1. #21
    csThor's Avatar Senior Member
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    All of these principles favor the "Allies" if you'd notice. I'm currently reading Antony Beever's "Stalingrad" and Hitler himself stated before the launch of "Fall Blau" that if Germany failed to capture the oilfields of Grosny and the Caucasus the war would be lost. Even before this the fuel shortage caused not little concern to the Luftwaffe and Army officials, because Germany's reserves were virtually non-existant, influx from Rumania and Germany's own synthetical fuel industry could not meet demands.
    Germany was not prepared and able to fight a prolonged war with the Allies just for natural ressources, "human material" and industrial potential.

    But of course the "austrian corporal in Berlin" was a major advantage for the Allies. As Napoleon said "Never interrupt your enemy when he's making a mistake."
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  2. #22
    Originally posted by csThor:
    I'm currently reading Antony Beever's "Stalingrad" ...
    Excellent book.
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  3. #23
    Originally posted by pacettid:
    After 23 years of service in the USN, and 30+ years of studying military history, my personal opinion is the Allies won the war because they violated fewer of Sun Tzu's principles than the Axis did. Here are a few which are always worth another read:

    "When doing battle, seek a quick victory.

    A protracted battle will blunt weapons and dampen ardor.

    If troops lay siege to a walled city, their strength will be exhausted.

    If the army is exposed to a prolonged campaign, the nation's resources will not suffice.

    When weapons are blunted, and ardor dampened, strength exhausted, and resources depleted, the neighboring rulers will take advantage of these complications."

    ..... Words of wisdom, valid even today.
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  4. #24
    Originally posted by Blutarski2004:
    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by pacettid:
    After 23 years of service in the USN, and 30+ years of studying military history, my personal opinion is the Allies won the war because they violated fewer of Sun Tzu's principles than the Axis did. Here are a few which are always worth another read:

    "When doing battle, seek a quick victory.

    A protracted battle will blunt weapons and dampen ardor.

    If troops lay siege to a walled city, their strength will be exhausted.

    If the army is exposed to a prolonged campaign, the nation's resources will not suffice.

    When weapons are blunted, and ardor dampened, strength exhausted, and resources depleted, the neighboring rulers will take advantage of these complications."

    ..... Words of wisdom, valid even today. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Hear hear
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  5. #25
    BfHeFwMe's Avatar Banned
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    It was due to them liking to hang cracker jack prize medals all over those cute uniforms.
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  6. #26
    horseback's Avatar Senior Member
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    I believe that in several senses, the Germans enjoyed a significant head start:

    1. They knew that they were going to war. Regardless of who actually initiates the hostilities, one side is going to be better prepared for a fight. In the first three years of WWII, the Germans were better prepared, psychologically ready to fight, and it showed.

    2. Better weapons platform. Ignoring for the moment the problems presented by taxiing, takeoffs and landings, the Bf 109 was a superb fighter equipped with good sights and reliable and effective weapons. It would be fair to say that until the jagdewaffe ran into the Spitfire at the far end of their range, they hadn't really had any competition. Even then, compared to the MG/FF cannon, the 8x.303 armament of the Spit Mk I and II was a bit like birdshot.

    3. Tactics and training. Molders' rotte and schwarme tactics were vastly superior to anything the Germans faced until mid-1941, if the biographers of Tuck and Bader are to be believed. Most of what I have read seems to indicate that the Germans engaged in a lot more operational flying prewar than the Poles, French, British, or Soviets, and let's face it, practice makes perfect.

    4. Marksmanship. This was a shooting air war, and the prewar Luftwaffe laid far more emphasis on learning to shoot accurately than any other air arm except possibly the Finnish AF and US Naval Aviation. The Germans put great store in their hunting traditions, and it is probable that the average German boy had a better idea of the principles of marksmanship than his French or English counterparts.

    5. Good Radio Communications. The basic principle of team tactics calls for clear and reliable communications. The Germans had very reliable voice communications, at least within units. The Japanese and Soviets certainly did not early in the war, to their great detriment.

    6. Three years of huge leads in technology, tactics, weapons and leadership before the other side even began to catch up allows gifted individuals to hone their skills to a very high level. As long as their aircraft were competitive, these guys would continue to have an edge over the opposition, having learned lessons the other guys would never have the combat time to reach.

    From 1939 until late 1942, the German fighter pilot was happily feasting on plentiful supplies of inferior enemy aircraft. The only fly in the ointment was the Spit IX, and it wasn't nearly numerous enough to equip all the RAF Squadrons on the Channel Front, much less the Desert Air Force. There were plenty of Mk Vs, Hurricanes and Kittyhawks to go around in the West, and Yaks, LaGGs, MiGs, and the odd Kittyhawk or Cobra in the East.

    So a lot of young men with good eyes, sharp reflexes, and highly competitive spirits became very formidible fighter pilots. When the Spit IX started showing up in significant numbers, and was joined by the P-47, P-38, P-51, La-5/7 and the late model Yaks, those young men still had a huge lead in skills and knowledge over their opposition, and continued to score, although generally at a reduced rate.

    If Hitler and his mob of fruitcakes hadn't been convinced that they could persuade the British and Americans to give up and go away while he carved up Russia, the Luftwaffe might have committed the resources to training the numbers of new young fighter pilots they were going to need, and developing the aircraft for them to fly, it could have been a very different story.

    cheers

    horseback
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  7. #27
    Originally posted by horseback:
    If Hitler and his mob of fruitcakes hadn't been convinced that they could persuade the British and Americans to give up and go away while he carved up Russia, the Luftwaffe might have committed the resources to training the numbers of new young fighter pilots they were going to need, and developing the aircraft for them to fly, it could have been a very different story.
    I agree with a great deal of what you had to say in your previous post, but I do not concur with the above statement.

    The Western Allies played their part, but Hitler was not able to rapidly defeat the USSR. This effectively sealed his fate because he did not have the resources to fight an extended war, especially on this front. The Soviet Union swallowed entire armies, on both sides, but the Soviets were able to absorb everything the Germans were able to throw at them, and still "come out swinging".

    The fact that the Luftwaffe was a tactical air force that was grossly over-extended in Russia, and Hitler's repeated violation of Sun Tzu's principles, is precisely why Germany did NOT have the resources to train the numbers of new young fighter pilots they were going to need, and develop the aircraft for them to fly.
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  8. #28
    horseback's Avatar Senior Member
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    First of all, I never stated that the Gang of Fruitcakes' belief that the British and Americans could be talked into backing off was realistic. The Western Allies were convinced that Fascism had to be destroyed, or that it would eventually destroy western democracy. Hitler and his boys never took that openly stated principle seriously, thinking it was merely propaganda.

    Well, at least until it was far too late.

    However, Hitler's problems in Russia become vastly simpler if the US becomes truly neutral in 1942; he no longer has to maintain a credible force to defend the western shores of Fortress Europe or diddle about in the Med, doesn't have to invest in a large fleet of U-Boats and can concentrate all of western Europe's resources on his real goals to the east.

    At the same time, the Soviets get no fuel (especially avgas), no Airacobras, Mitchells or Havocs, no trucks, no food, no metals and chemicals, no munitions, and most important, no Bennie Goodman records via Lend Lease. They revert to their pre-Barbarossa world pariah status, with the knowledge that no one in the rest of the world is going to mourn their passing. If they were on the edge of dispair in late 1941, how do they recover from the blow of being deserted a year later, just as they are getting their footing?

    Those supplies were absolutely critical to Stalin in the 1942-43 period, and had Hitler been able to convince Churchill and Roosevelt that it was all a big misunderstanding, that all Germany really wanted was the fertile parts of Russia (and the oil fields and natural gas and so on to the south), the Soviets are in a vastly different position than the one they historically were in in late 1942.

    In 1942, the Soviets were holding off the Germans with their stockpiled supplies and Lend-Lease while trying to reestablish their industrial base east of the Urals. What happens if they lose the Lendlease portion of the equation?

    cheers

    horseback
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  9. #29
    BaldieJr's Avatar Senior Member
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    Its real simple. Germany was the bad side so its clear that they lied. How could they possibly have such high scores when the allies had:

    A. P-51 Mustangs.
    B. God's blessing.
    C. The best of everything else.

    Clearly, the German propagandists were hard at work creating a fantasy in order to inflate egos that matched the national currency.
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  10. #30
    "We had a completely different system from the American pilots.They normally went home after one hundred missions. If I would have been sent home after one hundred missions,I wouldn't have had any victories at all. There were some of us who had a second tour of two hundred missions and some who had three hundred missions.As long as you were willing to fly,you could fly.But on the other hand,you saw them die-all of them,slowly they disappeared and that was very difficult.So you also had the feeling-It's just the time,to die very,very young."
    Luftwaffe General Walter Krupinski
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