The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Discussions on High Command, strategy and the Armed Forces (Wehrmacht) in general.
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Nickdfresh
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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Nickdfresh » 05 Jan 2017 16:19

Guaporense wrote:By the way, while it's pretty much agreed that the USSR took out Germany's army while the Western Allies defeated their airforce and navy, one should understand that the vast majority of Germany's military expenditures were with the ground forces, average monthly expenditures in aircraft and ships were 825 million RM in the 3rd quarter of 1943 (Tooze(2005), No Room for Miracles page 460), compared to average monthly total government expenditures of ca. 10.4 billion RM in the year 09.42-08.43 that's only 8%.

For the German war effort, the navy and the airforce were only supplementary to the army. For contrast in the US, a naval power rather than a land power, expenditures on ships and aircraft in 1943 was 25 billion dollars (at 1945 prices) out of total government expenditures of ca. 85 billion dollars.

....
Comments like the above make me rather skeptical that either you've actually read Wages of Destruction in its entirety, or that if you did that you actually understood Tooze's premise and it didn't go sailing right over your head.

There's nothing about the Luftwaffe or Kriegsmarine being "supplementary" to the Heer. In fact, quite the contrary Tooze infers that that Nazi Germany blundered into war unprepared believing that was alright since the Allies were too unprepared and it was "destiny" based on Hitler's rather faulty conspiratorial-based manias. Overall Wehrmacht planning was that there would be no war until the middle-1940's when both the Luftwaffe would have a strategic air arm and the navy would have achieved some sort of parity with the Royal Navy and US Navy when in unison with other Axis partners. I question your intellectual competence and think you are just cherry-picking to build a sophistic, prosecutorial case based on a predetermined "panzer-fanboi" world view rather than any factual, historical basis.

The reason why the Luftwaffe and Kriegsmarine were subsumed was the lack of German industrial capacity and the fact that they were an agrarian society pre-war and simply did not have the work force nor the industrial base to fully implement rearmament in a meaningful way to guarantee any sort of strategic victory in a "long war". It wasn't out of any sense of primacy for the ground forces but pragmatism to the reality of the situation...

There was to be nothing secondary about the efforts of the Luftwaffe. They simply could not produce a proper strategic force of four engined bombers because they lacked the industrial base to make them. So they were stuck with the twin engined bombers that would be effective enough against the French, but would begin to haunt them in the Battle of Britain and in the blundering incompetence and arrogance they showed in the planning of Operation Barbarossa...

Maybe you can look up the "Cliff Notes" version? :)

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Nickdfresh
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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Nickdfresh » 05 Jan 2017 16:41

Stiltzkin wrote:
Germany did not have a mass production industry for vehicles which is one reason for their lack of motorization.
Because the upkeep was more problematic and expensive than the mere possession of motorized vehicles for the average citizen.
Um, Opel? The Beetle (in which the Nazi party managed to swindle German citizens)?

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Nickdfresh
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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Nickdfresh » 05 Jan 2017 16:44

Richard Anderson wrote:
Stiltzkin wrote:
Germany did not have a mass production industry for vehicles which is one reason for their lack of motorization.
Because the upkeep was more problematic and expensive than the mere possession of motorized vehicles for the average citizen.
Yes they did have a "mass production industry for vehicles", but it was less advanced than other industry in 1934. The Nazi's pushed industry expansion and from 1934 to 1939, truck production expanded 363%, automobiles 174%, and motorcycles 276 percent. In 1939, 101,745 trucks, 250,788 automobiles, and 204,115 motorcycles were produced. However, production in 1938 and 1939 were limited by government steel allocation limits and could have been higher.

The main reason a larger number of motor vehicles was not produced during wartime was that much of the motor vehicle industry was converted to production of other war materiel and the remainder was underutilized due to lack of material or manpower or both. For example, Adam Opel at Russelheim and Daimler-Benz, at Unterturkheim, the first and third largest auto producers, were converted to component production for the aircraft industry by 1942. The Volkswagen plant in Fallersleben is another good example. Completed in 1939, it was the largest and most modern in Europe, but was always underutilized. Through 1941, only 20-25% of the plant capacity was used and throughout the war no more than 50% was ever used.

Other self-inflicted problems were the government insistence from 1935 on that much plant expansion be east of the "Hannover Line" in order to help protect such expansion from possible bombing by England and France in the event of war. The result were things like the Adam Opel - Brandenburg truck plant expansion, which was 200 miles east of the main Adam Opel - Russelheim plant. Such lack of centralization was common, unlike the American concentration of vehicle plants in Detroit. While it did provide dispersed bombing targets, it also did not facilitate industrial synergies.

Well, it looks like someone read Tooze and actually understood it! :)

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Nickdfresh » 05 Jan 2017 16:48

For Hitler, it was simple, the "strategic importance" of the Ost was to subsume its industrial base and augment Germany so he could face those "dirty Jew" swine-controlled Americans on some sort of equal footing. Again, if you read Tooze, you'll find that this turned out to be a rabbit hole as occupied countries like France were almost an industrial net-loss for the Reich once their captured lorries wore out...

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Richard Anderson » 05 Jan 2017 17:15

Nickdfresh wrote:Well, it looks like someone read Tooze and actually understood it! :)
Actually, a lot of that can be found in the original USSBS Motor Vehicles Report.
"Is all this pretentious pseudo intellectual citing of sources REALLY necessary? It gets in the way of a good, spirited debate, destroys the cadence." POD, 6 October 2018

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Nickdfresh
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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Nickdfresh » 05 Jan 2017 17:56

Richard Anderson wrote:
Nickdfresh wrote:Well, it looks like someone read Tooze and actually understood it! :)
Actually, a lot of that can be found in the original USSBS Motor Vehicles Report.
Ah. Tooze goes into a lot of German industrial white elephants such as Fallersleben, IIRC...

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by doogal » 07 Jan 2017 09:30

Tooze's emphasis on American industrial power, illuminating as it is, has the effect of downplaying the Soviet Union, and reducing the fight with Britain to a sideshow. Britain, which sacrificed its empire to defeat Germany in the war, is for Tooze merely a forward marshalling yard for the factories of Detroit and the American midwest. British victories are foregone conclusions. The Battle of Britain was, "in retrospect, an extremely one-sided affair". The outcome of Alamein "was never in doubt". One wonders if Tooze has ever spoken to his parents about the war or to the men who fought those hard fights. They did not think the outcomes pre-determined.
James Buchan
So there should be no surprise, then, that the German war economy pulled out of the Moscow crisis in the winter of 1941; it was the capital formation whatdunnit. Tooze has ample statistical data to underpin this, but I am less sure of his conclusions regarding another of the classic controversies. In nearly all British accounts of the second world war, the author takes sides regarding one or more of the morality, effectiveness, and wisdom of the RAF’s strategic bomber offensive against Germany; it’s an identity-creating decision for any British historian. AJP Taylor is the leader for the opposition; he argued, on the basis of J.K. Galbraith and George Ball’s US Strategic Bombing Survey results, that not only was it wrong, but it was also incredibly wasteful, sucking up almost one-quarter of UK industrial production and failing to seriously interrupt the German war effort. Still less did it deliver the crushing blows to morale the airpower theorists promised. And no branch of service offered its members a shorter life expectancy.

Tooze argues, against Galbraith, that the bombing was indeed effective. Specifically, he cites the “Battle of the Ruhr” in the spring of 1943 as essentially being enough to stop the growth of German armaments production in its tracks; and he has a graph to support this, with a little explosion at the inflection point (presumably there isn’t a carbonised ironworker’s corpse in MS Excel’s clipart file). He also quotes various people’s reactions to the destruction of Hamburg with a slightly distasteful enjoyment, hence the rather harsh finish to my last sentence. In fact, he goes as far as to conflate the Ruhr and Hamburg, although Hamburg can’t have been the key point because it’s not a steelworks town and it never has been. And anyway, the bombers didn’t win the war in 1943, nor 1944 or 1945 for that matter. What went wrong? Tooze argues that the mistake was Bomber Command’s – although he doesn’t say so. But it was Bomber, and particularly “Bomber” Harris, who shifted the target from the Ruhr to Hamburg, and then on to Berlin. Harris and his staff didn’t want to disrupt industry, after all; they wanted to “dehouse the German working class”, which they believed would lead to revolution or at least chaos. So this counterfactual would have required a different Bomber Command; one that didn’t believe in airpower theory, and therefore probably wouldn’t have existed. This is not mentioned, even though Tooze repeatedly and approvingly quotes the phrase “dehousing”.
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Nickdfresh - wrote . I question your intellectual competence and think you are just cherry-picking to build a sophistic, prosecutorial case based on a predetermined "panzer-fanboi" world view rather than any factual, historical basis.
one book among many, many disagree with elements of his analysis, his disproportionate weighting of Hitlers intentions based on the belief that America was Hitlers main motivating factor is irritating.

Certainly no reason to be calling peoples intellectual competence into question.

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Nickdfresh » 07 Jan 2017 23:38

doogal wrote:...
Nickdfresh - wrote . I question your intellectual competence and think you are just cherry-picking to build a sophistic, prosecutorial case based on a predetermined "panzer-fanboi" world view rather than any factual, historical basis.
one book among many, many disagree with elements of his analysis, his disproportionate weighting of Hitlers intentions based on the belief that America was Hitlers main motivating factor is irritating.

Certainly no reason to be calling peoples intellectual competence into question.
Um, firstly he quoted Tooze firstly. Secondly, while many can argue with some of Tooze, I call several of his previous postings into questions as to his intellectual competency, or ideological biases...

Of course, if you're trying to make some sort of moralistic argument against Tooze's thoughts on strategic bombing, you might be well informed that the Luftwaffe butchered far more people via areal bombing than the Allies did...

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by BDV » 13 Jan 2017 21:37

Nickdfresh wrote:Of course, if you're trying to make some sort of moralistic argument against Tooze's thoughts on strategic bombing, you might be well informed that the Luftwaffe butchered far more people via areal bombing than the Allies did...
That is incorrect, whatever meaning of the word "butchered" you want to apply.
Nobody expects the Fallschirm! Our chief weapon is surprise; surprise and fear; fear and surprise. Our 2 weapons are fear and surprise; and ruthless efficiency. Our *3* weapons are fear, surprise, and ruthless efficiency; and almost fanatical devotion

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Nickdfresh » 14 Jan 2017 12:48

BDV wrote:
Nickdfresh wrote:Of course, if you're trying to make some sort of moralistic argument against Tooze's thoughts on strategic bombing, you might be well informed that the Luftwaffe butchered far more people via areal bombing than the Allies did...
That is incorrect, whatever meaning of the word "butchered" you want to apply.
Yeah, perhaps you don't count the Soviet citizens and people?

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by BDV » 14 Jan 2017 13:38

Nickdfresh wrote: Yeah, perhaps you don't count the Soviet citizens and people?
Killed by Luftwaffe's "strategic bombing"?
Nobody expects the Fallschirm! Our chief weapon is surprise; surprise and fear; fear and surprise. Our 2 weapons are fear and surprise; and ruthless efficiency. Our *3* weapons are fear, surprise, and ruthless efficiency; and almost fanatical devotion

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Nickdfresh » 15 Jan 2017 00:10

Killed by bombing...

Is bombing cities and attacking civil or industrial targets "strategic" or tactical?

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by BDV » 15 Jan 2017 03:06

So what is your exact contention? What are you claiming to be a correct statement on the matter.
Nobody expects the Fallschirm! Our chief weapon is surprise; surprise and fear; fear and surprise. Our 2 weapons are fear and surprise; and ruthless efficiency. Our *3* weapons are fear, surprise, and ruthless efficiency; and almost fanatical devotion

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Yuri » 15 Jan 2017 20:16

Guaporense wrote: According to Germany and Second World War, volume 7, in 1943 there was one motor vehicle per 19 personnel in the field army while the Luftwaffe and the Kriegsmarine had 1 motor vehicle per 10 personnel, ideally, in a 100% motorized force you would need about 1 motor vehicle per 6-7 personnel. Importing a few hundred thousand trucks and APCs from the US would have done the job.
In 1941 In East Whermacht had 1 car per 6-7 personnel, and in addition 1 horse (4000+ thousand staff, 600 thousand vehicles and 600 thousand horses). We also used the National Socialist Automobile corps and captured Soviet vehicles. So according to Your statement - in East Wehrmacht was motorized at least 101%.

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Re: The Strategic Importance of the Eastern front

Post by Nickdfresh » 16 Jan 2017 03:15

BDV wrote:So what is your exact contention? What are you claiming to be a correct statement on the matter.
What's your contention? You're the one with the problem apparently. Go ahead, what are the numbers? What are you claiming is incorrect?

If you have a problem with something I said, then by all means correct it...

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