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

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E -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/6/2010 7:22:52 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: hjalmar99

...Operation Seeloewe was a still-born ... matter of weeks ... attrition rate ... Bomber Command ... the RN ... Etc


All of that pales against the Germans having to face Capt Mainwaring, Sgt Wilson, Cpl Jones & the rest of the boys of the Home Guard at Walmington-on-sea! (Could you imagine meeting Frazier on a dark night in unfamiliar territory? I thought not!)

quote:

ORIGINAL: P.Hausser

No Democracy would accepted to loose 30 or 50 or more million men



Utter Nonsense! They may not want to lose them, but they will loose them!






ilovestrategy -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/8/2010 2:48:10 AM)


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



Wow, I never knew heavy tanks did not have machine guns!




bairdlander -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/8/2010 4:13:27 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: DaveP

WWII in Europe was fought and won in Russia; the participation of the Western Allies was peripheral and of minor importance. The German forces left in the west before 1943 were litttle more than garrisons -- the British posed no real threat (only slightly more than if Britian had been driven to its knees in 40-41). By the time there was a true two front war, the turning point had been reached in Russia and the outcome was already decided. As much as it offends American pride, the participation of the US in Europe only helped speed up a Russian victory (though it was decisivie in keeping Western Europe free of Russian domination in the post-war period).



+1 And IMO I beleive the only reason the Allies launched D-Day was to prevent the Soviets from over running all of Europe which they would have done.




GoodGuy -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/8/2010 11:49:24 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: bairdlander

quote:

ORIGINAL: DaveP

WWII in Europe was fought and won in Russia; the participation of the Western Allies was peripheral and of minor importance. The German forces left in the west before 1943 were litttle more than garrisons -- the British posed no real threat (only slightly more than if Britian had been driven to its knees in 40-41). By the time there was a true two front war, the turning point had been reached in Russia and the outcome was already decided. As much as it offends American pride, the participation of the US in Europe only helped speed up a Russian victory (though it was decisivie in keeping Western Europe free of Russian domination in the post-war period).


+1 And IMO I beleive the only reason the Allies launched D-Day was to prevent the Soviets from over running all of Europe which they would have done.


Ppl who favor these 2 theories seem to forget that it was Stalin himself who urged the Western Allies to establish a second front in the West. There were messages going back and forth between Stalin, Churchill and FDR, with Stalin pushing them (1941 and 1942) to "do something because Russia had to bear the brunt" and because Russia lost men and equipment with breakneck speed. Some of these messages were almost whiny.
In their speeches on public events, US artists in Hollywood emphasized the need for the shipment of American aid to Russia and urged to buy war bonds, where the former fired back on quite some of them during the McCarthy era.

The Western Allies were just not ready to undertake a landing in France, so they decided to bring the fight to the Enemy at places where the amount of troops/resources seemed to be sufficient (Africa, Italy). You also have to keep in mind that the buildup for the Normandy invasion took more than a year (establishment and training of units in the US, shipping to the UK, training in the UK, development and relocation of tools and equipment).

But even the US landings in NA could have gone terribly wrong, if the Germans would have had a tick more resources (incl. one or another tank division, some more manpower and fuel), as the US units were inexperienced, lacked proper coordination in quite some units and because overall-planning was more a learning process than a fully professional procedure. One result of the NA operation was that the US discovered and then tried to solve what I'd call the "optics-crisis", when they found the Sherman's optics to be way inferior to the German ones, regarding quality and range (in terms of providing more blur at medium and long range than comparable German optics). They could not reach the German quality level until the end of the war in Europe, but - as a result of the encounters in NA - they gradually upgraded the optics in ordnance depots, which then provided a magnification level of 5x at least. This gave the Shermans even a theoretical advantage over Mark IV tanks, which used ~2.5x magnification at the time, IIRC, but the US optics still provided a disadvantageous amount of blur, as the Germans successfully employed 2 processes to reduce the amount of blur (which usually increases with each lense added, without proper coating).

So in many respects pre-Normandy operations were field tests, where equipment and tactics could be verified, but they also helped to bind enemy resources (ie. Italy). Ppl seem to underestimate that. For the Italian theater, German units had to be either pulled away from the Russian front or from the French coast (where the Germans expected an invasion for a while).
Units like the 16. PzDiv (which perished in the Stalingrad pocket), were re-established in France (April-May 1943) and not sent back to Russia, but (fully operable) to Salerno instead.

The German Kursk offensive had been halted, as the upper pincer seriously stalled but also due to the Russian counterattacks at Orel AND the Allied landings on Sicily.

I never read Churchill's works (from after the war) about his thinking during that time, but he had a vital interest in gaining or securing a British foothold in the Mediterannean, especially in the Balkans (IIRC, he favored a landing in the Balkans instead of Sicily + Italy, first, probably to mark Western claims against Stalin), I'm convinced Churchill saw the Mediterranean as an exclusive sphere of British interests (traditionally, and especially for the future).

The real race for Berlin, thus the attempt of the Western Allies to secure as much of the German territory as possible, did not start before 1945, and was rather triggered by some nonspecific concerns that Stalin may not stick to former agreements. It seems that Eisenhower wanted to preserve Western manpower/resources, so he let the Russians do the job. It was also not necessary to race for Berlin, as FDR, Stalin and Churchill had detailed the spheres of interest during the several conferences already, and Russian and Allied troops were pulled back to the zones after hostilities, just as agreed upon, anyways.

D-Day in Normandy was a (delayed) fulfillment of the promises the Western Allies had made to Stalin. When it materialized, the Russians had the upper hand for a year, already. The Italian engagement was driven by Churchill, it was probably a rather "selfish" turn, and it was also against the advice (in the main) of many US advocates of a second front in France. The Italian theater proved to be a long and atricious campaign, too, unable to hit the Germans where it really hurt (industrial capacity, manpower, etc), as it took the Germans less effort to muster successful defensive or delaying actions than in Russia.

Actually, I do believe that the massive American and the British deliveries (Grant tanks, Stuart tanks, fuel, halftracks, trucks) helped Russia to survive the period when they (temporarily) lost the oil wells in the Crimea and when they relocated steel and armament production to the Ural (outside the range of German medium bombers). If the Brits wouldn't have invaded Iran, to make sure deliveries could be shipped across the Caspian Sea, Russia would have faced serious trouble, as the Northern shipping route around Norway (to Murmansk) was contested by the Germans (airforce, Tirpitz raids).

Even though the fresh Russian troops (from Siberia), committed to push back the stalled Germans near Moscow in 1941, were successful, this set of units was basically Stalin's last ace, before the reorganisation of the Soviet Army showed some effect.

That said, without Allied help, it's not sure whether the Russians would have survived the period between early 1942 and early 1943, at all. The German territorial gains in 1942 were compelling.

My 2 cents.

quote:

ORIGINAL: ilovestrategy

Wow, I never knew heavy tanks did not have machine guns!


I hope that was meant to be an ironic comment. [:)]




warspite1 -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/8/2010 2:18:20 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: P.Hausser

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



Warspite1

There is a saying which is broadly true. In WWII the USA gave money, the USSR gave blood and the British Commonwealth gave hope.

I think it all too easy to dismiss the British contribution; but to do so is quite wrong. If the British had taken the path of least resistance and quit after the French surrendered for example (and that is not as far-fetched as it sounds), there is every chance that the Soviet Union would have been beaten before the US got involved. Think of the Axis aircraft not lost in the Battle of Britain, the additional units available for the Eastern Front that would no longer be needed in Norway, France, Libya etc etc.

History teaches us we learn nothing from history; that has never been more true than in the case of Hitler failing to learn from Napoleon. Attacking Russia when the British were still in the game and had been given a battleground in which to fight - for Portugal / Spain read the Western Desert.

I recognise and salute the contribution of our Russian and US Allies - its a shame that the British are not always treated with the same courtesy. Fighting two world wars cost this country very dearly in terms of national prosperity and casualties - both civilian and armed forces, but in doing so I believe we made a real difference to the outcome.

Rant over.....










Zakhal -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/8/2010 2:27:55 PM)

Japanese high command lacked flexibility from the start. They learned nothing from their mistakes and instead repeated them. Also there were those nasty allied radar controlled guns. Japs also lacked decent AA gun like bofors.

I guess Ive been reading too much jap destroyer commander..




105mm Howitzer -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/10/2010 4:27:53 AM)

Here's another gem of mine; The North Atlantic, or how the convoys should have been stopped. Resources from abroad, Lend Lease materials going to Allies should have been a top German priority. Of course, they weren't looking for a long war, figuring everyone was going to keel over before the need to shut the Atlantic became a necessity. Terrible oversight on their part, and it cost them dearly. Tactically the Russians took the brunt of the land fighting, however it's the "behind the scenes" that made the difference. As someone said before ( my apologies, for I cannot recal the name) a lot of resources were tied up or used up outside of the USSR. Resources that could have been sent East had the Western Allies not been there.
Cheers
MC




06 Maestro -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/10/2010 7:41:58 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: GoodGuy


The real race for Berlin, thus the attempt of the Western Allies to secure as much of the German territory as possible, did not start before 1945, and was rather triggered by some nonspecific concerns that Stalin may not stick to former agreements. It seems that Eisenhower wanted to preserve Western manpower/resources, so he let the Russians do the job. It was also not necessary to race for Berlin, as FDR, Stalin and Churchill had detailed the spheres of interest during the several conferences already, and Russian and Allied troops were pulled back to the zones after hostilities, just as agreed upon, anyways.


Good post GoodGuy. It seems that some schools leave out the Yalta conference from their curriculum. Oh well, what can you do. Some still think that the Allied bomber campaign didn't do any good.




06 Maestro -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/10/2010 7:56:54 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: 105mm Howitzer

Here's another gem of mine; The North Atlantic, or how the convoys should have been stopped. Resources from abroad, Lend Lease materials going to Allies should have been a top German priority.


It was a very high priority. It was high enough that the Murmansk route had to be abandoned for long periods during the war. The RN make a fantastic effort to keep supplies going around Scandinavia-it was very expensive to do so. The reason is that the bulk of the German Navy was stationed there to prevent such convoys. There was also a significant number of Uboats, seaplanes and regular bombers assigned to that task.

One particular convoy (PQ 17 if trusting my sometimes shorting memory) was nearly wiped out in June of '42. The Royal Navy got word that the Tirpitz had sortied so the convoy was ordered to scatter. It was broad daylight-the convoy was found by the wolf packs-and the Luftwaffe. Something like 2 dozen ships were sunk. The German armed forces did not have such achievements by sending a few dozen guys to the frigged north for a quick camping trip. There were hundreds of thousands of men deployed to Norway for the duration of the war-not counting those trying to reach Murmansk.




GoodGuy -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/10/2010 7:04:52 PM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: 06 Maestro

It was a very high priority.


Actually, if you consider the area Howitzer had in mind (the North Atlantic), the priority had not shifted before Admiral Dönitz (who was commander of the U-boat arm) became head of the entire German Navy in 1943, which allowed him to shift production and determine the direction of the industrial main effort (then in favor of the submarine arm). At that time, it was already too late, though, and he ordered to pull back from the Atlantic (in the main) a few months later, after some temporary success like in the good old times of 1941 ("bloody march" bloody may?, well some month around March-May 1943), where Bletchley Park could not read the U-Boat messages for some 3 weeks.

quote:

The reason is that the bulk of the German Navy was stationed there to prevent such convoys. There was also a significant number of Uboats, seaplanes and regular bombers assigned to that task.


Not the bulk, but the Tirpitz, a couple of destroyers and one or another cruiser, along with pretty good bomber and fighter-bomber-support (keeping in mind the harsh and difficult weather conditions up there) appeared to be enough to check (and bind) the British homefleet and contest the Murmansk passage. It wasn't until late 1944 (IIRC, and not until the Tirpitz was sunk) that the homefleet was reassigned to the Pacific.

quote:

One particular convoy (PQ 17 if trusting my sometimes shorting memory) was nearly wiped out in June of '42. The Royal Navy got word that the Tirpitz had sortied so the convoy was ordered to scatter. It was broad daylight-the convoy was found by the wolf packs-and the Luftwaffe. Something like 2 dozen ships were sunk.


Seriously decimated, at least. I don't think there were more than 2-4 subs (if at all) involved. They mostly tracked down stragglers after the main slayfest, if I am not mistaken. The Luftwaffe had ripped that convoy apart, IIRC.

quote:

The German armed forces did not have such achievements by sending a few dozen guys to the frigged north for a quick camping trip. There were hundreds of thousands of men deployed to Norway for the duration of the war-not counting those trying to reach Murmansk.


Erm, no. Actually, in order to bolster forces in front of Leningrad, quite some German units were pulled out of Norway in 1942. My grandfather was stationed up there (engineer batallion), until his unit was re-assigned that year to prepare the front sector in front of Leningrad, for the upcoming attack and the subsequent "siege" of the city. German progress had completely stalled, due to the stubborn Russian defense, before.

Also, for the operation Silver Fox (June to September 1941, targeting the seizure of Murmansk and its harbor) around 5 divisions, where 3 of them were German divisions from Norway, (incl. 2 mountain divisions, the 2nd and 3rd Mtn. Div]), were moved to the Finnish-Russian border, and additionally, 2 tank units were attached, involving ~200,000 troops for this Northern campaign.

The sub-operation Platin Fox (June-July) involved ~40,000 troops, basically the Alpine Corps Norway. Both were started from Finnish territory.
The Campaign failed, Murmansk harbor was never seized, and Murmansk proved to be the only lifeline for Allies lend-lease stuff in late 1941/early 1942. 25% of the lend-lease supply deliveries came through the Murmansk port, despite the fact that the shipments had to be called off for a while, because the Tirpitz taskforce and the Luftwaffe contested that supply line.

Whatsoever, these German forces did not move back (retreat) to Norway before late 1944, so Norway was relatively empty, besides regular occupation units, the massive workforce around the Tirpitz (one main effort was to deploy a massive amount of fog machines around the Tirpitz anchorage, in order to reduce the number of RAF raids), the workforce that was sent to repair the Tirpitz (~400 men), the submarine effort (U-boat base in Bergen) and the impressive (in relations to being a secondary or even tertiary theater) Luftwaffe presence.




06 Maestro -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/10/2010 9:03:19 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: GoodGuy

quote:

ORIGINAL: 06 Maestro

It was a very high priority.


Actually, if you consider the area Howitzer had in mind (the North Atlantic), the priority had not shifted before Admiral Dönitz (who was commander of the U-boat arm) became head of the entire German Navy in 1943, which allowed him to shift production and determine the direction of the industrial main effort (then in favor of the submarine arm). At that time, it was already too late, though, and he ordered to pull back from the Atlantic (in the main) a few months later, after some temporary success like in the good old times of 1941 ("bloody march" bloody may?, well some month around March-May 1943), where Bletchley Park could not read the U-Boat messages for some 3 weeks.


Its true that the top naval priority was not shifted to Uboats until the 43 change in command, but there were still about 200 uboats built in '42-no small feat. Perhaps "high priority"is a bit ambiguous. Without the data in front of me, I will restate it; uboat production priority for the purpose of interdiction of Allied convoys in the Atlantic and elsewhere was not surpassed by very many other military production requirements. [;)] Better?



quote:

The reason is that the bulk of the German Navy was stationed there to prevent such convoys. There was also a significant number of Uboats, seaplanes and regular bombers assigned to that task.

Not the bulk, but the Tirpitz, a couple of destroyers and one or another cruiser, along with pretty good bomber and fighter-bomber-support (keeping in mind the harsh and difficult weather conditions up there) appeared to be enough to check (and bind) the British homefleet and contest the Murmansk passage. It wasn't until late 1944 (IIRC, and not until the Tirpitz was sunk) that the homefleet was reassigned to the Pacific.


The 2 remaining Pocket Battleships plus the Sharnhorst and the Tirpitz were all in Norway-along with the required screening forces and support. The Gneisanau would have been there too if it did not get banged up in the "Channel Dash" and some further bad luck. Other than the pre WW1 relic battle ship and some cruisers, that was the bulk of the German surface fleet. Of course, there were many more U boats in the "western approaches" and beyond.

Other than the blockade of Leningrad, the interdiction mission in Norway was the only rational deployments for the German surface fleet. The Skageratt could be easily controlled by a/c and light vessels.

Ahh, the East Sea could mean the Pacific-hey, it happens.[;)]

quote:

One particular convoy (PQ 17 if trusting my sometimes shorting memory) was nearly wiped out in June of '42. The Royal Navy got word that the Tirpitz had sortied so the convoy was ordered to scatter. It was broad daylight-the convoy was found by the wolf packs-and the Luftwaffe. Something like 2 dozen ships were sunk.

Seriously decimated, at least. I don't think there were more than 2-4 subs (if at all) involved. They mostly tracked down stragglers after the main slayfest, if I am not mistaken. The Luftwaffe had ripped that convoy apart, IIRC.


Too bad I no longer have the book with that info-I'll have to check online-carefully for the story. I may be wrong, I though there were about 10 uboats.


quote:


quote:

The German armed forces did not have such achievements by sending a few dozen guys to the frigged north for a quick camping trip. There were hundreds of thousands of men deployed to Norway for the duration of the war-not counting those trying to reach Murmansk.


Erm, no. Actually, in order to bolster forces in front of Leningrad, quite some German units were pulled out of Norway in 1942. My grandfather was stationed up there (engineer batallion), until his unit was re-assigned that year to prepare the front sector in front of Leningrad, for the upcoming attack and the subsequent "siege" of the city. German progress had completely stalled, due to the stubborn Russian defense, before.


Well, many units were pulled from the west, but others replaced them later. The forces in the west continued to increase in size from early '43 onwards-including those in Norway. Not only was blocking the Murmansk convoy route important, but Hitler was overly concerned about an Allied landing in Norway. This had the result of many Army units being stationed there-waiting for an invasion.


quote:


Also, for the operation Silver Fox (June to September 1941, targeting the seizure of Murmansk and its harbor) around 5 divisions, where 3 of them were German divisions from Norway, (incl. 2 mountain divisions, the 2nd and 3rd Mtn. Div]), were moved to the Finnish-Russian border, and additionally, 2 tank units were attached, involving ~200,000 troops for this Northern campaign.

The sub-operation Platin Fox (June-July) involved ~40,000 troops, basically the Alpine Corps Norway. Both were started from Finnish territory.
The Campaign failed, Murmansk harbor was never seized, and Murmansk proved to be the only lifeline for Allies lend-lease stuff in late 1941/early 1942. 25% of the lend-lease supply deliveries came through the Murmansk port, despite the fact that the shipments had to be called off for a while, because the Tirpitz taskforce and the Luftwaffe contested that supply line.


Yes, Silver Fox-the first use of the Tigers-all six of them. The forces in Norway did fluctuate-depending on the grand schemers mood.


quote:


Whatsoever, these German forces did not move back (retreat) to Norway before late 1944, so Norway was relatively empty, besides regular occupation units, the massive workforce around the Tirpitz (one main effort was to deploy a massive amount of fog machines around the Tirpitz anchorage, in order to reduce the number of RAF raids), the workforce that was sent to repair the Tirpitz (~400 men), the submarine effort (U-boat base in Bergen) and the impressive (in relations to being a secondary or even tertiary theater) Luftwaffe presence.


As long as the army had secure supplies in the north, it could be considered as part of a general defensive deployment for Norway.




105mm Howitzer -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/10/2010 9:51:25 PM)

Case in point. The units pulled out of the West and subsequently replaced later amounted to little more than ersatz units. Many were ailment troops, who had relatively little value in the Eastern Front. ( until the creation of City/Fortresses and the infamous stay to the last man/bullet order issued by Hitler) Except for some panzer divisions getting refitted in France or Holland, garrison troops were the flavor of choice in the West.




GoodGuy -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/11/2010 12:51:07 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: 06 Maestro

Its true that the top naval priority was not shifted to Uboats until the 43 change in command, but there were still about 200 uboats built in '42-no small feat. Perhaps "high priority"is a bit ambiguous. Without the data in front of me, I will restate it; uboat production priority for the purpose of interdiction of Allied convoys in the Atlantic and elsewhere was not surpassed by very many other military production requirements. [;)] Better?


Aww come on, hehe. As there weren't other production goals than the few types for coastal submarine missions and the "milk-cows" tanker subs, you're still saying u-boat production numbers weren't bad.
Consider the following layout: For a long time (IIRC 1939-41) 9-11 "Wolfs" were (literally) lined up in order to report and intercept convoys, while ~7 subs were on their way to the mission area, with ~ 5-6 on their way back to the bases in France, at any given time. It's actually extremely impressive how many GRTs this small number of subs managed to sink. Even with ~200 subs produced by the end of 1942 (I think the number is correct), the amount of operational subs in the mission area was limited (less than 30 early 1943, IIRC, I would have to look it up).

quote:

The 2 remaining Pocket Battleships plus the Sharnhorst and the Tirpitz were all in Norway-along with the required screening forces and support.


There were 3 pocket-BS:
The Deutschland (later renamed to "Lützow"), which was committed to operations in the Baltic Sea (arty ground support) and also to attack a convoy that followed PQ-17 (JW-51B, all convoy vessels reached the USSR), the Admiral Graf Spee deliberately scuttled by the Germans at Montevideo in Dec. 1939, and the Admiral Scheer, usually based in Kiel, Germany, operated even in the Indian Ocean, besides being part of the taskforce ordered to trace PQ-17. The Adm. Scheer failed to track down any vessel of the convoy, btw. The ship assisted German ground forces with arty support from the Baltic from 1944-1945, but was always based in Kiel.

quote:

Ahh, the East Sea could mean the Pacific-hey, it happens.[;)]


Actually, I was referring to the British homefleet that could be assigned to the Pacific after the Tirpitz (the reason for keeping back the ships that formed the homefleet) was sunk.

quote:

Too bad I no longer have the book with that info-I'll have to check online-carefully for the story. I may be wrong, I though there were about 10 uboats.


I wouldn't bet on my rough number (2-4), been a while since I read that. [:)]

quote:

Well, many units were pulled from the west, but others replaced them later. The forces in the west continued to increase in size from early '43 onwards-including those in Norway. Not only was blocking the Murmansk convoy route important, but Hitler was overly concerned about an Allied landing in Norway. This had the result of many Army units being stationed there-waiting for an invasion.


Hmm, I'll check that. If so, I don't think these were major commitments, though.

quote:

As long as the army had secure supplies in the north, it could be considered as part of a general defensive deployment for Norway.


Actually, the Finns could have done such job with one or another additional German division. Purely offensive op there, Maestro, and the troops would have been reassigned to some other places than Norway, if they wouldn't have been committed there, most likely. [:)]




GoodGuy -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/11/2010 1:06:20 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: 105mm Howitzer

Except for some panzer divisions getting refitted in France or Holland, garrison troops were the flavor of choice in the West.


With some exceptions to your rule. The US forces at Omaha beaches, for example, ran into a division that had NCOs (and a few grunts, IIRC) who had served in Russia for at least a year. Their resistance was stronger than in other sectors. There were also noteworthy contingents in Calais, in 1944.




morvwilson -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/11/2010 3:21:53 PM)

The short answer to "what caused the axis the most harm?" I would say was lack of cooperation on strategic goals.
What if the Japanese attacked the Russians at the same time as the Germans instead of attacking Pearl Harbor?
With only the Germans attacking the Soviet Union, the soviets were close to collapse.




105mm Howitzer -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/11/2010 9:11:53 PM)

The Japanese did attack the Soviets on the Mongolian fron in the early 30's, but were repulsed bloodily. The Soviets did not pursue them into Occupied China, though.


quote:

ORIGINAL: morvwilson

The short answer to "what caused the axis the most harm?" I would say was lack of cooperation on strategic goals.
What if the Japanese attacked the Russians at the same time as the Germans instead of attacking Pearl Harbor?
With only the Germans attacking the Soviet Union, the soviets were close to collapse.





105mm Howitzer -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/11/2010 9:13:19 PM)

Quite right, GoodGuy, but in average, the rest were notoriously innefective.
quote:

ORIGINAL: GoodGuy

quote:

ORIGINAL: 105mm Howitzer

Except for some panzer divisions getting refitted in France or Holland, garrison troops were the flavor of choice in the West.


With some exceptions to your rule. The US forces at Omaha beaches, for example, ran into a division that had NCOs (and a few grunts, IIRC) who had served in Russia for at least a year. Their resistance was stronger than in other sectors. There were also noteworthy contingents in Calais, in 1944.






sprior -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/11/2010 11:19:46 PM)

quote:

The short answer to "what caused the axis the most harm?"


The Allies.




pasternakski -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/11/2010 11:45:55 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: sprior

quote:

The short answer to "what caused the axis the most harm?"


The Allies.

Thief




sprior -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/11/2010 11:46:42 PM)

Borrower. You can have it back now.




pasternakski -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/12/2010 1:25:04 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: sprior

Borrower. You can have it back now.

Nah. You keep it, if you think it worth having, my witty old friend. It went to a good home, with you zinging it in there like a proper Meisterzinger. Just look out for a little intellectual thievery in the future, because you're definitely worth stealing from.

I inherently respect people who don't use emoticons...




Muzrub -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/12/2010 11:57:16 AM)

Racism was the main cause in the defeat of the Axis forces......

1) The wasting of resources concerning the Jewish question and the misuse and disregard of the people of the Western Soviet Union.
The second point being the more detrimental to Germany's overall cause.

2) The Japanese preoccupation with being the elite of the Asian races, and not taking full advantage of anti Western feelings in their violent attempt at creating a powerful Asian bloc headed by Japan.




sprior -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/12/2010 12:07:05 PM)

The Allies were just better and consequently beat the snot out the bad guys.




ilovestrategy -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/12/2010 3:59:30 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: GoodGuy


quote:

ORIGINAL: ilovestrategy

Wow, I never knew heavy tanks did not have machine guns!


I hope that was meant to be an ironic comment. [:)]


I'm serious, I always thought that all tanks had machine guns. It kinda seems like a requirement to me.




ilovestrategy -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/12/2010 4:01:40 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: sprior

The Allies were just better and consequently beat the snot out the bad guys.



I love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! [:D][&o][sm=00000436.gif][sm=Tank-fahr09.gif]




ezz -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/12/2010 7:25:51 PM)

A cartoon in this weeks private eye magazine.

A group of German officers are examining a map of Russia.
One looking pleased with himself officer turns from the map and says to a sad looking Hitler,

"Basically, front line battlegroups outstripping supply lines with limited seasonal hazard recognition.
A schoolboy error Mein Fuhrer."





GoodGuy -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/12/2010 10:42:28 PM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: ilovestrategy

I'm serious, I always thought that all tanks had machine guns. It kinda seems like a requirement to me.


All German tanks had machine guns, except for the first version of the Elefant tank (90 Elefants were ever produced) I mentioned before, where 48 of the remaining ~50 Elefant tanks - right after their experience from their FIRST battle (Kursk) - were upgraded with a hull-MG, of course.
So the OP either totally overrates the importance of a batch of 90 tanks that lacked MGs (initially), or he mistakenly thinks that all heavy tanks really didn't have MGs. Another detail: The Elefants weren't heavy tanks, actually, they were self-propelled guns designed for tank-hunting. Their kill-ratio was pretty ok, but they were too slow, as I outlined in a previous post.




GoodGuy -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/12/2010 11:16:25 PM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: 105mm Howitzer

The Japanese did attack the Soviets on the Mongolian fron in the early 30's, but were repulsed bloodily. The Soviets did not pursue them into Occupied China, though.


Actually, the Japanese attacked in 1939, during the Russian-Japanese border incident (some call it border "war"). The Russians didn't have to pursue the Japanese force, because the Japs had crossed the river (border) and attacked first, where they totally underestimated the size of Zhukov's force (some 50,000 - 70,000 troops, depending on the source), due to bad recon on the Jap. side.

After the main battle had become a stalemate, Zhukov developed a certain method during this border war, which he then copied and mastered in Stalingrad later on (in fact most of his WW2 operations used this model). It's about fixing the enemy (keeping him busy, basically letting him run into the alledged main force, that incorporates a sufficient amount of troops to hold the supposed main line), and about putting the tank force at the left and right wings, supported by mech. brigades and infantry support, to perform a giant pincer movement.
Zhukov broke the stalemate, crossed the border, pinned the Japs with the alledged frontal "main" force and surrounded an entire Japanese division with the pincer movements. A Relief operation and an attempt to breakout both failed, the jap. division was annihilated by planes and artillery. Zhukov did the same in Stalingrad, well minus the planes.

Russian tank losses were quite high, though, as they did not wait for their Infantry support, allowing Japanese Infantry, the few AT- and the artillery elements to kill a good number of tanks.

Both side's propaganda tried to hide/downplay the losses, but at least some of the Russian losses could be estimated, after Russia opened some of its archives, recently. Still, really reliable numbers (say Russian tank losses or Jap. inf/light tank losses) are not available, in the main.




mikemike -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/13/2010 12:12:07 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: GoodGuy

LOL. Hey, you forgot Swing (Swing kids in Germany were persecuted, tortured, imprisoned, some were sentenced to death or died in KZs), Coca Cola and MickeyMouse. [;)]
The US had everything Adolf hated. [:D]


You're going to laugh: Coca-Cola did very well in the Third Reich, actually. They had a very canny General Manager. Amongst other things, Coca Cola sponsored the annual Hitler Youth National Meet, they had a large promotional presence there, and sold lots of their stuff. Coca-Cola also always ran ads in the Hitler Youth's monthly. Coca-Cola sales in Germany stopped only when they couldn't get the concentrate from the USA anymore, but the corporation continued to operate by developing Fanta which at that time was made of whey.




mikemike -> RE: Which Caused the Axis Powers the Greatest Harm (3/13/2010 12:51:14 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: GoodGuy


quote:

Well, many units were pulled from the west, but others replaced them later. The forces in the west continued to increase in size from early '43 onwards-including those in Norway. Not only was blocking the Murmansk convoy route important, but Hitler was overly concerned about an Allied landing in Norway. This had the result of many Army units being stationed there-waiting for an invasion.


Hmm, I'll check that. If so, I don't think these were major commitments, though.



It's true that Hitler had a fixation about an invasion in Norway (helped along by Allied, especially British efforts, like commando raids) which led to a disproportionate effort in Norway and Denmark. I don't know about infantry units, but most of the heavy CD guns of the Atlantikwall were installed in Norway, including French guns, amongst others three of the 380 mm guns produced for BB Jean Bart (the French swapped them postwar for an equal number of German 380 mm guns, probably from Battery "Todt" near Calais, so they could complete the ship). Norway also had seven 406 mm guns compared to three in France; the surviving guns from Gneisenau also ended up in Norway and Denmark. That must have helped Overlord.




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