Time travel

Discussion in 'The Barracks' started by Peter Clare, May 12, 2006.

  1. Peter Clare

    Peter Clare Very Senior Member

    Just got back from the pub and had this strange thought :)

    If time travel was possible and you had the choice to travel back in time to an era of military significance what would it be and who would you have liked to have been at that time?

  2. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    To a quiet German Barracks/hotel with some major rally on that night, The high-ups, Political leaders, Generals, Admirals, Hitler himself? etc. all sleep at the Barracks and hang their hats in the hallway. My Time-travel dream has long been to visit that room....and steal all the Hats.
    Have you seen the price of German Hats these days?
    Tempted by a standard Panzer feldmutze last year until......£800!
    The Hats.
    Definitely the hats.....
    SteveDee and A-58 like this.
  3. Kitty

    Kitty Very Senior Member

    Peter, i really think it's time you entered the strange world of the SFX forums mate...
    Anyway, i've always wanted to go back to the night of 16/17th May 1943 and sit on the top of the hill above the Mohne damn and just watch the raid.
    That or to be in London when VE & VJ is announced. The world's biggest party.
  4. Peter Clare

    Peter Clare Very Senior Member

    Just had a look at the SFX site, think I'll stay here :)
  5. Kitty

    Kitty Very Senior Member

    Enter the Off Topic section of the forums. Then all you have to do to be accepted as one of them is bring A) A Toga, B) Shout Wibble!, C) Mention choklit, D) Bring Jaffa cakes and beer. They're very easily pleased. i fit right in, though i do have Smoth worried.
    Can i please go back in time to Arnhem, and have a gun in my hand as i stand behind the utter git that shot my uncle? cheers.
  6. Gage

    Gage The Battle of Barking Creek

    I'd like to stand in the crows nest on the Titanic and shout ICEBERG! A little bit earlier.:)
  7. Loki

    Loki Member

    April 2 - 12th, 1917 Vimy Ridge. To walk up the hill while under fire, amazing.
  8. Gage

    Gage The Battle of Barking Creek

    I'd liked to have been Ginger Lacey flying in the Battle of Britain, just to experience what it was like.
    Or like Mossie, sit behind Guy Gibson on the Dams raid.
    There are so many place you would like to go or would you?:confused:
  9. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    I knew a Veteran, Roy Henley, who was there and believe me you don't want to go there in your Time Machine.
    I'm quite content to visit Battlefields AFTER the event.
    I don't want PTSD thank you.
    If I did go back in time. I'd stay in Swindon to watch the punch ups between the Brits, Yanks and Canucks in the Town centre pubs!
  10. adamcotton

    adamcotton Senior Member

    Here's a thought.....

    Suppose you had access to a time machine and could go back in time to 1919, just at the point Adolf Hitler was becoming political, and assasinate him. Would you do it? And if so, how different do you think the world today would be politically, socially, economically, and - above all - technologically?

    I was thinking backwards: would we have internet forums like this? The internet arose out of the Cold War, The Cold War arose out of WW2, WW2 arose out of factors fermenting in the 1920s and 30s, and so on....

    Would satellitte communications link us like they do now? Air travel?
  11. Kyt

    Kyt Very Senior Member

    Probably not - the fact that Hitler rose to the fore in German nationalism doesn't mean that without him war would have been averted. There were enough nationalist groups for another leader to emerge. Possibly not as bad, but possibly even worse. And, having Hitler as leader actually helped the Allies - his meglomania and bad military decisions contributed to the Nazi downfall. An alternative leader may actually have won the war by making sensible decisions.

    And if so, how different do you think the world today would be politically, socially, economically, and - above all - technologically?

    I was thinking backwards: would we have internet forums like this? The internet arose out of the Cold War, The Cold War arose out of WW2, WW2 arose out of factors fermenting in the 1920s and 30s, and so on....

    Would satellitte communications link us like they do now? Air travel?

    I suppose without the war, the process of decolonisation may have slowed down or not occured, possible colonial wars between France and Britain over places like Africa, the US may have remained isolated, no welfare state, and technologically we'd have lost at least 50 to hundred years in progress.
  12. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    As I've said before, If I could time-travel my main aim would be to visit a Fuhrer-conference cloakroom & steal all the hats. you would not believe how much those hats now sell for.

    Other than that I'd say Kyt sums the logistical side up quite well, how many times are you going to keep travelling backwards and forwards until you'd corrected all the potential mistakes and disasters. How many would you have to kill before a good result came?
    The other possibility is travelling to the bunker to finally finish him off with some unknown at the time weapon, no harm to the continuity of time, a sensation of satisfaction and plenty of grist for the conspiracyistas.

    Having said all that I suspect that the knub of the question is "was the war a good thing in terms of the overall march of mankind?" and I find that extremely hard... in fact impossible, to answer. So much progress was accelerated by it, but so many potential lives were extinguished by it, I always think of the potential for good that was lost but I suppose that cuts both ways as well, what if one of the casualties would have risen (if they had survived) to be a worse threat to the world than Hitler?

    Nice question Adam, Silly on the face of it but It's made me go "hmmmmmm" quite a lot. o_O
  13. jacobtowne

    jacobtowne Senior Member

    I'd be sorely tempted to dust an un-indicted war criminal named Hirohito, but would it change the course of events? Another emperor might have resisted the military junta that exercised so much influence over Japanese foreign policy, but then he might not have.

    Good one about those hats, VP. I'd raid the Walther factory in Zella-Mehlis and spirit away all the engraved PPs and PPKs, after stealing the personal handguns of Himmler, Goering, and Hitler, of course.:D

  14. Kyt

    Kyt Very Senior Member

    Nah, Dubya wasn't born yet! (IT'S A JOKE!!!!)
  15. adamcotton

    adamcotton Senior Member

    Some interesting responses.....

    It's true some other despot may have risen in Hitler's place, but I think it's also true to say that Hitler's brand of anti-semitic vitriol was the first of its kind in recorded history. Whilst anti-semitism, for instance (and I speak as a Gentile) has always existed in Europe, Hitler was the first to stir the fires to such an extent and harness the resultant hate to his own ends. I have said elsewhere that I believe Hitler didn't truly hate the Jews; he merely used them as a political expedient to unite the nation - which makes his crime even more horrendous! So, without Hitler, and his half baked doggerell and rabble rousing, might European culture be 6 million Jews richer? And as a result, the world as a whole the better for it - bearing in mind many of the finest scientific and artistic minds of our age were Jewish? (It is an undisputed fact that Nazi Germany handicapped itself in its scientific endeavours in WW2 - most notably in its efforts to produce an atomic bomb - by having sent a large proportion of its best - largely Jewish- scientific minds to concentration camps, rare exceptions like Albert Enstien escaping to America). So, whilst it is tempting to state that WW2 accelerated scientific and technological progress - as undoubtedly it did - maybe it would have been advanced further still if some of the world's finest minds weren't culled in the programme of Nazi genocide?

    And what of Germany itself? Prior to Hitler's ascendancy Germany was a bankrupt nation with mass unemployment, her currency not worth the paper it was printed on. Let's assume we assassinate Herr Hitler in 1919. What happens? The nascent NASDP fizzles out into the political backwaters, or at least never assumes any position of political promience - rather like our own BNP currently. Goering and Himmler never rise to positions of power, the former succumbing to his opium/morphine addiction and probably ending his days sprawled in some Berlin gutter. The autobahns never get built. Millions of Germans remain unemployed while the economic infrastructure of the nation descends further into anarchy. The Weimar Republic, enfeebled and powerless, presides over a crumbling nation as the years roll on......

    Does Germany still become the economic powerhouse of Europe it is today?

    And what of America? Whilst Japan may still have proved a thorn in its Pacific side, without a war in Europe the USA would have remained in delirious political and geographical isolation from the European continent. What then the opportunities for American globilisation? Might it today be the norm that we'd walk down the high street without once encountering a Starbucks or a McDonalds? (not that I'm saying those institutions, or indeed things American, are ipso facto bad).

    Here's another thing. Few people know know that American billionaire Howard Hughes is responsible, indirectly, for the advent of communications satellites, for it was his company that put the first comms satellitte into orbit in 1968. And it was due solely to America's involvement in WW2 that the Hughes Aircraft Company received huge investment from the US Government, which led to its recruitment of some of the best best brains in aerospace and their employment in such cutting edge projects after the war ended. And, it is only thanks to the advent of Hughes satellite technology, that we were able to witness a live broadcast of the first moon landings in July, 1969 - which, of course, were only made possible in themselves because of the rocket technology developed by Werner Von Braun in Nazi Germany....

    Which ever way you slice it - and I'm sure we could all add more - the world would be a vastly different place had Adolf Hitler been assassinated....
  16. jacobtowne

    jacobtowne Senior Member

    And what of America? Whilst Japan may still have proved a thorn in its Pacific side, without a war in Europe the USA would have remained in delirious political and geographical isolation from the European continent. What then the opportunities for American globilisation?

    This case assumes that Japan would not have attacked the U.S., which raises a good question that I've often considered. If the military might of the Soviet Union had not been locked in battle on the Eastern Front, and if British forces has not been obliged to defend the home islands, would Japan have launched the attacks of December 7th?

  17. adamcotton

    adamcotton Senior Member

    Wel, "thorn in its Pacific Side" allows for the possibility of a Pearl Harbour attack. I'm not sure to what extent Russian war committments would have influenced Japan's decision to attack at Pearl Harbour (as Japan's most recent conflict at that point was with China, and whilst the fires of resentment still simmered between Japan and Russia, they hadn't been in all out conflict for some years). However, co-incident with their attack on Pearl Harbour, the Japanese also moved on British bases in the Far East. And had Britain not been comitted to home defence, would, for instance, have been in a position to send squadrons of Spitfires and Hurricanes out to Singapore for air defence, instead of the woefully inadequate Brewster Buffaloes. On the other hand, without the rise of Hitler, the Spitfire and Hurricane would probably have never existed. Oh, it gets so complicated....

    But yes, I certainly think had Britain not been involved heavily in Europe, so it had scant resources it could devote to a conflict in the Pacific/Far East, maybe the Japanese would have thought twice about attacking Pearl Harbour.
  18. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    so if we took out Hitler, the Jews wouldn't be attacked so would that mean there would be no Israel?

    As to VP's idea about hats surely Mr Tankman you'd hide away some German Armour ready to find in the early 21st Centuary?
    You'd be off to Beltring in some flash AFV I bet. :)
  19. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    Ssshhhhhhh!!!! they'll find out what's underneath the Swamp T34 and they'll all be wanting one.
    Found out recently how much a pzIV can change hands for.... blimey.
    Another FAMO restored in France.... woohoo.
    Rumours of English based Panthers.... aaarghh.
    Sorry, back to the time-travelling.
  20. lancesergeant

    lancesergeant Senior Member

    You come across a classic dilemma in time travel. You travel to the past you see Hitler - you are assassinating him before he has been party to the atrocities, before they have taken place. Another dilemma you are basing on what you know of the future. Could you kill someone who hasn't as yet got blood on his hands. One could be deemed as cold blooded as Hitler was going to be - if you carried out the execution on him.

    At the time of Hitler's ascendancy to power you have a bankrupt nation in need of leadership. A book I read concerning Hitler and the dark arts (can't think of it at the moment!!) mentions I think Drechsler leading the neophyte NSDAP. Hitler came to the front and spoke and Drechsler found the figurehead the guiding light , the public face. If Drechsler and the like had been running the shop I think they would have played a nominal role in politics like say the BNP or the Greens etc. Hitler took oratory lessons and learned how to get the audience eating out of his hands. Look at Nuremberg, whatever your allegiances, you would have to be pretty numb to not imagine the atmosphere at those rallies. He's only doing what a lot of leaders have done in the past -told the populus what it wants whats it's thinking, then manipulated it to his ends. Willing or not. He played on their feelings, fears, unemployment and made them believe he was the man to lead them out of this wildnerness of no respect. Tell them what they want to hear.Then manipulate them to his own ends.

    So Drechsler and gang, in a nominal role. At the time the government in power was socialist. Lenin and the Bolsheviks were active in undermining the Germans, look at the work of AJP Taylor's First World War.
    Look how Stalin came to power. He carves up Poland with Germany. If Germany had not rearmed and had kept to the Versaille agreement, I believe that there is the possibility that Stalin would have invaded Poland and made to occupy a politically friendly Germany. With it's minor forces, he would have steamrollered over Germany. He took chunks of Finland and the Baltic states at a whim - why not Germany. Do you think France would have come to Germany's assistance!!!!

    If Germany had not been a threat then I believe that the Far East would have been more heavily defended. Notably Singapore, which I think was lost more by political incompetence than underestimating the enemy.

    Hitler while being a focus for world change was a link in the chain. Because of necessity in facing him, allied powers developed items which had an effect long after the war.

    Was the loss of Singapore the start of the loss of the Empire, or just what was going to happen anyway. The Japanese occupied Manchuria in 1937, they weren't going to sit back and leave it at that. When they decimated the Russian fleet in 1904 at Port Arthur, that should have been a warning a wake up call. If we had a major presence in the region, they may have hesitated. If the Japanese hadn't bombed Pearl Harbor, the Americans wouldn't be in the war. Roosevelt couldn't justify his involvement to the dissenters the likes of Lindbergh. Japan may have settled for Manchuria and left it at that.

    As far as Western Europe is concerned he makes a valid point about Hitler's megalomania. If he had heeded the advice of his generals, admirals etc. You have thousands of troops being sacrificed for no strategic or tactical reason. Surrounded by sycophants and assorted incompetents. It was only the likes of Guderian who stood up to him. He dismisses him then reinstates him when he finds the yes men are just and only that. If he surrounded himself and listened to the well qualified generals, the war would have been a lot more costly to the allies. Any strategist would say you don't open up two fronts especially when one is Russia. If he had concentrated on taking Western Europe - that could have been the lebenstraum. Then just keep Stalin sweet.

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