There is an organisation studies PhD in the answer to that question. Here are some points that maybe of relevance:FMModel wrote:So how did the division status sink (as of yet I do not have a rating for the division post-Stalingrad) to the level of one of the lowest rated divisions on the Italian front? Why did the number of veterans NOT promote a better "inner quality"? Could quality of training during reconstitution and prior to deployment have had a bigger influence? Shortfalls in equipment? Status of the division from motorized to panzergrenadier - differences in tactics/deployment?
- the specialists who were withdrawn may not have been from combat elements of the division, but from staff/2nd echelon parts (so-called 'non-essential' personnel; many of the combat echelon leaders may well have been dead by the time the withdrawal started, or not been allowed to go in order not to weaken the front further).
- merging with 345. ID is essentially a reverse take-over of the remains of 29. PzGrD with 345. ID. It is probably instructive to look at the rating of 345. ID before the merger. I have myself seen a small and quite good government department being merged with a large and rubbish one. The result was that the good people in the smaller department (who were expected to impose their style on the larger department to increase its performance) all left in frustration very quickly and the combined department went to the lowest common denominator.
- Lack of esprit de corps even amongst the 29. veterans, because the returning wounded/holiday men of 29. presumably came from random parts of the division, and did not constitute a unit before being wounded or going on leave.
Just some ideas.