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Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most Overhyped Battle in History

 
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Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most Over... - 8/15/2016 5:28:42 PM   
DicedT

 

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This thread is already in the main forum, but I realized it might of more interest here. http://nationalinterest.org/feature/tiger-tiger-burning-bright-why-kursk-the-most-overhyped-17334

Michael
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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/15/2016 7:52:46 PM   
heliodorus04


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Read all $275 of this new book?
http://www.amazon.com/Kursk-Battle-Prokhorovka-Christopher-Lawrence/dp/0971385254

No? Then STFU. Idiot.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/15/2016 9:35:59 PM   
DicedT

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: heliodorus04

Read all $275 of this new book?
http://www.amazon.com/Kursk-Battle-Prokhorovka-Christopher-Lawrence/dp/0971385254

No? Then STFU. Idiot.


No, I actually read Glantz and Zamulin, who had access to Soviet archives.

But I'm more fascinated that you paid $275 for a Kursk book, Captain Sunshine. Pay me $500, and I'll teach you better manners, better grammar and a more helpful personality.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/15/2016 9:36:39 PM   
Lobster


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quote:

ORIGINAL: heliodorus04

Read all $275 of this new book?
http://www.amazon.com/Kursk-Battle-Prokhorovka-Christopher-Lawrence/dp/0971385254

No? Then STFU. Idiot.


I'm pretty sure calling someone an idiot is squarely against forum rules. I'm equally certain telling someone to STFU is also squarely against forum rules. Not to mention the OP made no comments regarding anything about anything other than someone might find something interesting. Your utter disregard for decorum is disturbing in the least. If you have a personal grudge there is a PM system. Use it.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/15/2016 9:48:51 PM   
Icier


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quote:

ORIGINAL: heliodorus04

Read all $275 of this new book?
http://www.amazon.com/Kursk-Battle-Prokhorovka-Christopher-Lawrence/dp/0971385254

No? Then STFU. Idiot.

I must admit rather surprised by your rabid response considering that the person posted the article
as they thought it may be of interest. This is after all, a forum.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/15/2016 11:40:09 PM   
mrchuck


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Without necessarily disagreeing on any particular point, I think the conclusion is wrong. The turning point was psychological, not just material. Many of the Russians themselves (except possibly Zhukov) weren't sure of the outcome before it started. Once underway, it showed once and for all that the Red Army could hold and throw back the Wehrmacht on ground of the latter's choosing, in high summer. This battle has a place in the mythology of war precisely because all the rivers ran the other way afterwards. Check out Alexander Werth, Russia at War, for some discussion of this, aspect taken down at the time.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/16/2016 1:00:41 AM   
Icier


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I agree with you..it was a psychological battle for both sides.. for the Germans to get their MOJO back aster the disaster of Stalingrad & for the Russians, belief that Stalingrad was no fluke.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/16/2016 2:09:50 AM   
NotOneStepBack


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War is pyschological first

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/16/2016 2:54:35 AM   
DicedT

 

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But how do we know the German offensive was the psychological turning point, and not Stalingrad or the post-Kursk offensives in the summer of '43? Why Kursk and not the surrender of North Africa, the surrender of Italy, and Allied troops setting foot on the European continent in the fall of '43?

Even if the Germans had won a victory at Kursk (and what does victory mean in the Kursk context? X number of Soviet prisoners?), would the initiative have shifted in the summer of '43 anyway as the Soviets amassed breakthrough forces at some weak point in the German lines, and the Second Front was beginning to emerge?

Michael

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/16/2016 7:58:17 AM   
SigUp

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: mrchuck

This battle has a place in the mythology of war precisely because all the rivers ran the other way afterwards.

The battle has a place in mythology - especially Prokhorovka - because that's what the leading figures of that time turned it into. Rotmistrov and Vatutin were particularly influential in creating the myth of burning German tanks and the supposed swan song of the Panzerwaffe. After all, they had to find some sort of justification for the massive failure of the counterattack that day. Vatutin and Rotmistrov got their armies completely shredded while only facing a couple of SS regiments. They had to find some sort of narrative that would allow them to turn this massive failure into a success. It's like the myth created by von Manstein that he could've turned Kursk into a local success, or managed a draw against the Soviet forces if Hitler had given him operational freedom.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/16/2016 11:22:39 AM   
Aditia

 

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If there are any battles that are 'over hyped', it would be the battles fought by the Western Allies against Nazi Germany between 1943-1945. The inflated importance of those battles in Western histories is an affront to the titanic struggle in the east...

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/16/2016 1:23:43 PM   
EwaldvonKleist


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Completely agree Aditia. They contributed their part but single battles on the eastern front were greater than entire allied campaigns which are more hyped, this is at least my subjective impression.
One have to credit GB for keep fighting in 1940 but 1941-1945 soviets caused the most losses and made things much easier for Wallies who attacked with great superiority a depleted army which was hindered a lot by Hitler.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/16/2016 3:58:21 PM   
No idea

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: EwaldvonKleist

Completely agree Aditia. They contributed their part but single battles on the eastern front were greater than entire allied campaigns which are more hyped, this is at least my subjective impression.
One have to credit GB for keep fighting in 1940 but 1941-1945 soviets caused the most losses and made things much easier for Wallies who attacked with great superiority a depleted army which was hindered a lot by Hitler.



The blood was mainly soviet, that is right, but the means were mostly from the US. The importance of lend lease is not grasped by wite. Mainly because wite production is simple and about war equipment.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/16/2016 4:49:33 PM   
sillyflower


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It needed both the western allies and the Soviets to win the war. Each of them contributed in very different ways, and the West also had to deal with Japan. I'm don't believe it's possible to apportion credit in a mathematical way, or helpful to try: especially if you factor in (as you should IMHO) the help Stalin gave to the Nazis before they themselves were attacked. I don't want to downplay the Russian contribution, especially the blood-price, but equally the western contribution should not be downplayed either simply for that reason.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/16/2016 4:54:42 PM   
EwaldvonKleist


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Yes land lease played a role you must not forget. Irrelevant in some areas, but super important in some special branches crucial for the Red Steamroller. Another question one can ask how many % a nation gave.
Total war is: reduce civil goods production to the level where the population nearly dies and all the rest goes to the army. People work 14 hours per day and eat meat once per half year.
I have not yet read that much about it but soviet union went more for total war than USA (also necessary through the Stalin purges and mismanagement).
Soviet union paid a very high price in population, weapons and nationwide mobilisation+civil population suffering.
USA paid high price in weapons and a low to intermediate price in population and nationwide mobilisation+very low civil population suffering.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 8/16/2016 5:23:19 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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Hi Heliodorus04,

quote:

ORIGINAL: heliodorus04
Read all $275 of this new book?
http://www.amazon.com/Kursk-Battle-Prokhorovka-Christopher-Lawrence/dp/0971385254

No? Then STFU. Idiot.


This is an official reminder and warning. Whatever your opinion, the forum rules prohibit personal attacks and after this warning, future violations of those rules will result in a temporary ban.

Regards,

- Erik


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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 10/31/2016 5:37:20 PM   
Lobster


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quote:

ORIGINAL: EwaldvonKleist

Yes land lease played a role you must not forget. Irrelevant in some areas, but super important in some special branches crucial for the Red Steamroller. Another question one can ask how many % a nation gave.
Total war is: reduce civil goods production to the level where the population nearly dies and all the rest goes to the army. People work 14 hours per day and eat meat once per half year.
I have not yet read that much about it but soviet union went more for total war than USA (also necessary through the Stalin purges and mismanagement).
Soviet union paid a very high price in population, weapons and nationwide mobilisation+civil population suffering.
USA paid high price in weapons and a low to intermediate price in population and nationwide mobilisation+very low civil population suffering.


Do you mean irrelevant as in the Soviet population would have starved if not for the BILLIONS of pounds of foodstuffs sent to them. BILLIONS OF POUNDS!!! If left to the Soviet population someone would have to work the fields, harvest, process, feed livestock, butcher, process and everything else that goes along with producing billions of pounds of food.

Then there are all of the completed products they got from Lend Lease. Everything they received, whether it was for photo processing or blowing things up, had to be made. Not just made. The raw materials had to be gotten. Then transported. Then processed. Then refined. Then transported. Then shaped into something useful. Then assembled. Then transported. Even making one screw, one nail, requires a multitude of steps and manpower. Lend Lease didn't simply move things from point A to the Soviet Union. It freed up billions of man hours. And freed up millions of people to fight the Axis. America was indeed the Allies arsenal.

Without Lend Lease I used to think the Soviets would have won anyway it just would have taken longer. Then I found this: http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/WRHARTICLES/pearl/www.geocities.com/Pentagon/6315/lend.html I got to thinking, OMG, all of that 'stuff' had to be started off as raw materials. Even the raw materials had to be 'harvested' in some way. And the equipment used to get the raw materials had to be produced and maintained and on and on. That changed my way of thinking and led me to believe that without Lend Lease the Soviets would have achieved stalemate at best. Without the Western Allies tying down Axis forces they would most certainly have lost everything west of the Urals.

< Message edited by Lobster -- 10/31/2016 5:41:22 PM >


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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 11/1/2016 12:13:55 AM   
EwaldvonKleist


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quote:

Yes land lease played a role you must not forget. Irrelevant in some areas, but super important in some special branches crucial for the Red Steamroller. Another question one can ask how many % a nation gave.

What is your problem with this statement?
I explicitly say that it was "super important in some special branches crucial for Red Steamroller".
Your Link is very good, though I was aware when writing my post that the most important land lease goods were not weapons, but trucks and all the daily life stuff of the army and to a lesser extent civil population. An example is also high quality aircraft fuel.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 11/1/2016 4:43:09 AM   
Lobster


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"Irrelevant in some areas" and "super important in some special branches"

It was relevant in all areas because it freed up manpower that could be used in all areas. What someone didn't have to produce made them available for other duties. This made Lend Lease relevant across the board.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 11/1/2016 6:23:31 AM   
shermanny

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: DicedT

But how do we know the German offensive was the psychological turning point, and not Stalingrad or the post-Kursk offensives in the summer of '43? Why Kursk and not the surrender of North Africa, the surrender of Italy, and Allied troops setting foot on the European continent in the fall of '43?

Even if the Germans had won a victory at Kursk (and what does victory mean in the Kursk context? X number of Soviet prisoners?), would the initiative have shifted in the summer of '43 anyway as the Soviets amassed breakthrough forces at some weak point in the German lines, and the Second Front was beginning to emerge?

Michael

Stalingrad was the psychological turning point. After that the Russians knew that they would not in the end lose. As to Kursk, there have been editions of GGWITE in which
it is possible for the Germans to win the Kursk battle, in the sense that the first turn can be polished to a perfection that puts the Soviets in a real dilemma and results
in the loss of a few Armies worth of surrounded infantry and the capture of Kursk or at least of its suburbs and its rail net radiating West.

And in the game, so what? The Soviets gain the upper hand shortly anyhow.

In the real world, even a strategic minor victory of that sort was never in the cards. If one weighs the Soviet resources, and the limited fuel reserves of the Axis, it is
a forced conclusion that the Axis could at the very outside never have done more than pocket an infantry army around Lgov or Sumy, and chew up Soviet tank armies somewhat more thoroughly than they actually did.

The battle of Kursk was an artificial contest in a way. The Soviets drew the Germans in by feigning weakness. There were armies behind armies in reserve. Reserves that were historically committed to diversionary offensivesafter Kursk had been decided, but before it had entirely run its course, could have been instead diverted to the battle had things gone badly for the Soviets.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 11/1/2016 9:21:48 AM   
Smirfy

 

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In sheer numbers of obsolete equipment that had lost utility on the Western Front Kursk is impressive. A World War one battle fought in the Second world War. When you look at the industrial capacity to mount the V program, the U Boat War, Air War not to overlook flak all facing west its nothing to get excited about. The Russian front did what it did put Germany in a personnel war while the West denied them any materiel advantage to deploy there.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 11/2/2016 3:00:21 PM   
stolypin

 

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The best book I have ever read on Kursk is by George Nipe (though it covers only the southern wing of the battle).

In addition to excellent combat coverage, he discusses the various myths associated with the Kursk battle.

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RE: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: Why Kursk is the Most ... - 12/17/2016 3:12:37 PM   
GamesaurusRex


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I thought the Battle of Kursk was notable just due to the sheer number of tanks that were involved.

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