Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

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Aida1
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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Aida1 » 26 Feb 2020 09:57

Cult Icon wrote:
26 Feb 2020 07:41
Anderson, this is a "What if" thread, not a history thread. It's meant to be speculative- the German OKW never did such a thing as to examine the problems with allied fire supremacy and orchestrate changes to doctrine. My OP shows that I aimed to go after tactical and operational issues & hear what interested persons had to say on the military dilemma.

You went after a lot of tangents on differences we have on various issues (the 106th Infantry,, etc. and such as this recent on, POW data patterns)- not really necessary and valid to the OP, which you never bothered to address. You also are attributing views that I never held or stated by pulling out comments and expanding on "What you think I mean" and then going forward with "this is why you are wrong". That's strawman stuff and off topic. I accept differences of opinion and won't correct every nonfactual statement I see. There are so many in this thread now from posters other than me. :lol: You don't have to pull the trigger on everything and challenge all views that you don't agree with. Maybe even your exalted self is ignorant of some things. I don't get the sense that you are much interested in the Red Army and the East, for example.

You don't have to post if you don't find the premise valid and that's simple. I think it's a valid one- that the Germans failed to figure out how to break-through due to Soviet/allied developments and could have done better, after studying so many problems with German attacks in 43-45. Do you believe that they did the best they could have?
This is your personal opinion which only exhibits your lack of knowledge on the subject of German tactical development.

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Aida1 » 26 Feb 2020 09:59

Cult Icon wrote:
26 Feb 2020 08:15
daveshoup2MD wrote:
26 Feb 2020 08:11
What ifs without any historical basis are fantasy.
All what ifs are fantasy..? Are there new rules that only Anderson follows?
Yours are not even close to reality. Pure fiction.

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Aida1 » 26 Feb 2020 10:02

Cult Icon wrote:
26 Feb 2020 09:28
Those are just pieces of equipment- not significant at all. the dilemma would have had to be approached at the operational level- hence the OP.

What I did not mention yet was their FKL units.
You come up with nothing new. So only proves lack of knowledge.

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Kingfish » 26 Feb 2020 10:49

daveshoup2MD wrote:
26 Feb 2020 09:25
There's also the minor issue that despite all those "mousetraps," when push came to shove and the western Allies deployed and sustained three army groups and eight field armies ashore in northwestern Europe, it took them all of 11 months to get from Normandy to the Oder, because of that fire supremacy, most of which was sustained - ultimately - from 3,000 miles across the North Atlantic.
[minor nit=pick] Elbe, not the Oder. [/minor nit-pick]
The gods do not deduct from a man's allotted span the hours spent in fishing.
~Babylonian Proverb

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Aida1 » 26 Feb 2020 13:52

As use of dummies was mentioned here,I translate a document of the OKH concerning the use of these which shows the german army did think of this.

"Adjudant of the chief of the general staff HQ 10.02.1944
576/44 g.Kdos

Concerns : use of Panzer dummies to deceive the enemy

1)Objective;
A.Mislead the enemy ground and air reconnaissance and through this influence the enemy command decisions
B. Distract the enemy artillery fire and air attacks from the real Panzer deployments and other targets

2. Types of dummies
a) static : boxes from plywood, wattles, thick cardboard etc.. with the dimensions of real tanks but only turret and bow with the right shape, the rest of the frame hidden by camouflage. Dummies partly equipped with rollers to displace them
b) mobile use: wooden frames strengthened with meshwork in the natural height of a tank with painted canvas coating . The dummies are made mobile on streets and terrain by driving a truck in them. After driving out of truck and camouflage they can be use fixedly.
3). To make certain the deception one must make sure of the tactical correct construction of the dummies, production of tank traces and noise.
4). Simulating tank transport on the railroads to deceive enemy air reconnaissance : trains fitted with camouflaged tank dummies
5) the use of tank dummies on a large scale is an important means to deceive the enemy and is to be applied as much as possible in all theatres of war
6) A thorough report from the east follows
7) Gen Insp der Pz Tr is requested to issue short instructions to the Army Groups concerning the experiences in the building of dummies.
signed
I.A. Frhr v. Buttlar

OKW/WFST/Op (H) Nr 001533/44 g.Kdos "

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Cult Icon » 26 Feb 2020 14:56

Richard Anderson wrote:
26 Feb 2020 08:09

Given that they only degraded tactically by perhaps 30% between roughly 42 and 44 despite horrific levels of attrition, I think the Germans did pretty well against long odds. However, basic shortages of manpower and fuel worked against them.
Is that what the data says? 1942 models vs 1944 models of units?
I go back to the RKKA- the army of 1944/1945 was organized dramatically differently from 1941,42 and illustrates immense institutional change and upgrades in capabilities that were far greater than 30%.

Going back to that train of thought earlier, the heavy fighting of the summer of 43'- which opened up a new phase in the war- which initiated a strain on their military system that they never truly recovered from, leading to significant downgrades to their organization and training. The heightened losses, and the inability to reinforce units in the field adequately show a gradual shrinkage among their formations. Critical attacks of varying scales had to rely more on more on collections of weakened units and the order of battle in these months show an army with large portion of weak divisions that had to hold the front for an excessively long period of time with significant reinforcements to armies based mainly on the movement new formations. This is contrast to the US replacement system, which maintained its much fewer units at strength, which maintained a more continuous flow of combat morale and combat value even though divisions absorbed up to 30,000 or so battle and non-battle casualties.

A German offensive operation or major counterattack- typical of the later periods- with a lot of worn units with weak strengths naturally ran into myriad and preventable problems when conducting attacks. There is also the trend of even strong divisions getting their inf component depleted in just a few days of heavy action, which is common turning point in operations. Lack of sustainability is a major issue in the late war.

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Aida1 » 26 Feb 2020 15:24

Back to dummies
" Telex

to Army group south
Mitte
North

Use of tank dummies by the russians has led at places to deceive the own comand and the use of the air force against dummy targets.The experiences made in the application of own tank dummies in the area of Army group south also brought proof that tank dummies can be an important weapon in deceiving the enemy command.
Besides the fixed use, the mobile use( wooden frame on trucks, feigning of tank transports by rail) has proved itself.

OKH Gen St d H Op Abt
Nr 1718/44 gKdos
19.2.1944
Signed Heusinger"

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Aida1 » 26 Feb 2020 16:19

More on the use of dummies by the german army

" General Inspekteur der Panzertruppen OKH 2.4.1944
Abteilung Ausbildung
Bb Nr 910/44 gKdos

Concerns: tank dummies

In annexe the draft building instructions for tank dummies are transmitted.
After it was decided that a mass production of tank dummies in Germany and the delivering to the front is not possible because of production and transport reasons, the instructions in annexe are intended to produce the dummies by the troop. Dependent on time, material and labour , 8 different models can be produced from the most primitive to the most high quality production method. Special importance was given to simplicity of material and production method. The ready models can be viewed in the Panzer troop school Bergen.
The use of tank dummies gave the enemy success on multiple occasions. With appropriate use, deception on a large scale can be attained. A short explanatory note on the possibilities for use of tank dummies is annexed.
Independent from the building of tank dummies by the troop, the possibilities for use of tank dummies are already now tested by Army group center with allocated dummies. The first experiences of Army Group center will be forwarded to the other Army groups after they arrive.
The sent building instructions are the first substraction.
The definite building instructions are being printed and can be shortly ordered in large numbers from the Generalinspektor der Panzertruppen.
The Army Groups etc.. are asked to continuously send their experiences in building and use of tank dummies to the Generalinspector der Panzertruppen."

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Aida1 » 26 Feb 2020 17:57

Use of Tank dummies by the german army continued

"Annexe 1 Instruction sheet for the use of tank dummies

The deployment of tank dummies is an excellent means to deceive the enemy on the own strength and intentions and to induce the enemy to false measures.
The use of tank dummies can be used as well on a large scale to simulate operational measures to deceive enemy enemy air reconnaissance as on a small-scale to make easier tactical objectives.
The condition for each success is a use which corresponds to reality. The camouflage against ground and air reconnaissance must be such that the sham display is found by the enemy but is not recognised as such.
The more thorough the setting up and preparation, the longer the deceptionsuccess will last.

The deception objective can be:

1) feigning own tank concentrations to fix enemy forces and prevent a pulling out of enemy panzer units( in connection with fixing attacks)
2) deceive the enemy on the loosening up of the own tank concentrations
3) feign operational objectives by driving trains with tank dummies
4) in the defense use of dummies to feign counter attacks
5) pull away enemy bombers, fighter bombers and artillery fire from the real targets to the dummies and therefore relieving the own troops.
6) deceiving enemy ground and air reconnaissance in all situations

According to the situation, dummies can be used fixed or mobile. The use of dummies together with a few real tanks can be appropriate.

To achieve a realistic appearance, the following is to be made sure off:

1) the driving of real tank traces to the place for setting up the dummies makes it difficult for the air reconnaissance to differentiate between dummies and real tanks. The abscence of these traces indicates that they are dummies.
Pay special attention to the laying of the driving traces. Either let a real tracked vehicle roll the driving traces(wipe out traces of driving back )or excavate them oneself. Distance from track inner edge to track inner edge with a pz V 1,9 m , track width 66 cm, with pz IV 2,00 m respectively 38 cm. All traces have to branch off from a march up road . Traces have to be excavated paralell. Turns have to be particularly emphasised (angular therefore a lot of of earth). At a driving into a woods, shrubbery or cornfields, cut off trees or fold over corn. Lay trees and corn in direction of driving.
2) it is not appropriate to set up the dummies in the open as this is unnatural.
The installation must be recognisable but must not deviate from the usual positioning of tanks.
Manner of installation in defense 2-5 km behind the frontline, if possible in lightly wooded terrain , in groups of shrubbery, in a cornfield or in villages. The positioning area must be passable and reachable for tanks and wheeled vehicles, therefore no marsh or river sector with no bridge behind. Set up all the dummies facing to the enemy. Distance and intervals 25- 50m."

to be continued

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Aida1 » 26 Feb 2020 18:47

Annexe 1 Instruction sheet for the use of tank dummies continued
" 3) Display reporting traffic by motor cyclists. Put up people in black uniforms, respectively feign recce done by them.
4) The lack of flak protection at collections of dummies can indicate their deception intention to the enemy. Display the positioning so that the set up flak can be seen as the securing of a deployment.
5) Camouflage material has to be taken from the overgrowth on the place of positioning . Leave barrel and chain links free so that the dummies can be recognised as tanks.Paint the chain links white(bare chafed chain supports). In woods set up dummies in paths facing the march up road.
6) To display own armored advances, set up the dummies on a backslope or on the edge of towns or woods or at cornfields( gaps 30- 50 m). Displaying of fire by individual guns of the same caliber(7,5 cm)is useful as nonfiring dummies will be quickly recognised.
7) Position barrels with used oil and ignite when under enemy fire to display hits. Change position by night with motor noises, during the day using smoke. Do not let dummies fall in enemy hands.
8) The acoustic display of armor noises with loudspeakers enhances the impression of authenticity by the enemy. Suitable recordings which can be broadcast by the propaganda companies were developed by Wa A in cooperation with the Generalinspecteur. Running time for each disc 4 minutes. "

Followed by other annexes with instructions for building the dummies and sketches.

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Richard Anderson » 26 Feb 2020 19:02

Cult Icon wrote:
26 Feb 2020 09:28
Those are just pieces of equipment- not significant at all. the dilemma would have had to be approached at the operational level- hence the OP.

What I did not mention yet was their FKL units.
So that the Germans did rotate invalid personnel to provide experience in training and did try to find technological solutions to the problem, including tactical changes - and a lot of dispute on the "proper" way to initiate offensive operations, that means they did not, because they did not approach it at the operational level? Yet again, that would astonish Manteuffel, Dietrich, and Brandenburger, not to mention Heinrici and Model. Trying to innovate operational methods to counteract Allied firepower and manpower superiority was the hallmark of German operational thinking 1943-1944. That it did not work and may not have worked no matter what they attempted is a different issue.
"Is all this pretentious pseudo intellectual citing of sources REALLY necessary? It gets in the way of a good, spirited debate, destroys the cadence." POD, 6 October 2018

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Richard Anderson » 26 Feb 2020 19:37

Cult Icon wrote:
26 Feb 2020 14:56
Is that what the data says? 1942 models vs 1944 models of units?
More or less.
I go back to the RKKA- the army of 1944/1945 was organized dramatically differently from 1941,42 and illustrates immense institutional change and upgrades in capabilities that were far greater than 30%.
They did? They rejiggered organizations to make them more compatible to the level of skill of the officers they were training up. Is that what you mean? Yes, they may well have increased their capabilities 1941-1945 by much greater than 30%, but that is not what I was refering to.
Going back to that train of thought earlier, the heavy fighting of the summer of 43'- which opened up a new phase in the war- which initiated a strain on their military system that they never truly recovered from, leading to significant downgrades to their organization and training. The heightened losses, and the inability to reinforce units in the field adequately show a gradual shrinkage among their formations. Critical attacks of varying scales had to rely more on more on collections of weakened units and the order of battle in these months show an army with large portion of weak divisions that had to hold the front for an excessively long period of time with significant reinforcements to armies based mainly on the movement new formations. This is contrast to the US replacement system, which maintained its much fewer units at strength, which maintained a more continuous flow of combat morale and combat value even though divisions absorbed up to 30,000 or so battle and non-battle casualties.
I'm sorry, but the problem is you are basing your premise on some assumed facts that are not in evidence. This is not a derailing of the thread, it is simply that your conclusions are based on faulty premises.

I have to tend to some personal business right now, but I will be back to demonstrate were the problems in this construct are. Hopefully that will allow you to tighten up your conclusions by improving some of the data incorporated in your train of thought.
"Is all this pretentious pseudo intellectual citing of sources REALLY necessary? It gets in the way of a good, spirited debate, destroys the cadence." POD, 6 October 2018

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Cult Icon » 26 Feb 2020 21:25

Richard Anderson wrote:
26 Feb 2020 19:02
So that the Germans did rotate invalid personnel to provide experience in training and did try to find technological solutions to the problem, including tactical changes - and a lot of dispute on the "proper" way to initiate offensive operations, that means they did not, because they did not approach it at the operational level? Yet again, that would astonish Manteuffel, Dietrich, and Brandenburger, not to mention Heinrici and Model. Trying to innovate operational methods to counteract Allied firepower and manpower superiority was the hallmark of German operational thinking 1943-1944. That it did not work and may not have worked no matter what they attempted is a different issue.
What you mentioned so far appears to be tactical and in equipment basis- incremental little steps rather than a major restructuring.

Where is this from? Are you referring to Brandenburger/Manteuffuel/Dietrich/Kraemer's WACHT AM RHEIN interviews?

That these Generals had their own individual style of command and ideas in the defense with their armies is different from an Wehrmacht wide solution? Leaders at the divisional level and below improvised countermeasures. What exactly are you talking about?

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Aida1 » 26 Feb 2020 21:42

Cult Icon wrote:
26 Feb 2020 21:25
Richard Anderson wrote:
26 Feb 2020 19:02
So that the Germans did rotate invalid personnel to provide experience in training and did try to find technological solutions to the problem, including tactical changes - and a lot of dispute on the "proper" way to initiate offensive operations, that means they did not, because they did not approach it at the operational level? Yet again, that would astonish Manteuffel, Dietrich, and Brandenburger, not to mention Heinrici and Model. Trying to innovate operational methods to counteract Allied firepower and manpower superiority was the hallmark of German operational thinking 1943-1944. That it did not work and may not have worked no matter what they attempted is a different issue.
What you mentioned so far appears to be tactical and in equipment basis- incremental little steps rather than a major restructuring.

Where is this from? Are you referring to Brandenburger/Manteuffuel/Dietrich/Kraemer's WACHT AM RHEIN interviews?

That these Generals had their own individual style of command and ideas in the defense with their armies is different from an Wehrmacht wide solution? Leaders at the divisional level and below improvised countermeasures. What exactly are you talking about?
You must be kidding if you think there was no thinking going on on the level of the army command on all aspects of tactics and operations and no instructions were given. There are more than enough original documents on that which you can read if you make the effort.
And besides that obviously commanders would take their own initiatives in their own command. Model for example was very active in writing instructions based on his front visits.
You seem to think German officers were mentally lazy. :roll: It is higly unlikely a civilian outsider with only book knowledge like you would come up with something they did not think about. :roll:

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Re: Tactical innovation, adapting to Allied suppressive firepower

Post by Aida1 » 26 Feb 2020 21:52

Cult Icon wrote:
20 Feb 2020 01:56
Image

-every division issued a supply of these decoys. Special decoys could be dragged behind vehicles. Other, heavier and more sturdy decoys are made out of wood frames.

-drivers trained in simulating tank movement and placements. In attacks, decoys are deposited, semi-concealed and far enough to fool forward observers.

-in attacks the decoys outnumber the real tanks and AG by multiples, and decoys are brought right up to the front.
Nothing original in this as the germans did think of that as i showed. But producing them in high numbers and transporting them was a factual impossibility.

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