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The myths of WWII (Eastern Europe)

Discussion in 'Eastern Europe' started by LJAd, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    With the permission of the highests authorities,an incomplete list (of course,everybody is invited to add other myths)
    1)Barbarossa was delayed because of the war in the Balkans
    2)Because of the stupid Hitler (always skilfull to use the stupid Hitler as an excuse )the Germans could not capture Moscow
    3)Point 2 was a turning point
    4)The German failure to capture Leningrad was a turning point (always skilfull the use of turning points to hide one's lack of knowledge)
    5) Point 2 was not due to the stupid Hitler,but to the unexpected(!) arrival of the Russian winter in the beginning of december
    6) the Russian winter was the hardest in memory,of the century,in history (!)
    7) The stupid Hitler (I know,it's boring:cool:)was responsible that the Germans did not get winterclothing
    8) Countless of Germans died because of the Russian winter
    9)Point 5 was not due to the stupid Hitler,but to the unexpected(!) arrival of the millions of Siberian troops
    10)The Siberian troops were going to the Moscow front,because Stalin listened to the informations of his master spy (Sorge)
    11) Millions of Russians were willing to fight with the Germans against Stalin,but the stupid Hitler (always him;)) was forbidding it,because of his racial biases
     
  2. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    12) If Japan also had attacked the SU,the SU was doomed
    13)Without the oil of the Caucasus,the SU was lost
    14)The aim of Fall Blau (=German summeroffensive in 1942) was Stalingrad
    15)Stalingrad was the fault of ...Hitler (good guess)
    16)Kursk was a turning point
    17)Prochorova was the biggest tank battle in WWII
    18)The Russians did not win at Kursk,it was the West:Kursk was canceled because of Husky .
    19)The Russians did not win at Kursk,it was the West :the boys of Bletchey Park intercepted the German radio traffic and some communists at Bletchey Park were giving the information to Stalin
    20)The Russians did not win at Kursk,it was the West :the Lucy spyring obtained the secret German plans from from high ranked German generals (a variant is :from Bormann!) and transmitted them to Moscow.
    For 18,19 and 20,the reason lying behind is :the Russians were to primitive to be able to win against the sophisticated Germans,they received the aid from the brilliant West .
     
  3. Mehar

    Mehar Ace

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    The Russian weather certainly did play a role in the day to day operation of German forces (the Russians were more prepared). It made getting supplies, people, etc from point A to point B a logistical nightmare and made it harder for the soldiers to operate.

    V24N2 - Failure Of Logistics In "Operation Barbarossa" And Its Relevance Today

    Not sure how many deaths were as a direct result but among all the other problems I'm sure it didn't help much.
     
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  4. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    I know the article,but,I am not impressed,because,the German offensive already was stopped BEFORE the winter,thus the winter can not be the mean reason for the failure of the Germans,unless one is thinking that the winter was starting in october .
    One even can argue that the winter was hindering principally the attacking side (=the SU)
    About the 14000 amputations,this sounds big,but it's only 0.5 % of the Ostheer .And the death toll :maybe 2000=negligible .
     
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  5. freebird

    freebird Member

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    Hold on, I wouldn't take these as "myth" :confused:

    1.) Barbarossa was delayed by the Balkan operations.
    6.) The winter of 41/42 may not have been the coldest ever, but it was colder than usual.
    8.) Countless Germans did die from the cold, but obviously in conjunction with OKH failure to prepare winter clothes.
    11.) There were indeed millions of Soviet citizens who were opposed to the Communists and would fight against them.
     
  6. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    1) It was not :it was the weather:at the beginning of june,many rivers in the western SU (which would have to be crossed during the attack,a.o.the Bug and the Narew),were still in flood,due to the late thaw .
    8 )The German non combat losses during the winter 1941-1942 were
    december :91000
    january:128000
    february:85000
    march:62000
    Total =366000
    Bear in mind that the losses due to freezing only were a minority :ex.for 1-11 december :2185,of whom 103 amputations and 22 death cases (1 %)
    While there was in the beginning of cember a shortage of winterclothing (understandable,because in november,the Germans had to choose:weapons,ammunition,and such things,OR winterclothing),it was not that important,because the big problems only happend in january,which is in whole Europe,the coldest month .
    6) As far I remember (but you have to consider that my memory is not what it used to be),the problem of the 41-42 winter was not that the cold,but the snow,which was mostly hindering the attacker (=the Russians)
    8)Here you are making the mistake to think that people who were opposed to communism (and there were a lot of them),also would risk their live by fighting against communism:in the occupied countries (as France,Belgium,)most people were opposed to the Germans,but,only a negligible % was joining the resistance .
    Whatever,their number and their willingness was irrelevant,as the only chance for the Germans to win,was to win in the first 10 weeks,and,as this imaginary big Russian Liberation Army never could be operational in this period,its existence was irrelevant .
     
  7. freebird

    freebird Member

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    Do you have any primary data to support your claim?

    From my research (in Russian) the thaw was mainly late in the northern sector, but not in the southern sector. If the attack had been launched in the beginning of May, rather than in Jume, it wouldn't have caused many problems. The northern sector was much weaker than the southern sector. The Germans would be advancing through (modern) Belarus, with less opposition.
    The weather was much better in May in western Ukraine, where the major soviet mechanized forces were grouped.

    It certainly was important, but there are no accurate statistics to measure it.
    How many Germans were frozen or incapacitated by the cold, and killed or captured by the Soviets?
    If the performance of you troops is degraded (as they are numb & half frozen) they certainly cannot fight as well, resulting in more casualties (killed & captured)
    German units were also killed or captured due to weather when their weapons & vehicles froze & failed.

    There were people in (Soviet) occupied Europe that did fight against the Soviets in WWII.
    Anti-Soviet partisans - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    What's your basis to declare it "irrelevant"?
    Have you been to the Baltic countries or Ukraine?

    We will never know how effective it could have been because the Nazi's brutal actions in Ukraine in the opening months of the war discouraged many from joining the anti-Soviet resistance.

    If, on the other hand, Hitler had declared Ukraine as an independant state (though as a Nazi puppet of course) they could likely have recruited hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians to fight.
    Ukraine had suffered very badly under the Holodomor ( Голодомор) and other Communist actions, so they had very little loyalty or love for the Soviets
     
  8. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    I know very well that there was a lot of hostility in the annexed territories and in the western Ukraine,but,again,that does not prove that there were millions waiting to fight against communism.
    And,again,for the Germand,it was irrelevant .
    The Germans planned to defeat the SU in 10 weeks,before september,because,after september,they had (from their POV),little or no chance to win .
    Now,do you really think that,if there were millions available to join the Germans,that these millions would be operational in 10 weeks ? You have any idea what they would need on ammunition,weapons,supplies in these 10 weeks,and this,while the Germans were unable to give their own troops the indespensable weapons,fuel,ammunition,supplies ?
    The railway situation was catastrophic,in Germany,the industry could not produce enough,the Germans were UNABLE to send reinforcements before september,on 1 september only 96 tanks were sent to the front and you imagine they could feed in these 10 weeks an extra army of 1 million men ?And 1 million men,without officers and NCO's,and without military experience ! Do you know how long it took the US to make a division operational ?
     
  9. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    My point 8 is that the claim thar countless (!)German soldiers died because of the Russian winter,is a myth .Replies that German soldiers were incapacitated and frozen by the Russian winter,are a strawman,as this never was the subject .
    From a post on AHF by "Hero" (with as thread :German casualties in Barbarossa 1941)
    For 93 % of the Non Combat Losses ,the average time of being unfit for action,was roughly a month .About 5 %were only to be used for work of garrison duties,1% unfit for any duty and O.67 % DIED
     
  10. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    Last point on the "Russian Volunteers":eek:n the risk of going off topic:the political reliability of such units:those who were stationed in Normandy,were willingly surrendering to the Allies,at the end of the war,the Vlassov units were mutineering in Prague,also at the end of the war,Georgian units at the isle of Terschelling(Holland) were mutineering,and killed their German NCO's.
     
  11. T. A. Gardner

    T. A. Gardner Genuine Chief

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    The T 34 and KV 1 made a huge difference before 1943....

    The P-39 was frequently used as a tank buster.

    That only German troops suffered terribly in winter on the Eastern Front.
     
  12. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    2 other ones:
    Hitler's stand order nearly caused the destruction of the German army in the winter of 1941-42.
    Hitler's stand order saved the German army in the winter of 1941-1942
     
  13. olegbabich

    olegbabich Member

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    During Summer of 1941, most of Red Air Force planes were destroyed on their airfields by Luftwaffe.
     
  14. Jager

    Jager Member

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    I would say most of your so called myths are in fact true. It was a combination of the weather, Hitler's orders, the arrival of Siberian troops, and limited supplies of the Germans that halted the advance just outside of Moscow. Also Moscow, Leningrad, and Stalingrad would be considered the turning points of the eastern front. These 3 things caused the Germans alot of things they could not afford. Leningrad resulted in forcing the Germans to keep a number of forces north when reserves could have been shifted to push into moscow or to break the encirclement at Stalingrad. Capturing Moscow would have kept Guderian in command, and obviously its important considering its the capital cit of russia and alot of information would be forfeited to the German upon capture, plus the logistical, political, and militarial structure would be at least temporarily unorganized. And of course Stalingrad because it kept the Germans from getting into all the industry and resources in the cacauses. And rest assured a good chunk of the world steel and oil comes from that part even today. It would not have as much hurt the soviets because they are so vast but it would have provided plenty of meneuvering space, oil, and steel for German tanks. Those 3 things are definantly very big parts of the eastern front. The Germans had already lost by Kursk so that was not a turning point. It was more like an attempt to further delay the inevitable.
     
  15. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    Well,it was not the weather,Hitler'orders,the (few) Siberian units,limited German supplies that halted the Germans :it was the Russians.The Germans already were stopped at the end of augustus,and they were stoped again at the end of november,when they were weaker than in augustus,by the Russians who were stronger than in augustus .
    From 23 june on,the Russians became stronger,and the Germans weaker .The situation would not change,with or without Guderian .The only chance for the Germans was if Moscow was captured before october,and,that was depending on the Russians .
    Stalingrad :the fall of Stalingrad would not mean the fall of the oil fields of the Caucasus :Stalingrad in se had no importance :AGB had as mission to go the the Wolga,to defeat the Russians and thus to protect the left flank of AGA,but AGA had already failed .
    Btw :the possession of the Caucasus would have given the Germans nothing:when Maikop was captured,it was that destroyed that the Germans got not one barrell of oil .
    About Leningrad :its fall in the autumn of 1941,would not mean the fall of Moscow .While it is true that Leningrad was claiming reserves in 1942 (the 11th army),the same was also true for AGC(which lost more men in august than AGS)
     
  16. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    I think the credit needs to be spread a bit more than that.
    The August halt was in large part a logistical one from what I've read. The one in front of Moscow was due to a number of things but I'd put the Red Army at the top of the list. It should be noted however that the Red Army was composed of a lot more than Russians.
     
  17. Jager

    Jager Member

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    First off to say that Germany was weak at any point before losing the 6th army at Stalingrad would be insanely inaccurate. Germany was at no time weak before 1943 and even until the end of the war they were still a force to reckon. Also, when I look at the fact that the Germans were dropping Russian soldiers faster than rain can fall, I would not say that the Red Army stopped the German offensive. The Red Army surely drove them back but it was a combination of logistical, weather and tactical problems of the Germans that caused the advance to stall long enough for the russian army to re-organize. With the exception at Leningrad where the russian army held out the siege with large numbers and fast production of ppsh smg's and t-34's. And how was moscow dependent on the russians? It was Hitler who ordered Guderian to turn his reserves south when he was standing less than 3 miles outside of moscow which enabled the russian army to stall the advance with the help of the weather. and stalingrad would have meant the fall of the cacauses because most of the russian army lay around the north of stalingrad. also stalingrad was a major industrial center with lots of railroads and directly on the volga which is crucial for germans to transport materails from the cac. also the cac is terrain suitable for german armor to blitz across. The cacs would do nothing for the Germans? Where is your idealogy on that? The Germans were depending on the oil fields of ploesti for their oil. without ploesti the germans had to resort to an expensive reprocess of methanol for their gasoline. it was ultimately the bombing of ploesti by the USA that caused the German to lose oil produciton for the rest of the war
     
  18. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    1) About the weakness of Germany :why do you think Hitler said in his Barbarossa order that the SU had to be defeated in a quick campaign ? It is obvious :because Germany was to weak to defeat the SU in a long campaign:it only was strong enough for a "Blitzkrieg" campaign (as in 1940):Germany was the weaker one .It attacked in june 1941 with less artillery and aircraft than in may 1940.
    2) Always Stalingrad :in june 1943Germany was stronger on the Eastfront than before Stalingrad .
    3)About the ratio of casualties betwen Germany and the SU :notwithstanding a ratio of (at least ) 1/5,the SU stoped the Germans at the end of the 1941 summer,BECAUSE,they were sending as much or more men to the frontline as they lost .
    till october,the SU had lost (at least) 2.7 million men(without sick),on 1 january :4.2 million men .
    They started with 3 million (operational forces + Stavka reserve),and on 1 december,they had 4.6 million :that's an increase of 1 MILLION PER MONTH,
    On the German side ,it was the opposite :eek:n 1 september :casualties :400000 men,no replacements ,on 1 december :750000 men ,replacements :less than 500000,on 1 january :830000 men .
    From the FIRST day on,the Germans were weakening (men,weapons,...) and they knew it,before the attack ,that's why they had to win in a quick campaign .What was killing the Germans was that ,from the first day on,the defensive capability of the Soviets was increasing.The summer weather was irrelevant .
    4) The fall of Moscow was depending on the Russians (or Soviets for pedantic people) :eek:nly if the Soviet resistance collapsed,could the Germans capture Moscow :they were weaker on 1 october (whenTyphoon started) than on 22 june .
    When Guderian was going south (Kiew) ,he still was at Smolensk,a lot of miles from Moscow .
    5)The Germans captured Maikop,and got only a few barrels of oil,because the Soviets gad destroyed the whole thing ,thus,I don't see any benefit for the Germans .
    6) The caucasus being terrain suitable for German panzers to blitz accross ? Something new :big mountains are not suitable for armor .
    7 )Stalingrad was not crucial for the Germans ,they would not use it to transport oil from the Caucasus .The mean attack in Fall Blau was the Caucasus ,AGB had as mission to protect the left flank of AGA by driving back the Soviets behind the Wolga .
    8) About Plusti :I think that the importance is much exagerated .I thought that the bombing of the oil refineries in Germany were more important .
     
  19. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    About the importance of Plusti :
    in 1938,the German oil consumption was :44 million barrels
    supply :imports from oversea :28 million
    :imports from Europe :3.8 million (Romania :2.8)
    :home production :3.8
    :synthetic production :9 million
    Thus :importance of Romania :less than 7 %
    1943 :total supplies :71 million barrels
    :Romania :13 million
    home production :12 million
    :Synthetic :36 million
    importance of Romania :less than 20 %
    In august 1943 ,the air raids destroyed 50 % of the Romanian refinery capacity .
    Source :the role of synthetic fuel in WWII Germany .
     
  20. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    The OP was,after the defeat of the Red Army to halt in august for refulling,etc,,but,the Red Army was not defeated ,the Germans were blocked and had to halt .
     

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