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Old 07-06-2011, 10:23 AM
 
13,596 posts, read 17,120,004 times
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I will try to organize my responses...

To your post #199...

I don't think discussing casualties and broader war deaths is the proper frame of reference to argue from. It really didn't matter as a German victory in 1941 would have only saved German lives. A German victory would have sealed the fate of millions more civilians in the conquered areas. One need only look at what the Nazi's did in Poland to get a sense of their future plans for the areas they conquered. So, I don't accept the argument that Hitler's decision sealed the fate of millions more to an early death.

The offensive was always cited on reaching Smolensk, that was AG Center's goal. When they got there the operation was halted for the reasons I outlined earlier. The Germans needed to take a break to close the pocket, rest and refit and most importantly resolve their supply issues. It wasn't a case of making them stop as much as it was they had no choice but to stop.

To your post #200...

Your statements regarding the supply situation fails to take into account the actual needs of AG Center. By early-mid August they were receiving an average of 12,000 tons daily in supply. This seems like a lot until you consider that each division required around 100-200 tons daily to simply exist. This number increased to 300-450 tons on advance and engaged in heavy fighting. AG Center consisted of ~51 divisions. That means they need around 10k tons and change to exist and would need upwards of 15k-23k tons to sustain an advance. Essentially, the supplies they were receiving were capable of SUSTAINING AG Center, but left nothing in terms of stockpiling for an advance or providing enough to allow the entire group to engage in an advance. That level of supply was not attained until mid-late September.

In order to place the number in more perspective the German logistical apparatus in planning for Barbarossa called for 60k tons a day of supply with 25k-30k tons allocated to AG Center. After Smolensk they were receiving roughly half their stated operational supplies. Another often overlooked factor is the over supply of German units in preparation for the invasion. They carried extensive additional supplies of ammunition and fuel allowing them to operate rapidly and more independently and sustain their operations while the supplies caught up. These "handkoffer" supplies had been completely exhausted after Smolensk.

The argument that they were able to supply Guderian and Hoth for their break off engagements in support of other groups is not proof of fact that they could logistically sustain the advance of the entire group. Certainly they had some operational freedom, but Hoth and Guderian alone could not have taken Moscow without the rest of AG Center for support and follow-up and the rest of AG Center lacked the capacity to engage in a major offensive.

As for the Soviet forces in and around Kiev, the fact remains that without the use of Guderians troops to complete the encirclement, those forces would not have been destroyed in such a resounding fashion. The entire point of the Soviet Briansk front was to threaten the flank of AG Center. The Soviet forces in Kiev would not have been destroyed without the addition of Guderians forces. If those troops were not destroyed I find it incredibly hard to believe they would have sat idly by while AG Center drove on Moscow.

Regardless of what the Russians did though, the Germans simply didn't have the resources to launch the attack earlier than mid-September and virtually everyone agrees that a couple weeks wouldn't have made a difference overall, even the beginning of September wouldn't have mattered. All the what ifs are contingent upon an early August Typhoon, but such an operation was outside the logistical capabilities of AG Center.
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Old 07-06-2011, 10:49 AM
 
Location: Carmel, CA USA
40 posts, read 26,680 times
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Default The CASE FOR TAKING MOSCOW PART 1

THE CASE FOR TAKING MOSCOW PART 1


The Basis for Contentious Debate for Decades

The debate over whether Moscow should have been the strategic objective of the invasion of the Soviet Union has been going on virtually since the end of World War II.

The camp against such a prospect has put together, what appears on the surface at least, to be a rather reasonable list of arguments against it.

* The weather was against the Germans. They had to fight the rains and the mud, then the snow and the intense cold.

Answer: Senior commanders on the ground were anticipating a start date of Operation Typhoon to be scheduled roughly around the middle of August and were firming their operational plans for this final push to Moscow when Hitler did a complete about face and halted offensive operations for Army Group Center, thus instantly the forward momentum they had been achieving from day one the invasion
evaporated.

* The supply situation was too strained and at the point of breaking down.

Answer: I've already addressed this issue and overcome this argument in the earlier post. Supply problems were virtually a non issue in August 1941 for Army Group Center. The major rail depot and line at Minsk in the now rear area of Army Group Center was already set up and receiving supplies for distribution via both forward rail and truck convoy to AG Center combat units in the field throughout operations in forward areas and in this time frame. Even when Guiderion was ordered to send his armor formations to support von Runestedt and AG South in their encirclement operations outside of Kiev, the logistical supply and support for Guiderion and his armor came from AG Center supply and logistic units from these supply depots. Thereforce, any claim that supply was in any kind of dire condition in August 1941 was erroneous.

As previously mentioned, the only time during August/September when AG Center was experiencing supply disruptions was in the area of heavy ordinance depletion of German heavy artillery fire - due to the fact that the now stationary AG Center formations were now under Russian artillery attack from nearby Russian units.

If AG Center had been allowed to resume their advance in mid August as originally planned, this supply disruption of heavy ordinance would not have arisen. Supply issues were not the overaly critical factor opponents to the Moscow operation would have others believe.

Guiderian and Hoth and even von Leeb were well underway in their operational readiness for the anticipated start to the final push on Moscow by mid August. When they recieved word that Hitler changed his mind, they were completely shocked. Guiderian even arranged with General Halder of OKH to personnally meet with Hitler and make his case for the completion of Army Group Center's advance on Moscow - all to no avail. Hitler would not budge and this sealed the fate of the entire invasion of the Soviet Union.


* Their flanks were too exposed and open to attack, especially from the South.

Answer: This concern was exaggerated and had no basis in fact when confronting the actual conditions on the ground for both the Germans and the Russians. The Russian army was in no conditon to initiate a far flung and coordinated counter offensive against the flanks, especially the southern flanks, of AG Center as they approached Moscow. At this time, Soviet forces in the Gomel sector (South of Smolensk) were in full evacuation mode and the primary Soviet forces in the Kiev region were alrady tied up and quite busy trying to fend off the tactical advance of Army Group South.

*What were they going to do when they got there? It would have been another Stalingrad.

Answer: I will address this concern in full in part 2 of this post.


Overall

The first three of these arguments have already been addressed in previous posts to be without justification. Their conclusions are based on the Wehrmacht following the critically late start date of late September - October 2, 1941 and, given this basis, they have every right to view Operation Typhoon as a doomed effort in Germany's prosecution of the war against the Soviets.

It is this timing miscalculation made by Hitler and the intentional grounding of the entire offensive momentum of Army Group Center, which proved to be the critical and pivotal point in determining the overall success of Operation Typhoon. By choosing to halt Army Group Center's offensive operations after the sucess of the Battle of Smolensk in early August, and diverting a significant portion of their armor assets to both the support of Army Group North's operatons against Leningrad in the North and to provide further punch to Field Marshal von Runstedt's encirclement efforts against Soviet forces in the Kiev area of the Ukraine, Hitler managed to commit several major mistakes.



SOME OF THE DETRIMENTAL CONSEQUENCES TO HITLER'S DECISION...

*Hitler stopped the forward strategic thrust of Army Group Center in its drive to take Moscow. Of the three Army Groups, AG Center was the largest with the most armor and infanty divisions as well as the largest air support. Being given the largest offensive assets and strategically placed in the geostrategic center of the entire invasion campaign it, by natural extension, was the Army Group originally given the strategic priorty and focus by the German senior general staff and by the senior commanders on the ground.

In this one major decision, Hitler effectively hamstrung and throttled the entire advance and forward momentum of this massive offensive spearhead towards Moscow, dismantled its core offensive elements and let it sit idle while precioius days and weeks burned away in the pursuit of peripheral campaigns that should have remained secondary considerations.

By changing the strategic direction of Operation Barbarossa, Hitler destroyed the already built and created forward strategic momentum of the entire invasion and neutralized that forward thrust, thus putting in jeopardy the success of the entire invasion.

*By delaying the actual start date for Operation Typhoon to the much later start date of late September - early October 1941, HItler sealed the fate of Operation Typhoon. This crucial delay placed AG Center and its offensive strike nearly at the beginning of the Russian rains which started in full force that year on October 10th, crippling most forward offensive operations for days at a time. These rains also made re supply and logistical support and repair of vehicles extremely difficult and slow going and further slowed AG Center's forward movement and momentum toward Moscow.

*By delaying the kick off to such a crtically late start, Hitler gave the Russians extra breathing room to fortify Moscow defensive lines and give Stalin time to arrange for the now timely arrival of divisons of the Siberian army coming in by rail from the East.

*By diverting these offensive armor assets to the other two campaigns Hitler provided additonal wear and tear on both the vehicles and men of these armor divisions as they were painstakingly and ponderoulsy prepared for loading onto rail cars for the long trek to the other fronts. After being diverted to these other fronts, and after long weeks of fighting these extra peripheral operations, these same armor formations were finally sent back to the original point in their now halted advance outside of Smolensk.


It is with these consequences in mind, that one is easily astonished to realize just how far the German advance actually got in spite of so many massive obstacles in its path of advance. Forward units and artillery spotters of Army Group Center were able to see the spires of the Kremlin without binoculars. Moscow came within artillery fire. Given such formidable obstacles, it is stunning to realize the scope and the reach of their advance.

Now, granted....the fate of this entire offensive operation was sealed by Hitler's reckless and short sighted decision to both negatively alter the strategic focus of the entire campaign and to intentionally delay Operation Typhoon. But, despite even this monumental mistake, AG Center STILL managed to reach the gates of Moscow!

It's just that they got there too late. Their forces were too depelted and damaged by the struggles and extra hardship of fall and cold winter fighting as they approached way too late in the year and too little strategically supported or fortified by Hitler to make the taking of Moscow a realistic prospect.

With few if any reinforcements or replacements of losses, with severe supply disruptions due especially to the now extremely harsh and adverse weather conditons and with Hitler now giving greater strategic priority to his new focus; the plan to invade deeply into the Ukraine in the South, there was little prospect for ultimate success for Army Group Center in its advance to Moscow. Hitler doomed this operation from the very beginning.

They had to fight the Russians, the weather, and the consequences of Hitler's reckless and destructive decisions.

THE TIMING WAS THE KEY TO TYPHOON'S FATE

If Army Group Center were allowed by Hitler to resume their offensive thrust after the Battle of Smoensk in early August with an actual start date of Operaton Typhoon to be the middle fo August, the taking of Moscow became a major likelihood.

AG Center was around 200 miles from Moscow in early August. Generals Guiderian and Hoth, commanders of Army Group Center's two panzer armies, knew that if they could start in the mid August time frame, that the reaching of Moscow was a foregone conclusion. They had more than enough offensive striking ability to achieve a daily gain in territory in their advance of well over 8-10 miles daily and this was taking into account constant combat operatons and maneuver.

During the first weeks of Operation Barbarossa, many forward armor units were achieving daily territory gains of well over 30-40 miles daily. As the operation progressed and as resistance stiffened, this daily advance was reduced to between 10 to 30 miles daily during actual offensive advance operatons. Therefore, the estimate of an 8-10 mile per day gain is actually quite conservative. Some days would be far more miles than this average and other days less factoring in the natural consequences of anticipated supply delays and temporary logistical disruptions.

However, simple math tells you Moscow could be reached within the month. Mid August to mid September provided near optimum weather conditons for the advance. These were near perfect conditons to achieve the chances for success in the taking of Moscow.

Even taking into account, the time required to occasionally pause and wait for the support infantry to come up from the rear, this time schedule was practical and achievable.

In part 2 of this post, I will set out the practical steps necessary for AG Center, upon reaching Moscow, to take Moscow.
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Old 07-06-2011, 12:09 PM
 
Location: Carmel, CA USA
40 posts, read 26,680 times
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Default For those critics who see the glass as half empty, everything to them is half empty.

[quote=NJGOAT;19897278]I will try to organize my responses...


Critics look at risk based initiatives of any kind and have a strong tendency to look at such efforts in terms of the "glass being half empty" and search for any set of easily maneuvered "facts" to support their argument that an initiative cannot possibly be achieved because of this or that laundry list of perceived negatives.

The same approach to the perceived or imagined problems leading up to the actually crtically delayed and hamstrung advance of Army Group Center and Operation Typhoon.








To your post #199...

Quote:
I don't think discussing casualties and broader war deaths is the proper frame of reference to argue from. It really didn't matter as a German victory in 1941 would have only saved German lives. A German victory would have sealed the fate of millions more civilians in the conquered areas. One need only look at what the Nazi's did in Poland to get a sense of their future plans for the areas they conquered.
Though it is true that Nazi persecution was taking place in Poland. This is sheer speculation on your part that somehow the Germans could coneivablly decide to SLAUGHTER 150 million human beings in the Soviet Union if the actual war were cut short by the successful taking of Moscow .

You cannot possibly be serious.

This is sheer and unjustified speculation on your part as to some bizarre, nightrmarish renditon of what could have happen if the war in the East were cut short through some kind of cesssation of combat operatons after the taking of Moscow. Although I never said that the successful taking of Moscow was a guarantee that that the war against the Soveit Union would somehow magically end by the taking of Moscow but it would certainly have been a major strategic gain and success for Germany and a massive loss on every level for the Soveit Union.

The entire population of Poland was not in any way annihilated or exterminated...you are aware of this. So, to draw that implication is a gross distortion of history.

In point of fact and what you cannot possibly be in denial of is this:

By deciding to take a whole new strategic direction and invade throughout the breadth and depth of the Ukraine, Hitler set into motion a whole string of castastrophic events which DID lead either directly or indirectly in the war related deaths of over 27 million civilians!

That happed becuase of his decision to re direct the entire focus and energy of the invasion into a concerted and concentrated invasion of the Ukraine instead of Moscow.

This is history. This is fact. This happened. Those millions upon millions upon DID DIE in that conflagration due to that deciision oh Hitler's part.

There is no way you can deny that without being in denial of history.

For your part, your speculation as to what would have happend if the war were cut short versus the continued expansion of the war into the Ukraine is sheer and absolute guessing on your part. Nothing else.

What did happen was a catastrophe for the peoples of the Ukraine. And, they still haven't fully recovered from that result.




Quote:
So, I don't accept the argument that Hitler's decision sealed the fate of millions more to an early death.
You may not accept it. But that is exactly what happened for sure because that is exactly what happened as this freshly directly forces were poured south into the black hole of a hyper extended war. Those tens of millions did die.




The offensive was always cited on reaching Smolensk, that was AG Center's goal. When they got there the operation was halted for the reasons I outlined earlier. The Germans needed to take a break to close the pocket, rest and refit and most importantly resolve their supply issues. It wasn't a case of making them stop as much as it was they had no choice but to stop.

To your post #200...

Your statements regarding the supply situation fails to take into account the actual needs of AG Center. By early-mid August they were receiving an average of 12,000 tons daily in supply. This seems like a lot until you consider that each division required around 100-200 tons daily to simply exist. This number increased to 300-450 tons on advance and engaged in heavy fighting. AG Center consisted of ~51 divisions. That means they need around 10k tons and change to exist and would need upwards of 15k-23k tons to sustain an advance. Essentially, the supplies they were receiving were capable of SUSTAINING AG Center, but left nothing in terms of stockpiling for an advance or providing enough to allow the entire group to engage in an advance. That level of supply was not attained until mid-late September.

In order to place the number in more perspective the German logistical apparatus in planning for Barbarossa called for 60k tons a day of supply with 25k-30k tons allocated to AG Center. After Smolensk they were receiving roughly half their stated operational supplies. Another often overlooked factor is the over supply of German units in preparation for the invasion. They carried extensive additional supplies of ammunition and fuel allowing them to operate rapidly and more independently and sustain their operations while the supplies caught up. These "handkoffer" supplies had been completely exhausted after Smolensk.

The argument that they were able to supply Guderian and Hoth for their break off engagements in support of other groups is not proof of fact that they could logistically sustain the advance of the entire group. Certainly they had some operational freedom, but Hoth and Guderian alone could not have taken Moscow without the rest of AG Center for support and follow-up and the rest of AG Center lacked the capacity to engage in a major offensive.

As for the Soviet forces in and around Kiev, the fact remains that without the use of Guderians troops to complete the encirclement, those forces would not have been destroyed in such a resounding fashion. The entire point of the Soviet Briansk front was to threaten the flank of AG Center. The Soviet forces in Kiev would not have been destroyed without the addition of Guderians forces. If those troops were not destroyed I find it incredibly hard to believe they would have sat idly by while AG Center drove on Moscow.

Regardless of what the Russians did though, the Germans simply didn't have the resources to launch the attack earlier than mid-September and virtually everyone agrees that a couple weeks wouldn't have made a difference overall, even the beginning of September wouldn't have mattered. All the what ifs are contingent upon an early August Typhoon, but such an operation was outside the logistical capabilities of AG Center.[/quote



__________________________________________________ ___




RESPONSE:


They did have the supplies and it was evident and all too blatantly obvious from the ease with which they conducted numerous massive combat operations at this time. That is FACT.

So the supply situation was not some kind of "crisis" as you imagine.


I have already stated that supply flows were clearly established, up and running from the nelwly established supply junctions/depots of the Minsk rail center and supplies were shipped off from here via both rail and truck convoy.

You can supply all the counter "facts" and "tonnages" and supposed "evidence" of numbers all you want and I could do the same old back and forth with you and split hairs over the legitamacy of whose numbers are right .....

But let me ask you something NJGoat...

If supplies and a supply crisis were such a critcal, mission destroying issue at this time....

WHY DIDN'T THE SENIOR COMMANDERS ON THE GROUND USE THIS AS THE BASIS FOR NOT PURSUING THE ACTUAL AND IMMEDIATE RESUMPTION OF THE ADVANCE ON MOSCOW AFTER SMOLENSK?

WHY? They were planning this operation and its immediate resumption in August...why would they be doing this if your imagined supply crisis were actually real?

HAVE YOU EVER STOPPED TO WONDER ABOUT THAT?

listen, it's the questions that matter with analysis...it's the questions ...and it is truly this key question which totally and completely destroys your argument.

IF THE SUPPLY ISSUE WHICH YOU AND OTHERS LOVE TO USE AS THE EXCUSE WHY THE ADVANCE ON MOSCOW COULD NOT POSSIBLY HAVE STARTED AT THIS TIME IN THE CAMPAIGN,...

WHY OH WHY...

WAS THIS EXCUSE NOT USED AS THE ACTUAL BASIS FOR THE SENIOR COMMANDERS ON THE GROUND, FOR THE SENIOR GENERALS INCLUDING GENERAL HALDER AT OKH,...WHY WOULD THAT NOT HAVE TOTALLY CHANGED AND HALTED THEIR PLAN TO TAKE MOSCOW AFTER SMOLENSK?

They didn't see the supply situation as somehow stopping them from moving forward at this time. They were ready to go.


Guiderian and Hoth and Halder and Leeb and the others were SET to start the last

phase of their advance on Moscow after the Smolensk operation in the month of

August and when Hitler changed his mind, this infuriated these

generals and ground commanders including and especially Guiderian and Hoth

who were ALL SET TO GO.

If the supposed supply drama you have painted, were so real and substantial as you claim, thiis would have changed their plans completely.

They would not have been so infuriated and frustrated with Hitler's decision. And, they certainly would not have tried to talk him out of it. They did so, especially Guiderian, because they were....

READY TO GO!

Do you actually think that, if they were not all set to commence the last phase of their drive to Moscow, that they would have been so furious with Hitler over this change of plan?

Do you think Guiderian and the others would have gone to the point of actually confronting the Fuhrer of Germany over this?


BUT some kind of supply imagined "supply problem" was not at the forefront of their mind.

THEY WERE SET TO RESUME THEIR ADVANCE ON MOSCOW IMMEDIATELY AND HITLER'S 180 CHANGE OF PLAN ABSOLUTELY WRECKED THEIR CHANCES OF SUCCESS BY CRITICALLY DELAYING THEIR OPERATIONS FOR WEEKS AND WEEKS.





Conclusion:

Critics look at risk based initiatives of any kind and have a strong tendency to look at such efforts in terms of the "glass being half empty" and search for any set of easily maneuvered "facts" to support their argument that an initiative cannot possibly be achieved because of this or that laundry list of perceived negatives.

The same approach to the perceived or imagined problems leading up to the actually crtically delayed and hamstrung advance of Army Group Center and Operation Typhoon.

Last edited by SmilingWolf; 07-06-2011 at 12:19 PM..
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Old 07-06-2011, 12:20 PM
 
13,596 posts, read 17,120,004 times
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I look forward to your second post, but I fear ultimately we will be arguing in circles. At this point we could already simply copy and paste the discussion on the Axis History Forum regarding Barbarossa. I have used it as a reference in this discussion and no offense, but many of your statements are copied from there almost verbatim. You're leaning heavily on Hooker and Stolfi's positions and I am using Glantz, Roberts and van Creveld. Essentially were arguing the same points the experts do with little consensus.

Instead of beating the dead horse proving it was possible or impossible to launch Typhoon in August, lets just say it was. We'll also take out any impact troops in Kiev and the SW Front may have had, as well as reserves near Leningrad to the north.

When could it have started?

Most would peg the beginning of the operation to being 10-14 days following the closing of the Smolensk pocket and operations to take Roslavl to prep for the invasion and secure the Velnia salient. This puts us around say August 18th or so to begin Typhoon.

How far did they have to go and how quick could they get there?

They had ~200 miles to go before they could reach Moscow. The actual rate of advance would depend on what the Russians in the Vyasma-Bryansk-Orel line did:

Scenario 1: If those units stood firm requiring yet another encirclement and liquidation, such an operation could have taken up to 15 days to complete. That places the Germans around 150 miles from Moscow in early September. Assuming a rate of advance of 10 miles a day, that places Hoth and Guderian at Moscow in 15 days, around September 20th. The infantry would have been 10-14 days behind them meaning that they reach Moscow at the beginning of October, right when the rains started.

Scenario 2: Those units fall back to stregnthen the defenses of Moscow. That accelerates the time table by 15 days or so and places the Germans at Moscow at the end of September. Of course, they are now dealing with a much stronger defense centered on Moscow, but they have a couple weeks of operations in good weather.

What happens once they're there?

Well, that is the biggest what if there is. Could the panzers complete the encirclement and cut off the city? Chances are they could have. Would the Russians in the Moscow pocket have surrendered? Most likely not. That means reducing the pocket of strongest resistance the Germans had yet faced. Considering the fact that Hitler issued an express order not to enter Moscow itself, it would seem the German intent was to cut off the capitol and then...

At this point we are already firmly in the rainy season and supplies are having a heck of a time moving to the new Moscow front. The Soviets are stubbornly holding out and forces from Siberia as well as reserves and new units are massing for a counter attack to relieve the city, a counter that includes large numbers of T-34's. Time ticks on...

The Soviets don't surrender, the weather is turning, the supply situation is deteriorating daily. By November the first bitter cold hits. German mechanized units are down to about only 1/3 of their vehicles being operational and many infantry divisions are reduced to 1/2 strength. The German army is bogged down surrounding Moscow and getting weaker by the day. While the deep freeze eases the supply situation and allows the armor to move again, there is nowhere for it to go without its infantry support which is now invested beseiging Moscow. The temperatures keep dropping and by December the Germans and their equipment are freezing to death. A massive Soviet counterattack is launched to relieve the city...

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Old 07-06-2011, 12:27 PM
 
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^^^Everything has been good reading especially since this came back to life. Best part of this forum is the different opinions when the respondents are well read.

I prefer to read where several analyses/theories are presented rather than one view only. (as with different views of the Little Big Horn Custer Hill battle)

I have a difficult time focusing on work lately. (I will have to write myself up.)

Come on guys. Let us not let it get personal. I am no Internet saint but let us move on.

Last edited by Felix C; 07-06-2011 at 12:48 PM..
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Old 07-06-2011, 12:38 PM
 
Location: Carmel, CA USA
40 posts, read 26,680 times
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Default Naysayers tend to look at glass half emtpy situations and never change their perception.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NJGOAT View Post
I look forward to your second post, but I fear ultimately we will be arguing in circles. At this point we could already simply copy and paste the discussion on the Axis History Forum regarding Barbarossa. I have used it as a reference in this discussion



Quote:
and no offense, but many of your statements are copied from there almost verbatim
.





I do take major offense - NJGoat. I have been a student of that excellent site....axishistory.com and it it true that the actual chronological facts of the situation on the southern flanks I borrowed from one of the users, but I did try to put this information in my own words.

So, please find where I actually copied - word for word - whatever info you accuse me of plagiarizing. And put it down in your next response. Becuase unless I was sleepwalking, I don't recall copying word for word - anybody.

And, if you read my work on these posts...it is all my own words and thoughts.

And, after you fail to try and find any passages that are not totally my own and my own thoughts and words.... tell me how you are going to restore my credibility after smearing it just now.



Quote:
You're leaning heavily on Hooker and Stolfi's positions and I am using Glantz, Roberts and van Creveld. Essentially were arguing the same points the experts do with little consensus.

Instead of beating the dead horse proving it was possible or impossible to launch Typhoon in August, lets just say it was. We'll also take out any impact troops in Kiev and the SW Front may have had, as well as reserves near Leningrad to the north.

When could it have started?

Most would peg the beginning of the operation to being 10-14 days following the closing of the Smolensk pocket and operations to take Roslavl to prep for the invasion and secure the Velnia salient. This puts us around say August 18th or so to begin Typhoon.

How far did they have to go and how quick could they get there?

They had ~200 miles to go before they could reach Moscow. The actual rate of advance would depend on what the Russians in the Vyasma-Bryansk-Orel line did:

Scenario 1: If those units stood firm requiring yet another encirclement and liquidation, such an operation could have taken up to 15 days to complete. That places the Germans around 150 miles from Moscow in early September. Assuming a rate of advance of 10 miles a day, that places Hoth and Guderian at Moscow in 15 days, around September 20th. The infantry would have been 10-14 days behind them meaning that they reach Moscow at the beginning of October, right when the rains started.

Scenario 2: Those units fall back to stregnthen the defenses of Moscow. That accelerates the time table by 15 days or so and places the Germans at Moscow at the end of September. Of course, they are now dealing with a much stronger defense centered on Moscow, but they have a couple weeks of operations in good weather.

What happens once they're there?

Well, that is the biggest what if there is. Could the panzers complete the encirclement and cut off the city? Chances are they could have. Would the Russians in the Moscow pocket have surrendered? Most likely not. That means reducing the pocket of strongest resistance the Germans had yet faced. Considering the fact that Hitler issued an express order not to enter Moscow itself, it would seem the German intent was to cut off the capitol and then...

At this point we are already firmly in the rainy season and supplies are having a heck of a time moving to the new Moscow front. The Soviets are stubbornly holding out and forces from Siberia as well as reserves and new units are massing for a counter attack to relieve the city, a counter that includes large numbers of T-34's. Time ticks on...

The Soviets don't surrender, the weather is turning, the supply situation is deteriorating daily. By November the first bitter cold hits. German mechanized units are down to about only 1/3 of their vehicles being operational and many infantry divisions are reduced to 1/2 strength. The German army is bogged down surrounding Moscow and getting weaker by the day. While the deep freeze eases the supply situation and allows the armor to move again, there is nowhere for it to go without its infantry support which is now invested beseiging Moscow. The temperatures keep dropping and by December the Germans and their equipment are freezing to death. A massive Soviet counterattack is launched to relieve the city...

I do take major offense - NJGoat. I have been a student of that excellent site....axishistory.com and it it true that the actual chronological facts of the situation on the southern flanks I borrowed from one of the users, but I did try to put this information in my own words.

So, please find where I actually copied - word for word - whatever info you accuse me of plagiarizing. And put it down in your next response. Becuase unless I was sleepwalking, I don't recall copying word for word - anybody.

And, if you read my work on these posts...it is all my own words and thoughts.

And, after you fail to try and find any passages that are not totally my own and my own thoughts and words.... tell me how you are going to restore my credibility after smearing it just now.
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Old 07-06-2011, 12:48 PM
 
Location: Carmel, CA USA
40 posts, read 26,680 times
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Quote:
and no offense, but many of your statements are copied from there almost verbatim
.





I do take major offense - NJGoat. I have been a student of that excellent site....axishistory.com and it it true that the actual chronological facts of the situation on the southern flanks I borrowed from one of the users, but I did try to put this information in my own words.

So, please find where I actually copied - word for word - whatever info you accuse me of plagiarizing. And put it down in your next response. Becuase unless I was sleepwalking, I don't recall copying word for word - anybody.

And, if you read my work on these posts...it is all my own words and thoughts.

And, after you fail to try and find any passages that are not totally my own and my own thoughts and words.... tell me how you are going to restore my credibility after smearing it just now.
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Old 07-06-2011, 12:57 PM
 
Location: Carmel, CA USA
40 posts, read 26,680 times
Reputation: 19
NJ Goat ...

I am waiting for you to find the actual "statements" I copied verbatim from the axishistory site.

And, after you failed to find these contrived proofs....

Then, you can apologize for such a low class accusation. I have put these posts together investing a large amount of time putting myself, my thoughts into supporting my stand in various issues of the Eastern Front and I have done much study over this subject through the years, so for you slap me in the face with that accusation of copying the thoughts of others verbatim...is intolerable.

As mentioned, I did use some facts over the dispositions of the Soviets in the southern area south of AG Center to show how that was not a threat. But, I did make every effort to put those facts into my own words.

Now, find all of these supposed statements I made ...

And, then after you can't find them...

Be man enough to apologize for the smear you just made against me.
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Old 07-06-2011, 01:50 PM
 
13,596 posts, read 17,120,004 times
Reputation: 11708
Quote:
Originally Posted by SmilingWolf View Post
NJ Goat ...

I am waiting for you to find the actual "statements" I copied verbatim from the axishistory site.

And, after you failed to find these contrived proofs....

Then, you can apologize for such a low class accusation. I have put these posts together investing a large amount of time putting myself, my thoughts into supporting my stand in various issues of the Eastern Front and I have done much study over this subject through the years, so for you slap me in the face with that accusation of copying the thoughts of others verbatim...is intolerable.

As mentioned, I did use some facts over the dispositions of the Soviets in the southern area south of AG Center to show how that was not a threat. But, I did make every effort to put those facts into my own words.

Now, find all of these supposed statements I made ...

And, then after you can't find them...

Be man enough to apologize for the smear you just made against me.
Your points regarding the supply situation and disposition of Soviet forces on the SW Front are very similar to arguments made by a handful of posters on Axis History. The most verbatim statement was the one regarding the time table for the movement of the Siberian troops. While the statements are not verbatim they are paraphrased and I got the feeling I had read them before.

The statement was not meant as a condemnation of your knowledge or credibility, merely pointing out that we are arguing the same argument that many have argued before and I thought it pertinent to list the site we were both drawing from as well as the historians whose positions we seem to be in agreement with.

Your statements are a little difficult to discern at times, especially as they are often spread across multiple posts and they are not exactly cohesive as they jump from point to point, which drew me to the possibility you were drawing from another source to assemble your arguments.

As I said, I meant no offense and if offense was given then I apologize for it. For what it's worth, I doubt much of what we have posted regarding the positions we have taken are fully our own thoughts. Our thoughts are shaped by what we have read and have an inclination to believe is correct. Neither one of us is quoting from source material and making our own analyses, we are drawing from others who have done that.

I'm willing to continue the discussion and withdrawal my verbatim statement. I see three ways to continue:

1. We ignore everything about the supply situations and focus on our hypothetical August 18th launching of Typhoon, which I personally believe would have met the same fate the operation actually did, but with additional gains. This means I give up my position that it was impossible to launch the attack early. It also means we will be dealing in probability and what ifs, with no real concrete foundation to draw on for our arguments.

2. We can continue to discuss the supply situation for which I can continue to provide evidence, primiarly from van Creveld who as far as I know is the only person to take a critical look at the actual logistical situation. I might even have a response to why Guderian et al thought the way they did. The only thing I ask in return is that you attempt to provide constructive arguments as to why it was possible, not simply state it was.

3. We can consider this conversation closed and move on to other topics. Obviously the mainstream historian community is divided over the topic and we are each representing one of the camps. If they can't reach consensus chances are we won't either.
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Old 07-06-2011, 01:56 PM
 
6 posts, read 9,430 times
Reputation: 10
Duh!

Nazi's fell victim to one of the classic blunders! The most famous is "Never get involved in a land war in Asia"
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