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  1. #21
    Sniffles
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    I don't find it entirely implausible for Hitler to be an F. His reasoning for things was rather F. I mean, in his eyes, it was all one big epic war of that which is pure over that which is filthy. Good and bad, light and dark.
    That's pretty much how it played it out eventually. It should be mentioned that Hitler's original intention in 1939 was for a more limited war. He was literally shocked when he heard about Britain and France declaring war, remarking "What do we do now?"

    Of course, he should've fucking seen this eventuality since breaking the Munich agreement, plus Chamberlain's war guarantee to Poland in March 1939. Sorry Im just having trouble buying the argument that Hitler was somehow forced to attack Poland. Try again Buchanan and AJP Taylor.

    In terms of skills, Hitler was a brilliant manipulator of peoples' spirits, but he didn't know shit about commanding an army. He really bares a lot of responsibilities for Nazi millitary defeat, and he probably should have let his wiser generals make the decisions. In fact, it was often his inability to accept certain realistic, but depressing possibilities, that made him give crazy military orders.
    Yes and no. It was only untill 1941 after he sacked Field Marshal Walther von Brauchitsch, thus taking direct command of the army, that Hitler started to show his flaws as a commander. Up untill this time, Hitler did show considerable skill when limiting himself to the proper role of overall commander-in-chief.

    He certainly made a wise decision to bypass the General Staff's plan for the 1940 campaign(which was a rehash of the old Schliffen plan of 1914) and instead back von Manstein's plan for a surprise attack through the Ardennes. This was key to the German victory over France, and succeeded beyond anybody's belief(especially Hitler's). During the same campaign, he did play some role in planning the assault on Fort Eben-Emael, which to this day still remains a textbook example of the tactical use of special forces.

    It's generally agreed that his decision to hold the line at all costs against the Soviet counter-attacks in '41 did save the Wehrmacht from possible total annhiliation.

    There's also this issue brought up by B.H. Lindell Hart in his History of the Second World War that Hitler's "intuition" deduced that the Allies would probably land somewhere near Normandy in 1944, which ran counter to the calculations of the General Staff. Of course the constant rivalry between Rommel and von Rundstedt on not only where the Allies would land but how to respond, plus lack of time and resources, prevented the Germans from better preparing their defenses.

    So it'd be wrong to say Hitler was completely incompetent in military affairs. He really bit off more than he could possibly chew(especially at Stalingrad, telling squads where to fight in heavy street-fighting 1000 miles from the front).

  2. #22
    heart on fire
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    Wasn't Hilter mostly a front man who had advisors and handlers? Wasn't he just like the showman who charmed the masses?

  3. #23
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by heart View Post
    Wasn't Hilter mostly a front man who had advisors and handlers? Wasn't he just like the showman who charmed the masses?
    No, he actually through around some real control. That was exactly the problem. He totally over-extended himself.

    I don't know... Hitler really does strike me as NF. Stalin is practically a patron of T, but I'm not decided on whether I'd peg him as N or S.
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  4. #24
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    The quotes seem very Ni to me (now that I actually know what Ni reads like).

    I don't see any reason why Hitler couldn't be an NF, and I don't see anything particularly un-NF about the quotes. (not that I want him to be part of the NF team, haha, but I don't see why he couldn't be)
    "...On and on and on and on he strode, far out over the sands, singing wildly to the sea, crying to greet the advent of the life that had cried to him." - James Joyce

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  5. #25
    Sniffles
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    Quote Originally Posted by heart View Post
    Wasn't Hilter mostly a front man who had advisors and handlers? Wasn't he just like the showman who charmed the masses?
    If you mean did he take part in the day-to-day affairs of the running the state? No, he entrusted that job to his second-in-commands like Goering, Himmler, etc. This was especially true when it came to the Final Solution. There were some procedures in place to make sure Hitler never heard about many of the nitty-gritty details of that affair, and anybody who brought it up was in big shit.

    This happened with the wife of Baldur von Schirach, head of the Hitler Youth. I can't remember off hand the exact incident: either she saw some trains carrying Jews to the camps or soldiers complained to her about having to kill people; anyways, she actually mentioned this to Hitler, and he threw a major tantrum about how she should never deal with affairs she doesn't understand. After that, the Schirachs were never invited to Hitler's presence ever again!

    There was another incident, recorded by a former telephone operator at Hitler's HQ, of overhearing Himmler talking to Hitler's secretary Martin Bormann. In the midst of the conversation, Himmler spontaneous told Bormann to tell Hitler that X number of Jews(again cant remember the exact number off hand) had been liquidated. Bormann was outraged and told Himmler this would be reported.

    The basic rule was nothing was to disturb or upset the Fuhrer too much.


    Of course he encouraged rivalries within his power structure, so nobody would obtain enough power to overtake him. This had the negative effect of limiting German abilities to operate on various levels during the war. This was especially true at times with the rivalry between the Waffen-SS and the regular Wehrmacht. One incident I know about during the 1941 Balkans campaign where an SS officer drew his pistol at a Wehrmacht commander, simply because the Wehrmacht column passing ahead of the SS contingent.

  6. #26
    Sniffles
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    Stalin is practically a patron of T, but I'm not decided on whether I'd peg him as N or S.
    I'd say N. According to Sewern Bialer's introduction to Stalin and His Generals, he mentions that Stalin had real talent in two main areas of military matters: grand strategy and detailed tactics. It was pretty much everything in between(ie operational matters) that he lacked much skill in. This seems to line up the one quote I posted before, claiming he was a master of details.

  7. #27
    Sniffles
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    Wow here's something I randomly found, an assestment of Stalin's skill as a commander - and even compares his style to that of Hitler's:

    His leadership was by no means confined to the taking of abstract strategic decisions, at which civilian politicians may excel. The avid interest with which he studied the technical aspects of modern warfare, down tot he minute details, shows him to have been anything but a dilettante. He viewed the war primarily from the angle of logistics. To secure reserves of manpower and supplies of weapons, in the right quantities and proportions, to allocate them and to transport them tot he right points at the right time, to amass a decisive strategic reserve and to have it ready for intervention at decisive moments--these operations made up nine-tenths of his task.

    In the first phase of the war the army paid a heavy price for, among other things, the loss of self-reliance which its commanding staffs had suffered as a consequence of the purges. The lesson was not, however, wasted on Stalin. He had the sense to give back to his generals their freedom of movement, to encourage them to speak their mind, to embolden them to look for the solution of their problems by way of trial and error, and to relieve them from the fear of the boss's wrath, a fear which weighed so heavily on Hitler's generals.

    He punished his officers with draconian severity for lack of courage or vigilance; he demoted them for incompetence, even when the incompetents happened to be Voroshilov and Budienny; and he promoted for initiative and efficiency. Hitler's generals had a shrewder appreciation of Stalin's method than Hitler himself when they said that the top rungs of the Russian ladder of command "were filled by men who had proved themselves so able that they were allowed to exercise their own judgment, and could safely insist on doing things in their own way."

    It is nevertheless true that, like Hitler, Stalin took the final decision on every major and many a minor military issue. How then, it may be asked, could the two things be reconciled: Stalin's constant interference with the conduct of the war, and freedom of initiative for his subordinates? The point is that he had a peculiar manner of making his decisions, one which not only did not constrict his generals, but, on the contrary, induced them to use their own judgment.

    Hitler usually had his preconceived ideas--sometimes it was a brilliant conception, sometimes a bee in his bonnet--which he tried to force upon a Brauchitsch or a Halder or a Rundstedt. For all his so-called dilettantism, he was a doctrinaire in matters of strategy, impatient with those who could not see the merits of his particular dogma or plan. Not so Stalin. He had no strategic dogmas to impose upon others. He did not approach his generals with operational blue-prints of his own. He indicated to them his general ideas, which were based on an exceptional knowledge of all aspects of the situation, economic, political, and military.

    But beyond that he let his generals formulate their views and work out their plans, and on these he based his decisions. His role seems to have been that of the cool, detached, and experienced arbiter of is own generals. In case of a controversy between them, he collected the opinions of those whose opinion mattered, weighed pros and cons, related local viewpoints to general considerations and eventually spoke his mind. His decisions did not therefore strike his generals on the head--they usually sanctioned ideas over which the generals themselves had been brooding. This method of leadership was not novel to Stalin.

    Stalin as Warlord

    There's also of course the recently released Stalin's Wars: From World War to Cold War, 1939-1953 by Geoffrey Roberts, which goes into more details about Stalin's skills as a commander.

    Anthony Beevor even pays homage to Stalin's commander skills in both Stalingrad and The Fall of Berlin 1945.

  8. #28
    Sniffles
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    Quote Originally Posted by DigitalMethod View Post
    He mentioned his love for the details. Definitely more NT.
    He's complaining about being submerged by details. Even the author of the books mentions: "For Hitler, the big idea was never to be disrupted by small facts." That sounds more NF.

    By constrast, it was Stalin who was the master of details.

    Yes yes yes, I simply know too much about this shit - it's disturbing.

  9. #29
    Content. Content? DigitalMethod's Avatar
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    Hmm well now that I think about it I enjoy the big picture, and the details that make up the picture! Ahh man I'm so confused.

    I love the often beautiful "big picture" of a lot of things.
    But I also love the small details of that picture.
    "The life of the individual has meaning only insofar as it aids in making the life of every living thing nobler and more beautiful."
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  10. #30
    Sniffles
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    Quote Originally Posted by DigitalMethod View Post
    Hmm well now that I think about it I enjoy the big picture, and the details that make up the picture! Ahh man I'm so confused.

    I love the often beautiful "big picture" of a lot of things.
    But I also love the small details of that picture.
    Except we're not talking about you, we're talking about Uncle Adolf here.

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