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PBS airs "Hitler's Victory," an alternate history with significance to American patriots

Posted on 05/08/2003 3:16:09 PM PDT by risk

Hitler's Britain (2 ´ 50'), produced by AAC FACT™, Lark International for PBS and Lion Television, examines one of the most intriguing questions of our time: what would the Nazis have done if they had conquered Britain? Told in two equally compelling parts, Thinking the Unthinkable: The Nazi Occupation of Britain and Churchill's Last Stand: The Secret of the British Resistance, Hitler's Britain will examine the unsettling possibilities of an alternative world order, and the chilling consequences that Hitler's victory would have had on the UK and beyond. Using reconstruction and graphic manipulation, the programme shows how Hitler's plans would have transformed Britain from a gentle, free-spirited country into an unimaginably harsh and repressive regime.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: California; United Kingdom; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: banglist; britain; gcinc; germany; harryturtledove; hitler; nazi; pbs; rkba; robertharris
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NAZIs in London

I saw this on KQED last night, and it was awesome! You've simply got to see it. It's available on DVD, but I didn't catch the details on how to buy it ($20) and I don't see them online anywhere.

Interesting "thought provoking" issues of great relevance today:


1 posted on 05/08/2003 3:16:10 PM PDT by risk
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To: *bang_list; Joe Brower
Bang! You may be more critical to our nation's security than you realized.
2 posted on 05/08/2003 3:19:07 PM PDT by risk (Give me liberty or give me death.)
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To: risk
SS-GB by Len Deighton is a good take on the same topic too.
3 posted on 05/08/2003 3:19:22 PM PDT by swarthyguy
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To: risk
Archangel - Robert Harris
... he suggested an alternate history in which Hitler had won the war (similar to PK.Dick's
The Man in the High Castle or Otto Basil's The Twilight Men, among many ...

4 posted on 05/08/2003 3:20:26 PM PDT by backhoe
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To: risk
I saw it. It was very interesting. I'm likely wrong, but it seems to me that the moment the nazi's managed a beachhead on Britain, US Soldiers would have been landing to help the Brits throw them off. I know that many in the US were ant-war, but that would have been the final straw in my mind.
5 posted on 05/08/2003 3:20:43 PM PDT by SoDak
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To: SoDak
They probably would not have gotten there in time, as we were barely mobilized at the time. It would have been close though.
6 posted on 05/08/2003 3:22:07 PM PDT by Mr.Clark (From the darkness....I shall come)
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To: SoDak
There probably would have been a chilling realization that, if we weren't the very next in line, we would be on the list sooner or later.
7 posted on 05/08/2003 3:22:21 PM PDT by Poohbah (Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women!)
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To: backhoe
Actually, the Harris book about the Nazi's winning was Fatherland, which was a fabulous book. Archangel was pretty good also.
8 posted on 05/08/2003 3:22:57 PM PDT by Mr.Clark (From the darkness....I shall come)
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To: Poohbah
Didn't we already have flyers in the RAF by that time, along with munition pipelines? I need to re-read my WW2 history.
9 posted on 05/08/2003 3:25:58 PM PDT by SoDak
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To: risk
If Hitler had even come close to conquering Britain, we would have had troops in Ireland and Iceland before Hitler could blink, ready to invade. He never would have won, no way, we wouldn't have let him.
10 posted on 05/08/2003 3:26:21 PM PDT by Reaganwuzthebest
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To: Reaganwuzthebest
Wishful thinking.
11 posted on 05/08/2003 3:27:13 PM PDT by risk
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To: risk
dubious historical bump
12 posted on 05/08/2003 3:28:00 PM PDT by LiteKeeper
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To: SoDak
Sorry to say, but I think your assumption is wrong. There were plenty of Americans at the time, including Joe Kennedy and Charles Lindberg, who firmly believed the British were doomed and that America had no business saving them. Roosevelt was sympathetic to the British plight and did everything he could within (and a bit beyond) what the neutrality laws would allow to help them, but we fought Hitler because he declared war on us.
13 posted on 05/08/2003 3:28:09 PM PDT by katana
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To: SoDak
What most of the "FDR conspired to drag America into WW2" folks do NOT realize is that Lend-Lease and the "Neutrality Patrol" (which was anything BUT neutral) were actually quite popular moves at the time. There was a sense in America that we should help England with all aid possible short of war--and if Hitler didn't like it, he could have a nice warm cup of STFU.
14 posted on 05/08/2003 3:30:34 PM PDT by Poohbah (Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women!)
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To: risk
Maybe next they'll do one where George Bush was not elected President in 2000 and (therefore) Al-Qaida conquered Europe and North America.
15 posted on 05/08/2003 3:32:04 PM PDT by Savage Beast ("Liberals" would love the Taliban if they could make the rules.)
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To: risk
A conquered Britain would have made America's task far more difficult. A large, unsinkable aircraft carrier 12 miles off the coast of Europe was essential for Overlord.

Considering The Bomb, we would probably have still won the war, but it would have been longer and much bloodier.
16 posted on 05/08/2003 3:32:27 PM PDT by Restorer (TANSTAAFL)
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To: risk
Wishful thinking.

Did you see how fast we had troops in North Africa after Hitler declared war on us in 1941... matter of months. And we already had troops in Iceland, stationed there in 1940. The US had a navy, Germany didn't have one to speak of, so we could deploy troops and supplies faster.

17 posted on 05/08/2003 3:32:32 PM PDT by Reaganwuzthebest
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To: risk
I tuned in last night. I usually gobble this stuff up, but this program is complete dreck, from the unbearably ominous narration to the cheesy re-creations.

It was so silly I could only watch for about 20-30 minutes.

18 posted on 05/08/2003 3:33:52 PM PDT by beckett
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To: katana
I think common sense and a sense of imminent doom would have convinced more than enough of congress at the time to do the right thing.
19 posted on 05/08/2003 3:35:47 PM PDT by SoDak
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To: risk
I heard or saw on some show that Churchill would order the deployment of Anthrax over the UK & Europe if Germany made it onto British soil...
20 posted on 05/08/2003 3:36:21 PM PDT by MD_Willington_1976
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To: Reaganwuzthebest
The US had a navy, Germany didn't have one to speak of, so we could deploy troops and supplies faster.

I'm not saying you're wrong, I'm just saying that an intact, Allied Britain was an integral part of our effective prosecution of the war in the history that stands. I'm confident that the Russians would have continued to beat the Germans in the East. But I'm not convinced that we would have knocked out Hitler's atomic bomb effort effectively.

21 posted on 05/08/2003 3:37:39 PM PDT by risk
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To: Reaganwuzthebest
I disagree. The North Africa invasion was not initiated until late 1942, and even that was a tough operation. Read Rick Atkinson's new book to see how close that was to a disaster. Really, the wargame scenario is tough to run, because there are so many variables. However, if Hitler had managed to win the skies over Britain, let's say late 1940, the US would have had a hell of a time getting to Britain and fighting the Wehrmacht successfully. I mean, the biggest German advantage would be the fact that their supplies would be 20 miles away across the Channel, while American supplies would be coming from 3000 miles away. The American army at the time was woefully outmatched by the Germans, they still were in 1942. This is all supposing that FDR would be able to rush a war amendment through, which would not have been a slam dunk.
22 posted on 05/08/2003 3:40:17 PM PDT by Mr.Clark (From the darkness....I shall come)
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To: Reaganwuzthebest
I believe that if Hitler managed to take England it would have been Stalin's move. If he signed a peace treaty then Germany may very well have held western Europe. Our best move would have been to launch from the mideast. If USSR did not sign a treaty then we would have had to support USSR with materials and move forces in either along side of them or possibly waited for a weakened Germany in order to invade France from the south. This would depend on kicking the Germans out of north Africa and moving supplies overland across Africa from the Atlantic cost. Once again it would have depended on Stalin tying up German forces on the eastern front instead of reinforcing the Africa Corps.
23 posted on 05/08/2003 3:40:24 PM PDT by Kadric
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To: Reaganwuzthebest
The reason why we'd put troops in Ireland was simple: we were afraid that if Britain fell, so too would her navy.
24 posted on 05/08/2003 3:40:34 PM PDT by Poohbah (Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women!)
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To: risk
Sounds like what the Hildebeast has in store,...if enough of the brain-dead and misinformed nitwits vote for her when she runs in '04, or '08.

My remote is programmed to explode if I punch-up a PBS station or CNN, ...I may have to reconsider and check this out. :-))

Mustang sends from "Malpaso News"
25 posted on 05/08/2003 3:43:10 PM PDT by Mustang (Evil Thrives When Good People Do Nothing!)
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To: Savage Beast
It won't matter who we elect, that's a fait accompli. They're doing it as we speak. Their weapon is the womb.
26 posted on 05/08/2003 3:43:12 PM PDT by Black Agnes
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To: beckett
It was so silly I could only watch for about 20-30 minutes.

Heh. I've read PKD's Man in the High Tower, so this idea wasn't totally new to me. The important thing is that some people are now starting to question everything about WWII. It's good to remind people, especially on the left, that they would have been the first to bite the dust if Hitler had won.

27 posted on 05/08/2003 3:44:00 PM PDT by risk
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To: risk
Allied Britain was an integral part of our effective prosecution of the war in the history that stands.

Britain was an important staging area for attacks on Germany itself, and yes they were an integral part of the allied force. That's why we wouldn't have let Hitler conquer Britain, before he established roots there like he did in Europe we would have brought the calvary in, from Iceland and Ireland, even if Roosevelt had to lie us into it. It's all hypothetical, but I think contingency plans had been made for such a possibility.

Btw, great screen name, that's a game I can play forever.

28 posted on 05/08/2003 3:47:52 PM PDT by Reaganwuzthebest
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To: Reaganwuzthebest
Ireland was quite hopeful of Germany at least beating England into a position in which they could not overcome a mauser armed IRA.
(Ulster was different than Ireland then, now, and long into the past.)
At the time WW2 was building up, the 'two largest minorities' in the USA were British and German and then came Italians.
We had a pro-allies neighbor to the north and a generally pro-axis neighbor to the south.
(The one lonely mexican AF contribution to WW2 went to the Pacific - late.)
The US populace did not have just 'many who were anti-war' but virtually half who were pro German. (Kennedy family for one example and there is still debate over Lindberg)

If Hitler had been clearly winning in 1940 we'd very likely have remained much more neutral than your parents told you and likely would have turned to a poorly constructed Fortress America.

The Japanese did Churchill and FDR a great service (regardless of any conspiracy tales out there).
29 posted on 05/08/2003 3:51:16 PM PDT by norton
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To: Mustang
Sounds like what the Hildebeast has in store...

Yeah, the most chilling passage was an edit of a speech by (I think) Lord Halifax saying, "We've got to work together with Hitler for the mutual benefit of both countries..." This was taken from one of his appeasement speeches, but was set in post-defeat England and he was to have been instrumental in the transition of governments. So were the police. And so were records of all kinds.

30 posted on 05/08/2003 3:51:16 PM PDT by risk
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To: Reaganwuzthebest
>>>we would have had troops in Ireland and Iceland before Hitler could blink, ready to invade.<<<

The government of Ireland at the time was highly nationalistic, and hated Britain for historical injustices inflicted on the Irish.

That explains why Ireland was neutral in WW-2.
31 posted on 05/08/2003 3:51:33 PM PDT by AveMaria
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To: Mr.Clark
However, if Hitler had managed to win the skies over Britain, let's say late 1940, the US would have had a hell of a time getting to Britain and fighting the Wehrmacht successfully.

No matter what, an attempted German invasion would have been a complete disaster. Even IF the Luftwaffe had "won" the Battle of Britain.

The German Navy had been essentially wiped out in the invasion of Norway. They had really terrible, small landing craft. The Royal Navy was based at Scapa Flow and was a long flight for the LW. Once the invasion started, the RN would have been able to make it south and shoot up the landing craft...even if 90% of the RN was wiped out by the LW on the way the remaining 10% would have crushed the landing craft.

Sealion was really a half-assed joke. Britain was never in serious danger of invasion.

32 posted on 05/08/2003 3:52:21 PM PDT by John H K
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To: Poohbah
The reason why we'd put troops in Ireland was simple: we were afraid that if Britain fell, so too would her navy.

If Hitler had seized Britain's navy, then the US would have had some problems, another reason why I don't think we would have let it happen.

33 posted on 05/08/2003 3:55:48 PM PDT by Reaganwuzthebest
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To: John H K
Sealion was really a half-assed joke. Britain was never in serious danger of invasion.

That's easy to say in hindsight. But that's not the point of alternate history fiction, or this sort of experimental documentary. There's much we can learn about the future by thinking about what happened in WWII, or what didn't happen and why.

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. --Edmund Burke

34 posted on 05/08/2003 3:56:48 PM PDT by risk
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To: norton
>>>>The US populace did not have just 'many who were anti-war' but virtually half who were pro German. (Kennedy family for one example and there is still debate over Lindberg)<<<<

That is one ugly aspect of the pre-war American right. There were many rightists who shared the view of Charles Lindberg, that the greatest threat to Western Civilization came from the Soviets and the Orientals (as Asians were then called).

They viewed Hitler's Germany in the same way they viewed Franco's Spain, as allies of the West against the spread of Communism and the so-called "Yellow Peril".

Such rightists would have sought detente with Nazi Germany.

35 posted on 05/08/2003 3:59:55 PM PDT by AveMaria
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To: Savage Beast
Maybe next they'll do one where George Bush was not elected President in 2000 and (therefore) Al-Qaida conquered Europe and North America.

You left out the second chapter where the military overthrew the dem government, instituted martial law, armed veterans to guard the streets, and then nuked mecca, medina, tehran, damascus, rounded up American Muslims...

36 posted on 05/08/2003 4:01:09 PM PDT by RaceBannon
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To: Mr.Clark
Actually, the Harris book about the Nazi's winning was Fatherland, which was a fabulous book

But a rather crappy film adaptation, unfortunately.

37 posted on 05/08/2003 4:01:13 PM PDT by montag813
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To: MD_Willington_1976
I heard or saw on some show that Churchill would order the deployment of Anthrax...

Yes. I have a "good friend" that was in the RAF at the time. The gas masks issued to the civilian population were, in reality, not intended to protect the British from German mustard gas, as they were told, but to protect them while the Brits gassed the Krauts if they landed on the Island.

Furthermore, the Brits had built oil pipelines into either end of the Channel with the intention of flooding the invasion crossing with petroleum, and lighting it on fire with the German invaders trapped in the oceanic inferno.

In short, the concept of the show is entertaining, but highly unlikely. Winston was not going to let Jerry on his Island.

38 posted on 05/08/2003 4:03:35 PM PDT by elbucko ("We will never surrender"!)
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To: risk
...so this idea wasn't totally new to me.

The idea is fine and potentially fascinating, which is why I tuned in, but creative vision and production values of this particular program were abysmal.

39 posted on 05/08/2003 4:05:41 PM PDT by beckett
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To: AveMaria; norton
Ireland was quite hopeful of Germany at least beating England into a position in which they could not overcome a mauser armed IRA.

The government of Ireland at the time was highly nationalistic, and hated Britain for historical injustices inflicted on the Irish.

Ireland actually supported Germany in the beginning for historical reasons, so I'm not sure if our forces would have been welcomed there initially, but what could they do about it? And most likely we would have gone to Northern Ireland anyway, still in Britain's control. Hitler wouldn't have had time to get in there, his hands would have been too full in Britain.

40 posted on 05/08/2003 4:06:05 PM PDT by Reaganwuzthebest
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To: John H K
Sea Lion may have been a joke--but we didn't know that at the time, and there really wasn't a British Army able to fight in 1940.

It would have been the ultimate asymmetric conflict--can tactical airpower, a far superior army, and an improvised amphib force have won out over tactical airpower, an outstanding navy, and an army that was a shadow of what it had been a year earlier?

41 posted on 05/08/2003 4:07:12 PM PDT by Poohbah (Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women!)
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To: Reaganwuzthebest
We would've simply have based our troops in Ulster.
42 posted on 05/08/2003 4:07:37 PM PDT by Poohbah (Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women!)
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To: risk

the unsettling possibilities of an alternative world order,

CULTURE : Hitler's Forgotten Library: The Man, His Books, and His Search for God

One of the most heavily marked books is Magic: History, Theory and Practice (1923), by Ernst Schertel. When I typed the author's name into one Internet search engine, I scored eight hits, including sites on Satanism, eroticism, sadomasochism, and flagellation. When I typed his name into Google, I scored twenty-six hits, including sites on parapsychology, astrology, and diverse sexual practices. According to a Web site for Germany's sadomasochistic community, Schertel wrote numerous books on flagellation and eroticism, and was "a central figure" in the German nudist movement of the 1920s and 1930s. Hitler's copy of Magic bears a handwritten dedication from Schertel, scrawled on the title page in pencil. A 170-page softcover in large format, the book has been thoroughly read, and its margins scored repeatedly. I found a particularly thick pencil line beside the passage "He who does not carry demonic seeds within him will never give birth to a new world."

43 posted on 05/08/2003 4:07:55 PM PDT by Remedy
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To: risk
So, it's a good thing so many Americans are armed, I guess. At least that's my inferrence.
44 posted on 05/08/2003 4:09:54 PM PDT by muir_redwoods
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To: Poohbah
What most of the "FDR conspired to drag America into WW2" folks do NOT realize is that Lend-Lease and the "Neutrality Patrol" (which was anything BUT neutral) were actually quite popular moves at the time.

What is your definition of "quite popular"? As I remember it, it was not a majority opinion at the time.

45 posted on 05/08/2003 4:09:59 PM PDT by jackbill
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To: risk
It's good to remind people, especially on the left, that they would have been the first to bite the dust if Hitler had won.

That's for sure. Hitler used the German Left to get into power, then shipped them off to the camps when he had it all. The Left never learns this lesson about their lack of good judgement.

46 posted on 05/08/2003 4:13:04 PM PDT by elbucko
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To: jackbill
What is your definition of "quite popular"? As I remember it, it was not a majority opinion at the time.

60+% of the American public supported Lend-Lease.

The majority of the American public did not support actually entering the war.

47 posted on 05/08/2003 4:13:12 PM PDT by Poohbah (Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women!)
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To: SoDak
I saw it. It was very interesting.

Has this already aired in the U.S. If not, do you know when?

48 posted on 05/08/2003 4:14:49 PM PDT by Euro-American Scum
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To: elbucko
In short, the concept of the show is entertaining, but highly unlikely. Winston was not going to let Jerry on his Island.

Interesting. Also interesting is that it was the committment to blocking that outcome that made the difference. We need that sort of resolve today. After history is written, it looks easy. But while history is unfolding, we're going to lose people, we're going to lose battles, and we're going to feel hopeless at times. Never forget, never forgive, and resolve to die on your feet. That is the best deterrent.

49 posted on 05/08/2003 4:14:53 PM PDT by risk
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To: norton
The Japanese did Churchill and FDR a great service (regardless of any conspiracy tales out there).

They certainly did. Can anyone imagine invading Afghanistan and Iraq without 11 September, 2001.

50 posted on 05/08/2003 4:18:16 PM PDT by elbucko
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