DIREWOLF75 wrote:RichTO90, that is indeed one major reason for my less then stellar expectations about USAs army. Not an inability to learn from experience, but the sometimes active resistance to it.
Actually, it is not "active resistance" - "passive ignorance" is a better term.
Compare with what happened early in WWI, after a lot of briefing by the Brits and French on their experiences sofar, the USA personnel pretty much discarded it as the result of those nations being wuzzies and then started off their part in the war with 19th century charges just like what the Brits and French had warned about.
Oh yes, excellent support. The French foisting the Chauchat on American infantry, the French refusal to provide technical specifications for the production of the 75mm in the US, Allied attempts to break up US divisions into component battalions and regiments for attachment as cannon fodder to French and British divisions. To say that the Americans were a little leery of Allied intent is rather a bit of an understatement.
The opposite trait is also one of the best parts of the German army.
Yes, at the tactical and tactical-operational level - at the strategic level they remained blissfully ignorant.
Hmm? Come again? I expect that is the name of a book?
Sorry, havent read it. I read about that in documentation at US DoD. Was online when i read it some years ago, probably still is.
Also read about it elsewhere but with not so extensive research behind it.
I see. So you are using a source that you have no real knowledge of - you don't even recognize the title or author - to "prove" your assumptions? I think I may have a little bit of a problem with that.
Later in the war, and especially in quickdrafted German units, the same can certainly be said. But i would still argue that it was to a lesser extent.
Actually, complaints about the inadequate tactical training in the Landser surfaced after both the Polish and French campaign. They overly relied on the LMG and other supporting arms, lacked initiative, failed to maneuver, and so on. The intense infantry training the assault units underwent for Zitadelle indicates that periodic retraining was apparently considered neccessary and of course the German replacement system - especially when the Feldersatz Abteilung associated with a division were created in 1943 - tended to facilitate that. And as you note the late war collapse - well destruction by Hitler may be a better term - of the Ersatzheer pretty much screwed the system up after fall of 1944.
1, Not enough training, or skimping on training due to more "administrative/logistical matters"... mmm not the best of ideas id say.
I think you miss the point. The "skimping" on training due to "administrative/logistical matters" wasn't something done by choice - it was a necessity. The US Army had no mobilization plan beyond hemisphere defense prior to 1941, had no mobilization infrastructure and was forced to project its mobilized power overseas often to hostile shores. Worse, the changing nature of the war and shifting priorities and requirements quickly made hash of the mobilization planning that was done. A simple example is that it was planned that one year would be required to mobilize, organize, train, and deploy a division overseas, but the actual average time for a division to get overseas was closer to two years - for many reasons. In some cases, divisions ordered for overseas movement waited in assembly areas where there was no space for even physical training for weeks while convoys were assembled, ships broke down or were sunk or deployment plans changed. The old proverb that "haste makes waste" may apply, but in this case it is not obvious that less haste could have been made or that it would have allowed "more" or "better" training.
2, Training doctrine IS doctrinal. And i can say for certain i am no fan of USAs training doctrines at the time. Or to an extent, today either for that matter.
Yep, or rather I agree if you mean that training is done according to doctrine, which is true. But in World War II the US training doctrine wasn't necessarily poor (although early on it was very schematic and based upon poor infantry tactical doctrine, but that isn't necessarily the same thing), but the execution - for many reasons - was.
That is PROBABLY the correct term.
However, the problem i referred to was the practise of doing such without information of this "attachment" being properly transferred upwards. Meaning that commanders sometimes found themselves without troops they THOUGHT they still had in area X or place Y.
Ie. not so much with a higher command assigning units under "him" but by commanders in the field "commandeering" nearby units temporarily.
Granted, that it was often necessary and sometimes very beneficial, but it could have used proper "rules" from the start to avoid the problems it caused.
Okay, at this point I must say - with all due respect - that as far as I can see you have no idea what you are talking about. I have spent much of the last 17 years working with unit journals and after action reports of US Army units in Tunisia, Italy, Northwest Europe and the Pacific, as well as reading the standard official and secondary source histories, and I can simply say that I have never run across that "practice" being common. Attachments and detachments were always specified in full operations orders. I know of a few instances of units being informally attached, perhaps the most famous being the 463rd PFA at Mourmelon on 16 December 1944, but that was almost invariably a case of mutual agreement between commanders and their subordinates.
But if you are talking about the micro-tactical level - the level of a "duel" between individual squads/sections/individuals or "engagements" between platoons and companies - then the reality is that the confusion of modern war meant that often small units became "lost" and "attached" themselves to other units that appeared to know what they were doing. But that was (and probably still is) a common phenomena of modern conventional warfare and is partly a consequence of the "empty battlefield" syndrome.
So unless you can come up with some concrete examples I have to say that I still don't know what you are talking about, nor do I belive that you do.
AFAIK, that never or nearly never happened within the German kampfgruppe system.
Uh, sorry, but no - the "kampfgruppe" system (which it wasn't BTW, it was a practice inherent in the command and control doctrine of the Heer - the Truppenfuehrung) did nothing of the sort and German commanders were constantly complaining about the effects of the doctrine, which splintered organizations. "Borrowing" under the kampfgruppe practice was endemic.
I have a problem believing in objectivity when I read posts where statements are couched as absolutes. AFAICS I am being completely objective, whereas you appear to be the one who is being dogmatic and inflexible in your belief. So
right back at you.
Heh, well lets see, German campaign against Poland, quite possibly third strongest military in the area at the time (after USSR and Germany), measured in weeks.
Objective ranking means nothing of course. I could as easily compare a campaign by the US Navy against the Chinese. The Chinese may have "quite posssibly" the second "strongest" navy at this time, but it would soon consist of smoking wrecks.
Your "comparison" is as equally meaningless.
German campaign running over France, Netherlands and Belgium, also something measured in weeks. And far from easy opposition in either case.
Yes indeed, especially if you look at the levels of intensity. Of course the command and control system of the Allies was greatly overmatched, they were only partly mobilized (especially in terms of equipment) and were doctrinally far behind the Germans. With the result being the disparity in intensity between the first and second part of the campaign, which allowed the French to better make use of their strengths.
The collective strength of USA, UK, Free French, Commonwealth, and all the minor troop contingents and contributors with superiority in most areas, amazingly massive superiority in some, then take almost a year to "go the other way" even though Germany at this time has its main focus on halting or at least slowing down USSR on its main front. In comparison, yeah, definetly snail paced.
Yes, after nearly four years of mutual weapons and tactical developments - it is a give and take.
BTW, isn't the UK part of the Commonwealth?
Hmm, in this case, perhaps context?
Yes, I agree, you do seem to have a problem seeing things in context.
Depends of course, the make of such a knife and how it is put to use.
If someone load a blunderbus with a knife, its definetly major ouchtime on the other side of any gunfight.
Actually, no, since it would be smarter to load the blunderbuss with langridge....