Nazi Germany v. USSR Watch

z-hog
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To compare life under Hitler and Stalin, the USSR was worse. They were like minded individuals and the regimes reflected that, they were identical in almost every aspect. They both deprived people of freedom of thought and expression, they both used concentration camps for dissenters, they both invaded other countries.

They carved out Poland between them. The USSR was in no way a better place than Nazi Germany, where we can equally say it wasn't all bad in the 30s. Not when compared to the 20s, at least.

Under Stalin, entire communities could find themselves dispatched to Siberia as punishment or have their produce taken away as in the Ukraine. Estimates talk of millions, a lot of Ukrainians died of hunger for the sake of the Socialist experiment. They did welcome the Nazis as liberators, that is well known.

Is there anything at all to make the USSR a more palatable proposition than Nazi Germany? The Soviets went on to occupy a large part of Europe for a lot longer than the Nazis did and all.
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poslednigeroi
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In the USSR, it was far easier to become a dissident. In Nazi Germany, the Gestapo had eyes everywhere - but the USSR didn’t have nearly as many numbers in the NKVD/KGB, or the technology to bug buildings until at least the 70s I would say. All it took to become a dissident in the USSR was to gather some trusted friends and meet somewhere secluded to discuss opposition to the gov’t.
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z-hog
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(Original post by poslednigeroi)
In the USSR, it was far easier to become a dissident.
Equally unproductive and exposed to the same consequences.
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Napp
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(Original post by z-hog)
To compare life under Hitler and Stalin, the USSR was worse. They were like minded individuals and the regimes reflected that, they were identical in almost every aspect. They both deprived people of freedom of thought and expression, they both used concentration camps for dissenters, they both invaded other countries.

They carved out Poland between them. The USSR was in no way a better place than Nazi Germany, where we can equally say it wasn't all bad in the 30s. Not when compared to the 20s, at least.

Under Stalin, entire communities could find themselves dispatched to Siberia as punishment or have their produce taken away as in the Ukraine. Estimates talk of millions, a lot of Ukrainians died of hunger for the sake of the Socialist experiment. They did welcome the Nazis as liberators, that is well known.

Is there anything at all to make the USSR a more palatable proposition than Nazi Germany? The Soviets went on to occupy a large part of Europe for a lot longer than the Nazis did and all.
An interesting question but one im not sure you can really answer. Especially given the USSR was (despite its centralisation) still a relatively loose collection of extremely different civilisations and cultures which were still in the process of being Stalinized and Russified.
As a general and horribly loose answer though the USSR probably would have been worse due to Stalin and his merry band of psychopaths like Beria. However, with all that being said, free speech itself was a rather interesting ones that the Russians were and are very good at having fun with. During the Soviet period some of their best literary novels were produced notably those by Ilf and Petrov ( highly recommended by the way)

As for the occupation of eastern europe? I'm not sure, in this context, you can call it good or bad in reference to your proposition. They occupied it for a very simple reason... defence. Russia has no natural fortifications and countless armies from the French, Germans, Poles, Swedes, Lithuanians etc. have invaded (or tried) the center through the East European Plain. Having seen the destruction wreaked upon them you can hardly blame them for trying to create a buffer zone.
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z-hog
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(Original post by Napp)
As for the occupation of eastern europe? I'm not sure, in this context, you can call it good or bad in reference to your proposition. They occupied it for a very simple reason... defence. Russia has no natural fortifications and countless armies from the French, Germans, Poles, Swedes, Lithuanians etc. have invaded (or tried) the center through the East European Plain. Having seen the destruction wreaked upon them you can hardly blame them for trying to create a buffer zone.
Well, that was the argument for their invasion of Poland indeed. It's all very nice to have a buffer zone but that meant keeping a lid on Eastern Europe and everyone in it as they did, to those countries the effect was the same as it would have been under the Nazis to say the least. An expansionist buffer zone, Hitler was all for that too. Really, I can't think of one thing in favour of Soviet Russia when compared to Nazi Germany in the 30s.
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Napp
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(Original post by z-hog)
Well, that was the argument for their invasion of Poland indeed. It's all very nice to have a buffer zone but that meant keeping a lid on Eastern Europe and everyone in it as they did, to those countries the effect was the same as it would have been under the Nazis. An expansionist buffer zone, Hitler was all for that too. Really, I can't think of one thing in favour of Soviet Russia when compared to Nazi Germany in the 30s.
Indeed, although a fun fact people forget is the Poles had been invading and trying to conquer Russia for centuries. It seems a bit eyebrow raising that they got so uppity when the shoe was on the other foot.... Of course i'm not being overly serious with the latter remark but nevertheless in geopolitics might is right and i can near enough guarantee that Britains entry into WWII was not so much to protect ickle Poland as to follow our sacrosanct foreign policy goal of never letting a single power dominate the continent.

But yes as to your question i would tend to tentatively agree with you, Stalins Russia was not a pleasant place to be. Although he was a lot more even handed in his mass slaughter :lol:. But i stand by the premise its a dubious proposition to try and compare the two in the first place.
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z-hog
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Isn't anybody going to stick up for Soviet Russia then?
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JamesManc
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It wasn't too good in germany of you were a Jew.
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z-hog
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Time's up, we have established that Nazi Germany was a better place than Soviet Russia. The other day there was a family walking around Westminster with a massive Soviet flag, the children ought to be taken away by Social Services.

Also, the so-called education system should stop telling students that Hitler was worse than Stalin. He wasn't.
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PTMalewski
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(Original post by z-hog)

Is there anything at all to make the USSR a more palatable proposition than Nazi Germany? The Soviets went on to occupy a large part of Europe for a lot longer than the Nazis did and all.
Speaking of the occupation of Europe, the situation in the countries occupied by The Soviet Union was far better than the situation in the countries occupied by the Reich, or in the Soviet Union itself.

IIIrd Reich is responsible for killing 4-5,7+ million of Polish citizens during the 1939-1945 period. The Soviet Union is responsible for killing 350 thousand during the 1939-1953 period.
Terror in the Soviet bloc countries was often much lesser than that inside the Soviet Union, and in some countries, it dispersed almost completely after the death of Stalin.

Also, whilst it could have been better to be German in IIIrd Reich, than anyone in the Soviet Union, the Soviets targeted only those whom they believed to be their class enemies, while the Generalplan Ost presumed that Slavs should either be exterminated or turned into uneducated slaves.

(Original post by Napp)
Indeed, although a fun fact people forget is the Poles had been invading and trying to conquer Russia for centuries. It seems a bit eyebrow raising that they got so uppity when the shoe was on the other foot....
Hmm... It's not that easy.
Poland formed a Union with the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, that had taken control over territories that were earlier controlled by different old-Russian states (mid medieval period), as well as territories that were earlier occupied by the Mongol invaders. In fact, part of the Golden Horde even joined Lithuania and helped the Poles and Lithuanians to fight the Teutonic Order.
Poland and Lithuania specifically decided to make the Union of Lublin that turned them into a single state, because Lithuania was unable to defend itself from Moscow, from that point onwards all the wars ran by the Polish-Lithuanian Republic against Russia, were either defensive wars, or attempts to gain back territories that were lost earlier. The only exception from this occurred during the Time of Troubles, but that was literally a private venture of border magnates who managed to eventually get the king Sigismund III involved and cause a Polish-Russian war, the Parliament didn't want.
The Republic could organize an army from 60-100 thousand soldiers + extensive supporting staff in need, as it did several times when fighting Turkey or the Chmielnicki's uprising, while for the Polish-Russian 1608-1618 the Parliament did no assign any significant resources and an army of only 7 thousand soldiers was sent.
Moreover, in the 1919 The Second Republic of Poland actually signed a ceasfire with the Bolsheviks, because the 'White movement' didn't want to accept the resurrection of Poland, while Polish leaders were either thinking they can make a deal with Bolsheviks on that matter or that the Revolution would cause chaos in Russia for very many years, removing the Russian threat.
Last edited by PTMalewski; 2 months ago
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