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View Poll Results: Who was the most useless nation during WWII
France 46 23.59%
Italy 48 24.62%
China 11 5.64%
Czechs 10 5.13%
Poland 9 4.62%
Netherlands 5 2.56%
Beligum 12 6.15%
Switzerland 20 10.26%
One of the countries from the British Empire 6 3.08%
Other 28 14.36%
Voters: 195. You may not vote on this poll

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Old Nov 30, 2001, 07:45 AM   #1
MrPresident
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Who was the most useless nation during WWII?

We all know the story of the British standing up alone against the might of the Nazi army for 6 months. We also know that although they entered late the Americans did more than their fair share during the war. The Russians perhaps more than any other allies repeatly paid the price of war. Lets be fair the Nazis too as they did conquer most of Europe. So who were the useless countries?who let their side down? Who did they allies wish was fighting for the other side? Who has deservedly gone down in history with only a minor part in WWII?
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 08:25 AM   #2
Mikoyan
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Italy. Everything Italian, except their navy, sucked.
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 09:13 AM   #3
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Itt el a nep! Vagy ott...

I think Mikoyan is going to shoot me but I voted "Other" for Hungary.

The Hungarians did us a favor when they refused to allow their erstwhile ally, Hitler, to use their trainlines for the invasion of Poland in 1939. However, for some reason - effective propaganda? - while nearly everyone surrounding Hungary had great respect for the Hungarian Army, its actual performance was pathetic. The Soviets in the months after the German invasion in 1941 bent over backwards and begged Budapest not to join Operation Barbarossa, offering them the banners they'd seized in the failed 1848-49 Hungarian Revolution as well as recognition for the real estate deals Budapest had made with Hitler that gave them back some of their pre-WW I lands. Eventually though an airraid on an eastern Hungarian city, Kassa (modern Kosice, Slovakia) brought Hungary into the war against the Soviets. (This airraid, while never proven, was almost certainly a German--staged stunt to get Hungary in the war.) The Hungarians joined several other Hitler allies fighting in Russia, and like most of them the Nazis trusted them little and put them in "safe" areas. The problem was that after the Battle of Stalingrad, those "safe" areas began to disappear, and just about everywhere became a front line. The Hungarians had an unfortunate meeting with the Soviet Army as it surged towards the Don River in January, 1943 at Voronjesh - and the result was 150,000 lost out of a total 200,000 on the Hungarian side. (Hint: It wasn't a Hungarian victory.)

Hitler had known for a while that the Hungarians were secretly negotiating a switch to the Allied side (based on a bizarre Churchill scheme to invade the Balkans just like they did in the First World War, giving the Hungarians the belief that they could switch the moment the Allies reached the Hungarian border). However as the Soviets approached Hungarian territory in March 1944 Hitler had the Wehrmacht occupy Hungary, and as the Soviets invaded Hungary in September 1944 it started getting serious. After a German betrayal of a truce at the first major battle in Hungary (Debrecen) the Nazis tossed the Hungarian government out and installed a bizarre small band of Hungarian fascists led by a guy who made Hitler seem normal, Ferenc (Franz) Szalasi. This madman loyally fought the Soviets at every advance, guaranteeing that much of Hungary - so far untouched by the war - would be laid waste. As the Soviets advanced the Americans bombed Budapest from Italy. Huge battles were fought and lost all across Hungary, including in Budapest itself and even the final westernmost city in Hungary, Sopron. The place lay in ruins and Hungary was branded by the Allies as Hitler's most faithful ally, all because of the idiocy of one man. (Some captured Hungarian soldiers did try to form a liberating Hungarian unit in the Soviet Army to fight for the Allies but the Soviets said "Nyet".)

So the Hungarian contribution of the war militarily was essentially nil, and was to no one's - not even Hungary's - benefit. To be fair, Hungary was a major provider of foodstuffs to the Wehrmacht and provided much logistical support through engineers and transport. A Hungarian professor of mine, however, once put it this way: "Hungary allied itself in 1914 with the Germans, and they lost. Hungary allied itself in 1939 with the Germans and they lost again. Hungary then allied itself with the Soviets in the Cold War, and they lost. Now Hungary is a NATO ally; clearly NATO does not read history books...."
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 09:25 AM   #4
willemvanoranje
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France. They had an army as big as the Germans, but were crushed.
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 11:11 AM   #5
SkidiWili
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I vote for the neutral countries. Big things like World War going on and they don't take sides.
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 11:37 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by willemvanoranje
France. They had an army as big as the Germans, but were crushed.
Well that's a point of view. But maybe they didn't have the same equipment.

Maybe you don't consider the action of the different resistance forces who were (most of them I guess) coordinated from London to sabotage stuff like communications, place bombs on railroads and so on ...

But for the army you're totally right. The funny part is that a french politician said at the time "We shall win because we are the strongest" ... That sentence remained famous in history classes. hehe.
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 01:15 PM   #7
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I said the Italians.

They were a liablity for the Germans. The Germans had to divert soldiers and suppilies to fight what the Italians should have taking handily.
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 01:30 PM   #8
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Italy was not only worthless, they got the Germans involved in fighting at unfortunate times. Why did Germany have to invade the Balkans and delay the invasion of Russia? Italy tried to conquer Greece. Why was there a war in Africa? Italy tried and failed to defeat the horribly outnumbered British in Egypt. Had Mussolini's troops just stayed in Mussolini's colonies, it is likely that Operation Torch and the entire allied invasion of southern Europe never would have happened. Thus, Italy was more than just worthless to the Axis, they might even have brought about its defeat.
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 06:05 PM   #9
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Argentina declared war to Germany bocouse of the pressure of the USA government just three days before the end of the war.
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 06:58 PM   #10
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Yeah, but before that point they were actually somewhat helpful to the axis.
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 09:34 PM   #11
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Looks like I with the majority again on Italy. Wasn't it Churchill who considered it the "soft underbelly of Europe" which influence his decision to advocate the allies offensive in that area of course not reckoning enough on the German presence there.
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Old Nov 30, 2001, 10:48 PM   #12
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What do you mean by useless ? The less able to fight, the less willling to fight ? Useless for whom ? Allies, Axis, neutral ? Economically, Militarilly, Politically ? Sweden had an important economic role by supplying iron to Germany though it was neutral and never fought. Same for Switzerland, it kept the nazi gold. How could Italians be useless when they had an army (even not terrific as it was) and some minor countries didn't. Well, inside Europe, the Netherlands and Danemark didn't fight at all when the Nazis invaded their country. But in what could they be called useless or usefull ? Were Mongolia or Chad useful during the war ? Sorry but I don't understand your question. I don't see any point in all this. :crazyeyes
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Old Dec 01, 2001, 02:06 AM   #13
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Well if you look at it from a different point of view, Italy was very useful, to the allies. I voted for Czechoslovakia, because their only contribution (that I'm aware of) was to be forced into merging with Germany. Not much done there...
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Old Dec 01, 2001, 07:07 AM   #14
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The Czechs would have fought had Mr Chamberpot would have fought with them...

Te Czechs provided the Germans the massive Skoda armourment factories which aided massively the German war effort.


I'd say the Italians were the most useless...they had virutally none of the vital war materials and thus were a drain on the german economy of oil and coal.

Italy extended greatly the amount of coastline and territory the Germans had to defend...when Italy was invaded it may not have brought the swift victory Churchill had hoped for but it brought the closest match of strength of Germans to Allied troops than anywhere at that time thus provided a massive drain on German man-power relative to the force commited.

Even her fleet was useless effectively achieving nothing -the 28 italian subs in the Atlantic sank nothing! and her battleships got bombed at Taranto and then failed to engage the British navy.

The Italian performance can be demonstrated from the first days of the war as laughable...a few days before France surrendered to germany Italy declared war on France and with 32 divisions atacked France...a mere 6 French divisions prevented the Italians gaining anything from France in the Armistice...

My Grandfather who fought with the desert rats said of the Italians "as soon as they saw you they'd have their hands up"...pretty darn useless!
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Old Dec 01, 2001, 07:25 AM   #15
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I would go for Spain (from Hitler's point of view then) ,germany had an alliance with spain and it helped Franco out of the mess in the civil war.But when war erupted ,and Germany was asking Spain to join ,Spain did nothing.
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Old Dec 01, 2001, 09:43 AM   #16
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I didnt even know the czechs were in the war.

But poland sucks real bad. Ok horses vs. armored tanks.:crazyeyes
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Old Dec 01, 2001, 10:33 AM   #17
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I voted Italy, for all the above mentioned reasons. The French could also lay claim because of their defeat, The colonial areas giving up without a fight, and the Vichy governments compliance with the Axis. The resistance was a saving grace, but I would bet that in sum total the Germans got more from france in the way of food and industry than they gave up in dealing with the resistance.

I would stick up for Poland in the sense that they did not let down massive expectations like the French and Italians did.

Spain may have been more of a liability had they joined the Axis. Tons of coastline to defend. Alternatively, they certainly should have been able to neutralize Gibralter. Kind of a toss up on that one.
 
Old Dec 01, 2001, 10:49 AM   #18
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Franco was right in keeping Spain out of the war, the country was still suffering from the effects of the civil war. (although several thousand volunteers did fight on the Eastern front)

Italy was on the "winning" side for most of the war of course.
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Old Dec 01, 2001, 07:23 PM   #19
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Sweden.

Smack between a capitalist (Norway) and near communist country (Soviet Union), and out of reach of Adolf Hitler.

With safety like that, you think they'd at least question Hitler instead of ignore World War II.
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Old Dec 01, 2001, 09:50 PM   #20
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how about aussie? From what I remember, all they did was took one beating from Japan(air raid)
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