Germany invades her allies

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Peter89
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Germany invades her allies

Post by Peter89 » 11 Feb 2021 12:02

This What If is about a different German policy, in which I assume that Germany realizes that her allies would be more useful as occupied lands instead of independent belligerents whom they should supply, but whose resources they couldn't fully exploit.

In June 1940, after the inept Italian debut in the war, Hitler orders Wilhelm Keitel, the Chief of the OKW to hold talks with the Italians. In this ATL, he also orders him to draw plans to invade Italy the next spring.

After the talks with Molotov in November 1940, Hitler changes his mind and considers Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria as liabilities to his Southeastern flank. Now he needs all the raw materials as well as ethnic Germans, numbering over a million, from these countries. He orders Keitel to extend the plans to these countries, too.

The Germans did not send Rommel to Africa, and the Italian morale collapses as well as their troops in Greece and Lybia.

After the successful Operation 25 and Operation Marita, the Germans turn their attention and forces against both Italy and the minor Axis partners, eliminating them cost-efficiently all by late summer of 1941.

We have data on how much more the Germans exploited the neutrals and their allies after their eventual occupation. In this scenario, the Germans are not weaker, but stronger. The industries of the former minor Axis nations do not turn out useless scrap metal, but instead modern equipment of German design. A lot of skilled workers are transferred to Germany. Mines, refineries, wells are all come under direct control of the respective German conglomerates, and the Germans start to invest into these sectors as they did in 1944. The POL, raw material, transportation assets and other stocks of these countries are also used by the Germans. These countries were net food exporters, so the food situation becomes better overall. The Germans started to "reap" volunteers from these countries, but instituted forced conscription after their eventual occupation, where ethnic Germans could be found. The Waffen-SS could fill the ranks of a few more divisions.

Will Germans be in a better position to fight the Soviets or the British in the 1942 campaigning season?

I think yes, because if they attack Italy, or simply do not help them, it means that they forfeited their foothold in Africa, which makes the defense of the soft underbelly of Europe so much more easier, and it would help them to concentrate their efforts against the Soviets. All those planes, AFVs, troops and equipment that they sent to Africa would become available to use in the East. Also, the minor Axis armies would be missing from the OOB in the East, but it would be partially compensated by the extra Waffen-SS units as well as the industrial capacities and stocks of these countries.

I thought about it a lot why the Germans did behave so irrationally in France, why didn't they integrate the useful parts of the French economy and war industry into theirs. I found it especially interesting because the first things I came to know about German economic overtake in Hungary after Operation Margarethe was kind of positive and actually lay down the foundations for industrial developments achieved in the later communist period in the fifties and sixties, when, in many cases straightforwardly, the communist regime executed the nazi plans, especially in the aluminium industry, so important for the German aircraft production.

Another interesting aspect of these new conquests was the synthfuel production in Pétfürdő (Hungary) and Bari & Livorno (Italy). The former had the capacity of about 3650t/y in 1933, but it later increased to 100,000t/y in 1944 ( The Mediterranean Allied Air Force’s Intelligence and the Photographic Interpretation of Allied Air Raids in World War 2 by Oláh András Pál ) , while the latter was able to produce, at least in theory, some 240,000t/y ( International Petroleum Trade Vol. 6. No 9. - 197). While not decisive in capacity, these plants were already operational in 1941, and in the case of Pétfürdő, it operated on a local patent using locally mined, enriched coal.

There was also the Manganese production of Hungary, somewhere between 50-120,000t/y, which is obviously small compared to Nikopol's production of over 600,000t/y, but could be taken for zero to minimal costs.

The same goes for the bauxite and the aluminium industry of Hungary, which produced over 1,000,000t/y by 1943, and there was no indication that the leap from 540,000t/y in 1938, couldn't be brought forward in time. The Germans simply occupied the country too late for that. There was also a whole aluminium industry with its skilled workers, producing pans and stuff like that, with an aluminium output of about 20,000t/y, which is like 7-8% of the German production.

The Germans, of course, profited from trade with their minor allies, but never on the scale which they did after their occupation. So these numbers are not really "additions" to the German production, but rather an indication of the scale of the relative importance of these resources. Although this ATL seems not to be a game-changer move, I think it would definately increase the German chances, and carries some plausability based on the fact that the Germans actually did occupy their allies later.

What do you think?
“And while I am talking to you, mothers and fathers, I give you one more assurance. I have said this before, but I shall say it again, and again and again. Your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars." - FDR, October 1940

thaddeus_c
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Re: Germany invades her allies

Post by thaddeus_c » 11 Feb 2021 18:15

they certainly used Eastern Europe as a stepping stone(s) to invade the USSR without integrating their economies and securing the resources.

think they could have used different tactics for the varying countries, that for Hungary and Bulgaria puppet regimes could have been effected, after Romania and Yugoslavia, and Greece had been occupied.

some of the resources, further developed, the need for an invasion of the USSR, or at least the urgency might fade? (and NOT roaming over the USSR creates huge savings itself)

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Andy H
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Re: Germany invades her allies

Post by Andy H » 11 Feb 2021 23:29

Peter89 wrote:
11 Feb 2021 12:02
This What If is about a different German policy, in which I assume that Germany realizes that her allies would be more useful as occupied lands instead of independent belligerents whom they should supply, but whose resources they couldn't fully exploit.

In June 1940, after the inept Italian debut in the war, Hitler orders Wilhelm Keitel, the Chief of the OKW to hold talks with the Italians. In this ATL, he also orders him to draw plans to invade Italy the next spring.

After the talks with Molotov in November 1940, Hitler changes his mind and considers Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria as liabilities to his Southeastern flank. Now he needs all the raw materials as well as ethnic Germans, numbering over a million, from these countries. He orders Keitel to extend the plans to these countries, too.

The Germans did not send Rommel to Africa, and the Italian morale collapses as well as their troops in Greece and Lybia.

After the successful Operation 25 and Operation Marita, the Germans turn their attention and forces against both Italy and the minor Axis partners, eliminating them cost-efficiently all by late summer of 1941.
Hi Peter89

Leaving aside all the other aspects of your thread, what manpower do you foresee the Germans having to find to occupy, police and defend these countries?

Of the top of my head, in the quiet periods of occupation Germany had around 36 Divisions in France, 9 in Norway, around 13 in Yugoslavia, about 6 in the Low Countries, a couple in Denmark and not sure about Greece, 3 maybe. In all around 70 Divisions worth of men and equipment.

You'd have to figure around that number again for these other occupied countries.

Regards

Andy H

thaddeus_c
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Re: Germany invades her allies

Post by thaddeus_c » 12 Feb 2021 00:54

Andy H wrote:
11 Feb 2021 23:29
Peter89 wrote:
11 Feb 2021 12:02
This What If is about a different German policy, in which I assume that Germany realizes that her allies would be more useful as occupied lands instead of independent belligerents whom they should supply, but whose resources they couldn't fully exploit.
Leaving aside all the other aspects of your thread, what manpower do you foresee the Germans having to find to occupy, police and defend these countries?

Of the top of my head, in the quiet periods of occupation Germany had around 36 Divisions in France, 9 in Norway, around 13 in Yugoslavia, about 6 in the Low Countries, a couple in Denmark and not sure about Greece, 3 maybe. In all around 70 Divisions worth of men and equipment.

You'd have to figure around that number again for these other occupied countries.
they could strike a treaty with Vichy regime that turned over large parts of France to their control? (Vichy control)

vary from the OP by having Hungary and Bulgaria remain independent, not drain Hungary of manpower to invade East (if they do invade East)

Peter89
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Re: Germany invades her allies

Post by Peter89 » 12 Feb 2021 07:36

Andy H wrote:
11 Feb 2021 23:29
Peter89 wrote:
11 Feb 2021 12:02
This What If is about a different German policy, in which I assume that Germany realizes that her allies would be more useful as occupied lands instead of independent belligerents whom they should supply, but whose resources they couldn't fully exploit.

In June 1940, after the inept Italian debut in the war, Hitler orders Wilhelm Keitel, the Chief of the OKW to hold talks with the Italians. In this ATL, he also orders him to draw plans to invade Italy the next spring.

After the talks with Molotov in November 1940, Hitler changes his mind and considers Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria as liabilities to his Southeastern flank. Now he needs all the raw materials as well as ethnic Germans, numbering over a million, from these countries. He orders Keitel to extend the plans to these countries, too.

The Germans did not send Rommel to Africa, and the Italian morale collapses as well as their troops in Greece and Lybia.

After the successful Operation 25 and Operation Marita, the Germans turn their attention and forces against both Italy and the minor Axis partners, eliminating them cost-efficiently all by late summer of 1941.
Hi Peter89

Leaving aside all the other aspects of your thread, what manpower do you foresee the Germans having to find to occupy, police and defend these countries?

Of the top of my head, in the quiet periods of occupation Germany had around 36 Divisions in France, 9 in Norway, around 13 in Yugoslavia, about 6 in the Low Countries, a couple in Denmark and not sure about Greece, 3 maybe. In all around 70 Divisions worth of men and equipment.

You'd have to figure around that number again for these other occupied countries.

Regards

Andy H
It depends on the country. The occupation of Hungary was a net manpower profit for the Germans, on 01/05/1944 they had an occupational force of 46,507 but later they increased the number to some 70,000 by 01/07/1944, but of which 50,000 were ethnic Germans from Hungary. Of course, other ethnic Germans were already in other units on the Eastern front or the Balkans.

Romania also had a large ethnic German population, which could be used for this purpose as well.

Italy was occupied by the Germans OTL, I doubt that they should use more force for that in this ATL. More likely the British will reconsider to attack when German units are there in numbers.

I think the real drain would be the Balkans, which wasn't really occupied by the Germans, but the Italians (32 divisions) and Bulgarians (2 army corps). Thus the non-German garrison forces on the Balkans approached 40 divisions, but there were again, anti-communist or pro-German soldiers as well as local ethnic relations could be used to control each other, Yugoslavia being the best example.

I think about 25-30 extra occupational divisions.
“And while I am talking to you, mothers and fathers, I give you one more assurance. I have said this before, but I shall say it again, and again and again. Your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars." - FDR, October 1940

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