Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Discussions on all aspects of the First World War not covered in the other sections. Hosted by Terry Duncan.
User avatar
Terry Duncan
Forum Staff
Posts: 5601
Joined: 13 Jun 2008 22:54
Location: Kent

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Terry Duncan » 28 Sep 2016 14:33

Attrition wrote:The vexed question of whether the Allied defeat in 1940 was decisive has had another airing, leading to the Wikistapo locking the Battle of France article for a week. My count of sources is about 15:5 against decisive but it hasn't made much impression on the decisive-ists.
My guess would be no, it didnt have to be decisive, enough remained to fight a really bloody rearguard campaign similar to 1871. What was lacking was the manpower and political will. Maybe if the sacking of Gamelin had not delayed his planned counter-offensives, or if Weygand had shown any sense of urgency when taking command, there would have been no defeat anyhow. The biggest problem was hit upon by a French politician iirc who noted that the French right wing would rather see a Nazi victory than a victorious French left.

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 28 Sep 2016 15:32

Some of the others think decisive mean big and others use the Clausewitzian sense of war determining (the battles around Smolensk from August-September 1941 are the decisive ones for me). Either way there's a policy on it that isn't being followed. Considering that Britain was in the war and the BEF managed to scuttle, I can't see anything in 1940 that was war determining.

The stuff I've been reading by Doughty, Frieser, Tooze notes that had the winter been less harsh, Hitler would have attacked in late 1939 or early 1940 and the Mechelen Incident in January that was the catalyst for the evolution of Fall Gelb towards the Ardennes. (Along with wargames by Tippelskirch and Liss that led Halder et al. to decide on the Ardennes gig that took place during the postponements.) Allied intelligence was incapable of predicting that the Germans would change plan after Mechelen and like that Moltke said years earlier, a mistake in the initial deployment could hardly be remedied in the course of a campaign. Had the weather been warmer or the Mechelen fiasco not occurred, the Germans might have gone through the Belgian plain and been undone as Gamelin intended. The French had expected an advance through the Ardennes to take nine days (ample time to redeploy) but the Germans did it in fewer than three.

User avatar
Terry Duncan
Forum Staff
Posts: 5601
Joined: 13 Jun 2008 22:54
Location: Kent

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Terry Duncan » 28 Sep 2016 16:02

I would say the German attack in 1940 was decisive for France, but that really is about all. The Germans had no method or plan to deal with Britain other than to hope she would give up, as the next 18 months were to reinforce, so the the greater respect what was decisive was that it ended any German hope of victory that would be acceptable to the Nazis. The Smolensk battles were decisive for the forces involved, but in the end just proved the Germans were not capable of fighting Russia and winning due to the disparity in manpower and industrial potential. Both Smolensk and France 1940 were locally decisive, but both pointed to defeat in the future as despite the losses, the Germans really had no method to force their enemies out of the war that would be likely to happen before they ran out of Germans. I think it was Schlieffen who prophetically said 'The Germans will find that they are not strong enough for the task they have decided to undertake' and that sort of applies well to both wars, there were never enough Germans overall.

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 28 Sep 2016 18:58

I think Smolensk was decisive for WWII, because it showed that Barbarossa had failed, which meant that the Red Army couldn't lose. Gamelin's methodical battle worked in Russia and with a bit of help from the Westenders, sealed Germany's fate.

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 01 Oct 2016 22:58

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attack_on_Convoy_AN_14

Filled in missing citations and it got a B class

The Ibis
Member
Posts: 345
Joined: 27 Dec 2015 01:06
Location: The interwebs

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by The Ibis » 02 Oct 2016 16:48

Attrition wrote:I think Smolensk was decisive for WWII, because it showed that Barbarossa had failed, which meant that the Red Army couldn't lose.
IMO, when Stalin didn't crack upon hearing the news of the invasion, the Germans were going to lose.
Gamelin's methodical battle worked in Russia and with a bit of help from the Westenders, sealed Germany's fate.
Don't tell anybody. Most prefer to say that methodical battle had no place in WWII.
"The secret of managing is to keep the guys who hate you away from the guys who are undecided." - Casey Stengel

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 02 Oct 2016 18:12

Odd really, when the evidence is so plentiful....

The Ibis
Member
Posts: 345
Joined: 27 Dec 2015 01:06
Location: The interwebs

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by The Ibis » 03 Oct 2016 14:55

Attrition wrote:Odd really, when the evidence is so plentiful....
I think its because the terminology is so identified with the French and, well, 1940 didn't turn out quite the way everyone expected.
"The secret of managing is to keep the guys who hate you away from the guys who are undecided." - Casey Stengel

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 08 Oct 2016 11:07

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of ... willerkopf

Put in for review but only a C for a lack of sources

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 12 Oct 2016 01:51

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_wa ... %80%931940

Finally managed to finish an article instead of starting another....

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 15 Oct 2016 09:31

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Royal_Marine

Tidied up and added gleanings but there's not a lot to it.

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 16 Oct 2016 11:20

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Royal_Marine

It's a C class now and will have to wait for someone with better sources I'm afraid.

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 19 Oct 2016 23:46


User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 24 Oct 2016 14:51

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Channel_Dash

Tided up for a B but its a bit short on German detail.

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3675
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Poelcappelle 9 Oct 17

Post by Attrition » 28 Oct 2016 12:37


Return to “First World War”