "Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union began moving troops into the Baltic States, which had been ceded to the Soviet sphere of influence under the Molotiv-Ribbentrop Pact, following Soviet ultimatums to those states]]." creates an impression that the USSR invaded the Baltic states almost immediately after invasion of Poland, and that that was an armed invasion. Since it was obviously not the case, I propose to change the sentence as follows:

"Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union forced the Baltic countries to allow the USSR to station troops on their soil.[49]"

Since the pressure on Finland was quite different (the USSR requested for territorial concessions and for a lease of Hanko peninsular for a naval base) I propose to change a wording as follows:

"The USSR also made territorial demands against Finland[50] that leaded to the armed conflict, ending with Finnish concessions."

The next sentence pays a great attention to the UK's and France's motives, whereas no explanation for the Soviet actions are provided (the USSR's motives were to protect Leningrad in the case of the war with Germany). It is necessary to either provide such explanations in all cases or to remove them completely. In the absence of a consensus on that account Ii propose to remove such explanations for a while.

The last sentence of the paragraph breaks the chronological order of the events (occupation of Baltic States was preceded by invasion of France), so I propose to move it to the next section.

Summarizing all said above, I propose to change the para as follows:

"Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union forced the Baltic countries to allow the USSR to station troops on their soil.[51] The USSR also made territorial demands against Finland[52] that leaded to the armed conflict, ending with Finnish concessions.[53] France and the United Kingdom responded to the Soviet invasion by supporting its expulsion from the League of Nations.[54] Though China had the authority to veto such an action, it was unwilling to alienate itself from either the Western powers or the Soviet Union and instead abstained.[55] A displeased Soviet Union protested and suspended all military aid to China.[55]"
--Paul Siebert (talk) 10:56, 10 August 2009 (UTC)

That seems OK, though I have some changes:
Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union forced the Baltic countries to allow it to station troops on their soil.[56] Finland rejected Soviet territorial territorial demands, and was invaded in November 1939.[57] The resulting conflict ended in March 1940 with Finnish concessions.[58]
There doesn't seem to be any need to devote time to goings on regarding the League of Nations in 1940 given that it was basically defunct and I find it hard to believe that Soviet aid to the Chinese Government was a big deal (though I'm happy to be proven wrong). Nick-D (talk) 11:18, 10 August 2009 (UTC)
I'm assuming these would be along with this prior discussed change (see above) to avoid repetitive clarifications of each's territories in the later sentences:

Changes above discussed to change this:This treaty included a secret protocol to split Poland and Eastern Europe into separate spheres of influence.[59]

to this:This treaty included a secret protocol to split Poland and Eastern Europe intoplacing western Poland in the German sphere of influence while placing eastern Poland, Finland, the Baltic States and part of Romania in the Soviet sphere of influences.

Compare of proposed changes:

It is: Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union began moving troops into the Baltic States, which had been ceded to the Soviet sphere of influence under the Molotiv-Ribbentrop Pact, following Soviet ultimatums to those states]].[60][54] Resistance by Finland, which had also been ceded to the Soviet sphere of influence under the Molotiv-Ribbentrop Pact, to similar ultimatums by the Soviet Union in late November preceded a Soviet attack of Finland, ending with Finnish concessions.[61] France and the United Kingdom, treating the Soviet attack on Finland as tantamount to entering the war on the side of the Germans, responded to the Soviet invasion by supporting its expulsion from the League of Nations.[54] Though China had the authority to veto such an action, it was unwilling to alienate itself from either the Western powers or the Soviet Union and instead abstained.[55] A displeased Soviet Union protested and suspended all military aid to China.[55] By June 1940, the Soviet Armed Forces completed the occupation of the Baltic States.[60]

Paul Siebert suggests this:Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union moving troops into the Baltic States, which had been ceded to the Soviet sphere of influence under the Molotiv-Ribbentrop Pact, following Soviet ultimatums to those statesforced the Baltic countries to allow the USSR to station troops on their soil.[62] Resistance by Finalnd, which had also been ceded to the Soviet sphere of influence under the Molotiv-Ribbentrop Pact, to similar ultimatums by the Soviet Union in late November preceded a The USSR also made territorial demands against Finland[63] that leaded to the armed conflict, ending with Finnish concessions.[64] France and the United Kingdom, treating the Soviet attack on Finland as tantamount to entering the war on the side of the Germans, responded to the Soviet invasion by supporting its expulsion from the League of Nations.[54] Though China had the authority to veto such an action, it was unwilling to alienate itself from either the Western powers or the Soviet Union and instead abstained.[55] A displeased Soviet Union protested and suspended all military aid to China.[55]'
I would suggest the following, keeping some original language, incorporating some of Nick's changes, reducing the then testy China/League of Nations/Military Aid issue, correcting grammar, etc.:

Changes to current (with earlier clarifications discussed above):: Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union began moving troops into the Baltic States, which had been ceded to the Soviet sphere of influence under the Molotiv-Ribbentrop Pact, following Soviet ultimatums to those states]] forced the Baltic states to allow Soviet troops to move into their countries.[65] Resistance by Finland ,which had also been ceded to the Soviet sphere of influence under the Molotiv-Ribbentrop Pact, to similar ultimatums by the Soviet Union in late November preceded a Soviet attack of Finlandrejected Soviet territorial territorial demands and was invaded by the Soviet Union in November 1939.[66][67] The resulting conflict ended in March 1940 with Finnish concessions.[68] France and the United Kingdom treating>ed theat Soviet attack on Finland as tantamount to entering the war on the side of the Germans, responded to the Soviet invasion by and supportinged> expulsion of the Soviet Union from the League of Nations.[54] Though China had the authority to veto such an action, it was unwilling to alienate itself from either the Western powers or the Soviet Union and instead abstained from vetoing the expulsion,[55] <u<resulting in a A displeased Soviet Union protested and suspendedsion of all military aid to China.[55]

Thus, the suggested paragraph (with earlier clarifications discussed above):Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union forced the Baltic states to allow Soviet troops to move into their countries.[69] Finland rejected Soviet territorial territorial demands and was invaded by the Soviet Union in November 1939.[70][71] The resulting conflict ended in March 1940 with Finnish concessions.[72] France and the United Kingdom treated that attack as tantamount to entering the war on the side of the Germans and supported expulsion of the Soviet Union from the League of Nations.[54] China abstained from vetoing the expulsion,[55] resulting in a Soviet suspension of all military aid to China.[55]
</blockqutoe>
Re the movement of the Soviet invasion of the Baltic sentence to the invasion of France area (as discussed above), I would suggest a change as well:

Current sentence on Soviet invasion of the Baltics suggested to be moved to the next section: By June 1940, the Soviet Armed Forces completed the occupation of the Baltic States.[60]

Suggested change: Shortly after the invasion of France, Soviet forces invaded the Baltic States.[60]
I would put it at the end of the first paragraph detailing the French invasion in the next section.Mosedschurte (talk) 18:43, 10 August 2009 (UTC)
Starting from the end, the sentence: "Shortly after the invasion of France, Soviet forces invaded the Baltic States.[60]" creates an impression that the USSR invaded both France and the Baltic states. As a native English speaker, you should be more accurate. To fix this awkward fragment and to show the casual linkage between the fall of France and occupation of Baltic states, I suggest the following version (the whole para is shown below with suggested text italicized):
On that same day, Germany invaded France and the Low Countries.[73] The Netherlands and Belgium were overrun using blitzkrieg tactics in a few weeks.[74] The French fortified Maginot Line was circumvented by a flanking movement through the thickly wooded Ardennes region,[73] mistakenly perceived by French planners as an impenetrable natural barrier against armored vehicles.[75] British troops were forced to evacuate the continent at Dunkirk, abandoning their heavy equipment by the end of the month. On June 10, Italy invaded, declaring war on both France and the United Kingdom;[76] twelve days later France surrendered and was soon divided into German and Italian occupation zones,[77] and an unoccupied rump state under the Vichy Regime. Alarmed, the USSR decided to strengthen its control of the Baltic states and Bessarabia and fully occupied them in mid June.[78] On July 14, the British attacked the French fleet in Algeria to prevent its possible seizure by Germany.[79]
With regards to the first fragment, I see no reason to re-insert the British and French positions, the fact that they initiated expulsion of the USSR from the League is quite sufficient. The second sentence is also not good, because it creates a wrong impression: the USSR forced the Baltic states to sign mutual assistance pacts, however the USSR mado no territorial demands against them. By contrast, by the moment Winter war started the USSR didn't insist on a mutual assistance pact with Finland, however, it made concrete territorial demands. Your version mix this two things together, although does it implicitly. It is quite necessary to separate occupation of the Baltic states and the Winter war. I propose the following version:
Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union forced the Baltic states to allow Soviet troops to move into their countries.[80] The Soviet territorial demands against Finland[81] leaded to the armed conflict, ending with Finnish concessions.[82] France and the United Kingdom responded to the Soviet invasion by supporting its expulsion from the League of Nations.[54] China abstained from vetoing the expulsion,[55] resulting in a Soviet suspension of all military aid to China.[55]
--Paul Siebert (talk) 20:06, 10 August 2009 (UTC)


Changes to the article's text-3

Finland's refusal of Soviet territorial ultimatum didn't "leaded (sic) to armed conflict". As the sources make extremely clear, the Soviet Union flat out attempted an invasion of Finnish territory. This is not disputed history and the suggested change is somewhat bizarre. Nor is any reason given to delete the currently provided grounds in the article that the UK/France gave for expelling the Soviets (a future ally) from the League, which caused the Chinese/Soviet issues,. I have no problem cutting that section down, but eliminating that simple clause is rather odd. With some revisions incorporated from your text, already incorporating many of Nick-D's changes, putting the sentences in chron order, grammar, etc., it would at a minimum be:


Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union forced the Baltic states to allow Soviet troops to move into their countries.[83] After its Finnish territorial demands were rejected, the Soviet Union invaded Finland in November 1939.[84][85], which France and the United Kingdom treated as tantamount to entering the war on the side of the Germans and supported expulsion of the Soviet Union from the League of Nations.[54] China abstained from vetoing the expulsion,[55] resulting in a Soviet suspension of all military aid to China.[55] The Soviet-Finnish conflict ended in March 1940 with Finnish concessions.[86]
Re: "Shortly after the invasion of France, Soviet forces invaded the Baltic States" creates an impression that the USSR invaded both France and the Baltic states.

Wow. The article spends the entire paragraph describing Germany and Italy's invasion of France, not the Soviets. It couldn't be more clear if you drew a map. "Shortly after [an event]," does not mean that a later sentence subject was in any way related to that event. Just that the sentence's action happened after that event. Should one really want to make it clear (and repetitive), simply add the words "German and Italian" in front of invasion, though this is entirely unnecessary.

Re the proposed change, let me get this straight: you are seriously suggesting describing the June Soviet invasion of the Baltic States, full national incorporation, attrocities, etc. (which we needn't go into) as [After the invasion of France], "Alarmed, the USSR decided to strengthen its control of the Baltic states and Bessarabia and fully occupied them in mid June" Perhaps we can post that proposal on the Occupation of the Baltic States and see what the editors who work on this issue think of that description. Actually, that's not a bad idea for this entire section if it continues to go in this direction.Mosedschurte (talk) 17:50, 11 August 2009 (UTC)

Re: "Finland's refusal of Soviet territorial ultimatum didn't "leaded (sic) to armed conflict". ". A very interesting statement, although unsupported by sources. The source provided by me (DW Spring) states the following:
"The negotiations with Paasikivi and Tanner in Moscow emphasized the commitment of Stalin still to a peaceful solution. He had good reason to expect this. The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact had excluded the possibility that the Finns would remain unresponsive to Soviet strategic requirements in expectation of German support, which had been the fear for much of the 1930s. And the evidence of Hitler's continued aggression seemed to make incontrovertible Soviet claims that they needed to improve their security by controlling access into the Gulf of Finland in the face of evident future dangers. In these circumstances the Soviet demands were, as Upton notes in his excellent study of the Winter War, 'both rational and moderate'.4 The Soviet expectation that a settlement could be reached and was desirable was shown by the tone of the negotiations, which were generally friendly and not threatening. Stalin and Molotov attempted to convince by their arguments rather than by the weight of Soviet power. The priority given to a negotiated solution was shown by the involvement of Stalin himself in most of the discussions, and by a significant flexibility in the Soviet negotiating position, even though there remained the essential points of a base at the entrance to the Gulf of Finland and of the removal of the frontier on the Karelian isthmus further away from Leningrad. Stalin did not insist on a mutual assistance treaty which had been imposed on the Baltic states. He sought to find ways by which the proposal might be made more acceptable to the Finnish parliament and to give assurances on the evacuation of a base at Hanko at the conclusion of the war between Germany, Britain and France. After Molotov had seemed to bring the discussions to a close on 3 November with the statement that as there had been no agreement 'the matter will have to be handed over to the military', Stalin still showed a readiness to compromise. He returned to the discussions on 4 November and when the Finns firmly resisted any arrangement on Hanko, he dropped the idea and proposed an agreement for a base on any of the islands off the Hanko peninsula. Even when this was rejected by the Finns in the final session on 9 November, Stalin still sought to find another island in the vicinity which the Finns would be prepared to concede by lease or sale, but without success. Stalin's commitment to a negotiated settlement, for whatever reasons, right up to 9 November at least, thus maintaining a particular image of Soviet policy, emphasises the importance of the decision to use military force against Finland, made between that date and 30 November."
In other words, the source states clearly that it was the naval base issue that affected Stalin's decision to attack Finland.
Re: "Should one really want to make it clear (and repetitive), simply add the words "German and Italian" in front of invasion," Well, then you are probably right. However, the text proposed by you doesn't explain the motives of the Soviet invasions. By contrast, my version does that. "Alarmed, the USSR decided to strengthen its control of the Baltic states and Bessarabia and fully occupied them in mid June" is a summary of a whole paragraph in the G Robetrs' book (the full citation and the page number can be found in the text). A simple comparison of my sentence with the book's para clearly demonstrates that the proposed text is fully supported by the source cited. With regards to some Eastern European editors, let me remind you WP must reflect a global POV. In addition, to my opinion, majority editors from Baltic countries are quite adequate, and their involvement in this discussion would be very helpful.
Re: "Nor is any reason given to delete the currently provided grounds in the article that the UK/France gave for expelling the Soviets (a future ally) from the League, which caused the Chinese/Soviet issues." Once again, if we decided to provide a ground for some decisions, such an approach should be universal. In that concrete case, taking into account that expulsion of the USSR from the League was not too important event, it is not a good idea to devote so much space to Franco-British motives explaining that relatively unimportant action.
To make myself clear enough I repeat this my point: since no ground is provided in the article for even much more important steps of one or another country, it is ridiculous to describe the ground for the expulsion of the USSR from the League in details.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 18:44, 11 August 2009 (UTC)


Are you seriously suggesting there is anything remotely considering a consensus of historians for summary facts in an article like this that the Soviets invaded the Baltics because they were "alarmed" at the French invasion. Good God man, and I didn't even broach the topic, but many sources state that the Soviets used the German invasion as as cover to invade the Baltics, not out of "alarm", such as

Davies, page 84: The Baltic States, June 1940. At the other end of Europe, Stalin was not sleeping. With the world's attention focused on France, he [Stalin] was presented with a golden opportunity for overturning one of the most irritating aspects of the Versailles settlement. . . .

Wettig, page 20: "In mid·June 1940, when international attention was focused on the breathtaking German advance into France, the second phase of annexation was initiated. Soviet NKVD troops raided border posts of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania."

O'Connor (The History of the Baltic States, page 115) - "Then in the spring of 1940, while the world's attention wa riveted on Hitler's triumphs in Denmark, Norway and France, Moscow began to ratchet up the pressure on its western neighbors. In late May and early June, the Kremlin acuased the government of all three Baltic states of unfriendliness and of conspiring together against the USSR . . . As in Lithuania, Soviet occupation of Latvia and Estonia immediately followed. The Soviet justification for the occupation writtenin history books published inthe postwar period, ingnored Sovet beligerancy in these events, instead emphasizing the "class struggle"
</blockqoute>
I have not -- and am not -- suggesting that we cite these widely cited reasons either. But I certainly wouldn't just go with "alarmed" and leave it at that. Are you suggesting we post a topic on the experts on the sources addressing the topic at Occupation of the Baltic States to see what they say on the topic, because we can certainly do that.
And again, are you seriously arguing that the Soviet Union did not attempt to invade Finland -- just vague "leaded (sic) to armed conflict" -- after Finland refused the Soviets' territorial demands? Your source certainly didn't say that, and I have no idea why you provided this long paragraph further supporting the point. Please tell me I'm not going to have to get 20 sources to disprove another WP:Fringe theory as I had to with your prior fringe Litvinov firing theory. I will, of course, do so if necessary, for it is time consuming, and frankly, a waste of time.Mosedschurte (talk) 19:25, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
Firstly, Davies, Wettig and O'Connor do not represent majority views. In addition, my version does not contradict to their statements. The fact that the Soviet Union was alarmed with German dominance in continental Europe is not questioned by these scholars. Can anybody provide a proof that the USSR was not alarmed in 1940, and can anybody present an evidence that the USSR did no preparations for a war against Nazi Germany in 1940? Once again, the quotes provided by you do not refute my version, but complement it. Roberts states that German dominance in continental Europe became a major Stalin's concern (and subsequent events substantiated that), whereas Davies demonstrated that the events in west gave Stalin a good opportunity to improve his strategic positions in Eastern Europe. Again, Robert and Davis complement one another: the former explains motives whereas describes opportunities. Therefore, I see no reason to modify my version.
Secondly, you claimed that I push fringe theories. This is a personal attack, and the only excuse for such an action is providing a solid ground for that statement. I expect you to provide such a proof, although I don't believe that would be easy, because you yourself use the Roberts' book extensively as a source, thereby acknowledging reliability of that book as a source for WP.
With regards to the Litvinov's issue, let me remind you that I presented three articles from academic journals that dissect the issue in details, whereas you provided ~30 citations from books that devoted not more than one phrase to that question. According to WP policy, "the greater the degree of scrutiny involved in checking facts, analyzing legal issues, and scrutinizing the evidence and arguments of a particular work, the more reliable the source is", therefore, my sources are more reliable than yours, therefore I have more ground to blame you in WP:Fringe. You didn't proved I was wrong in that case, I just postponed the work on that issue, because I need to concentrate on more important things.
In future, please refrain from such accusations, because my patience can be exhausted.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 20:26, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "And again, are you seriously arguing that the Soviet Union did not attempt to invade Finland -- just vague "leaded (sic) to armed conflict" -- after Finland refused the Soviets' territorial demands?" I didn't understand your question. Obviously, the USSR did attempted to invade Finland, and it even tried to install pseudo-independent puppet regime there (in case if the invasion was successful). However, there is no evidences that that were initial Soviet intentions. However, the historical fact is that the Soviet demanded to lease Hanko or some island in the Gulf of Finland for a naval base, and only after that demands were rejected they decided to conquer Finland completely (probably, because the bases leased peacefully are much more safe than the bases taken by force, but that are just my speculations). Again, nobody knows if the conquest of Finland was their initial intention, or initially they really needed just the bases in the gulf.--Paul Siebert (talk) 20:37, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "Can anybody provide a proof that the USSR was not alarmed in 1940, and can anybody present an evidence that the USSR did no preparations for a war against Nazi Germany in 1940?"
Good God, the sources all gave a different motivation for invading the Baltics than "alarm" at the French invasion, as your proposed text claimed as the motivation. Do I really need to retrieve yet other quotes from major sources for the many other potential motivations for the Baltic invasions, because believe me, most of them aren't "alarm" at the invasion hundreds of miles west. The point being that attempting to shoe horn this sole motivation into the sentence was, to be kind, a horrible idea.
Re: "I didn't understand your question. Obviously, the USSR did attempted to invade Finland"
Then just say "invade" instead of the more vague and grammatically incorrect (I've tried to point this out several times) "leaded to armed conflict".Mosedschurte (talk) 23:16, 13 August 2009 (UTC)
If you care about accuracy why did you proposed to replace absolutely correct statement "Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union forced the Baltic countries to allow it to station troops on their soil.[87]" with vague and ambiguous "Following the invasion of Poland, the Soviet Union forced the Baltic states to allow Soviet troops to move into their countries.[88]"?
With regards to Finland, it is necessary to reflect the following:
(i) By contrast to the Baltic states (Estonia, latvia and lithuania) the USSR did made territorial demands against Finland (in actuality, they proposed territorial exchange, although the Finnish territories were much more valuable);
(ii)The Winter war started when the Finns rejected these demands;
(iii)The Winter war was not a border conflict but attempted full scale invasion (in that sense I fully agree with you).
If you proposed a formula that correctly reflects all these three points, I'll fully support its incorporation into the article.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 02:31, 14 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "Good God, the sources all gave a different motivation for invading the Baltics...". In actuality, sources generally give two motivations: (i) the Soviets invaded the Baltics because the situation was favorable, and (ii) the Soviets were alarmed with Hitler's dominance. Some sources, like Roberts, focus on (ii), whereas Baltic nationalistic sources, and Cold war type propaganda books used to tell only about (i). In my opinion, the most balanced POV is a combination of (i) and (ii). A good example is the Valdis O. Lumans' book "Latvia in World War II. Volume 11 of World War II--the global, human, and ethical dimension" (Fordham Univ Press, 2006, ISBN 0823226271, 9780823226276). This Latvian writer presents both motives (page 89): (i) "With Hitler's Blitzkrieg racing through the Low Countries and France in May 1940 ..., Stalin decided to exploit Hitler's preoccupation with that front to complete the Soviet seizure of the Baltic states". In the next para he continues (ii) "Hitler's involvement with France was one consideration for moving against the Baltic States when Stalin did, but anxiety might have been another. (...) as Germany's victory seemed certain, he (Stalin) realized that the Soviet Union might have to face Germany alone, especially if England made peace with Hitler."
I wait you to propose the text that reflects both these motives, otherwise I'll do that in close future by myself.--Paul Siebert (talk) 15:04, 14 August 2009 (UTC)

Finland and Winter War

Another Winter War related source appears to support my above speculations ("probably, because the bases leased peacefully are much more safe than the bases taken by force, but that are just my speculations"). Kalevi J. Holsti in his article: Strategy and Techniques of Influence in Soviet-Finnish Relations (The Western Political Quarterly, Vol. 17, No. 1 (Mar., 1964), pp. 63-82) writes:

"The Soviet military demands on Finland in 1939 were motivated, I believe, by a desire to secure the safety of Leningrad against a Nazi attack through Finland, and the attempt to communize Finland by establishing the puppet Kuusinen regime during the Winter War was only a means to the achievement of this military objective. These demands, which included the fortification of Finnish islands in the Gulf of Finland by Russian military officials, the leasing of naval bases on the Finnish southern coast, and other territorial adjustments, were typical manifestations of traditional Russian perceptions of military requirements in the Baltic area."

Note, I am not cherry picking citations that support my point, I just look in historical journals (not in popular books) trying to find anything about Winter War. BTW, the previous source (Spring) was supported by Timo Vihavainen. In his article The Soviet Decision for War against Finland, November 1939: A Comment (Soviet Studies, Vol. 39, No. 2 (Apr., 1987), pp. 314-317) he writes:

"D. W. Spring (Soviet Studies, XXXVIII No. 2 (April 1986) pp. 207-26) has written an interesting article about the possible factors which influenced the Soviet decision to attack Finland on 30 November 1939. His central thesis, which holds that the attack was not a result of Stalin's commitment to the revolutionary cause, but of more complicated circumstances (p. 209), is quite convincing."

(Interestingly, both Vihavainen and Holsti seem to be Finnish, judging by their last and first names).
--Paul Siebert (talk) 19:44, 12 August 2009 (UTC)


Re: "Another Winter War related source appears to support my above speculations "
What speculations? Is this going to be another one of these situations where you write long sections of text with numerous paragraphs on points about which no one disputes? This really isn't the place for long off-topic military discussions, but there are bulletin boards for that.

Changes to the article's text-4

Re:""?In actuality, sources generally give two motivations: (i) the Soviets invaded the Baltics because the situation was favorable, and (ii) the Soviets were alarmed with Hitler's dominance."
There are way more than two. In one of the sources cited above, they gave the reason that Stalin viewed these territories as part of what should be greater Russia. As yet another literally randomly picked example (there are so many), Weinberg, probably the most cited source in this article, states, "Once Germany and the Western Powers were fully engaged in major hostilities in Western Europe, the Soviet Union could resume its advance in the Baltic and Balkans without concern over either of the warring sides being able to interfere." Nowhere given there is that this invasion was because of "alarm" at the western European engagements.
I'm not sure how any of this leads to the conclusion that we would ever state in an article like this that the Soviets invaded and incorporated the Baltic States because of any sort of "alarm" at the German invasion of France.Mosedschurte (talk) 00:23, 17 August 2009 (UTC)
Don't be hairsplitter. Obviously, when I wrote "the Soviets invaded the Baltics because the situation was favorable", I meant "the Soviets invaded the Baltics because the situation was favorable for regaining the previous territorial losses". Weinberg tells exactly the same.
With regards to Nowhere given there is that this invasion was because of "alarm", none of these sources state the USSR was not alarmed, or concerned (if you more like that word). Therefore, they cannot serve as arguments against incorporation of the second reason for the Soviet occupations.
Some of your recent wording is superfluous: "launched its own invasion" is too wordy. "Invaded" is better. In addition, I prefer Nick-D's wording: "to allow it to station troops on their soil", because it more precisely reflects the situation: the troops were stationed in some concrete places of these countries, the contacts between Soviet military and local population were minimal, and the Soviets (at the beginning) didn't interfere into domestic affairs. Don't change wording without providing satisfactory arguments.--Paul Siebert (talk) 01:37, 17 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: "Some of your recent wording is superfluous: "launched its own invasion" is too wordy. . . . Don't change wording without providing satisfactory arguments."

That this is "my wording" is yet another fabrication. As just one example, I grabbed the article from one year ago, and there it is, before I had ever edited it even once: "the Soviets launched their own invasion of Poland." In fact, check the identity of the last editor in this version one year old containing the text "launched their own invasion", to differentiate it from the German invasion in the other side of the country rather than being "superfluous".

As you have been told many times, please refrain from false accusations, by implication or otherwise.

I will not change "stationed", but he idea that your change of the old text to "on their soil" is more accurate than "in their countries" boggles the mind. Your command with regard to your own added text to "Don't change wording without providing satisfactory arguments" is, besides being entirely beyond your power as a Wikipedia editor, somewhat humorous given that this is changing your own change to the text.

Re: "Don't be hairsplitter."

Honestly, this is so silly, no response is necessary. I pointed out sources (there are probably hundreds more) not supporting the idea that the Soviets invaded the Baltics because of "alarm" as you suggested inserting into the article (I won't even belabor the humorous POV push here), and that many give several other motivations. Most notably, that they invaded and incorporated the Baltics while attentions were focused westward on Germany's west European invasions, which is the explanation in countless sources.

There really isn't that much more to say on the issue.Mosedschurte (talk) 01:39, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

Re: "That this is "my wording" is yet another fabrication." You re-introduced it => you supported it => it is your wording. I see no fabrication there,, just pure logics.
Re: "I will not change "stationed", but he idea that your change of the old text to "on their soil"" My major objection was a replacement of "stationed" with "moved". Since your English is definitely better than mine I fully rely on your opinion: if your think that "in their countries" sounds better than "on their soil", feel free to change it. In general, I never objected, and I will fully support in future all stylistic corrections of the texts proposed by me if the major idea remains unaltered.
Re: "Honestly, this is so silly". My remark relates to your another statement, and I believe I made myself clear enough. With regards to "alarmed Soviet Union", again, if some sources cite only a reason (i), that doesn't mean that this reason is the sole one. None of these sources tell the opposite, namely, that the reason (ii) was false. I concede, some fringe theories existed that state that the USSR's major goal during 1939-1941 was cooperation with Germany, but these sources are the minority views. The USSR did massive preparations for war with Germany, and occupation of Baltic countries and Bessarabia was a part of these preparations. Of course, the USSR used a good opportunity to seize a control over these lands and to regain previous territorial losses, however, that doesn't contradict to the above statement.
And, finally, I propose to stop the quarrel that just distracts both you and me from productive work. I concede that our opposition has already led to considerable improvement of the "European occupations and agreements" and "War breaks out" sections: our points of view are quite opposite and the balance between them warrants real neutrality. Your and my points of view will never coincide, however, I believe, we could make our opposition more civil and fruitful.
I believe we can stop at that point and pass to the next section.
Agree?
Regards,
--Paul Siebert (talk) 02:52, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

In addition, would you please stop unilaterally deleting the language differentiating the Soviet and German invasions by deleting the language "the Soviets launched their own invasion", which has been in the article for over a year]. If you'd like to discuss changing it to something like "the Soviets launched a separate invasion", I am fine with such a discussion, but deleting the clarification altogether is neither accurate (I won't even get into that again) nor acceptable. Mosedschurte (talk) 03:13, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

Well, I see you'd answered my question below. The language differentiation is needed because these invasions were different. Whereas the German invasion triggered WWII, the Soviet invasion triggered nothing, no war was declared on any one. Whereas the German invasion was a full scale war, no full scale hostilities took place during Soviet invasion. The USSR remained neutral, whereas Germany became involved in WWII. You yourself pointed out, and did it correctly, that the major rift between the USSR and Western Allies took place not after Soviet invasion of Poland, but later, as a result of Winter War. Therefore, I think it is fully correct to use different languages when we describe these two invasions. And, I believe, "Germany attacked Poland" vs "Soviets invaded Eastern Poland" show this difference adequately.--Paul Siebert (talk) 03:34, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

Big sections on War time occupation and Advances in technology and warfare

Interesting issues to be sure (especially for me), but what possible reason is there to have a multiparagraph MASSIVE 9.9Kb section on Advances in Technology and Warfare. Same for the large multiparagraph 3.2KB section on War Time Occupation War Time Occupation.

This is a summary article which barely devotes single sentences to central key events such as the Battle of Midway and the key failure of Germany's southern Soviet offensive. I can see 1-2 sentences on Technological advances and a paragraph on occupation, but these huge sections seem far out of place. Especially given that they have articles to which a link can (and is already) provided.Mosedschurte (talk) 07:32, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

Is anyone against reducing these huge sections in this summary article?Mosedschurte (talk) 02:56, 31 July 2009 (UTC)
I think it more important to leave the 'War time occupation' article. I'll go over and try to tighten up the wordage.StevenWT (talk) 04:19, 31 July 2009 (UTC)
Mosedschurte: check out this abbreviated version of ‘War time occupation'- which I really consider in need of expansion: need a few words on what was like for the occupied peoples? —Preceding unsigned comment added by StevenWT (talkcontribs) 05:27, 31 July 2009 (UTC)

Technical end date of war

Should there be a statement regarding the technical end date of the war being in 1990, as indicated by the citation provided in the following wikipedia artice (List of wars extended by diplomatic irregularity )? --RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 15:01, 8 August 2009 (UTC)

The reference used in that article for the end date of 1990 is QI, a comedy quiz show, which is hardly good enough to satisfy WP:RELIABLE, even if it is presented by Stephen Fry. Hohum (talk) 17:06, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
However, if you go on to read the rest of the article, and I agree QU doesn't meet Reliability standards, it references Times Magazine in the following statement found on the wikiarticle

At the time World War II was declared over, there was no single German state that all occupying powers accepted as being the sole representative of the former Reich. Therefore the war technically did not finish until the country was reunified. However, in 1949 some technicalities were modified to soften the state of war between the U.S. and Germany. The state of war was retained since it provided the U.S. with a legal basis for keeping troops in Western Germany.[89] As a legal substitute for a peace treaty[90] the U.S. formally ended the state of war between the U.S. and Germany on October 19, 1951 at 5:45 p.m. According to the U.S. a formal peace treaty had been stalled by the Soviet Union.[90] It was not until the Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany was signed in 1990 that peace was formally established.

--RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 13:52, 9 August 2009 (UTC)
Also, in an attempt to reach consensus, if the war did not formally end until the Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany was signed, would the cold war be part of World War II, especially since the final settlement of Germany was a major issue of contention of that period of time? --RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 13:56, 9 August 2009 (UTC)
Only the QI reference gives 1990 as the end date. The Time articles do not - they were written in 1949 and 1951. Inferring that they mean it ended in 1990 is Original Research (WP:OR), which is unacceptable here. It should also be unacceptable in the List of wars extended by diplomatic irregularity article. Hohum (talk) 14:11, 9 August 2009 (UTC)
These sorts of arguments about "technical" ends of wars are meaningless anyway. Wars end when the fighting stops. There is no "technical" end to a war, just as there is no need for declaration of war for one to start. Suggestions that Berwick-upon-Tweed is still at war with Russia have no place outside trivia games. Cyclopaedic (talk) 17:20, 9 August 2009 (UTC)
Perhaps we need a clearer definition of ”World War II.” If we go by when the fighting started or stopped, did it stop in 1945, or at the end of the Greek Civil War in 1949? Did it start in 1939, or when Germany, Italy and Russia went to war in 1936 in Spain? Just what do we mean by WWII?StevenWT (talk) 04:25, 10 August 2009 (UTC)
No, we don't. We do what Wikipedia does, which is to rely on the consesus of published sources and the ordinary understanding of terms. The idea that every term and the scope of every article is susceptible of some precise legal or quasi-scientific definition is another fallacy. Cyclopaedic (talk) 05:27, 10 August 2009 (UTC)
Let's not be silly: 1945 is the generally accepted date for the end of the war as it was when both Germany and Japan surrendered. While other related conflicts continued (and some are arguably going to this day) and some bits of paper weren't signed until later, the shooting in 'World War II' ended in August 1945. Nick-D (talk) 11:21, 10 August 2009 (UTC)
Well the Pacific War, which list itself as part of World War II, lists its start date to include the Second Sino-Japanese War in 1937. --RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 14:24, 12 August 2009 (UTC)
If this technical point is to be addressed at all in this article, it should be in a reference footnote only, not the text of the article.Mosedschurte (talk) 23:21, 13 August 2009 (UTC)
Or as an alternative, it could have its own subsection. --RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 01:40, 14 August 2009 (UTC)
No, it's no more than trivia. Cyclopaedic (talk) 11:45, 14 August 2009 (UTC)

China, Soviet Union and the League of Nations

I checked the source and I found that the present text ("France and the United Kingdom, treating the Soviet attack on Finland as tantamount to entering the war on the side of the Germans, responded to the Soviet invasion by supporting its expulsion from the League of Nations.[41] Though China had the authority to veto such an action, it was unwilling to alienate itself from either the Western powers or the Soviet Union and instead abstained.[43] ") almost literally reproduces the source cited. However, the source itself is incorrect. In fact, the decision was made by majority of votes, not by consensus. Only seven League's members (out of 14) voted for expulsion, whereas China, along with Yugoslavia, Greece and Finland abstained from voting (Iran, Peru and the USSR weren't represented on the meeting). My source is Leo Gross "Was the Soviet Union Expelled From the League of Nations?" (The American Journal of International Law, Vol. 39, No. 1 (Jan., 1945), pp. 35-44) Interestingly, according to that source, the resolution of December 14, 1939, had no legal effect (due to the absence of Iran and Peru, and due to abstention of China, Yugoslavia, Greece and Finland), therefore, the USSR wasn't expelled from the League of Nation de jure.
In addition, the expulsion procedure was initiated not by France and the UK, so it is unclear why these two countries are mentioned explicitly.

My conclusion is that the fragment is disputable (the interpretation presented in the source contradicts to another reliable source). Taking into account that the fragment describes rather unimportant event (unimportant for such a summary style article), I concur with Nick-D and support removal of this text completely.--Paul Siebert (talk) 15:08, 12 August 2009 (UTC)

I still think that it should be removed as being an unimportant incident. No-one really cared about the League in 1940. Nick-D (talk) 08:02, 13 August 2009 (UTC)
The notion, probably reduced (as suggested above), should stay -- in fact, there can be little argument that the two of what would be the big three allies turning on each other (or at least one on the other) early on in World War II shouldn't remain in such an article -- but corrected if there are inaccuracies in the voting procedures for expulsion. The importance of the League itself is much less important than one future Ally claiming that the other future Ally committed acts tantamount to entering the war on the German side. The League was just a forum for the rift between future Allies to arise, regardless of that forum's importance Note: that SEVERAL, as in most of what I read and probably hundreds of, sources also state that the Soviet Union was expelled, and I am not sure about this de jure analysis posted above, but it is of no matter in any regard. In fact, that explusion is included in most basic summary chronologies of World War II.
That the Finland invasion caused a major rift between Britain and France (and even future Ally the US) and future Allies the USSR (Many many sources, and if this basic point is seriously disputed, I'll do the wasteful legwork of retrieving many) is not disputed, including some mentions of it being tantamount to entry on the side of the war with Germany, e.g. (Garver, "Chinese-Soviet relations, 1937-1945"). Though the overall mechanics of the League and China's role/backlash could be shortened (as suggested above). Mosedschurte (talk) 23:19, 13 August 2009 (UTC)
Firstly, if you want to include the statement that "the invasion of Finland caused a major rift between Western democraties and the USSR", I'll fully support it. However, mentioning of the League of nation is misleading in that article, because this orgatisation was virtually defunct by that moment.
Secondly, your comment ("Unilateral change reverted -- see talk and article policy") is unacceptable. The change was not unilateral, it was supported by two editors. With regard to the article policy (BTW, could you explain me what separate article policy you refer to?), no rules exist that every change made without your approval is unilateral. You behave as an editor-in-chief of all articles you work on.
Thirdly, since the source (Hsiung) states that Chinese abstention was just a pretext for suspension of the Soviet assistance to China (the USSR planned to do that anyway), the statement is not fully supported by the source. Taking into account that fact, as well as relative insignificance of the Soviet help, this fragment should be removed.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 02:07, 14 August 2009 (UTC)
The western democracies and USSR had poor relations from the Russian Revolution until 22 June 1941 when they became allies of convienience for the duration of the war, so I don't see why this is a big deal. Nick-D (talk) 04:44, 14 August 2009 (UTC)
I think, it is oversimplification. Although the relations were generally poor, the USSR did participate in some mutual assistance treaties with France, and even was close to signing anti-German political and military alliance. Interestingly, even after Molotov-Ribbentrop pact the western powers believed that the relation with the USSR may be improved. In that sense, the Winter War really caused a major rift between Western democraties and the USSR.
However, to tell about this rift, we have to tell a full story, namely a story of improvement of Franco-Anglo-Soviet relations in late 1930s. Otherwise the article is biased: it presents minuscule details about pro-German steps made by the USSR, it tells about deterioration of Franco-Anglo-Soviet relations, however, no contrary examples is presented.
I see no problem to tell about the rift between the future allies, provided that the story about their earlier rapprochement is re-introduced into the article. Otherwise, I support complete removal of the disputable fragment.----Paul Siebert (talk) 13:44, 14 August 2009 (UTC) 13:42, 14 August 2009 (UTC)


when did world war 2 end?

I thought it was in 1945 but i was watching a british tv show called QI which said technically speaking it did not end until east and west germany were reunified as a single state, which makes it 1990, but then i never saw that mentioned in the article, but if it is so then shouldnt it atleast have a mention that the main conflict was from 1939 to 1945 and it ended in 1990 technically speaking

also i found this to http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_year_did_World_War_2_officially_end —Preceding unsigned comment added by 90.212.222.44 (talk) 03:40, 17 August 2009 (UTC)

World War 2 ended in 1945. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 02:57, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

...launched its own invasion...

I changed these words to just "invaded", because it is shorter, and it better fits the article's style. See, for instance: "...culminating in a campaign to invade China.", " Germany attacked Poland and World War II broke out", "...Finland rejected Soviet territorial demands, and was invaded...", "On that same day, Germany invaded France and the Low Countries", "...Germany, along with other European Axis members and Finland, invaded the Soviet Union in Operation Barbarossa", "... and shortly after jointly invaded Iran...", etc.
However, Mosedschurte reverted my changes twice. I am wondering if "...launched its own invasion..." carries any additional information as compared to "invaded", and, if the answer is "yes" than what this information consists in? What is the reason for that reversion?--Paul Siebert (talk) 03:25, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

As a reality check:
(1) The clarifying language "the Soviets launched their own invasion"has been in the article for over a year.
(2) The reason it likely has been in the article for over a year is that it clarifies the separate nature of the Soviet invasion of eastern Poland from the German invasion of western Poland -- this was not a "co-invasion" or "joint invasion". This is why the text makes this entirely undisputed clarification not present with other invasions that do not involve separate powers invading separate parts of a country roughly concurrently but not doing so in a joint or co-invasion. In fact, as you yourself point out, the clarification was also made for the very different "jointly invaded Iran" in text you quote above.
(3) You have repeatedly unilaterally deleted this undisputed clarification. And you have refrained from discussing potential alternatives raised above. I would have no problem with the also historically accurate "the Soviets launched a separate invasion of eastern Poland" or "the Soviets separately invaded eastern Poland".
(4) In addition, you also falsely claimed this was " your recent wording", referring to me, when this simple clarification has been in the article since well before I ever edited this article.
(5) Again, text regarding the most basic undisputed history -- no matter how simple, noncontroversial or straight-forward -- is tortured into some kind of odd battle over single words requiring separate Talk page sections, etc. Mosedschurte (talk) 03:57, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
Re: (1) Since I changed "Hitler launched his invasion" to "Germany attacked Poland" (simpler and more factually correct), the Soviet related part should be changed accordingly.
Re: (2) Addressed there [8]
Re: (3) I noticed no discussion of these concrete words on the talk page (your posts are so wordy...). My apologies, if I was wrong.
Re: (4) WP has neither copyright nor authorship. If you support some text and re-introduce it, this text is your text.
Re: (5) Fully agree.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 04:02, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
Besides #(5), I don't think you directly addressed a single word I typed, including the rather basic and historically undisputed point of the clarification or the potential alternatives. In fact regarding the latter, humorously, you merely claimed "(your posts are so wordy...", while having just engaged in this prior incomprehensible textual dump. Mosedschurte (talk) 04:11, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
Similarly, I got no explanation why your wording (old wording re-introduced by you) is better than new one. With one exception: "launched its own invasion" is longer...--Paul Siebert (talk) 04:24, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

(od)Except the thorough explanation given above of the clarification that it the Soviet September 17th launched invasion was a separate invasion of the same country (Poland) and not a co-invasion or joint invasion (with Germany). Which, humorously, was also further clarified by your own quotation of text "jointly invaded" involving a very different invasion. That obvious point directly addressing the point and why it obviously differs from some other text where no such separate roughly simultaneous invasion was taking place. Or the proposed other alternatives you refused to discuss.
Quite an illuminating talk page section you've started here.Mosedschurte (talk) 04:28, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

Again, I believe, it is clear for everybody (except you) that the phrases "Germany attacked Poland" and "the Soviets invaded Eastern Poland" describes these two events as two separate, non-connected and weakly coordinated invasions. However, if you, for some personal reason, strongly prefer old wording, I don't think we should waste each other's time in fruitless discussions.
Re: "while having just engaged in this prior incomprehensible textual dump" It is unbelievable. You yourself blamed me in pushing fringe theories there [9]("Please tell me I'm not going to have to get 20 sources to disprove another WP:Fringe theory "). To demonstrate the opposite, I provided two more articles from reputable academic history journals that demonstrated and supported my point. I did that because of, and only because of your (baseless) accusations. Frankly, I expected you to apologize for groundless accusations. Instaed of that, you throw such an argument. That directly contradicts to my understanding of logics, morale and politeness...--Paul Siebert (talk) 17:10, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

The Allies gain momentum last version.

Below is a new version of the Allies gain momentum section where I attempted to combine the new version of the section, supported by a number of editors, with last Mosedschurte's modifications. I tried to preserve the Mosedschurte's wording where it was possible with some exceptions. Major exceptions are.

1. Battle of Kursk. The sentence "On July 4, 1943, Germany attacked Soviet forces in the region of the Kursk Bulge. Within a week, German forces had exhausted themselves against the Soviets' layered defenses and large reserve forces" is incomplete and incorrect. It tells nothing about a strategic pause during spring 1943, when both sides were doing massive preparations. I added the sentence back. "layered defenses and large reserve forces" is incorrect, because the Soviets used almost no strategic reserves during the defensive phase of the battle. I changed the wording accordingly, and added few words from Glantz who described the Battle of Kursk as the first example of the successful application of the defence tactics against blitzkrieg offensive. Since it was the first and the most striking example of the German offensive's failure, that should be said explicitly in the article.
In addition, it is quite necessary to tell explicitly that the Battle of Kursk was an ultimate turning point in the East. Glantz's and Bellami's famous words that, whereas after Stalingrad the Germans could not win, after Kursk the Soviet couldn't lose, should be in the section in one or another form.

2. Auxilliary sentences "German operations in the Atlantic also suffered." and "In mainland Asia, however, the Allies weren't so successful." are helpful, especially the last one, because, whereas the European Axis was losing most battles during that time, no signs were visible that the Allies gain momentum in Asia. I re-introduced these two sentences.

3. Mosedschurte proposed to re-introduce Battle of Târgu Frumos, although the way he did that violated the chronological order of the events. I put these battles into more appropriate place and added that these offensives were repulsed by the Axis. I also added the Battle of Crimea, because, by its scale and strategic importance this battle surpassed the Battle of Târgu Frumos (if we include the latter, the former also should be included). I also fixed one more error: by May 1944 the USSR had not expelled the Axis from the USSR. Belarussia and Western Ukraine was still occupied by Germany. I fixed that.

4. The last critical error was: "The German Army Group North and Estonians hoping to re-establish national independence halted the following Soviet offensive at the pre-war Estonian border..." This text equates the German and Estonian troops, that, obviously was not the case. The Estonians who fought against the Red Army were German Waffen SS conscripts, so the old wording is correct, whereas the new one is wrong.


Allies gain momentum

Following the Guadalcanal Campaign, the Allies initiated several operations against Japan in the Pacific. In May, 1943, American forces were sent to eliminate Japanese forces from the Aleutians,[91] and soon after began major operations to isolate Rabaul by capturing surrounding islands, and to breach the Japanese Central Pacific perimeter at the Gilbert and Marshall Islands.[92] By the end of March, 1944, the Allies had completed both of these objectives, and additionally neutralized another major Japanese base in the Caroline Islands. In April, the Allies then launched an operation to retake Western New Guinea.[93]

In the Soviet Union, both the Germans and the Soviets spent the spring and early summer of 1943 making preparations for large offensives in Central Russia. On July 4, 1943, Germany attacked Soviet forces in the region of the Kursk Bulge. Within a week, German forces had exhausted themselves against the Soviets' deeply echeloned and well-constructed defenses[94][95] and, for the first time in the war, Hitler canceled the operation before it had achieved tactical or operational success.[96] This decision was partially affected by the Western Allies' invasion of Sicily launched on July 9 which, combined with with previous Italian failures, resulted in the ousting and arrest of Mussolini later that month.[97] On July 12, 1943, the Soviets launched their own counter-offensives, thereby dispelling any hopes of the German Army for victory or even stalemate in the east. The Germans attempted to stabilize their eastern front along the hastily fortified Panther-Wotan line, however, the Soviets broke it at Smolensk and by the Lower Dnieper Offensives.[98]

In early September 1943, the Western Allies invaded the Italian mainland, following an Italian armistice with the Allies.[99] Germany responded by disarming Italian forces, seizing military control of Italian areas,[100] and creating a series of defensive lines.[101] German special forces then rescued Mussolini, who then soon established a new client state in German occupied Italy.[102] The Western Allies fought through several lines until reaching the main German defensive line in mid-November.[103]

German operations in the Atlantic also suffered. By May 1943, as Allied counter-measures became increasingly effective, the resulting sizable German submarine losses forced a temporary halt of the German Atlantic naval campaign .[104] In November 1943, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill met with Chiang Kai-shek in Cairo[36] and then with Joseph Stalin in Tehran.[37] The former conference determined the post-war return of Japanese territory[36] while the latter included agreement that the Western Allies would invade Europe in 1944 and that the Soviet Union would declare war on Japan within three months of Germany's defeat.[37]

In January 1944, the Allies launched a series of attacks in Italy against the line at Monte Cassino and attempted to outflank it with landings at Anzio.[105] By the end of January, a major Soviet offensive expelled German forces from the Leningrad region[106], ending the longest and most lethal siege in history. The following Soviet offensive was halted on the pre-war Estonian border by the German Army Group North aided by Estonians hoping to re-establish national independence. This delay retarded subsequent Soviet operations in the Baltic Sea region.[15]

British troops firing a mortar during the Battle of Imphal.

By late May 1944, the Soviets had liberated Crimea, largely expelled Axis forces from Ukraine and made incursions into Romania, which were repulsed by the Axis troops.[107] The Allied offensives in Italy had succeeded and, at the expense of allowing several German divisions to retreat, on June 4 Rome was captured.[108]

The Allies experienced mixed fortunes in mainland Asia. In March 1944, the Japanese launched the first of two invasions, an operation against British positions in Assam, India[109], and soon besieged Commonwealth positions at Imphal and Kohima.[110] In May 1944, British forces mounted a counter-offensive that drove Japanese troops back to Burma,[110] and Chinese forces that had invaded Northern Burma in late 1943 beseiged Japanese troops in Myitkyina.[111] The second Japansese invasion attempted to destroy China's main fighting forces, secure railways between Japanese-held territory and capture Allied airfields.[112] By June, the Japanese had conquered the province of Henan and begun a renewed attack against Changsha in the Hunan province.[113]


Fixing of typos, errors and stylistic corrections are warmly appreciated.
Cheers,
--Paul Siebert (talk) 19:31, 19 August 2009 (UTC)

I just fixed a minor typo in the above, and think that it's generally OK. Stating that "In mainland Asia, however, the Allies weren't so successful." and then talking about the Battle of Imphal isn't accurate though - while the Allies underestimated the scale of the Japanese attack (mainly because they didn't think that the Japanese would be so dumb as to launch an offensive with forces larger than what they could support) and had some bad weeks at the start of the battle, this ended in a decisive victory which permanently ruined the Japanese Army in Burma. As such, I'd suggest that "In mainland Asia, however, the Allies weren't so successful" be replaced with "The Allies experienced mixed fortunes in mainland Asia". I still think that the coverage of Estonia is excessive and the claim that the Battle of Narva "retarded subsequent Soviet operations in the Baltic Sea region" wrong (this material was added by an Estonian POV-pusher), I lost that argument a long time ago, and the tweaked wording is definitely an incremental improvement. Nick-D (talk) 10:49, 20 August 2009 (UTC)
Definitely, "The Allies experienced mixed fortunes in mainland Asia" reflects the course of the events better. The fact that nothing is said about the battle of Imphal's outcome is a critical omission. I made some changes in the text to fix that. With regards to "POV-pusher", you are absolutely wrong. Judging by his edits, the user you talk about is definitely not a POV-pusher. Your comment is absolutely unjustified.--Paul Siebert (talk) 14:32, 20 August 2009 (UTC)
I propose one more modification. Since much more global questions were discussed in Tehran than in Cairo, I think it would be better to separate there two meetings. In addition, "the post-war return of Japanese territory" is ambiguous, because it is unclear to whom these territories were to be returned, and, in addition, these territories weren't Japanese. They were Chinese and Korean, although under Japanese occupation. Instead of
"In November 1943, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill met with Chiang Kai-shek in Cairo[36] and then with Joseph Stalin in Tehran.[37] The former conference determined the post-war return of Japanese territory[36] while the latter included agreement that the Western Allies would invade Europe in 1944 and that the Soviet Union would declare war on Japan within three months of Germany's defeat.[37]"
I propose:
"In November 1943, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Winston Churchill and Chiang Kai-shek met in in Cairo[36] where they determined that Japanese held territories should be returned to China and that Korea should become free and independent.[36] Few days later, during the Tehran conference,[37] "The Big Three" endorsed the final strategy for the war against the Axis including opening of the Second Front in 1944 and Soviet entry into the war against Japan within three months of Germany's defeat.[37]"
--Paul Siebert (talk) 17:18, 22 August 2009 (UTC)
I prefer the current version - that's too much detail. Moreover it's confusing to say that "Japanese held territories should be returned to China and that Korea should become free and independent" - most of the territory occupied by Japan at this time had been conquered from the various colonial powers and was returned to them after the war and Korea became anything but free or independent. Nick-D (talk) 22:22, 22 August 2009 (UTC)
I'm inclined to agree with Nick-D here. This article ranks in at a whopping 132,250 bytes. 132 kilobytes. According to WP:SIZE, we should probably be trying to cut this article down into more "readable" prose. Best ...Ω.....¿TooT?....¡StatS!.. 01:25, 29 August 2009 (UTC)
No problem. As you see, the old para's version is already in the article. With regards to cutting down, I don't see how can we do that without violating a balance. For instance, what concretely do you propose to remove from this section?--Paul Siebert (talk) 01:47, 29 August 2009 (UTC)

Demand

As to the speech given yesterday by Putin in Westerplatte, Gdańsk, Poland, during celebration of 70th WW2 outbreak, while he said something like "half of the people killed in ww2 were soviets", well: just look at the graph and keep in mind that the big numbers are surely impressive, but what counts the most is the PERCENTAGE, as for it may be that 20 mln are dead but are only tiny % of a nations population, while 5 mln killed may constitute about 50% of a nations population, which means that almost half of ENTIRE NATION was killed. I just want you to know that. A Pole.

As a represantant of a nation most injured in WWII I demand that some of eligible editors add in the section 'casualties' a line after info about 27 mln casualties being soviets of more or less such content: ...however the nation most injured, for it lost about 19% of its population were Poles. Thank you for just being just :) —Preceding unsigned comment added by 83.12.91.242 (talk) 15:31, 2 September 2009 (UTC)

Can somebody at least answer? Thanks for obeying the elementary rules of good manners (meaning answer). —Preceding unsigned comment added by 83.12.91.242 (talk) 15:33, 3 September 2009 (UTC)
Since you didn't address to anybody personally it is a little bit odd to request for an answer. Probably, people think your demand is too odd to respond. I'll try to explain why.
Firstly, the very idea to use percentage as a measure of human sufferings seems not to be appropriate. I don't think suffering of Chinese civilians were smaller because their population was large. Every human life is equally precious. Secondly, it is not a good idea to make a stress on some concrete European nation (except Jews), because many nations suffered in almost equal extent: Poles, Belorussians, Serbs, European Russians, etc. Thirdly, you are simply wrong: besides Jews, the most affected nation was the Belorussians, that lost more than 20% of their pre-war population.
Regards,
--Paul Siebert (talk) 16:27, 3 September 2009 (UTC)
Instead of rudely demanding something, perhaps you could take your own subsequent, and ironic, advice. Hohum (talk) 18:36, 3 September 2009 (UTC)
I wasn't trying to be rude, neither do I think that my request was odd nor the idea of percentage is wierd. I already explained why I think so. But let me repeat: for example losing 20% of nation's population is "little bit" different than losing 1 %. All and every death is always a tragedy, however this is not the case. As to Belarus - i couldn't found the info you stated neither in here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:World_War_II_Casualties2.svg nor in here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_II_casualties . As because the sections is called 'casualties', for me its sort of obvious that you should put there an info about who suffered the most. Remember that Poland was the first country to suffer, and the one to suffer the most as it was placed between the hammer and the anvil or between devil and the deep blue sea if you will. Between the two deadliest totalitarisms ever. And the repercussions of ww2 still influence todays Poland as it still has problems to rise up after the dark times of communism, that took place because Allies simply, cruely and treacherously sold my country to Stalin for almost half a century in Teheran, Jalta and Postdam. Despite being a forth Allied european force in ww2 (after USA,USSR, GB) polish veterans (even those most about which Churchill said that never in the history of war so many owed so much to so few - polish airmen during Battle of Britain) were never allowed to participate in '45 London victory parade. Now the descendents of german nazi criminals abound in western world wealth, while my country, the biggest victim of ww2 is still rebuilding after communism.As to the Jews - 1st - the're not an european nation, 2nd - I wouldn't give them any special place, as Holocaust targeted Slavs and Gypsies as well for total elimination. They tend to overreact with the big numbers, the fact is, it can't be 100% said how much Jews exactly perished in german death camps. I've heard even such ridiculous numbers as 6 mln. Anyway - I think my nation deserves such info to be put in this section. Over and out. P.S. I think this book http://search.barnesandnoble.com/A-Question-of-Honor/Lynne-Olson/e/9780375411977 can help to open your eyes on what Allies did to Poland for its tremendous sacrifice in winning ww2. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 83.12.91.242 (talk) 10:49, 5 September 2009 (UTC)
I'd ask a different question. How many innocents were killed? How many entire nations that had no intention of ruining their economy or gambling their people's lives on military adventure when Stalin and Hitler decided to slice up Europe? This "our country suffered greater losses, therefore we should have greater honor" is a childish international posturing. Piano non troppo (talk) 14:50, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
It's not about "our country suffered greater losses", it's rather "our country suffered the greatEST losses" therefore it should be at least mentioned which nation lost the most part of its population, it's not about honoring anybody. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 83.12.91.242 (talk) 16:43, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
If the country that had the "greatest" losses was also the country that planned a war, it isn't exactly an honorable position. More like one of shame. Shame on Germany, Russia, Italy and Japan. Piano non troppo (talk) 18:55, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Re: "Shame on Germany, Russia, Italy and Japan." If you followed the discussion on this talk page you probably noticed that a large number of sources tell that the alliance between the UK, France and the USSR was possible in 1939 that could prevent WWII. British historiography used to blame in the triple negotiations' failure primarily the Chamberlain's cabinet. Other sources describe position of Poland as suicidal. Some scholars (e.g. Michael Gabara Carley) call the whole decade (1930-1939) "dishonest", and I fully agree with him. Many states behaved dishonestly, many leaders were simply stupid, indecisive etc, what eventually led to WWII. I hate oversimplifications, and what you wrote is a blatant oversimplification. --Paul Siebert (talk) 02:14, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
Re: "If the country that had the "greatest" losses was also the country that planned a war, it isn't exactly an honorable position." Well, Poland was far away of planning war, as it was just 21 years after regaining its independence after ww1, so I'm not quite sure what you are reffering to.

collage

why doesn't the collage of WWII images have any United States references? they did win the war. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 76.236.177.46 (talk) 03:36, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

Chronology

The USSR's role in the start of the war—supporting the Luftwaffe during the invasion of Poland and in being an active and equal partner in the partition of Poland—cannot be omitted from the chronology. VЄСRUМВА  ♪  16:17, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

Incorrect. The story of Soviet support of the Luftwaffe during the invasion of Poland consists only in broadcasting of navigational signals by the radio station in Minsk. The full story was as follows. On September 1, 1939, when the war had already started, the Germans official Hilger came to Narkomindel and informed Soviet official (concretely, Pavlov) that Germany attacked Poland. He also passed a request from the Luftwaffe's general headquarters. They asked to consider a posiibility for the Soviet radio station in Minsk "to start a continuous broadcast needed for urgent aeronautical experiments. This translation should contain the embedded call signs "Richard Wilhelm 1.0", and, in addition to that, to broadcast the word "Minsk" as frequent as possible."
The Molotov's resolution on that document authorised broadcasting of the word "Minsk" only).
The source is АВП СССР, ф. 06, оп. 1, п. 7, д. 74.
We can see that (i) the request was passed after the war started. (ii) The real reason was not disclosed. Of course it would be hypocritical to claim that Molotov didn't understand the real reason of the request, but, anyway, the actions of the USSR between Sept 1, 1939 and Sept 7 1939, when the war already started, provide no ground to claim that the war started with joint attack of Poland.
In addition, majority sources tell about "German" attack of Poland as a start date of WWII. The USSR is not mentioned by them. By contrast, it is well known that no country declared a war on the USSR in Sept 1939. My conclusion is that the last edit is not supported by majority sources and, therefore, should be reverted.
--Paul Siebert (talk) 17:25, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Dear Paul, you are slanting your argument in favor of removing vital information, that is, on September 1, 1939, the day of the invasion, the German ambassador Schulenberg requested that the Soviets include Luftwaffe codes in their broadcasts from Minsk. Moreover, on September 3rd, only two days after the invasion, Ribbentrop instructed Schulenberg to request the Soviets commence their invasion per the territorial division outlined in the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact. The Soviets only waited for Warsaw to fall to the Germans before commencing their own invasion to seize the other half of Poland (at the end, 51% of territory to Stalin, 49% to Hitler), as Molotov himself stated to Schulenberg regarding the timing of the Soviet invasion. (The fall of Warsaw allowed the Soviet propaganda machine to spin up and contend that with the disintegration of the Polish state, the Soviets were only moving in to protect the ethnic Ukrainian and Belarusian minorities in eastern Poland).
   To completely delete the central role of the Soviet Union in the chronology of the start of the war removes a core relationship and makes it appear the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact had no bearing on the start of the war, which would be a complete fallacy. Hitler was able to invade Poland—start the war—amassing his entire forces on the Eastern front, only because he correctly surmised the British and French would not intervene on the behalf of Poland, and because his partner was ready to crush Poland from the east.
   You cannot argue for the omission of the Soviet Union from the chronology of the start of the war. To argue most sources regarding the "instant" of the "moment" of the "start" of the war (my quotes for emphasis) only mention Hitler's part in the commencement of elimination of the Polish state is so precise that in the broader sense of communicating the start of the war (i.e., chronology), that characterization is simply inaccurate.
   As I rather suspect that neither of us will convince the other and it would be puerile to keep reverting, perhaps some other editors might want to comment on this inclusion—which should have been worded with a bit more clarity, as in the Soviets commenced their pre-arranged invasion of Poland so that the link with the German invasion is clear. VЄСRUМВА  ♪  18:42, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Dear Peters, a part of what you write is correct, however, you are not accurate. First, the quote I provided demonstrates that it was not Schulenburg, but Hilger who passed the request. In addition, the real reason of the request was not disclosed, and the request was not completely satisfied. That makes you reference to this help to Luftwaffe insufficient to speak about the USSR in the context of the date of Sept 1.
Second, since all other events you are telling about took place after Germany attacked Poland, and after France and the UK declared a war on Germany, any mentioning of the USSR in the chronology section is incorrect. Everything relating the Soviet attack of Poland happened after WWII started. It belongs to the next sections, not to chronology.
Re: "To completely delete the central role of the Soviet Union in the chronology..." The Chronology section contains only well established facts or opinions shared by overwhelming majority of scholars. The idea about the central role of the Soviet Union in the WWII outbreak is, without any doubts, shared by many reputable scholars (e.g. prof Raack), however, it is not shared by majority of scientific community. Many scholars believe that prior 1941 Stalin's policy was passive, defensive and inconsistent. Again, although I don't state your POV is completely wrong, it belongs to more specialized articles where both points of view are discussed.
Best regards,
--Paul Siebert (talk) 19:55, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
First my source indicated Schulenberg—regardless, the communication was through ambassadorial contact, Hilger having served a number of ambassadors. Perhaps another example of precision versus accuracy where Soviet archives are concerned.
   Regardless, it's quite clear we travel in a different set of scholarly sources with regard to what forms a "majority" scholarly opinion of the Soviet condition and role at the outset of WWII. Germany pushing for a Soviet invasion of the Polish east two days (Sept. 3) after their invasion from the west (the day Britain, then France, declared war in the form of expired ultimata to withdraw, Britain's in the morning, France's in the evening only after failing to come to yet another accommodation of Hitler), Molotov subsequently stating the USSR was awaiting the fall of Warsaw, and upon invasion, the USSR claiming to "protect" minorities, are all part of the playing out of the stratagem initiated by the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact. There too, regarding M-R, there are those who maintain Stalin was driven into Hitler's arms, Stalin was only buying time, etc. versus scholarship which argues a far more active Soviet role in precipitating events, including Stalin's rapprochement with Hitler (signaled publicly at least as far back as Hitler's and Stalin's speeches of March 10, 1939).
   To your characterization of passive versus active, there is no compelling case to give the upper hand to the passive view. This is not an "innocent (passive) until proven guilty (active)" pseudo-academic court of law. You cannot state there is a clear majority that the Soviet role in the start of WWII viz. a viz. Poland and Eastern Europe/the Baltics was not central, and so that Soviet role must be rightfully included at the outset in the chronology to properly set the stage of understanding future events—and characterizations of those events by the Soviet Union, and extending to official Russia today—in proper context.
   We agree on differing scholarly accounts, but not on representation, and so I again invite others to comment. VЄСRUМВА  ♪  22:02, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Dear Peters, first of all, WP is not a democracy, it is a reliability of sources that matters, not the number of editors, supporting one and another point of view. Note, I write that before other editors expressed their opinions. That means that I am intended neither to argue on behalf of majority (if they will support me), nor to accept opposite point of view for only reason that several other editors support it. Our discussion is about sources and about logics, no matter how many peoples support you or me.
I personally dislike contemporary Russia's policy. In my opinion, the Soviet attack of Poland was a crime. However, these questions have no relation to the subject of our discussion. Hitler issued a directive to attack Poland before any appreciable sign of Nazi-Soviet rapprochement took place. During first days of September 1939, Hitler knew neither when Stalin plans to attack Poland nor if he plans to do that at all (otherwise the Ribbentrop's telegram looks absolutely odd). The only thing Hitler knew for sure was that the USSR would be neutral in the war he started. In that sense, the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact removed the major obstacle for WWII. That was the first Soviet guilt. As I already wrote, the USSR attacked Poland on Sept 17. That was a second Soviet guild. However, both of them did not trigger WWII: it was a Hitler's decision to attack Poland on September 1, 1939, after which WWII started.
Again, we have two facts: (i) the Hitler's attack of Poland triggered WWII; (ii) Nazi Germany and the USSR were equally responsible for WWII outbreak. The first fact is indisputable, whereas no common opinion exists about the second one. By saying (ii) you present one of two major POVs as the sole one. It is incorrect.
The question of relative responsibility of the USSR and Germany in WWII outbreak is too complicated to fit it into one sentence. You should either to discuss it in details or not to discuss at all (I mean in a separate article).--Paul Siebert (talk) 23:14, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
To avoid duplication of arguments it would be useful for everyone to look at the discussion here [10]--Paul Siebert (talk) 23:21, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

Finland

The last change:

"Following the invasion of Poland and a German-Soviet treaty governing Lithuania, the Soviet Union forced the Baltic countries to allow it to station Soviet troops in their countries under pacts of "mutual assistance."[114][60][54] Finland rejected the Soviet attempt to force it into a similar pact as well as Soviet territorial demands and was invaded by the Soviet Union in November 1939.[115]"

was not accurate. Although it is quite correct that the USSR proposed a mutual assistance pact to Finland, the reason for the Soviet attack is shown incorrectly. The source (Spring) tells clearly that the reason was not in the Finnish refusal to sign a pact. After Finnish refusal, the Soviets didn't press Finland to sign this pact, and the only subject of the November talks were territorial demands. I already presented a quote from this source on that talk page, however, I can reproduce is again:

"The negotiations with Paasikivi and Tanner in Moscow emphasized the commitment of Stalin still to a peaceful solution. He had good reason to expect this. The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact had excluded the possibility that the Finns would remain unresponsive to Soviet strategic requirements in expectation of German support, which had been the fear for much of the 1930s. And the evidence of Hitler's continued aggression seemed to make incontrovertible Soviet claims that they needed to improve their security by controlling access into the Gulf of Finland in the face of evident future dangers. In these circumstances the Soviet demands were, as Upton notes in his excellent study of the Winter War, 'both rational and moderate'.4 The Soviet expectation that a settlement could be reached and was desirable was shown by the tone of the negotiations, which were generally friendly and not threatening. Stalin and Molotov attempted to convince by their arguments rather than by the weight of Soviet power. The priority given to a negotiated solution was shown by the involvement of Stalin himself in most of the discussions, and by a significant flexibility in the Soviet negotiating position, even though there remained the essential points of a base at the entrance to the Gulf of Finland and of the removal of the frontier on the Karelian isthmus further away from Leningrad. Stalin did not insist on a mutual assistance treaty which had been imposed on the Baltic states. He sought to find ways by which the proposal might be made more acceptable to the Finnish parliament and to give assurances on the evacuation of a base at Hanko at the conclusion of the war between Germany, Britain and France. After Molotov had seemed to bring the discussions to a close on 3 November with the statement that as there had been no agreement 'the matter will have to be handed over to the military', Stalin still showed a readiness to compromise. He returned to the discussions on 4 November and when the Finns firmly resisted any arrangement on Hanko, he dropped the idea and proposed an agreement for a base on any of the islands off the Hanko peninsula. Even when this was rejected by the Finns in the final session on 9 November, Stalin still sought to find another island in the vicinity which the Finns would be prepared to concede by lease or sale, but without success. Stalin's commitment to a negotiated settlement, for whatever reasons, right up to 9 November at least, thus maintaining a particular image of Soviet policy, emphasises the importance of the decision to use military force against Finland, made between that date and 30 November."

In addition, here [11] one can find two more sources that support the above conclusion. In connection to that I revert the recent change.--Paul Siebert (talk) 05:01, 8 September 2009 (UTC)


"Poland wants war with Germany .."

On the talk page of the Rydz-Smigly-article I found, it was some months ago, a remark about an interview with this man - he was commander in chief of the polish army 1939 -, which was printed in the Daily Mail of August 6th 1939, where he was reported to have said: "Poland wants war with Germany and Germany will not be able to avoid it even if she wants to." Some days later this remark was removed. Is anyone able to verify or to falsify this? See also Nr.5 and Nr. 30 on this talk page. user:jäger 01:25, 10 September 2009 (CET)

I'll try to find anything, and to check if it was just a personal opinion or more or less official policy. However, I don't believe it will be easy: last time, when I tried to find a reliable sources telling about persecution of Germans in Central European states after WWI I found almost nothing (although I spend a lot of time searching databases).
What I know (and I have the sources confirming that) that Germany proposed Poland to join the Axis, however, by contrast to Hungary, Poland refused to do so.--Paul Siebert (talk) 16:44, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
I found nothing so far, however I found a source that seems to support your previous point (that the Germans were persecuted in pre-war Poland). In the review on the Horak's book (Stephan M. Horak Poland and her national minorities, 1919-39: a case study. Vantage Press, 1961; Stephan M. Horak. Poland and Her National Minorities 1919: 39 Textbook Publishers, 2003 ISBN 0758109784, 9780758109781), Stanley W. Page writes:
"Stephan Horak, born in the Western Ukraine when that region was administered by Poland, demonstrates, admittedly on the basis of sparse if hardly disputable documentation, how the Polish government persecuted the 30 per cent non-Polish population. That included, in addition to the large body of Ukrainians, against whom the 1930 campaign of "pacification" had to be waged, Germans, Jews, Belo-Russians, Lithuanians, and others. The treaties of Versailles and of Riga had established the boundaries of postwar Poland. Despite provisions in both treaties for minority guarantees those of the Versailles treaty were to be assured by the League of Nations a new "jailhouse of nations,' similar to that of tsarist Russia, against whose repression the heroes of Congress Poland had so valiantly struggled, was brought into existence.
Horak's brief account stresses the severe educational, economic, pogromist, colonizing, and altogether fascistic measures employed by the Polish regime to convert its "historically-based" territorial claim into something like a unified entity." (Source: Stanley W. Page. Reviewed work(s):Poland and Her National Minorities, 1919-1939: A Case Study by Stephan Horak Geschichte der Polnischen Nation, 1916-1960: von der Staatsgrundung im Ersten Weltkrieg bis zur Gegenwart by Hans Roos The Journal of Modern History, Vol. 34, No. 4 (Dec., 1962), pp. 462-463).
Although I am not sure we have sufficient ground to include mentioning of persecution of Germans in pre-war Poland into this concrete article, you point seems to be supported by some reliable sources.--Paul Siebert (talk) 19:08, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
Thank You very much for Your great efforts! user:Jäger 00:25, 11 September 2009 (CET)

(od) I don't have a source confirming or denying the quote. However, this appears to run counter to the dynamics set in motion in the fall of 1934 with Lipski's meeting in Berlin with Ribbentrop. This was where Danzig, a Corridor, etc. were brought up by Ribbentrop, ostensibly with concessions to Poland. While rejected, negotiations continued. In November, Hitler instructed his military command to draw up plans, no later than mid-January, to seize Danzig. (This tactic had served Hitler well to this point.) Eventually, by spring 1939 discussions broke down and it was determined to resist Hitler's demands, with the hope that—as no one had heretofore stood up in any manner to Hitler—the Poles showing some spine might cause Hitler to recover some "measure in thinking and acting." If not, it was observed Poland would have to fight. There was no "desire" or lobby to oppose Hitler militarily.
   Paul, please explain your sources re: an offer to "join the Axis." Had Poland accepted Hitler's initial offer it's clear that Poland would have fallen out of the ranks of France and Britain and into the sphere of influence of Nazi Germany; however, in no way was that proposed or meant as a "joining." VЄСRUМВА  ♪  01:45, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

Dear Peters, you probably noticed that I tried to draw (anti)parallelism between Poland and Hungary. Under "joining" I meant joining on about similar conditions Hungary joined the Axis. BTW, you have to agree that during short time Poland did collaborate with Germany (I mean partition of Czechoslovakia). If you still want to see my source, I'll try to find it for you.--Paul Siebert (talk) 05:06, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
PS. Re " Poland would have fallen out of the ranks of France and Britain". Pre-war Poland never had a rank comparable to that of Britain or France.--Paul Siebert (talk) 05:09, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

Some seconds ago I had to realize that my remarks about the contents of Hermann Rauschning "Entdeutschung .." made in the Rauschning article had been deleted yesterday by a Pole without any comment. Is this wikipedia policy or pure censorship? user:Jäger 00:42, 12 September 2009 (CET)

I deleted these "remarks" were deleted because they were cited to Nazi sources (since Rauschning was a prominent Nazi), where highly POV and on Wikipedia we use only reliable sources. I did explain why I removed the text. Please don't try to use Nazi propaganda as sources in Wikipedia articles. As to your bringing up Kaczynski, I have no idea what your point is here. I also don't understand why you're discussing Rauschning here, rather than at his article.radek (talk) 23:40, 13 September 2009 (UTC)
"This deletion is clearly the result of vandalism, because it is not possible to undo it (conflicting editions)." - That's an interesting, unique, and incorrect way to determine if something is vandalism. Hohum (talk) 00:04, 14 September 2009 (UTC)
Hermann Rauschning collected these reports after he had been made a "Reichskommissar für die besetzten Gebiete" (imperial commissioner for the occupied territories) by the democratic german government of that time. And in this function he had published this volume and not as propaganda for the nazi party. user:Jäger 23:00, 14 September 2009 (CET)
A poisoned well is poisoned. Hohum (talk) 21:07, 14 September 2009 (UTC)
He joined the party in 1926, left the party in 1934. When did he collect and publish this data? Ronabop (talk) 21:14, 14 September 2009 (UTC)
Rauschning began to collect this material in 1919 and published it in 1930. It is in good agreement with other sources e.g. "Der polnische Aufstand in Oberschlesien .. Weissbuch des Kreise Tost-Gleiwitz" Berlin 1921 a copy of this book is existing at the Herder Institut. user:Jäger 00:40, 16 September 2009 (CET)
Jäger has been trying to include material about the views of Hermann Rauschning in this article for months. As has been noted each time the material has been inserted (and then removed) he's not a reliable source and there's no need to include that kind of material in such a high-level article anyway. Nick-D (talk) 08:02, 16 September 2009 (UTC)

The earliest events recorded by Hermann Rauschning in "Die Entdeutschung Westpreußens und Posens" happened in January 1919. That means that he began this work full 9 months before Adolf Hitler joined the "Deutsche Arbeiterpartei" (the later NSDAP). If this book were a Nazi-Source this would be a miracle. The NSDAP that Rauschning joined in 1926 was completely different from that one of perhaps 1938. In 1926 large parts of the SA were dominated by the later (1934!!!) exiled socialists Otto Strasser and Gregor Strasser. Rauschning was a humanist who felt compassion with suffering people - with his own compatriots and with the jews! And "Die Entdeutschung .." is a result of this deep humanism. This shows that this book is a high ranked and absolutely reliable hisorical source! user:Jäger 00:25, 17 October 2009 (CET)

The sources available for me confirm that conclusion only partially. None of the reviews on his books (Author(s): Elizabeth Wiskemann Reviewed work(s): Die Revolution des Nihilismus. by Hermann Rauschning. Source: International Affairs (Royal Institute of International Affairs 1931-1939), Vol. 18, No. 3 (May - Jun., 1939), p. 429 Published by: Blackwell Publishing on behalf of the Royal Institute of International Affairs Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3019729; Author(s): W. C. Regendanz Reviewed work(s): Makers of Destruction by Hermann Rauschning. Source: International Affairs Review Supplement, Vol. 19, No. 8 (Jun., 1942), pp. 458-459 Published by: Blackwell Publishing on behalf of the Royal Institute of International Affairs Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3026085; Author(s): Ieuan G. John Reviewed work(s): Deutschland zwischen West Und Ost. by Hermann Rauschning Source: International Affairs (Royal Institute of International Affairs 1944-), Vol. 27, No. 1 (Jan., 1951), pp. 102-103 Published by: Blackwell Publishing on behalf of the Royal Institute of International Affairs Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2608358) call him Nazist. Moreover some of them note that in his books Rauschning tried to warn the world about Nazism. However, Bradley F. Smith in his review of Theodor Schieder's Hermann Rauschnings "Gesprache mit Hitler" (Author(s): Bradley F. Smith. Reviewed work(s): Hermann Rauschnings "Gesprache mit Hitler" als Geschichtsquell by Theodor Schieder. Source: The American Historical Review, Vol. 81, No. 3 (Jun., 1976), p. 618. Published by: American Historical Association. Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1852532) pointed out that, Rauschning's words may be unaccurate and should be treated with cautions.
I would recommend to post a request on WP:RSN to verify if Hermann Rauschning's books can be considered reliable sources.--Paul Siebert (talk) 06:26, 17 October 2009 (UTC)
I did what You have proposed. Thak You again! user:Jäger 01:47 19 October 2009 (CET) —Preceding undated comment added 22:51, 18 October 2009 (UTC).

Soviet decision?

Just quickly read this article looking for something else, and was struck by this sentence "The Soviets decided to make their stand at Stalingrad which was in the path of the advancing German armies." It seem to me that the decision was actually made to defend Moscow, and only later with the realisation that the German offensive, despite deception, was heading into the Caucasus that the Red Army begun to shift forces towards that area of the front, and initially not even Stalingrad. I have looked at some other sources and it seem the Soviet defence of Stalingrad was very much a reaction to German initiative, not an independent decision.--Koakhtzvigad (talk) 22:12, 10 September 2009 (UTC)

You are right. However, under "The Soviets decided to make their stand at Stalingrad" the article seems to mean the decision that was made after Hitler's Fall Blau started.
Generally speaking, the section is organized incorrectly. First, it is out of chronological order: it is composed of three different sub-parts, Pacific, Eastern front and Mediterranean, that are placed arbitrarily. In actuality, these sections, that tells about a turn of a WWII's tide should concentrate on three major turning points: a turn in Pacific (Midway, etc), a turn in Africa (El-Alamein and Torch) and a turn in the Eastern Front (Stalingrad). Since they followed in that chronological order, it would be correct to re-organize the text.
Secondly, it is necessary to show the connection between EF and Africa. It is well known that beginning of Torch approximately coincided with the halt of the German offensive in Stalingrad. Although it would be incorrect to attribute the German decision to stop their EF offensive to Torch exclusively, it is well known that German Luftflotte 4 was withdrawn to Mediterranean, that might facilitate the Soviet's Uranus. Anyway, like Hasky, Torch could be a straw that broke a camel's back, and this connection should be shown (similar to Kursk-Hasky).
And finally, the story of Blau-Stalingrad, the largest, bloodiest and the most important WWII battle deserves to be discussed in more details. We can tell about an almost deadly Stalin's mistake (a wrong prediction of the direction of the German offensive), about a suicidal Hitler's decision to split his troops for a double-prong attack (to Baku oil field, that provided 90% of Soviet oil, and to Stalingrad, an important industrial center (T-34), and a huge transport hub, connecting Caucasus with European Russia), we can tell about a desperate Manstein's attempt to liberate Paulis' 6th army (this battle alone exceeded the Battle of El-Alamein), and how that failed attempt nevertheless lead to failure of the Soviet plans to strike to Rostov and thereby cut all German troops in North Caucasus.
I believe, the section can and should be improved.--Paul Siebert (talk) 00:39, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

Wouldn't it be better in the beginning to date the start from the german invasion of Poland! On September 1939 and then the declarations of war by Britain and France on 3 September instead of just saying "subsequently?" That is very vague, leaving open the options of declarations later that day or months later. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 93.97.194.138 (talk) 06:53, 15 September 2009 (UTC)

duplication of images with article and infobox

Currently 5 of 6 infobox images (only exception being Marching German police during Anschluss) are also in article text, which seems to be relatively pointless duplication as there should be no shortage of WW II related pictures.--Staberinde (talk) 12:07, 23 September 2009 (UTC)

Correct. In addition, the present collage may have some copyright problems (the Khaldei's photo is not a free image). I recall we discussed that issue before, however, I cannot find the talk page archives ##31, 32, where the discussion is supposed to be.--Paul Siebert (talk) 22:45, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
PS. I found it. The Khaldei's photo was removed from Commons as it's been determined to not be in the public domain[12]. Therefore, if I am not wrong, we cannot use this collage.--Paul Siebert (talk) 22:51, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
Interesting, well creating collage doesn't seem to be actually very complicated so replacing it shouldn't be technically very difficult(I personally think that Anschluss picture should be also thrown out and replaced with something from actual war), although if collage itself needs to changed and not images on article, then discussion probably belongs more to Template talk:WW2InfoBox.--Staberinde (talk) 19:37, 9 October 2009 (UTC)
Some photo from Berlin (late April-May 1945) is absolutely required because it is one of key events. Anschluss is much less significant.
With regards to the discussion about the collage, if it really violates copyright it should be replaced with the previous one, and after that the discussion can be continued.--Paul Siebert (talk) 21:16, 9 October 2009 (UTC)
I am really not competent to comment situation with copyright :) But anyway it seems that previous collage was kicked out for similar reason Talk:World_War_II#collage so it probably wouldn't be suitable replacement.--Staberinde (talk) 22:17, 9 October 2009 (UTC)

the Soviets renounced Soviet–Polish Non-Aggression Pact

The newly added statement:

"the Soviets renounced Soviet–Polish Non-Aggression Pact and launched their own invasion of eastern Poland"

is incorrect. The USSR didn't need to renounce the pact because it never declared a war on Poland. The USSR declared that as a result of German invasion Polish state ceased to exist, so the Red Army had to enter eastern Part of former Poland to protect and liberate Ukrainian and Belorussian population there. That was the official pretext for Soviet invasion.--Paul Siebert (talk) 15:10, 7 October 2009 (UTC)

incorrect file

thum The caption on the page of ww2 is writen as Body disposal at Unit 731, the Japanese biological warfare research unit. However, the file Description writen as Picture of Manchurian Plague victims in 1910 -1911 that has been historically mislabeled as "Body disposal at Unit 731" A much higher resolution photo, with Russian text stating that these were "Dead plague bodies held in storage awaiting scientific research" can be seen here:http://hahn.zenfolio.com/p933515793/h2e4b7519#h2e4b7519. The file date also writen as 1910 -1911. WW2 is not the time. And Unit 731 is not exist at the time. We should move the incorrect file.--Bukubku (talk) 17:07, 7 October 2009 (UTC)

That doesn't seem like the most reliable of websites. Do you have any other reliable sources stating this? Obviously, if this is true, we need to alter the picture's caption and move it. But we do need reliable sources. Skinny87 (talk) 17:19, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
The site is reliable or not, the site writen about the picture as The Manchurian Plague 1910-11 (2) . There is no relavant to war crime. The user who up load the file seems bad faith.--Bukubku (talk) 17:26, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
The photo's caption is a part of the full (non cropped) image, and, according to the caption's grammar, the caption was made before 1918. So the only question is if the photo is a forgery. Taking into account that the full photo (http://hahn.zenfolio.com/p933515793/h2e4b7519#h2e4b7519) has much better resolution, than the cropped image, it isn't. In addition, the link where the cropped photo was taken from (http://www2.rnw.nl/rnw/en/currentaffairs/region/asiapacific/jap020827.html) is dead, so the initial claim (body disposal at Unit 731) is fully unsupported. The image should be removed.--Paul Siebert (talk) 17:39, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
Thank you for your understanding and good research. Thank you.--Bukubku (talk) 17:47, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
Righto, well that seems all correct, it should be removed. Skinny87 (talk) 18:09, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
Thank you Bukubku for noticing the inconsistency. --Paul Siebert (talk) 22:41, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
It is my fail, I didn’t check photo, when reupload it from some Wiki-project. --A.I. (talk) 16:26, 8 October 2009 (UTC)

Timeline

I noticed that on the timeline there are zero mention on the China front, kind of odd considering that 36 Japanese dvisions and 44 mixed brigades, or about 1.3 million men and 67% of Japanese Army were fighting in China by 1941! DCTT (talk) 15:42, 10 October 2009 (UTC)

Based on the numbers of troops involved the China front is comparable with Siege of Leningrad (25 German divisions were involved there initially and 20 by the end of the siege, and, obviously, military capabilities of one German division were higher than those of one Japanese division). Nevertheless, the siege is mentioned only twice in the article, whereas a separate section is devoted in the article to the Chinese theatre, and China, especially Operation Ichi-Go and battles of Changsha etc, is mentioned many times. My conclusion is that the balance is more than observed. --Paul Siebert (talk) 20:10, 10 October 2009 (UTC)
The article is fine, I am referring to the timeline in Template:World War II, based on its current state there seems to be nothing going on in China from 1939 - 1945. DCTT (talk) 06:58, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
Although continuous resistance to JIA was an important contribution of ROC into Allied war efforts, I don't understand which separate events in China deserve mentioning. Only very important events are supposed to be included into the template. However, maybe you have some idea on that account?--Paul Siebert (talk) 07:16, 11 October 2009 (UTC)

Recent Labattblueboy's edits.

Labattblueboy explained the changes he made as follows (on my talk page):

"Edits made because of image bunching. Eastern Front and Guadalcanal previously linked in artcle. All the best."

My comments:

(i) Eastern front links are not identical. Each of them is the link to certain Eastern front's section. Taking into account the Eastern front article's size, I believe, this is helpful.
(ii) I agree that two identical Guadalcanal links are redundant.
(iii) Removal of the picture from the article because it duplicate the image form a collage in general is correct. However, the present collage may have some copyright violation problem (at least, it has not been carefully chacked AFAIK) and, probably, will be replaced with something else. Therefore I propose not to remove duplicated images from the article until the collage issue is completely resolved. In the event if the collage is decided to be appropriate, several picture from the article will have to be replaced. However, I oppose to their removal (probably, besides the Hiroshima) picture. The removed picture should be replaced by some other pictures from the same theatre.--Paul Siebert (talk) 21:03, 14 October 2009 (UTC)
I haven't seen a GA, A or FA where multiple links to the same page, even if they are different sub-sections, is considered acceptable. The image was removed because of bunching not because it's a duplicate. The image's right justification results in a large white space in IE browsing. I like the image but it's problematic with right justification and since you don't start a section with an image at left justification it was removed until which time it is no longer an issue. Please stop inserting additional subpage edits without consensus. --Labattblueboy (talk) 22:41, 14 October 2009 (UTC)
Your understanding of consensus is somewhat odd. Since it were you who changed the stable article's version the burden of proof rests with you. I can also refer to the normal WP:BRD procedure. In addition, there is a consensus among those who edit this article that all disputable changes should be discussed on the talk page before they are made. I am ready to discuss the proposed changes, however, the old version should be restored until a consensus is achieved.--Paul Siebert (talk) 23:23, 14 October 2009 (UTC)
PS. With regards to multiple links, I don't think some strict policy exists on that account. Of course, some guidelines may recommend avoiding multiple links, however, WP always recommend to ignore any rules and to use common sense when it is necessary. In this particular case, I believe, common rules are hardly applicable: this summary style article deals with enormous amount of facts and events, and I see no problem to repeat some links, especially if these links are the links to another huge article.--Paul Siebert (talk) 23:31, 14 October 2009 (UTC)
PPS "The image was removed because of bunching not because it's a duplicate." Such an explanation is hardly reasonable. The logical continuation of such an argument would be removal of a piece of text because of bad formatting. The easiest way to resolve the problem with the image is to change its position. I've done that, and I believe your IE renders the page without problems now.--Paul Siebert (talk) 23:42, 14 October 2009 (UTC)
I removed the links because they were of the sort:[[Eastern Front (World War II)|second winter counter-offensive]]. That does the reader no good. If you want to link to a specific section (which I see has now been done for a couple of them), fine. But linking to the top of a very broad article with the intention of pointing to a specific portion is not a good idea, because it'll just confuse readers. Ideally, Eastern Front should only be linked the first time the words "Eastern Front" are mentioned; every other link should point to a sub-article. For instance, link to Korsun–Shevchenkovsky Offensive instead of piping Eastern_Front_(World_War_II)#Autumn_and_Winter_1943.E2.80.9344. Parsecboy (talk) 00:51, 15 October 2009 (UTC)
I don't see the value in multiple links to the Eastern Front article - these events should be linked directly to the individual articles on them (or red links if there isn't an article yet - though if something is here it should also have its own article by now). Multiple links to the same article should be avoided unless there's a good reason to include them, and I don't think that's at all the case here. Nick-D (talk) 00:55, 15 October 2009 (UTC)
Theoretically you are right, (and I even tried to do that when I worked on the present version of this section) however, it is not always clear for me how to do it technically. For instance, I don't know how to link a Soviet winter counter-offensive (1941) to some single article. Remember, this counter-offensive started along 1000 miles long front, and there is no single article about it in WP. As a result, at least two articles ( Battle of Moscow and Second Battle of Kharkov) should be linked there. If you have any idea how to do it, please, explain me. Otherwise, the old (my) version of the link should be restored.
In addition, again, I don't see why multiple links to different section of some huge article should be avoided. For instance, it is not easy to find a relevant section in so large article as the EF article.--Paul Siebert (talk) 01:35, 15 October 2009 (UTC)
Linking to different sections of large articles is undesirable as the names of the sections in the target article will change over time, making the links invalid. Nick-D (talk) 01:42, 15 October 2009 (UTC)

World War II Navbox

I'm not sure if this has anything to do with the above discussion, however an editor changed the state of this Navbox a couple of weeks ago (30 Sept), and it really screwed up the effect of the {{FixBunching}} templates in my IE7 browser. There was waay too much whitespace in the lede between the text and the first Infobox. Before 30 Sept, the state of Template:World War II had been set equal to "autocollapse". I sandboxed it all and found that the FixBunching effect is much improved when Template:WWII is in the autocollapse state. So I changed the state back to autocollapse. Hope this helps.
 —  .`^) Paine Ellsworthdiss`cuss (^`.  00:49, 15 October 2009 (UTC)

Just completed a few more minor improvements to this template. By the way, I forgot to mention that this is the Navbox template that is "nested" at the very bottom of the 2nd Infobox. It should now be hidden until you click on the "show" link. When you do that, it makes the whole box wider, but at least now the columns are in better alignment, especially in the "monobook" skin that most people use.

Here's a tip... if you edit in a skin other than monobook, a quick way to see how your edit looks in monobook is to add...

?useskin=monobook

to the URL. For example the URL for this page would become...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:World_War_II?useskin=monobook

And you can set "?useskin= to any of the skins to see the differences.
 —  .`^) Paine Ellsworthdiss`cuss (^`.  03:18, 15 October 2009 (UTC)

Minor additions

I would like to propose the following additions:

"and the Vietnamese famine of 1944–45.[265]"
"Victory was achieved at a huge cost: between 1939 and 1945, 3,500 Allied ships were sunk (gross tonnage 14.5 million) at a cost of 783 German U-boats.[310]"

http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=World_War_II&diff=320066278&oldid=319926040

2 short sentences contain useful information, 2 images are completely relevant. Any objections to adding it in?

Tobby72 (talk) 19:03, 16 October 2009 (UTC)

I agree with including the Vietnamese famine and the photo of the partisans being hanged (as this section is presently unillustrated). I don't think that the proposed material on the Battle of the Atlantic casualties should be included (as casualties for individual campaigns aren't mentioned in the article and adding this across the board would lead to a massive expansion of the article while greatly reducing its readability) and the photo of a diorama depicting the siege of Leningrad isn't necessary - this section has lots of photos and a photo of a model doesn't add much value to the article. Nick-D (talk) 22:23, 17 October 2009 (UTC)


Again: Hermann Rauschning.

I have directed a request to the WP:RSN whether "Die Entdeutschung Westpreußens und Posens" can be quoted on Wikipedia. The answer was - as a whole - positive (see there point 6 "Hemann rauschning"). It can be used if verbatim quotes are made with the english translation and with the remark that Rauschning was politically contentious. The problem is that the polish atrocities against the geman minority in the lost territories after wwI belong essentially to the background of wwII and it should be found a way to include these facts into this article. It is undeniable that already the peace nobel-laureate Gustav Stresemann not excluded a possible war against poland in order to protect the german minority ("There will be no treaty of Locarno in the east"). user:Jäger 22:15, 25 October 2009 (CET)

Again, I don't think that they're important enough to include here. A source which can only be used with a note stating that it's contentious doesn't seem at all suitable either here given that the article is written at a very high level and doesn't have room for dueling points of view. Nick-D (talk) 06:08, 26 October 2009 (UTC)

Meanwhile it has turned out that Rauschning joined the nazi party not before 1932 Brockhaus Enzyklopädie Vol. 22 recent print-edition page 578. So the only argument existing against "Die Entdeutschung " is totally refuted. Most probably Rauschning became a nazi because he feared to lose all political influence in his home city Danzig when he would not join it. The statement that he has supported this party since the twenties, given in the Rauschning artice, is completely unsourced and has to be removed. user:Jäger 00:02, 30 October 2009 (CET)

Ugh, please see the discussion here [13]. The fact that he first wrote his book and then joined the Nazis doesn't make him any more reliable. Also it is not the only argument. He also published a book full of imagined and false conversations he supposedly had with Hitler for one thing. And then there's like 6 other arguments for why this is unreliable (not to mention way UNDUE). But the Nazi thing is the most obvious one.radek (talk) 23:09, 29 October 2009 (UTC)
The old collage was much better, but a few persistent Wikipedians replaced it with the thing you see now. Sole Flounder (talk) 01:41, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
The present collage shows (i) the African theatre (Britain vs Germany and Italy), (ii) Asian theatre (Japan vs Chinese civilians), (iii) Eastern Front (the USSR vs European Axis), (iv) Pacific theatre (Japan vs the USA), (v) a final battle in Germany (battle of Berlin, the USSR vs Germany) and (vi) the battle of Atlantic (Germany vs the USA, or the UK). Obviously, since about one third of all WWII losses were sustained by China, the picture of Chinese civilians' massacre should be there. Talking into account that about a half of all WWII land battles took place in Eastern front, at least two pictures from EF should be in the collage. Which of remaining three pictures should be removed in your opinion, an which pictures should be inserted instead of them?--Paul Siebert (talk) 02:46, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
This collage must go on several grounds. I was quite surprised to see it. 1) It's been nominated for deletion since 7 June 2009. 2) A collage source for this photo is "BuriedAlive.jpg", which has been deleted, so that nobody can check what it's about, when it happened, or whether it is properly copyright justified, 3) It includes a grotesque scene casting one particular group as outstandingly "evil", where, as I recall, the Japanese, Nazis and Soviets would all bury people alive, 4) This is an article that is highly likely to be seen by young children, and the image is inappropriate, 5) There are no dates, but with the choice of subject the photos aren't well ordered, e.g., the Japanese planes -- echoing Pearl Harbor to the later war, would come before the Soviets in Berlin. 6) The number of dead in a particular theater is not pertinent to photo selection. What is pertinent are the signal events of the war -- ones that English speaking readers associate with it today. Not where editors have an international political axe to grind. There should at least be: an atomic bomb exploding, D-Day, aerial shots of Battle of Britain, a bombed out city. 7) The photos themselves are poorly chosen, even given that particular events are agreed as central. The bunker shot is practically incomprehensible, the "buried alive" shot shows a tiny bunch of figures where the activity is unclear. Planes on a flight deck are nowhere near as evocative as bombing Pearl Harbor or a sea battle. The troops in the desert are a soldiers in positions that could be any of a dozen wars, rather than showing action, or place. A U-boat picture should show a U-boat and a ship sinking.
This collage shows a poor appreciation of the audience, represents events poorly, and uses images that are either deleted from Wikipedia or are nominated for deletion. Piano non troppo (talk) 14:34, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
On refection, the collage has been removed because there is no defense for using an image whose copyright status cannot be established. Please comment on the Template discussion page? [14]. Piano non troppo (talk) 18:59, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Oh, goody. Now we have no picture there, for one of the highest-read articles on en.wikipedia, which I'm sure lots of ips will subsequently complain about. You could have at least replaced it with something else before taking down the collage - which was done without consensus, by the way. Skinny87 (talk) 19:03, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Thank you for your comment Skinny87. I have replaced the collage with an earlier one that has no copyright issues that I could discern. (I'm making no statement in my selection, I just am following up on Skinny87's observation.)Piano non troppo (talk) 19:31, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

(od)Re: "I recall, the Japanese, Nazis and Soviets would all bury people alive" I am unaware of documented mass killings of civilians committed by the Soviets, I mean in scales exceeding the Katyn' massacre. By contrast, Japanese and Germans killed millions. However, if sources available for you allow you to state that the Soviets buried civilians alive, you probably can add that into the Soviet war crimes article, because in its present form the article contains not much well documented facts and numbers.
With regards to the collage, the new collage looks better because the previous one was composed of the battle pictures only. This collage contains more iconic pictures, and I like it more. The only problem is that there out of six collage's pictures duplicate the pictures from the article: the Stalingrad picture, the Berlin picture and the picture of the atomic explosion. Although the latter is no identical to the Hiroshima's picture, I doubt we need more than two atomic explosion pictures in the article. If the new collage will be supported we will need to think about the replacement of the article's pictures. For now I propose to remove the Hiroshima picture from the Allied victory section, because the picture of Japanese surrender (the final event of the War) is quite sufficient.
Re: "What is pertinent are the signal events of the war -- ones that English speaking readers associate with it today." Absolutely incorrect. The purpose of this article is not to support the existing stereotypes, but to tell truth about the war. Tellign fairy tails to please the English speaking audience's ear is a Hollywood's goal. We Wikipedians work based on reliable sources and we must limit ourselwes with what they say.--Paul Siebert (talk) 01:58, 8 September 2009 (UTC

GA nom?

So is this article ready for another GA nomination? if not please post what eles must be done to improve it to GA status.--Coldplay Expert 00:56, 26 October 2009 (UTC)

I see some problems with the article that I would like to fix/discuss in close future.
First, the "Axis advances" section contains a dubious statement:
"The Soviet Union expressed interest in joining the Tripartite Pact, sending a modified draft to Germany in November, offering a very German-favourable economic deal;[116] while Germany remained silent on the former, they accepted the latter.[117]"
This statement is factually incorrect (the initiative to start Nazi-Soviet talks belonged to Hitler, not Stalin), and, more important, we agreed earlier that failed negotiation should be excluded from the article (similar to what we did with Anglo-Franco-Soviet triple talks). However, some editor vehemently opposed to removal of this sentence, without providing any new arguments. To indicate that the section has some biased statements I introduced the neutrality tag, however, no one expressed a desire to join a discussion so far. I believe this issue should be resolved (preferably, by simple deletion of the sentence) before GA nomination.
Resolved: removed sentence.
The second issue is the "Tide turns" section. I described the problem recently here[15].
The section "Axis collapse, Allied victory" also needs some work. First, when we modified the "Allies close in" section, we moved the Yugoslavian events there (they were tightly connected with Jassy-Kishinev operation), so the text it the "Axis collapse" section simply repeats the same information (that is out of chron order there). Second, the undue weight is given to the Battle of the Bulge. The section states:
"On December 16, 1944, Germany attempted its last desperate measure for success by marshaling German reserves to launch a massive counteroffensive in the Ardennes to attempt to split the Western Allies, encircle large portions of Western Allied troops and capture their primary supply port at Antwerp in order to prompt a political settlement.[118] The offensive was spearheaded by Germany's top army group and over one million total soldiers fought in the battles.[118] The offensive had been repulsed by January with no strategic objectives fulfilled.[118]"
The statement " Germany attempted its last desperate measure for success by marshaling German reserves to launch a massive counteroffensive in the Ardennes" is false, because the last major German offensive launched during World War II was Operation Frühlingserwachen.
Resolved: added the words on the western front in the battle of the bulge section
The statement "The offensive was spearheaded by Germany's top army group and over one million total soldiers fought in the battles" is misleading because it creates a wrong impression about total scale of the European theatre's battles: by the number of troops involved the Battle of Bulge was similar to the Vistula–Oder Offensive, smaller than the Battle of Berlin, Prague Offensive, East Prussian Offensive taken separately (leaving East Pomeranian Offensive and Silesian Offensives beyond the scope). However, since the Battle of the Bulge was the only major battle in the West during that time, it is absolutely incorrect to make a stress on over one million total soldiers fought in the battles.
Resolved: removed sentence about one million men
Thirdly, the fact that the Vistula-Oder offensive had the direct impact on the Bulge is ignored in the article (although the connection between Kursk and Hasky has been shown). This also has to be fixed.
Resolved: reworded section
I also have some other minor points, however, I would prefer to talk about them later.--Paul Siebert (talk) 02:15, 26 October 2009 (UTC)
OK, thanks for the help ill try to get to some of those soon.--Coldplay Expert 10:30, 26 October 2009 (UTC)
Fixed the problem about the Ardens offensive being the last major offensive.--Coldplay Expert 11:02, 26 October 2009 (UTC)
I've just removed this claim "The failure of the Ardennes Offensive was largely due to Germany haveing to move several of its forces to the east to meet the oncoming Soviet offensive in Poland". This is totally wrong. Most histories I've read argue that the Ardennes offensive failed before it began as the Germans didn't have sufficient fuel to reach their objectives, lacked the strength to defeat the highly motivated and good-quality Allied units they faced once they recovered from the shock of the attack and were totally exposed to air attack when the weather cleared up. The US and British counterattacks were also very successful and resulted in huge numbers of Germans being taken prisoner. Arguing that the Ardennes offensive failed mainly because Germany was fighting on two fronts is nonsense. Nick-D (talk) 09:56, 28 October 2009 (UTC)
I've also just removed " The offensive was spearheaded by one of Germany's top army groups". As Army Groups were assigned regions rather than a core of units, there was no such thing as a "top Army group". The Army Group responsible for the offensive happened to be the one whose territory covered the area. It's relative quality at the time (which wasn't actually very good) was due to better than average units being transferred to it for the offensive. Moreover, the implioed claim that this was a good Army group is miss leading as the quality wasn't really very high - while there were some good units involved, the Wehrmacht forces for the Ardennes Offensive makes it clear that most of the units were low-ish quality infantry (including several volksgrenadier divisions which were decidedly second-rate). Nick-D (talk) 10:04, 28 October 2009 (UTC)
Re: "This is totally wrong." I agree that Ardennes Offensive failed before the Soviets attacked in the East. However, some connection between East and West did exist, similar to the connection between Stalingrad and Torch, and Kursk and Husky: although eastern Hitler's offensives in 1942 and 1943 essentially failed before the Allied offensives started, the latters prevented Hitler from sening reinforcements to the East. In 1945, the situation was a reverse: Vistula-Oder offensive, that started immediately after the Ardennes Offensive's failure, deprived Hitler of any reserve to stabilize Western front after his offensive had been repulsed. I believe, the connection between Ardennes and Vistula should be shown in the same way we did for Kursk-Husky.--Paul Siebert (talk) 14:12, 28 October 2009 (UTC)
BTW, Dawid Glantz writes:
"Then the main offensive, which was tentatively scheduled to begin between 15 and 20 January 1945 but began on 13 January to relieve German pressure on the Allies in the Battle of the Bulge."
Although some scholar argue that in actuality Stalin planned to start the offensive on 13 January from the very beginning, the fact that the offensive really relieved the German pressure in the west is obvious.
To reflect that, to eliminate some residual West to East disbalance, and to remove the events already mentioned in the previous section, I propose the following changes to the first para:
"On December 16, 1944, Germany attempted its last desperate measure for success on the Western Front by marshaling German reserves to launch a massive counteroffensive in the Ardennes to attempt to split the Western Allies, encircle large portions of Western Allied troops and capture their primary supply port at Antwerp in order to prompt a political settlement.[118] The offensive had been repulsed by January with no strategic objectives fulfilled.[118] Few days after that the Soviets launched a major offensive in Poland, taking much of Poland, destroying the German Army Group A and striking deep within the borders of the Reich. The overextended Soviet troops were ordered to halt just 36 miles from the capital Berlin. Simultaneously, the Red Army attacked heavily fortified East Prussia, trapping and destroying a large amount of German troops there.[119]In Italy, the Western Allies remained stalemated at the German defensive line."
In addition, let me point at the another issue: after the new collage has been introduced into the article, the pictures there duplicate the pictures from the article. We have either to replace the collage (that is undesirable, the collage seems good for me) or to think about replacement of some article pictures.--Paul Siebert (talk) 15:11, 28 October 2009 (UTC)

The map of German conquests

German and other Axis conquests (in blue) in Europe, during World War II.

This map, that shows the Axis' maximal territorial expansion, is beyond the section's scope: the section tells mostly about 1940 events, whereas Southern Russia, Caucasus and Southern France were conquered two years later. I believe, it should be replaced with the 1940 map. I also think that addition of similar maps to all other sections would be useful and informative.--Paul Siebert (talk) 05:20, 26 October 2009 (UTC)

Yeah, maps would be much more useful than photos. Do you have any maps in mind? (those from the US Military Academy would probably be the best bet in my view - they're available here and are public domain, accurate and provide good coverage of non-US forces. Nick-D (talk) 06:04, 26 October 2009 (UTC)
I agree, we need maps for both stages, they can be really usefull for readers who want to know what is happening on a global and even regional scale, things which historical pictures cannot do. (now I still think that thepictures are good as well) One more thing, are there any maps for Asia?--Coldplay Expert 10:29, 26 October 2009 (UTC)
Here's a really good map from that website showing the german offensives in the balkans. The Balkans 1941.PNG Feel free to put this anywere you guys think it is appropriate.--Coldplay Expert 10:44, 26 October 2009 (UTC)
I believe, the good idea would be to introduce animated maps, e.g. this one (world scale):
400px
and that one (for the European theatre only):
Second world war europe animation small.gif
They both can be included, because important territorial changes in Europe are almost invisible on the first map, whereas the second map is too local. Of course, it would be better to split them onto several animated gifs that would cover the periods described in the corresponding sections (and the last map should be translated from German), however, it seems to be doable if the major idea is accepted.--Paul Siebert (talk) 02:12, 27 October 2009 (UTC)
I see, maybe the map about the balkans should be added to the Balkan Campaign. The second map that you posted is way too slow, is there any way to speed it up? As for the first map, I vote we put it in right now.--Coldplay Expert 10:36, 27 October 2009 (UTC)

Actually I don't think the Balkans map is very good for a basic-level reader; it seems to hold more interest for expert readers that want to know what units were deployed, and along what specific lines they were advancing. This may be interesting for the detail article for the campaign, but not for the broad-scale article; a mnap for this paragraph should just show big arrows from Austria/Ostmark, Hungary, Rumania and Bulgary pointing into Yugoslavia and Greece. The way the map looks in the article now (without blowing it up); it is just a geography map of the region, with hardly any relevance to the subject. JurSchagen (talk) 11:17, 27 October 2009 (UTC)

OK i moved the map to the main article about the Balkan Campaign, I think I will upload all of those maps and put them in to their respective articles.--Coldplay Expert 18:36, 27 October 2009 (UTC)
well I fixed the problems that were mentioned above, Ill leave it up to another user to remove the tag about POV. Is there anything else that is needed in order to reach GA class?--Coldplay Expert 22:41, 27 October 2009 (UTC)

I would be generally very careful with animated maps, especially with the one that depicts whole world. There have been some issues with their accuracy in past. On the one that Paul showed Belgian Kongo and part Netherlands East Indies for example join war before Netherlands and Belgium themselves did. Also status of some middle east countries colored like independent members of allies and not like colonies/occupied territories may be disputable.--Staberinde (talk) 16:25, 28 October 2009 (UTC)

Pre-war Italy

Background section: The role of Italy in the years before the war and its gradual sliding into the Axis camp is described pretty vague. For example, in describing 1934 events, there is mention of "French allowed Italy a free hand in Ethiopia", while two paragraphs down it says that in 1935 "Germany was the the only major European nation supporting [Italy's actual invasion of Ethiopia]. " Subsequently, several steps taking them into the Axis are described, but there's no hint as to the "why" of this swing.

I would suggest adding a seperate paragraph about this, along the lines of:

While the fascist ideology of Italy's regime had much in common with the nazism in Germany, Italy didn't support German expansionist ambitions from the start, because she feared these would block her own foreign ambitions. Italy tried to barter anti-German support for territorial concessions with the Western democracies first. France and Britain had an ambivalent stance towards this: even though they wanted Italian support against Gemany, they didn't want Italian expansion in Africa. Thus, while the Allies seemed to agree to Italian expansion during 1933/1934, allowing Italy a free hand in Ethopia, this support was withdrawn when Italy actually invaded, shaming them before the League of Nations. Italy was very disppointed by this, and immediatly began tightening relations with Germany, which eventually led to a full alliance with Germany (Axis). JurSchagen (talk) 12:08, 27 October 2009 (UTC)

I believe the proposed text is correct and relevant to the article.--Paul Siebert (talk) 15:17, 28 October 2009 (UTC)
That seems rather lengthy to me (especially as it only covers the early 1930s) and it needs citations. Moreover, there aren't entire paragraphs on covering only any of the other major participants, so why start with Italy? I'd also seriously question whether the Ethiopian crisis "shamed" France and Britain; they weren't the ones who invaded Ethiopia and actually had the strong support of the League for imposing various penalties on Italy after the invasion (Ethiopia was also a member of the league). Nick-D (talk) 10:15, 29 October 2009 (UTC)
Ah, that's a mis-phrasing then, and indeed it leads to an easy mis-read - I meant Italy was shamed, not UK/Fr, so that needs rephrasing if it gets agreed on in general terms.
As for the separate paragraph, it might interest readers to know that the Axis might never have formed. Most other major nations (except USSR which is extensively covered I believe) had a more or less clear " alignment" long before the war, Italy is the exception. JurSchagen (talk) 11:28, 29 October 2009 (UTC)

Germany signing Versailles

  • sigh*

Current "Background" section reads: " In the aftermath of World War I, a defeated Germany signed the Treaty of Versailles.[4] "

Yesterday I changed the "signed" to "was forced to sign", but this was reverted because it was an undiscussed change, with the note "Germany could have restarted the war" in the comment. (Note, this would put a different light on the clause "defeated Germany" as well)

I propose to make this change again; a basic-level reader might think some German government just volunteered to the draconic Versailles terms... JurSchagen (talk) 16:21, 28 October 2009 (UTC)

I don't agree. The change isn't necessary and seems to present Germany as a victim. Nick-D (talk) 10:06, 29 October 2009 (UTC)
The current text is suggesting a free choice of action which isn't accurate. Germany was defeated and had no choice but signing. Historians tend to agree that Germany WAS a victim here, taking all the blame for a war that was everybody's fault. Since there are no other opinions, changing the text now. JurSchagen (talk) 10:50, 5 November 2009 (UTC)
I've just reverted your change. The current text was developed as part of a re-write of the article involving lots of editors, and you're the only person who wants to change it. More views on this would, of course, be great though. I don't agree that "historians tend to agree" that Germany was a victim; I've read widely on WW1 and its aftermath and haven't noticed any such consensus (some historians argue that the Versailles conditions were relatively mild compared to those suffered by other defeated countries during this historical period, for instance). Nick-D (talk) 10:58, 5 November 2009 (UTC)
When was this rewrite done? I've just been going back to may 2008 and the phrase was there then. It is easy to miss a phrase like this on a rewrite of a large article like this, even with a team of editors; it doesn't necessarily mean that it was a consensus phrasing.
The fact that other nations were treated even harsher doesn't change the fact that the blame was taken to the losing side, and Germany was the major loser. Outside Germany, Versailles revisionism started in Britain asearly as the late twenties/early thirties; it was partly why there was no response to flagrant violations of Versailles by Hitler (re-militarization of the Rhineland, creation of the Luftwaffe, etc); this was seen as "Germany having a point". I'd say that today, it is recognized that the Wilson doctrine (nation states created by regional majority votes) wasn't fully applied to peoples of the losing side (e.g. Sudeten, parts of Hungary), that the war damages payment wrecked the German economy, that Weimar had to fail given the limited political manoevring space, and harsh Versailles measures (damaging German national pride in the prrocess) indirectly led to the rise to power of Hitler. Do you really want me to source that? JurSchagen (talk) 11:37, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

Actually a former version of the text included a similar phrase. It was removed here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=World_War_II&action=historysubmit&diff=204846282&oldid=204600851

This seems to be a period of many edits to the article. I couldn't find any discussion thread on the subject on the talk page in this period. The changing user doesn't appear on a search of the talk page in the period. I'd say this hardly qualifies as a consensus opinion of a team of editors. JurSchagen (talk) 12:00, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

info on japanese helmet

i would like to ask for information on japan big gun # 5. i have found a helmet from i belive to be wwii.inside the writing was translated to say big gun # 5.this helmet has a solid green padded cover on tha outside with a yellow ship anchor patch, also the web inside has pouches with what i belive to rice in them any help would be very greatful for thank you —Preceding unsigned comment added by 173.20.208.189 (talk) 18:49, 28 October 2009 (UTC)

I think that this question would be best asked at Wikipedia:Reference desk/Humanities. This page is intended for discussing this article only. Nick-D (talk) 21:51, 28 October 2009 (UTC)

How can I edit the Info box?

I want to put in something about the complete destruction of the Nazi and Fascist schools of thought. I think it would be good under "results." Fusion7 (talk) 15:50, 29 October 2009 (UTC)

As terrible as it may sound, the Nazia and Fascist schools of thought have not been totally destroyed, there are several pro-Nazi and Fascist groups in the USA even today.--Coldplay Expert 18:19, 29 October 2009 (UTC)
I was thinking about that when I wrote my question. I came to the conclusion that since a political ideology can't truely disappear, (There will always be somoneone) it "dies" when it becomes completely marginalized. Such is the case fo the neo nazis and facists. They have become stigmatized. Perhaps I should have been clearer. Fusion7 (talk) 21:19, 29 October 2009 (UTC)
Because of this I dont really think that it should ne put into the info box. There is just no need for it.--Coldplay Expert 23:28, 29 October 2009 (UTC)
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