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 Fall 09 Independent Study

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Friedrich Werner
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PostSubject: Fall 09 Independent Study   Sat Mar 28, 2009 11:11 am

Hey everyone,
I put these questions to my boys in the 2nd SS, but I thought even more ideas/ thoughts/ suggestions would be awesome. So here is what i posted in 2nd SS forums, let me know if you all have anything please. Thanks!



I am going into my senior year of college at University of Richmond, VA and I have opted to do a independent study with a professor at my university whose focus is Eastern Europe and Balkans. Side note he works for the US government and during the Croatian independence affair this past year he was one of the first people to be called to D.C. to get parts of the Pentagon up to speed on this subject. He also went over to Berlin (where he has an apartment) last fall I.O.T. to go speak to the EU and Nato defense officials regarding both the balkans and the Russo-Georgian Conflict

Anyways I will be doing an independent study with him next fall in which I will read around 8 books (or 2 essays instead of a book) and discuss the topic of my study through book reviews and lunch with him every so often. I am trying to think of some great topics that are uncommon in this sphere of the world (U.S.). Here are my ideas, if anyone (I am especially interested in what schreiner has to say and recommend) can think of some other related topics, books, and/or articles please let me know.

Thanks,
werner


Topics I would enjoy aimming this study towards:

- Minor Axis Nations pre/in WWII
I.e. The war time and post war goals of bulgaria, slovakia and croatia

I.e. Bulgaria and Germany (topics within to look into Germany having a hand in Bulgarias King's death in 43)

I.e. Hungary, Romania and the eventual conflict over transylvania the two would have after the 'believed' victory the axis would have over russia in 1942.

I.e. Pro-Facism in greece before Italy invaded- a possible minor Axis power lost to italian greed

I.e. Turkey's involvement with the axis and the events of 1945 when Turkey went from neutral to Allied.


- Scandinavia in WWII
I.e. Sweden's (government's and/or populace's) involvement with the Axis

I.e. Sweden and Finland Winter War

I.e. Sweden and Finland Continuation War

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{SHD}Kimball



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PostSubject: Re: Fall 09 Independent Study   Sat Mar 28, 2009 2:11 pm

The Richmond Spiders.
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Metalbourne
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PostSubject: Re: Fall 09 Independent Study   Sat Mar 28, 2009 4:36 pm

I could ask Gunslinger in our unit, he's a historian from England and has tons upon tons of info on WW2. I have over 100 books on WW2 and even more documentries but he beats us.

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PostSubject: Re: Fall 09 Independent Study   Mon Mar 30, 2009 2:13 pm

I'll try to come up with something related to those Swe+Fin -topics.
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Alexandr Kamyshonov



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PostSubject: Re: Fall 09 Independent Study   Thu Apr 02, 2009 1:54 pm

I would suggest the Winter War, or maybe the Annexation of the Baltic States by Russia. Almost nobody knows about that, and fewer people write/talk about it. Though, you might not find to many resources on it.
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PostSubject: Re: Fall 09 Independent Study   Fri Apr 03, 2009 7:23 pm

This is a re-post of what I wrote. It's from the Das Reich forums.


Yugoslavia and Nezavisna Država Hrvatska (Independent State of Croatia)

The establishment of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes was a result of the point of self-determination and the treaties of Versailles and Trianon. Interestingly enough the idea of a Yugoslav state was conceived by the Croatians and not the Serbs. The Serbian royal family held legitimacy in this new state. This new state of South Slavs was a patchwork of many peoples including groups which were the Serbs, Croats, Bosnian Muslims, Slovenes, Macedonians, Montenegrins and others such as the Hungarians, Albanians, Germans, Bulgarians, Greeks, Turks and Jews (Both Ashkenazi and Sephardic). It stretched from the Dalmatian Coast in the west to the border with Bulgaria in the east and from Vojvodina in the North to Macedonia in the south. Ethnic disputes would occur commonly in this state, especially in between the Croatians and Serbians, so much that the Croatian representative of the Croatian Peasant Party Stjepan Radić, would be shot and killed in the Skupština or Parliament by Serbian politicians from the Radical party. These events would define a great rift in between the two groups. In response to these events King Alexander dissolved parliament, got rid of the constitution and established autocratic rule to further his grip and keep order. All national and radical parties were banned and the country was renamed to Yugoslavia in 1929. While this seemed like a legitimate move in the face of radical nationalism, it was perceived by many Croatians to be a catastrophe and extension of Serbian power. This was the last straw to many Croatians both moderate and hard-liner and soon many fights broke out in the country. This tension eventually culminated with the assassination of King Alexander during his visit to Marseilles in France. The assassination was linked to both the Ustahsa and IMRO (Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization).

By 1939 the Croatians had gained self-autonomy except in foreign and military affairs which was still in the hands of the central Yugoslav government. In 1940 there were talks about signing the Tri-Partite pact, but Prince Paul was hesitant since he was afraid of a revolt. A coup toppled the Yugoslav Government under Prince Paul. In April, 1941 directive 25 was issued by Hitler. This called for the invasion of Yugoslavia. The invasion involved German, Italian and Hungarian forces. The Yugoslav forces quickly gave in due to the disunity amongst the ranks and the overwhelming forces they faced from all sides of their country. The Independent State of Croatia was declared on April 10th, 1941 just one day before the invasion. The Ustasha regime came to power supported by the Germans and Italians. The Poglavnik or leader would be Dr.Ante Pavelić who was uncompromising when it came to Croatian independence. This determination can be seen in some of the clandestine operations the Ustasha engaged in during the interwar period such as the raid on the Dalmatian coast. This independent state in terms of military forces fared well, but that was not enough against the various threats it faced, notably the revolutionary partisan movement under Josip 'Broz' Tito. The Croatian State needed the support of German troops in order to maintain territorial integrity against an increasingly strong partisan movement and other internal enemies. The Germans as well needed the Croatian forces to back-up anti-partisan operations which required manpower and equipment they could not afford to deploy to the Balkans due to the demands of the Eastern Front. The series of conflicts in the former Yugoslav territories was rather unique in the fact that it in involved so many factions and ideologies. These included the Ustasha, regular Croatian Army forces, Germans, Italians, Royalists, Orthodox, Catholics and Muslims. The Partisans began their long campaign in July, 1941 with around 10,000 men. This force would grow indefinitely overtime. The anti-Serb policies pushed by the NDH would also strengthen the resolve of the Serbs to fight back whether in the Chetniks (Serb Royalists) or Partisans. These actions helped swell the ranks of the Partisans as well. The brutal civil war involved unimaginible atrocities such as ethnic cleansing and repercussions of ethnic cleansing all in a vicious cycle. The most notorious unit was the Ustasha's Crna Legija or Black Legion which was an assault force, but it also engaged in massacres of Serb civilians. The partisan threat eventually became so large that the Germans had installed their security apparatus into the NDH (Independent State of Croatia) and raised a number of security units from Croats and Bosniaks such as the Sandžak militia. As the war drew on in favor of the Allies the Partisans were experiencing a greater growth in numbers, some of these even came from native units in the area who had previously fought them. The Independent State of Croatia was eventually overthrown and the Croatian forces fled north into Austria where they stopped by the British and guaranteed a safe-haven from partisans in Italy. Once disarmed they were sent on trains, but these trains were not going to the destination they thought they would end up in, but back home with enraged partisans who massacred around 150,000-200,000 Croatians both military and civilian.

Slovenská republika (Free State of Slovakia or Slovak Republic)

The Free State of Slovakia was formed from the remains of the state of Czechslovakia with Josef Tiso as President and Vojtech Tuka as Prime and Foreign minister. They both wanted to see Slovakia have her place in the New Order of Europe. Josef Tiso was more of a moderate when it came to policy and did not want to see his country under the hegemony of another nation, whether they be Czech or Hungarian. Vojtech Tuka however was more of a reactionary, he advocated a National Socialist view and was responsible for establishing the Rodobrana which was similar to the Blackshirts. This organization later became the Hlinka Guard. Slovakia wanted to maintain its territorial integrity in the face of irredentist claims from both Poland and Hungary. The former wanted the territory in the north while the latter considered all of Slovakia to be Felvidék or upper-Hungary although they ended up with only southern Slovakia and southern Ruthenia after the first Vienna award. Distraught over the loss of southern Ruthenia the Karpatska Sich of the Ruthene Republic attacked Munkacs. In reaction the Hungarians invaded the area and annexed it. Slovakia was also forced to give an additional strip of land. Slovakia invaded Poland with Germany and saw limited success due to lack of mobilization. Later Slovakia participated in Operation Barbarossa sending her Slovak Expeditionary Force into the Soviet Union. Since many of the Slovak units couldn't keep up with the main German forces an improvisation was done. This improvisation condensed all motorized equipment into a new formation, Brigade Pilfousek. Later on the Slovak Army group was re-organized into two divisions better suited for the front. These were 1st Slovak Mobile Division and the 2nd Slovak Security Division. The first saw action on the front lines from Kiev to the Caucasus, while the latter was charged with rear-guard duties. Due to the declining situation of the war for the Axis resistance was building up against Tiso's regime. This accumulated to the point where a National Uprising was staged of which was helped by insurgents supported by the Soviets. In the end it was crushed by German and loyal Slovak units. Eventually Slovakia lost some autonomy due to an ever apprehensive Germany and even some loyal Slovak units were disbanded although this was later reversed. Partisan activity would continue until late in the war. When Tiso was evaluated under trial he specifically stated that he had no choice in many matters and desired to maintain Slovak independence in the face of aggression of all the surrounding powers, especially the Hungarians.

In conclusion both of these States goals were to maintain their independence or de-facto independence and hoped to find a place in the New Europe.

Yes, I actually wrote this myself and double-checked the information to make sure it was factual. I hope to get some acknowledgments on this as it took me some time.


Last edited by August Schreiner on Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Friedrich Werner
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PostSubject: Re: Fall 09 Independent Study   Mon Apr 06, 2009 12:35 pm

great stuff man! got class now, so i just did a quick read. I'll talk to you later about what you gave me.

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PostSubject: Re: Fall 09 Independent Study   Mon Apr 06, 2009 12:35 pm

and of course thank you

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