Stalingrad

Discussions on High Command, strategy and the Armed Forces (Wehrmacht) in general.
ljadw
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by ljadw » 07 Apr 2022 13:10

One can not use Verpflegungstärke to calculate the strength of a unit because Verpflegungstärke includes HiWi,POW, members of OT,railway personnel and other civilians , but does not include Urlaubgänger and Abkommandierte and a big number of the wounded .
For the 14 Pz : an increase of the Verpflegungstärke by 600 men does not mean that the manpower of the division has increased by 600, the opposite is possible : the manpower could have decreased .
The Verpflegungsstärke of 211000 Germans in the Kessel on 18 December does not mean 211000 soldiers,as it included also members of the OT and railway personnel .
And, I think that the number of wounded/sick was much,much greater than 6000.

Art
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Art » 07 Apr 2022 20:06

That's the physical number of men in the pocket (as close as Germans were able calculate it). A separate number is provided for Hiwis.

Globalization41
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Globalization41 » 09 Apr 2022 12:38

As has been mentioned, German POWs from the Stalingrad pocket and elsewhere were not treated nicely. German willingness on the Eastern Front to fight to the death increased. Later, German POWs in France were well fed and pampered by Anglo/American forces in general. As a result, a higher percentage of German troops in the west were less inclined to fight to the death, thus saving lives.

12/8/1942, Stalin's City: In 1918 Stalin Took Charge from Trotsky & Cleared Logistics Bottleneck at Tsaritsyn

12/8/1942, Russians Penetrate German Lines at Stalingrad; 120 Three-Engine Axis Supply Planes Destroyed

Map, Stalingrad, Google12/8/1942, Russians Pressure Stalingrad; Germans Lose 21 Tanks on Central Front

Globalization41.

ljadw
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by ljadw » 09 Apr 2022 18:37

OTOH, the mass surrendering of Stalingrad ( 91000 POWs at the end ) and of Heeresgruppe Mitte in July 1944 (more than 200000 POWs )indicate the opposite ,which is that it is always better to become a POW than to die for the Führer .
The same for the millions of Russians who preferred a harsh fate as POW of the Germans than to die for Stalin .
And for Stalingrad the truth is that more Germans surrendered than became KIA or DOW or died of illness .

Globalization41
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Globalization41 » 09 Apr 2022 22:46

I'm talking in general terms Ijadw. If certain troops didn't want to die for Hitler and other troops didn't want to die for Stalin, then it could be said that many troops did not want to die. Troops surrendering in earlier parts of the war were less aware of atrocities to POWs committed by the enemy. By the end, German troops on the Eastern Front were more likely to fight harder against the Russians than in the west against Anglo-American forces, unless I'm mistaken. I suspect one reason for this might have been that the Germans had developed clues about atrocities to POWs during the course of the war. ... Stalingrad was the first big surrender for the Germans. Some of those surrendering may not have been aware of Stalin's POW policy. Incidentally I think most of the German POWs from Stalingrad died from disease during the following summer of '43. ... Seemingly, most of the intense fighting in the Battle of Stalingrad occurred before the encirclement by the Russians. Maybe the overconfident Germans eventually trapped in Stalingrad were more aligned toward occupation instead of house-to-house combat. ... The Russian steamroller after D-Day in the summer of '44 launched one of the most powerful offensives of all time. The Germans were overstretched and had underestimated the Red Army. Many Germans surrendered initially. POWs were marched through Moscow. ... As the Red Army closed in on Berlin, reports of atrocities increased the fighting spirit of the Germans. The perception of possible humane treatment of POWs by western Allies decreased the fighting spirit of the Wehrmacht.

Globalization41.

ljadw
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by ljadw » 10 Apr 2022 15:22

I am not convinced that the expectation of a harsh treatment for POWs had a big influence on the decision to capitulate /to continue the fight .
Some examples :
the 50000 Germans in Brest fought longer than the 50000 Germans in Königsbergen, although those in Brest could expect a better treatment after a surrender .
most of the BEF losses in 1940 were POWs,but most of the Commonwealth losses in Malaya/Singapore were also POWs,although those in Malaya/Singapore knew very well what to expect if they became POWs of the Japanese .
the US soldiers in Bastogne did not surrender, but those in Bataan/Corregidor did surrender,although the chance to survive was much bigger if one became a POW of the Germans .
And, most German losses during the encirclement of Stalingrad were POWs,those who died during the encirclement were mostly sick and wounded who would have surrendered if they had the choice .And relatively most German losses from Bagration were POWs : 150000 on a total of 350000 .
That reports of atrocities increased the fighting spirit of the Ostheer :maybe, but there is no proof of the causal relation between the reports and the increase of the fighting spirit .The same for the claim of the opposite in the West .
About the Red Army : most Soviet POWs became POWs if 1941,although there were very quickly convincing reports about the inhumane treatment by the Germans .

Jan-Hendrik
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Jan-Hendrik » 11 Apr 2022 09:42

The main problem in 1944/45:

Lack of frontline soldiers, too many soldiers without combat experience. Lack of experienced CO and NCO.

Heer was worn out!

Jan-Hendrik

Globalization41
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Globalization41 » 11 Apr 2022 14:05

Seemingly on the Eastern Front, the powerful German military reached its peak around the time of the Stalingrad loss until the Battle of Kursk in 1943 as the U.S. factor began to weigh in. ... Meanwhile, the Red Army improved steadily from the start in June 1941 until the end in 1945. ... Hitler was prone to splitting his resources. He lost WWII on December 11, 1941, by declaring war on the U.S. Without that, Hitler most likely would have stalemated in Russia. The Soviets would have stalled before reaching Berlin without the U.S. in the war.

Globalization41.

ljadw
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by ljadw » 12 Apr 2022 06:57

Globalization41 wrote:
11 Apr 2022 14:05
Seemingly on the Eastern Front, the powerful German military reached its peak around the time of the Stalingrad loss until the Battle of Kursk in 1943 as the U.S. factor began to weigh in. ... Meanwhile, the Red Army improved steadily from the start in June 1941 until the end in 1945. ... Hitler was prone to splitting his resources. He lost WWII on December 11, 1941, by declaring war on the U.S. Without that, Hitler most likely would have stalemated in Russia. The Soviets would have stalled before reaching Berlin without the U.S. in the war.

Globalization41.
This is the old Cold War theory,very popular in the US and in Germany, but, there is after 80 years still not the beginning of a proof for it .Hitler could not afford a stalemate in Russia .
The truth is
a Germany would have lost against a coalition of US and UK,without intervention from the Soviets
b Germany would have lost against a coalition of UK and the Soviets,without intervention of the US
c Germany would have lost against the Soviets,without intervention from UK and US .
Germany was much weaker than is believed .Much weaker .

Howling Wolf
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Howling Wolf » 24 Apr 2022 23:33

ljadw wrote:
12 Apr 2022 06:57
Globalization41 wrote:
11 Apr 2022 14:05
Seemingly on the Eastern Front, the powerful German military reached its peak around the time of the Stalingrad loss until the Battle of Kursk in 1943 as the U.S. factor began to weigh in. ... Meanwhile, the Red Army improved steadily from the start in June 1941 until the end in 1945. ... Hitler was prone to splitting his resources. He lost WWII on December 11, 1941, by declaring war on the U.S. Without that, Hitler most likely would have stalemated in Russia. The Soviets would have stalled before reaching Berlin without the U.S. in the war.

Globalization41.
This is the old Cold War theory,very popular in the US and in Germany, but, there is after 80 years still not the beginning of a proof for it .Hitler could not afford a stalemate in Russia .
The truth is
a Germany would have lost against a coalition of US and UK,without intervention from the Soviets
b Germany would have lost against a coalition of UK and the Soviets,without intervention of the US
c Germany would have lost against the Soviets,without intervention from UK and US .
Germany was much weaker than is believed .Much weaker .
And you are 100% sure of this? Give the reasons why. Just the facts please

ljadw
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by ljadw » 25 Apr 2022 07:17

If UK and US remained neutral ( which does not mean : no LL to the SU ) ,Germany would still be obliged to keep strong forces in the West, forces which would be stronger than in June 1941 .And this would prevent Germany to defeat the Soviets in a quick campaign .
Neutral countries are potential enemies .
Besides a neutral Britain implies a neutral France which implies a strong German Westheer .
If France and Britain were defeated and occupied, Germany would need an additional 30 divisions and a strong LW as occupation force in the UK,which means 30 divisions less for Barbarossa .Thus again no chance to win .
And last point : it is more than probable that there would be no Barbarossa if Britain was defeated and occupied as the main reason for Barbarossa was that Britain continued the war .

Howling Wolf
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Howling Wolf » 07 May 2022 20:38

ljadw wrote:
25 Apr 2022 07:17
If UK and US remained neutral ( which does not mean : no LL to the SU ) ,Germany would still be obliged to keep strong forces in the West, forces which would be stronger than in June 1941 .And this would prevent Germany to defeat the Soviets in a quick campaign .
Neutral countries are potential enemies .
Besides a neutral Britain implies a neutral France which implies a strong German Westheer .
If France and Britain were defeated and occupied, Germany would need an additional 30 divisions and a strong LW as occupation force in the UK,which means 30 divisions less for Barbarossa .Thus again no chance to win .
And last point : it is more than probable that there would be no Barbarossa if Britain was defeated and occupied as the main reason for Barbarossa was that Britain continued the war .
Using your scenario still does not guarantee a SU victory.
If France and Britain were defeated and occupied, Germany would need an additional 30 divisions and a strong LW as occupation force in the UK,which means 30 divisions less for Barbarossa
France was defeated and occupied and Britain did absolutely nothing except strategic bombing sorties after the BOB and those were not successful at all. The Luftwaffe shot down too many British bombers and the British fighter escorts in the period when the BOB ended until the end of 1941 and most of 1942. The British losses were not worth it compared to the success of the bombing which had very little effect on Germany's industrial output.

This is using your formula but - and maybe this belongs in the "what if" category - Hitler does not declare war on the USA?

The USA does not help Great Britain or the Soviet Union with lend lease.

Soviet Union would be without

363,000 trucks

9500 fighter aircraft

3800 bombers

6200 tanks

15,000,000 pairs of boots

Alternate source

400,000 jeeps & trucks
14,000 airplanes
8,000 tractors
13,000 tanks
1.5 million blankets
15 million pairs of army boots
107,000 tons of cotton
2.7 million tons of petrol products
4.5 million tons of food

Even using my scenario I will not say that Germany would have prevailed against the SU. Its a subject one could only speculate on using different formulas/scenarios.

Globalization41
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Globalization41 » 07 May 2022 22:48

My guess is they would have stalemated without U.S. help, with the demarcation line somewhere between Minsk and Moscow. Hitler was prone to overextension and would have had to retreat a little to eventually established a strategic defensive line.

Globalization41.

ljadw
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by ljadw » 08 May 2022 06:44

Howling Wolf wrote:
07 May 2022 20:38
ljadw wrote:
25 Apr 2022 07:17
If UK and US remained neutral ( which does not mean : no LL to the SU ) ,Germany would still be obliged to keep strong forces in the West, forces which would be stronger than in June 1941 .And this would prevent Germany to defeat the Soviets in a quick campaign .
Neutral countries are potential enemies .
Besides a neutral Britain implies a neutral France which implies a strong German Westheer .
If France and Britain were defeated and occupied, Germany would need an additional 30 divisions and a strong LW as occupation force in the UK,which means 30 divisions less for Barbarossa .Thus again no chance to win .
And last point : it is more than probable that there would be no Barbarossa if Britain was defeated and occupied as the main reason for Barbarossa was that Britain continued the war .
Using your scenario still does not guarantee a SU victory.
If France and Britain were defeated and occupied, Germany would need an additional 30 divisions and a strong LW as occupation force in the UK,which means 30 divisions less for Barbarossa
France was defeated and occupied and Britain did absolutely nothing except strategic bombing sorties after the BOB and those were not successful at all. The Luftwaffe shot down too many British bombers and the British fighter escorts in the period when the BOB ended until the end of 1941 and most of 1942. The British losses were not worth it compared to the success of the bombing which had very little effect on Germany's industrial output.

This is using your formula but - and maybe this belongs in the "what if" category - Hitler does not declare war on the USA?

The USA does not help Great Britain or the Soviet Union with lend lease.

Soviet Union would be without

363,000 trucks

9500 fighter aircraft

3800 bombers

6200 tanks

15,000,000 pairs of boots

Alternate source

400,000 jeeps & trucks
14,000 airplanes
8,000 tractors
13,000 tanks
1.5 million blankets
15 million pairs of army boots
107,000 tons of cotton
2.7 million tons of petrol products
4.5 million tons of food

Even using my scenario I will not say that Germany would have prevailed against the SU. Its a subject one could only speculate on using different formulas/scenarios.
I said : if UK and US remained neutral (which does NOT mean no LL ) : US deliveries to the Soviets started already before PH .
And about LL :
the 4,5 million tons of food were NOTHING compared to the Soviet food production .The same for the petrol production :the Soviets won with a petrol production that was lower than in peace time .
About the British strategic bombing : it tied a very big part of the LW and of the industrial production .
About the US tanks :the Soviets produced 100000 tanks during the war .

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Yuri
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Yuri » 12 May 2022 10:11

So finally there was an opportunity to take the time to describe the elements / signs that are placed on my beautiful map (did I try in vain?!)

First, about the Army Corps "Hiwi", whose headquarters in 1942 was located in Mariupol on the shore of the Sea of Azov (approximately where the Nazi regiment "Azov" is now being hammered)
All Hiwi-units operating in the zone of the southern army groups (that is, army group "South", in July 1942 divided into army group "A" and Army Group "B"), were formally part of the Army Corps "Hiwi". Whose headquarters were located in Mariupol.
At the same time, the Army Corps "Hiwi" did not plan or conduct military operations. This is an exclusively military-administrative organization whose function is as follows.
1. Registration and accounting of Hiwi-units, which are either newly formed or have arrived in the area of operation of the southern army groups for the first time. Including Hiwi-units that arrived from Europe together with German divisions.
2. De-registration of Hiwi-units that are being liquidated or are being withdrawn from the area of operation of the southern army groups.
3. Accounting for the movement of Hiwi-units from one German military organization/formation to another.
4. Personal accounting of members of Hiwi units: promotion/demotion in rank (duty); movement from one Hiwi unit to another; accounting for dismissal, injury, death and others.
5. Payment of monetary and clothing allowances and everything else related to the provision of "Hiwi" and its dependents (family members/close relatives).
6. Organization of mail messages for members of Hiwi-units. Each Hiwi-unit had its own Field Mail number. All letters from Hiwi (both outgoing and incoming) first got to Mariupol and only then were sent to the address indicated on the envelope.
7. Organization of money transfers.

In short, in the headquarters of the Army Corps "Hiwi", all documents on the Hiwi-units and their members were kept and stored.

The commander of a German regiment (a separate battalion) had the right to form a Hiwi-platoon.
The commander of the German division had the right to form a Hiwi-company.
The Corps Commander or Army Commander had the right to form a Hiwi-battalion.
The Commander of the Army Group had the right to form the Hiwi-regiment.
Only OKH /OKB had the right to form the Hiwi-division.

P.S.
It is necessary to add an important circumstance, which I did not mention above.
If there was an opportunity, the Hiwi who violated the oath or discipline was sent to court to the Corps "Hiwi" in Mariupol.

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