Could the Allies defeat Germany only with air power?

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Jenisch, Nov 22, 2011.

  1. Jenisch

    Jenisch Active Member

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    #1 Jenisch, Nov 22, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2011
    In an alternative history scenario were Germany does not fight with the Soviets and the Anglo-Americans were forced to fight the Germans alone, their air power would be enough to pave the way for a sucessfull invasion of Europe?

    I think this is an interesting subject to discuss because many historians seems to not give much consideration to the air power in WWII, and therefore say that in this specific case only the full strenght of the German Army would render a landing operation unlikely to succeed.

    ps: the tittle of the topic is wrong, desconsiderate. If possible, moderation can correct it.
     
  2. Kryten

    Kryten Member

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    ACM Harris believed bombing could bring Germany to it's knees and win the war and he was wrong!
    It takes a concerted effort by all the different arms to bring Victory in a war.
     
  3. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    just to clarify...are you asking if the soviets were not involved could the western allies with their air forces have beaten the reich? Or are you asking if the western allies just using their air power alone...no ground forces could have beaten the reich?
     
  4. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    Something like 80% of the German war effort fought on the Russian front. Without the German-Russian war the Luftwaffe would be mostly deployed in the west and they would have a lot more aircraft without the need to maintain 150+ divisions in eastern front combat. The so called "Battle of Britain" would continue for the entire duration of the war with ever increasing numbers of German aircraft. Meanwhile RAF Bomber Command would bomb Europe for the entire duration of the war just as happened historically.

    So who gets bombed to rubble first?
     
  5. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    After you read Mein Kampf this scenario doesn't seem very plausible.
    The whole purpose of this venture was eastward expansion for Lebensraum.
     
  6. Readie

    Readie Well-Known Member

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    The allies had the bombers and the armaments but, without a weapon like like the A bomb its hard to image Nazi Germany being defeated by area bombing alone.
    The bomber crew losses were appalling as it was without the entire LW to contend with.
    John
     
  7. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    in this senario does the us still get bombed by japan? if NO, then it would remain to be seen how long the US would sit on its hands before getting involved. if yes then...yes the german industrial machine could have cranked out more ac but i doubt they still wouldnt have been able to match the output of the us aircraft factories. also IF the soviets werent an ally where does that place finland? the western allies never courted the fins because they were afraid of upsetting uncle joe...since he obviously had designs there. without that...the west could have negotiated and possibly pulled finland into their union...if so they would then have bases where long range bombers could strike just about any area of the reich....it still would have been a problem until long range escorts were made available. the fins would have been a good ally to have! there are a lot of IFs in this line of questioning. but if the intent was to see if solely airpower alone could win a war... i would have to say no. sooner or later you have to plant ground troops to really secure a win.
     
  8. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    What are the Soviets doing in this scenario?
    Prior to Barbarossa, the Soviets invaded, warred with, or annexed Japan, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania (annexed Bessarabia and Northern Bukovina), Finland.
     
  9. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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    Could the Allies defeat Germany only with air power?

    No.

    :)

    MM
     
  10. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    The Soviets would be exchanging petroleum for German coal in accordance with the trade agreement.
     
  11. Jenisch

    Jenisch Active Member

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    #11 Jenisch, Nov 22, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2011
    I wrote the tittle wrong. It would be US and Britain figthing against Germany by themselfs. The question is if would be plausible for them to invade Europe using the air power to achive this objective.

    Regarding the Battle of Britain, the RAF succesfully repeled the German air strikes, with the LW suffering. Further raids would meet resistance from the USAAF as well.

    One of the reasons for my creation of this topic was this:

    "4.06 times as many aircraft were lost in combat in the West than were lost in the East, a ratio reasonably close to Groehler's 3.41 for all "losses". The most chilling statistic for the JG 26 pilots appears in the sortie data. An airplane flying a combat mission in the West was 7.66 times more likely to be destroyed than one on a similar mission in the East. It is clear that the burden of sacrifice was borne by the Luftwaffe aircrew on the Western Front and over the Reich, not on the Eastern Front. "

    Source with additional details: http://don-caldwell.we.bs/jg26/thtrlosses.htm

    In 41-42 most of the LW was in the East. But even so the margin in which the Western Allies managed to destroy the Luftwaffe was very spaced. So I considerate this valid. Specially because the Allies send 18,700 aircraft to the Soviets by the Lend Lease program, and this, as well as the other resources send to them, all would be turned against Germany. The British particulary send large amounts of equipment in 1941 to the USSR. I belive this equipment being send to Africa could have sealed the gap the Eastern Front created there historically. And also because the German and Italian navies could not ship much material and men to there. Other consideration is that the US would likely change it's priorities in the Pacific. And even more of their GDP would be employed in the war.

    Whatever political reasons. I want to try know here if the Western Allies were really so unlikely capable of defeat Hitler alone as often heard.

    Imaginate the Soviets in a neutrality, even if not so realistic. They keep providing the Germans with a median supply quantity. Enough for their needs to maintein the war. But not for create larger reserves.

    I will put that no. Japan is usually desconsiderated by people who mentioned the USSR could have won the war alone, who only considerate Germant. Since I'm trying to know if the Western Allies also could, will desconsiderate a Japanese participation as well. Gonna set that the Americans enter in the war towards the end of 1941. Do not want to discuss much politics involved here. More industrial and military capability.
     
  12. tyrodtom

    tyrodtom Well-Known Member

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    With Russia not at war, I doubt Japan would have attacked the US.

    Germany invaded Norway fairly early in the war, I doubt we would be able to use Finland as any kind of base even if they did become a ally.

    I just don't see any way the Allies could have won without the Russians, and it would have been over before we could have developed any atomic capability.
     
  13. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    Germany reacted quickly with overwhelming force to thwart Operation Wilfred and the complementary Operation R4. They would react even more quickly to thwart a British occupation of Finland.

    Operation Wilfred.
    Mine Norwegian coastal waters beginning April 5, 1940.

    Operation R4.
    Occupy Narvik, Trondheim, Bergen and Stavenger with British and French troops on April 5, 1940. Anglo-French bickering delayed Operation R4 until April 8, 1940 providing Germany with an opportunity to land troops first.
     
  14. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    Common, after some shock awe, Hitler would pee his pants and plead for peace
    (yeah, right)
     
  15. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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    ".. I just don't see any way the Allies could have won without the Russians, and it would have been over before we could have developed any atomic capability."

    I agree. Germany had a head start of 6 years - 1933 -39. Those first years of WW2 were a close thing.

    MM
     
  16. Ratsel

    Ratsel Banned

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  17. Jenisch

    Jenisch Active Member

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    #17 Jenisch, Nov 22, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2011
    Well, I think it would depend on the situation. There are a LOT if factors to considerate IMHO. And one of the major ones would be the presence of the USN with strength in Europe. The US would likely be capable of launch an invasion of Europe much quicker than historically.
     
  18. Jenisch

    Jenisch Active Member

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    The LW didn't get even closer to defeat the RAF as often told. This is a myth. Even worse with the USAAF and more resources directed from the Lend Lease the Soviets received.
     
  19. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    i think the one of the first allied campaigns would have been the invasion of norway. if they were able to secure that then a treaty with the fins is more possible.

    i think the war would have been possible to win with out russia....the cost though would have been staggering in both men and materials
     
  20. Ratsel

    Ratsel Banned

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    Imo the only way the west would have won without the Russians would have been played out the same way as the war in the pacific... with a nuclear waepon. OR perhaps more resources to fight the war in Europe would have taken from the Pacific. The US was a manufacturing megamachine back then.. but there are limits.
     
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