German commando attack on the US, Canada Alaska

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by Soren, May 26, 2008.

  1. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    German commando attack on the US, Canada possibly Alaska

    The time is early 1942 and Amerika recently entered the war, and so to sabotage its war effort by striking fear into the hearts of the civilian population Germany is planning a commando raid on the US Canada and perhaps even a small town in Alaska just to demonstrate their abilities.

    A further purpose of the mission is to be putting up weather stations and radio transmitters, allowing Germany to monitor in some degree what's going on in the country.

    Question is how would they do it? How effective would it be ? How long would it last ? Do the commandos get extracted or escape the countries somehow after their attack, or do they fight to the death, or perhaps even let themselves capture ? Also what equipment would be needed, and what would be the most effective ?

    Looking forward to hear your thoughts.
     
  2. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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  3. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    Hehe FLYBOYJ, those were spy operations, which is completely different from a commando attack.
     
  4. comiso90

    comiso90 Active Member

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    If they played by the rules of today, one of the most effective things they could do would be blowing up a highschool football game in the heartland or planting land mines on the beach for sun bathers to find... Loading a suitcase full of explosives into a Yellow Cab in Times Square...

    Not playing by the rules of war? Was blindly launching V-1's into London or the firebombing of cites any more civil?


    IMO, German agents could only effect the war in a couple of ways:
    Passive observation and intelligence gathering
    Attacks against soft, low value targets to spread terror an hysteria
    Attacks against lightly protected, unprotected civilian infrastructure.. telephone lines, power stations, starting fires

    Attacking / sabotaging military targets is romantic but not practical.
     
  5. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    Very interesting links nonetheless FLYBOYJ, thanks.
     
  6. Haztoys

    Haztoys Member

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    If I were running the the Axis..I would of done more moves like you have said here Sorens .... Not that it would of helped militarily per say as to win land or said battle...But as in the Dambusters move ...The wreaked dams did not stop the Germans factory's.. But it did tied up men and machines that should and could of been used else were... Workers had to fix the dam ..The workers were pulled from the Atlantic Wall to fix the dam ...And the Germans moved troops to defend the dams...That could of been at D-day and the Eastern Front...
     
  7. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    The US industrial machine was so vast, theres nothing the commando team could have done to materially effect the war.
     
  8. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    What about blowing up the hoover dam ?
     
  9. Haztoys

    Haztoys Member

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    You ever been to Hoover dam Sorens...?.. Its way in land... and not much down stream to hurt the war machine...And it would have to be a hell of alot of commandos to pull it off ..Packing a lot of explosives... Was just over it two weeks ago ...The wrecked German dams were real long ... Hoover is short and in a very deep canyon...

    Not that it could not be done...

    I would think a move near the coast would be a better move ... If your picturing a Dambusters move like the Brit's did "I" would not think it could be done... A Lanc at 60 feet would lose it wings as narrow as the canyon is..We in America do dams in deep canyon ..At list out west we do..Not wide places as they do over in Europe

    But I do think Cmmando raids would of tied up alot of the war machine..America had a bigger war machine ...Harder to hurt then the Germans Machine...
     
  10. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    Hehe, no no, I'm not talking about another dambuster raid. But I do believe that exploding the dam was possible, but it would be a very tough task and a commando team wouldn't be capable of it.
     
  11. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    according to what I've heard Goebbels threatened my neck of the woods with its hydro electric capacity and the chemical and abrasives industries whether this folk lore or not I don't know.
     
  12. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    Hoover dam has survived a mag 5 quake. No amount of explosives is going to take this one out.

    Damaging the power generators or transmission towers would be a good bet. But its not the only power source for California.
     
  13. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    In the end I do not think it would have accomplished anything.

    Blowing up the Hoover Damn would hurt a small portion of America. The US's resources were spread out all over the United States.

    A "terrorist" attack would have put fear into the people, but in the end it would have only rallied the US people even more and given them more resolve to end the war and more than likely "punish" Germany on an even greater scale.
     
  14. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    I don't think a commando attack on the US, anywhere, would've done Germany any good. Keep in mind that the country was really unified after Pearl Harbor. Even the Isolationists were all for attacking and gettin some back. A commando attack would not have done any good....raids that small, in a country that has no "front line borders" anywhere near it, would not have diverted any significant amount of troops from critical front line positions. Raids that small, in a country with such a huge industrial capability, would not have slowed production or distribution of war materiel in any insignificant way. The Japanese managed to surface a submarine and fire a few shells on the west coast, damaging (I believe) an un-occupied carnival or something like it...no military benefits whatsoever. All they managed to do was to get the civilians to organize themselves into a sort of neighborhood-watch....not the military, but the civilians. So, unless the commando raid happened to take out pretty much every military and civilian leader at once, it would've done nothing more than really piss off the populace and get a group of skilled military men killed/captured for no reason whatsoever. Also keep in mind that, to pull it off successfully, they would've had to come in in Allied uniforms/clothes, not German uniforms. Therefore, if caught, they would be treated as spies and subject to execution according to the Geneva Convention.

    If they had tried it, I believe the best thing they could've done would be to land small groups to, as stated earlier, mine beaches and coastal waterways and roadways. Yes, they would've eventually been caught, but nighttime commando raids would've had a slightly longer longevity than one or two "terroristic" strikes. The submarines, while waiting for the commandos to perform their missions, could surface and fire off a few deck-gun rounds at targets of opportunity, such as wealthy mansions (nuttin like a couple of pissed off rich folks to put pressure on the military to divert a trainload of troops or two!) or factories. America and Canada, however, have the rather unique advantage of not sharing common borders with a bunch of different, potentially beligerent, nations. Anything out to get us would have to cross alot of water. So all of our output can be channeled into the offensive, instead of split between offense and defense.

    My head hurts now from all this thinking...if such it can be called. *g*


    ETA: Erich Gimpel wrote a book about his experience as a spy. I used to own the book, but can't find it...probably got stuck in the wrong pile and went to Half-Price Books at some point. Here's the Amazon.com link: Amazon.com: Agent 146: The True Story of a Nazi Spy in America: Erich Gimpel: Books
     
  15. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    The thing I find confusing here is that some seem to suggest that the US wasn't already doing all it could when it hadn't suffered commando raid. In my mind that makes no sense at all.

    The US industry was running as fast as it could right after Pearl Harbour, so a Commando could only hamper that to some degree, it certainly wouldn't strenghten it.
     
  16. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    I can just imagine these guys landing on the east coast of Canada without drawing attention to themselves , I'm quite sure no one in Germany speaks french Acadian style or talks like a Newfoundlander . They would generally be limited to rail transport for the 1st 700miles
     
  17. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    *LOL* @PBfoot


    Soren....not sure if I came across clearly or not. Immediately after Pearl, the US started shifting over to a war-footing. It took a little time to do that. Even when running full-steam, yes a commando attack would've slowed down production a bit....kinda like pulling a bucket full of water lessens Niagra Falls. Sure, it does, but only to a degree that would interest a mathemetician. The grunts on the front lines/boats/skies wouldn't've noticed any appreciable decline in parts/supplies/ordinance/replacements.

    Anyhoo....that's my conjectures on the topic. *g*
     
  18. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    It might of diverted resources to prevent further attacks, the strength would of come from the people who would of produced even more toward the war effort.
     
  19. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    How was the US running at full speed after Pearl? The US war effort grew stronger and faster with each passing year.
     
  20. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    Adler

    You are absolutely correct. US Productive output is estimated by Overy (I think) never to have exceeded about 75% of its maximum warmaking potential, even as it reached its peak levels of output in early 1944. Proper rationing was never introduced in the US. About 60% of aircraft produced, never left the continental US. The home air force of the US was about 5000 a/c from memory. The US army was expanding rapidly, and in training. As far as I can see, putting a couple of hundred German commandoes is going to give the massive continental air force targets to find and bomb, and the US army live targets to practice on. The majority of the US army formations were raised either pre-war, or in 1942, but did not leave the continental US until 1943-44, so there were oodles of "unemployed" US troops to run around all day hunting down the Commandoes. Any damage to the US economy is going to be very slight, and easily taken up by the uncommittedd elements of the US economy.

    Finally, how are these commadoes going to get past the blockade. By June 1941 the OKM enigma coses (less the U-Boat codes in 1942), were being read to a significant degree. All of the tankers sent out to support Bismarck had been rounded up by June 1941, as a result of the enigma code intelligence, preventing any significant continuation of the surface raider war after that time. Those raiders already at sea in June were able to continue to the end of 1941. However, new raids by the surface raiders were not breaking out effectively from the second half of 1941 on. The blockade of Germany was more or less complete (with the exception of restricted cargoes being smuggled into Germany via some of the neutrals) from the middle of 1941 onward.

    A mission of this type would have to involve the use of coded messages on the enigma system, and these are almost certainly going to be intercepted and understood by Bletchely Park. It has all the makings of another Zimmermann telegram IMO, and similar consequences. From Septmeber 1941, even the slightest hint of belligerent action by Germans against the continental US would have brought an immediate and swift response from the US, and not one that Herr Hitler would be too pleased about.
     
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