Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 09 Aug 2021 02:07

KDF33 wrote:That's amazing detail! Thank you for sharing it.
A very useful document. I send my thanks into the ether.
KDF33 wrote:I agree with this as it pertains to administration (342,962)
Administration seems related to the size of the army in total. I doubt, for example, that New Zealand's army needed 343k administrative personnel. Among other things, administrators would process soldier payments, oversee procurement and shipping to field forces, review disciplinary cases, review disability claims, etc. All this paper-pushing scales with army size.

Some things would not scale with army personnel size - e.g. weapons inspectors (would scale with weapons deliveries), the core analytical/command bodies of the General Staff and high command.

I'd guess half the Feldheer means slightly more than half the administration - say 200k. That gives 1.63mil in the Ersatzheer:

Image

With 100 divs at 20k Feldheer div-slice, that gives 3.63mil in the Heer total. Not far from my original 3.5mil projection. 100 divs is obviously somewhat arbitrary...
KDF33 wrote:Some sick would remain, although I wonder how much sickness cases increased due to the grueling conditions the Feldheer operated under after 6/21/1941. Do you have figures for the number of hospitalized sick prior to Barbarossa?
We could also use stats for, say, OB West in 1941-43. Although OB West contained less-fit men so probably higher resting sick rates.

Sickness rates were certainly higher on the Eastern Front than elsewhere. Obviously you have the cold with frostbite cases. In addition, soldiers were frequently sleeping in lice-infested peasant huts and drinking from unsanitary wells. This is ubiquitous in soldier's accounts though of course it would be best to have data.
KDF33 wrote:We are largely in agreement, then, give or take a few 100,000s.
I think I am too but to clarify:

OTL LW air ops and support: 262,000
ATL LW air ops and support: 1,048,000 (x4)
ATL:OTL delta: +786,000.

4x OTL requires only a 3x delta...

But nonetheless I'd stick with ~1mil air ops and support delta. Why? Because attrition probably wouldn't have happened at 4x OTL velocity. I.e. the USAAF and RAF wouldn't have continued sending their bombers to get slaughtered at 4x OTL rate. They don't have enough bombers to do so. Rather, they'd have husbanded resources and made fewer raids (until/unless CBO is stopped).

This would allow LW's establishment strength to rise by a delta greater than the ATL:OTL production flow delta. Keeping a ~1mil combat/support delta allows ~5x the unit establishment strength. With lower attrition and sortie rates per establishment, the operable/on-hand and operable/establishment ratios would increase.

All together we'd probably see LW able to put up ~6x the planes on any given day. For RLV units in early 1944, that means ~3,000 dayfighters can sortie. The escorts would have their hands full with half that force; the bombers would be devastated.

Re 8th AF bomber tactics, there's a definite Lanchestrian element here: American Heavies flew in combat boxes offering interlinking, collective defense. As 8th AF told its crews:
The “tactics lesson” grimly noted, “The straggler’s number
is up. Keep in formation at all costs”
The Luftwaffe over Germany: Defense of the Reich by Caldwell and Murray
More fighters would break up more combat boxes, causing more stragglers and weaker defenses within thinned-out combat boxes. This implies bomber losses supra-linear with opposing forces (and fighter losses sublinear).
KDF33 wrote:As I see it, the best strategy for the Germans would have been to allocate a large share of their additional manpower to expanding coal output, railway capacity, and the scale of the hydrogenation industry,
You've convinced me. It's both wise and in line with Hitler's OTL wont (Speer complained in Inside the Third Reich that Hitler wanted to spend more on synthgas than Speer thought wise). One option I could see is locating expanded hydrogenation capacity in the Donbas under an expanded and earlier Iwan Program such as I discuss upthread. OTL Iwan was less focused on the Donbas it abutted the front lines when in early '42; ATL Donbas is deep behind them. This industrial complex could be partially adaptable to coal or oil inputs. It would of course be secure from bombing.
KDF33 wrote: I also agree that German fuel supply expansion would have been necessary.
Yes but not to American levels. What do you see as a likely ATL LW fuel buget?

From what I've been able to find, the actual LW training fuel budget (i.e. that actually delivered/consumed) was shockingly small. Caldwell and Murray's Defense of the Reich say 50,000t allotted for May 1944 ("General Kreipe, the Director of Training, requested 60,000 metric tons of fuel per month for aircrew training. [Göring cut this to 50,000].") This was a prospective allotment; surely less was delivered.

That implies 600k tonnes annually, which implies 2.4mil tonnes for training 4x the pilots. That's approximately covered simply converting all of Germany's OTL hydrogenation plants to avgas production, rather than ~half going to mogas.

Of course 1944 training flight hours and fuel consumption, per pilot, were lower than before. Here's a summary from Defense of the Reich:

Image

My ballpark estimate is you could maintain 1942 training levels with slightly more than double the 1944 fuel input, per pilot. That would imply only ~5mil tonnes of avgas for ATL LW training. It's, again, a shockingly small number but I see no way around the logic.

American comparisons are a red herring because US was simply inefficient (militarily) in WW2. If, as some would have us believe, the LW needs American staffing and resource levels to use 4x OTL production flow, then why doesn't the Heer need a 60,000 division slice like the US Army? That would obviously be an absurd argument; it's no less absurd regarding air forces. I will grant that ASF's assumption of much AAF logistical duties may make the nominal air force personnel comparisons similar. But as a mere coincidence, not as a matter of logic.

It's practically certain that ATL Germany can spare more than 5mil tonnes of avgas for LW training, which would allow a qualitative delta to LW performance in addition to quantitative. So far my discussion has proceeded as if quality remains constant. What would you project?
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 09 Aug 2021 03:36

pugsville wrote:
09 Aug 2021 01:53
Have you read "The Mythical Man Month"?
The Idea you can just do stuff by throwing more bodies at the problem...
Also German lacked the raw materials,.
Awe you must believe the Coal Stork myth.

For those that don't know, the Coal Stork is where coal comes from according to parents who don't want to tell children about bodies plunging deep (to mine coal, of course - minds out of the gutter!). There's also an iron ore stork, a bauxite stork, etc.

Many children continue to believe this is where natural resources come from well into adulthood. They also believe that the Coal Stork blesses some countries with more or less coal; it's just God's will and there's nothing anyone can do to change it.

Some day when you grow up you'll learn about bodies plunging deep and where coal really comes from. Then you'll be able to understand the relationship between miners and the ATL.
https://medium.com/counterfactualww2
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by pugsville » 09 Aug 2021 04:58

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
09 Aug 2021 03:36
pugsville wrote:
09 Aug 2021 01:53
Have you read "The Mythical Man Month"?
The Idea you can just do stuff by throwing more bodies at the problem...
Also German lacked the raw materials,.
Awe you must believe the Coal Stork myth.

For those that don't know, the Coal Stork is where coal comes from according to parents who don't want to tell children about bodies plunging deep (to mine coal, of course - minds out of the gutter!). There's also an iron ore stork, a bauxite stork, etc.

Many children continue to believe this is where natural resources come from well into adulthood. They also believe that the Coal Stork blesses some countries with more or less coal; it's just God's will and there's nothing anyone can do to change it.

Some day when you grow up you'll learn about bodies plunging deep and where coal really comes from. Then you'll be able to understand the relationship between miners and the ATL.
This makes no sense what so ever.

But neither does the idea you can just add millions of workers and be instantly productive, no need to ramp up, and all transport, resource, production faculties are just infinitely expansible in zero time,.

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by KDF33 » 09 Aug 2021 05:15

pugsville wrote:
09 Aug 2021 04:58
But neither does the idea you can just add millions of workers and be instantly productive, no need to ramp up, and all transport, resource, production faculties are just infinitely expansible in zero time,.
That's a strawman. TMP never claimed that production would instantly expand, rather than gradually ramp up.

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by glenn239 » 10 Aug 2021 14:57

KDF33 wrote:
07 Aug 2021 21:58
If Germany kept the peace with the USSR, it would be at the latter's mercy if the U.S. joined Britain as an active belligerent, a prospect that was already discernible at the time, and indeed that Hitler explicitly referred to.
Hitler expressed many reasons for attacking the USSR, but I don't recall a fear of a Soviet invasion of Germany being one of them. In terms of being vulnerable, if Germany were to attack the USSR and fail, it would be so weakened that it would be "at the mercy" of the Anglo-Americans. This is what actually occurred.
Now this might have worked out - after all, why would Stalin have wanted the Axis destroyed, just to then stand alone in an Anglo-American world? But then again, Stalin would have been wary of a negotiated peace leaving him squeezed between a German Europe and a Japanese East Asia.
I think you might be underestimating the strength of the Soviet Union going forward relative to all sides, that Stalin would somehow have to allow Japan to rule East Asia.
Even a shrewd, deliberate statesman would have been concerned with leaving his nation's destiny in the hands of the Soviets. It might have been the better option, but it would still have been a gamble. Given Hitler's pathologies, it should have been obvious which gamble he would ultimately prefer.
Why would a 'shrewed' politician get bombed flat by the Anglo-Americans and lose the war just because of some fear of future Soviet action? The B-17 and Lancaster. Those were real, not figments of imagination.
To be clear, that is not the gamble I am referring to. By the summer of 1940, Germany's actions meant that the only remaining diplomatic question was whether Stalin would in the end prefer Anglo-American victory, and consequent U.S. influence over Eurasia, or a more fragmented international order, with continued German hegemony over continental Europe.
I would doubt the Anglo-Americans to have the strength to conquer Germany should the USSR be an ally of Germany and I would doubt that Germany could hold the whip hand with the Soviet Union in the decades after 1940 should Germany be locked in conflict with the West. So, the most likely outcome seems like neither of the scenarios you outline. Rather, a stalemate in the war and Germany increasingly dependent on the Soviet Union.

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by glenn239 » 10 Aug 2021 18:49

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
08 Aug 2021 05:17
KDF already makes the main point: Soviet workers "recruited" to Germany. Let me say a bit more.
Even 20 million slave laborers were not going to allow a German economy 1/3rd the size of the United States to surpass the United States economically.
I've stipulated 7.5mil additional ATL workers "recruited" to Greater Germany; that's already 75% of the SU's total industrial(+) workforce.
Hitler will capture next to none of Stalin's core industrial work force. These will always be evacuated eastwards out of reach of the latest advance.
Oil is a domain of superior Soviet productivity but that owes to geography rather than economic fundamentals. In any case, ATL Germany would possess Soviet oil deposits.
No conceivable scheme of German exploitation of Soviet resources under occupation would exceed the profitability of trading with an allied Soviet Union. Furthermore, the act of invading set Soviet production on the side of the United States, compounding the problem.
The argument that Germany got nothing economically from Barbarossa is wrong as a matter of historical fact, is simplistic regarding why industrial output was so low, and is entirely inapplicable to ATL conditions involving a minimally competent Barbarossa.
The argument is not that Germany got nothing out of the Soviet Union. The argument is that the only chance Germany had in WW2 was with the intact Soviet economy producing on the side of the Axis. An invasion made that impossible.

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by Peter89 » 10 Aug 2021 20:01

glenn239 wrote:
10 Aug 2021 18:49

The argument is not that Germany got nothing out of the Soviet Union. The argument is that the only chance Germany had in WW2 was with the intact Soviet economy producing on the side of the Axis. An invasion made that impossible.
Furthermore, the Thomas report from 13/02/1941 made it clear: in case of an attack on the SU, the Germans can't have access to Asian resources like rubber, Manila hemp and platinum. It is a very interesting document btw, because it gives a hint what was on the table of Hitler and Göring before the attack on the SU. They knew they had to meet some military prerequisites for a successful exploitation of the SU; prerequisites that were impossible to meet.
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 11 Aug 2021 06:14

glenn239 wrote:Even 20 million slave laborers were not going to allow a German economy 1/3rd the size of the United States to surpass the United States economically.
When have I ever claimed Germany would surpass the US economy in general? I have claimed only that defending against the CBO was far cheaper than doing the CBO, and that Germany would have had the resources to stop it. Nothing about that claim requires Germany having the larger economy; it's explicitly based on the relative cheapness of defense.

Economics is important but isn't everything.
glenn239 wrote:The argument is that the only chance Germany had in WW2 was with the intact Soviet economy producing on the side of the Axis. An invasion made that impossible.
That's your broad claim but I don't think you've substantiated it.
https://medium.com/counterfactualww2
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by ljadw » 11 Aug 2021 06:42

glenn239 wrote:
10 Aug 2021 18:49
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
08 Aug 2021 05:17
KDF already makes the main point: Soviet workers "recruited" to Germany. Let me say a bit more.
Even 20 million slave laborers were not going to allow a German economy 1/3rd the size of the United States to surpass the United States economically.
I've stipulated 7.5mil additional ATL workers "recruited" to Greater Germany; that's already 75% of the SU's total industrial(+) workforce.
Hitler will capture next to none of Stalin's core industrial work force. These will always be evacuated eastwards out of reach of the latest advance.
Oil is a domain of superior Soviet productivity but that owes to geography rather than economic fundamentals. In any case, ATL Germany would possess Soviet oil deposits.
No conceivable scheme of German exploitation of Soviet resources under occupation would exceed the profitability of trading with an allied Soviet Union. Furthermore, the act of invading set Soviet production on the side of the United States, compounding the problem.
The argument that Germany got nothing economically from Barbarossa is wrong as a matter of historical fact, is simplistic regarding why industrial output was so low, and is entirely inapplicable to ATL conditions involving a minimally competent Barbarossa.
The argument is not that Germany got nothing out of the Soviet Union. The argument is that the only chance Germany had in WW2 was with the intact Soviet economy producing on the side of the Axis. An invasion made that impossible.
The maximum of oil Germany could get from a neutral USSR was 1 million tons of oil a year,which was also the maximum it could get from an occupied USSR . And, in both cases, it would take several years to reach that number .
And, if there was no war/no loner war with the USSR, Germany would not need the oil of the USSR .
Besides, the costs to get 1 million tons of oil from an occupied USSR would be prohibitive .

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by ljadw » 11 Aug 2021 06:44

KDF33 wrote:
09 Aug 2021 05:15
pugsville wrote:
09 Aug 2021 04:58
But neither does the idea you can just add millions of workers and be instantly productive, no need to ramp up, and all transport, resource, production faculties are just infinitely expansible in zero time,.
That's a strawman. TMP never claimed that production would instantly expand, rather than gradually ramp up.
Gradually means years, a lot of years .
Germany had not a lot of years .
Time was working against Germany .

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 11 Aug 2021 07:01

ljadw wrote:And, if there was no war/no loner war with the USSR, Germany would not need the oil of the USSR .
:lol: :lol: :lol:
https://medium.com/counterfactualww2
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by ljadw » 11 Aug 2021 10:55

Germany was going to Stalingrad without the oil of the Caucasus,if there was no war with the USSR,why would Germany need the oil of the Caucasus ? Germany would not and could not invade India ,thus ....
The truth is that Germany did not need the oil of the Caucasus .
German oil production and import
1940 :6,888 million tons
1941 : 8,485
1942 : 8,965
1943 : 10,497
1944 : 6,504
After June 1941, Germany did no longer receive oil from the Caucasus, but still its available amount of oil was increasing .
What Germany received from the USSR and what it could receive from the USSR was peanuts compared to its own synthetic production .
Besides, Germany was already losing when it had more oil in 1943 .

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by glenn239 » 11 Aug 2021 14:51

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
11 Aug 2021 06:14
When have I ever claimed Germany would surpass the US economy in general? I have claimed only that defending against the CBO was far cheaper than doing the CBO, and that Germany would have had the resources to stop it. Nothing about that claim requires Germany having the larger economy; it's explicitly based on the relative cheapness of defense.
You claimed that Germany could have surpassed the US in aircraft production, in part by pilfering Soviet resources including making slave labor out of the key skilled Soviet industrial work force. Which Stalin has handily allowed Hitler to capture by the millions for some reason that you never explained. Hitler will capture nothing of Stalin's key tooling, plant, and skilled work force.

Germany could not have exceeded the US in aircraft production. The historical production numbers are -

Anglo-Americans - 456,000
Axis - 207,000
Soviets - 157,261

Stolen Soviet production could not make up the difference even assuming that Hitler manages to get the historical 157,000 aircraft produced in the Soviet Union during WW2. And, you seem to be assuming that the Americans had no extra gear to ramp up their aircraft production even further. But they did. AFAIK, there was no bottleneck stating that that maximum US production was 100,000 per year. This production figure was set to beat what the Axis were capable of, not set by what the US could do producing all out.

That's your broad claim but I don't think you've substantiated it.
IT was Hitler himself that substantiated the conclusion that invading the USSR was the wrong strategy in 1945. His methodology was SS style, with a cyanide tablet and a pistol to the head. Ergo, since invading the USSR was not the correct thing to do, by process of elimination not invading the USSR was the correct decision.

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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 11 Aug 2021 15:11

glenn239 wrote:Ergo, since invading the USSR was not the correct thing to do, by process of elimination not invading the USSR was the correct decision.
That's a silly argument that only works if you assume there was only one version of Barbarossa possible. It's particularly silly to suppose so when allowing oneself to suppose Hitler could have changed something so fundamental as being anti-Soviet for the entire war. Your view is a far greater departure from OTL because it requires Hitler acknowledging the SU as stronger than Germany. My view requires only that he not assume the SU's immediate political collapse.

I could respond to your other points but it looks like we've run our course for now. I don't want to say, yet again, that labor is fungible.

I've appreciated your general commentary in this thread, which has been intelligent and fair.
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Re: Could a German invasion of Turkey succeed?

Post by glenn239 » 11 Aug 2021 17:35

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
11 Aug 2021 15:11
That's a silly argument that only works if you assume there was only one version of Barbarossa possible.
The version of Barbarossa applied seems virtually irrelevant to the ultimate outcome due to the vast scale of the theatre, the strength and endurance of the Soviet resistance, the truly lousy weather, and the short timescale in comparison to the American buildup. It should have never been done.
It's particularly silly to suppose so when allowing oneself to suppose Hitler could have changed something so fundamental as being anti-Soviet for the entire war. Your view is a far greater departure from OTL because it requires Hitler acknowledging the SU as stronger than Germany. My view requires only that he not assume the SU's immediate political collapse.
Hitler himself said in 1945 that coexistence with the USSR would have been an option. Who better to know Hitler than Hitler?
I could respond to your other points but it looks like we've run our course for now. I don't want to say, yet again, that labor is fungible.


I was curious for your explanation on how the Germans could possibly capture the skilled Soviet labor force given that this would be moved eastward as necessary to avoid the German army. Seemed to me this would be impossible. Seems to me that the only possible way Hitler could have accessed Soviet skilled labor was to make an alliance with the Soviet Union and barter for it's output.

Invading the Soviet Union is on the shortlist of the worst decisions ever made in military history. Ten Sealion failures would not have amounted to that one war-ending debacle.

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