RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (Full Version)

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Whisper -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 9:34:52 PM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: mike scholl 1
None of the above. Failure to adequately mobilize their industrial base to support a prolonged battle of attrition was by far the worst blunder. None of the Axis powers really tried to fully mobilize their economies until 1943---which is why their most productive year was 1944. There are many reasons for this, but all come back to the basic ignorance and prejudice of their military and national command authority.

Yes none of the above. What caused the greatest harm?
4) their existence. based on their dependance on charismatic but mentally deranged leadership.

What is this doing in a Pacific War forum anyway.




Footslogger -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 9:36:03 PM)

If I recall the Germans were in the process of buidling a CV. The hull was finished, but Hitler abandoned it. Does anyone know what the name was suppost to be?[sm=character0085.gif]




mike scholl 1 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 9:37:04 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Footslogger

If I recall the Germans were in the process of buidling a CV. The hull was finished, but Hitler abandoned it. Does anyone know what the name was suppost to be?[sm=character0085.gif]


Graf Zeppelin. More of a heavy CVL that a CV.




topeverest -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 9:48:45 PM)

MIke SCholls comments are pretty spot-on, but one must not overlook the findemental lack of leadership at the top in Italy, Germany, and Japan. There is where the critical errors occured. These are the 'Dunkirk' errors. Without a doubt, those issues proposed and discussed above certianly were all major tactical issues that impacted the war within the context of the larger issues.




Drambuie -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 9:55:22 PM)





quote:

ORIGINAL: Canoerebel

None of the above. Failure to adequately mobilize their industrial base to support a prolonged battle of attrition was by far the worst blunder. None of the Axis powers really tried to fully mobilize their economies until 1943---which is why their most productive year was 1944. There are many reasons for this, but all come back to the basic ignorance and prejudice of their military and national command authority.


Precisely ... pointless debate really as there was so much that they didn't do right. Could never win the U-Boat campaign as they never commited enough resources to it (and after '43 it was as good as over) and the war on the Eastern front was always the priority, could never win the Battle of Britain as they didn't have the range once the RAF pulled back to more northern bases (and didn't have the right bomber as already discussed), could never invade as the RN would have shredded their invasion force.


quote:

ORIGINAL: topeverest

MIke SCholls comments are pretty spot-on, but one must not overlook the findemental lack of leadership at the top in Italy, Germany, and Japan. There is where the critical errors occured. These are the 'Dunkirk' errors. Without a doubt, those issues proposed and discussed above certianly were all major tactical issues that impacted the war within the context of the larger issues.


Agreed ... one example already discussed - Kursk - was never, ever going to work once the Russians countered it with massive defensive lines and air superiority. One great point that sums up the whole thing is made by Murray and Millet in 'A War to be Won' - the essentially pointless V weapon projects cost the German war economy an estimated equivalent of 24000 fighter aircraft's worth of production ... says it all about their misguided strategy really.

As for Japan the Wargames film quote - 'A strange game. The only winning move is not to play.' - suits their situation pretty well perhaps?




hjalmar99 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 10:19:29 PM)

I think Mike Scholl 1 has nailed the essence of the strategic error . . . plus the fact that the war continued after July 1940.

On the other hand, could the tyrants have remained in power with a failing Keynesian-socialist economy without the mobilizing distraction of a war against an "outside threat"?




Ranger5355 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 10:32:03 PM)

With all the engineering power at the hands of Germany I'm always left scratching my head wonder why nobody thought of rigging up drop tanks for those early 109's. If they could carry 250lb bombs imagine how much loiter time that amount of fuel would have given them. Maybe enough to tip the balance their way.




hjalmar99 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 10:58:10 PM)

Even if the Luftwaffe had trashed the RAF, Operation Seeloewe was a still-born, dead-ended, not-ever-going-to-happen, non-event. The Germans simply lacked the amphibious lift-capacity in 1940, and with their sclerotic industrial base it would have taken years to overcome that deficiency. The Axis strategic capability of 1940 is almost invisible against the Allied capability of 1944 . . . and the latter was a near-run thing, and could have ended in disaster had the Germans been more strategically competent.

Assuming a best-case scenario for the Germans in 1940 - no RAF, no Royal Navy in the Channel, an unopposed landing - it would have been a matter of weeks before the bulk of the invaders were the "guests" of King George. The attrition rate of the supply barges during crossings would have left the invaders starved of every imaginable type of supply. The Channel gets choppy after the summer, and laden river barges are not particularly seaworthy.

More realistically: The Germans would not have captured any viable, undynamited, functioning ports within their limited reach. Once the Germans had landed, Bomber Command and the RN would have paid the struggling landing zones a devastating visit . . . night after night. Even daylight supplies making it to landing zones under Luftwaffe cover would have been inadequate, and would barely have made it off the few useful beaches and jetties.




hjalmar99 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 11:06:00 PM)

I think someone else already mentioned the biting-off-waaaayyyy-more-than-you-can-chew, brain-dead event that unfolded a year later to the east of [former-]Poland. That was the date when Axis defeat was assured.




spence -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 11:12:18 PM)

If one accepts that Hitler and the Japanese military leaders "had" to get into a war with the US and the Soviet Union and the UK then the greatest strategic failing was to have a plan to win. The Wehrmacht had no plan for exploiting the defeat of France: apparently the hope that the Brits would just give up was substituted for a plan to beat them prior to the BoB (when Op SeaLion was cobbled up out of zero prior preparation). A really rational plan to beat the Soviet Union was likewise lacking. Pushing on to Vladivostok was never a possibility and pushing on to the A-A Line really did little to force the S.U. to make peace. Like the French coast it represented a place to reach whereupon the "hope strategy" would be the endgame. Only the real dope-fiends even thought about how to force the US to give up.

The Japanese were just nuts to even consider winning.




Whisper -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 11:13:05 PM)

What in the world is this Wild Wild World of Mentally Deranged Nazis on Ice thread doing on the War in The Pacific forum?

Have raised this with Matrix and the moderators. Hope they will move this to the s...r it belongs in.




che200 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 11:17:12 PM)

Well its still WW2 so whats wrong in a discussion why the Axis failed in taking over the world ?




hjalmar99 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/1/2010 11:23:14 PM)

Who "whispered" in your corn flakes, old chap? [:'(]




Gräfin Zeppelin -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 12:10:29 AM)

2. The failure was to use a tactical airforce as a strategic one.German fighters had the range they where suposed to have but they had to do the wrong job.

3.All German heavy tanks had several MGs. the Ferdinands(later Elephant) where a leftover from another(canceled) Tiger design.They where fited as tank destroyers and yes, it was a minor blunder to give them no MGs but from a strategic view a nuisance at best.
ps the surviving ones where refited with MGs and fought mainly in Italy.




Canoerebel -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 12:40:38 AM)

Regarding why this thread is on AE:  the original question asks for a comparison of German blunders with a Japanese blunder in regard to the Zero fighter.  As such it's legit fodder for the AE thread, IMO.

Many of the replies were pretty non-responsive.  I wasn't asking what was the worst mistake by an Axis power during WWII.  Just which of the three listed had the greatest impact.  Despite the wide-ranging nature of the answers, the answers and insight and opinions are interesting and taught me a heck of alot (for one thing, if I ever get the notion to write about WWII I'm going to run my conclusions by you guys first!).




Venividivici10044 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 1:09:37 AM)

Germany
1. Attacking Russia.
2. Failure of Germany to develop and produce a standardized tank in the medium class (think mass production).
3. Declaring War on the US.

Italy
1. Entering the war.
2. Sending an Army to Russia.
3. Not utilizing its surface fleet effectively.

Japan
1. Failure to evolve its fighters.
2. Failure to evolve its naval tactics - despite the brilliance of PH and what it taught, they still desired the massive battle (even after their carrier arm was shattered.
3. Over-extension - they should have withdrew from China and the outer perimeter when things reversed. 


Overall - not realizing when the war was lost and thus throwing in the towel and seeking peace (think population survival here). 




skrewball -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 7:31:12 AM)

Geez, what's wrong with a single thread debating our beloved WWII? It's not like it's flooding the AE discussion. The AE board has some of the most passionate and informed WWII historians I've come across. I say leave the thread be.

BUT...to bring us back on track as to not have this thread moved...

With all the "What Ifs" on the German side that may or may not have led to a German victory...

Is there a Japanese "What if"? Or were they doomed from the start and anything they would have done could not have improved their chances?




gladiatt -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 9:06:11 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: CarnageINC


I would say the biggest strategic blunder was the Luftwaffe breaking off bombing FC fields and going after the cities.  They were so close to having air superiority that I think Hitler might of thought twice about attacking Britian.



should i add a bit of national proud here ?
Battle of Britain (IIRC) lead to the loss of nearly 2000 germans planes in 3 month.
Battle of France had the same amount of loss for the luftwaffe in 2 months (nearly 2000).
If l'Armée de l'Air hadn't fought, how many planes the RAF would had to face in july 1940?

This point is not here to reduce the exploit of any belligerant. Just to remenber what others did to help accumulate unbearable loss for the wrong side.
(And in wrong side, i am talking of the leadership, NOT the mens).




P.Hausser -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 9:54:56 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: Canoerebel

Which do you think cost the Axis Powers the greatest strategic harm in World War II?





The anwser to your question is very simple, and the anwser is: Soviet Union and their love of the motherland




LoBaron -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 10:08:40 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: mike scholl 1


quote:

ORIGINAL: Canoerebel

Which do you think cost the Axis Powers the greatest strategic harm in World War II?

1) Japanese failure to equip fighters with self-sealing gas tanks and armor

2) German failure to equip heavy tanks with machine guns

3) German failure to have fighters with sufficient legs to escort bombers deeply into Britain



None of the above. Failure to adequately mobilize their industrial base to support a prolonged battle of attrition was by far the worst blunder. None of the Axis powers really tried to fully mobilize their economies until 1943---which is why their most productive year was 1944. There are many reasons for this, but all come back to the basic ignorance and prejudice of their military and national command authority.



This.

And if you want to go further:
Lacking the ressources in manpower, raw materials, technical educated society (thats more true for Japan though)
and modern mass production technologies to sustain such an industrial base...




che200 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 10:18:32 AM)

P.hausser unfortunately i do not agree with your answer, Yes Soviet union inflicted most casualties to germany but the biggest contibuter to the defeat of the Axis was USA. If the Usa stayed neutral Great Britain would have collapsed and if Britain collapses Soviet Union would have been alone against Germany, Italy an Japan how long would they have lasted. Plus USA provided a lot of logistics to USSR and Britain. Something like 80% of trucks used by soviet union where Lend Lease. Lend Lease kept the war going. No USA to provide Money(credit for Russia and Britain so they could buy Items they did not produce) and equipment (I would reccomend to check what russia was producing and even england) would have resulted in Stalemate.

My 2 cents




Twotribes -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 10:43:36 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: CarnageINC

Not to be picky but these all have tactical implications not strategic. 

Out of your choices I say 1, it hurt them over the long run.

2.  the Germans had great combined arms doctrine so I think that the impact of the guns was not as great as 1.
3.  The British would of fought on regardless and I think it would of only prolonged what resulted anyways.

I would say the biggest strategic blunder was the Luftwaffe breaking off bombing FC fields and going after the cities.  They were so close to having air superiority that I think Hitler might of thought twice about attacking Britian.


Agreed. DUMBEST move of the war. A few more weeks of Airfield attacks a couple months max and the Brits would have been beaten in the air.




Twotribes -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 10:53:19 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: che200

P.hausser unfortunately i do not agree with your answer, Yes Soviet union inflicted most casualties to germany but the biggest contibuter to the defeat of the Axis was USA. If the Usa stayed neutral Great Britain would have collapsed and if Britain collapses Soviet Union would have been alone against Germany, Italy an Japan how long would they have lasted. Plus USA provided a lot of logistics to USSR and Britain. Something like 80% of trucks used by soviet union where Lend Lease. Lend Lease kept the war going. No USA to provide Money(credit for Russia and Britain so they could buy Items they did not produce) and equipment (I would reccomend to check what russia was producing and even england) would have resulted in Stalemate.

My 2 cents



The US also provided all the communications cables the Soviets used. They had a problem making reliable cables. Without those cables the Soviets could not have successfully massed their artillery or had reliable comm in their Divisions. Radios are great but cables were and still are heavily used.




LoBaron -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 10:59:11 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Twotribes


quote:

ORIGINAL: CarnageINC

Not to be picky but these all have tactical implications not strategic. 

Out of your choices I say 1, it hurt them over the long run.

2.  the Germans had great combined arms doctrine so I think that the impact of the guns was not as great as 1.
3.  The British would of fought on regardless and I think it would of only prolonged what resulted anyways.

I would say the biggest strategic blunder was the Luftwaffe breaking off bombing FC fields and going after the cities.  They were so close to having air superiority that I think Hitler might of thought twice about attacking Britian.


Agreed. DUMBEST move of the war. A few more weeks of Airfield attacks a couple months max and the Brits would have been beaten in the air.


Would not have had any consequences.

Hitler lacked the logistics/fleet/production numbers to supply an army located on the other
side of the channel even if (which I highly doubt) he had been able to bring this army there in the first place.
The BoB is glorified because its easy to believe thats the place where the Axis had been stopped in the West - in the air above England.
Truth is they never had a chance to go further...




P.Hausser -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 11:01:43 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: che200

P.hausser unfortunately i do not agree with your answer, Yes Soviet union inflicted most casualties to germany but the biggest contibuter to the defeat of the Axis was USA. If the Usa stayed neutral Great Britain would have collapsed and if Britain collapses Soviet Union would have been alone against Germany, Italy an Japan how long would they have lasted. Plus USA provided a lot of logistics to USSR and Britain. Something like 80% of trucks used by soviet union where Lend Lease. Lend Lease kept the war going. No USA to provide Money(credit for Russia and Britain so they could buy Items they did not produce) and equipment (I would reccomend to check what russia was producing and even england) would have resulted in Stalemate.

My 2 cents





I did not talk about equipment, The Political will won the war.
The will to let 30 Million of your men die to win, or rather to let whatever it takes win. No Democracy would accepted to loose 30 or 50 or more ... Million men to beat Germany.

So IMHO, US Money combined with Soviet will and fear won the war.
Without any of the two the Allies would probably lost..






mike scholl 1 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 11:06:15 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Twotribes


quote:

ORIGINAL: CarnageINC

Not to be picky but these all have tactical implications not strategic. 

Out of your choices I say 1, it hurt them over the long run.

2.  the Germans had great combined arms doctrine so I think that the impact of the guns was not as great as 1.
3.  The British would of fought on regardless and I think it would of only prolonged what resulted anyways.

I would say the biggest strategic blunder was the Luftwaffe breaking off bombing FC fields and going after the cities.  They were so close to having air superiority that I think Hitler might of thought twice about attacking Britian.


Agreed. DUMBEST move of the war. A few more weeks of Airfield attacks a couple months max and the Brits would have been beaten in the air.



I wouldn't count on it..., the British were already outproducing the Germans in A/C. And the German Army's plans for the invasion basically treated the English Channel as a big river. Remember the big storm that closed Allied operations in Normandy in 1944? And they came prepared for a sea-borne invasion, not with a bunch of converted canal boats.

An amazing amount would have had to go perfectly for the Germans to invade with success..., and very little go wrong to doom them to failure. Most of the "it was that close" stories come from the Brits (who take a perverse delight in scaring themselves).




che200 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 11:09:43 AM)

But Without air superiority would Britain have survived ? Especially if it had no LL.






Twotribes -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 11:12:23 AM)

I never said they would invade. Nor was I talking about air frames. Britain was critically short on trained fighter pilots, no let up in attacking the fighter command and its fields would have caused a collapse of Fighter Command.

This would give Germany free rein to bomb manufacturing or cities with impunity. No Fighter Command and unrelenting bombing and even Churchill would be seeing a different outcome.




mike scholl 1 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 11:18:25 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: che200

But Without air superiority would Britain have survived ? Especially if it had no LL.



Germany needed "air superiority" to invade (as did the Allies in 1944)..., but all Britain needed was "air parity" to defend herself. Look at Normandy..., the Allies flew over 5000 sorties on D-Day, the Germans flew 2. That's air superiority! Was a 1000:01 superiority ever a possibility for the Luftwaffe in the Fall of 1940? I doubt it.

Could Germany have attacked England successfully? It's possible..., in the Summer of 1941 (after devoting 6-8 months to producing and training the force to do it). Still "iffy" though, as the Brits would have been working just as hard to prepare to stop them.




LoBaron -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/2/2010 11:25:56 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Twotribes

I never said they would invade. Nor was I talking about air frames. Britain was critically short on trained fighter pilots, no let up in attacking the fighter command and its fields would have caused a collapse of Fighter Command.

This would give Germany free rein to bomb manufacturing or cities with impunity. No Fighter Command and unrelenting bombing and even Churchill would be seeing a different outcome.


FC would have retreated north, enabling the Germans to bomb at will on the regions south of London and still continue to protect the mid-english
industrial regions where the 109´s legs were too short. Then the USA would have done exactly what they did (maybe even earlier) and the LW
would have faced combined RAF/USAAF fighters over British territory.
Germany would have lost more pilots because of bails over enemy territory and this could have even accelerated the outcome.




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