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Bush tries to dictate Australian policy ...

By jardinier ·
I don't know what kind of coverage the American media gave to John Howard's visit to America, but in reply to a question from a reporter from the Australian newspaper regarding Mark Latham's promise to withdraw Australian troops from Iraq by Christmas, if he is elected as Prime Minister before then, Bush gave a straightforward and honest answer which amounted to dictating what Australia's policy should be on this issue.

Not that Mark Latham will take any notice of this, but I think Bush should have said something like: "I cannot comment on Australia's foreign policy." or: "It would not be appropriate for me to comment on the foreign policy of another country."

Currently 63 per cent of Australians think Australia should never have gone to Iraq in the first place.

I don't think that Bush's comment will endear him to Australians.

Whilst Mark Latham has criticised Bush, he has not done so on a live telecast to the whole nation, and certainly not in a way that would be readily picked up by all Americans.

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by Oz_Media In reply to edit for the reply above

From a report I watched on the weekend, Hitler was tipped off that Normandy would be hit but thought that the main landing point was Juno beach as the intercepted signals were regarding Canadian and British special forces landing on Juno. Nazi troops were pulled in to reinforce Juno as it was not heavily armed, what Hitler didn't catch onto was that Allies were planning on taking the main Nazi acces points, the Orne River/Caen Canal bridges, by use of nightime glider landings and not beach landings. The gliders landed in the darkness of late night before the D-Day invasion. Special forces quickly took the bridge and kept it while the troops landed in the morning, the only remaining glider pilot is a Canadian who was honored on the D-Day memorial weekend.

At this point more Canadian troops took Juno beach and worked thier way farther inland than any other allied force and held thier territory. The numbers of resistance troops were named but I didn't take any notes. They also said that Canada had met a greater opposition through these movements than any other allied force on D-Day as they were expected and Hitler had ordered troops to Juno, though they were stopped en route.

I believe the issue with the US forces on Omaha was that the beach was well fortified, and a smaller nimer of Nazis were able to create more destruction due to thier hilltop positions and several guns placed farther inland and prepared to protect the beach, which the US troops were unaware of.

Either way, it was an Allied effort not a US effort, numbers were the main reason Hitler was defeated, not greater ability.

I just found some details on the different beaches and the successes.

Even here it is stated that the Canadian troops had greater preparation as they had learned from the massacre at Dieppe (I watched a documentary on Dieppe where the cameras were rolling in anticipation of a major victory. They showed the lifeless bodies being carried aboard naval ships after finding out that Hitler had been tipped off and was waiting for the invasion at Dieppe, the hoped for propaganda film was never aired in Canada until last weekend.

Juno: " spite of heavy opposition at Courselles-sur-Mer, broke through and advanced nearly to their objective, the airfield at Carpiquet, west of Caen. The Canadians made the deepest penetration of any land forces on June 6th, again with moderate casualties."

Omaha: "One of the biggest problems was not only the restricted terrain and the dug in pillboxes, but the fact that allied intelligence had overlooked the 352nd Infantry Division, right behind the beaches. This unit, like the others in Normandy, was spread out but was an experienced unit that had served in Russia. It more than doubled the effectiveness of the coastal defences, thus resulting in excessive U.S. losses."

This coupled with a reluctance to use military engineers in place of the Sherman 'funnies' (modified Sherman tanks for mine sweeping and others with large rollers to flatten land for ease of movement was a major reason for the large numers of US casualties on Omaha beach.

I have also read that the US airmen were using British Spitfires as they were readily available in England and more effective for fighting off the Luftwaffe. Although the Luftwaffe had larger wing cannons and double the number on a British Spitfire, the Spitfire offered bette visibilty and maneuverability so the two were practically in a stalemate as to which was superior. Pilots who have since flown both planes have mixed opinions, many British pilots preferred the Luftwaffe's power where many German pilots say that the RAF Spitfires were way easier to fly and offered sight advantage.

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So who was the Supreme Allied Commander?

by Garion11 In reply to edit for the reply above

Yeah, thats what I thought. Surprise!! An American.

Casualties for WWII

The number that surprised me was the USSR information.

Country Military Civilian Deaths
USSR 13,600,000 7,700,000 21,300,000
China 1,324,000 10,000,000 11,324,000
Germany 3,250,000 3,810,000 7,060,000
Poland 850,000 6,000,000 6,850,000
Japan - - 2,000,000
Yugoslavia 300,000 1,400,000 1,706,000
Rumania 520,000 465,000 985,000
France 340,000 470,000 810,000
Hungary - - 750,000
Austria 380,000 145,000 525,000
Greece - - 520,000
United States 500,000 - 500,000
Italy 330,000 80,000 410,000
Czechoslovakia - - 400,000
Great Britain 326,000 62,000 388,000
Netherlands 198,000 12,000 210,000
Belgium 76,000 12,000 88,000
Finland - - 84,000
Canada 39,000 - 39,000
India 36,000 - 36,000
Australia 29,000 - 29,000
Albania - - 28,000
Spain 12,000 10,000 22,000
Bulgaria 19,000 2,000 21,000
New Zealand 12,000 - 12,000
Norway - - 10,262
South Africa 9,000 - 9,000
Luxembourg - - 5,000
Denmark 4,000 - 4,000
Total - - 56,125,262

Yeah, noone is disputing that the allies worked together to win WWII, but just don't forget America DID lead the way.

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by JamesRL In reply to edit for the reply above

You might want to tone down the Rah rah rhetoric Garion.

Yes the Americans did make massive contributions when they did enter the war. But on a per capita basis, the USSR, Canada and Russia spent more, contributed more troops and suffered more.

When you combine the British and Canadian forces on DDay, they outnumbered the US forces.

As to Omaha, Oz omits one of the crucial factors - the US swimming tanks that were released far beyond their operational limits in high seas - all but one sank, many crew were drowned. With those tanks(55 if I recall correctly) many of those pesky machine gun nests would have been eliminated. Another problem was the softening up with rockets. The rocket ships at Omaha attacked too far out and their rockets didnt come within hundreds of yards from shore. The landing forces were counting on some of those rockets making holes for cover.

Yes Ike was the Supreme Allied Commander in Europe. And for DDay and beyond, Monty was in command of all land forces, Tedder(British) was in charge of air forces, and a British Admiral was in Charge of the Navy.

But if we all focus on DDay, we ignore the fact that the Soviet Union suffered far worse that anyone in Europe - higher costs, higher casualties. Even without Normandy, the Soviets would have eventually defeated Hitler - though it might have taken years longer and would have caused even more frighteningly high casualties. They were at least as responsible for the defeat of Hitler as the US, and many historians, including American ones, would suggest they were more responsible.


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Well how do you like it when

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Scratches head

The Leader of a country like France, Germany, Russia or any number of others say that GWB was wrong and ahead of himself in invading Iraq in the first place?

That is similar to them attempting to tell the US how to run its Foreign Policy but right now Australia has an upcoming Election in which Mr Howard may very well be out of office and here you have the President of the US saying that the current Opposition Policy is wrong.

You can scratch your head all you like but what GWB did is just plain wrong and I do not think you'll ever understand that!

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I guess you never finish what you start hum

by JimHM In reply to Bush tries to dictate Aus ...

Right or Wrong - once you start you need to finish it. Otherwise it is worse than when you started.

Kind of like making love - once you start - you finish - or do you stop in the middle and say - sorry not in the mood tonight dear...

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While we are using sexual metaphors ...

by jardinier In reply to I guess you never finish ...

I would describe the invasion of Iraq as a TOTAL **** UP !

If current voting trends continue, come November Australia will have a new prime minister who, unlike Howard, has integrity (you wouldn't understand this as you would not be familiar with Australian domestic issues).

America, on the other hand, will quite likely have John Kerry as its president. And who will you have to thank for this? Yes, your blundering bull-in-a-china-shop GW Bush.

No doubt if this occurs you will blame the media and other leftie weanies. But the outcome, if this is the case, can be readily attributed to your constitution which permits freedom of the press.

You often cite the benefits of the freedoms given to you by your constitution. However these very same freedoms may just come back to bite you on the backside.

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Ok so I guess the bet is on?

by Garion11 In reply to While we are using sexual ...

If Bush wins, I get a wait, make it a beer. Ice cold Fosters.

If Kerry wins, you get a hotdog with Heinz ketchup. lol

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You are all TOTALLY missing the point ...

by jardinier In reply to Bush tries to dictate Aus ...

This discussion is NOT about Mark Latham's Iraq policy, but about Bush publicly criticising the policy of a contender for the leadership of another country.

Australia has had a strong alliance with the US since 1**6, when this alliance was established under a war-time LABOR prime minister, John Curtin.

This alliance DOES NOT require Australia to be subservient or sycophantic to America, as Howard has been.

In an earlier discussion when I referred to Howard's subservience to the US, one answer was: "Well that's your problem. Vote him out if you don't like him."

We intend to do just that.

A man I spoke to this morning suggested that if Howard had been any kind of a decent leader, he would not have permitted Bush to make these remarks.

So please, start again and address the topic of the discussion, or SHUT UP!

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It's sidestepping

by Oz_Media In reply to You are all TOTALLY missi ...

When defending American politics, it is common for those who support it (either Dem or Repub) to sinply side step and evade to a different issue when they are cornered.

The presidents and prime ministers have made it such an art that people do it without relizing it.

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Or maybe OZ

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to It's sidestepping

They just don't know any better and think that they have a "God Given Right" to comment on other countries political agendas.


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