Stalingrad

Discussions on High Command, strategy and the Armed Forces (Wehrmacht) in general.
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Aida1
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Aida1 » 05 Oct 2022 16:06

mezsat2 wrote:
05 Oct 2022 14:00
Walking into Stalingrad was an insane act by Hitler.

Equally insane was Stalin/Zhukov's choice to encircle the already
destroyed and worthless 6th Army in the city in Nov. 1942. They could
have easily driven all their tanks across the frozen Don to Rostov and
cut off, essentially, the entire German army.

It was insane, again, as a tactician, not a strategist. Stalin
actually wanted to prolong the war as long as possible so he
could eventually take over Eastern Europe. His actions were
strategic, not tactical.
Insane is an overstatement. Trying to take Stalingrad at all costs was not a good idea and later not given up the part that was occupied was also. Getting obsessed by a city is dumb.
The red army was not ambitious enough but the red army and particularly Stalin were not confident enough to be that ambitious.

mezsat2
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by mezsat2 » 08 Oct 2022 10:01

It's difficult to assess, to this day, what was going through Stalin's mind.

Manstein clearly illustrated in his writings about how the Red Army could have
cut off all of 1st panzerarmee, 17th, 6th, and assorted other formations by driving
straight to the sea of Azov in Dec. 1942. Certainly, it would have been difficult to
ward off a breakthrough attempt at the Donets by reinforcement units of the
Waffen SS and cobbled together Ostheer forces, but that would most likely
have ended in even more serious losses to the Wehrmacht.

Art
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Art » 08 Oct 2022 12:11

mezsat2 wrote:
05 Oct 2022 14:00
Equally insane was Stalin/Zhukov's choice to encircle the already
destroyed and worthless 6th Army in the city in Nov. 1942. They could
have easily driven all their tanks across the frozen Don to Rostov and
cut off, essentially, the entire German army.
Studying the map of railrods in the area will answer many questions.
As long as German held Stalingrad they blocked railroad traffic in the large area of the theatre of operation which made any deep advances problematic.
See e.g. maps here:
https://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USA/US ... feat-4.jpg
https://www.soldat.ru/files/f/000005d4.jpg
https://www.soldat.ru/files/f/000005d5.jpg
from which importance of Stalingrad is a rail hub is obvious.

ljadw
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by ljadw » 08 Oct 2022 13:34

mezsat2 wrote:
08 Oct 2022 10:01
It's difficult to assess, to this day, what was going through Stalin's mind.

Manstein clearly illustrated in his writings about how the Red Army could have
cut off all of 1st panzerarmee, 17th, 6th, and assorted other formations by driving
straight to the sea of Azov in Dec. 1942. Certainly, it would have been difficult to
ward off a breakthrough attempt at the Donets by reinforcement units of the
Waffen SS and cobbled together Ostheer forces, but that would most likely
have ended in even more serious losses to the Wehrmacht.
Manstein said a lot of things ,things that are unreliable .

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Aida1
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Aida1 » 08 Oct 2022 14:36

ljadw wrote:
08 Oct 2022 13:34
mezsat2 wrote:
08 Oct 2022 10:01
It's difficult to assess, to this day, what was going through Stalin's mind.

Manstein clearly illustrated in his writings about how the Red Army could have
cut off all of 1st panzerarmee, 17th, 6th, and assorted other formations by driving
straight to the sea of Azov in Dec. 1942. Certainly, it would have been difficult to
ward off a breakthrough attempt at the Donets by reinforcement units of the
Waffen SS and cobbled together Ostheer forces, but that would most likely
have ended in even more serious losses to the Wehrmacht.
Manstein said a lot of things ,things that are unreliable .
Purely your personal opinion. At least he was a professional officer. You have abundantly proven here your knowledge of warfare is almost nonexistent.

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dgfred
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by dgfred » 10 Oct 2022 16:56

Just 'holding' the Stalingrad area would block those supply routes and the river south too. Didn't need the entire city... but H wanted it.

mezsat2
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by mezsat2 » 12 Oct 2022 10:17

Aida1 wrote:
08 Oct 2022 14:36
ljadw wrote:
08 Oct 2022 13:34
mezsat2 wrote:
08 Oct 2022 10:01
It's difficult to assess, to this day, what was going through Stalin's mind.

Manstein clearly illustrated in his writings about how the Red Army could have
cut off all of 1st panzerarmee, 17th, 6th, and assorted other formations by driving
straight to the sea of Azov in Dec. 1942. Certainly, it would have been difficult to
ward off a breakthrough attempt at the Donets by reinforcement units of the
Waffen SS and cobbled together Ostheer forces, but that would most likely
have ended in even more serious losses to the Wehrmacht.
Manstein said a lot of things ,things that are unreliable .
Purely your personal opinion. At least he was a professional officer. You have abundantly proven here your knowledge of warfare is almost nonexistent.
So, I take it you've held the post of generalfeldmarshall? Like you, I'm sure, I have nothing to go by other than
what was (and is) written by the participants. Much of the written material is clouded by bias and propaganda
as well. This must be taken into account and then formulate a "most likely" scenario for what ultimately transpired.

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Aida1
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Aida1 » 12 Oct 2022 11:11

mezsat2 wrote:
12 Oct 2022 10:17
Aida1 wrote:
08 Oct 2022 14:36
ljadw wrote:
08 Oct 2022 13:34
mezsat2 wrote:
08 Oct 2022 10:01
It's difficult to assess, to this day, what was going through Stalin's mind.

Manstein clearly illustrated in his writings about how the Red Army could have
cut off all of 1st panzerarmee, 17th, 6th, and assorted other formations by driving
straight to the sea of Azov in Dec. 1942. Certainly, it would have been difficult to
ward off a breakthrough attempt at the Donets by reinforcement units of the
Waffen SS and cobbled together Ostheer forces, but that would most likely
have ended in even more serious losses to the Wehrmacht.
Manstein said a lot of things ,things that are unreliable .
Purely your personal opinion. At least he was a professional officer. You have abundantly proven here your knowledge of warfare is almost nonexistent.
So, I take it you've held the post of generalfeldmarshall? Like you, I'm sure, I have nothing to go by other than
what was (and is) written by the participants. Much of the written material is clouded by bias and propaganda
as well. This must be taken into account and then formulate a "most likely" scenario for what ultimately transpired.
The opinion of a professional officer with high rank and a lot of practical experience in commanding military operations needs to be taken seriously contrary to what ljafw pretends who has zero experience and not much reading either. Anyway, Manstein always considered the greatest danger for AGS to be cut off entirely. A danger that he also saw in 1943 and beginning 1944.
We mostly have much more than memoirs to go by and opinions of senior officers are always interesting reading.

mezsat2
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by mezsat2 » 13 Oct 2022 08:28

Aida1 wrote:
12 Oct 2022 11:11
mezsat2 wrote:
12 Oct 2022 10:17
Aida1 wrote:
08 Oct 2022 14:36
ljadw wrote:
08 Oct 2022 13:34
mezsat2 wrote:
08 Oct 2022 10:01
It's difficult to assess, to this day, what was going through Stalin's mind.

Manstein clearly illustrated in his writings about how the Red Army could have
cut off all of 1st panzerarmee, 17th, 6th, and assorted other formations by driving
straight to the sea of Azov in Dec. 1942. Certainly, it would have been difficult to
ward off a breakthrough attempt at the Donets by reinforcement units of the
Waffen SS and cobbled together Ostheer forces, but that would most likely
have ended in even more serious losses to the Wehrmacht.
Manstein said a lot of things ,things that are unreliable .
Purely your personal opinion. At least he was a professional officer. You have abundantly proven here your knowledge of warfare is almost nonexistent.
So, I take it you've held the post of generalfeldmarshall? Like you, I'm sure, I have nothing to go by other than
what was (and is) written by the participants. Much of the written material is clouded by bias and propaganda
as well. This must be taken into account and then formulate a "most likely" scenario for what ultimately transpired.
The opinion of a professional officer with high rank and a lot of practical experience in commanding military operations needs to be taken seriously contrary to what ljafw pretends who has zero experience and not much reading either. Anyway, Manstein always considered the greatest danger for AGS to be cut off entirely. A danger that he also saw in 1943 and beginning 1944.
We mostly have much more than memoirs to go by and opinions of senior officers are always interesting reading.
Spot on. Manstein's greatest concern was not the relief of 6th Army, but the very real possibility that Stalin/Zhukov could concentrate all their tanks around the Millerovo vicinity and drive straight through Rostov to the sea of Azov, thereby cutting off everyone. The only escape route would have been through Kerch and all heavy equipment would have to be abandoned (for the units who could actually reach Kerch in the dead of winter).

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Yuri
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Yuri » 28 Oct 2022 09:35

Aida1 wrote:
08 Aug 2022 17:34
Yuri wrote:
03 Apr 2022 15:29
ljadw wrote:
03 Apr 2022 09:28
The map does NOT show that the main forces of the 14 Pz are located at Werkhnyaya Buzinovka, because no map can show this :maps do not indicate strength .Only a detailed report of the local commander can indicate the strength of 14 Pz at Werkhnyaya Buzinovka .
All we have is the report of the Abwicklungstab indicating the strength of 6th Army at 15 October inside and outside what would be 5 weeks later the pocket .
Not "NOT", but "YES".
The map shows: the main forces of the German 14th Pz.D. are located in the Verkh. Buzinovka area, because the inscription "Ma 14.Pz" is the designation on the map of the location of the main forces of the division.
The designation "Ma" has no other meaning for our case.
This is the army document, not a receipt for the purchase of toilet paper..
Further, Your day of October 15, 1942 is not suitable, because there is too much time (five weeks) between this day and the day of November 23, 1942. A lot of things could have changed in these days.
We have the opportunity to find out about the location and strength of the German 14th Pz.D. with a date very close to November 23, namely the date of November 19/20, 1942.
42-11-19_4Pz_rum3A_XXXXVIII_Pz().jpg
This is not a novel of Soviet/Russian writers and not the work of Soviet/Russian historians, this is a document of the headquarters of the German XXXXVIII.Pz.K compiled just on the day of the beginning of the operation "Uranus" by the Red Army troops.

As you can see, during the period from October 15 to November 19, 1942, the main forces of the German 14th Pz.D., located in the Verkhnyaya Buzinovka area, increased from 9,594 people (235 officers + 9,359 man and uffz.) to a total of 10,389 people.
Thus, in five weeks, the number of the main forces of the German 14st Pz.D. located in the Verkhnyaya Buzinovka area increased by 795 people, that is, by 7.5%, which is not a little.
Conclusion. The source is: WW 2 stats is wrong.
ljadw wrote:
03 Apr 2022 09:28
And this report proves clearly that the postwar claims,who have become a myth, that Uranus resulted in the encirclement of 300,000 German soldiers,are totally wrong .
I agree, "are totally wrong". The number of 300,000 European soldiers, officers and generals who were surrounded as a result of Uranium is a myth.
In fact, on November 23, 1942, as a result of the 1st stage of the Stalingrad Offensive operation (which went down in military history as Operation Uranus), 330,000 European soldiers, officers and generals of all types of armed forces and all branches of the troops got into the encirclement ring.
Support units of a division are located so back rom the front that they can end up outside of an encirclement. 16 pz div, for example had 2200 men outside the stalingrad pocket including 400 hiwis(Geschichte der 16 Pz div ., Wolfgang Werth en podzun Verlag 1958 p 138).
However, there are many examples of the opposite nature, namely: parts of formations (divisions) that are not part of the AOK.6. and PzAOK.4. got into the encirclement. For example, KG. Simons.
KG_Simons_01.jpg
KG_Simons_08.jpg
KG_Simons_09_Skizze1.jpg
Not from the works of Soviet writers and not from the works of Soviet/Russian historians, but from the document of the commander of the German combat group, we see that units from the 62nd German Infantry Division, which, together with the German 294th Infantry Division, were located in the band of the 8th Italian Army, got into the encirclement ring.

From the 294th Infantry Division, the entire 294. Pi.Btl got into the encirclement ring.
In addition to this Pi.Btl. the other nine Pi.Btls belonging to German infantry divisions that are not part of the AOC.6. or Pz.AOK.4. were in the encirclement ring.
Further, if you look at the last pages of the branch

"Batlle for the state farm "Red Star" (state farm 79)", then you can find out that IV/Lw.Fld.Div.15 and part of the artillery regiment of this 15.Lw.Fld.Div got into the encirclement ring.
And examples of this nature are much more than your example with the 16th PzDiv.
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mezsat2
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by mezsat2 » 02 Nov 2022 11:34

In a strategic sense, Hitler's abandonment of 6th Army was perfectly understandable. It tied down large Soviet forces which
may have been used to seal the fate of the entire German army east of Rostov.

On the other hand, there's the obvious fact that Stalingrad should have never been attacked in the first place. The offensive
power of the Wehrmacht was utterly destroyed in the process. Still, it's hard to see how they'd have held these forward positions
for any length of time, regardless. Even if they'd cordoned off and fortified the Don/Volga landbridge, these waterways were frozen
solid in winter, and therefore offered no real defensive protection.

Alternatives? There weren't any, other than to take up defensive positions on the Dnipro and focus on reinforcing Rommel's drive
to the middle east (if oil was the primary objective). Crimea was a total waste of time and resources since Stalin had no strategic
bombing forces capable of reaching the Rumanian oil fields in the face of the Luftwaffe, and the Kriegsmarine had no vessels
capable of exploiting the Black Sea, anyway.

Even at Kursk, Hitler had not learned his lesson and forced his fine generals and panzer forces straight into a Soviet gauntlet of
unprecedented concentration- before or since. Hitler and most of the GHC knew this and did it, anyway.

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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Konig_pilsner » 02 Nov 2022 16:41

Hitler's plan was fine, the General's execution of the plan not so much. As always the disconnect between OKH and OKW was a bigger obstacle then Russian resistance, leading to the Voronezh debacle and the Rostov traffic jam. The army needed to be split in July since AGS was too big to be supported on one axis, and Hitler was right again.
Even if they'd cordoned off and fortified the Don/Volga landbridge, these waterways were frozen
solid in winter, and therefore offered no real defensive protection.
Not to sure how eager I would be driving a KV1 over ice in late November. Point is mute regardless since it was the bridgeheads over the Don that allowed for the early date of the attack, as well as the speed and flexibility of the attack itself to so quickly overwhelm the Romanian defenders. Had the bridgeheads been eliminated any attack over the Don would have been much slower allowing for the Germans to coordinate a much better response then historical.

When I look at Fall Blau, I see fractured leadership leading to indecision, just like the Kiev/Moscow clown show a year earlier. Then the troubling infrastructure beyond Rostov that limited operational movements. Poor logistics may have limited Paulus's options, and led to many stalled and predictable attacks, but it was his decisions that IMO doomed the army. He didn't clear the bridgeheads over the Don, he drove a Panzer army to the Volga (Kotluban) and then let it sit there till the end to get pummeled. When things ground down it was Paulus that ignored intelligence of build ups on his flanks, and it was he who decided not to create a strategic reserve.

One can argue he was under direct pressure from Hitler to speed up the advance (true), which led to him cutting corners. I would counter once he cut one corner, he began to cut them all and he let the battle take control of him rather then creatively taking control of the battle.

PS: I forgot to mention Hoth's uninspiring slog to the south, yuck.

KP

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Aida1
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Aida1 » 02 Nov 2022 17:33

Konig_pilsner wrote:
02 Nov 2022 16:41
Hitler's plan was fine, the General's execution of the plan not so much. As always the disconnect between OKH and OKW was a bigger obstacle then Russian resistance, leading to the Voronezh debacle and the Rostov traffic jam. The army needed to be split in July since AGS was too big to be supported on one axis, and Hitler was right again.

KP
You are turning things upside down. And ignoring Hitlers interference which messed things up. Going for two objectives at the same time instead of a phased approach was wrong.

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Aida1
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Aida1 » 02 Nov 2022 17:38

Konig_pilsner wrote:
02 Nov 2022 16:41

When I look at Fall Blau, I see fractured leadership leading to indecision, just like the Kiev/Moscow clown show a year earlier. Then the troubling infrastructure beyond Rostov that limited operational movements. Poor logistics may have limited Paulus's options, and led to many stalled and predictable attacks, but it was his decisions that IMO doomed the army. He didn't clear the bridgeheads over the Don, he drove a Panzer army to the Volga (Kotluban) and then let it sit there till the end to get pummeled. When things ground down it was Paulus that ignored intelligence of build ups on his flanks, and it was he who decided not to create a strategic reserve.

One can argue he was under direct pressure from Hitler to speed up the advance (true), which led to him cutting corners. I would counter once he cut one corner, he began to cut them all and he let the battle take control of him rather then creatively taking control of the battle.

PS: I forgot to mention Hoth's uninspiring slog to the south, yuck.

KP
Very simplistic and making Paulus responsable for a lot of things that had nothing to do with him. :roll: :roll:

Konig_pilsner
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Re: Stalingrad

Post by Konig_pilsner » 02 Nov 2022 17:46

You are turning things upside down. And ignoring Hitlers interference which messed things up. Going for two objectives at the same time instead of a phased approach was wrong.
Hey Aida1,

I suggest you look at the maps above Art provided in post #273 regarding the rail network in the region. Then ask yourself how you would supply an army of that size on the single railroad heading from Rostov to Stalingrad. A diversion south was needed at least to get on the southern track. You can also read Halder's diaries regarding the traffic nightmare at Rostov.
Very simplistic and making Paulus responsable for a lot of things that had nothing to do with him. :roll: :roll:
Perhaps its simplistic, not quite sure if it is inaccurate. I guess in your opinion Paulus was not responsible for the actions/movements of the Army he was commanding.

KP

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