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Posts posted by paintybeard

  1. 2 hours ago, TGP said:

    Were the Germans going straight for a Hydrogen bomb, skipping the step of messing about with Uranium or any of its isotopes?


    Wasn't there a raid on a Heavy Water (deuterium) plant in Norway, or was that just a movie?


    Just the atom bomb, the theory for Hydrogen fusion isn't fully worked out until the late 1940's


    Yes, there is a combine commando and Norwegian resistance raid February 1943. (Operation Gunnarside). This does a lot of damage but does not destroy all of the stored heavy water. The Germans try to move this to Germany and the Norwegians sabotage the ferry it is loaded onto. This pretty much stops the export of heavy water. It doesn't stop all German atomic research but it slows it down.  


    I think that the film you are thinking of is "The Heroes of Telemark". For a non-fiction treatment try "Operation Gunnerside Reconsidered" by Nigel West

    1 hour ago, kristof65 said:

    Well now I want to see this play. 


    It is, let's say... Rabelasian...

    • Like 5
  2. 7 hours ago, Green Eyed Monsty said:

    It is if you are wearing the t-shirt on top of the toasty warm heavy flannel shirt over the undershirt.


    Who is sporting a nice green Grinch over red striped flannel.

    I have a hunch some of our difference in perspective is just that, mine seen from the US side of the pond and yours from the European side.

    As to the evidence for the NAZI A-Bomb, it comes from recent History Channel programs on the subject, using information de-classified in the last five years.  The programs also included information on Japanese research, including photographic evidence of the equipment in research facilities.  Bottom line is both the Germans and the Japanese were closer to solving the problems of building a nuclear bomb than allied governments have been willing to admit.



    I just don't agree with your assessment of German atomic progress. 

    One of the first steps in the development of any bomb is testing a nuclear pile. Fermi did this in June 1942. Doppel did not manage this for the Germans before early 1945.

    Add this to disinterest by the Armed forces, ideological objections to the science and the conscription of so many required technicians into the wehrmacht and the German weapons programme was never likely to achieve much.

    I would refer you to "Hitler's Scientists" by John Cornwell (2013) for a balanced and detailed treatment of the subject.

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  3. 7 hours ago, Green Eyed Monsty said:

    I agree, we are splitting hairs.

    But this is the meat and potatoes of understanding the full ramifications of history.

    Here's my line of reasoning:

    Without Pearl Harbor the isolationists in the USA still have enough influence to keep the US Armed Forces sidelined.

    The massive support of the British Isles in the form of both food and war materials doesn't ramp up as quickly,  possibly making a difference in Hitler invading and conquering Great Britain.

    The Norwegian Heavy Water Project isn't crippled so Hitlers research into an Atomic Bomb isn't impeded.  We know now that the Nazi's were mere months away from having a working A-Bomb, which would have been delivered to the Continental USA by intercontinental range bombers that would have been in production by 1946.

    The Manhattan Project is delayed from being started up by months while the USA dithers about getting into the shooting war.

    Many of the projects the Nazi's were close to completing, such as expanded sub pens in France, would have been completed, as would additional launch sites for V-1 and V-2 rockets/ballistic missiles.

    Lend/lease would have started shipping great quantities of food and military supplies to the Soviet Union later, possibly making enough of a difference to tip the balance in the German's Russian Campaign. [I appreciate the key role the Russian Winter played in stalling the German Advance]

    I see the Soviet Union as not becoming a true World Power until the end stage of WWII, with the territory they wrested from the Nazi's and occupied becoming the core for their client states that kept the Soviet Economy viable for longer than it would have without such clients.  Without the {as characterized by Churchill}  "Iron Curtain"  there would have been much more trade between the Eastern Europe Nations and the West, loosening the hold Moscow as able to exert over these nations much sooner than actually occurred.

    I'm treading very close to what used to be beekeeper territory so I will leave it at this.



    Well played!

    Very well played.



    As you say, we are in counter-factual territory, so this is all entirely speculative.

    So a few more of my counter arguments:

    1) Before Pearl Harbour USN is already in a shooting war with the Kreigsmaine. Sooner or later the loss of American ships and lives is going to trigger a war. I don't see the isolationists being able to stop this.

    2) The Russians stop The Germans at the gates of Moscow before any significant Anglo-American help arrives. After that the Germans are stuck in a 2-front war. It will last longer and be even bloodier without US help, but I can't see the Germans achieving anything better than a very painful stalemate.

    3) The German Heavy Water plant is destroyed by the indigenous Norwegian Resistance movement. This is still likely to happen even without outside help. Also I'd like to hear your references to the Germans being close to having the atom bomb. They lacked anything on the scale of Manhattan Project and most of their physicists (and Hitler) denigrated the "Jewish science" that would lead the required research. And even if they had got the Bomb, the emasculated Luftwaffe had almost no chance of delivering anywhere.


    Another pivotal point that I prefer: Winston Churchill steps out into to cross Fifth Avenue in 1932, looks the wrong way and gets hit by a taxi, hospitalised for a month. If this had been slightly more serious Churchill could easily have died. In that case a British compromise peace is much more likely after the Fall of France, Hitler avoids a 2-front War and we are in an entirely new ball-game.


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  4. 3 hours ago, Green Eyed Monsty said:

    My statement is based on the Pearl Harbor attack blasting the USA off of dead center and silencing the opposition of the isolationists.  Without Pearl Harbor it would have been months before the USA was actively involved [and yes I do recognize the already ramping up war production plus the effects of the military draft] , allowing Hitler more time to tighten his grip on Europe and devote more resources earlier to the Russian Front.  Germany might even have achieved a working Atomic Bomb first..

    You nominate some excellent candidates but I stand by my opinion.


    All good points and we are probably splitting hairs but...


    By "pivotal moment" I take that to mean one singular event that makes a noticeable change to the whole world, and I just don't think that Pearl Harbour qualifies as that. A world war was already in progress for 2 years. (More if you include Japanese aggression in China.) So PH was just the final taking of sides. As I've stated earlier, USA was already the worlds No.1 industrial power and had been so since before WWI. It was inevitable that she would eventually become a major military power, WW2 merely forced the pace.


    Let's not forget that it is Hitler who declares war on USA, not the other way around.

    • Thanks 4
  5. 14 hours ago, Green Eyed Monsty said:

    It can be argued that this act was the pivotal event of the 20th Century.

    Lets all have a moment of silence in respect of the memories of those who sacrificed so much so that those who came after could live free.



    Politely, I think not. America was already "Top Nation" in terms of productivity and potential. Japan was a second rate nation that only got as far as she did because she had been under-estimated and ignored. (As FDR sensibly recognised; Germany was the bigger threat.)


    Pivotal moments? Bolshevik revolution or Cockcroft and Watson splitting the atom are better candidates.


    But yes, deepest respect to all who fought and made sacrifices to defeat those tyrannies.

    • Like 6
  6. 1 hour ago, TGP said:

    DEC 6

    Which do you like better Dawn or Sunset? Have you ever seen either from the air?


    Very happy with both. Perhaps dawn wins out as it PROBABLY means that I get to enjoy at least one more day.


    Seen both from the air, in fact I once saw 2 sunsets in a row, with no sunrise in between. (Going westward on Concorde.)


    Saw "the Green Flash" during one spectacular sunset in the Caribbean.

    • Like 8
  7. On 12/3/2021 at 5:08 PM, Chaoswolf said:

    Today's date(12/3/21) is the same in every direction. Theres your neat little fact for the day.



    In other news, it is national bartender day. Who makes up all these days, and how do I apply for that job?


    Only if you use the weird American system of date notation.


    Ninja'd by Sumbloke, teach me to read a whole thread before replying.

    • Like 5
    • Haha 3
  8. 10 hours ago, TGP said:

    DEC 4
    Who here has ever been in a storm at sea; what is the foulest storm you’ve been in?

    Where do I begin?

    Swinging the lamp:

    Was stuck behind Hurricane Katarina for 2 days off Yucatan, a few days before it got to Florida, even a 250.000 ton tanker could not move against that.

    Been in big ones of Capes of Good hope and Horn, nasty ones in Sea of Japan and Japan, but probably the worst was the sudden onslaught of a Mistral in the Mediterranean. Lost the Main Engine and went beam on in Force 10 on that one.

    • Like 8
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