Most successful country post WW2

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by michaelmaltby, Mar 18, 2010.

  1. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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    I have a great fondness for Finland. They are an example to the world of how deal with adversity - make lemonaide when handed lemons.

    Consider their record. In 1917 when the Revolution broke out they almost went communist. They suffered economically in the '30s. Were invaded by the Soviets and eventually had to yield. Re-engaged again in 1941 with Germany against Russia. Negotiated a peace treaty unilaterally for which they had to (1) defeat their former ally- Germany, (2) give up territory, and (3) pay huge, huge reparations $$$. They turned that anchor around their feet into an incentive - building good stuff for the Soviets to pay off their "debts" and creating new industries and global markets.

    To-day, Finland leads the world in wireless communications technology, is respected internationally, pays no "guilt-geld" for having being associated with the Nazis, and, I'm told, every Finn knows how to tango like a Latino :).

    Can anyone think of a more successful comeback for a country on the losing side of WW2?

    MM
     
  2. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    The USA.

    Completely dominated the worlds economy up to the 1980's.

    Still the most completely dominate military power.

    Still elite in technological and scientific prowess.
     
  3. timshatz

    timshatz Active Member

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    Think Germany did very well. So did Japan. Both rebounded astoundingly.

    Italy, Hungary, Romania....not so much.
     
  4. imalko

    imalko Well-Known Member

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    #4 imalko, Mar 18, 2010
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2010
    That may be so, but question was about countries on loosing side in WW2. :)

    Never gave it a much thought about this. What MM wrote about Finland is quite true. My first thought would be Japan though. Germany? Did OK I guess, but up to the 1989 only the west part of it.
     
  5. Messy1

    Messy1 Well-Known Member

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    I'd be confident that Germany has made one hell of a comeback since WW2. Especially since it was divided in half for 50 years. Japan I would say may have done the best since WW2.
     
  6. Waynos

    Waynos Active Member

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    #6 Waynos, Mar 18, 2010
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2010
    I'd say Japan too, they virtually took over the worlds motor and electronics industries.

    I wouldn't include the USA even if the question did include any participant. The war did not break the USA like it did other countries.

    Its landmass and civilian population was almost completely unscathed and as armourer to the allies, with an unmolested industry, the war made the USA the powerhouse it has been ever since. The one nation for which WW2 was a profitable excercise.

    The nation that came out of WW2 the worse off was almost certainly a choice between the USSR and the UK, ironically both on the winning side.
     
  7. ToughOmbre

    ToughOmbre Active Member

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    Losing side most successful .....

    Hard to argue for countries other than Japan and Germany with the devastation they had to come back from.

    TO
     
  8. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Since this is about the losing side and not the allied side...

    I will have to go with Germany. Why? Lets see. Germany has come out of the ashes of WW2 as:

    1. 4th largest economy in the world.
    2. Europe's largest economy.
    3. Continues to be one of the worlds leaders in technology, science and electronics.
    4. Overcame being split into two nations and reunited (of which one of them was a communist puppet state).
    5. The worlds 2nd largest exporter.

    I think it is pretty hard to go against Germany with those stats (except for Japan of course).
     
  9. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    I think the bevastation worked to their advantage as they were forced to retool new factories , tools etc meanwhile in North America the retooling was far later80's 90's letting us fall behind for a bit
     
  10. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    Think that Italy fared pretty well after WW2 - the economy is bigger then of UK for a decade or two now. Despite the mayhem they had about governments and mafia...
     
  11. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    For the losers, Japan.

    The devestation they received was in many spects worse than Germany.

    While it comes to consumer devices and production methods, Japan is the leader.
     
  12. ToughOmbre

    ToughOmbre Active Member

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    Good point pb, I agree.

    TO
     
  13. stasoid

    stasoid Member

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    USA benefited the most. Politically, militarily, economicaly.
    Japan, Germany, USSR.
    Then smaller eastern earopean countries like Lithuania, Belarus, Ukraine, some of which almost doubled their territories due to pre- post- WW2 events, and eventually gained independence.

    Finland? I dont see how Finland was affected by WW2. The country would evolve into what it is now with or without WW2. IMHO.
     
  14. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    The nation was falling apart by 1900 and central Government collapsed completely during 1911.

    From 1915 to 1945 they endured Japanese invasion and partial occupation. They also had a three way civil war between the KMT, communists and Japanese supported government in Beijing. Plus a bunch of regional warlords that no one outside China has heard of.

    During 1945 to 1949 they had another civil war, this time between the KMT and Soviet backed communist government of Mao Zedong.

    1950 to 1953 they fought the U.S. and South Korea, supposedly suffering a million casualties in that conflict.

    During the late 1950s they fought a series of engagement s against Taiwan.

    During 1962 China fought a major war with India. Plus several border skirmishes since then.

    During the 1960s and 1970s China had several border fights with the Soviet Union.

    During 1979 China fought a relatively large border war with Vietnam.

    Around 1990 the Chinese economy began growing about 10% per year and it's still growing at a very healthy pace. Today they are the third largest economy in the world (after the USA and Japan). With another 10 years growth at this pace they are likely to become the second largest.

    Not too shabby for a nation that was essentially a basket case for the first half of the 20th century.
     
  15. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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    "... I don't see how Finland was affected by WW2. The country would evolve into what it is now with or without WW2. IMHO." With all respect, Stasoid, you wouldn't :). Russia INVADED them post M-R pact. The Finns humiliated the Soviets BUT in the end the Soviets proved irresistible and the Finns Sue for peace in 1940. After Brarbarossa the Finns and the Germans became "friends". The 2nd WW is " the War of Continuation" - to Finns :)

    Finland is the canary in the goal-mine - only the canary has teeth ":)

    Japan was culturally re-structured by General Doug.

    USA wasn't on the loosing side and was successful BEFORE WW2 :)

    Germany - looks good - but the problem is that GERMANS WON'T FIGHT any more. Is that PROGRESS :) You know it isn't.

    Canada - unmentioned - has proven to be a serious contender - but has absorbed huge amounts of immigration - which in itself requires rethinking the country.

    But Finland :) - success against adversity and no ATTITUDE :) (And they GET hockey)

    MM
     
  16. stasoid

    stasoid Member

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    Sorry michaelmaltby, I'm not sure I got what you're saying. Can you elaborate on Finland's gains?
    Its political system hasnt been changed, neutral status maintained, technological breakthoughs somewhere in 80's (40 years after the war), no territorial gains... what else? High living standards? ... can partially be explained by counry's being untouched by the war (a border conflict with the soviets in 1940 too small in scale of the WW2).
    Finland and the Soviet Union were good neighbors throughout the Cold War, if that's a result of the previouse confrontation and hostilities resolved towards the end of the war, that can be counted as a benefit for both sides. Friendly relations with your immediate neighbor are very important, we all know that.
    What else do we know about Finland? Excuse my ignorance here.
     
  17. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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    Finland lost quite a bit of territory to the Soviets (Karelian Peninsula). The country wasn't "untouched" it was quite heavily bombed in the '39-'40 Winter war. Finland and the USSR were good neighbors :) - if you consider paying your neighbor millions and millions $$$$ in compensation for a 2-part war in which your neighbor invaded you in the first place. :)

    Finland is/was the "canary" because they were an early target for Soviet aggression - and demonstrated the difficulty of being a close neighbor of the Bear :) - but - thanks to geography (and spirit) they successfully fought back to the point that the Soviets respected them.

    They became expect I believe in making ice breakers for the Soviets, pulp and paper machines (Valmet engineering) not just cell phones :)

    Lemons into lemon aid.

    MM
     
  18. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    Reminds me of a bad Irish Joke.

    Patrick - Were in trouble Paddy the country is bust and everyone is out of work, what shall we do?

    Paddy - Easy declare war on America

    Patrick - America are you mad!!

    Paddy - No we declare war, lose, get the aid and be the next Japan

    Patrick - But Paddy, WHAT IF WE WIN
     
  19. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    The nations most affected by the war were territories that were not even nations in 1945, or were so backward as to be not even in the 20th century. The success stories here are the leading ex-third world countries, like malaysia (emerged not even as a nation, plunged into civil war, then recovered, now the 12th ranking trading nation of the world....or Indonesia...a dark horse that has not yet reached its potential. then there is of course China and japan, and lurking in the shadows is india...all the economic and intellectual powerhouses of the future.

    brush up on your chinese or Indian language skills guys, we are going to need it in the next 50 years or so
     
  20. Messy1

    Messy1 Well-Known Member

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    Good post Parsifal. I did not think about the nations you listed.
     
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