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RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel

 
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RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 1:50:19 AM   
Von Rom


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Belisarius

quote:

ORIGINAL: Kevinugly

The British Army can disagree all they want, but the war in North Africa was a total sideshow which had little or no effect on the outcome of the war. This is not to denigrate any soldier who fought in the campaigns but when I read Churchill talking about El Alamein as 'The Hinge of Fate' it really frustrates me.

Back to Rommel, in France he was only a divisional commander who happened to be at the spearhead of the assault. Any credit for that campaign has to go to the likes of Manstein and Guderian. In North Africa he rode his luck against the hapless British and Commonwealth armies who practically gifted him victories at the likes of Bir Hacheim and Gazala. To give him credit, he was one of the first commanders to recognise the anti-tank capabilities of the 88mm Flak guns and make good tactical use of them. He also was an inspiring commander to serve under who preferred to 'lead from the front'. Regrettably his skills as a defensive general were barely tested, had he been allowed to deploy the panzer divisions close to the invasion beaches in 1944 then 'Overlord' may have produced a different result. However, one can only judge a commander by what actually happened rather than what might have been.


I have to protest there Kevin. Rommel was NOT untried as a defensive commander - albeit he also showed that only in that little intermezzo called North Africa. Without Rommel's actions, the DAK would probably had been completely annihilated in the weeks immediately following El Alamein. Rommel's problems in Normandy were more due to conflicts in authority, and that was his weakness. He wanted to believe in Hitler's re-assurances. (For me, I believe the greatest 'disaster' on that part was Rommel "allowing" the entire DAK get caught in Tripoli. 200,000 veteran troops. Imagine what a headache they would have been in Normandy. To compare with Manstein or Guderian, I doubt they would have settled with the Fuehrer's promises)


Rommel was quite good on defense. Just look at the state of his forces vs the Allies at Al Alamein, and his fighting withdrawl. . .

Rommel's main problems were due to supply issues and the fact that there were officers close to Hitler who wanted to see Rommel fail. Similar things can be said about Patton's situation.

In Tripoli, Rommel had no choice - Hitler had over 200,000 troops sent there only to surrender. Rommel argued against this move, preferring those 200,000 troops be stationed in Sicily and Italy.

I agree that Rommel was indispensable for the DAK. He turned them into elite soldiers.

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Post #: 31
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 1:53:56 AM   
Von Rom


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Ironduke:


quote:

As for Rommel versus Patton. Rommel was a more rounded Commander, and I think he possessed (usually) a purpose to his manouevre which Patton lacked.


Give me one example of Patton's lacking purpose in maneuvre.

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Post #: 32
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 2:01:20 AM   
Von Rom


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quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pippin

I have to agree that Patton is over-rated. However, I will give him some good credit in my books for a few things. One of them, was he would speak his mind and call things exactly the way he saw it. Unfortunately he got ****-canned by his own american comrades because he did not partake in their political BS and coverups at the time..

Oh.. and the whole cold war thing... he kept warning them... but no one would listen.... Ironicaly, his predictions seemed to come true, yet he was **** (insert political correct term here) for it.


I'd only take this so far. I think he had some candid comments in his diaries about what he thought of the campaign and his peers (Monty went into print with his opinion, so Patton wasn't alone in this). However, after Hammelburg, he instigated what looks very much like a cover up all of his own. He may have had little time for the politics that governed Allied strategy to some degree (neither did Monty) but he played the game with the rest of them. If he didn't like the politics, it was largely because he felt the politics didn't always suit him. In this, he was being like every other General after a piece of the action but not getting what he wants because the strategy demands someone else get the leading role. I don't assign any particular noble motives to him on this.

Re the cold war, ultimately, the west won the economic battle, and defeated communism in the factory and the laboratory. Therefore, I don't see anything appealing in retrospect in his desire to go after them militarily in 1945. The best of the Allied equipment matched what the Russians had, and individually Allied troops were more skilled. However, with British manpower declining, and the Americans hamstrung by fighting a two front war with only 89 divisions, I doubt whether anything would have been achieved in 1945 had we taken them on. You may well have been able to persuade Churchill to go along, but probably not the heart of the British (or even US) Army. I just don't think anybody having to do the fighting would have been up for it having just beaten the Germans, and with the Japanese still fighting in the Pacific.

The A-Bomb provides a good what if, but I don't think I like the idea of a war in which progress is achieved once a month by a fresh atomic explosion over central europe. We'd also never have invaded the Soviet union had we forced them out of Eastern Europe, and we'd have been guaranteed a further war in the fifties or sixties when they would have had a nuclear unbrella of their own, and they'ed have expanded westwards.

All in all, we got in and out of the cold war about as well as we could possibly have dreamed bearing in mind what could have happened.

Regards,
IronDuke



quote:

However, after Hammelburg, he instigated what looks very much like a cover up all of his own.


Where's your proof regarding this statement?


quote:

ultimately, the west won the economic battle, and defeated communism in the factory and the laboratory. Therefore, I don't see anything appealing in retrospect in his desire to go after them militarily in 1945.


Yes, the west won by 1991 (when USSR collapsed).

Yet, you seem to have overlooked:

1) Communist insurgency in post-war Greece

2) The Korean War

3) The Vietnam War

4) The Cuban Missile Crisis

5) Massive funds that went into the Arms Build-up

6) All the Third world nations that suffered through proxy wars.

7) Now we have to deal with Chinese sabre-rattling over Taiwan. . .

Patton was right. . .

But that is when "politics" took over.

< Message edited by Von Rom -- 8/6/2004 12:02:57 AM >


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Post #: 33
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 2:07:34 AM   
Von Rom


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quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

quote:

ORIGINAL: freeboy

On balance, I think Rommel called it right, but he didn't have the resources to play it as well as he wanted to. I think Rundstedt's strategy would have failed. It's possible it might have kept the campaign for France alive as long as Rommel's did, but it offered little or no chance for success in the long run. Rommel's strategy offered a slim hope depending on what happened on the beaches.
above from id

I definately agree with id here.. had Rommel a free hand in Normandy. Pas d'Calias (sp?)
it would have been a tougher go for the Allies.
Patton gets both praised and faulted for his daring plans, but since he too was hamstrung by his supperiors, or not depending on your view of reality.. no offense to either side on that one.... I have to say that Monty raites a second in my biook to each, especially
Rommel... give each equal supplies and air and reletive forces, but this is seldom the case..


Any examples of an overwhelmingly outguned and supplied force fighting of and "winning"?????
Well, not to be pointed but before those stupid Hitler order conter attacks in Normandy tthe Allies were being somewhat bottled up....

I come back to the origonal quote... no real answer... too much differnces in the situations between US and Germany to aduquately say "better"
How about Pieper verses Patton? or Rommel? Could either have lead there men as well? and remember ultimately he "lost" too????????


The what if conerning the troops in the pas de calais is interesting as well. I don't think the rail network (even without Allied air interdiction and the bombing that was undertaken of marshalling yards etc) would have supported a quick build up in Normandy. However, I can certainly see the battle stretching several weeks or months longer, had the Germans had infantry formations to relieve the Panzer Divisions early on.

The Allies were never overwhelming in their numbers in Normandy. I don't have the troop levels to hand but I doubt they could have built up sufficiently in the bridgehead to gain the 3:1 usually said to be required had the Germans concentrated in Normandy. I think they might eventually have broken out only by staging the subsidiary landings in Southern France etc, and outflanking.

Peiper is an interesting figure, but essentially only reached the rank of Regimental Commander. It's difficult to equate him with Patton or others because of this. He was less concerned with operational matters, and more with the sharp end.

Regards,
Ironduke


I think there was a lot written about the fact that the Allies needed even more men, and that not enough troops were allotted for the campaign in Normandy.

If memory serves me right, I believe the Allies had planned to have 90 divisions in France. This turned out to be less than sufficient considering Ike's Broad Front strategy.

I also have a feeling that Rommel's strategy of attacking the Allied Beachead had merit, especially considering how tough the Americans had it on Omaha Beach.

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Post #: 34
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 2:36:10 AM   
Von Rom


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quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

The Allies were never overwhelming in their numbers in Normandy. I don't have the troop levels to hand but I doubt they could have built up sufficiently in the bridgehead to gain the 3:1 usually said to be required had the Germans concentrated in Normandy. I think they might eventually have broken out only by staging the subsidiary landings in Southern France etc, and outflanking.

Regards,
Ironduke



I think it is safe to say they were overwhelming in the air. Same goes for the naval numbers. I believe the allies were overwhelming on ground as well. It is difficult to find numbers for both allied and german powers reffering to the same date, but in general the number of allied division were just slighty more numerouse that the german division. However, taking into account the massive number of independent battalions the allied had, one can say that a allied division had about 3 times as many men as the germans (40-50 000 men/div).

The error of just comparing number of divisions that many do (not necesseraly you Duke) is obvious considering that the americans at 25. july -44 had 13 inf. div + 5 Arm div in Normandie (totalling 247.340 men), while adding the independent they totalled to 735 000.

In addition to this comes the many poorly equiped, poorly trained german divisions (consisting of old men and POW's), the fact that the german losses was unlikely to be replaced (at least within reasonable time) whereas the allied forces was well supplied in any regard compared to the german forces (losses were quicly replaced), and that it was always trained soldiers.



quote:

However, taking into account the massive number of independent battalions the allied had, one can say that a allied division had about 3 times as many men as the germans (40-50 000 men/div).


"Independent battalions"?

Where did you get this from?

Average US division was roughly 15,000 to 20,000 men.


quote:

The error of just comparing number of divisions that many do (not necesseraly you Duke) is obvious considering that the americans at 25. july -44 had 13 inf. div + 5 Arm div in Normandie (totalling 247.340 men), while adding the independent they totalled to 735 000.


What is your source for these numbers of "Independent forces"??


quote:

In addition to this comes the many poorly equiped, poorly trained german divisions (consisting of old men and POW's),


Please. . .

Here is the initial German opposition the Allies ran into:

OMAHA BEACH: One of the biggest problems was not only the restricted terrain and the dug in pillboxes, but the fact that allied intelligence had overlooked the 352nd Infantry Division, right behind the beaches. This unit, like the others in Normandy, was spread out but was an experienced unit that had served in Russia. It more than doubled the effectiveness of the coastal defences, thus resulting in excessive U.S. losses. This unit was attached to the 84th German Corps, which had responsibility for the entire Normandy region. In addition, elements of the 3rd Sturm-Flak Korps were spread out from Carentan to Bayeux. They contributed a large number of 20, 37 and 88mm guns to the defense, but the unit was badly disrupted by the pre-invasion air attack.

GOLD BEACH: Most of the opposition here consisted of "Ost" troops, Russian and Polish conscripts/prisoners fighting in the German Army, and men from the 716th Infantry Division, a second rate static unit with a large frontage (Caen Bayeux).

JUNO BEACH: The Canadians faced the same troops as were positioned behind GOLD, plus the 440th 0st Battalion dug-in at Courselles-sur-Mer. Later in the day they faced elements of 2lst Panzer and l2th SS Panzer Division, both deployed too far in the rear to hinder the actual landings.

SWORD BEACH: The 3rd (British) Infantry Division faced, as the other beaches, well dug-in but overextended elements of 716th Infantry Division. The British also faced counter-attacks from l2th SS and 21st Panzer later in the day and into the night.


And these were just the initial German forces. Plus, they were fighting in heavy bocage country which aided the defense.

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Post #: 35
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 2:39:38 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

The Allies were never overwhelming in their numbers in Normandy. I don't have the troop levels to hand but I doubt they could have built up sufficiently in the bridgehead to gain the 3:1 usually said to be required had the Germans concentrated in Normandy. I think they might eventually have broken out only by staging the subsidiary landings in Southern France etc, and outflanking.

Regards,
Ironduke



I think it is safe to say they were overwhelming in the air. Same goes for the naval numbers. I believe the allies were overwhelming on ground as well. It is difficult to find numbers for both allied and german powers reffering to the same date, but in general the number of allied division were just slighty more numerouse that the german division. However, taking into account the massive number of independent battalions the allied had, one can say that a allied division had about 3 times as many men as the germans (40-50 000 men/div).

The error of just comparing number of divisions that many do (not necesseraly you Duke) is obvious considering that the americans at 25. july -44 had 13 inf. div + 5 Arm div in Normandie (totalling 247.340 men), while adding the independent they totalled to 735 000.

In addition to this comes the many poorly equiped, poorly trained german divisions (consisting of old men and POW's), the fact that the german losses was unlikely to be replaced (at least within reasonable time) whereas the allied forces was well supplied in any regard compared to the german forces (losses were quicly replaced), and that it was always trained soldiers.


There's certainly a lot in what you say I would agree with, but I think numbers are important in this instance, because the Allies eventually ground out victory in Normandy. Patton poured through a hole created by Hodges that was created because the Germans had run out of men. If you look at some of the casualty rates inflicted on Allied forces (both US and UK, albeit for differing reasons) An extra 6-8 German infantry divisions would have exacted a heavy toll. By the end of the campaign in Europe the UK was folding infantry units in order to bring others up to strength and (IIRC) the Americans were having some problems of their own keeping up a steady stream of quality replacements.

A lot of the extra Allied troops would have been rear area formations as well, I'd guess. The Allied tail was far larger than the German tail, and the fact that average divisional sizes may have been larger in certain Allied formations doesn't necessarily mean they had more rifles at the sharp end. That said, the tail had other benefits in combat that should not be overlooked, but the extra Allied bodies would not all have been fighting men.

Regards,
John.

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Post #: 36
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 2:49:04 AM   
Von Rom


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Joined: 5/12/2000
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quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

The Allies were never overwhelming in their numbers in Normandy. I don't have the troop levels to hand but I doubt they could have built up sufficiently in the bridgehead to gain the 3:1 usually said to be required had the Germans concentrated in Normandy. I think they might eventually have broken out only by staging the subsidiary landings in Southern France etc, and outflanking.

Regards,
Ironduke



I think it is safe to say they were overwhelming in the air. Same goes for the naval numbers. I believe the allies were overwhelming on ground as well. It is difficult to find numbers for both allied and german powers reffering to the same date, but in general the number of allied division were just slighty more numerouse that the german division. However, taking into account the massive number of independent battalions the allied had, one can say that a allied division had about 3 times as many men as the germans (40-50 000 men/div).

The error of just comparing number of divisions that many do (not necesseraly you Duke) is obvious considering that the americans at 25. july -44 had 13 inf. div + 5 Arm div in Normandie (totalling 247.340 men), while adding the independent they totalled to 735 000.

In addition to this comes the many poorly equiped, poorly trained german divisions (consisting of old men and POW's), the fact that the german losses was unlikely to be replaced (at least within reasonable time) whereas the allied forces was well supplied in any regard compared to the german forces (losses were quicly replaced), and that it was always trained soldiers.


There's certainly a lot in what you say I would agree with, but I think numbers are important in this instance, because the Allies eventually ground out victory in Normandy. Patton poured through a hole created by Hodges that was created because the Germans had run out of men. If you look at some of the casualty rates inflicted on Allied forces (both US and UK, albeit for differing reasons) An extra 6-8 German infantry divisions would have exacted a heavy toll. By the end of the campaign in Europe the UK was folding infantry units in order to bring others up to strength and (IIRC) the Americans were having some problems of their own keeping up a steady stream of quality replacements.

A lot of the extra Allied troops would have been rear area formations as well, I'd guess. The Allied tail was far larger than the German tail, and the fact that average divisional sizes may have been larger in certain Allied formations doesn't necessarily mean they had more rifles at the sharp end. That said, the tail had other benefits in combat that should not be overlooked, but the extra Allied bodies would not all have been fighting men.

Regards,
John.



quote:

Patton poured through a hole created by Hodges that was created because the Germans had run out of men.


Not quite so.

The hole was created because 2,000 heavy bombers created it.

Then First Army infantry divisions were used to push the hole wider, thus allowing Patton's forces to breakout. . .

In the Falaise Pocket, the Germans had tens of thousands of soldiers ready to fight, which Patton was in the process of encircling.

Hitler then made a stupid mistake of ordering a German counterattack at Mortain. . .

When the Germans realized what Patton was doing, they made a mad scramble to flee the Pocket. . .

< Message edited by Von Rom -- 8/6/2004 12:51:50 AM >


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Post #: 37
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 3:11:15 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Von Rom

Ironduke:


quote:

As for Rommel versus Patton. Rommel was a more rounded Commander, and I think he possessed (usually) a purpose to his manouevre which Patton lacked.


Give me one example of Patton's lacking purpose in maneuvre.


Von Rom,
I am prepared to reply to this, but if my points are ignored, or rejected without evidence to the contrary, or buried beneath long passages of questionable relevance, I reserve the right to just talk to the others. I'm not getting into another Patton thread situation.

In addition to General McNair's comments after watching Patton's manouevres (in Louisiana if memory serves) in 1941 "This is no way to fight a war".; you could also cite the right turn with sizeable forces into Brittany after the breakout; indeed the entire attack into Brittany. On the 3rd August, Bradley (an Army Group Commander at this point) was at Middleton's HQ (A Corp Commander) concerned at the spread out dispositions of the troops, was ordering some of Patton's divisions about to cover the flanks. He was interfering in Patton's command because he felt the advance was everywhere at once and not tactically sound.

To quote Farago:

"...he (Patton) usually confined his piecemeal operations to skirmishes with stragglers, instead of interfering strategically with the enemy's communication zone. While he did succeed in places and in parts in preventing the enemy from forming a front, he did not destroy enough of his units to make more than a dent in his strength".

If you don't like Farago, try Weigley:

"He did not ruinously disrupt the enemy's communication's zone. His traps failed too often to close on the enemy's main forces. Principally, he occupied ground rather than destroying armies."

Ultimately, it lacked purpose because it was an advance for advancing's sake. Rommel manouevred in order to outflank, encircle and defeat all manner of defences. You can see the purpose of his manouevres through the desert campaign.

The final example would be Sicily. An offensive considered insane by his senior Corp Commander, and which was considered a glory drive by his senior Divisional Commander. Perhaps I am wrong to say it had no purpose, I should have said it had the wrong purpose.

Regards,
Ironduke

(in reply to Von Rom)
Post #: 38
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 3:12:43 AM   
Von Rom


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Rommel vs Patton:

I would rate them almost equal in ability, perhaps giving Patton the edge.

It is amazing how closely there are similarities between the two:

1) both were hampered from above by High Command

2) rival jealousies from above interfered in their conduct of the war

3) there was a shortage of supplies at critical times (through no fault of their own)

4) both died under questionable circumstances

etc, etc. . .

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Post #: 39
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 3:24:53 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

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IronDuke
quote:

However, after Hammelburg, he instigated what looks very much like a cover up all of his own.


Von Rom
quote:

Where's your proof regarding this statement?


Patton's letter to his Wife three days before the raid says:

"We are headed right for John's place and may get there before he is moved".

After the raid, to quote Professor d'Este:

"Patton perpetuated the fiction of Hammelburg at a press conference, in which he baldly deceived the correspondents by waiving his personal and official diaries in the air and claiming he had known nothing of Water's presence in Hammelburg until nine days after the raid. "

In other words, he didn't tell the truth. His letter to his wife clearly indicates he (at the very least) strongly suspected he was there.

So, when someone says something about an embarrassing event that isn't true, and is designed to deflect criticism over the event and conceal the real reasons behind it, it's a cover up.


IronDuke
quote:

ultimately, the west won the economic battle, and defeated communism in the factory and the laboratory. Therefore, I don't see anything appealing in retrospect in his desire to go after them militarily in 1945.


Von Rom
quote:

Yes, the west won by 1991 (when USSR collapsed).

Yet, you seem to have overlooked:

1) Communist insurgency in post-war Greece

2) The Korean War

3) The Vietnam War

4) The Cuban Missile Crisis

5) Massive funds that went into the Arms Build-up

6) All the Third world nations that suffered through proxy wars.

7) Now we have to deal with Chinese sabre-rattling over Taiwan. . .

Patton was right. . .

But that is when "politics" took over.


I don't believe that any of this would have been avoided by taking two war weary nations into a third world war ten minutes after finishing the second one. A war with an erstwhile Ally, who had done more than anyone to defeat the NAZIs, and who currently had 5-6 million men in the field. American casualties in Vietnam would have been dwarfed by American casualties in Central Europe fighting the Russians in 1945.

Also, whilst the Russians backed the Korean War, the main impetus came from China, so this would hardly have been prevented by fighting the Russians.

Regards,
Ironduke

(in reply to Von Rom)
Post #: 40
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 3:36:11 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

Posts: 1595
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Von Rom

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

quote:

ORIGINAL: freeboy

On balance, I think Rommel called it right, but he didn't have the resources to play it as well as he wanted to. I think Rundstedt's strategy would have failed. It's possible it might have kept the campaign for France alive as long as Rommel's did, but it offered little or no chance for success in the long run. Rommel's strategy offered a slim hope depending on what happened on the beaches.
above from id

I definately agree with id here.. had Rommel a free hand in Normandy. Pas d'Calias (sp?)
it would have been a tougher go for the Allies.
Patton gets both praised and faulted for his daring plans, but since he too was hamstrung by his supperiors, or not depending on your view of reality.. no offense to either side on that one.... I have to say that Monty raites a second in my biook to each, especially
Rommel... give each equal supplies and air and reletive forces, but this is seldom the case..


Any examples of an overwhelmingly outguned and supplied force fighting of and "winning"?????
Well, not to be pointed but before those stupid Hitler order conter attacks in Normandy tthe Allies were being somewhat bottled up....

I come back to the origonal quote... no real answer... too much differnces in the situations between US and Germany to aduquately say "better"
How about Pieper verses Patton? or Rommel? Could either have lead there men as well? and remember ultimately he "lost" too????????


The what if conerning the troops in the pas de calais is interesting as well. I don't think the rail network (even without Allied air interdiction and the bombing that was undertaken of marshalling yards etc) would have supported a quick build up in Normandy. However, I can certainly see the battle stretching several weeks or months longer, had the Germans had infantry formations to relieve the Panzer Divisions early on.

The Allies were never overwhelming in their numbers in Normandy. I don't have the troop levels to hand but I doubt they could have built up sufficiently in the bridgehead to gain the 3:1 usually said to be required had the Germans concentrated in Normandy. I think they might eventually have broken out only by staging the subsidiary landings in Southern France etc, and outflanking.

Peiper is an interesting figure, but essentially only reached the rank of Regimental Commander. It's difficult to equate him with Patton or others because of this. He was less concerned with operational matters, and more with the sharp end.

Regards,
Ironduke


I think there was a lot written about the fact that the Allies needed even more men, and that not enough troops were allotted for the campaign in Normandy.

If memory serves me right, I believe the Allies had planned to have 90 divisions in France. This turned out to be less than sufficient considering Ike's Broad Front strategy.

I also have a feeling that Rommel's strategy of attacking the Allied Beachead had merit, especially considering how tough the Americans had it on Omaha Beach.


By the end the British and Commonwealth were only deploying around 15 divisions if memory serves, and total US Army strength was only 89 divisions (split between NW Europe, Sicilt and the Pacific) so I'd be sceptical this was ever an attainable figure. Can you remember your source for this?

Regards,
IronDuke

(in reply to Von Rom)
Post #: 41
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 3:54:52 AM   
Von Rom


Posts: 1705
Joined: 5/12/2000
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

quote:

ORIGINAL: Von Rom

Ironduke:


quote:

As for Rommel versus Patton. Rommel was a more rounded Commander, and I think he possessed (usually) a purpose to his manouevre which Patton lacked.


Give me one example of Patton's lacking purpose in maneuvre.


Von Rom,
I am prepared to reply to this, but if my points are ignored, or rejected without evidence to the contrary, or buried beneath long passages of questionable relevance, I reserve the right to just talk to the others. I'm not getting into another Patton thread situation.

In addition to General McNair's comments after watching Patton's manouevres (in Louisiana if memory serves) in 1941 "This is no way to fight a war".; you could also cite the right turn with sizeable forces into Brittany after the breakout; indeed the entire attack into Brittany. On the 3rd August, Bradley (an Army Group Commander at this point) was at Middleton's HQ (A Corp Commander) concerned at the spread out dispositions of the troops, was ordering some of Patton's divisions about to cover the flanks. He was interfering in Patton's command because he felt the advance was everywhere at once and not tactically sound.

To quote Farago:

"...he (Patton) usually confined his piecemeal operations to skirmishes with stragglers, instead of interfering strategically with the enemy's communication zone. While he did succeed in places and in parts in preventing the enemy from forming a front, he did not destroy enough of his units to make more than a dent in his strength".

If you don't like Farago, try Weigley:

"He did not ruinously disrupt the enemy's communication's zone. His traps failed too often to close on the enemy's main forces. Principally, he occupied ground rather than destroying armies."

Ultimately, it lacked purpose because it was an advance for advancing's sake. Rommel manouevred in order to outflank, encircle and defeat all manner of defences. You can see the purpose of his manouevres through the desert campaign.

The final example would be Sicily. An offensive considered insane by his senior Corp Commander, and which was considered a glory drive by his senior Divisional Commander. Perhaps I am wrong to say it had no purpose, I should have said it had the wrong purpose.

Regards,
Ironduke




quote:

I am prepared to reply to this, but if my points are ignored, or rejected without evidence to the contrary, or buried beneath long passages of questionable relevance, I reserve the right to just talk to the others. I'm not getting into another Patton thread situation.


Well, just be sure you don't ignore my points or call me disparaging names as you had hinted at on several ocassions in that "other" thread.

quote:

In addition to General McNair's comments after watching Patton's manouevres (in Louisiana if memory serves) in 1941 "This is no way to fight a war".;


So, you use a pre-war trainig exercise as an indication of Patton's expertise in maneuvers?

BTW, how well did you spell in grade 8 compared to today?

Even so, let's look at McNair's training exercies in 1941:

It is very clear that McNair and a few others were out to try to discredit Patton and his armor theories:

"A conspiracy was developing in the War Department to take the wind out of the sails of the 'armor boys' and once and for all discredit the tank as a panecea. It was no longer a secret in the inner circles of the Army that the big maneuvres. . . were being deliberately rigged against armor" (Ladislas, Farago, Patton: Ordeal and Triumph (New York: Astor-Honor, Inc., 1964), p. 158)

Further:

Patton was winning in the maneuveres when "McNair ordered the umpires to cut Patton down to size. After that, every decision went against him. But so devastating were his tactics that in the end McNair was forced to call off the exercises 12 hours ahead of their allotted period because Patton had wrapped them up and left nothing more to do" (Ladislas, Farago, Patton: Ordeal and Triumph (New York: Astor-Honor, Inc., 1964), p. 161)

So much for McNair.

Even though the maneuveres were rigged against him, Patton's expert blitz of his forces ended the maneuveres 12 hours early. . .


quote:

you could also cite the right turn with sizeable forces into Brittany after the breakout; indeed the entire attack into Brittany. On the 3rd August, Bradley (an Army Group Commander at this point) was at Middleton's HQ (A Corp Commander) concerned at the spread out dispositions of the troops, was ordering some of Patton's divisions about to cover the flanks. He was interfering in Patton's command because he felt the advance was everywhere at once and not tactically sound.


Not sure where you are getting your information, but that is all incorrect.

Patton was ORDERED to seize Brittany:

"Patton's latest directive - to secure Brittany - had been issued to him by General Montgomery on July 27th. It was repeated verbally on August 1st, the written confirmation of the verbal order, now coming from Bradley, the new Army Group Commnader, reaching Patton four days later" (Ladislas, Farago, Patton: Ordeal and Triumph (New York: Astor-Honor, Inc., 1964), p. 480).

As to Patton's flanks, Third Army XIX TAC flew 12,000 sorties in August alone to cover his flanks. This coordination between Third Army and its air wing has been considered one of the most brilliant air/land combinations of the war.

“By the summer of 1944, Allied forces had four fighter-bomber tactical air commands supporting the designated field armies in Europe; in the fall they added a fifth. Of these, the team of Third Army, commanded by Lt Gen George S. Patton, and XIX Tactical Air Command (TAC), led by Brig Gen Otto P. Weyland, deserves special attention as the most spectacular Allied air-ground team of the Second World War.

"The Patton-Weyland relationship arguably proved the most satisfying of all such partnerships between air and ground commanders during the conflict. It remains today a model for air-ground cooperation.” p. 147 “...The problems and frustrations encountered in North Africa led to important improvements in command, control and operations. By the time of the Normandy buildup in 1944, many of the participants involved had lived through North Africa and Sicily. They had tested doctrine under combat conditions, worked out problems, and created bonds that they brought to the northwest European campaign.” p. 148"

http://www.belisarius.com/modern_business_strategy/moore/mie_29.htm



quote:

"...he (Patton) usually confined his piecemeal operations to skirmishes with stragglers, instead of interfering strategically with the enemy's communication zone. While he did succeed in places and in parts in preventing the enemy from forming a front, he did not destroy enough of his units to make more than a dent in his strength".

If you don't like Farago, try Weigley:

"He did not ruinously disrupt the enemy's communication's zone. His traps failed too often to close on the enemy's main forces. Principally, he occupied ground rather than destroying armies."

Ultimately, it lacked purpose because it was an advance for advancing's sake. Rommel manouevred in order to outflank, encircle and defeat all manner of defences. You can see the purpose of his manouevres through the desert campaign.

The final example would be Sicily. An offensive considered insane by his senior Corp Commander, and which was considered a glory drive by his senior Divisional Commander. Perhaps I am wrong to say it had no purpose, I should have said it had the wrong purpose.


Many of these comments are purely vacuuous and contain NO EVIDENCE.

Most of these are just general comments and really carry NO WEIGHT.

Patton bypassed opposition so he could ENCIRCLE HIS ENEMY, such as in Falaise.

This is exactly what the Germans did in France - which you spoke so highly about.

That is the goal of most brilliant commanders: to out-flank, encircle and trap the enemy.

This is exactly what Patton did.

As for Sicily:

Alexander kept Third Army INACTIVE FOR two weeks. Fed up, Patton got permission from Alexander to seize Palermo, then conducted three amphibious operations, and then he took Messina.

Even with a two week delay, Patton still beat Monty to Messina, who was engaged in tough frontal fighting against entrenched axis forces in mountainous terrain.

Had Patton been allowed to drive for Messina TWO WEEKS EARLIER, he could have bagged all the Axis forces on Sicily.

You keep harping on Bradley's comments. Yet it is well known that Bradley disliked Patton.

However, BOTH Alexander and Monty agreed that Patton's drive was the CORRECT ONE.

Decisively defeating an enemy force requires dominant maneuver throughout the depth of the battle space. Dominance requires seeing activity in the battle space, moving rapidly through its depth and directing firepower to dominate the maneuver relationship. Final dominance comes through simultaneously applying firepower and controlling terrain.

Relational maneuver creates a decisive impact on a campaign by securing operational advantages before battle or exploiting tactical success. By avoiding enemy strengths, relational maneuver attempts to incapacitate through systematic disruption rather than physical destruction. The potential advantages are disproportionate to the effort and resources involved. Facilitating maneuver with firepower can yield astounding results such as Operation Neptune to establish the Normandy lodgment or Operation Cobra to break out of the lodgment.


In contrast to those sources you cited, here are the comments by three leading German authorities who knew all about Patton's abilities:

Percy Ernst Schramm, the distinquished historian who was one of the keepers of the German High Command's war diary, stated: "'The breakout paved the way for a new situation. The struggle that hitherto resembled 1918, with two more or less static fronts, now developed into a war of movement whose speed surpassed, if possible, that of the [German] campaign of 1940'" (Ladislas, Farago, Patton: Ordeal and Triumph (New York: Astor-Honor, Inc., 1964), p. 505).

General Siegfried Westphal, who was von Rundstedt's Chief of Staff in the west, wrote: "'As far as General Patton was concerned, I was of the opinion even then that he was by far the outstanding commander in the [enemy] camp. Above all else, Patton was remarkable for his determined and bold actions" (Ladislas, Farago, Patton: Ordeal and Triumph (New York: Astor-Honor, Inc., 1964), p. 505).

General Blumentritt wrote: "'We regarded General Patton extremely highly as the most aggressive Panzer-General of the Allies, a man of incredible initiative and lightning-like action. He resembled our own Panzer-General Guderian. His operations impressed us enormously, probably because he came closest to our concept of the classical military commander. He even improved on Napoleon's basic tenet-activitee, vitesse-vitesse" (Ladislas, Farago, Patton: Ordeal and Triumph (New York: Astor-Honor, Inc., 1964), p. 505).

"It was Marshall's firm belief that Patton was the Army's greatest human asset in the field to score decisive victories over the fast-moving Germans. He came to regard him as absolutely indispensable for the triumph of American arms in the Second World War. . . . Patton was to General Marshall the ideal of an American officer - organizer, trainer, combat leader. Marshall knew only too well that there were not many officers like that in the United States or, for that matter, in any man's army anywhere in the world" (Ladislas, Farago, Patton: Ordeal and Triumph (New York: Astor-Honor, Inc., 1964), pp. 131-32).

< Message edited by Von Rom -- 8/6/2004 2:10:21 AM >


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(in reply to IronDuke_slith)
Post #: 42
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:00:06 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

Posts: 1595
Joined: 6/30/2002
From: Manchester, UK
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Please. . .

quote:

Here is the initial German opposition the Allies ran into:

OMAHA BEACH: One of the biggest problems was not only the restricted terrain and the dug in pillboxes, but the fact that allied intelligence had overlooked the 352nd Infantry Division, right behind the beaches. This unit, like the others in Normandy, was spread out but was an experienced unit that had served in Russia. It more than doubled the effectiveness of the coastal defences, thus resulting in excessive U.S. losses. This unit was attached to the 84th German Corps, which had responsibility for the entire Normandy region. In addition, elements of the 3rd Sturm-Flak Korps were spread out from Carentan to Bayeux. They contributed a large number of 20, 37 and 88mm guns to the defense, but the unit was badly disrupted by the pre-invasion air attack.


Incorrect. The 352nd never served in Russia. (I would be happy to retract this statement if you can give an action in which they served on the eastern front, or their dates of deployment there if not an actual action). It was activated on 5 November '43 in France (St Lo to be exact). A cadre of men from the all but destroyed 321st Infantry division was incorporated, but most of the troops were recruits born in 1925/26.
The (small) number of men incorporated from the 321st would have seen action in Russia, but the remnants of this division (it was all but destroyed in Russia) were split between several formations, so the 352nd did not receive many veterans at all.

I believe it is this cadre that ensures people frequently repeat the mistake that they had served in the east, but the 352nd was not a veteran formation. Indeed, between November '43 and March '44, this division had only fired live rounds on three occasions in training. Training improved after March but was still hampered by the extensive work on fortifications (9 hours a day) the division undertook.

quote:

GOLD BEACH: Most of the opposition here consisted of "Ost" troops, Russian and Polish conscripts/prisoners fighting in the German Army, and men from the 716th Infantry Division, a second rate static unit with a large frontage (Caen Bayeux).


Only one Ost Battalion (441st) was in Gold's area on the left flank of 716th Division. It was one of only two committed in 84 Korps beach defences because of general questions about the Ost Battalion's effectiveness. However, the 441st was committed at the request of the 716th Divisional Commander because it was considered one of the more reliable formations. In addition to a thousand Russians, it had 270 German Officers and NCOs.

Elements of the 352nd Division also manned defences on the western flank of the Gold landings.

quote:

JUNO BEACH: The Canadians faced the same troops as were positioned behind GOLD, plus the 440th 0st Battalion dug-in at Courselles-sur-Mer. Later in the day they faced elements of 2lst Panzer and l2th SS Panzer Division, both deployed too far in the rear to hinder the actual landings.


Elements of 21st Panzer reached the coast late in the day, so were not too far back to interefere with the landings. They might have reached the coast much earlier but for an initial deployment that saw them east of the Orne facing the British Paratroops. Their redeployment to attack the beaches took several hours to complete because of traffic problems in the bombed Caen and Allied air interdiction. By 15.00 they were attacking towards the beaches, and indeed a Battalion of one of 21st Pzgr regiments was dug in behind Sword beach on the way to Caen.

I'm also wondering at your point. You seem to be contradicting Jallatryne's point about the poor quality of the defenders and then highlighting the 716 and Ost Btns?

Regards,
IronDuke

(in reply to Von Rom)
Post #: 43
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:05:08 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

Posts: 1595
Joined: 6/30/2002
From: Manchester, UK
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quote:


Not quite so.

The hole was created because 2,000 heavy bombers created it.

Then First Army infantry divisions were used to push the hole wider, thus allowing Patton's forces to breakout. . .

In the Falaise Pocket, the Germans had tens of thousands of soldiers ready to fight, which Patton was in the process of encircling.

Hitler then made a stupid mistake of ordering a German counterattack at Mortain. . .

When the Germans realized what Patton was doing, they made a mad scramble to flee the Pocket. . .


This was not the first time the Allies had used heavy bombers and they had not worked before. They worked this time because the Germans had no reserves to plug the gaps they blew in the front lines. The hard work ensuring no reserves were available was done by Hodge's First Army over several weeks clearing the Peninsula and driving on St Lo. So I repeat, the Germans ran out of men.

IronDuke

(in reply to Von Rom)
Post #: 44
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:06:19 AM   
Error in 0


Posts: 245
Joined: 7/19/2004
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Von Rom

quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

The Allies were never overwhelming in their numbers in Normandy. I don't have the troop levels to hand but I doubt they could have built up sufficiently in the bridgehead to gain the 3:1 usually said to be required had the Germans concentrated in Normandy. I think they might eventually have broken out only by staging the subsidiary landings in Southern France etc, and outflanking.

Regards,
Ironduke



I think it is safe to say they were overwhelming in the air. Same goes for the naval numbers. I believe the allies were overwhelming on ground as well. It is difficult to find numbers for both allied and german powers reffering to the same date, but in general the number of allied division were just slighty more numerouse that the german division. However, taking into account the massive number of independent battalions the allied had, one can say that a allied division had about 3 times as many men as the germans (40-50 000 men/div).

The error of just comparing number of divisions that many do (not necesseraly you Duke) is obvious considering that the americans at 25. july -44 had 13 inf. div + 5 Arm div in Normandie (totalling 247.340 men), while adding the independent they totalled to 735 000.

In addition to this comes the many poorly equiped, poorly trained german divisions (consisting of old men and POW's), the fact that the german losses was unlikely to be replaced (at least within reasonable time) whereas the allied forces was well supplied in any regard compared to the german forces (losses were quicly replaced), and that it was always trained soldiers.



quote:

However, taking into account the massive number of independent battalions the allied had, one can say that a allied division had about 3 times as many men as the germans (40-50 000 men/div).


"Independent battalions"?

Where did you get this from?

Average US division was roughly 15,000 to 20,000 men.


quote:

The error of just comparing number of divisions that many do (not necesseraly you Duke) is obvious considering that the americans at 25. july -44 had 13 inf. div + 5 Arm div in Normandie (totalling 247.340 men), while adding the independent they totalled to 735 000.


What is your source for these numbers of "Independent forces"??


quote:

In addition to this comes the many poorly equiped, poorly trained german divisions (consisting of old men and POW's),


Please. . .

Here is the initial German opposition the Allies ran into:

OMAHA BEACH: One of the biggest problems was not only the restricted terrain and the dug in pillboxes, but the fact that allied intelligence had overlooked the 352nd Infantry Division, right behind the beaches. This unit, like the others in Normandy, was spread out but was an experienced unit that had served in Russia. It more than doubled the effectiveness of the coastal defences, thus resulting in excessive U.S. losses. This unit was attached to the 84th German Corps, which had responsibility for the entire Normandy region. In addition, elements of the 3rd Sturm-Flak Korps were spread out from Carentan to Bayeux. They contributed a large number of 20, 37 and 88mm guns to the defense, but the unit was badly disrupted by the pre-invasion air attack.

GOLD BEACH: Most of the opposition here consisted of "Ost" troops, Russian and Polish conscripts/prisoners fighting in the German Army, and men from the 716th Infantry Division, a second rate static unit with a large frontage (Caen Bayeux).

JUNO BEACH: The Canadians faced the same troops as were positioned behind GOLD, plus the 440th 0st Battalion dug-in at Courselles-sur-Mer. Later in the day they faced elements of 2lst Panzer and l2th SS Panzer Division, both deployed too far in the rear to hinder the actual landings.

SWORD BEACH: The 3rd (British) Infantry Division faced, as the other beaches, well dug-in but overextended elements of 716th Infantry Division. The British also faced counter-attacks from l2th SS and 21st Panzer later in the day and into the night.


And these were just the initial German forces. Plus, they were fighting in heavy bocage country which aided the defense.



Independant battalions refers to units not sorted in a division. It is very strange you, who has spend so much time discussing the west front not knowing of their existence

The number I presented for divisional strength was not an actual divisional strength. Rather a 'rule of thumb' as to highlight how many men were available when divisions and independent units were countet together. I think it is clearly stated my meaning in my post....

Regarding the poorly trained units. I see no argument from your side, fonråm. Maybe you misread me and believed I said something like ALL german troops were Bodenstandige units. I did not mean nor did I write that. Surely they encountered well trained germans. But they did also encounter bodenstandige units, and other that was rather weak. I probably misread you, but the Ost units units you refer to has little with the Eastern front veterans, I believe. They were POW etc which would not be expected to fight very hard?

I found the numbers on www.fanaticsOfRommel.cåm, and is therefore FACTS and TRUE No, seriously these numbers are quoted from M. Tamelander and N . Zetterling.

< Message edited by JallaTryne -- 8/6/2004 2:15:37 AM >

(in reply to Von Rom)
Post #: 45
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:17:51 AM   
CCB


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Patton never could have taken Tobruk. Not with the limited resources Rommel had to use.

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Post #: 46
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:25:19 AM   
Von Rom


Posts: 1705
Joined: 5/12/2000
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: Von Rom

quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

The Allies were never overwhelming in their numbers in Normandy. I don't have the troop levels to hand but I doubt they could have built up sufficiently in the bridgehead to gain the 3:1 usually said to be required had the Germans concentrated in Normandy. I think they might eventually have broken out only by staging the subsidiary landings in Southern France etc, and outflanking.

Regards,
Ironduke



I think it is safe to say they were overwhelming in the air. Same goes for the naval numbers. I believe the allies were overwhelming on ground as well. It is difficult to find numbers for both allied and german powers reffering to the same date, but in general the number of allied division were just slighty more numerouse that the german division. However, taking into account the massive number of independent battalions the allied had, one can say that a allied division had about 3 times as many men as the germans (40-50 000 men/div).

The error of just comparing number of divisions that many do (not necesseraly you Duke) is obvious considering that the americans at 25. july -44 had 13 inf. div + 5 Arm div in Normandie (totalling 247.340 men), while adding the independent they totalled to 735 000.

In addition to this comes the many poorly equiped, poorly trained german divisions (consisting of old men and POW's), the fact that the german losses was unlikely to be replaced (at least within reasonable time) whereas the allied forces was well supplied in any regard compared to the german forces (losses were quicly replaced), and that it was always trained soldiers.



quote:

However, taking into account the massive number of independent battalions the allied had, one can say that a allied division had about 3 times as many men as the germans (40-50 000 men/div).


"Independent battalions"?

Where did you get this from?

Average US division was roughly 15,000 to 20,000 men.


quote:

The error of just comparing number of divisions that many do (not necesseraly you Duke) is obvious considering that the americans at 25. july -44 had 13 inf. div + 5 Arm div in Normandie (totalling 247.340 men), while adding the independent they totalled to 735 000.


What is your source for these numbers of "Independent forces"??


quote:

In addition to this comes the many poorly equiped, poorly trained german divisions (consisting of old men and POW's),


Please. . .

Here is the initial German opposition the Allies ran into:

OMAHA BEACH: One of the biggest problems was not only the restricted terrain and the dug in pillboxes, but the fact that allied intelligence had overlooked the 352nd Infantry Division, right behind the beaches. This unit, like the others in Normandy, was spread out but was an experienced unit that had served in Russia. It more than doubled the effectiveness of the coastal defences, thus resulting in excessive U.S. losses. This unit was attached to the 84th German Corps, which had responsibility for the entire Normandy region. In addition, elements of the 3rd Sturm-Flak Korps were spread out from Carentan to Bayeux. They contributed a large number of 20, 37 and 88mm guns to the defense, but the unit was badly disrupted by the pre-invasion air attack.

GOLD BEACH: Most of the opposition here consisted of "Ost" troops, Russian and Polish conscripts/prisoners fighting in the German Army, and men from the 716th Infantry Division, a second rate static unit with a large frontage (Caen Bayeux).

JUNO BEACH: The Canadians faced the same troops as were positioned behind GOLD, plus the 440th 0st Battalion dug-in at Courselles-sur-Mer. Later in the day they faced elements of 2lst Panzer and l2th SS Panzer Division, both deployed too far in the rear to hinder the actual landings.

SWORD BEACH: The 3rd (British) Infantry Division faced, as the other beaches, well dug-in but overextended elements of 716th Infantry Division. The British also faced counter-attacks from l2th SS and 21st Panzer later in the day and into the night.


And these were just the initial German forces. Plus, they were fighting in heavy bocage country which aided the defense.



quote:

Independant battalions refers to units not sorted in a division. It is very strange you, who has spend so much time discussing the west front not knowing of their existence

The number I presented for divisional strength was not an actual divisional strength. Rather a 'rule of thumb' as to highlight how many men were available when divisions and independent units were countet together. I think it is clearly stated my meaning in my post....

Regarding the poorly trained units. I see no argument from your side, fonråm. Maybe you misread me and believed I said something like ALL german troops were Bodenstandige units. I did not mean nor did I write that. Surely they encountered well trained germans. But they did also encounter bodenstandige units, and other that was rather weak. I probably misread you, but the Ost units units you refer to has little with the Eastern front veterans, I believe. They were POW etc which would not be expected to fight very hard?

I found the numbers on www.fanaticsOfRommel.cåm, and is therefore FACTS and TRUE No, seriously these numbers are quoted from M. Tamelander and N . Zetterling.


quote:

Independant battalions refers to units not sorted in a division. It is very strange you, who has spend so much time discussing the west front not knowing of their existence

The number I presented for divisional strength was not an actual divisional strength. Rather a 'rule of thumb' as to highlight how many men were available when divisions and independent units were countet together. I think it is clearly stated my meaning in my post....


What?

Do you honesty think that there were 500,000 Allied soldiers just running around France and Normandy?

Where are your sources?

As to divisions we are talking about fighting strength. . .

In Normandy, the Allies marginally out-numbered the Germans.

quote:

Regarding the poorly trained units. I see no argument from your side, fonråm. Maybe you misread me and believed I said something like ALL german troops were Bodenstandige units. I did not mean nor did I write that. Surely they encountered well trained germans. But they did also encounter bodenstandige units, and other that was rather weak. I probably misread you, but the Ost units units you refer to has little with the Eastern front veterans, I believe. They were POW etc which would not be expected to fight very hard?



You initialy wrote that the Allies only encountered old men and POWs. What are people supposed to think?

Of course the Alles encountered these, but they also encountered elite Panzer divisions which you so conveniently left out.

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Post #: 47
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:29:52 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

Posts: 1595
Joined: 6/30/2002
From: Manchester, UK
Status: offline
Von Rom
quote:

Well, just be sure you don't ignore my points or call me disparaging names as you had hinted at on several ocassions in that "other" thread.


Von Rom
quote:

BTW, how well did you spell in grade 8 compared to today?


This is insulting and condescending, and the reason I'm leaving you to it. How on earth can you claim other's insult you, and then say something like this? You wonder why people won't debate with you, or report posts to the moderators. I know from the interventions of others in the Patton thread that your methods do not go unnoticed by the other thread users, so I'm happy to leave you to it. I'm off to debate with the others.

(in reply to Von Rom)
Post #: 48
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:32:58 AM   
Error in 0


Posts: 245
Joined: 7/19/2004
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

The Allies were never overwhelming in their numbers in Normandy. I don't have the troop levels to hand but I doubt they could have built up sufficiently in the bridgehead to gain the 3:1 usually said to be required had the Germans concentrated in Normandy. I think they might eventually have broken out only by staging the subsidiary landings in Southern France etc, and outflanking.

Regards,
Ironduke



I think it is safe to say they were overwhelming in the air. Same goes for the naval numbers. I believe the allies were overwhelming on ground as well. It is difficult to find numbers for both allied and german powers reffering to the same date, but in general the number of allied division were just slighty more numerouse that the german division. However, taking into account the massive number of independent battalions the allied had, one can say that a allied division had about 3 times as many men as the germans (40-50 000 men/div).

The error of just comparing number of divisions that many do (not necesseraly you Duke) is obvious considering that the americans at 25. july -44 had 13 inf. div + 5 Arm div in Normandie (totalling 247.340 men), while adding the independent they totalled to 735 000.

In addition to this comes the many poorly equiped, poorly trained german divisions (consisting of old men and POW's), the fact that the german losses was unlikely to be replaced (at least within reasonable time) whereas the allied forces was well supplied in any regard compared to the german forces (losses were quicly replaced), and that it was always trained soldiers.


There's certainly a lot in what you say I would agree with, but I think numbers are important in this instance, because the Allies eventually ground out victory in Normandy. Patton poured through a hole created by Hodges that was created because the Germans had run out of men. If you look at some of the casualty rates inflicted on Allied forces (both US and UK, albeit for differing reasons) An extra 6-8 German infantry divisions would have exacted a heavy toll. By the end of the campaign in Europe the UK was folding infantry units in order to bring others up to strength and (IIRC) the Americans were having some problems of their own keeping up a steady stream of quality replacements.

A lot of the extra Allied troops would have been rear area formations as well, I'd guess. The Allied tail was far larger than the German tail, and the fact that average divisional sizes may have been larger in certain Allied formations doesn't necessarily mean they had more rifles at the sharp end. That said, the tail had other benefits in combat that should not be overlooked, but the extra Allied bodies would not all have been fighting men.

Regards,
John.


Welcome back to the front line, again.., duke I cannot say how these unites were deployed, but I guess both sides kept units in reserves. From the contects I quoted the numbers, I would be surprised if they added pure garrison units (non-combat units). However, assuming the numbers are correct, since I know next to nothing of tactics and strategy, I would not know if it is correct to call it an overwhelming number of men. But I believe Rommel did win battles in N Africa even if he was outnumbered as an attacker, so I guess the 3:1 ratio is a 'rule of thumb'.

(in reply to IronDuke_slith)
Post #: 49
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:37:32 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

Posts: 1595
Joined: 6/30/2002
From: Manchester, UK
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quote:

I found the numbers on www.fanaticsOfRommel.cåm, and is therefore FACTS and TRUE No, seriously these numbers are quoted from M. Tamelander and N . Zetterling.


Which work is this? I got a copy of Zetterling's book on German combat effectiveness in Normandy, today. Was it this one and if so, what did you think?

Regards,
IronDuke

(in reply to IronDuke_slith)
Post #: 50
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:42:30 AM   
Error in 0


Posts: 245
Joined: 7/19/2004
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Von Rom

quote:

Independant battalions refers to units not sorted in a division. It is very strange you, who has spend so much time discussing the west front not knowing of their existence

The number I presented for divisional strength was not an actual divisional strength. Rather a 'rule of thumb' as to highlight how many men were available when divisions and independent units were countet together. I think it is clearly stated my meaning in my post....

Regarding the poorly trained units. I see no argument from your side, fonråm. Maybe you misread me and believed I said something like ALL german troops were Bodenstandige units. I did not mean nor did I write that. Surely they encountered well trained germans. But they did also encounter bodenstandige units, and other that was rather weak. I probably misread you, but the Ost units units you refer to has little with the Eastern front veterans, I believe. They were POW etc which would not be expected to fight very hard?

I found the numbers on www.fanaticsOfRommel.cåm, and is therefore FACTS and TRUE No, seriously these numbers are quoted from M. Tamelander and N . Zetterling.


quote:

Independant battalions refers to units not sorted in a division. It is very strange you, who has spend so much time discussing the west front not knowing of their existence

The number I presented for divisional strength was not an actual divisional strength. Rather a 'rule of thumb' as to highlight how many men were available when divisions and independent units were countet together. I think it is clearly stated my meaning in my post....


What?

Do you honesty think that there were 500,000 Allied soldiers just running around France and Normandy?

Where are your sources?

As to divisions we are talking about fighting strength. . .

In Normandy, the Allies marginally out-numbered the Germans.

quote:

Regarding the poorly trained units. I see no argument from your side, fonråm. Maybe you misread me and believed I said something like ALL german troops were Bodenstandige units. I did not mean nor did I write that. Surely they encountered well trained germans. But they did also encounter bodenstandige units, and other that was rather weak. I probably misread you, but the Ost units units you refer to has little with the Eastern front veterans, I believe. They were POW etc which would not be expected to fight very hard?



You initialy wrote that the Allies only encountered old men and POWs. What are people supposed to think?

Of course the Alles encountered these, but they also encountered elite Panzer divisions which you so conveniently left out.




VONROM! Take a chillpill. I NEVER sait ONLY, read my post again! And read my answer again. There I told my sources as you asked for!! The book, btw is called D-Day. As regard to the number of men: The number only reffered to US units Yes, Patton DID NOT WIN WW2 ALL BY HIMSELF.

btw, you are rude and unneccessary aggressive, and I am not patient enough not to not becoming rude and aggressive back, and then this thread will be closed, and you and me will yet again miss a chance to have an grown-up discussion and actually learn something! I believe not for an instance that you are an "old man" as you claimed in the Patton thread.

(in reply to Von Rom)
Post #: 51
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:43:35 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

Posts: 1595
Joined: 6/30/2002
From: Manchester, UK
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quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

The Allies were never overwhelming in their numbers in Normandy. I don't have the troop levels to hand but I doubt they could have built up sufficiently in the bridgehead to gain the 3:1 usually said to be required had the Germans concentrated in Normandy. I think they might eventually have broken out only by staging the subsidiary landings in Southern France etc, and outflanking.

Regards,
Ironduke



I think it is safe to say they were overwhelming in the air. Same goes for the naval numbers. I believe the allies were overwhelming on ground as well. It is difficult to find numbers for both allied and german powers reffering to the same date, but in general the number of allied division were just slighty more numerouse that the german division. However, taking into account the massive number of independent battalions the allied had, one can say that a allied division had about 3 times as many men as the germans (40-50 000 men/div).

The error of just comparing number of divisions that many do (not necesseraly you Duke) is obvious considering that the americans at 25. july -44 had 13 inf. div + 5 Arm div in Normandie (totalling 247.340 men), while adding the independent they totalled to 735 000.

In addition to this comes the many poorly equiped, poorly trained german divisions (consisting of old men and POW's), the fact that the german losses was unlikely to be replaced (at least within reasonable time) whereas the allied forces was well supplied in any regard compared to the german forces (losses were quicly replaced), and that it was always trained soldiers.


There's certainly a lot in what you say I would agree with, but I think numbers are important in this instance, because the Allies eventually ground out victory in Normandy. Patton poured through a hole created by Hodges that was created because the Germans had run out of men. If you look at some of the casualty rates inflicted on Allied forces (both US and UK, albeit for differing reasons) An extra 6-8 German infantry divisions would have exacted a heavy toll. By the end of the campaign in Europe the UK was folding infantry units in order to bring others up to strength and (IIRC) the Americans were having some problems of their own keeping up a steady stream of quality replacements.

A lot of the extra Allied troops would have been rear area formations as well, I'd guess. The Allied tail was far larger than the German tail, and the fact that average divisional sizes may have been larger in certain Allied formations doesn't necessarily mean they had more rifles at the sharp end. That said, the tail had other benefits in combat that should not be overlooked, but the extra Allied bodies would not all have been fighting men.

Regards,
John.


Welcome back to the front line, again.., duke I cannot say how these unites were deployed, but I guess both sides kept units in reserves. From the contects I quoted the numbers, I would be surprised if they added pure garrison units (non-combat units). However, assuming the numbers are correct, since I know next to nothing of tactics and strategy, I would not know if it is correct to call it an overwhelming number of men. But I believe Rommel did win battles in N Africa even if he was outnumbered as an attacker, so I guess the 3:1 ratio is a 'rule of thumb'.


Rommel did. It's one of the things I think makes Good Generals stand out. I think superior numbers have to be outmanouevred unless they are of a very poor quality. Attacking them head on can lead to a battle of attrition which doesn't suit the smaller force. It's difficult to judge western Allied Generals because of the preponderance of firepower they were invariably blessed with after Alamein.

Regards,
IronDuke

(in reply to Error in 0)
Post #: 52
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:44:23 AM   
Von Rom


Posts: 1705
Joined: 5/12/2000
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quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

Please. . .

quote:

Here is the initial German opposition the Allies ran into:

OMAHA BEACH: One of the biggest problems was not only the restricted terrain and the dug in pillboxes, but the fact that allied intelligence had overlooked the 352nd Infantry Division, right behind the beaches. This unit, like the others in Normandy, was spread out but was an experienced unit that had served in Russia. It more than doubled the effectiveness of the coastal defences, thus resulting in excessive U.S. losses. This unit was attached to the 84th German Corps, which had responsibility for the entire Normandy region. In addition, elements of the 3rd Sturm-Flak Korps were spread out from Carentan to Bayeux. They contributed a large number of 20, 37 and 88mm guns to the defense, but the unit was badly disrupted by the pre-invasion air attack.



quote:

GOLD BEACH: Most of the opposition here consisted of "Ost" troops, Russian and Polish conscripts/prisoners fighting in the German Army, and men from the 716th Infantry Division, a second rate static unit with a large frontage (Caen Bayeux).


Only one Ost Battalion (441st) was in Gold's area on the left flank of 716th Division. It was one of only two committed in 84 Korps beach defences because of general questions about the Ost Battalion's effectiveness. However, the 441st was committed at the request of the 716th Divisional Commander because it was considered one of the more reliable formations. In addition to a thousand Russians, it had 270 German Officers and NCOs.

Elements of the 352nd Division also manned defences on the western flank of the Gold landings.

quote:

JUNO BEACH: The Canadians faced the same troops as were positioned behind GOLD, plus the 440th 0st Battalion dug-in at Courselles-sur-Mer. Later in the day they faced elements of 2lst Panzer and l2th SS Panzer Division, both deployed too far in the rear to hinder the actual landings.


Elements of 21st Panzer reached the coast late in the day, so were not too far back to interefere with the landings. They might have reached the coast much earlier but for an initial deployment that saw them east of the Orne facing the British Paratroops. Their redeployment to attack the beaches took several hours to complete because of traffic problems in the bombed Caen and Allied air interdiction. By 15.00 they were attacking towards the beaches, and indeed a Battalion of one of 21st Pzgr regiments was dug in behind Sword beach on the way to Caen.

I'm also wondering at your point. You seem to be contradicting Jallatryne's point about the poor quality of the defenders and then highlighting the 716 and Ost Btns?

Regards,
IronDuke



Ironduke:


quote:

Incorrect. The 352nd never served in Russia. (I would be happy to retract this statement if you can give an action in which they served on the eastern front, or their dates of deployment there if not an actual action). It was activated on 5 November '43 in France (St Lo to be exact). A cadre of men from the all but destroyed 321st Infantry division was incorporated, but most of the troops were recruits born in 1925/26.
The (small) number of men incorporated from the 321st would have seen action in Russia, but the remnants of this division (it was all but destroyed in Russia) were split between several formations, so the 352nd did not receive many veterans at all.

I believe it is this cadre that ensures people frequently repeat the mistake that they had served in the east, but the 352nd was not a veteran formation. Indeed, between November '43 and March '44, this division had only fired live rounds on three occasions in training. Training improved after March but was still hampered by the extensive work on fortifications (9 hours a day) the division undertook.



Incorrect.

The 352nd Infantry Division was formed in the summer of 1943. Officially the unit was created on November 14th from various units from the Eastern Front involved in the Kursk Offensive. The end of the summer of 1943 saw the close of the Kursk Offensive on the Eastern Front. The losses during this operation added to the vast loss of men that year. As a result, a new wave of divisions were ordered to be raised for deployment by the spring of 1944. Infantrie Division 352 was to be among this number. The early fall of 1943 saw the formation of the nucleus of this division in the area surrounding St. Lo, occupied France.

Therefore, it was made up of experienced infantry who had served in Russia.

quote:

I'm also wondering at your point. You seem to be contradicting Jallatryne's point about the poor quality of the defenders and then highlighting the 716 and Ost Btns?


Not so.

Elite formations such as the 12 and 21 SS were moved into position. As were other formations. The 352 Div was experienced and were holding back the Americans at Omaha.

The implication given was that there were only old men and POWs fighting on D-day.

_____________________________


(in reply to IronDuke_slith)
Post #: 53
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:48:45 AM   
Von Rom


Posts: 1705
Joined: 5/12/2000
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quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

Von Rom
quote:

Well, just be sure you don't ignore my points or call me disparaging names as you had hinted at on several ocassions in that "other" thread.


Von Rom
quote:

BTW, how well did you spell in grade 8 compared to today?


This is insulting and condescending, and the reason I'm leaving you to it. How on earth can you claim other's insult you, and then say something like this? You wonder why people won't debate with you, or report posts to the moderators. I know from the interventions of others in the Patton thread that your methods do not go unnoticed by the other thread users, so I'm happy to leave you to it. I'm off to debate with the others.



LOL

What feinted outrage

I figured you'd bail once you saw the evidence I had stacked up against you.

LOL

People have trash-talked me for over three weeks. LOL

But please don't let the facts about Patton interfere with your opinions. . .

And here it is - still little 'ol me. . .

< Message edited by Von Rom -- 8/6/2004 3:31:58 AM >


_____________________________


(in reply to IronDuke_slith)
Post #: 54
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:52:05 AM   
Error in 0


Posts: 245
Joined: 7/19/2004
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

quote:

I found the numbers on www.fanaticsOfRommel.cåm, and is therefore FACTS and TRUE No, seriously these numbers are quoted from M. Tamelander and N . Zetterling.


Which work is this? I got a copy of Zetterling's book on German combat effectiveness in Normandy, today. Was it this one and if so, what did you think?

Regards,
IronDuke


It is the book:

"Avgjørandets øgonblick. Invasionen i Normandie 1944" published by Nordstedt. I am not sure it has been translated to english yet, but it has been translated into Norwegian at least. In Norway It is called "D-Dagen" (D-Day). I liked this book very much, but it is not an hard-core history book. It for the general masses I guess . I have not read your book, but from What I have heard of Zetterling, I believe it is a good book. Can you refer me to a book or web-site where I can learn more about tactics deployed in WW2?

< Message edited by JallaTryne -- 8/6/2004 2:56:39 AM >

(in reply to IronDuke_slith)
Post #: 55
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 4:55:06 AM   
Von Rom


Posts: 1705
Joined: 5/12/2000
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: Von Rom

quote:

Independant battalions refers to units not sorted in a division. It is very strange you, who has spend so much time discussing the west front not knowing of their existence

The number I presented for divisional strength was not an actual divisional strength. Rather a 'rule of thumb' as to highlight how many men were available when divisions and independent units were countet together. I think it is clearly stated my meaning in my post....

Regarding the poorly trained units. I see no argument from your side, fonråm. Maybe you misread me and believed I said something like ALL german troops were Bodenstandige units. I did not mean nor did I write that. Surely they encountered well trained germans. But they did also encounter bodenstandige units, and other that was rather weak. I probably misread you, but the Ost units units you refer to has little with the Eastern front veterans, I believe. They were POW etc which would not be expected to fight very hard?

I found the numbers on www.fanaticsOfRommel.cåm, and is therefore FACTS and TRUE No, seriously these numbers are quoted from M. Tamelander and N . Zetterling.


quote:

Independant battalions refers to units not sorted in a division. It is very strange you, who has spend so much time discussing the west front not knowing of their existence

The number I presented for divisional strength was not an actual divisional strength. Rather a 'rule of thumb' as to highlight how many men were available when divisions and independent units were countet together. I think it is clearly stated my meaning in my post....


What?

Do you honesty think that there were 500,000 Allied soldiers just running around France and Normandy?

Where are your sources?

As to divisions we are talking about fighting strength. . .

In Normandy, the Allies marginally out-numbered the Germans.

quote:

Regarding the poorly trained units. I see no argument from your side, fonråm. Maybe you misread me and believed I said something like ALL german troops were Bodenstandige units. I did not mean nor did I write that. Surely they encountered well trained germans. But they did also encounter bodenstandige units, and other that was rather weak. I probably misread you, but the Ost units units you refer to has little with the Eastern front veterans, I believe. They were POW etc which would not be expected to fight very hard?



You initialy wrote that the Allies only encountered old men and POWs. What are people supposed to think?

Of course the Alles encountered these, but they also encountered elite Panzer divisions which you so conveniently left out.




VONROM! Take a chillpill. I NEVER sait ONLY, read my post again! And read my answer again. There I told my sources as you asked for!! The book, btw is called D-Day. As regard to the number of men: The number only reffered to US units Yes, Patton DID NOT WIN WW2 ALL BY HIMSELF.

btw, you are rude and unneccessary aggressive, and I am not patient enough not to not becoming rude and aggressive back, and then this thread will be closed, and you and me will yet again miss a chance to have an grown-up discussion and actually learn something! I believe not for an instance that you are an "old man" as you claimed in the Patton thread.



quote:

VONROM! Take a chillpill. I NEVER sait ONLY, read my post again! And read my answer again. There I told my sources as you asked for!! The book, btw is called D-Day. As regard to the number of men: The number only reffered to US units Yes, Patton DID NOT WIN WW2 ALL BY HIMSELF.

btw, you are rude and unneccessary aggressive, and I am not patient enough not to not becoming rude and aggressive back, and then this thread will be closed, and you and me will yet again miss a chance to have an grown-up discussion and actually learn something! I believe not for an instance that you are an "old man" as you claimed in the Patton thread.


Well my friend,

When you hand out trash talk - remember your comment about "American fanatics"? - then you will get trash handed back to you.

Treat me with respect, and I will offer you the same.

Understand?

Again, do you honestly believe that there were 500,000 EXTRA Allied soldiers just milling about the battlefield?

What are the page sources? What were their units?

Basic questions.

< Message edited by Von Rom -- 8/6/2004 2:56:55 AM >


_____________________________


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Post #: 56
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 5:08:00 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

Posts: 1595
Joined: 6/30/2002
From: Manchester, UK
Status: offline
quote:

Incorrect.

The 352nd Infantry Division was formed in the summer of 1943. Officially the unit was created on November 14th from various units from the Eastern Front involved in the Kursk Offensive. The end of the summer of 1943 saw the close of the Kursk Offensive on the Eastern Front. The losses during this operation added to the vast loss of men that year. As a result, a new wave of divisions were ordered to be raised for deployment by the spring of 1944. Infantrie Division 352 was to be among this number. The early fall of 1943 saw the formation of the nucleus of this division in the area surrounding St. Lo, occupied France.

Therefore, it was made up of experienced infantry who had served in Russia.


I'm not getting back in, I just wanted to smile at this, when you keep talking of stacking up evidence.

No sources listed: (I used Zetterling, Nafziger and Mitcham). No mention of which units were used to create it. (I mentioned the 321st). You say the division was formed in the summer, then say it was ordered to be formed after the losses of the summer. Then say formed in early fall of 1943.
Although it was only officially created on November 14th. By and large in my experience, units are usually officially created before they are actually created if anything, as the official creation might mean the assigning of a number, a Commander, a barracks and training area, and weapon transfers. The actual receipt of men into the unit happens afterwards, as they are received into the existing set up. This entire paragraph is self contradicting.

You call it a member of a "new wave" of divisions (ie newly formed), point out it was raised because of losses in Russia (lots of veterans killed), then say this new division was full of experienced infantry from Russia.

So, You eventually say:

quote:

Therefore, it was made up of experienced infantry who had served in Russia.


without telling us where these men had come from. I've pointed out where the experienced infantry came from and how few of them there were. The crazy thing is you seem to genuinely believe this makes sense, and that people can't see through this sort of reasoning and argument.

It's the real reason why I'm bailing out, your definition of evidence and the rules you use when gathering and presenting it are not ones I'm familiar with. We have no common definition of what evidence is or how it can be used. I am withdrawing, and others can decide (as they did in the Patton thread) which of us makes more sense. The above statement doesn't make internal sense, much less external. I present lots of facts, then get contradicted by a fact-less argument, then get called incorrect?
Which units did these infantry come from? What is your source for this claim?


There will be no answer, as there is no answer. I withdraw, because as RiverBravo said on page one

quote:

Good riddons to the patton thread.It was going in circles.

At least the Bismarck thread kept evolving.


I don't believe this thread should be spoiled for the others by us rehashing the same material from the other thread. Anyone who wants to know what evidence we have can re-read that thread if they wish, and judge which of us is correct. As I said, the above is the reason I will not debate with you. It isn't fair of you to simply say "You are incorrect" without proving why, or presenting something which does not address the point. In these circumstances, it is pointless to continue. Say what you will, I'm happy to allow others to judge.

IronDuke

< Message edited by IronDuke -- 8/6/2004 3:28:06 AM >

(in reply to Von Rom)
Post #: 57
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 5:09:09 AM   
Error in 0


Posts: 245
Joined: 7/19/2004
Status: offline
I totally agree I can bee rude. This can happen if I get too excited (and I am always sorry for this), or if someone is rude towards me first. The latter fits you from the Patton thread, and it fits in this thread as well. But I do apologize if you were offended by my reference to "fanatics". I used an to indicate to readers not to take it too seriously. Also, I explained to you in the Patton thread why I used this phrase. And I find you to be rude against pretty much anyone who challenge your arguments, which is sad. And I cannot for these reasons treat you with respect. It is comments like "Understand?" (you answering me), and "LOL" etc (Iron Duke) that may be found unessecary aggressive and rude (in that order) by some. Atleast to me.

As to the Extra manpower, I dont know what you mean. Do you believe all soldiers are sorted under a division? If so, you are mistaken, and very much so as I have pointed out. You have your divisions and then you have your independent battalions/brigades/other sized units that, I guess, provied flexibility to an army. And of cource some would be just natural to deploy independently like heavy AA etc.

(in reply to Von Rom)
Post #: 58
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 5:18:40 AM   
IronDuke_slith

 

Posts: 1595
Joined: 6/30/2002
From: Manchester, UK
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: JallaTryne

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

quote:

I found the numbers on www.fanaticsOfRommel.cåm, and is therefore FACTS and TRUE No, seriously these numbers are quoted from M. Tamelander and N . Zetterling.


Which work is this? I got a copy of Zetterling's book on German combat effectiveness in Normandy, today. Was it this one and if so, what did you think?

Regards,
IronDuke


It is the book:

"Avgjørandets øgonblick. Invasionen i Normandie 1944" published by Nordstedt. I am not sure it has been translated to english yet, but it has been translated into Norwegian at least. In Norway It is called "D-Dagen" (D-Day). I liked this book very much, but it is not an hard-core history book. It for the general masses I guess . I have not read your book, but from What I have heard of Zetterling, I believe it is a good book. Can you refer me to a book or web-site where I can learn more about tactics deployed in WW2?


There are a few. I like Gudmundsson's works "on Infantry"; "On artillery" and the forthcoming "On Armour" as a good starting point. He illustrates how tactics have evolved over the last hundred years, putting WWII into a good context.

Some of the various Army handbooks can also provide some good starting info on how individual armies fought. You come across certain constants. The Germans liked infiltration, and used immediate local counterattacks in defensive situations where they had lost ground etc.

The more interesting thing for me is the relative effectiveness. Dupuy and Creveld really sparked the debate on German versus British and American combat effectiveness, and there has been some spiritied counterattacks in recent years. Zetterling seems to fall into Dupuy's camp, but it's a fascinating debate.

I don't often use websites so couldn't say. I'll have a look through the various links I do have to see if I can come up with something.

Regards,
IronDuke

(in reply to Error in 0)
Post #: 59
RE: Who was better: Patton or Rommel - 8/6/2004 5:23:20 AM   
Von Rom


Posts: 1705
Joined: 5/12/2000
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: IronDuke

IronDuke
quote:

However, after Hammelburg, he instigated what looks very much like a cover up all of his own.


Von Rom
quote:

Where's your proof regarding this statement?


Patton's letter to his Wife three days before the raid says:

"We are headed right for John's place and may get there before he is moved".

After the raid, to quote Professor d'Este:

"Patton perpetuated the fiction of Hammelburg at a press conference, in which he baldly deceived the correspondents by waiving his personal and official diaries in the air and claiming he had known nothing of Water's presence in Hammelburg until nine days after the raid. "

In other words, he didn't tell the truth. His letter to his wife clearly indicates he (at the very least) strongly suspected he was there.

So, when someone says something about an embarrassing event that isn't true, and is designed to deflect criticism over the event and conceal the real reasons behind it, it's a cover up.


IronDuke
quote:

ultimately, the west won the economic battle, and defeated communism in the factory and the laboratory. Therefore, I don't see anything appealing in retrospect in his desire to go after them militarily in 1945.


Von Rom
quote:

Yes, the west won by 1991 (when USSR collapsed).

Yet, you seem to have overlooked:

1) Communist insurgency in post-war Greece

2) The Korean War

3) The Vietnam War

4) The Cuban Missile Crisis

5) Massive funds that went into the Arms Build-up

6) All the Third world nations that suffered through proxy wars.

7) Now we have to deal with Chinese sabre-rattling over Taiwan. . .

Patton was right. . .

But that is when "politics" took over.


I don't believe that any of this would have been avoided by taking two war weary nations into a third world war ten minutes after finishing the second one. A war with an erstwhile Ally, who had done more than anyone to defeat the NAZIs, and who currently had 5-6 million men in the field. American casualties in Vietnam would have been dwarfed by American casualties in Central Europe fighting the Russians in 1945.

Also, whilst the Russians backed the Korean War, the main impetus came from China, so this would hardly have been prevented by fighting the Russians.

Regards,
Ironduke



quote:

Patton's letter to his Wife three days before the raid says:

"We are headed right for John's place and may get there before he is moved".


It's interesting that D'Este paints a somewhat guilty picture of Patton about the Hammelburg inciden, even though he says it's all circumstantial evidence.

What IS interesting is what D'Este LEAVES out of this incident.

Following is from (Martin Blumenson & George S. Patton, The Patton Papers 1940-1945; Da Capo Press; (October 1, 1996)

Blumenson writes that Patton's referring to "John" in the letter to his wife was SHORTHAND. "Patton could hardly tell her about Hammelburg because of censorship" issues (p. 665). So he mentioned "John" so they both knew what they were referring to.

This did NOT mean he KNEW John was in the POW camp.


quote:

After the raid, to quote Professor d'Este:

"Patton perpetuated the fiction of Hammelburg at a press conference, in which he baldly deceived the correspondents by waiving his personal and official diaries in the air and claiming he had known nothing of Water's presence in Hammelburg until nine days after the raid. "

In other words, he didn't tell the truth. His letter to his wife clearly indicates he (at the very least) strongly suspected he was there.

So, when someone says something about an embarrassing event that isn't true, and is designed to deflect criticism over the event and conceal the real reasons behind it, it's a cover up.




D'Este incorrectly painta an unfair situation here, especially over what he LEAVES OUT of his book.

I quote the following from the The Patton Papers 1940-1945:

1) In a letter to Aye on March 29, 1945, Patton wrote: "It is possible that John may be among the prisoners" (p. 666).

2) In a letter to his wife, March 31, 1945, Patton wrote: "I had known about the camp for a week but did not know definitely he [John] was in it" (p. 668).

3) In a letter to his sister, Nita, April 5, 1945, Patton wrote: "When I sent it out, I did not know Johnny was in the camp but did know there were 900 American officers there" (p. 671).

So it is more than likely that Patton did not know for sure that John was in that POW camp.


quote:

I don't believe that any of this would have been avoided by taking two war weary nations into a third world war ten minutes after finishing the second one. A war with an erstwhile Ally, who had done more than anyone to defeat the NAZIs, and who currently had 5-6 million men in the field. American casualties in Vietnam would have been dwarfed by American casualties in Central Europe fighting the Russians in 1945.

Also, whilst the Russians backed the Korean War, the main impetus came from China, so this would hardly have been prevented by fighting the Russians.



The Russians were at the end of their supply line and their armies had been bled white fighting for Berlin and other battles. Remember, that behind them lay hundreds of miles of scorched earth.

In any war in 1945, they would have run out of supplies fairly quickly.

Korea and Vietnam served as proxies against the Americans. Both China and the USSR armed them both to the teeth.

Also, in Korea the USSR supplied China with 1,500 combat aircraft with Soviet officers flying them to go against UN forces in the south. This is not to mention almost all of the Nortth korean forces were armed with Soviet tanks and weapons.

So don't kid yourself about Soviet involvement in Korea.

Yes, there would have been tough fighting in 1945, but how many people do you think died in Korea, Vietnam, etc, etc. . .

_____________________________


(in reply to IronDuke_slith)
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