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View from Ostankino Tower.

I am back. Happy 88th OT!

This break from blogging, which was not 100% voluntary, gave me the chance to reflect on my content and how I can improve it going forwards. Though it may not seem like it at this moment, my output has been steadily increasing the past few years. I went up from ~130 blog posts in 2015/2016, to 262 in 2017, 341 in 2018, and 244 this year to date (so I am still just on track to beat last year’s record). Visitorship has been booming. So overall, I think the blog has been a success.

But there’s one problem that increasingly concerns me. I only have so much time and energy for writing every week (amidst other commitments), so this creates a tradeoff between “r-selected” and “K-selected” output. And looking back, I do feel that my output has veered too far towards the former. In terms of such “value added” content, perhaps the one bright spot is my travel reviews. Otherwise, I only produced ~3 articles that qualify as highly K-selected longreads, or “effortposts”, this year (world’s maximum population; animal rights; world scientific production). I want to be producing 1-2 of these per month. Moreover, I only managed to review one book this year out of dozens of deserving candidates. I want to be be doing it at a rate of closer to once per week. Finally, I am rather depressed to have made zero progress on any of my book projects.

Since one can’t get something for nothing, something will have to give. And after mulling over this, I am going to cut out two things that have up till now characterized this blog.

First, there are going to be fewer posts. While that means fewer “shitposts” about memes and autistic drama (it should stay on Twitter), it also means fewer “useful” posts about new scientific articles and topic news stories. At the end of the day, there are at least three other excellent bloggers who offer such coverage in my area of (relative) expertise, intelligence research: James Thompson, Emil Kirkegaard, and Steve Sailer. I will still do the occasional post highlighting some new paper or finding, but only if it is either really groundbreaking (actually Kirkegaard et al.’s latest would qualify) or if I find it inordinately interesting.

As for news, while NNT might be wrong on a lot of things, I consider him to be very correct on the low utility of following the news cycle – 95%+ of it is going to be irrelevant crap that everyone will forget about within a few months. So while I will have something up when the neocons finally consummate their Iran obsession, or even when Americans vote in the next elections, I am no longer going to write something whenever BHL interviews Orban, or Levada releases the latest poll on Russian attitudes towards Jugashvili. Consequently, you may expect my monthly output to go down from my otherwise typical ~30-35 posts to around a dozen. Now there’ll still be an occasional post about some topical news story or important new data/numbers, but I’ll only do them if they personally interest me.

Second, I won’t be participating as much in the discussions. I’ll still keep an eye on them and contribute something from time to time, but I will reduce my participation in debates, and I will no longer conscientiously try to read every last comment (as I have done up till now). However, since a surfeit of enthusiastic and knowledgeable commenters is one of the best features of this community, weekly Open Threads will remain on the menu.

I see several advantages to this rearrangement. First, less frequent but more substantial pieces have a greater chance of becoming influential. Second, this means that visitorship is unlikely to fall; while there’ll be fewer clicks day by day, this should be balanced out whenever an effortpost goes viral. Third, I realized that I don’t really enjoy writing about “newsy” stuff. I would much rather be creating longer content, and since I have the privilege of writing on a website that gives me almost complete editorial freedom, I should take advantage of that.

Anyhow, let me know what you think of this. I am pretty set on this change in tack, but there is still some room for adjustment.

***

Featured

***

Russia

  • *blast from the past* “Well, here’s something: German Foreign Ministry official explaining in March 1991 that NATO “made it clear” to Sovs it wouldn’t expand “beyond the Elbe” and so couldn’t “offer membership of NATO to Poland and the others.”
  • Ben Aris: Which country is the biggest FDI investor into Russia? It’s Cyprus… Not. (It is actually the US).
  • There has been the usual whining and kvetching on a certain anniversary. There’s basically two versions of telling the lead up to WW2 centering on either Munich (pro-Russians) or the Non Aggression Pact (pro-Westerners), and the one you favor is ideologically, not historically, determined.
  • Insomniac Resurrected:
    • Ukraine postpones Census (again). With last one held in 2001, this will fuel even more questions about its real population situation.
    • Ukraine puts the crew of the Crimea-bound passenger airliner that crash-landed into a wheat field onto its “Peacekeeper” hit list.
  • ZoIS: New poll of Donetsk/Lugansk on joining Russia, Ukraine, or autonomy within Ukraine
    • Supporters of direct incorporation into Russia increase relative to the last poll in 2016.
  • Navalny’s daughter is a lesbian (or bi) and went to Stanford to escape her overbearing parents and family drama. Or maybe not and it’s yellow journalism. I don’t really care.
  • Bolton doesn’t want Chinese to acquire Ukraine’s Motor Sich.
  • HK protesters, inspired by the Ukraine, put pans on their heads to own the CPC
  • *powerful take* Bryan MacDonald: Putin losing everything, Putin winning everything

***

World

***

Coffee Salon

***

Culture War

***

Powerful Takes

***

 
• Tags: Admin, Blogging, Open Thread 
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  1. This is the current Open Thread, where anything goes – within reason.

    If you are new to my work, start here.

    • Replies: @RobRich
  2. No problem. These changes are fine by me because while I love reading your articles and twitter and the discussions, it’s honestly quite addicting. I also have a lot of work to look forward to in the future so I need to direct my attention elsewhere. I haven’t made a comment on this site for more than a month anyway. Congrats on the 88th Open Thread if you know what I mean.

    • Replies: @Not Raul
  3. I went up from ~130 blog posts in 2015/2016, to 262 in 2017, 341 in 2018, and 244 this year to date

    Yes, but as you basically admit yourself, there has been very little substantial content this year. Two thirds of 2019 is over and hardly anything announced for 2019 in this thread
    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/11-years-of-blogging/
    has actually been written.
    tbh it’s hard not to get the impression that you’ve lost interest in this blog…not that one can complain, it’s free content after all and your PhD thesis or whatever it is you’re doing is certainly more important than a blog on a fringe website like Unz review which if anything must be something of a career-killer.

    There’s basically two versions of telling the lead up to WW2 centering on either Munich (pro-Russians) or the Non Aggression Pact (pro-Westerners), and the one you favor is ideologically, not historically, determined.

    That’s kind of missing the point. The Soviet Union isn’t criticized so much for the pact itself, but because it proceeded to annex the Baltic states and Eastern Poland (plus the unsuccesful war against Finland) and brought the full range of Bolshevik terror there, with tens of thousands killed and hundreds of thousands deported to labor camps. Sure, it’s not entirely inappropriate to warn against false equivalencies and point out that this wasn’t the same as the Nazi racial terror (which was eventually ended not least by Soviet forces). But there’s no equivalence either between Soviet actions and crimes in 1939-1941 and what Britain and France did at Munich.
    That being said, the way how the recent commemorations in Poland were used to link the events of 80 years ago with the current tensions between the West and Russia is certainly very questionable.

  4. Thomm says:

    I think it is quite salient to point out the vast difference between AK’s views of Andrew Yang, vs. Steve Sailer’s.

    Anatoly Karlin is a fan of Yang, and has done his best to promote him. AK does not think Andrew Yang’s heritage is a huge factor in his candidacy. While Yang’s version of ‘UBI’ is a relatively uncreative idea among the set of ideas out there regarding UBI, Karlin at least recognizes that some form of this idea has merit.

    On the other hand, Steve Sailer, true to his worldview, can only see Andrew Yang as a Chinese person who wants to sneak more Chinese people into the US (that too in the cramped conditions Chinese often come in illegally under) :

    http://www.unz.com/isteve/andrew-yang-should-endorse-this-idea/?highlight=andrew+Yang

    When one sees race in everything, they assume all others do too, and can’t imagine anyone who doesn’t think that way.

    AK has defended Steve Sailer in the past (although those instances had a vibe of ‘I have to defend Sailer’ rather than ‘I want to defend Sailer’).

    But this time, it is instructive to see who is a thinker vs. who is in a relatively lower tier of innate caliber of thought.

    I have often maintained that if one scratches the surface, they see that Steve Sailer is ultimately a 100 IQ blogger catering to an 80 IQ audience.

    His strength is quantity of output, rather than quality. If just one post out of six is good, doing six posts per day still leads to one good one per day. This episode does not help Steve’s defenders argue otherwise.

    • Disagree: Thorfinnsson
    • Replies: @Realist
  5. AP says:

    ZoIS: New poll of Donetsk/Lugansk on joining Russia, Ukraine, or autonomy within Ukraine
    Supporters of direct incorporation into Russia increase relative to the last poll in 2016.

    Yes. It increased from 44.5% to 45.5%.

    However, supporters of integrating these areas back into Ukraine as they were before the war (with no special autonomy) also increased, from 20.6% in 2016 to 23.5% in 2019.

    Support for special autonomy within Ukraine decreased from 35% to 31%.

    Sadly, most of the people living in the Donbas Republics still want to be in Ukraine rather than in Russia (54.5% vs. 45.5%). But they prefer an arrangement that is bad for Ukraine. No thanks.

    Also, the parts of Donbas under Kiev’s control have become more pro-Ukrainian than they were before. 65% of people in those parts want no special autonomy for Donbas.

    So, if all of Donbas were integrated and a vote took place in both the Kiev-controlled parts and the Donbas Republics, incorporation into Ukraine with no special autonomy would win a plurality of the votes.

    • Replies: @Belarusian Anon
    , @Mr. XYZ
  6. I hope this plan works out. Your effort posts are unique, and quantitative blogging has really waned from its 2009-2013 hay day. It’s hard though to find the energy and creativity for this if you’re doing anything approaching a day job. My own personal investigations hit a wall after leaving school. I think there’s a reason those posts tend to be done by students and those not working, and suspect the lower effort posts aren’t eating into your “budget” much.

    If you need energy and a clear mind, maybe do a travel post on an active Russian monastery. Like if you could get a blessing to stay overnight, usually they let you do that. Be keen to read your take and you might be surprised by the medium term effects a monastery stay has on energy and mood.

  7. melanf says:
    @German_reader

    There’s basically two versions of telling the lead up to WW2 centering on either Munich (pro-Russians) or the Non Aggression Pact (pro-Westerners), and the one you favor is ideologically, not historically, determined.

    That’s kind of missing the point. The Soviet Union isn’t criticized so much for the pact itself, but because it proceeded to annex the Baltic states and Eastern Poland (plus the unsuccesful war against Finland) and brought the full range of Bolshevik terror there, with tens of thousands killed and hundreds of thousands deported to labor camps

    This is a clear amalgam in logic – terror in the annex the Baltic states and in “Eastern Poland” is certainly bad thing, but this terror was not the cause of the WWII.

    the unsuccesful war against Finland

    The war showed poor quality of the red Army, but by the results of the war, this war was definitely successful

  8. On ‘Russian-Jewish mafias helping run the USA’ claims, as, for example, advanced by Gordon Duff (self-disclosed as Jewish) of Veterans Today

    And in fact having their ‘mole’ in charge of the most important branch of the USA Justice Department

    On Medium:
    ‘Donald J. Trump is a longtime money-launderer who remains beholden to the Russian mob’s “boss of bosses” Semion Mogilevich’

    The above article, by John Bernstein, is noteworthy for avoiding saying that Semion (sometimes ‘Simon’) Mogilevich, & some others mentioned, are Jewish

    In that article:
    “Mikhail Fridman — the founder of Russia’s Alfabank, is Semion Mogilevich’s partner”

    Brian Benczkowski is a lawyer who has represented Alfabank (sometimes ‘Alphabank’)

    Brian Benczkowski is now the head of the Trump’s US Justice Department Criminal Division, 700 prosecutors who are in charge of the USA’s most important federal criminal cases, such as organised crime and corruption … the people who should be ‘draining the swamp’ … with US Attorney General William Barr of half-Jewish heritage, supervising
    https://www.thedailybeast.com/brian-benczkowski-worked-for-a-russian-banknow-hes-trumps-man-at-justice

    So apparently the hold-up of the ‘Russian influence in USA’ theme, is that the promoters of this theme – often Jewish – wanted to avoid mentioning that some ‘Russians’ with some links to USA gov, are often ‘Russian-Jewish’ or ‘Ukrainian-Jewish’ etc folks

  9. Bolton doesn’t want Chinese to acquire Ukraine’s Motor Sich.

    We should have bombed this thing years ago! Seriously, why is it still around?

    If we are not going to annex it, it needs to be destroyed – it’s dangerous and plain irresponsible to leave Soviet military technologies in the hands of primitives.

    • Replies: @Swarthy Greek
  10. Navalny’s daughter might be a lesbian, but his latest expose of Moscow deputy mayor’s (one of many, this one responsible for housing and communal affairs) extended family is a great microcosm of the late putinism.

    13 luxury apartments in central Moscow (one of the in Moscow’s equivalent of billionaires row). At least 20 luxury cars (none of them are Lada). Huge manor that would put any nineteenth century Russian count to shame.

    p.s. sorry this post might be a duplicate, first one did not come through

  11. @German_reader

    plus the unsuccesful war against Finland

    In what world was it “unsuccesful”??

    Are you mad?

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
  12. @Felix Keverich

    Motor Sich, as well as most Soviet era military production facilities (I.e:Kharkov tank factory) are in a deplorable state and on the verge of Bankrupcy. Why bomb it when the whole thing falls apart by itself?

  13. US doesn’t let in Palestinian student because his friends posted anti-US comments on Facebook

    Based?

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  14. @anonymous coward

    Oh come on, we all love Georgian Mario here but it’s quite clear that the goal of the Finnish campaign was to expand the Karelian SSR and/or create a Finnish one that would return the Russian Empire borders
    Finns avoided this fate at tremendous cost, but can comfort themselves knowing they avoided greater terror

    The Winter War was a painfull lesson but it would become useful during the winter campaigns of WW2, so the USSR did end up getting some good out of it

  15. @Swarthy Greek

    The dirty secret about the run up to WW2 is that everyone who wasn’t a Jew or a Commie thought Hitler was a pretty cool guy

  16. Mitleser says:
    @Korenchkin

    That means the Finnish campaign was a success for Russia, though.

    • Agree: melanf
    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  17. @Swarthy Greek

    Are you daft?? China considers it valuable enough to pay real money for it.

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
  18. @Kent Nationalist

    Well, the West makes a huge deal in those very rare instances when their journalists who professionally trash Russia (which they can do just as well from home) are refused visa extensions by Russia. And to a lesser extent, when China does it. And yet the US itself can’t even tolerate criticism by someone’s extended circle.

  19. @Mitleser

    The Finnish campaign of 1940 was a success for the USSR in that it achieved its intended geo-political objective of taking the territories it considered necessary and vital for its national security. Otherwise, it is a limited success because this objective was achieved with unnecessarily high costs in manpower and resources. The same outcome could have been achieved more easily if it wasn’t for Stalin’s mass murdering, the Sovok system, and so on.

    What’s actually interesting about this though, is that the territorial gains made from the Winter War by the USSR were actually secured by 1945 and even survived the dissolution of the USSR in 1991 onward. It is un-ironically one of the few things that Stalin, the Sovoks and Liberasts managed to not ruin for Russians in the 20th century. That is, as far as territorial gains that Russians still keep.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karelian_question

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
    , @Mitleser
  20. neutral says:

    Happy 88th OT!

    I always knew he was a secret Hitler fan, look at his twitter handle if you still don’t believe me.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  21. @neutral

    I guess he was born in 1988.

  22. @Felix Keverich

    Because they can potentially revive it, maybe even nick some useful blueprints

  23. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    survived the dissolution of the USSR in 1991 onward

    I still can’t fucking believe that Narva ended up in Estonia

  24. Mitleser says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    That is because the Soviets failed to establish a lasting Finnish SSR that would absorb these territorial gains, hence they ended up as part of Russia.

    For a similar reason, most of the former German territory the USSR gained ended up in the RSFSR.

  25. Mitleser says:
    @Korenchkin

    Narva is traditional Livonian clay.

  26. Prague should demand foreign journalists begin to referring to the city as Praha. Prague is a Germanism and a remnant of foreign occupation of Bohemia.

    But wait! The Czechs have more self-confidence than Ukrs, the sons of Sumeria…

    • LOL: Anatoly Karlin
  27. @AP

    These pollsters are rarely educated properly in how sample sizes work and such. Don’t get your hopes up some imaginary great fifth column exists in Donbas the people there left Ukraine because they want nothing to do with the third world.

    • Replies: @AP
  28. @Korenchkin

    It is a depository of our military technology, that exists outside of our control, and which apparently everybody can buy for a fair price. Even if Ukrainian regime is not in the position to make use of this stuff, simply allowing this place to exist is irresponsible.

  29. @melanf

    This is a clear amalgam in logic

    The “amalgam in logic” is with Russians who come up with this revisionist whataboutery (“But Britain and France also made a deal with Hitler, and Poland had also signed a non-aggression pact!”) to justify Molotov-Ribbentropp and everything it led to.
    I don’t care much about the issue and the way it’s used by the current Polish government and American hegemonists like Pence to bash contemporary Russia is certainly dubious, but insinuating that a negative view of what Stalin’s regime did in 1939-1941 is somehow merely due to Russophobia isn’t convincing imo.

  30. @Korenchkin

    Well, that’s because of Lenin, Trotsky and the Bolshevik band breaking Russia, as during the Russian Civil War, the Latvians managed to sneak away with Narva. Of course, Stalin and the Sovoks after him never thought to restore Narva to the Soviet Socialist Republic (SSR) of Russia, and in general, they did not meddle with the internal borders of SSR’s.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narva#20th_century

    Of course, a notable exception is with Krushchev giving Crimea to the Ukranian SSR. If only some Russian Sovok politician/elite decided to be a crypto-ethnonationalist (which is what really all the Sovoks of every other non Russian ethno-racial/religious group were) that could somehow have gathered enough power, maybe the Russians could’ve sorted out the USSR’s internal borders much more favorably and then dissolved the USSR with those better borders. That is, of course, since the dissolution of the USSR was based upon exactly those same Sovok internal borders.

    The internal borders of the former USSR, like the former Yugoslavia, were complete garbage rigged against ethnic Russians and Serbs respectively. One of the greatest hypocrisies in international relations is the fact that even though the former USSR and Yugoslavia are considered archaic and their collapse is celebrated as a good thing, their internal borders are still treated as legitimate international borders which are holy, sacred and inviolable …

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
  31. @German_reader

    Before the start of Barbarossa, the Soviets killed proportionally more of the population in their part of Poland (which was much less Polish anyway) than the Nazis did in theirs

    • Replies: @Epigon
    , @German_reader
  32. Epigon says:
    @Kent Nationalist

    Before the start of Barbarossa, the Soviets killed proportionally more of the population in their part of Poland (which was much less Polish anyway) than the Nazis did in theirs

    [citation needed]

    Also, calling Belarus and Ukraine “eastern Poland” is the same as calling Poland – western Russia.

    • Replies: @Kent Nationalist
  33. Epigon says:
    @German_reader

    You seem to be unaware of the fact that France, UK and Poland made it impossible for USSR to respect their defensive alliance with Czechoslovakia.

    The British and French were clearly happy with Reich’s rise (remilitarization of Rheinland) and expansion (Anschluss, Czechoslovakia). Hitler had nowhere near universal support for Czechoslovakia affair – had Germany come under attack, he would have been deposed by the Army.

    The West was counting on Hitler going Drang nach Osten, attacking USSR, as outlined in Mein Kampf. There is absolutely no way of framing it any other way. They would then sweep in, fresh and prepared, descend on the depleted winner and dictate the world order. The French in particular signed and pledged a lot of things in late 1938 and early 1939 regarding Germany.

    The territory gained by USSR through Molotov-Ribbentrop gave USSR the strategic depth to survive the initial Axis onslaught, and win the war in the end.

    I can see the Westerners being annoyed with above mentioned facts.

  34. @German_reader

    but insinuating that a negative view of what Stalin’s regime did in 1939-1941 is somehow merely due to Russophobia isn’t convincing imo.

    Well, this is used as an excuse to hate on Russia by Poles and Balts. Of course Russians are going to perceive it as Russophobia. In fact, it actually is anti-Russian sentiment. Of course, to you as a German, Russian hostility towards Balts and Poles is offensive because you view the Poles and Balts as German pets among a whole collection of other peoples’.

    Anyway, besides the typical things that invading powers and occupying armies do, such as taking away national sovereignty, imposing occupying armies and so on, what was so exceptionally terrible about what the USSR did to the Balts compared to any other people that were invaded, conquered and lived under foreign occupation? The Poles have Khatyn to whine about, which is something that at least can be taken seriously, but what do the Balts have to whine about? The Balts didn’t even get Khatyned at all or anything.

    In fact, the Balts got off extremely lightly with Communism compared to ethnic Russians. They even managed to separate from Russia with Sovok borders and had the privilege of freeloading wealth and industrial investment from the Russian SSR. In fact, as AK has pointed out, especially the Latvians have the least to whine about because they were instrumental in bringing about Communism and founding the USSR to begin with. Ethnic Russians are in fact the biggest losers of Communism compared to other groups like Balts, because literally everyone else could shield themselves as victims of “greater Russian chauvinism” and that sort of thing …

    • Replies: @German_reader
  35. @Kent Nationalist

    One often reads that, but is it actually true? I think Soviet terror was more restricted in scale and intent than Nazi terror (which aimed at the destruction of Poland as a nation, something which was eventually prevented mainly by the Red army, it has to be admitted)…pointing out such differences is legitimate and maybe necessary imo.
    What is however also true, is that before September 1939 Stalin’s regime had killed a lot more people than the Nazis. Why the heck should Britain and France actually have trusted a regime of commie fanatics which killed hundreds of thousands of its own citizens?

  36. Mencius Moldbugman: On Sweden Yes!

    Some obvious inaccuracies in that thread.

    * The price of a beer is nowhere near $15 a pint. Numbeo has it at 7-odd dollars, which seems about right.

    * Opening hours at Systembolaget, the government-owned chain of liquor stores, are not 11-04, but 10-07 (sometimes 08) on weekdays and 10-03 on Saturdays.

    * Speaking of which, the Systembolaget store he went to must have been one of very few without self-service (indeed, the only such store I can think of was that in Stockholm’s Old Town, which closed shop in 2012).

    That said, I agree with most of his observations.

  37. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    what was so exceptionally terrible about what the USSR did to the Balts compared to any other people that were invaded, conquered and lived under foreign occupation?

    I can’t be bothered to look for numbers, but a lot of Balts got deported to Gulag labor camps (somewhere in the range of a few hundred thousands iirc).

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  38. @Korenchkin

    China is interested to buy all the intellectual property: they use the D-18 engine on their Y-20 military cargo aircraft which is made by Motor sich. The sale of D-18 engines to China is MotorSich’s financial lifeline and they won’t sell the intellectual property because they would immediately lose all potential orders. Selling the plant will save face and leave some manufacturing orders to Ukraine as well as some capital investments. Overall china is really struggling with advanced Jet engine manufacturing and there are rumors that J-20s use late soviet era designed (and Russian made)AL-31s so getting their hands on production facilities would help them get a hold of Manufacturing processes for 80s era engines.

  39. @Korenchkin

    it’s quite clear that the goal of the Finnish campaign was to expand the Karelian SSR and/or create a Finnish one that would return the Russian Empire borders

    You’re nuts. The goal of the Finnish campaign was to move the international border away from St. Petersburg on the eve of the coming WWII.

    The Soviets wouldn’t have minded if Finland decided to roll over and die, like the Baltic “countries” did, but that certainly wasn’t the goal of the war.

    The Soviets got far more the from war then they ever bargained for, anyways.

    The “we won the Winter War” bullshit is crackpot nuttery invented by insane Finnish nationalists to save face and explain away their utter failure and loss of Karelia.

    • Replies: @Kerubi
    , @Jaakko Raipala
  40. Dmitry says:

    Article by Vladimir Perekrest about alleged migrant conquest of Russia.

    С января по июль население России уменьшилось на 209,7 тысяч. В основном за счет русских. Такими темпами лет через 30-50…

    Posted by Vladimir Perekrest on Saturday, September 7, 2019

    My comment.

    Problem is (and this article is a symptom) the assumption that population size has to be expanded – which leads to horseshoe:

    1. Open border and accept more unfiltered immigrants (Merkel).

    2. Open border and accept more unfiltered immigrants, and also government can boost birthrates (Putin).

    3. Government can boost birthrates and so we do not need to open border (Orban).

    Problems with 1 and 2 (Putin/Merkel) policies, are obvious.

    But 3 is also a joke, which only survives because of people who do not have statistical knowledge trying to infer from badly designed measurements like “total fertility rate”.

    As Governor of Perm territory has said recently, the effect of attempted pro-natalist policies, is that they reduce poverty, but do not stimulate fertility rates.

    Eventual fertility rates are very stubborn.

    If we look in Russia, they are locked around 1,6 for women born since 1965.
    Ironically, in a theoretical world, at this fertility rate, one of the most effective ways to slow population decline would be to raise women’s age of conception – as this would space out generations. (Not that government could have significant effect on that in a real world).

    So what is the solution? It is to reject the false assumption (that population has to expand) which created this horseshoe.

    Correct planning should be:

    1. Stricter border policy, stop unfiltered immigration and flooding by immigrants.

    2. Plan for smaller population size, to emphasize benefits and reduce costs. These benefits such as: higher salaries for workers, higher per capita income, higher employment rate for young people, better teacher to student ratio in schools, more available spaces and treatments in hospitals (to the extent this is possible with an aging population), lower crime rates (with aging population).

    With resource extraction economy – more revenue shared among small population, results higher per capita revenue. (Dependency ratio is less important than for some other types of economy).

    (??? Profit – in terms of immigration/emigration. Less brain drain, and possibility to select higher quality immigrants in the future.)

  41. Mitleser says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Actually, Stalin-era Sovoks did partially reverse some of the actions of the traitorous early Soviets which later caused some butthurt among Balts.

    The orange areas were controlled by the inter-war Estonian state.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  42. AP has changed its style for the capital of Ukraine to Kyiv. Glorious accomplishment!

    Next up: Kyivan Rus and Chicken Kyiv!

    Joke’s aside, it’s high time Russia began pushing back at this nonsense. A good start is to force all branches of the Russian government, and especially state media (e.g. RT), to use the traditional Russian names of towns and people wherever appropriate. If this proves too little, the same law could be extended to all Russia-based media (e.g. Moscow Times). Businesses should probably be left to their own devices.

  43. The news is not only low in signal and high in repetition, large doses of it are hazardous to one’s mental health. I can’t remember the last time (it is way over one year) the New York Times or the Washington Post informed me I had exceeded my free access limit of 3 articles a month or whatever the number was at the time.

    In the immortal words of Carl Bernstein, it’s like all fake.

    (that is paraphrase not direct quotation)

  44. @Mitleser

    Well, those are extremely minimal reversals. Without Narva, it’s really just a bunch of scraps.

    • Replies: @Swedish Family
    , @Mitleser
  45. Epigon says:
    @Dmitry

    No, the path to increased fertility is to stimulate it first through tax reduction to BOTH parents (family remaining together pre-requisite, miniscule for 1 kid, solid for 2 kids, very high for 3) until 0% tax for 4+ kids.

    No lump sums, no other benefits. This would benefit people with higher income (often smarter, better educated) in high tax countries and would not fund Gypsy and other minority multiplication.

    It would literally make it cost effective to have more kids, appealing to current materialist mindset.

    This would only be a stopgap, as the true path to high fertility is through ideological and cultural reshaping. Women are too precious to be spending their fertile, healthy potential motherhood years pursuing useless degrees, crappy meme careers, pushing papers and saturating job market.

    More people, especially more people of same ethnicity in the same country is always a good thing. It is in the long-term interest of the state to promote as high as possible fertility rates.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  46. @Dmitry

    Russia needs a much bigger population, because population is power – especially in the absence of any carrying capacity constraints (totally inapplicable in this case, of course).

    The slideback in fertility rates since 2016 is probably temporary, and is significantly explained by birth postponement.

  47. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    One of the greatest hypocrisies in international relations is the fact that even though the former USSR and Yugoslavia are considered archaic and their collapse is celebrated as a good thing, their internal borders are still treated as legitimate international borders which are holy, sacred and inviolable …

    Very true, but much of this is just that border disputes give Europeans the jitters since they have a history of leading to war.

  48. @Epigon

    The West was counting on Hitler going Drang nach Osten, attacking USSR, as outlined in Mein Kampf.

    If that had been true, they would have put pressure on Poland to accept Germany’s demands, become a German satellite and join the anti-Bolshevik crusade (or at least grant German troops right of passage to Soviet territory)…instead of guaranteeing Poland’s independence and actually declare war on Germany after the German attack.
    Kind of funny how even right-wing “Russophiles” end up defending every action of Stalin’s regime (which, as AK always tells us, was fundamentally anti-Russian).

    • Agree: reiner Tor
    • Replies: @Epigon
  49. @German_reader

    I can’t be bothered to look for numbers, but a lot of Balts got deported to Gulag labor camps (somewhere in the range of a few hundred thousands iirc).

    I bothered to do some brief browsing on the deportations, and yes, it is around a few hundred thousand, no more than 300,000 from all the Baltic countries. The deportations were aimed at political dissidents. Even then, deportations for the Balts were still better than being mass murdered into the millions like ethnic Russians were.

    Still though, what are Russians supposed to do when faced with Svidomy Balts screeching about “muh deportations”, even though all those deportations were done by an ethnic Georgian (Stalin), Jewish and Sovok Communist leadership? Why should Russians from Russia even care about these deportations when hundreds of thousands of ethnic Russians are at the “mercy” of Svidomy Balts? Would you have Russia pay reparations or something for the 300 gorillion deportations?

    • Replies: @German_reader
  50. @Anatoly Karlin

    What are your thoughts on blocking women from education, especially university/college education, in order for them to instead focus on giving birth to kids?

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  51. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Well, those are extremely minimal reversals. Without Narva, it’s really just a bunch of scraps.

    Why this obsession with Narva? The place is a total hellhole.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  52. @Anatoly Karlin

    In AOMI IV, you quote the following:

    Moreover, according to a 2004 meta-analysis by Van Den Bergh and Rietveld of global carrying capacity estimates, the median of 94 historical estimates was 7.8 billion – that is, virtually exactly equivalent to the world current population of 7.6 billion.

    The problem with nearly all of these historical estimates is they define carrying capacity as simply ” maximum population size of the species that the environment can sustain indefinitely” (meaning their definition of carrying capacity focuses only on resource limitations); they don’t take into account environmental degradation i.e. biodiversity loss and global warming (carbon emissions):

    …indicators of unsustainability such as global warming and biodiversity loss, which have not been taken into account in the primary studies analyzed here.

    (Den Bergh & Rietveld, 2004)

    One notable exception is Paul Ehrlich (referenced as a historical estimate by Den Berg & Rietveld, 2004); note how his studies typically define carrying capacity to include environmental degradation e.g. his book The Population Explosion:

    [Carrying capacity:] When its population can’t be maintained without rapidly depleting nonrenewable resources (or converting renewable resources into nonrenewable ones) and without degrading the capacity of the environment to support the population. In short, if the long-term carrying capacity of an area is clearly being degraded by its current human occupants, that area is overpopulated.

    Ehrlich therefore points out by this definition of carrying capacity, the world is already overpopulated (this is fact):

    By this standard, the entire planet and virtually every nation is already vastly overpopulated. Africa is overpopulated now because, among other indications, its soils and forests are rapidly being depleted—and that implies that its carrying capacity for human beings will be lower in the future than it is now. The United States is overpopulated because it is depleting its soil and water resources and contributing mightily to the destruction of global environmental systems. Europe, Japan, the Soviet Union, and other rich nations are overpopulated because of their massive contributions to the carbon dioxide buildup in the atmosphere, among many other reasons.

    Note Van Den Bergh and Rietveld go on to recognise this and sympathise with Ehrlich’s estimated carrying capacity (that includes biodiversity loss) at well under 1 billion:

    These indicators suggest that the lower bound prediction of 0.65 billion people in the meta-regression may be as good a guess as is possible for population limits in the current technological circumstances.

    If you compiled an average or median of global carrying capacity estimates that take into account global warming (carbon emissions) and biodiversity loss you would find they agree with Ehrlich’s. I see absolutely no discussion about biodiversity loss in your AOMI IV essay, nor other posts. As an example, as recent as 1970 humans have caused (a further) 60% reduction of all vertebrate wildlife populations. Also because primarily of human activity, the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species lists 41% of amphibians, 25% of mammals, 34% of conifers, 13% of birds, 31% of sharks and rays, 33% of reef-building corals, and 27% of crustaceans – threatened with extinction.

    To argue the carrying capacity of humans is 100 billion (I believe that is your argument, or you made a similar estimate) is ecologically irresponsible and very disturbing.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  53. Mitleser says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Narva river is the traditional border between Russia and the Baltics.
    It is fine.

    Even when the Baltics were part of the part of the Russian Empire, they were separated from the Russian heartland and autonomous until the last decades.

  54. Beckow says:
    @Epigon

    …The West was counting on Hitler going Drang nach Osten, attacking USSR, as outlined in Mein Kampf. There is absolutely no way of framing it any other way.

    That was an irrefutable reality of the 1938-39 period and it was understood by all at that time that was what was going on. Poland naively saw itself as being a part of this attack and dissolution of the Soviet Union.

    We simply can’t understand the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact that happened without the context of the West desperately wishing for a German-Soviet war. Most in the West also expected and wanted Germany to win. I will put aside evaluating this, one can understand both class, elite and moral revulsions and a wish to destroy Soviet Union.

    That was the reality of late August 1939 and Stalin pulled a fast one out of his hat and changed the strategic balance (at the same time as Red Army smashed Japanese in the Far East). The M-R pact literally saved Soviet Union and probably prevented most Slavic nations in the area, including the Poles, from being exterminated or assimilated. Given the brutes Soviets were it came with some violence and oppression. But in history one has a choice of what to endure, I strongly suspect that if the original Western plan of encouraging a war between Germany and Russia in 1939 happened, we would be living in a different, but equally bloody history. Without the Pact and the strategic geographic depth it gave Russia, and the 2 years time it bought, WWII would unfold differently.

    Western revisionists are simply angry that they got outplayed by Stalin in 1939. It was a gutsy and unexpected move, but people about to be murdered often surprise with some creativity.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  55. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    even though all those deportations were done by an ethnic Georgian (Stalin), Jewish and Sovok Communist leadership?

    NKVD was majority ethnic Russian by 1940/41 iirc, Jewish overrepresentation was more of a feature of the earlier period (though Beria was of course Caucasian).

    Would you have Russia pay reparations or something for the 300 gorillion deportations?

    No, certainly not. My intention was merely to point out the problems with claiming the actions of Britain and France and the Soviet Union were somehow morally equivalent. Anyway, it’s mostly a historical matter imo.

    • Replies: @Mitleser
  56. @Swedish Family

    Very true, but much of this is just that border disputes give Europeans the jitters since they have a history of leading to war.

    True. Still, Europeans do not care about resolving border disputes in good faith through peaceful diplomatic negotiations. This is why it’s peak hypocrisy for Europeans to whine how it’s “so terrible” that there’s war in, say, the Ukraine, when with the USA in the 1990’s they were very eager to dissolve the USSR on those same Sovok borders which are a large part of the cause for conflict now and in the future.

    Of course, I mean European elites, because most average Europeans are too busy globo-homoing themselves out of existence to truly care about border disputes in Europe …

    • Replies: @Swedish Family
  57. Mr. Hack says:

    AP has changed its style for the capital of Ukraine to Kyiv. Glorious accomplishment!

    I think that it’s high time that our very own AP follow suit. How about it AP, isn’t it high time for you too, to make the switch and come out and endorse the approved spelling of KYIV? 🙂
    (I know that you’re out there reading this).

    Try it, you’ll like it!

    • Replies: @AP
  58. @Epigon

    Didn’t the British also have a plan to bomb the Oil fileds in the Caucasus? Before Barbarossa even started

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  59. @Swedish Family

    Why this obsession with Narva? The place is a total hellhole.

    Narva is only the most valuable thing on the Russian-Estonian border in that area. I personally don’t really care about Narva. Honestly, I’m starting to think that border and territory disputes are pointless to aggressively pursue for any ethno-national/religious group unless their demographic performance is good. That is, if a given group happens to have a birth rate above 2.1 children per women, the replacement rate, of course, only then can they securely push for retaking rightful land or stealing territory from others as only then would they truly have the vital energy needed for such ventures.

    • Replies: @Swedish Family
  60. @Korenchkin

    Yes, Ron Unz wrote about this in his endorsement of historical revisionism about WW2. Can’t be bothered linking the article to you, unless you really want me to.

    • Replies: @German_reader
    , @Korenchkin
  61. Epigon says:
    @German_reader

    Pardon my ignorance, but could you write down the damage inflicted on German armed forces, German industry from September 1st 1939 to April 1st 1940 by UK and France?

    And how exactly do Poland and Grossdeutschland, Drang nach Osten/Lebensraum compute?

    • Agree: TheTotallyAnonymous
    • Replies: @German_reader
    , @reiner Tor
  62. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    http://www.unz.com/runz/american-pravda-how-hitler-saved-the-allies/ (Operation Pike).

    That was in 1940 though, when the Soviet Union delivered oil and other strategically important goods to Germany.

  63. Don’t say “The Netherlands” you’re legitimizing Spanish Imperialism, it’s just Netherlands now

  64. @German_reader

    NKVD was majority ethnic Russian by 1940/41 iirc, Jewish overrepresentation was more of a feature of the earlier period (though Beria was of course Caucasian).

    Well, ethnic Russians may qualify as collaborators in the decision, but they certainly do not qualify as the planners and ultimate perpetrators of the deportations. Collective responsibility certainly cannot be assigned onto Russia and all ethnic Russians as a collective for the deportations. This is literally what the Balts want to do though, which is obviously why Russians take issue with this sort of thing.

    http://www.unz.com/runz/american-pravda-how-hitler-saved-the-allies/ (Operation Pike).

    Thanks for doing the hard work of providing the link for me 🙂

    • Replies: @German_reader
  65. @Epigon

    I read it somewhere in the last couple of months but I read a lot of books one after the other so I can’t remember exactly where. Maybe David Stahel’s book on Operation Barbarossa?

    Also, calling Belarus and Ukraine “eastern Poland” is the same as calling Poland – western Russia.

    I didn’t call it Eastern Poland, but in any case hundreds of thousands of Poles had lived there for hundreds of years and were responsible for what advanced culture existed there, so it’s not.

    • Replies: @Epigon
  66. Sam says:

    @Anatolykarlin
    Think it’s a good idea with the long content posts going forward.
    Just wondering, do you have plans to writ about Putin and the alleged false flag apartment bombings. You mentioned you would before and I always wondered since it is one of those conspiracies endorsed, partially, in the West.

    Another post I’ve wondered about is your view of the deaths under communism. I know you challenged Unz’s reliance on the Black Book of Communism and related sources. A possible topic?

    Keep up the great content

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  67. @Epigon

    And how exactly do Poland and Grossdeutschland, Drang nach Osten/Lebensraum compute?

    As far as I know, there’s general agreement among most historians that Hitler’s original intent was to turn Poland into a satellite and enlist it as a junior partner in his war against the Soviet Union (maybe like a bigger version of Slovakia). How that would have played out in the longer term and how it could have been reconciled with the anti-Polish traditions of German nationalism, who knows? But it’s not like Hitler was incapable of at least tactical concessions regarding German minorities abroad, as is shown by South Tyrol.
    Main reason why it didn’t happen was because Poland refused to become a German satellite and wasn’t interested in joining a German war on the Soviet Union (contrary to what Stalin in his paranoia may have believed).

    • Replies: @Epigon
  68. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    but they certainly do not qualify as the planners and ultimate perpetrators of the deportations.

    That guy looks pretty Russian to me:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivan_Serov#Deputy_Commissar_of_the_NKVD
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serov_Instructions

    Collective responsibility certainly cannot be assigned onto Russia and all ethnic Russians as a collective for the deportations.

    I never wrote it should, and certainly some of the anti-Russian sentiment in the Baltic states and Poland isn’t very constructive…but so isn’t the “Stalin did nothing wrong” revisionism seen in this thread.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  69. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    I did read it, which is why I posted about it
    I remember hearing about such plans but never thought they were actually intending to do it (operation unthinkable style)

    The plans existance would mean there was no real grand strategy for the British, they were just exploiting whatever opportunity arose with a vague central goal in mind, that ended up getting unfullfilled since their Empire disintegrated and they became a satrap to their former colony
    Fucking hell, India sided against them and partnered up with the Soviet Union during the Cold War, in a way fullfilling their fears all the way back from the Great Game days, and today India remains a Russian partner even as Russia is getting increasingly friendly with China

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  70. Epigon says:
    @German_reader

    In my studies of Ostfront, I quite distinctly remember a shockingly high claim of Hiwis/Poles participating in the invasion and fighting in the USSR. Was it 600k Poles, or is my memory playing games with me?

    Didn’t Donald Tusk’s ancestors take part? Would explain a lot.

    You have to admit that Phoney War combined with empty guarantees given to Poland might have something to do with Russian malevolence regarding WW2?

  71. Kerubi says:
    @anonymous coward

    Winter War certainly did not go along Uncle Joe`s plan. The original goal was to occupy the whole country in a couple of weeks and install a communist puppet regime headed by Otto V. Kuusinen, one of the few Finnish communists who survived Stalin`s purges. After that Finland would either have “voluntarily” joined the Soviet Union as a Soviet republic or it would have become a nominally independent communist vassal state like Mongolia.

    Soviets did not only suffer heavy military losses but also the diplomatic humiliation of getting kicked out of the League of Nations. There was even the risk of war against France and Great Britain. Soviet Union`s public image also got tarnished. What is more, Leningrad`s security actually got worse. Without Winter War, Finland would not have got involved in Operation Barbarossa.

    Utter failure? I would call surviving as an independent non-communist country as some kind of success. Compared to Estonia, we have been doing pretty well.

    • Replies: @anonymous coward
  72. Mitleser says:
    @German_reader

    Britain and France were worse, cowardly and unwillingly to support the collective security the USSR proposed.

  73. Epigon says:
    @Kent Nationalist

    I find that claim very suspect because Germans shredded Polish Army and bombed cities, established a military occupation, while Soviets moved in with only light resistance. It would take many Katyn-level atrocities to catch up with German-inflected casualties.

    Rus’ towns and cities had a culture and civilization before Poles and Lithuanians exploited Mongol-Tatar aftermath. The nobility was the first to align with invaders, followed by burghers, while peasants resisted.

  74. melanf says:
    @German_reader

    The “amalgam in logic” is with Russians

    I think you misunderstood me. If the causes of the WWII (referred by Karlin) are discussed, the Soviet terror in the Baltic States and in “Eastern Poland” is completely irrelevant, since this terror had nothing to do with the causes of the WWII. For this (to determine the causes of the WWI) Munich collusion can be compared with the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, but in other respects. The reference to Soviet terror in this case (in determining the causes of the war) is pure amalgam.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  75. melanf says:
    @Dmitry

    Article by Vladimir Perekrest about alleged migrant conquest of Russia.
    “From January to July, the population of Russia decreased by 209.7 thousand….”

    It’s just fake information. Here are the stats https://zemfort1983.livejournal.com/1233033.html

  76. Dmitry says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    slideback in fertility rates since 2016

    In my opinion, likely there isn’t slideback in eventual rates – just talking about the statistical noise in the temporary ones.

    Around 1,6 children for women born since 1965 – as it has been at 2011 – should be basis for planning. Eventual fertility rates will be not be far distant from that figure.

    Unless there is some kind of unexpected scientific advance, and artificial wombs are suddenly introduced in the 2030s.

    population is power – especially in the absence of any

    For the military, probably. For construction industry, definitely. But for yourself? Well it depends in what industry you work, and what kind of family you are born. (i.e. if the family of your next re-incarnation is randomized – and not influenced by karma – would you prefer to be born in small population Switzerland or large population India?)

    Benefits for average students born after 1992 – they have less competition for better jobs after university, will have fast upward mobility in work, etc, ceteris paribus. For them personally, it is better to be in a smaller cohort, especially at beginning stage of working life.

    Besides, what’s the point about stressing about it as if it was a choice. It is reality – until artificial wombs. The danger and current mistake of politicians, is accepting unfiltered immigration, and linkage of the two topics in their mind is part of the cause (which is implied by assumption that population has to expand).

    absence of any carrying capacity constraints

    Sure, but Australia has a similar situation, but more extreme – with 3 times less population density than Russia. And yet Australia is quite successful for living . So I see this more as a question of intelligent management, just like on the other extreme, Monaco has 1900 times more population density – and yet (unlike Bangladesh) still is good for living.

    I won’t talk about oil revenue like it is permanent, because this might all change after 2030ies.

    But with the current arrangement of the economy (with up to half of the budget from just oil/gas depending on particular year), then less people results in more available budget per capita.

    Or for the most extreme example, simple dilution of resource extraction revenue by population, is likely the difference between Nigeria (GDP per capita PPP $5,927) and Equatorial Guinea ($34,865)

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  77. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    I am against it for both ethical and practical reasons (which are actually linked).

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  78. @Oliver D. Smith

    You mean this Paul Ehrlich?

    The battle to feed all of humanity is over. In the 1970s hundreds of millions of people will starve to death in spite of any crash programs embarked upon now. At this late date nothing can prevent a substantial increase in the world death rate.

    I’ll give him one thing: He’s consistent.

    Paul Ehrlich: ‘Collapse of civilisation is a near certainty within decades’ https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2018/mar/22/collapse-civilisation-near-certain-decades-population-bomb-paul-ehrlich

    PS. Now that you’re here, would you be kind enough to update the RatWiki with my comments on McCain’s death? They were good for my brand here.

    • Replies: @Oliver D. Smith
  79. @melanf

    If the causes of the WWII (referred by Karlin) are discussed

    Yes, but as I wrote in my original comment, Western criticism of Molotov-Ribbentropp isn’t because of the mere fact of the pact itself, but because of what the Soviet Union did as a consequence of it, that is invading the territory of other states and bringing communist terror there. Karlin referred to the recent commemorations in Poland, and the Soviet record wasn’t attacked there simply because the Soviet Union signed an agreement with Hitler’s Germany (it’s technically correct that other states, including Poland, had done so before as well), but because of Soviet policies in the annexed territories during 1939-1941.
    It would certainly be extremely inappropriate to cast Russians as a perpetrator nation because of Molotov-Ribbentropp or to forget the Russian role in the defeat of Nazi Germany, but I don’t see why that should mean one has to defend everything Stalin’s regime did, as some of the commenters here seem to believe.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  80. @Sam

    I find it difficult to summon much passion over very old conspiracy theories (especially when newer, more relevant ones exist).

    But a post quantifying the death toll under Bolshevism is very much on the cards.

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
    , @reiner Tor
  81. @Dmitry

    You can’t build an Orion nuclear propulsion spaceship to settle Alpha Centauri on the back of Australia’s population.

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
  82. @Anatoly Karlin

    a post quantifying the death toll under Bolshevism is very much on the cards.

    Oof, that Sikorsky one was very depressing
    But can you please label what % of the people getting killed by Bolsheviks were actual Russians and what were Tatars, Balts, Koreans etc.

  83. Dmitry says:
    @Epigon

    increased fertility is to stimulate it first through tax reduction to BOTH parents (family

    It’s like “increasing dose of Vitamin C will result in higher life expectancy”.

    It seems sensible in the mind. But when we look at evidence in the real whether it actually has an effect in the real population – it is lacking that it changes the rates. (Or usually only changes the timing, but with no effect on eventual rates).

    of the state to promote as high as possible fertility rates.

    Most governments of the lowest fertility countries believe this idea. And pro-natalist policies are mainstream in many countries. But state incentives do not seem to have much effect.

    I know people say France, Norway or Sweden are an example of successful government increase of birthrates. But I have read mixed things about this claim (some people say a lot of their higher birthrates in those countries are from recent immigrants).

    true path to high fertility is through ideological and cultural reshaping.

    It will happen with artificial wombs.

    But problem in Europe is not low fertility.

    Problem is an issue with unfiltered immigration, together with various other problems. Two topics can be related to some extent, but they shouldn’t be.

  84. @Anatoly Karlin

    But problem in Europe is not low fertility.
    Problem is an issue with unfiltered immigration, together with various other problems.

    The vicious Eurocuck circular logic is:
    “we need less kids, to focus on careers and protecting the enviroment”
    “we have no kids, so we need migrants”

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  85. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry

    Problem is an issue with unfiltered immigration, together with various other problems. Two topics can be related to some extent, but they shouldn’t be.

    It’s actually being used as an excuse to have a more unfiltered immigration policy.

    And Perekrest’s article above symptomatic of the idea the two topics are necessarily connect. .

  86. @Kerubi

    The original goal was to occupy the whole country in a couple of weeks and install a communist puppet regime

    Untrue. The goal was to move the border a bit, not to occupy the whole country.

    The ‘couple weeks’ business is just Soviet propaganda; the official party line at the time was that the mighty Red Army will kick everyone’s ass and win WWII with minimal blood on enemy territory. Don’t confuse commie spin with CPSU goals, the CPSU leadership never got high on their own supply. (Unlike the modern-day Western leadership.)

    Soviets did not only suffer heavy military losses but also the diplomatic humiliation of getting kicked out of the League of Nations.

    That’s true, but that is just the regular communist incompetence, none of it is Finland’s accomplishment.

    Without Winter War, Finland would not have got involved in Operation Barbarossa.

    I doubt Finland could go through WWII without picking a side. Even Sweden didn’t, despite their nominal “neutrality”.

    • Replies: @Kerubi
  87. Dmitry says:
    @Korenchkin

    Yes exactly.

    And Orban – although very good economically as a leader – is symptomatic of the other side of this horseshoe

    Orban discourse: “We can avoid unfiltered immigration if we can somehow boost our fertility rate” (In reality, Hungary has one of the lowest in the world, and it won’t change much).

    ^
    No, you can avoid unfiltered immigration even unrelated to what is your country’s fertility rate.

    Germany was below replacement fertility already (if I recall) before the 1920s or something like that.
    And West Germany had static population for decades, after a massive fall. And yet everything was working well in Germany (and I’m sure without importation of Turkish gastarbeiters the country wouldn’t collapse or something, but just have even higher wages for the local people).

    • Replies: @German_reader
  88. @Dmitry

    Germany was below replacement fertility already (if I recall) before the 1920s or something like that.

    I googled it, and surprisingly enough, you seem to be not totally wrong about that…apparently fertility rates were apparently as low as 1,8 already as early as 1934 (though I suppose that was at least parly due to the Great Depression). But after WW2 they rose to 2,5 in West Germany until the mid-1960s. Decisive change happened in 1965-1975 when the fertility rate dropped to 1,4 in West Germany where it has stayed since then among ethnic German women.
    The real disaster will happen in a few years when the baby boomers retire.

    And West Germany had static population for decades, after a massive fall.

    Population is static in numbers only because of massive immigration, well before 2015.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  89. @Dmitry

    And pro-natalist policies are mainstream in many countries. But state incentives do not seem to have much effect.

    There’s a lot of dumb hay made about this (including attempts to pull in just-so-story explanations with genetics and DNA), but as far as I can tell, fertility is a simple function of living space.

    Give a family an apartment half again as large, and they’ll have another kid.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @Dmitry
  90. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    a crypto-ethnonationalist (which is what really all the Sovoks of every other non Russian ethno-racial/religious group were)

    I’m not sure where you get this. It was true of some Sovoks, both Russians and non-Russians, but for example Hungarian Sovoks were notably non-nationalists.

    The internal borders of the former USSR, like the former Yugoslavia, were complete garbage rigged against ethnic Russians and Serbs respectively.

    I’m not sure about Yugoslavia, but in the case of Russia it was certainly true that they promoted the Russian language throughout the country and also managed to get ethnic Russians into all corners of the USSR. The Hungarian minority in Ukraine certainly learned more Russian than Ukrainian until the 1990s, which caused them problems later on.

    maybe the Russians could’ve sorted out the USSR’s internal borders much more favorably and then dissolved the USSR with those better borders

    Sovoks never thought their empire would dissolve, nor did they think anything coming after them would be good. So thinking about what would be beneficial for Russians after the dissolution of the USSR was something like thinking about what would be good after losing ww3.

    The borders “rigged against Russians” meant huge Russian population in the other republics, which was supposed to make separatism more difficult for them.

    • Replies: @AP
  91. @melanf

    The war showed poor quality of the red Army, but by the results of the war, this war was definitely successful

    You need to get into some pretty ridiculous revisionism over the war goals if you want to pretend that the end result of making Finland a German ally wasn’t a strategic own goal. Nothing was gained by Russia in the war for the purposes of the greater conflict as during Operation Barbarossa Finland quickly recaptured the land lost in the Winter War and used all of it in further operations against Russia as an ally of Germany.

    Obviously the only realistic fear Russia has from Finland is whether the territory of Finland is used by some greater power and an alliance with Germany was the least likely of all outcomes considering the pre-war situation where Finland had attempted to gain security guarantees from the West (with no success), attempted to negotiate with Russia and attempted to remain neutral. The alternative outcomes in the case of no Winter War would be

    a) Finland tries to remain neutral. This would be a problem for Germany in the siege of Leningrad and might lead to a German invasion of Finland. How much resistance Finland would produce is a big what if but the potential is there as Germany would have to either stage a landing on the coast or come through roadless Lapland, both of which would be massive defender advantages.

    The military elites of Finland were overwhelmingly Germanic and German-trained and the Finnish civilian government was actually rather worried about their potential pro-German sympathies (that’s why they had taken Mannerheim out of retirement – he was the one plausible military leader who wasn’t German trained and who would definitely oppose a pro-German military coup). But then, the Reds (and Stalin) were once popular with ethnic Finns so at least communist resistance would be plentiful and highly motivated (and capable) which would massively empower them after a German loss and withdrawal, giving the communists a very high chance of capturing Finland with a coup after the war.

    b) Finland finds an ally in the West. If Finland has security guarantees and Russia invades anyway, that’s hard to say and this is the most questionable scenario, but then that is the whole reason why it’s extremely unlikely that Britain or France would have given any security guarantees that weren’t aimed against Germany. If Russia then decides to skip the invasion, this probably plays out like (a) but with an added chance of Finland in pro-Western hands in the end. Western Allies would at least contribute to anti-German war efforts with air support etc. So this ends up being better for Russia in WWII but not after.

    c) Finnish-Russian negotiations are successful and a land trade is made where Russia gets more land near Leningrad and Finland gets some of the already Finnic-populated land further north in exchange. The willingness was clearly there and Stalin had already proposed this around the time of the revolution (“you can have as much swamp as you like”) but the deal should have been made back then as the pre-WWII demands from Russia were too much and Russia did not even gain the unacceptable demands that it had made in the peace that ended the Winter War (no base near Helsinki etc).

    If that deal had been made in 1920, Finland might have almost entirely avoided World War II and ended up genuinely neutral or even pro-Russian during the Cold War (as opposed to swearing “Soviet friendship” while constantly looking for a chance to defect to the Western bloc as happened in the real history).

    There used to be a lot of talk about who screwed up the negotiations with Russia and eg. it used to be a common commie conspiracy theory that the German-sympathizing Swedes and Germans who owned this country intentionally sabotaged the talks so that Russia would attack and then they could then take Finland to the war on the German side and sell the whole thing to the people as recapturing lost territory. However the left has decided that Swedes and Germans are not evil Nazis after all but glorious heroes of multiculturalism so now our academia and media have completely erased all doubt of eternal pure Russian guilt for everything bad that has ever happened.

    The scenario where the Winter War would have been a positive for Russia would be if Finland doesn’t resist enough and Russia gets control of the cities before the spring thaw. (There’s a bad Western trope of how stupid it is to invade during the winter but it’s not – the mud seasons and the swampy roadless terrain mean that winter is the time to move around and whatever gear you commit to an invasion is easily stuck there until the next winter.) Then a communist puppet government could have ensured that Finland doesn’t ally with Germany, though if Germany then attacked it would have been the same as in the Baltic states with a lot of people signing up to fight against the communist puppet government and Russia.

    But the actual war is a case of self-fulfilling prophecy – an attempt to make sure that Finland’s territories aren’t used in an invasion against Russia led to all of those territories being used in a Finnish-German joint invasion of Russia.

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @melanf
  92. @Beckow

    the West desperately wishing for a German-Soviet war. Most in the West also expected and wanted Germany to win.

    Then why did they issue a unilateral guarantee to Poland, and why did they declare war on Germany after it attacked Poland?

    One would think these actions significantly reduced the chances of a German-Soviet war happening, at least before Hitler destroyed France.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  93. @anonymous coward

    You’re nuts. The goal of the Finnish campaign was to move the international border away from St. Petersburg on the eve of the coming WWII.

    And this goal failed utterly as Finland allied with Germany to take back all of that territory. Every inch of territory that had been taken by Russia in the Winter War was used by Finland to passively support the siege of Leningrad by blocking Russian movements to that direction, something that would have been easily avoidable if Russia had offered better terms to Finland before the war (land exchange to move the border would have been fine, military bases next to Helsinki when Russia was training Otto-Wille Kuusinen’s communist cabinet to be Finland’s future leaders? hell no).

    I don’t know what kind of mental gymnastics it requires to claim successful war aims while simultaneously claiming that the war aim was the opposite of what actually happened – if the aim was to gain protection for Leningrad, that failed pretty badly as the territories were used to siege Leningrad instead of protecting it.

  94. AP says:
    @Belarusian Anon

    Donbas the people there left Ukraine because they want nothing to do with the third world.

    Donbas is now a lot poorer than Ukraine.

    Another for Ukraine not to take it back.

    • Replies: @Belarusian Anon
    , @Mr. XYZ
  95. @Anatoly Karlin

    Ehrlich responded to these criticisms in 2009. In response to that prediction he points out:

    But, of course, there were famines, essentially continuously in parts of Africa. Perhaps 300 million people overall have died of hunger and hunger-related diseases since 1968.

    So while he wasn’t entirely incorrect, he did exaggerate about famines, many of his other predictions were though completely accurate (e.g. the world population rapidly increased from 3.5 billion in late 1960s to over 7 billion in 2010s). However, the main goal of The Population Bomb has been partially achieved:

    Birthrates [and fertility rates] have dropped in most of the world, partly in response to government-sponsored programs in education (especially of women), giving women job opportunities, making contraceptive information and materials accessible – and to economic factors… Thus the central goal of The Population Bomb, to encourage the adoption of policies that would gradually reduce birthrates and eventually start a global decline toward a human population size that is sustainable in the long run, has been partially achieved.

    (Ehrlich and Ehrlich, 2009)

    The goal of The Population Bomb (1968) was to reduce population fertility rates across the world to 1.0 (Ehrlich supports a global one-child policy and after having one child, he had a vasectomy). This hasn’t been achieved yet, but obviously progress has been made if you compare the world total fertility rate in 1960s to 2010s; it has halved from around 5 to 2.5:

    TFR
    1965–1970: 4.92
    2010–2015: 2.52

    And of course in a few countries (Singapore, Spain, Portugal etc.) fertility rates are as low as 1.3.

    People who are ‘red-pilled’ on overpopulation, start with The Population Bomb. I read it around 12 years back. Most people however who understand its main goal and the ecological issues the world faces, become more radical than Ehrlich because even if there was a global one-child policy, the world population would still *increase* until 2050s (or even 2100) and not drop to under 1 billion until 2200s. See the following paper: https://www.pnas.org/content/111/46/16610

    Even one-child policies imposed worldwide and catastrophic mortality events would still likely result in 5–10 billion people by 2100.

    The more draconian fertility reduction to a global one child per woman by 2100 (Scenario 3) resulted in a peak population size of 8.9 billion in 2056, followed by a decline to ∼7 billion by 2100 (i.e., a return to the 2013 population size) (Fig. 1A). Enforcing a one child per female policy worldwide by 2045 and without improving survival (Scenario 4) resulted in a peak population size of 7.95 billion in 2037, 7.59 billion by 2050, and a rapid reduction to 3.45 billion by 2100… Projecting Scenario 3 (worldwide one-child policy by 2100, assuming no further reduction in total fertility thereafter) to 2300, the world population would fall to half of its 2013 size by 2130, and one-quarter by 2158.

    This is why environmentalists of today tend to be voluntarily childfree, rather than supporting small families which Ehrlich popularised in 1960s. Article:

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jun/20/give-up-having-children-couples-save-planet-climate-crisis

  96. @Epigon

    You and a number of other commenters are endorsing the Sovok view that the West was actively hoping for a German-Soviet war which Germany would win. I guess the first step towards encouraging this outcome would have been just letting Germany do what it likes with Poland – either reduce it to a client state (probably after restoring the 1913 border), or outright conquer it.

    By declaring war on Germany (totally counterproductive if they wished for an eastern German campaign), they ensured to divert significant German resources to the West. (Also made sure that Hitler would destroy France first before attacking east. Either he would be successful, which I don’t see how France could’ve wished for, or not, which would’ve precluded a campaign against the USSR altogether.) They also started a naval blockade against Germany which made maritime trade impossible except for trade with Scandinavia. This also reduced the chances of a Soviet campaign being successful.

    I’m not sure how a rational person could believe that Western actions 1933-40 were consistent with a wish for a German-Soviet war.

  97. @German_reader

    Moreover, it’s the exact opposite of a policy to ensure a German-Soviet war. Actually, it would have pushed them closer to each other.

  98. @anonymous coward

    Living space per person is far higher in the New World European countries, but fertility rates are not much higher than in Europe itself.

    In Victorian Britain families were living in two-room apartments, sometimes even with extended families, and still having large families.

    The fall in fertility rates is due to many factors:

    • Sexual revolution

    • Contraception and abortion

    • Change in markers of social status for women–mothers are made to feel inferior to career women

    • Increase in single motherhood and miscegenation

    • Divorce, child support, alimony, domestic violence laws, marital “rape” laws, etc.

    • Decline in material standards of living and career prospects for the young

    • More time wasted in “education” (especially for women, but it’s a problem for men too)

    • Helicopter parenting

    • Deteriorating health and vigor in the population at large

    • Massively increased options for entertainment, amusement, and distraction

    • Change in reported ideal family size from four children to two–this merits more investigation as to why it happened

    And there are probably more I haven’t identified. It’s not very mysterious why fertility has fallen. What is mysterious is that no one in charge seems to care, especially since it has already been a problem for a long time.

  99. @Anatoly Karlin

    This is a conspiracy theory which is pretty much believed by many (most?) normies. I very often meet Hungarian liberals who believe that. It’s also often promoted by major online media sites.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  100. @Oliver D. Smith

    Great news. I look forward to environmentalists dying out, ridding our descendants of their defective genes.

  101. @reiner Tor

    There must be an age factor here though, I doubt it’s that well known among those of up to 30 years of age who have no real personal memories of politics 20 years ago.
    I agree though that it’s an interesting issue, since it’s very hard for those of us without intimate knowledge of Russia to evaluate it.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  102. @Oliver D. Smith

    This is why environmentalists of today tend to be voluntarily childfree, rather than supporting small families which Ehrlich popularised in 1960s.

    How well is that going with women in Niger?

    • Replies: @Oliver D. Smith
  103. @German_reader

    I don’t care much about the issue and the way it’s used by the current Polish government and American hegemonists like Pence to bash contemporary Russia is certainly dubious, but insinuating that a negative view of what Stalin’s regime did in 1939-1941 is somehow merely due to Russophobia isn’t convincing imo.

    Russophobia certainly motivates some, but the key rationale is annexophobia or conquestophobia.

    For some strange reason, around a century ago people developed the incorrect idea that conquest was somehow morally wrong. By the 1930s this false doctrine had taken root in Britain, France, and America. The Axis powers and the Soviet Union held the older, and correct, understanding of the Doctrine of Conquest.

    The idea that the Soviet Union did anything wrong at all in gobbling up the Baltic states, Karelia, Bessarabia, etc. is typical liberal Western religious fanaticism. No different than Greta Thunberg.

  104. @German_reader

    A major Hungarian liberal site ran an article on it. I’m pretty sure most people who read it and hate Putin believe it. It was a very convincing article.

    Similarly, around the death of Litvinenko I read several articles about it, since Litvinenko promoted this particular theory.

  105. @Thorfinnsson

    The issue is of course that in our little conversation all people agree that conquest (or even foreign influence) of their own land was morally wrong. So those commenters who think Stalin did nothing wrong will tell you how wrong it was that the US managed to get Estonia into NATO, and might even be bitching about Narva being part of Estonia.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  106. melanf says:
    @Jaakko Raipala

    result of making Finland a German ally

    I think Finland would be an ally of Germany anyway. There is no doubt that Finland had quite clear plans for conquest (and ethnic cleansing) of northwestern Russia. The situation when the German offensive in 1941 would have started from the outskirts of Leningrad (where are placed the border with Finland before the Winter war) is probably meant the complete defeat of the Soviet Union in 1941.

    Nothing was gained by Russia in the war

    Except the Karelian isthmus

  107. @reiner Tor

    Anything that harms me is deeply immoral, that much is true.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  108. @Thorfinnsson

    btw, what’s your take on the Mencius Moldbugman thread about Sweden? Sounds like a nightmare in parts, how much of it is true?

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @reiner Tor
  109. @Thorfinnsson

    But if you’re looking at things from a purely Machiavellian perspective America is doing the perfectly logical thing by promoting the idea that conquest is unethical. Once you’ve reached the top of the food chain through conquest and become a superpower with a wide gap to your rivals, there are big diminishing returns to conquest and increasing your power through territorial acquisition becomes less of a priority than preventing the emergence of any rival by preventing anyone else from acquiring land, population and resources through conquest.

    Similarly, communists glorified rebellion and revolution until they were in power and then rebellion immediately became an unacceptable form of “counter-revolution”. Once you’re on top the first priority always is to ensure that no one else can use the same method of climbing to the top.

    Despite all of your idolization of pure rational Machiavellian calculus without moral qualms, it seems like the American elites that you deride are actually simply better than you at it, Mr Thorfinnson.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  110. @German_reader

    It’s mostly true, though some of his complaints are typical of Northern Europe (high price levels) or even simply apartment blocks in general (communal laundry). It won’t surprise you that wealthier urban dwellers, like my cousins, have in-unit laundry.

    Stifling egalitarianism is more distinctly Scandinavian, though weaker today than it was in the past.

  111. @Jaakko Raipala

    Something can be simultaneously useful and untrue. This was understood at the time and featured heavily in Axis rhetoric against the British.

    I find the ability of most people, elite or not, to sincerely believe in falsehoods to be extremely irritating.

    And it’s even more irritating when those falsehoods are against their own self-interest (in this case not, of course, Americans).

    As for my own nation’s elites, they’ve done well at securing their own positions. They’re not particularly good at handling the affairs of state.

  112. @German_reader

    I highly doubt that people are taking days off only to do the laundry.

    I’ve seen such communal laundry elsewhere, and it’s nowhere near as nightmarish as is depicted in this thread.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  113. @melanf

    There is no doubt that Finland had quite clear plans for conquest (and ethnic cleansing) of northwestern Russia.

    Highly doubtful in light of the fact that they even stopped their troops despite Hitler’s repeated requests to resume the offensive.

    • Replies: @melanf
  114. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    Sadly, most of the people living in the Donbas Republics still want to be in Ukraine rather than in Russia (54.5% vs. 45.5%). But they prefer an arrangement that is bad for Ukraine. No thanks.

    Why not have Ukraine offer a South Tyrol-style autonomy to the Donbass rebels? That way, they could have autonomy without having veto power over national decisions.

    So, if all of Donbas were integrated and a vote took place in both the Kiev-controlled parts and the Donbas Republics, incorporation into Ukraine with no special autonomy would win a plurality of the votes.

    I wonder if Russophile tendencies in the western Donbass are going to significantly increase in the event that this region will ever be conquered by the Donbass separatists.

  115. Dmitry says:
    @German_reader

    real disaster will happen in a few years when the baby boomers retire.

    Why should it be a disaster? Falling population does not imply the economy has to collapse – potentially it can imply higher quality of life.

    Labour supply will fall (if unfiltered immigration can be prevented), so it will be upward pressure on wages. This is motivate businesses to increase capital intensity of their production.

    Think about agriculture. It used to require large supplies of labour. And yet today, it requires very little.

    You can already see Germany automobile industry – workers only required for final assembly:

    Whereas in the past, such a factory would need to be full of workers at all stages.

    after WW2 they rose to 2,5 in West Germany until the mid-1960s.

    Although this was among a smaller cohort, as a result of war losses. So we can already assume below replacement of the previous generation?

    • Replies: @German_reader
  116. Mr. XYZ says:
    @Oliver D. Smith

    This is why environmentalists of today tend to be voluntarily childfree, rather than supporting small families which Ehrlich popularised in 1960s.

    That might actually be a terrible strategy since it could ensure that the generations of tomorrow are going to be less environmentally conscious than the generation of today. After all, less people might care about the environment if environmentalists did not spread their genes to subsequent generations.

  117. @reiner Tor

    German_reader probably has communal laundry based on what he’s said of himself.

    Communal laundry is nightmarish when one isn’t used to it. Just like any other reduction in convenience–and social status.

    • Replies: @Anonymoose
  118. AP says:
    @Mr. Hack

    I think Kiev is easier and the historical (Ukrainian language) word. I’ll switch over when everyone other than RT does. The time is getting closer, but we are not there yet.

  119. Mr. XYZ says:
    @German_reader

    The Soviet Union isn’t criticized so much for the pact itself, but because it proceeded to annex the Baltic states and Eastern Poland (plus the unsuccesful war against Finland) and brought the full range of Bolshevik terror there, with tens of thousands killed and hundreds of thousands deported to labor camps.

    Would there have been less criticism of the Soviet Union had it still conquered these territories but did not subsequently bring brutality to these territories?

  120. melanf says:
    @reiner Tor

    There is no doubt that Finland had quite clear plans for conquest (and ethnic cleansing) of northwestern Russia.

    Highly doubtful in light of the fact that they even stopped their troops despite Hitler’s repeated requests to resume the offensive.

    In this case, there is no room for doubt, because a huge chunk of northwestern Russia was captured by Finland in 1941 and officially declared part of Finland. The Russian population in these areas ( adults, children, women, men, all without exception) were sent to concentration camps.
    These conquests were the result of plans that existed in Finland long before 41 (and long before the Winter war)

    • Replies: @Kerubi
    , @Jaakko Raipala
  121. @Dmitry

    Why should it be a disaster?

    Do you understand how the German pensions system works? It’s based on the working population paying for pensioners. Looked sustainable in the 1950s, with above replacement birth rates (Adenauer is alleged to have said Kinder kriegen die Leute immer – “People will always have children”, it was apparently inconceivable for him that birth rates could drop like they eventually did), when pensioners died a few years after entering retirement. Nowadays, given very low birth rates and high life expectancies, not so much.
    The younger generations of productive Germans will be crushed by the financial burden of having to provide for the boomers. On top of that, our completely irresponsible government is importing millions of parasitic foreigners who immediately enter the welfare system and destroy all the potential benefits of an ageing society like increased availability of housing, less crime etc. The likely result is clear: tax burden will increase, if anything, it will be harder for productive younger Germans to have children, and an increasing number will flee the country for greener pastures.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  122. @Thorfinnsson

    For some strange reason, around a century ago people developed the incorrect idea that conquest was somehow morally wrong.

    Civilised people always believed that naked, unjustified aggression was wrong. They just had a different and more expansive definition of when conquest was justified.
    Roman, Greek and medieval writers will condemn acts of perceived unjustified aggression (obviously in a way that often seems biased to us) and offer justifications for wars based on past wrongs.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  123. AP says:
    @reiner Tor

    The borders “rigged against Russians” meant huge Russian population in the other republics, which was supposed to make separatism more difficult for them.

    Exactly. If the Soviets hadn’t loaded Crimea and Donbas into Ukraine, Ukraine would have followed Poland’s geopolitical path from 1991. If the Soviets had added, say, Stavropol, Kursk, and some other regions to Ukraine, it would have been another Belarus. If “Ukraine” stretched to the Volga, it would never have become independent.

    The Soviet strategy of adding Russian areas was not anti-Russian. They merely blundered by underestimating the strength of the local nationalists, so they added too few Russians into the mix.

    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
    , @Mikel
    , @Gerard2
  124. Dmitry says:
    @anonymous coward

    If living space is determinant, why does Gaza have 4,5 children per women, while in Canada 1,6 children per women?

    Or about apartments – look at demographic transition in the USSR. Collapse continued at the same time, housing supply is greatly improved. There is fall from 1960-1980, from 2,6 to around 1,9. At the same time, the housing situation of the population was improving (across 1960-1980).

    • Replies: @AP
    , @Mr. XYZ
  125. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Still, Europeans do not care about resolving border disputes in good faith through peaceful diplomatic negotiations. This is why it’s peak hypocrisy for Europeans to whine how it’s “so terrible” that there’s war in, say, the Ukraine, when with the USA in the 1990’s they were very eager to dissolve the USSR on those same Sovok borders which are a large part of the cause for conflict now and in the future.

    This is the crux of the matter, I think. And part of why that good faith isn’t there is that the EU is itself an empire — just an especially self-deluded one, which makes it sometimes hard to tell the rhetoric from the reality. Michael Anton:

    While traditional empires may have gone out of fashion, globalization has taken its place as the imperialism of our time. Globalization represents an attempt to do through peaceful means—the creation of transnational institutions, the erosion of borders, and the homogenization of intellectual, cultural, and economic products—what the Romans (and Cyrus and others) achieved through arms.

    No surprise, then, that globalization and imperialism suffer from the same flaws. Like the latter, the former is also hubristic and prone to overreach. It also erodes and even subverts and attacks liberty. It requires centralization.

    Globalization also has the same stifling impact on ideas, and for the same reasons, that Machiavelli diagnosed as a problem with imperialism 500 years ago. Globalization reduces differences in thought in any number of ways: through media consolidation, for example, or through the homogenization of the elite—who these days all seem to come from the same background, attend the same schools, and go to the same conferences. The champions of globalization also aren’t above stooping to outright censorship and coercion when threatened. Indeed, this impulse is perhaps the most important root of political correctness.

    Defenders of globalization will respond that whereas imperialism—globalization by conquest—amounts to theft and enslavement and is inherently violent, today’s globalization is voluntary.

    But is it really? It certainly doesn’t feel that way to the people all over the world who have seen their culture, traditions, communities, and economies disappear before their eyes. And this transformation has been voluntary only in the sense that it has been undertaken with the full approval of the elite. As for the common folk, not so much.

    https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/04/20/the-trump-doctrine-big-think-america-first-nationalism/

  126. @Kent Nationalist

    I find it amusing that even the Nazis felt it necessary to stage a false flag attack to justify their invasion of Poland (though there were also real anti-German atrocities in Poland).

    As for justifying wars based on past wrongs, amusingly the Japanese invasion of Korea in the 16th century was justified on the basis that the Koreans had assisted the failed Mongol assault on Japan–more than three centuries prior.

    My take is that humans are tribal and compete for resources and that’s that.

    The position that war in cases other than self-defense is always wrong is a respectable one, but clearly not believed by today’s cruise missile left. Instead they suggest we go to war because the Assman is allegedly a really bad dude.

    As a result is we get the costs of war without the benefits.

  127. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Narva is only the most valuable thing on the Russian-Estonian border in that area. I personally don’t really care about Narva.

    Yes, but its only value I can see is its people (some 50,000 ethnic Russians — cashiers greet you in Russian there even though you are technically in the EU state of Estonia). Soviet artillery basically leveled the old Narva with the ground, so the whole town is one gigantic commieblock.

  128. Dmitry says:
    @German_reader

    (Adenauer is alleged to have said Kinder kriegen die Leute immer – “People will always have children”

    People will always have children. But not necessarily 2 children (very often 1 child). Germany was already below replacement level of fertility in the 1930s, so his comments were not reasonable even for the 1950s (when the higher fertility rate was for a smaller cohort anyway – actual birthrates were not high).

    younger generations of productive Germans will be crushed by the financial burden of having to provide for the boomers.

    Sure, this is the problem of increasing dependency ratio.

    But with an economy as deeply strong as Germany, I don’t see why they cannot manage a higher dependency ratio.

    enter the welfare system and destroy all the potential benefits of an ageing society like increased availability of housing, less crime etc.

    Well here is the problem.

    Falling or static population, should not have implied open immigration policies. There should be rejection of the assumption that population has expand by any means necessary.

    an increasing number will flee the country for greener pastures.

    What kind of countries do you think they would emigrate to? I guess UK, Austria or Switzerland?

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @German_reader
  129. Beckow says:
    @reiner Tor

    …why did they issue a unilateral guarantee to Poland, and why did they declare war on Germany after it attacked Poland?

    UK-France declared a ‘war’ and didn’t fight it, they sat on their hands. If France-UK invaded into Rhineland in September 1939 – as Poles thought they would – the war would be very different. They didn’t for a reason: West wanted to facilitate Germany’s war towards the east, if it meant sacrificing Poland, Czechoslovakia, so be it.

    The guarantee to Poland was a piece of paper, issued in April 1939 by UK (France less so, they had contingencies attached). It deceived Poland into thinking they were a part of ‘Western world’, it amounted to nothing. One can suspect that in a cynical way giving fake guarantees to the hapless Poles was a way to stir it up and make sure that Germany and Poland ended up in a war, Germany ends victorious on Russia’s borders and the desired war to death in the east takes place. Except they thought Germany would be all the way deep into Belarus-Ukraine or ‘eastern Poland’ at that time. So they would a few hundred kilometres from Moscow. That part didn’t work because Stalin outplayed them on the last minute.

    Molotov-Ribbentrop was a great chess move, it changed the situation dramatically and it literally saved millions of eastern Europeans (Poles!) from eventual extinction.

  130. @Thorfinnsson

    I read that Moldbugman thread. Is it rue that there are fights over there in communal laundries?

  131. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry

    , so his comments were not reasonable even for the 1950s (when the higher fertility rate was for a smaller cohort anyway – actual birthrates were not high).

    Here – even with a higher fertility rate in the 1950s, the birthrate in West Germany only has slight and temporary recovery.

  132. AP says:
    @Dmitry

    You do realize he is wrong about 99% of the time?

  133. @Dmitry

    Germany was already below replacement level of fertility in the 1930s

    I’m not sure the graph you’ve provided (thanks btw, very interesting!) actually shows that, the drops below replacement rate look more like temporary reactions to shocks like the world wars or the Great Depression…of course there’s a long-term downwards trend, but the change to permanently below replacement levels only comes after the mid-1960s.

    But with an economy as deeply strong as Germany

    Question is how long it will remain strong, energy supply/costs will become problematic because of the insane decision to give up both atomic and coal power, and the established parties, in their quest to take up the Greens’ agenda, seem likely to promote policies which will wreck the German car industry. Once that has been accomplished, German economic strength will be irrevocerably gone.

    Falling or static population, should not have implied open immigration policies.

    If Europe were isolated, that might be true, but we’re next to demographically expanding regions.
    I just read this:
    https://www.hoover.org/research/european-demographics-and-migration
    There won’t be a happy ending to this.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  134. @Dmitry

    I know people say France, Norway or Sweden are an example of successful government increase of birthrates. But I have read mixed things about this claim (some people say a lot of their higher birthrates in those countries are from recent immigrants).

    Swedish birthrates are way overhyped. For one thing, our TFR has only exceeded 2.1 twice since 1967 (in 1990 and 1991), and for another, it’s still unclear, as you point out, how far our somewhat higher TFR than the Western average can be put down to ethnic Swedish birthrates. Most figures I have seen would suggest an ethnic Swedish TFR of 0.2-0.3 lower than the total Swedish TFR, which is not very impressive.

  135. @Beckow

    What exactly would have been the British and French interest in Germany conquering the Soviet Union? That would have made German autarky against any attempts of blockade possible and all but ensured German hegemony in Europe…and Britain and France had fought a horrible war just 20 years before to prevent exactly that.
    From a British and French point of view it was far preferable if it didn’t come to a German-Soviet war which would inevitably end with either the Germans or the Soviets in control of much of Europe.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  136. @Beckow

    They didn’t for a reason

    Or they were just bluffing and expected Hitler to be put off, just as Hitler expected them not to follow through

  137. @Beckow

    While it is true that the Entente made false promises to the Poles, the idea that the intent was to facilitate a German-Soviet war is ridiculous. If that was the case Britain could’ve joined the Anti-Comintern Pact and encouraged Poland to sincerely negotiate with Germany. Then they could’ve gone on to dismember the USSR together, which was the dream of some Nazis (but not many British).

    The Entente believed, not entirely without reason, that the German armed forces were stronger than their own in the fall of 1939. The Germans had been successfully exaggerating their military strength for years.

    Entente leadership had been scarred by the Great War, and they were determined to avoid another Passchendaele or Verdun. British officers display reticence in the offensive for the entire war as a result, and unlike in 1914 no one in the French Army was keen to go on the offensive.

    What the Entente was confident of was its economic superiority, and therefore planned to use this economic superiority to build up sufficient forces to go on the offensive in 1941. Much as in the Great War, there were also the usual Entente plans to strike Germany’s economic power by attacking the periphery. Seizing the Swedish iron mines, bombing the Soviet oil fields, exerting British financial and political influence in the Balkans, and so forth.

    Poland, incidentally, was expected by Entente military planners to hold out for at least three months. This sounds ridiculous to us today, but was reasonably based on the experience of cracking small countries in the Great War. Serbia and Rumania were both tough nuts to crack in that war.

    Molotov-Ribbentrop was a great chess move…for Germany.

    • Replies: @Mitleser
    , @Beckow
  138. Dmitry says:
    @German_reader

    I’m not sure the graph you’ve provided (thanks btw, very interesting!) actually shows that, the drops below replacement rate look more like temporary reactions to shocks

    Total period fertility rate is not very clear. But if look at cohort fertility rate.

    Women born in Germany from 1900-1920s, were already below replacement rate.

    Biological “fertility window” for a woman born around in 1900-1910, was from around 1915-1940.

    So there was a generation of women who were just below replacement fertility in Germany whose “fertile window” was the 1920s-1930s

    Young women of 1920s and 1930s Germany, were slightly below replacement fertility.

    how long it will remain strong, energy supply/costs will become problematic

    I’m not an economist. But it is believed that some indicators like economic complexity can predict how resilient and diversified an economy is.

    So if we look at economic complexity – Germany is supposedly the third highest country in terms of economic complexity, after Japan and Switzerland.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_economic_complexity

    because of the insane decision to give up both atomic and coal power, and the established parties,

    To stop coal is sensible IMO – it will improve public health and also of electricity produced by gas is now below cost for coal a lot of the time.

    If Europe were isolated, that might be true, but we’re next to demographically expanding regions.
    I just read this:
    https://www.hoover.org/research/european-demographics-and-migration
    There won’t be a happy ending to this.

    But look at Germany’s geography, for example.

    It is not next to any third-world or asylum needing population.

    In order to reach Germany, every immigrant has to cross other countries, in which they were already safe.

    Yet according to 1951 Refugee Convention, the refugee has to apply for asylum in the first safe country they reach.

    So in theory, Germany has no legal obligation to accept immigrants on that basis. It’s a question of voluntarily how many immigrants the government wants to accept.

  139. @Dmitry

    To stop coal is sensible IMO – it will improve public health and also of electricity produced by gas is now below cost for coal a lot of the time.

    The cost of electricity generated by natural gas is cheaper than coal in North America and the former Soviet Union. This is only a recent development here (~12 years) by the way. Traditionally coal was always cheaper.

    Is it true in Germany? Does anyone know?

    Additionally, even if the cost of natural gas is cheaper than coal per kilowatt hour in Germany, one would have to consider the social costs of winding down the coal industry. In the UK the social wreckage from the decision to abandon coal mining was substantial.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  140. @Kent Nationalist

    The carbon footprint of one American today is equivalent to that of 150 people in Niger (World Bank, 2014) and a person in the UK produces 70 times the CO2 of someone living in Niger.

    Of course, I support drastically reducing fertility rates in Niger as any other country (including my own, UK), however, it’s clear that a person living in Niger is far less ecologically destructive than someone in the Western world i.e. fewer people being born in US/UK has the most immediate and positive impact on our environment —> so priority should obviously be to focus on reducing birth/fertility rates in the West (but also China, India and Brazil that also have high carbon emissions) rather than Niger.

    Concerning Niger, although it still has a high TFR, note it has fallen from a peak of 7.89 (1983) to 7.24 (2016) and continues to decline. Fertility rates are lower in every single Sub-Saharan African country compared to decades ago (same for globe); there has been a world-wide decrease in TFRs. The problem is these have not decreased as much as in SSA than most other parts of the globe, this is explained by several factors, although I won’t bother getting into them.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  141. @Dmitry

    Women born in Germany from 1900-1915, were already below replacement rate.

    Thanks, interesting data. But it seems to have been only slightly below replacement level (and stable at that level), and I think one would have to consider the effects of the world wars and the Great Depression. imo this isn’t quite the same as the situation since the 1970s.

    To stop coal is sensible IMO

    Yes, but you can’t run an industrial economy just with renewables in Germany, that’s an absurd illusion. imo atomic power would be necessary if one wants to end reliance on coal-based power plants, but unfortunately atomic power has been demonized by decades of Green propaganda.

    It is not next to any third-world or asylum needing population.

    Europe is next to Africa and the Mideast though, and for various reasons, there is no political will to stop immigration, instead the political establishment does everything in its power to expand it. It will be very difficult to change this dynamic without a change of political elites.

  142. @German_reader

    Atomic power, while highly desirable, isn’t strictly necessary for a coal phaseout because natural gas can be imported from Russia. Of course that reduces energy security.

    The ideal energy mix for Germany is atomic power for baseload with hydro for peak demand. Solar really doesn’t make sense anywhere in Germany, and wind mills appear to be a bust. That said solar could perhaps be imported cheaply from the Mediterranean, depending on availability and transmission costs. Germany already imports hydro from Scandinavia.

    If environmentalists were serious they’d demand we look into atomic energy for industrial process heat. For instance a lot of carbon is emitted in the production of cement, refine fuels, and chemicals.

    The high-temperature gas-cooled reactor design is supposed to be able to reach outlet temperatures of 1000 C, which would be useful for those industries.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  143. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    recent development here (~12 years) by the way. Traditionally coal was always cheaper.

    Coal is usually cheaper than gas in terms of the cost of the chemical energy inside the material itself, although price of gas is quite volatile, and sometimes might go cheaper.

    But conversion of chemical to electrical energy can be more efficient today in the combined cycle gas turbine plants, and this has allowed the cost of electricity generated by gas to fall below coal. .


    Here Siemens now claims over 61% efficiency (this is the turbine imported now in some of the latest projects in Russia).

    https://new.siemens.com/global/en/products/energy/power-generation/gas-turbines/sgt5-8000h.html

  144. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    England seems to be successfully transitioning to a lot of offshore wind electricity generation, which is already 1/4 of their mix.

    They are building them larger and larger every year. Perhaps Germany does not have areas with a sufficiency powerful supply of wind, however.

    It is also not explained if it is steady enough to be suitable for baseload (I assume not).

  145. @AP

    In mean, certainly. However in median and range you’ll find quite a contrast.

    But I’m glad you agree the Ukrainian gov’t should just leave the people there alone.

  146. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    Exactly. If the Soviets hadn’t loaded Crimea and Donbas into Ukraine, Ukraine would have followed Poland’s geopolitical path from 1991.

    Perhaps much more corruption and stealing than in Poland, though. That would have probably meant a longer EU path for Ukraine in comparison to Poland–though I completely agree that pro-Russian forces had no chance to actually come to power in Ukraine without Crimea and the Donbass–especially in the 21st century.

    If the Soviets had added, say, Stavropol, Kursk, and some other regions to Ukraine, it would have been another Belarus.

    Yep.

    If “Ukraine” stretched to the Volga, it would never have become independent.

    I’m not so sure about that. After all, Sovoks do whatever they’re told to, no? Plus, Ukraine’s elite would have still wanted to loot the country, would it not have?

    I do agree that another Belarus is likely here as well, though.

    The Soviet strategy of adding Russian areas was not anti-Russian. They merely blundered by underestimating the strength of the local nationalists, so they added too few Russians into the mix.

    They should have also aimed to encourage more Russian migration into the other SSRs.

    • Replies: @AP
  147. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    Another rebuilding project for Russia then, no?

  148. Mr. XYZ says:
    @Dmitry

    IMHO, Gaza should be allowed to expand into the northeastern part of the Sinai Peninsula. After all, it’s not like Egypt is actually making good use of this territory right now.

    In the US, we say “California Dreaming!”; in Gaza, they should say “Sinai Dreaming!”

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  149. @Dmitry

    Offshore wind power is probably the most EROEI-inefficient energy sources on the planet after biofuels. Huge sink of resources.

    But if they want to waste their money on it more power to them.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  150. Mr. XYZ says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Russia needs a much bigger population, because population is power – especially in the absence of any carrying capacity constraints (totally inapplicable in this case, of course).

    Agreed, and Russia’s goal should be to encourage its best and brightest to have much more children. If costs of living are a problem, Russia can encourage some of its smart people to move to other parts of Russia–assuming, of course, that this will actually succeed in raising their fertility.

    Interestingly enough, I previously read that ex-USSR Jews who moved to Israel subsequently saw a significant increase in their total fertility rate. The better life in Israel (excluding the terrorism, of course) probably helped in regards to this–as did Israel’s pro-natal culture. In other words, having more children was no longer viewed as a “Gypsy thing” by many ex-USSR Jews after they moved to Israel.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @Dmitry
  151. Mitleser says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    If that was the case Britain could’ve joined the Anti-Comintern Pact and encouraged Poland to sincerely negotiate with Germany. Then they could’ve gone on to dismember the USSR together, which was the dream of some Nazis (but not many British).

    Brits wanted both sides to lose, Germany and the Soviet Union, hence no joining of ACP or what the USSR proposed.
    Of course, the unexpectedly weak military performance of certain countries after M-R made them change their plans.

  152. AP says:
    @Mr. XYZ

    “Exactly. If the Soviets hadn’t loaded Crimea and Donbas into Ukraine, Ukraine would have followed Poland’s geopolitical path from 1991.”

    Perhaps much more corruption and stealing than in Poland, though. That would have probably meant a longer EU path for Ukraine in comparison to Poland

    It would have followed the path more slowly but probably would not have joined the EU later than did Bulgaria or Romania. Also Donbas was the one of the most corrupt parts of Ukraine.

    If “Ukraine” stretched to the Volga, it would never have become independent.

    I’m not so sure about that. After all, Sovoks do whatever they’re told to, no?

    I don’t think they would have gone that far, however.

    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
  153. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    …Molotov-Ribbentrop was a great chess move…for Germany.

    Well, no, after all Germany lost the war in a rather catastrophic way and they have never recovered from it. It is hard to argue that Germany made great moves when they ended up losing so badly. Winning matters.

    Here is the list of losses for Germany from R-M Pact:
    – Russia got enormous strategic depth that resulted in Barbarossa running out of steam before they reached Moscow/St. Petersburg
    – Germany burned bridges with their Anglo sympathisers
    – Japan was betrayed by Germany – they were in the middle of a war in Mongolia with Russia that they lost. This led directly to Japan unwilling to join Germany in 1941 – and that was catastrophic for German chances, no second front for Russia in the east.

    If there was no M-R Pact and Germany attacked Poland, they would still win decisively and also take over eastern Poland (or most of it). They would be at the top of the world and a few hundred kilometres from Moscow, Kiev, St. Petersburg. Russia would be surrounded by enemies – from Finland to Romania all potential allies of Germany. UK-France would sit on the sidelines and find some ethnic excuse to justify Germany liberating somebody in the east, maybe Ukrainians. Germany would most likely prevail. M-R Pact turned that around – Hitler got played because he was unsure of himself and couldn’t quite trust that UK-France will only declare a phoney war and do nothing. They did and I am pretty sure by the end of 1939 Hitler knew that he made a mistake. M-R decided the war, it was brilliant on part of Stalin to shift the chess game so dramatically.

    Britain is always deceptive, that’s the only way they do anything – in other words, their geo-politics is based on lying and they are rather proud of it. The other idea that Britain would openly show its aims by joinig Nazi Germany in an Anti-Comintern pact is naive. There was the Jewish issue (bad publicity), there was the left in Western Europe issue (not eager to fight the first ‘socialist’ country).

    No matter how you cut it, Stalin was a savvy (or lucky) player in WWII. That’s why Russia won.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @Gerard2
  154. @German_reader

    Europe is next to Africa and the Mideast though, and for various reasons, there is no political will to stop immigration, instead the political establishment does everything in its power to expand it. It will be very difficult to change this dynamic without a change of political elites.

    Immigration restrictionist policies are now adopted by mainstream parties though, or at least are being spoken about.

    Labour (UK):

    Speaking to Sky News, he added: “There’s got to be tough controls on immigration, and you’ve got to know the people who come here contribute before they get any benefits.

    “It’s a pledge from us, it’s on the mug and I’m hoping after the general election I can do a toast in that mug as we get on and change Britain for the better.”

    The mugs have been branded with the party’s five election pledges, including tighter controls on immigration.

    https://www.channel4.com/news/labour-mug-immigration-controls

    Conservative Party (UK):

    Theresa May has indicated that the Conservatives will again promise to cut net migration to the “tens of thousands” in their election manifesto.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-39840503

    This was quite the opposite as recent as the 2000s when both Labour and Conservative Party didn’t talk openly about reducing the number of immigrants and tried to brush under the carpet the issue of immigration altogether. What changed? Well, since the mainstream parties ignored this issue, it led to the electoral rise of the far-right British National Party-

    It is not for nothing that the BNP received 800,000 votes in the recent [2oo4] elections and the UK Independence Party — which also has a strong policy on immigration — did remarkably well. Unless the major parties get a grip on this problem and do so soon, the extremists of the BNP will make hay and the tranquillity of our society will be placed at serious risk. The time for decisive action has arrived.

    https://www.migrationwatchuk.org/press-article/54/let-everyone-in-is-a-dangerous-immigration-policy

    Similarly, in Denmark since the mainstream parties ignored immigration, the 2000s and early 2010s saw the rise of the far-right Danish People’s Party.

    But as soon as the mainstream parties in UK and Denmark adopted immigration restrictionist policies and started to openly talk about immigration (as if it was no longer a taboo and acceptable), the BNP and Danish People’s Party – collapsed electorally. The latter in the fairly recent 2019 Danish general election did almost as poorly as they first started out in 1998. We will most likely see the same thing happen in the next decade in Sweden, Germany etc.

    The “political elites” really are no longer ignoring ordinary people’s concerns about immigration and there seems to be no need for the far-right anymore.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  155. Beckow says:
    @German_reader

    UK-France interest was in a war between Germany and Russia to exhaust both. Secondary interest was in directing German post-WWI revanche towards the east – go east Nazis and find your lebensraum, just leave the West alone.

    If there was any sympathy in Britain for one side to win in 1939-41 it was definitely on the side of Germany. London saw Nazis as an aberration that could be corrected, but Germany as an ok ally. Russia is a permanent, eternal enemy of Britain – at least that’s the way British elite sees it. I doubt that will ever change.

    …From a British and French point of view it was far preferable if it didn’t come to a German-Soviet war which would inevitably end with either the Germans or the Soviets in control of much of Europe.

    Britain believed that with American help they can sneak in a few months before the end of the war, have Germans basically give up on the Western front, and take over most of Europe since Russia was too exhausted and too far to the east. Actually, it kind of worked that way.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  156. @Beckow

    If there was any sympathy in Britain for one side to win in 1939-41 it was definitely on the side of Germany.

    German bombing killed about 40 000 British civilians in 1940…it’s pretty deranged to claim that the British public wanted Germany to win under such circumstances. Whether rightly or wrongly, the war against Germany after the fall of France was seen as a struggle for national existence by the British.
    People here often complain about irrational Western hostility towards Russia, but imo your comments show that the reverse also still exists among people whose formative experiences were in Eastern Bloc educational systems.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  157. @Oliver D. Smith

    But as soon as the mainstream parties in UK and Denmark adopted immigration restrictionist policies and started to openly talk about immigration

    Problem is it’s mostly limited to talk…one could also say that mainstream politicans try to placate the public with vague “We have understood” statements, without any intention of really doing anything. Net immigration to Britain is still at extremely high levels by pre-1997 standards, and the Danish Social Democrats already seem to have softened their immigration skepticism…apparently was only necessary before the election.

    • Replies: @Oliver D. Smith
  158. Dmitry says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    The English are reducing the price of offshore wind electricity through increasing the size of the project. So the price is rapidly becoming competitive.
    https://www.carbonbrief.org/analysis-uk-auction-offshore-wind-cheaper-than-new-gas

    They are matching what China succeeded with PV.

    If you look at Hornsea Project One.

    Each wind turbine is 190 metres tall (the famous Gherkin skyscraper of London is only 180 metres tall).

    Each wind turbine is 40% taller than the Great Pyramid of Giza. Or 500% taller than Colossus of Rhodes.

    And they have installed 100 of these turbines on the single project already this year. (There’s only about 50 skyscrapers as tall as these in Europe).


  159. Dmitry says:
    @Mr. XYZ

    previously read that ex-USSR Jews who moved to Israel subsequently saw a significant increase

    They have the lowest fertility rate of any population in Israel, which shows how strongly low fertility behavior continues, even in a high fertility country. (Although it can be remembered that Jews were one of the lowest fertility, if not the lowest fertility, nationality in the USSR).

  160. Dmitry says:
    @Mr. XYZ

    There is almost a larger war in the Sinai, between Egypt and rebels, than there is between Israel and Palestinians.

    Look at the casualties on both sides.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sinai_insurgency

    It’s strange how Western liberals are not interested about all the deaths in the Sinai, and there are not articles about the “oppression” there.

    • Replies: @German_reader
    , @Mr. XYZ
  161. Dmitry says:
    @Oliver D. Smith

    Are you a fanboy of Schopenhauer or something? You read Supplements to the Book 4
    of Volume 2 of World as Will and Representation and became highly cynical? http://www.gutenberg.org/files/40868/40868-h/40868-h.html#toc53

    • Replies: @Oliver D. Smith
  162. Dmitry says:
    @German_reader

    atomic power has been demonized by decades

    One practical problem of establishing nuclear power plants, is lack of nimbleness.

    From planning process to placing the power plant online, will often be around 15 years.

    If Germany decides to build nuclear power stations at the political level now, they will be going online maybe in the mid-2030s.

    And obviously, there will probably be many delays from local politicians and NIMBY, which will slow it down.

    So is likely planning to produce for electricity demand of the second half of the 2030s, in the case of nuclear plant decisions now. And by then, there might be cheaper possibilities.

    By comparison, converting a coal power station to gas, can be in 1-2 years. However, securing supply of gas might have less nimbleness.

  163. @Dmitry

    and there are not articles about the “oppression” there.

    One sometimes reads articles though about the local bedouins who capture African migrants and torture them to extort ransom from their relatives.

  164. Beckow says:
    @German_reader

    Ok, change it to 1939-40, the British elite (not the public) were more sympathetic to Germany than to Russia. In Munich in 1938, and then with the phoney war in 1939, the British elite wanted a German-Russian war. And if they had a preference for who should win, it was more for Germany.

    That is not ‘irrational hostility’, it is simply describing it as it was. I also don’t see anything irrational about British elite anti-Russian attitudes. It is something that fits quite well into their worldview and self-interest. British elite understands that when Russia does well, Britain will do less well. It is a bit of either-or, the wealth, assets, influence, historical narratives and national myths are at cross-purposes between the Anglo and the Russian world. When one does better, the other loses ground and Anglo world elites understand this very well. It is quite rational to want to protect one’s standing.

    I, by the way, don’t apply any of this to the British public. They are in just for a ride, too often they are willing to swallow their elites’ attitudes toward Russia (and the east in general) without much objection. But that’s true in most societies so one can’t really object too much.

  165. @Anatoly Karlin

    I am against it for both ethical and practical reasons (which are actually linked).

    No offense, but that is an extremely beta male argument to justify women being educated. The white knighting for women is so cringe nowadays.

    Of course, I should clarify that women on a basic level should learn to read, write and do basic math. Still, why do women need education beyond this? Their ultimate purpose is to make children and then raise them while taking care of the home.

    It is with good reason that women used to be the private property of men in the past. In fact, it is the most reliable way to ensure that women do what they are supposed to do. All education does, especially university education, is simply to either block or delay women from fulfilling their natural purpose in life. It is actually immoral to educate women with university and college since it harms society, birth rates, and men.

  166. @German_reader

    I never wrote it should, and certainly some of the anti-Russian sentiment in the Baltic states and Poland isn’t very constructive…but so isn’t the “Stalin did nothing wrong” revisionism seen in this thread.

    Lol. Besides Beckow, I haven’t seen a single example of “Stalin did nothing wrong” revisionism here in this thread. That sentiment only exists among Sovoks or tribal Russians/Slavs who feel threatened and confused. It’s also something that Anatoly Karlin has written about before. Of course, Russians/Slavs who truly understand what Stalin did and his purpose, do not hero worship him.

    I personally think that Ivan the Terrible really did nothing wrong and that Russians should endorse historical revision about him instead, since really, the mainstream western historical narrative is complete with lies, falsehoods and half truths about Ivan the Terrible. That bias is even shown by the incorrect translation of Иван Грозни – Ivan Grozni – which means Ivan the Fearsome, to Ivan the Terrible.

  167. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Besides Beckow, I haven’t seen a single example of “Stalin did nothing wrong” revisionism here in this thread.

    Epigon made much the same argument in favour of Molotov-Ribbentropp (“The territory gained by USSR through Molotov-Ribbentrop gave USSR the strategic depth to survive the initial Axis onslaught, and win the war in the end.”)…and you agreed with it 🙂
    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/open-thread-88/#comment-3435735

    I personally think that Ivan the Terrible really did nothing wrong

    I don’t know much about Ivan. iirc AK actually wanted to do a post about him, let’s hope he’ll get around to doing that (or at least review that book about medieval Russia he was reading recently).

  168. @Korenchkin

    The plans existance would mean there was no real grand strategy for the British, they were just exploiting whatever opportunity arose with a vague central goal in mind, that ended up getting unfullfilled since their Empire disintegrated and they became a satrap to their former colony

    I would disagree about the British Empire having no grand strategy before and during WW2. I’m sure Epigon would most certainly disagree.

    Fucking hell, India sided against them and partnered up with the Soviet Union during the Cold War, in a way fullfilling their fears all the way back from the Great Game days, and today India remains a Russian partner even as Russia is getting increasingly friendly with China

    Yeah lol. Cuckoldry is probably the best word to describe that.

    Still, this doesn’t really matter for the Brits. Britain has been basically irrelevant in the world post-1945 as most of their power was transferred to the USA to which they have a Belarus-Russia style relationship. The biggest problem for Brits/Anglos is being demographically pulverized out of existence by the Third World. This demographic replacement actually began around the 1960’s time period when it was deliberately enabled by Jews/Liberals. The only person who had the wisdom among them to foresee the disaster that was coming was Enoch Powell. He was completely correct with his “Rivers of Blood” speech about multiculturalism/immigration and his predictions about the EU.

  169. @German_reader

    Epigon made much the same argument in favour of Molotov-Ribbentropp (“The territory gained by USSR through Molotov-Ribbentrop gave USSR the strategic depth to survive the initial Axis onslaught, and win the war in the end.”)…and you agreed with it 🙂
    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/open-thread-88/#comment-3435735

    You misinterpreted Epigon’s comment and my agreement with it as an endorsement of “Stalin did nothing wrong”. It was nothing of the sort. Epigon only correctly pointed to the wisdom of Stalin’s decision to make the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact and the hypocrisy of the UK/France and the Western Allies in their dealings with Germany and the USSR. It is not a comment about Stalin’s actions and policies within the USSR.

    With the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact, it should actually be clarified that it was the Germans who approached Stalin and the Soviets first, not the other way around, in order to sign the pact and agree on partitioning Poland and the Baltics.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molotov%E2%80%93Ribbentrop_Pact#Negotiations

    Note that it was German diplomats who traveled to Moscow to start negotiating the pact, not the other way around. It’s often forgotten that the Germans themselves in 1939 did not want the USSR to instantly come to the defense of Poland where Germany would have to fight both, hence why it was of high importance for them to come to a territorial arrangement with the USSR.

    • Replies: @utu
  170. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    It would have followed the path more slowly but probably would not have joined the EU later than did Bulgaria or Romania. Also Donbas was the one of the most corrupt parts of Ukraine.

    Were Ukraine’s 2005-2010 governments and 2014-present governments much less corrupt than Yanukovych’s government was?

    Also, unless Ukraine was much wealthier than it was in real life in 2007, I just don’t see a quick EU entry for Ukraine in this scenario. I mean, a huge part of the Balkans is still outside of the EU even right now in spite of them being wealthier per capita than Ukraine is.

    I don’t think they would have gone that far, however.

    Why not?

    • Replies: @AP
  171. Mr. XYZ says:
    @Dmitry

    I think that a part of the elevated criticism towards Israel might be that it claims to be a democratic country to a greater extent than Egypt does.

    As for the Sinai rebels, Hamas can go in and crush them for all I care.

  172. Kerubi says:
    @melanf

    What plans? What is your evidence? In the 1930s only extreme right wing people had such dreams. But in the late 1930s right wing did not have much influence in Finnish politics. That conquest in 1941 was an improvised opportunistic move based on security concerns. Even leftist historians have not found evidence of some secret planning before 1941.

  173. Kerubi says:
    @anonymous coward

    When Soviet Union invaded Finland on November 30 1939, Red Army was ordered to occupy the whole country, march to the Bothnic Gulf and Swedish border. It was not just some small border skirmish. Do you really think that after installing Kuusinen`s puppet government in Helsinki and making some border adjustments the Red Army would just have gone home? Without a massive Red Army presence, Kuusinen regime would have fallen in a matter of months. It was like Afganistan 1979. Stalin intended to take the whole country under control either directly or through a puppet government.

    Since 1937, Finland was governed by Cajander`s Center-Left government with a strong majority in Finnish parliament. Cajander`s government was committed to neutrality. The idea of conspiring with Nazi Germany to launch a joint invasion against the Soviet Union was very alien to those people. Probably they would have made concessions to Germany like Sweden did (selling iron ore, allowing troop transports etc), but they wouldn`t have actively participated in Barbarossa. Winter War changed Finnish foreign policy dramatically as Finland looked for support against the Soviets wherever it could be found. Stalin pushed Finland into Hitler`s arms.

  174. utu says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    “it was the Germans who approached Stalin and the Soviets first, not the other way around”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maxim_Litvinov
    On 3 May 1939, Stalin replaced Litvinov with Vyacheslav Molotov. […]. The replacement of Litvinov with Molotov significantly increased Stalin’s freedom to maneuver in foreign policy.[25] The dismissal of Litvinov, whose Jewish ethnicity was viewed disfavorably by Nazi Germany, removed an obstacle to negotiations with Germany.[26] Stalin immediately directed Molotov to “purge the ministry of Jews.”[23][27] Recalling Stalin’s order, Molotov commented, “Thank God for these words! Jews formed an absolute majority in the leadership and among the ambassadors. It wasn’t good.

    Given Litvinov’s prior attempts to create an anti-fascist coalition, association with the doctrine of collective security with France and Britain, and pro-Western orientation by Kremlin standards, his dismissal indicated the existence of a Soviet option of rapprochement with Germany.[28] Likewise, Molotov’s appointment was a signal to Germany that the USSR was open to offers.[28] The dismissal also signaled to France and Britain the existence of a potential negotiation option with Germany. One British official wrote that Litvinov’s disappearance also meant the loss of an admirable technician or shock-absorber, while Molotov’s “modus operandi” was “more truly Bolshevik than diplomatic or cosmopolitan.”

    With regard to the signing of a German-Soviet nonaggression pact with secret protocols dividing eastern Europe three months later, Hitler remarked to military commanders that “Litvinov’s replacement was decisive.”[26] A German official told the Soviet Ambassador that Hitler was also pleased that Litvinov’s replacement, Molotov, was not Jewish.[30] Hitler also wrote to Mussolini that Litvinov’s dismissal demonstrated the Kremlin’s readiness to alter relations with Berlin, which led to “the most extensive nonaggression pact in existence.”[31] When Litvinov was later asked about the reasons for his dismissal, he replied by asking, “Do you really think that I was the right person to sign a treaty with Hitler?”

  175. @utu

    Oy vey! Those evil anti-semites!

    How dare the goyim conspire against the chosen people!?!?

  176. melanf says:
    @German_reader

    Epigon made much the same argument in favour of Molotov-Ribbentropp (“The territory gained by USSR through Molotov-Ribbentrop gave USSR the strategic depth to survive the initial Axis onslaught, and win the war in the end.”)…and you agreed with it

    I also agree that “The territory gained by USSR through Molotov-Ribbentrop gave USSR the strategic depth to survive”. As far as I know this is an undoubted historical fact.
    This statement does not contradict the fact that the Stalinist terror, deportations, etc. were a very bad thing

    • Agree: TheTotallyAnonymous
  177. @utu

    On a more serious note, even in your link utu, it explains that it was the Germans who were the ones that wanted Litvinov to be dismissed. Stalin and the Soviets merely accepted the subtle offers that were coming from the Germans.

    Even English academic, Richard Overy, in his book about these events, Russia’s War, explains that the Germans were the ones who approached the Soviets first for a deal on partitioning East Europe, not the other way around.

    • Replies: @utu
  178. utu says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    “Germans who were the ones that wanted Litvinov” – Another sovok BS! If Germans were really so keen on making a deal with Soviets (as you suggested) they would not care about ethnicity of Litvinov. They did not replace Ribbentrop with a communist to please Stalin. It was other way around. Litvinov’s dismissal was Stalin’s signal that he wanted to deal with Hitler. All the gestures were done by Stalin not by Hitler meaning that it was Stalin not Hitler who was the initiator of the Non-aggresion Pact.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  179. @utu

    Remind me please, was it the German or Red Army which invaded Poland first in 1939?

    Also, if it was the Soviets who were so desperate to initiate the negotiations for the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact, then why did the Germans let the Soviets take the larger share of land in East Europe? After all, if the Soviets were so desperate for the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact, why was the German Army the one which did the heavy lifting during the double invasions of Poland?

  180. anon[134] • Disclaimer says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    I personally think that Ivan the Terrible really did nothing wrong and that Russians should endorse historical revision about him instead, since really, the mainstream western historical narrative is complete with lies, falsehoods and half truths about Ivan the Terrible. That bias is even shown by the incorrect translation of Иван Грозни – Ivan Grozni – which means Ivan the Fearsome, to Ivan the Terrible.

    The only defense of Ivan the Awesome from Russian patriotic sources I read was that he was no more brutal and terrible than contemporary Western kings (Henry VIII, Marie de Medici, Charles V, Philip II. etc… ).

  181. @German_reader

    When the Danish People’s Party cooperated with the Conservative-Liberal coalition government (2001-2011) which gave them control over immigration policy, they actually did very little to decrease immigration, in fact, there was an increase in net-migration for most years; based on the following graph, net-migration increased from around 50,000 in 2004, 80,000 by 2006, to 100,000 by 2010. https://www.ceicdata.com/en/denmark/population-and-urbanization-statistics/dk-net-migration

    The same happened with the Freedom Party of Austria (FPO), i.e. during the OVP-FPO government (200o-2005), net-migration increased. Something similar happened with the True Finn Party.

    I’m familiar with the BNP in UK a decade back. They were nowhere in terms of support like the Danish People’s Party or FPO, but did well in local council elections in the 2000s, including taking 12 seats on a London borough council and forming the opposition (Barking and Dagenham). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2006_Barking_and_Dagenham_London_Borough_Council_election They achieved though absolutely nothing when elected despite having some control.

    So far-right & right-wing populists appear to achieve nothing when elected, same for Trump. They’re as incompetent as the mainstream parties on immigration. I think though it’s futile to try to lower immigration without looking at its causes and taking direct action. The far-right & Trump though don’t want to discuss or tackle issues such as anthropogenic climate change and unsustainable population growth/overpopulation.

    Climate Change Is Already Driving Mass Migration Around the Globe
    https://www.nrdc.org/onearth/climate-change-already-driving-mass-migration-around-globe

    Climate change is the overlooked driver of Central American migration
    https://www.pri.org/stories/2019-02-06/climate-change-overlooked-driver-central-american-migration

    Five Ways Immigration-Driven Population Growth Impacts Our Environment
    https://cis.org/Sussis/Five-Ways-ImmigrationDriven-Population-Growth-Impacts-Our-Environment

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  182. @Dmitry

    The shift to wind is not driven by economic considerations, but by atomophobia and the gaia religion. It was (re)invented in Denmark after local voters hysterically rejected atom.

    Wind power has improved its economics, but they generally remain poor. Good data on this is confusing, but the latest best case I’ve seen for offshore wind is 16c/kwh. That’s terrible.

    Then, as AK noted, there is the EROEI issue. Financial cost does not necessarily translate to energy cost.

    That said unlike onshore wind, offshore megawind is at least pretty cool.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  183. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Agreed on Stalin. Disagree on Ivan IV – while he was not unremittingly bad, I believe that this assessment of Mao applies to him to a tee:

    Had Mao died in 1956, his achievements would have been immortal. Had he died in 1966, he would still have been a great man but flawed. But he died in 1976. Alas, what can one say?

    • Agree: AP
  184. @Beckow

    Germany lost the war after they devoured rump Czechoslovakia and created a global Anglo-American war machine determined to destroy it. To even have a shot at winning, it had to do everything right and make no mistakes.

    Its initial efforts were focused on creating an alliance with Italy and Japan in order to face the Western powers with global war and dilute their naval assets. But neither were willing to bite. Next up was Germany’s effort to form an alliance with Poland, allowing an immediate strike to the West. The Poles, either unable to read a map or willing to wait 60 years for things to get better, refused.

    That left the Soviet Union, which allowed Germany to quickly liquidate the Polish stooges with facing simultaneous war against Russia and France.

    The strategic depth gained by the USSR must be offset by the fact that it also resulted in Finland and Rumania joining the German invasion two years later.

    True enough that Japan was very unhappy with the M-R Pact, but as it was proving itself inferior to the Soviet army in any case and its strategic needs dictated expansion to the south.

    Ignored in my previous post, and yours, is also the economic benefits of the M-R Pact to Germany. The German-Soviet commercial agreements that arose out of the Pact provided vast resources to Germany and were very helpful in light of the Entente blockade. In fact the Entente’s entire strategy for defeating Germany was short circuited by German-Soviet trade.

    Of course, who’s to say that negotiating economic agreements required the Pact, especially after the German Army demonstrated its power?

    • Replies: @Beckow
  185. Do all Chinese men look like children or is it just a Hong Kong adaptation to living in a cupboard?

    • Replies: @Anonymoose
  186. @Oliver D. Smith

    Immigration hasn’t been successfully tackled by anyone in almost a century as far as I can tell. America did successfully clamp down on immigration in the 1920s, and although I’m less clear on the date Australia decisively shut down Chinese coolie migration as well.

    As far as purely illegal immigration goes there have been recent successes in Italy, Israel, Australia, and Japan.

    The basic problem with immigration is that once immigrants establish an anchor, they act as a magnet drawing in more from their homelands. It requires determined and competent governance to put a stop to it. Both are seriously lacking today, and not just in the Trump administration.

    And yes, in principle environmentalists should be joining us in leading the fight against immigration. From an environmentalist point of view there should be zero immigration from areas with low material standards of living to high ones. In turn I don’t mind joining with environmentalists in fighting AGW, though if they’re going to be atomophobic it makes my stomach turn.

    Climate change may be driving migration, but it strikes me as irrelevant. Irrelevant because shutting down immigration by enforcement is easier than stopping AGW. Doubly irrelevant because the fundamental driver of immigration is obviously the vast chasm in living standards, which is unlikely to change and in any case would be undesirable to change (as it would increase the political power of these countries).

  187. @Anatoly Karlin

    Good luck with that political program.

    Lol. Thank you. It is something that could be easily executed in a non-Democracy.

    Still, even in a Democracy, women mentally and physiologically crave to be dominated by a superior life form, which is men, even though they are not fully conscious of this. Patriarchy and giving birth to many children is what women need, as their condition and nature is to be 110% irrational and mentally disturbed otherwise. Feminism is just women shit testing (deliberately causing trouble to test a man’s masculinity) men seeing if those men are worthy of controlling them. Of course, the Globohomo dynamic of Feminism being sponsored by George Soros, and so on, is another matter

    • Replies: @AP
    , @Thorfinnsson
  188. @Dmitry

    Never heard of him.

    I simply discuss and tackle (evidence-based) taboo topics.

    A decade back the taboo was immigration; no longer the case, since mainstream politicians now talk openly about it and most mainstream political parties have immigration-restrictionist policies.

    The current taboo is overpopulation. Unlike immigration, even the far-right don’t want to tackle it. It’s basically an elephant in the room for the entire political spectrum, even including most left-wing environmentalists.

    https://www.degrowth.info/en/catalogue-entry/an-elephant-in-the-room-called-overpopulation/

    Human population growth is the elephant in the room in the climate change debate
    https://www.bmj.com/content/365/bmj.l1938/rr-2

    As a long-standing supporter of various environmental and conservation charities since the late 1980s, I have noticed that human population growth is very much a taboo subject for the “green” environmental movement. It is almost never mentioned.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @Dmitry
  189. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Non-Anglosphere countries should also ban the learning of English except after extensive vetting

  190. AP says:
    @Mr. XYZ

    It would have followed the path more slowly but probably would not have joined the EU later than did Bulgaria or Romania. Also Donbas was the one of the most corrupt parts of Ukraine.

    Were Ukraine’s 2005-2010 governments and 2014-present governments much less corrupt than Yanukovych’s government was?

    With respect to CPI (what matters in terms of Euro-integration) they have been a little bit better IIRC.

    Also, unless Ukraine was much wealthier than it was in real life in 2007, I just don’t see a quick EU entry for Ukraine in this scenario.

    Ukraine was slightly richer per capita than Bulgaria and Romania in 1991, had higher level of human capital, and was closer to Western supply chains. If Ukraine had aggressively pursued Eurointegration from 1991 (which would have been the case if it didn’t have Crimea and Donbas looking to Russia) it would have been better off by 2007 than were Romania and Bulgaria. Having Crimea and Donbas, whose population served as an anchor holding Ukraine back, cost Ukraine dearly. 25 lost years.

    There’s a reason why Putin isn’t taking Donbas and wants to shove it back to Ukraine. It’s not Ukraine’s best interest (nor that of Donbas’ people), it’s Russia’s.

    I don’t think they would have gone that far, however.

    Why not?

    No region with a majority Russian ethnic population sought independence from Moscow.

    A “Ukraine” stretching to Volgograd wouldn’t have become independent. And I suspect that this would have had a chilling effect on the others: Belarus would not have left if “Ukraine” hadn’t. Only the Baltics and Georgia. And there would have been Galician separatism from “Ukraine.”

    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
  191. AP says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    LOL, you are quite the catch. You admitted to being poor, a Balkan immigrant in the West. What woman could resist someone like you?

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  192. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    I don’t disagree with this, but in light of all the labor-saving devices available in households it seems reasonable to create opportunities for women to do something out of the house, just not for forty plus hours a week.

    Middle class and higher housewives have long busied themselves with volunteering and other charitable activities, but beyond that it could be a good idea to experiment with special 20-30 hour workweeks for women. Allows them to take care of their homes and families properly, but also to get out of the house.

    As far as “education” goes, it might be acceptable to allow women to pursue higher education once they are already married and producing children in order to relieve boredom. It’s pointless of course, but women derive esteem from assimilating “knowledge” which is deemed to have high social status.

    And yes, feminism is a society wide shit test that men have failed. Though it was originally just started by ugly women.

    • Agree: TheTotallyAnonymous
    • Replies: @Toronto Russian
  193. @Oliver D. Smith

    Overpopulation was a fashionable topic in the 1970s, but then disappeared.

    Not entirely sure why. Perhaps a combination of “neoliberalism” and “racism”.

    • Replies: @anonymous
  194. @Anatoly Karlin

    Disagree about Ivan IV.

    Ivan IV literally did nothing wrong. All the lies about Ivan being a cruel despot and barbarous murderer was a blacklisting and demonization of him at the time and throughout history by the treacherous Russian oligarchy, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (PLC), international Italian and Jewish oligarchies, and the Vatican. Nearly everything Ivan is accused of is completely false, half true or a lie by omission. For instance, the city of Novgorod was not annihilated. Only a few Boyar scum were executed by his Oprichnina, and Novgorod was instead disbanded and the population resettled somewhere else instead of being “massacred”, or whatever other hysterics the Boyars wrote about it.

    In a similar way, Vlad Dracula also did nothing wrong as he impaled traitor Boyars and Muslim Turks who only deserved it. Similarly to Ivan, Vlad Dracula was instead demonized by Wallachian Boyars, and especially the Transylvanian German-Saxons because he restrained their commercial trading privileges. The Transylvanian Saxons spread propaganda about Vlad being a barbarian all throughout Europe in the 15th century.

    Anyway, a reassessment of Late Medieval and Early Modern history in East Europe that cuts through Vatican-Germanic propaganda is sorely needed and long overdue.

  195. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    That bias is even shown by the incorrect translation of Иван Грозни – Ivan Grozni – which means Ivan the Fearsome, to Ivan the Terrible.

    From Wikipedia:

    Sobriquet

    The English word terrible is usually used to translate the Russian word grozny in Ivan’s nickname, but this is a somewhat archaic translation. The Russian word grozny reflects the older English usage of terrible as in “inspiring fear or terror; dangerous; powerful; formidable”. It does not convey the more modern connotations of English terrible, such as “defective” or “evil”. Vladimir Dal defines grozny specifically in archaic usage and as an epithet for tsars: “courageous, magnificent, magisterial and keeping enemies in fear, but people in obedience”. Other translations have also been suggested by modern scholars.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  196. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    but by atomophobia

    England does not have irrational atomophobia. They are constructing Sizewell C at the moment.

    But see how Sizewell C will be more than 15 years to become online (with opening date for 2031).

    On the hand, Hornsea Project One was ordered 2,5 years ago and is online already.

    power has improved its economics, but they generally remain poor. Good data on this is confusing, but the latest best case I’ve seen for offshore wind is 16c/kwh.

    Levelized cost of energy already cheaper than nuclear in 2018.
    https://www.lazard.com/media/450784/lazards-levelized-cost-of-energy-version-120-vfinal.pdf

    However, problem is it is not steady, while nuclear more suitable for baseload.

    the EROEI issue. Financial cost does not necessarily translate to energy cost.

    It’s not necessary way to look at it, as you can just remove subsidies – and it should be reflected in financial cost.

    By the way, nuclear energy has a lot of hidden costs – the greatest is waste disposal, which is usually heavily subsidized by the government.

    Eventual deep geologic disposal not really resolved yet, and is expensive future task which current people are putting on future generations. (Future generations are subsidizing current ones in this industry).

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  197. @Dmitry

    It is true that England doesn’t suffer from German level atomophobia, but they certainly suffer from atomic mismanagement. This is reflected in their abandonment of their indigenous nuclear-industrial base and the comically poor management of Sizewell C.

    The time and cost to construct atomic powerstations in some countries is the result of atomophobia. The generation II nuclear reactors which constitute most of the global nuclear power fleet were largely constructed in a few years. Atomophobes demanded a massive escalation of unnecessary “safety” features. That wasn’t the worst of it however, as the industry has now dealt with this, but rather mucking up the planning and construction costs.

    In Asia, nuclear powerplants are constructed quickly, as you can see here: https://www.scmp.com/news/asia/article/2027347/south-korea-second-fastest-nuclear-plant-building-country

    Unit 6 at Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant was built in just 39 months, and with first world safety standards.

    There was once no issue with fast construction in Western countries. Atomophobes are to blame for the glacial pace today.

    Nuclear waste is not an expensive problem to deal with. It can be stored at the plants themselves in dry concrete casks. It’s also not strictly speaking “waste” in that it contains a lot of energy, but mining more uranium is for now cheaper than reprocessing the waste.

    The only subsidy actually required for the industry is insurance. Other than that all that is necessary is to crush atomophobic cowards by sending them to concentration camps, ideally ones containing nuclear waste.

    EROEI should not be ignored because the purpose of energy production is to produce energy. If EROEI is not positive than one is simply transforming energy with no net energetic benefit. If it’s negative one is actually losing energy.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  198. Dmitry says:
    @Oliver D. Smith

    I don’t understand people with “practical” arguments against why your society should not have children.

    Environmental problems with overpopulation, can be solved with technology.

    I agree aesthetically, our current environment is overcrowded and the number of people is too high already – even in low density Australia it would be even quieter, more pleasant and more peaceful with 1/10th of current population figures.

    But as we find the world today – higher quality people do not have enough children, while the lower quality people have too many. Aesthetic considerations becomes less important in such a situation. World would benefit from more civilized people having children, and less uncivilized ones producing less, in the current dynamic.

    If uncivilized people stopped having children, then it would be acceptable if civilized people reduced the numbers as well (while still having more than the uncivilized people). But this is the opposite, sadly, of the current dynamic.

    On the other hand, if your belief against childbirth is based in the Christian, Buddhist, Gnostic, Schopenhauer, rejection of the will- then I can start to understand (certainly in Schopenhauer’s writing).

    • Replies: @Oliver D. Smith
  199. @Dmitry

    I can recommend reading this essay; can be found on Google Books: https://www.oxfordscholarship.com/view/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199378111.001.0001/acprof-9780199378111-chapter-2

    This chapter advances a misanthropic moral argument for anti-natalism. According to this argument, we have a presumptive duty to desist from bringing into existence new members of species that cause vast amounts of harm. Extensive evidence is provided to show that human nature has a dark side that leads humans to cause vast amounts of pain, suffering, and death to other humans and to non-human animals. Some of this harm is mediated by destruction of the environment.

    This essay only raises evidence-based ecological (what you would consider ‘practical’) arguments against childbirth, not religious or philosophical. Many people are too selfish or ignorant to accept the reality childbirth has a negative environmental impact.

  200. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    EROEI should not be ignored

    It seems a fully arbitrary measurement, invented by an economist recently. Although it might be interesting sociologically, it’s also subjective and arbitrary how you define what is the energy input – and you could produce wildly different results by varying your definitions.

    purpose of energy production is to produce energy. If EROEI is not positive

    This is tautology.

    Obviously, if it was negative, you would find you have no energy very soon.

    simply transforming energy with no net energetic benefit

    All human energy generation activities, is simply transforming energy with no net energetic benefit.

    Nuclear waste is not an expensive problem to deal with. It can be stored at the plants themselves in dry

    It’s extremely expensive, just a lot of costs hidden carefully. You can look at the already incredibly high costs of nuclear disposal contracts in Krasnoyarsk .

    And the fact disposal of high level radioactive waste is still technically unsolved.

    Here the type of future proposal where they will study if the method they propose works or not first.

    Unit 6 at Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant was built in just 39 months, and with first world safety standards.

    You mean re-opening of existing unit by TEPCO?

    Also it seems like they have been offline for 6 years since the earthquake, before re-opening?

    atomic mismanagement. This is reflected in their abandonment of their indigenous nuclear-industrial base and the comically poor management of Sizewell C.

    Many countries have atomic mismanagement, including sometimes the most advanced countries (Japan, England,, etc). Inductively, it seems to be not the most easy industry to manage.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  201. @melanf

    There is no doubt that Finland had quite clear plans for conquest (and ethnic cleansing) of northwestern Russia.

    By these standards there is also “no doubt” that the Soviet war aim was full ethnic cleansing of Finland. People were shown supposed leaks of Soviet government plans to deport the whole Finnish ethnic group to Siberia, many ethnic Russian dissidents who had formerly worked for Stalin and had defected to the West showed up in Finland to testify about Russia’s genocidal plans, Finnish leftists who had returned from the Soviet Union were testifying about (actually real) mass executions of Finns etc.

    People mock Finns who believe Finland to have won the war but a big part of that is that rather many Finns believe the worst about Russia’s aims. If you believe that the Russian aim was the elimination of Finns as a national group and you note that Finns still exist after the war, well, then you’re going to believe that Finns won and that Russians lost.

    You may think it’s ridiculous but it’s no more ridiculous than your beliefs of nefarious Finnish grand plans which are very likely based on claims that something published by some random fringe nationalist somewhere were “government policy” or even just the word of Finnish communist exiles who of course made all sorts of made up claims.

    In any case, we have an extremely likely comparison with the Baltic states. Baltic nations weren’t wiped out but there was communist mass terror and I think there’s approximately zero chance that my landowning ancestors wouldn’t have been shot or put in some cattle wagon if Finland had accepted the communist puppet government. Most Finns would have faced less persecution, though Finland would have been turned into a backwards shithole.

    We don’t have a similar comparison for what would have happened if Finland won and it’s actually tough to say precisely because Finland didn’t have any grand plan and offensive war aims had never been widely discussed since most people considered invading Russia a ridiculous idea. Finland’s behavior was inconsistent and ineffective in offense due to lack of clear and consistent war aims beyond recapturing lost territories.

    One pretty good bit of evidence that Finland had not expected the war was that the government had made very little investment in military and Finland had essentially no offensive capabilities. This was another reason why the Winter War pushed Finland into German arms – the popular feeling was that since we had done so well when fighting with hunting rifles and no real military, imagine what we could do if we had proper fighters, tanks, artillery?

    The Winter War had everyone convinced that with German gear it would be a quick victory. Russia would surrender and we’d be at a negotiation table and that’s when we’d talk about which lands to claim and what is to be done with the populations.

    The situation when the German offensive in 1941 would have started from the outskirts of Leningrad (where are placed the border with Finland before the Winter war) is probably meant the complete defeat of the Soviet Union in 1941.

    Finland did not allow the Germans to use the territory even in real history so what would be different in this scenario? Finland’s deal with the Germans was to take the positions that it had had before the Winter War, sit there and do nothing else. No German offensive was allowed to start from that position towards Leningrad so why would it be allowed in some alternative scenario When the siege didn’t go as planned the Germans asked for more but Finland refused.

    Finland reached the old border well in time to wait for Germany to show up so Russia gaining the Karelian isthmus in Winter War did not delay the siege of Leningrad.

    Of course, if Germany had some regime that was trusted more than Hitler’s, Finland might have allowed them more use of its territory, but then we’d need to have a hypothetical nicer German regime that still wants to start Operation Barbarossa.

    Personally I think it was a foolish decision not to push further on Leningrad and if we had actively co-operated with the Germans we would have properly closed the siege. Since Russia is eternally going to use “defense of St Petersburg” as a supposed reason, we really should have taken the one chance to get rid of that reason. But with hindsight I doubt it would have made the difference to the war – I don’t see how Germany would have won even if a meteorite had destroyed Leningrad in early 1941.

    • Replies: @utu
    , @melanf
    , @Korenchkin
  202. @AP

    LOL, you are quite the catch. You admitted to being poor, a Balkan immigrant in the West. What woman could resist someone like you?

    It’s actually not that hard to have casual sex with women in the West. It doesn’t even require a man to have much money. Men just need to be entertaining and project power/status. Women are also mostly race/ethnicity blind. For men with money, prostitutes are obviously easier.

    Of course, family formation is another matter.

  203. @Dmitry

    EROEI is not arbitrary at all. It is true that it is a recent concept, but it’s inherently simple to understand. One simply compares the input of energy invested to the energy return on said investment.

    In that sense it is quite similar to financial ROI. If you borrow money at 5% to get a return of 3%, you will not be long for this world.

    You are correct that all human energy production activities are actually a form of energy transformation. But in EROEI one looks at already usable forms of energy in order to get new energy. If the new energy obtained is less than the energy that was used to harvest it, then energy has been lost.

    This is sometimes useful of course. Classic examples are batteries and pumped hydro, as both store energy for future needs. But when used for electricity generation it is pathological.

    Japan had the world’s best managed nuclear industry until its irrational, hysterical reaction to Fukushima. It may never properly recover, which is very sad. Even worse, this inspired neighboring South Korea to embrace atomophobia as well. The future of the nuclear industry now lies in China and Russia.

    And no, I did not mean the reopening of some units at that plant, but the construction of unit 6 there.

    The nuclear industry simply requires economies of scale and standardization to succeed. In this it’s not very different from other industrial activities, but it is unfortunately subjected to far more political interference. Imagine if the American fracking industry faced similar interference. There would not be a fracking industry at all. Likewise the achievements of modern combined cycle natural gas powerplants are the result of sixty years of refinement and experience, without dramatic political interference (there has been pressure to reduce emissions, but done in a rational way).

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  204. @Hyperborean

    That is fair enough, but most people who know the English language are not aware of that.

  205. Realist says:
    @Thomm

    I have often maintained that if one scratches the surface, they see that Steve Sailer is ultimately a 100 IQ blogger catering to an 80 IQ audience.

    He seems to catch your interest.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  206. @Realist

    Thomm is a really weird commenter. His main obsessions are attacking “white trashionalists” (who in turn accuse him of being Indian) and Steve Sailer.

    The former is sort of understandable, though odd from someone in our space.

    The latter is bizarre. Steve Sailer is one of the most important–and high quality–public intellectuals of the past twenty years. He doesn’t do any long-form writing anymore, probably because he’s seen it all before. Sailer should probably write more books, if only to increase his income and prestige, but he doesn’t appear to enjoy that.

    • Replies: @Realist
    , @German_reader
  207. Realist says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Thomm is a really weird commenter.

    He is for sure.

  208. melanf says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Disagree on Ivan IV – while he was not unremittingly bad, I believe that this assessment of Mao applies to him to a tee:

    Ivan no doubt was an exceptionally unpleasant person, but as a ruler, he increased the area of Russia three times and successfully kept these gains (it was the land most important for the future of Russia ). This Ivan is difficult to criticize as a ruler (in the overall assessment of his reign).

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  209. Beckow says:
    @German_reader

    …Western criticism of Molotov-Ribbentropp isn’t because of the mere fact of the pact itself, but because of what the Soviet Union did as a consequence of it, that is invading the territory of other states and bringing communist terror there.

    You make that distinction, but not everybody in the West does it. There is an attempt to say that M-R pact made it ‘possible’ for Germany to attack Poland. Or even that it was a joint attack. That is simply historically not true.

    Regarding consequences, as I wrote above, Soviets were brutal and the way they did things at that time was very brutal. The consequences were built into the agreement. By the way a number of other countries at that time were also habitually brutal in their own way, e.g. Japanese, French or British in their colonies, Turks, and of course the highly cultured Germans anywhere in the east, it was a different era, brutality came with it automatically.

    To expect that after Germany quickly executed their part of M-R Pact, Soviets would sit on their hands and not take over the exposed buffer area between them and larger Germany is unrealistic. Why would they do it? At any point after defeating Poland, Germany could sweep through eastern ‘Poland’, Baltic states, or place its artillery a few kilometres from St. Petersburg. No military strategist would allow that, so Soviets had to move in.

    Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact happened for two reasons:
    – Poland refused to even discuss any alliance against Germany that included Russia
    – Moscow was skeptical whether UK-France would fight and suspected that at that time Britain’s policy was to trigger a Germany-Russia war and watch from the sidelines.

    All else were natural consequences. You can call that ‘paranoid‘, but that is the way all countries think – they have to plan for the worse possibilities, not hope for the best.

  210. Not Raul says:
    @Anonymoose

    I agree. The changes are fine with me, too, AK.

  211. @Thorfinnsson

    He doesn’t do any long-form writing anymore

    Sailer comes across as pretty disillusioned, like he’s resigned himself to not doing more than chronicling the insanities of the present age which will inevitably end in disaster. But tbh that’s probably just being realistic. It’s also probably hard not to get cynical when one has to read the NYT and similar publications.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  212. @melanf

    Ivan no doubt was an exceptionally unpleasant person

    What are you on about? Ivan was a deeply just and moral man. Ivan IV was also the most moral and humane ruler in all of Europe for his time. It was his oligarch boyar associates who were unpleasant scum that betrayed him. Ivan’s wife was poisoned by boyar scum. A close friend of Ivan’s, a piece of boyar scum, also betrayed him and defected to Poland-Lithuania where he took part in many of the oligarch-noble boyar conspiracies against Ivan IV and Russia. The Oprichniki were a necessary, just and righteous guard that defended against internal and external conspiracies.

    Again, Ivan did nothing wrong and all the quotes about him being evil is just propaganda written by those who hated him at the time or have hated him ever since. They have no evidence in fact and basis.

    • Replies: @melanf
    , @Anonymoose
  213. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    I mostly agree with that summary, a few quibbles:

    – It was not fully determined in March 1939 when Germany swallowed Czechoslovakia that it would eventually lose, they had a few better moves after that. But it was largely sealed after M-R Pact and attacking Poland later that year.
    – Finland, and especially Romania, were going to join Germany in fighting Russia no matter what. Finland reluctantly and locally, Romania with an overarching ambition.
    – True, Japan lost to Soviets in August 1939. But at the right time, in late 1941, if Japan attacked Soviets in the east it could had been very different. At the minimum, Soviets would had to keep a much larger force there to defend. The defeat of Germans in front of Moscow was partly achieved by a risky transfer of Siberian troops to the West – there was no way they could had done it if Japan attacked at the same time.

    Japan not attacking Russia was among the decisive factors in defeating Barbarossa. It was caused by Japan not trusting Germans after the M-R Pact. Everybody expected Japan to attack and they didn’t – it is the dog that didn’t bark and it decided the war.

    You can see the economic benefits to Germany as a payoff by Russia to buy time. Incidentally, at that time Germany openly paid profits to US-British investors in German companies through Switzerland. I would not be too harsh on any of it, but let’s not cherry pick who helped Nazis when and more. Sweden also helped a lot. History is always messy.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  214. @German_reader

    Sailer likes to say that he keeps seeing the same things over and over again in the press that he’s been reading about since he was a teenager. No doubt it gets old. I’m still young, and I certainly can’t be bothered to argue with people anymore about the reality of race and/or IQ. Eventually you conclude that everyone’s nuts and things are hopeless (until, of course, they aren’t). I’m sure that would be economic reformers felt the same before the Great Depression for instance.

    Keep in mind also that he is now over sixty years old, has suffered from cancer, and doesn’t seem to be very affluent. No family money that I can see, and he retired from his business career during his prime earning years to focus on his writing–and was quickly purged.

  215. @Thorfinnsson

    btw I just saw this:

    It’s really remarkable how crazy the left on both sides of the Atlantic has become in recent years with their open borders enthusiasm.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  216. @Beckow

    The Germans could’ve plausibly won the war had they done everything and then some right. They had a weak hand and played it very far.

    The issue with swallowing up rump Czechoslovakia is that it permanently destroyed Hitler’s credibility with the British. The Germans didn’t understand this, as they didn’t understand the moral evolution that Britain had undergone since Gladstone’s time. They should’ve known better in light of British outrage over Belgium in 1914.

    I’m not at all convinced that Finland would’ve joined Germany in attacking the USSR had there been no Winter War, Jaako Raipala certainly suggests otherwise, but you’re almost certainly right about Rumania.

    I don’t think Japan not attacking Russia was decisive in defeating Barbarossa, though it helped. See here: http://www.operationbarbarossa.net/the-siberian-divisions-and-the-battle-for-moscow-in-1941-42/

    So the question is; who stopped the Germans in December 1941 if it couldn’t possibly have been hordes of newly arrived Siberian or East Front troops? The answer is a massive number of newly mobilised and deployed divisions and brigades. The Soviet land model shows that 182 rifle divisions, 43 militia rifle divisions, eight tank divisions, three mechanised divisions, 62 tank brigades, 50 cavalry divisions, 55 rifle brigades, 21 naval rifle brigades, 11 naval infantry brigades, 41 armies, 11 fronts and a multitude of other units were newly Mobilised and Deployed (MD) in the second half of 1941.

    Any Japanese offensive into Siberia would’ve been limited in size for a variety of reasons. The demands of the war in China, the difficult terrain, logistical constraints (especially on the Soviet side of the frontier), and Japan’s limited industrial resources. The Soviets would not have needed to maintain many forces in the Far East, especially as there was nothing important there to hold other than the port of Vladivostok.

    Losing Vladivostok would be helpful to the Germans, but cargo would’ve continued to flow into Murmansk (which couldn’t be taken because of Finnish reluctance) and Persia.

    A lot more helpful to the Germans would be if Italy and especially Japan had agreed to the global alliance proposal in 1939. Imagine the strain on Britain’s navy and merchant marine.

    German-Soviet trade wasn’t just a move to buy time for the USSR. The Soviet Union received valuable goods and technology from Germany in exchange. Though they also made some dubious purchases in pursuit of Stalin’s odd big fleet program: https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a422492.pdf

    My take on the M-R Pact is that it assured no Soviet involvement in Germany’s war with the Entente while providing Germany with valuable resources. Nothing about the M-R Pact required the USSR to attack Finland (or to attack it so ineptly), so that can be described as a Soviet own goal unrelated to the pact per se.

    That brings up another hypothetical–historical M-R Pact, but no Soviet attack on Finland. Then there could be the benefit of additional strategic depth without a hostile Finland. But who knew?

    • Replies: @Beckow
  217. @German_reader

    It’s crazy, but it makes perfect sense from their first principles.

    If your first principle is equality (or perhaps hatred of the white race under the guise of equality), then denying people rights based on their place of birth and citizenship is evil.

    From Elizabeth Warren it’s especially absurd since she’s made her political career on fighting economic inequality and exploitation. But then she’s also a hysterical female.

  218. @Thorfinnsson

    Steve Sailer’s scientific views are rejected by the vast majority of scientists, so he’s left posting about them on right-wing fringe websites. lol

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  219. @Oliver D. Smith

    The vast majority of scientists are cucked faggots whose careers would end or at the very least stall if they were to state the obvious. The scientists can reject the obvious all they want, and I’ll continue not taking them seriously.

    The recent defenestration of Noah Carl is a useful example which serves pour encourager les autres.

    Of course you’re an amateur witch burner so you delight in this.

    One of many reasons I counsel young dissidents to make some money and not grow dependent on institutions for their livelihoods. These institutions are either outright controlled by the enemy or afraid of them, with few exceptions (Nivea has notably ignored them recently, unless something changed).

    • Replies: @Oliver D. Smith
  220. melanf says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Ivan was a deeply just and moral man. Ivan IV was also the most moral and humane ruler in all of Europe for his time.

    Funny joke.
    Here is how to characterize Ivan historian Sergei Platonov (in General, positively evaluating Ivan as a ruler)
    “Грозный последних лет его деятельности не умалишенный человек, но человек, лишенный душевного спокойствия, угнетаемый страхом за самого себя и своих близких. Это – одна сторона его “ненормальности”. Другая – близкая к тому, что называется “садизмом”, то есть соединение жестокости с развратом. Эта черта в натуре Грозного, воспитанная его несчастным детством, к старости усилилась до чрезвычайных; проявлений. Его жертвы погибали в утонченных истязаниях и погибали сразу сотнями, доставляя тирану своеобразное удовольствие видом крови и мучений. Иногда Грозный “каялся”, признавая, что “он разумом растленен и скотен умом”, что он осквернил себя убийством, блудом и всяким злым деланием, что он “паче мертвеца смраднейший и гнуснейший”; но это был лишь обряд.”

    • Disagree: TheTotallyAnonymous
  221. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    EROEI is not arbitrary at all.

    It is arbitrary in many different ways.

    Because it’s now the season of year for harvesting sunflowers – we can use that for an example.

    Maybe you assume that sun is “not your energy”. So to produce sunflower oil, you need some land (0 energy investment), and energy investment (what you eat for breakfast) of planting sunflower seeds.

    We can also employ laborers to collect the sunflower seeds and squeeze them for oil. So the energy investment is what they eat for breakfast.

    In the end we can produce arbitrary amount of sunflower oil (perhaps hundreds of litres, perhaps millions of litres), depending on the size of the land and its location relative to the sun, which is produced for almost no energy investment (except what the labour who plant and harvest the seeds eat).

    Is the “energy invested” relevant cost for production of the energy? Is sunflower oil costing the breakfast the labour eats? (Perhaps recycling a spoon of last year’s sunflower oil to feed them?)

    No, the important things are:
    1. Value of land used. (Opportunity cost of land)
    2. Time.
    3. Cost of the labourer’s souls themselves (not their breakfast)

    To continue example – think about a rowing ship.

    Power is supplied by the slaves under the ship. Energy invested is the chemical energy in food you feed to slaves. And usable energy is the kinetic energy of the oars.

    In this case, you might think there is very negative return on energy invested (as most of the chemical energy in food is not transferred to the oars).

    But to illustrate how arbitrary this is, just add another stage – that the person who invests in the slave ship is the same one who invests in the sunflower farm, and that we consider this as a total energy generation and transfer system.

    By changing definition of the size of the system (to expand its size to include the farm), then you will have a positive return on investment.

    I did not mean the reopening of some units at that plant, but the construction of unit 6 there.

    It was constructed in the 1970s? But then restarted in 2009 after upgrad, and they closed it after Fukushima incident?

    nuclear industry simply requires economies of scale and standardization to succeed.

    There’s very large hidden costs. Who is subsidizing geological disposal – or even current research into this – of high-level waste? It is taxpayers, and primarily future taxpayers.

    And yet levelized cost of energy of nuclear energy is already higher than gas (without accounting for hidden costs of nuclear waste disposal).

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @Thorfinnsson
  222. @melanf

    Both of my grandfathers were in Petrozavodsk during the war, in rather different duties, and a lot of relatives who could speak Russian worked there with the civilian population. I rather trust their stories, photographs and the documents that they brought back rather than later government propaganda (whether Finnish or Russian).

    In this case, there is no room for doubt, because a huge chunk of northwestern Russia was captured by Finland in 1941 and officially declared part of Finland. The Russian population in these areas ( adults, children, women, men, all without exception) were sent to concentration camps.

    Not all Russians. All governments in this war interred ethnic groups related to the enemy to concentration camps as they captured territory and some like America and Russia put even those who had been citizens before the war in camps. Ethnic Finns in Russia were put in concentration camps if they didn’t have communist party credentials. Ethnic Russians in Finland were treated just the same as other citizens and were not imprisoned (unless they refused to fight) and Finland is actually rather exceptional in that, though I would say it was mostly because Russians who had sympathies for the Reds had been expelled or killed in the Civil War so the remaining ones were trusted more.

    What these “concentration camps” were in practice was often just a fence built around houses so a lot of Russians spending the war in a “concentration camp” just meant living in the house where they had always lived, the difference is that some Finns had come to build a fence around the group of houses and added some tents, hastily constructed houses etc. People would walk out of the camp in morning to go to work and the guard would check for weapons, propaganda material etc and the same when returning. It was anti-partisan control that was always to be temporary for the duration of the war.

    However there were some bizarre “supremacist” aspects of the military government, like rules that Karelians and Vepsians were paid more for the same job than an ethnic Russian laborer. This was apparently supposed to convince the locals that joining the Finnish cause would be a way out of oppression and a chance to be masters over Russians instead, however according to my grandfather this mostly left the locals baffled. Atheist Bolsheviks were hated by many and a lot of locals joined Finnish forces out of anti-communism but local Karelians did not feel oppressed by their Russian neighbor.

    After Petrozavodsk had been taken (not a major fight) regular military was moved out and a selected set of soldiers with language skills was left in charge. My grandfather was assigned for this as he was an easterner who could understand the locals better, spoke Russian, were familiar with eastern culture and passed the background checks for a solidly right-wing family. This was a privileged position where you could go to dances with local women instead of sitting in trenches and seeing friends blown up and my grandfather very much liked talking about this part of the war…

    The locals had been given lots of scare propaganda about Finnish soldiers so they hid in fear at first but the plan of using soldiers with language and cultural knowledge worked to get things working smoothly and many aspects of the military government like no more repression of religion were viewed positively. One of those horrible “concentration camps” which was actually just a fence around a part of Petrozavodsk was set aside for suspected partisans and no, not all Russians were immediately put in there as there were enough people with language skills so that people could be interviewed and investigated.

    Finnish intellectuals, teachers, doctors etc with progressive views were brought in with ideas of improving the conditions of the locals. Their ideology was more “colonialist” than “nationalist” in that while Orthodox Karelians, Vepsians and Russians were of course seen to be at a lower level of development it was to be our “white man’s burden” to bring civilized government to these people and build up health care, education and industry. Finns were to be a European people and of course a European people needs a colonial project.

    However things ended up going sour as the expected quick German victory did not materialize and it turned into a long war that drained resources to the point where it was getting hard to feed soldiers. Fancy projects were canceled and there were not enough men with language skills to keep investigating suspected partisans so the policy just ended up becoming the internment of ethnic Russians. Partisan attacks succeeded in creating the cycle of soldiers on edge and looking out for partisans creating more partisans, creating the need for more harsh measures, creating more partisans etc. In the end conditions got nasty.

    At withdrawal, surprisingly many people begged to be taken to Finland as even those evil Finnish camps had seemed like a more promising life to many than Stalinist Russia. (Those Karelians and Vepsians who fought on the Finnish side of course wanted to come rather than face punishments but Finland immediately betrayed them, definitely the most embarrassing part of the history.) This was not officially supported but it was a mess where orders weren’t followed and soldiers often did random things, some bad, some good, assuming of course that you agree that helping Russian families escape Stalinist Russia was a good thing (maybe you don’t).

    There is a whole class of people of Russian roots who mysteriously gained Finnish papers in the 1940s – people from those horrible camps who managed to escape to Finland in the wake of the withdrawal and somehow avoided radar as Finland started collaborating with Stalin and hunting down Soviet citizens to be sent back. Perhaps the biggest anti-Russian policy of the Finnish government was forcing many Russians to return to Russia at the end of the war…

    • Replies: @melanf
  223. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry

    It is arbitrary in many different ways.

    Lol I edited this to be more polite writing style, but when I re-read it looks like I am condoning it. But I should say – it is an arbitrary nonsense.

    By changing definition of the size of the system (to expand its size to include the farm), then you will have a positive return on investment.

    Because everything will have a positive return on investment, when you look at the larger system. This is the tautology of the concept. I can only think it might be useful if you want a way to distinguish between things which you can apply a concept of “transfer stations” and “capture stations” – but that would just be a way to invent more imprecise new terminology.

    • Replies: @Simpleguest
  224. utu says:
    @Jaakko Raipala

    Finland was to be swallowed by the USSR according to the Secret Protocol to the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molotov–Ribbentrop_Pact#/media/File:Ribbentrop-Molotov.svg

  225. @Dmitry

    I’m going to try to state this as clearly as possible, as the waters are being muddied.

    The basic issue with negative EROEI energy production projects is that they are net consumers of energy. Thus scaling up their energy production drains energy from the rest of the system, even if a financial profit is ostensibly produced (in the case of so-called renewables, this financial profit is usually because of specific subsidies).

    So if we’re talking about negative EROEI windmills, and I’m not stating the offshore project you linked is negative EROEI (first I’ve heard of it, and I certainly haven’t seen an energy analysis on it), more primary energy must be produced elsewhere. Generally in the form of other fossil fuels (coal for the steel, refined fuels for transport and heavy equipment, etc.).

    This is not comparable to the energy lost in transforming slave muscle power to marine propulsive power via oars. In that case, to propel the ship one must first transform the slave muscle power into oar power and accept the efficiency losses (mostly from drag).

    That situation is comparable to thermal fossil fuel power stations, in which there are efficiency losses transforming heat energy into electrical energy. Since heat energy cannot be used for power, one must accept those losses.

    But in looking at the energy analysis of the whole system, even after the efficiency losses are taken into account all the energy that is invested into this system (extracting the fossil fuel, refining it, transporting it, building the powerplant, transmitting the electric energy, etc.) more energy is obtained than was invested into the system. Thus there is an energy profit, allowing the expansion of techno-industrial activity. Most of the industrial revolution is simply the expansion of humanity’s aggregate energy surplus.

    It was constructed in the 1970s? But then restarted in 2009 after upgrad, and they closed it after Fukushima incident?

    New reactor units were added over the years. Unit 6 took 39 months to build and went online in 1996. But all seven units were built in five years or less.

    Costs were also low. Unit 7, the cheapest, was built at a cost of around $4bn.

    There’s very large hidden costs. Who is subsidizing geological disposal – or even current research into this – of high-level waste? It is taxpayers, and primarily future taxpayers.

    And yet levelized cost of energy of nuclear energy is already higher than gas (without accounting for hidden costs of nuclear waste disposal).

    First of all, there is no requirement for geological disposal. That is driven by atomophobia. In any case I’m not sure what’s so expensive about stuffing crap in an abandoned mine.

    “Levelized” (?) cost of nuclear energy is higher than gas owing to atomophobia.

    In reality, the cost of nuclear energy is lower, especially with today’s rock-bottom interest rates. With non-atomophobic management, you can build a gigawatt reactor for $4 billion which will operate for a century. 30 year bonds with a coupon of 3% can finance the project. Most of the world’s reactor fleet was built with interest rates far higher than that, yet provide extremely affordable electricity. Operating costs obviously aren’t zero, but they’re lower than any other form of electricity generation except hydroelectric power (the cheapest and best of all, but cannot be built everywhere).

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  226. @Thorfinnsson

    I wrote a rebuttal to Noah Carl’s claims, see here:

    https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Noah_Carl_Controversy:_FAQ_(rebuttal)

    I’m well aware RationalWiki has a toxic reputation as being SJW. However, many articles I wrote about pseudoscientists on RW are now appearing on Wikipedia.

    Wikipedia has more of a credible reputation; few people would consider its POV as SJW, so my content is now not so easily dismissed, e.g.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpenPsych
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gerhard_Meisenberg
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noah_Carl

    Both Meisenberg and Carl lost their jobs, but I had no involvement in that. I just wrote some RationalWiki and Wikipedia articles criticising them, alongside several other pseudoscientists associated with OpenPsych.

    Note that there are various people who argue the decision to sack Noah Carl was a mistake, but even they have admitted the obvious that OpenPsych is pseudoscience and “academically dodgy”. The following article for example:

    https://www.spiked-online.com/2019/05/09/the-lynch-mobbing-of-noah-carl/

    So it turns out OpenPsych has even a more toxic reputation than RationalWiki. lol.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  227. @Oliver D. Smith

    Wikipedia is considered sufficiently SJW by some that the following alternatives, off the top of my head, have been launched:

    • Conservapedia
    • Metapedia
    • InfoGalactic

    There are no doubt more I don’t know about.

    We live in an era in which ostensibly leftist values dominate the discourse in the Western world, and figures who challenge the narrative (Sailer’s term) face threats to their reputations and livelihoods. In many cases actual imprisonment, as is the case with Holocaust deniers.

    I have little patience and even less respect for people who adhere to and enforce these values. They’re fundamentally weak people who are unable to stand on their own two feet and require the comfort of dogma.

    As an example you refer to the reputation of OpenPsych as compared to the reputation of RationalWiki. What other people think of OpenPsych does not concern me, unless I know those people and have grounds to trust their judgment. I trust Anatoly Karlin’s judgment as an example because I’ve known him for a long time and consider him reliable.

    And I’ll amend that by stating that what other people think can be useful in the reverse. If, for instance, The Guardian were to condemn the OpenPsych conference (and maybe it did), I would in fact consider that a positive endorsement.

    Finally, it’s very easy for me to dismiss your content. You appear to be a religious fanatic who seeks to persecute people for heresy. That’s exactly the sort of person I dismiss immediately.

  228. @Dmitry

    Energy return for energy invested is a very simple concept and it applies to energy production only.
    Mass production of energy as a commodity, is a fairly modern concept and ore boats are certainly not a good example.

    It’s a measure that shows how efficiently you produce and distribute useful energy, later to be used in manufacturing or services. It is not used to calculate the energy efficiency or profitability of manufacturing/services.

    If you use energy equivalent of 3 barrels of oil to extract 2 barrels of oil from the ground, you are in negative EROEI.

    But if the oil is used exclusively as a raw material for manufacturing of say, plastics or fertilizers, then its negative EREOI will be irrelevant. It will just add to the cost of the final product.

    Please note that I use the term “energy equivalent to 3 barrels” not literally 3 barrels of oil.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  229. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    comparable to thermal fossil fuel power stations, in which there are efficiency losses transforming heat energy into electrical energy.

    These (fossil fuel power stations) are “negative EROEI” . More energy is expended than is returned in the new form. The important thing is that it is – currently – quite cheap to buy the chemical energy which they convert.

    On the other hand, a wind turbine will have very “positive EROEI” – as for conceptual reasons, the kinetic energy in the wind is not counted as part of your own energy investment.

    (Here we can laugh about the arbitrariness of this nonsense – activity of mining the coal has very “positive EROEI”.)

    Problem of the wind energy, however, is that land is extremely expensive, and it is wind famr over a large area of space (so the main expenditure will often be the land value).

    Also the design of the turbine is might be new technology, so might requires hiring innovative engineers (i.e. expensive labour cost) and precision engineering, as well as potentially expensive materials (and later you have to hire qualified /expensive workers to repair them).

    invested into this system (extracting the fossil fuel, refining it, transporting it, building the powerplant, transmitting the electric energy, etc.) more energy is obtained than was invested

    Sunflower oil has “more energy was obtained than invested”. And the amount of chemical energy can be arbitrarily increased (to that contained in millions of litres if you want), for very little expenditure of chemical energy (food given to workers).

    The relevant cost is not “energy expended” – but the value of the land and the time of workers.

    I’ll quote again from the sentence to say something else.

    invested into this system (extracting the fossil fuel, refining it, transporting it, building the powerplant,

    The energy constitutes a small minority of the cost of those activities. Much more expensive is the time of the people doing the work, and the value of the capital itself (not it’s energy value, but it’s actual value).

    energy analysis of the whole system, even after the efficiency losses are taken into account all the energy that is invested into this system (extracting the fossil fuel, refining it, transporting it, building the powerplant, transmitting the electric energy, etc.) more energy is obtained than was invested into the system. Thus there is an energy profit, .

    There is transfer of energy from one place to another, or from one form to another. There is not “energy obtained”.

    If you build the Pyramid of Giza, it required people to transfer energy from wheat, to kinetic energy. And for the skyscraper, building with power tools – then the chemical energy in oil, to the energy in the movement tools and cranes, etc.

    Now it might be fun for sociologists imagine humanity as a giant “energy transfer system”, and industrial revolution as “expansion of humanity’s aggregate energy surplus.”

    But this is just what happens when you smoke too much cannabis. It’s an artistic or aesthetic claim – however, the concepts do not exist in real world.

    reactor units were added over the years. Unit 6 took 39 months to build and went online in 1996. But all seven units were built in five years or less.

    So they could add new units quite fast in 1990s Japan. But what is the time from deciding to build the nuclear power station, to the first ones going online ?

    In any case I’m not sure what’s so expensive about stuffing crap in an abandoned mine

    Well we need to ask one of the people who works in this area. But it extremely expensive, and it seems to be the same across countries. I can look up at the costs in Russia and you just see hint of amazing costs .

    And then you can look at similar proposals in UK.
    Here they say £12 billion to build the disposal site. (It is public money).
    https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/uk/new-bid-to-find-uk-site-for-nuclear-waste-disposal-36529309.html

    “Levelized” (?) cost of nuclear energy is higher than gas owing to atomophobia.

    In reality, the cost of nuclear energy is lower, especially with today’s rock-bottom interest rates.

    For whichever reasons you attribute, it will be quite expensive.
    https://www.lazard.com/media/450784/lazards-levelized-cost-of-energy-version-120-vfinal.pdf

    The advantage of nuclear is that it is steady for the baseload, and can provide energy security (as uranium import can last a long time).

    But for countries like Russia and America (which have indigenous natural gas supply), there is little rationale.

    It’s only mid cycle cost which is really low. For the footnote for that – “Represents the midpoint of the marginal cost of operating fully depreciated coal and nuclear facilities, inclusive of decommissioning costs for nuclear facilities.”

    Commissioning new ones is quite expensive. But continuing operate existing ones, is sensible.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  230. @Dmitry

    I’m going to abandon the EROEI matter with you. I’m reminded of your struggles with “cultural Marxism” and “bioleninism”. Perhaps your interest is piqued enough you’ll figure it out on your own.

    The purpose of pursuing atomic power when affordable natural gas supplies are available is obvious: to reduce carbon emissions. I am not certain if the AGW hypothesis is correct, but it seems reasonable to take precautionary measures as the hypothesis does make inherent sense. If the precautionary measures do not incur additional cost, there is no harm.

    Also, contrary to what atomophobes claim, natural gas is in fact far more dangerous than atomic energy. The Fukushima meltdown killed one or two people, but the same tsunami that caused it also results in many natural gas fires and explosions which killed many more.

    That said natural gas is much safer than coal.

    • Agree: AP
    • Replies: @Dmitry
  231. Dmitry says:
    @Simpleguest

    shows how efficiently you produce and distribute useful energy, later to be used

    It doesn’t show any useful concept of efficiency.

    Again, a primitive sunflower oil farm can incredibly efficient in terms of “energy return on energy invested” measure (because we arbitrarily only need to account for energy of the workers), if you combined it with a electricity generator.

    However, the production of the sunflower oil could be extremely inefficient from any relevant sense – main cost will be opportunity cost of the land and the workers’ time.

    use energy equivalent of 3 barrels of oil to extract 2 barrels of oil from the ground, you are in negative EROEI.

    On the other hand, if you use energy equivalent of 3 barrels of oil, to extract equivalent energy equivalent of 2 barrels of electricity – you have the world’s most efficient power station.

    Again, energy expended is not the relevant concept. (It’s really nonsense invented by a professor who has smoked too much cannabis).

    But efficiency of the transfer of the energy from one form to another, can be very relevant to how economically efficient this form of energy is (along with many other factors you have to look at).

    • Replies: @Simpleguest
  232. melanf says:
    @Jaakko Raipala

    There is no doubt that Finland had quite clear plans for conquest (and ethnic cleansing) of northwestern Russia.

    By these standards there is also “no doubt” that the Soviet war aim was full ethnic cleansing of Finland

    The difference is that the Finnish plans were implemented (temporarily). Northwestern Russia (the part that Finland was able to occupy) was officially declared part of Finland. “Ethnic cleansing” is, in my opinion, a rather mildly definition of the policy that was carried out in these territories.

    What these “concentration camps” were in practice was often just a fence built around houses so a lot of Russians spending the war in a “concentration camp” just meant….

    You and I probably live in different universes so
    perhaps further discussion on this topic lack any sense. But

    “In our camp “Heposuo” in four barracks were more than 600 people. We were not given any clothes, we went to the concentration camp in the clothes we were wearing for almost three years-1004 days! The camp was famished. Initially were given a scoop of soup liquid and 150-200 gr. a day of biscuits from oat grains and other waste. Then began to give half-rotted vegetables. Our family was saved by chance. In the middle of winter, a horse died of scabies, its corpse was not buried very deep. Somehow my brother managed to cut a piece of meat out of a dead animal. My mother salted and hid the meat . We were afraid to cook this meat, because the smell of meat could give us away. Ate a piece raw….
    In the summer we crawled under the barbed wire and went to the forest or beg at the station – in civilian clothes we looked like children of the local population, just very skinny. But if someone was caught, the punishment was inevitable. So, (guards) caught my mother walking on the field for the remains of potatoes, beat with whips, after which she could not lie on her back for several days.
    Everyone had to work: both adults and children, mainly in logging. I was 11 years old, but I also worked in the woods. After such works I was on the verge of death. People were dying by the dozens daily.” etc., etc.

  233. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Those are true:

    1. Substituting nuclear energy for coal/gas/fuel oil, would reduce carbon dioxide emissions, if you believe this should be a priority.

    2. Nuclear energy for electricity production, has not killed many people by comparison to many other forms of energy, particularly coal.

  234. anonymous[372] • Disclaimer says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Overpopulation was a fashionable topic in the 1970s, but then disappeared.
    Not entirely sure why. Perhaps a combination of “neoliberalism” and “racism”.

    The religious right of the United States.
    Have you noticed it was right wingers who screamed RACISM HITLER EUGENICS when Bernie recently said the obvious – that unlimited population growth on limited planet is not possible.
    It is the GOP who is consistently blocking all population control measures all over the world, coz every sperm is sacred.
    Add the climate change denial, and the never ending war mongering.

    25% of Republicans want war against Iran.
    https://news.gallup.com/poll/265640/americans-war-iran.aspx

    33% of Americans would support a nuclear first strike on the North Korea.

    https://nationalinterest.org/blog/skeptics/poll-33-americans-are-favor-dropping-nuclear-weapons-north-korea-64696

    Most of them are, predictably, Republicans.

    https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00963402.2019.1629576

    A majority of Trump supporters prefer the US strike in every scenario, except when confidence in the effectiveness of the US conventional strike is 50 percent. Still, it is important to note that preference for the strike even in this scenario remains at 44 percent among Trump supporters, compared to only 8 percent among non-Trump supporters

    Do you understand why the Republican Party is enemy of all mankind and must be destroyed by any means necessary?

    This is why every sane person must support open borders – open borders for America.
    Unlimited immigration, till every state is blue state and only elected Republican is dogcatcher of Upper Hog Creek, Alabama.
    This is the only way to save the world.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  235. @anonymous

    There’s not much of a religious right in Western Europe, but overpopulation discussion disappeared there as well.

    The religious right in America mostly accepts the moral values of the enemy–except when it comes to contraception, or these days really just abortion.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  236. @Thorfinnsson

    I’m an ex-sysop on Metapedia, and also formerly edited Conservapedia where I had edit rights i.e. editing is usually closed on Conservapedia at night-time (US time zone) but trusted editors are granted 24/7 editing access. My history on Metapedia and Conservapedia was a fairly long time ago now though, stretching back to 2012 (I closed my account on both in 2013). I created my first RationalWiki account in 2012 (but had made some IP edits in 2010) and was made sysop on a bunch of separate accounts over past 7 years (most notably “Krom” in 2015) and am probably the top article creator. I’m not actually unusual since there’s other individuals who have been editing Conservapedia, Metapedia and RationalWiki at same time such as https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Conservapedia:RobSmith A former InfoGalactic editor, also became a RationalWiki sysop and moderator. There’s also another wiki I’ve made some edits on over past decade and created a few articles for, Liberapedia. Obviously, has a left-wing POV. I’ve also edited Wikipedia since 2010, if not earlier. Having edited all these wikis covering diverse political agendas, it is Wikipedia that I found to be most reliable and has most neutral editing guidelines and POV. But it’s far from perfect.

    • Replies: @AnonnSher
  237. anonymous[188] • Disclaimer says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    We live in an era in which ostensibly leftist values dominate the discourse in the Western world, and figures who challenge the narrative (Sailer’s term) face threats to their reputations and livelihoods. In many cases actual imprisonment, as is the case with Holocaust deniers.

    I have little patience and even less respect for people who adhere to and enforce these values. They’re fundamentally weak people who are unable to stand on their own two feet and require the comfort of dogma.

    In comments above you preach that might makes right and celebrate right of conquest, and now you cry you are being “oppressed”? LOL.

  238. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    On another topic, I have wondered why there are no high-speed trains in America. yet

    And what kind of proposals there might be in the future. High speed trains between every state capital, or between only the most important cities?

    China has a high speed railway between Beijing and Shanghai, which is distance of 1300 kilometers, and is a 4 hour 20 minutes journey on the train.

    This is less distance than New York to Florida – but not that much less. Personally, I would find this a lot more pleasant than flying.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @songbird
  239. @Dmitry

    There are several reasons there is no true high speed rail in the US. These include:

    • Mismanagement of existing passenger rail network (once one of the world’s best)
    • Geography
    • Disappearance of domestic industrial passenger rail base
    • Lobbying by airlines and conservatives
    • NIMBYism and cost disease in US infrastructure

    I regard mismanagement as the fundamental reason. Regulation (and myopic management) prevented the railroads from adjusting and competing properly with the rise of other modes of transport (cars, trucks, and planes), and eventually passenger rail service was assumed by the federal government (Amtrak) which has done a poor job for a variety of reasons (including not owning the tracks it operates on).

    There are always projects on the drawing board, but one of them are very serious. You can read about the sad story of the attempt to bring high speed California in the past decade to see more. The US Federal Rail Administration has also “improved” the safety standards for HSR over those prevailing in Europe and Asia, so at this stage high speed rail is likely never to happen.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  240. anon[353] • Disclaimer says:

    And it begins, again…

  241. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    The impact of any Japan attack in Siberia in 1941 would be psychologically devastating for the Soviets. It doesn’t matter if it only blocked Vladivostok and took Irkutsk, having to defend Siberia hinterland would change the balance of power. Japan was also quite capable and within 6 months of Barbarossa defeated Americans in the Philippines, occupied most of east Asia, had air force, etc…

    … hordes of newly arrived Siberian

    I take historians who feel comfortable describing soldiers from Siberia as ‘hordes‘ with a grain of salt. Imagine ‘hordes of newly arrived British soldiers in Normandy‘. Right.

    …moral evolution that Britain had undergone since Gladstone’s time

    You mean from lying occasionally to basically lying all the time? Britain has no morals and no honour code. The main reason Brits invented the concept of fair play is because they naturally lack any sense of fairness or honour. So they play-act. I don’t think British elite had any moral awakening about Nazis after Czechoslovakia, they simply adjusted their behaviour to reflect the fact that Germany was suddenly on the roll. I find all this posturing about ‘British values‘ and morality bizarre beyond belief, are we talking about people like Chamberlain, Churchill, Halifax?

    Germany could had won WWII if they didn’t attack Soviet Union. It is that simple: as Napoleon, Swedes, Turks and Poles before, they broke their teeth attacking Russia. If Germany in 1941 simply sat on its hands and kept what they had, they were unbeatable. Poles would disappear, French would adjust to pleasing their German overlords, Sweden would over time become a dependency. Germany attacked Russia in 1941 because they were on a victory high and judged Red Army by the ease with which they disposed of Poles and French. Hitler even sent Rudolf Hess in May 1941 to negotiate a 3-year pause on the Western front to have time to defeat Russia – and Britain agreed to the dot, they waited exactly 3 years before Normandy invasion.

    Finland was definitely a fiasco and there is no way to know what they would had done in the absence of the Winter War. My point is that countries act based on existing threats and that made attacking Finland almost inevitable. It is interesting that Westerners who act in a similar paranoid fashion at home all the time not allowing even a semblance of threat on the own borders don’t see the other side as having a right to similar concerns. We see it again today with Nato in Ukraine, etc… Being willfuly self-righteous is no way to run the world.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  242. @Beckow

    The impact of any Japan attack in Siberia in 1941 would be psychologically devastating for the Soviets. It doesn’t matter if it only blocked Vladivostok and took Irkutsk, having to defend Siberia hinterland would change the balance of power. Japan was also quite capable and within 6 months of Barbarossa defeated Americans in the Philippines, occupied most of east Asia, had air force, etc…

    The entire Japanese Centrifugal Offensive was conducted with only 11 divisions, nearly all of which had the advantage of surprise.

    The IJN was very impressive, but the IJA was not and largely bogged down in China.

    Don’t get me wrong, it obviously would be a negative development for the Soviets.

    But militarily, the Japanese would not have been able to invade with a large force, and the force would be worse equipped than the Red Army.

    You mean from lying occasionally to basically lying all the time? Britain has no morals and no honour code. The main reason Brits invented the concept of fair play is because they naturally lack any sense of fairness or honour. So they play-act. I don’t think British elite had any moral awakening about Nazis after Czechoslovakia, they simply adjusted their behaviour to reflect the fact that Germany was suddenly on the roll. I find all this posturing about ‘British values‘ and morality bizarre beyond belief, are we talking about people like Chamberlain, Churchill, Halifax?

    Now you’re morally judging the Brits, as they judged the Germans.

    What matters here isn’t whether or not the British statesmen of the 1930s were moral people, but how their moral beliefs influenced their perceptions of Axis behavior.

    Even taking morality aside, from a purely practical perspective Hitler completely discredited himself by devouring rump Czechoslovakia. It didn’t make the Brits think to themselves that Hitler was simply doing what British statesmen had done a century earlier. It made them think Hitler could not be trusted or negotiated with, and that his entire regime needed to be brought down.

    And as you can see from a number of interesting articles on this website, behind the scenes American diplomats were energetically pushing the Brits and the Poles to take the hardest possible line in order to foment war. This unfortunately only became known to the Germans after they took Warsaw.

    Germany could had won WWII if they didn’t attack Soviet Union. It is that simple: as Napoleon, Swedes, Turks and Poles before, they broke their teeth attacking Russia. If Germany in 1941 simply sat on its hands and kept what they had, they were unbeatable. Poles would disappear, French would adjust to pleasing their German overlords, Sweden would over time become a dependency. Germany attacked Russia in 1941 because they were on a victory high and judged Red Army by the ease with which they disposed of Poles and French. Hitler even sent Rudolf Hess in May 1941 to negotiate a 3-year pause on the Western front to have time to defeat Russia – and Britain agreed to the dot, they waited exactly 3 years before Normandy invasion.

    Hitler actually spent the half year preceding the invasion studying the campaigns of Karl XII and Napoleon.

    That said, the German Army was largely operating from a different historical frame of reference. In addition to their recent spectacular victory over France, where they achieved in six weeks what their fathers had been unable to do in four years, they remember the First World War’s Eastern Front. In that conflict the Germans repeatedly defeated the Russians with their B-team.

    Germany’s strategic situation in 1941 was not as good as you think. Closed off from world trade, they were becoming increasingly dependent on the Soviet Union which in turn was becoming increasingly assertive. Molotov’s October 1940 visit to Berlin was a diplomatic disaster in which he demanded naval bases on the North Sea and the freedom to again attack Finland.

    Worse, not only did Britain refuse to make peace, but America had openly pledged to manufacture 50,000 aircraft per year and supply them to the British. German industry faced the product of global war against the Anglo-Americans, who possessed far superior resources. It was in this context that they invaded the USSR–a desperate gamble to acquire the resources they needed to fight the Anglo-Saxon powers.

    In hindsight if German leaders had appreciated the strength of their own synthetic fuels program they might have realized there was no need.

    As for the Hess conspiracy theory, I suppose we won’t know until 2040 when the files are unsealed. If ever. Personally I think it’s absurd. If Britain had tried to land in France in 1942 they would’ve been slaughtered like cattle.

  243. AnonnSher says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Cattle are not slaughtered by Aryans though.

  244. AnonnSher says:
    @Oliver D. Smith

    So you’re a meganerd who doesn’t realize that with an Anglo-Saxon Intellectual background you cannot even concieve of a world outside of your moral spirtual rights, freedoms, liberties & gayness.

  245. @Dmitry

    “On the other hand, if you use energy equivalent of 3 barrels of oil, to extract equivalent energy equivalent of 2 barrels of electricity – you have the world’s most efficient power station.”

    WTH?

    I will try again, step by step:

    1. To extract crude from the ground, you consume energy (electricity, diesel fuel, gasoline, natural gas etc). This energy is used to operate pumps, rigs and drills, ferry water, sand and chemicals – in case of shale oil – or produce steam – in case of Alberta tars, etc.
    2. For every 2 extracted barrels of crude oil, you consume energy equivalent to the energy stored in 3 barrels of crude oil;
    3. You have managed to replenish only 2/3 of your energy input;
    4. Since you are an energy producer – crude oil is above all an energy source – you have created a net energy loss. You are not a very successful energy producer.

    PS. I am aware of the law of energy conservation so terms like “produce energy” and “consume energy” should not be taken literally.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  246. songbird says:
    @Dmitry

    I would speculate that one reason is that America is more suburban. This creates a few complications.

    One is that the acquisition of track is more expensive, even on existing lines, or defunct, historical lines. Sometimes they need to soundproof homes or do other abatements. It can be astonishingly expensive just to slightly expand a city’s metro or commuter rail.

    Another problem is that a lot of the people who might use such trains are living in the suburbs, not the city. They would have to commute into and out of the city to use such lines and this makes them less attractive. A lot of people will actually drive from NY to Florida, in preference to flying.

    Still, another reason is that America doesn’t really have many big cities.

    Of course, mostly I think it is the issue of governmental incompetence. Not that the trains necessarily make sense for the US – just that the US could once do it at reasonable cost, it is no longer so. Too much parasitism and making the job last.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  247. @Thorfinnsson

    “It was in this context that they invaded the USSR–a desperate gamble to acquire the resources they needed to fight the Anglo-Saxon powers.”

    This theory is feeble.
    Germany could not possibly dream of defeating combined Anglo-Saxons (USA, Great Britain, Canada, Australia and NZ) without the Soviet Union on its side.
    So in reality Germany never had such illusions, not to speak of intentions. Their real goal was expand and “drive east” (as the man with mustache stated himself).

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  248. The term used by Kiwi Farms and Encylopedia Dramatica to describe me is “Wikisperg”.

    I’ve mostly retired from editing the main wikis I listed though, and nowadays prefer Wikia, covering my interests such as video games, Greek mythology, cryptozoology, fantasy literature and toys.

    Here are some of my favourite:

    https://monsterinmypocket.fandom.com/wiki/Main_Page
    https://cryptidz.fandom.com/wiki/Cryptid_Wiki
    https://thief.fandom.com/wiki/Thief:_The_Dark_Wiki

    I would recommend Anatoly Karlin checks out the Thief games given his interests and posts, particularly the Mechanist technocracy faction.

    https://thief.fandom.com/wiki/Category:Mechanist

  249. songbird says:

    I don’t know if anyone in Europe is dumb enough to make the same argument that is made of Hispanics in the US about them being “natural conservatives”, when it comes to Muslims and blacks. But if they are, here is one thing I’d say: in colonial times, homosexuals went the continent of Africa for sex tourism and pederasty. That is why Roger Casement was in the Congo.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  250. @Oliver D. Smith

    I would recommend Anatoly Karlin checks out the Thief games

    Thief games are pretty good, very atmospheric (though like all video games kind of a guilty pleasure and waste of time).
    But with all due respect, don’t write sentences like

    I’ve mostly retired from editing the main wikis I listed though, and nowadays prefer Wikia, covering my interests such as video games, Greek mythology, cryptozoology, fantasy literature and toys.

    We’re not that cruel around here, but that sounds almost like an invitation to mock you.

  251. @songbird

    That is why Roger Casement was in the Congo.

    I thought he went there to uncover colonial atrocities.
    But actually yes, there is something similar in Europe, at least in Germany, though the values are of course somewhat different (not much emphasis on free enterprise, immigrants as entrepeneurs like in the US). You definitely have “conservative” Christians who get all sentimental about Muslims and their “family values” and say they’ve got more in common with them than with native atheists.

    • Replies: @songbird
  252. @Simpleguest

    After the defeat of France and prior to Operation Barbarossa the main industrial priorities were the expansion of shipbuilding, aircraft construction, capital investments of all kinds, and fuel.

    It was intended to triple the output of aviation fuel by using oil from the Caucasus as a feedstock. The investments were started before the panzers even rolled across the frontier.

    But yes, the Grossraum was also short of food, and German peasants had been in a poor state for decades which motivated land hunger on the German right.

    The Germans also attempted to get the Soviets on their side, which is known as the German-Soviet Axis talks.

    • Replies: @Simpleguest
  253. @Thorfinnsson

    bogged down in China

    When they devoted resources to making gains in China, like with operation Ichi-Go, they could manage it. I do not think that the stop in progress in China was a matter of incompetence by the army, but rather a strategic realisation that there was little to be gained by making further progress when it would be extremely hard to win a final victory, the enemy did not pose much of a threat and there was little to be gained.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  254. songbird says:
    @German_reader

    I thought he went there to uncover colonial atrocities

    Casement got his commission from the British government to investigate the Congo in 1903. But he was in the Congo beginning in 1884, in a commercial capacity working for King Leopold II, or at least a front for him. But he was there for many years, I believe. His diary even included gay rendezvouses with Africans in 1903, in exchange for money.

    I’m not sure he was a terribly reliable source. Not that I don’t think bad things happened there – just probably not his crazy numbers.

  255. @Kent Nationalist

    I’m not an expert on this conflict, but yes, it’s my understanding that it stalemated by 1940 or so.

    At the time of Barbarossa there were, I believe, 27 IJA divisions in China and 13 in Manchuria. The IJA was poorly equipped by European standards, though it did have great fighting spirit.

    The Japanese would’ve cleared out the Soviet Far East and then advanced along the Trans-Siberian Railroad until their offensive bogged down, which wouldn’t be long in that terrain.

  256. @Thorfinnsson

    It is indisputable fact that German industry (+ that of occupied/aligned European countries) was impressive and very potent.

    Yet, combined potential of Anglo-Saxons + dominions (South Africa, India, Middle East, South America etc) dwarfed anything Germany/Japan could throw at them.

    German-Soviet axis was never, in my mind, a real possibility, taking into account the obvious disdain the man with mustache and his entourage felt towards the “untermench”.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  257. Dmitry says:
    @Simpleguest

    I understand what you try to say, but it’s still – not talking about you personally but this “measurement” – an arbitrary nonsense.

    Again:

    For every 2 extracted barrels of crude oil, you consume energy equivalent to the energy stored in 3 barrels of crude oil;

    While it would strange to 2 barrels of oil to extract 3 barrels – how much oil you expend is not the determining factor for whether to drill oil.

    There are other costs – land, labour, capital – which will determine whether you will drill the oil, while the energy bill will be a small part of the cost.

    By the way, cost of capital, is its actual value, not how much energy was used to make it. (The value of a drilling rig is far more than the energy required to build it, or not – depending on the market conditions. Labour cost is usually far more important input for the cost of capital).

    On the other hand, if you expend 3 barrels of oil to extract 2 barrels equivalent of electricity, you have the world’s most efficient power station. (EROI is also applied to various unrelated activities. For some, at the same “EROI”, it might be rational activity, and others not – but EROI will almost never be determining reason.)

    have managed to replenish only 2/3 of your energy input;

    There’s no universal “energy stock” that you replenish. If the activity converts energy into a another form of energy, then even losing 2/3 might be good (for example, if chemical energy is converted into electrical energy).

    If the energy that is replenished is the same as the one which was expended, then losing 1/3 will be something no-one does, but gaining 2/3 might still be very sensible, if the other (more significant) costs are low.

  258. Dmitry says:
    @songbird

    I understand some of land is used for suburbs (with large,luxurious houses) – and this adds to a large part of the cost – , but the majority of the land needed will be farm land. In addition, space requirement for the rail line, is less than for multi-lane road. And yet there was not opposition to building the highway system all over America.

    This aspect of the project is a lot easier in America, than in Japan, where Shinkansen lines travel directly next to houses in the most density populated areas of the country.

    In addition, if you look at a route like New York to Miami, most of the land is flat and has no obstacles. On the other, for Shinkansen they have to build thousands of tunnels and aqueducts, as the flat of the land constantly varies.

    Typical Shinkansen line is aqueducts and tunnels, and the center of cities (also in tunnels under the sea between different islands).

    Another problem is that a lot of the people who might use such trains are living in the suburbs, not the city. They would have to commute into and out of the city to use such lines and this makes them less attractive. A lot of people will actually drive from NY to Florida, in preference to flying.

    But you also have to commute to an airport.

    Compared to driving, it is twice the speed, you can sleep (or complete your work on the notebook) and you don’t need to buy a car.

  259. @Simpleguest

    The US State Dept has no problems working with literal Neo-Nazis in the Ukraine today.

    Likewise, the H-man was prepared to work with Slavs and even non-whites. Stalin worked with capitalist countries.

    German-Soviet Axis talks fell apart over, what else, the Balkans…

  260. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    This is the fastest train in America, apparently – Acela Express. I don’t know if you guys have used it?

    He pays $150 for the journey from Washington DC to Boston. The time for the journey is 7 hours.

    But the speed he says is only “average of 49mpg” on the second part of the journey, although he says average 80mpg on the first part. Seems a bit unimpressive for the fastest train in the world’s only superpower.

    You get free softdrinks though in the station which is pretty cool, and also the small number of other passengers makes it seem civilized.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @Thorfinnsson
  261. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry

    He pays $150 for the journey from Washington DC to Boston. The time for the journey is 7 hours.

    Oops… he paid $282 for the train ticket (1:29 in the video). I don’t know why I said $150 (that would be a good price).

    $282 is expensive for a ticket on a medium speed train.

  262. @Dmitry

    I’ve used it. It’s a pleasant way to get around the BosWash corridor compared to air travel.

    A lot of American East Coast elites use it, so there’s a fair amount of people watching on the Acela.

    What’s truly embarrassing is that there were 100mph passenger trains on the New York Central railroad in 1900. By the 1930s there were passenger trains in America exceeding 120mph.

    Today, however, our passenger rail is a global laughingstock.

    One nice thing about Amtrak is the old transcontinental rail lines remain in operation as excellent tourist trains: https://www.amtrak.com/empire-builder-train

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  263. @Kent Nationalist

    Pen Zoned

  264. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Wasn’t his half Serb mother poisoned as well? But one thing he did do wrong was beat his daughter in law causing her to miscarrige and then killed his son in rage when he confronted him about it leaving his second weakly son to succeed him who had no heirs which subsequently led to civil war upon his death.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  265. @Kent Nationalist

    Sodomite apelings?

    Lanz von Liebenfels’ Theozoology, or the Science of the Sodomite-Apelings and the Divine Electron is definitely one of the more peculiar books I have encountered.

  266. @Kent Nationalist

    Believe it or not I’m a fan of the old Mankind Quarterly when they used to publish interesting content (under Robert Gayre’s editorial), such as articles about cryptids like Bigfoot and Yeti. The journal used to publish a lot more diverse articles on unusual topics in the 1960-1970s. MQ turned garbage when Roger Pearson took it over exclusively focusing the journal on race and IQ and it now just regurgitates boring Richard Lynn type racist pseudoscience, worse than toilet paper.

    I wrote a fairly detailed history of MQ on RationalWiki, covering it’s more interesting early history:

    https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Mankind_Quarterly#History

    MQ‘s founding “honorary” associate editors such as Corrado Gini were cryptozoologists. Gini founded the International Committee for the Study of Hairy Humanoids in 1962. https://www.jstor.org/stable/29787494

    Porshnev, Sanderson, and Heuvelmans were good friends and members of The International Committee for the Study of Hairy Humanoids (the name owes its origin to Heuvelmans), an organization created in Rome in 1962, by Dr. Corrado Gini, Emeritus Professor of Sociology at Rome University. Opening the committee, Dr. Gini said, in full agreement with Boris Porshnev, “The Snowman and other hairy bipeds present a subject worthy of a profound scientific study. (…) This is a subject of the greatest importance for understanding the origin of man and the initial stages of human society.” (Genus, 1962). The committee included some 30 persons from different countries, among them Dr. George Agogino, Dr. Raymond A. Dart, Dr. John Napier, Dr. W.C. Osman Hill, Dr. P.R. Rinchen, Prof. Philip. V. Tobias, as well as yeti investigator Ralph Izzard, yeti and Bigfoot investigators Tom Slick and Peter Byrne, sasquatch investigators John Green,
    Bob Titmus, Rene Dahinden

    https://www.isu.edu/media/libraries/rhi/essays/Bayanov_rev.pdf

    Gayre also joined the “International Committee for the Study of Hairy Humanoids” (Comitato internazionale per lo studio degli umanoidi pelosi), promoted by Gini within the International Institute of Sociology. On this, see “Comitato Internazionale per lo Studio degli Umanoidi Pelosi,” Genus 18, no. 1–4 (1962): 1–4. On Gini’s interests on the Abominable Snowman, see John P. Jackson Jr., “‘In Ways Unacademical’: The Reception of Carleton Coon’s The Origin of Races,” Journal of the History of Biology 34 (2001): 247–85. On this topic, see also: Brian Regal, “Amateur versus Professional: the Search for Bigfoot,” Endeavour 32, no. 2 (June 2008): 53–57.

    https://books.openedition.org/ceup/729?lang=en

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  267. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    …It was in this context that they invaded the USSR–a desperate gamble to acquire the resources they needed to fight the Anglo-Saxon powers.

    No, you are wrong. 80% of fighting took place on the eastern front and the main German objectives were to take over the lands in the east – lebensraum. All else was a side show, Hitler thought of Brits as ‘cousins’ and would had preferred that they saw Germany the same way. Germany had no global ambitions for Canada, US, New Zealand – they wanted a European empire. Their primary enemy was always in the east, Czechs, Poles, Russians. You have it upside down and that is at the core of Western misrepresentation of WWII.

    Hess was #2 to Hitler and flew in May 1941 to meet with high ranking British contacts. It was no accident and he was not crazy – it was an obvious German attempt to make separate arrangement with Britain one month before attacking Soviet Union. There is no way to see the reason for that trip as a ‘conspiracy’. He flew there, he was there. He was largely rejected publicly because of the optics – but Britain stayed out of Europe land war for 3 years.

    Maybe it was a coincidence, and you are right that Brits would be slaughtered. But they were slaughtered in 1944 in Normandy – it was one of the most inept attacks that resulted in completely unnecessary casualties with naval and air support failing, etc… German defenders were Class C Bohemian Czech-German amateurs who were not particularly motivated to fight. And yet the landing was still a catastrophe by any military standard. It was a military disaster and Brits-Americans got stuck in a small area until Germans tactically decided that it was in their interest to give up in the West – since Soviets were steam-rolling over them in the east. German leadership (not Hitler and his fanatics) preferred to lose to the Anglos. It was less painful that way.

    West has creates a comfortable myth about WWII, Normandy and all, because geo-politically what actually happened is at cross-purposes with their goals. I expect it to get worse.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @Thorfinnsson
  268. @Anonymoose

    Wasn’t his half Serb mother poisoned as well?

    Yes, the boyars poisoned Ivan IV’s mother as well and she was also half-Serb which means Ivan was 1/4 Serb.

    But one thing he did do wrong was beat his daughter in law causing her to miscarrige and then killed his son in rage when he confronted him about it leaving his second weakly son to succeed him who had no heirs which subsequently led to civil war upon his death.

    There’s no proof or evidence for this. Also, just like Ivan’s mother and wife died from being poisoned by boyar scum, Ivan himself also died from immense amounts of Arsenic and Mercury poisoning just like his extended family even including his own son. It’s no surprise that anti-Ivan boyars and others would doctor the historical record with stories about Ivan’s supposed “abuse” towards his own family.

    Civil wars and the Time of Troubles would have most likely happened regardless, even if Ivan’s heirs did survive. The boyars were an extremely powerful oligarchic class in 16th century Russia that undermined the state from within and often co-operated with external enemies. Only Ivan IV was capable of reigning in their destructive power, but since he did not kill enough boyars, he clearly failed. Russia under Ivan the Terrible was surrounded by enemies on all sides with the exceptions of Siberia and the North Sea. The treacherous boyar class collaborated with all of these enemies which included, Sweden, Denmark, Poland-Lithuania, Crimean Tatars and Ottomans.

    The Crimean Tatar raid and sack of Moscow in 1571 led by Devlet Giray was only possible because the boyars bribed the Russian governors responsible for the defense of Southern Russia to do nothing. The boyars also directly communicated with the Crimean Tatars to stage this attack. Ivan’s Oprichnina barely succeeded in fighting off the Tatars. Russia’s defeat in the Livonian War was also due to boyar treachery. Of course, there are also the infamous letters from the boyar scum Andrei Kurbsky, who defected to Poland-Lithuania (not because of Ivan’s “terror”, but because he was offered large amounts of land by Sigismund III of Poland in order to overthrow Ivan), and his lengthy correspondence with Ivan the Terrible where it is clearly revealed what kind of scum Kurbsky and his boyar class are while Ivan is forever vindicated.

    Unfortunately, almost none of this evidence is available in English language sources but is mostly restricted to Russian language sources.

  269. melanf says:

    New President of Kalmykia

  270. @Beckow

    German defenders were Class C Bohemian Czech-German amateurs who were not particularly motivated to fight.

    You’re talking about 1st SS LSSAH, 2nd SS Das Reich, 9th, 10th, 12th SS, each among the better SS divisions (the first two actually elite), or Wehrmacht divisions like the Panzer Lehr (again, an elite division). I’m unaware of any of these consisting of Sudeten Germans or Bohemian Germans or Czechs or whatever. (At least certainly not above their average proportion of the German population.)

  271. melanf says:
    @Jaakko Raipala

    People mock Finns

    No one mock Finns in this debate. But there are two obvious things

    Results of the Winter war meant winning the USSR. I don’t think evicting Finns from Vyborg is a good thing (I think such actions are a bad thing) but the reality is that success often has nothing to do with morality.

    The Finnish border on the outskirts of Leningrad (on the eve of the WWI) threatened the USSR with defeat and destruction. Of course, the alternative history is incomprehensible to us, but there is reason to think that Finland would be an ally of Germany in any case (even without Winter war).

  272. @Jaakko Raipala

    People mock Finns

    People mock Finns for their lack of social skills, not because of the Winter War XD
    Shitty jokes aside, the Winter War is best classified as a stalemate IMO

    No one should deride Finns for celebrating the fact that they prevented the complete annexation of Finland, here’s hoping you manage to dodge the Globo Homo aswell

  273. @Thorfinnsson

    It’s pointless of course, but women derive esteem from assimilating “knowledge” which is deemed to have high social status.

    Your American mentality is showing. Couldn’t be farther from Russian realities of the last 100 years. My great-grandmother was a doctor (people whose lives were saved wouldn’t agree it was pointless) and my grandmother an engineer who was sent to Czechoslovakia to build factories and got patents for some inventions in chimney-stalk structures. All that was a completely normal part of life. Or look at this story from the “Mad Men” era.

    Or he will spy like the utter son of a bitch

    (…) So, in 1965 (I could be mistaken for a couple of years, but no more), a large delegation of specialists in the processing of earthly gifts, including fruit and berry products, traveled from the USSR to the USA. This trip was organized as an exchange of experience – times were still thawing. My grandmother was also included in the delegation – she was perhaps the biggest specialist in the USSR in fruit and berry standards. And she was, according to her recollections, the only female specialist on that trip. No, of course there were other women (I don’t know how many, I was too young to ask). But they were wives of specialists.
    (…)
    Soviet delegates were taken to all kinds of facilities, including industrial ones. They showed them technologies. But… When the delegates asked to show them some workshops, they were evasively refused. Although these aren’t rockets, just cans with compote, still there is no need. Let these Russians sweat and invent something themselves. Lest they come, understand the machine operating principle and methods of processing raw materials, and implement it at home. It would be a shame!

    Nevertheless, a tour to some particularly attractive factory was organized. But not for everyone, only for women. Why? Because the organizers knew that women are wives, they don’t understand anything about technology. The experts were taken somewhere else. And my grandmother was among the wives. The organizers who relaxed at the end of the delegation’s visit did not suspect she was a specialist. The American comrades knew that Soviet spouses could have different surnames, and they did not consider it decent to check who was whose husband. You appear on the list of the delegation, and that’s enough.

    According to one version of family memoirs, the director of the All-Russian Research Institute of Gardening, who, of course, was also part of the delegation, having heard about the tour for the wives, jumped to my grandmother, grabbed her sleeve, and whispered in her ear in a terrible whisper: “You look closely there, Elena Prokofievna! ” According to the other, no one jumped to anyone, she only exchanged long, understanding glances with the director. In the third, there weren’t even any glances because the director knew perfectly well what kind of specialist and responsible person Elena Prokofievna really was, and silently giggled in advance.

    And the pike was thrown into the river! They let a goat into the garden, you know. While other women absentmindedly looked around, my grandmother, walking with everyone in the shops, looked with her tenacious gray eyes exactly where she really needed to look, noticed and remembered everything. She spied, in short, like the utter daughter of a bitch. They say she managed to see a lot of useful things. Were they usefully implemented in domestic industry? God knows. In the USSR, it was sometimes difficult to introduce.

    But only half a century has passed, gentlemen! And there are already vanishingly few places on earth where they believe a woman can only be someone’s wife, but not a specialist, and relax as carelessly as those long-time American comrades. Just some fifty years…
    https://maria-gorynceva.livejournal.com/642867.html

    Comments:

    “Well, I still flinch when I notice that here, in the decaying West, no one can even figure that a woman of our mothers’ and grandmothers’ generation can be a specialist too, not only a wife. After all, with all the numerous flaws of the USSR, in this matter it was advantageously different.”

    “Yes, the fact that women could become specialists despite many hurdles is really one of the Soviet achievements.
    But are there really people somewhere in the decaying West who don’t believe in female education and female professionalism in the USSR? Oh boy, what gaps can there be!”

    “They don’t disbelieve that, it’s just that their older woman is by default a housewife, or in the best case a secretary. This set-up shows in expressions like ‘explain it so that your mom can understand’ – here I usually mount my horse and say my mom is a systems engineer, she understands many things. They’re surprised :)”

    And don’t get me started on TTA’s fellow Balkan men. Those “patriarchs” would sit in kafanas with their friends drinking rakija all day if their women didn’t push them to get it together and do something productive.

  274. @Beckow

    No, you are wrong. 80% of fighting took place on the eastern front and the main German objectives were to take over the lands in the east – lebensraum. All else was a side show, Hitler thought of Brits as ‘cousins’ and would had preferred that they saw Germany the same way. Germany had no global ambitions for Canada, US, New Zealand – they wanted a European empire. Their primary enemy was always in the east, Czechs, Poles, Russians. You have it upside down and that is at the core of Western misrepresentation of WWII.

    Four-fifths of German combat deaths were in the East, which is not the same thing as four-fifths of all fighting taking place in the East. Half of the air combat, nearly all of the naval combat, and all of the heavy air defense took place in the West. The largest single consumer of industrial resources during the war was the Luftwaffe.

    “Global war” was perhaps a confusing way for me to state things. It’s not that Germany sought a global empire, she did not, but that she faced a war against a worldwide Anglo-American coalition of unprecedented scope.

    It’s true that Hitler’s ambitions had always been to build a Eurasian empire, but his efforts to reach an understanding with the British failed. Even worse, the second Roosevelt administration demonstrated an implacable hostility to Nazi Germany.

    Hess was #2 to Hitler and flew in May 1941 to meet with high ranking British contacts. It was no accident and he was not crazy – it was an obvious German attempt to make separate arrangement with Britain one month before attacking Soviet Union. There is no way to see the reason for that trip as a ‘conspiracy’. He flew there, he was there. He was largely rejected publicly because of the optics – but Britain stayed out of Europe land war for 3 years.

    It’s entirely plausible that Hess was sent by Hitler on a peace mission.

    It’s not plausible that a secret understanding was reached to stay out of France (obviously not Europe, since Italy was invaded in 1943) for three years. While not fighting in France, the Anglo-Americans were fighting in the Atlantic, North Africa, Italy, and in the skies over Europe.

    Maybe it was a coincidence, and you are right that Brits would be slaughtered. But they were slaughtered in 1944 in Normandy – it was one of the most inept attacks that resulted in completely unnecessary casualties with naval and air support failing, etc… German defenders were Class C Bohemian Czech-German amateurs who were not particularly motivated to fight. And yet the landing was still a catastrophe by any military standard. It was a military disaster and Brits-Americans got stuck in a small area until Germans tactically decided that it was in their interest to give up in the West – since Soviets were steam-rolling over them in the east. German leadership (not Hitler and his fanatics) preferred to lose to the Anglos. It was less painful that way.

    West has creates a comfortable myth about WWII, Normandy and all, because geo-politically what actually happened is at cross-purposes with their goals. I expect it to get worse.

    “Class C” was a Cold War Soviet Army designation, not one used by the Wehrmacht or Waffen SS. And in any case the Magyar Miracle already pointed out that many excellent German formations were in the West.

    As for these German troops allegedly being Bohemians, that’s a new one to me. To take one example, Hauptsturmführer Michael Wittman’s Tiger company was transferred to the West in April, 1944. Wittman was a Bavarian and went on to destroy over a dozen tanks in fifteen minutes at Villers-Bocage. He died in combat two months later.

    Operation Overlord had many errors, but expecting the Anglo-Americans to pull off the largest amphibious invasion in history without a hitch is too much.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  275. @Toronto Russian

    You’ve lived in North America for how many years and think this is an American mentality?

    No wonder someone who doesn’t know who Lester Pearson was is so clueless.

    If you knew something about the continent you now live in, which you don’t, you’d be aware that there were female business executives by the 1930s. Fortune Magazine had an entire issue about women in business in 1935, along with an update twenty years later.

    The distinction from the communist world was that prior to the social revolution of the 1960s, most women of means preferred the domestic sphere (working class women nearly always worked).

    I’m quite well aware that women are capable of work, and in many respects work better than men do. What they’re not capable of is any kind of independent thinking. This is why “educated” females tend to be so irritating–they simply regurgitate what’s been planted in their minds by the Cathedral.

    And yes, nagging is clearly an evolved trait that exists for a reason. It’s certainly strongly needed in Balkanoid cultures and the Mediterranean basin generally.

  276. @Toronto Russian

    That’s one of the most impressive internet posts I’ve seen to date. This is the first time in my life that I’ve come across a Sovok justification for Feminism or “women’s rights”.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  277. @Thorfinnsson

    There was however a substantial number of Osttruppen from the Soviet Union in France in 1944 (the background to that possibly legendary story about a Korean who had served first in the imperial Japanese army, then the Red army, and finally the Wehrmacht). Obviously they weren’t motivated to fight against the western allies and were pretty much useless. Much of the Wehrmacht occupation forces in France also can’t have been of that high quality, though there were of course the Waffen-SS divisions like Das Reich and Hitlerjugend which fought ferociously.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @melanf
  278. Dmitry says:
    @Mr. XYZ

    better life in Israel (excluding the terrorism, of course)

    Israel has a worse life in this perspective – although salaries are higher, housing costs are impossible for most immigrants from former Soviet Union countries, who do not inherit apartments from their parents. They rent small apartments which are not suitable for more than 1-2 child.

    other words, having more children was no longer viewed as a “Gypsy thing” by many ex-USSR Jews

    It is not common at all, as most of them are completely secular.

    But there is the case of infamous Israeli politician Anastasia Michaeli, who attacked Arab politicians in the parliament. She had 8 children while working as a politician in the parliament.

  279. Dmitry says:
    @Oliver D. Smith

    Are you interested in this because you believe the animals actually exist? And have managed to avoid being captured by man?

    Do you know about the story of the death of the tourist group led by Dyatlov. What kind of animal would be responsible, in your view?
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dyatlov_Pass_incident

  280. @German_reader

    There were also hifis, Italians (until Stalingrad), Hungarians, Romanians, etc. in the East.

    Here’s the German OOB from June, 1944: http://www.ww2f.com/threads/complete-order-of-battle-for-german-forces-in-the-west-6-6-1944.8913/

    As you can see there were many Panzer divisions, though of course also low quality formations like Luftwaffe field divisions.

    Here’s number of German divisions by front throughout the war: https://www.axishistory.com/axis-nations/134-campaigns-a-operations/campaigns-a-operations/2085-number-of-german-divisions-by-front-in-world-war-ii

    All divisions in the West (West, Norway, Italy) constituted two-thirds of the divisions in the East (East, Finland) in June, 1944. I’ve ignored divisions in Germany and Balkans as they were arrayed against both.

  281. melanf says:
    @German_reader

    Obviously they (Osttruppen from the Soviet Union ) weren’t motivated to fight against the western allies

    These units were transferred to the West because they wanted to fight on the Eastern front even less than they wanted to fight on the Western front

    • Replies: @German_reader
  282. Beckow says:

    …Four-fifths of German combat deaths were in the East, which is not the same thing as four-fifths of all fighting taking place in the East.

    Yes, it is, that’s the way math usually works, how else would you decide it? By the number of Hollywood movies?

    You are right about Navy and Air force, but that is already to some extent accounted for in the 20%. But the real bulk of WWII was in the east. Because that’s what Germans wanted – they were trying to conquer the area, remove most of the population and settle it. The rest was just about who gets to be genuflect to whom, almost trivial in comparison.

    …Hess’s peace mission to Britain…It’s not plausible that a secret understanding was reached to stay out of France

    Why not? We don’t know what happened because Brits are obsessively protecting any information about it. That speaks for itself, what are they hiding? In similar circumstances with any other country, the facts would be evaluated based on what happened afterwards: Hess flies in, is detained and hidden from public, one month later Germany attacks Russia, and conveniently Britain refrains for 3 years from a land invasion of western Europe.

    Whether there was an ‘understanding‘ depends on what that would mean and who were the parties. That’s a matter of interpreting categories and terms, and Anglos are very good at twisting and lying in those circumstances. Suffice to say the whole affair was awfully suspicious and if another country had done it, it would be assumed that some sort of a deal took place.

    …“Class C” was a Cold War Soviet Army designation, not one used by the Wehrmacht

    The front line in Normandy was staffed by very mediocre second tier guards mostly originally from among Volk Deutsche German ethnics from eastern Europe – many were not really German, or only ‘temporarily‘ German, and they were not deemed good enough to actually fight. Many were older guys drafted because they in 1939 declared ‘German’ nationality as opportunists. My relatives knew some of them after WWII, and they were generally referred to as ‘C-ari’, in other words third rate troops. It is possible they were there as cannon fodder and behind them were better troops. But it shows you the level of priority German general staff put on the Western front.

    Normandy landing was a military fiasco with thousands of unnecessary casualties, running against machine guns, with minimal or non-existent air or artillery support. It was done for a show. If any other army would execute similarly inept manuever it would be openly discussed, but myth is a myth. The reality is that by the time of Normandy a large part of German military and elite was looking for the easiest way to lose – preferably as much as possible to the Anglo side. They were scared sh.tless of the Soviets.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  283. @melanf

    These units were transferred to the West because they wanted to fight on the Eastern front even less

    Not sure that’s true imo, anti-communism must have held some appeal for many of them…whereas they had no discernible interest at all in fighting against Britain and America. iirc many (the majority?) of them also weren’t ethnic Russians, but rather from various minorities which had a more extensive record of collaboration.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  284. @Beckow

    Yes, it is, that’s the way math usually works, how else would you decide it? By the number of Hollywood movies?

    You are right about Navy and Air force, but that is already to some extent accounted for in the 20%. But the real bulk of WWII was in the east. Because that’s what Germans wanted – they were trying to conquer the area, remove most of the population and settle it. The rest was just about who gets to be genuflect to whom, almost trivial in comparison.

    We’ve now moved on from German strategic goals to where the fighting took place.

    Obviously, most of the land combat took place in the East. No one disputes that except perhaps the late Stephen Ambrose who seemed to believe the Normandy campaign was the greatest land battle in history.

    The problem with this line of thinking is that it leads people to believe that there was little fighting of significance in the West, which is not true.

    Why not? We don’t know what happened because Brits are obsessively protecting any information about it. That speaks for itself, what are they hiding? In similar circumstances with any other country, the facts would be evaluated based on what happened afterwards: Hess flies in, is detained and hidden from public, one month later Germany attacks Russia, and conveniently Britain refrains for 3 years from a land invasion of western Europe.

    Whether there was an ‘understanding‘ depends on what that would mean and who were the parties. That’s a matter of interpreting categories and terms, and Anglos are very good at twisting and lying in those circumstances. Suffice to say the whole affair was awfully suspicious and if another country had done it, it would be assumed that some sort of a deal took place.

    It’s ridiculous to me that the British made such a pledge, or that the Germans sought such a pledge, because there was tremendous fighting between the Germans and the West between May 1941 and June 1944. The fighting just didn’t take the shape of land combat in France, other than the disastrous Dieppe Raid.

    What good does it do the Germans exactly to get a promise of no landing in France while suffering endless disasters like Tunisgrad and the Combined Bombing Offensive? Had the British not let up on bombing the Ruhr in 1943 in favor of vainly going after Berlin they could’ve caused a catastrophe.

    That said, certainly something was discussed, as why else would the British seal all the files until 2040?

    The front line in Normandy was staffed by very mediocre second tier guards mostly originally from among Volk Deutsche German ethnics from eastern Europe – many were not really German, or only ‘temporarily‘ German, and they were not deemed good enough to actually fight. Many were older guys drafted because they declared ‘German’ nationality. My relatives knew some of them after WWII, and they were generally referred to as ‘C-ari’, in other words third rate troops. It is likely that they were put there as cannon fodder and behind them were better troops. But it shows you the level of priority German general staff put on the Western front.

    I posted the complete Normandy German OOB previously. If you didn’t read it, these high quality formations were present:

    3.fallschirmjäger-Division
    5.fallschirmjäger-Division
    1.SS-Panzer-Division
    17.SS-Panzergrenadier-Division
    Panzer-Lehr-Division
    2.SS-Panzer-Division
    9.Panzer-Division
    2.Panzer-Division
    21.Panzer-Division
    116.Panzer-Division
    11.Panzer-Division

    There were other good divisions as well, but off the top of my head I can’t recognize whether a numbered German infantry division is any good or not so I’ve ignored those.

    Normandy landing was a military fiasco with thousands of unnecessary casualties, running against machine guns, with minimal or non-existent air or artillery support. It was done for a show. If any other army would execute similarly inept manuever it would be openly discussed, but myth is a myth. The reality is that by the time of Normandy a large part of German military and elite was looking for the easiest way to lose – preferably as much as possible to the Anglo side. They were scared sh.tless of the Soviets.

    Well it’s a shame that General Beckow wasn’t in command of Operation Overlord instead of General Eisenhower.

    The American landings, especially on Omaha Beach, were a bloodbath. The British landings went better in part because they produced specialized equipment for it: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hobart’s_Funnies

    As for no air support, the Allies spent the entire month of May distintegrating the French rail network, with disastrous effects for the Germans. On the day of the invasion the Allies flew 7,000 air support sorties!

    • Replies: @Beckow
    , @utu
    , @Epigon
  285. Dmitry says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    ?

    In the USSR, there was eventually the highest female employment rate in the world – higher than for men.

    Although these trends of women entry to male professions predate the Soviet Union.

    For example, at the time of October Revolution, the Winter Palace was defended by the Women’s death battalion. (Earlier in the year, in July, the women soldiers had attacked German army in Krevo, suffering many deaths.)

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  286. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    It’s surprising even the wealthy Mormons of Utah, do not build high-speed rail connections from their isolated region to the Pacific Ocean.

    From Salt Lake City to San Francisco/Silicon Valley, is only 1000 kilometers.

    This is around a 3,5 hour train journey, with the latest high-speed rail. In order words, with adequate infrastructure (and if you don’t dislike 7 hours a day in a train), you could commute every day from your house in Salt Lake City to work in Silicon Valley. And similarly, a lot of offices in Silicon Valley could build branches in Salt Lake City.

    The closest proposal I can see is
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XpressWest

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  287. @Dmitry

    In the USSR, there was eventually the highest female employment rate in the world – higher than for men.

    You state this as if this was a good thing. The USSR also had a shockingly high number of, and rates of abortion, that is, mass murder of babies.

    Although these trends predate the USSR.

    For example, at the time of October Revolution, the Winter Palace was defended by the Women’s death battalion. (Earlier in the year, in July, the women soldiers had attacked German army in Krevo, suffering many deaths.)

    I should clarify that even though I stated men are inherently superior forms of life to women, it is not like women are absolutely incapable of doing many things should there be an absence of men. It is only that on average, men are better than women at most things. The problem with women doing things men are supposed to be doing is that any society in which women are not primarily focused on giving birth to children, that is, to the extent of at least 2.1 children per woman on average, is a society and people/ethnos that will not exist in the world for very long.

    In order for women to be giving birth to children, they must be put into their appropriate social position, which can only be done by men directly and decisively being their superiors. Nicolae Ceaușescu with good reason and just cause used government power to pressure the ignorant Romanian women into making many Romanian children. By the way, Nicolae Ceaușescu is also another man who did absolutely nothing wrong and is slandered by a large amount of complete lies, half truths and lies by omission.

  288. @Dmitry

    Aside from Utah, this would require planning approval from the Federal government (EPA and BLM at the very least), the State of California, the State of Nevada (which would grant it quickly), and every political entity en route. These entities would include every county and municipality along the way, along with odd ones you’ve never heard of.

    All of the private land owners on the way would need to be bought out, and many would refuse. Their land would need to be seized by eminent domain proceedings, which could take years. So-called environmentalists would file numerous lawsuits to stop the project, which would also take years.

    The planning and legal costs alone would run into the billions of Dollars, and there is no guarantee it would be successful.

    During this entire process, numerous entities would also lobby politicians against the project and run advertising campaigns to convince the public to stop the project. Lobbying forces would include wealthy home-owners on the route, major airlines on the route (Delta, Southwest, American, and Alaska are all prominent in Salt Lake), political conservatives, libertarians, and environmentalists.

    Once construction actually got started, if it ever did, then in California and possibly also Nevada labor unions would demand their due. In addition to high pay scales, American construction labor unions on public projects also demand staffing levels three to four times that which is required.

    So now you can see why America has no high speed rail, and also why simple projects like subway extension in Manhattan have costs ten times that in Paris and London.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  289. Beckow says:
    @German_reader

    The key dynamic for most of them was survival. They joined German military partially to improve their families’ odds of survival.

    In the east it was a lot harder to survive the fighting, or being captured. Everybody with half a brain, or an uncle in the right places, tried to be assigned to the Western front.

  290. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    …We’ve now moved on from German strategic goals to where the fighting took place.

    No we didn’t, those two are related.

    it leads people to believe that there was little fighting of significance in the West, which is not true.

    All fighting in WWII was significant by historical standards, but most of it (roughly 80%) took place on the eastern front.

    …British made such a pledge, or that the Germans sought such a pledge

    I said understanding, not a ‘pledge’, you are playing with my words. The facts on the ground – what actually happened as I described it above – suggest some kind of a tacit understanding. Hess flew to Britain because his message couldn’t be trusted to anyone else and it had to be delivered in person. (Hess was roughly #2 in the Nazi hierarchy.) He wouldn’t do it without some assurances or previous contacts. It is also quite likely that British leaders were not of one mind, thus the ambivalence.

    But the fact remains that Britain stayed out of land war in Western Europe for 3 years until Normandy, watching Germany trying to conquer the east. That was not what anyone in Europe expected in 1941 – so there had to be a reason. Being lousy at land war and fearing WWI casualties probably played a role. But to think that Britain would be above develish self-serving betrayals like giving Nazis some time to finish off the Soviets is naive.

    shame that General Beckow wasn’t in command

    That is silly and content free. Are you trying some verbal nihilism? That usually signals that you are running out of arguments.

    I am aware of the good German divisions in the West, but they were not on the frontline in Normandy. I would also count most division in Germany and Balkans by summer 1944 as being primarily fighting the Soviets – check out the maps, Red Army was about to storm Eastern Prussia.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @AP
  291. @Beckow

    All fighting in WWII was significant by historical standards, but most of it (roughly 80%) took place on the eastern front.

    80% German KIA on the Eastern Front is not equivalent to 80% of combat taking place on the Eastern Front.

    It may mean 80% of land combat taking place on the Eastern Front, which probably isn’t far off the mark.

    Even when the allies weren’t engaging Germany, the possibility that they might also drew off substantial German forces. For this reason Germany kept over 300,000 troops in Norway for the duration of the war. And in fact Churchill repeatedly badgered the Imperial General Staff about the possibility of again invading Norway.

    And that’s just land troops.

    Here’s a study of the distribution of German air forces (including flak) from 1941 – 1944: http://www.ww2.dk/Dan%20Zamansky%20-%20The%20Study.pdf

    Looking at just operational frontline aircraft, the East’s percentage of frontline aircraft declined from 62% in Nov. 1941 to 40% in Feb. 1944. If you include all aircraft, the figure is lower still.

    As early as June 1942, while the Germans were driving towards the Caucasus, only 4% of flak cannons with a caliber 105mm or greater and 20% with a caliber 75-94mm were located in the East. I don’t think I need to remind you that these were also capable anti-tank guns.

    Needless to see nearly all German naval resources were engaged against the Western allies, who among other things were shipping goods to the USSR.

    Here’s a chart of German vs. Soviet steel allocation in 1944:

    Note that even in 1944 (when the Battle of the Atlantic was lost) the Germans were allocating more steel to shipbuilding than the USSR was to guns.

    I said understanding, not a ‘pledge’, you are playing with my words. The facts on the ground – what actually happened as I described it above – suggest some kind of a tacit understanding. Hess flew to Britain because his message couldn’t be trusted to anyone else and it had to be delivered in person. (Hess was roughly #2 in the Nazi hierarchy.) He wouldn’t do it without some assurances or previous contacts. It is also quite likely that British leaders were not of one mind, thus the ambivalence.

    But the fact remains that Britain stayed out of land war in Western Europe for 3 years until Normandy, watching Germany trying to conquer the east. That was not what anyone in Europe expected in 1941 – so there had to be a reason. Being lousy at land war and fearing WWI casualties probably played a role. But to think that Britain would be above develish self-serving betrayals like giving Nazis some time to finish off the Soviets is naive.

    Italy is in Western Europe, and British troops had higher combat proficiency than Soviet troops (though lower than German).

    And, as noted previously, I’m not sure what good it does the Germans to be fighting the British in North Africa where they were at substantially greater disadvantage than they were in France.

    It is true the British did keep looking for excuses to avoid confronting the main body of the German Army, but they were pushed by the Americans into doing so.

    As usual this also ignores the aerial and naval dimensions of the war, which was a catastrophe for Germany. One-third of Britain’s entire war effort went to the strategic bombing of Germany, and by 1943 was producing horrors not seen in Germany since the 30 Years War.

    That is silly and content free. Are you trying some verbal nihilism? That usually signals that you are running out of arguments.

    I am aware of the good German divisions in the West, but they were not on the frontline in Normandy. I would also count most division in Germany and Balkans by summer 1944 as being primarily fighting the Soviets – check out the maps, Red Army was about to storm Eastern Prussia.

    They weren’t on the frontline in Normandy because the Germans weren’t sure where the allies were going to land, and other than Rommel they underestimated the ability of the allies to interdict German transportation. And actually the 21st Panzer Div. was at Caen and counterattacked later in the day.

    Germany moved troops into the Balkans in 1943 (see above) as a result of Tunisgrad. They were concerned about the possibility of an allied landing in the Balkans, from where they obtained many vital raw materials. Unlike Italy the transportation net in the Balkans was poor, so there was no possibility of surging large formations in response to an allied landing.

    As it happens the Americans overruled the British scheme to invade the Balkans.

    And if you actually clicked on the link I previously provided, you’ll note that divisions in Germany are considered those not engaged on other fronts even when those fronts were in Germany itself. As it happens in June 1944 there were only 7 divisions in Germany.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  292. utu says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    General Beckow in Slovak Operation Overlord:

    • LOL: Thorfinnsson
  293. RobRich says: • Website
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Just keep up the good work, Anatoly.

    Your thinkpieces are always intriguing, well-written, and filled with enlightening factoids.

  294. A few new Russian submarines are incapable of longer term missions, because they have no longer access to American batteries, and while American batteries were good for five days, the Russian ones are only good for two.

    http://avia.pro/news/rossiya-poteryala-u-beregov-sirii-srazu-tri-podvodnyh-lodki

    • Replies: @Epigon
  295. @Dmitry

    I’ve always been interested in unusual things. In regards to cryptozoology, I’m an open-minded sceptic. I usually argue cryptids are misidentified ordinary animals opposed to the view they’re unknown/elusive animal species and imaginary/hoaxes, so I take the middle view between these two extremes. On Twitter this usually means I get criticised by both hardcore sceptics and true believers. Who is similar to me? Probably the scientist Darren Naish who is a sceptic but has defended cryptozoology from more harsh critics who dismiss it a pseudoscience. https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/tetrapod-zoology/is-cryptozoology-good-or-bad-for-science/

    Cryptozoology doesn’t actually require a belief cryptids are unknown/elusive animal species and there is very diverse views and opinions within cryptozoology about what cryptids are.

    For a few cryptids I’m open to the possibility they’re unknown/elusive animals, although accepting possibility doesn’t mean I’m exactly a “believer” since this would require more evidence. I recently submitted two cryptozoology papers to journals, although they’re still being reviewed. Both argue against the unknown/elusive animal hypothesis for Yeti and Chinese Wildman (yeren) and put forward another explanation.

    I was open-minded a few years ago about to the possibility Ebu gogo and/or Orang Pendek is a relict population of Homo floresiensis; let’s say I estimated the probability Homo floresiensis could have survived in remote parts of Indonesia, at 15-20%. The problem however is Homo floresiensis was re-dated in 2016. They’re no longer thought to be as young as 12,000 years old (Holocene), but 50,000-60,000 BP (the 2004 dating was apparently erroneous). So I no longer think there’s any possibility they could have survived into modern times; they went extinct during Late Pleistocene.

    I’ve read about the Dyatlov Pass incident and also watched a documentary about it. There’s a Russian dark ambient project I listen to inspired by it –

    I’m really not sure I have an explanation as to how or why they died and it’s still a mystery; far-fetched claims and conspiracy theories have though been refuted on sceptic blogs.

    On subject of Russians, they have put out some of the best works on cryptozoology but they’re rarely translated in English, an exception is Dmitri Bayanov, the pioneer of “hominology”. The most interesting cryptid in this region is the Almas: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Almas_(cryptozoology)

  296. The Dyatlov Pass incident is a pretty interesting thing. A popular Hungarian blogger wrote about it a few years ago, I’ve since read a short book on it. It didn’t convince me, though.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  297. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    All of the private land owners on the way would need to be bought out, and many would refuse. Their land would need to be seized by eminent domain proceedings, which could take years.

    How were highways and interstate system built?

    A highway is significantly wider, and equally as impassable. And the volume of highways in America, is thousands of times greater than would be required for two tracks of high-speed rail.

    In my Salt Lake City-Silicon Valley proposal, most of the journey is across desert. It would require tunnels and aqueducts for some of the desert topology.

    To bypass urban areas like Modesto, there would need to be raised track (at least this is how it looks all over Japan).

    But these cities like Modesto are very rural by comparison to what Shinkansen is constantly travelling over.

    Lobbying forces would include wealthy home-owners on the route, major airlines on the

    It sounds like a nightmare. But how then are roads constructed?

    and also why simple projects like subway extension in Manhattan have costs ten times that in Paris and London.

    That must be a nightmare, if it is 10 tens London.

    In London, they have a problem with far too high costs of HS2 project.

    But consider this is travelling in the center of the country, not in deserts, and that they have some of the most expensive property prices in the world – unlike Nevada.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Speed_2

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  298. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    At this point I am not sure what your point is.

    – 80% of WWII was fought between Germany and its allies against Russia in the east. Yes, there was substantial activity in the West, smaller and later than common sense would expect.
    – Normandy invasion was a relatively small operation very late in the war that went fairly badly – charging machine guns like in WWI with poor support against second rate German troops is not an example of glory.
    – Hess flew to Britain a month before Germany attacked Soviet Union – if you have a better explanation of what he was sent there for, tell us. Maybe, he went for tea and scones, or he was truly mad. But to outsiders it looked and still looks very suspicious.

    If you have an issue with any of that, address it. But bringing Norway, Sicily or Balkans into it is pointless and seems like an attempt to distract. That and silly personal attacks are an example of verbal nihilism – something that losing side in an argument engages in to confuse the perceptions. It is generally pointless to argue with verbal nihilists. People over certain IQ see it without me responding, people below that IQ cutoff will never see, so they will clown around with their goat fantasies. How clever, and useless.

  299. @Beckow

    Okay.

    You are an idiot, and worse an overconfident one.

    If the Magyar Miracle, Annatar, or one of the other WW2 buffs wants to carry this burden, hop in.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  300. @Dmitry

    The idea of a cryptid being responsible always seemed odd to me, because there’s no evidence of any mundane creature being involved (i.e. no foot prints). It would hence need to be a much more exotic theoretical monster than the yeti. Perhaps Mothman, which could cause them to behave irrationally (out of terror, or maybe mind control?) while also leaving no tracks behind. But if you’re going that far, why not just blame a demon or evil spectre from the beyond?

    Skimming the article it seems like there are some inconsistencies, were their belongings emptied from the tent or not (“their tent was empty… belongings and shoes left behind”)? If so then I would be interested if their was a toxicology report (again not mentioned) and how accurate it would be, because most of the other theories seem insufficient to explain leaving their cold weather gear behind after removing it from the tent, unless their were mind-altering drugs involved. But that still leaves the “pressure” wounds which killed three (which were far beyond the pressure of 4 meters of snow? Again unclear from the article). A strange case to be sure.

    But I may be softening on your position that unz is a terrible website for morons now that the regular commentariat has degraded from mentally ill shut ins and neo nazis to editors of rational wiki.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  301. @Dmitry

    How were highways and interstate system built?

    A highway is significantly wider, and equally as impassable. And the volume of highways in America, is hundreds of times greater than would be required for two tracks of high-speed rail.

    They were built in a different time, before the rise of NIMBYism, environmental review, endangered species act, etc. It was also illegal in many places in those days for public sector workers to unionize.

    To bypass urban areas like Modesto, there would need to be raised track (at least this is how it looks all over Japan).

    But these cities like Modesto are very rural by comparison to what Shinkansen is constantly travelling over.

    I’m not an expert on Japanese urbanism, but there are some very different features there.

    First of all, a private railroad company can get eminent domain done on its own. Once they’ve bought up 70% of the property on a proposed route, everyone else is forced to sell. I don’t know if there are legal procedures if they can’t get to 70%, but I assume there are.

    Second of all, zoning in Japan is national instead of local. And zones are defined by maximum level of nuisance, rather than being single use as is common in North America. The only single use zone in Japan is heavy industry.

    It sounds like a nightmare. But how then are roads constructed?

    Today, they’re largely not, except where private developers have bought up all the land and build a new master planned development.

    Existing roads are maintained, improved, and extended of course. State Departments of Transportation have decent standardized procedures and crews so the costs are reasonable in most cases.

    But where something new or ambitious is done in this department, it too is usually a fiasco. See for instance Boston’s Big Dig: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Dig

    This was supposed to cost $7.7bn and ended up costing $18.9bn.

    Most of the infrastructure you see in the USA was constructed between the Civil War and the election of Ronald Reagan.

    • Agree: songbird
    • Replies: @Dmitry
  302. @reiner Tor

    I’ve since read a short book on it. It didn’t convince me, though.

    What was its theory?

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  303. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    I will take that as a concession speech.

    My (over)-confidence just shot through the roof, thank you.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  304. @German_reader

    I think that the very heavy wind created a sound frequency which could cause in humans a total temporary disorientation and loss of judgment with a very strong desire to get away from it. According to the book the tent was exactly at a location where the sound would have been worst. They left the tent in panic (as, according to the author, all humans would do when exposed to such a sound for an extended period), cutting it out from the inside, and went to the nearest tree without their warm clothes (only in pullovers), where they suddenly realized what they had done. It was basically impossible in the middle of the night in a snowstorm to find the tent again, and they couldn’t survive the night in such cold. A few of them tried to get back to the tent and died without finding it. A few tried to make fire but froze to death anyway. A few tried to go deeper into the forest to get some firewood and died there.

    Apparently the most mysterious things, like the injuries on some corpses (a missing tongue etc.), could be explained easily (animals ate from the corpses after thawing in the spring), and basically everything fits into the very simple explanation of them leaving the tent very quickly in panic (cutting out the tent from inside), going to the tree, their panicking even more, splitting into three or four small groups trying to get firewood or back to the tent or finding the others who have gone and then each dying, because, whatever they tried, they were doomed after leaving the tent. (E.g. one of them had serious bone injuries next to the tree, and a few branches of the tree were broken or damaged. No, they weren’t fleeing to the tree from some mysterious monsters, simply tried to get firewood from up the tree, but in the extreme cold couldn’t climb up the tree and fell, breaking bones.)

    Now I can accept much of the thesis (that they only needed to leave the tent in panic for everything else to follow), but I’m not sure I believe the mysterious sound frequency of the wind. Another proposal could be an unfounded fear of an avalanche, which this book dismissed.

    In general, the theory sounds convincing, but it also sounds like a pet theory which ultimately cannot be proven or falsified.

    Anyway, the idea that the only mystery is why they left the tent (and everything following from them leaving the tent and then realizing they were doomed) is pretty convincing in itself.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  305. @reiner Tor

    Thanks, interesting. I’ve only read the Wikipedia page about the incident which also makes a scenario of the sort you described seem most likely. There doesn’t really seem to be much basis for the more outlandish theories.

  306. Dmitry says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Japanese urbanism, but there are some very different features there.

    Another thing about Japan, is I believe land path for Tokaido main line was bought in the 1930ies – when land would have been cheaper.

    However, even in 1930s, Kanto Plain would surely be vastly more expensive than e.g. Nevada desert.

    Most of the infrastructure you see in the USA was constructed between the Civil War and the election of Ronald Reagan.

    I guess this explains Elon Musk’s interest in tunnel projects.

    Cannot there be a legal change, for example in the Supreme Court, to favour acquisition of land for high-speed rail, however?

    In India, for example, is fighting to forcibly acquire land for its rail lines, which will use modern Japanese trains.

    “Mumbai (Urban Transport News): The Farmers from Maharashtra are all set to oppose Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s one of biggest dream project. The State Government is planning to use an obscure section of the land acquisition act to forcibly takeover land in the tribal district of Palghar for the bullet train project.”

    https://urbantransportnews.com/indias-first-bullet-train-project-fights-battle-for-land-acquisition

  307. Dmitry says:
    @Athletic and Whitesplosive

    It’s very cold and isolated up there, and it is already something like a Darwin award nomination to want to sleep in a tent there in the winter (even if you are with a group of other students)?

    I don’t think I wish to go up there – and definitely not sleep the night – even in August.

    But, yes, in that temperature it is quite easy to die simply by running out of your tent at night.

    The mystery:

    1. Why they all run out of tent in the night.

    2. Why did one have a smashed skull and another the smashed chest bones.

    So, in my skeptical opinion, the most logical conclusion is that they were killed by evil ghosts.

    • LOL: German_reader
    • Replies: @songbird
  308. AP says:
    @Beckow

    Are you trying some verbal nihilism? That usually signals that you are running out of arguments.

    Accusing someone of verbal nihilism means Beckow is losing the argument.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  309. Mikel says:
    @AP

    If the Soviets had added, say, Stavropol, Kursk, and some other regions to Ukraine, it would have been another Belarus.

    Not really. Belarus is a very homogeneous country, there are hardly any East-West or North-South differences. And perhaps more importantly, its population has a remarkably pragmatic and down to earth attitude, especially compared to their neighbor to the South.

    I have never met any Belarusian who expressed much sympathy for their leader Lukashenko but none of them seemed to hate him too much either and some even declared that he’s done some good things. People just can’t be bothered to go to the streets and try to change a regime that is not so bad after all. They have more practical things to do with their lives.

    On the other hand, everybody seems to understand Belarusian but nobody speaks it in daily life situations. I was even told that the few who try to do that are mocked and laughed at.

    So, basically, a day-and-night comparison with Ukraine. It is not very surprising that Belarusians have enjoyed a much more peaceful transition to post-Communism while achieving more than twice the Ukrainian per-capita GDP without joining the EU and all that comes with it.

    • Replies: @AP
  310. @Beckow

    Dunning-Kruger in action.

    • Agree: AP
  311. Epigon says:
    @reiner Tor

    This is an extremely dubious claim.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  312. Epigon says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    I posted the complete Normandy German OOB previously. If you didn’t read it, these high quality formations were present:

    3.fallschirmjäger-Division
    5.fallschirmjäger-Division
    1.SS-Panzer-Division
    17.SS-Panzergrenadier-Division
    Panzer-Lehr-Division
    2.SS-Panzer-Division
    9.Panzer-Division
    2.Panzer-Division
    21.Panzer-Division
    116.Panzer-Division
    11.Panzer-Division

    On paper strength is irrelevant. Divisions which suffered high losses in the East would be rotated to recoup, retrain and reequip in the West.
    What you need is the total German AFV breakdown by type in 1944 Normandy and France.
    This would demonstrate how understrength and rag-tag those divisions were compared to nominal OOB.

    There is another distinction – a Panther in the East was not manned by novice, green crew. In the West, Germans were forced to utilise green Panzerbrigaden with nowhere near enough supporting elements to terrible results.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @reiner Tor
  313. @Beckow

    80% of WWII was fought between Germany and its allies against Russia in the east.

    That’s just wrong, but because you define % of fighting as % of German soldiers killed, you will inevitably end up with that tautological conclusion. In your world, a German bomber with a crew of 4 destroyed is exactly the same as 4 infantrymen killed.

    Normandy invasion was a relatively small operation

    This is a very dumb statement. The Soviets couldn’t have pulled it off.

    Hess flew to Britain a month before Germany attacked Soviet Union – if you have a better explanation of what he was sent there for

    The question contains an assumption already, that he was sent. It’s anyway a conspiracy theory, we won’t be able to prove here anything

    • Replies: @Beckow
  314. Epigon says:
    @Beckow

    Look at it this way – how much Luftwaffe strength was diverted from Ostfront from 1943 to 1945, allowing Soviets to deny Axis the previously enjoyed air supremacy, and evolving over time into Soviet air supremacy?
    Air recon, close support, tactical bombing are incredible force multipliers and require skies clear of enemy fighters.

    What would you consider a bigger loss for the war effort – a loss of a wing worth of fighters and pilots in combat, or a loss of an infantry battalion?

    Now compare the casualty count in both cases.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  315. @Epigon

    The Panzer Lehr was at full strength already in March of that year when it participated in Operation Margarethe. I’m pretty sure that most of these divisions were close to full strength at the time, having been sent to the West months earlier.

    Anyway, the issue at hand is whether these were manned by unmotivated conscripts (?) or volunteers (?) from Bohemia or other Volksdeutsch groups. They were not.

    • Replies: @Epigon
  316. @Epigon

    There is another distinction – a Panther in the East was not manned by novice, green crew. In the West, Germans were forced to utilise green Panzerbrigaden with nowhere near enough supporting elements to terrible results.

    I don’t think that was true in June 1944, when the Germans had several months to train their crews, but it was to a large extent true in December during the Battle of the Bulge. Most German conscripts by that time were coming from the urban working class not drafted previously due to their importance to the war economy. There was nowhere enough time to give them proper training.

    By the way German crews were getting increasingly inexperienced by that time in the East, too.

    • Replies: @Epigon
  317. @Epigon

    I don’t even know Russian, I saw it shared elsewhere and then shared it here in the hope of someone putting it in context for me.

    • Replies: @melanf
  318. Epigon says:
    @reiner Tor

    The Panzer Lehr was at full strength already in March of that year when it participated in Operation Margarethe. I’m pretty sure that most of these divisions were close to full strength at the time, having been sent to the West months earlier.

    I am pretty sure they weren’t at full strength, not quality-wise (AFV type) and not quantity wise.
    But I have to check actual numbers before posting.

    Anyway, the issue at hand is whether these were manned by unmotivated conscripts (?) or volunteers (?) from Bohemia or other Volksdeutsch groups. They were not.

    I was not taking part in that discussion, just clarifying that simply looking at listed divisions doesn’t tell the full story. The same way a 1941 and 1940 Panzer division are world apart.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  319. melanf says:
    @reiner Tor

    I don’t even know Russian, I saw it shared elsewhere and then shared it here in the hope of someone putting it in context for me.

    The link is a sample of yellow journalism. Submarines (according to an unknown source) because of the lack of American batterys can swim under water for only 1 day instead of three, and therefore submarines can’t go back from Sirya in Russia and, accordingly, lost for Russia. The Ministry of defence is silent, which confirms the scale of the disaster.

  320. @Epigon

    Were Eastern Front divisions truly at full strength? I’m pretty sure that divisions which had spent several months in France were closer to full strength than divisions which had spent months fighting on the Eastern Front.

    • Replies: @Epigon
  321. Epigon says:
    @reiner Tor

    The crews already present in Normandy were a mix of Ostfront vets and trained recruits.

    However, Normandy has a fine demonstration of just how much were the SS troops blown up by propaganda – a single Canadian Sherman Firefly wiped out FIVE SS Panthers on June 9th in quick succession.

    What was substandard were the crews sent as reinforcements in the later phases of France campaign – Panzerbrigaden that got mauled near Arracourt by Sherman 75s.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @Korenchkin
  322. Epigon says:
    @reiner Tor

    Lets take a look at 21st Panzer Division in France.

    At the start of battle, it was equipped with:
    Command Company – 3 x Panzer III long 50 mm, 5 x Panzer IV long 75 mm (F2/G/H), 1 x Befl.Pz. III

    I/Pz.Rgt. 22
    Command Company 1 x Panzer III long 50 mm, 5 x Panzer IV long 75 mm, 1 x 1 x Befl.Pz. III
    1. Company 17 x Panzer IV long 75 mm
    2. Company 17 x Panzer IV long 75 mm
    3. Company 17 x Panzer IV long 75 mm
    4. Company 17 x Panzer IV long 75 mm

    II/Pz.Rgt 22
    Command Company 5 x Pz. IV long , 3 x Befhl.Pz.-S35 (f) (Somua)
    5. Company. 5 x Pz.-IV (l), 9 x Pz.-S35 (f)
    6. Company 5 x Pz.-IV (l), 13 x Pz.-S35 (f)
    7. Company 5 x Pz.-IV (l), 13 x Pz.-S35 (f)
    8. Company 6 x Pz.-IV short 75 mm

    Additionally, it had two companies of Hotchkiss H-38 (Pz.-H38 (f)) and one company of Pz. Char B-2 740 (f) Flamm assigned to division HQ.
    Naturally, the Germans didn’t utilise French tanks and short 75 mm Panzer IVs in combat against Allies.
    At the time, a Panzer Division was supposed to have an a battalion of Panthers and a battalion of Panzer IV with L43/48 guns.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @reiner Tor
  323. @Epigon

    So the 21st Panzer looked like your typical understrength Eastern Front division.

    Here’s the Panzer Lehr:

    Panzer Lehr began forming in 30 December 1943[9] and moved to the Nancy–Verdun area in January 1944 to complete the process.[10] It was formed from several elite training and demonstration units.[11] Most of the division’s original cadre was drawn from Panzertruppenschule I and Panzertruppenschule II, the Panzerwaffe’s major training units.[10] These training and demonstration units were some of the most experienced and highly trained troops in the Panzerwaffe, with almost all having seen combat in the East, North Africa, Sicily or Italy and many having received decorations for bravery.[7] As a result of this, Panzer Lehr was considered an elite unit from the time of its formation.[12]

    In early 1944, Panzer Lehr was transferred to Hungary for further training as well to serve in Operation Margarethe, the occupation of the country by German forces.[10][13] The division absorbed the 901st Panzergrenadier-Lehr-Regiment while there. It then returned to France to await the Allied invasion as a part of the OKW’s armored reserve, along with the I SS Panzer Corps and the 17th SS Panzergrenadier Division Gotz von Berlichingen.[14] These units could be released only with Adolf Hitler’s personal authorization.[15]

    Panzer Lehr’s panzer regiment had a battalion each of Panther and Panzer IV available.[10] Moreover, all the battalions in both panzergrenadier regiments were transported by tracked, armored vehicles, such as the Sd.Kfz. 251 halftrack.[16][1] This is in contrast to ordinary Wehrmacht panzer divisions, where only the first battalion in the first panzergrenadier regiment was equipped with halftracks, with the remaining battalions equipped with trucks. The division’s engineer and reconnaissance formations were also equipped with armored vehicles,[16] the armored reconnaissance battalion having a company of the new Sd.Kfz 234/2 Puma armored cars.[17] The division’s panzer regiment also had the 316. Funklenk-Panzerkompanie (abbreviated 1./s.Pz. Kp. ‘Funklenk’ 316) (“316th Remote Control Panzer company”)[note 1] attached while in Normandy; this company was originally equipped with ten Tiger I tanks, and was allocated the first five of the new Tiger II tanks that are not used in Normandy since it broke down en route[18] and been replaced by 9 Sturmgeschütz self-propelled guns, which fought at Tilly and St. Lo until destroyed, at which point the 316th Company was disbanded.[19][20] The division’s panzer regiment had a total complement of 208 operating tanks and assault guns (10 Panzer III, 9 StuG III, 97 Panzer IV, 86 Panthers and 6 Tigers) as of 6 June 1944 plus nine tanks and assault guns under repair (1 Panzer III, 1 StuG III, 2 Panzer IV, 3 Panthers and 2 Tigers).[21] It also had 31 Jagdpanzer IV in its Panzerjäger battalion.[21] Another unique feature of this formation was that its panzergrenadiers were, for a large part, dressed in the double-breasted Sturmgeschütz jacket, instead of the standard field blouse worn by other German Army (Heer) units.[22]

    I’m not sure which was the very best unit on the Eastern Front in early June 1944, but Panzer Lehr looks like the very best unit Germany could conceivably field at that time.

  324. @Epigon

    how much were the SS troops blown up by propaganda

    SS troops (at least the earlier formed German SS troops, including all the troops fighting in Normandy) were highly motivated and selected from the most valuable conscript/volunteer material.

    I didn’t mention the 12th SS Panzer Division “Hitlerjugend” because I thought they were some kind of supersoldiers (they weren’t), but they were definitely highly motivated, contained lots of former LSSAH soldiers (who were, in addition to being highly motivated, also well trained and highly experienced). Anyway, even the very best elite Waffen-SS formations had issues with their officer corps (which was usually worse than in the better Heer divisions), but you cannot say that the German high command sent units like the “Hitlerjugend” to Normandy because it thought these were 3rd rate units. I’m pretty sure the Wehrmacht had many units which were significantly worse than the “Hitlerjugend,” indeed, if I had to bet, I’d bet that the majority of Wehrmacht divisions were worse than the “Hitlerjugend,” mostly because they didn’t have full personnel strength.

    I only searched the net for data, so couldn’t find anything about the vehicle strength of “Hitlerjugend,” but it was formed using 2000 former “LSSAH” soldiers as a core, and they had 16,000 barely 18 year old recruits from the Hitlerjugend (the organization). This makes for a personnel strength of 18,000, which is that of a full strength Panzer division (I think elite divisions had something like 23,000, but it’s been at least a decade I was reading about these things).

    I wouldn’t make much of your anecdote (the Firefly Sherman was a very good battle tank, the Canadians were in general considered better than average British troops, etc.), but it’s well-known that many Waffen-SS troops didn’t live up to the Waffen-SS’ reputation. Many British, Canadian, American soldiers often mistakenly believed to be fighting the Waffen-SS whenever they were fighting Panzer troops (due to their use of the same Totenkopf symbol and black shirts), which led to the reputation of the Waffen-SS being better than they actually were. (The “Hitlerjugend” in particular probably took credit for what the “Panzer Lehr” holding the adjacent portion of the frontline did.)

    Anyway, I don’t think it’s these details are that important. What is important is that the Western Allies wiped out the German Air Force in the early months of 1944, largely destroyed the communications lines to Normandy, and then, utilizing these, executed the by far the largest amphibious invasion ever launched in human history. They were fighting against the best troops the Germany could throw at them in the summer of 1944 – which, admittedly, included barely useful troops, like the Tibetan soldiers allegedly captured there, but such troops fought on the Eastern Front as well. The British and Americans had already destroyed large German formations in Africa (in Tunis in the spring of 1943 German and Axis losses were actually higher than at Stalingrad a few months earlier), and they were fighting a bloody (if to an extent ineptly led) land war against them in Italy. Beckow’s claims are untenable in light of the available evidence.

    • Replies: @Epigon
  325. @Epigon

    A few more points:

    – the 21st Panzer Division had a manpower strength of 20,000 at the time; so it wasn’t exactly understrength, just in terms of battle tanks and vehicles; in other words, it wasn’t fully a tank division – but that’s true of most Panzer divisions on the Eastern Front, too; except they probably didn’t have a manpower strength of 20,000

    – regarding the battalion of Panthers, which was supposed to be in each Panzer regiment, that’s pretty laughable. There were very few divisions which met that requirement in the summer of 1944 (or, basically, ever), because the requirement was even created in wartime (in the summer of 1943, by which time Germany was losing the war), and they could never meet this for most divisions.

    So basically you’re comparing an actual division to some never existed ideal. Instead, you should be comparing it to actual existing divisions fighting on the Eastern Front. I’m pretty sure you’d find that, on average, the Western Front had better troops. (Simply because they had spent the previous several months resting and recuperating.)

    https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/21._Panzer-Division_(Wehrmacht)

    “Die Schnelle Brigade 931 wurde am 15. Juli 1943 im Raum Rennes im besetzten Frankreich umgegliedert und erhielt den freigewordenen Namen 21. Panzer-Division. Bei der Operation Overlord bzw. der Operation Neptune im Juni 1944 lag die 21. Panzer-Division, die seit dem 8. Mai 1944 von Generalleutnant Edgar Feuchtinger befehligt wurde und über etwa 20.000 Soldaten verfügte, südlich der Stadt Caen bei Falaise in der Nähe der östlichen Landezone Sword.”

    • Replies: @Epigon
  326. Epigon says:
    @reiner Tor

    Italian losses in North Africa were inconsequential, so no need to group them together with German ones. Afrika Army was crappy to the same extent its Panzer divisions were understrength throughout the campaign.
    Total losses until surrender in Tunisia demonstrate this – it was a maneuver campaign decided by Axis inability to conquer Malta – only a matter of time until Allies built up their strength, a sideshow.

    The motivation of German(ic) SS was not the problem. In SS Panzer case, they often picked best Heer crews, too. What was lacking were sensible decisions and tactical skills, which were overruled through unfounded sense of superiority. Common history knowledge praises Wittman for Villers-Bocage. A closer inspection of events demonstrates he foolishly charged into combat and achieved nothing, knocking out (several Tigers attacked) at most 4 RHQ Cromwells, 1 Firefly, Cromwell OP, Sherman OP and 2 Stuart Recce tanks, wildly inflating his claim (standard German practice – claimed 15 heavy tanks destroyed and 6 knocked out) and losing precious 6 Tigers which could not be replenished, along with several Pz IV in pointless counterattacks. Going into close combat with a Tiger is foolish and against all German instructions and manuals. Some lowly StuG and PzJg units actually scored better k:d ratios than even Tiger battalions because they were aware of their vulnerability and the importance of camouflage and situational awareness. A deployed unit of StuGs or ATGs would ambush the armoured column, repel the advance and redeploy elsewhere, without foolishly trying to take on the entrenched enemy in urban combat.
    The British were badly mauled by such a combination during Operation Goodwood, suffering huge tank losses to concealed towed guns, assault and self-propelled guns.

    Soviet documents reveal that it wasn’t the Panzers they feared the most, but ATG.

    At no point was I substantiating Beckow’s claims – I was clarifying that just listing divisions present in the theatre doesn’t tell the whole story. I didn’t even mention the fact that there is a huge difference between a formed, concentrated Pz. division and one arriving piecemeal, over detours, element by element (Allied bombing and air threat).

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  327. Epigon says:
    @reiner Tor

    June 1st 1944 has the 21. Pz. division at 16 297. The Western front didn’t have better troops on average, but it could be said that those frontline, first-class divisions deployed to the West had greater average combat strength than those in the East. But many divisions in Normandy were NOT frontline, but garrison, second-rate, foreign-manned.

    I fully concur that suffering 80% of losses doesnt’t equate to 80% of effort being diverted to that front.
    But a close inspection of German AFV, vehicle and artillery losses between USSR and Allies is a good proxy for land combat effort distribution.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  328. AP says:
    @Mikel

    Not really. Belarus is a very homogeneous country, there are hardly any East-West or North-South differences.

    It is not as homogeneous as you think. Western Belarus has its nationalists and a not-insignificant Polish population. It is not like Galicia, not like Kiev/Central Ukraine. However they are perhaps only 10%-20% of the population, have no chance of doing anything, and thus don’t try. If the Ukrainian SSR included enough places like Stavropol, Kursk, Bryansk it would be a similar situation. At most, there would be Galician separatism from the rest of Ukraine.

    I have never met any Belarusian who expressed much sympathy for their leader Lukashenko but none of them seemed to hate him too much either and some even declared that he’s done some good things.

    Sure. He is not a comprador elite but a local ethnic Belarussian Sovok farm manager. I guess a Ukrainian analogue might be someone like Kuchma, not Yanukovuch.

    So, basically, a day-and-night comparison with Ukraine.

    Correct. As I said, if Ukraine had more Eastern territories it would have been about the same.

    Belarusians have enjoyed a much more peaceful transition to post-Communism while achieving more than twice the Ukrainian per-capita GDP without joining the EU and all that comes with it.

    Belarus, Poland and Ukraine had about the same GDP per capita PPP in 1991:

    https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.PCAP.PP.CD?locations=PL-BY-UA

    Poland chose to move Westward and integrate with EU.

    Belarus chose to stick with Russia.

    Ukraine was torn between both sides, did neither, and remained a private fiefdom of the local Russian-speaking Sovok elites.

    Clearly Ukraine’s approach was the worst one. Poland’s approach was better than that of Belarus. Poland is now further from Belarus than Belarus is from Ukraine.

    You will say that Ukraine would not have been another Poland because it was further form Western markets or something. But look at Romania:

    https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.PCAP.PP.CD?locations=PL-BY-UA-RO

    It was even poorer than the other three in 1991, and further from the West, and with worse human capital. But it has surpassed Belarus also.

    So yes, Lukashenko was better than post-Sovok Ukrainian-Russian thieves. But he wasn’t all that great. Ukraine would have done better to emulate Poland than to emulate Belarus. And it would have done so, if it wasn’t stuck with Crimea and Donbas in 1991.

    Since losing these territories and focusing on Westward integration, Ukraine has seen solid 3% growth for 4 years (around 3-4% per capita), which is now accelerating. Ukraine has now caught up to where it had been in 2013, but without 2013’s wealthiest regions (Donbas), so the remaining territory is now significantly wealthier than it had been in 2013. This is particularly true in the west and center.

    My cousins in an oblast capital in the middle of the country have taken a holiday at a resort in Turkey for the first time in their lives. This isn’t a big deal for Russians or other eastern Europeans, but Ukrainians couldn’t afford to do that before. My aunt from the USA recently visited them, they told her that for the first time in their lives they felt financially secure.

    Hopefully serious reforms are now coming, which bring further improvement. This should have started 25 years ago.

    • Replies: @Mikel
    , @Mr. XYZ
    , @Mr. XYZ
  329. @Epigon

    Canadian Sherman Firefly wiped out FIVE SS Panthers on June 9th in quick succession.

    You sure that’s not another Audie Murphy case?

  330. @Epigon

    The second rate divisions at Normandy were largely static divisions in prepared coastal fortifications.

    Not very different from the French Army practice of having fortress divisions in the Maginot line, or the general practice of using second rate and foreign divisions for occupation duty. I doubt the German divisions fighting partisans in Belarus were particularly good for instance.

    I think it’s reasonable to say that there were strong German formations on all fronts with high combat intensity, with weaker divisions elsewhere.

    To some of your earlier points I’m not sure you will be able to find at a Panzer division at its authorized strength on any front for the entire war, and 1941 Panzer divisions were in fact more powerful formations than 1940 divisions despite fewer tanks overall. See here: http://www.operationbarbarossa.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/1940PzDiv-vs-1941PzDiv.pdf

    ATGs were generally more feared than enemy tanks by tankers for good reasons. ATGs were generally concealed and dug-in in prepared positions, and they usually had excellent sight lines and fields of fire. An 8.8cm flak crew will have a much easier job acquiring targets and firing at them than a Tiger. A lot of hay is made of the anti-tank capabilities of the German big cats, but the main objective of tanks was certainly not simply to duel with enemy tanks.

    The issue with Beckow, aside from his ignorance and overconfidence, is one typical to people with his worldview. Pro-Russian/Soviet, anti-American/Western (note: nothing wrong with this worldview per se). A lot of these people seem to dismiss the German conflict with the Anglo-Americans as a minor sideshow, which is simply not the case.

    Best single metric for land combat effort distribution is probably the expenditure of munitions.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  331. Beckow says:
    @reiner Tor

    Normandy invasion was a relatively small operation

    This is a very dumb statement. The Soviets couldn’t have pulled it off.

    People are good or bad at different things. At a minimum Soviets would had blasted German defences to smithereens before attempting a landing – you know it can be done, a soldier should never go where an artillery shell didn’t go first. Second, you do 2 or 3 geographically separate landings to get some theater control. The casualties in Normandy were disproportionate to the goal achieved – and that fact is buried deep in Western military textbooks.

    Regarding size: Germans had around 120k casualties in Normandy. At the very same time, in the east, in just one Soviet offensive – Bagration in Belarus – Germans lost 400-500k soldiers. 3-4 times as many. If you would rank Normandy among the biggest battles German fought in WWII it would barely made it in the top 10. By that standard it was a relatively small operation.

    Hess and his journey to England in May 1941 remain unexplained. Brits murmured something about him being mad and locked him up with no contact. Top political leaders very seldom go ‘mad’, other than being a bit shifty and volatile to start with. In any case, the only reason to isolate Hess for 40 years was to keep him from saying something that would embarrass the British government. Given the context, it was about WWII and its evolving alliances, not about mating habits of British royals. Don’t be so afraid to think it through.

    80% of WWII was fought between Germany and its allies against Russia in the east.

    The actual German casualties in the east were higher than 80% – the estimates are closer to 90%. I have even seen a 94% but that included dead German POWs and allied casualties among Italians, Hungarians, Romanians. So my 80% number was already adjusted down for the presumed higher value of pilots and navy. At the end, whether it was 80%, 82% or 73%, is less important than the fact that WWII was by far mainly fought on the eastern front. There is little danger given Western myths that people would over-estimate Russia’s contribution, so an almost hysterical defense that Thorfinnson is putting up to claim credit in the West seems to me misplaced.

    I also find personal attacks simply silly, what do we know about each other? Attacking based on not knowing anything about the other person is like screaming in a dark forest. Let’s stick to arguments and leave unknowable motivations to the gods.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  332. Beckow says:
    @AP

    You can’t do better? Like in a kindergarden: ‘you are stupid!’ ‘no, you are!’…

    And just as I was going to give you credit for actually being thoughtful about Belarus.

    • Replies: @AP
  333. @Beckow

    The Soviets would’ve blasted German defenses into smithereens with what, exactly?

    The battleships and cruisers they didn’t possess?

    The four-engined bombers they didn’t possess?

    The 11,000 single-engine fighters they didn’t possess?

    Perhaps they would’ve dragged their artillery, chronically short of shells for almost the entire war, ashore in rubber rafts?

    They would’ve done 2 to 3 geographically separate theater landings (ever heard of Operation Dragoon?) with what shipping and what landing craft?

    Which amphibious invasions against defenders in prepared defensive positions do you think went better than Operation Overlord? Iwo Jima? Okinawa? Tarawa? All blood baths.

    Yes, there was plenty of incompetence at Normandy. Incompetence is common in war. John T Reed had a nice piece on it not long ago: https://johntreed.com/blogs/john-t-reed-s-news-blog/the-big-d-day-screw-ups-that-have-been-covered-up-for-75-years

    Lastly, since you STILL don’t get it, 80% KIA on the Eastern Front DOES NOT MEAN that 80% of combat took place on the Eastern Front, let alone 80% of industrial effort. It may suggest that 80% of land combat took place on the Eastern Front, and in fact it may suggest more since Soviet combat efficiency was lower than Anglo-American. Perhaps you think losing a Type VII U-Boat is equivalent to losing an infantry platoon or that losing a B-29 Superfortress is equivalent to losing an infantry squad.

    Just stop, you’re embarrassing yourself. The reason you’ve been personally attacked is that you clearly know less about the conflict than some other commenters here yet are extremely confident. Not only do you not know anything, you don’t know that you don’t know anything.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  334. @Thorfinnsson

    I doubt the German divisions fighting partisans in Belarus were particularly good for instance.

    From what I’ve read, the Wehrmacht’s occupation and anti-partisan forces were usually quite old on average (sometimes including quite a few WW1 veterans) and severely under-strength for controlling the territories assigned to them. They were also under-equipped in terms of trucks and heavy weaponry, often not enjoying any clear material superiority over the partisans they were facing.
    Those deficits were also a factor in the cruelty and escalation of the anti-partisan war, because early on in 1941 it was decided to compensate for this weakness with terror measures. It also meant Wehrmacht occupation forces were glad about any help from SS and police units they got which introduced an additional ideological dimension (something that actually wasn’t to be expected just from the social and age structure of the occupation forces, since many of them had been socialized well before 1933 or even 1914).

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  335. Beckow says:
    @Epigon

    …What would you consider a bigger loss for the war effort – a loss of a wing worth of fighters and pilots in combat, or a loss of an infantry battalion?

    In most cases, I would go with the pilots. But wars are incredibly dynamic and there are inter-connections all over. One can make an almost unlimited number of claims based on cherry-picking a particular mental pathway. But there is also the fundamental big picture, the truth.

    Some big questions that can only be answered by focusing on the overall context:
    – Would Anglos defeat Germany by themselves? Almost certainly no without dropping an atom bomb on Munich.
    – Would Soviets? Probably, but it would take a few more years and a few more million dead. I also suspect after that Germans would cease to exist.
    – What was Germany trying to accomplish: large European (and partially Asian) land empire to spread the German folk over a lot more lands.
    – What was going to happen to people living in those lands? They would cease to exist one way or another, probably starting with the Poles.
    – What was Soviet objective: survive and spread the blessings and pains of communism, they had no ethnic goals – a huge, an almost catastrophic error.
    – What was Anglos goal? Stay on top with the least cost possible and weaken/destroy any potential rivals, Germany, Russia, even France. Ideally the rivals would fight each other.

    What happened nicely fits in the above context.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  336. @Beckow

    they had no ethnic goals – a huge, an almost catastrophic error.

    Why was it an error?

    • Replies: @Beckow
  337. @German_reader

    They had some decent armored trains, and these were quite useful since the railways were a primary target for partisans for obvious reasons.

    To my knowledge partisans never managed to seriously disrupt German logistics in any theater, but they drew off German resources which was obviously useful.

    Probably the biggest benefit partisans provided was intelligence, especially in the West where they were more likely to have radio-sets.

    • Replies: @Epigon
  338. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    You create strawman arguments that misrepresents what I wrote and then proceed to argue with it. Answer what I say and don’t interpret what you think I might be saying.

    My point about Normandy was that it was done incompetently based on resources UK-US had – they had cruisers, battleships and planes and they used them poorly. Thus the high casualties. It was also a relatively small operation by WWII standards and very late in the war. The mythology in the West is way overblown. If you look at Normandy with the same critical standard that West applies elsewhere, you have to agree with that assessment. But if it is an emotional, feel-good myth, I can see how it rubs you the wrong way.

    …Which amphibious invasions against defenders in prepared defensive positions do you think went better than Operation Overlord? Iwo Jima? Okinawa? Tarawa? All blood baths.

    All done by Anglos, they seem to like bleeding in the sand and shallow waters.

    Engaging in personal attacks without knowing that person is a fool’s errand. But I am puzzled by your objection to my ‘confidence’. Do you expect people who disagree with you to doubt their own side? I think you do, and that seems like a bizarre late-in-the-game development in the Western thinking – angry that others disagree or have different views of history, West lashes out and demands that even critics accept the basic Western-liberal narrative.

    Why would we? We, unlike you, probably have a few more years of European civilization to enjoy. A big part of that civilization is curiosity and seeking the truth. People who are obsessively concerned with preserving myths – like Normandy landing won WWII – are displaying mostly fear of the future.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  339. provided was intelligence, especially in the West where they were more likely to have radio-sets.

    I don’t think partisan movements in Western Europe were really important, except for post-war mythmaking in France and Italy.
    Importance of the Soviet partisan movement is obviously a very contested issue as well (though even some revisionist accounts indicate that the partisans may have killed up to 50 000 German soldiers), as are certain aspects of German anti-partisan warfare (was the brutality more due to situational factors or racial ideology?). In general you’re probably right that its impact on German communications and transport was limited, though it may have played some role before the Soviet offensive in 1944.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @melanf
  340. Beckow says:
    @German_reader

    WWII was the ultimate ethnic conflict – all sides were fighting for their national interest. Except Soviets fought the war and its aftermath mostly as an uber-national ideological contest. I said mostly, because there were a few exceptions that almost all benefitted smaller ethnic groups like Lithuanians, Poles, Ukrainians, Czechs,…

    So in effect Russians gave away most of their biggest national victory to help others who are today superbly ungrateful, look at Poles, French, even Jews. From Russian point of view it was an error (f..ck ideology and take care of your own). We are ending up in a situation that a nation that lost millions to defeat Nazism – let’s agree that was overall a good thing – is regularly described as an aggressor in WWII, denied its role in that victory, and watching as the same assembly as in 1941 is again marching up and down its borders. They had to something wrong to end up again in the same predicament.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  341. @Beckow

    So the Soviets, magically having the same aerial and naval resources as the Anglo-Americans, would’ve conducted amphibious operations with more skill. The same Soviets who displayed inferior combat efficiency in land operations.

    Right.

    No one here espouses the D-Day myth at all, that’s the domain of the late Stephen Ambrose and Hollywood. What’s being disputed with you is instead the Eastern Front myth, namely the idea that Germany was primarily fought and defeated in the East.

    What I expect is for people to understand the limits of their own knowledge and not double down on ignorance, apparently too tall an order for you.

    Epigon for instance doesn’t always agree with my takes on WW2, but is much better informed on the topic than you are. I think he’s out to lunch in calling the North African campaign a sideshow and might address that later, but he isn’t coming from a position of ignorance. He’ll probably also click on the link I provided comparing 1940 to 1941 Panzer divisions, whereas you obviously didn’t click on any links provided before making doubling down on your ill-informed positions.

    Lastly, one of the main purposes of the internet is personal attacks and I will never agree with anyone who says otherwise.

    • Replies: @Epigon
    , @Beckow
  342. @German_reader

    The intelligence provided by the French Resistance was useful. This didn’t include just partisans, but also for instance Frenchmen employed in the Ministry of Posts and Telegraphs and the French National Railway Company. As soon as the Anglo-American armies crossed into Germany for instance their information on German forces dropped drastically, for the obvious reason that German civilians didn’t betray the movements of German troops to their enemies.

    The same sort of thing is of course true in the East as well, but communications between the Red Army and Eastern European partisans were at a lower level. Conditions of occupation in the East were also much harsher, which increased the risk level.

    • Replies: @German_reader
  343. @Beckow

    Living space of Russians did increase somewhat as a consequence of WW2 by annexation of East Prussia, and at least temporarily in the Baltic states as well. Maybe you should spell out in more detail what should have been done in your opinion.

    and watching as the same assembly as in 1941 is again marching up and down its borders.

    Yeah, sorry, this is definitely where I part ways with Russophiles. I’m as skeptical as anyone of America’s foreign policy and the anti-Russian antics of Polish nationalists don’t strike me as constructive either, but these false analogies with Nazi Germany and Operation Barbarossa are getting rather tiresome.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  344. @Thorfinnsson

    but communications between the Red Army and Eastern European partisans were at a lower level.

    I’m not sure that’s actually true for Soviet partisans, Stalin and other top Soviet leaders made intense efforts to organize and control the partisan movement (whose original nuclei often were communist party functionaries and Red army soldiers who had been overrun by the German advance, it’s not like some civilians just decided spontaneously to take up weapons). I’d have to look into the issue in more detail though, and I don’t have time for that right now.

  345. Epigon says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Soviet partisans (often remnant of divisions encircled in Barbarossa) were very effective at disruption of German logistics and railway lines. Prior to and during Zitadelle, railway and bridge sabotage, derailment of trains reached their maximum – almost 50% of planned rail traffic was disrupted.

    German military losses due to Soviet partisan action were rather small – low ten thousands. French resistance was more of a propaganda trope and joke than an important affair, while Yugocommunists actually had standing orders to avoid engaging Germans.

  346. @Epigon

    Didn’t Yugoslav partisans liberate areas of Yugoslavia on their own?

    • Replies: @Epigon
  347. Epigon says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Regarding ‘40 vs. ‘41. Pz.Div. the on-paper tank strength vs. practical combat value you specified was what I was aiming at with my comment.
    In that case, a simple look at tank inventory would not be an accurate gauge of combat value – as opposed to comparing tank inventory of ‘44 divisions and their warpath to date.

    North Afrika was a sideshow, was thought of as a sideshow by Germans from the beginning. Rommel’s orders were clear and in line with it being a sideshow.
    His first spanking of British was accomplished with a grand total of 32 Panzer III tanks.
    From March to June 1941, DAK suffered 12 203 men out of action, but only 3512 due to enemy action – the rest were ill, sunburned, dehydrated etc.

    Just to present how small were DAK forces in April 1941, its main offensive strength – Pz. Rgt. 5 = 4 x Pz I, 15 x Pz. II, 9xPz. III, 9 x Pz. IV (early variants for the last two) and Pz. Rgt. 8 = 28 x Pz. II, 26 x Pz. III, 13 x Pz. IV, 5 x Befehlspanzer

    August figures – 20, 30, 57, 16 for 5th; 41, 70, 16 for 8th
    September – 13, 34, 60, 16 for 5th; 41, 64, 13 for 8th
    October – 13, 20, 55, 10; 42, 77, 18

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  348. Beckow says:
    @German_reader

    2/3 of East Prussia went to Poland, +Silesia, Pomerania. Poland won nothing in WWII, they collapsed in 3 weeks. Strategically, a smaller Poland would be of benefit to Russia, why not keep those German ethnic areas in Germany? Letting Poland keep Galicia would also be much better for Russia and make Ukraine into a more homogeneous country. And why give Vilnius to Lithuania? By helping those small nations to get their maximalist land demands, Russia antagonised others and got nothing except trouble in the long run.

    I am not into comparing anything to Barbarossa, I think most historical analogies are faulty, today’s situation is unique to today. My point is not that West or Poland will invade, my point is that by foregoing strategic depth Russia has invited this stalemate on its borders. And as I have said before, that stalemate is not good for anybody, not for EU, not for Russia and definitely in the long run not good for the smaller nations in that area. It benefits only one group: globalist elites who want to distract from what is going on and enjoy having some perks that come with having an ‘enemy’ in Russia. It is also slightly risky, it could possibly blow up.

  349. Epigon says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    If by liberation you mean “unhospitable worthless wastelands, forests, mountains and hills of no concern to German effort” – yes. In reality, Germany surrendered before Yugocommunists defeated last pockets of Croats and Muslims, entered towns and cities.

    The only exception is the 1941 Užice when Royal Yugoslav Army/Chetniks and Serb Partisans together defeated German garrison, liberated the area, and saw Germans launching a counterattack, crushing them and killing 70 000 people in fighting and reprisals. Idiotic, pointless, just like March 27th coup and not joining Axis.

    Germans pacified Serbia afterwards, instituting 100 for 1 reprisal for each killed German and railway sabotage, 50 for each wounded. There were successful diversions around Niš area where main German logistical route to Greece ran, in 1942 and 1943.

    Yugoslav partisans swelled in ranks when Croats went full retard in May 1941 and decided to eliminate Serbs – to the dismay of Germans who wanted stable rear. When their presence was large enough, Germans would launch an offensive to eliminate them. The “genius” of Tito consisted of throwing (tens of) thousands of people to their death as rearguard, abandoning wounded and sick to the Axis, in order to escape, on multiple occasions. There was not a single attack on any death camp, Axis garrison or important target. The actual impact of Yugocommunists on war effort was neglibible. In fact, total German losses in the Balkans, from invasion of Yugoslavia and Greece, over occupation, anti-resistance operations to Soviet liberation of Belgrade and push in Vojvodina was ridiculously small – less than 100 000.

  350. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    …The same Soviets who displayed inferior combat efficiency in land operations.

    They won the war. I guess others displayed even more inferiority.

    …the idea that Germany was primarily fought and defeated in the East

    That is the idea. The key word is ‘primarily’. It is supported by data, including German casualties, big battles, Soviets in Berlin, etc… If you dispute it, who is your candidate? Would you say that UK, US or France ‘primarily’ defeated Germany in WWII? Or would you argue that no-one was primary?

    I am ok with personal attacks, it is entertaining. But can we elevate it a bit? Sweeping generalisations seldom hit a mark, they almost seem lazy. Try something that one can actually relate to, something more 2019.

    • Replies: @Epigon
    , @Thorfinnsson
  351. Epigon says:
    @Beckow

    Soviets were effective, but not as efficient as Germans or Americans on a per unit scale.

    • Agree: Thorfinnsson
  352. Epigon says:

    North Africa is a cool theatre in 1941 and 1942 because it is a sort of land sea combat. No value in holding the territory, very low troop counts and force density across the theatre, ridiculous motorisation (33 000 Germans and 11 330 German vehicles – contrast to Ostfront numbers) and mobility, supply points and ports have the same value as naval bases in naval warfare.
    It is also a gentleman’s war compared to conduct elsewhere.

    In hindsight, Malta should have been conquered before any forces landed.

  353. Epigon says:

    https://www.stripes.com/news/europe/in-a-first-for-beijing-in-europe-serbia-to-receive-chinese-armed-drones-1.598166

    The future Imperial Associate Greater Serbia is laying the groundwork. Drones have proven themselves time and again at eliminating tribal savages, goatfuckers, Islamists – there is definitely plenty of them in our neighbourhood.

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
  354. Anatoly’s twitter moniker 🐉 Апатоlу Каrliп should actually be pronounced as Apatolu Karlip.

  355. Mr. Mustache just got the boot.

  356. @Epigon

    Prior to and during Zitadelle, railway and bridge sabotage, derailment of trains reached their maximum – almost 50% of planned rail traffic was disrupted.

    That seems to be disputed and may be a Soviet myth.
    Sebastian Stopper in this article here
    https://www.ifz-muenchen.de/heftarchiv/2011_3_3_stopper.pdf
    analysed German railway communications in the Bryansk area during April-July 1943 and claims that the effect of partisan attacks was very limited and didn’t really impede German troop movements.
    German military losses to partisans are also estimated to have been fairly low nowadays…the article cites a number of 35 000 killed on the German side in the Soviet theatre, half of them native collaborators.
    I still think it’s possible that on some occasions (e.g. in the run-up to the Soviet offensive in June 1944) the partisans may have been somewhat important, but in general their effectiveness seems to have been exaggerated.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  357. Mikel says:
    @AP

    It is not as homogeneous as you think.

    I know Belarus and Poland quite well. I actually lived in Poland for a short period in the 90s.

    I’ve explicitly asked several Belarusians about regional language differences in their country (something of interest to me as a Basque speaker) and most of them would not be able to say if there are any or would be puzzled by the question. Some others said what I think I later observed: people in rural areas of all parts of the country will use some Belarusian words heavily mixed with Russian, which is the lingua franca everywhere.

    So it’s an opposite situation to Ukraine, where there is a very marked East-West linguistic cline, with Ukrainian being actually predominant in the West. That wouldn’t change with more territories added to the East of the SSR.

    Belarus, Poland and Ukraine had about the same GDP per capita PPP in 1991

    I am very skeptical of the real value of those figures when it comes to former republics of the USSR. These were countries of very recent creation whose economy was intimately linked to a structure that was about to disappear. That was the relevant economic path at the time, much more than their population being more or less “Western oriented”.

    Poles in the 90s would regard anything East of them as “Russia”, even the Baltics, and feel threatened by them, which was not surprising, with all the criminals that came from those areas to rob passenger trains and engage in gangster activities.

    When I decided to visit Kiev everybody warned me against it. Nothing bad happened to me but I did see a much poorer country. In fact, and without going into details, it was the most run down place I have ever been to outside Africa. Comparable to Cuba perhaps.

    By contrast, in the late 90s I drove from Poland to Lithuania, Latvia, Belarus and back to Poland. Belarus was possibly the best looking country of the lot. The roads were quite good, the villages I passed through looked nice and Minsk was a pleasant-enough city.

    Ukraine would have done better to emulate Poland than to emulate Belarus.

    Possibly yes but there is a reason why it didn’t do it and that train left the station a very long time ago.

    I don’t believe that things in Eastern Europe are any different from what I observe in Western Europe. With some peaks and troughs, countries essentially maintain their relative wealth over time and nothing much has changed since the early 20th Century (this even applies to regions within countries). Perhaps affluent Ireland is the only only remarkable exception, for the time being.

    In the coming decades I essentially expect to continue seeing the same differences that I saw in the 90s in Eastern Europe.

    People often forget that the real advantage of the EU is being part of a huge common market and, since the ECC became the EU, also the possibility of offloading your unemployed and underemployed to more prosperous countries in the EU (with Britain being the primary destination for everybody but now they’re leaving the Union).

    However, the path to becoming part of the EU has never been an easy one at all. I perfectly remember seeing whole parts of the Spanish economy disappear in the 80s in order to meet the free-competition demands of the association. People in their 50s or late 40s would lose their lifelong jobs never to find stable work again. They would survive on benefits and side jobs until their early retirement.

    At the end of the process the winners are the efficient companies that don’t need captive markets to compete (most of them from Northern European countries) plus the parts of the local economy that managed to survive the cull. They both now have a much larger market to sell their products in.

    Compared to the advantages of the single market and the need to meet EU-wide financial discipline rules, the “convergence” transfers for infrastructure projects are a just side show, both in absolute figures and in real effects. Portugal and Southern Spain have been receiving those funds for decades but their relative poverty has remained unchanged.

    Eastern European countries that joined the EU (some of them, like the Romania you cite, through a forced fast-track that Brussels is very unlikely to repeat) had already seen their economies dismantled with the end of Communism so the impression might be that the specific efforts that they had to make to join the EU were not that tough but they would have been if more of their economy had survived.

    So what is Ukraine going to do now? Go through a further 90s-like dismantling of its existing economy? The EU is not a charity organization. It _will_ demand convergence efforts, open markets for its products, end of subsidies,…

    And is Ukraine planning to send millions of workers to the EU at a time when immigration is the central electoral issue in all EU countries, from Denmark and Britain to Italy and Hungary?

    My eldest son lives in Poland and has recently finished his engineering studies. He told me that Ukrainian engineers are already straining the labor market and accepting jobs for 2.5k-3k zlotys that are hardly enough for a Pole to live on. Incidentally, he also said that there are so many Ukrainian laborers that knowledge of Russian is advantageous to get a managerial job.

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Beckow
    , @AP
    , @Dmitry
  358. @Epigon

    Operation Sonnenblume was a sideshow, and deliberately intended as such.

    The Mediterranean theater went onto evolve into a major theater of operations and led to Italy’s exit from the war. The impact on Germany was considerable. While the Battle of Kursk was going on (shortly after the Tunisgrad disaster), 40% of German bombers were in the Mediterranean. The collapse of the Axis position in North Africa forced major diversions of German forces into Southern France, Italy, and the Balkans.

    It was a sideshow compared to the Eastern Front and Northwestern Europe in that operations in the Mediterranean could not produce Germany’s defeat, but the theater hastened Germany’s defeat on those fronts, the skies over Europe, and in the Atlantic.

  359. @Beckow

    That is the idea. The key word is ‘primarily’. It is supported by data, including German casualties, big battles, Soviets in Berlin, etc… If you dispute it, who is your candidate? Would you say that UK, US or France ‘primarily’ defeated Germany in WWII? Or would you argue that no-one was primary?

    It’s not supported by data, unless you only focus on land combat. And even when you only focus on land combat one must bear in mind how the efforts of the allies influenced land combat on the Eastern Front.

    I would argue that no-one was primary.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  360. melanf says:
    @German_reader

    Importance of the Soviet partisan movement is obviously a very contested issue as well (though even some revisionist accounts indicate that the partisans may have killed up to 50 000 German soldiers)

    The significance of the partisans was definitely not in the number of German soldiers killed, but in another area

    According to the “Atlas of the fighting of army group “North” in 1942 the partisans had derailed 224 of the train (in the area of group North). According to the Soviet Headquarters of the partisan movement – partisans had derailed 297 echelons . At the same time, according to the Headquarters of the partisan movement, the partisans killed 28,450 German soldiers, but Atlas gives only 353 killed

  361. @Epigon

    To put it into perspective, this is coming alongside
    30 T72 b3s
    14 MiG 29s with more coming next year alongside some Mi-17s
    10 BRDM-2s with more to go
    (These are from Russia and Belarus)
    Combined with a restarted arms industry which just unveiled new APCs, ARs, mobile artillery and other goodies

    Not bad at all

    • Replies: @Epigon
  362. Beckow says:
    @Mikel

    …Ukrainian engineers are already straining the labor market and accepting jobs for 2.5k-3k zlotys that are hardly enough for a Pole to live on.

    There are a few million more right behind them. And of course the whole Third World surplus of at least 10’s of millions that Poland has so far refused to take. It benefits ‘business’, so they will push as much as they can to make it ubiquitous. We have so far in Czechia and Slovakia avoided most of it, although Prague is full of Ukrainian construction workers and service people.

    It keeps incomes down. It makes work less rewarding and more unpleasant. That’s why bosses love it. Ukrainians at least assimilate, but the impact on wages is always there.

    There was a period when liberal elites tried to sell this bosses-led destruction of labor markets as a ‘win-win’. Today they don’t bother, the idea was preposterous on its face anyway. They have shifted to ‘it is inevitable‘ and emotional manipulation ala ‘look, a migrant has drowned, what would Jesus do?’. It is always touching to follow an example of a guy who basically martyred himself, let’s go, how bad can it be?

    Your summary of EU recent history is basically accurate, Ukrainians on Maidan simply had no idea what they were chanting about. Or some of them did, and had no plans to stick around for the consequences. They are in Poland today.

    • Replies: @AP
  363. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    …no-one was primary.

    Does that mean an equal share of 1/3 for Russia, Britain and UK? Seriously? So how did Russians kill over 80% of Germans and only get 33% of credit? Weird rules.

    Or do you give Russia some extra credit, but it is not on the level of ‘primary’? What percentage of the overall victory against Germany would you assign to each ally?

    Here are my:
    Russia 60-75%
    Britain 20-25%
    US 15-20%
    France -5% (yes, a minus, more French died fighting for Germans than against them)
    Poland 1% (a touching example of self-sacrifice that motivated others)

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    , @reiner Tor
  364. Epigon says:
    @Korenchkin

    T-72 are not B3 model unfortunately, let alone B3M.

    They are T-72B1MS – B1 denotes no ATGM capability.

    The single B3 sighted in Serbia is Russian, and was for parade purposes.

    B3 and upward are force multipliers, especially at night. These B1, not really – but then again, there is practically 0 chance of them being used for anything except training and parades. And Serbia’s neighbours apart from Hungary (Leo2 path) have similar or inferior tank forces.

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
  365. @Beckow

    Does that mean an equal share of 1/3 for Russia, Britain and UK? Seriously? So how did Russians kill over 80% of Germans and only get 33% of credit? Weird rules.

    How did Russia kill 80% of Germans and only get 33% of credit (I didn’t say 33% ftr)?

    As I said previously:

    It’s not supported by data, unless you only focus on land combat. And even when you only focus on land combat one must bear in mind how the efforts of the allies influenced land combat on the Eastern Front.

    As an example the 1943 British bombing of the Ruhr resulted in a complete interruption of the increase of German armaments production from July, 1943 to March, 1944. This had substantial impacts on the German war effort in general and also impacted the Eastern Front in particular. However, direct German casualties (mainly civilians) were only 21,000. Does that mean the Battle of the Ruhr was 10% as consequential as Stalingrad or Tunisgrad? No.

    The following year of course the USAAF 8th Air Force went on to destroy the Luftwaffe (prior to both Bagration and Overlord) and German’s oil industry, with catastrophic effects.

    Also noted earlier, allied operations (or the possibility of allied operations) meant that during most of the Soviet-German War only half the Luftwaffe and three-fifths of the German Army were actually in the East.

    We can also take the issue of Lend-Lease. In Boris Sokolov’s 1998 work (which corrected Soviet propaganda), he found that Lend-Lease supplied:

    58% of the USSR’s high octane aviation fuel
    33% of their motor vehicles
    53% of USSR domestic production of expended ordnance (artillery shells, mines, assorted explosives)
    30% of fighters and bombers
    93% of railway equipment (locomotives, freight cars, wide gauge rails, etc.)
    50–80% of rolled steel, cable, lead, and aluminium
    43% of garage facilities (building materials & blueprints)
    12% of tanks and SPGs
    50% of TNT (1942–1944) and 33% of ammunition powder (in 1944)
    16% of all explosives (from 1941–1945, the USSR produced 505,000 tons of explosives and received 105,000 tons of Lend-Lease imports)

    Specifics here in an English-language book that makes use of Sokolov’s work: https://books.google.com/books?id=-BN64vwKSkQC&pg=PA8#v=onepage&q&f=false

    Assigning a percentage value to any of the major belligerents is difficult. Stalin’s own formulation was that Britain provided the time, the USSR the blood, and the USA the money.

    Guillaume Tell also pointed out to me that France may have helped secure Germany’s defeat in an underappreciated way. The German decision to setup Vichy France meant that the Germans did not fully exploit French resources and also set the stage for the American landings in Algeria.

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Simpleguest
    , @Beckow
  366. songbird says:
    @Dmitry

    I like the theory that the KGB killed them, after they accidentally witnessed some top secret experiment. Not that I believe it, at all – I just think it appeals to the imagination the most.

  367. @Beckow

    more French died fighting for Germans than against them

    I believe that’s factually incorrect, and by at least an order of magnitude. (Possibly two orders of magnitude.) France lost something like 200,000 soldiers in the war, and the vast majority of them on the side of the Allies. Something like 10-15,000 French served in the Waffen-SS altogether, even if each of them died, that would be something like 20 times more dying against than for Hitler.

    • Replies: @Beckow
    , @melanf
  368. @Epigon

    T-72 are not B3 model unfortunately

    Strange, both domestic and foreign media were reporting that they were B3
    But this wouldn’t be the first time they got this stuff wrong either, still I could swear they showed pictures of B3s in the Niš parade, but I can’t find it now

    What’s your opinion on the 6.5mm M17 AK from Zastava, afaik it still hasn’t passed testing
    It’s supposed to be good on long distances, so it might be useful against goat fuckers hiding in the mountains

  369. @Thorfinnsson

    If I may, I think Beckow and you are discussing two different aspects of this war: human “capital” and industrial/technological/ capacity and resource.
    Both of them were equally important for winning the war.

    While combined Anglo-Saxons (I use this term intentionally) had resources, technology, manufacturing and logistics capacity that dwarfed anything that Germnay(+Japan, Italy) could muster, they had one major weakness: unwillingness or inability to suffer casualties at least not on scale Soviets or Germans and Japanese were willing to.
    For that, they needed the Soviet Union.

    Please note that I am not, in any way, implying that Soviets were used just as a “cannon fodder”.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  370. Beckow says:
    @reiner Tor

    I was comparing French Resistance after France surrendered in 1940 with all French fighting on the German side. There were a lot more of them than just Waffen-SS, e.g. Alsatians in Wehrmacht, etc…

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  371. Beckow says:
    @Simpleguest

    The distinction you are making is a big part of it, but not all. My basic argument is that Anglo-Saxons were incapable of winning against Germany on their own, and didn’t even try too hard. Soviets just might had won on their own.

    The supply chain-material resources are important, but trucks don’t fight by themselves – there is no war without human “capital”. And the WWII was basically a massive fight to death between Germany (and its allies, really most of Europe) and Soviets in the east. That dwarfed anything else that was happening.

    The western psyche has a hard time with this reality, so they ignore it, lie about it, mythologize Normandy, talk Land-Lease. There is an ugliness about this evasive attitude that is hard to digest. It is one thing to say that Germans should had won – there will always be those who think that – but it is an another level of conflicted thinking to reframe WWII as a Churchill led victory by ‘liberal democracies’ with Holocaust as the central event. When stories we tell each other get so far from reality, they no longer make sense. And when stories don’t make sense, people die. Lying about WWII prepares ground for a potential catastrophe.

  372. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    ….Assigning a percentage value to any of the major belligerents is difficult.

    Sure, it is, and it will never be that precise. And yet my suspicion is that you avoid assigning percentage values because of what it would look like. If you say 33%, or even 40% for Russia, you will look silly. If you go over 50% for Russia, you will prove my point.

    So you and large part of the West choose ambiguity. Others go further and prance around Normandy shedding tears for the ‘decisive moment in human history‘. It is hard to take people who avoid reality seriously.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  373. @Beckow

    If you put a gun to my head I’ll say:

    USA: 40%
    USSR: 35%
    Britain & Dominions: 25%

    • Replies: @Beckow
  374. AP says:
    @Beckow

    Three commenters have pointed out your stupidity and how you are wrong on this issue, already. So there was no need for me to elaborate.

  375. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Well, we disagree, except on Britain+.

    Claiming that Soviets had less than 50% overall role in defeating Germany is – to be polite – just silly.
    If you are serious, it almost seems like two parallel universes and that usually doesn’t end well.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  376. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    With respect to CPI (what matters in terms of Euro-integration) they have been a little bit better IIRC.

    Enough for successful European integration?

    Ukraine was slightly richer per capita than Bulgaria and Romania in 1991, had higher level of human capital, and was closer to Western supply chains.

    What supply chains are you talking about here?

    If Ukraine had aggressively pursued Eurointegration from 1991 (which would have been the case if it didn’t have Crimea and Donbas looking to Russia) it would have been better off by 2007 than were Romania and Bulgaria. Having Crimea and Donbas, whose population served as an anchor holding Ukraine back, cost Ukraine dearly. 25 lost years.

    There’s a reason why Putin isn’t taking Donbas and wants to shove it back to Ukraine. It’s not Ukraine’s best interest (nor that of Donbas’ people), it’s Russia’s.

    Yeah, I agree with all of that. I do wonder if Leonid Kuchma would have actually been able to win in 1994 without Crimea and the Donbass.

    No region with a majority Russian ethnic population sought independence from Moscow.

    Actually, Crimea did–albeit relatively narrowly. That said, though, the Russians in Ukraine outside of Crimea appear to have largely voted in favor of secession from the USSR back in 1991. At least, that’s what the huge victory margins for the pro-independence side in all parts of Ukraine other than Crimea in the December 1991 referendum suggest.

    A “Ukraine” stretching to Volgograd wouldn’t have become independent.

    Again, Crimea was Russian-majority in 1989 and yet narrowly voted for secession from the USSR in December 1991. Likewise, most of the Russians in Ukraine outside of Crimea likely voted in favor of secession from the USSR in December 1991 as well. So, there was significant potential in regards to getting support for independence even from pro-Russian voters. For that matter, some Russians in the Baltic countries also voted for independence, no?

    And I suspect that this would have had a chilling effect on the others: Belarus would not have left if “Ukraine” hadn’t. Only the Baltics and Georgia. And there would have been Galician separatism from “Ukraine.”

    What about Armenia, Azerbaijan, Moldova, and Central Asia?

    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
  377. AP says:
    @Mikel

    When I decided to visit Kiev everybody warned me against it. Nothing bad happened to me but I did see a much poorer country. In fact, and without going into details, it was the most run down place I have ever been to outside Africa. Comparable to Cuba perhaps.

    I was also in Kiev in the 90s. It is like night and day.

    I don’t believe that things in Eastern Europe are any different from what I observe in Western Europe. With some peaks and troughs, countries essentially maintain their relative wealth over time and nothing much has changed since the early 20th Century (this even applies to regions within countries).

    Recovering from Sovok malaise changes this trend, however, and Ukraine had not recovered due to its particular position. So it has room to improve.

    For example in 1991 Poland had half of Portugal’s per capita GDP. It has now just about caught up to Portugal and will surpass it in a year or two:

    https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.PCAP.PP.CD?locations=PT-PL

    (Poland is already ahead in terms of GDP per capita PPP)

    So what is Ukraine going to do now? Go through a further 90s-like dismantling of its existing economy?

    It’s economy was dismantled over 25 years. Since reorienting, from the end of 2015 Ukraine has had 3% solid growth as it reorients towards the West (it posted 4.6% growth last quarter but this was a fluke). Plants are opening, wages are rising. The dismantling has been done, rebuilding is already under way.

    My eldest son lives in Poland and has recently finished his engineering studies. He told me that Ukrainian engineers are already straining the labor market and accepting jobs for 2.5k-3k zlotys that are hardly enough for a Pole to live on.

    My best friend rents out his Warsaw apartment. The real estate agent is a Ukrainian from Lviv. There are now Ukrainian cops in Poland, too.

    Incidentally, he also said that there are so many Ukrainian laborers that knowledge of Russian is advantageous to get a managerial job.

    Western Ukraine’s economy has been improving a lot, but not so much the East. Wages in Poland are a lot higher than in Russia, so now a lot of Russian-speaking eastern Ukrainians are working in Poland (one reason for all the new air routes from places like Kharkiv or Zaporizhia to Poland). It’s helpful for the workers, the money they bring back goes a long way in Ukraine and it eases economic pressure during the transition. My relatives in central Ukraine are happy that they don’t feel the need to work abroad anymore, there is plenty of work at decent wages (by local standards) now. But a cousin from east of the Dnipro went to Poland for 6 months when his new bride got pregnant, to build up some savings (he did some skilled work). Ironically he visited the village in Poland that our ancestors had once owned. His Russophile great-grandparents should have stayed in Galicia!

    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
    , @Mikel
  378. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    Ukraine has seen solid 3% growth for 4 years (around 3-4% per capita),

    So have Romania and Hungary, no? Romania and Hungary are much wealthier than Ukraine is on a GDP PPP per capita basis and thus if Ukraine isn’t even growing faster than they are, then it isn’t looking too good for Ukraine. I still suspect that Ukraine’s GDP is growing about half as much each year as it should based on its level of human capital (which is probably above that of Romania but slightly below that of Hungary).

    • Replies: @AP
  379. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    Western Ukraine’s economy has been improving a lot, but not so much the East. Wages in Poland are a lot higher than in Russia, so now a lot of Russian-speaking eastern Ukrainians are working in Poland (one reason for all the new air routes from places like Kharkiv or Zaporizhia to Poland). It’s helpful for the workers, the money they bring back goes a long way in Ukraine and it eases economic pressure during the transition. My relatives in central Ukraine are happy that they don’t feel the need to work abroad anymore, there is plenty of work at decent wages (by local standards) now. But a cousin from the East went to Poland for 6 months when his new bride got pregnant, to build up some savings (he did some skilled work). Ironically he visited the village in Poland that our ancestors had once owned. His Russophile great-grandparents should have stayed in Galicia!

    How many of those Ukrainians plan to permanently stay in Poland?

    Also, how many Ukrainians do you think would permanently move to other parts of Europe if they were actually given the chance to do so?

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  380. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    At most, there would be Galician separatism from the rest of Ukraine.

    What about Volhynian separatism or Podolian separatism or Kievan separatism?

    Also, I wonder what would happen to Subcarpathian Ruthenia if Galicia would have seceded from this Mega-Ukraine. I mean, it would be cut off from the rest of Ukraine but might be unwilling to join a Galician state considering that Subcarpathian Ruthenia is nowhere near as nationalistic as Galicia is (due to their divergent history after 1867).

  381. Mr. XYZ says:
    @Mr. XYZ

    And I suspect that this would have had a chilling effect on the others: Belarus would not have left if “Ukraine” hadn’t. Only the Baltics and Georgia. And there would have been Galician separatism from “Ukraine.”

    What about Armenia, Azerbaijan, Moldova, and Central Asia?

    (I’m fixing this part because I meant to put the part at the top here in quotes but forgot.)

    • Replies: @AP
  382. AP says:
    @Mr. XYZ

    Ukraine has seen solid 3% growth for 4 years (around 3-4% per capita),

    So have Romania and Hungary, no?

    Prior to Maidan Ukraine had 0% and 1% growth.

    In 2016, 2017 and 2018 Ukraine’s per capita GDP growth of about 3% has surpassed that of Russia and Belarus, essentially erasing the increased gap following Maidan. It is on track to do so in 2019 which means Ukraine will have a slightly improved position to those countries than it had in 2013. And keep in mind – this is Ukraine minus its wealthiest parts in 2013 (the steel and coal exporting Donbas).

    Prior to Maidan it was just falling further and further behind.

    https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.PCAP.KD.ZG?locations=UA-BY-RU

    I still suspect that Ukraine’s GDP is growing about half as much each year as it should based on its level of human capital

    Corruption has held it back. If reforms go through growth may be 4% to 5% per year and last quarter’s 4.6% growth won’t be such a fluke.

    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
  383. My impression from what I skimmed through here is that Thor et al. vs. Beckow are talking past each other.

    Thor knows more history, and is arguing with statistics. Beckow perceives this as an ideological debate, hence talking points like “USSR could have beaten Germany by itself.”

    In reality, unlikely in the extreme – but that’s the majority (60-70%) viewpoint in Russia. https://www.levada.ru/2017/06/22/velikaya-otechestvennaya-vojna-2/

  384. Appreciated, Beckow.

    • Replies: @AP
    , @Beckow
  385. Dmitry says:
    @Mikel

    Interesting you say you are from Pais Vasco. I was going to ask about this to you before when I saw your name is – Mikel, which is obviously a Basque name. I was thinking if I should learn some more euskera soon, beyond some simple words and phrases I know.

    Which part of Pais Vasco are you from? (I have visited the main cities there).

    • Replies: @Mikel
  386. Dmitry says:
    @Mr. XYZ

    It’s quite difficult in terms of paper/visa barrier for them to stay permanently in Poland. They can easily go for temporary visas though.

  387. @German_reader

    So basically an order of magnitude less than what the monument there claims (150,000).

    • Replies: @German_reader
  388. @Beckow

    My basic argument is that Anglo-Saxons were incapable of winning against Germany on their own, and didn’t even try too hard. Soviets just might had won on their own.

    My opinion is that the Anglos could have won the war against Germany had it taken the Germans until 1944 to break the USSR through atomic democide beginning from 1945.

    Not if that had happened in 1941-42, as the Nazi leadership were planning and relying upon.

    If in 1943, could have gone either way.

  389. @Beckow

    Claiming that Soviets had less than 50% overall role in defeating Germany is – to be polite – just silly.

    The reaction is because we recoil at at the idea that GPD, munitions, trucks, etc. are interchangeable with human lives, and the fact that the meatgrinder was by far the most intense on the Eastern Front, and overwhelmingly affected our ethnoracial group, makes that even harder to accept.

    But it’s a pretty accurate assessment. I’d probably give the USSR 40%-45% but would otherwise concur with Thorfinnsson’s breakdown.

    • Agree: TheTotallyAnonymous
    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
  390. @Anatoly Karlin

    According to the article I linked to (p. 388), German records indicate 10 000 casualties (killed, wounded, captured) on the German side in the partisan war in the Bryansk area. This includes German and Hungarian soldiers, but apparently also a substantial number of local collaborators.
    150 000 sounds quite implausible anyway, I don’t think any irregular force has ever inflicted comparable losses anywhere.

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
  391. Mr. XYZ says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    But it’s a pretty accurate assessment. I’d probably give the USSR 40%-45% but would otherwise concur with Thorfinnsson’s breakdown.

    What would you give the US and (Britain + the British Empire)?

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  392. AP says:
    @Mr. XYZ

    Moldova possibly, Azerbaijan possibly, Central Asia doubtful.

    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
  393. AP says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    I was going to post that. Is there a lot of Sovok love in Slovakia, as demonstrated by Beckow?

  394. AP says:
    @Beckow

    There are a few million more right behind them.

    All the Ukrainians who want to work in Poland already do so – nothing is stopping them. The numbers will not increase significantly. They cycle around – people work for 6 months or a year and come back to Ukraine with their savings. Then they go back. Or don’t.

    Ukrainians on Maidan simply had no idea what they were chanting about. Or some of them did, and had no plans to stick around for the consequences. They are in Poland today.

    If Ukrainians weren’t satisfied with Maidan they would not have overwhelmingly voted into power a Maidanist government.

    Maidan was a mass revolt of the western and central (not eastern or southern) Ukrainian people. They represented regions with a little over 50% of the population, overwhelmingly ethnic Ukrainian. They got most of what they wanted – Donbas non-Ukrainian president out of power, no dictatorial consolidation and free elections in the future, pro-Western government integrating with the West. They didn’t get corruption under control. So they used the free election that Maidan guaranteed to them, to punish the government that failed to fix corruption and elect a new one, that promises ongoing Euro-integration but also to cut down on corruption.

    “Getting rich” wasn’t an explicit goal of Maidan, but it was assumed that choosing the EU over Eurasia and driving out the would-be thuggish dictator would pay off eventually (polls suggested they expected improvement in 3-5 years, nobody expected immediate improvement). Euro-integration has already economically paid off for the western and central parts of the country, the ethnic Ukrainian parts, the (bare) majority, the ones that created Maidan.

  395. melanf says:
    @reiner Tor

    I believe that’s factually incorrect, and by at least an order of magnitude. (Possibly two orders of magnitude.) France lost something like 200,000 soldiers in the war, and the vast majority of them on the side of the Allies. Something like 10-15,000 French served in the Waffen-SS altogether, even if each of them died, that would be something like 20 times more dying against than for Hitler.

    According to official statistics the Soviet troops on the Eastern front was captured 22 thousand French this “10-15, 000 French served in the Waffen-SS” seem an understatement

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  396. Mikel says:
    @AP

    from the end of 2015 Ukraine has had 3% solid growth as it reorients towards the West

    Unfortunately, things are not so simple. Countries don’t just “reorient” towards a cardinal point and magically start growing. Economies tend to grow after hitting a hard rock bottom, like Ukraine did in 2015, but one of the inexorable realities economists struggle to combat is the cyclical nature of growth and a global recession is statistically likely in the near future. We’ll see what happens then with the Eurozone and the Ukraine/EU visa-free regime.

    Ukraine has received quite a lot of financial aid from the IMF and the EU and is also seeing the first fruits of the EU Association Agreement, so it has seen some capital influx that is probably boosting some sectors of its economy but the general consensus is that nothing much has changed, hence Zelensky (who is apparently also closely associated to one of the old-guard oligarchs).

    If Ukraine is to follow the Polish path, the hard part has not even begun yet. Its main trading partner, in spite of all their mutual sanctions, continues to be Russia (and part of its exports to other countries is re-export of Russian products). As I told you from first-hand experience, a Polish-like integration in the EU will mean that, just like everybody else, Ukraine will have to dismantle a considerable part of its current economic fabric. People will suffer and things will get worse before they have a chance of starting to get better.

    I don’t really know much about the different regions of Ukraine but perhaps an independent Western Ukraine would have worked better than maintaining the old administrative frontiers of the Ukrainian SSR. I have the impression that most ordinary folks in Eastern Ukraine would have been happy to join Russia (or at worst they would have been as phlegmatic about it as Belarusians are about Lukashenko). As you said yourself, the more territories it has on the East, the less Ukraine has been able to pursue a Western orientation.

    But unfortunately, the one path that Ukraine has decided to follow is nationalist irredentism so this solution is unimaginable.

    As a Basque, I have a lot of time for irredentism but one should fight one’s battles on its own, without involving the rest of the world. Right now, and given the EU and US tendency to meddle in everybody’s disputes, the Ukrainian irredentism and its failure to build a successful state is causing a very dangerous situation with nuclear powers confronting each other and returning to a silly Cold War without any ideological basis. I find Ukraine’s continuous appeal to the “West” to help her with its territorial problems particularly irritating.

    • Replies: @AP
  397. Mikel says:
    @Dmitry

    Hi Dmitry, I was born in a small industrial town in the middle of Gipuzkoa (capital city Donostia / San Sebastian), although all my known ancestors come from the neighboring province of Navarre.

    Good luck with your efforts learning euskera 🙂 When I was a kid only native Basques (roughly 50% in my town and a small minority in big towns like Bilbao or Vitoria) were able to speak it but nowadays all children learn it at school, at the cost of many people speaking a degraded version of our ancient language.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  398. I wish all Americans a happy 9/11 and Bashar Al Assad a Happy Birthday!

    • LOL: Hyperborean
  399. @melanf

    And where did they serve? Are you aware that Alsatians (who were speakers of a German dialect very similar to dialects on the other side of the border) were forcibly (or not so forcibly) conscripted into the German armed forces (I believe mostly into the Waffen-SS)? (For example some members of the Waffen-SS division “Das Reich” were Alsatians, they participated in the Oradour-sur-Glane massacre.) Why would you count these (basically, Germans) among “French” soldiers fighting for Hitler? (It’s like saying that hundreds of thousands of Czechoslovaks served in the Wehrmacht. Well, technically speaking, it’s true of hundreds of thousands of pre-1938 Czechoslovak citizens, but still…)

    Anyway, even if true, I pretty much doubt these numbers would come even close to the roughly 200,000 French soldiers killed while fighting against Hitler.

    • Replies: @melanf
  400. @Beckow

    If you count Alsatians in the Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS, then you can also talk about hundreds of thousands of Czechoslovaks serving in those forces. Alsatians were not really French. (You might argue that by 2019 they are almost completely assimilated, but that was very far from true in 1940.)

    Regarding the French la résistance, you cannot have it both ways. Most Frenchmen ostensibly serving Hitler served in the various French police forces theoretically fighting against the French resistance. If the resistance just barely existed, and it accomplished very little, if anything, then so did the Frenchmen “serving Hitler” do very little, if anything.

    By the way it’s also pretty questionable why you are only cherrypicking the 1940-44 period (even during that period an increasing number of Frenchmen served the Allies, probably exceeding the number of those serving in the Waffen-SS), and why you are discounting 1940 (when well over 100,000 Frenchmen were killed in a period of 6 weeks of intense fighting).

    • Replies: @Beckow
  401. melanf says:
    @reiner Tor

    Are you aware that Alsatians…

    These figures (22 000 prisoners) include Alsatians and Bretons.

    Why would you count these (basically, Germans) among “French” soldiers fighting for Hitler?

    Well, here’s an example: Soviet war hero major Alexander Herman.

    He commanded a partisan detachment operating in the woods near Pskov and died in battle with German troops in 1943. As far as I know his death is accounted in the losses of Soviet troops, and is not counted in the losses of the Wehrmacht, although Alexander Herman was (in its origins) Russian German.
    As far as I know this is a universal principle of counting losses – not by “ethnic group”, but by citizenship.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  402. @Beckow

    Just to finish my previous train of thought. I am very much doubtful that Soviet Union would have prevailed on its own just like the Anglo-Americans would have not been able to defeat Germany/Japan on their own.
    It took the mutual effort of both to win this war. Assigning percents to one’s war effort is fun for teenagers.

    I think there was an underlying understanding between former allies (and new Cold War foes) to this effect. That was reflected in the underlying respect that they maintained to each other throughout the Cold War despite the harsh Cold War rhetoric.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  403. AP says:
    @Mikel

    Economies tend to grow after hitting a hard rock bottom, like Ukraine did in 2015,

    Sure, but for those regions under Kiev’s authority the economy has recovered past the losses of 2014-2015 and continues to expand, and is growing at a faster rate than before the crisis, so the current growth cannot be attributed simply to a bounceback from the crisis.

    If Ukraine is to follow the Polish path, the hard part has not even begun yet….As I told you from first-hand experience, a Polish-like integration in the EU will mean that, just like everybody else, Ukraine will have to dismantle a considerable part of its current economic fabric.

    As I wrote before, Ukraine’s economy was largely dismantled in the last 25 years. Current growth consists of agriculture (which will only increase after the necessary land reforms), IT (which is exploding with EU links), and building and expansion of new Western-owned plants. Which of these will have to be dismantled, in your opinion? Will the Germans have to tear down the factory they built two years ago? You seem to think Ukraine is now where Poland was in 1991 (when Poland’s economy shrank over 7%). But it’s more like 1992 (when Poland’s economy grew 2.2%, and never turned back). To be sure I doubt Ukraine will grow as fast or as much as did Poland. But it is in the same spot where Poland was after the collapse ended.

    The only potential problem will be if there is a global economic crisis. Hopefully Trump will keep this at bay until after the 2020 election, so Ukraine builds up more of a cushion..

    I find Ukraine’s continuous appeal to the “West” to help her with its territorial problems particularly irritating

    I wonder if it’s envy, that you cannot admit to yourself. Ukraine got its independence, your people did not.

    • Replies: @Mikel
  404. @Mr. XYZ

    I would keep Thorfinnsson’s proportions.

  405. Dmitry says:
    @Mikel

    I visited over a lot of Pais Vasco (also all over Spain) 4 years ago through Vitoria, Donostia and Biarritz. I guess I travelled beside your hometown.

    I haven’t been to Navarre and Pamplona, sadly.

    One funny thing about Vitoria, you can find Russian beer sold very cheaply in the centre of the city. I wrote about it here.
    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/open-thread-57/#comment-2546932

    ^Well it makes me sound like a philistine to focus on – obviously it’s a very beautiful city, in addition to the drunk Russian man selling beer cheaply there.

    Pais Vasco has a kind of distinct atmosphere in my opinion, compared to Spain.

    nowadays all children learn it at school, at the cost of many people speaking a degraded version of our ancient language.

    Even in all the supermarkets, audio announcement is Euskera as well as Spanish. Probably because of Spanish accent, Euskera sounds almost like Spanish for my ears.

    Good luck with your efforts learning euskera

    I have a colleague from the area and so will just learn some more phrases from him.

    Yes it seems like everyone you meet from there speaks Euskera – but also people from Navarre also speak it or something almost as the same.

    • Replies: @Mikel
  406. Gerard2 says:
    @Beckow

    – Japan was betrayed by Germany – they were in the middle of a war in Mongolia with Russia that they lost. This led directly to Japan unwilling to join Germany in 1941 – and that was catastrophic for German chances, no second front for Russia in the east.

    Every single nation in the war , US, Germany, Poland, USSR, Japan, France seem to have either been unsure or not trusted what the 0fficial British position was. This may well have influenced the Japanese not to invade USSR with the Nazis.

    A successful invasion of Vladivostok would have accelerated even more instant interest in the Far East from the British Navy .

    Japan invading China, Korea and then the Soviet Union successfully would inevitably lead to the British to be proactive in reducing the threat of Japan invading their territories in South-East Asia.Japan wouldn’t have wanted a high level of British military deployment , particularly at a time when the British were not actually much fighting anybody else

    Absolutely noway of the Japanese knowing what the possibilities would of a Labour Government winning power in the UK – high possibility they would be pro-Soviet. Neither would they know even exactly how anti-Communist the FDR regime was in America ( first US admin to recognise USSR in 1933) compared to how anti-Japanese Empire they were

    Japan’s invasion of British territories as Burma, Singpaore etc only started after the British Navy were heavily engaged in the Atlantic and Mediterranean…and their army fighting in North Africa.
    Though Thorfinsson’s argument are also very sound , I think these are the reasons Japan did not invade USSR

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  407. Gerard2 says:

    Great(ish) news!! Russian demographic of 0-9 year olds is 18 million. This is very positive for the government policy because by comparison the 10-19 year old demographic (i.e people born from parents of the demographic who suffered the most, after the elderly, during the 90’s) …is 14.5 million.

    Did not see 40-49 year stat ( the generation you could say suffered the most in the 90’s/early 2000 and giving birth to the low number 10-19 year age group)…
    but the 50-59 year age bracket is a steady 20 million people in Russia.

    So for me, 18 million is very promising, or at least signals improvement, because you could say that a healthy age group number should be 25-30 million

    18 million is also very good because counter-logically, increasing westernisation, urbanisation and improved living standards that go with it are also a big driver of small population growth as the terrible conditions in the 90’s were.

    • Replies: @Denis
  408. @Gerard2

    There was mutual suspicion between all the belligerents, not just suspicion of Britain. For instance, FDR was an anti-colonialist and frequently raised the issue of “freedom” for British colonies. This was of course not well received in London. And needless to say suspicion of the communist Soviet Union was high.

    Japan ultimately went to war because the United States embargoed the export of oil to Japan, and Japan was at that time dependent on American oil. America’s demands were unacceptable to Japan (complete withdrawal from Indochina and China), so Japan felt it had to invade the Dutch East Indies to acquire more oil.

    Japan felt that it would not be possible to attack the Dutch East Indies without embroiling itself in war with Britain and America, and in any case the sea lanes to the NEI from Japan were intersected by British and American territories.

    • Replies: @Gerard2
  409. Mikel says:
    @AP

    Which of these will have to be dismantled, in your opinion? Will the Germans have to tear down the factory they built two years ago?

    You got that right. German investors will not lose a cent with the further integration of Ukraine in the EU markets. That’s not what the EU is about.

    As for which parts of the Ukrainian economy will suffer with that integration, every single part that is unable to compete with EU companies, every company or household that is receiving subsidies incompatible with Brussels directives, every sector that will be unable to sell to Russia or other 3rd parties when the Customs Union comes into force,… I’ll let you do the math but why do you think that countries are granted very long transition periods before they can join the EU?? And Ukraine is still not there yet.

    I wonder if it’s envy, that you cannot admit to yourself. Ukraine got its independence, your people did not.

    No, there’s nothing of the like at all. For reasons that should be self-evident, I have children and I very much prefer the Basque Country continuing to be under the heel of the Spaniards rather than risking a global confrontation between superpowers.

    In fact, I never supported armed struggle for independence for moral reasons. But I’m not sure that you can understand this point, we’ve discussed war civilian casualties before and your views were rather troubling for my taste. This may in fact be related to what I said before. The long-term development of different countries is determined by the human fabric of the underlying society. How far a country can go that did what Ukraine did to Donbas civilians remains to be seen.

    • Replies: @Beckow
    , @AP
  410. Beckow says:

    …I’d probably give the USSR 40%-45%

    Fair enough, there is definitely a subjective element when comparing supplies of munitions to the meat-grinder of an actual war. I would keep Britain+ slightly higher than US based on the overall optics – they were on the front-line, US was not. I suspect US role against Japan influences most people (I tried to exclude it).

    I will stick with my 60-75% based on the German casualties, timing – US was not involved until quite late, and on the ground not till ’43-44, and the fact that Soviets took Berlin (extra points for 1st place). It is also unquestionable that Germans feared Russians by far the most – towards the end large German sections in the West wanted to surrender.

    This intellectual exercise was quite illuminating.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  411. Beckow says:
    @reiner Tor

    …hundreds of thousands of Czechoslovaks serving in those forces. Alsatians were not really French.

    Some were, some were not – I know Alsatian families who struggle with it to this day. In any case, French citizens (previously) who fought for Germans. In Czechoslovakia there were 2 groups: Sudeten Germans and a much smaller group of mixed-opportunistic Czech-Germans who switched nationality and volunteered for Germany. The first group was expelled after the war (that didn’t happen with Alsatians), the second was prosecuted. A messy and ugly affair all around.

    I don’t want to cherry-pick, but it is to some extent inevitable. Categories here are quite fluid and we all cherrypick to highlight a point. E.g. if you exclude foreigners, French Resistance was very small.

    My point is that French have little in WWII to boast about – individuals behaved admirably, but as a whole it is hard to determine whose side ‘France‘ was really on, and who they helped more. That applies in different degrees to most of continental Europe – whose side were they really on? And, yes, I fully apply that to my own people too, I am trying to understand it.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  412. Beckow says:
    @Mikel

    …long-term development of different countries is determined by the human fabric of the underlying society. How far a country can go that did what Ukraine did to Donbas civilians remains to be seen.

    A key point that Ukrainian enthusiasts don’t like to think about. Shooting at your civilians is often a red line that indicates that future life in the same country will not be possible.

    AP and others dismiss it by claiming that they don’t really care about Donbas staying in Ukraine, or even prefer for it to leave. But then why shoot at them? There is also the overall Russian-leaning community in Ukraine (very substantial all over) – how is shooting in Donbas seen by them?

    Ukraine is not going to be in EU, not like this. That reality undermines the whole mythology of Maidan. And it wasn’t about a few better coffee shops in Lviv.

    • Replies: @Mikel
  413. @Beckow

    I will stick with my 60-75% based on the German casualties, timing – US was not involved until quite late, and on the ground not till ’43-44

    No matter how many times the point is made, you refuse to focus on anything other than casualties and land combat.

    Timing is another problem in WW2 discussions. People tend to treat the war as if it were comparable to the phases of the moon. Germany waxed, then waned. In reality there was nothing inevitable about German defeat after Stalingrad (or El Alamein, Tunisgrad, Hamburg, whatever “turning point” you want to use).

    How would you analyze the Pacific War?

    I would keep Britain+ slightly higher than US based on the overall optics – they were on the front-line, US was not.

    Two problems here.

    First, the US was on the frontline.

    Second, the myopic focus on the frontline.

    and the fact that Soviets took Berlin (extra points for 1st place)

    The Battle of Berlin was fierce, and the Soviet victory a great credit to the Red Army.

    But as I’m sure you’ll agree, Germany was already beaten by then and taking Berlin was a (bloody) formality.

    In line with your previous thinking about Anglo-American intentions, allied forces could’ve beaten the Soviets to Berlin. Churchill, Montgomery, and Patton all wanted to march to Berlin. This was flatly rejected by Eisenhower.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  414. Beckow says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    What is interesting is the very high ‘Neither’ vote everywhere that reflects the underlying skepticism about the ‘Russians are invading‘ nonsense. Given that power hierarchy and media is fully pro-US in all those countries, responding Neither is a vote of distrust for that narrative.

    Shockingly almost half among Poles are also not willing to die. That could be a problem, they usually line up in the front row. Or it could be simple pacifism.

  415. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    …you refuse to focus on anything other than casualties and land combat.

    For us traditional simpletons from hinterlands, eating is about the actual food, women about having children and &%, and war is about shooting at each other. We leave supply chains to others, that’s just fluff.

    How would you analyze the Pacific War?

    I left it out completely. For what it’s worth I would give US almost full credit there, but Japan was a much weaker overall opponent than Germany. Nuking Japan was awkward and I am convinced that Anglos wouldn’t had done it to Germany. That makes defeating Germany without Russia highly problematic. If Yanks had nuked anything in continental Europe, we would have a different world today and no amount of Hollywood could fix it.

    …Berlin was a (bloody) formality.

    It was still symbolically the end of the war and Russians took Berlin – extra credit by any standard. If Churchill had his way and marched on Berlin – with what was at that point minimal German resistance – it was gong to be quite ugly with the Soviets and large part of European population. Even mendacity should have some limits. Eisenhower was a grown-up.

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
  416. Epigon says:

    Now that HK protests are winding down, there is a topic which should be discussed:
    Why are those protestors all myopic, scrawny, short insectoids?
    I would gladly trade away 10 IQ points average result recalculated from PISA math tests to NOT have such population.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  417. Epigon says:

    Soviets withstood and reversed the Axis onslaught on their own in 1941, no Lend Lease and assistance whatsoever. Axis logistics were failing at their maximum advance line, so additional troops couldn’t be diverted to Ostfront to make a difference.
    One of the common myths is the supposed German foolishness of not preparing for winter in Russia – the uniforms and equipment were there, but the means of getting them to the front line weren’t – food, fodder, fuel, ammunition required more than available logistic capacity.

    American involvement saved a lot of Soviet lives by delivering steel of various types, aluminum,
    fuel, boots, locomotives and trucks. In addition to allowing better aircraft (aluminum, look up plywood designs of Soviets) to be produced and used (Soviets received high octane US fuel), it also allowed Soviets to focus their manufacturing efforts on artillery, AFV, small arms and ammunition.
    That is the key of Soviet AFV productivity – do a comparison of steel and AFV production for Reich and USSR.

    USA is on another level, even compared to rest of the world combined in terms of industry. In a hypothetical scenario, USA could take on Europe+Commonwealth+Japan in 1939 and win eventually.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  418. Beckow says:
    @Simpleguest

    …reflected in the underlying respect that they maintained to each other throughout the Cold War despite the harsh Cold War rhetoric.

    That seems to be gone. Let’s see how the new harsh rhetoric works out for everybody without the underlying respect.

    I believe it was Talleyrand who said that some historical events happen first as a tragedy and then as a farce. Maybe we will reverse the order. And given that Cold War can be seen as a bit of a farce (not a real war), this could get quite interesting.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  419. Beckow says:
    @Epigon

    …HK protestors all myopic, scrawny, short insectoids?
    I would gladly trade away 10 IQ points from PISA math tests

    Maybe is is something about PISA. I recall AP telling us about the incredibly high PISA math scores for ‘US Latinas’. They are also mostly ‘scrawny, short insectoids‘. Coincidence?

    • Replies: @AP
  420. Gerard2 says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Fair point…..but Britain is the only country which has veered sharply between “friendly to” and “harshly opposed” to all those countries at some point.

    Polish “elite” asswipes at least are consistent………frequently having delusions of being friendly with and indeed , actually being French. Consistently anti-Russian. Willing to whore off anybody to do so..

  421. @Beckow

    For us traditional simpletons from hinterlands, eating is about the actual food, women about having children and &%, and war is about shooting at each other. We leave supply chains to others, that’s just fluff.

    Simpleton is certainly a good way to put it.

    Half the munitions the Soviets expended came from offshore supply chains as far as “shooting at each other” goes.

    I left it out completely. For what it’s worth I would give US almost full credit there, but Japan was a much weaker overall opponent than Germany. Nuking Japan was awkward and I am convinced that Anglos wouldn’t had done it to Germany. That makes defeating Germany without Russia highly problematic. If Yanks had nuked anything in continental Europe, we would have a different world today and no amount of Hollywood could fix it.

    I am surprised you don’t credit the Chinese with the lion’s share of defeating Japan.

    It was still symbolically the end of the war and Russians took Berlin – extra credit by any standard. If Churchill had his way and marched on Berlin – with what was at that point minimal German resistance – it was gong to be quite ugly with the Soviets and large part of European population. Even mendacity should have some limits. Eisenhower was a grown-up.

    This much is true, though German resistance in Berlin was fierce.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  422. Epigon says:

    Half the munitions the Soviets expended came from offshore supply chains

    This is a very suspect claim. Could it possibly refer to 50% of high explosive/50% of chemical precursors to high explosive being sourced from USA?

    I find it very unlikely that USA manufactured tens of millions of 76.2 mm artillery shells for ubiquitus 76.2 mm field and tank guns, 122 and 152 mm guns and howitzers. Not to mention 82, 132, 300 mm rocket ammunition.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
  423. Beckow says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    Simple truths are good, try it. I couldn’t tell Japanese, Chinese, Koreans apart when they fight, so assigning credits would be random.

    Where did you get my picture?

  424. @Epigon

    I’m unable to read Sokolov’s work in the original, as it’s in Russian.

    There is an English language book which references Sokolov’s work (along with American archives) which is on my reading list.

    Shells were furnished under Lend Lease, though I don’t know in what caliber. I do know that the Germans manufactured shells in Soviet calibers, so I don’t see why the USA (or Britain) couldn’t have. Though I don’t know whether they did–should be investigated.

    Sokolov also counts Lend Lease inputs into Soviet domestic production. E.g. his aircraft figures includes production which is attributable to Anglo-American inputs of raw materials (esp. aluminum) and capital goods. With respect to artillery shells America furnished large amounts of steel, copper, toluene, TNT, etc. which would’ve been employed in shell production. So yes, it could definitely include those precursors and probably does.

    In any case, while Lend Lease was important, that’s not the only thing the Anglo-Americans did during the war or even the only thing which improved the Soviet situation on the Eastern Front.

  425. @Epigon

    Soviets withstood and reversed the Axis onslaught on their own in 1941, no Lend Lease and assistance whatsoever.

    This is true, though British deliveries started very early and constituted a surprising fraction of medium and heavy tank strength at the Battle of Moscow.

    This is an interesting article from the Journal of Slavic Military Studies on early British efforts to aid the USSR: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13518046.2013.844538

    Soviet armies on the Caucasus front were largely supplied by the allies, including I believe during Case Blue.

    Most significantly is that from 1941-1944 Soviet attrition exceeded German attrition, even as a fraction of mobilized manpower. Thus in the hypothetical absence of the allies, the Soviets would’ve run out of soldiers before the Germans. Of course in such a hypothetical scenario the Soviets would’ve fought differently to begin with.

    One of the common myths is the supposed German foolishness of not preparing for winter in Russia – the uniforms and equipment were there, but the means of getting them to the front line weren’t – food, fodder, fuel, ammunition required more than available logistic capacity.

    I’ve also heard that one reason the Germans didn’t make preparations for winter was to avoid tipping off Soviet intelligence. Never looked into it however.

    The Germans expected to capture a lot of Soviet rolling stock in tact, but during Operation Barbarossa only 15% of Soviet rolling stock was lost vs. 40% of the rail net.

    American involvement saved a lot of Soviet lives by delivering steel of various types, aluminum,
    fuel, boots, locomotives and trucks. In addition to allowing better aircraft (aluminum, look up plywood designs of Soviets) to be produced and used (Soviets received high octane US fuel), it also allowed Soviets to focus their manufacturing efforts on artillery, AFV, small arms and ammunition.

    American food shipments also staved off famine.

    That is the key of Soviet AFV productivity – do a comparison of steel and AFV production for Reich and USSR.

    German AFV productivity was also reduced by low production priority until 1943 (Adolf Hitler panzer program), the production of other tracked vehicles besides tanks (half-tracks–Soviets built none but did receive American M3 Whites), and the production of too many different types (which speaks well of Soviet rationalization efforts).

    USA is on another level, even compared to rest of the world combined in terms of industry. In a hypothetical scenario, USA could take on Europe+Commonwealth+Japan in 1939 and win eventually.

    1939 Europe working in concert would probably produce an atomic bomb before America simply owing to Europe still being the world center of science at that time.

  426. @Beckow

    For us traditional simpletons from hinterlands, eating is about the actual food, women about having children and &%, and war is about shooting at each other. We leave supply chains to others, that’s just fluff.

    Based and redpilled.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  427. @Anatoly Karlin

    Based, redpilled and extremely powerful.

  428. @Epigon

    Soviet documents reveal that it wasn’t the Panzers they feared the most, but ATG.

    I think Thorfinnsson has already answered to that point (and I’m pretty sure that you know it yourself), but let me put it here, too: battle tanks’ main job is usually not taking out enemy battle tanks. It’s always nice if they can do that, and sometimes that’s their main mission, but usually not.

    I would add that beside ATGs, tank destroyers were also specifically designed for the role of destroying tanks, and so were presumably more feared by tank crews than enemy tanks.

    Regarding Wittmann, he was a very good tank commander, but was promoted above his level of competence (and training).

  429. AP says:
    @Beckow

    Maybe is is something about PISA. I recall AP telling us about the incredibly high PISA math scores for ‘US Latinas’. They are also mostly ‘scrawny, short insectoids‘. Coincidence?

    Steve Sailer showed that US Latinos outscore Slovaks on reading:

    https://isteve.blogspot.com/2013/12/overall-pisa-rankings-include-america.html

    This may explain your stupid arguments about World War II.

    • LOL: Thorfinnsson
    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
  430. @melanf

    As far as I know this is a universal principle of counting losses – not by “ethnic group”, but by citizenship.

    No, normally you would count losses based on whose military they were serving in. By that metric, French citizens volunteering to serve in the Waffen-SS shouldn’t be counted towards the French (negative) contribution to defeat Hitler. But Beckow cited them as his reasoning.

    It might be interesting to you that not only did Alsatians serve in the German military or paramilitary, but they were actually given German citizenship (and their French citizenship was no longer recognized by the German authorities), so even by the citizenship metric it’s unclear why they should be treated as French.

    Anyway, even conceding all of them, and assuming that three times that number (so 66,000) died fighting for Hitler, it’s still just a third of French losses against him.

    So my point still holds: it’s untrue that more Frenchmen died fighting for than against Hitler.

  431. AP says:
    @Mikel

    Which of these will have to be dismantled, in your opinion? Will the Germans have to tear down the factory they built two years ago?

    You got that right.

    So in your world all of those factories that Europeans have built in Ukriane in the last 3 years will be torn down by as a result of regulations created by the Europeans themselves. Good to know.

    Fortunately, the world moves on despite crazy dreams by deluded people.

    Fitch just upgraded Ukraine’s Long-Term Foreign- and Local-Currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDR) to ‘B’ from ‘B-‘ and improved its projected GDP growth in 2019 to 3.4%.

    As for which parts of the Ukrainian economy will suffer with that integration, every single part that is unable to compete with EU companies

    Integration has already been happening for 4 years. It’s why Ukraine’s economy has shifted to the country’s West and Center and away from its East, and why it has shown consistent overall improvement. This, naturally, has been very upsetting to Soviet nostalgists and Russian nationalists, and those who believe what they claim. Some of them retreat into desperate fantasies of Ukraine being a Somalia, of its economy still collapsing, etc. Such specimens are often found on Saker’s blog.

    • Replies: @Mikel
  432. @Beckow

    My point is that French have little in WWII to boast about

    That’s not a very original or groundbreaking point, I simply took issue with your statement regarding their supposed negative contribution to defeat Hitler.

  433. I found the complete statistics of American shipments to the USSR.

    Among other things the USA shipped 700,000 tons of sugar and 520,000 tons of vegetable oil to the USSR.

    Clearly Operation Barbarossa was a benevolent invasion meant to protect Russians from dental decay and type 2 diabetes.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  434. Hungarian soldiers in late summer and fall of 1942 found American corned beef cans on the corpses of fallen Soviet soldiers and in Soviet dugouts. This was extremely disheartening, as the Soviets were seen to be eating better than Axis soldiers at the time, despite the Soviets losing ground.

  435. @Thorfinnsson

    Clearly Operation Barbarossa was a benevolent invasion meant to protect Russians from dental decay and type 2 diabetes.

    Based, redpilled, powerful, and also believed by Wally.

  436. Though we’ve now transformed it into a ww2 thread, let me mention something more recent. Orbán made a secret speech (the participants had to sign not to disclose its contents – it leaks anyway each year; such a speech is made annually), and he sees the near future of the economy positively. He said one important job is to extend the supposed prosperity to the ethnic Hungarians living in neighboring countries. However, he thinks the most important thing is to do it in a way which doesn’t raise the suspicions of our neighbors, and is mutually beneficial to both of us, while benefiting the ethnic Hungarians living there, too. As an example he cited the (somewhat dubious, OBOR and China related) railroad development between Budapest and Belgrade.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  437. Mikel says:
    @AP

    So in your world all of those factories that Europeans have built in Ukriane in the last 3 years will be torn down

    Sorry but you lost the plot badly here. As I tried to explain to you, those are the companies that will not close down (if all goes well but I’m sure that any serious investor in Ukraine today is provisioning funds for the event that things turn sour).

    I forgot to mention that the men in black suits from Brussels will want to make sure that Ukraine is really meeting the inflation, deficit and debt targets that they will also impose and the austerity measures needed to meets those goals will cull a good batch of Sovok-style managed companies too.

    But I’m probably wasting my time here, since you believe in growth happening because a somewhere-oriented government takes seat and in Trump fending-off the next global recession (through Twitter?).

    I really hope that Ukraine does well. Nobody has anything to gain from a country of its size and location continuing to live in poverty and turmoil (and I have a very personal interest in Ukraine not sending too many engineers to Poland). But I’ve done my best to explain what the realistic prospects are for the integration in the EU of a 40-million country with a per capita GDP of ~$7,000 that is starting the process 25 years late.

    Believe whatever you want.

    • Replies: @AP
  438. @Beckow

    I believe it was Talleyrand who said that some historical events happen first as a tragedy and then as a farce.

    That was Marx in The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Napoleon. I am surprised at your misquote, considering your Eastern Bloc education and your general nostalgia for the Soviet past.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  439. Mikel says:
    @Beckow

    Ukraine is not going to be in EU, not like this.

    I’m not sure what terrible Russian threat elites in Brussels are afraid of.

    The EU (and to a more modest extent the Common Market before it) was all about the economic and political union of peaceful, democratic and prosperous European countries. I don’t see how a country like present-day Ukraine could fit in that original project without the whole idea being based on some kind of antagonism against Russia.

  440. Mikel says:
    @Dmitry

    Since you mention Navarre, that is a good example of pointless irredentism that has some parallels with Ukraine.

    Navarre was the cradle of Basques. Romans referred to the Basque language as lingua navarrorum . It was the most fertile part of our mountainous territory and the Kingdom of Navarre was the only political entity to ever encompass Basque lands on both sides of the Pyrenees. But people in central and southern Navarre (where most of the population lived) gradually lost the Basque language. By the late 19th century it was only spoken in the northern parts and a majority of Navarrese had lost their Basque identity.

    At the end of the Franco dictatorship Spain offered Basque nationalists a very generous autonomous regime that we still enjoy in a futile attempt to calm down separatists feelings. But there were endless discussions on what territories it should contain. They offered Northern Navarre but nationalists flatly rejected the idea of a Basque Country that didn’t contain the whole of the Old Kingdom. So two separate autonomous communities were created and for a couple of generations northern Navarrese (among them relatives of mine) have been separated from the Basque Country proper.

    Northern Navarrese vote in block for separatist parties so a Basque Country that included them would still be more independentist. But instead of that, we’ll have to wait for the Southern Navarrese to redevelop their national identity, which may never happen, since that area is receiving lots of non-EU immigrants (they don’t have to learn the difficult Basque language there).

    Irredentism accomplished the goal of adding a new division to the historic separation of Basques between France and Spain: we are also separated in two entities in Spain.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  441. Beckow says:
    @Hyperborean

    …That was Marx in The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Napoleon

    Sure it was, he probably stole it from someone. You are wrong about my education, I only got a tail end and we didn’t get anywhere close to Marx. I am also not nostalgic and have never been to Soviet Union. Projecting on others is tricky, you end up creating a false stereotype.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  442. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    TBH, I wonder just how US Latinos compare to Ukrainians on reading.

  443. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    Prior to Maidan Ukraine had 0% and 1% growth.

    How much of this was due to Yanukovych versus the lingering aftereffects of the Great Recession, though?

    In 2016, 2017 and 2018 Ukraine’s per capita GDP growth of about 3% has surpassed that of Russia and Belarus, essentially erasing the increased gap following Maidan. It is on track to do so in 2019 which means Ukraine will have a slightly improved position to those countries than it had in 2013. And keep in mind – this is Ukraine minus its wealthiest parts in 2013 (the steel and coal exporting Donbas).

    IMHO, we should continue looking at long-term trends here. As in, just how much smaller will the Ukrainian-Russian GDP per capita gap going to be in, say, 2025 or 2030 in comparison to 2013?

    Corruption has held it back. If reforms go through growth may be 4% to 5% per year and last quarter’s 4.6% growth won’t be such a fluke.

    https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/ukrainealert/a-unique-chance-for-change/

    In the article above, Anders Aslund about Ukraine’s potential to grow by 7% a year.

    • Replies: @AP
  444. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    What about Armenia?

    Also, it would be a huge shame if there is no Kazakh independence in this scenario. 🙁 I’m a huge fan and admirer of Kazakhstan! 🙂

  445. Mr. XYZ says:

    Also, AP, do you think that Russia should formally annex the Donbass after Ukraine joins the European Union? I mean, it does seem like Russia owes it to the people of the Donbass (well, the rebel-controlled part) to do that considering that it encouraged them to rebel and thus caused them to lose thousands of lives. 🙁

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  446. AP says:
    @Mikel

    Sorry but you lost the plot badly here. As I tried to explain to you, those are the companies that will not close down

    I wrote: “Will the Germans have to tear down the factory they built two years ago?”

    You replied; “You got that right.”

    So you claimed that the Europeans would be shutting down factories they had just built.

    Did you misspeak?

    I forgot to mention that the men in black suits from Brussels will want to make sure that Ukraine is really meeting the inflation, deficit and debt targets that they will also impose and the austerity measures needed to meets those goals will cull a good batch of Sovok-style managed companies too.

    News for you: Ukraine’s economy had been terrible and never recovered after 1991. There wasn’t a lot old that was even left. Forcing what is left to attain modern Western standards is a good thing.

    Ukraine’s post-Maidan growth has been driven by: agriculture; IT development (R&D, outsourcing); manufacturing investment from the West. All of these things were helped by integration with the West and will continue to improve with ongoing integration and reforms demanded by the West. I will note that since 2015 Ukraine’s economy has been growing faster than that of Russia and Belarus. Ukraine’s GDP PPP is now slightly higher relative to Russia’s than it was in 2013, before Maidan.

    • Replies: @Mikel
  447. AP says:
    @Mr. XYZ

    Prior to Maidan Ukraine had 0% and 1% growth.

    How much of this was due to Yanukovych versus the lingering aftereffects of the Great Recession, though?

    Ukraine bounced back in Yanukovich’s first year, then stopped growing in his second and third years.

    Post-Maidan, Ukraine bounced back early this year but keeps growing.

    IMHO, we should continue looking at long-term trends here. As in, just how much smaller will the Ukrainian-Russian GDP per capita gap going to be in, say, 2025 or 2030 in comparison to 2013?

    It is so far behind it will not close the gap any time soon.

    Ukraine had 33% of Russia’s per capita GDP PPP in 2013, 34% in 2018.

    Back in 2009 the gap was only 37%. So prior to Maidan Ukraine just kept falling further and further behind. Now it is finally moving forward. It is now relative to Russia where it was in 2010, erasing the gap that had grown under Yanukovich.

    Ukraine is predicted to have 2% higher growth than Russia in 2019 and 2020.

    Obviously if Ukraine’s economy starts growing at 7% a year, convergence would be faster.

    And keep in mind that post-2013 Ukraine doesn’t include steel and coal-exporting Donbas. This makes the improvement larger than it seems (because it is the formerly poorer parts of Ukraine that are doing better now, than Ukraine with its richer parts had been doing in 2013).

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  448. Mikel says:
    @AP

    Did you misspeak?

    No, I thought that yours was a rhetoric question. But perhaps you were asking it seriously, which would further prove my point.

    In any case, feel free to continue believing that Ukraine’s path to EU membership will be so rosy and so completely different from that of all previous candidates, including much older and wealthier ones.

  449. @Beckow

    Sure it was, he probably stole it from someone.

    Marx was making a sort of cheeky remark based on a reference to Hegel, whom Marx was immensely influenced by.

    From the start of first chapter of The Eighteenth Brumaire:

    Hegel remarks somewhere[*] that all great world-historic facts and personages appear, so to speak, twice. He forgot to add: the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce. Caussidière for Danton, Louis Blanc for Robespierre, the Montagne of 1848 to 1851[66] for the Montagne of 1793 to 1795, the nephew for the uncle. And the same caricature occurs in the circumstances of the second edition of the Eighteenth Brumaire.

    https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1852/18th-brumaire/ch01.htm

    I am also not nostalgic

    Czechoslovak communism was also quite mild with low costs and substantial country building and social benefits.

    —-

    I think of the socialist-Soviet era as just another time in our history. It wasn’t great before that, and it hasn’t been all bed of roses since. If one tries to evaluate it objectively – based on simple data – the achievements between 1945-1990 were very substantial: all nations there grew quite a bit, became much more homogenized, prosperous, healthier, better educated, etc… The two arguments against are that it would had happend anyway and that it was achieved at too high a cost. In reality the costs were comparable to what happened previously in that region, and there is no way to know if the elites (including in the West) would had done the positive things after 1945 without a threat of socialism-communism. Ukraine, by the way, prospered enormously under Soviets and reached an apogee if its development roughly around 1990 (50 million+, industry…).

    Nostalgia can be either neutral, detrimental or beneficial, I am not making a value judgement in this specific case but to deny that you are nostalgic for the previous social regime is a peculiar trait you are exhibiting.

    have never been to Soviet Union.

    You yourself describe the Communist era of your country as “socialist-Soviet”.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  450. Beckow says:
    @Hyperborean

    Czechoslovak communism was also quite mild with low costs and substantial country building and social benefits. I think of the socialist-Soviet era as just another time in our history. It wasn’t great before that, and it hasn’t been all bed of roses since…

    And you have a problem with that? Do you have even the foggiest idea about Czechoslovakia, its history, WWII, economy, living standards? The above is an assessment by a large percentage of people and most political parties in Czechia and Slovakia – it was what it was, but it wasn’t totalitarian, it was only mildly brutal, and people lived relatively well. If that is ‘Soviet socialist nostalgia‘, you are a bit unhinged.

    There are a few types of emigre people from Eastern Europe who continue to demonise anything that happened there prior to 1990:
    – Bitter people who aspired to be ‘professors of medieval art‘ and commies wouldn’t let them. Holy sh.t, let’s check with most Uber drivers in the West for context here – how dare those red bastards not allow full self-realization? after all everybody gets to be whatever they dream about in the West. Right, back to those Uber drivers.
    – Scared exiles who feed the stereotypes in order to not feel out of place.
    – Hustlers who have figured how to make a living out of selling scary stories.

    Are you in one of those categories?

    We had no ‘Khmer Rouge‘, Mao or Stalin in Czechoslovakia. It is a bit tiresome to be constantly lumped together with them. But I am probably wasting my time, ideologues are seldom interested in a true picture of reality.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
    , @reiner Tor
    , @AP
  451. Dmitry says:
    @Mikel

    may never happen, since that area is receiving lots of non-EU immigrants

    In Basque country, we saw a lot of non-EU immigration too.

    However, I guess they will nonetheless learn euskera – especially as it is necessary for government jobs there.

    historic separation of Basques between France and Spain: we are also separated in two entities in Spain.

    Isn’t it more of a continuum, than simple separation?

    For example, do you view people from La Rioja as being foreigners, because they are not Basques, even though they are touching the region? Is Miranda de Ebro, so different to Vitoria?

    Also surely Miranda de Ebro and Vitoria are more similar to each other, than either to Biarritz?

    • Replies: @Mikel
  452. @Beckow

    And you have a problem with that?

    Here is a dictionary definition of nostalgia:

    a sentimental longing or wistful affection for the past, typically for a period or place with happy personal associations.

    There is no value judgement here, you shouldn’t react so strongly.

    – Scared exiles who feed the stereotypes in order to not feel out of place.
    – Hustlers who have figured how to make a living out of selling scary stories.

    Are you in one of those categories?

    Most of the branches (rural, proletarian, petit bourgeois and old bourgeois) of my extended family were and are long-time adherents (3/4/5 continuous generations long etc.) of socialism, some of them foreign Soviet (and Stalinist) loyalists, others Trotskyists and revisionist Western European socialists.

    This was the millieu I was born in.

    But even from a social democratic/socialist perspective, it is justified to state that the East Bloc states had their flaws.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  453. Mikel says:
    @Dmitry

    Isn’t it more of a continuum, than simple separation?

    In the case of the Basque Autonomous Community and Northern Navarre it is an administrative boundary that separates people speaking the same old dialects of Basque, have the same last names and often are members of the same blood family. And, again, this was a deliberate decision of Basque maximalist patriots.

    do you view people from La Rioja as being foreigners, because they are not Basques, even though they are touching the region?

    Foreigners is a bit of a strong word, considering the centuries we’ve spent under the same kingdom and empire but, well, yes. Our languages are less related to each other than Russian is to Spanish, for example. And genetic studies show a distinct cluster separating Basques from their neighbors as much as Finns are separated from Russians, or thereabouts (although the latest research suggests that this separation is basically due to Basques not having received any significant admixture since the late Bronze – Iron age).

    Is Miranda de Ebro, so different to Vitoria?

    No, not at all. But you need to bear in mind that ~75% of people in Vitoria have their roots in different regions of Spain, typically much further south than Miranda. In fact, when I talk about genetic studies showing this or that about Basques I’m talking about geneticists having to find examples of ethnic Basques in rural mountainous regions to conduct their studies on them.

    Inhabitants of the current Basque Country being a separate ethnic group is a fiction. The Basque Country was swamped with immigrants from Spain since the end of the 19th century, when the industrial revolution took hold in our lands and in Catalonia but not elsewhere in Spain. This is an irreversible process under any realistic scenario but Basque language and traditions will hold on in rural areas, as it has done for millennia.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  454. @Hyperborean

    This was the millieu I was born in.

    But even from a social democratic/socialist perspective, it is justified to state that the East Bloc states had their flaws.

    Intially I found it quite emotionally painful and re-evaluate the views I had inherited and was struck with ideological indecision for some years, but I think even on its own terms the Soviet Union and its vassal states (with tbe exception of Finland, due to its different circumstances) failed to “build the Crystal Palace”.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  455. Beckow says:
    @Hyperborean

    …it is justified to state that the East Bloc states had their flaws.

    Who are you arguing that point with? I explicitly stated above the same thing. You invent a straw-man and then argue with it.

    I have no idea what a ‘Crystal Palace’ is or was, and I have no desire to build it. All I know is that life under socialism in Czechoslovakia in the 80’s was not some unredeemable hell: nobody was shot, we travelled to the West fairly easily if one had money, churches were open – I was baptised, education was high quality, people didn’t work too much, food was plentiful – even bananas occasionally. It was inefficient and stagnant, but the idea that it was some totalitarian hell is so far from reality that one always wonders about the ‘intellectuals’ in the West who go on and on about ‘totality’ and ‘Stalin’ – from what I recall, Stalin was openly denounced and Mao was ridiculed, although not as much e.g. Pinochet.

    I have no desire to go back to it because I dislike inefficiency and enjoy luxury. But if that is ‘nostalgia’ than what wouldn’t be? You use words that your don’t seem to understand.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  456. @Beckow

    it wasn’t totalitarian

    It wasn’t mass murderous, but it was totalitarian. Opposition parties, organizations, gatherings, activities were all illegal and actively searched out and suppressed by the state. The government employed a large police bureaucracy and tens or hundreds of thousands of informers to spy on the population, especially those deemed less reliable. Membership in mass organizations was often not compulsory, but highly recommended, and often practically unavoidable, like membership in the pioneers’ organization for children. People were also often compelled to participate in mass rallies, and the government certainly took interest in every aspect of people’s lives. That’s almost the textbook definition of totalitarianism.

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
    , @reiner Tor
  457. @reiner Tor

    So basically like Yugoslavia, except Yugoslavia was also mass murderous (for a bit)

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  458. @reiner Tor

    I’m lazy to read up on Czechoslovakia, but I know for sure that after 1968 the Czechoslovak regime was more oppressive than the Hungarian one. (Before 1968 it might have been the opposite, because the Hungarian regime got progressively milder during the 1960s, while the Czechoslovak regime was even more liberal and even faster liberalizing until 1968, when, after the crackdown, it suddenly turned much harder, and stayed so until its collapse in 1989.)

    In Hungary this “goulash communism” meant at least 100,000 regularly paid informers (1% of the population, including babies and the elderly), and several hundreds of thousands of “social contacts” for the secret police, which would add another several percentage points of the population – so something like 3-4% of the population was regularly informing the authorities of every social gathering they ever participated in. I have read reports written by these people (many of them starting it after being blackmailed, but many taking up the duty out of “patriotism” or “loyalty to the socialist motherland”), and it was impossible not write bad things in them. Overall, once you start snitching on your friends and relatives, eventually bad things will find their ways into your reports. “Social contacts” and paid informers were often warned by their handlers that their reports were being compared to reports made by other informers, should they also be present (and not infrequently it happened, unknown to each of them), this meant that they felt compelled to write incriminating information into their reports.

    In general relatively few people were arrested, and by the 1970s no one executed. But people could still lose their jobs, careers broken, etc. (Which is why the present “soft totalitarianism” in the West reminds me of “goulash communist” totalitarianism.)

    In Hungary, membership in the “úttörő” (“pioneer”) movement was practically compulsory for children aged 7-15, and then later KISZ (the communist youth movement) was also advisable to join (though not nearly as universal as the pioneer movement for younger children). I was also once a member of the pioneer movement. (Age 7-11 the “little drummer” movement, which was a section of the pioneer movement for this age group, but it was integrated with the pioneer movement, since elementary schools were 8 years from ages 6-14, and the movement was organized by schools.)

    I remember that the May 1 holiday was always ruined by the compulsory mass rallies, where I had to join one of my parents (usually my mom), as they couldn’t stay home. Yes, it was only the morning (it ended around noon and devolved into a no longer compulsory picnic), and better than school, but I wanted to be free to do whatever I please.

    There was government propaganda permeating all aspects of life. The famous “red tail” meant that, because articles in peer reviewed journals were still censored, their authors (serious scientists and scholars) felt compelled to attach a “red tail” to the end of their articles with a few quotes from Lenin, greatly increasing their chances of publication. This led to comical things like an article in a physics journal discussing some topic, and than a few paragraphs (the “red tail”) at the end discussing its relevance to Marxism-Leninism, quoting Lenin and maybe Engels.

    Traveling abroad was possible, but you needed a special passport (the blue passport valid for all countries in the world, as opposed to the red passport valid only to “socialist” countries), and it could be withdrawn. You also couldn’t freely convert much of your currency, in the late 1980s you could convert $50 per person annually, so you needed to wait several years before being able to afford a travel. (Like a family of 4 needed 3 years to gather $600.)

    This is what totalitarianism is: the government was interested in you even if you weren’t interested in it.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @Beckow
  459. @reiner Tor

    The passport was withdrawn in the case of people who criticized the government, or who were suspected of wanting to defect to the West. Traveling abroad wasn’t that easy.

  460. @Korenchkin

    Yugoslavia was no longer mass murderous by the 1960s, I believe. While in 1944-46 roughly 40,000 ethnic Hungarians were murdered (as retaliation for the 1942 Cold Days anti-Serb and anti-Jewish murder of roughly 3,000 people by Hungarian forces), by the 1960s ethnic Hungarians in Yugoslavia had it often better than Hungarians in Hungary. It often happened that Hungarian language books which were unavailable in Hungary due to censorship could be freely published and purchased in Yugoslavia. Yugoslav citizens could more freely travel abroad, and could even emigrate and take up jobs in West Germany or Switzerland, something which would’ve been impossible for Hungarians.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  461. While we idly discuss ww2, minorities in the US are making history! According to CNBC’s lede on Facebook, at least, that’s what “history in the making” looks like.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2019/09/11/minorities-ages-25-to-54-make-up-most-new-hires-in-workforce.html

  462. @reiner Tor

    Yugoslav citizens could more freely travel abroad, and could even emigrate and take up jobs in West Germany or Switzerland, something which would’ve been impossible for Hungarians.

    This was true but only possible because Yugoslavia, especially in the beginning when led by Tito, was a Trojan Horse of Britain and the USA against the USSR. The economic prosperity and well-being of Yugoslavia was completely artificial. It was all financed by the US Marshall Plan (in the beginning) and massive loans from the West. Communist Yugoslavia was not really Communist or Socialist at all, as it was only really a sham of either one of these things. It was only really anti-Serb and anti-USSR.

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
  463. @AP

    It’s interesting that you place so much hope for Ukraine’s future with the EU lol.

    You must’ve missed when Dutch voters overwhelmingly voted in advance to block and veto any potential future Ukrainian membership in the EU. You also must’ve missed when Macron stated that there would be no more EU enlargement before thorough internal reforms. Of course, there’s also the fact that Ukraine is still in the middle of a war that is unlikely to end anytime soon because the EU obviously does not accept countries which are in the middle of a war.

    At this rate, it’s much more likely that the EU collapses or fragments than it is that Ukraine joins the EU.

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
    , @AP
  464. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    was a Trojan Horse of Britain and the USA against the USSR

    Is it really a Greek Pony when the enemy already knows it’s a ruse?
    Stalin and Churchill agreed on a 90/10 split in Yugoslavia in favor of Britain when they were carving up Europe and it was widely known that the Brits shafted the Chetniks in favor of the Partizans

    It was all financed by the US Marshall Plan

    Marshall aid to SFRY was pretty low, it was mostly the loans and the letting of Yugo workers to go around Western Europe that helped, also there was a lot less barriers to trade

    Funnily enough we’re once again caught between two large spheres, this time leaning more towards Russia

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  465. @reiner Tor

    As an example he cited the (somewhat dubious, OBOR and China related) railroad development between Budapest and Belgrade.

    Perhaps Epigon could inform us more properly about this railway, but from what I’m aware, it functions perfectly fine on the Hungarian side of the border while it is in complete dysfunction and disarray on the Serbian side of the border lol. I think Vucic mentioned something about how the state of the railway will be improved in the future.

  466. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Don’t forget the Albanians which willingly turned themselves into EuroAmerican satraps and go along with every idiocy that the DC/Brussels gang comes up with (they were the first Euro countries to start shilling for Guaido) and still not an inch of progress was made towards their membership

    Or Romania and Bulgaria which are stuck in the Eurozone waiting room for over a decade now and suffered abysmal losses of population due to immigration
    I dread to think what will happen to us if we ever do enter the EU, but thankfully that’s unlikely

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
    , @AP
  467. @Korenchkin

    Is it really a Greek Pony when the enemy already knows it’s a ruse?

    Well it took Stalin until around 1948 to realize that Tito was a Trojan horse. The Soviets seemed to genuinely trust the Yugo-Communist Partisans for some time until they realized post WW2 that they were untrustworthy. This is why it always struck me as strange that after the Red Army liberated Serbia east of the River Drina in 1944, the Red Army just left to go north and fight in Hungary instead of at least keeping some form of more permanent military presence.

    Stalin and Churchill agreed on a 90/10 split in Yugoslavia in favor of Britain when they were carving up Europe

    Wasn’t it more 75/25? At least that was the impression I had when I read about Churchill and Stalin dividing up East Europe.

    • Replies: @Simpleguest
  468. @Korenchkin

    Don’t forget the Albanians which willingly turned themselves into EuroAmerican satraps and go along with every idiocy that the DC/Brussels gang comes up with (they were the first Euro countries to start shilling for Guaido) and still not an inch of progress was made towards their membership

    LOL. Didn’t know about this. Learnt something new today. Of course, don’t forget Monkeydonia (“North Macedonia”) that still is far from EU membership despite signing their “historic” (LOL) agreement with Greece.

    Or Romania and Bulgaria which are stuck in the Eurozone waiting room for over a decade now and suffered abysmal losses of population due to immigration

    Is that really a bad thing though? The Eurozone just erodes national sovereignty further and harms the economy of a given state. Of course, the emigration for Bulgaria and Romania is bad, but that just comes with being an EU member state from South or East Europe.

    I dread to think what will happen to us if we ever do enter the EU, but thankfully that’s unlikely

    Me too. I think we dodged a bullet ever since the 2015 migrant crisis, Brexit, and Macron rejecting EU enlargement. Of course, there’s also the life and death struggle over Kosovo, especially because the EU has conditioned any form of Serbia’s future membership on recognizing Kosovo. I think we’ve been very geo-politically lucky in the past few years.

    • Replies: @AP
  469. The Eurozone just erodes national sovereignty further and harms the economy of a given state.

    Depends who you ask, but it was clearly Sofia Gov goal to enter the Eurozone for a good while now, failure to achieve it diminishes trust in the system
    Kiev is wasting it’s time trying to join NATO/EU, as the West will sell them out just like they sold them out during literally every other conflict, sorry AP

    I think the best solution would’ve been to create an independent Galicia which would join EU/NATO and turn the rest of Ukraine into a Belarus sort of affair

    • Agree: TheTotallyAnonymous
  470. AP says:
    @Beckow

    Do you have even the foggiest idea about Czechoslovakia, its history, WWII, economy, living standards?

    And yet you pretend not to.

    Prior to Communism Czechoslovakia had living standards (income, life expectancy, etc.) about the same as Austria’s. By 1990 it had dropped to below Spain’s.

    it wasn’t totalitarian, it was only mildly brutal,

    You fell well behind but your government was “only” mildly brutal. Yay!

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  471. AP says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    It’s interesting that you place so much hope for Ukraine’s future with the EU lol.

    It’s not hope, it’s reality. Ukraine’s economy has been steadily growing since linking to the EU and the central and western parts are probably more prosperous now than they had been since independence (this is not saying much but it is a fact).

    Obviously full membership would be at least 20 years away but the links are already paying off.

    At this rate, it’s much more likely that the EU collapses or fragments than it is that Ukraine joins the EU.

    Intermarium would be better than EU.

  472. @AP

    Totalitarian doesn’t have to be very brutal. Mussolini’s regime was totalitarian and is and has always been widely recognized as such, but it wasn’t very brutal inside the country. (It was pretty brutal in places like Ethiopia or the Balkan, though obviously had nothing on the Germans or Croats in the latter.)

    • Replies: @AP
    , @German_reader
  473. AP says:
    @reiner Tor

    I suspect it performed better economically than did the Sovok states.

  474. AP says:
    @Korenchkin

    Or Romania and Bulgaria

    In 1991 Romania had about 1/3 of Russia’s GDP per capita.

    Today it has a higher GDP per capita than Russia, despite not being an oil-rich country (both nominal and PPP).

    https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.PCAP.CD?locations=RO-RU

    https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.PCAP.PP.CD?locations=RO-RU

    So joining EU worked out well for Romania.

    and suffered abysmal losses of population due to immigration

    So in addition to people in the country getting a lot richer, individuals have been free to move to places where they can make 3x more. Terrible!

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
  475. AP says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    The Eurozone just erodes national sovereignty further and harms the economy of a given state.

    Romania improved from 1/3 of Russia’s per capita GDP in 1991 to a higher per capita GDP than Russia in 2018.

    https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.PCAP.PP.CD?locations=RO-RU

    You have a strange idea of the word “harm.”

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  476. @AP

    Today it has a higher GDP per capita than Russia

    Futher proof that GDP per capita is a useless metric

    So in addition to people in the country getting a lot richer, individuals have been free to move to places

    Bucharest Gov discussed importing 500 000 Paki workers, what vibrant ethnic group will Kiev invite I wonder

    where they can make 3x more. Terrible!

    They drove Polish workers wages through the floor, and they all voted for Zelensky, go figure

    I find it difficult to comprehend why you’d be joyful to see the homeland you love be depopulated of your brethren, your Ukranian nationalism seems to be very ad hoc at times
    Turning into the EU version of the Central Asian -stans, with most of the economy reliant to remittances, is not a fate I’d wish upon my homeland if I were a diaspora nationalist

    • Agree: TheTotallyAnonymous
    • Replies: @AP
  477. @Beckow

    I have no idea what a ‘Crystal Palace’ is or was

    The central idea of radical socialist revolutionary Nikolai Chernyshevsky’s well-known at its time (Dostoyevsky’s mocks Chernyshevsky among others in Notes from the Underground) novel What Is To Be Done? , usually now more known as the origin for the title of Lenin’s pamphlet of the same name.

    even bananas occasionally.

    Even for a self-described “traditional simpleton” this should be a telling statement.

    from what I recall, Stalin was openly denounced and Mao was ridiculed, although not as much e.g. Pinochet.

    Stalin had by then already been denounced by his Soviet successor and Mao and Pinochet were enemies of the USSR and her vassals, so what does this prove?

    But if that is ‘nostalgia’ than what wouldn’t be? You use words that your don’t seem to understand.

    You should accept the dictionary definition of the word rather than infusing your own connotations into your interpretations.

    But I don’t really think it is productive to argue over the meaning of the word “nostalgia”, you don’t seem really arguing with me.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  478. @AP

    It must be noted though that the Russian (and Ukrainian) economy was probably more distorted (so its GDP numbers less meaningful), while Romania (and Poland, your other example) had artificially suppressed GDP numbers, in the case of Poland due to the default on foreign debts earlier (which meant Poland wasn’t growing much for its last decade under communism, and the 1970s were already pretty sluggish), and in the case of Romania due to Ceausescu forcibly repaying its external debt, which resulted in an extremely restrictive fiscal policy throughout the 1980s. The dissolution of the USSR probably also heavily depressed the resulting smaller economies, probably resulting in permanent output losses.

    So the comparison almost certainly overstates the difference of what could have been in Ukraine.

  479. AP says:
    @Korenchkin

    Today it has a higher GDP per capita than Russia

    Futher proof that GDP per capita is a useless metric

    Why? You doubt Romania has gotten a lot richer after 1991 and has caught up to Russia?

    So in addition to people in the country getting a lot richer, individuals have been free to move to places

    “Bucharest Gov discussed importing 500 000 Paki workers, what vibrant ethnic group will Kiev invite I wonder”

    Discussed.

    So where are all those Pakistanis?

    where they can make 3x more. Terrible!

    They drove Polish workers wages through the floor, and they all voted for Zelensky, go figure

    According to one poster here, Mikel.

    Meanwhile, in the real world Polish wages have been going up:

    https://tradingeconomics.com/poland/wages

    He mentioned engineering salaries and gave a fake figure. He wrote, “My eldest son lives in Poland and has recently finished his engineering studies. He told me that Ukrainian engineers are already straining the labor market and accepting jobs for 2.5k-3k zlotys that are hardly enough for a Pole to live on..”

    Real figures are here:

    http://www.salaryexplorer.com/salary-survey.php?loc=173&loctype=1&job=22&jobtype=1

    The Engineering salaries in Poland range between 4,430 PLN per month (minimum salary) to 10,634 PLN per month (maximum salary).

    The median salary is 8,253 PLN per month, which means that half (50%) of people working in Engineering are earning less than 8,253 PLN while the other half are earning more than 8,253 PLN. The median represents the middle salary value. Generally speaking, you would want to be on the right side of the graph with the group earning more than the median salary.

    Ukrainian workers in Poland make about the same as do Polish workers in the same jobs.

    I find it difficult to comprehend why you’d be joyful to see the homeland you love be depopulated of your brethren

    1. Ukraine’s population will probably not sink below that of the 1950s. It was not depopulated at that time.

    2. Ukraine has no minorities so this population decrease doesn’t correspond to ethnic replacement.

    So while not ideal, the circumstances are better than post-Soviet poverty and isolation from the Western brothers..

    your Ukranian nationalism

    While I consider nationalism to be a lesser evil than Sovokism or modern Western self-nullification, I am not a nationalist. All populism is bad.

    • Replies: @Korenchkin
    , @Mr. XYZ
    , @Mikel
  480. @reiner Tor

    Mussolini’s regime was totalitarian and is and has always been widely recognized as such

    I think that’s at least contested, many historians would actually deny Mussolini’s Italy was totalitarian (e.g. Stanley Payne does in his A history of fascism). The potential was probably there and Italian fascism was certainly a lot more aggressive and racist on its own than Italians like to admit nowadays, but the freedom of action of Italian fascists was much more restricted by the alliance with the old elites than in Germany, and the fascists never quite managed to overcome those restraints.
    As you write, Fascist Italy was fairly brutal abroad, but on the other hand, the same had already been true of liberal Italy to a considerable degree (when Italian forces suffered a setback during the initial stages of the Libyan war in 1911, they reacted by massacring a few thousand Arab civilians).

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  481. @AP

    You doubt Romania has gotten a lot richer after 1991 and has caught up to Russia?

    Do you doubt that Ireland has surpassed all of Europe?

    Ukraine has no minorities

    Except for that one big one

    While I consider nationalism to be a lesser evil than Sovokism or modern Western self-nullification

    True, but I wouldn’t call it an evil

    post-Soviet poverty

    Which is what Ukraine has now

    Western self-nullification

    Which is what the EU and US are pushing on you for the future

    But I get where you’re coming from, even if I disagree with your view on Rus history

    • Replies: @AP
  482. @German_reader

    I think that’s at least contested, many historians would actually deny Mussolini’s Italy was totalitarian (e.g. Stanley Payne does in his A history of fascism).

    In hindsight, PNF-era Italy was not near as controlling as other dictatorial states ended up being, but if Fascist Italy ended up enshrined as a totalitarian state then this is likely at least partially because their rhetoric:

    The Fascist conception of the State is all embracing; outside of it no human or spiritual values can exist, much less have value. Thus understood, Fascism, is totalitarian, and the Fascist State – a synthesis and a unit inclusive of all values – interprets, develops, and potentates the whole life of a people (14).

    http://www.worldfuturefund.org/wffmaster/Reading/Germany/mussolini.htm

    (I find the Doctrine of Fascism an interesting ideological text, though I wonder how much of it Mussolini actually wrote in comparison to Giovanni Gentile.)

  483. Dmitry says:
    @Mikel

    since the end of the 19th century, when the industrial revolution

    You can see very much from Pais Vasco urban development, how there was a bourgeois industrialist golden age around the beginning of 20th century.

    There seems to be a second golden age currently, as they successfully have deindustrialized the cities, and resulted in a newly higher quality ecology, urbanism and standards of living.

    It would be a good – but impossible – example to follow for many cities of the Ural district. (The successful deindustrialization of the cities, but not its liberal immigration situation).

  484. Beckow says:
    @Hyperborean

    If you have a problem with some of your relatives who engage(d) in utopian leftist fantasies, take it up with them. Projecting it ignorantly in discussions about other topics is an odd way to resolve family traumas. (Don’t become like the poor AP.)

    I was also struck by your lack of sense of humor – you know, the ‘banana‘ comment, did you actually take that seriously?

    Stalin and Mao in the 1980’s Czechoslovakia were denounced and ridiculed – that was official. Same went for things they were associated with – from forced collectivization to Great Jump. Calling it Stalinism when someone observes (correctly) that Stalin did rather well in WWII or that M-R Pact was a good strategic move is incredibly shallow. You have to excuse when I assume that when you and others do it here on Unz, it comes across as transparent effort to avoid discussion, to evade addressing different angles and viewpoints. It demeans the site. So go and have your plentiful bananas (warning: that was not serious!) and throw a few darts at Stalin or your misguided relatives. And make sure that you check under your bed for the hidden totalitarians who might be lurking there. It is f…ing 2019, don’t we have bigger issues than fighting imaginary ‘Stalins’?

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  485. Hopefully this won’t get buried and Anatoly will see it because I think it’s quite interesting.

    The chairman of the “Russophiles” movement in Bulgaria has been arrested and charged with being a Russian spy.

    Today the prosecutor’s office released some of the evidence against him – nothing less than a complete plan for changing Bulgaria’s geopolitical orientation to Russia.

    prb.bg/media/cms_page_media/Докл. записка, приложения_0.pdf

    It’s in Russian and too long for me to translate, so apologies to the English speakers.

    Richard Spencer had a twitter thread yesterday about seizing power in a globohomo occupied country (or rather, how not to seize power) and I thought it interesting in this light to see someone whose views are similar to mine having a specific and large-scope plan (it becomes apparent that a transfer of assets for 1.5 billion dollars has been done as part of this plan, a transfer from a Bulgarian banker to a Russian businessman – Konstantin Malofeev, the owner of TsargradTV) for creating a political, cultural and economic base for a tectonic shift in the politics of a country.

    I have to admit this does make him look like a foreign agent though, even if his intentions are good – the title of his document is a “report”, although unclear who is he reporting to, it’s obviously someone in Russia.

    Maybe it’s old school bureaucracy habits or a Slavic lack of cunning, such things should be discussed in informal settings and off the record. I also wonder how did the prosecution got a hold of this.

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Gerard2
  486. @Mr. XYZ

    Also, AP, do you think that Russia should formally annex the Donbass after Ukraine joins the European Union?

    In the last 1-2 years it is steadily moving in the direction of Transnistria/Abkhazia, which is where I expect it will stay long-term short of radical political/geopolitical shifts.

    For instance, it appears that direct train routes from Moscow to Donetsk are going to be launched imminently.

    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
  487. Beckow says:
    @reiner Tor

    If what you describe is ‘totalitarianism‘ then I would argue that most history and most societies have been ‘totalitarian’. From feudalism (ultimate control) to most modern societies around the world currency, travel restrictions and police informers have been ever present. There were some temporary exceptions, but governments or powerful institutions from churches to large corporations have always tried to monitor, manipulate and control people. I am guessing as I type this, about half a dozen surveillance systems of different kinds are capturing it. BFD.

    In my book ‘totalitarian’ without brutality is an oxymoron. In 1980’s Hungary or Czechoslovakia there was simply not that much violence or brutality. Even the few dissidents who would assemble to wave some slogans were treated mostly with kid gloves – ‘sir, you have to vacate this space!, ‘sir this is an illegal assembly, you are blocking traffic‘ – and off to an overnight detention they went, often exchanging cigarettes with the unmotivated policemen. Nobody was shot. It actually looks like today’s treatment of Yellow Jackets or anti-LGBT marches (or pro-LGBT in some countries).

    You describe the once a year May 1 ‘mass rally’ as something nefarious and oppressive. I was a small child and my memories are of a day with ice cream, music and everybody heading to have a picnic early on. My dad often didn’t show up at all and I am not aware of any consequences. It was once a year for God’s sake, is that ‘totalitarian’ in your book?

    Travel was a lot easier than you imply. In Czechoslovakia you either exchanged enough money and that was always possible – any waiter in Prague or grandmother with relatives in the West had hard currency – or even more common, just bought one of the ‘group’ trips that were widely available. It also required some effort at that time for most people in the West to travel – they also needed money, visas, some countries had restrictions on draft age men, etc…

    It is time to let go of this endless self-denigration and one-sided exaggerations for the benefit of the misguided Westerners. They think ‘totalitarian’ is Stalin, Gulag, Khmer Rouge, Nazis, killing and hunger. You and I might know that is a fantasy, but by using their terms we are feeding the frenzy – and that is the last thing nationally oriented people in Europe need toady.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  488. @Beckow

    You describe the once a year May 1 ‘mass rally’ as something nefarious and oppressive. I was a small child and my memories are of a day with ice cream, music and everybody heading to have a picnic early on. My dad often didn’t show up at all and I am not aware of any consequences. It was once a year for God’s sake, is that ‘totalitarian’ in your book?

    Could we have an empathy or feels button for things like this Anatoly?

    I felt a surge of sadness and empathy for Beckow when I read this. Shame there isn’t a Feelz emote either … 🙁

  489. Gerard2 says:
    @Spisarevski

    This is even more laughable than when the story first broke out. Not a single thing listed there could classify as “subversive” and in need of him being arrested…this isn’t like the ridiculous shit subversive that keeps going on between State Department/Soros and Banderastan all these years

    He is not even using the retarded lying cover of “Independent ” media ( euphemism for anti-Russian or strongly anti-Russian government as opposed to actually independent) he is just calling for the creation of openly russophilic tv channels , media and groups, that go in line with 80% of the Russophile population, which considering he has been an activist in this field for years, should not be a surprise…..nor that the Bulgarian state have been trying to stop some of his plans/media acquisitions in court in recent years

    All this done in the background of Sofia Mayor election where the “russophile “party may win, and the potention rejuvenation of the South Stream project……plus Nuclear Power Station deals with Russia…and a festival deidcated to the liberating of the country by the Soviets

    • Replies: @Spisarevski
  490. Hong Kong’s godfather of indie music gets creative to curate two Nordic-inspired concerts

    Northern Europeans and North-East Asians have a lot of cultural similarities. Quiet, introverted, collectivist, highly organised. Musicical preferences tends to be pop, synth, trance. Architectual preferences also both tend to veer in the same direction: minimalistic, bordering on ascetic.

    That said, I am surprised that not more attention is paid to North-East Asia from our side. Outside of the usual weeabos, ignorance of NEA (ex-Japan) in the Nordics tends to be pretty high, which is puzzling to me.

  491. @Beckow

    If you have a problem with some of your relatives who engage(d) in utopian leftist fantasies, take it up with them.

    Several of them had direct experiences with Eastern Bloc states (studying in the DDR, several holidays in the USSR, visits to East Germany and Rumania). The fact is that they, Western European leftist sympathisers, independently came to the conclusion that the East countries were shabby.

    I was also struck by your lack of sense of humor – you know, the ‘banana‘ comment, did you actually take that seriously?

    If you were in India 20 years ago you probably saw the fall of the Berlin Wall like I did – with Prannoy Roy on The World This Week. And like me you may have also been struck by one thing – all those bananas. I remember the programme ending with shots of ecstatic East Germans kids holding perhaps the first bananas they had seen in their lives. I can’t have been the only one in India wondering rather bemusedly how our humble kelas could cause such happiness.

    https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/blogs/onmyplate/bananas-and-the-berlin-wall/

    Calling it Stalinism when someone observes (correctly) that Stalin did rather well in WWII or that M-R Pact was a good strategic move is incredibly shallow.

    Where did I say that is Stalinism? I said that some of my relatives (my great-grand parents) were Stalinists (during the period when Stalin was still alive and it was a “normal” opinion).

    But that your viewpoints are very influenced by a socialist-Soviet perspective is obvious. There is nothing wrong in this, just the fact that you act as if it is shameful and deny any such association whenever it comes up.

    You have to excuse when I assume that when you and others do it here on Unz, it comes across as transparent effort to avoid discussion, to evade addressing different angles and viewpoints. It demeans the site.

    I am (trying to) conversing with you, aren’t I?

    And make sure that you check under your bed for the hidden totalitarians who might be lurking there.

    Again, I never brought up “totalitarianism”.

    It is f…ing 2019, don’t we have bigger issues than fighting imaginary ‘Stalins’?

    Invoking The Current Year, what a peculiar habit you picked up.

    • Replies: @Beckow
  492. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    1. Ukraine’s population will probably not sink below that of the 1950s. It was not depopulated at that time.

    Ukraine is projected by the UN to fall to something like 25 million in 2100. That’s not underpopulated, but it’s still way below what Ukraine had in 1950. Also, these projections might actually be underestimates since eventual EU membership could result in a lot of emigration from Ukraine just like it did with Poland, Romania, et cetera.

  493. Mr. XYZ says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    If the Donbass is going to go into limbo status, is Russia actually going to bother to invest a lot of money in it?

  494. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    If you have read about Churchill and Stalin dividing up Eastern Europe, you would have known that it was 50%/50%.
    Finding out is as easy as checking at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Percentages_agreement

  495. Mr. XYZ says:
    @AP

    Intermarium would be better than EU.

    A bit off-topic, but do you think that Germany should have created an Intermarium if it would have won World War I? I’m thinking of incorporating the Pale of Settlement territories along with Livonia and Estonia into one country after the end of World War I.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  496. @Gerard2

    I don’t agree with his arrest and if foreign agents are to be arrested, there are certainly many western-serving traitors that should be arrested before him. Just saying that he should have been smarter about it and not leave something like this in writing.

    Anyway the majority of comments in Bulgarian news sites basically agree with you.
    “More than 50% of the people will put their signature on this, are you going to arrest us all?”
    “He only said truths, how is this supposed to make him look bad”
    “Borisov was called CIA’s man in Bulgaria, he personally admitted that the Hanns Seidel and Konrad Adenauer foundations helped him set up GERB, America for Bulgaria is openly funding media with millions, but they all work unharassed?” etc

    All this done in the background of Sofia Mayor election where the “russophile “party may win, and the potention rejuvenation of the South Stream project……plus Nuclear Power Station deals with Russia…and a festival deidcated to the liberating of the country by the Soviets

    You know a surprising amount about what happens here.

    Anyway there was no liberation by Soviets, sorry. The Tsardom of Bulgaria was a free country, much freer than commie Bulgaria.
    Of course, “occupation” is not exactly correct either as there was no resistance and Bulgarians generally don’t mind Russian troops here, commie or not. Politics is the enemy of nuance.
    But it’s a strategic mistake to conflate distaste for communism with russophobia, especially here, as the russophiles are a much wider group than the commies. Case in point: myself.

  497. @Mr. XYZ

    A bit off-topic, but do you think that Germany should have created an Intermarium if it would have won World War I? I’m thinking of incorporating the Pale of Settlement territories along with Livonia and Estonia into one country after the end of World War I.

    Aside from every other issue, incorporating Estonia and Livonia into such a project brings up the issue of why and how the Baltic German landowners and the Prussian Junkers would agree to it?

    • Replies: @Mr. XYZ
  498. Beckow says:
    @Hyperborean

    …came to the conclusion that the East countries were shabby.

    Yes they were, most of the world is shabby. Working class suburbs in Vienna through the late 90’s were also quite shabby, and have you been to Newcastle? I have been to India (not sure I am pinning you right, but probably) and it is not just shabby, it is sh..thole shabby. E Germans lived order of magnitude better than Indians.

    …all those bananas…ecstatic East Germans kids holding perhaps the first bananas they had seen in their lives.

    I doubt it. It was either happiness from seeing a better supplied supermarket or maybe a silly phallic joke. I am not familiar with banana situation in E Germany, but in Czechoslovakia we had plenty of bananas. To the point that I distinctly recall my village uncle commenting that bananas taste ‘like squash‘ and my mom being offended by it. TV people tend to create narratives. I can go to India today and film nothing but shantytowns and poverty. Or to LA for that matter. How ‘true‘ would that be?

    If I mixed others’ views with your own and you don’t share them, well, that happens when there are multiple strings in a discussion. You have the space to disassociate from it if you don’t share the views and you haven’t done it.

    your viewpoints are very influenced by a socialist-Soviet perspective

    My views are influenced by a lot of stuff, mostly my family, business, nationality and religion, my studies (in the West) or what I read. My views can’t be influenced by socialism since I am not a socialist and I barely remember it. Stop stereotyping.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  499. Epigon says:

    Bulgarians are far more competent than Monteniggers. Their “Russian coup plot attempt” was a travesty, a total joke that is only mentioned in Globohomo outlets in the West once a year.

    I still can’t see any purpose in Russia investing anything in the Balkans, not with Turkish Stream finalised and arms delivery to Turkey proceeding.

    Russia has neither the soft power, nor media presence, nor economic opportunities compared to EU/NATO.
    The only 3 non-NATO countries are North Macedonia, Serbia and B&H – not for long, though, with N.Macedonia being in the process of accession. Croats and Bosniaks in B&H press for NATO membership, Serbs will have none of it.
    EU doesn’t want any of Balkanites left outside of EU, Balkanites want EU gibs and jobs.

    The whole region is a total shithole where Russia can’t project any power, and where there aren’t any lucrative investment opportunities.
    Opposing US/Atlanticists over Kosovo and B&H integration/centralization, what Russia is doing at the moment, is optimal.

    Talk is cheap, vast majority of even “pro-Russian”, “anti-West” Serbs would immediately accept hypothetical job offers in Germany, Austria, UK, USA.
    What has been a particular embarrasment is numerous Serb attempts to game Russians and exploit trade agreements – re-exporting Polish apples, EU meat and fruit, trying to export substandard food to Russia which failed controls etc.

  500. Mikel says:
    @AP

    According to one poster here, Mikel.

    …/…

    He mentioned engineering salaries and gave a fake figure.

    My son lives in Poland, has just finished college and, unlike you in this thread, has no incentive to paint a rosy picture of his country giving fake figures when he speaks to me about his career plans.

    The idea that you know the realities of the Polish labor market through an online search better than someone on the ground who is looking for a job is ridiculous. 8,000 zlotys is a very high salary in Poland. If you think that a Ukrainian construction engineer working (often off the books) in some building in Rzeszóv or Lublin is making that kind of money you’re deluding yourself.

    Even if you had managed to find a realistic figure of what average “engineers” in P0land make (an average that would comprise salaries from nuclear engineers to plan drafters) that is NOT the relevant figure. The relevant figure is what Ukrainian engineers of a specific field make in their country and what their unemployment rate is. That is what determines how much they’re willing to work for when they emigrate elsewhere.

    Ukraine’s per capita GDP is similar to Egypt’s or Central American countries’. The idea that any EU country receiving hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians is not going to see salaries depressed in many sectors is absurd.

    Nothing of what I’ve told you about how the EU works and what a country like Ukraine can expect to go through before being able to join is controversial. I’m sure anyone in Ukraine with a brain and some knowledge of economics knows it perfectly. I don’t know why you find yourself in the need to dispute obvious facts.

    • Replies: @LatW
    , @AP
    , @LatW
    , @AP
  501. LatW says:
    @Mikel

    His country? If war broke out, hypothetically speaking, whose side would your son be on? Do not give any pacifist nonsense, please, pick a side now.

    • Replies: @Mikel
  502. AP says:
    @Korenchkin

    You doubt Romania has gotten a lot richer after 1991 and has caught up to Russia?

    Do you doubt that Ireland has surpassed all of Europe?

    Ireland is one o a small handful of countris whose GDP is inflated becasue it serrves as a tax haven for large companies.

    Neither Romania nor Russia fall into that group of countries, so GDP per capita comparisons are valid.

    While I consider nationalism to be a lesser evil than Sovokism or modern Western self-nullification

    True, but I wouldn’t call it an evil

    Removing aristocracies and the Church from their proper roles by placing “the people” first was evil, and resulted in the World War I debacle. Of course Sovokism and modern Western hedonistic self-nullification culture are even worse.

    post-Soviet poverty

    Which is what Ukraine has now

    This is finally starting to be addressed.

    Western self-nullification

    Which is what the EU and US are pushing on you for the future

    Poland, Czechia, Baltics, Hungary, Slovakia, and Croatia have avoided this. It’s a Western European problem, not an “EU” problem.

  503. AP says:
    @Mikel

    My son lives in Poland, has just finished college and, unlike you in this thread, has no incentive to paint a rosy picture of his country giving fake figures when he speaks to me about his career plans.

    My closest friend and godfather to one of my kids is a Polish engineer who actually contemplated moving back because things were going well in Poland (granted, it would be a a Western firm at a Western salary). Then he got a massive promotion in the USA and has stayed. But he has many former classmates in Poland who work as engineers there at local salaries. The figures you claim don’t match what I have heard.

    This could be a case of my story versus your story, except a simple google search reveals that you or your son are clearly mistaken (to put it charitably).

    http://www.salaryexplorer.com/salary-survey.php?loc=173&loctype=1&job=22&jobtype=1

    The Engineering salaries in Poland range between 4,430 PLN per month (minimum salary) to 10,634 PLN per month (maximum salary).

    The median salary is 8,253 PLN per month, which means that half (50%) of people working in Engineering are earning less than 8,253 PLN while the other half are earning more than 8,253 PLN.

    https://www.averagesalarysurvey.com/poland

    Engineer PLN 102,442 (8536 per month)

    Here people put in their salaries:

    https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/poland-engineering-salary-SRCH_IL.0,6_IN193_KO7,18.htm

    Average is a little lower, 7,332 PLN per month

    Junior software engineer at Samsung earns 5400/month

    So your claim of 2.5k is silly. Maybe such salaries exist somewhere on the fringes, anything is possible. But they are exceptional.

    ::::::::::::::::::

    Ukraine’s per capita GDP is similar to Egypt’s or Central American countries’. The idea that any EU country receiving hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians is not going to see salaries depressed in many sectors is absurd.

    This would be true if the Ukrainians created an oversaturation of people for each position, rather than filling empty positions that have demand.

    The proof that you are wrong is that Polish wages have consistently been increasing every year:

    Nothing of what I’ve told you about how the EU works and what a country like Ukraine can expect to go through before being able to join is controversial

    It is not controversial, it is simply delusional. Ukraine has already begun the integration process and it has seen steady economic growth. This is projected to continue. Nobody is predicting decline due to ongoing integration.

  504. Mikel says:
    @LatW

    His country?

    Yes, the country he is a citizen of. He’s half Basque, half Polish but lives in Poland.

    Your question doesn’t make any sense. I don’t know what war between whom you are speaking about and I don’t want to imagine my son taking part in any war so I’ll just ignore it.

  505. LatW says:
    @Mikel

    Ukraine doesn’t need the EU per se, it needs lucrative opportunities and to create a local ownership class that goes beyond the oligarchs. Ukraine is vulnerable right now but it could bring itself to a better negotiating position and then talk the EU.

    There are thriving markets out there (Revolut was cofounded by a guy from Kyiv, I’m sure there’s more where that came from, these sorts of companies do become international but the founders can then reinvest their money).

    The president got the captives exchanged which will give him political credit to carry out reforms. Yes, they might be too neoliberal but they might create business opportunities for Ukrainians themselves, which will improve their position, there is no rush to join the EU.

  506. AP says:
    @Mikel

    And your claim that Ukrainians in Poland are making a fraction of Polish wages is another false one:

    https://www.unian.info/society/10142516-ukrainians-in-poland-receive-almost-same-wages-as-poles-study.html

    More Ukrainians in Poland receive the same wages as the Poles, while employers do not rule out they will pay Ukrainians even more, according to a study on labor migration in the first half of 2018, conducted by the Personnel Service. “For some time, the Poles and Ukrainians have been having same wages. The time when workers from Ukraine were paid less has quickly passed into oblivion,” Personnel Service Board Chairman Krzysztof Inglot said, as reported by the Ukrainian media outlet Europeiska Pravda.

    https://zi.ua/en/news/how-much-do-ukrainians-earn-in-european-countries_88490/

    According to her, there she works in a factory, on a conveyor belt, or at a harvest. Last time, she worked five to six days a week, 12 hours a day.

    It’s hard to work, but they paid her 19-20 thousand UAH a month. Although qualified professionals – turners, welders – can earn a half to two times more.

    ::::::::::::::::::

    20k hyryvnia a month is about 3k zloty a month. This is for a simple laborer.

    It makes your claim of “Ukrainian engineers are already straining the labor market and accepting jobs for 2.5k-3k zlotys ” truly ridiculous.

    Thanks for demonstrating your “knowledge” though.

  507. Mikel says:

    This could be a case of my story versus your story, except a simple google search reveals…

    No, this is a case of you pretending to know better than me and my son what realities he is facing in his initial steps in the career he has chosen. Nonsensical.

    The fact is that entry-level engineers in Poland right now have to face the competition of engineers coming from Ukraine and willing to work for much less than what they expected to get. Nothing you can find out in Google is going to change this basic reality.

    And how could this possibly not be the case? Everybody knows that due to labor shortages in Poland and also for political reasons Poland has been letting in massive amounts of Ukrainians. The idea that they only fill positions where they are badly needed and that Polish employers will not take advantage of the situation to employ an experienced professional willing to work for peanuts rather than an inexperienced one (as they do everywhere else in the world) is very ridiculous.

    I’m not going to beat the horse of explaining to you again what all countries that have joined the EU needed to do and why long transition periods are granted, it seems to be totally pointless. But be aware that you have very little idea of what you’re talking about and that is always a perfect position to speak nonsense, as shown by your enthusiasm with the future of IT outsourcing and agriculture exports in Ukraine.

    If you haven’t noticed, the IT outsourcing industry is totally owned by the Indians, who graduate hundreds of thousands of English-speaking IT engineers each year. The IT industry is very big and growing so there are some scraps left for countries like Russia, Belarus and now Ukraine, especially in the field of development, but not that many. In the support outsourcing field Romania has made some progress lately due to some space being necessary for the EMEA timezones. It can also offer cheap labor and infrastructure with the advantage of the common EU legal framework. Those