steverodgers801 wrote:At Stalingrad the German generals dismissed the ability of the Soviets to launch a coordinated counterattack. At Kursk, the German generals again underestimated Soviet capacity for an offense and it was Model who help convince Hitler the Soviets were going to attack in the south in 1944 and therefore received all but one of the available Pzr div.
You are extremely simplifying something very complex here.
It is the Abteilung Fremde Heere Ost under Reinhard Gehlen that made estimates of the strength and intentions of the red army. Unless you have a spy in the enemy HQ it is all guesswork made more difficult by the fact that an attacking army will always use deception measures to hide its intentions.The intelligence picture as it evolved during the period before the red army counterattack near Stalingrad is far more complex than what you state here. It is actually a subject in itself. As alway, indications of enemy attack become clearer over time as completely hiding attack preparations is impossible. The last days before the attack it was clear it was imminent and certain measures were taken.
During the Kursk offensive the losses of the red army had been so high that it was estimated that it would take some time before it could assume the attack again. This assumption is again based on what the intelligence services estimate the enemy strengths to be. Always guesswork as said before.
Before Bagraton the most dangerous thing the red army could have done was an attack against Heeresgruppe Northukraine and go for the Baltic . THis was also assumed to be the intention of the red army and this assumption was strengthened by the usual deception measures any attacking army takes. Given all this, shifting most of the reserves behind Heeresgruppe Northukraine was a correct decision. There was nothing that indicated that the main effort would come against AGC. The only mistake that was made is the refusal by Hitler to allow AGC to shorten its line in order to compensate for the forces taken away. Even only to deal with the secondary effort expected against it, AGC needed a shorter line.
People judging in hindsight know everything. Real commanders have to base their decisions on what the intelligence services tell them and this is guesswork unless you break the enmy code or have some spy at the enemy high command.
Decisons have to be judged on the information available at the time.