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what if the Spanish and Turks agreed to help Hitler

Discussion in 'Alternate History' started by yan taylor, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Yes, the Spaniards had just experienced a terribe civil war and were still burying their dead. They were still very divided and no doubt that in case of a war a large part of the population would have their hearts beating for an allied victory (the Former Republicans and those who suffered from the Luftwaffe and the Condor Legion) . The many refugees in France would have used this opportunity to fight Franco once's again, meaning franco would have Gibarlatar in the South and a potential Republican Guerilla in the North before he's even start any operation.
     
  2. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    Not again ,please:eek:
     
  3. belasar

    belasar Court Jester

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    No one ever expects the Spanish Inquisition! ( or the Spanish/Turkish join the Axis thread! ) :)
     
  4. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Now you know there is worse torture than the Spanish inquisition :D
     
  5. knightdepaix

    knightdepaix Member

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    Please read this Wikipedia article even if you do not like Wikipedia for reasons or another.
    On the battlefield, Italy at least put up some rarities of good fight against the British in North Africa and won early engagements. Spain would not.
     
  6. knightdepaix

    knightdepaix Member

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    So the assumption that the Axis co-belligerents joined Germany and could make Germany light years better is not true. However, after the battle of France, could Germany not only confiscate machines for own use, but also copy French industries to Eastern Europe and the Balkans. During the interwar years, France was an on-and-off trade partners for Eastern European countries. Given their weaker industrial capabilities, could Spain, Hungary, Romania, Yugoslavia, Bulgaria copy French industries. However, Spain has a cultural advantage to Latin American nations. Could Spain tap into Latin America to speed up its economy recovery and not joining the Axis?
     
  7. Terry D

    Terry D Well-Known Member

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    I don't see how more badly equipped divisions from un-modernized armies would have been an asset to the Axis cause. (And yes, I do know that Spanish and Turkish troops could fight well, as if that by itself decided any war.) Where were the Germans going to find the equipment for Spanish and Turkish formations when they could barely equip their own? And as to suddenly cranking up respectable war industries in Spain and Turkey by just copying foreign designs, whether French or German--well, that could hardly have happened overnight. The only advantages that Spain and Turkey possessed for the Axis were geographical, namely Spain's position as a threat to Gibraltar and Turkey's position as a threat to the Near East and the Soviet Union. But if you cannot transform a geographical advantage into real military advantage due to lack of forces, what good is it? Axis strength was terribly overstretched as it was, and involvement in Turkey and Spain to support two such weak allies against British (and later American and/or Soviet) reaction would only have worsened things. Spain had just fought an exhausting war and was badly in need of reconstruction. The Turks had been severely burned by their involvement on the German side in WWI, and they remembered it too. Altogether I think both governments showed good sense by staying out. If he had possessed a brain, Mussolini would have been well advised to do the same.
     
  8. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Have you read the article? Really, all you need to do is read the first three paragraphs...They paint a rather bleak Spanish economic picture well into the 1950's. I'm not exactly sure where Germany would be able to, during the war years, equal the one billion dollars of US assistance Eisenhower gave to Spain in the 1950's. Spain would likely prove to be a money pit for Germany if she was an ally of theirs. Money would go in, but nothing useful to Germany would come out. Further, despite whatever ties Spain had to Latin America, Latin America, at the time, was well and truly under the US "thumb". There would be no assistance from Latin America to Spain unless the US allowed such assistance to go through.

    Turkey also would be a difficult proposition because there was no majority support for any of the warring sides of WW2. For the Turks, there was no overwhelming support for the Axis or Allies, and the Turks continued to do business with both, until defeat loomed for the Axis, and the Turks went to war with Germany.
     
  9. knightdepaix

    knightdepaix Member

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    I do not understand why a mere and very minor suggestion to take factories to less industrial developed nations would also happen overnight. Stalin government copy industries from European part of Soviet Union -- Ukraine and Belorussia more inland. Could Italy, Spain and the East European nations do the same from France? Either way, Spain and Turkey could not help Germany. However, for other nations fighting the Soviet Union on its own, for example Finland. Spain and East European technicians could work on the home front on machinery. Finland used wide variety of aircraft. More foreign technician maintenance on employment freed Finns to fly the plane and fight the Soviets.
     
  10. Terry D

    Terry D Well-Known Member

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    You are comparing a massive effort by a state (the USSR) which was fairly well industrialized already to two states which were far less advanced in that area. Spain indeed had some industry, including some war industry, but much of this had been badly damaged in the Civil War (Guernica was an arms-making town, which was doubtless one of the reasons why the Kondor Legion bombed it). I am less informed about Turkey. The Turks had some arsenals but if they had been truly self-supporting in arms production they would never had to buy so many different items from so many different suppliers before WWII. Sure, the Finns did quite a bit, but please note that even they had to import most of their guns, aircraft, and tanks and their effort could not be compared with that of a major industrial state like the USSR, Britain, or the US. The Germans already had to prop up one major ally with weak war industry (Italy) as well as Rumania, Hungary, and to a large extent Finland as well. The creation of war industry is not the business of a day or a week, but requires enormous planning and effort, to say nothing of raw materials, engineers, technicians, a sound transport network, etc. Did Spain and Turkey have these things? Germany had them, and even German war industry did not kick into really highest gear until 1942. Britain's production did not peak until the same year, American production did not attain sufficient volume until 1943. The Soviet displacement of their war industry from west to east led in the short term to serious disruption of production and major shortages of equipment, especially tanks. In the short term in a short war, Spain and Turkey might have offered some advantages to the Germans, but in a long attritional war of the kind WWII became they would have been a major drain on German resources of all kinds.
     
  11. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    The problem with this is that Stalin/USSR began copying industries of the West in 1918-1920. Thus he was well along in 1939. Now if the same scenario was given to Italy, Spain, and Eastern Europe, and given the same level of success, but beginning in 1939...It would be about 1950, before real positive growth was seen, and real benefit to their respective armed forces would occur around 1955.

    As several have said, this industrialization takes time, and industrializing Italy, Spain, and Eastern Europe in 1939*1940 is truly way too late to do any good for the next decade or so.

    You are forgetting that Finland produced only a minuscule number of aircraft during World War II, and an even smaller number of combat aircraft. Likewise, their tank production was equally pitiful - The only domestic tank produced was the BT-42 and only about 18 of these were constructed. So, relying on foreign/German technicians means that Germany has less of said technicians to use for herself. Not to mention less tanks and aircraft because they are being produced by Germans in Germany for the Finns.

    So essentially, there is no effective increase in combat power...Finland is not producing her own tanks and aircraft - unlike Britain, USA, or USSR - but drawing of stocks provided by the Germans, or in the case of the Winter War, provided by foreign companies.

    The reality is that this is more of a hindrance than a help for Germany.

    Except of course, Finland and Spain, essentially lack an industrial base, so those technicians won't really amount to a hill of beans. As to Romania, perhaps their technicians could be retrained to work in the petroleum industry, as neither their aircraft or armor production was very high.
    The Czechs were the only Eastern Europeans with a tank production worthy of name, but even then they did not make the jump to producing a reasonable medium tank during 1941-42.
     
  12. knightdepaix

    knightdepaix Member

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    Well, is TerryD assuming I support Spainish or Turkish help on Germany? However, I also not expressing that either nation could be well industrialized in short time -- about two years -- after Spainish Civil War in time for the OB. Why sending technicians automatically meant huge drain to national resources? Even factories have skilled workers. For example, you mentioned that Hungary had a weak war industry but that weakness did not hamper few hundred Hungarian officers and men volunteering in the Winter War for Finland. Why could Hungary not send again few hundred aircraft and machinery technicians to Finland working maintenance of aircraft of sorts and tank destroyers while more Finns fought in the front line...

    If I am guessing right, you are taking ideas to the extremes that a minor change could change the big picture... If you prefer no guess from readers, please let the reader know.

    Let us strike for calm discussion.

    So I appreciate TerryD's effort of explaining the Spainish situation. Franco's not participating Axis Co-belligerence showed his decision making. From the content of that Wikipedia's article even Spain's cooperation with Germany caused its economy greatly.

    However, Spanish volunteer combatants in the Blue Division fought in the Battle of Leningrad. Mediterranean Europeans fighting on the latitude of Stockholm, Sweden and Saint Petersburg may not be ideal. Maybe the deployment of Portuguese and Spainish combatants of the Blue Division shall be in Ukraine near Romania or the Crimea to booster Von Manstein's forces. Most German co-belligerent came from Central or Southern Europe. Maybe Slovaks in one division strength and Latvian shall be in the fight of Leningrad in place of the Spanish. Anyway, different arrangement of divisional strength foreign volunteers could not change the big picture -- Spain could not agree to help Hilter.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2017
  13. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Spain was getting its oil from the US. As it was the Italian fleet and to a lesser extent the KM were handicapped early in the war by a lack of oil. By mid war flight training was being impacted by the lack of fuel. Throwing additional demands on an already overburdened system is not a recipe for success. Was Spain self sufficient as far as food production goes? Would it have been if oil was in tighter supply? How about other raw materials?
     
  14. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Because all of the nations you have mentioned thus far, except the Czechs, had little in the way of trained technicians to send...Further along this line, most, if not all of these nations had little interest in Finland, and even less in the way of motivation to do so.

    Fighting in the trenches is grunt work...Any on can do it giving a brief training cycle.

    How many grunts would be able to rebuild a Pratt & Whitney R-1340? A Fiat A30 RA-bis V12? A Junkers Jumo 205?

    Are you daft man? The Hungarian Air Force(one of the larger of the less industrialized European nations) only had 262 aircraft...If Hungary sends away some hundreds of her trained technicians...Who is going to be performing maintenance on these aircraft? Further, with a the technician pool greatly reduced...Maintenance downtime will be much higher, as it will take longer. Operational readiness will drop precipitously, not to mention less aircraft will now be available, due to maintenance downtime, for pilot training.

    Clearly, you have not even begun to think this matter through, and are simply spit-balling.
     
  15. Honorius

    Honorius New Member

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    Going through Dr. Robert Forczyk's research, Spain's entry is only possible if Franco died and Turkey would need a different Government willing to forgive Germany's seizure of weapons they had paid for but never received. The Turks were pretty hacked off about that.

    But taking this Op at face value, and its vagueness as no date is given.

    If it is after the fall of France, the Vichy French will join in as well on the Axis side to pre-empt their territory being given to the Spanish or Turks as a reward. This basically kills the British in the Mediterranean as the Vichy French Navy combined with the Italian Navy and the Modest Spanish Navy makes the Mediterranean untenable for them. The Vichy French also has substantial air and ground forces as well. With this alliance, Stalin will jump in as well in declaring war on Britain and haring off into Persia and Afghanistan to achieve historical Russian strategic aims.

    At that point the Dominoes in the British Parliament start falling and Churchill is booted for someone who can negotiate a Peace of Amiens type deal till the Brits can get their house in order before it disintegrates. This will also cause them to reconsider their faith in the US and go begging back to Japan to renew the old alliance and simply raise cash as Churchill allowed himself to be swindled by FDR of Britain's gold reserves and US assets.

    Spain gets Gibraltar and not much else. Italy gets Malta and keeps what it gained in Africa and nought else. Turkey shaves off Northern Iraq and calls it good and sits out. Vichy gets its Prisoners and ships back. The Germans withdraw back to its pre-1914 borders with France. but keeps the Low Countries, Denmark, and Norway with those nation's Government in exiles being disbanded along with Polish and Czech ones by the British who then annex Iceland, the DEIs, DWIs, and Faeroes in compensation.

    However, Britain refuses to negotiate with Stalin as he threatens their prestige in Persia and India. Hitler smiles and carries on planning Operation Barbarossa.
     
  16. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Hitler didn't even ask Italy to join the war so I certainly don't see him trying to do this prior to the fall of France. Indeed it would be hard to arrange most of this prior to Barbarossa. Getting the Turks on board to declare after the start of Barbarossa makes some sense as it would further unhinge the Soviet defense. However if Stalin gets wind of it that might be enough for him to believe the intel he's getting about the possible German attack. In the mean time Spain has little or no access to oil so must be supplied with the same from the same pool that Germany and Italy are. Since Italy can't even keep her fleet supplied this doesn't suggest that the Axis will be able to keep there theoretical numerical advantage in play in the Med.
     
  17. green slime

    green slime Member

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    Soviet defences "unhinged?" It is unlikely the non-motorised Turks would contribute anything real at all. In 1938 their army was ill-armed and numbered a less than 200,000. In a country that has quite a few issues with minorities. Even assuming they had somehow doubled in size (in order to send an expeditionary force of 200,000), and become better trained and moderately equipped in time for Barbarossa. Germany wasn't exactly producing a surplus of modern war machines, and wondering what to do with them all.

    It is commonly forgotten, that at the same time as Barbarossa was supposedly crushing the Red Army in August-September of '41 (without the Wehrmacht actually managing to staunch the ability of the Red Army to recruit manpower, a fundamental underestimate by Nazi Germany), and failing to force a collapse as in France (which the whole of Barbarossa required in order to have any hope of success), due to the enormous size of Russia, something the Germans were already well aware of already prior to the invasion (their war games had repeatedly demonstrated this, and yet they went to war and with no real answer other than a blind hope), that the Red Army was invading Persia. With three Soviet armies, numbering more men, and better equipped than Turkey could contribute.

    [​IMG]
    Soviet tank in Tabriz.

    With all the issues Turkey has, why? Modern Turkish historians instead describe why they were unable to join the Western Allies with the German threat on their doorstep, the Turkish lack of preparations and manpower, together with the inadequate provisions/guarantees from the West, and not wanting to aggravate the Soviet Bear.

    All told, the story of Turkey in '41 doesn't exactly strike fear into the heart of any Great Power. It is more viewed as a sacrificial pawn in the great game, and their leadership was wise enough to see that.
     
  18. knightdepaix

    knightdepaix Member

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    Maybe can the topic of this thread be changed to how Spain and Turkey benefit from staying neutral, joining Germany, the SU or allies, or some extents in between the extremes?
     

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