Rudolf Hess - why was he held in Captivity - 1941-1987 for so long?

Black Azrael

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You have quoted Avery yourself .
The man who wrote The makings of the Second World War.
A scholarly book you sought to downgrade because it was published before Soviet archives were made available post 1970.
Your posts have made several references to Avery’s book already and you seem to be confounding and confusing yourself.
I can not help you with such problems,
Refer back to this thread. Where?

My recent posts have been referring to Sidney Aster — the source The Field Marshal mentioned in post #111. The only 'Avery' I have cited on WW2 (in one of the posts lost in the site re-boot) was Tex Avery's Blitz Wolf. Somehow I doubt that is the 'Avery' in question.
 

The Field Marshal

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Refer back to this thread. Where?

My recent posts have been referring to Sidney Aster — the source The Field Marshal mentioned in post #111. The only 'Avery' I have cited on WW2 (in one of the posts lost in the site re-boot) was Tex Avery's Blitz Wolf. Somehow I doubt that is the 'Avery' in question.
Apologies.
My bad.
I mistakenly said Aster instead of Avery.
They are not disimiliar names but the mistake is mine.
I am referring of course all along to AVERYS excellent book.
I you consult page 90 of Averys book in the chap called Making a Stand the Polish Foreign ministers conniving and intransigeance is entirely exposed.
 

Black Azrael

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Apologies.
My bad.
I mistakenly said Aster instead of Avery.
They are not disimiliar names but the mistake is mine.
I am referring of course all along to AVERYS excellent book.
I you consult page 90 of Averys book in the chap called Making a Stand the Polish Foreign ministers conniving and intransigeance is entirely exposed.
I'm still no wiser.

Precise name of author? Detail of book title? That might help. I repeat: there is no 'Avery' in this context.

I'm looking at page 90 of Aster. It deals with the secret negotiations between the Polish Ambassador in Berlin, Lipski, and Ribbentrop. Therefrom I learn that:
Hitler personally would welcome a visit from Colonel Beck. The basis for any discussion, Ribbentrop concluded, would be the return of Danzig to Germany, and the establishment of an extra-territorial railway and road between the Reich and East Prussia. In return, the Corridor would remain Polish and Germany would guarantee Poland.
Lipski, who had just had his offer of resignation rejected by Beck, returned hastily and in deep gloom to Warsaw. There he found the Foreign Minister not unduly perturbed, and in a belligerent mood. Danzig, Beck declared to a meeting of senior officials, was a symbol for which Poland would fight. The Polish state would never "join that category of eastern states that allows rules to be dictated to them". He considered it "wiser to go forward to meet the enemy than to wait for him at home". Beck then revealed the basis of his exuberant confidence: "We have arrived at this difficult moment in our politics with all the trump cards in our hand."
The main trump card was of course Britain's new interest in eastern Europe...
If that is the sum total of the assertion that Poland was intransigent, OK, I'll take it. What it does do, though, is throw wider responsibility back on the likes of Chamberlain and Halifax, neither of whom are usually considered natural war-mongers.

I'll add this: looking further at Aster, there's an essay of his on Appeasement, Before and After Revisionism, in Diplomacy and Statecraft, vol 19, pp443-480. That's as good a summary of historiography on the topic as I'd wish to find, including (at the end) its relevance to British policy (or rather the attitudes of Thatcher and Blair) on the Falklands, Kosovo and even Iraq.
 
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The Field Marshal

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I'm still no wiser.

Precise name of author? Detail of book title? That might help. I repeat: there is no 'Avery' in this context.

I'm looking at page 90 of Aster. It deals with the secret negotiations between the Polish Ambassador in Berlin, Lipski, and Ribbentrop. Therefrom I learn that:
Hitler personally would welcome a visit from Colonel Beck. The basis for any discussion, Ribbentrop concluded, would be the return of Danzig to Germany, and the establishment of an extra-territorial railway and road between the Reich and East Prussia. In return, the Corridor would remain Polish and Germany would guarantee Poland.
Lipski, who had just had his offer of resignation rejected by Beck, returned hastily and in deep gloom to Warsaw. There he found the Foreign Minister not unduly perturbed, and in a belligerent mood. Danzig, Beck declared to a meeting of senior officials, was a symbol for which Poland would fight. The Polish state would never "join that category of eastern states that allows rules to be dictated to them". He considered it "wiser to go forward to meet the enemy than to wait for him at home". Beck then revealed the basis of his exuberant confidence: "We have arrived at this difficult moment in our politics with all the trump cards in our hand."
The main trump card was of course Britain's new interest in eastern Europe...
If that is the sum total of the assertion that Poland was intransigent, OK, I'll take it. What it does do, though, is throw wider responsibility back on the likes of Chamberlain and Halifax, neither of whom are usually considered natural war-mongers.

I'll add this: looking further at Aster, there's an essay of his on Appeasement, Before and After Revisionism, in Diplomacy and Statecraft, vol 19, pp443-480. That's as good a summary of historiography on the topic as I'd wish to find, including (at the end) its relevance to British policy (or rather the attitudes of Thatcher and Blair) on the Falklands, Kosovo and even Iraq.
Again thank you fo your forbearence on this difficult topic.
I will try find the additional sources that led me to such a negative conclusion concerning Polish diplomacy in 1939.

It certainly looks like the Brits were led wilingly by the nose into the Polish guarantee trap.
Their cabinet was murmuring about German domination of the continent a la Napolean.

Exactly the primary reason for their war declaration and nothing at all to do with anti Nazism.

Britains war declarations on Germany in both world wars were entirely to do with ensuring no country dominated continental europe .
That has always been British foreign policy.
 
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parentheses

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Again thank you fo your forbearence on this difficult topic.
I will try find the additional sources that led me to such a negative conclusion concerning Polish diplomacy in 1939.

It certainly looks like the Brits were led wilingly by the nose into the Polish guarantee trap.
Their cabinet was murmuring about German domination of the continent a la Napolean.

Exactly the primary reason for their war declaration and nothing at all to do with anti Nazism.

Britains war declarations on Germany in both world wars were entirely to do with ensuring no country dominated continental europe .
That has always been British foreign policy.
Or was it the other way round? Did the British deliberately want to wreck a German-Polish rapprochement?
 

Black Azrael

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Good question.
What, precisely, is the 'question'? It's isn't the faux-simplicity of Parenthesis in post #161.

At that juncture British policy was directed at two main issues:
  • a tripartite agreement between Britain, France and Russia, which had been on-and-off since earlier that spring;
  • as Cadogan noted (and The Field Marshal would endorse this, since it's page 91 of Aster, his text of first resort):
Whole situation looks as murky it can be, and all the little States are weakening and showing funk.
Over the weekend of 26-27 March 1939, as Westminster wrestled with Poland having come looking for a 'gentlemen's agreement', the other little State on the agenda was Rumania.

The essence, its was felt, was to tie up the little States in a common front. On the one hand that chimed with Josef Beck's half-mad idea of a third European consortium between Soviet Russia and Nazi Germany. On the other, it would require a degree of acquiescence from the Soviets, but Roman Catholic opinion must not see any sell-out to the Bolsheviks. Yet a further complication: any close connection with Stalin's Russia would poison relations with Francoist Spain, Mussolini's Italy and Imperial Japan. It would also enthuse the CPGB and the PCF. To the surprise of many colleagues, the greatest cheerleader for an Anglo-Soviet tie was Sir Samuel Hoare, the Home Secretary and arch-appeaser.

What I read (and to avoid having spending Monday morning tracing endless discussions, meetings and politicking) is that the British government was never able fully to untangle this knotty business, and Chamberlain's 'pledge' was something of a 'Hail Mary pass'. Note his caginess in the short adjournment debate of which that 'pledge' was the key moment.

Meanwhile the Soviets and Poles, separately, got fed up waiting for the British and French to come up with a common front. The Soviets went with a cynical Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact, and the Poles remained locked in futile negotiation with Ribbentrop until a few hours before Fall Weiss was triggered.

Allow me to refer back to The Field Marshal's earlier assertions on the potency of the Polish army in 1939. As we now appreciate, that strength flattered to deceive. It was, however, a view respected by the the British Foreign Policy Committee in those March 1939 exchanges. Poland could reasonably be seen as a better deterrent than the Soviets: the Stalin purges had emasculated the Red Army — its morale and organisation were seen to be somewhere between poor and hopeless.

Last throw: around the millennium there was an attempt to re-appraise Chamberlain. One proponent was Graham Stewart. As I recall, the effort didn't go far, but Stewart's thesis was Chamberlain scored an unexpected success: the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact alienated most neutral opinion and Fall Weiss, when it came:
meant Chamberlain was able to declare war at the very moment when Britain would have to fight the fewest number of enemies on the narrowest number of battlefronts.
 
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Nebuchadnezzar

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IIRC he didn't reply, but destroyed the french fleet instead, a much stronger message.

Sinking French battleships was part of the response but there were other responses too.

‘Peace offer’ was not really the correct term to use but there was a period of peace approaches during the period from May through to mid July. The initial approach was via the Swedes with peace negotiations to be facilitated by Mussolini. Halifax was in favour of pursuing this line but Churchill and most of the cabinet were opposed. However, Halifax seems to have continued some sort of correspondence on the matter with the Germans via Lord Lothian, the ambassador in Washington until directly instructed to cease by Churchill on 19th July. Churchill also instructed Lothian to cut off contact in a signal sent on 20th July. Interesting timing given Hitler’s Reichstag ‘peace’ speech of 19th July....

“It almost causes me pain to think that I should have been selected by Providence to deal the final blow to the edifice which these men have already set tottering... Mr. Churchill ought for once to believe me, when I prophesy that a great empire will be destroyed which it was never my intention to destroy or even to harm... In this hour I feel it my duty before my conscience to appeal once more to reason and common sense in Britain... I CAN SEE NO REASON WHY THIS WAR MUST GO ON!”

Halifax replied negatively a few days later but an unoffical ‘firm’ response was broadcast by the BBC within an hour of Hitler’s speech. The words of Sefton ‘Tom’ Delmer in a BBC german language propaganda broadcast......

“Herr Hitler, you have on occasion in the past consulted me as to the mood of the British public. So permit me to render your excellency this little service once again tonight. Let me tell you what we here in Britain think of this appeal of yours to what you are pleased to call our reason and common sense. Herr Führer and Reichskanzler, we hurl it right back at you, right in your evil smelling teeth.”

His words had not been officially sanctioned however they were subsequently endorsed by the Minister of Information....

Duff Cooper rallied to my support with all his suave authority. He assured the House that my talk had the Cabinet’s full approval. And when the Foreign Secretary Lord Halifax replied to Hitler a couple of days after me the sense of what he said was the same, although he used rather more restrained language.”

Udo Walendy on Sefton Delmer: Black Propaganda during World War Two
 

Nebuchadnezzar

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Do you ever read any history at all?
Hitler was on record time after time saying he admired the British Empire and did not want to ever quarrel with the British.
Even when he conquered most of Europe and had the military wherewithal and ability to invade and subjugate Britain he didn't .

It is unreal and irrational conjecture to think that Hitler would have ever gone near Britain had that country refrained from its rash and ill advised war declaration on Germany in 1939.
The same applies to the sneaky and cowardly Usa who whilst pretending neutrality were arming the British.
Do you have any grasp of basic facts?

1. Regarding Hitler’s various reassurances......

Hitler was also on record in September 1938 stating that the Sudetenlands marked the end of german territorial ambitions....

“I am thankful to Mr. Chamberlain for all his trouble and I assured him that the German people wants nothing but peace, but I also declared that I cannot go beyond the limits of our patience.

I further assured him and I repeat here that if this problem is solved, there will be no further territorial problems in Europe for Germany.”

Within 6 months the German troops invaded what was left of Czechoslovakia and 6 months after that Poland’s turn came.

2. Your assertion that Hitler “had the military wherewithal and ability to invade and subjugate Britain he didn't.”

Did he? He tried and failed. Reminder....the Battle of Britain was a defeat for Germany. Even if the Luftwaffe had achieved superiority over southern England and attempted invasion would have remained a very risky proposition.

3. “the sneaky and cowardly Usa who whilst pretending neutrality were arming the British.”

Roosevelt made no secret of his support for Britain and the fact that it was supplying weapons to them. He broadcast to the nation in his December 1940 fireside chat that America was “the Arsenal of democracy” but it was well known long before that that hundreds of American aircraft were being supplied to the British and French. Nothing sneaky about it.
 

Nebuchadnezzar

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....and back to Hess. Given that peace approaches were made and publically rejected in mid 1940 when things were at their bleakest why would an official peace offer via Hess in 1941 be suppressed for so long? The rejection of a deal with Germany in 1940 would at least be more understandable than a rejection in 1941. The theory that he was incarcerated for many decades and then assassinated to keep such a peace offer secret makes no sense.
 
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