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Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey replies to Stephen Sciaretta about WW2

Stephen Sciaretta's article 

To deny the importance of the United States in World War Two would be an act of extreme ignorance. However, to state that the contribution of the USA was more important than that of the Soviet Union is as asinine a comment as I have ever heard, especially from someone who purports to be a scholar.

The USA lost some 295,000 military personnel and no civilians (in the USA). The USSR lost 13.600.000 troops and 7.700.000 civilians, a total of 21.300.000 people. These people gave their lives by stemming the tide of Hitler's sweep to the East after the West had been utterly and completely defeated, with Britain penned into her shores and France collapsed.

If over 90% of the German troops killed, were killed on the Eastern front, and all the other allied armies combined, of which the USA was one part, killed less than 10%, it would seem to me logical that the contribution of the USSR was considerably and significantly, not to say crucially, more important than that of any other country.

Stalin's "dastardly, unholy alliance" with Hitler (your words) was the Non-Aggression Pact signed in 1939. It was not an alliance with Hitler, but an attempt to buy time, as much time as possible, because the USSR was still exhausted from the Civil War and the Communist Party always stood for peace.

Stalin knew very well that Hitler would invade. In the event he bought two precious years and the result was what we have already said: over 90% of German troops killed on the Eastern Front.

As to your comment that Germany would have won both wars if the USA had not intervened, I think you had better buy yourself another pair of spectacles and study your history books more carefully. The USA came out of isolationism in 1917 (the First World War began in 1914), by which time the British, French, Russians and their allies had the Triple Alliance forces in retreat.

As for World War Two, the American Army only came into direct contact with the Wehrmacht in 1942 (the war began in 1939) by which time the Germans had lost North Africa, and had been overstretched in Russia. Remember, D Day was only in 1944, by which time Stalingrad and Kursk had virtually sapped the energy of the Wehrmacht and its ability to launch large-scale offensives.

As for your insults regarding my writing, I am used to such blatant bad manners by certain readers. Well, you are free to say what you want, at least here in the Russian press. I understand that as a US citizen your freedoms are limited, for example, you are not able to travel freely to Cuba, is this not so?

However you do not need to speak about Chechnya, which is an integral part of the Russian Federation, where an armed insurrection by foreign elements is attempting to destabilize the country as a whole (although it will not succeed) when trying to justify the Bush regime's murderous and illegal act of butchery which has slaughtered tens of thousands of civilians, which has targeted civilian infrastructures, which has dropped cluster bombs in civilian areas, and so on. Chechnya is Russia and every state has the right to defend itself. Iraq is not the USA.

Nobody needs to exaggerate anything when reporting the record of your government in Iraq, unfortunately the figures speak for themselves: 10.000 civilians slaughtered, 35.000 mutilated, 1.000 children blinded or maimed, water and electricity supplies destroyed, systematic torture of
detainees. These are not exaggerations. They are facts.

Face the truth and do not try to wriggle out of it by blaming Russia for Chechnya. Chechnya is the symptom, Russia is the cure. I hope Washington is not the cause, whether directly or indirectly.