Germany Mobilizes Earlier

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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 20 Jul 2021 15:29

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
18 Jul 2021 03:22
KDF33 wrote:
17 Jul 2021 20:29
What does Germany do with the extra manpower? First, it increases the size of the Wehrmacht by 800,000 men, of which 200,000 form additional divisions to allow for a double-envelopment in the Ukraine, and 600,000 are allocated as additional replacements for Barbarossa.
I’ll propose some other notions in another post. The goal will be to reach some reflective equilibrium regarding Germany’s likely ATL resource commitments, east vs. west, had Hitler taken the SU seriously.
You're right that a Germany planning a two-summer campaign in Russia would have raised an army larger than the 85,000-man minimal delta I've proposed. A bit of background on why will probably be familiar to most readers but is good to keep in mind (as my OP neglected).

Hitler constantly worried about American intervention and took remarkable steps not to confront her (e.g. restraining Uboat commanders). Later dismissive remarks (1942 and onwards) about American military power (e.g. Americans can only build razor blades) should be read as desperate attempts to reassure himself and others. The looming American threat heavily influenced Barbarossa, as Germany and the Second World War v.4 relates:
The compulsion to swift action sprang from the steadily increasing American
potential, even though Hitler did not believe the United States would be ready
for war until 1942. p.28
on 17 December 1940
Hitler summed up his global political estimation of the situation underlying
his decision to go to war against the Soviet Union in the remark that ‘all
continental European problems’ would have to be solved in 1941 since ‘after
1942 the United States would be in a position to intervene’ p.47
Hitler's accurate perception that America could be a belligerent in '42 provided psychological motivation to believe he could finish the SU in '41. As ATL Hitler doesn't give in to wishful thinking, he's squarely confronting a "1.5-front" war against a hobbled SU and mobilizing US in '42.
Under this strategic concept, Hitler knows that '42 will require sufficient land forces both to execute a massive second offensive in the East and to handle an Anglo-American incursion in the West.

------------------------------------------------------------
As an aside, some have suggested that Hitler perceiving inability to destroy the SU in '41 would imply no attacking the SU. This suggestion can firmly rejected, IMO, as (1) war in the East was Hitler's raison d'etre from the early '20's, (2) an incipient Soviet colossus would threaten Hitler's rear and tie down valuable resources in the inevitable war against Anglo-American powers, and (3) the ATL supposes that Hitler accurately perceives Soviet strength as not to be taken lightly, but not so great as to preclude German victory.
------------------------------------------------------------

What planning implications? Hitler's accurate prediction of US threat in '42 implies that the "1.5-front" war requirements should be scheduled to come online by Spring '42, not necessarily during 1941. Nonetheless, the timeline for raising German fighting formations implies additional drafts during latter '41.

Regarding ATL Barbarossa, I'll take KDF33's suggestion of at least a 200k-man amplification of initial forces, which allows 10 mechanized divisions plus a hefty non-division slice (more assault gun battalions?). Perhaps it would be 400k initial delta - a 20div bonus - I'll discuss that option below.

For replacements, KDF33's 600k additional means >900k overall, which seems a dim German view of the coming war. Germany would probably prefer to tolerate some shortfalls in Ostheer and use manpower to establish new divisions for Spring '42. ATL replacement stash would probably be ~same as OTL. But Germany would have men in training for Spring '41, flowing to field units by Fall. OTL the Heer delayed inducting the class of 1922 (JG22), as it wanted to wait for releases from Ostheer to economy during Fall '41 (lol). As result, JG22 wasn't fully trained when needed late in Barbarossa.

In sum, I'll propose a total 600k recruitment delta to Ostheer by end '41, timed about as follows (Column G showing ATL draft differential, Column H the % from industry):

Image

This still allows a substantial production delta, easily able to equip a larger army and increase air/sea production.

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

Between 600k more draftees and 300k fewer net Ostheer casualties up to April '42, by Spring '42 the Feldheer will have 900,000 more soldiers. Let's try apportioning them as follows:
  • OTL Ostheer plus 100k (for replacements during '42 campaign to the Urals and Baku).
  • OTL Westheer plus 800k in ~40 divisions, including at least 5 more mechanized formed over the winter in France.
ATL Ostheer faces a 40%-weaker SU and has significantly better equipment status (lower losses over a no-retreat winter, greater production). It can finish things in the East by taking the Central Urals and Transcaucasus by Fall.

ATL Westheer takes Malta in Spring '42, sends ~3 mechanized divisions to Rommel. Reinforces Narvik with a few divisions.

By June/July '42, Hitler is flush with ~twice OTL's agricultural loot from occupied SU - 3mil tons of grain and other foodstuffs.

That summer, he says to Franco (summary): "Time to enter the war. There are 40 German divisions and a million tons of Russian grain on your border. Which would you prefer I order into Spain?" Spain takes the grain, begins redeploying its army from the Pyrenees to Spanish Morocco and the Canaries.

After Franco joins the war, Westheer and Ostheer begin transferring divisions to Thrace and Aegean islands to pressure Turkey into Axis or granting passage to Syria/Iraq. Likely the same result as with Franco, as Turkey knows Britain/America can't send them much help and their MidEast position will rapidly collapse with an Axis or acquiescent Turkey.

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

It's also feasible under this ATL to pressure/invade Turkey in Spring '42, rather than Spain. Maybe that's the better path but invasion would strain logistics during Ostheer's second offensive in a way that forcing Franco's hand would not.

Any way, open to other ATL concepts based on KDF33/my general concept of a larger Heer backed by greater production in 1941/42.
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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by historygeek2021 » 26 Jul 2021 03:45

Another way of quantifying this, taking into account physical limits on Germany's industrial output, would be to see how steel allocations could be changed from the ATL. Tooze gives a chart in Appendix A2 to Wages of Destruction. How do you think steel allocations would change from the OTL?
WW2 GER Steel Allocations.png
WW2 GER Steel Allocations 2.png
These figures are in 000 monthly tons.
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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 26 Jul 2021 22:40

historygeek2021 wrote:
26 Jul 2021 03:45
Another way of quantifying this, taking into account physical limits on Germany's industrial output, would be to see how steel allocations could be changed from the ATL. Tooze gives a chart in Appendix A2 to Wages of Destruction. How do you think steel allocations would change from the OTL?

WW2 GER Steel Allocations.png

WW2 GER Steel Allocations 2.png

These figures are in 000 monthly tons.
Tooze's numbers don't align with USSBS. I don't have his sources so not saying he's necessarily wrong, but I've explained elsewhere (discussion of Bassett index) that Tooze's revisionism has advocated very fishy sources over USSBS. In 2Q '40, he has Army allocated 30% more than USSBS. He also omits Greater Germany and occupied Europe's steel production until '41. That misses significant '39-40 production; Czechia and Poland (Silesia) alone are big factors.

Image

Image

Re ATL steel allocations...

1,000 Pz III/IV's would weigh ~25,000t. Spread over 12 months that's 2,000t; almost a rounding error in army allocations even if we assume 50% manufacturing wastage.

Increased ammo output after 3Q '40 would be the biggest steel draw. From 4Q '40 through 4Q '41, we could model maintaining 3Q '40's ammo peak by (1) using peak army steel allotment and (2) adding, say, 5k/mo for tanks, trucks, weapons.

Using Tooze's figures (just because we have them for after 2Q '40), gives us...

OTL/ATL/Delta

3Q 40: 305 / 320 / +15
4Q 40: 350 / 365 / +15
1Q 41: 290 / 365 / + 75
2Q 41: 270 / 365 / +95
3Q 41: 227 / 365 / +138
4Q 41: 180 / 365 / +185

Total ATL army steel delta up to end '41: 523,000t. That's ~1.6% of Grossraum's 31.82mil-t production in 1941; ~1% of production over 3Q '40 - end '41.

So probably my expanded army program could be "steel-funded" entirely through domestic belt-tightening. I've already specified increased steel output, however, (and allocated workers to it) so that's not a necessary argument.

Additional steel output can go to KM and LW. Doubling KM's 2nd-half '40 allotment of 295,000t requires ~1% of Grossraum steel output; doubling LW's requires closer to 2%.

Grossraum's peak quarterly output of 9,192k tons (1Q '44) exceeded 3Q '41's 8,010k tons by only ~15% [USSBS Europe report, App. table 72]; armaments output tripled over that period.

I have trouble seeing that steel would have been a major constraint on German armaments production for any early-war ATL production delta south of doubling OTL armaments output. ...IF Germany had mobilized its available resources earlier.
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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by historygeek2021 » 27 Jul 2021 04:42

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
26 Jul 2021 22:40

Tooze's numbers don't align with USSBS. I don't have his sources so not saying he's necessarily wrong, but I've explained elsewhere (discussion of Bassett index) that Tooze's revisionism has advocated very fishy sources over USSBS. In 2Q '40, he has Army allocated 30% more than USSBS. He also omits Greater Germany and occupied Europe's steel production until '41. That misses significant '39-40 production; Czechia and Poland (Silesia) alone are big factors.
I ran the numbers and Tooze's numbers align almost perfectly with USSBS Appendix Table 71, which takes into account pre-war steel production from Austria and the Sudetenland in 1939 and 1940.

1,000 Pz III/IV's would weigh ~25,000t. Spread over 12 months that's 2,000t; almost a rounding error in army allocations even if we assume 50% manufacturing wastage.
Is it really that simple though? Does 150% of the weight of a tank really reflect the total steel required to manufacture, transport and maintain a tank? Genuinely curious because I don't know. I suspect if it were as easy as you say, tank production in the OTL would have been a lot higher.

Doubling KM's 2nd-half '40 allotment of 295,000t requires ~1% of Grossraum steel output; doubling LW's requires closer to 2%.
I'm not seeing this. If you compare steel production with what was left after allocations to the military, exports and the 4-year program, the amount of steel left for non-essential purposes during the war was less than 25% of total steel production:
WW2 Steel Production and Use.png
If you go by USSBS Appendix Table 69, doubling steel consumption by the Kriegsmarine and Luftwaffe in the second quarter of 1940 would eat up 37.24% of the steel available for the civilian sector.

Note also that in the period after the fall of France, there were significant transportation issues that prevented Germany from getting access to the manufacturing output of the conquered territories. So simply because the Grossraum steel production increased at the start of your increased mobilization period doesn't mean it would translate into immediate availability for the needs of the Wehrmacht.

Likewise, expanding the rail capacity of Germany, as required by your ATL, would eat up significant quantities of steel.
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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 27 Jul 2021 04:57

historygeek2021 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 04:42

Is it really that simple though? Does 150% of the weight of a tank really reflect the total steel required to manufacture, transport and maintain a tank? Genuinely curious because I don't know. I suspect if it were as easy as you say, tank production in the OTL would have been a lot higher.
I can't say with certainty the amount required per tank either, summing wastage, maintenance, etc. What I can say is that Grossraum steel production increased by 5.1% between 3Q '40 and 2Q '44 [USSBS Europe app. table 72], while between July '40 and July '44 German panzer production increased 1,500% by weight [app. table 105]. Who are we to believe, Tooze's atmospheric thesis of German maximal effort or our lying eyes?

I suspect that panzer production faced raw materials difficulties in the kinds of steel production rather than total steel output, though that's just a hunch. Armor-quality steel is much more expensive. But then addressing that additional expense is largely a matter of labor to conduct the expensive treatments required. It requires no more iron ore than normal structural steel or pig iron. Alloying minerals may be bottlenecks in the long run but, re a pre-Barbarossa buildup, stocks should be sufficient. And of course a more-mobilized Germany can trade for more of these resources.
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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 27 Jul 2021 05:24

historygeek2021 wrote:If you compare steel production with what was left after allocations to the military, exports and the 4-year program, the amount of steel left for non-essential purposes during the war was less than 25% of total steel production:
Your table is missing ~3.5mil tons of steel from occupied Europe annually for '41 and '42.
historygeek2021 wrote: doubling steel consumption by the Kriegsmarine and Luftwaffe in the second quarter of 1940 would eat up 37.24% of the steel available for the civilian sector.
Combining LW+KM 4Q steel "requirements" (438k tons), I get 1,752k tons to double OTL "requirements" (which were certainly greater than OTL consumption but can't say by how much). Divide that by your "extra" figure for '41 (6,837k tonnes) plus Grossraum's 3,586k tons, I get 16.8% of "extra."

Note that I project somewhat less than doubling OTL production in '41.
historygeek2021 wrote: in the period after the fall of France, there were significant transportation issues that prevented Germany from getting access to the manufacturing output of the conquered territories.
Sure but up to August/September '40 I'm only increasing panzer, MV, and weapons production - all of which are low-steel content relative to value.

The small initial steel delta can be covered by using more of domestic installed capacity (i.e. feeding it sufficient labor and other inputs dependent on labor): "Old Germany" produced 350k tons less steel in 3Q '40 than in 3Q '39 [app. table 70] - at least 1.4mil tons annual capacity unused. Again it's mobilization of labor stunting domestic German output. The ATL revives output via foreign labor substitution, just as Germany did later.
historygeek2021 wrote:Likewise, expanding the rail capacity of Germany, as required by your ATL, would eat up significant quantities of steel.
Expansion of the fixed infrastructure seems unnecessary. Given that Old Germany produced 17.3% more steel in 1Q '39 than 3Q '40 [app. table 70], the physical rail net was sufficient to support greater ore/coal traffic in the Ruhr etc. DRB's total t-km didn't decrease between those dates but apparently shifted from ores/coal to troops and their material.

We probably need more rolling stock. Again, Germany took gobs of it from France/Belgium after/during the Winter Crisis.
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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by historygeek2021 » 27 Jul 2021 06:03

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
27 Jul 2021 05:24

Your table is missing ~3.5mil tons of steel from occupied Europe annually for '41 and '42.
Based on what? My table is reproducing total steel production in occupied Europe from both USSBS and Tooze, whose numbers are virtually identical and include all of occupied Europe:
WW2 GER Steel Production 1938 1942.png
Combining LW+KM 4Q steel "requirements" (438k tons), I get 1,752k tons to double OTL "requirements" (which were certainly greater than OTL consumption but can't say by how much). Divide that by your "extra" figure for '41 (6,837k tonnes) plus Grossraum's 3,586k tons, I get 16.8% of "extra."
The production figures I gave are inclusive of the Grossraum. There is no 3,586k extra.

438,000 tons was the monthly requirement, not quarterly. On an annual basis, that was 5,256,000 tons of steel. Doubling it would eat through 76% of the "excess" available.
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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 27 Jul 2021 07:42

historygeek2021 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 06:03
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
27 Jul 2021 05:24

Your table is missing ~3.5mil tons of steel from occupied Europe annually for '41 and '42.
Based on what?
Image

Your table is for Greater Germany, which includes some areas we'd call "Occupied Europe" (Warthegau, Alsace-Lorraine, Upper Silesia) but not all of them.
historygeek2021 wrote:438,000 tons was the monthly requirement, not quarterly.
Ach, ja. My mistake.
historygeek2021 wrote:On an annual basis, that was 5,256,000 tons of steel. Doubling it [LW and KM "requirements"] would eat through 76% of the "excess" available.
Correcting my mistake (i.e. multiplying x3) and your mistake (adding in Grossraum not just Greater Germany), doubling LW and KM requires 5,256k of 10,424k tons "extra" - 50%. That is probably infeasible. A few points:
  • Again, I'm not suggesting doubling LW/KM production in my OP or this ATL as modified since OP. To the extent I suggested such doubling was easy, it was half-cocked throwaway and is retracted. Note that LW allocation presumably includes flak; doubling aircraft production only under LW (as my OP notionally suggests) would have far lower steel implications (greater aluminum).
  • I projected from 4Q '40 "requirements", which always exceeded consumption. As consumption is the relevant parameter for ATL:OTL comparison, the projection overestimates things... if '41's consumption didn't exceed '40's "requirements". I assume that to be the case, given the general flatlining of German production in '41. USSBS doesn't give data past 2Q '40 for consumption and past 4Q '41 for allotments/requirements. Per Tooze, '41's average quarterly allocation to Wehrmacht was 3% higher than 4Q '40's; the allocation-consumption difference almost certainly exceeded 3%.
  • My OP specifies increased German steel output from mid-'40. As shown in my last post, Germany's domestic steel capacity was under-utilized in mid-'40.
At a very broad level, you're resistant because if this is all so easy why didn't Germany do it? The answer is basically that Germans were racist/xenophobic and thought they'd already won. Why import millions more dirty foreigners?
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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by historygeek2021 » 27 Jul 2021 16:10

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
27 Jul 2021 05:24


The small initial steel delta can be covered by using more of domestic installed capacity (i.e. feeding it sufficient labor and other inputs dependent on labor): "Old Germany" produced 350k tons less steel in 3Q '40 than in 3Q '39 [app. table 70] - at least 1.4mil tons annual capacity unused. Again it's mobilization of labor stunting domestic German output. The ATL revives output via foreign labor substitution, just as Germany did later.
Table 70 is steel products, not steel. And it's more complicated than just "add more labor", as you acknowledge in the same post:

Expansion of the fixed infrastructure seems unnecessary. Given that Old Germany produced 17.3% more steel in 1Q '39 than 3Q '40 [app. table 70], the physical rail net was sufficient to support greater ore/coal traffic in the Ruhr etc. DRB's total t-km didn't decrease between those dates but apparently shifted from ores/coal to troops and their material.

We probably need more rolling stock. Again, Germany took gobs of it from France/Belgium after/during the Winter Crisis.
German steel production was heavily dependent on imports of iron ore from Sweden, France and the low countries, all of which fell precipitously in 1940:
WW2 GER Iron Ore Imports.png
A considerable portion (not sure how to quantify) of the steel produced in the occupied countries would have been necessary for the maintenance and upkeep of the industry and infrastructure in those countries (plus the construction of bases, u-boat pens, fortifications, etc.). From Table 72, Belgium looks like it would have been the only occupied country in a position to supply a meaningful amount of steel to Germany, and that only in the range of ~1 million tons annually.

Maximizing steel production was always one of the highest priorities for the Nazi regime. Hitler was always adamant about driving it higher. Even after Germany "got serious" in the OTL, it was only able to raise total steel production across Germany and the occupied countries by 8.8% (31,819 in 1941 to 34,644 in 1943 per USSBS Table 72).

Appendix 28 offers another example of how little steel was available in the non-military economy for purging:
WW2 Steel Machine Tool Allocations.png
The "other users" amount to less than 7% of steel allocations, and many of these were likely necessary for the long-term functioning of Germany's economy.
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
27 Jul 2021 07:42

At a very broad level, you're resistant because if this is all so easy why didn't Germany do it?
My main point of resistance isn't that Germany couldn't have increased army production between the fall of France and the start of Barbarossa (I agree that it could have, although I still don't see the campaign being as successful as you propose, for the reasons I gave in that thread). The concerns I'm raising in this thread are with your projections for the overall increase in German military production that you believe were possible. Based on these discussions, it seems clear that Germany could have only marginally increased military output over the OTL by more strictly rationing steel allocations for non-military uses.
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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by KDF33 » 27 Jul 2021 18:49

historygeek2021 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 16:10
Based on these discussions, it seems clear that Germany could have only marginally increased military output over the OTL by more strictly rationing steel allocations for non-military uses.
I don't see that at all.

German steel allocations, military (3 services + 4-year plan) / total:

1940: 11,508,000 / 23,424,000 metric tons = 49.1%
1941: 12,570,000 / 28,383,000 metric tons = 44.3%
1942: 14,043,000 / 30,747,000 metric tons = 45.7%
1943: 16,368,000 / 31,065,000 metric tons = 52.7%
1944: 15,378,000 / 28,632,000 metric tons = 53.7%

Source: Die Deutsche Industrie im Kriege 1939-45, with data reproduced by Art here

Note that armaments consumed only a fraction of overall military steel allocations.

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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by KDF33 » 27 Jul 2021 18:50

historygeek2021 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 16:10
Appendix 28 offers another example of how little steel was available in the non-military economy for purging:
This table shows steel allocations for machine tool production.

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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by historygeek2021 » 27 Jul 2021 18:58

KDF33 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 18:49
historygeek2021 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 16:10
Based on these discussions, it seems clear that Germany could have only marginally increased military output over the OTL by more strictly rationing steel allocations for non-military uses.
I don't see that at all.

German steel allocations, military (3 services + 4-year plan) / total:

1940: 11,508,000 / 23,424,000 metric tons = 49.1%
1941: 12,570,000 / 28,383,000 metric tons = 44.3%
1942: 14,043,000 / 30,747,000 metric tons = 45.7%
1943: 16,368,000 / 31,065,000 metric tons = 52.7%
1944: 15,378,000 / 28,632,000 metric tons = 53.7%

Source: Die Deutsche Industrie im Kriege 1939-45, with data reproduced by Art here

Note that armaments consumed only a fraction of overall military steel allocations.
Now add in exports (necessary to obtain raw materials), railroads, basic maintenance of infrastructure, plant and equipment, and necessary civilian production - what is left that can be added to the military?

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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by historygeek2021 » 27 Jul 2021 19:00

KDF33 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 18:50
historygeek2021 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 16:10
Appendix 28 offers another example of how little steel was available in the non-military economy for purging:
This table shows steel allocations for machine tool production.
Yes, I know that. I can read. No need for these subtle insults.

The table shows that steel for machine tool production was devoted overwhelmingly to the military and necessary economic activities (blast furnaces, railroads, etc.) even before Germany switched to "total war" in 1943. There was very little that could be added to increase machine tools for the military. And without more machine tools for the military, military production can't increase, except on a temporary basis by adding more worker shifts, which will wear out machine tools faster, which will require more replacement machine tools ...
Last edited by historygeek2021 on 27 Jul 2021 19:04, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by KDF33 » 27 Jul 2021 19:02

historygeek2021 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 18:58
Now add in exports (necessary to obtain raw materials), railroads, basic maintenance of infrastructure, plant and equipment, and necessary civilian production - what is left that can be added to the military?
It is obvious that there was elasticity. Let's do the same exercise, reversed:

Non-military steel allocations:

1940: 11,916,000
1941: 15,813,000
1942: 16,704,000
1943: 14,697,000
1944: 13,254,000

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Re: Germany Mobilizes Earlier

Post by historygeek2021 » 27 Jul 2021 19:05

KDF33 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 19:02
historygeek2021 wrote:
27 Jul 2021 18:58
Now add in exports (necessary to obtain raw materials), railroads, basic maintenance of infrastructure, plant and equipment, and necessary civilian production - what is left that can be added to the military?
It is obvious that there was elasticity. Let's do the same exercise, reversed:

Non-military steel allocations:

1940: 11,916,000
1941: 15,813,000
1942: 16,704,000
1943: 14,697,000
1944: 13,254,000
This doesn't answer my question.

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