I guess the first question would be that of could Greece neutrality or participation have been possible if Italy did not invade?
Would Yugoslavia have also been able to avoid entry into the war or was it destined to be used by either the Allies or the Axis?
In reading google groups I came across this entry in a news group which is why I am asking these questions. Of course I'm just basing this on othe guess that these figures are somewhat correct.
If these forces plus those utilized in Greece and Yugoslavia had not been commited would it have been possible to have less troops committed to Africa with better mobilization and heavy equipment ratio? Or would the fuel supply requirement have gone up too much to keep such troops supplied? Was it better to keep the British busy in Greece and Crete or to have the Centauro and other units/equipment available in Libia?Perhaps to eternally puzzle historians, the Italian military and political
leadership seemed to be fighting the war for Russia rather than North
Africa. In 1941, the Italian corps in Russia had 5,500 vehicles (partly
sucked from stockpiles earmarked for North Africa) and 16 of its 148 guns
were precious 75/46 high velocity guns, whose subtraction from the African
front was sorely felt as a contemporary document proves. In 1942, the
following material was diverted to the Russian front:
- the only group (battalion) of 210/22 heavy howitzers existing,
- 36 149/40 heavy cannons out of 51 existing,
- 24 out of the 38 German-produced 149/28 howitzers available,
- 72 modern 75/18 divisional field guns,
- one fourth of the few modern 75/46 AA guns available,
- the only German-made 75/38 antitank guns available,
- the only 36 modern 75/32 guns by then produced, also used in antitank
- in all, 588 guns all calibers,
- nearly 100 aircraft,
- 31 light tanks and 19 light AT SP guns,
- 16,700 trucks and cars (only 7,000 running in North Africa - and 6,650
more were needed to achieve an acceptable degree of motorization), 1,130
artillery tractors, 4,000 motorcycles, 224 20 mm AA guns, 423 81 mm mortars,
1,742 machineguns and a lot more stuff.
.... and many ships sailed to North Africa with half-empty holds. No wonder
most scholars in Italy state that material, if sent to NA instead of being
uselessly regaled the Soviets with, would have made some difference in the