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BATTLE OF THE BULGE


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#1 TacticalTank

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 02:56 PM

What is your favourite weapon in the battle of the the bulge, why?
Do you think that Hitler made a wise gamble for it all or flat out stupid?
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"Hey Sarge, who was there? You, or us?" - Tully Pettigrew
Troy - "Tully what were you doing!?" Tully- "Was just going to turn on the light and then-" Troy - "THE LIGHT!"
"Alright let's shake it." Cheers, TT

#2 formerjughead

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 03:41 PM

The weather is my favorite and most effective weapon during the 'Bulge', it cut both sides off from their most effective weapons.
The Ardennes' offensive was actually one of Hitler's more reasonable ideas.

#3 judge death

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 06:35 PM

I just find the new generation of Panzers from the Germans to be the most interesting weapon there. King tiger for one of many. But that they did the offensive in the winter and how it was and they were outnumbered and almost no fuel and still trying was to me interesting as well.

Is splitted into: it was a stupid idea and agree with Rundstedt that they should had choosed a smaller target for the offense or limit it to just damage the allied forces, especielly the americans to make them go out from the war.
On one hand that was a good idea and they made good progress and if it wasnt for the fuel and reserves problems they could maybe had come a longer way to the goal. And that Lufftwaffe had done the bodenplatte operation earlier. But I doubt they would had won the battle as a whole anyway.

#4 TacticalTank

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 10:43 PM

i personally think that the HUGE German offensive was not the best idea but option's were limited so i understand why Hitler did what he did
"Hey Sarge, who was there? You, or us?" - Tully Pettigrew
Troy - "Tully what were you doing!?" Tully- "Was just going to turn on the light and then-" Troy - "THE LIGHT!"
"Alright let's shake it." Cheers, TT

#5 yan taylor

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 11:57 AM

I think it was a crazy idea, even if they would have captured the bridges over the Meuse River and Bastogne it would have made no difference, they would have been defeted in the end. to try a big thrust like they did with limited fuel and a infantry force mainly composed of green and young troops and counting on cloud cover was a big gamble. What gets me is when the allies invaded Germany in 1945, a lot of German units tried to hold up the Russians so that the allies could capture a lot of Germany (so the Russians could not wreck the place). so these valuble troops and tanks wasted in the Battle of the Bulge should have been deployed against the Soviets, thus saving a lot of German lives.
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#6 lwd

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 02:15 PM

If it had had any reasonable chance at achieving what they hoped it might achieve it might have been reasonable. Although I think even then there were better places for them to commit the troops. As it was they wasted formations they could ill aford to loose for no significant gain.

#7 Triple C

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 04:12 PM

It might have contributed to the success of the Vistula-Oder Offensive, saving not a few Russian lives.

#8 yan taylor

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 04:45 PM

I think by this time Hitler was a desperate man, who didnt look past his own nose, his generals must have knew that the bad weather wont last forever and the allied airforce would soon blast his allready depleted forces to bits.

#9 4th wilts

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 05:27 PM

What were the plans drawn up by o.k.w,for the smaller attack?.I cannot find owt for it o the usual sites wiki etc.can anybody help please,cheers.
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#10 Slipdigit

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 06:20 PM

Lee,

I don't think plans, per se, were drawn up for a smaller attack, much beyond the conception stage. Different ideas were proposed to Gröfaz, mainly centering on limiting the objective to Liege or maybe Brussels, with most not crossing the Meuse. All were immediately shot down by him.
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#11 Martin Bull

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 03:04 PM

What were the plans drawn up by o.k.w,for the smaller attack?.


The only official OKW plan for the Ardennes was the 'Meuse first, then Antwerp' one. When this was presented to Westphal, Model, Dietrich and Manteuffel at Hitler's HQ on Nov 2, 1944, they agreed that Antwerp was too ambitious by far. Model and Manteuffel quickly drafted a smaller solution ( nicknamed 'small slam' as Manteuffel was keen bridge player ) but it was totally rejected by Hitler.
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#12 Krystal80

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 04:55 PM

This isn't a well thought out or researched answer, but from what I read about Stalingrad and the Russian battles, I don't think Hitler was top notch with strategy and thought out battle plans. Its hard to imagine that anyones soldiers meant so little to them. Again just from what I read, I agree that the cold was maybe the best/worst weapon at the time.

Edited by Krystal80, 05 February 2011 - 04:58 PM.
bad spelling


#13 J and G's Dad

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 10:33 PM

Stalin, when he heard of the operation remarked it was "very stupid". It's hard to disagree with this statement.

#14 JBark

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Posted 06 February 2011 - 01:58 AM

i personally think that the HUGE German offensive was not the best idea but option's were limited so i understand why Hitler did what he did


I think you might want to consider that the man was insane and based the plan on an insane dream. While any tactical objective may have been possible any strategic positive result was not.

#15 Martin Bull

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Posted 06 February 2011 - 09:05 AM

It's also easy to be certain in retrospect ( Arnhem is another prime example ). Sure, we all know Hitler was nuts but he showed a certain amount of cunning to the end. His whole military ethos was based on attack ( usually audacious ), not defence. By late 1944 Hitler knew for sure that any form of attack against the Russians had no chance. Given his faulty knowledge of the Allies at the time ( and let's face it, they probably looked a weaker opponent than the Soviets ) he thought there was a slender chance of creating a favourable political opportunity by driving a powerful wedge into them.

In theory and given what Hitler knew, just possibly it was worth a try. In practice, it had no hope. But that's war.......
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#16 JBark

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 03:28 AM

It's also easy to be certain in retrospect ( Arnhem is another prime example ). Sure, we all know Hitler was nuts but he showed a certain amount of cunning to the end. His whole military ethos was based on attack ( usually audacious ), not defence.

Don't mean to nitpick but is this an example of cunning. His unwillingness to use tactical withdrawl with figthing defence in depth squandered away thousands of his own troops and many possibilities for better outcomes in batle. His generals had abilities he refused to recognize and use and chose to micromanage the war in a way which would result in no positive outcome.


By late 1944 Hitler knew for sure that any form of attack against the Russians had no chance. Given his faulty knowledge of the Allies at the time ( and let's face it, they probably looked a weaker opponent than the Soviets ) he thought there was a slender chance of creating a favourable political opportunity by driving a powerful wedge into them.

In theory and given what Hitler knew, just possibly it was worth a try. In practice, it had no hope. But that's war.......


Hitler chose to attack the west because he saw capitalism as the greater threat to National Socialism.

#17 Martin Bull

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 01:25 PM

Which just goes to show that a quote isn't necessarily a quote.....:confused:
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#18 Pelekys

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 10:00 PM

Predators have as a habit to attack. Hitler could not attack in the east front so he did what he could done better. I think that the most important weapon was the airplane.Weather was bad for both sides. But the airforce made the difference.
Generally speaking i have to admit that Hitler did the unespected. From September there was a crisis in supplies of the Allies and this made the marching to Germany slower. The Allies needed ports with huge facilities in order to supply all the armies. The port which could make the difference was Antwerp. Hitler believed that if he could take Antwerp he could have another Dunkerque and this would relieve him from the pressure from the West.
Additionally always he thought of a separately ceasefiring with the Western allies so to defend succesfully against Russians. So he decided to gable. From the begining the operation faced big problems like the lack of gasoline but what followed shows that Germans had some possibilities to make the unexpected. For example Gerrmans were too close to take a big quantity of fuel supplies in SPA, 4.000.000 litres of fuel, they were stopped before STAVELO on 17 Dec. night while only 13 Americans were defend it only and when they reached MALMENTY they continue to the East;if they continue to the North they may cut off 30.000 men (1st infatry division, 99 inf. div., 2 inf. div., 9 inf. div.) so it was not far from the collapse of the 1st Army. Later Liutenant General Lauer of 99th inf. div. said 'they have in hand the key of success but they did not realized they got it'.
So as an idea was not bad, as a plan was medium, as an execution was O.K. but could be better. Of course after the failure the situation was worst than before.
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#19 yan taylor

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 11:52 AM

Exelent evauation Pelekys, When you mentioned Antwerp, was that the only town except for London to hit by V-1s ?.

#20 syscom3

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 03:55 PM

Hitler chose to attack the west because he saw capitalism as the greater threat to National Socialism.


Are you sure about that?

#21 formerjughead

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 04:06 PM

I think this is what he was trying to do:

It's also easy to be certain in retrospect ( Arnhem is another prime example ). Sure, we all know Hitler was nuts but he showed a certain amount of cunning to the end. His whole military ethos was based on attack ( usually audacious ), not defence.


Don't mean to nitpick but is this an example of cunning. His unwillingness to use tactical withdrawl with figthing defence in depth squandered away thousands of his own troops and many possibilities for better outcomes in batle. His generals had abilities he refused to recognize and use and chose to micromanage the war in a way which would result in no positive outcome.


By late 1944 Hitler knew for sure that any form of attack against the Russians had no chance. Given his faulty knowledge of the Allies at the time ( and let's face it, they probably looked a weaker opponent than the Soviets ) he thought there was a slender chance of creating a favourable political opportunity by driving a powerful wedge into them.

In theory and given what Hitler knew, just possibly it was worth a try. In practice, it had no hope. But that's war.......

Hitler chose to attack the west because he saw capitalism as the greater threat to National Socialism.



#22 belasar

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 04:15 PM

I have to agree with syscom3 on that. I believe he saw western capitalist as prey, but communism as to similar to nazism and therefor a threat.
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#23 LJAd

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 04:57 PM

Exelent evauation Pelekys, When you mentioned Antwerp, was that the only town except for London to hit by V-1s ?.

Others were Liege and Brussels,but Antwerp got more V-1 and V-2 than London,because it was strategically more important .

#24 Pelekys

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Posted 14 February 2011 - 02:59 PM

Germans targeted Antwerp's docks till 30 March 1945! You can see a map showing the hits one by one and the results also. http://www.v2rocket....t_map_large.jpg

So it is obvious how important was the big port of Antwerp for the supplying of the Allies' armies and justifies the decision of Hitler's for the Bulge attack. Antwerp was only a few Km from the frontline.
When your life is flashing before your eyes, you better have plenty to watch.

#25 lwd

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 03:27 PM

... So it is obvious how important was the big port of Antwerp for the supplying of the Allies' armies and justifies the decision of Hitler's for the Bulge attack.

It only justifies it if there was a reasonable chance of success. There wasn't

Antwerp was only a few Km from the frontline.

for some definitions of "a few"
Looking at the map at Bastogne, Walloon Region, Belgium - Google Maps
I make over a 100 km from Antwerp to Bastogne so probalby 150+ to the front line.




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