Wise words, Worsham.
Like Model , he would have done very well in the halcyon days. I believe he would have done less well, defensively, unlike Model, though. He would have worried his Army commander, like Guderian, never wanting to pause to regroup. But that would not have mattered to him or to the result.
In some of my other posts on this forum, I’ve described how even in 1940 (when the U.S. was still technically at peace with Germany), it had devoted a significant amount of industrial potential toward winning the air war against Germany; with plans to considerably expand the effort over the next several years. America’s strongest single asset was her industrial potential, as Hitler clearly understood. But that potential was going to be increasingly turned against Germany, whether the U.S. was technically at war or not.
Hitler’s plan to counter this was to expand Germany’s industrial output over the short-term, so that he could at least keep pace with the air war over Germany in the long haul. His method of expanding Germany’s output included industrialization and conquest. The industrialization aspect of his plan meant that instead of putting everything he had into weapons output for 1941 or 1942–in a massive effort to crush the Soviet Union–he had to divide his nation’s economic activity between short-term military production and long-term output increases. The result of all that industrial investment was that Germany increased its aircraft output from 16,000 planes per year in 1941 to over 40,000 planes per year by 1944. It also increased its military production in other categories, such as tanks and V2 rockets.
In late 1941, Hitler knew that his window of opportunity to win the war was relatively slim; and that 1942 would be critical. Germany had to win a decisive victory over the Soviet Union in that year, both to take pressure off its eastern front, and to provide it with the raw materials and manpower it needed to hold its own in the air war over the long haul. Hitler believed that the overwhelming majority of America’s naval strength would be needed in the Pacific to counter the Japanese; at least until the end of 1943. That gave him what he believed was a two year window with which he could sink the American Lend-Lease Aid pouring into Great Britain and the Soviet Union. Sinking those ships would increase Germany’s chances of obtaining the victory over the Soviet Union it desperately needed.
However, the Japanese Navy proved less adept than Hitler had hoped. The Battle of Midway occurred six months after Pearl Harbor. That battle took the naval pressure off the U.S. in the Pacific, and allowed it to focus more of its efforts on convoy protection in the Atlantic. More generally, the failure of the Japanese military meant that Japan would be far less successful in taking military pressure off of Germany than Hitler had hoped.
In 1942, the Soviet Union outproduced Germany 3:1 - 4:1 in tanks, artillery, and other land combat categories, and even 2:1 in military aircraft. It also fielded a much larger army than Germany. Thus evaporated Hitler’s hope of a decisive victory on his eastern front.
Had Hitler not declared war against the U.S., large amounts of American Lend-Lease aid would still have flowed to his enemies in Europe. Over the long-term, he still would have needed to devote a significant portion of his military production to defending German skies and German cities against American-made bombers. He would have lost out on the Second Happy Time (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Happy_Time ), which would have resulted in a stronger Soviet war effort for 1942. On the other hand, he wouldn’t have had to deal with the U.S. invasion of Algeria in 1942, its invasion of Sicily and Italy in 1943, or the Normandy invasion of '44. It’s easy to say in hindsight that the harm of the American invasions exceeded the benefit of sinking that Lend-Lease shipping in '42. But that distinction was less obvious at the time.
A more realistic distance is over 800 statute miles.
Zero had a range of 1,600 miles, so yes thats consistent with Sakai’s account over Java.
Also, they had over 400 Zeros in active service by July 1940.
Germany because of the SS’s elite training and morale stemming from their admirable mission to defend Europe from Bolshevism. Kurt is absolutely right about the Soviets planning to invade Europe, and yes, including Germany. This is why the Germans had such success at first by attacking a mere 2 weeks before the Soviets. All The Soviets’ airfields and other pertinent facilities and equipment was DIRECTLY behind the front lines in preparation for supporting the advancing army proceeding kilometers ahead. See Operation Groza(Thunderstorm). http://defence.pk/threads/operation-groza-soviet-invasion-of-western-europe-july-6-1941.293859/
Btw, the Germans would have won if they had implemented “total war” production practices that the British had done in 1940 and Soviet Union had done at the outbreak of hostilities with Germany. They did not do so until 1943 because they cared about citizens’ well-being and morale. This is why they were so far behind regarding equipment totals.
It is amazing how much resources Hitler put into the defense of the British owned Channel Islands. He demanded between 10 to 25% of all Atlantic Wall material get dedicated to these Islands.
Lucky for us, Hitler was really dumb and was a terrible commander. He crippled his air force, threw away an army (6th), wasted his Kriegsmarine,he made Normandy an allied victory.
I believe that Germany would have won if they had been a competent military mind as head of state, or even if Hitler just didn’t interfere in military decision.
As a Canadian, it never felt like we were the big guy the poor little USA was hitting the back of the head with a chair. Of course as a product of the Canadian education system I feel this way. It was never emphasised it was a US attack on Britain as Canada didn’t exist for another 55 years. Yeah, we all knew 1867 was our Day 1 as a country but that was merely a technicality. Of course in the 70s Canada was a great deal more lefty and somewhat….I wouldn’t say anti-American, but perhaps a bit defensive at perceived slights by the US. Which was weird for me as I grew up 30 KM from the US and most TV on the rabbit ears was from Buffalo NY.
Note to USA. I can remember not too long ago being pissed about a Canadian dollar only being worth 65 cents in the US. Now its worth 1.05 or so. You guys are like cousins who have bad spending habits. I like you guys but you’all need to take note that you are slipping behind the others relatively speaking. Having them catch up is natural, starting to watch them pull up then ahead shouldn’t be so natural.
I was more referring to the British Empire as a whole as its resources were tied up elsewhere in the world. What is facinating about the war of 1812 is how quickly the 13 colonies went from being British themselves in 1776 to more or less siding with Napoleon against the British less than 40 years later. Another interesting thought it that had the French actually won the Napoleonic wars I have little doubt that the fledgling United States would of eventually come under the dominion of the French Empire.
On top of that, the average and casual Italian at this point had a very low morale, since they by now knew that Italy would loose, even if the Axis won the war.
That statement rings false. Germany did not have plans to enslave Italy after the war. In his writings, Hitler pointed out that if a nation wants allies, it must establish a reputation for treating its allies well. It was a logical conclusion for the leader of any nation, and I have seen no evidence to suggest Hitler had deviated from that logic.
I agree Italian morale was low. There were several reasons for that.
Mussolini seized power through military means. His views were not necessarily representative of those of most Italians.
Mussolini did not build a strong relationship with the Italian people after seizing office. He had no reason to rely on the Italian people to stick with him through thick and thin.
Most Italians did not believe in Mussolini’s dream of a revived Roman Empire, and thought his foreign adventures were rather pointless.
Italy was unprepared for war. It lacked a strong military culture and strong military traditions. Its army was not afforded the weapons which would have been necessary to destroy Britain’s Matilda tanks. Its military leadership was lacking. It’s hard to maintain high morale when it’s obvious that your opponent has a much better sense of what he’s doing than your own military has of what it’s doing.
Note that all four problems existed before Hitler came to power in Germany. It’s not as though Mussolini’s Italy had a great military tradition, which then collapsed once Hitler and Mussolini became allies. On the contrary: Italy’s military tradition and military preparedness were greatly lacking both before and after Hitler and Mussolini became allies.