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What if Hitler would have been elected for Reichspresident in 1932? Earlier rearmament?


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#1 ww2fan

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 10:07 AM

What if Hindenburg died, retired, or was defeated in the 1932 election and Hitler won the presidency and was given complete dictatorial control of Germany by the fall of 1932 from a Nazi party majority in the 1932 Reichstag. My guess is that a German

economic recovery and rearmament may also have start between 9-14 months months earlier, leaving Germany better prepared in case war broke out in 1939. Would everything happen about 1 year earlier or would earlier rearmament make the war break out

over the Polish invasion earlier in more desirable weather conditions like May or June 1939 like Germany favored? Which would have obviously lead to earlier 1939 scenario invasions of the low countries, France and Norway, perhaps while France and Britain

would be less prepared and mobilized for blitzkrieg.Do you think the war would have turned more to Germany's favor from a better equipped army and war machine thanks to an earlier Nazi regime? Would the sequence of events have been almost identically

the same? Would Germany have its navy better prepared and greatly needed aircraft carrier(s) ready before a war broke out? How do you think this would change the sequence of events in your reasonable estimate?
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#2 ww2fan

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 10:21 AM

I know Germany was conducting some rearmament earlier illegally. But suppose it started rearmament a year or two earlier in secrecy in the same scale as started by the Nazi regime in 1935.

Edited by ww2fan, 03 November 2011 - 08:13 PM.


#3 belasar

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 12:58 PM

First so far as I know Hindenburg was in nearly full agreement with German rearmament, so I am not so sure he was a brake on that front. Next if we consider German production capacity prior to 1941 was pretty meager compared to 1942 and after. So while Germany could produce more tanks and aircraft, they would be in relatively modest numbers. Good yes but not a game changer in itself. Technical issues would prevent the early deployment of better tanks, planes and carriers, so the weopons they have will be more of the same.

On the positive side Germany would have more Divisions combat ready by 9/1/1939 which would be good, or yes, they could attack Poland sooner, say late spring 1939. The problem is still the English channel and Germany's inability to force Britain out of the war.

For the extra year of production to be a game changer, Germany would need to know what kind of war they were about to embark on, and if this was generaly known within Germany, it is likely Hitler would have been deposed as a madman.

Wars are rarely fought in black and white, but in infinite shades of grey

(Poppy is occasionaly correct, or so I hear)

#4 Carronade

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 01:45 PM

Good point, under Weimar the German military, with discreet support from the government, was doing whatever it could get away with: tank and aircraft trials in Russia, building submarines for other countries, and stretching the treaty limits with their "pocket battleships" and cruisers.

There's an interesting note in the wikipedia article on the Treaty of Versailles which I had not been aware of:

In 1932, the German government announced it would no longer adhere to the treaty's military limitations, citing the Allies' violation of the treaty by failing to initiate military limitations on themselves as called for in the preamble of Part V of the Treaty of Versailles.

There was a limit to how much could be accomplished covertly, and within a year of assuming full power (1935 historically, say 1933 in our current scenario) Hitler openly renounced the Versailles restrictions on conscription, tanks, aircraft, capital ships, etc. The British were helpful enough to enter a naval agreement which superseded Versailles, including accepting construction of U-boats.

For all the propaganda about German rearmament, it proceeded at a moderate pace in the 1930s, factories and shipyards worked normal shifts, and there was minimal impact on consumer goods or other peacetime production. The Nazi regime made the most of what were still limited forces with parades, mass flyovers, and similar demonstrations that led to exaggerated impressions of German might.

After a bit of hesitation, the once and future Allies stepped up their own rearmament in response to Germany, and that too would happen earlier in this scenario. These "what-ifs" often propose that Germany would get a couple of years' "free" production while everyone else is confined to what they had historically. The balance of forces would not be that different.

#5 ww2fan

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 08:45 PM

Good point, under Weimar the German military, with discreet support from the government, was doing whatever it could get away with: tank and aircraft trials in Russia, building submarines for other countries, and stretching the treaty limits with their "pocket battleships" and cruisers.

There's an interesting note in the wikipedia article on the Treaty of Versailles which I had not been aware of:

In 1932, the German government announced it would no longer adhere to the treaty's military limitations, citing the Allies' violation of the treaty by failing to initiate military limitations on themselves as called for in the preamble of Part V of the Treaty of Versailles.

There was a limit to how much could be accomplished covertly, and within a year of assuming full power (1935 historically, say 1933 in our current scenario) Hitler openly renounced the Versailles restrictions on conscription, tanks, aircraft, capital ships, etc. The British were helpful enough to enter a naval agreement which superseded Versailles, including accepting construction of U-boats.

For all the propaganda about German rearmament, it proceeded at a moderate pace in the 1930s, factories and shipyards worked normal shifts, and there was minimal impact on consumer goods or other peacetime production. The Nazi regime made the most of what were still limited forces with parades, mass flyovers, and similar demonstrations that led to exaggerated impressions of German might.

After a bit of hesitation, the once and future Allies stepped up their own rearmament in response to Germany, and that too would happen earlier in this scenario. These "what-ifs" often propose that Germany would get a couple of years' "free" production while everyone else is confined to what they had historically. The balance of forces would not be that different.


Well that can't be an absolute certainty nor would it matter since the allies would have had most likely the same fate and would even be less prepared from a blitzkrieg operation that would have started earlier after Poland in 1939 and most likely would have had the same fate of being cut off from a rapid and underestimated German thrust, losing the of a vital bulk of their heavy equipment and armor trying to evacuate from Dunkirk or some other port even if the balance of forces were the same.

#6 ww2fan

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Posted 04 November 2011 - 11:00 PM

Any other unbiased thoughts

#7 leccy1

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Posted 05 November 2011 - 01:19 PM

Well that can't be an absolute certainty nor would it matter since the allies would have had most likely the same fate and would even be less prepared from a blitzkrieg operation that would have started earlier after Poland in 1939 and most likely would have had the same fate of being cut off from a rapid and underestimated German thrust, losing the of a vital bulk of their heavy equipment and armor trying to evacuate from Dunkirk or some other port even if the balance of forces were the same.


The war would probably have started earlier but would still have had the same outcome, you are just bringing the timeline forward. The Allies started to re-equip as a response to German re-armament. Italy entered as Mussolini thought the European powers were defeated, Japan joined as it was not prepared to give up in China and with Germany defeating Western Europe, Britain seemingly powerless, the big threat of the Soviet Union looking neutralized it thought it could give the US a short sharp shock to convince it to stay out.

#8 British-Empire

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 02:18 PM

So Hitler comes to power 9 months earlier if im right in thinking.
That would mean war should begin in about January 1939 however it is unlikely the Germans would act until the summer.
That would leave a lot more time for a negotiated settlement and around 6 months extra rearming for Germany.




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