German Squad Tactics

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Gary Kennedy
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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Gary Kennedy » 30 Aug 2019 20:45

I hadn't seen this topic till a few days ago. As bayonetstrength got a couple of nods I suppose I'd better contribute something, but I'm not up to a trip down a rabbit hole either. As the OP wants specifics this was the original query;

"I read about German Squad Tactics and there their said that the primary weapon of the squad is the machinegun and the riflemans are there for assault and flank protection and only if nessesary the riflemans would assist with their fire. I heared thats the reason why their were equipped with a smooth and reliable but rather limited carabine for most time of the war.
What I don't quite understand is how this was successful. If for example a american squad would fight a german one then the americans would face just a point target which everyone would engage including there Riflamans with there semi-auto rifles. It wouldn't be hard to find it too because a machinegun is loud and spits tracer rounds which should get them supressed fast.
My thoughts here are that thats maybe the reason for their emphasis of changing position (Der Stellungswechsel) but that would leave them constant on the move. Shoot some burst, relocate, shoot, relocate,.... That sounds quite ineffective to me giving me a hard time to understand why the germans were so effective and were most of the time only chrushed by numbers."

The link offered earlier in the thread (post 15) gives the contemporary German view on the relationship between the rifle and the LMG at the Squad level. These are two paragraphs from it that I think best illustrate this;

“General principles…The squad is usually employed in combat as a unit. The division into two groups - a light machine gun group and a rifle group, with different combat missions - no longer applies. The fire fight is now conducted through the concerted effort of the entire squad…The employment of the light machine in the fire fight emphasizes the heaviest concentration of fire against the more threatening and most dangerous targets.

“Fire discipline…the rifleman fires upon that portion of the target designated to him…If the selection is left to the rifleman, he himself fires upon the target which interferes most with the accomplishment of the squad’s mission.”

Pre-war the Rifle Squad had a distinct division into a Rifle troop (7 men) and an LMG troop (4 men with 1 LMG), plus two NCOs, one directing each part. Within a few months of the invasion of Poland the Squad was reorganised, now having a single NCO, 6 riflemen and 3 LMG numbers, the latter still serving one LMG. Before, the LMG troop was used to supress the enemy and the Rifle troop to put in the close assault. Now everyone was expected to contribute to the firefight. The LMG was still recognised as making the biggest contribution, which was only natural, but not the sole effort.

"It seems like it's not properly understood what I mean so I try a second time:
The Germans were focusing their fire power in one weapon per Squad. The machinegun. The rest was more of a support element of the machine gun.
Other nations had their own ways but in general distributed the fire output they expected from their men over serveal of them.
(The americans are a great example in my eyes because their had a semi-auto rifle for every infantry man and not uncommonly multiple automatic rifles and/or machineguns)

So my problem is how a Squad focusing their main fire power in one weapon can be superior to one distributing their fire. The german machine gunner after he revealed himself with fire would draw fire from all this directions. His fire on the other hand would maybe be supressing/killed this guys but then the other guys could fire on him. And not just with some carabines but with M1s and maybe the second BAR if we take the americans as an example again. Acceptable fire volume on just one point => Good supression

That sounds like a big disatvantage for the germans making them rather ineffective in my eyes so where do I miss something that would turn the tide?"

I think this might be why you're struggling to find value in the replies to date, because I've tried three ways to address this point and deleted them all. If the gunner of the Bren, BAR, DP or MG34, which by any yardstick provides the main firepower of a Squad/Section, is disabled or killed, that should not render the whole Squad/Section ineffective. Someone else will pick up the gun and keep it working. That's the same for any Squad, not just the German. If no one else thinks to pick up the gun, or if no one else knows how to use it, that's a lousy trained Squad.

If the concept that you're trying to formulate is, wouldn't 12 GIs with 11 M1s and a BAR always be able to outshoot a single MG34, so how could the Germans possibly hold any defensive line, then simply put, that's not the reality of what happened (which has already been said here I know), so it's perhaps why you can't find a worthy answer.

Gary

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Zimtstern » 31 Aug 2019 09:25

Zimtstern wrote:
27 Aug 2019 17:33
These mg teams are supported by the whole rest of the squad doing important things. During the battle primarily observing and kinda covering flanks and dead spots of the mg team and carrying ammo but in general quite far behind the mg team regarding firepower. So should it happen that the mg team is temporary (changing position, weapon jam, gunner hit...) or completely (gun hit, crew dead, ...) out of action the squad suddenly drops significantly in firepower making it compared to the previous firepower rather combat ineffective for its assigned task.
Riflemans have their own firepower. LMG got much more. No LMG, not much fireoutput from the squad. -> Even temporary delay in employment of the LMG is a big problem. - Again in extra short.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Duncan_M » 01 Sep 2019 02:23

Zimtstern wrote:
31 Aug 2019 09:25
Zimtstern wrote:
27 Aug 2019 17:33
These mg teams are supported by the whole rest of the squad doing important things. During the battle primarily observing and kinda covering flanks and dead spots of the mg team and carrying ammo but in general quite far behind the mg team regarding firepower. So should it happen that the mg team is temporary (changing position, weapon jam, gunner hit...) or completely (gun hit, crew dead, ...) out of action the squad suddenly drops significantly in firepower making it compared to the previous firepower rather combat ineffective for its assigned task.
Riflemans have their own firepower. LMG got much more. No LMG, not much fireoutput from the squad. -> Even temporary delay in employment of the LMG is a big problem. - Again in extra short.
How often is this going to matter?

Let's say a German squad's frontage covers 30-40 meters (German Squad Tactics in WWII, Gajkowski, M.). Eight riflemen and one submachine gun now have to cover that 30-40 meter frontage. If they can't, if the enemy threat is too much, then they would need heavy machine gun support from their company or battalion level, mortar support by their company or battalion level, infantry cannon support from their regiment, tube artillery support from their division's artillery regiment, to include possible attached StuG assault guns, as well as regimental panzerjaegar attachments. And that only counts what a standard infantry division has at its disposal with nothing else attached from corps or army level.

Modern combat is not squad jousting.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Terry Duncan » 01 Sep 2019 19:00

Two posts, one from Zimtstern and one from Duncan_M were removed by this moderator as they offered nothing to the discussion, only serving as an exercise in discourteousness. Please avoid making personal comments, telling others to shut up etc as this is forbidden by the forum rules.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Duncan_M » 01 Sep 2019 19:31

Just to add, this is the only question Zimtstern asked in this entire thread:

"How can you effectively provide infantry firepower with your firepower concentrated in just some few points?"

The problem with this assumption, based on all the rest of his posts, is he is clearly ONLY factoring squad level organic firepower, and nothing else, when the German infantry doctrine was to constantly use infantry in combined arms kampfgruppe.

The basic infantry gruppen was what what it was, and had what it had. But it was not designed to fight alone. The gruppe/squad was only the smallest individual maneuver unit (they had no sub truppe during WW2). So they most often were operating with the rest of their platoon, but even then they were not often alone. Depending on the mission, enemy, terrain, troops available, time available, they could and often did get grouped with other elements and arms from within their own companies, battalions, regiments, divisions, corps, armies, to include company and battalion level heavy machine guns and mortars, regimental cannon and panzerjaegar, divisional engineers, StuG, tube artillery, corps and army level rocket artillery and attached independent panzer battalions and brigades, to include heavy tank battalions. They ad hoc forces would be commanded by the most senior individual in the kampfgruppe, who by their doctrine attempted to use all in concert.

What that means is that standard infantry division's gruppen with only one LMG, multiple SMGs, a rifle grenade, would also often have at its disposal a whole bunch of different types of hand grenades, AP and AT mines, panzerfaust or other AT weapons, as well as having attached forces with MG 34 or 42 HMGs, 8.0 cm and 12 cm mortars, 10.5 cm infantry cannon, 7.5 cm AT guns, 8.8 cm Panzershreck, 7.5 cm StuG, 10.5-15 cm artillery, engineers with ad hoc demolitions of all sorts, nebelwerfer rockets, Luftwaffe air support, and of course possible attachments of Panzer IV, V, VI from other units.

Does this remotely sound like firepower is concentrated in only a few points?
Last edited by Duncan_M on 01 Sep 2019 19:37, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Duncan_M » 01 Sep 2019 19:36

Gary Kennedy wrote:
30 Aug 2019 20:45
I hadn't seen this topic till a few days ago. As bayonetstrength got a couple of nods I suppose I'd better contribute something, but I'm not up to a trip down a rabbit hole either. As the OP wants specifics this was the original query;

"I read about German Squad Tactics and there their said that the primary weapon of the squad is the machinegun and the riflemans are there for assault and flank protection and only if nessesary the riflemans would assist with their fire. I heared thats the reason why their were equipped with a smooth and reliable but rather limited carabine for most time of the war.
What I don't quite understand is how this was successful. If for example a american squad would fight a german one then the americans would face just a point target which everyone would engage including there Riflamans with there semi-auto rifles. It wouldn't be hard to find it too because a machinegun is loud and spits tracer rounds which should get them supressed fast.
My thoughts here are that thats maybe the reason for their emphasis of changing position (Der Stellungswechsel) but that would leave them constant on the move. Shoot some burst, relocate, shoot, relocate,.... That sounds quite ineffective to me giving me a hard time to understand why the germans were so effective and were most of the time only chrushed by numbers."

The link offered earlier in the thread (post 15) gives the contemporary German view on the relationship between the rifle and the LMG at the Squad level. These are two paragraphs from it that I think best illustrate this;

“General principles…The squad is usually employed in combat as a unit. The division into two groups - a light machine gun group and a rifle group, with different combat missions - no longer applies. The fire fight is now conducted through the concerted effort of the entire squad…The employment of the light machine in the fire fight emphasizes the heaviest concentration of fire against the more threatening and most dangerous targets.

“Fire discipline…the rifleman fires upon that portion of the target designated to him…If the selection is left to the rifleman, he himself fires upon the target which interferes most with the accomplishment of the squad’s mission.”

Pre-war the Rifle Squad had a distinct division into a Rifle troop (7 men) and an LMG troop (4 men with 1 LMG), plus two NCOs, one directing each part. Within a few months of the invasion of Poland the Squad was reorganised, now having a single NCO, 6 riflemen and 3 LMG numbers, the latter still serving one LMG. Before, the LMG troop was used to supress the enemy and the Rifle troop to put in the close assault. Now everyone was expected to contribute to the firefight. The LMG was still recognised as making the biggest contribution, which was only natural, but not the sole effort.

"It seems like it's not properly understood what I mean so I try a second time:
The Germans were focusing their fire power in one weapon per Squad. The machinegun. The rest was more of a support element of the machine gun.
Other nations had their own ways but in general distributed the fire output they expected from their men over serveal of them.
(The americans are a great example in my eyes because their had a semi-auto rifle for every infantry man and not uncommonly multiple automatic rifles and/or machineguns)

So my problem is how a Squad focusing their main fire power in one weapon can be superior to one distributing their fire. The german machine gunner after he revealed himself with fire would draw fire from all this directions. His fire on the other hand would maybe be supressing/killed this guys but then the other guys could fire on him. And not just with some carabines but with M1s and maybe the second BAR if we take the americans as an example again. Acceptable fire volume on just one point => Good supression

That sounds like a big disatvantage for the germans making them rather ineffective in my eyes so where do I miss something that would turn the tide?"

I think this might be why you're struggling to find value in the replies to date, because I've tried three ways to address this point and deleted them all. If the gunner of the Bren, BAR, DP or MG34, which by any yardstick provides the main firepower of a Squad/Section, is disabled or killed, that should not render the whole Squad/Section ineffective. Someone else will pick up the gun and keep it working. That's the same for any Squad, not just the German. If no one else thinks to pick up the gun, or if no one else knows how to use it, that's a lousy trained Squad.

If the concept that you're trying to formulate is, wouldn't 12 GIs with 11 M1s and a BAR always be able to outshoot a single MG34, so how could the Germans possibly hold any defensive line, then simply put, that's not the reality of what happened (which has already been said here I know), so it's perhaps why you can't find a worthy answer.

Gary
I just want to say that I really appreciate the work you put into doing what you do! I really enjoy reading it.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Zimtstern » 01 Sep 2019 20:31

Zimtstern wrote:
27 Aug 2019 17:33
Its been some time but I will try to formulate my question again minding all these objections and hope to get an answer then:

Of course war is not a squad duel and its all about combined arms but as I mentioned if one part is sufficiently lacking doctrinal effectiveness its collapses like a house of cards.
I will just repeat my question to ease reading: How can you effectively provide infantry firepower with your firepower concentrated in just some few points?
These mg teams are supported by the whole rest of the squad doing important things. During the battle primarily observing and kinda covering flanks and dead spots of the mg team and carrying ammo but in general quite far behind the mg team regarding firepower. So should it happen that the mg team is temporary (changing position, weapon jam, gunner hit...) or completely (gun hit, crew dead, ...) out of action the squad suddenly drops significantly in firepower making it compared to the previous firepower rather combat ineffective for its assigned task.

To put it in a combined arms example lets take a rifle platoon obviously supported by his higher structures. Basically we can categorize in artillery, armor and infantry. Infantry is obviously present. If enemy armor is present the defender need sufficient counter armor assets or the defender already lost and in need of highly favorable terrain to take that fight. Here we assume quite less enemy tanks acting cautiously in fear of enemy counter-armor. Same for the counter armor which only takes one high valve targets of opportunity repositioning after that. The enemy armor is staying with its infantry supporting it but playing it safe. For artillery, we hopefully also can agree that artillery is the queen of the battlefield and the big killer. Both sides got heavy artillery and medium and light mortar but limited in strength else it would be crushing and again distracting from the infantry part. Artillery will be occupied with the opening barrage/ counter battery fire. Mortar open up on pre registered likely enemies positions some waiting for fire orders. Germans in defense, Americans attacking on our company sector. Germans digged in a day before after a retreat.
This may be sounding like picking raisins but it was absolutely normal to be not at full strengths and fight all these little battles that are just a little note in the history books with what you had. Attacker hastily massed sufficiently looking mass of combat strength and attacked to keep pushing. Sometimes successfully sometimes not. There are enough examples and also with even less support of heavy assets. But also in general WWI proved that you cant obliterate the enemy with technical assets and then just walk there arms shouldered. The last push is always an infantry battle before you actually take boots on ground.

Now our supported infantry clashes. You win by massing superior firepower. Whoever wins the firefight suppressed the enemy to a point that his left fire output is rather ineffective and allows movement for you. Free support assets waiting for fire missions are used on promising weak spots and the defender will try to support it weak spots the same way. Our platoon isnt such a weak spot and our light mortars at hand are used to harass and later massed on an enemy support mg position.
Now the Americans expected their fire output of their squads coming from every rifleman with their semi-autos supported by a automatic rifle. Since the mass of Germans small arms fire coming from their mgs they all focus on the few mg teams while the Germans facing a well distributed origin of that fire output. You cant tell me that a mg is winning over multiple riflemen if sufficiently spread out and superior in strength. For me its looks like the Germans are those in need of superior numbers even though they are in the defense and thats just on infantry. They were often inferior in heavy assets and that more and more the longer the war got, so they should have been constantly mauled which wasnt the case. If you just looking at the deaths of the allied you see they made them pay a price and by fact normally held ground if not faced with superior number and assets.
Here I put it in a combined arms setting just for you guys but this shouldnt matter in a way some try to put it. If you lacking firepower or doctrinal effectivness you will have to concentrate more arms for the same task but unfortunately you dont always have as much arms as you want especally the germans the longer the war was going. Neverless they let the allies pay a hard price so there is a logic gap that I want to be filled.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Duncan_M » 02 Sep 2019 01:53

Zimtstern wrote:
01 Sep 2019 20:31
Zimtstern wrote:
27 Aug 2019 17:33
Its been some time but I will try to formulate my question again minding all these objections and hope to get an answer then:

Of course war is not a squad duel and its all about combined arms but as I mentioned if one part is sufficiently lacking doctrinal effectiveness its collapses like a house of cards.
I will just repeat my question to ease reading: How can you effectively provide infantry firepower with your firepower concentrated in just some few points?
These mg teams are supported by the whole rest of the squad doing important things. During the battle primarily observing and kinda covering flanks and dead spots of the mg team and carrying ammo but in general quite far behind the mg team regarding firepower. So should it happen that the mg team is temporary (changing position, weapon jam, gunner hit...) or completely (gun hit, crew dead, ...) out of action the squad suddenly drops significantly in firepower making it compared to the previous firepower rather combat ineffective for its assigned task.

To put it in a combined arms example lets take a rifle platoon obviously supported by his higher structures. Basically we can categorize in artillery, armor and infantry. Infantry is obviously present. If enemy armor is present the defender need sufficient counter armor assets or the defender already lost and in need of highly favorable terrain to take that fight. Here we assume quite less enemy tanks acting cautiously in fear of enemy counter-armor. Same for the counter armor which only takes one high valve targets of opportunity repositioning after that. The enemy armor is staying with its infantry supporting it but playing it safe. For artillery, we hopefully also can agree that artillery is the queen of the battlefield and the big killer. Both sides got heavy artillery and medium and light mortar but limited in strength else it would be crushing and again distracting from the infantry part. Artillery will be occupied with the opening barrage/ counter battery fire. Mortar open up on pre registered likely enemies positions some waiting for fire orders. Germans in defense, Americans attacking on our company sector. Germans digged in a day before after a retreat.
This may be sounding like picking raisins but it was absolutely normal to be not at full strengths and fight all these little battles that are just a little note in the history books with what you had. Attacker hastily massed sufficiently looking mass of combat strength and attacked to keep pushing. Sometimes successfully sometimes not. There are enough examples and also with even less support of heavy assets. But also in general WWI proved that you cant obliterate the enemy with technical assets and then just walk there arms shouldered. The last push is always an infantry battle before you actually take boots on ground.

Now our supported infantry clashes. You win by massing superior firepower. Whoever wins the firefight suppressed the enemy to a point that his left fire output is rather ineffective and allows movement for you. Free support assets waiting for fire missions are used on promising weak spots and the defender will try to support it weak spots the same way. Our platoon isnt such a weak spot and our light mortars at hand are used to harass and later massed on an enemy support mg position.
Now the Americans expected their fire output of their squads coming from every rifleman with their semi-autos supported by a automatic rifle. Since the mass of Germans small arms fire coming from their mgs they all focus on the few mg teams while the Germans facing a well distributed origin of that fire output. You cant tell me that a mg is winning over multiple riflemen if sufficiently spread out and superior in strength. For me its looks like the Germans are those in need of superior numbers even though they are in the defense and thats just on infantry. They were often inferior in heavy assets and that more and more the longer the war got, so they should have been constantly mauled which wasnt the case. If you just looking at the deaths of the allied you see they made them pay a price and by fact normally held ground if not faced with superior number and assets.
Here I put it in a combined arms setting just for you guys but this shouldnt matter in a way some try to put it. If you lacking firepower or doctrinal effectivness you will have to concentrate more arms for the same task but unfortunately you dont always have as much arms as you want especally the germans the longer the war was going. Neverless they let the allies pay a hard price so there is a logic gap that I want to be filled.
There is a phrase I read about, Steven Zaloga mentions it a lot in his books about the German army of WW2: a torso division. That's a division that still has intact HQ, support personnel, often most artillery, some other units that aren't in the thick of it whose distance from the MLR provides more safety, while the infantry, tankers (if that's the division type), reconnaissance, and engineer strength are all depleted to the point they're combat ineffective and can no longer conduct even limited defensive missions.

Due to inadequacies with the Heer and W-SS replacement policy and the reality that few divisions had any hope of being pulled from the line until the division was destroyed, then in an infantry division who likely becomes a casualty first? The members of a rifle company's infantry gruppen who are in the thick of it? Or someone in a supporting arms position that doesn't place them in routine close combat with the enemy on the MLR?

While the Germans often had supply problems to the point they have to ration artillery, mortars, even machine gun ammo (which also would effect the infantry gruppe's LMG), they would likely still have more personnel on full duty status than the infantry companies, who in every army took the vast brunt of all casualties.

What I'm getting at is your concern should be reversed. The supporting arms of an infantry battalion, regiment, and division would more likely run out of infantry to even support in the first place before not being able to support them, if with nothing else than company or battalion level heavy machine gun squads.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Zimtstern » 02 Sep 2019 13:49

Duncan_M wrote:
02 Sep 2019 01:53
There is a phrase I read about, Steven Zaloga mentions it a lot in his books about the German army of WW2: a torso division. That's a division that still has intact HQ, support personnel, often most artillery, some other units that aren't in the thick of it whose distance from the MLR provides more safety, while the infantry, tankers (if that's the division type), reconnaissance, and engineer strength are all depleted to the point they're combat ineffective and can no longer conduct even limited defensive missions.

Due to inadequacies with the Heer and W-SS replacement policy and the reality that few divisions had any hope of being pulled from the line until the division was destroyed, then in an infantry division who likely becomes a casualty first? The members of a rifle company's infantry gruppen who are in the thick of it? Or someone in a supporting arms position that doesn't place them in routine close combat with the enemy on the MLR?

While the Germans often had supply problems to the point they have to ration artillery, mortars, even machine gun ammo (which also would effect the infantry gruppe's LMG), they would likely still have more personnel on full duty status than the infantry companies, who in every army took the vast brunt of all casualties.

What I'm getting at is your concern should be reversed. The supporting arms of an infantry battalion, regiment, and division would more likely run out of infantry to even support in the first place before not being able to support them, if with nothing else than company or battalion level heavy machine gun squads.
So you want to say you think the infantry acutally lacked effectivness and most kills comes through operational, tactical and support arms effectivness?

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Duncan_M » 02 Sep 2019 14:29

Zimtstern wrote:
02 Sep 2019 13:49
Duncan_M wrote:
02 Sep 2019 01:53
There is a phrase I read about, Steven Zaloga mentions it a lot in his books about the German army of WW2: a torso division. That's a division that still has intact HQ, support personnel, often most artillery, some other units that aren't in the thick of it whose distance from the MLR provides more safety, while the infantry, tankers (if that's the division type), reconnaissance, and engineer strength are all depleted to the point they're combat ineffective and can no longer conduct even limited defensive missions.

Due to inadequacies with the Heer and W-SS replacement policy and the reality that few divisions had any hope of being pulled from the line until the division was destroyed, then in an infantry division who likely becomes a casualty first? The members of a rifle company's infantry gruppen who are in the thick of it? Or someone in a supporting arms position that doesn't place them in routine close combat with the enemy on the MLR?

While the Germans often had supply problems to the point they have to ration artillery, mortars, even machine gun ammo (which also would effect the infantry gruppe's LMG), they would likely still have more personnel on full duty status than the infantry companies, who in every army took the vast brunt of all casualties.

What I'm getting at is your concern should be reversed. The supporting arms of an infantry battalion, regiment, and division would more likely run out of infantry to even support in the first place before not being able to support them, if with nothing else than company or battalion level heavy machine gun squads.
So you want to say you think the infantry acutally lacked effectivness and most kills comes through operational, tactical and support arms effectivness?
So sayeth every single historical analysis of modern warfare. Artillery is called king of battle for a reason.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Zimtstern » 02 Sep 2019 22:34

That not the point. Its about the infantry.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Cult Icon » 02 Sep 2019 23:25

"kills" is not the only metric and the distribution between bullets and fragments varied in casualty counts after actions, it was not necessarily the famous "80%". I've seen actions at the 50% and lower. The most important (BASIC) factor in the defense is whether the infantry is sufficient to screen the frontline (repel enemy forces) without the division or major elements dis-integrating under the enemy's offensive and the enemy troops infiltrating into the rear where the artillery/rear echelon is.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Duncan_M » 03 Sep 2019 01:36

Zimtstern wrote:
02 Sep 2019 22:34
That not the point. Its about the infantry.
How does it not the point when it answered YOUR question?

Infantry is always going to kill fewer than artillery and other deadlier support weapons than rifles, LMGs, SMGs, assault rifles, bayonets, grenades, grenade launchers, etc., that were issued to any squad. HE and fragmentation is just far more dangerous than any sort of bipod operated bullet hose, they have access to more ammo, and can fire it from what is often safety.

And in the German infantry division, its not about the infantry, its about combined arms. That doesn't mean that which is inside the gruppe, it means that which is inside the division, which includes infantry in their regiments, artillery in their regiment, cavalry in the reconnaissance battalion, engineers in their battalion. And even infantry, there are those in a infantry squad, but also those in the heavy machine gun squad, or those in the mortar team, or those in the panzerjaegar company, or those in the infantry cannon company.

Because modern warfare is not squad jousting.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Zimtstern » 03 Sep 2019 10:00

Its not the point because it doesnt answer my question. I already agreed on the artilleries killing valvue:
Zimtstern wrote:
27 Aug 2019 17:33
For artillery, we hopefully also can agree that artillery is the queen of the battlefield and the big killer.
But what my question is going about is a logical weakness in he infantry doctrine that plays a role when imbeded in a combined arms setting both sides infantry clashes. If you are far superior in support arms and arms in general then this is not so important but if their defence is put to the test the infantry also has to do their part. Since every successful defence didnt rely on superior mass of support arms the infantry cant be lacking effectiveness even when outnumbered. Its one of the reason you conduct defence. Its a force multiplier.

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Re: German Squad Tactics

Post by Duncan_M » 03 Sep 2019 16:54

Zimtstern wrote:
03 Sep 2019 10:00
Its not the point because it doesnt answer my question. I already agreed on the artilleries killing valvue:

For artillery, we hopefully also can agree that artillery is the queen of the battlefield and the big killer.
Infantry is the queen of battle, artillery is the king.

"How can you effectively provide infantry firepower with your firepower concentrated in just some few points?"

And I answered the single question you've asked NUMEROUS times. Firepower is not concentrated in just some few points, that the deadliest firepower is nowhere near the infantry gruppe level. And lastly, again, modern combat is not squad jousting.

That single question you asked previously still had nothing at all to do with anything in your recent posts.

Ask a new question, and make sure you include a question mark.
But what my question is going about is a logical weakness in he infantry doctrine that plays a role when imbeded in a combined arms setting both sides infantry clashes. If you are far superior in support arms and arms in general then this is not so important but if their defence is put to the test the infantry also has to do their part.
The German infantry doctrine was combined arms.

Let me repeated that. Combined. Arms.

That means its greater than just the infantry squads fighting on their own, jousting against the enemy squads. It means the entire infantry division is supposed to fight in a series of kampfgruppe built for a mission. Offense or defense. The members of the infantry squads part of those kampfgruppe have their role, the mortarmen how their role, the AT gunners have their role, the StuG have their role, the artillery have their role, etc. All together they play as a symphony orchestra, whereas alone they are just one instrument playing notes that don't even make a song.
Since every successful defence didnt rely on superior mass of support arms the infantry cant be lacking effectiveness even when outnumbered.
A defense is not based solely on the infantry squad holding out alone, its based on the infantry squads being on the MLR, supported by all sorts of other weapons, to include company and battalion level machine guns and mortars, regimental cannons, panzerjaegar (for those pesky tanks). An infantry squad with no supporting arms doesn't stand a chance against a concerted attack by any enemy.
Its one of the reason you conduct defence. Its a force multiplier.
That is not why one conducts a defense, especially not the Germans. They were culturally obsessed with attacking. One goes on the defense when one can no longer conduct an attack, when initiative and momentum are lost, and resume attack at the first opportunity. Even with the German defense the counterattack was organic to it.

The idea for a German unit to go onto the defense to kill more enemy is a myth. They tried that in WW1 at Verdun, it was considered heresy then, it was considered heresy in the post war period. Some float the idea that after 1943 they should have solidified the Eastern Front line and gone on the defensive, but its just the nonsense written about in some postwar memoirs by lying generals trying to make up excuses why the lost.

Read Robert Citino's The German Way of War.

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