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View Full Version : WHAT IF THE GERMANS ATTACKED MOSCOW IN 1942?



XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 02:42 AM
After the Soviet offensive during the winter of 1941-42 slowed to a halt, the German generals began to make plans to resume their offensive in the Spring of 1942. The Germans are still close to Moscow, and at some points, only one hundred miles away, but Hitler refused to veto any plans to resume the attack against the Soviet capital. During the winter-spring months of 1942, the Soviets built up a formidable defense system between the German central front and Moscow. Enormous numbers of divisions are located before Moscow, including the bulk of the Soviet armor divisions and artillery. Stalin was determined to hold onto Moscow at all cost. But Hitler is interested in the oil of the Caucasus, and is not interested in destroying the bulk of the Soviet forces. The German generals know this is a formula for disaster and make contingent plans incase the opportunity arises. They keep trying to change Hitler's mind, but with little success. Hitler orders the OKW (command of the armed forces), to draw up plans for Operation Blue, the invasion of the Caucasus. The date is set for June 28.




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"You can discover what your enemy fears most by observing the means he uses to frighten you"

Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 02:42 AM
After the Soviet offensive during the winter of 1941-42 slowed to a halt, the German generals began to make plans to resume their offensive in the Spring of 1942. The Germans are still close to Moscow, and at some points, only one hundred miles away, but Hitler refused to veto any plans to resume the attack against the Soviet capital. During the winter-spring months of 1942, the Soviets built up a formidable defense system between the German central front and Moscow. Enormous numbers of divisions are located before Moscow, including the bulk of the Soviet armor divisions and artillery. Stalin was determined to hold onto Moscow at all cost. But Hitler is interested in the oil of the Caucasus, and is not interested in destroying the bulk of the Soviet forces. The German generals know this is a formula for disaster and make contingent plans incase the opportunity arises. They keep trying to change Hitler's mind, but with little success. Hitler orders the OKW (command of the armed forces), to draw up plans for Operation Blue, the invasion of the Caucasus. The date is set for June 28.




http://fluxout.homestead.com/files/Thx-32x.jpg


"You can discover what your enemy fears most by observing the means he uses to frighten you"

Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 02:51 AM
No one can really ever know. The results would've been very bloody,nevertheless.

47|FC
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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:03 AM
Dunno, my money would be on the germans tough.... despite the great defences around moskow, I thing the germans , if they would have attacke dat the right time and place, they would have managed to capture Moskow.
they attacked afterall, and they achieved some succes, so for sure if hitler wouldn't stopped them at that time,...
The loss of moskow, IMHO, would mean the defeat for the russians for sure.....

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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:06 AM
I agree with Von_Zero to an extent. I think the Germans could've taken Moscow,but I don't think that would've spelled the end for the Russians YET. There's still quite a bit of territory to the east of Moscow.

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Message Edited on 09/03/0309:07PM by necrobaron

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:07 AM
i disagree the russians would not have surendered if moscow had fallen, it would not have mattered it would have only made them fight harder.

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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:08 AM
Erm...hence my post./i/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

47|FC
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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:12 AM
The capture would not have, as been said, made the Soviets surrender, but Moscow was the major transportation hub for the SU. That would have made the Soviet's ability to conduct war much harder.

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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:14 AM
At the very least it could have delayed the Russian advance west in later years. It may have prevented later Russian conquest of neighbouring countries, or at least save east Germany.

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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:40 AM
Maybe with Moskow on his hands, Hitler might have mannaged to obtain an favourable "armistice" from Stalin.

<center>"The show must go on..."<center>
<center>http://www.hobby.ro/roarmy/aviatia/greceanu%20tudor/1.jpg
A 'good' landing is one from which you can walk away. A 'great'
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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:41 AM
You are correct! Read what could've happen:

This scenario, I believe is very likely. If the Germans had concentrated their forces in 1942 on Moscow instead of the south, they would have had the decisive battle they were looking for. The Soviets were determined to defend Moscow with all available forces and would not have retreated as they did when the Germans attack in Operation Blue. The Germans still had the forces necessary to achieve a victorious conclusion to an attack on Moscow. The fall of the Red Capital would not ensure the defeat of the Soviet Union, but it would have weakened the Red Army and push back its timetable of counter attacks for at least a year. The fall of Moscow and a tactical defeat of the Soviets in 1942 would also have put the Germans in a stronger position for 1943 and 1944.

The Allies would have been forced to move up the date for Operation Torch. In reality, FDR wanted the invasion of North Africa to begin in October, instead of November, so he could present the public with victory before the 1942 elections. So this is also a reasonable assumption. The Germans would still have lost the war but the end would have been very different. The defeat of Torch would have delayed the Anglo-American timetable for operations in the European Theater. Roosevelt wanted to concentrate on Europe, but a defeat in 1942 could have forced the United States to reallocate much of its resources to operations in the Pacific. There would have been no invasion of France in 1944 and relations between the Soviets and the Anglo-Americans would have been worst than in our time line. FDR was gravely ill in 1944 and he also died in during the first four months of 1944. If the war progressed at a much slower rate in our time line, it is very possible and even probable, that FDR would have died a year earlier. With Roosevelt out of the picture, the Democratic Party, which was already spilt (the Southerner Democrats often sided with the Republicans in both houses of the Congress), would have fractured with the leftist, Henry Wallace as the Democratic candidate in 1944. Thomas E. Dewey has been elected President, and he would not have remained as resolute to FDR's Unconditional Surrender policy. Even Churchill and Stalin disagreed with this policy. With the Germans still in control of most of Europe in the Summer of 1945, it is very possible that after the Allies dropped an A-bomb on a German city, the German High Command would have either forced Hitler to resign or removed him by force, if the Allies assured them of reasonable terms.

In this time line, the Germans did not begin to lose the war until 1944, therefore, the extermination programs had not begun until much later. Less than a million people were killed in the camps in this time line. After the war, a constitutional monarchy, modeled after Great Britain was put into place in Germany. Goering proved an able negotiator and was able to convince Dewey and Churchill that a strong Germany was still necessary in central Europe. Because of Stalin treachery, the Allies, especially Churchill, agreed with Goering. Churchill did not want to repeat the failure of the Versailles Treaty. Germany was permitted to retain its 1937 borders, plus Austria. The Sudetanland was returned to the Czechs. A strong German military was permitted, and Germany was allied to the United States, Great Britain and France against the Soviet Union.

In the Pacific, the Emperor was retained, but the Japanese Imperial military establishment was removed. MacArthur was given the job of drawing up a new constitution for Japan. In China, the Allies supported the Nationalists against the Communists. The Cold War between the free world and communism eventually developed, but there was no Berlin Wall, Iron Curtain, Communist China or Korean War.


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"You can discover what your enemy fears most by observing the means he uses to frighten you"

Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:55 AM
That's alot of "ifs",but that's certainly a possible scenario.

47|FC
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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:57 AM
NTESLA, just for my curiosity, are you russian?(no offence intended, I'm just curious).

<center>"The show must go on..."<center>
<center>http://www.hobby.ro/roarmy/aviatia/greceanu%20tudor/1.jpg
A 'good' landing is one from which you can walk away. A 'great'
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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 04:07 AM
So... Germans are taking a break and gathering their forces ...and russians are sitting in trenches and patiently waiting.... then after germans got all ready...they go and take over the Moscow? /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

Not a chance.... why? Simple...allowing soviets a break and chance to regroop would be a suicide...

Oh, i am russian...well everyone knows it by now /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-tongue.gif

Regards,
VFC*Crazyivan
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"No matter how good the violin may be, much depends on the violinist. I always felt respect for an enemy pilot whose plane I failed to down." Ivan Kozhedub

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 04:10 AM
crazyivan1970 wrote:
Oh, i am russian...well everyone knows it by now
- /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-tongue.gif to you to /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-tongue.gif
/i/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif
I was just trying to figure it out howcome on this pnet there are olso nice russian(that in the case this guy is a russian too), cuz, a thread a few days ago tended to brutaly demonstrate the contraire........ /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Message Edited on 09/04/0306:13AM by Von_Zero

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 05:52 AM
I think the house-to-house fighting that ground the Wermacht to a halt in Stalingrad would have also happened in Moscow. Germany might have been able to eventually overwhelm Moscow, but by that time would have been so low in reserves and resources (since an effort at the southern oil fields never would have been attempted) that the Russian brigade counterattacks could have closed up the German corridor leading to Moscow.

Dennis

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 06:09 AM
Yeah it would been easy just bypass moscow and roll a bit more east secure the flanks. Thus incircling armies in moscow and allowing the germans to destroy this pocket a leisure just as they did in '41 with the vast encirclements of whole russian armies. The war woulda been won by germany. Common sense says the invasion of england woulda now looked brighter with all the luftwaffe being avaible to concentrate on the west and africa. So that A-bomb scenario is just plain wishful thinkin. Nobody what any historian says the war for germany was lost in the east.

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 06:23 AM
-Nobody what any
- historian says the war for germany was lost in the
- east.
-
-

This is a joke, right? /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

Regards,
VFC*Crazyivan
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"No matter how good the violin may be, much depends on the violinist. I always felt respect for an enemy pilot whose plane I failed to down." Ivan Kozhedub

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 06:26 AM
I don't think that i would chanche the outcome very much. The reasone why Germany lost the war with Soviet Union was not only one Hitler's mistake. It was many miscalculations. Just think about the fact that Geman comanding after loosing Moscow compain because of being not ready for winter did the same mistake at Stalingrad. Hitler thought that Germans would be in moscow in summer 1941 and was not ready for the winter. German advance on Stalingrad started at summer and also was planned to be over bebore winter. But the reality was different. And let's dont forget that Russians had much more resources than Germans thought. For example, during all war Stalin held big forces on the Far East waiting the attack of Japan. But Japan never attacked...

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 06:33 AM
Folks,

I've studied and tested this theory scores of times over thousands of hours with dozens of scenarios and using seven different models. Once the Germans failed to achieve a strategic and conclusive victory in the winter of '41-'42 they were doomed. Given the loses of the '41 campaign and the phenomenal growth of Soviet forces, and discounting any extreme occurrences, Germany's days were numbered. Their Stalingrad would have simply occurred in Moscow, or Tula, or Kalinin and the ultimate result would have only varied by a few months at most.


Falcon

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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 06:57 AM
I saw we clone hitler and find out by asking him.

________________________________________
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XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 07:04 AM
Good to start some educated historical what if's but I started all of this from this very interesting "WHAT IF" scenario for the "FORGOTTEN BATTLES" in the Eastern European war between NAZI Germany and Soviet Union during WW II. It is part of the game to think of "what if" stories and/or strategies, it is a big part, at least for me in making my own missions. Here is the complete "WHAT IF" ( WARNING: It is a long read but interesting specially since it relates to Oleg's Forgotten Battles) :



After the Soviet offensive during the winter of 1941-42 slowed to a halt, the German generals began to make plans to resume their offensive in the Spring of 1942. The Germans are still close to Moscow, and at some points, only one hundred miles away, but Hitler refused to veto any plans to resume the attack against the Soviet capital. During the winter-spring months of 1942, the Soviets built up a formidable defense system between the German central front and Moscow. Enormous numbers of divisions are located before Moscow, including the bulk of the Soviet armor divisions and artillery. Stalin was determined to hold onto Moscow at all cost. But Hitler is interested in the oil of the Caucasus, and is not interested in destroying the bulk of the Soviet forces. The German generals know this is a formula for disaster and make contingent plans incase the opportunity arises. They keep trying to change Hitler’s mind, but with little success. Hitler orders the OKW (command of the armed forces), to draw up plans for Operation Blue, the invasion of the Caucasus. The date is set for June 28.



A CHANGE OF PLANS

At this point in time something happens to change the course of history. On May 2, a German general is flying near to the Soviet front when his air craft crashes. He is carrying the plans for Operation Blue. The plans fall into Soviet hands. (This actually happens in our time line, but it happens on June 19) When Hitler hears of the crash he flies into a rage. His generals convince him that the Soviets have plenty of time to prepare for their attack. They argue that the Soviets will avoid the German pincer movements by simply withdraw across the Don River. If they can’t encircle the bulk of the Soviet forces in the outset of the offensive, Operation Blue will fail. The generals were convinced that geographic reality dictated two choices: Moscow and the Donets/Caucasus. Since the latter was now compromised, Moscow was the logical choice. It was the central point of all Russian life. It is also the Western terminus of the land bridge between European and Asiatic Russia. After several days of considering his options, Hitler reluctantly agrees to call off Operation Blue. The OKW presents Hitler with a new alternative of operations to begin in one week.

First, the 6th Army and the 1st Panzer army will cut off the Soviet forces in the Losovaya salient south of Kharkov. Once the southern front is fortified, the 11th Army under Manstein will be transferred to Leningrad and join the 18th Army in an assault on the besieged Soviet city. This assault will also eliminate the Oranienbaum bridgehead west of Leningrad, and destroy the Soviet salient around Yeglino, south of the city. This operation will begin on May 19. But the main operations will commence on June 28 along the central section of the front.

The German 16th and 9th armies will attack the Sukhinichi salient from the northwest while the 1st Panzer Army, to be transferred from the south, will strike north from Rzhev and entrap seven Soviet armies. The 2nd Panzer Army will attack north of Kaluga while the 4th Panzer Army will attack north from Orel and entrap another seven Soviet armies. Once these double entrapment maneuvers have been accomplished, the German forces, reinforced by Manstein’s assault troops of the 11th Army, will attack Moscow in a great pincer movement. Hitler referred to this as Operation Red. Hitler agreed to this plan, but insisted that the 11th Army be transferred to the Crimea as soon as Moscow falls. He wanted to clear the Soviet forces held up in Sevastopol.

The OKW is convinced that the nature of these limited offensives will inflict heavy losses on the Soviets. It will also shorten the German lines and free extensive forces, including the 18th Army and Finnish forces besieging Leningrad. By eliminating these pockets of resistance, at least three armies, including armored forces, could be freed in the sectors of Groups North and central. The German generals hope that the fall of Moscow will not only lead to a decisive military but also political and moral victory that would vastly weaken the Soviet Union. The Soviets have placed the bulk of their best forces defending Moscow. If Operation red successes it will deal a massive blow against the red Army. It will also greatly disrupt Soviet operations. Moscow is an important center of traffic and arms production. The fall of the Red capital would mean the disruption of transportation and supply.



THE OPPOSING SIDES

The German army was not fully recovered from its losses it suffered in 1941. By May 1942, it was only two-thirds up to strength from its strength when it invaded the Soviet Union in June 1941. Reinforcements have helped to replenish most of the German armies. In addition, five-four allied divisions were added from Germany’s Slovakian, Romanian, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and other allies. This did not include the fifteen Finnish divisions in the north. The Soviet army suffered a terrible beating and was no where as strong as it was as it would be during the battle of Kursk in our time line. The German army was still far superior when it came to man-to-man fighting quality via the Soviets, at a four to one advantage.

The Soviets were able to draw on its vast superior number in manpower, but its troops were poorly trained and not as well armed as it would be in 1943. In our time line the Soviets’ production of tanks and artillery will grow rapidly in 1942, because Moscow and the Russian heartland will not suffer from being overrun by the German army. This heartland, which is west of the Volga River, contains vast industries and manpower that would tremendously hurt the Soviet war effort if lost to the Germans. The Soviet Union in 1941 possessed four-major industrial centers; the Moscow region, the Donets Basin, the Urals and the Kuznets Basin in Western Siberia. The Germans partially captured the Donets Basin and almost captured Moscow. As a result, Soviet production actually declined by about 40 percent in 1941-1942. This was also because the Soviets began dismantling and relocation of much of the Soviet industries. It will not be until 1943 when the Soviet production will be back up to strength after it was reassembled in farther to the east. Still, the Soviets were able to field a much larger army than the Germans.

The German and Axis satellite troops in the Soviet Union in June 1942, totaled about 3.5 million. This included 330,000 Romanians, 300,000 Finns, 70,000 Hungarians, 68,000 Italians, 28,000 Slovakians, 14,000 Spaniards, along with numbers of other ethnic groups and nationalities fighting on the side of the Germans. The Soviets had 5.5 million troops at the front, plus another 1.5 million in uncommitted reserve formations to the east. Despite these numbers, the Soviets were far weaker than they were in June 1941. The Soviets could field 6,000 tanks and the Germans only 3,000. The Soviets had 2,600 combat aircraft while the Germans had 2,770. The Soviets possessed a far superiority in artillery pieces, 55,000, while the Germans owned only a fraction of this number, 8,000. Further, the Germans lacked about 35,000 trucks and other motor vehicles. But numbers alone don’t tell the whole story. The combat effectiveness of the Germans was far better than the Soviets and varied somewhere between 3.10 and 2.34 to 1. The qualitative factors were in the German favor. The Soviets still had not learned to fight and conduct combat as effectively as the Germans.



MAY-JUNE 1942

The Germans began their offensives in early May. General Meckenberg led an attack on the Kharkov Salient with the 1st Panzer and 2 Army. The Soviets were butchered and lost over 330,000 losses. While this offensive took place, Manstein began his offensive against Leningrad itself. The 16 Army struck at the Soviet salient north of Lake Ilmen, causing 100,000 Soviet losses. Further to the north the 3rd Panzer Army struck northeast, while the 18th Army attacked the Soviet 1st Army in the Oranienbaum pocket to the west of Leningrad. Manstein himself led the assault on Leningrad itself with the 11th Army. A concentration of the Luftwaffe on the city assisted the assault. The fighting was fierce and lasted for six weeks. In the end, the German succeeded in destroying the Oranienbaum pocket and smash its way into Leningrad. The fighting was terrible, but the Soviets eventually surrendered. This happened after the Finns opened a second assault from the north. The Finns told the Germans they would not attack until the Germans linked with them east of Lake Ladoga. The German 3rd Panzer Army was able to reach the Finns on June 2. The Finns attack Leningrad on June 6. The bridge across Ladoga Lake was finally cut and Leningrad to the Germans on June 13. The Soviet losses were about 1.3 million.

The Germans hoped to attack the Soviets on June 19, but delayed the attack until June 28 to permit the relocation of the 3rd and 1st Panzer Armies to the Central Front. With the capture of Leningrad, the Germans could no transfer both the 11th and 16th Armies to support the attack against Moscow, as well as free several panzer and infantry divisions for the North Africa theater. Meanwhile, the Germans were eliminating the Soviet pocket south of Rzhev. This had to be done before the assault on Moscow could begin. Over 100,000 Soviet losses were bagged in the pocket. By the time of the German offensive was to begin on Moscow on June 28, the Soviet losses for May-June 1942 were 1.7 million.

The main attack began on June 28. The German 3rd Panzer Army struck east from Demjansk and moved north of Ostaschhikov. Further to the north the 16th Army attacked across the Volkhov River. The German 1st Panzer Army struck north from Rzhev and linked up with the 3rd Panzer Army, encircling seven Soviet armies in the Toropec Pocket. A second German assault began with the attack of the 2nd Panzer Army toward Moschajsk and then moved south. North of Orel, the German 4th Panzer Army struck north, east of Kaluga. The two panzer armies finally met and encircled or destroyed eight Soviet armies. These two encircling movements resulted in the destruction of another 1.4 million Soviet troops. Stalin was determined to make an all out fight before Moscow. His refusal to permit a withdrawal ensured the encirclement of his armies by the Germans. The Red Army fought hard and the system of fortifications before and around Moscow were well planned out. The Germans suffered heavy losses, but the fall of Leningrad freed up the 16th and 18th Armies to support the German panzer thrusts. By ordering the red Army to resist fanatically, Stalin handed the Germans exactly what they were looking for: giant encirclement and pocket battles close to the Wehrmarcht’s supply bases. This was the same kind of warfare the Germans had enjoyed the previous year before crossing the Dvina and Dnieper river lines.

After the completion of the double encirclement by August 1, the German armies now turned on Moscow. As in 1941, Stalin refused to abandon Moscow. Soviet reserves were rushed forward to meet the German panzer armies. But unlike 1941, this was August and the weather was warm and the ground was hard. There would be no rain or snow to plague the German armies as they resumed the attack on Moscow. On August 5 the Germans resumed the attack with two great pincer movements north and south of Moscow. The 1st and 3rd Panzer Armies struck north of the Soviet capital. The 3rd Panzer Army struck north of Kalinin while the 1st moved south of the city and across the Moscow Canal. The 3rd Panzer was attacked by the Soviet 10th and 9th Reserve Armies, but was able to resume the attack after five days of heavy fighting. The 1st Panzer Army continued its progress slowly, blasting away through the heavy fortifications around Moscow with the support of the 9th Army. To the north the 16th Army was racing toward Rybinsk Reservoir.

Further to the south the German 2nd and 4th Panzer Armies attacked on both sides of Tula, encircling the city and the continued their assault east of Moscow. The two panzer armies suffered heavy, but they were able to fight off the attacks of the Soviet 70th and 6th Reserve Armies. After Rajasan fell to the Germans on August 25, the two panzer armies then turned north and finally linked up with the 3rd and 1st Panzer Armies at Vladimir on September 3. Moscow was now encircled and cut off from the rest of the Soviet Union.



THE ENCIRCLEMENT OF MOSCOW

As the German armies moved to encircle Moscow, Stalin and the Soviet government fled to Gorki. As the Germans approached the Red Capital there was no replay of civilian rebellion that took place last year. The Soviet secret police, the NKVD, was out rounding up anyone who expressed any discontent. All civilians were rushed into service constructing defenses. Anyone who tried to escape the city was killed. The roads leading out of the capital were littered with the bodies of thousands of people who tried to flee. The Soviet defenses around Moscow were constructed in depth resembling a weaker version of the defense of Kursk in 1943, in out time line (OTL). Along the defenses the bulk of the Soviet reserve armies and newly reorganized tank corps were located.

Despite these defenses the concentrated German panzer thrusts penetrated into operational depths. The costs of these penetrations were high in men and equipment. But the Soviets refused to give ground. Even though Stalin fled, he left orders for every inch of ground to be defended to the last man. This permitted the bulk of the Soviet forces to be destroyed or encircled. Unlike OTL, when the Soviets withdrew across the Don River when the Germans attacked in the south, the Soviet armies were chewed up by the German forces. Supported by both the 4th and 9th Armies that encircled Moscow, Manstein’s 11th Army, experienced in assaulting fortifications, began the assault on the Red Capital. The fighting lasted for six weeks and the losses on both sides were terrible. As in out time line, when the Germans invaded the Caucasus, many Soviet citizens supported the Germans as liberators. In 1941 Hitler wanted to obliterate the entire city of Moscow and its civilian population, but this policy slowly clanged with the defeats of the Winter 1941-42. After the Germans entered the Red Capital hundreds of thousands of Russians surrendered. Eventually, Manstein’s 11th Army was able to pacify the city. When Moscow finally surrendered on October 1, the Soviets suffered another 1.3 million losses.



THE RACE TO THE VOLGA

As Moscow was surrounded, the Germans tried to reach the Volga River before the rains of late October set in. The Germans took heavy losses, but they succeed in breaking through the Soviet lines and rapidly moved east of Moscow. The Soviet lines were ripped apart and the Red Army only put up token resistance. As the battle east of Moscow became more mobile, the Germans quickly achieved the advantage they needed. The Soviets’ ability to fight a mobile battle had improved in the last twelve months, but the Germans are still far superior when it came to mobile warfare. Now that the bulk of the Soviet forces on the Central front was destroyed or entrapped in Moscow, the Soviet front crumbled. Stalin was forced to flee once more to Kazan further east.

The German panzer armies continue to race eastward. Hitler soon grew nervous, but the German Generals convinced him that the Soviets could not put up any serious resistance east of the Volga. The 3rd Panzer Army reach Gorki while the 1st Panzer Army thrust toward Nizhiy Novgorod. The 2nd Panzer turned south and raced towards Penza while the 4th Panzer struck south to take Tambov. Further to the north, the German 16th and 18th Armies were pushing the Soviets back to a line from Lake Onego to Cherepovits.

As the Germans were pushing east on both the Central and North Fronts, the Soviets decided to conduct a massive withdrawal along the southern sector of the front. Front Voronezh to Rostov the Soviet armies began to withdraw east in a desperate attempt to block the Germans moving south toward the Don. The Soviets feared they would be entrapped on the west bank of the Don River by the Germans if they reached Stalingrad.

The Soviet Union was not defeated, but their capacity to go onto the offensive was servilely damaged. The capture of Moscow and the destruction of the Soviet armies along the Central Front. This quickly led to the capture of the Russian heartland east to the Volga, resulting in the disruption of Soviet transportation and communication networks. But worst of all, the fall of the Russian heartland to the Germans meant the lost of one of the most important industrial and manpower reserve centers in the Soviet Union.

The Soviets were still able to crank out new equipment and train new troops, but only at the same rates of 1941-1942. Only two major industrial centers were left to the Soviets, and Soviet production was reduced by 60 per cent. The lost of Moscow was also a major blow to Soviet morale. Revolts throughout the remainder of the Soviet Union were becoming more common. Stalin’s own position as dictator was also in jeopardy. Revolts broke out among both anti-Communist forces and the many non-Russian nationalities. Stalin was face with the fact that there would be no Soviet counteroffensive in 1942-1943. All Soviet reserves were being rushed to the front to set up fortifications along the Volga and along a line that ran from Rostov to Stalingrad and up to Kazan.



THE FAILURE OF OPERATION TORCH

After America entered the war, President Roosevelt wanted to concentrated America’s war effort in Europe. With the Japanese overrunning most of the Pacific, FDR was desperate for an American victory. The American military wanted to land in France, but the British were completely against it. Churchill feared his government would collapse if an Anglo-American invasion of France failed. He still had nightmares about his failure at Gallipoli in the First World War. Churchill and Roosevelt settled on and Anglo-American invasion of French North Africa.

Roosevelt wanted the invasion to begin in October 1942, several weeks before the 1942 U.S. elections. All poles indicated that the Democrats were going to do badly in the November elections, and could even lose the Congress to the Republicans. FDR hoped an American victory in North Africa could help the Democrats in the elections. But the American military vetoed such a date as premature. The Allied forces would not be ready for such an early date and planned the invasion for November 8, after the elections.

With the defeats of the Soviet armies in the summer of 1942, and the encirclement of Moscow, Stalin became more desperate and began demanding the Western Allies do something to relieve the pressure on the Soviet Union. He wanted a second front established in France as soon as possible. FDR puts pressure on the military and forces them to move the date up to October 8. The result is a total disaster. When the American land in North Africa, the French decide to resist because of the exceptional German victories on the Russian Front. In September 1942 Hitler transfers several panzer and infantry divisions to North Africa to reinforce Rommel. Half of the force is moved into Algeria and Tunisia to support the French. The Americans are driven back into the sea and Vichy France officially joins the Axis against the Allies. The British land later and are unaware of the American defeat. By the time they learn of the American disaster they are attacked by the French with German support. The rest of the German reinforcements don’t arrive in time to prevent a British victory at El Alamein, but Rommel is once again able to halt the British advance in Libya at El Agheila. Rommel is able to stop Montgomery and once again turn the tide on December 16. Needless to say, the Republicans captured control of both houses of Congress.

1942 was a year of victories for Germany, but the German armies were exhausted. The cost of German victories on the Eastern Front resulted in the reduction of the strength of the German armies by one third. The Soviet armies were worst off, but the Soviets could raise new divisions at a faster rate, though it took time to train and equipment their new recruits. Stalin decided not to counterattack the Germans in 1942, but instead, to dig in and build up his forces for 1943. He still demanded the Western Allies invade France and was furious at the Anglo-American defeat in North Africa. He accused the Allies of not trying hard enough and began to seek the possibility of peace with Germany.

Churchill and Roosevelt agree to meet in Canada in February 1943. Roosevelt wants to push forward a Germany First strategy bu he needs a victory. The defeat of the Japanese Navy at the battle of Coral Sea and Midway convinces the American military that the war should concentrate on Japan. They are also convinced that the Anglo-American forces are not yet ready to take on the Germans. The battle of the North Atlantic was still raging, and until the Allies could eliminate the threat of the German U-boats, they will never be able to build up their forces for an assault on Europe or North Africa. Roosevelt is forced to agree and authorizes a major build up in the Pacific. Southern Democrats in both houses of Congress have joined with the Republicans to undermine Roosevelt’s authority. They want a Japan First war strategy. Roosevelt fears that any further defeats in Europe would result in his and the Democrats’ defeat in the 1944 elections and surrenders to the pressure to concentrate in the Pacific. It is agreed that across the south and central Pacific will commence as soon as possible. Roosevelt also wants to increase lend-lease to the Soviets. He is bent on pleasing Stalin. To achieve this goal the United States would have to decrease the amount of aid to the British, which angers Churchill. Churchill fears Roosevelt and the Americans are too naive when it comes to Stalin and the Communists. To satisfy the British, Roosevelt also promises to send American infantry tank divisions to Egypt and the Middle East, to fight alongside the British.



GERMAN PLANS FOR 1943

Hitler is delighted with the progression of the war, but he is concerned about the lack of oil. He wanted to pursue the Soviets south across the Don River and into the Caucasus but his armies ran out of fuel. He is desperate for the oil of the Caucasus and claims that if his generals had followed his plans for Operation Blue in 1942, Germany would now have all the oil she needed. Throughout the Winter and Spring of 1943, Stalin continues to try for a negotiated settlement with the Germans, but Hitler wants to capture the Caucasus before coming to some kind of settlement with the Soviets. Plans are drawn up for a continuation of an offensive into the Caucasus in June 1943. Hitler finally agrees to place the German economy on a total war footing. Hitler also orders the manufacturing of the new Me 263 jet fighters.

Hitler agreed to the total mobilization of the Germany economy, which was accomplished by the end of January 1943. This benefitted German production and set free manpower for the Wehrmacht. Eight hundred thousand men were drafted during the first half of 1943, and the number of women permitted to be drafted to work in manufacturing was approved by Hitler.

Because of the defeat of the Anglo-American invasion of North Africa, the Italians don’t overthrow Mussolini. At the same time Rommel is ordered to resume the offensive in Libya. He is instructed to attack the Allies in Egypt and invade the Middle East. With the entrance of Vichy France into the war, Rommel’s rear is now protected. The Germans are able to use bases in Tunisia to supply Rommel. Rommel wants an assault on Malta before he resumes his attack against the British. Hitler agrees to an attack on Malta. The Germans hope to link up with their forces moving south through the Caucasus into Iran. Feelers are put out to Japan to resume the attack on India for a grand strategy of the Axis linking up in Iran. The Japanese are reluctant to commit their fleet to the Indian Ocean after their double defeat by the Americans at Midway and Coral Sea.

The Vichy government is reluctant to get too involved in the war, but with the Germans in North Africa they have to submit to Hitler’s demands. The Vichy French try to convince Hitler to release the two million French prisoners of war. Hitler agrees to release one million if they volunteer for duty in North Africa and in Russia. Half are sent to Russia and placed under German command. They take up defensive positions along the Volga. Several infantry divisions are placed under Rommel’s command to fight against the British. Rommel is able to win over the loyalty of these French divisions and they prove to be courageous and dedicated soldiers fighting the British, who they hate.



OPERATION OILFIELDS

On June 25, 1943, the German armies struck south into the Caucasus. The Germans were employing their new Tiger and Panther tanks. As the rushed forward, the Soviet armies began withdrawing. The Soviets were expecting the Germans to attack in the south and decided not to stand and fight as they did before Moscow. The Soviet armies had not yet recovered from their defeats in 1942. The Red Army had less territory to draw on and spent most of their resources building a series of fortifications on the east bank of the Volga. Even with the lost of the Russian heartland, the Soviets still had a great industrial capacity in Siberia and the Urals. The Soviets were able to build new armies with the support of American Lend-lease, but it would not be until late 1943 before they could buildup a large enough reserve of their T-34 tanks for an offensive. By avoiding direct battles with the Germans, the Soviets can build up their armies and wait until the Germans are exhausted. As the German panzer armies are racing south, Stalin is planning a major offensive further north.

By October 1943, the Germans have reached the Caucasus Mountains and have reached the oil fields. The Caucasus peoples, especially the Cassocks, welcome the Germans as liberators. The Soviets blowup the oilfields as they retreat. For the next month the Germans sludge it out over the mountains, but they finally cross over to the south. Baku is captured on November 15. The Georgian and Armenian peoples also welcome the Germans as liberators.



NORTH AFRICA AND THE MIDDLE EAST

In January 1943, a combined German-Italian-French assault on Malta begins. The overall importance of Malta’s position in the Mediterranean for future Axis was emphasized by Rommel, Field Marshal Kesselring, the German Navy and the Italian Comando Supremo. They were able to convince Hitler of the great advantage that laid in Axis possession of the island. An air offensive began by the 2nd Air Corp. of the Luftwaffe on January 2 and the 28 with all its forces. The British suffered such heavy loses that it was paralyzed to resist an Axis invasion. The Luftwaffe flew 5800 bombers, 6000 fighter and 350 reconnaissance missions and deployed over three hundred aircraft in these operations. This was followed by an assault by the French and Italian fleets against the British defenses as German Airborne troops drop and take both airfields after heavy losses. This is followed up by a German-Italian assault by sea. After three weeks of heavy fighting and high casualties on both sides, Malta finally falls to the Axis. The Central Mediterranean is finally secured by the Axis.

Now that Rommel’s supply lines are secured with the capture of Malta, he resumed the attack in Libya. This time he is reinforced by several Panzer divisions and additional French troops. Rommel defeated Montgomery at El Aghelia in March 1943, and again at Tobruk in May 1943. The British defeat was total. Montgomery was removed from his command in disgrace. In June 1943, Rommel once again crosses into Egypt. This time his Africa Corp. is met by a combined force of British and Americans. With the defeat of Operation Torch, the Allies began transferring the American 7th Army to Egypt. Since Montgomery was removed from his command, it was agreed that an American should be put in charge of the Anglo-American forces in Egypt. Churchill fears that Turkey will come into the war on the side of the Axis and agrees to the Americans’ demand. The Allies picked General Patton. The Second battle of El Alamein is fought in October 1943. Both sides are evenly matched and the battle is fought to a standstill.

The Ally command wants Patton to retreat to Alexandria and wait for reinforcements, but Patton refuses. He figures that if his armies are in bad need of supplies, so are Rommel’s armies. He decides to open a surprise attack in November 1943. His gamble pays off. Patton’s attack takes Rommel by surprise. Once again both sides suffer terrible losses, but Rommel believes that the only way the Allies could resume the attack is because they have received reinforcements. Rommel has outrun his supply lines and his supplies haven’t reached him yet. Fearing a total route by his badly under strength forces, he decides to play it safe and retreats to Tobruk. Patton receives his supplies and continues to attack. He doesn’t want to give Rommel time to catch his breath.



THE SOVIET WINTER OFFENSIVE OF 1943-44

In November 1943 the Soviets were finally to go on the offensive. In the Caucasus the red Army retreated while they built up their forces along the Volga River. Soviet armies stationed on the north bank of the Volga between Gorki and Kazan attacked south while another offensive was launched between Kazan and Saratov. The Germans fought determinately, but were unable to stop the Soviets. Their best forces, especially most of the panzer units were in the Caucasus. The Soviets were trying to recapture most of the Russian heartland between the Don and Volga Rivers. Hitler gave orders for his armies to hold their positions and fight for every inch of territory. Field Marshal Manstein was sent north to stop the Soviets. He was able to strike at the advance guard of the Soviet spearhead that had taken Voronezh. The German 3rd and 4th Panzer armies to the Central Front with their newest Panther and Tiger tanks. They counterattacked in February and encircled five Soviet armies at Voronezh, forcing the Soviets back to a line that ran from Rbinsk in the north to Vladimir, Ryazin, Tambov, along the Khoper and Don Rivers to Stalingrad.



ALLIED NORTH AFRICAN OFFENSIVE OF 1944

Because of the Soviet offensives in the East, Hitler was unable to send additional reinforcements to Rommel in North Africa. Patton’s armies were now at full strength once more and he resumed his attacks on Rommel. Patton attacks Rommel at Tobruk and breaks through the Axis lines in December 1943. Rommel is in retreat and withdraws to El Aghelia, but is unable to stop Patton. The Allied armies in North Africa are now receiving uninterrupted supplies and reinforcements. The Allies were able to turn the tide in the North Atlantic in 1943. Reinforcements and supplies were now crossing the Atlantic in record numbers. In February 1944, the British and American fleets sail into the Mediterranean and attack the French and Italian fleets, seriously destroying them. The Vichy governments in Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia are secretly opening up negotiations with the Americans.

Patton once again is able to force Rommel to retreat, this time into Tunisia. The Germans formally take over the administration of Tunisia. Patton’s offensive has finally run out of steam, but in the west, American and British forces once again land in North Africa in April. This time the Vichy governments surrender to the Allies and Morocco and Algeria are quickly overrun. With the surrender of the Vichy governments in North Africa, Hitler orders to total occupation of Vichy France. Surprisingly, those French troops under Rommel’s commander agree to continue fighting for Rommel. The final battle for North would now begin. Allied attacks from Libya and Algeria began in May and lasted two months, when Rommel convinced Hitler to withdraw 300,000 German and Italian troops to Sicily for that island’s defense. The German control of Malta prevents the Allies from invading Sicily.



THE SOVIET SUMMER 1944 OFFENSIVE

Allied air raids against Germany increase and German cities were now feeling the weight of Allied bombardment. FDR wanted to invade France in 1944, but the invasion had to be postponed until 1945. Churchill wants to concentrate Allied operations in the Mediterranean. With the Caucasus in German hands most of the oil fields were reopened by the summer of 1944. Badly needed oil was now flowing into the German economy. Hitler was determined to retain control of the Caucasus.

Stalin, on the other hand, was planning to reconquer the Caucasus in the Summer 1044. The Soviet economy was production was greater then Germany’s but not by much. The lost of the Caucasus not only caused great hardships on Soviet production because of the lost of its oil reserves, but also eliminate the supply lines of aid arriving from the United States. The lost of Moscow also meant the lost of control of their vast rail network west of the Ural Mountains. This hampered the movement of both troops and supplies to the front. American army trucks were now more valuable then ever, but their numbers were limited by the poor roads and rail links through Central Asia, which was now the only means for supplying the Soviets year round.

In July 1944, the strength of the Red Army along the entire front with Germany was 6.4 million men, 8,200 tanks and self-propelled guns and 8,250 aircraft. The Soviets faced 3.9 million Axis troops, of which 900,000 were non-Germans, 380 tanks and self-propelled guns and 2700 aircraft. The Soviet Summer Offensive began on July 7 all along the front from Ryazan to the Don River. A second attack began five days later across the Volga between Stalingrad and Astrakhan. The Germans and their allies resisted courageously, but they were outnumbered and overwhelmed. The Germans were forced to withdraw and tried to set up a new line along the Don River, but the Soviet broke through this line also. Voronezh fell to the Soviets, but the Germans were able to stop the Red Army from taking Kursk and Orel. Further to the south the Soviet overran Kharkov. On August 18 Rostov fell, cutting off the Caucasus from the Ukraine. The Germans in the Caucasus were forced to retreat south. Hitler refused orders for them to withdraw west before they were cut off. He wanted to retain control of the oil wells at all cost. In the South the Germans were able to establish a line at the Caucasus Mountains. Hitler hoped to transport oil across the Black sea to Romania and the souther Ukrainian ports. The Germans under Manstein were able to launch a series of counterattacks and retook Kharkov and push the Soviets back to Rostov, but failed to reestablish contact with the Caucasus.



THE ALLIED INVASION OF GREECE AND SICILY

During the Summer of 1944 the Allies decided they would have to take Malta before they could invade either Italy of Greece. Churchill had pushed for invasions of southern Europe and still opposed a cross channel invasion of Northern France. He feared a defeat in northern France could result in the collapse of his government, and the withdrawal of Britain from the war. Britain’s economy was on the verge of collapse and was only kept afloat by large injections of aid from the United States. British manpower was also running out. He wanted to conduct smaller invasions of Italy and Greece to prevent further drains on British manpower. Churchill also hoped to prevent the Soviets from overrunning Eastern Europe. He wanted to restore British influence in the Balkans and Central Europe after the war.

In April 1944, a combined Anglo-American assault on Malt was successful. The Germans fought hard to retain the island, but the Allied navies now dominated the Mediterranean. The Island surrendered after three weeks of hard fighting. The fall of Malta was fallowed by the invasion of the island Crete in June. This time the Allied had to assault the island with 50,000 troops. Once again the Germans fought to defend every inch territory and the losses to both sides were heavy. After six weeks of fighting, Crete was finally in German hands. Hitler had to rush badly needed troops from the Russian Front to reinforce his defenses in both Italy and Greece.

On August 4, 50,000 Allied troops landed in Greece. Three amphibious assaults were launched. Athens and the Peloponnese fell to the Allies, but the Germans and Italians were able to establish a line of defense across the neck of the Boeotia. Greece proved to be a difficult terrain for the Allies to invade. The mountains of Greece provided a natural defense for the Germans to dig into. Despite Greek partisan activities to the rear of the Germans, the Axis were able to prevent the Allies from breaking out of southern Greece.

A second Allied amphibious invasion began in November against Sicily. The British land south of Siracusa, while the Americans under Patton landed near Palermo. As the British moved north, along the eastern coast of the island, the Americans moved west on the northern coast. The battle was costly. There were over 400,000 German and Italian troops on the island and they fought to defend every inch of territory. The Italians fought harder in this time line than in our own because of the slower progression of the Anglo-American advance, the defeat of Torch in 1942, and the German successes in the Soviet Union in 1942 and 1943. But the Allies were able capture the entire island by November. This sent repercussions through the Fascist Italian government.

During the years of the war Roosevelt’s health was getting progressively worst. The failure of Operation Torch, and the postponement of the invasion of France in 1944 caused FDR’s health to worsen even more than in our time line. Roosevelt wanted to concentrate the American war effort in Europe, but the failure to do this aggravated his mental and physical conditions and accelerated the decline of his health. By early 1944 he suffered several minor heart attacks and his physicians restricted him to a twenty-hour work week, but even this was too much for him. By March 1944, he had been reduced to a raving lunatic. Henry Wallace was unpopular by much of Roosevelt’s cabinet and the running of the government suffered. Then, on May 5, Roosevelt died. Wallace was sworn in as the President of the United States. Eleanor Roosevelt encouraged Wallace to declare his intension to run for President in 1944. Wallace was able to retain the support of the New Dealers within the Democratic Party, but lost the support of the Southern Wing of the party. The Southerners walked out of the Democratic Convention in 1944 when Wallace received the candidacy of the Democratic Party and formed the States’ Rights Party. Their candidate was Sturm Thurmond from South Carolina. The Republicans nominated Thomas E. Dewey from New York.



WAR IN THE PACIFIC, 1944

Because of the defeat of Operation Torch in 1942, and the fall of Moscow, the American Military convinced FDR to increase the forces allocated for the Pacific. It was agreed by both the British and American military leaders that any attempt to invade North Africa would have to be put off for a year, and an invasion of northern France for at least two years. American forces in the Pacific were now strengthened. With the defeat of the Japanese at Midway and Coral Sea, the Americans were now in position to begin rolling back the Japanese Empire. Throughout 1943, the American forces attack in the southern Pacific theater (invading New Guinea), and in the central Pacific (the invasion of the Gilbert Islands and Guam), and the Aleutian Islands were recaptured.

By 1944 the American Navy was now superior to the Japanese Navy everywhere in the Pacific. But the Japanese Navy was still a serious threat. The Americans continued to advance throughout 1944. Palau Island fell to the Americans in June, and the Philippines were invaded and liberated in August. The Mariana Islands fell to the Americans in March and Iwo Jima fell in May. A large naval battle was fought between the American and Japanese fleets were fought in the Battle of the Lingayen Gulf was fought in June with the total destruction of the Japanese Navy. The Americans now ruled the Pacific. In September the island of Taiwan was invaded. Taiwan was considered Japanese home territory, and the American suffered heavy casualties. After six weeks of terrible fighting, the island was secured. The Americans quickly followed up their capture of Taiwan with the invasion of Okinawa in December. Once again Japanese resistance was fanatical.

On mainland China the Japanese Army began to invade southern China. The Chinese Nationalist forces suffered heavy loses but refused to surrender. The Japanese were able to link up with their forces in southern China. To counter Japan’s advance in southern China, the British began a counter attack in Burma. They hoped to open the Burma Road to China. This was achieved in early 1945 and badly needed supplies began to flow into China to support the badly mauled Nationalist forces.



AIR WAR IN EUROPE 1944-45

Throughout the war the British had been escalating the air war against Germany. British policy was terror bombing. They believed that saturation bombing of residential neighborhoods was more effective than the destruction of factories, military and scientific facilities. But the British found it difficult to conduct raids on Germany without suffering heavy loses during daytime hours, and so they conducted their raids during the night. After the Americans entered the war, they preferred to conduct daytime bombing against strategic targets. Throughout 1943, round-the-clock bombing began to take its toll. The principal target was the vital industrial area of the Ruhr Valley, but it was not restricted to the Ruhr. Throughout Fortress Europe, from Norway in the north to Italy in the south, the Allied bombers flew on their errands of death and annihilation.

German war production was heavily damaged by these raids, but by no means crippled. The war plants recovered quickly, and some of them even increased their output despite repeated raids. Efforts were made to continue war production in vast underground plants.

German production continued to increase. Production of aircraft by the Germans increased from 15,288 in 1942 to 25,094 in 1943, to 39,275 in 1944 and 47,833 in the first seven months of 1945. In this time line German production took a different turn because of the introduction of new German jet fighters and bombers. In this time line, the Germans had access to a larger supply of oil for a longer period of time. In our time line, the Germans produced hundreds of the Messerschmidtt Me 262 jet fighters, but every few got off the ground because of fuel shortage. But in this time that did not happen. By August 1944, hundreds of Me 262s were being produced every month and there were the fuel and pilots to fly them. This caused a reduction in the effectiveness of the Allied air raids on Germany in the second half of 1944 and throughout 1945. Soon after the Me 262 went into production, several other jet fighters were produced, but the most effective fighter was the Heinkel He 162 Volksjaeger. It was a single engine design and easy to manufacture. Heinkel was able to begin production of the Volksjaeger within six weeks after he completed its design. By May 1945, over one thousand were being produced in Germany’s underground factories. It was also very effective in challenging the Allies for domination of the skies over Germany.

The Allies continued to inflict heavy destruction on Germany, but at a very heavy cause. The British would lose over 130,000 airmen and 47,000 planes by the end of the war. The Americans would suffer the lost of 48,000 planes and the death of over 111,000 airmen. In this time line the Allies were unable to continue their one thousand plane raids. The Allies were never able to conduct raids that produced destruction that was inflicted on Dresden in out time line. The Germans made a massive effort to drive the Allies from the skies over Germany in early 1945. With the mass production of the Me 262 and the He 162, Allied loses of both fighters and bombers were as high as 30 to 40 percent throughout 1945. The cost in planes and manpower for the Allies began to skyrocket.

The Germans had also invented the V-1 rockets in 1944, and begun unleashing them against Britain in June. This was followed by the V-2 rockets in September. The V-2s traveled faster than the speed of sound. Though neither of these rockets was very effective, they had a terrible a psychological effect on British morale. But was even more terrible, psychologically, was the introduction of the two-staged V-3, or "American Rocket" in June 1945. Hundreds of V-3s were launched from Germany and raced across the Atlantic. Most fell harmlessly into the Atlantic, but several dozen struck New York City, as well as New Jersey and new England. But worst of all the introduction of the Horton Flying Wing.

Goering had authorized the production of a flying wing designed, six-engine, long-range jet bomber designed by two brothers, Walter and Reimar Horten. The first flying wing jet bombers conducted a raid on New York City. Fifteen bombers took off from Germany on June 17 and flew at a height of 37,000 feet. Several other raids would take place in July and August, as well as raids on Soviet cities in the Ural Mountains. The war suddenly came home to the Americans.



SOVIET WINTER OFFENSIVE OF 1944-45

The year 1944 was one of Soviet advancement. The Soviet economy had finally reached a point where it was producing enough tanks, guns and plans to permit the Red Army to conduct a massive offensive. The Soviets shrewdly timed their attacks, working in close coordination, and maintaining their supply lines on the few railroads they still controlled, attacked westward through the Ukraine. The Red Army advanced 400,000 miles across the Dnieper River.

Fighting began on an 800-mile front in the south, running from Tula, south of Moscow to Orel, Kursk, Byelgorod to Kharkov and down to Rostov. A secondary attack took place in the north between Lake Onega and Cheropovets, advancing 100 miles, taking Byelozark, but failing to reach Lake Ladoga and Leningrad. The German 18th Army and their Finnish allies put up stiff resistance in the swamps and rough terrain of this northern region.

On November 3, the Soviets captured Kharkov and cross the Donets River. On November 4 Kursk fell, followed by Orel on November 8. With the capture of these three key cities, the Germans found it difficult to maintain the line of defense. The Germans were forced to retreat, but before they did the Wehrmacht and the Luftwaffe systematically destroyed all three cities, leaving them in flames.

The impetus of the Red drive continued into December. The Soviets sought to retake Kiev, the capital of the Ukraine, and cross the Dnieper River to cut off the German forces in the Crimea. The Red Tide swept on irresistibly for the next two months. Key points fell to the Soviets, one after another. Dnepropetrosk, Zaporrozhye, Krivai Rog in the south and Gomel and Bryansk in the north. But the Soviets were finally halted before they could take Smolensk, and they failed to reach the mouth of the Dnieper River, which would have cut off the Crimea.

When the Soviet offensive finally petered out outrunning their supply lines, the Germans struck back on February 5, 1945. Using mobile maneuvers, the Germans were able to retake Krivai Rog in the south, pushing the Soviets back across the Dnieper River. North of Kiev the Germans retook Gomel and reached the outskirts of Bryansk. The Germans finally retook Kiev. Their Ukrainian allies fought along side of the Germans and were determined to liberate their capital.

Further to the south, in the Caucasus, the Soviets attack across the Caucasus Mountains. The German 11th Army, which was sent there to storm the last Soviet pockets of resistance in 1944, had been trapped there after the Soviet Summer 1944 offensive. Local populations had welcomed the Germans as liberators from Soviet Communism. Units of Georgians, Armenians, Azerbaijanis, Chechyans, Dagestanis and Cossacks all joined the Germans as allies in the hope of preventing the Soviets from retaking the Caucasus.

The British attacked from the south where they had occupied Iran in 1942. The struck north and eventually took Baku, but not before the Germans destroyed all the oil wells there. The 11th Army under Field Marshal Busch retreated to the Turkish border. They fought their way south, putting up stiff resistance against the advancing Soviets. Native guerillas remained behind, in the mountains, and harassed the Soviets. Hitler had ordered Busch to fight to the end. He did not want to surrender the oil wells to the Soviets, but the Germans were not match for the Red Army. Hitler wanted to try to keep the 11th Army supplied through the Black Sea, but it was impossible. Hitler finally was able to put pressure on the Turkish government to agree to permit the 11th Army to retreat into Turkish territory, where it was eventually returned to Germany. The 11th Army suffered 50 percent casualties, but the Soviets lost over 800,000 casualties.

The first German jet fighters appeared on the Eastern Front during their counterattack. Me 262s were instrumental in halting the Soviet advance and driving them out of Kiev. In this time line the Soviet do not dominate the skies over the Eastern Front. Hundreds of Soviet tanks were destroyed by German jets. Shortly after the fall of Kiev to the Germans, the German jet bomber, the Arado 234 made its first appearance. It was an effective instrument in disrupting Soviet supply lines. The appearance of German jets would have the effect of slowing the advance of the Soviet Army during 1945.



THE FALL OF ITALY 1944

In this time line Mussolini is able to maintain control over the Fascist government until October 1944, when he was finally overthrown. The lost of Sicily and Italy’s Italian empire had convinced the Italians that they had nothing to gain by staying in the war. General Badaglio and the Italian King were negotiating secretly with the Allies to drop out of the war. When they thought they had assurances from the Allies that Italy would be permitted to surrender, the King arrested Mussolini and Badaglio replaced him as Prime Minister.

Badaglio assured the Germans that Italy would remain loyal, but Hitler was not fooled. Before the Allies could invade Italy, the Germans invaded and occupied the entire country down to the Italian toe. Hitler immediately reinstated Mussolini, but this time as head of state. The King and Badaglio fled the country and the Monarchy was replaced by the Italian Fascist Republic.



THE INVASION OF FRANCE JUNE 1945

Churchill had been sending reinforcements to Greece for an attempt breakout into the Balkans in the Spring of 1945. The Germans were too preoccupied in Russia to release enough troops to drive the British back into the sea. Churchill still objected to an invasion of Northern France. He knew Britain was exhausted from five and a half years of war. He feared that the British Empire could not survive the type of losses it suffered in the war of attrition during the First World War. He preferred to fight Germany at the periphery of German-occupied Europe, far away from the center of German power.

The Americans were determined to invade France. The American Army in Europe now numbered over two million and President Dewey is anxious to land this army in France. Churchill had been dragging his feet for three years, but he knew that he could no longer delay a cross-channel invasion. Churchill agreed to only one British Army joining the invasion. The American would send four across the channel to land in Normandy. The British could provide additional air and sea power to support the invasion, but Churchill wanted to concentrate British power in Greece. The Allies agreed that once they had established a beach head in Normandy, the British would break out of the Greek beach head. In this way they could apply pressure on the Germans from two directions. Churchill agreed to this plan. He was concern about the Soviet overrunning eastern and central Europe and hoped to drive north through the Balkans and prevent the Soviets from occupying Romania, Hungary, Yugoslavia and Bulgaria. Churchill believed this strategy would ensure the British Empire would remain a great power in the postwar world. He had no illusion about Stalin and was relieved when FDR died and Dewey became President, replacing Henry Wallace. Both FDR and Wallace were too trusting of the Soviets. There were over 300 Soviet agents within the Roosevelt-Wallace administrations, many in high positions and were responsible for formulation policy toward the Soviet Union. But Dewey was far less trusting of Stalin and was glad to cooperate with Churchill in planning the postwar settlement. Dewey even agreed with Churchill the FDR’s "Unconditional Surrender" policy was a big mistake and he scrapped it.

On June 4, four American and one British landed on the beaches of Normandy. The weather was clear and perfect for the invasion. Several weeks before the invasion the Allies conducted massive carpet bombardment of northern France, knocking out communication and transportation junctions and centers, as well as smashing as much of the German fortifications along the coast. In this time line, Rommel was able to convince Hitler that he should order the positioning of the panzer armies close to the coast in 1945. When the Allies invaded Normandy in 1945, they were confronted with panzer assaults by King Tiger and Panther tanks. In addition to the panzer assaults, the Allies were confronted with swarms of German Jet fighters and bombers that challenged Allied air superiority. The Americans and British were developing their own jet fighters, but they would not be ready for another month. Churchill tried to convince the Americans to postpone the invasion until after their jet fighters could become available to assists in the invasion. He feared the German jets would deny the Allies air superiority and put the entire operation into jeopardy. The Allies were able to hold onto their beach heads throughout June, but found it difficult to breakout of Normandy into France. Both side suffered heavy losses. By July 1, the Allies lost air superiority and the Germans were able to move their panzer reserves stationed in the Flanders to Normandy without fear of being destroyed by Allied air attacks. Churchill’s prediction about the threat of German jets were coming true.

Despite the German attacks from their panzer armies and jets, the Allies were able to build up their armies strength in their beach heads. By July 14 they attacked the German lines, using their new jet fighters to challenge the German jets. The Americans were able to break out under Patton between Coutance and St. Lo and struck towards Rennes and e Mans. The Germans sent their panzer reserves to attack from Argentan towards Avranches on July 23, in hope of cutting off the American offensive. Both side suffered heavy losses. While fighting continued in northern France, the British finally begun their breakout of Greece. British commandos landed on the east coast of Greece near Larisa. Aid was given to Yugoslavian and Greek partisans who caused a great deal of disruption of German supply lines, and helped to divert badly needed German troops from Greece to Yugoslavia.



WAR IN THE PACIFIC, 1945


In the Pacific the Japanese were losing the war at a much faster rate than in our time line. The United States had devoted greater resources to the Pacific War. The American nay bypassed tough island bases where the Japanese were dug in. General MacArthur insisted the United States conduct a campaign of island-hopping. MacArthur by passed the strongest Japanese-held islands and took only weakly held islands where the U. S. set up its own bases. By using both its surface and submarine fleets, the United States was able to dominate the Pacific and cut Japanese lines of supply, choking off the Japanese economy by denying the importation of badly needed resources from the Dutch East Indies and Southeast Asia. This policy also enabled the Americans to prevent the Japanese from reinforcing and supplying islands they held behind American lines.

The Americans capture the Volcanic Islands, including Iwo Jima, after several weeks of bloody fighting. The Americans suffered heavy casualties because the Japanese defending the island fought to the last man. But the capture of these islands permitted the Americans to begin around-the-clock air bombardment of Japanese cities with their B-29s. The B-29 could fly high enough to remain out of range of Japanese fighters defending the Japanese home islands. This meant the Americans could bomb Japan at will, causing horrible devastation on the Japanese cities. Japanese cities were made of wood and paper and easily transformed into flaming infernos.

In Burma the British were able to push the Japanese back into Thailand. Aid began flowing into China and Chinese resistance by the nationalist forces toughened throughout the first half of 1945. American planes could now fly from the Philippines and Okinawa and land in China.



THE SOVIET OFFENSIVE OF SUMMER 1945

The Soviet armies far outnumbered the Germans in 1945, but were no where on the level of technological and fighting ability quality as in our time line. The quality of the Soviet armies had improved but was still not equal to the Germans in quality. The Soviet offensive of the Winter of 1944-45 inflicted heavy casualties on the Germans and their allies, but the Red Army also suffered high casualties. With Moscow still in German hands in 1945, the Soviet had to rely heavy on the vast numbers of American trucks imported from the United States for mobility. The Soviets were also now producing huge numbers of their T-34 tanks, but they were still not equal to the German panther and King Tiger tanks. But the Germans had suffered heavy losses and their losses exceeded their production of new tanks.

The Red Army was also suffering from casualties the Germans were inflicting on it. The Soviets were beginning to reach the bottom of the barrel of its manpower reserves, because most of the Russian heartland was totally or partially in German hands throughout the period of 1942 to 1945. Stalin now ordered all males, from thirteen to sixty-five years old to be drafted. The era of the Red Army absorbing millions of casualties was over.

The Soviets are still deep in their own territory in the Summer of 1945 and began to think about a separate peace with the Germans in hope of reclaiming its 1941 borders. With the British in Greece, Stalin feared the Anglo-Americans will capture the Balkans and might even try to restrict the U. S. S. R. to its 1939 borders after the war.

Before Roosevelt died, Stalin had over 300 Red spies within the Roosevelt administration, even holding high positions within FDR’s cabinet. Stalin was receiving intelligence about the American Manhattan Project to build the Atomic Bomb. He knew that the Americans would have the Atomic bomb before 1946. With President Dewey in the White House, most of Stalin’s spies had been replaced, and Stalin no longer trusted the Americans and the British. He hoped for one more major offensive to retake Moscow and then offer Hitler peace terms in return for the Soviet 1941 borders.

On June 13, Operation Kremlin opened with a short artillery bombardment, followed by infantry reconnaissance units, which used the cover of the artillery to move into attack positions. This was typical of Soviet operations under Marshal Zhukov. Zhukov next ordered a massive artillery assault against German lines all along Army Group Center within twenty-four hours. On June 14 heavy infantry swarmed across the lines towards the German positions. They were supported by dense formations of Soviet aircraft. This was followed by tank assaults which broke through the German defensive positions and cut deep into the rear of the German armies.

The assault on Moscow salient included 166 divisions and supported by 2600 tanks and 1200 aircraft. Against this, Army Group Center, along a 800 mile front, possessed only 47 divisions, supported by 1100 tanks, mainly Tiger, King Tiger and Panther tanks, but the Germans were receiving large numbers of the He 162 jet fighters and some Me 262 jet fighters.

The first German army to suffer was the 9th, south of Moscow. It was threatened with encirclement until it retreated to the west of Moscow. It was ordered to hold open the road to Moscow and prevent the encirclement of Moscow. The 4th Army north of Moscow also suffered heavy casualties and had to retreat back into Moscow. The 3rd Pz Army, located east of Moscow retreated and fought a mobile defense, inflicting heavy casualties on the advancing Red Army, but it could not keep the Soviets closing its pincers west of Moscow. Hitler was always had a phobia about Moscow, and now feared that the duplication of Napoleon’s disaster was about to be repeated. He immediately ordered the withdrawal of the Moscow salient. The Germans were able to withdraw to a line running from Tikhvin in the north to Novgorod down to Smolensk and finally along the Dneiper River. In the Southern most end of the Soviet offensive, the Red Army was able to take Kiev.

By July 27, the Soviet offensive slowed to a halt. Stalin offered Hitler his peace terms, but Hitler rejected a withdrawal to the 1941 borders. With the Allies, building out their forces in northern France, now breaking out of their Normandy beach head, and the British attacking in Greece, Hitler’s generals pleaded with Hitler to cut a deal with the Soviet Union so they could drive the Anglo-Americans off the continent in France and Greece. Hitler finally agrees. On August 1, an armistice is signed between Germany and her allies and the Soviet Union. The Germans agree to withdraw to the 1939 Soviet borders. Hitler hopes to attack the Soviets once again, after he has defeated the Americans and the British. Stalin also plans to break the armistice once the Germans divert most of the forces to France and Greece.



THE ALLIES DROP ATOMIC BOMBS ON HAMBURG AND HIROSHIMA

Both President Dewey and Prime Minister Churchill were furious at Stalin’s betrayal. On July 16, 1945, the Americans successfully tested the first Atomic bomb at Alamogrado, New Mexico. The United States produced two more A-bombs. Dewey met with Churchill and the two agreed that they would drop one of the bombs on Hamburg and the other on Hiroshima on July 6. They also agreed that they would not demand unconditional surrender. Terms would be presented to both the Germans, Italians and the Japanese after the bombs are dropped. The two leaders then discussed the terms they would present to the Axis powers.

On July 6, two B-29 bombers took off on their deadly missions. One left an airfield in England heading for Hamburg, while the other left Tinian Island in the Marianas, for Hiroshima. Both bombs were dropped, causing massive devastation to both cities. Statements were immediately released from the White House to both Berlin and T

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 07:18 AM
please don't tell me you wrote all that.

________________________________________
http://www.angelfire.com/80s/prettypaper/images/Viper.jpg

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 07:33 AM
The Main reason Germany invaded Russia was to take the Caucasus Oil Fields.
They needed them to fight a Sustained War, Germanys Oil reserves where not unlimited and she was fighting a War on a huge scale, which expanded on to two fronts, in the Med and the East.
If those Oil Fields where in England, the Germans would have kept right on comming at Dunkirk, with U Boat Wolf Packs supported by Hundreds of German bombers and fighters, making the Channel crossing point for the Germans a suicidal place for the Royal Navy to try and intervene, but there never was a contingancy plan to invade England because those Oil fields where in Russia.

S!

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 08:58 AM
Falcon_41 wrote:
- Folks,
-
- I've studied and tested this theory scores of
- times over thousands of hours with dozens of
- scenarios and using seven different models. Once
- the Germans failed to achieve a strategic and
- conclusive victory in the winter of '41-'42 they
- were doomed. Given the loses of the '41 campaign
- and the phenomenal growth of Soviet forces, and
- discounting any extreme occurrences, Germany's days
- were numbered. Their Stalingrad would have simply
- occurred in Moscow, or Tula, or Kalinin and the
- ultimate result would have only varied by a few
- months at most.
-

Hi Falcon,

Ya, I've done that too in numerous operational og strategic scale East Front games. I absolutely agree with you.

cheers/slush

http://dk.groups.yahoo.com/group/aktivitetsdage/files/Eurotrolls.gif

You can't handle the truth!
Col. Jessep

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 09:09 AM
My two Kanuckas worth:

The Soviets expected a German summer offensive towards Moscos in 1942, that's why they kept the bulk of their forces there. That, and because they were still there after the Soviet winter offensive of 41/42. Those forces were later used in the failed Mars offensive that would have dwarfed Uranus (the Stalingrad operation).

In the south they had limited forces, that had encountered a severe setback after the ill-conceived Kharkov operation. So the Germans had an extremely easy time in the opening phase of Operation Blue (their attack towards Stalingrad).

Had they massed the forces on the Moscow front (as expected by the Soviets), they would have commited themselves to a frontal assault against a wellprepared enemy with superiour numbers. Kursk (operation Zitadelle in 1943) showed quite clearly the futility of that.

Obviously they could have tried the flanking attacks of 1941, but the situation was very different a year later. They faced motivated, veteran armoured formations with a mobility that could match their own. And they faced skilled commanders that had learned the trade of war the hard way.

In my opinion there's absolutely no way the Germans could have made it to Moscow with a direct assault in the summer of 1942. BUT had they done so it would have undermined the still fragile regime of Stalin, and it would have severed the links between the Leningrad forces and the Southern command, thus severely weakened the Soviet ability to wage war.

A more interesting 1942 scenario, again: in my opinion, would have been a smaller version of Operation Blue, where Hitler did not insist that Stalingrad should be the pivot of their North/South advances. Instead the Germans would have been content with an advance to an easily held Volga line, and directed the bulk of their forces towards either the Caucasus or Moscow, instead of trying to achieve both with too few troops.

cheers/slush

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You can't handle the truth!
Col. Jessep

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 09:13 AM
Wulf said:

"The Main reason Germany invaded Russia was to take the Caucasus Oil Fields."

That is highly debatable. If you're looking for a MAIN reason, I think the answers are to be found in Mein Kampf.

Yes, taking oil fields is great, but that's an awful lot of trouble to go to just to get them.

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 09:16 AM
Moscow would have become another couldron along the lines of Stalingrad but far bigger.

Without the limits imposed by the Volga there would have been very little to prevent the Russians pouring an almost limitless supply of troops into the city from the East. and that the German supply lines would have been stretched that little bit further, I think that the main outcome would be that the Germans would have lost whichever army/ies it commited to the attack on Moscow.

I beleive that Moscow could have held untill a point came where the weather would seriously hinder the German offensive. Also Germany would be forced to commit huge numbers to the assault itself which would impact on its ability to provide proper defences to the North and the South.

To the German advantage could have been that despite the loss of Army Group Centre, groups North and South would likely have encountered a weakening of Russian defensive capability as troops were re-positioned to defend Moscow and could well have acheived their objectives.

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 09:58 AM
Besides all the interesting posts (amazing!!) depicting some more or less plausible scenarios, I believe this:
even if germans could take Moskow in '42 by concentrating their forces to do this task, they would have ended to be wiped out from that area just some time later.
Don't forget that USSR was as huge as a continent, there were millions of guys ready to fight against germans, and the territory was extremly hostile to let any easy support from Germany.
The nazi-occupied Moskow would have been cut-out from the west, and it would have been a massacre to take back the town (or what it was left of it).
Remember also Napoleon, who he did the same mistake believing to be able to cope with russian territory.
You can't cope with environmental conditions of that area, no matter if your troops move by feet, horse or tank. It's HUGE, in winter is snowy and extremely cold, in spring is a plain of mud, there were few roads, and it was far away from Germany.
Even if Hitler managed to arrive near Moskow, take it and occupy it... then? How long it would have last?
Not much, I believe.



http://www.uploadit.org/files/030903-Tempest_MkV_picc.jpg </p>


I have more pistons than you!</p>

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 10:01 AM
For each "what if" we grant one side, changing a mistake, we must grant one to the other (somebody already mentioned Kharkov). That Germans lost everything indicates they made a minimum of one (1) more mistake than the Soviets made, and so would still lose everything no matter the techie details of this Debate, by the mere process of using up all their "what if" mistake corrections before the Soviets do.

This is a fantastic idea to discuss, but we should observe the Rule of Equal Grants (just made that up).


Falcon41 observes::
- Once the Germans failed to achieve a strategic and
- conclusive victory in the winter of '41-'42 they were doomed.

Exactly what crazy ivan's translated out of that IL2 pilot's diary.

Perhaps the most strategic issue is the potential if the German Nation had a different attitude to the local populations. But then we can argue "what if" Stalin had treated his people better. So...

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 10:32 AM
i would say Germans would have good chance to capture Moscow in 1942. Their strength was consolidated after the winter, their supply lines from behind the frontlines to Moscow relatively short, the roads were good and many of them and the Soviet army still wasnÔ┬┤t fully capable to withsdtand an attack of experienced German troops. The big Soviet troops on the Moscow bridgehead would lead to big pockets and hundreds of thousands of captured soldiers. Remeber, the attack on the South was in the beginning a hit into an empty space - Soviets fled first in panic, then retreated more coordinately. German forces were soon spread on a huge area with long supply lines and decided to spend their best army in the nonsense city-fighting in Stalingrad, allowing Soviets to concentrate forces and hit their weak flanks.

The question is whether Soviets would surrender or not if Moscow would fall. Sure, a big war industry was being built behind the Ural, but also in Moscow there were many factories (Aerodynamic Air Institute - that equipment you can not move easily to East), the Moscow was a heart of the railway spidernet of Russia and behind the Moscow the density and quality of communications was poor. Soviets shouldnÔ┬┤t be able to move their forces quickly.



<center>http://www.kurita.sk/PRIVATE/pictures/sig_il2.jpg

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 10:32 AM
Well, if you want to make up what if cenarios why don't you look at the plans which were already made by the germans? The original plan was to take Leningrad in the North, moscow in the middle and the caucasus in the south and force russia into a peace treaty where russia would consist of everything east of moscow, the communist government would be forced to leave the country and a german friendly government should be installed. the Ukraine and the oilfields in the south were planned to be directly under german control. after the germans had to stop near moscow in winter and the red army built up those huge defences the Germans changed plans as they knew they could not break those defences. New plan was to take Leningrad and Stalingrad and the caucasus first. that's why they split the armygroup south into 2 groups, one heading North for Stalingrad the 2nd going to attack in caucasus. the forces attacking stalingrad were meant to move up after taking the town and help armygroup center to attack moscow in 1943 armygroup north should have taken Leningrad and parts of it would have been directed to attack moscow from the north. The mistake of the germans was that NON of those armies achieved the goals of those plans. So it was NOT only the battle of moscow but all other fronts too. every german advance in 1942 was stopped at the end of 1942. and they lost half of armygroup South. In 1941 they had a big advantage, in 1942 the russians were prepared, they were not able to defeat the germans by then but they were able to stop them until the situation turned around in 1943/44.

2 things we need in FB:
The 110 and the desert!!!
http://exn.ca/news/images/1999/04/23/19990423-Me110coloursideMAIN.jpg

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 10:43 AM
I cannot remember Hitlers Exact words, but he did answer the protests put to him by the German generals, for diverting to the Caucasus Oil Fields instead of driving directly on Moscow.
Somthing about the Generals bieng good soldiers but not good at economics.

As in so where is the diesel fuel for the tanks going to come from, and the fuel for the aircraft etc etc going to come from for this drive on Moscow ?
Then consider the Oil industry by product needs of Africa Corps, The German U Boat Fleet the German Navy the Luftwaffe in the West, and it just goes on and on and on.

So where was these Oil industry products going to come from for Germany to be able to fight a sustained War.

Because Germany did not have those sort of Oil reserves.

DOH ! so where was it going to come from people ?

Bing ! are we switched on yet ?

S!

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 10:54 AM
By may-june 1942, Moscow was the most heavily defended area on the Estern front, it was a city far bigger than Stalingrad and with really enormous defences (several times the 62nd Army that fought in Stalingrad), it would have been nonsense to launch a massive attack there.

By attacking in the South, the germans attacked the soviets where they were not waiting for them and had only crippled defence (already decimated because of the ill-led offensive of Timochenko), I really don't think they would have been more successfull attacking where the soviets were only waiting for them and had concentrated their best units.

Moreover the Army group center had heavily suffered during the soviet winter offensive and hadn't yet recovered its strength, it couldn't attack immediately with reasonnable probabilities of success, and waiting wasn't a solution as the german army had to achieve its objectives before the winter.

Anyway, by 1942, the german forces were not strong enough to achieve any decisive victory, as on no area of the front they had sufficient reserves for it (not in the North, not in the Center, and, as it was finally proved in Stalingrad, no more in the South).

They had been doomed by the Moscow defeat in 1941, never after that they were able to attack on the whole front, they became weaker and weaker while the soviets became stronger and stronger.

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 12:18 PM
nicli wrote:
- By may-june 1942, Moscow was the most heavily
- defended area on the Estern front, it was a city far
- bigger than Stalingrad and with really enormous
- defences (several times the 62nd Army that fought in
- Stalingrad), it would have been nonsense to launch a
- massive attack there.
-
- By attacking in the South, the germans attacked the
- soviets where they were not waiting for them and had
- only crippled defence (already decimated because of
- the ill-led offensive of Timochenko), I really don't
- think they would have been more successfull
- attacking where the soviets were only waiting for
- them and had concentrated their best units.
-
- Moreover the Army group center had heavily suffered
- during the soviet winter offensive and hadn't yet
- recovered its strength, it couldn't attack
- immediately with reasonnable probabilities of
- success, and waiting wasn't a solution as the german
- army had to achieve its objectives before the
- winter.
-

Completely agree here. It would be great mistake for Hitler to attack Moscow in 1942. Any german general suggesting this should be considered extremely dumb or uninformed at least (whats is also quite dumb, hehe).
Why so?
1. Moscow had very good defence, a lot of prepared units defending.
2. Moscow was a major transport hub => no problem with reserves and supplies for russian.
3. Moscow was VERY heavy AA and AAA defended => Russian Air superiority.
4. Moscow couldnt be taken fast, no matter what, so at very best germans could only encircle it before winter (i mean, if first 3 puntkts werent here). They would be in danger of be encircled yourself then.

So if German would attack Moscow in 1942, then Kursk battle would be 1 year earler. Not very good for Germans http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif I think the war would end in 1944 then.

- Anyway, by 1942, the german forces were not strong
- enough to achieve any decisive victory, as on no
- area of the front they had sufficient reserves for
- it (not in the North, not in the Center, and, as it
- was finally proved in Stalingrad, no more in the
- South).
-
- They had been doomed by the Moscow defeat in 1941,
- never after that they were able to attack on the
- whole front, they became weaker and weaker while the
- soviets became stronger and stronger.
-
-

Thats said, if Germans couldnt take a Stalingrad, with they superior strategic position there, with much weaker Soviet defence there, with quite difficult transport problem for Soviets there - then no way they could take a Moscow.
Remember also Lenengrad (Snkt.Petersburg) - they couldnt take it for 3 years, despite much weaker defence than in Moscow.

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 12:59 PM
Hitler and Stalin were both crazy. Neither one would listen to their Generals. Millions of Russians and Germans died to satisfy the idiot demands of Hitler and Stalin.

It must have been "Helter Skelter" being involved with either.

Those two crazies re-wrote the book on what not to do.

-------------------- /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 01:02 PM
Very interesting read. But I can't help but think what would have happened if Germany had never invaded Russia in the first place...
Would Stalin eventually have flipped and invaded Germany? Germany and USSR were, as I have been told, if not allies then at least very close to being it, with the division of Poland and the non-agression pact.




-----------------------------------

"I don't know what weapons World War 3 will be fought with, but World War 4 will be fought with sticks and stones."
-A. Einstein
"And any leftover assault weapons" -Fallout Fan


I am an Arado whiner. And proud of it.

http://www.vectorsite.net/avar234.html
Not my site. But a good place to start if you want to join the Arado-whining. The Arado needs *you* today!

fluke39
09-04-2003, 01:09 PM
yoinks!! i really havn't the time to read all that - looks' interesting never the less however:

" If the war progressed at a much slower rate in our time line, it is very possible and even probable, that FDR would have died a year earlier."

am i the only one who doesn't quite see the logic in this statement?

did the progress of the war have a direct effect on FDR's health? maybe a bit i think but not that much .....

<center><img src=http://mysite.freeserve.com/Angel_one_five/flukelogo.jpg>

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 01:31 PM
This one will surprise you, but when you look at Human History, its amazing how self centred we humans beings are thinking that we are masters of our own fate.

We talk about who won and lost the war, and the reasons why, and what if scenarios.
However when you look at what happened, I was reminded of a passage I read in Bible years ago, where it says,

God gives power to whom ever he pleases in the Kingdom of men.

It left me wondering why God gave power to Hitler, I must confess with the Nazi party only having a 1/3 majority in the Riechstag, for Hitler to be named as chancelor, and get the public service to swear the Oath of allegiance to a single individual, to him, now that is miraculouse to say the least.
Today we can look back on the whole bloody mess and carnage and living hell for millions that followed, and ask ourselves why?

But did we notice the greatest single persecution of the Jewish race in recorded Human History, that led to the re Birth of the Ancient Biblical Nation of Israel into the modern world of the 20 th Century, as a result of this global war.

My Goodness

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 01:45 PM
just like with Pattons army, the Germans got too far ahead of themselves and stretched their supply lines to far and didnt have adequate supplies to finish the job.

http://www.endlager.net/fis/pix/banners/fis_banner_01.jpg

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 01:47 PM
And look how many children, women and men have died in God's name in 2000 years. Religious persecution even between the followers of God cost millions of lives. Religion is a curse on mankind.


Artic_Wulf wrote:
- This one will surprise you, but when you look at
- Human History, its amazing how self centred we
- humans beings are thinking that we are masters of
- our own fate.
-
- We talk about who won and lost the war, and the
- reasons why, and what if scenarios.
- However when you look at what happened, I was
- reminded of a passage I read in Bible years ago,
- where it says,
-
- God gives power to whom ever he pleases in the
- Kingdom of men.
-
- It left me wondering why God gave power to Hitler, I
- must confess with the Nazi party only having a 1/3
- majority in the Riechstag, for Hitler to be named as
- chancelor, and get the public service to swear the
- Oath of allegiance to a single individual, to him,
- now that is miraculouse to say the least.
- Today we can look back on the whole bloody mess and
- carnage and living hell for millions that followed,
- and ask ourselves why?
-
- But did we notice the greatest single persecution of
- the Jewish race in recorded Human History, that led
- to the re Birth of the Ancient Biblical Nation of
- Israel into the modern world of the 20 th Century,
- as a result of this global war.
-
- My Goodness
-
-



http://a1276.g.akamai.net/7/1276/734/625ed428e022ef/www.harley-davidson.com/PR/MOT/2004/Softail/images/DOM/img_Softail_FXST.jpg

http://www.redneckengineering.com/photogallery/photo23581/curves-done-03.jpg

"Only a dead 'chamber pot' is a good 'chamber pot'!"

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 01:51 PM
Only people kill other people, Israel is in your Atlas.

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 02:09 PM
Dystopian wrote:
- Very interesting read. But I can't help but think
- what would have happened if Germany had never
- invaded Russia in the first place...
- Would Stalin eventually have flipped and invaded
- Germany? Germany and USSR were, as I have been told,
- if not allies then at least very close to being it,
- with the division of Poland and the non-agression
- pact.
-

IMHO a Russo-German war would have come no matter what. The Ribbentropp pact was a matter of convenience, nothing else. The "Drang nach Osten" was inherent in Nazi ideology, and Stalin was prepared to fight a war against Germany - he just needed to get his army in shape.

cheers/slush

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You can't handle the truth!
Col. Jessep

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 02:10 PM
Artic_Wulf wrote:
- This one will surprise you, but when you look at
- Human History, its amazing how self centred we
- humans beings are thinking that we are masters of
- our own fate.
-
- (...yadayadayada)
-
- But did we notice the greatest single persecution of
- the Jewish race in recorded Human History, that led
- to the re Birth of the Ancient Biblical Nation of
- Israel into the modern world of the 20 th Century,
- as a result of this global war.

ROFL! /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif
Are you for real?!

/slush


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You can't handle the truth!
Col. Jessep

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 03:38 PM
Slush69 wrote:
-
- IMHO a Russo-German war would have come no matter
- what. The Ribbentropp pact was a matter of
- convenience, nothing else. The "Drang nach Osten"
- was inherent in Nazi ideology, and Stalin was
- prepared to fight a war against Germany - he just
- needed to get his army in shape.

Stalin never had plans of invading Germany. As a matter of fact he was afraid of Germany and tried to avoid the war at any cost. For many military people it was obvious that Germany was getting ready for the war. But Stalin denied this. He even sent people who were giving advice to get ready for the war with Germany into prison. Squadrons received an order not to attack German reconnaissance aircrafts. Stalin's main concern was to protect his power. And his main enemy was the people of its own country. He put into prison and shot many military people and weakened the Red Army right before the war with Germany. Actions like this will look strange for the person who is getting ready for invasion. After German invasion Stalin escaped to his summer residence and fall into depression. He still believed that in non-aggression pact and thought that invasion is not real and was made up by his inner enemies who were trying to take his power away. This explains the why Germans were moving so fast during first days of invasion. Red Army was disorganized without top commanding and had no order to resist. Using the info they got from reconnaissance flight Germans strike the airfields paralyzing VVS. All this wouldn't happen if Stalin wanted the war with Germany and was ready for it.

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 08:55 PM
MiloMorai wrote:
- And look how many children, women and men have died
- in God's name in 2000 years. Religious persecution
- even between the followers of God cost millions of
- lives. Religion is a curse on mankind.
-
-

Right but great things (look in the area of art or architecture) were also done in the name of one or another God, in fact, all the disasters you're thinking of happened when some tried to lead countries (or political actions) on religious principles.

I think (most probably like you) that we'll have a far better world when people will understand they shouldn't mix religion with politics in any way.

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 09:27 PM
nicli wrote:

-
- I think (most probably like you) that we'll have a
- far better world when people will understand they
- shouldn't mix religion with politics in any way.
-
-

For sure./i/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

Nothing wrong with religion, just organized religion./i/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

If one lived by the basic teachings of the Bible and the Koran, the world would be a much better place to live in. (not to sure about other religions but must be simular)

Radical interpretations of the 'books'...../i/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif


http://a1276.g.akamai.net/7/1276/734/625ed428e022ef/www.harley-davidson.com/PR/MOT/2004/Softail/images/DOM/img_Softail_FXST.jpg

http://www.redneckengineering.com/photogallery/photo23581/curves-done-03.jpg

"Only a dead 'chamber pot' is a good 'chamber pot'!"

XyZspineZyX
09-04-2003, 10:18 PM
i like that Rule of Equal Grants.

Germany had a problem admitting it was able to LOSE wars.
Many in Germany blamed the defeat in the First World War on their politicians. Instead of admitting they couldn't take on all their enemies at once. The politicians made a painful agreement to stop the fighting.

It was not easy, but further fighting would have made the conquest of Germany in 1919 a very bitter year.for Germany.

Hitler capitalized on this false belief.
Nothing can stop the German army!
Only those meddling politicians...

Be careful when you analyze the "mistakes" he made.
Germany got to the position it was in for Barbarossa by the gambles (and crimes) he made (and committed).

Example - Hitler did not prepare his armies for winter.

Result - Stalin did not believe Germany would be STUPID enough to invade Russia.

You take away Hitler's gamble, and no strategic surprise.

Half of the kills the Luftwaffe got on the first day never happen.

More importantly the encircelement battles would be fewer and farther between.

Again - why not take Moscow?

Answer - why not Leningrad? Stalingrad?

For every soldier and plane diverted to Moscow, there is a weakness made in the line the Red Army faced elsewhere.

If not for diverting his forces from Moscow... he might have fought a pitched battle there. So while his soldiers are dying in streetfighting surely an equal hell to Stalingrad.... (and i wager a grave for even more German soldiers)...

There is an army or three that was left undestroyed... cutting into the supply lines from the Ukraine, from Stalingrad, etc.

Encircle it?
Imagine letting Russian forces grow.
Imagine German troops caught deep in hostile territory while in static defences not equal to their enemies...
Imagine how thankful the Red Army would be for the gift.

So i think the What If question is tricky.

It can be an interesting question but "mistakes" are not such easy things to dissect and separate from the overall conflict.

Final note - for all the praise given to General Winter, remember Germans had trouble moving in Russia whenever there were heavy rains. don't blame the weather when German engineering was to blame. and inferior German production efficiency because for all the hype given to the "modernity" and mechanization of the German war machine, a lot of the movement was done by foot and hoof. They still relied on horses to do a lot of their transport.

HORSES!

Summary of Answer -
If they attacked, they still would have lost.
This time in the city, rather that at its gates. /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

XyZspineZyX
09-05-2003, 09:57 AM
maxim26 wrote:

- Stalin never had plans of invading Germany. As a
- matter of fact he was afraid of Germany and tried to
- avoid the war at any cost. For many military people
- it was obvious that Germany was getting ready for
- the war. But Stalin denied this. He even sent people
- who were giving advice to get ready for the war with
- Germany into prison. Squadrons received an order not
- to attack German reconnaissance aircrafts. Stalin's
- main concern was to protect his power. And his main
- enemy was the people of its own country. He put into
- prison and shot many military people and weakened
- the Red Army right before the war with Germany.
- Actions like this will look strange for the person
- who is getting ready for invasion. After German
- invasion Stalin escaped to his summer residence and
- fall into depression. He still believed that in
- non-aggression pact and thought that invasion is not
- real and was made up by his inner enemies who were
- trying to take his power away. This explains the why
- Germans were moving so fast during first days of
- invasion. Red Army was disorganized without top
- commanding and had no order to resist. Using the
- info they got from reconnaissance flight Germans
- strike the airfields paralyzing VVS. All this
- wouldn't happen if Stalin wanted the war with
- Germany and was ready for it.

You have to distinguish between the "Realpolitik" og Stalin and his geostrategy. Stalin signed the Ribbentropp pact and cooperated with Germany, because he knew very well, that the Red Army was not reorganized after the purges in the 30's.

He needed to redeploy his army at the new Polish frontier, and he needed to reorganize the command structure, before he could contemplate any offensive action against Germany.

And while the Soviet prewar plans for 41/42 were purely defensive, there were definitely discussions in the Stavka to prepare for a more offensive stance.

Regarding the initial German advance: It is not true that the Red Army was ordered not to resist. If you look at the actual events and orders (after the confusion of the first day), the Red Army followed their prewar contingency plans and went on a wild rampage of uncoordinated counterattacks, that surprised the Germans, but also doomed the frontline Soviet units, since the Germans could destroy the amateur attacks in a piecemeal fashion.

cheers/slush

http://dk.groups.yahoo.com/group/aktivitetsdage/files/Eurotrolls.gif

You can't handle the truth!
Col. Jessep

XyZspineZyX
09-05-2003, 12:26 PM
My Grandad knew the answer-the Germans would have been drowned in blood(pardon my French)-there were just too many Soviiet armies!As a matter of fact,Stalin expected the offensive right there-not to the south(from my Granpa's words!)



"Defend the Motherland!Fight back the agressors!"

XyZspineZyX
09-05-2003, 12:33 PM
Just take a look at this: http://www.lib.ru/WSUWOROW/

XyZspineZyX
09-05-2003, 02:01 PM
von_SchTiRLiTZ wrote:
- Just take a look at this: http://www.lib.ru/WSUWOROW/

Right ...

Anyway, your Granddad has spoken, so I guess this discussion is over.

Thanks to ya'll.

cheers/slush

http://dk.groups.yahoo.com/group/aktivitetsdage/files/Eurotrolls.gif

You can't handle the truth!
Col. Jessep

XyZspineZyX
09-05-2003, 03:46 PM
I think this is a key point. Not the question of taking the city but that of holding it. I dont believe that Hitler would have had the resources available to police a continent/country the size of the Soviet Union.

With the greatest respect to the countries that he invaded and occupied, none where at that time major fighting forces in the world power league. The Soviet Union would have been a different ball game. I think that France demonstrated that resistance was possible (though debatable how effective) and holding a country against the collective free will of the people is neigh on impossible. Invaders will always be invaders and consequently treated as such.

I do believe that the battle for Moscow would have made the fall of Berlin look like a walk in the park, and I do believe that the losses would have forced Hitler to re-think his strategy, as I dont believe that there would be any point in time whereby he could define himself "victor".

├člue├čoy

"Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;"
John Gillespie Magee, Jr. (1922-1941)

XyZspineZyX
09-05-2003, 04:12 PM
Anyone interested in this topic should read the memoirs of Heinz Guderian. Apparently the decision to take southern objectives, rather than Moscow, created a morale problem in the German Army. That in itself might have spelled doom.