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OT: Operation Sealion

 
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OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 4:29:02 AM   
Footslogger

 

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Had Operation Sealion been implememted, what were the Germans expecting for casualties?
Post #: 1
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 4:52:32 AM   
kg_1007

 

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In FM v. Manstein's book, he goes a little bit into depth on this.
He states that the officers in command of the various units which would have been used, believed it to be a workable plan, if done right. While Hitler and the Army high command believed it would fail with great losses.

(in reply to Footslogger)
Post #: 2
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 5:26:36 AM   
glvaca

 

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Yes, they were expecting serious casuaties, especially in barges. They had a substantial reserve of those to make good losses but probably not enough and they were short on tuggs.
As the plan evolved, the broad landing strategy was certainly reduced to a more realistic narrower landing, closer to the embarkation ports and air cover. But still, the Royal Navy would certainly have intervened and have taken a considerable toll.

(in reply to kg_1007)
Post #: 3
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 8:59:42 AM   
Apollo11


Posts: 22595
Joined: 6/7/2001
From: Zagreb, Croatia
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Hi all,

quote:

ORIGINAL: Footslogger

Had Operation Sealion been implememted, what were the Germans expecting for casualties?


Operation Sea Lion was "pipe dream"... it was not feasible and top German brass from all services knew it from the start (and they never considered it seriously)...

I will re-post my post in one other thread here from few weeks ago about Anglo - German post WWII war game dealing with it!


Leo "Apollo11"

_____________________________



Prior Preparation & Planning Prevents Pathetically Poor Performance!

A & B: WitW, WitE, WbtS, GGWaW, GGWaW2-AWD, HttR, CotA, BftB, CF
P: UV, WitP, WitP-AE

(in reply to Footslogger)
Post #: 4
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 9:03:45 AM   
Apollo11


Posts: 22595
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From: Zagreb, Croatia
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Hi all,

War is won by logistics!

Germans could have trid the Sealion invasion and they might have succesfull landing in England - but they would be doomed there because the landed troops would eventually run out of ammo, fuel and supplies...

The Germans never had Mullbery harbours - they simply had to rely on capturing some ports in England - and to think that such port would be able to be defended agianst everything British would have thrown against it is impossible dearm for Germans!

BTW, there is one nice war game conducted in the, I think 1970's...

quote:


Operation Sealion - summary of an exercise held at the Staff College, Sandhurst in 1974.





The full text is in 'Sealion' by Richard Cox. The scenario
is based on the known plans of each side, plus previously
unpublished Admiralty weather records for September 1940.
Each side (played by British and German officers respectively)
was based in a command room, and the actual moves plotted
on a scale model of SE England constructed at the School
of Infantry. The panel of umpires included Adolf Galland,
Admiral Friedrich Ruge, Air Chief Marshal Sir Christopher
Foxley-Norris, Rear Admiral Edward Gueritz, General Heinz
Trettner and Major General Glyn Gilbert.

The main problem the Germans face is that are a) the
Luftwaffe has not yet won air supremacy; b) the possible
invasion dates are constrained by the weather and tides
(for a high water attack) and c) it has taken until
late September to assemble the necessary shipping.

Glossary
FJ = Fallschirmjaeger (German paratroops)
MTB = Motor Torpedo Boat (German equivalent, E-Boat)
DD = Destroyer
CA = Heavy Cruiser
BB = Battleship
CV = Aircraft Carrier

22nd September - morning
The first wave of a planned 330,000 men hit the beaches
at dawn. Elements of 9 divisions landed between
Folkestone and Rottingdean (near Brighton).
In addition 7th FJ Div landed at Lympne to take the airfield.

The invasion fleet suffered minor losses from MTBs during
the night crossing, but the RN had already lost one
CA and three DDs sunk, with one CA and two DDs damaged,
whilst sinking three German DDs. Within hours of the landings
which overwhelmed the beach defenders, reserve formations
were despatched to Kent. Although there were 25 divisions
in the UK, only 17 were fully equipped, and only three
were based in Kent, however the defence plan relied on
the use of mobile reserves and armoured and mechanised
brigades were committed as soon as the main landings were
identified.

Meanwhile the air battle raged, the Luftwaffe flew 1200
fighter and 800 bomber sorties before 1200 hrs. The RAF
even threw in training planes hastily armed with bombs,
but the Luftwaffe were already having problems with their
short ranged Me 109s despite cramming as many as possible
into the Pas de Calais.

22nd - 23rd September
The Germans had still not captured a major port, although
they started driving for Folkestone. Shipping unloading
on the beaches suffered heavy losses from RAF bombing
raids and then further losses at their ports in France.

The U-Boats, Luftwaffe and few surface ships had lost
contact with the RN, but then a cruiser squadron with
supporting DDs entered the Channel narrows and had to
run the gauntlet of long range coastal guns, E-Boats
and 50 Stukas. Two CAs were sunk and one damaged. However
a diversionary German naval sortie from Norway was
completely destroyed and other sorties by MTBS and DDs
inflicted losses on the shipping milling about in the
Channel. German shipping losses on the first day
amounted to over 25% of their invasion fleet, especially
the barges, which proved desperately unseaworthy.

23rd Sept dawn - 1400 hrs.
The RAF had lost 237 planes out 1048 (167 fighters and
70 bombers), and the navy had suffered enough losses such
that it was keeping its BBs and CVs back, but large
forces of DDs and CAs were massing. Air recon showed a
German buildup in Cherbourg and forces were diverted to
the South West.

The German Navy were despondant about their losses,
especially as the loss of barges was seriously
dislocating domestic industry. The Army and Airforce
commanders were jubilant however, and preperations for
the transfer of the next echelon continued along with
the air transport of 22nd Div, despite Luftwaffe losses
of 165 fighters and 168 bombers. Out of only 732 fighters
and 724 bombers these were heavy losses. Both sides
overestimated losses inflicted by 50%.

The 22nd Div airlanded successfully at Lympne, although
long range artillery fire directed by a stay-behind
commando group interdicted the runways. The first British
counterattacks by 42nd Div supported by an armoured
brigade halted the German 34th Div in its drive on Hastings.
7th Panzer Div was having difficulty with extensive
anti-tank obstacles and assault teams armed with sticky
bombs etc. Meanwhile an Australian Div had retaken
Newhaven (the only German port), however the New Zealand
Div arrived at Folkestone only to be attacked in the
rear by 22nd Airlanding Div. The division fell back on
Dover having lost 35% casualties.

Sep 23rd 1400 - 1900 hrs
Throughout the day the Luftwaffe put up a maximum effort,
with 1500 fighter and 460 bomber sorties, but the RAF
persisted in attacks on shipping and airfields. Much of
this effort was directed for ground support and air
resupply, despite Adm Raeders request for more aircover
over the Channel. The Home Fleet had pulled out of air
range however, leaving the fight in the hands of 57 DDs
and 17 CAs plus MTBs. The Germans could put very little
surface strength against this. Waves of DDs and CAs
entered the Channel, and although two were sunk by U-Boats,
they sank one U-Boat in return and did not stop. The German
flotilla at Le Havre put to sea (3 DD, 14 E-Boats) and at
dusk intercepted the British, but were wiped out, losing
all their DDs and 7 E-Boats.

The Germans now had 10 divisions ashore, but in many
cases these were incomplete and waiting for their
second echelon to arrive that night. The weather
was unsuitable for the barges however, and the decision
to sail was referred up the chain of command.

23rd Sep 1900 - Sep 24th dawn
The Fuhrer Conference held at 1800 broke out into bitter
inter-service rivalry - the Army wanted their second
echelon sent, and the navy protesting that the
weather was unsuitable, and the latest naval defeat
rendered the Channel indefensible without air support.
Goring countered this by saying it could only be done
by stopped the terror bombing of London, which in turn
Hitler vetoed. The fleet was ordered to stand by.

The RAF meanwhile had lost 97 more fighters leaving only
440. The airfields of 11 Group were cratered ruins, and
once more the threat of collapse, which had receded in
early September, was looming. The Luftwaffe had lost
another 71 fighters and 142 bombers. Again both sides
overestimated losses inflicted, even after allowing for
inflated figures.

On the ground the Germans made good progress towards Dover
and towards Canterbury, however they suffered reverses
around Newhaven when the 45th Div and Australians
attacked. At 2150 Hitler decided to launch the second wave,
but only the short crossing from Calais and Dunkirk. By
the time the order reached the ports, the second wave
could not possibly arrive before dawn. The 6th and 8th
divisions at Newhaven, supplied from Le Havre, would not
be reinforced at all.

Sep 24th dawn - Sep 28th
The German fleet set sail, the weather calmed, and U-Boats,
E-Boats and fighters covered them. However at daylight 5th
destroyer flotilla found the barges still 10 miles off
the coast and tore them to shreds. The Luftwaffe in turn
committed all its remaining bombers, and the RAF responded
with 19 squadrons of fighters. The Germans disabled two
CAs and four DDs, but 65% of the barges were sunk. The
faster steamers broke away and headed for Folkestone,
but the port had been so badly damaged that they could
only unload two at a time.

The failure on the crossing meant that the German
situation became desperate. The divisions had sufficient
ammunition for 2 to 7 days more fighting, but without
extra men and equipment could not extend the bridgehead.
Hitler ordered the deployment on reserve units to Poland
and the Germans began preparations for an evacuation as
further British arracks hemmed them in tighter. Fast
steamers and car ferries were assembled for evacuation
via Rye and Folkestone. Of 90,000 troops who landed
on 22nd september, only 15,400 returned to France, the rest
were killed or captured.



Leo "Apollo11"

_____________________________



Prior Preparation & Planning Prevents Pathetically Poor Performance!

A & B: WitW, WitE, WbtS, GGWaW, GGWaW2-AWD, HttR, CotA, BftB, CF
P: UV, WitP, WitP-AE

(in reply to Footslogger)
Post #: 5
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 9:36:33 AM   
kg_1007

 

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One thing to keep in mind however, is that if they had tried it in time, the English army was reeling. Still, the best way for it to have worked, would have been the destruction of the English Army at Dunkirk. Even with allowing the army to escape however, the British were not capable of defeating the Germans on the ground, as they had already seen in France, in Crete, and in Greece. They might have fought harder with their own homes at their backs, but it certainly was not a guarantee they would win. It would take another couple of years for the British to really be capable of defeating German troops on the ground, in Africa.
The one thing that really was in the British favor however was they could read the German signals, but of course the Germans did not know that for years after the war.
As for air supremacy, that was what the Luftwaffe tried to do on Eagle Day, and when they failed, the plan was cancelled.

< Message edited by kg_1007 -- 4/22/2012 9:38:13 AM >

(in reply to Apollo11)
Post #: 6
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 9:40:43 AM   
kg_1007

 

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Was a great exercise though Leo. If they ever get WiW out, we can try it there haha.

(in reply to kg_1007)
Post #: 7
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 10:07:47 AM   
glvaca

 

Posts: 1109
Joined: 6/13/2006
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Apollo11

Hi all,

quote:

ORIGINAL: Footslogger

Had Operation Sealion been implememted, what were the Germans expecting for casualties?


Operation Sea Lion was "pipe dream"... it was not feasible and top German brass from all services knew it from the start (and they never considered it seriously)...

I will re-post my post in one other thread here from few weeks ago about Anglo - German post WWII war game dealing with it!


Leo "Apollo11"


And I will repeat what I said then. Read Invasion of England 1940 by Peter Schenk for a very thorough look at the preparations the Germans made.
To repeat, I'm not saying that it would have worked but to dismiss it out of hand is wrong. IF the only source you have to determine is the field exercise, I strongly suggest you explore the subject further before coming to such conclusions.

Now, concerning your field exercise. It's all very nice but considering that it was hosted by the British, who are extremely touchy on the subject. Considering it was a game, not reality and considering that the German judges were then part of NATO and particularly keen on befrinding their former adversaries, one can serious doubt that any other result would have been "possible".

War is full of uncertainty, of chance, luck and bad luck. For the ultimate "freak" result, look at Midway.

(in reply to Apollo11)
Post #: 8
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 10:28:24 AM   
Apollo11


Posts: 22595
Joined: 6/7/2001
From: Zagreb, Croatia
Status: offline
Hi all,

quote:

ORIGINAL: glvaca

quote:

ORIGINAL: Apollo11

quote:

ORIGINAL: Footslogger

Had Operation Sealion been implememted, what were the Germans expecting for casualties?


Operation Sea Lion was "pipe dream"... it was not feasible and top German brass from all services knew it from the start (and they never considered it seriously)...

I will re-post my post in one other thread here from few weeks ago about Anglo - German post WWII war game dealing with it!


And I will repeat what I said then. Read Invasion of England 1940 by Peter Schenk for a very thorough look at the preparations the Germans made.
To repeat, I'm not saying that it would have worked but to dismiss it out of hand is wrong. IF the only source you have to determine is the field exercise, I strongly suggest you explore the subject further before coming to such conclusions.

Now, concerning your field exercise. It's all very nice but considering that it was hosted by the British, who are extremely touchy on the subject. Considering it was a game, not reality and considering that the German judges were then part of NATO and particularly keen on befrinding their former adversaries, one can serious doubt that any other result would have been "possible".

War is full of uncertainty, of chance, luck and bad luck. For the ultimate "freak" result, look at Midway.


German preparations were irrelevant... the British preparations is what mattered...


The British knew that for successful invasion the Germans would have to have intact harbor with certain amout of cargo capacity used for off loading.

Eventually it all bears down to that - the harbor (or harbors) where the German supply ships would be unloaded!

The RAF in 1940 (including Fighter Command and Bomber Command) was at least 1:1 vs. Luftwaffe.

To think that Bomber Command would not be able to smash into pieces any port seized by Germans and make it useless is irresponsible - they would do it regardless of losses and they had hundreds of bombers manned with determined crews to do it!


BTW, in 1944 and Allied invasion the weakest link for Allies were the harbors (again ) - if the storm wrecked the 2nd Mullbery there would be some dire troubles for them because Cherbourg (and any other near-by ports) were not ready - they were totally smashed!

Also in 1944 Luftwaffe was 1:100 vs. Allied air power - they had no chance to stop allied supply offloading...



Leo "Apollo11"

_____________________________



Prior Preparation & Planning Prevents Pathetically Poor Performance!

A & B: WitW, WitE, WbtS, GGWaW, GGWaW2-AWD, HttR, CotA, BftB, CF
P: UV, WitP, WitP-AE

(in reply to glvaca)
Post #: 9
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 10:33:42 AM   
warspite1


Posts: 19473
Joined: 2/2/2008
From: England
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: glvaca


quote:

ORIGINAL: Apollo11

Hi all,

quote:

ORIGINAL: Footslogger

Had Operation Sealion been implememted, what were the Germans expecting for casualties?


Operation Sea Lion was "pipe dream"... it was not feasible and top German brass from all services knew it from the start (and they never considered it seriously)...

I will re-post my post in one other thread here from few weeks ago about Anglo - German post WWII war game dealing with it!


Leo "Apollo11"


And I will repeat what I said then. Read Invasion of England 1940 by Peter Schenk for a very thorough look at the preparations the Germans made.
To repeat, I'm not saying that it would have worked but to dismiss it out of hand is wrong. IF the only source you have to determine is the field exercise, I strongly suggest you explore the subject further before coming to such conclusions.

Now, concerning your field exercise. It's all very nice but considering that it was hosted by the British, who are extremely touchy on the subject. Considering it was a game, not reality and considering that the German judges were then part of NATO and particularly keen on befrinding their former adversaries, one can serious doubt that any other result would have been "possible".

War is full of uncertainty, of chance, luck and bad luck. For the ultimate "freak" result, look at Midway.

Warspite1

It is of little consequence what preparations the Germans made; knowing the Germans I am sure they were as thorough as they could be. That does not alter the fact that had Hitler authorised Sealion then the result would have been absolute carnage for the German army - and total and utter failure. It was not a "freak" result that they required; a successful outcome to the operation was just not possible.

And at the risk of taking this OT, why on earth do you say Midway was a freak result? The Japanese got what their thoroughly ill-conceived, badly planned and incompetently executed operation deserved.

< Message edited by warspite1 -- 4/22/2012 11:05:46 AM >


_____________________________

England expects that every man will do his duty - Horatio Nelson 1805.




(in reply to glvaca)
Post #: 10
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 10:34:39 AM   
warspite1


Posts: 19473
Joined: 2/2/2008
From: England
Status: offline
Posts crossed Leo - same opening conclusions!

_____________________________

England expects that every man will do his duty - Horatio Nelson 1805.




(in reply to warspite1)
Post #: 11
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 11:47:24 AM   
glvaca

 

Posts: 1109
Joined: 6/13/2006
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Apollo11

Hi all,


German preparations were irrelevant... the British preparations is what mattered...

An interesting view on the matter

The British knew that for successful invasion the Germans would have to have intact harbor with certain amout of cargo capacity used for off loading.

Quite, but you fail to mention that until the last days of August, the British thought the invasion would be directed against their East Coast (directly from Germany), not in the Channel. As such most of their combat ready divisions were deployed there. Quite interesting preparations, no?

Eventually it all bears down to that - the harbor (or harbors) where the German supply ships would be unloaded!

Yes, it certainly would have had a major impact and there was a limited amount of them close to the invasion beaches. Certainly, they would have been damaged and would have to be repaired. However, the barges were scheduled to be unloaded directly on the beaches. They were modified to have a front "opening" (don't know the correct English word) and would be towed in by tuggs. Transports would be unloaded through the use of barges. This was certainly not ideal!

The RAF in 1940 (including Fighter Command and Bomber Command) was at least 1:1 vs. Luftwaffe.

I'm not sure where you got those numbers. Occording to my copy of "the defence of the United Kingdom" part of the United Kingdom official history of the Second world war series, the following numbers are printed.
Germany:
Luftflotte 2&3
Long range bombers: 1.131
Dive-bombers: 316
Single Engine fighters: 809
Twin-Engined figthers: 246

Luftflotte 5 (several of it's units were redeployed to France during the campaign)
Long range bombers: 129
Single Engine fighters: 84
Twin-Engined figthers: 34

UK:
Single engine fighters: 600, 2/3rd Hurri's, 1/3 Spitfire (defiants and Blenheim Sq. excluded).
Coastal command: around 300 mostly obsolete.
Bomber command: hardly more than 500 and also not really very capable. This includes Battle Axes which were cut to pieces over France.

I'll let you do the math yourself. If you have different sources to back up your claim then please share.


To think that Bomber Command would not be able to smash into pieces any port seized by Germans and make it useless is irresponsible - they would do it regardless of losses and they had hundreds of bombers manned with determined crews to do it!

Yes, I suppose that history is irresponsible then as bomber command tried to do just that at the embarkation harbours in France and failed, misserably. Bombing a port out of commission in 1940 was not such a straightforward thing. As the course of the strategic bombing offensive on Germany demonstrates all to well.

BTW, in 1944 and Allied invasion the weakest link for Allies were the harbors (again ) - if the storm wrecked the 2nd Mullbery there would be some dire troubles for them because Cherbourg (and any other near-by ports) were not ready - they were totally smashed!

Not quite. Certainly, the US lost their Mullbery but is generally accepted that the unloading of supplies did not suffer, in fact, it might have been easier without the Mullbery which fuled the debate about the resources put into building them. Granted, the Allies had much better speciallized equipment to unload directly on the beaches, but still, the principle is the same AND the UK forces were nothing of the order of the defences in Normandy 1944.

Also in 1944 Luftwaffe was 1:100 vs. Allied air power - they had no chance to stop allied supply offloading...

Quite true, but also totally irrelevant



Leo "Apollo11"



< Message edited by glvaca -- 4/22/2012 11:48:58 AM >

(in reply to Apollo11)
Post #: 12
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 12:16:40 PM   
Howard Mitchell


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From: Blighty
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There was an interesting debate at the RUSI a few years back on the Royal Navy and the Battle of Britain. You can read it here:

http://www.rusi.org/analysis/commentary/ref:C4538DAE3AB61C/
http://www.rusi.org/analysis/commentary/ref:C4538E2591AE95/


There are also two recent books which look at the naval aspects of Sealion:

- Hitler's Armada, by Geoff Hewett

- The Royal Navy and the Battle of Britain, by Anthony J Cumming

Hewett's analysis is particularly damning, and shows just how much of a long shot a German invasion was. The chances of it succeeding were very, very small, the chances of it being a disaster almost complete.

_____________________________

While the battles the British fight may differ in the widest possible ways, they invariably have two common characteristics – they are always fought uphill and always at the junction of two or more map sheets.

General Sir William Slim

(in reply to glvaca)
Post #: 13
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 12:21:44 PM   
Howard Mitchell


Posts: 449
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From: Blighty
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: kg_1007
... the British were not capable of defeating the Germans on the ground, as they had already seen in France, in Crete, and in Greece. They might have fought harder with their own homes at their backs, but it certainly was not a guarantee they would win. It would take another couple of years for the British to really be capable of defeating German troops on the ground, in Africa.


The British army lacked the proficiency of the Germany army in 1940 without a doubt, but remember that in the examples you quote the British were usually heavily outnumbered and often operating at the end of a long supply line. The situation would have been reversed for the most likely outcome of Sealion, fragmented German forces ashore cut off from easy supply by the Royal Navy.

< Message edited by Howard Mitchell -- 4/22/2012 12:24:21 PM >


_____________________________

While the battles the British fight may differ in the widest possible ways, they invariably have two common characteristics – they are always fought uphill and always at the junction of two or more map sheets.

General Sir William Slim

(in reply to kg_1007)
Post #: 14
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 12:24:20 PM   
glvaca

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Howard Mitchell

There was an interesting debate at the RUSI a few years back on the Royal Navy and the Battle of Britain. You can read it here:

http://www.rusi.org/analysis/commentary/ref:C4538DAE3AB61C/
http://www.rusi.org/analysis/commentary/ref:C4538E2591AE95/


There are also two recent books which look at the naval aspects of Sealion:

- Hitler's Armada, by Geoff Hewett

- The Royal Navy and the Battle of Britain, by Anthony J Cumming

Hewett's analysis is particularly damning, and shows just how much of a long shot a German invasion was. The chances of it succeeding were very, very small, the chances of it being a disaster almost complete.


I have both books.
What is interesting is the way they dismiss the U-boats. We'll just have to take his word for it!
Secondly, both books aim to basically prove the point that it wasn't the Royal Airforce who stopped the invasion from happening, it was the Royal Navy. So if they are right, by extension, the Germans had air superiority. Interesting, not?

I don't know what is with you Brits that under no circumstances you will even entertain the thought that it could have been possible. Please note, I'm not saying it was likely, easy, a sure thing, at all.

I seems it's some sort of collective pride, a reminder of the good old Empire days that prevents Brits to aknowledge the most basic truth. Strange...

(in reply to Howard Mitchell)
Post #: 15
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 12:27:17 PM   
Howard Mitchell


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I don't think it would have been possible because I've studied it in detail and decided it was a fantasy.

I've no particular axe to grid. If the evidence pointed to it being possible I'd go with that.

But it doesn't.


_____________________________

While the battles the British fight may differ in the widest possible ways, they invariably have two common characteristics – they are always fought uphill and always at the junction of two or more map sheets.

General Sir William Slim

(in reply to glvaca)
Post #: 16
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 12:28:17 PM   
glvaca

 

Posts: 1109
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Howard Mitchell

quote:

ORIGINAL: kg_1007
... the British were not capable of defeating the Germans on the ground, as they had already seen in France, in Crete, and in Greece. They might have fought harder with their own homes at their backs, but it certainly was not a guarantee they would win. It would take another couple of years for the British to really be capable of defeating German troops on the ground, in Africa.


The British army lacked the proficiency of the Germany army in 1940 without a doubt, but remember that in the examples you quote the British were usually heavily outnumbered and often operating at the end of a long supply line. The situation would have been reversed for the most likely outcome of Sealion, fragmented German forces ashore cut off from easy supply by the Royal Navy.


Yes, and the Germans had about 600 Ju52's in reserve and a para division (7th) and an Airlift div (22nd), scheduled to drop near Lympne. Pls note, very close to the coast and within full reach of the Me109's. Not to speak of the carnage the Lufwafe bombers would have brought to the Royal Navy in day light. And don't tell me it wouldn't have been possible, they demonstrated their capabilities well enough near Crete.

(in reply to Howard Mitchell)
Post #: 17
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 12:29:30 PM   
glvaca

 

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I've studied it in detail too, very close detail.
I don't have an axe to grind either, but it is strikingly how all Brits react the same. It's not possible. Period.
Strange considering the evidence.

(in reply to glvaca)
Post #: 18
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 1:14:59 PM   
glvaca

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Apollo11

Hi all,

War is won by logistics!

Germans could have trid the Sealion invasion and they might have succesfull landing in England - but they would be doomed there because the landed troops would eventually run out of ammo, fuel and supplies...

The Germans never had Mullbery harbours - they simply had to rely on capturing some ports in England - and to think that such port would be able to be defended agianst everything British would have thrown against it is impossible dearm for Germans!

BTW, there is one nice war game conducted in the, I think 1970's...

quote:


Operation Sealion - summary of an exercise held at the Staff College, Sandhurst in 1974.





The full text is in 'Sealion' by Richard Cox. The scenario
is based on the known plans of each side, plus previously
unpublished Admiralty weather records for September 1940.
Each side (played by British and German officers respectively)
was based in a command room, and the actual moves plotted
on a scale model of SE England constructed at the School
of Infantry. The panel of umpires included Adolf Galland,
Admiral Friedrich Ruge, Air Chief Marshal Sir Christopher
Foxley-Norris, Rear Admiral Edward Gueritz, General Heinz
Trettner and Major General Glyn Gilbert.

The main problem the Germans face is that are a) the
Luftwaffe has not yet won air supremacy; b) the possible
invasion dates are constrained by the weather and tides
(for a high water attack) and c) it has taken until
late September to assemble the necessary shipping.

Glossary
FJ = Fallschirmjaeger (German paratroops)
MTB = Motor Torpedo Boat (German equivalent, E-Boat)
DD = Destroyer
CA = Heavy Cruiser
BB = Battleship
CV = Aircraft Carrier

22nd September - morning
The first wave of a planned 330,000 men hit the beaches
at dawn. Elements of 9 divisions landed between
Folkestone and Rottingdean (near Brighton).
In addition 7th FJ Div landed at Lympne to take the airfield.

The invasion fleet suffered minor losses from MTBs during
the night crossing, but the RN had already lost one
CA and three DDs sunk, with one CA and two DDs damaged,
whilst sinking three German DDs. Within hours of the landings
which overwhelmed the beach defenders, reserve formations
were despatched to Kent. Although there were 25 divisions
in the UK, only 17 were fully equipped, and only three
were based in Kent, however the defence plan relied on
the use of mobile reserves and armoured and mechanised
brigades were committed as soon as the main landings were
identified.

Meanwhile the air battle raged, the Luftwaffe flew 1200
fighter and 800 bomber sorties before 1200 hrs. The RAF
even threw in training planes hastily armed with bombs,
but the Luftwaffe were already having problems with their
short ranged Me 109s despite cramming as many as possible
into the Pas de Calais.

22nd - 23rd September
The Germans had still not captured a major port, although
they started driving for Folkestone. Shipping unloading
on the beaches suffered heavy losses from RAF bombing
raids and then further losses at their ports in France.

The U-Boats, Luftwaffe and few surface ships had lost
contact with the RN, but then a cruiser squadron with
supporting DDs entered the Channel narrows and had to
run the gauntlet of long range coastal guns, E-Boats
and 50 Stukas. Two CAs were sunk and one damaged. However
a diversionary German naval sortie from Norway was
completely destroyed and other sorties by MTBS and DDs
inflicted losses on the shipping milling about in the
Channel. German shipping losses on the first day
amounted to over 25% of their invasion fleet, especially
the barges, which proved desperately unseaworthy.

23rd Sept dawn - 1400 hrs.
The RAF had lost 237 planes out 1048 (167 fighters and
70 bombers), and the navy had suffered enough losses such
that it was keeping its BBs and CVs back, but large
forces of DDs and CAs were massing. Air recon showed a
German buildup in Cherbourg and forces were diverted to
the South West.

The German Navy were despondant about their losses,
especially as the loss of barges was seriously
dislocating domestic industry. The Army and Airforce
commanders were jubilant however, and preperations for
the transfer of the next echelon continued along with
the air transport of 22nd Div, despite Luftwaffe losses
of 165 fighters and 168 bombers. Out of only 732 fighters
and 724 bombers these were heavy losses. Both sides
overestimated losses inflicted by 50%.

The 22nd Div airlanded successfully at Lympne, although
long range artillery fire directed by a stay-behind
commando group interdicted the runways. The first British
counterattacks by 42nd Div supported by an armoured
brigade halted the German 34th Div in its drive on Hastings.
7th Panzer Div was having difficulty with extensive
anti-tank obstacles and assault teams armed with sticky
bombs etc. Meanwhile an Australian Div had retaken
Newhaven (the only German port), however the New Zealand
Div arrived at Folkestone only to be attacked in the
rear by 22nd Airlanding Div. The division fell back on
Dover having lost 35% casualties.

Sep 23rd 1400 - 1900 hrs
Throughout the day the Luftwaffe put up a maximum effort,
with 1500 fighter and 460 bomber sorties, but the RAF
persisted in attacks on shipping and airfields. Much of
this effort was directed for ground support and air
resupply, despite Adm Raeders request for more aircover
over the Channel. The Home Fleet had pulled out of air
range however, leaving the fight in the hands of 57 DDs
and 17 CAs plus MTBs. The Germans could put very little
surface strength against this. Waves of DDs and CAs
entered the Channel, and although two were sunk by U-Boats,
they sank one U-Boat in return and did not stop. The German
flotilla at Le Havre put to sea (3 DD, 14 E-Boats) and at
dusk intercepted the British, but were wiped out, losing
all their DDs and 7 E-Boats.

The Germans now had 10 divisions ashore, but in many
cases these were incomplete and waiting for their
second echelon to arrive that night. The weather
was unsuitable for the barges however, and the decision
to sail was referred up the chain of command.

23rd Sep 1900 - Sep 24th dawn
The Fuhrer Conference held at 1800 broke out into bitter
inter-service rivalry - the Army wanted their second
echelon sent, and the navy protesting that the
weather was unsuitable, and the latest naval defeat
rendered the Channel indefensible without air support.
Goring countered this by saying it could only be done
by stopped the terror bombing of London, which in turn
Hitler vetoed. The fleet was ordered to stand by.

The RAF meanwhile had lost 97 more fighters leaving only
440. The airfields of 11 Group were cratered ruins, and
once more the threat of collapse, which had receded in
early September, was looming. The Luftwaffe had lost
another 71 fighters and 142 bombers. Again both sides
overestimated losses inflicted, even after allowing for
inflated figures.

On the ground the Germans made good progress towards Dover
and towards Canterbury, however they suffered reverses
around Newhaven when the 45th Div and Australians
attacked. At 2150 Hitler decided to launch the second wave,
but only the short crossing from Calais and Dunkirk. By
the time the order reached the ports, the second wave
could not possibly arrive before dawn. The 6th and 8th
divisions at Newhaven, supplied from Le Havre, would not
be reinforced at all.

Sep 24th dawn - Sep 28th
The German fleet set sail, the weather calmed, and U-Boats,
E-Boats and fighters covered them. However at daylight 5th
destroyer flotilla found the barges still 10 miles off
the coast and tore them to shreds. The Luftwaffe in turn
committed all its remaining bombers, and the RAF responded
with 19 squadrons of fighters. The Germans disabled two
CAs and four DDs, but 65% of the barges were sunk. The
faster steamers broke away and headed for Folkestone,
but the port had been so badly damaged that they could
only unload two at a time.

The failure on the crossing meant that the German
situation became desperate. The divisions had sufficient
ammunition for 2 to 7 days more fighting, but without
extra men and equipment could not extend the bridgehead.
Hitler ordered the deployment on reserve units to Poland
and the Germans began preparations for an evacuation as
further British arracks hemmed them in tighter. Fast
steamers and car ferries were assembled for evacuation
via Rye and Folkestone. Of 90,000 troops who landed
on 22nd september, only 15,400 returned to France, the rest
were killed or captured.



Leo "Apollo11"


By the way Apollo, the plan in this drawing was the original Army plan which was rejected by the Navy as impossible and replaced by a much narrow front plan basically only going as far as Beachy Head (so anything West of Beachy Head was scrapped and a much higher concentration was allotted to the remaining invasion beaches). Please note, this would have drastically reduced ferry times (closer to embarkation ports in France) and would have put all invasion beaches very close to German fighter bases in France.

(in reply to Apollo11)
Post #: 19
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 2:31:58 PM   
kg_1007

 

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I agree with glvaca..I seem to run into a wall of British pride haha. For the record, there is much to be proud of, but it is incorrect, as stated above, to assume ANYTHING in war ever was, ever is, or ever will be, a guarantee. Actually I think that Overlord was more of a gamble, than Sealion...by all rights, any of a dozen things could have gone wrong, and spoiled the entire operation..in an alternate universe somewhere there would then be people on a forum talking about why it was guaranteed to fail from the beginning. My point is not at all one of disrespect, but rather just that there are so many variables in even a small military operation, and larger ones increase it a hundredfold. In fact there is no way to know if the operation would have worked..there is no way to know what the result in the 1980s of a WP/NATO confrontation would have been..it is a lot of fun to debate, and argue, but it is foolish to say about something that did not happen, that it never would have worked, when wilder things have worked, and more sensible things, have ended as military disasters.

(in reply to glvaca)
Post #: 20
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 2:33:44 PM   
Apollo11


Posts: 22595
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From: Zagreb, Croatia
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Hi all,

quote:

ORIGINAL: glvaca

quote:

ORIGINAL: Apollo11

German preparations were irrelevant... the British preparations is what mattered...

An interesting view on the matter



Like Robert wrote above - German preparations were surely meticulos - but what actually mattered in this case is how the British would respond!

Also German generals and admirals never believed in Sea Lion - not in 1940 and not after WWII (even Hitler who loved such daring plans never actually liked it)...

quote:


The British knew that for successful invasion the Germans would have to have intact harbor with certain amout of cargo capacity used for off loading.

Quite, but you fail to mention that until the last days of August, the British thought the invasion would be directed against their East Coast (directly from Germany), not in the Channel. As such most of their combat ready divisions were deployed there. Quite interesting preparations, no?


The Sea Lion was never envisioned before September - so this is not really a big issue.

Also British forces could have been quickly deployed elsewhere if it was necessary (and there were other units apart from regular combat reafy units - those wold have serverd as a "stop gap") - never underestimate the British resolve and that even such units would have been useful!


quote:


Eventually it all bears down to that - the harbor (or harbors) where the German supply ships would be unloaded!

Yes, it certainly would have had a major impact and there was a limited amount of them close to the invasion beaches. Certainly, they would have been damaged and would have to be repaired. However, the barges were scheduled to be unloaded directly on the beaches. They were modified to have a front "opening" (don't know the correct English word) and would be towed in by tuggs. Transports would be unloaded through the use of barges. This was certainly not ideal!


IIRC the British at that time thought that German division needed about 300 tons for each day of fighting (and even more it it is Panzer division).

If the 1st wave would consist of 5 division + 5 divisions in the 2nd wave that would mean at least 3000 tons of supplies (ammo, food, fuel etc.) delivered for every single day of fighting.

That would mean about 10-15-20 barges daily (if we approximate river barge sizes).

The problem would then be:

a)
Get those barges intact over the channel.

b)
Manually offload them without a dock (i.e. just by manual labor).

c)
Transport those supplies to actual combat units that were away from the beach.

This is impossible task even for Germans...


quote:


The RAF in 1940 (including Fighter Command and Bomber Command) was at least 1:1 vs. Luftwaffe.

I'm not sure where you got those numbers. Occording to my copy of "the defence of the United Kingdom" part of the United Kingdom official history of the Second world war series, the following numbers are printed.
Germany:
Luftflotte 2&3
Long range bombers: 1.131
Dive-bombers: 316
Single Engine fighters: 809
Twin-Engined figthers: 246

Luftflotte 5 (several of it's units were redeployed to France during the campaign)
Long range bombers: 129
Single Engine fighters: 84
Twin-Engined figthers: 34

UK:
Single engine fighters: 600, 2/3rd Hurri's, 1/3 Spitfire (defiants and Blenheim Sq. excluded).
Coastal command: around 300 mostly obsolete.
Bomber command: hardly more than 500 and also not really very capable. This includes Battle Axes which were cut to pieces over France.

I'll let you do the math yourself. If you have different sources to back up your claim then please share.



So... the Germans did with the "Battle of Britain" after all with such great numerical advantage!

Oh wait!

But they didn't...


The British had integrated air defense system and they were able to concentrate where and when it was needed - the Germans lacked that - the on-paper numerical superiority Germans had meant littele in teh actual "Battle of Britain"!


quote:


To think that Bomber Command would not be able to smash into pieces any port seized by Germans and make it useless is irresponsible - they would do it regardless of losses and they had hundreds of bombers manned with determined crews to do it!

Yes, I suppose that history is irresponsible then as bomber command tried to do just that at the embarkation harbours in France and failed, misserably. Bombing a port out of commission in 1940 was not such a straightforward thing. As the course of the strategic bombing offensive on Germany demonstrates all to well.


The invasion barges were not placed in ports - IIRC they were dispersed in river estuaries on the French coast.

Attacking harbor with docks and cranes is one thing - the RAF Bomber Command was most certainly capable of that - attacking dispersed barges is another...


Leo "Apollo11"

_____________________________



Prior Preparation & Planning Prevents Pathetically Poor Performance!

A & B: WitW, WitE, WbtS, GGWaW, GGWaW2-AWD, HttR, CotA, BftB, CF
P: UV, WitP, WitP-AE

(in reply to glvaca)
Post #: 21
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 2:45:46 PM   
kg_1007

 

Posts: 229
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Sealion orders were issued July 2, 1940, actually. Long before September. And reading Manstein's book, as just one example, shows that one German commander, who had a somewhat capable tactical mind, thought the plan could work, and thought they should have done it.

< Message edited by kg_1007 -- 4/22/2012 2:48:24 PM >

(in reply to Apollo11)
Post #: 22
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 5:17:17 PM   
glvaca

 

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Joined: 6/13/2006
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War is always a case of action and reaction. I fail to see why in this particular case everything would be decided by the British reaction and the Germans would have no say in the outcome. Please, could you ellaborate on this further?

It was an issue, we were talking about preparations. Well, since the British thought the invasion would be on their East Coast, they put much effort into building beach defences and fortifications at a spot that would not see any action. Secondly, transfering divisions takes time and means of transportation that was already stretched because shipping in the Channel was seriously disrupted and the rail net was insufficient to replace it completely.

I do not underestimate the British resolve, I'm sure they would have fought determinedly as they did the entire war. But if you're going as far as to suggest that the home guard would have been able to make an impression on the German troops at the peak of their efficiency, we will just have to agree to disagree. Resolve is one thing, fighting with rifles against tanks and machine guns operated by elite troops is quite another.

Do you have any idea how badly equipped the British were?

The 300 tons is a figure that is taken from the needs of a UK infantry division. I'll not debate whether or not the Brits needed that much on a daily basis, but it is well known that the Whermacht could do with far less than the Allied divisions. So, anything from upwards 150 tons would certainly have been more than sufficient for a German division.

Besides, and I do admit surprisingly, a Panzer division actually needed less supplies per day than an infantry division. The horse fodder having something to do with it.
How can you be so sure that the Germans would not have captured one or more small harbours reasonably soon? Even a simple peer would have helped a lot and there were plans to construct peers themselves and timber was taken along in the barges.
I agree with your list of problems, but I fail to see why that would have been too much for the Germans. From Calais to Dover is a quick crossing and the Germans did have a considerable amount of transports.

Hold on a second Leo, first you say the British had a 1:1 regarding planes. when I prove the contrary, you start about radar. I'm sure we can agree that the Germans did have a considerable numerical superiority.

Now let's consider you new position, you now claim that the British were able to concentrate superior strength when and were they were necessary because of radar. Wrong!
If anything, the Brits fought constantly at a numerical disadvantage. That's fact. If you don't believe me, buy some books
Even when the Germans shifted their attention to London, which was a grave error, the Germans still had numerical superiority.
As long as they stayed South of London and over the Channel itself (which is were the fight would have been if the invasion was attempted), the Germans not only had the advantage of numbers but also of equality when it came to distance of _OPERATIONAL_ air bases. The RAF had abandonned the use of the forward airbases for anything other than emergency landings and refueling in the South-East of England.
Before they shifted to daylight attacks on London, the Germans had air superiority in the Channel, were it mattered. Did they manage to break the RAF, no, certainly not. Would they have had to fight for the crossing, certainly, but it would have been quite a different situation than daylight raids on London.

Lastly, those 600 RAF fighters where actually spread out over different Groups covering the whole of Britain. Only approx. 300-350 were ever in a position to be used against German raids. And then part of those where part of 12 Group who, with their big Wing, always turned up late, except during the London attacks.

Off course the barges where in the ports. In fact a good number were lost or damaged.
Transports: 21 lost of total 170
Barges: 214 lost of total 1918
Tugs: 5 lost of total 386

You are seriously over rating the capabilites of Bomber Command this early in the war. If they had 250 operational bombers at this time they would have been very happy. Most of them were Wellingtons and Blenheim, only a few were Whitleys and Hampdons. This was not the force that would mount 1000 bomber raids later in the war!



< Message edited by glvaca -- 4/22/2012 5:26:18 PM >

(in reply to Apollo11)
Post #: 23
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 6:15:48 PM   
Apollo11


Posts: 22595
Joined: 6/7/2001
From: Zagreb, Croatia
Status: offline
Hi all,

quote:

ORIGINAL: glvaca

War is always a case of action and reaction. I fail to see why in this particular case everything would be decided by the British reaction and the Germans would have no say in the outcome. Please, could you ellaborate on this further?

It was an issue, we were talking about preparations. Well, since the British thought the invasion would be on their East Coast, they put much effort into building beach defences and fortifications at a spot that would not see any action. Secondly, transfering divisions takes time and means of transportation that was already stretched because shipping in the Channel was seriously disrupted and the rail net was insufficient to replace it completely.

I do not underestimate the British resolve, I'm sure they would have fought determinedly as they did the entire war. But if you're going as far as to suggest that the home guard would have been able to make an impression on the German troops at the peak of their efficiency, we will just have to agree to disagree. Resolve is one thing, fighting with rifles against tanks and machine guns operated by elite troops is quite another.

Do you have any idea how badly equipped the British were?


British were badly equipped after Dunkirk - very true - but Sea Lion was not possible immediately after disaster in France - what British had when Sea Lion was actually possible (i.e. September) was improved situation (not ideal but most certainly much improved)!

And also we should never forget the fact that German units that would actually be able to cross the channel in Sea Lion would not be 100% - they would be disrupted and reduced from crossing at the least...

quote:


The 300 tons is a figure that is taken from the needs of a UK infantry division. I'll not debate whether or not the Brits needed that much on a daily basis, but it is well known that the Whermacht could do with far less than the Allied divisions. So, anything from upwards 150 tons would certainly have been more than sufficient for a German division.

Besides, and I do admit surprisingly, a Panzer division actually needed less supplies per day than an infantry division. The horse fodder having something to do with it.

How can you be so sure that the Germans would not have captured one or more small harbours reasonably soon? Even a simple peer would have helped a lot and there were plans to construct peers themselves and timber was taken along in the barges.

I agree with your list of problems, but I fail to see why that would have been too much for the Germans. From Calais to Dover is a quick crossing and the Germans did have a considerable amount of transports.


Unloading on beaches without machines (i.e. cranes) is very very long and hard thing - it is not something that could sustain several divisions fighting inland!

If some ports / harbors with piers / docks and cranes were taken by the attacking Germans I am 100% sure that RAF would do everything it could to disable and/or destroy such facilities... such targets are much smaller and easier to destroy than long stretches of sandy beaches (which are unusable for offloading)...


quote:


Hold on a second Leo, first you say the British had a 1:1 regarding planes. when I prove the contrary, you start about radar. I'm sure we can agree that the Germans did have a considerable numerical superiority.

Now let's consider you new position, you now claim that the British were able to concentrate superior strength when and were they were necessary because of radar. Wrong!

If anything, the Brits fought constantly at a numerical disadvantage. That's fact. If you don't believe me, buy some books

Even when the Germans shifted their attention to London, which was a grave error, the Germans still had numerical superiority.

As long as they stayed South of London and over the Channel itself (which is were the fight would have been if the invasion was attempted), the Germans not only had the advantage of numbers but also of equality when it came to distance of _OPERATIONAL_ air bases. The RAF had abandonned the use of the forward airbases for anything other than emergency landings and refueling in the South-East of England.

Before they shifted to daylight attacks on London, the Germans had air superiority in the Channel, were it mattered. Did they manage to break the RAF, no, certainly not. Would they have had to fight for the crossing, certainly, but it would have been quite a different situation than daylight raids on London.

Lastly, those 600 RAF fighters where actually spread out over different Groups covering the whole of Britain. Only approx. 300-350 were ever in a position to be used against German raids. And then part of those where part of 12 Group who, with their big Wing, always turned up late, except during the London attacks.

Off course the barges where in the ports. In fact a good number were lost or damaged.
Transports: 21 lost of total 170
Barges: 214 lost of total 1918
Tugs: 5 lost of total 386


I have read many books on "Battle of Britain" and I own one of the best on subject (Len Deighton - Fighter) for about 20+ years... so I can say that I have read on the subject quite a lot...

http://www.amazon.com/Fighter-Len-Deighton/dp/0785812083

Historically Germans utterly failed in "Battle of Britain" - that is a fact (and the on-paper numerical advantage they had was of no help to them)!

To believe that Luftwaffe would do better in "Sea Lion" as opposed to "Battle of Britain" is quite a big stretch of imagination...


On the other side - with today's hindsight the Luftwaffe could have done much much better under command of almost any of us here (as opposed to Goering and many of his planners) - but that didn't happen - the Germans choose the wrong tactics and wrong strategy and they lost the "Battle of Britain" because of it!

If Luftwaffe only:

#1
Keep constant pressure on RAF airfields (and left alone London and other cities)

#2
Attacked radar installations properly and continuously

#3
Attacked Rolls-Royce Merlin production and Spitfire and Hurricane production (they could have even done it at night - they had their own pathfinders and electronic navigation that was yet undiscovered by the British - the firebombing by pathfinders could have marked the area and main bomber force could then simply saturate the marked

etc.

But they didn't... the Luftwaffe never had cohesive plan...


quote:


You are seriously over rating the capabilites of Bomber Command this early in the war. If they had 250 operational bombers at this time they would have been very happy. Most of them were Wellingtons and Blenheim, only a few were Whitleys and Hampdons. This was not the force that would mount 1000 bomber raids later in the war!


Bomber command was quite capable of destroying / damaging port facilities captured by German in invasion on English soil if needed!

Why wouldn't they be?

Such captured ports in England would not immediate have German airfield near-by and mass of FLAK like the port facilities in occupied France across the channel - they would be extremely vulnerable and quite withing capability of RAF bomber command...



Leo "Apollo11"

_____________________________



Prior Preparation & Planning Prevents Pathetically Poor Performance!

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P: UV, WitP, WitP-AE

(in reply to glvaca)
Post #: 24
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 7:16:06 PM   
glvaca

 

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Well, I have yet to see your position supported by anything more than your gut feeling and personal opinion. Everytime you make a statement that I can disprove you just shift your opinion to something else. Not quite the way I'm used to discussing anything.
We'll just have to agree to disagree then.

(in reply to Apollo11)
Post #: 25
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 7:26:42 PM   
Apollo11


Posts: 22595
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From: Zagreb, Croatia
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Hi all,

quote:

ORIGINAL: glvaca

Well, I have yet to see your position supported by anything more than your gut feeling and personal opinion. Everytime you make a statement that I can disprove you just shift your opinion to something else. Not quite the way I'm used to discussing anything.
We'll just have to agree to disagree then.


I can say the very same thing about your position...

BTW, my support is based on history - the Germans DID lose the "Battle of Britain" whilst you keep claiming that they were numerically superior...


Leo "Apollo11"

_____________________________



Prior Preparation & Planning Prevents Pathetically Poor Performance!

A & B: WitW, WitE, WbtS, GGWaW, GGWaW2-AWD, HttR, CotA, BftB, CF
P: UV, WitP, WitP-AE

(in reply to glvaca)
Post #: 26
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 8:00:42 PM   
glvaca

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Apollo11

Hi all,

quote:

ORIGINAL: glvaca

Well, I have yet to see your position supported by anything more than your gut feeling and personal opinion. Everytime you make a statement that I can disprove you just shift your opinion to something else. Not quite the way I'm used to discussing anything.
We'll just have to agree to disagree then.


I can say the very same thing about your position...

BTW, my support is based on history - the Germans DID lose the "Battle of Britain" whilst you keep claiming that they were numerically superior...


Leo "Apollo11"


No you can't, as I have backed up my claims with numbers. First the strength returns of the relative airforces. Second the shipping destroyed by bomber command. If you'd like, I can give you list of British formations, their equipment and training and their locations at different times of the battle. I can do the same for the Germans, including embarkation ports, and equipment. If you insist, I can list the location, name, ASW capability and mine clearing equipment of each RN ship and their time to travel towards the invasion beaches. Just to say, I'm pretty well informed.

Leo, respectfully, the German airforce was numerically superior, I doubt you will find any source claiming otherwise. On the other hand the Brits had a substantial reserve on planes to make good losses rapidly while the German could barely keep up with losses and actually say a decrease of frontline strength during the battle, only made good by new Gruppe being sent from Germany and transfered from Norway.
Secondly, proving that the Germans were numerically superior does not automatically mean I'm also claiming they won the battle of Britain. Those are quite distinct things.

What I do claim is that before the shift to London day light attacks, the Germans had achieved substantial air superiority in the Channel area which included the invasion beaches. This is actually acknowledge by several English works on the subject. In part this was due to the evacuation of the forward airfields in the SE of England and because fighter command preferred to fight over English ground to give their pilots the best possible chance of a succesful bail out.
Experienced fighter pilots was always a problem for the Brits at this stage. Please note, the use experienced. They had plenty of pilots, but without proper training in combat tactics they were sitting ducks and usually got shot down pretty quickly, not helped by the Vic formations used and often enforced by superior officers as opposed to the rotte and scharm formations of the Germans which were much more effective.

The main point that needs to be established is what constitutes winning the battle of Britain? Does it mean the totally destruction of fighter command? Or does it mean achieving some sort of air superiority over the Channel? And if so, to which degree?




(in reply to Apollo11)
Post #: 27
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 8:12:58 PM   
IronDuke

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Footslogger

Had Operation Sealion been implememted, what were the Germans expecting for casualties?


100%, although a few of the better swimmers might have made it home....

(in reply to Footslogger)
Post #: 28
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 8:25:00 PM   
timmyab

 

Posts: 972
Joined: 12/14/2010
From: Bristol, UK
Status: online
I think Sealion would have been the riskiest operation in the history of warfare and I'm not surprised they abandoned the idea.If you include POWs as casualties then I suppose you could be looking at nearly 100% worst case.

(in reply to Footslogger)
Post #: 29
RE: OT: Operation Sealion - 4/22/2012 8:29:09 PM   
IronDuke

 

Posts: 1578
Joined: 6/30/2002
From: Manchester, UK
Status: offline
Sea Lion would have been an unmitigated disaster.

The earliest of the assault forces would have needed to leave for England 24 hours before the landing. They are leaving ports in occupied territories so everyone knows they are going and the British will find out they are coming. So, operational and tactical surprise is utterly blown from the outset.

The idea is that these barges then spend several hours travelling at walking space across notoriously choppy waters in long straight lines. The Germans tried a dress rehearsal and in perfect weather, from a starting distance only a short distance out to sea, and without anyone firing a shot in reply, only half the men actually got ashore at all.

Even without British reaction, the German forces that come ashore will do so utterly disorganised.

German Naval Forces are so outmatched, they can not affect the outcome. The minute the Germans are detected a flood of MTBs, Destroyers, Armed trawlers and anything that floats that can mount a machine gun head into the channel. In the ensuing melee many barges will be lost, many more will simply float miles off course.

As they come ashore, British mobile columns will begin moving to meet them. In the meantime, British Cruisers and destroyers escorts will prepare to enter the channel and prevent any further landings. Given most barges will be lucky to reach England, getting home in any sort of state to take a further part in the fighting quickly will be problematical.

In the air, the Luftwaffe is covering the landings, covering the crossing, acting as mobile artillery for the troops ashore and doing none of them well. Any British fighter that gets through in the channel can take a barge out. The thought of a destroyer amongst the long lines of barges conjures up only bloody images.

By the end of day 2, ad hoc German formations ashore will be bogged down in beachheads a few miles across and just a couple of miles inland. Further supplies will not reach them and they'll slowly be starved out.

Sealion stood no chance. Getting troops ashore would have been hard enough. re-supplying and reinforceing them would have been impossible.

regards,
ID



< Message edited by IronDuke -- 4/22/2012 8:34:54 PM >

(in reply to glvaca)
Post #: 30
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