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[VIDEO] Could the Axis Powers Have Won? ‘The Second World Wars’ with Victor Davis Hanson

Could the Axis powers have won? What are the counterfactuals for World War II? Find out in part two of this episode as military historian, editor of Strategika, and Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow Victor Davis Hanson joins Peter Robinson to discuss his latest book, The Second World Wars.

Victor Davis Hanson explains the counterfactuals of World War II, the “what-ifs” that easily could have changed the outcome of the war. If Hitler had not attacked Russia or the Japanese had not attacked Pearl Harbor, the USSR would have never turned on Germany and the United States would have never entered the war. Hanson argues that the leaders of the Axis powers overreached in their strategies, which ultimately caused their downfall. Hanson also explores the counterfactual surrounding the American commanders and the “what-ifs” that could have prevented American success in the war.


Victor Davis Hanson also reflects on his own family history and connections to World War II and how it shaped him as both a person and a scholar in his life today. He talks about his motivations to write his latest book, The Second World Wars, and how his family history and the current political climate inspired him to write it.

Watch the full episode to learn more about the history of World War II.

About the Guest:

Victor Davis Hanson is the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow in Residence in Classics and Military History at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University; a professor of Classics Emeritus at California State University, Fresno; a nationally syndicated columnist for Tribune Media Services; host of the Classicist podcast; and the editor of the military history journal, Strategika. He is also the Wayne & Marcia Buske Distinguished Fellow in History, Hillsdale College, where he teaches courses in military history and classical culture every fall semester. Hanson is the author of hundreds of articles, book reviews, scholarly papers, and newspaper editorials on matters ranging from ancient Greek, agrarian, and military history to foreign affairs, domestic politics, and contemporary culture. He has written or edited twenty-four books, the latest of which is The Second World Wars.

Additional Resources:
• The Year That Changed History
• Victor Davis Hanson’s Website
• An Avoidable Great War
• The Deadly Cost of Mutual Misunderstanding
• The Axis Was Outmatched From The Start

For the full transcript go here.

Source:  YouTube – Part 2: The Second World Wars with Victor Davis Hanson

2 Comments on [VIDEO] Could the Axis Powers Have Won? ‘The Second World Wars’ with Victor Davis Hanson

  1. “the USSR would have never turned on Germany and the United States would have never entered the war.”

    Whoa. Stalin was preparing and planning for war. The Red Army was going to move west. Hitler beat Stalin to the punch. The Russo-German Pact was a gambit so that Germany and the western democracies would wear themselves out and make it easy for a Soviet invasion of Europe. As well, FDR (a villain to be sure) was doing everything he could to provoke both Japan and Germany, and to prod or goad France and Britain into war with Germany.


    • Your contention is that villainous FDR actively provoked Germany Japan and Europe into war with each other Is an interesting contrary opinion. As revisionist history theory, that’s a novel assertion, to say the least, though I imagine there are a minority of contemporary Imperial Japan enthusiasts and socially isolated Third Reich hobbyists who would certainly welcome that view.

      Kidding aside – from the exposure I’ve had to his writing on the subject, I’m inclined to think Victor Davis Hanson’s views have credibility, and merit. There are a lot of popular scholarly books about the World Wars, this one is well-regarded. The ideas contained in his new book deserve, I think, more serious examination. If you read further and still disagree with his conclusions, you’re welcome to entertain the debate with the author himself.


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