Imagine not 600 paratroops at one end of the Arnhem bridge, but a significant part of the division, even with the scattering common in airborne operations, it would be thousands of men in a much larger bridgehead. The gliderborne 6pdr antitank guns caused problems for the Germans, how much more effective would they have been over the open country to the South of Arnhem. The whole of Arnhem would have been turned into a battleground, which the Germans would have had to advance through, losing some of the power of their AFVs.
The SS would've mostly had to ferry troops across the Rhine to get to them, so they would be safer south of Arnhem, with water on three sides. However, in that case the SS or other German forces could also try and relocate (through Germany) to Nijmegen in order to engage American forces and drive North across the bridges at Nijmegen, which is why it think that success would've been only possible if both the bridges at and around Nijmegen and the bridge at Arnhem could've been held until the arrival of XXX Corps.
It was a winning doctrine in the end.
I'll repeat it again: whether a doctrine was successful or not is not the sole issue that matters, as it does not necessarily have a relation to the merits of the actual doctrine.
Change it inside a year? How?
Mobilise more men, create a number of divisional sized training units as a pool for frontline units and move some of them to Europe with the rest of the army, so the replacements would be trained and on site. That would've given them enough time for at least 6 months of training, with the rest spend on preparing to move to Europe and moving to Europe.
The German's did not assault with 24 Divisions out of the Ardennes in the first wave.
No, but they could have, as those forces were available.
Comparing the forces that could have been used in the Ardennes and the area around it (from troops South of Liege to Montmedy):
Infantry divisions: 3,5,8,12,15,16,17,21,23,24,28,32,34,36,62,68,73,76.
1st Gebirgs Division.
Motorised: 2nd Motorised Infantry, with 13th Motorised Infantry and 29th Motorised infantry arriving in a few days.
A few of the infantry divisions would be needed to keep the French units in the Maginot Line honest and in place.
Belgian: 1st Cavalry, 1st and 2nd Ardense Jagers division as mobile formations, with the 2nd, 3rd and 8th Infantry divisions protecting Liege and Namur.
Initially (in the area described earlier or within a few kilometres West, or South of the Meuse): 1st, 2nd, 3rd (would have to move from Maginot Line reserve duty) and 5th Light Cavalry, as well as about a division worth of non-divisional mobile units, with the 55th and 61st Infantry division and the 102nd Fortress/static division assembled in defences/defensive positions behind the Meuse.
Possible Reserves (including some reserves of the Maginot line): South of the Meuse: 1st Colonial Infantry division, 6th Infantry division and another division worth of mobile troops, in several days: 3rd Armour and after that 2nd Armour. West of the Meuse: 4th North African Division, 22nd Infantry division and the 4th Light Cavalry. 1st Armour could possibly act as a reserve should it decide to move South.
The French had enough men in the area to stall the Germans, they just didn't have a sensible defensive strategy so they could not stop them.
The Germans had real issues supplying the forward units during the invasion of France. Given the roads available couldn't support the combt units, exactly how easy was it ever going to be? German tanks units carried extra fuel with them, sometimes strapped to the tank. You underestimate German logistical difficulties.
I'm not underestimating anything, I'm saying that the Germans were not under fire when they had their supply difficulties, whilst the Allies were during Market Garden.
Hmmm....Hodges shattered the front.
No, it is Hodges and Collin's.
The front was still there, it was shaken, but still there, Patton finished what others had started but did not finish. That's what we can credit him for, for delivering the final blow that dislodged the German line in the area. I don't give him any credit for the wearing out the defenders.
And advancing in the face of no resistance is how difficult exactly....?
It isn't, that's why I don't credit him for it.
There is no other type. Manouver warfare against a foe incapable of resisting is known as "pursuit".
I meant: a chance to resist their mobile forces. The Germans were still resisting, but they were virtually immobile. The Allied mobile divisions bypassed tens of thousands of German forces that couldn't stop them because they had no mobility. That was not "pursuit".
The Normandy landings were not deep insertions, what difference does it make. the point was the Allies tried hard at Arnhem, and when that failed, still had the specialist para resource to go again six months later.
It makes a substantial difference. The Normandy landings, as well as the German landings in Holland and in Crete, were made with the knowledge that if no friendly follow-up forces would arrive, the paratroopers would be screwed. The same goes for the landing around Arnhem. In the case of the landing at Arnhem and the German landing in Rotterdam, the paratroopers were nearly defeated by the defenders before they could withdraw/be rescued. The paratrooper operations in Germany made little to no use of the advantages of paratroopers by dropping them almost directly behind German lines. Allied paratroopers did not quite "go again" on an operation comparable to the landings of Normandy, Market Garden or the German paratrooper operations.
Why? The Germans massed enough transports at Stalingrad to airdrop a Division. Successfully lifted an Army into Tunisia. It was nothing to do with transport aircraft. It was will. The casualties persuaded Hitler these operations wouldn't work.
First: the Germans did not airlift an army into Tunisia, they lifted about a division in. Most forces were shipped in.
Second: the Germans could not air drop a division because that would mean the forces in the pocket would not be supplied by the transports being used to deliver and supply the paratroopers.
The point is that the German transports always had other tasks and could in most cases simply not be used to drop large quantities of troops. That's the result of the early war losses and lacking production, not "will".
Which western Allied Nation fielded a 17pdr or 90mm weapon before that?
By the time 17 pounder equipped tanks became more common in late 1944, the Americans had the M36.
Of course, the 17 pounder had been developed and produced prior to the US conversion of the 90mm AA gun to an AT weapon, but it effects had not really been felt because British tank design did not keep up with the improvement in armament.
British doctrine called for infantry tanks and cruiser tanks. The cruisers were designed for manouvre so didn't need thick armour and the infantry tanks were consistently the best in class.
British tank design was also stunted because production in the early years concent
rated on pumping out proven existing designs to maximise production to replace the losses of the French campaign.
And here we have the primary flaws of British tank designs: tanks designed for the wrong kind of war/enemy and good tanks not being produced because early and mid war designs were kept in production.
Weapons ideally suited to infantry support, which is what the tanks were designed for.
A concept of which the bankruptcy had become painfully apparent during the battle for France in 1940, but which was still kept in place.
A "truly" modern scout vehicle was hardly as desparately needed as heavy armour etc.
We have already established that the British did not have good "heavy armour" for most of the war either, at least no heavy armour that packed a punch that matched its protection.