One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 22 Mar 2020 03:06

Continuing from another thread, currently locked for other reasons.

This will be the first in a series of posts analyzing the German/Grossraum economy after the fall of the SU, in around mid-'44.

As I've discussed in other posts, German defeat of the SU - accompanied by an armistice and resumption of trade - would mean that the Axis controls a greater portion of the world's output by the end '42, measured by 1938 GDP's at international USD prices:

Image

https://www.cnrs-scrn.org/northern_mari ... _31-58.pdf

Two things about these calculations:

(1) US GDP grew more between '38 and '42 than any other economy, so this picture is more favorable to the Axis on that account.
(2) The GDP comparisons are in international USD, a comparison that favors the Allies over the Axis. More recent scholarship gives higher figures for German GDP, for example.

At base, any purely price-based evaluation of WW2 is going to have flaws because price systems don't work perfectly during wars, especially inter-country comparisons under conditions in which the warring blocks' currencies are not widely traded.

Despite this, the price systems are sufficient to give a first-order picture of relative economic resources and the picture presented runs against the grain of conventional wisdom in showing Axis resources at about the same level as Allied.

There's a difference between resources and production, of course. OTL the Allies were much more successful at mobilizing the resources they controlled than were the Axis. There are multiple reasons for this, not all of which would be solved by German victory in the East - Japan is still going to face probably insuperable problems mobilizing the resources it controlled. In Europe, however, conquest of the Soviet Union opens up at least the possibility - and arguably the probability - that Germany will successfully mobilize European (and Middle Eastern) resources towards its war effort by '44 or so.

To show the plausibility of European mobilization, however, requires exploding a common AHF myth: that European countries refused to collaborate economically with Germany. While this view is all too common on AHF, the weight of the evidence shows it to be flatly wrong. Jonas Scherner's research, for instance, shows that occupied Europe contributed ~1/4 of Germany's equipment during the war. https://www.degruyter.com/downloadpdf/b ... 85-006.pdf The book "Does Conquest Pay?" likewise convincingly argues that Germany diverted 30-40% of Western Europe's economic activity to German war efforts. https://press.princeton.edu/books/paper ... nquest-pay

European economies suffered from a lack of inputs - mostly food and fuel - under German occupation, not from a lack of zeal to engage in economic activity that might help the Nazis.

---------------------------------

An ATL in which Germany successfully resists/beats the Wallies has to show a path towards increased mobilization of European economies following defeat of the SU. I set forth an outline of that path here: viewtopic.php?f=11&t=247189&start=135#p2256647


Below is the first installment of completing that outline, discussing German domestic labor resources following a '42 defeat of the SU:


German Labor Resources in mid-'44

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First step is to discuss the field of comparison. I will be using Germany's OTL June '44 non-agricultural, non-military labor force as the baseline for establishing the magnitude of the ATL delta. In June 1944, Germany's total (foreign and domestic) non-ag, non-military labor force was 25mil.

Labor force delta attributable to demobilization from OTL level:

We're measuring a point in June '44 when there is no large-scale land combat in the ETO. Russia is supine; the Wallies can't dream of landing in Europe yet.

As a result, Germany will have a much-lower active Wehrmacht strength. As estimated upthread, the Heer would be reduced to ~130 divisions total.
Note, however, that Germany would maintain the ability rapidly to mobilize a far-larger army within weeks of an Allied landing in Europe. [Equipment depots in Western Europe within a quick march of any landings]

OTL Wehrmacht was ~9.5mil in mid-44.

ATL Wehrmacht will be 5.5mil in mid-44: ~3.5mi Heer/WSS, ~1.5mil LW, ~.5mil KM.

LABOR FORCE DELTA: 4mil


Labor force delta attributable to fewer permanent casualties:

Casualties during '41-'42:
For the OTL baseline of German casualties up to June 1944, there's obviously some dispute about the figures. Wiki has a decent summary of different views, with cites, here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_ca ... rld_War_II

Per the Staatliches Jahrbuch:
OTL German Casualties during June 41-42 were ~730,000 KIA and ~120,000 MIA/POW.

Per Overmans:
897,000 dead.

Casualties from '43 to June '44:

Per Jarhbuch:
OTL German permanent casualties during this period were ~1,150,000: 660,000 KIA and 480,000 POW.

Per Overmans:
1.45mil dead.


Overmans study seems statistically sound, but to be safe I'm going to go with a compromise for the baseline OTL calculation and say 750k KIA in '41-42 plus 120,000 MIA/POW. For '43 through June '44, I'll go with Overman's statistic for total dead (including POW who died in captivity).

That gives us 2.3mil German dead and captured/missing up to June '44.

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As described upthread, ATL casualties in SU are lower due to (1) greater encirclements, (2) a significantly weaker SU (numerically) by '42 at the latest, (3) a significant decline in Soviet combat effectiveness during '42, converging earlier to OTL '43 levels due to earlier destruction of pre-war cohort and worse training. And of course earlier end to the war.

ATL German MIA/POW for this calculation will be set at 10% of OTL '41-'42, as the first Russian winter offensive is stopped in its tracks, as Stalingrad never happens, and as prisoner exchange upon armistice is assumed (also assumes death in Russian POW camps - thus 10% of OTL not 0%).

ATL German KIA (and died of wounds) is set at 60% of OTL '41-42 level: 450,000 KIA.

Not all German casualties were on the Eastern Front during this period but for our purposes these rough figures are close enough, once we add back in some German casualties against the Wallies prior to June '44.

So we get out ATL casualty delta (pre-Wallies infliction during '43-'44) by backing out all of '43-June44 plus the '41-'42 delta:

TOTAL SAVED: 1.858mil.

Casualties against Wallies added back: Let's say 58,000 for now (Middle East and North Africa campaigns mostly). In terms of estimating a labor force 50k here or there isn't going to ruin the picture and using 58k gives us the round figure of 1.8mil fewer German KIA/POW/MIA so far.

Then there's the issue of Germans crippled in combat and not available to the economy or armed forces. OTL WIA was ~3x killed and ~2/3 of these returned to their units eventually. Presumably some portion of the remaining 1/3 of "permanently wounded" found employment and some were crippled. What was the fraction? Given that we're talking a number about as high as killed/died, the total delta would be similar: ~1.5mil.

Rather than spend more hours on this question, I'll be conservative and say the overwhelming majority found some employment in the economy and only 200k didn't. That gives as a nice round number:

TOTAL DELTA TO GERMAN WORKFORCE FROM FEWER CASUALTIES: 2 million.

Labor force delta attributable to greater foreign workers:

OTL Germany employed a maximum of ~7mil foreign workers in mid-'44. See my post here for further discussion: viewtopic.php?f=11&t=243557&start=45#p2216965

As discussed in that post and cited works, German recruitment of foreign labor didn't become systematic until after the appointment of Fritz Sauckel as labor plenipotentiary in early '42. By the time German recruitment efforts really stepped up, her war fortunes had turned and conditions in Germany were becoming truly unbearable.

By contrast, ATL Germany in mid-'44 will have largely stopped the Allied bomber offensive, will have revived agriculture across Europe, and will have a commanding position in the war (occupying all of Europe, most of North Africa and Middle East). Foreign labor recruitment and retention will, therefore, be easier than OTL (even if still requiring unconventional tactics).

In addition to better conditions in Germany, there will be a larger pool of labor to draw from than OTL: German conquest of European Russia and integration of Iberia and Turkey into the Axis sphere will basically double the occupied population.

Finally, ATL conditions envision at least 3mil additional Soviet POW's during '41-'42.

For these reasons, Germany should have been able to recruit and retain at least twice as many foreign laborers in ATL '44 as in OTL, with ~1/3 of these being additional Soviet POW.

LABOR DELTA ATTRIBUTABLE TO MORE FOREIGN LABOR: 7 million.


Total domestic labor force delta:

Demobilization: 4mil
Fewer casualties: 2mil
More foreign labor: 7mil

Total labor force delta: +13mil

Total German domestic non-agricultural labor force in '44 was ~25mil.

Accordingly, German productive capacity in ATL mid-'44 should be at least 50% greater than OTL.

Of course this assumes several non-labor production factors (capital, raw materials) that will be discussed in other posts.

DerGiLLster
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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by DerGiLLster » 24 Mar 2020 02:34

Why don't you have them discover the Matzen Oil field in Austria in 1938? The oil field held onto 20 million barrels of crude.

https://www.onepetro.org/conference-paper/WPC-32139

That could help with adding almost a dozen mechanized/panzer divisions. Should make further advances than OTL. Should be enough to capture Leningrad in 1941.

ljadw
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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by ljadw » 24 Mar 2020 09:09

And how would you move all this oil to Leningrad ?
Besides : more oil does not mean more mobile divisions ,and the number of mobile divisions that could operate in the USSR was limited.Most Soviet mobile divisions that in June/July 1941 were going to the border,fell apart before they saw a German .

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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by DerGiLLster » 24 Mar 2020 17:30

ljadw wrote:
24 Mar 2020 09:09
Snip
Oh I don't know maybe by rail...??? :roll:

You've established yourself as a laughing stock for quite a while, but maybe TheMarcksPlan might take your place.

But keep spewing out the absurd, its what you're best at.

ljadw
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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by ljadw » 24 Mar 2020 19:38

The Germans had already a lot of problems to supply the existing divisions, thus how should they supply 12 additional mobile divisions .
About laughing stock , saying that more oil means more tanks is not very serious .The same for saying that more mobile divisions would help into capturing Leningrad, as mobile divisions are worthless in big cities : see :Warsaw, Stalingrad, etc.

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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by DerGiLLster » 24 Mar 2020 21:50

ljadw wrote:
24 Mar 2020 19:38
snip
The regular horse divisions turn into the mobile mechanized divisions, therefore making such existing divisions more powerful and flexible than what they were, alas along iwth increasing the range for supply lines of other divisions.

By the way, from a barrel of crude, being 42 gallons, you get 18.4 gallons.
ON page 63

So from 20 million barrels of crude you get 8.762 million barrels of gasoline.

1 barrel is 42 gallons. Average gallon of gas weighs from 5.8 to 6.5. I'll pick 6.2 since that is the most common number I see.

6.2 times 42 = 260.4 pounds for a single barrel of gasoline \\ 260.4 pounds times 8,762,000 barrels = 2,281,624,800 pounds
2,281,624,800 pounds divided by 2000 = 1,140,812 tons of gasoline

Aw man, the Reichsbahn capable of transporting several million tons each month, can't transport barely 1.2 million tons of gasoline in span of a few months for the rest of 1941. :roll:

Unless you can get someone else to agree with your message, you're not convincing anyone.

ljadw
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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by ljadw » 25 Mar 2020 07:42

12 additional panzer/mot divisions need more things, much more things than 1,2 million ton of gasoline .Have you calculated the number of supplies ONE mobile division would need EVERY DAY ?
12 additional mobile divisions are ( Korps and Heerestruppen included ) more than 250000 men, 1000 tanks, 5000 trucks, etc,etc
Have you calculated the road space these divisions would need ?
Have you consulted Pottgiesser's standard work about the German railways and Barbarossa : Die Reichsbahn im Ostfeldzug ?
And last, but not least : WHY would the Germans need more mobile divisions , as the decision would happen between the border and the DD line (Leningrad was not decisive ) and as they could have won with the existing forces, with stronger forces, with weaker forces .

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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Paul Lakowski » 31 Mar 2020 19:58

you are missing the point....you don't add more divisions you restructure them from mixed horse/wheel in to just wheel . No more divisions or equipment, just allocated differently.

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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by ljadw » 01 Apr 2020 09:04

12 additional mobile divisions mean less ''horse '' divisions , here : 12 less .And mobile divisions need more wheeled vehicles . And, as the mobile divisions are depending on the ''horse '' divisions to succeed ,...
A mobile division has less manpower and fire power than a ''horse '' division , but more mobility .
A ''horse '' division has less mobility than a mobile division,but more firepower and manpower ,and as boots on the ground are stronger than boots in a truck ,...
And there is the decisive problem that it will be very difficult to make more mobile divisions be able to operate east of the DD line, because of a shortage of road space and because of the problem to supply the additional trucks .
Guderian always blamed the ID from Kluge for his problems : if Guderian has more mobile divisions and Kluge more ID , the problems become only worse .
The ideal division was one with sufficient firepower,sufficient manpower and sufficient mobility , but such a division did not exist in 1941 ,and if it existed, it could not operate in the Soviet Union .

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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Paul Lakowski » 04 Apr 2020 17:56

The fact of the matter is that three wagon/leg divisions had the same number of vehicle as a mobile division, so all the divisions in mid 1941 could allow the formation of 97 mobile divisions , but that would leave another 90 plus divisions with only Wagon/Kav/bicycles. Not great but not the end of the world.

The occupation duties around Europe consumed at least 1/3 of the field forces IE ~ 300 divisions in the Wehrmacht . Askey volumes report 58% troops were sent east leaving 42% covering the rest of the European duties. 210,484 load carrying vehicles went east, while 427,757 such vehicles covered the rear areas and another 493,659 were utilized by the 'war economy'. So deployed forces east consumed at most 210,484 out of 1,132,000 load carrying vehicles....or less than 1/5th or 19%.

Askey volumes report 193,818 wagon teams were sent east leaving 92,182, in the 'army rear' and the 'war economy'. That's 68% sent east. As a matter of interest at the start of Barbarossa ; the Reich had some 2,208,000 light transports [ cars/PKW etc] of which 126,406 were sent east, that's just 9% of the total inventory.

Looking at Buchner's THE GERMAN INFANTRY HANDBOOK 1939- 1945 a fair portion of the wagons used in infantry divisions were small karts and would have comparable lift capacity to the light transports IE 500-1250 kg. There is every possibilities that most of these karts/wagons in the infantry divisions, could be exchanged with some of these PKW in the rear areas/war economy.

Yes obviously the horse/wagons should have better cross country mobility , which is why virtually all the mobility of these Infantry Battalions /Regiments & Artillery Regiments in these divisions ; were wagon/leg. If you ran infantry divisions with just wagons instead of wagon/vehicles, it would hardly effect the tactical mobility of the division, but it should slow its operational mobility. At the end of the day however- by how much?

These are LEG MOBILE DIVISIONS, so they march at the speed of the slowest elements IE the leg mobile troops. WW-I infantry divisions could march at maybe 10km/day, while WW-II infantry divisions could average 20km/day.

How much faster were western Wheel/LEG divisions at marching in battle?

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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 08 Apr 2020 21:21

Paul Lakowski wrote:WW-I infantry divisions could march at maybe 10km/day
It took Napoleon 93 days to reach Moscow after crossing the Nieman, a pace that puts the Ostheer in Moscow on September 12.

So the operational pace of the foot-mobile ID's wasn't the constraint.

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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by ljadw » 09 Apr 2020 15:15

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
08 Apr 2020 21:21
Paul Lakowski wrote:WW-I infantry divisions could march at maybe 10km/day
It took Napoleon 93 days to reach Moscow after crossing the Nieman, a pace that puts the Ostheer in Moscow on September 12.

So the operational pace of the foot-mobile ID's wasn't the constraint.
that is not correct : Napoleon's army was much smaller , and there was much less fighting .
Besides, a modern army of 3 million men advances much slower than a 19th century army of 500000 that is not motorized .

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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Aida1 » 09 Apr 2020 19:58

ljadw wrote:
01 Apr 2020 09:04
12 additional mobile divisions mean less ''horse '' divisions , here : 12 less .And mobile divisions need more wheeled vehicles . And, as the mobile divisions are depending on the ''horse '' divisions to succeed ,...
A mobile division has less manpower and fire power than a ''horse '' division , but more mobility .
A ''horse '' division has less mobility than a mobile division,but more firepower and manpower ,and as boots on the ground are stronger than boots in a truck ,...
And there is the decisive problem that it will be very difficult to make more mobile divisions be able to operate east of the DD line, because of a shortage of road space and because of the problem to supply the additional trucks .
Guderian always blamed the ID from Kluge for his problems : if Guderian has more mobile divisions and Kluge more ID , the problems become only worse .
The ideal division was one with sufficient firepower,sufficient manpower and sufficient mobility , but such a division did not exist in 1941 ,and if it existed, it could not operate in the Soviet Union .
Which is complete nonsense. More mobile divisions is what was needed to follow the Pz DIV quicker.

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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by ljadw » 09 Apr 2020 20:47

Mobile divisions have not enough manpower: the most important thing was : boots on the ground, not boots in a truck .
The more mobile divisions the slower your advance .
If the enemy was defeated and remained defeated ,the advance /the pursuit of a defeated enemy would follow automatically
If he was not defeated, mobile divisions could not advance .
It were the Soviets who made a German advance possible.
Besides : east of the DD line,there was no place for a Blitzkrieg .
The mission of the Ostheer was not to advance : to advance with as aim to advance / to occupy enemy territory is not only senseless, but also the ideal receipt for defeat .

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Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Terry Duncan » 10 Apr 2020 09:44

Maybe people can start posting supporting evidence for their views or a detailed explanation for them, as the thread will be locked if it just descends into bickering.

Terry

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