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Old Today, 08:43 AM
 
Location: London
4,360 posts, read 3,647,052 times
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Percentage of time involved in WW2 for each country


https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qim...d90ff062ee4c44

Total number of combatants per country:
  1. USA -12,210,162
  2. British Commonwealth - 11,335,847
  3. USSR - 10,674,851



https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qim...dd491a600856ba

European Theatre peak numbers of men:
  1. USSR - 10,674,851
  2. British Commonwealth - 8,860,797
  3. USA -2,902,025



https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qim...e654798ad98def

Images public domain.

Last edited by John-UK; Today at 08:53 AM..

 
Old Today, 09:24 AM
 
12,257 posts, read 18,390,529 times
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I'm glad the commonwealth countries are finally broken out. India and Africa has never been given credit for there contributions, with England frequently taking credit.
 
Old Today, 10:09 AM
 
Location: San Diego CA
4,847 posts, read 3,374,646 times
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Not to forget that several thousand Indian troops, many of whom were POW’s in Singapore and Malaya, turned against the British and fought for the Japanese. I believe there were also some Indian troops fighting in Europe against the Allies. But as others have noted the majority of Indian troops fought with the British and were a major factor in defeating the Japanese in SE Asia.
 
Old Today, 10:11 AM
 
Location: USA
17,605 posts, read 8,827,681 times
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So time is how we measure success on the battlefield now? Yeah, they spent a lot of time getting their arses kicked by the Germans.
 
Old Today, 11:35 AM
 
Location: Central Washington
1,012 posts, read 306,673 times
Reputation: 1671
The Ploesti raid wasn't the first AAF action, the Doolittle raid occurred April 18 1942. Yes, the Navy provided the "airfield" but they were Army planes flown by Army crews. The 431st Bombardment Squadron's B-17s attacked the Japanese invasion force June 3 as it neared Midway.

Torch wasn't the first offensive action for the US army either, the 132nd, 164th, and 182nd infantry regiments landed on Guadalcanal October 13. US Army units in the Philippines also put up a very tough defense, until disease and starvation forced the surrender of Bataan April 9, Corregidor holding out almost an entire hellish month longer, surrendering May 6.
 
Old Today, 12:21 PM
 
Location: London
4,360 posts, read 3,647,052 times
Reputation: 1982
Quote:
Originally Posted by msgsing View Post
Not to forget that several thousand Indian troops, many of whom were POW’s in Singapore and Malaya, turned against the British and fought for the Japanese. I believe there were also some Indian troops fighting in Europe against the Allies. But as others have noted the majority of Indian troops fought with the British and were a major factor in defeating the Japanese in SE Asia.
There were just under 2.6 million in the British Indian Army, not 2.5 as the tables states. Any Indians that stupidly fought for the other sides were so small to 2.6 million it is not worth talking about too much. About 55 British POWs joined the Nazis. None fought in battle.
 
Old Today, 12:33 PM
 
Location: Howard County, Maryland
5,654 posts, read 3,638,226 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dozerbear View Post
The Ploesti raid wasn't the first AAF action, the Doolittle raid occurred April 18 1942. Yes, the Navy provided the "airfield" but they were Army planes flown by Army crews. The 431st Bombardment Squadron's B-17s attacked the Japanese invasion force June 3 as it neared Midway.

Torch wasn't the first offensive action for the US army either, the 132nd, 164th, and 182nd infantry regiments landed on Guadalcanal October 13. US Army units in the Philippines also put up a very tough defense, until disease and starvation forced the surrender of Bataan April 9, Corregidor holding out almost an entire hellish month longer, surrendering May 6.
Even before that, the USAAF was fighting from the Philippines as soon as the war started. Captain Colin Kelly was shot down on December 10, 1941 after attacking the Japanese cruiser Natori, and falsely given credit for sinking the battleship Haruna.

What the OP's first chart shows us is how long each of the major allied combatants had to shoulder the load of the fighting. That's all. It says nothing about the size of their contribution, or its effectiveness. (The second chart does show the size of each of the allies' manpower contributions.)
 
Old Today, 12:36 PM
 
Location: London
4,360 posts, read 3,647,052 times
Reputation: 1982
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pilot1 View Post
So time is how we measure success on the battlefield now? Yeah, they spent a lot of time getting their arses kicked by the Germans.
The war was decided by the time the USA got realistically involved. BTW, at Dunkirk no British general surrendered his small force to the Germans. The Germans were always getting beat after Dunkirk and Nov 1941 when Todt advised Hitler to seek peace terms with the Soviets.

Germany's biggest mistake was declaring war in the first place. Once they waged war when was the point they could not win? That was when the British refused to make peace in June 1940. With Britain still in the war the Royal Navy blockade starved Germany, and the Axis, of vital resources, including food (animal & human) and oil. Britain was even buying up rare metals from Turkey to ensure the Germans did not have them. The Royal Navy controlled and freely sailed the eastern Atlantic and the eastern Mediterranean, and both entrances to the Mediterranean. They even had Malta all through WW2, on the doorstep of Axis Italy. Britain's land forces were from Turkey to Libya. Essentially the British surrounded Europe, controlling the sea lanes.

The Royal Navy ensured the conflict with Germany would continue. Germany could not win from June 1940 onwards. Being a largely landlocked country, Germany's forces were heavily based on its army, while Britain's was heavily based on its navy and air force with a small highly mobile army. Germany could not remove Britain from the war having pretty well no surface fleet to Britain having the largest navy in the world.

Britain's approach was that every operation was to bleed Germany of resources, especially oil. Operations in Norway and Greece forced the Germans to deploy troops to these areas but also its surface fleet, which mainly was destroyed in Norway. The German occupied countries were also under the blockade, which were also a drain of German resources.

The British, because of its armed forces structure of massive navy, large air force and small highly mobile army were unable to engage the Germans on the European land mass, on which Germany had a massive army. Apart from the air, the two countries could not get at each other. Britain's war then was partially an economic war. Every German operation against the British had to be decisive whereas the British could lose to the Germans while still asserting economic pressure in its favour. This was the British way of war being very good at it. Britain used similar tactics against Germany in WW1 to devastating effects. This approach was used against the French on multiple occasions over 200 years. Smaller nations in Europe would follow Pax Britannica due British naval dominance. Britain could dictate any war's outcome by blocking trade and resources to one side or another.

The Germans like most of Europe relied on imported oil, raw materials and food (animal & human). For the Germans these resources can only come from two regions - the USSR or the rest of the world. By removing the rest of the world from the grasp of the Axis, the British forced the Germans to acquire Soviet oil - Romania did not produce enough. Hitler had no choice but to invade the Soviet Union in June 1941 because of the resources situation. He needed the resources of the USSR to fight the coming air war with Britain. In May 1940 Roosevelt stated the USA would produce 50,000 planes per year. Most of these would be directed towards Germany with British production on top.

Germany greatly expanded its U-Boat fleet. The popular view was that this fleet was to starve Britain into submission. That was valid but a high hope, however, it was also to divert and lock up Royal Navy resources in convoy protection and U-Boat hunting, allowing merchant ships to enter Germany and the occupied countries more freely.

Germany had been forced into a situation by the British that they knew they could not escape from. Even if Germany had seized the Caucuses' oil fields intact (the Soviets sabotaged them to the point new deep bore holes would need to be drilled) the British would have focused them for their bombing campaign operating from the Middle East - there were plans to bomb them as Britain held nearby Iraq and occupied Iran. This was to drain Germany of vital oil. Every British victory in Africa was decisive and every German victory was not, even if Germany won an operation, they were still being bled. Unless Germany could seize the Suez Canal and beyond, the British could just come back year after year and counter attack with new tanks and new men, with resources not being a problem for them.

Germany knew that they could not invade Britain as the royal Navy was just too powerful. The RAF could replace losses far quicker than they could, as they found out in the air Battle of Britain. Germany could not put their large army on British soil.

After June 1940 Germany has an enemy it can’t defeat not entertaining peace, economically throttling the them every day of the war. Germany never had time, the British did. The German invasion of the USSR with an army short of resources due to the Royal Navy blockade and RAF bombing of Germany, may have quickened the war's end for Germany, however it was not the point that Germany was doomed. Germany had already lost the war it was just a matter of time when Germany collapsed.
 
Old Today, 12:44 PM
 
12,257 posts, read 18,390,529 times
Reputation: 19079
Quote:
Originally Posted by bus man View Post
Even before that, the USAAF was fighting from the Philippines as soon as the war started. Captain Colin Kelly was shot down on December 10, 1941 after attacking the Japanese cruiser Natori, and falsely given credit for sinking the battleship Haruna.

What the OP's first chart shows us is how long each of the major allied combatants had to shoulder the load of the fighting. That's all. It says nothing about the size of their contribution, or its effectiveness. (The second chart does show the size of each of the allies' manpower contributions.)
Also of note is how many American volunteers enlisted to fight the Germans before America officially joined the war. For example - the RAF also had no less that 3 fighter squadrons filled by Americans, called "the Eagle Squadrons", in 1940. Many Americans also enlisted with Canadian outfits.
 
Old Today, 12:45 PM
 
Location: London
4,360 posts, read 3,647,052 times
Reputation: 1982
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pilot1 View Post
So time is how we measure success on the battlefield now? Yeah, they spent a lot of time getting their arses kicked by the Germans.
I knew someone would come back with the mythical Hollywood version of history, ignoring raw facts. The small British force was evacuated from France as the large French army capitulated. An organised retreat. The Germans never kicked any British arses, but the Luftwaffe had its arse kicked over Dunkirk by the RAF. They lost more planes. The German Navy had its arse kicked in Norway with most of its surface fleet sunk or disabled and in the Channel at Dunkirk. This wonderful German army spent just under 2 years trying to wipe out the British Army in Africa, but failed, with 250,000 Axis prisoners taken, more than taken at Stalingrad.

Best look at the timeline of WW2.

Last edited by John-UK; Today at 01:19 PM..
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