Discussion in 'Eastern Europe October 1939 to February 1943' started by KiwiTT, Jan 14, 2010.
You are right Tom. I shall play nice. Sorry!
The October mud was a problem to all movement but as you have even said above The supply situation is undermining the attacking potential of the entire Army Corps." It is not stopping the advance or attack just hindering it.
Movement improved in November when the ground was again hard.
Rail supplies for both months where adaquate to continue the advance had the ground conditions been superior.
I too often ponder this question. How did Germany do so well in early 1941? It is a given that Germans had the best tactical field army at that time. A lot of Barbarossa’s main goals were met: destruction of Soviet forces in the East and occupation of Eastern Russia. However German intelligence underestimated Russian Army numerical superiority and Russian ability to raise new units.
The size of the country I think was hard for Germans to grasp. From German border to Paris it is about 200km. If we draw a line from Archangelsk to Stalingrad it is about 2,000km from the Russian border to that line. As many here have noted German Army mostly traveled on foot. How long would it take for Germans to walk 2,000km? Even a Triumphant March with short rest periods so the Germans could be greeted with Bread and Salt by grateful locals would take more than 3-4 months. How long would it take if Germans also had to fight all the way?
I haven't the chance to read the entire thread yet, but I will go out on a limb and offer my prognosis on the thesis since it is going and going and going....
I believe, that Colonel Mustard did it in the study with the candlestick. Wait, that's the wrong answer. Wrong game. Oh yes, here it is....I believe, it was a Bohemian Corporal lacking in military skill, and a German general staff with no logistical concept of total war and a bazillion screaming Rooskies who loved their Motherland. All these factors conspired to cause Operation Barbarossa to fail. But that's just me.
I really don't know how Hitler thought Barbarrossa could have worked. Seriously, many German soldiers I've read about thought they could occupy the USSR completely by the end of 1942.
No way that was going to happen...
“You have only to kick in the door and the whole rotten structure will come crashing down”
Hitler to Field Marshal von Rundstedt before Germany invaded the Soviet Union on 22 June 1941.
And after the Red Armies effort in Finland, he wasn't the only one, many Western 'experts' gave the Soviets about 10 weeks.
People blame Hitler a lot for the failure of Barbarossa.
But it was his Generals who wanted an all out push for Moscow thinking that would end the war.
Hitler saw little point in taking Moscow and didnt think it would result in Soviet surrender.
What they ended up with was a combination of the two plans which was the worst of all.
Hitler may well have been advised to stick to his guns and demand Kiev and Leningrad before any Moscow adventure.
Just because they can "continue the advance" doesn't mean that they had adequate supplies or a chance of taking Moscow.
Why were the Germans advancing direction Moscow in october 1941?
Was it to capture Moscow ?
Or was it to commit,what they thought were the last available Soviet reserves,in to battle and defeat them ?
I think the second possibility is more probable .
They were advancing because they thought the Red Army was in even worse condition that they were and without reserves. The Germans were trying to envelop the city with the intent of capturing it without entering into urban combat (similar operation to Kiev).
If that was the case they would not have tried to encircle Moscow.
I think you are cherry-picking here. That sentence alone might support your view, but in the context of the whole quote, it takes on a whole different meaning. I think the preceding 2 sentences give that statement more impact.
"Rail links are inadequate, and the roads have been impassable to motor vehicles for several weeks, we have received scant supplies of fuel, ammunition and food. We have had to rely on what the troops and horses can carry forward."
You can't ignore whole passages in order to find short declarations that seem to favor your view.
Im not ignoring anything they quite clearly state that the supply situation in the October mud was undermining not stopping the Axis advance.
Thus the advance goes on.
Undermine- verb, "to erode the base or foundation of"
You are telling me that a supply problem "eroding the foundation" of their advance is not a reason for its failure?
At what stage through the war did Hitler ever give way to his generals? HOw many times did Hitler make decisions that his Generals disagreed with, and how many times did the Generals change his mind?
Why would this situation be any different?
Did they try to encircle Moscow ? Or did they try to encircle the Russian armies before Moscow ?
It would be if it stopped the advance as then it would be failure.
But as the advance continued it was not.
The attack on Moscow was an idea pushed by the Generals not Hitler.
The attack on Egypt was an idea pushed by the Generals and opposed by Hitler.
Hitler gave way on both.
OK, folks. This thread is drifting from its original premise, that is, why did Barbarossa fail. We are now into a what if area discussing, it seems, how it could have succeeded. Unless there is some other opinion expressed on why it failed (and it did), I can foresee a quick closing of this thread. Think long and hard about what you want to post before doing so.