High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 07 Oct 2020 06:46

themarcksplan wrote:Before I put in the effort of locating an actual citation, I'd like to know whether we're playing a game or whether you actually deny the reality of German locomotive losses that winter.
From Miezejewski's Most Valuable Asset of the Reich, p.101:
As late as mid-March, over half of the locomotives assigned to the railways of the occupied east were unserviceable.
By mid-March, the DRB had already dispatched 1,000 extra locomotives east - above and beyond the initial deployments - and had sent thousands of additional technicians to work on damaged trains. Hitler had already arrested several railroad officials for the rail failures (unjustly, btw, it was the Army's fault). So serviceability in January-Feb was almost certainly lower than in mid-March.

From "The Influence of Railways...":
The crisis came during the winter: With few covered locomotive depots [i.e. warming sheds!!!!],
the German engines fell out of service and by February 1942, at least
70 percent were inoperative,64 and traffic ground to a standstill. The constant
flow of engines eastwards had started to affect the wider German economy,
and on 15 January 1942 this prompted Hitler to act.65
https://www.hgwdavie.com/blog/2018/3/9/ ... r-19411945
Last edited by TheMarcksPlan on 07 Oct 2020 08:05, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 07 Oct 2020 07:13

Now that you've sent me back into the rail-books, let's look at another one of your assertions:
Max Payload wrote:The fact is that the railway supply situation of AGS improved over the winter months as more of the Reich’s rolling stock was diverted to the East to the detriment of the Reich’s wider economy.
Is it a "fact" that increased shipments to AGS damaged the economy more than did the '41-'42 Winter Crisis?

Let's look at Ostheer traffic in terms of Ton-km. Per Mierzejewski p. 144, DRB produced 164bn ton-km in 1942.

Per "Influence of the Railways...," on average 108 trains crossed into the occupied SU in 1942.

Assuming a 800km journey to the Ostheer and 450 tons/train, quick arithmetic produces ~14bn ton-km for the Ostheer or 8.5% of the DRB's traffic. As a proportion of total European traffic - the correct measure because Germany drew on European rail resources - it would be even less.

Traffic to the Ostheer increased over the spring because rail conditions improved, not because more of the Reich's economy was sacrified to the Ostheer. That includes the Jan-March improvement in eastern train serviceability from 50% to 70% that I established in my last post, as well as the substantial infrastructure improvements being made to Eastern railways, which railway scholar HGW Davie summarizes for us here: viewtopic.php?f=66&t=203286&start=75#p1849753

-----------------------

An earlier version of this post and the preceding post contained some frustration caused by an error on my part. I thought I had already linked to HGW Davie's "The influence of railways" and that Max Payload's response - that the article didn't discuss the Winter Crisis - indicated that he hadn't read it and accused me of mis-representing its contents. In fact I linked to HGW Davie's thread on eastern railways (under his nom de AHF) rather than his article, probably due to a copy-paste error when deciding which of Davie's sources to cite. So I have to apologize to you again, Max. Sorry about that mistake.
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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by Georg_S » 07 Oct 2020 07:19

Keep a polite Tone in this thread! Dont tell ppl what to do or not. Otherwise the topic Will be closed.

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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 07 Oct 2020 07:34

Here's another citation regarding the '41-'42 Winter Crisis and the impact of weather:
The most important change made to this [the railways leadership] organisation during the war was its
integration in Albert Speer's managerial apparatus as a result of the crisis of
the winter of 1941-42. Severe weather in the east immobilised thousands of the
locomotives and wagons that the Reichsbahn had sent there to support the
Wehrmacht. The result was a major lack of wagons in Germany itself. This in
turn triggered a coal shortage that led to factory closures.
From Mierzejewski's "The Deutsche Reichsbahn and Germany's supply of coal, 1939-45" p. 114
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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by Max Payload » 07 Oct 2020 13:39

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 06:13
Are you actually unfamiliar with German locomotive losses that winter?
I am not disputing the locomotive down-time repair problems, nor that they were exacerbated by winter conditions. What I was questioning was your bold assertion that -
“The rail catastrophe caused by complete failure to protect Ostheer's locomotives with warming sheds reverberated into '42, continuing to undercut Ostheer's logistics. That catastrophe also severely damaged German war production for the 7-8 months preceding Blau. As a result, the '42 Ostheer stepped off far weaker and less numerous than it could have been.”
(My emphasis)

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 06:13
You're confusing the issue of train crossings (into SU from Poland) with the issue of rail asset utilization.
No, I was simply pointing out that, irrespective of locomotive repair issues, AGS received more supplies by rail in January than it had in November or December; still more in February; and more again in March. That in turn makes Davie’s assertion that “by February 1942 ... [rail] ... traffic ground to a standstill” questionable.

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 06:13
What are you trying to say? That building a tank instead of an airplane weakened industrial output?

What I think you're trying to say is that Germany planned to, and wanted to, build for an air/sea war against the West but had to continue building for a ground war in the East.

That statement would make sense but is completely different from "expenditure of resources on Blau" weakening industrial output.
No, that was not what I was trying to say; more like - having planned to build both a tank and an airplane, but being constrained to only being able to build one because half the workforce is elsewhere, is a consequence of weakened industrial output.


TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 06:13
the Ostheer was more numerous and better-equipped in mid-'43 than mid-'42. Whether it's 10% or 30%, my point still stands.
I disagree. The point you made (in the sentence after reference to warming sheds) was -
“Ostheer was ~30% stronger numerically in mid-'43 than in mid-'42 ... because Germany belatedly adopted a more rational approach to the Ostheer's economic/logistical underpinnings.”
Not just cause and effect, but dramatic effect ~30% stronger. But even if the effect could be attributed in its eternity to ‘a more rational approach’, 9% is of relatively low significance.

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 07:13
Is it a "fact" that increased shipments to AGS damaged the economy more than did the '41-'42 Winter Crisis?
I never made any such comparison.

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 07:13
Traffic to the Ostheer increased over the spring because rail conditions improved, not because more of the Reich's economy was sacrified to the Ostheer.
But as you noted in your further quote of Davie, “The constant flow of engines eastwards had started to affect the wider German economy”


TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 07:13
So I have to apologize to you again, Max. Sorry about that mistake.
That’s OK, but yes, the link was to the first page of a 44-page long discussion with sub-links to other threads. This actually proved to be helpful because on page 87 of the NARA document within post #119 on page 8 of the thread are comments about the poor reliability of the rolling stock being used in the East prior to the winter. There was another reference to the age and general poor reliability of the rolling stock elsewhere that I noticed on first read-through, but I can’t find it now - maybe it was in one of the side-threads. The point is that reliability and down-time was an issue prior to the winter, it was not simply an issue of insufficient warming sheds.

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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by Ружичасти Слон » 07 Oct 2020 15:35

History can to be mostest confuse.

For datas on Germany army mens on ostheer now have 3 datas on 1 topic. And datas can to be mostest different. What numbers for to believe correct ? Zetterling or Hillebrand or datas what was find on IWM and BAMA archives ?

And i was read on topic some claims what have strange logic for to conclude.

Tmp was write
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
04 Oct 2020 04:46


IMO most analysts/historians fail to understand and/or explore two basic dynamics of the OTL '42 Eastern Front.

First, they don't recognize the extent to which the clown-show planning for '41 undercut the '42 Ostheer. The rail catastrophe caused by complete failure to protect Ostheer's locomotives with warming sheds reverberated into '42, continuing to undercut Ostheer's logistics. That catastrophe also severely damaged German war production for the 7-8 months preceding Blau. As a result, the '42 Ostheer stepped off far weaker and less numerous than it could have been. Ostheer was ~30% stronger numerically in mid-'43 than in mid-'42 (and better equipped), despite Stalingrad and that winter's disasters, because Germany belatedly adopted a more rational approach to the Ostheer's economic/logistical underpinnings.
But tmp was not write datas or evidences for to support claim.

Then maxpayload was write history datas for to show logistics for ostheer was good on 1942.year and was explain how was be possible.

Nobody was disagree on locomotive problems on winter 1941.year.

Why tmp again and again write on locomotive problems on 1941.year ? Tmp claim locomotive problems was cause on catastrophic logistics on 1942.year. Statement on locomotive problems can to not be evidence of catastrophic logistics. It is anti-intellectual for to assume locomotive problems on winter 1941.year must to = catastrophic logistic problems on 1942.year. It is not analysis it is guess. Maybe was have mostest affect maybe was have zero affect. Must to have datas on logistics on 1942.year for to make analysis not wave on hand guess.

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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by Richard Anderson » 07 Oct 2020 16:53

Max Payload wrote:
07 Oct 2020 13:39
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 06:13
the Ostheer was more numerous and better-equipped in mid-'43 than mid-'42. Whether it's 10% or 30%, my point still stands.
I disagree. The point you made (in the sentence after reference to warming sheds) was -
“Ostheer was ~30% stronger numerically in mid-'43 than in mid-'42 ... because Germany belatedly adopted a more rational approach to the Ostheer's economic/logistical underpinnings.”
Not just cause and effect, but dramatic effect ~30% stronger. But even if the effect could be attributed in its eternity to ‘a more rational approach’, 9% is of relatively low significance.
Yes, the Ostheer was "more numerous" in "mid-'43 than mid-'42"...between 9.0% and 9.5% stronger numerically.

However, it was emphatically NOT "because Germany belatedly adopted a more rational approach to the Ostheer's economic/logistical underpinnings".

The manpower increase was achieved through numerous stopgap measures, not by a "rational approach". They were personnel economies and shuffling of units, the eternal German game of robbing Peter to pay Paul, not rationalization of "economic/logistical underpinnings".

For example, the losses suffered in the Don basin during December and January led the WFSt on 16 February, issuing a plan for the transfer of units Westfront to Ostfront. The 106.ID would move 1 March, 39.ID after relief by 94.ID around 20 March, the 38.ID after relief by 76. ID around 10 March (it was delayed to 20 March), and 17. and 257.ID after they were relieved by 113. and 305.ID (as they were formed). That was followed by plans for further movements developed on 7 May 1943, which envisaged six newly formed Bodenständige divisions to relieve six divisions sent east. In addition, 3 more Bodenständige divisions were to be formed in the West by 1 August, 4 more by 15 August, and 1 More by 1 October for the same purpose.

Other "rational approaches" included stripping out personnel from rear area units and rebalancing using limited duty personnel to allow even more able-bodied personnel to move east. However, it wasn't until 19 November 1943 that such was rationalized in an order by the Oberquartiermeister General des Heeres. Prior to then such measures were a hodge-podge of local attempts to scare up personnel.
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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 07 Oct 2020 21:03

Some of the issues raised by replies would derail a high-level discussion of strategy. While I'm sure that is acceptable to, and probably the goal of, a few individuals, I'd prefer to stay focused on the bigger picture. So I am going to split my more detailed response on Winter Crisis issues into a separate thread linked here (if necessary), and will respond here only insofar as the debate relates to high-level analysis.
Richard Anderson wrote:NOT "because Germany belatedly adopted a more rational approach to the Ostheer's economic/logistical underpinnings".
Richard's post is an equivocation on the meaning of rational in this context. As the author of "rational," I'll tell you what it means in my post - even though it's a restatement of the strategic analysis already stated and therefore might have been clear from original context.

Germany irrationally provided the Ostheer with weak or no long-term economic/logistical underpinning in '41. It then rationally - but belatedly - ramped up Ostheer production and logistical (rail) investment in '42. Due to the Winter Crisis and the inherent time-lag between investment and payoff, production ramp-up and deployable production, the Ostheer didn't fully benefit from a stronger - more rational - strategic underpinning until '43.

Richard attempts to portray efforts to comb out manpower for the Ostheer as irrational but this equivocates between "rational" and something like "improvised" or "frantic." Improvised or frantic, it was rational to reinforce the Ostheer with personnel and material in '42-'43 and irrational to fail to do so in '41.
Max Payload wrote:I am not disputing the locomotive down-time repair problems, nor that they were exacerbated by winter conditions.
Max Payload wrote:But as you noted in your further quote of Davie, “The constant flow of engines eastwards had started to affect the wider German economy”
Respectfully, that you think the second quote undercuts my assertion shows that you don't understand the nature of the rail Winter Crisis and the point that I'm making.

The "constant flow of engines eastwards" does not reflect the magnitude of supply flow eastwards. It was a flow of engines that functionally replaced the loss of 70% of engines already dispatched. The flow of engines was one-way: they were mostly stuck in the East.

As stated, I'm going to put Winter Crisis details into a separate thread if necessary.

Do you agree with the broad assertion that rail failure problems owing to both lack of warming sheds and other rail infrastructure deficiencies (e.g. water towers/stations) contributed to lower German production? Do agree with the broad assertion that Ostheer would have been materially stronger in '42 absent the Winter Crisis?

If you agree with those broad assertions, then our disagreement is only a matter of degrees and I'd rather not get bogged down in this thread with that.
Max Payload wrote:The point is that reliability and down-time was an issue prior to the winter, it was not simply an issue of insufficient warming sheds.
I've written extensively about other rail issues that contributed to rail downtime and unreliability. Lack of watering stations/towers (do a search for terms on my profile it you'd to check). In my two-paragraph summary to Tom from Cornwall I mentioned warming sheds only.

I don't want to play a game here, I'm sure you don't either. Yes there were other factors. But as my copious citations attest, the biggest factor was warming sheds.

Let's stick to the high-level analysis and leave the games for others.
Max Payload wrote:Not just cause and effect, but dramatic effect ~30% stronger. But even if the effect could be attributed in its eternity to ‘a more rational approach’, 9% is of relatively low significance.
Let's step back once again to the high-level picture are my actual assertions.

Between Barbarossa and July 1943 Germany lost hundreds of thousands of men in the east and elsewhere. By '43 its defense burden in the West had increased. Yet on July 1, 1943 Ostheer personnel strength was about as strong as on June 22, 1941 and its equipment probably better overall (certainly its ammo supply and rail logistics were far better). Whether we measure from 1941 or 1942, whether the yard-stick is an increase in personnel strength or even a slight decrease, Germany's ability to strengthen - overall - the Ostheer despite all the catastrophes of intervening years reflects an irrational under-investment in the Ostheer in '41.

What part of that high-level picture do you actually disagree with? I've purposely phrased it widely this time so we can't drag the discussion down with a few % here or there.

Btw - your 9% Ostheer '43-'42 delta relies on a '42 personnel strength figure that even Richard called high. I'm not getting into the details of that, however, because I don't find it relevant to the high-level discussion.
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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 07 Oct 2020 22:18

In the Economy subforum I have a thread that is relevant here. viewtopic.php?f=66&t=252374

The thread summarizes recent scholarship on the early-war German economy and the various explanations of its underperformance.

The research of Jonas Scherner is particularly relevant here. As discussed in the thread, Scherner's view is that early-war German productivity declined due to the shock of drafts and reorganization. The draft shock in Germany was significantly greater than for Britain, as Germany inducted a larger part of its workforce.

The thread goes on to discuss the extent to which under-mobilization of German/European resources explains at least part of Germany's early-war economic underperformance.
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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by Max Payload » 08 Oct 2020 12:19

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 21:03
Do you agree with the broad assertion that rail failure problems owing to both lack of warming sheds and other rail infrastructure deficiencies (e.g. water towers/stations) contributed to lower German production? Do agree with the broad assertion that Ostheer would have been materially stronger in '42 absent the Winter Crisis?
Yes to both, but with caveats.

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 21:03
If you agree with those broad assertions, then our disagreement is only a matter of degrees and I'd rather not get bogged down in this thread with that.
Fair enough, but if the high-level analysis is supported by inaccurate information, it is entirely reasonable to draw attention to that. Such as the claim that failure to protect Ostheer's locomotives with warming sheds during the 1941/42 winter was the cause of a rail catastrophe that among other things left the Ostheer in 1942 “far weaker and less numerous than it could have been.” - 30% weaker in fact than a year later.
I’m paraphrasing your post I know, but we now seem to agree that it wasn’t 30% weaker and a shortage of warming sheds wasn’t the sole cause of the ‘rail catastrophe’ and that the immediate consequences, at least for AGS, were somewhat mitigated by the transfer of replacement rolling stock from the West, albeit to the detriment of the domestic economy.
Which brings me to my caveats.
The winter crisis was multi-dimensional with multiple causes - political, military, economic, social, bureaucratic. Could it have been avoided? Possibly, but only if a host of participants had acted in ways that were contrary to their inclinations, preconceptions and, in many cases, perceived best interests.
You are still claiming with ‘copious citations’ that the shortage of warming sheds (yes, back to that) was the primary cause of the rail catastrophe. What are those citations? I have only found the Davie citation that you posted earlier. That document makes only one reference to ‘covered locomotive depots’ and that was in the same sentence where he claimed that ‘traffic ground to a standstill’, which it didn’t.

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 21:03
Between Barbarossa and July 1943 Germany lost hundreds of thousands of men in the east and elsewhere. By '43 its defense burden in the West had increased. Yet on July 1, 1943 Ostheer personnel strength was about as strong as on June 22, 1941 and its equipment probably better overall (certainly its ammo supply and rail logistics were far better). Whether we measure from 1941 or 1942, whether the yard-stick is an increase in personnel strength or even a slight decrease, Germany's ability to strengthen - overall - the Ostheer despite all the catastrophes of intervening years reflects an irrational under-investment in the Ostheer in '41.
In 1943 Germany committed 70% of its GDP to the military (Harrison data). There is nothing rational about that unless your country (or more realistically, you as it’s leader) is facing an existential threat. In 1941 and in advance of the winter crisis the figure was already an enormous 52% of GDP and by June just about every able-bodied German male in his twenties was in uniform. That is quite a commitment for a nation that considered itself invulnerable with only one short sharp campaign to complete. You may reasonably criticise the efficiency with which it’s industrial resources were deployed in 1941 and the hubris of the country’s leaders when it came to assessing the military potential of the Soviet Union but more than half the nation’s GDP hardly merits the description of an irrational under-investment in the German military in 1941. Was it irrational not to employ more of the Wehrmacht’s resources in the initial attack? I don’t know how much more would have possible, (the potential for redeployment of Norwegian or French based divisions has been discussed previously) but given the preconceptions about what the Wehrmacht would face, what it committed would have seemed entirely adequate.

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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 08 Oct 2020 13:52

Max Payload wrote:You are still claiming with ‘copious citations’ that the shortage of warming sheds (yes, back to that) was the primary cause of the rail catastrophe. What are those citations? I have only found the Davie citation that you posted earlier.
viewtopic.php?p=2295876#p2295647

Literally right above your post.

I'm a fair guy; I apologize when I'm unjustifiably angry. It is a little annoying to have to repeat that though...

And please don't start with "two cites aren't copious." Davie and Mierzejewski are probably the two best living experts on German railways. Both support my assertions.
more than half the nation’s GDP hardly merits the description of an irrational under-investment in the German military in 1941.
Nowhere do I claim that Germany was under-invested in its military. The claim is - throughout numerous threads has always been - that Germany was under-invested in its army.

Also I suspect you didn't read the thread deeply, because you seem to be imputing a theory of the German economy - undermobilization or blitzkrieg theory - that I discuss as "rightfully rejected" bad history. I then go on to discuss possible subtleties between the old blitzkrieg theory and modern revisionsists like Tooze.

Again, it's a little annoying to have to clarify that my views are not bog-standard views that you'd find in Youtube comments sections from Wehrmacht fans. I do so with you because you also seem fair-minded. With others I've given up on clarifying views.


It would help our discussions a lot, though, if you considered the possibility that I have a well-reasoned, albeit peculiar, take on WW2. One that requires more attention than interpreting my statements as identical to every bad "Germany could have won" argument you've heard in the past. Have you read anywhere a critique of O'Brien's scholarship - nearly universally hailed - as well-documented and revealing as mine? viewtopic.php?f=76&t=250292&start=75#p2295884 I haven't. That may sound arrogant but sometimes you're just right despite nobody else being there with you yet. This is one of those times.
Fair enough, but if the high-level analysis is supported by inaccurate information, it is entirely reasonable to draw attention to that
It's fair but I immediately revised my thesis to show it's compatible with even your figures - figures that, again, overstate your case (as Richard pointed out, 2.8mil Ostheer strength in mid-'42 is high). Yet you want to stay on a debate about the historical delta. Why? What's the point? I don't want to argue about 10-30%, I want to discuss high-level issues and whether it's 10 or 30% makes no difference to the thesis.
The winter crisis was multi-dimensional with multiple causes
Fine! I DON'T DISAGREE! Trains break down for all kinds of reasons! But why did they break down in winter '41-'42?

You've been arguing about something I posted in a two-paragraph summary of a vast discourse on rail issues that I've written extensively about elsewhere. All that because my two paragraphs didn't list ALL the ways in which poor rail planning undercut the Ostheer? Yes there are other issues beyond warming sheds that would have provided for better serviceability rates. No that doesn't mean we should derail the discussion, especially given that warming sheds are just the best example of failure to prepare the railways, leading to rolling stock loss. As I've been trying to say.

And the two best living experts on German railways in Russia emphasize the weather.

If you have data/evidence showing that those experts were wrong in emphasizing weather you should show it. Otherwise it's like saying, "yes the Atom Bomb killed a lot of people in Hiroshima that day but your focus on the atom bomb ignores asthma-related deaths from Hiroshima's industrial pollution." That'd probably be a true statement but in a forum discussing the bombings it would be...
That document makes only one reference to ‘covered locomotive depots’ and that was in the same sentence where he claimed that ‘traffic ground to a standstill’, which it didn’t.
Come on dude. Obviously that's a figurative, not literal. Do you really think HGW Davie meant that literally?

As with your reaction to my two-paragraph note, this reflects a deficit of the intellectual generosity needed to have a productive discussion.
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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by Max Payload » 08 Oct 2020 16:11

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
08 Oct 2020 13:52
Max Payload wrote:You are still claiming with ‘copious citations’ that the shortage of warming sheds (yes, back to that) was the primary cause of the rail catastrophe. What are those citations? I have only found the Davie citation that you posted earlier.
viewtopic.php?p=2295876#p2295647

Literally right above your post.
The link makes no mention of warming sheds.

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
08 Oct 2020 13:52
Nowhere do I claim that Germany was under-invested in its military. The claim is - throughout numerous threads has always been - that Germany was under-invested in its army.

Also I suspect you didn't read the thread deeply, because you seem to be imputing a theory of the German economy - undermobilization or blitzkrieg theory - that I discuss as "rightfully rejected" bad history. I then go on to discuss possible subtleties between the old blitzkrieg theory and modern revisionsists like Tooze.
You have made only one reference to Tooze in this thread (in relation to agriculture) and none to the old blitzkrieg theory. No doubt you have such references to them in posts on other threads (and to Heer underinvestment). I may even have read some of them, though my memory is not what it was.

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
08 Oct 2020 13:52
Yes there are other issues beyond warming sheds that would have provided for better serviceability rates. No that doesn't mean we should derail the discussion, especially given that warming sheds are just the best example of failure to prepare the railways, leading to rolling stock loss. As I've been trying to say.
But have failed to adequately demonstrate.

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
08 Oct 2020 13:52
I don't want to argue about 10-30%, I want to discuss high-level issues and whether it's 10 or 30% makes no difference to the thesis.
It diminishes the strength of that aspect of the argument.

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
08 Oct 2020 13:52
As with your reaction to my two-paragraph note, this reflects a deficit of the intellectual generosity needed to have a productive discussion.
Is not ‘intellectual generosity’ something of an oxymoron?

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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by Richard Anderson » 08 Oct 2020 16:49

Max Payload wrote:
08 Oct 2020 12:19
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 21:03
If you agree with those broad assertions, then our disagreement is only a matter of degrees and I'd rather not get bogged down in this thread with that.
Fair enough, but if the high-level analysis is supported by inaccurate information, it is entirely reasonable to draw attention to that.
The repeated presentation by TMP of incorrect data, followed by his ill-conceived assumptions and inferences is the root of my decision to no longer argue with TMP and to set him to ignore. Take the specific recent case. His single-source and possibly erroneous (I haven't bothered to check with Niklas to see if TMP was correct) was corrected by multiple sources, indicating TMP's assumption exaggerated reality by a factor of three. However, instead of reevaluating his assumptions, he dismisses the correction as irrelevant because it is "only a matter of degrees".

I am happy to argue with someone that can take corrections and adapt their argument to account for them - if possible - but simply dismissing them isn't arguing.
Which brings me to my caveats.
The winter crisis was multi-dimensional with multiple causes - political, military, economic, social, bureaucratic. Could it have been avoided? Possibly, but only if a host of participants had acted in ways that were contrary to their inclinations, preconceptions and, in many cases, perceived best interests.
Exactly. Among other things, the Soviets had something to do with the "winter crisis". Nor did the Germans go into Barbarossa "irrationally", except for the fundamentally irrational decision to make the attack. Germany had been rationally building up the Wehrmacht with single minded fervor since the Reichstag's April 1934 budget, which increased the share of government spending on the Wehrmacht from 17% to 51%.
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 21:03
Between Barbarossa and July 1943 Germany lost hundreds of thousands of men in the east and elsewhere. By '43 its defense burden in the West had increased. Yet on July 1, 1943 Ostheer personnel strength was about as strong as on June 22, 1941 and its equipment "probably better overall" (certainly its ammo supply and rail logistics were far better).
In terms of manpower, the Ostheer "increase" in strength from July 1941 to July 1942 was 26,087. However, that "increase" was achieved by an increase from 145 to 188 divisions...so an 8.3% increase in strength required a 22.9% increase in the commitment of available forces. Similarly, the numbers of German AFV actually declined, from 3,937 to 3,284, in the same period. The argument that its equipment was probably better overall mirrors the German thinking, which was ultimately found to be irrational, especially given that Soviet equipment was also "probably better overall".
In 1943 Germany committed 70% of its GDP to the military (Harrison data). There is nothing rational about that unless your country (or more realistically, you as it’s leader) is facing an existential threat. In 1941 and in advance of the winter crisis the figure was already an enormous 52% of GDP and by June just about every able-bodied German male in his twenties was in uniform.
Exactly, and it was only sustainable because it was required to defeat that existential threat. The prewar peacetime German military spending program was also unsustainable.
Last edited by Richard Anderson on 09 Oct 2020 00:07, edited 3 times in total.
"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

Richard Anderson
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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by Richard Anderson » 08 Oct 2020 16:55

Max Payload wrote:
08 Oct 2020 16:11
Is not ‘intellectual generosity’ something of an oxymoron?
Given the repeated out of hand dismissal of counterarguments and contrary data, and the repeated ad hominems from your interlocutor, yes, indeed it is. :roll:
"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

Ружичасти Слон
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Re: High-level analysis of W.Allied vs. German manpower resources

Post by Ружичасти Слон » 08 Oct 2020 19:42

Richard Anderson wrote:
08 Oct 2020 16:49
Max Payload wrote:
08 Oct 2020 12:19
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
07 Oct 2020 21:03
If you agree with those broad assertions, then our disagreement is only a matter of degrees and I'd rather not get bogged down in this thread with that.
Fair enough, but if the high-level analysis is supported by inaccurate information, it is entirely reasonable to draw attention to that.
The repeated presentation by TMP of incorrect data, followed by his ill-conceived assumptions and inferences is the root of my decision to no longer argue with TMP and to set him to ignore. Take the specific recent case. His single-source and possibly erroneous (I haven't bothered to check with Niklas to see if TMP was correct) was corrected by multiple sources indication TMP's assumption exaggerated reality by a factor of three. However, instead of reevaluating his assumptions, he dismisses the correction as irrelevant because it is "only a matter of degrees".
Everything on tmp claim was be anti-intellectual. It is strange for to have on history forum such anti-intellectual anti-historical words.

It was start when tmp was write
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
04 Oct 2020 04:46


IMO most analysts/historians fail to understand and/or explore two basic dynamics of the OTL '42 Eastern Front.

First, they don't recognize the extent to which the clown-show planning for '41 undercut the '42 Ostheer. The rail catastrophe caused by complete failure to protect Ostheer's locomotives with warming sheds reverberated into '42, continuing to undercut Ostheer's logistics. That catastrophe also severely damaged German war production for the 7-8 months preceding Blau. As a result, the '42 Ostheer stepped off far weaker and less numerous than it could have been. Ostheer was ~30% stronger numerically in mid-'43 than in mid-'42 (and better equipped), despite Stalingrad and that winter's disasters, because Germany belatedly adopted a more rational approach to the Ostheer's economic/logistical underpinnings.
Claim was base on words on one author on one sentence
The crisis came during the winter: With few covered locomotive depots, the German engines fell out of service and by February 1942, at least 70 percent were inoperative, ...
and then was add tmp imagination and tmp anti-intellectual analysis and logics.

I was not read from tmp some datas or evidences for to explain how he was jump so far from "few covered locomotive depots" on winter 1941.year to "The rail catastrophe caused by complete failure to protect". Nothing.

Tmp tmp was not give any datas or evidences on
1) how much locomotives on number was 70% ?
2) how much ton-miles was be lost on problem broken locomotives ?
3) how much locomotives was be repair and back on service ?
4) how long was repair on locomotives ?
5) how much locomotives was come from Germany for to replace ?
6) after (5) what was be net loss ?
7) how much was miss net ton-miles summer 1942.year ?

After studys and analysises of questions 1 to 7 (and others) can for to understand what was real history impact "few covered locomotive depots" on winter 1941.year on total logistics capacitys and on military operations.

I not think tmp was make any studys and analysises on topic. I think he was only make one mostest big wave on hand and then was demand everybody must to believe is correct.

Complete anti-intellectual and no help on serious study and understand history.

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