German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

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Michael Kenny
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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Michael Kenny » 02 Nov 2016 11:38

Cult Icon wrote:
So you say that Bergstrom's view on Us losses is wrong, etc.
Check the list of people consulted for the book.

Richard Anderson
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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Richard Anderson » 02 Nov 2016 15:28

Cult Icon wrote:So you say that Bergstrom's view on Us losses is wrong, etc.
Yes, I just said I did. I supplied him the data for losses. He chose to expand on it via speculation regarding non-write offs.
If you use your figures than it is a lower ratio in the 'big 3'.
To reiterate. The daily Allied average was about 0.417%.

In "Normandy" it was about 0.93%.

In "Lorraine" - the Arracourt battles, it was about 0.47%. In the campaign, it was about 0.23%.

In the "Ardennes" it was about 0.87%,
You are confused at my statement and your calculation doesn't make sense. I did not see it as a 'day to day' affair but compared the period without a high concentration of german armor with the one that did possess this concentration. The German armor strengths on the Western front was much lower outside of the months that these '3 events' occurred.
What calculation doesn't make sense and why? It is a simple rate calculation. Please tell me where the error is?

Meanwhile, as I mentioned a while ago, the time outside those "3 events" is essentially all operations by the Allies other than those of Third Army, from 1 September to 17 December 1944 and all events on the Western Front after 16 January 1945. However, if you look at the data, you will notice that it is really only two "big events" - one of about 89 days and the other of about 30, during the 336-day campaign. during which the daily average about doubled.

Yes, the Germans were stronger in those periods. So your point is?
eg. weak 9.Pz, 116.Pz, 11.Pz, Pz-Lehr from time to time

I would say that the weak Pz units largely launched shallow counterattacks per doctrine against allied advances.
Except the shallow doctrinal counterattacks during the non-big two periods failed miserably with usually major losses to the Germans. About the only ones that didn't was against the 7th AD in the Peel Marshes and the small operation by elements of 116. Panzer versus the 112th Infantry at Schmidt.

So again, what is your point?
"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

Shermaninterest
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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Shermaninterest » 03 Nov 2016 01:20

Christer Bergstrom was very specific when it came to explaining his theories. He cited several incidences of "apparent" wrong loss counts. You think he might be wrong on those accounts? Unless there is some evidence to show his examples are incorrect it is obvious your set of numbers are incorrect and represent only partial figures. Napier on the other hand also showed several examples which strongly suggest the British reports were not entirely correct. As mkenny stated he seemed very thorough with his work. Why is such emphasis put on the "official" numbers when several incidences indicate those numbers weren't correct? For the Wehrmacht, it obviously is much easier since they lost most of the stuff. But the number of 3xxx seems extremely low aswell.

Another issue I noticed which maybe is easily explained with more knowledge: the Sherman shipping numbers hardly match the data.

According to armored thunderbolts about 17.000 Shermans were shipped to the British. In June 1945 they had 3800 in line or parks reserve ( no clue what this means ) minus their losses where was the rest? How many thousands were in depots? Is there a count?

According to the same book the US shipped 16k (+ 1000 E8? ) to their own troops. Then in June 45 they had about 6k in the ETO ( no Italy). 10k less? All in all 35k were shipped to Westen Allied forces and around 10k were accounted for at the end of war ( What am I missing )

Comparing those numbers should be the easiest and most definitive way. It was done for the Red Army and the Wehrmacht.

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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Richard Anderson » 03 Nov 2016 01:57

Shermaninterest wrote:Christer Bergstrom was very specific when it came to explaining his theories. He cited several incidences of "apparent" wrong loss counts. You think he might be wrong on those accounts? Unless there is some evidence to show his examples are incorrect it is obvious your set of numbers are incorrect and represent only partial figures.
Why is this always so hard to understand? Christer conflated "knocked out" with "write offs". They are NOT the same thing. "My figures" are not "mine". They are those of the AFV&W Section ETOUSA. That is, the Armored Fighting Vehicle and Weapons Section of the European Theater of Operations, U.S. Army as compiled from the vehicle record cards. They may be more or less accurate with regards to date - "catching up" is a common phenomena in these records, but that is a separate issue.
Napier on the other hand also showed several examples which strongly suggest the British reports were not entirely correct. As mkenny stated he seemed very thorough with his work. Why is such emphasis put on the "official" numbers when several incidences indicate those numbers weren't correct? For the Wehrmacht, it obviously is much easier since they lost most of the stuff. But the number of 3xxx seems extremely low aswell.
Yet again, Napier is working with a specific time period and looking at double-counting in unit reports for GOODWOOD. Any number have commented on this. It is another case of counting "knocked out" versus "written off".
Another issue I noticed which maybe is easily explained with more knowledge: the Sherman shipping numbers hardly match the data.

According to armored thunderbolts about 17.000 Shermans were shipped to the British. In June 1945 they had 3800 in line or parks reserve ( no clue what this means ) minus their losses where was the rest? How many thousands were in depots? Is there a count?
15,256 Medium Tank M4 75mm, 1,335 Medium Tank M4 76mm, and 593 Medium Tank M4 105mm were shipped to the British as Lend-Lease. I have no idea where your figure of 3,800 comes from, but if it is for Northwest Europe, then it does not include Italy or the Pacific. Meanwhile, 272 were lost at sea, 148 were lost in the Middle East, 116 in the UK, 31 in India/SEAC, 1,174 in Italy, and 2,712 in NWE.
According to the same book the US shipped 16k (+ 1000 E8? ) to their own troops. Then in June 45 they had about 6k in the ETO ( no Italy). 10k less? All in all 35k were shipped to Westen Allied forces and around 10k were accounted for at the end of war ( What am I missing )
Where in that book is that statement made?
Comparing those numbers should be the easiest and most definitive way. It was done for the Red Army and the Wehrmacht.
It was?
"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

Shermaninterest
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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Shermaninterest » 03 Nov 2016 02:35

Richard Anderson wrote:
Why is this always so hard to understand? Christer conflated "knocked out" with "write offs". They are NOT the same thing. "My figures" are not "mine". They are those of the AFV&W Section ETOUSA. That is, the Armored Fighting Vehicle and Weapons Section of the European Theater of Operations, U.S. Army as compiled from the vehicle record cards. They may be more or less accurate with regards to date - "catching up" is a common phenomena in these records, but that is a separate issue.
Well, this is mostly your opinion right? Reading both you and Bergstrom it is obvious he has a different opinion about this than you. You seem to have supplied him with research work and he used those numbers but he comes to a different conclusion. You say this due using KO's as write offs but this at least doesn't follow if i read him. He specifically writes the following:

"Due to an unfortunate culling in Americam military archives..."

He seems to think your data ( with that I mean the number sets you support ) is incomplete. He then goes to on an names examples. You say those were simply KOs and later repaired and thus are not included in the write offs. Is there evidence to support this claim? In his first specific example, he says the 10th reported 7 losses but just one Combat command seems to have lost 20 tanks. If those were simply KOs then this mathematically makes no sense. If the 7 losses are correct this would mean the unit suffered a max of 7 write offs plus at least another 20 KO'ed but repaired during retreat? While certainly possible this is just not an reasonable assumption. Please excuse my general ignorance, I have no further information about this and if there is hard evidence for those specific numbers I am obviously wrong. But given the information of Bergstrom ( assuming at least the numbers are correctly gathered ) its highly unlikely that your explanation is correct. He goes on with examples. Obviously, that doesn't mean the 20 were write-offs but even if the truth is in between we see that "official" numbers are not perfect. Another supporting argument for Bergstrom would be that those are just some examples, what about the other units not researched in such depth.

Richard Anderson wrote: Yet again, Napier is working with a specific time period and looking at double-counting in unit reports for GOODWOOD. Any number have commented on this. It is another case of counting "knocked out" versus "written off".
But that just shows that whatever conclusion is made is highly unlikely that researchers now got it right. Napier isn't even willing to come down to a number but rather gives approximations. My point with Napier is not about Goodwood but rather that numbers change all the time. For a battle that lasted just 1-3 days people come up with vastly varying numbers. Nobody seems to be able to see how many tanks were written off even though the strength numbers for units seem to exist, the replacement system obviously doesn't allow for concrete answers on this. Napier also showed several examples which demonstrate that the numbers were straight up incorrect.
Richard Anderson wrote: 15,256 Medium Tank M4 75mm, 1,335 Medium Tank M4 76mm, and 593 Medium Tank M4 105mm were shipped to the British as Lend-Lease. I have no idea where your figure of 3,800 comes from, but if it is for Northwest Europe, then it does not include Italy or the Pacific. Meanwhile, 272 were lost at sea, 148 were lost in the Middle East, 116 in the UK, 31 in India/SEAC, 1,174 in Italy, and 2,712 in NWE.
That's from Armored thunderbolt ETO. I don't have the numbers for either Italy or Pacific but if we make guesstimates based on other data this still leaves the question were the rest of them was.

Richard Anderson wrote: Where in that book is that statement made?
Roughly adding up the numbers.
Richard Anderson wrote: It was?
Well, most of the loss numbers for the Wehrmacht are the strength on date Before + replacements - strength on date After. The more fluid US replacement system seems to have made this impossible. Assuming you are the same Rich from other forums it seems that is obvious that the US loss system is impossible to control because there is no compiled data on the replacement tank system. If else it would be easy to check what the 10th Armored received as replacements. I don't even know how the US numbers were created. By adding up write off reports from the repair facility and units? So this just means that every lost data or incorrect report gets added up. That's why I mentioned the overall numbers not adding up. I'am not trying to be a smart ass and call your numbers "wrong" it just feels like those numbers are imperfect and only the best set of data available to get an approximation.

Where did excess Shermans get stored, did people do inventory there?

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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Richard Anderson » 03 Nov 2016 04:02

Shermaninterest wrote:Well, this is mostly your opinion right?
No, wrong.
Reading both you and Bergstrom it is obvious he has a different opinion about this than you. You seem to have supplied him with research work and he used those numbers but he comes to a different conclusion. You say this due using KO's as write offs but this at least doesn't follow if i read him. He specifically writes the following:

"Due to an unfortunate culling in Americam military archives..."
Sorry, just reviewed his book again - I set it aside in disappointment after he sent it to me. The figures Bergstrom used on page 425 and elsewhere are the data I provided him. They are from the AFV&W Section History and are the total losses for ALL U.S. Army forces in NWE, i.e., for First Army, Third Army, Seventh Army, and Ninth Army. The entire European theater. Christer somehow decided they were ONLY for the Ardennes. He did not consult with me after I responded to his request for data. He can have no idea if the "American military archives" were culled of that data because he never researched the data.
He seems to think your data ( with that I mean the number sets you support ) is incomplete. He then goes to on an names examples.
Please tell me what those "specific examples" are with page numbers.
You say those were simply KOs and later repaired and thus are not included in the write offs. Is there evidence to support this claim?
Do you know what a write off was?
In his first specific example, he says the 10th reported 7 losses but just one Combat command seems to have lost 20 tanks. If those were simply KOs then this mathematically makes no sense. If the 7 losses are correct this would mean the unit suffered a max of 7 write offs plus at least another 20 KO'ed but repaired during retreat? While certainly possible this is just not an reasonable assumption. Please excuse my general ignorance, I have no further information about this and if there is hard evidence for those specific numbers I am obviously wrong. But given the information of Bergstrom ( assuming at least the numbers are correctly gathered ) its highly unlikely that your explanation is correct. He goes on with examples. Obviously, that doesn't mean the 20 were write-offs but even if the truth is in between we see that "official" numbers are not perfect. Another supporting argument for Bergstrom would be that those are just some examples, what about the other units not researched in such depth.
This is the second problem. Bergstrom is mixing two data sets. The "monthly" data (actually from the 21st to the 20th of each month) compiled by the AFV&W Section is very different from unit reports. Units only reported vehicles as operational or operational in less than 6 hours, non-operational, but repairable in less than 24 hours, or non-operational and not repairable in less than 24 hours (including vehicles MIA). Units were only concerned with operational status. Worse, the 10th Armored Division was split into two separate halves where the fate of the parts trapped in Bastogne were not well known until after the relief. The data for the 9th Armored Division is even more problematic, since it was split into three widely separated parts.

However, that doesn't matter, since you are talking about two very different data sets with different objectives; comparing one to the other or drawing conclusions about one from the other, is insane.
But that just shows that whatever conclusion is made is highly unlikely that researchers now got it right. Napier isn't even willing to come down to a number but rather gives approximations. My point with Napier is not about Goodwood but rather that numbers change all the time. For a battle that lasted just 1-3 days people come up with vastly varying numbers. Nobody seems to be able to see how many tanks were written off even though the strength numbers for units seem to exist, the replacement system obviously doesn't allow for concrete answers on this. Napier also showed several examples which demonstrate that the numbers were straight up incorrect.
Sorry, but again a fundamental lack of understanding on what was reported, who reported it, and for what purpose. What was written off has nothing to do with the strength numbers of units.
That's from Armored thunderbolt ETO. I don't have the numbers for either Italy or Pacific but if we make guesstimates based on other data this still leaves the question were the rest of them was.
No, it is not from Armored Thunderbolt. Figures on Lend-Lease shipped are based upon Theodore E. Whiting, Carrel I. Tod, and Anne P. Craft, The United States Army in World War II: Statistics, Lend-Lease, Office of the Chief of Military History, Department of the Army, Washington, DC, 15 December 1952. No Lend-Lease went to "Italy or the Pacific", so I'm not sure why you would look for the figures?
Roughly adding up the numbers.
Roughly adding up what numbers?
Well, most of the loss numbers for the Wehrmacht are the strength on date Before + replacements - strength on date After.
No they aren't. They're almost invariably based upon M-H's postwar compilation or on the fragmentary records of the Generalinspektur der Panzertruppen and the Qu.
The more fluid US replacement system seems to have made this impossible. Assuming you are the same Rich from other forums it seems that is obvious that the US loss system is impossible to control because there is no compiled data on the replacement tank system. If else it would be easy to check what the 10th Armored received as replacements. I don't even know how the US numbers were created. By adding up write off reports from the repair facility and units? So this just means that every lost data or incorrect report gets added up. That's why I mentioned the overall numbers not adding up. I'am not trying to be a smart ass and call your numbers "wrong" it just feels like those numbers are imperfect and only the best set of data available to get an approximation.
What "fluid replacement system"? That you don't know how it was done doesn't mean it wasn't done. This is becoming surreal.
Where did excess Shermans get stored, did people do inventory there?
They are called Ordnance depots.
"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

Michael Kenny
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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Michael Kenny » 03 Nov 2016 06:38

The problem is the same one we always get when comparing Allied tank casualties with German total losses. This distortion is so widespread it is difficult to explain this skewed method an anything other than a deliberate attempt to create a false narrative. When you factor in that all German tanks shot full of holes and languishing 'in repair' then left behind when the retreat started end up being classed (on internet forums) as 'non combat' losses then the problem is magnified.
Take this specific example of 12th SS for EPSOM 26-27 June 1944. A brief 2 lines for Szamveber's 'Waffen SS Armour In Normandy' page 77:

II/SS Pz Rgt 12. War Diary Appendix no. 7

Losses on 26-27 06 1944.

Total losses of Pz IV:
Tanks with numbers 505,515,518,605,616,618,835,836,715,527 & 626. (total 11)

Pz IV to be repaired:
21 Pz IV


So we have a total of 11+ 21 =32 casualties

Most people would parrot the 'only 11 Pz IV lost during EPSOM' line because that is all they want to see. They will then compare this '11' with the total of every single British tank reported as a casualty for the same period in order to get an inflated 'kill ratio'.

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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Michate » 03 Nov 2016 09:16

A useful set of tank status listings for US armored units during the Normandy battle has been compiled by Leo Niehorster: http://www.niehorster.org/013_usa/44-06 ... ngths.html

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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Shermaninterest » 03 Nov 2016 09:17

You didn't address the points raised in regards to the specific examples. If the 10th for example, has reported 7 losses ( write-offs ) and this reported number now is part of the official write-off data it is obvious the numbers are incomplete. Your lengthy description of the issue does not discount Bergstroms logic in my opinion.
However, that doesn't matter, since you are talking about two very different data sets with different objectives; comparing one to the other or drawing conclusions about one from the other, is insane.
Not sure what is insane about that. Is there concrete evidence the 10th Armoured has only written off 10 tanks? You have provided none, therefore I am willing to assume that Bergstroms reasoning is correct. I am not saying fact he says is true but you didn't seem to refute his point. You are well researched obviously but you didn't provide facts specific for his examples. To be honest I don't see the relevance of your post. I am certainly a layman but unless Bergstroms numbers for the 10th Armored are incorrect his reasoning is sound, you have not provided data which disputes his numbers.
Sorry, but again a fundamental lack of understanding on what was reported, who reported it, and for what purpose. What was written off has nothing to do with the strength numbers of units.[(quote]

Actually, it does. The fact that strength numbers ( operational and complete count ) are often known shows that there is no complete record for the replacement tanks. If we had one we could easily establish write off numbers or at least KOs. It's obvious that if we unable to account for all tanks we can't be certain about anything.
They are called Ordnance depots.
Unless several thousands of Shermans were in those depots in Europe the Sherman loss data seems suspect.
No they aren't. They're almost invariably based upon M-H's postwar compilation or on the fragmentary records of the Generalinspektur der Panzertruppen and the Qu.
Well, most counts on Wehrmacht losses ( Normandy for example ) I have seen are simply checking the left over tanks since replacement and initial tank strength are known. This method does not seem to work for the US because nobody knows how much Shermans exactly were left.

{quote]No, it is not from Armored Thunderbolt. Figures on Lend-Lease shipped are based upon Theodore E. Whiting, Carrel I. Tod, and Anne P. Craft, The United States Army in World War II: Statistics, Lend-Lease, Office of the Chief of Military History, Department of the Army, Washington, DC, 15 December 1952. No Lend-Lease went to "Italy or the Pacific", so I'm not sure why you would look for the figures?
I meant I don't know which proportion of the land lease tanks were exclusively used in the ETO
The problem is the same one we always get when comparing Allied tank casualties with German total losses. This distortion is so widespread it is difficult to explain this skewed method an anything other than a deliberate attempt to create a false narrative. When you factor in that all German tanks shot full of holes and languishing 'in repair' then left behind when the retreat started end up being classed (on internet forums) as 'non combat' losses then the problem is magnified.
This seems often true but should not really influence the overall write-off data or does it? At least not for longer period. But I get your point, for shorter time frames like battles the German system makes the losses look smaller on the first glance. But I thought the scope of the thread ist complete write offs ETO. This time frame doesn'T seem to allow much discussion for the Wehrmacht because basically all combat vehicles were lost.


Not saying this is strong evidence but checking "Armored thunderbolt" loss numbers for Dezember and Januar seem to suggest Bergstrom is on to something.

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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Richard Anderson » 03 Nov 2016 15:26

Shermaninterest wrote:You didn't address the points raised in regards to the specific examples. If the 10th for example, has reported 7 losses ( write-offs ) and this reported number now is part of the official write-off data it is obvious the numbers are incomplete. Your lengthy description of the issue does not discount Bergstroms logic in my opinion.
Sorry, but yes I did, but you refuse to understand.

The 10th Armored Division did not report "write offs". They reported "losses" or, more accurately, operational status. "Write off" was a determination made by the Ordnance Department as to whether or not a vehicle "lost" was repairable or not.

What is Bergstrom's logic? He takes two completely different sets of data, compiled for two different purposes, and says one contravenes the other. That is not logic. That is a misunderstanding of the data sets.
Not sure what is insane about that. Is there concrete evidence the 10th Armoured has only written off 10 tanks?
For the last time. The 10th Armored Division reported losses, not write offs.
You have provided none, therefore I am willing to assume that Bergstroms reasoning is correct.
What reasoning are you referring to? The problem is, there is a second data set compiled by army for reports of Ordnance write offs from division and battalion Ordnance officers. i.e. from units like "10th Armoured [sic]". However, it is SMALLER than the final corrected totals in the monthly reports of the AFV&W Section. By the "logic" and "reasoning" of Bergstrom and yourself, it should be HIGHER.
I am not saying fact he says is true but you didn't seem to refute his point. You are well researched obviously but you didn't provide facts specific for his examples. To be honest I don't see the relevance of your post. I am certainly a layman but unless Bergstroms numbers for the 10th Armored are incorrect his reasoning is sound, you have not provided data which disputes his numbers.
For the final time. Bergstrom requested data on armor losses for the period of the Ardennes. I provided them. Unfortunately, he did not consult with me regarding the assumptions he made with regards to the data, thus he badly misunderstood the information he was provided.

The "10th" example only illustrates how badly the data is misunderstood. The division reported losses to its operational status, not write offs. It is impossible to tell how many of those losses were in fact write offs or were later repaired and re-issued.
Actually, it does. The fact that strength numbers ( operational and complete count ) are often known shows that there is no complete record for the replacement tanks. If we had one we could easily establish write off numbers or at least KOs. It's obvious that if we unable to account for all tanks we can't be certain about anything.
We can easily establish "write off numbers" since that is what the cumulative AFV&W Section figures are. What we CANNOT establish are "KOs", since they are something completely different that were never systematically tracked because NOBODY CARED. They had ZERO relevance to the replacement question. Oddly enough, getting you and others to understand this point is eerily similar to the problem the ETOUSA had getting the CONUS War Department Army Services Forces to understand why its replacement factors were inadequate and why the theater was experiencing a shortage in tanks.
Unless several thousands of Shermans were in those depots in Europe the Sherman loss data seems suspect.
First you need to show that "several thousand" were missing.
Well, most counts on Wehrmacht losses ( Normandy for example ) I have seen are simply checking the left over tanks since replacement and initial tank strength are known. This method does not seem to work for the US because nobody knows how much Shermans exactly were left.
Sorry, but no, we also have the OQu monthly figures for "write offs" by theater from April 1943 to December 1944 (with some gaps).
I meant I don't know which proportion of the land lease tanks were exclusively used in the ETO
Why does that matter?
Not saying this is strong evidence but checking "Armored thunderbolt" loss numbers for Dezember and Januar seem to suggest Bergstrom is on to something.
What is he on to other than the well-known fact that losses were always greater than write offs?
"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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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Richard Anderson » 03 Nov 2016 15:31

Michate wrote:A useful set of tank status listings for US armored units during the Normandy battle has been compiled by Leo Niehorster: http://www.niehorster.org/013_usa/44-06 ... ngths.html
Technically speaking, those figures were compiled by me. I provided them to Leo from my research, just as I provided the figures to Christer. Leo wisely chose to use the data as they were, without making assumptions about them. Christer was not as wise, which is sad, since he is normally quite good at his work.
"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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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by MarkN » 03 Nov 2016 15:40

I see another thread has become an endless loop between somebody who has put in hours upon hours researching primary material and analysing the data with an 'expert' who has read a few books and knows it all.

Whilst it is true that most primary documents contain errors - if not complete nonsense (consider British RAC documents up to 1942 as evidence of this) - the 'expert' book reader must understand that the authors of the books they read are, at best, only reiterating those same primary documents with the author's attempt to fill in blanks and explain discrepancies.

As one poster above has so rightly pointed out, it is impossible to understand any of the data (or the material one is reading) if one doesn't first grasp the terminology and the context of the data.

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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Michate » 03 Nov 2016 15:45

Cui honorem, honorem.

A useful set of tank status listings for US armored units during the Normandy battle has been compiled by Richard Anderson and published at Leo Niehorster's web site: http://www.niehorster.org/013_usa/44-06 ... ngths.html

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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by Shermaninterest » 03 Nov 2016 17:35

MarkN wrote:I see another thread has become an endless loop between somebody who has put in hours upon hours researching primary material and analysing the data with an 'expert' who has read a few books and knows it all.
I assumed this forum is a perfectly fine place to exchange opinions and challenge others. I am aware of Richard Anderson credentials and that he is a respected researcher. I am not sure if this should prohibit me from raising some issues I noticed. Mr Anderson can obviously stop replying to me if he finds that I'm missing the points and that we argue in circles until he does I'm thankful for his attempts to clarify his position to a layman.
Richard Anderson wrote:Sorry, but yes I did, but you refuse to understand.

The 10th Armored Division did not report "write offs". They reported "losses" or, more accurately, operational status. "Write off" was a determination made by the Ordnance Department as to whether or not a vehicle "lost" was repairable or not.

What is Bergstrom's logic? He takes two completely different sets of data, compiled for two different purposes, and says one contravenes the other. That is not logic. That is a misunderstanding of the data sets.
I understand that. I am also sure Bergstrom knows the difference between temporarily losses and total write-offs. The point is the "7" seem to the "official" write-offs for this unit as part of the overall compilation which gives 530 Shermans for December ( He references you so I assume you compiled this data).

Bergstrom: "Thus, for example, the 10th Armored Division losses in December 1944 are given as seven Shermans...."

Stop here. 7 write-offs(!) for the 10th AD in December.

He now explains that parts of the unit lost 20 tanks in a single action the Battle of Longvilly. He does not say those are write-offs. And this is not really that important. For the "7" to be correct, 13 of those 20 must have been repaired and no other part of the part of the unit could have sustained losses or more than 13 were repaired and other parts suffered write-offs. Considering the circumstances under which the unit had to pull back this assumption already feels very unlikely.


From the ibibilio site:
"Team Cherry (Lt. Col. Henry T. Cherry) of CCB, 10th Armored Division, which had been sent along the road toward Longvilly the previous evening, found itself involved in a series of disjointed actions as enemy troops cut the highway. Team Hyduke (1st Lt. Edward P. Hyduke) was caught up in the fight east of Mageret, subsequently losing all its vehicles"

From the same site:
"10th Armored, and CCR, 9th Armored, had between them some forty operable medium tanks by the 21st"

That doesn't sound like just 20 tank "casualties".


Bergstrom in his description of the actions mentions several times, that the records are incomplete and he does not sound like simply misunderstanding KOs and write-offs.

All things considered, the 7 write-offs seem very unlikely. The parts of the 10th Armored were beaten and had to retreat with their heavy equipment but lost only 7 as write-offs while seemingly only having a handful of operational tanks left 2 days later? From the list in thunderbolt the 10th AD had 165 Shermans in December but some days of fighting the unit had less than 40 tanks operational with only 7 write-offs? The same site gives 119 Shermans for January. Something dropped the unit holdings by 46 Shermans even with replacements but only 7 were written off in the heaviest fights around Bastogne? I am not claiming to have the answers but it feels that the official number are difficult to believe.

Again I want to point out that I don't think Mr. Andersons numbers are wrongly compiled but rather that I think it's highly likely that primary data available is incomplete and so every compilation of said is likely incomplete aswell. There is only so much you can do with data which is missing parts...

MarkN
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Re: German ETO destroyed armor 1944-1945

Post by MarkN » 03 Nov 2016 18:44

Shermaninterest wrote: He now explains that parts of the unit lost 20 tanks in a single action the Battle of Longvilly. He does not say those are write-offs. And this is not really that important. For the "7" to be correct, 13 of those 20 must have been repaired and no other part of the part of the unit could have sustained losses or more than 13 were repaired and other parts suffered write-offs. Considering the circumstances under which the unit had to pull back this assumption already feels very unlikely.

From the ibibilio site:
"Team Cherry (Lt. Col. Henry T. Cherry) of CCB, 10th Armored Division, which had been sent along the road toward Longvilly the previous evening, found itself involved in a series of disjointed actions as enemy troops cut the highway. Team Hyduke (1st Lt. Edward P. Hyduke) was caught up in the fight east of Mageret, subsequently losing all its vehicles"

From the same site:
"10th Armored, and CCR, 9th Armored, had between them some forty operable medium tanks by the 21st"

That doesn't sound like just 20 tank "casualties".
I see you continue to mix 'written off', 'lost' and 'casualty' in your writing. They all mean different things.

How many tanks did CCB, 10th AD start the battle of Bastogne with? I mean actually start with - not how many they should have had according to establishment.

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