Most Overrated Militaries

Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,171
US
The French in the inter war period was considered the best on the continent, maybe even in the world. In the 1930s France’s muscle was used by nations like Poland to keep German and Soviet threats at bay. Yet, in 1940 Germany ran right through the French military in weeks.
 
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Mar 2019
1,649
Kansas
The French in the inter war period was considered the best on the continent, maybe even in the world. In the 1930s France’s muscle was used by nations like Poland to keep German and Soviet threats at bay. Yet, in 1940 Germany ran right through the French military in weeks.
Its the old adage: It is not the size of the dog in the fight, it is the size of the fight in the dog.
 
Dec 2011
4,894
Iowa USA
The French in the inter war period was considered the best on the continent, maybe even in the world. In the 1930s France’s muscle was used by nations like Poland to keep German and Soviet threats at bay. Yet, in 1940 Germany ran right through the French military in weeks.
Specifically Rodger what are you referring to please on the topic of Polish-French relations, could be a few topics but what were you thinking of? Is it possible to elaborate?
 
This is possible but the army may have been just stopped and mauled, sort of like Gordian III's army about a dozen years later, and gave as good as it got, which would explain the lack of a Persian followup operation for over a decade. Btw I was under the impression the battle took place in 232 or 233. :)




Many of the losses of the northern force were due to frostbite on the way back.



This is by far the most likely version. Good thing we have the RGDS or the nonsense versions would've retained an even stronger influence...




Sure but remarkably, not even the severe losses due to defeats and plague prevented the comeback of c 268-299.



Very understandably, after incompetents had cost many thousands of lives around mid third century, the latter century soldiers made good generalship a key criterion for supporting an emperor or would-be emperor.



Pacatianus was along the Danube and Odainathus's authority was recognized by the emperor.



The do-nothing Gallus. He agreed to pay the victories goths a subsidy, and may not have planned to avenge Abrittus.



Sassanid successes were not really devastating until 252-60. I think the massive deterioration in the situation was mainly due to the increased barbarian threat, compared to most earlier periods. Note for example, Shapur's depredations of 252 came after Forum Terebronii and was an exploitation of it. On a number of previous occasions Parthians or Sassanids had caused trouble, requiring European legionary reinforcements in the East. Forum Terebronii mate this temporarily impossible, which was tantamount to a green light for Shapur.
I meant the Syrian aristocrat Jotapianus rather than Pacatianus, and as for Odainath he certainly declared his loyalty to Gallienus, but scholars generally consider it the case that Odainath took power in the east in large part through his own initiative and acted with a large degree of independence, albeit with loyalty to Gallienus. After all, he was not a general in the Roman army. He was a Palmyreme notable who appears to have reacted to crisis. Local initiative can otherwise be witnessed with the aforementioned Uranius Antoninus, with individual cities against Gothic raiders, etc. As for the rest I'm inclined to think that it was a perfect storm of factors (losses during wars with Persia, financial strain, Alemanni, Goths, climate, internal instability, etc).
 
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Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,171
US
Specifically Rodger what are you referring to please on the topic of Polish-French relations, could be a few topics but what were you thinking of? Is it possible to elaborate?
In the early 1930s, after Hitler came to power, Poland and Germany were sparring over the border created by the Treaty of Versailles. As Hitler Hagen to militarize Germany, there were “incidents,” especially around the free city of Danzig. Poland relied on their alliance with France to deter possible German aggression. Poland even contemplated a military strike before Hitler got too strong in the mid 1930s, but declined after France refused to join them.
 
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Dec 2011
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Iowa USA
In the early 1930s, after Hitler came to power, Poland and Germany were sparring over the border created by the Treaty of Versailles. As Hitler Hagen to militarize Germany, there were “incidents,” especially around the free city of Danzig. Poland relied on their alliance with France to deter possible German aggression. Poland even contemplated a military strike before Hitler got too strong in the mid 1930s, but declined after France refused to join them.
And the close cooperation with France was during Pilsudski's lifetime if I recall correctly?

Wasn't there a dilemma that, end of the day, Poland's trade with Germany was much greater than even the long-term potential trade relationship with France?
 
Likes: Rodger
Jan 2015
3,363
Front Lines of the Pig War
Well I will start with a pretty controversial one - Germany in WW2.
Dare I say "Overated" threads are overated? ;)

What exactly is the "rating" for the Wehrmacht?

A smidgen under a plethora?
The square root of a tesseract?

There is no numerical rating that I know of.
The "rating" is rather arbitrary, it really depends on each reader's opinion...


However, the fact does remain that Germany did punch above its weight (based on GDP and manpower) in WWII.
The German military consistently beat the Soviets in virtually every battle into 1944 - measured by casualties.
Even celebrated Soviet "victories" like Kursk & Stalingrad had the Red army with vastly more casualties than German
 

Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,171
US
And the close cooperation with France was during Pilsudski's lifetime if I recall correctly?

Wasn't there a dilemma that, end of the day, Poland's trade with Germany was much greater than even the long-term potential trade relationship with France?
I am not sure of the trade balances between Poland and Germany and Poland and France at this time. I know France often provided weapons and arms to Poland during this time period. But, if you look at trade balances and deficits today, it becomes apparent that nations trade with other nations that aren't so friendly to them. Germany's rhetoric about taking back Danig and even part of the Polish Corridor troubled Poland to the pnt that they leaned on France's reputation, at least in the 1930s, in an effort to keep German aggression at bay. As history has demonstrated, by1 940, germany had the advantage over France.
 
Jul 2009
9,955
And the close cooperation with France was during Pilsudski's lifetime if I recall correctly?

Wasn't there a dilemma that, end of the day, Poland's trade with Germany was much greater than even the long-term potential trade relationship with France?
The separate Polish-French alliance was always suspect by both Marshal Pilsudski and many other influential Poles. The agreements of Locarno in 1925 could be seen as indisputable proof that France would throw Poland under the bus in order to preserve France's security in the West. I am not sure of any sources, but it is possible that when the Nazi regime became recognizable for what it would become, Pilsudski urged France to join Poland in a preventive war against Germany. The French refused him (they were busy "staying safe" by building the Maginot line presumably).

Britain could do nothing for the Poles. France was the only possible guarantor of Polish interests, and, in the 1920s and 30s, France was not interested beyond diplomatic posturing and diverting Germany eastward.

As to trade relationships, most countries' trade at that time period was concentrated on neighboring states and economies. Poland's economy had to rely on markets in Germany and Russia, as well as "Little Entente" states to the south. Germany and Soviet Russia were biding their time to destroy an independent Poland. (Its a bad place to have a country - between Germany and Russia.)
 
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Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,171
US
The separate Polish-French alliance was always suspect by both Marshal Pilsudski and many other influential Poles. The agreements of Locarno in 1925 could be seen as indisputable proof that France would throw Poland under the bus in order to preserve France's security in the West. I am not sure of any sources, but it is possible that when the Nazi regime became recognizable for what it would become, Pilsudski urged France to join Poland in a preventive war against Germany. The French refused him (they were busy "staying safe" by building the Maginot line presumably).

Britain could do nothing for the Poles. France was the only possible guarantor of polish interests, and, in the 1920s and 30s, France was not interested beyond diplomatic posturing and diverting Germany eastward.
This is my understanding as well.Neither Poland or Czechoslovakia were invited to the Locarno meetings. Germany and Italy were. The emphasis in the mind of the Poles (and perhaps the Czechoslovaks) was that France ensured their western border by giving tacit approval for germany to focus n reshaping their eastern border. After that, Poland never fully trusted France. However, they were still leverage, on paper t keep the Germans in check. I can't remember the exact year, 1934, 035 or maybe 1936, but Poland wanted to initiate an attack of Hitler's Germany before it grew too strong - as the handwriting was on the wall - byt the French declined to engage. Poland alone, even at this point in Germany's military development, wasn't strong enough to ensure a victory.
 

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