ljadw wrote:Germany had not the means to win a long campaign
Obviously I disagree.
If Hitler has 20 more mobile divisions then AGS and AGN encircle and destroy their opponents during the border battles and in subsequent campaigns. AGC doesn't need to divert from its drive on Moscow; Stalin has significantly weaker forces everywhere. '41 campaign ends with Germans in Leningrad, Moscow, VOronezh, and Rostov. Germany conducts a winter offensive towards the Caucasus, maybe reaching Maikop before the spring thaw. In any event, Baku is within reach for the '42 campaign, as are Gorkiy and the whole Volga basin. By summer '43, Stalin has only ~40mil loyal subjects if the USSR hasn't collapsed. Germany can screen the East with a smaller force and with allies while making any assault on Western Europe too costly for the Allies to undertake.
Richard Anderson wrote:Uh, dude (or is it bro?)
Either is acceptable, as is "My Lord" or even "My Lady."
RIchard Anderson wrote:Pardon me for being more than slightly unimpressed by your genius.
I'm not surprised that in your mind this conversation is about who is smarter. That your motivation here is to show how smart you are and how much you know. I invite you to engage substantively with my proposals.
Do you think it historically implausible and economically impossible (1) for Germany to have shifted '38-'41 production and investment from LW/KM to Heer, and (2) for it to have mobilized more resources early in the war?
You seem to answer "yes" to both questions, but haven't said so explicitly. If I'm right in that guess, then what's your argument? In particular, why couldn't Germany have made different cuts to its armaments programs in early 1939, such as avoiding Plan Z in favor of ramping up Heer programs that were cut, most notably a 50% cut to planned tank building? Surely you're aware that the crisis that caused these cuts was financial, such that spending between the services was essentially fungible at that particular point.
Why couldn't Germany have appointed a "Plenpotentiary for Labor" immediately after war began, with broad powers to induct foreign and domestic workers?
I can see several facially valid responses to these questions but all of them arguably are overcome if Hitler has a different strategic conception of the coming war with the USSR. For example: "Greater demands will inspire greater resistance among the French and Polish." Sure, but with a bigger war looming Hitler's probably more willing to make more risks and throw his weight at allies and the conquered.
We can get down to brass tacks of how the greater forces are "paid for." But we'd have to adopt a different tone and be more explicit about our priors.