Dark Age wrote:You are not appreciating Grand Strategy or historical record.
This is an interesting comment coming from someone who refers to the BoB as simply an aerial battle or that Hitler's attack on Russia was not a major military blunder.
You are thinking too conventionally when it comes to history like an unimaginative college professor who simply regurgitates what he has been taught instead of adding anything new.
There is a section on this site that allows one to discuss how the war might have spun out if certain events/circumstances were to occur outside the historical timeline. If you want to debate the probability of Germany conquering Russia without US involvement I would suggest you move your thread there.
The common unimaginative/incorrect view points of the war on the Eastern Front are " Hitler's failure to take Moscow demonstrated that he couldnt win the war" then "Stalingrad was an epic turning point that showed Hitler would lose the war eventually" Such statements are ridiculous and flat out wrong. Historically the Germans in 1917 forced Russia to sue for peace and they hardly had to penetrate into Russia passed Riga on the Baltic yet with the collapse of the Russian war effort the Central Powers eventually seized all of the Ukraine, Belarus and the Baltic States with the treaty of Brest-Litovsk.
I fail to see what the political and military situation in 1917 Russia has to do with 1941 Russia. In 1814 the British successfully invaded the US and burned our capital. Are we to suggest the same thing would happen in 1851?
The Germans could have simply remained on the defensive after 1941 and let Stalin bleed himself to death attempting to dislodge the Germans from Soviet territory.
Apparently such infallible logic was lost on the German high command.
Any idea why?
Here's one by some guy named Clausewitz:Generally speaking, the chief aim is the certainty (high probability) of victory, that is, the certainty of driving the enemy from the field of battle. The plan of battle must be directed towards this end. For it is easy to change an indecisive victory into a decisive one through energetic pursuit of the enemy.
But on the Grand Scale it did not matter if Germany could inflict massive casualties on the Red Army.
The basis of your original argument was that Russia only had twice the population of Germany, and the loss ratio of '41 carried over (which BTW is highly unlikely) would eventually spell doom for Russia. Now you are saying that doesn't matter on a "Grand Scale". Odd contradiction.
The Soviet victories after Stalingrad furthermore were only achieved because Hitler was forced to weaken the Eastern Front to strengthen the West in anticipation of allied assualts.
Actually, part of the force that attempted the relief of Stalingrad came from the west.
Despite likely winning a victory in 1942-43 due to Operation Blue's over-ambitious goals, the Russians could not hope to dislodge the Germans without American attacks in the West. Germany would have won the war of attrition against the Soviet Union and seized more territory once Stalin's armies were bled dry.
Again, there is a section that allows for such interpretations. Go there and do a search before posting. You'll see there were many before you with this line of reasoning.
I am fully aware of Britains geographical importance to the allied war effort , as it served as a staging area for attacks against Germany. However when viewing the bigger picture, the German aerial attacks in 1940 were inevitably doomed to failure from the start.
The inevitable outcome is open to debate, but there is a line of thought that suggest the German efforts at RAF airfields during the opening stages were having an effect.
And even if Germany could have invaded Britian, imagine the casualties (Think Crete times 20) and imagine the troops Germany would need to occupy such a country if they win anyway (probably at least 350,000). Invading and holding Britain therefore could not help the German war effort overall. It spreads them too thin.
And the rational for attacking Russia is....?
And had Britain been conquered or neutral, it is likely the USA would have invaded North Africa and used it as a staging area to launch attacks in Italy and Southern France. Perhaps they would have used Iceland as a staging area to invade German held Britain. Either way, Germany loses if the USA enters the war before Germany defeats Russia, even with Britain hypothetically defeated and occupied.
Here we again are venturing into the "what if" which incidentally there is a section just for this kind of debate.
1: Britain's main continental ally France is smashed
The majority of the BEF was successfully withdrawn, and bolstered by newly raised units and Commonwealth reinforcements.
2: Germany is in possession of Channel Ports. ( Partly a reason why Britain went to war against Germany in 1914 when it invaded Belgium)
Which has what effect on British defenses?
3: Germany is in possession of coastal territory in a arc around Britain from France to Norway which makes a blockade impossible
What ships could slip past the blockade would bring in only a miniscule amount of German needs.
4: German armies and aircraft , now based in France and the Low Countries, are in closer striking distance
Until the luftwaffe can achieve air superiority the armies are limited to wagging their genitals at whomever is looking across the channel with high-powered binoculars.
5: Germany is in possession of more European territory to expand their population which within a generation leads to a larger manpower pool and thus leads to larger field armies.
This is strikingly reminiscent of another poster who suggested a successful German campaign in North Africa would eventually produce an army of Egyptians to fight alongside the Axis.
Are you two related?
6: Germany is in possession of more European territory and therefore has more resources to fuel their military
All grant you that one, but also bear in mind Britain's access to the world's raw material.
7: Germany's domination of Western and Central Europe allows them to muscle other countries on the continent to become German satellites, thus providing Germany more allies , geographical advantages, and more resources.
What other countries? By the time of Germany's attack on Russia all of Europe minus Sweden, Switzerland and the Iberian peninsula was either a German possession or ally.