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> Was the Soviet Union beatable?
contras
Posted: February 08, 2010 11:50 am
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I just cannot imagine,how could "we " defeat the russians.
Just look at the map.....
And the winter.
Not to mention that "we" entered russia just as Napoleon army did 100 something years earlier.
By foot I mean.


Of course, not we, alone, but with the allies. After the events, is easy to think and said it could't be.
Think again, in 1941, Germany was at war only with UK, who were on retreat.
Russians lost one million soldiers in Winter war with Finland many frozen to death, Fins only 40 000. At firsts stages of Eastern Front, few millions of Russians soldiers were killed or captured. At that time, no one could said when Americans were come to war, and what stage will reach the economic and arms support.
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Posted: February 08, 2010 09:24 pm
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QUOTE (contras @ February 08, 2010 11:50 am)
QUOTE
I just cannot imagine,how could "we " defeat the russians.
Just look at the map.....
And the winter.
Not to mention that "we" entered russia just as Napoleon army did 100 something years earlier.
By foot I mean.


Of course, not we, alone, but with the allies. After the events, is easy to think and said it could't be.
Think again, in 1941, Germany was at war only with UK, who were on retreat.
Russians lost one million soldiers in Winter war with Finland many frozen to death, Fins only 40 000. At firsts stages of Eastern Front, few millions of Russians soldiers were killed or captured. At that time, no one could said when Americans were come to war, and what stage will reach the economic and arms support.

By "We" I ment "together with out allies".
That romanian soldiers went on foot to war,wasn't a big problem.
But that the german army wanted to take the world by foot ,thats rather funny.Especialy when half of the year you have sub zero temp,saising to -60C.
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dead-cat
Posted: February 09, 2010 12:20 am
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russian water freezes at 0 C too, their army was, just like any other ww2 army, mainly on foot as well.
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contras
Posted: February 09, 2010 12:22 am
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Don't be so sure. On foot or not, the German army conquer Holland, Belgium, half of France, Danmark, Norway, Sweden, Yugoslavia, Greece, and many others. In 1941, they already took Creta and many part of Northern Africa.
On foot or not, can you believe that the Russians would not be ocopied by germans?
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Posted: February 09, 2010 10:23 am
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QUOTE (contras @ February 09, 2010 12:22 am)
Don't be so sure. On foot or not, the German army conquer Holland, Belgium, half of France, Danmark, Norway, Sweden, Yugoslavia, Greece, and many others. In 1941, they already took Creta and many part of Northern Africa.
On foot or not, can you believe that the Russians would not be ocopied by germans?

This comparation is strange...
How can you compare the the countries above with the soviet union????!!!!!!
Especialy Belgium and Holand....
THe german tanks drove on asphalt.Filed their tanks at gas stations.....
Again look at the maps....
How can you concuer russia when you are at the end of a very precarios suply line?
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contras
Posted: February 09, 2010 06:06 pm
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I repeat again. In 1941, very few doubted the German victory. Now, after the end, it very easy to say sentences who can't be combate.
I recomand to you the book written by military historian Bevin Alexander, Cum ar fi putut castiga Hitler al doilea razboi mondial, editura Lucman,2003.
The original title had also a subtitle, The fatal errors that led to nazy defeat.
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dragos
Posted: February 09, 2010 07:37 pm
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Perhaps in 1941-42 that was the view, but only because Germany and her allies had an incorrect perception of Soviet Union's potential. Unless Stalin and the Soviet administration would have somehow collapsed (in reality it proved even stronger than expected), the chances of a decisive Axis victory on the Eastern Front I think were extremely slim from the start.

Germany was logistically unprepared for an attrition war (all victories until then were Blitzkrieg-style, fast), so once it lost momentum at the end of 1941, it could never mount again an offensive on the entire front. From 1942 onwards the major offensives were focused on particular sectors of the front and with objectives more limited one after another. In other words, from the very moment operation Barbarossa started, the time ticked against Germans who could not deliver the coup de grace before the steam ran out.

Off topic discussion, but interesting and it will be separated to another thread.
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dead-cat
Posted: February 10, 2010 09:50 am
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the USSR was not winning the attrition war until '44 when 2 additional fronts in europe were established. at the casualty rates of '42 and '43 they would run out of men and material, quite some time before the axis.
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dragos
Posted: February 10, 2010 03:30 pm
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Do you have some numbers regarding the mobilization potential of Germany and USSR during 1941-1945?

How long it would take for USSR to run out of men (if that would happen before reaching Berlin) ? Since between 1941-1945 approximately 30 million were conscripted in the Red Army while the losses amounted to about 10 million that would mean it would take 12 years to completely deplete the army but only in the case no more mobilization was possible.
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contras
Posted: February 10, 2010 04:09 pm
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I think (I can't remember where I found the figures) that Soviets losses in ww2 were about 20 millions (both military and civilians) from the total ww2 that was 55 millions. I don't know if that figure includes the losses in Winter War with Finland (1 million, only military).
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dead-cat
Posted: February 10, 2010 04:10 pm
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according to krovosheev, around 35 million were conscripted. of which 29.6 million were lost.
until the end of 1943 the red army lost 19.6 million
the germany army in the east hit the 4th million casualty somewhere in summer '43 and ended the year somewhere between 4.5 and 5 million as casualties.
the SU had a population base of about 180 million in '41 and germany could draw from around 100 million. the campaign of '41 brought territorial losses for the SU where around 40-45 million lived which brought the recruitment base down to a population of about 135-140 million. so even a 1:2 rate would be problematic for the red army, but until 44 it was close to 1:4.

losses are not only dead. they include wounded, missing and prisoners as well.
so at 180 million population, it would be perhaps 85 million males, of which 2/3 would be in the draftable age group. that's around 56 million for the SU and about 30 for germany. as we know, germany drafted between 17 and 18 million and they hit the bottom of the sack during late '44. the SU drafted around 35 million and found herself close to that bottom in '45.

'43 was the worst year for the red army in terms of casualties with a peak of 7.8 million total. '44 still costed 6.8 million, but the german front strength decreased substantially for 85% of all available men in the east to about 45% in mid '44 because of the 2 additional fronts.

had they have been in the position to keep concentrating in the east in '43 and supply the army with the reserves which went to counter "Husky", '43 might have been even worse than it was and also '44. that coupled with a increase in war material production, which would have went entirely to the east, would have made '44 a very expensive year, even more expensive than '43, while it would have been less costly for germany that it was.

This post has been edited by dead-cat on February 12, 2010 04:33 pm
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contras
Posted: February 10, 2010 04:36 pm
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Bevin Alexander, I quotted his book earlier, has another theory how could be Soviet Union defeated by Germans.
He said that an indirect aproach would be better, not a direct atack. In 1940, after fall of France, British forces in Northern Africa has just one armoured division. Hitler has 20 in Europe, unused. If he sent 4 against British forces (like Raeder adviced him), he send just 2. Reader said that better send none. If British forces were defeated, Egypt conquered, Suez chanel in German hands, Hitler easy could occupy Arabian peninsula, and assure to him the oil reserves. In this time, he could secure bases in Western Africa (French colonies) for his submarines, makin life harder for British and American ships. Mediterana under his control, Yugoslavia and Greece would be trying to find a way to obey Germany. Eastern Europe would be in Hitler's hands without a single shot.
From Arabian Peninsula, German forces could advance east, very close to petrol oilfields in Caucaz. Turkey become German ally or allow her to croos their forces on his teritory. England would made big efforts to mantain India, and Soviets were esitated to upset Germany.
But this is just a theory, if we looked at suvorov's books, maybe would not be time to do this.
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dragos
Posted: February 10, 2010 06:35 pm
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QUOTE (dead-cat @ February 10, 2010 06:10 pm)
according to krovosheev, around 35 million were conscripted. of which 29.6 million were lost.

30 million military (not including civilians) casualties for 1941-45 ?

The most common figure is ~9 - 10 million military killed or missing so that means the rest of 20+ million are wounded and returned prisoners ?

QUOTE
'43 was the worst year for the red army in terms of casualties with a peak of 7.8 million total. '44 still costed 6.8 million, but the german front strength decreased substantially for 85% of all available men in the east to about 45% in mid 45% because of the 2 additional fronts.

had they have been in the position to keep concentrating in the east in '43 and supply the army with the reserves which went to counter "Husky", '43 might have been even worse than it was and also '44. that coupled with a increase in war material production, which would have went entirely to the east, would have made '44 a very expensive year, even more expensive than '43, while it would have been less costly for germany that it was.


Yet from 1943 the initiative changed even without the presence of the Western Front and the front started to move westwards, so with all the losses the Red Army started to advance west. It is to believe that with the shortening of the lines the German resistance would have stiffened, the question is had Soviet Union enough resources to reach Berlin?
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dragos
Posted: February 10, 2010 06:50 pm
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QUOTE (contras @ February 10, 2010 06:36 pm)
Bevin Alexander, I quotted his book earlier, has another theory how could be Soviet Union defeated by Germans.
He said that an indirect aproach would be better, not a direct atack. In 1940, after fall of France, British forces in Northern Africa has just one armoured division. Hitler has 20 in Europe, unused. If he sent 4 against British forces (like Raeder adviced him), he send just 2. Reader said that better send none. If British forces were defeated, Egypt conquered, Suez chanel in German hands, Hitler easy could occupy Arabian peninsula, and assure to him the oil reserves. In this time, he could secure bases in Western Africa (French colonies) for his submarines, makin life harder for British and American ships. Mediterana under his control, Yugoslavia and Greece would be trying to find a way to obey Germany. Eastern Europe would be in Hitler's hands without a single shot.
From Arabian Peninsula, German forces could advance east, very close to petrol oilfields in Caucaz. Turkey become German ally or allow her to croos their forces on his teritory. England would made big efforts to mantain India, and Soviets were esitated to upset Germany.
But this is just a theory, if we looked at suvorov's books, maybe would not be time to do this.

The problem with this scenario is that in order to send so many divisions and supplies through Mediterranean, the Germans had to neutralize the British Navy and airforce. Even more, to control Mediterranean also seizing Gibraltar was a must. It was quite unlikely to achieve these with the resources at hand.
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Dénes
Posted: February 10, 2010 07:28 pm
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I am not a fan of 'what-if' scenarioes in regards of history. History is (should be) a precise science.

This having been said, I will limit my post to one issue Bevin Alexander apparently overviewed: had Hitler not attacked the Soviet Union in 22 June 1941, the USSR would have had attacked Germany anyhow, possibly later on in 1941. Therefore, the entire scenario he described would had not happen.

Gen. Dénes

This post has been edited by Dénes on February 10, 2010 07:28 pm
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