Italian Economic Decline 1943-44

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thaddeus_c
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Re: Italian Economic Decline 1943-44

Post by thaddeus_c » 23 Oct 2018 12:01

would make a guess under this scenario Mussolini government lasts quite a while longer? the oil is still flowing from Romania, they have tenuous hold on N.Africa

unless the lack of MTO prompts a disaster at Kursk (or this timeline equivalent)

Carl Schwamberger
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Re: Italian Economic Decline 1943-44

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 23 Oct 2018 14:04

thaddeus_c wrote:
23 Oct 2018 12:01
would make a guess under this scenario Mussolini government lasts quite a while longer? the oil is still flowing from Romania,
We need solid numbers there. The Germans took control of Rumanias oil exports in 1941. & fuel shortages were one of the reasons the Italian fleet was making fewer & fewer sorties. They could not afford to send the fuel hog big ships to sea.
they have tenuous hold on N.Africa
Which keeps food stocks higher. Loss of the Cyrinacia wheat farms is supposedly a problem. A recent correspondent claimed the loss of imports from Lybia and French NW Africa reduced available wheat by over 30% for 1943. I've still not found a source for any of this. I need to try some Italian web sites.
unless the lack of MTO prompts a disaster at Kursk (or this timeline equivalent)
On the military side Mussolini ordered the Itlaian ARMIR withdrawn back to Italy in February 1943. Politically this was 'catastrophic', as the returning 150,000 survivors & previously returned 34,000 wounded were not isolated but circulated very negative views about Facist leadership. It also became clear to the Italains the death toll was 30,000+ & not some much lower number implied in Facist propaganda.

Looking at some old notes there is one describing how German Anthricite soft coal was the only significant import from Europe in 1942. Petroleum imports from Rumania declined. Some quantities of metals like nickel, Colbalt, Magnanese, Tungsten were continuing to flow from Spain and Turkey. After the Vichy army was dissolved and the Mediteranean provences occupied by the Italians there was some looting and the scraps the French had hoarded were imported to Italy. That included some ships fuel not yet taken by Germany, steel scrap, & motor vehicles.

Annecdotal evidence is what it is, but this gives a snapshot of conditions in rural northern Italy. https://www.disgracesonthemenu.com/2015 ... cript.html

thaddeus_c
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Re: Italian Economic Decline 1943-44

Post by thaddeus_c » 25 Oct 2018 00:07

Carl Schwamberger wrote:
23 Oct 2018 14:04
thaddeus_c wrote:
23 Oct 2018 12:01
would make a guess under this scenario Mussolini government lasts quite a while longer? the oil is still flowing from Romania,
We need solid numbers there. The Germans took control of Rumanias oil exports in 1941. & fuel shortages were one of the reasons the Italian fleet was making fewer & fewer sorties. They could not afford to send the fuel hog big ships to sea.
they have tenuous hold on N.Africa
Which keeps food stocks higher. Loss of the Cyrinacia wheat farms is supposedly a problem. A recent correspondent claimed the loss of imports from Lybia and French NW Africa reduced available wheat by over 30% for 1943. I've still not found a source for any of this. I need to try some Italian web sites.

Looking at some old notes there is one describing how German Anthricite soft coal was the only significant import from Europe in 1942. Petroleum imports from Rumania declined. Some quantities of metals like nickel, Colbalt, Magnanese, Tungsten were continuing to flow from Spain and Turkey. After the Vichy army was dissolved and the Mediteranean provences occupied by the Italians there was some looting and the scraps the French had hoarded were imported to Italy. That included some ships fuel not yet taken by Germany, steel scrap, & motor vehicles.
meant that oil from Romania still flowing to the Axis, of course Germany controlled its direction.

guess my projection is that Italy (not invaded) could linger as long as Balkan Axis counterparts did?

Germany was in perfect position historically to install a puppet regime in 1943, that likely not the case in 1944?

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Kingfish
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Re: Italian Economic Decline 1943-44

Post by Kingfish » 25 Oct 2018 00:19

Carl Schwamberger wrote:
21 Oct 2018 01:02
Kingfish wrote:
20 Oct 2018 13:19
O see no advantage to it.
An allied front in NW Europe means both sides will be making their main effort there. Control of Vichy France and the French Med fleet doesn't radically alter the strategies for either side.
The French have a vote in this. OTL several French commanders in Africa and France were actively preparing to fight the Axis. One was marching his battalions on Bourdeux circa 8-10 November.
I agree, but given the WI you laid out I don't see their vote having much effect.

Aside from their fleet, which is effectively rendered moot with a "quiet Med" strategy, what else would they have to offer as support for the allied cause?
The gods do not deduct from a man's allotted span the hours spent in fishing.
~Babylonian Proverb

Carl Schwamberger
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Re: Italian Economic Decline 1943-44

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 25 Oct 2018 01:23

thaddeus_c wrote:
25 Oct 2018 00:07
...
Germany was in perfect position historically to install a puppet regime in 1943, that likely not the case in 1944?
Depends on what German armies are in Italy to enforce such a action. In September 1943 OTL German forces had been surged to two army groups.
Kingfish wrote:
25 Oct 2018 00:19
...
I agree, but given the WI you laid out I don't see their vote having much effect.

Aside from their fleet, which is effectively rendered moot with a "quiet Med" strategy, what else would they have to offer as support for the allied cause?
Relating to the OP the end of French neutrality closes another conduit through the Allied blockade. Whatever grain or other necessities Italy was obtaining from Africa would be closed off. Sooner if Petain opts for the Allied side. Another long term effect would be French manpower. OTL ten divisions were stood up in 1943 out of the trained soldiery at hand in the French colonies. In the latter half of 1944 manpower for doubling that were shaken out of liberated France. Then there is the momentary problem of the German forces in west Europe when the Allies attack in 1943. They have a invading force in one direction, and a hostile or potientially hostile nation in the other. This complicates life for the German commander in the opening days or weeks.

Even if Petains government wants to remain neutral neither side has a interest in this. Between trust, control of the military potential, and Axis access to resources from Africa neither side has much interest in French neutrality.

Sid Guttridge
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Re: Italian Economic Decline 1943-44

Post by Sid Guttridge » 25 Oct 2018 15:59

Hi Carl,

Quite a number of assumptions there!

Mussolini and his regime were shakey by early 1943, with strikes taking place in the industrial north, including in armaments factories. This was before the North African Campaign finished.

However, what toppled him and Fascism was probably the imminence of Allied invasion of Italy, which might have provided an alternative to German occupation. I would suggest that an Allied invasion of France in 1943 would have to be demonstrably successful (i.e. at least into the breakout phase) to reproduce this effect in Italy.

Italy was pretty much bankrupt before the war, due to the expense of an early rearmament (which left it with many obsolescent weapons by 1940), the cost of war and development in Ethiopia and the expense of the campaign in Spain. On top of that it had almost no oil of its own and was largely dependent on German approval for buying Romanian oil. It was really only one third industrialized (the North) while the Centre and South were underdeveloped or undeveloped.

Italy was running on bluff from the outset and its economic circumstances were poor from the start. Even neutral San Marino had to introduce rationing in 1940 to prevent Italian "tourists" emptying its shops!

Cheers,

Sid

Carl Schwamberger
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Re: Italian Economic Decline 1943-44

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 25 Oct 2018 21:14

Sid Guttridge wrote:
25 Oct 2018 15:59
...
.
Mussolini and his regime were shakey by early 1943, with strikes taking place in the industrial north, including in armaments factories. This was before the North African Campaign finished.

...

Italy was pretty much bankrupt before the war, due to the expense of an early rearmament (which left it with many obsolescent weapons by 1940), the cost of war and development in Ethiopia and the expense of the campaign in Spain. On top of that it had almost no oil of its own and was largely dependent on German approval for buying Romanian oil. ...

Italy was running on bluff from the outset and its economic circumstances were poor from the start. Even neutral San Marino had to introduce rationing in 1940 to prevent Italian "tourists" emptying its shops!
Sid
Refreashing to see one of the people who can be counted on to focus on the question responding here. Do you have any sources to recommend that address the conditions in Italy through the first half of 1943. Such as grain, petrol, clothing, or essential alloys and chemicals for the industry? Understanding just what the shortages were could help clarify if the answer to my question is sometime in 1944, 1945, or still might occur in 1943.

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