Hello All ;
Mr. Glenn239 posted ;
I'm assuming the Italians had some drydocks that could
accommodate the Bismarck?
The French had two, one on the Atlantic, one in the Med.
If the Spanish had joined the Axis in the Summer of 1940, it would have allowed the Germans
to combined a few Luftwaffe units with the Spanish, and take Gibralter. Then, the Germans
simply allow the Spanish to keep Gibralter and the Canaries, and return for their help, the
Spanish give the Germans and Italians basing rights in both sets of ports. The Germans
run the Scharnhorst, Gneisnau, the Pocket Battleships, the CAs and a few CLs, and these,
combined with the Italian Fleet, push the British out of the Med, ( Which means NO TARANTO
in 1940 ! ) and the Mediterranean becomes ' Mare Nostrum ' for Mussolini. At the same
time, the U Boats move to the Med, and sortie out of Gibralter, well out of range of
RAF bombers and Coastal Command. Add in a few Italian Subs, and the U Boat war in
the second half of 1940 and all of 1941 becomes MUCH more effective. And, in the
winter of 1940-41, without the RN in Gibralter, or any RN in the Med, Surface raiding
from Gibralter into the Atlantic becomes a more viable option. Add in a few raiding task
forces made up of Italian fast CAs and CLs ( the 35 knot Condotieri's ) and the British would
be hard pressed to keep up.
We games this back in the late 70s and early 80s on several wargame platforms. If Spain
had joined the Axis in 1940, it would have been a game changer in 1941 for Britain, and NOT
in a good way......
Paul R. Ward