The Instigator
ej3467273
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
ararmer1919
Con (against)
Winning
10 Points

The Japanese wouldn't have won if they invaded Russia in 1941.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
ararmer1919
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/23/2013 Category: Education
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 700 times Debate No: 41100
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (3)
Votes (2)

 

ej3467273

Pro

I want to argue that if Japan invaded Russia in 1941, they would have lost that war. First round is acceptance the last 3 are arguments and rebuttals.
ararmer1919

Con

Sure why not. Good luck.
Debate Round No. 1
ej3467273

Pro

Thank you for accepting.

First we shall look at logistics. Logistics for the Japanese was always a nightmare. They over stretched themselves, having forces in Mayala, most of the Pacific, Burma, Indochina, and China. Supplying them by sea would be almost impossible, due Vladivistok being frozen shut several months out of the year. The Japanese always had a smaller force than a hundred thousand men when conducting invasions against the Allied Powers. In order to invade Siberia and the Far East, the Japanese would have had to assemble a massive force, at least a million strong, while still having enough to continue to occupy the Chinese territories, Manchuria, Korea and the rest of their territories.

Second, the Far East is vast. The main strength that the Russians here have is not that they have better troops, better armor or better aircraft,(though they had better armor) is that the Japanese would have to make sure that they could be bring up enough troops to garrison the entire place. A few thousand Russians with cold weather gear could hold Vladivistok as long as the railroad was kept open. Even if Vladivistok was lost, the Russians didn't just have that one area. The German attack on Moscow would still have been stopped even if Japan attacked.

That's all the time I have. I await your response.
ararmer1919

Con

Its a pleasure.

You bring up logistics as a crucial problem for the Japanese invasion of the USSR. It is no secret by any means that Japanese logistical planning is a major crutch for them, however a key flaw in your argument is that you are assuming that all these other operations and invasions; most Mayala, most of the Pacific IE Wake, Guam, Manila, the Philippines, Australia, Burma, Thailand, ect. would still have taken place and thus would have used up an ample amount of the Japanese resources and manpower. I submit to you that the majority of these operations would not have taken place had the Japanese decided not to attack the US first but instead attack the USSR. While we can not know for certain what would or would not have happened, I'm sure most of the operations in China and along the Russian border would have still taken place, but it is almost guaranteed that the vast majority of the pacific campaign would not have taken place since an attack on any of these nations or islands would have resulted in a war with the US since the vast majority had a US military presence. Supplying a transoceanic campaign is of course far more costly then a ground operation and the Japanese were able to successfully dominate the Pacific Ocean for many months taking most of the territory there. All the resources used to maintain and operate there fleets would not have been needed since there would have been no Pacific campaign. This means indisputably that the Japanese would have had a much larger force of manpower and far greater stockpile of resources due to them not using them up during the Pacific campaigns and the fewer territories they would have to maintain. All of this could now be used to supply the invasion of the USSR.

Now the main problem that the two of us seem to be having here is that the point that I am trying to make is not that the Japanese empire would have successfully conquered all or even most of Russia. The point I was trying to make is that by combining the power of the German forces attacking from the West and the Japanese forces from the East causing the USSR to fight a two front war would have been impossible for the Soviets to survive. They barley survived the German assault alone. Now imagine that you are Stalin and that on top of the German assault from the West which you are barley surviving now you have anywhere up to 6+ million Japanese soldiers, tanks and aircraft approaching from the East. You only have 700,000 troops on the eastern front and a very small force of amour and aircraft since you sent the majority of these assets to stop the German onslaught. So what do you do now? You'll have to send reinforcements to the Eastern font but now every asset you send to stop the Japanese was an asset that the USSR would have had, and needed, on the Western front. This severely reduces your chances of winning either front. The key here is not that either the Germans nor the Japanese needed to successfully conquer the Soviet Union on their own, or that one side needed to push so deep into Soviet territory, but that the combined attacks from both parties would result in the USSR stretching their assets far to thin which would result in the defeat on one front or the other or possibly even both.

Well that's all I have time for as well. Good luck in your next round.

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Debate Round No. 2
ej3467273

Pro

The cost would still be too high. The main problem with your argument is that the Japanese would still have the fuel to transport the large amounts of men and material in order to launch an invasion. The reason the Japanese attacked the Pacific holdings in the first place was that they needed fuel in order to continue to their war in China. Stalin didn't need to send reinforcements towards thee Far East since it so vast. John Keegan in the Price of Admiralty said that the Japanese were losing a million tons of fuel each month, meaning that the Japanese would need to attack the Dutch East Indies unless they wanted their invasion to ground to a halt.

That is the point I am making. The Japanese would need to fight a war on two fronts, unless they wanted their war machine to grind to a halt within a few short months of their invasion. Stalin looked west instead of east, and the Far East forces would be able to stop the Japanese on their own. The Japanese would still be drawn into the war against the United States unless they managed to find the Siberian oilfields at least forty years early.

The Japanese just couldn't fuel their forces and tanks, bombers, and transport over a large distance. Just outside of their range.
ararmer1919

Con

As Iv said I fully understand that fuel would have been a major problem for the Japanese in this scenario. However I still feel that you are missing the major point of this. In this scenario Germany is still going to be the major aggressor against Russia and would still be the one to do most of the conquest. Japans main goal would have been to simply present a threat from the east forcing the Soviets to tie up much needed assets that they absolutely needed to defend the west. Without these assets the Russians would have lost the western front to Germany. It is absolutely insane to think that the 700,000 man force who had very few aircraft and only a light contingent of tanks would have been able to hold against the 6 million man Japanese army along with however many planes and tanks they wanted to send. Stalin would have HAD to send more troops to the east or the Japs would have swept through all of eastern Russia. Every man Stalin sent to the east would be a man not fighting the Germans on the west which is the more crucial front of the war. Japan only needed to push just far enough to achieve this. They could then seize the eastern Siberian oil fields and while this wouldn't have provided them with to much oil it would have been enough to keep the invasion going. Once Germany was finished beating the tar out of the Soviets then Japan could turn its attention towards the East Indies. So this is not a question of manpower or how well Stalin could defend both fronts at the same time but a question solely decided by whether or not Japan had enough resources, the primary of which was oil, to conduct the invasion at all. And by the way Stalin himself was terrified at the prospect of fighting a two front war because even he knew it would have been the end of the USSR.

So now the question of whether or not the Japanese would have had the resources to conduct this invasion. I believe that they would have. During the winter of 1941 Japan had a stockpile of about 50 million barrels of oil. Japan could only produce about 2.7 million barrels a year domestically and an additional 2 or 3 million barrels from already conquered territories ie; Manchukuo and Taiwan. Not a whole lot of oil but still enough to last their country an estimated 2 years. This estimate however was based off of how much oil would be needed to also provide their navy for the Pacific campaign. During the campaign the Japs used an estimated 2,900 barrels of oil every hour. That's a lot of oil. A lot of oil that would NOT be being used in the scenario we are discussing. All of this oil the navy was soaking up could have been used to out fit their vehicles and tanks and planes in the invasion of Russia since the Navy would not have been necessary for such an invasion and could pretty much just sit there and chill in the Japanese waters. So now, yes, the Japs are using a lot of oil to fuel their planes and vehicles but nowhere near as much as what they would have been spending on their navy which means that 2 year estimate could almost certainly be extended. Meaning the Japs had 2+ years worth of oil they could use to invade Russia and then turn to the Dutch East Indies. Just one little extra bit to throw in here. Vladivostok Russia is only 538 miles away from main land Japan. Pearl Harbor however is 4,060 miles away from Japan. So saying that invading Russia was "just outside their reach" is clearly not true and obviously a crap ton more resources would have been needed by the Japanese to attack Pearl Harbor, and conduct several other military operations across the Pacific at the exact same time, then would be needed to push against the Russian border.

So basically for your next round ill give you a hand and tell you what you need to do to win. You have to somehow prove to me that the Japanese Ground and Air Forces would have used up more oil to conduct an invasion of Russia then the Japanese Naval Fleets used to conduct war against the US and allies in the Pacific Campaign. This is the only way you can prove that the Japanese would have been incapable of aiding the Germans in the defeat of the Soviet Union.

Best regards as always and good luck in your next round.
PS. I'm having a great time. Really enjoy this debate.
Debate Round No. 3
ej3467273

Pro

ej3467273 forfeited this round.
ararmer1919

Con

Very unfortunate that my opponent choose not to finish this debate. I had a fun time doing this and best regards to my opponent. My argument still stands. And vote Con ;)
Debate Round No. 4
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
RFD:

Decent debate.

I was mainly looking for a detailed discussion on energy concerns. CON's rebuttals went unrefuted, so arguments CON. CON's points about a 2 front war and the lack of relative need to engage via navy in SE Asia and the Pacific were also convincing and largely unaddressed.

Both sides had somewhat distracting S&G concerns. On sources, a suggestion for CON: When you source, as soon as you make an argument you want to substantiate with a source (or you make an argument derived from the source), either annotate the source with brackets/parentheses immediately after, or footnote it. Example:

"During the winter of 1941 Japan had a stockpile of about 50 million barrels of oil. Japan could only produce about 2.7 million barrels a year domestically and an additional 2 or 3 million barrels from already conquered territories ie; Manchukuo and Taiwan. Not a whole lot of oil but still enough to last their country an estimated 2 years. " (SOURCE LINK OR FOOTNOTE)

[etc]

(IF FOOTNOTE, LINK HERE)

---

You will see this format often in source heavy debates here. It makes it much easier for viewers to look up the source to see if your point is substantiated, which is the main point for sourcing (that and to avoid plagiarism).
Posted by STALIN 3 years ago
STALIN
Hmm, interesting debate. I'm glad there are more interesting WWII debates on now.
Posted by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
Let's see where this goes. I hope for PRO's sake he does not make as embarrassing a concession as the last debate I scored for him.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
ej3467273ararmer1919Tied
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: see comments. Pity there was a forfeit.
Vote Placed by STALIN 3 years ago
STALIN
ej3467273ararmer1919Tied
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: Con proved that Japan would have had a numerical superiority had they invaded the USSR. Pro also forfeited. Either he knew he had lost this debate or he simply didn't have the time to respond. Conduct to Con. And sources to Con although it would have been nice if he had showed which source applies to which specific part of the debate.