Liechtenstein, 5 Gebirgsjager Division and astrologers

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panzertruppe2001
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Liechtenstein, 5 Gebirgsjager Division and astrologers

Postby panzertruppe2001 » 28 Dec 2007 04:21

First of all the source: Michael Sharpe - 5th Gebirgsjäger Division: Hitler's mountain warfare specialists

I am reading the history of this unit when in page 36 mentioned that after Crete the division was scheduled to play in operation Tyr, the invasion of Liechstenstein.

Apparently in May 1941 an astrologer advised Hitler that " pebbles in the shoe can became boulders that roll and crush" and Liechstenstein was key to that prophecy.

The units commited for this operation would be 1, 4,5,6 Gebirgs Division and 188 Reserve Gebirgs Division

Rundstedt and Ringel, the last one commander of the 5 Gebirgsjager Division protested against this futile plan and were threated to be dismissed. Ony the popularity of Ringel because of Crete campaign saved him and the intervention of Halder, Leeb and Bock saved von Rundstedt.

The plans were cancelled because a "change in the stars" and a new interpretation of the prophecy. The units were sent to Russia or kept in Crete

Hitler expected attack the tiny country in mid 1942 but the plans were cancelled again.

Again and during Kursk Hitler expected an attack that the consecuences of this battle aborted the operation.

Well this is the question. What do you know about Operation Tyr.?

Panzertruppe2001

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Ironmachine
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Postby Ironmachine » 28 Dec 2007 09:40

Well, IIRC there was no 188 Reserve Gebirgs Division till 1943 when the Division Nr. 188 was redesignated as such.

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Postby panzertruppe2001 » 28 Dec 2007 19:55

Ironmachine wrote:Well, IIRC there was no 188 Reserve Gebirgs Division till 1943 when the Division Nr. 188 was redesignated as such.


Yes, following Marcus site, 188 Reserve Gebirgs Division was formed in October 1943 when Division No.188 was upgrade. I suppose the unit was this last one that was in Austria in 1941. Maybe a Sharpe´s mistake.

But I am interested in Operation Tyr, the possibility of an attack in Liechstentein in 1941 and the dismissal menace of Runstedt and Ringel.

Another details Sharpe says that his source were a series of Heers documents recently discovered. This documents were not directly linked with Operation Tyr but with horsesfeed requisitioned forms.

Panzertruppe2001

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Postby Qvist » 29 Dec 2007 23:34

Well, this in my opinion sounds completely bonkerooni and involve a lot of spectacularly implausible ideas - wholly disregarding such things as Liechenstein being the size of a county with zero military capability that could probably have been occupied in a day by a batallion or so. The notion of setting aside five Geb.Div for this task is completely absurd - they represent a manpower more than twice Liechtenstein's current population. There would have been roughly ten Gebirgsjägers for every adult Liechtensteinian male. :) If indeed they had somehow managed to physically squeeze five divisions into this tiny territory consisting mainly of mountains.

cheers

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Postby Harri » 04 Jan 2008 19:55

I agree with Qvist.

I think Liechtenstein was secured by the Swiss Armed Forces (like it is today) and the attack against it would have actually meant a war with Switzerland. Thus the attack force of five divisions (nearly 100.000 men with additional corps troops) does not sound much too large although against the tiny city sized country alone it would have been a huge troop concentration.

This is actual history as it happened:
In winter 1941/42 5.Geb.D was intented to be moved to North Finland together with 6.Geb.D and 7.Geb.D (former 99. leichte Infanterie-Division) but only the last two were actually moved: the first one already in late autumn 1941 to replace 3.Geb.D in Gebirgskorps Norwegen (later XIX.Geb.Korps) on the Murmansk front and the latter in spring 1942 with XVIII.Geb.Korps which was also moved to replace Finnish III Army Corps on the Kiestinki front.

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Postby Andreas » 04 Jan 2008 20:01

I believe 5th Geb. Division instead ended up in the Leningrad area?

All the best

Andreas

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Postby Harri » 04 Jan 2008 21:55

I think too 5.Geb.D which was on its way to the north was eventually moved to Leningrad area instead of Finland. Also SS-Infanterie-Regiment 9 (mot.) was moved away from the Finnish III Army Corps and moved to Leningrad front in November 1941.

Major part of the German 163.I.D. which was at River Svir with the Finnish troops waiting for the spearhed of the German troops of the Armee Gruppe Nord was moved to XXXVI.AK in late spring 1942 where it replaced Finnish 6th Division which was suspended in spring 1942.

SS-Division 'Nord' was at Kiestinki front in the Finnish III AK (with Finnish Division J and 3rd Division). I think it was the re-named 7.Geb.D which replaced the 5.Geb.D in Finland. Elements (about 1/3, including Geb.Jg.Rgt 139) of the 3.Geb.D stayed also in Finland and were the bulk of the later Divisionsgruppe Kräutler formed in 1944.

So, only 1., 4. and (after reforming) 3.Geb.D would have been available for the operation in 1942. The earlier mentioned mountain divisions would have been available for the miraculous operation "Tyr" only for a very short period before autumn 1941 and even then some divisions were tied in the Balkans and Greece area.

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Postby Ironmachine » 05 Jan 2008 09:42

I have just found this about Operation Tyr:
http://www.zzzptm.com/history10.html

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Postby zzzptm » 05 Jan 2008 19:56

Just out of curiosity, I had googled my domain name and phpbb and hit this discussion. I decided to register, as the page in question is of my authorship.

It is entirely false.

Back in 1999, I had some fun creating a series of joke pages dealing with Texas history and military history, as those were two areas I enjoyed studying greatly. Other topics in that series include such spurious things as Mafia control of Antarctica, a battle between Byzantine sailors conducting a portage and some Cumans, Zouave units in the Gulf War (they painted the countryside bright red and blue so as to be camouflaged in their traditional uniforms), and an army of Bavarian mercenaries fighting on behalf of Togo in a matter of recovering a debt from the state of Massachusetts.

There was no Operation Tyr until I invented it. As a lover of history and OOB details, I tried to do the best job I could at selecting the proper Gebirgsjaeger divisions - and the 188th Reserve served as a replacement division for the other Gebirgsjaeger divisions from 1939 to late 1942, so my statement "The 188th Reserve Mountain Division, a training outfit based in northern Austria," is, in fact, correct - in spite of the fact that it never was earmarked by a bitter Jodl for occupation duties in a plan that never existed.

Qvist's observation that sending five full divisions to do this task as being completely absurd is spot on. That was my historical joke. :D

Now, for Mr. Sharpe to include the story I wrote in his book on p. 36... I find that hilarious in that I wrote such a good hoax it was considered worthy of inclusion in a serious unit history, but I also find it disturbing that Mr. Sharpe never contacted me for my source information, as my page is completely undocumented. I also find it even more disturbing if the text in that book matches my web page. The source on my page puts a 1999 copyright on my material, so I'd appreciate if the OP could confirm if, indeed, my web page matches Sharpe's text. I'd also like to know if my website is properly cited in his bibliography.

I'd further question Mr. Sharpe's accuracy if he's going to use websites at face value as sources for OOB and unit history information. Given the wealth of material, including Mitchham's book "Hitler's Legions", which I used as my source, there is no reason to resort to Internet plagiarism.

All the same, I find the serendipity of this whole thing to be amazing... had I not done a random search this morning... :)

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Postby Ironmachine » 06 Jan 2008 00:01

zzzptm, what a good joke!
:lol:
By the way, your invention has reached wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Tyr

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Postby zzzptm » 06 Jan 2008 00:18

Thanks for the heads-up on the Wiki thing... I've edited that article.

But, yeah, it was the most fun I've ever had with a Wehrmacht Order of Battle book, ever.

Side note: if you really, REALLY want to have some WW2 OOB laffs, you can make up all kinds of things about the Chinese Army, as there are no English-language sources on it outside a single-volume summary that is highly biased. Anything goes there...

But back to the German Army, yeah, that guy should have done better homework. I used to design wargames for Command magazine back in the early 90's, and ANY error in OOB information would trigger thousands of nastygrams from irate gamers.

Sample nastygram: "The 7th Panzer clearly did NOT have an antitank battalion integral to its structure in 1940, so WHY one is being deployed in hex 3419 is entirely beyond me! I refuse to purchase your shoddy products ever again."

That's why I enjoyed doing games on Cortes and the Chinese Army most. No OOB police for those genres. :D But when I did Sealion, I had to have every duck in a row for that game.

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Postby Auseklis » 06 Jan 2008 02:35

That is MUCH more mountain troops than allocated for the invasion of Switzerland one year earlier...

They would have to bring enough tents since there are not enough houses in Liechtenstein for so many personel.

Anyhow that scenario would ad a new highlight to wargaming (after the self-liberation of Denmark and the naval landing on Kiska)

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Postby Ironmachine » 06 Jan 2008 08:27

zzzptm wrote:...I used to design wargames for Command magazine back in the early 90's,
---
That's why I enjoyed doing games on Cortes and the Chinese Army most. No OOB police for those genres. But when I did Sealion, I had to have every duck in a row for that game.


Command magazine... Ah, the good old times!
Now I know who you are. I really enjoyed your games. Cortes was truly great.
Thanks for your efforts. :)

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Postby Andreas » 06 Jan 2008 13:18

It appears to me that this one belongs more properly into the reference material section.

Nice one.

All the best

Andreas

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Postby zzzptm » 06 Jan 2008 14:40

Ironmachine wrote:
Command magazine... Ah, the good old times!
Now I know who you are. I really enjoyed your games. Cortes was truly great.
Thanks for your efforts. :)


Ah, a grognard! :D

Yes, I almost got a Charlie Roberts award for Cortes. Too bad it came out the same year Alexander did... :/

That's one of my favorites... I'll always have a soft spot for the human sacrifice rules... I remember playtesting them with a buddy and yelling "BONG-BONG! BONG-BONG! BONG-BONG! BONG-BONG!" to simulate the pounding of the sacrificial drums as I marched his captured conquistadors up the pyramid... Good times...

When I was at Command, I liked to write small articles about the esoterica of war. One that got bigger was the Ukrainian resistance in WW2, and the history of SS Div. 14, Galizien. That has to have been one of the most surreal units in the war. Its soldiers faked a massive casualty rate so more Ukrainians would pass through it to get German training and equipment so they could better resist the Russians.

There was a mention of Denmark and Kiska above... I once jokingly proposed to create a quadrigame of mini-mini-mini-mini-games, with two-hex maps. "Great for solitaire play!" I said... For Kiska, the US player would move his unit from the landing craft to the island, then roll on the sprained ankle table... if he got less than 2, he could call it a victory. In Denmark, the invasion would be the Germans attacking the Danes, with "Defender Eliminated" as the only result on the CRT. I also planned an expansion for the Denmark map to simulate its liberation: There would be a counter with a German unit on one side and a Danish partisan group on the other. The Danish player would say to the German player, "Look over there!" Once the German player was distracted, the Danish player would flip over the unit and declare victory, which was pretty much how it went down in 1945, from what I can gather. :D


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