The Wallies sent a substantial amount of war materiel to the SU, including over 18,000 aircraft and an insane amount of avgas. The very idea that "substracting the SU from the equatation would only mean more German forces against the same Wallied forces" is wrong.History Learner wrote: ↑21 Dec 2020 08:49These aren't exactly good comparisons though; whether or not more German bombers can successfully terror bomb Britain into surrender is rather different, in both tactical and strategic realities, than the Germans deploying more fighters to the Mediterranean in 1943 and somehow getting defeated even faster. To get an idea of what I mean:Peter89 wrote: ↑21 Dec 2020 08:36Quite the contrary, the air war was full of these situations.
In the night bombing campaign against Britain in 1940 / 1941. The airlift to Tunisia in 1942 / 1943.
In some cases, the deployment alone causes +10-20% non-combat losses.
If the Germans had twice more bombers in 1940, and they'd still deploy them as they did OTL, they might drop more bombs on Britain, but they would ultimately fail. In order to achieve sunstantially different results, the Germans needed like ten times the planes, and their additional crew, and the ground infrastructure, aviation fuel, spare part production, etc. Which is why it is a bit more complicated than a "more is better" approach.
To assume that "everything goes better for Germany" is simply not plausible. It would require a series of good calls instead of a series of wrong calls, each having a unique background why those calls were made.
The same goes for Tunisia; if the Germans had way more transport planes, they couldn't hope to sustain their forces in Africa via air.
Say the Allies are facing 1,000 German fighters and can shoot down 100 a day. You would thus assume, in 10 days, the Allies to eliminate their German opponents. Say the Germans reinforce that starting force with another 1,000 fighters, however, since the USSR has collapsed. Would the Allies still be able to defeat all 2,000 fighters in the original 10 days? No, because their capacity to inflict damage has not changed; it will now take them 20 days to eliminate all German fighters.
The only way to change this is by either increasing their ability to inflict damage with existing resources-which begs the question of how come they didn't do this historically-or they have to increase the amount of their own resources to compensate for the increase in German strength. Lastly, they can just accept the increase in German strength and struggle through attrition warfare, given with existing resources they can wear down this new German strength but it will take twice as long historically and that carries grave political consequences in both the United States and United Kingdom. TheMarcksPlan has, in other threads, shown that there was an understanding on the part of Anglo-American political leadership this was unfeasible, both politically and economically given what an Axis controlled Europe from Brittany to the Urals/A-A Line would mean.
Lastly, more German transports to North Africa can mean they can sustain them via air because you're increasing the influx of supplies. What happened historically was a shortage of sufficient transports and insufficient air cover to protect them; not an ability on the part of airpower to bring in needed supplies.
Moreover, they would defeat Japan, freeing up more and more resources to fight against Germany.
As for the Tunisian operation: the Germans had to send 80-100 escort fighters for approximately the same number of transports. The escorts had to refuel and reload ammo in Tunisia, etc. It was a madness. Not even twice the number of planes would change that outcome.
Also, deploying X times more of aircraft do not increase the delivered supplies by a factor of X; Tunis and Bizerte were the major airports, Gabes and Sfax had all kind of deficiencies and only the most skilled crew could fly there. So even if you have ten times the planes, you'll have to commit them piecemal. The OTL landings of 3900 Ju-52s and 160 Me-323s could be multiplied; it wouldn't mean a big change (maybe later, but the Germans still lose Africa), but it would contribute to higher German losses.
The problem with your approach that the Germans' doubled escort size would result a lower attrition rate is not entirely that easy either. Larger escort means lower efficiency. The Germans started the airlift operations in this theatre with an 1:15 ratio in 1941, and arrived to a 1:1 ratio in 1943. You really claim that a 2:1 ratio is feasible? That would essentially cripple the whole operation.
Besides, the Wallies intercepted air convoys with the matching amount of sorties; if you double the escort to 160-200, you will still lose, if you can't replenish your air forces at the same rate as the Wallies.
Also, the Wallies had the opportunity to increase their intercepting sorties to a level which the matching escort had no chance to compete with using the Tunisian airfields. Even as they were, they were stretched to their limits.