Author Topic: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?  (Read 55332 times)

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Offline AGRBear

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Re: I don't think so griffh
« Reply #120 on: September 05, 2006, 11:20:40 AM »
I have discussed this before with Bear, and once again, that is not the  case.  The Wilson administration and the U.S. military saw no point in continuiing the war on the Eastern front.  As to the comment about the Germans siezing the supplies, I think you might have misread the post.  The Americans didn't want the supplies going to the Bolsheviki.  That's the only reason the admin. agreed to send troops to Russia.

When we're speaking abouut the western front or eastern front,  this can get confused.

From the Russians point of view,  the line between Germany and Russia was the western front.

From the view of the Americans and the British,  the line between Germany and Russia was their eastern front.

And,  yes,  Bev,  I realize your views are different than my own.

But when you look at a map where the Americans and British had landed,  it doesn't appear they are just concern with the Czech's well being.

Let me go find a map.

AGRBear
"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

Joubert, Pensees, No. 152

David_Pritchard

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Re: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?
« Reply #121 on: September 05, 2006, 11:24:42 AM »
This is a strange moment Bear, in that I am now quoting myself, as you always do:

The de jure emperor was now Aleksei II according to Article 28 though he was still required to take the Oath and to be anointed before he would full fill the requirements of the Fundamental Law.

The most that I can write in favour of Grand Duke Mikhail Aleksandrovich is that he was the de facto Russian Emperor for less than 20 hours.

If you carefully read my post quoted in part above, I wrote that Aleksei Nikolaievich was the de jure emperor and Mikhail Aleksandrovich was the de facto emperor.

David

Offline AGRBear

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Re: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?
« Reply #122 on: September 05, 2006, 11:30:04 AM »
You and I continue to agree on the laws, David.

Regent Tsarovich Michael should have remained as such till Alexei became of age and took up the title even though he was a prisoner of the Counter-Revolutionists. 

Since I don't recall the age thing,  I"m not sure if Alexei was of  legal age at his death in July 1918.  If he was then he was the last Emp./Tsar of Russia who died in the hands of his enemy.

But,  David and I weren't there to keep things legal....



AGRBear
« Last Edit: September 05, 2006, 11:57:48 AM by AGRBear »
"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

Joubert, Pensees, No. 152

Offline AGRBear

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Re: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?
« Reply #123 on: September 05, 2006, 11:35:35 AM »
Bev,

Here is the map:



This map shows how close  to Petrograd [St. Petersburg]  the anti-Bolshevik forces reached by 1919.  The dark area to the south and the line [latice work] to the north.

AGRBear
"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

Joubert, Pensees, No. 152

Offline AGRBear

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Re: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?
« Reply #124 on: September 05, 2006, 11:39:46 AM »
Map #2

Everyone is giving us a great start.  Thanks.

Here is a map showing areas around Archangle where the Allies [British, American, Canadian, Italian, Serb and Finnish troops] were in 1918-1919:



Petrozavodsk was a little more than 100 milies from Petrograd [St. Persburg] on the north side and the furthest advance of anti-Bolshevik troops by Oct. 1919 on the south south west was about 25 miles....

AGRBear
"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

Joubert, Pensees, No. 152

Bev

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Bear, it isn't a matter of a different view
« Reply #125 on: September 05, 2006, 12:27:18 PM »
it is a matter of fact.  I believe you might have misread the Czech comment - I said that was the ostensible consideration - the real reasons Wilson sent troops were to protect American supplies from misappropriation and to fight the Boslheviki.

Yes, I completely agree that the allied powers wanted the eastern front to continue as a war theater, but the Americans did not.  Pershing would not allow American troops to serve as replacements for Allied commands.  Pershing's operational strategy was to push the German troops at the western front to where they would break.  He would not allow the National Army to be separated into two theaters.  The secretary of war did not want it, the chief of staff did not want it, Wilson did not want it, and Pershing wouldn't allow it.  That's not my opinion, that was the operational strategy as part of the grand strategy which was to bring overwhelming force to bear, conceived and executed by the government of the United States and carried out by the National Army of the United States.

Alixz

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Re: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?
« Reply #126 on: September 05, 2006, 04:42:16 PM »
I have been away for a few days, and how this thread has grown!

I picked up a book while away that I found to be interesting because of this discussion.

World War I (Opposing Viewpoints)
David L Bender, Publisher
Bruno Leone, Executive Editor
William Dudley, Series Editor
John C. Chalberg, PhD, professor of history, Normandale Community College, Counsulting Editor

It is from the American History Series.  It contains views pro and con of every point of "The Great War" beginning with whether or not the US was prepared or should have been, through selective service, through Wilson's speech to congress asking that it declare war and on to the end including the "Fourteen Points" and the "Treaty of Versailles" and the "League of Nations".

Every part of the war is viewed from both sides.  I have only begun to read but the sources quoted are excellent and the information is quite a revelation.

Offline griffh

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Re: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?
« Reply #127 on: September 05, 2006, 10:16:31 PM »
Hey I just wanted to drop in and say that I have finally made boundries for my choronology. 

It was so hard to know where to stop.  I have added two interesting perspectives to give some background to where Wilson stood politically before his Declaration of War. 

This was achieved through the letters of the American Ambassador, Water Hines Page whose dealing with the President in 1915-1916 reveal quite a an amazing perspective.  The other source is D. Fedotoff White memoirs, whose eventual involvement in the White Army is probably well known to those studying the Intervention.  I use White's observations during the year 1915-1916 which he spent as Naval attache to the Russian Embassy in Washington D.C. as they include the only proof of the existence of a the positive attitude towards Imperial Russia's prosecution of the War, just prior to the Revolution and Wilson's Declartion of War.  White also chronoicals how he and his Chief were turned from regular duties to become full time business managers because of the enormous volume of American war contractors who were selling their goods to Russia.   

Well anyway I have all my new material dated and ready to include in my chronology.  Since it will take a bit more time than I thought I will probably need a week or so.  But the discussion looks like there are many fascinating topics to discuss in the meantime. 

I just wanted to add a note about chronologys.  They produce the most interesting cross currenting of events that is lost when those event are treated as themes.  I have used this approach to unravel several complex periods that a thematic approach could not achieve.  It is my hope that the chronology will be helpful in that way.  Well anyway, toodle pip for now....

Oh and just as a P.S., Alixz that book sounds really wonderful.  Bev and AGRBear I was under the impression that none of the American troops were under the leadership of the American Generals and that this did not happen until WWII.  I was also under the impression that Pershing was not given a free hand by the Allies but had to bow to the authority of the British and French Commands which caused Pershing endless bitterness and ended is some great unpleasantness. 

Bev

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Yes, Foch was the supreme commander
« Reply #128 on: September 06, 2006, 07:36:54 AM »
but it was nothing like Eisenhower's position in WW II.  It's a very intricate and complicated subject and had little to do with American grand strategy and operational strategy.

Richard_Cullen

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Re: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?
« Reply #129 on: September 06, 2006, 02:33:25 PM »
A subject dear to my heart (but little to do with this thread)

Despite what some Americans might think (and I don't want to upset anyone) they were bit players in World War II (I accept the difference in World War II).  Foch did have a very unusual role and it is dangerous to compare it with World War II leadership.  The battle was on French soil (largely) and the French had the most troops (if they weren't revolting that is!).  It is interesting to note that in the offensives of 1918 after the inital reverses of the German attack on the British Fifth Army that the most gorund, the most prisoners were taken by the British.

Many First World War generals have been criticised, unjustly in my view, for how they conducted the war.  One should note that the Germans, the French, the British, the Italians and the Russians conducted it in the same way.  Although it was only the Russians who neded to take rifles from the dead to supply new recruits.

Largely except for the Franco Prussian war we had moved from a world where cavalry dominated proceedings, and generals (Field Marshalls) such as French were very much a cavalary man dominated warfare.  The Boer War should have been a wake up call to all the nations - it wasn't.

The dissent between generals and high command on the western front could not continue and Lloyd George ( who to avoid ownership of problems places the responsibility on the Generals) passed command of the Western Front to Foch.  In my view a sensible and in terms of resources excellent decision as in World II leadership went to the Americans despite the fact that they didn't come into the war until attacked by Japan.   Something the Kenndey family in the form of the USA Ambassador to GB may find difficult to explain in a world where we describe each other as best allies.

Did Wilson - this strand have any involvement in the Tsar and IFs murder the answer is 'NO'.  America was not that influential.  Did America influence the independence of India and the creation od the Jewsih State post World War II then the answer is 'YES'.

As an historian I am totally unimpressed by Wilson, he failed to act to support the alliesand is legacy pervaded American policies into World War II.  America was not well served by him.  I do not think Wilson is an example of a great American President.

But did he help murder the Tsar and the IF the answer is 100% NO.

Richard


Offline griffh

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Re: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?
« Reply #130 on: September 06, 2006, 05:21:07 PM »
Richard thank you for sharing your perspective as an historian.  Your careful scholarly approach is something that I highly value.  I totally agree with you about how America's involvement in WWI is tremendously overrated.  Earlier in the thread I tried to establish this by quote T. Bentley Mott, in his book, “Twenty Years Military Attaché.”  I thought that if I used an American to describe Europe’s view of the American military in 1900 it would be more acceptable than using any number of European sources.  I bluntly quoted Bentley statement that, to Europe…”Our army was still considered a joke …The Spanish American war had shown all of us who had been in it that our army still stood just where the winding up of the Civil War period had left it.  We were fully thirty years behind the times, while Europe was devoting great portions of her energy and her brain-power to getting ready for the next conflict.”  

I also revealed that how America, in attempting to mobilize for the war had almost ended in total chaos until Wilson called in Baruch from Wall Street who introduced what Leuchtenburg called "wartime socialism.”   I also added the sad statistics that the American government was never able to produce a ship for the war and had to rely on ships seized from Germany or built in the private section of American industry.  I also provided information about the American government’s inability to provide tanks and armaments, including the fact that the Americans that fought in the war were mostly using French armaments.   So I have bent over backwards to expose the difference between American bravado and the actual fact of it’s incompetence.  I have even gone so far as to heighten Russia by comparison.  I also pointed out that by the time American troops were deployed to the battle field only 13 months of the war remained.  So I am there with you on those points.  

Having taken considerable time to lay the foundation that Wilson had no power to influence the War or Russia from a military point of view; I had hoped to then establish where the power to redefine the objective of WWI came from in his April 1917 Declaration or War.  Again, I have never tired to build my argument on America's military prowess in WWI because it simply did not exist.  

What I am trying to establish in this thread, is that Wilson redefined the objects of WWI in April 1917 which suddenly placed the patriotic ex-Emperor Nicholas II in the role of an autocratic enemy of the War.  Do I really need to quote Wilson’s words again?  

In Wilson’s Declaration of War in April 1917 his denigration of Nicholas II occurred even before that tragic man had returned to Tzarskoe Celo.  Why does this point continue to fall on deaf ears?  I am not making it up.  Until Wilson’s Declaration of War, the ex-Emperor Nicholas was only a deposed monarch.  After April 8, 1917 he became an enemy of the War and was classed with Kaiser Wilhelm.  

(to be continued)
« Last Edit: September 06, 2006, 05:34:02 PM by griffh »

Offline griffh

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Re: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?
« Reply #131 on: September 06, 2006, 05:21:41 PM »
Now, as Richard has pointed out, who in God’s name would listen to the words of an American President in April 1917 whose potential for it’s country’s military prowess, according to a British point of view [which I happen to agree with], could hardly impact the final outcome of WWI?   At this juncture I must point out that there were many Brits in April 1917 who opposed the entrance of America into the War because they said that the Americans would later claim the entire victory belonged to them, which indeed they did. 

Given all of that , now we come to the rub.  On April 17, 1917 Ambassador Page warned Wilson that because of the success of the German blockade of England, there was not enough food left in Great Britain to feed the civilian population for more than six to eight weeks.  I hope that statistic is not offensive.  This is what gave Wilson the upper edge.  Through the marvelous efforts of Herbert Hoover, Wilson was able to provide food for the civilian population of Great Britain. Added to this fact, by the following Easter of 1918 the British economy was exhausted, well if I must be blunt, England was bankrupt.   

It was money that gave that stupid man Wilson his power to demean Nicholas and brand him as a War Criminal and I defy anyone to say that Wilson’s ignorance backed by American capital did contribute to Nicholas demise.   That idiot Wilson had labeled Nicholas as a War Criminal twice; once in April 1917 and again in January 1918.  And to those who keep insisting that America wasn’t a debtor nation in 1914 and rose to replace Britain as the world’s creditor nation in 1918, let’s review the facts and in the spirit of good fellowship lets not even go to 1918.  Let’s just review the financial state of America in 1914 and compare it with the financial state of America after two years of supplying Europe with arms and food.  After the war began in 1914 and while America remained a neutral power, trade with Europe rose to $825 million dollars.  By 1916 that figure had jumped to $3 billion, 200 million dollars.  And that is just 1916.   

Can any sane individual assume that when this Wilson person, with 3 billion dollars [ 45 billion by todays standard] of wartime profit behind him, identified Nicholas II in April 1917 as a tyrant whose existence the War effort was now be directed against [this same Wilson person that was feeding the starving civilian population of Great Britain] had no impact on the salvation of Nicholas II and the IF, well such an individual is tragically misinformed by about 100%. 
« Last Edit: September 06, 2006, 05:50:25 PM by griffh »

Bev

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Griffh
« Reply #132 on: September 06, 2006, 07:26:51 PM »
Honestly, I agree with some of your arguments, but your claim is just false, because most of your arguments are false.  (And I don't mean in any way shape or form that I think you're lying or anything of that nature.)  This is where your claim falls apart:

1.  "Wilson had the upper edge" in the relationship between Great Britain and the United States.  This is not true for more than a few reasons, but the greatest reason is explained best by Ricardo's economic maxim "that men don't cut the throats of men who are putting food on their tables."  The U.S. was as dependent on England buying our goods as they were dependent on our selling them goods.  The U.S. was dependent on Great Britain's protection of its global markets, they were not are only customer.  Economically, we were still under the umbrella of the British Trade Alliance.  The British were blockading our trade as a
"neutral" with countries the U.S. declared "neutrals" (because until 1917 Americans were still selling to the central powers when they could) so many or our usual European markets were closed to us.  Neither country had the "upper edge" and at best it was a draw.  Also until 1917, Americans were still exporters of raw materials not finished manufactures - Great Britain was ou main supplier of finished goods. 

When the argument is made that Great Britain had only enough food stuffs for 6 to 8 weeks, this is understood to mean that the people faced starvation.  Again, this is not supported by the facts - the problem wasn't that they didn't have food, the problem was the lack of food distribution, with the choice between feeding the people or feeding the army.  They couldn't do both because of the problems in distribution - it was just easier to explain to the public that "the Brits are starving" than to explain the intricacies of distribution. 

2.  The U.S. in the period of 1914 to 1918 did go from a "debtor" to "creditor" nation, but I've explained to you the reason for that - the foreign investment had dried up - when you examine the economy of nations, you don't look at the debt as much as you look at the kind of debt the nation is carrying.  I cannot impress upon you enough the importance of this.  It is vital in your assessment of the economics  of this war.  (As an example of how symbiotic the economies of the two countries were, consider the fact that Great Britain outfitted, armed and transported half the AEF who were sent to Europe.)  Also, people forget that the war in total, (including labour, military, goods produced, interest on loans etc) cost the U.S. over 32 Bil. dollars, most of which was in delayed payments due in the 1920s.  The government didn't "make money" on this war, the government owed money on this war.  ALL governments lose money on war, because there is no return on investment.  Now that isn't my opinion, that is Economics 101.  (Remember that in 1914, it was illegal for Europeans to invest money overseas, they were obligated by law to bring it back to their own nations.) 

Bev

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Thirdly and most importantly
« Reply #133 on: September 06, 2006, 08:12:16 PM »
you're not discerning between speech for public consumption which is for the local or national polity, and the private speech and actions that truly define intent.  it's simplistic to take quotes out of time and context and assume that the person is being honest, lying, speaking public truths or any other such quality that characterizes speech.  This is especially true in democracies where speech for public consumption is geared and biased toward particular groups in order to garner support in elections.  Wilson's speeches did not define or redefine the war.  (In my own personal opinion, no one can define what that war was about because no one knows what it was about.  Wars inevitably take on a life of their own and defy definition.)

Now I'm going to address the basic fault in your argument - the notion that Wilson was a stupid, ignorant man, incapable of appreciating the Tsar and because of his stupidity he helped murder the Tsar.  First of all, Wilson wasn't stupid or ignorant.  He was a well read, well educated man.  His objection to autocracy is one anyone well grounded in enlightened, reasonable thought  would have - that any and all people have the right to self-determination, they have a right life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, that by virtue of their birth they are entilted to these rights, and no man has the right to rule over another by divine appointment of a supernatural being.  I have never seen any evidence that would reinforce your argument that Nicholas was an enlightened, liberal Tsar who was slowly but surely moving his people to a democratic monarchy.  In fact, all the evidence is to the contrary - that the Tsar was being pulled along and dragging his feet and clinging to door jams all the way.  He might have been a good man, but without a doubt the historical consensus is that he was a bad Tsar.  The people responsbile for the death of the Tsar are the Russian people and nothing, absolutely nothng, Wilson said or did would have altered the fate of Nicholas II. 

You've made some interesting points, some good points, but in the end, there is no evidence to support your claim and in fact all of the evidence supports the opposite - that Wilson had no influence whatsoever on the Tsar's death.  I've really enjoyed our discussion, but frankly, I don't think a chronology is going to provide evidence to support your claim although I am sure it will be very useful and interesting.
Best wishes,
Bev

Offline griffh

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Re: Did President Wilson help murder Nicholas II?
« Reply #134 on: September 06, 2006, 08:57:36 PM »
Dear Bev, at least your objections still encourage me to get my chronology posted.  Honestly, I am grateful for your continual objections to my premise.  As a matter of fact I find your objections far less defensive than Richard's.  I must confess that it odd to me, Bev, that I am being pushed down by the intellectual prowess of a well respected British historian before I even am even allowed to launch my point of view, while your objections at least allow me the chance to present my case. 

It is especially disheartening to me,0 as I am a member of one of those expatriate American families whose father was born in England and whose niece has returned to England, to be coupled with some kind of “Hoopla do and How Are You,” American point of view by an esteemed British authority.  It is especially disheartening to me.  Even knowing as I do the intolerance of the British attitude towards the argument I am advancing (especially in context with Wilson), I must admit I expected more of Richard Culllen who I still respect.  However, at this point, I must say Bev, as bumpy as our initial intercourse was, I feel you are still willing to hear my point of view, where as, Richard seems intent on closing down my argument before I even have had a chance to advance it.