Good, agreed. That we can identify the capability - and the requirement - 79 years later doesn't of course say a damned thing about what they might have been able to identify then, with events cascading down on them.
We're looking at multiple things actually. There is manpower mobilization, then there is economic mobilization, and also resource mobilization, which are all interrelated. The UK mobilized very quickly, faster than the Germans, in really all respects, but then fell behind as the risk of actually losing started to recede. The Germans, like the Soviets, mobilized more effectively in toto, but just a bit slower than the British and Soviets, primarily because they believed they were winning.My understanding of the overall picture is that Germany had a similar level of manpower mobilization - either military or industrial - as the U.K. in the period in question. Increasing production meant either radicalizing German mobilization (which they did after Moscow, largely to restore frontline strength) and/or instituting a program of forced foreign labor on the lines of what they did in March 1942.
One of the problems for the Germans is that they over-mobilized WRT manpower in 1939-1940, expecting they had a tough fight against the Franco-British coalition. It affected industrial output and the organization of the armed forces well into 1942.
The constant reallocation of resources as different assumptions about the state of the war percolated through the German leadership was a problem well identified by Tooze.The impetus to imagine such radical measures was simply absent before December 1941. The Germans even slashed Heer armaments production pretty steeply in the second half of 1941. They were operating under the assumption that Barbarossa was a simple precursor to the partial demobilization of the Heer and the subsequent reorientation of their war effort towards fighting the U.K. and, probably, the U.S.
Very true. My problem comes when the impetus is declared to be "they think harder".So although I agree that it was unlikely to happen, the ATL is still interesting inasmuch as it illustrates how the assumptions and decisions (or absence of decisions) of the period from July 1940 to December 1941 had a decisive, shaping effect on the latter course of the German manpower deployment and armaments production.
I don't think anyone realized that the entire German war plan - such as it was - was little more than opportunistic jumping from one fire to another, without any real thought as to what the outcome might be or how to put the fires out. It makes the American war planning for Iraq 2002 look like pure genius.For what it's worth, my opinion is that, had the Germans realized that Barbarossa was unrealistic as a short campaign, they would have mobilized the resources of Europe in a more broad-based fashion than to just form 5 extra Panzer divisions - and in the final analysis I suspect TMP agrees with this. Then again, Hitler was unlikely to see the need before it stared him in the face, given how wishful thinking was such a core aspect of his personality.
Indeed, it may be they had to see it that way, because it was the least unpalatable way out of the mess they had gotten into.If I allow myself the indulgence to do a bit of pop psychology, I'd even argue that the German leadership needed to see Barbarossa as an easy and brief land grab, given the scope of their predicament if it was otherwise.