What if, Stalingrad mistakes

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by Teapopper, Oct 7, 2009.

  1. Teapopper

    Teapopper New Member

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    #1 Teapopper, Oct 7, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2009
    delete this thread.
     
  2. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    Some interesting points
    but 100,000 troops moved to either city would probably have been 100,000 more troops into the meat-grinder, it might have taken the Soviets longer but I think they would have managed it.
    Getting tied up in a slugging match with any strongly defended installation (or city) was an anathema to the principles of blitzkrieg which emphasised going around any such installations and continuing on to take the 'keys' to the territory. The now-isolated pockets of resistance can then either come to their senses and surrender, or starve and surrender.
    The German forces would have been freed up to do what the Wehrmacht was trained for - battlefield engagements, as well as interdicting relief attempts on the surrounded cities.
    With the initiative thus largely handed back to the German commanders as to how they were going to defeat the enemy, it could have been a different outcome.
     
  3. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    lol thanks :)
     
  4. Soren

    Soren Banned

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  5. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    Some interesting points were posted concerning mistakes made by the Germans in the Soviet Union.
    I selected a portion as a quote and responded. When I came out of my reply, he'd deleted his original post. :)
     
  6. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    Certainly the germans had an oversupply of units deployed on the Norwegian Coast defence, but these units were severely lacking in mobility and in no way could be considered combat worthy. Like the units in France they were usually organized on a two regiment basis with just two battalions per regiment. Motor transport was virtually non-existent, and horse transport was down to about 30% what was required for mobile operation in the east. I havent checked, but I will bet the artillery and other heavy weapons was obsolete and down to about 50% or less of establishment

    Sending troops like this to the east in that state of readiness would have been suicide for those men. They needed time to be ade ready for action, and amajor injection of manpower, since many of the troops were over-age or unfite, and short of establishment strengths anyway. The tanks stationed in Norway all suffered from faulty transmissions
     
  7. Vassili Zaitzev

    Vassili Zaitzev Well-Known Member

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    Why did he delete his posting? He couldn't handle somebody putting holes in his theory?
     
  8. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Wow don't understand what happened here. Thread stays open...
     
  9. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    Shame he didn't leave his original post up, he made some interesting points
     
  10. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    Agree with Parsifal
    many of the German troops in Norway were older ones and rather poorly equipped, especially their vehicle allocations were low. When the main Pz unit there, future 25th PzD, was decided to sent to East in late 43, it was first to sent to France via Denmark to be made Eastern front capable, that took a while, even if the unit was one of the best equipped in Norway, and when the time of deployment was forwarded because of the critical situation in the East, the div suffered badly at first, partly because of peacemeal deployment but also partly because of they were still bit unprepared to what was waiting them.

    Juha
     
  11. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Agreed, but there is still plenty that can be discussed on this topic. Besides maybe he will return and re-post it.
     
  12. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    What-ifs are always fun. Wish he'd kept it up....hope he's not a one-post wonder!
     
  13. wheelsup_cavu

    wheelsup_cavu Well-Known Member

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    I have to agree RA.

    I am looking forward to watching/reading where this thread goes.


    Wheels
     
  14. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Good point, Colin.

    If the Wehrmacht had stayed out of the city and the inevitable meat-gringer, they may have had a far better shot at taking it. Urban warfare is best suited to the defenders, and the ancient art of laying seige should have been the focus in this case.
     
  15. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    Hello Geist
    the problem was that Germans didn't have assests to allow them crossing the Volga, so they could not encircle the city. They tried to interdict the traffic across the river as well as the could, but even if they had squeezed Soviets into tight bridgehead, that wasn't enough to stop the traffic. If Soviets have had much large area in the western bank, interdiction would have been clearly less effective and isolation is important part of siegecraft. Of course late Nov Nature would have delivered a week/couple weeks isolation of Stalingrad, but that was predictable to Soviets.

    Juha
     
  16. lesofprimus

    lesofprimus Active Member

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    How about shutting down the ice road the Soviets used to re-supply Stalingrad during the winter???
     
  17. Thorlifter

    Thorlifter Well-Known Member

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    I think it would have depended on what the Germans were going to do with an extra 100,000 men, however, we can probably assume they would have been used to continued the path of death across the Volga.

    If they would have been used to flank the city or parachute behind the city, or as Les said, cut the supply lines feeding the Soviet defenders, it may have been successful.
     
  18. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    #18 Juha, Oct 9, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2009
    Hello
    as I wrote, crossing the Volga and staying on the eastern side there would have need more resources than Germans had in the area. It was not only men that were lacking, Germans would have needed more tanks, StuGs, A/T guns and artillery.And of course crossing equipment.

    And when the river froze over 6th Army was or was to be encircled. I what if scenario, if Soviets were left to hold Stalingrad, which occupied IIRC some 50 km of the west bank and if, I cannot remember how thickly the river frozed, the ice could carry lorry, in winter that doesn't need very thich ice, new ice can carry much more load than the same thickness of ice in spring, Soviets couls have easily open a new road in different location. It would have been rather hopeless job to keed some 40km wide stretch of ice so weak, that it could not be used at least by the horse drawn Soviet wagons.

    IMHO German options were screen the city or take it, both had problems. Thoseof latter option are well known
    Juha
     
  19. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    I think the whole '42 offensive was faulty in conception. What I think would have been the best option for the german in '42 was to lay down reasonable peace terms, probably a return to the pre-'39 borders. Then fortify the whole eastern front, and establish strong local counterattack forces, built around the panzers, and using mobile defence where the Russians attempted brekthroughs.

    If the germans could inflict enough manpower sapping defeats on the Russians, without suffering castrophic losses of their own, and not giving up too much territory, they may have been able to reach a truce with the Rusians of some sort. That done, they may have been able to deal with the west before a final showdown with the Russians in '44-5 roughly.
     
  20. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Since we're working out "what if" scenarios, what if the Germans worked out a peace with the western Allies and turned up the heat on the Soveit Union.

    With a considerable amount of manpower and equipment freed up, (and a little better strategic planning), I seriously think Stalin would have been in trouble.

    As far as Stalingrad goes, with the additional manpower on the ground, they could have worked a better encirclement on the city as long as they kept the Soviet supply lines broken. Creating a "no man's land" around the city and working the Volga by air (boat traffic and bridges being priority), it would have kept the Wehrmacht from being chewed to peices in that hellish urban street brawl.
     
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