Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

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maltesefalcon
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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by maltesefalcon » 16 Jul 2014 02:32

LWD wrote:There's also the fact that they were having a hard time keeping those divisions in North Africa supplied now he wants to add more ...
At the same time pulling trucks out of Barbarossa.

If http://www.cgsc.edu/CARL/nafziger/941GFAD.pdf is accurate the Germans only had 10 motorized infantry divisions at the time. "Peeling" them away might have helped by making it obvious much sooner that Barbarossa had failed. A quick survey only shows 20 some panzer divisoins at the time as well. I may have missed some but looks like all sorts of problems with maltesefalcon's statement.
Oh for Gods sake.
Why would there be a supply problem in North Africa? In the OTL most of the army and the supplies were in frikkin Russia. By definition of the OP they would not be there in 1941 now. So they would come in pretty handy elsewhere.

And they wouldn't be pulling trucks from Barbarossa in 1941, because it wouldn't be happening for a year.

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by ljadw » 16 Jul 2014 06:14

maltesefalcon wrote:
Oh for Gods sake.
Why would there be a supply problem in North Africa? .

:P :P

In the OTL,the Germans(in fact the Italians ) had insoluble problems to supply 2 divisions in NA (in 1941):the logical conclusion is that to send 4 divisions would only increase the problems .

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by ljadw » 16 Jul 2014 06:19

maltesefalcon wrote: In the OTL most of the army and the supplies were in frikkin Russia. By definition of the OP they would not be there in 1941 now. So they would come in pretty handy elsewhere.

.
No they would not come in pretty handy elsewhere:if there was no Barbarossa,the 150 divisions of the Ostheer would not come in pretty handy in NA,they would remain pretty handy in Germany .

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by maltesefalcon » 16 Jul 2014 11:41

ljadw wrote:
maltesefalcon wrote:
Oh for Gods sake.
Why would there be a supply problem in North Africa? .

:P :P

In the OTL,the Germans(in fact the Italians ) had insoluble problems to supply 2 divisions in NA (in 1941):the logical conclusion is that to send 4 divisions would only increase the problems .

Most of the problems stemmed from the fact that the original force was an afterthought, hastily organized. Therefore they had poor air support and poor logistics because....Hitler focussed the bulk of his attention and resources on Russia.

With no Barbarossa in 1941 these troops would have little else to do except as mentioned above stay in Germany where they would serve no purpose for a year. If I were Rommel and found myself starved for troops and supplies while 75% of the army sat on its ass back home,I'd scream to the rafters.

There was no US support at the time so why not finish the British off. I would agree that the original B of B was a failure and the Germans failed to knock the UK out of Africa in 1941 in the OTL.

But the allies did not win their first bombing campaigns either and despite being pushed off the continent they emerged victorious. Why? Because they kept trying.

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by LWD » 16 Jul 2014 12:58

maltesefalcon wrote: ... Most of the problems stemmed from the fact that the original force was an afterthought, hastily organized. Therefore they had poor air support and poor logistics because....Hitler focussed the bulk of his attention and resources on Russia.
Not from what I've read. The supply problems in North Africa stemed from a number of severe bottlenecks at several places along the supply chain. Fixing them would in itself be resource intensive and it's questionable whether the resources to fixing it could have been deployed and supported there along with the resources to protect them.

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by ljadw » 16 Jul 2014 15:02

While the Italians were able to transport the needed supplies for the existing forces in NA in 1941(=the Italian forces and the 2 German PzD+LW) and the civilians,(the losses underway were marginal),the BIG (and insoluble)problem started when these supplies arrived in NA : how to transport them to the front ?It could not be done,unless thousands more trucks also would arrive: these trucks did not exist,and,if they were available ,they would need additional manpower (drivers and technicians) ,fuel and spare parts:this would be at the expense of the supplies of the front-units.The choice was between the plague and the cholera : more trucks,thus less supplies,or not more trucks and not enough supplies.At a certain moment,the result of more supplies (trucks,etc) arriving in NA,would be less supplies arriving at the front .

And,there is also the question of the unloading /transport . capacities of the Italanian ports,of the NA ports, of the Italian railways and merchant navy .
And ,the distance : a train with supplies leaving the Ruhr for Tobruk would have to cover a distance of almost 4000 km,which means :30 days .

All this has been discussed and explained at the NA section .

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by BDV » 16 Jul 2014 17:18

ljadw wrote:No they would not come in pretty handy elsewhere:if there was no Barbarossa,the 150 divisions of the Ostheer would not come in pretty handy in NA,they would remain pretty handy in Germany .
:lol: :thumbsup:


Yes...

... but the Tante Jus used in the East would come in handy, for Operation Herkules, and for North Africa.

P.S. It's 450 kilometers from Sitia, Crete to Mersa Matruh.
Last edited by BDV on 16 Jul 2014 18:15, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by ChrisDR68 » 16 Jul 2014 18:11

maltesefalcon wrote:With no Barbarossa in 1941 these troops would have little else to do except as mentioned above stay in Germany where they would serve no purpose for a year. If I were Rommel and found myself starved for troops and supplies while 75% of the army sat on its ass back home,I'd scream to the rafters.

There was no US support at the time so why not finish the British off. I would agree that the original B of B was a failure and the Germans failed to knock the UK out of Africa in 1941 in the OTL.
But how were the Germans going to finish Britain off as you put it?

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by maltesefalcon » 17 Jul 2014 16:15

Points taken on difficulties with the Axis logistics. But the British had two choices to move their own supplies. Either thread the needle into the perilous waters of the Western Med, which was a long journey itself. Failing that they needed to circumnavigate the entire continent of Africa. They seemed to cope with this just fine.

Would it be fair to mention that much of the logistics issues were not just due to the distances travelled? The RAF and Royal Navy were aggressive in interdicting supply ships and columns. So much so, that the Axis ships needed to avoid the area of Africa well within range of British aircraft. My assumption is that with more aircraft based first in Greece, Crete, and Sicily, the Axis could mitigate the Desert Air Force to some extent. Perhaps that would allow more efficient flow of traffic from say Tobruk, provided it was captured?

In any case my theory was pure speculation. There was no guarantee of success in trying to finish the UK off. Perhaps if the situation looked grim enough Churchill would be forced by his own government to reach a negotiated end of hostilities?

In the end the Germans had 2 alternative choices, do nothing at all until 1942 or continue to wage a half-assed campaign against the only power they were currently fighting.

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by BDV » 17 Jul 2014 16:21

maltesefalcon wrote:... But the British had two choices to move their own supplies. Either thread the needle into the perilous waters of the Western Med, which was a long journey itself. Failing that they needed to circumnavigate the entire continent of Africa.
It's not THAT far from Haifa to Alexandria, and freshwater can be decanted from the Nile. Until they reach the Nile, Axis would be in a severe bind, having to truck absolutely EVERYTHING from Tripoli and Bizerta, or fly it in from Crete.
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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by LWD » 17 Jul 2014 16:40

Water apparently wasn't that much of a problem. At times getting the ships to port was but for most if not all the period getting the supplies from the port to the front line was a severe bottleneck. Not only were the railroads rather limited but so was the road network and what there was wasn't in great shape. The fuel cost alone of trying to maintain a log network by truck when it gets over 300KM or so becomes prohibitive add that to an environment that tends to rapidly degrade motor vehicles and you can start to see the problems.

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by maltesefalcon » 18 Jul 2014 02:41

One of the reasons Rommel had difficulties with his supply chain is that his constant movements left the logistic train with no idea where he was.

In any case lets accept the terrain and road network was so bad the Germans struggled on their offensives from Tunisia to El Alamein.

Then why did the 8th Army not have the same problems moving west from El Alamein to Tunisia after the battle?

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by ljadw » 18 Jul 2014 05:57

They had big problems (as in 1940 and 1941):it took Montgomery 2 months to reach Alamein, BUT they had the resources to build a railway from Alamein to Tripoli (the role of the NZL soldiers in this construction is ignored,even to day).

And,why had they the resources? Simply,because they started from a developped colony /base :Egypt,while Libya was still underdevelopped in 1940:the real colonisation/development had still to start .

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by ljadw » 18 Jul 2014 05:58

maltesefalcon wrote:One of the reasons Rommel had difficulties with his supply chain is that his constant movements left the logistic train with no idea where he was.
Radio existed in 1941 :P

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Re: Operation Barbarossa Launched In May 1942

Post by Baltasar » 18 Jul 2014 10:34

ljadw wrote:Radio existed in 1941 :P
So did radio bearing techniques.

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