One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Discussions on alternate history, including events up to 20 years before today. Hosted by Terry Duncan.
Eugen Pinak
Member
Posts: 997
Joined: 16 Jun 2004 16:09
Location: Kyiv, Ukraine

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Eugen Pinak » 10 May 2020 13:52

Paul Lakowski wrote:
09 May 2020 16:59
Eugen Pinak wrote:
09 May 2020 12:28
Paul Lakowski wrote:
07 May 2020 02:55
To free up all this motorization in each division [222 truck;63 car & 182 M/C] should require 388 more wagons and 86 karts [2 horse] plus 103 mounted horsemen [Officers/Kavalry].
First you have to find horses and wagons - and only then you can start to remove motor vehicles from the units. And no - cavalrymen doesn't grow on trees either.
They had plenty of those, its just a 'shell game' at that level. If you have studied the Wehrmacht you know that few divisions followed actual TOE.
"Plenty" - it's for the Facebook. What sources claim German army in 1941 had hundred of thousands of extra horses and wagons?

Paul Lakowski
Member
Posts: 1441
Joined: 30 Apr 2003 05:16
Location: Canada

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Paul Lakowski » 10 May 2020 23:27

Eugen Pinak wrote:
10 May 2020 13:52
Paul Lakowski wrote:
09 May 2020 16:59
Eugen Pinak wrote:
09 May 2020 12:28
Paul Lakowski wrote:
07 May 2020 02:55
To free up all this motorization in each division [222 truck;63 car & 182 M/C] should require 388 more wagons and 86 karts [2 horse] plus 103 mounted horsemen [Officers/Kavalry].
First you have to find horses and wagons - and only then you can start to remove motor vehicles from the units. And no - cavalrymen doesn't grow on trees either.
They had plenty of those, its just a 'shell game' at that level. If you have studied the Wehrmacht you know that few divisions followed actual TOE.
"Plenty" - it's for the Facebook. What sources claim German army in 1941 had hundred of thousands of extra horses and wagons?
I don't have facebook.

There is NO need for extra they already have all the horse and wagons they need, they just need to rearrange these divisions FROM THE VERY BEGINNIG. In other-words all infantry divisions from early 1930s on ,would start out as WAGON divisions and every second division would evolve with motorization.

ljadw
Member
Posts: 11489
Joined: 13 Jul 2009 17:50

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by ljadw » 11 May 2020 16:57

Paul Lakowski wrote:
10 May 2020 23:27
Eugen Pinak wrote:
10 May 2020 13:52
Paul Lakowski wrote:
09 May 2020 16:59
Eugen Pinak wrote:
09 May 2020 12:28
Paul Lakowski wrote:
07 May 2020 02:55
To free up all this motorization in each division [222 truck;63 car & 182 M/C] should require 388 more wagons and 86 karts [2 horse] plus 103 mounted horsemen [Officers/Kavalry].
First you have to find horses and wagons - and only then you can start to remove motor vehicles from the units. And no - cavalrymen doesn't grow on trees either.
They had plenty of those, its just a 'shell game' at that level. If you have studied the Wehrmacht you know that few divisions followed actual TOE.
"Plenty" - it's for the Facebook. What sources claim German army in 1941 had hundred of thousands of extra horses and wagons?
I don't have facebook.

In other-words all infantry divisions from early 1930s on ,would start out as WAGON divisions and every second division would evolve with motorization.
And,how would they win against Poland, against France, against the USSR with wagon divisions ?
The possible ,and unlikely, benefit of more wagon and motorized divisions would not outweigh the certain advantages of having less mobile infantry divisions .
If Guderian would have 5 additional motorized divisions and Kluge minus 10 mobile infantry divisions, this would not help Guderian ,as the ID from Kluge would not be able to help the motorized divisions of Guderian .
Besides,more motorized divisions would imply that these would be more concentrated, which is very questionable , as more motorized divisions would need more road capacity and more trains .
Last point : giving a division more wheeled transport does not transform this division in a motorized division .
And, I forgot almost the principal objection to your proposal : WHY would Germany need more divisions with wheeled transport for Barbarossa ?
You are falling for the Blitzkrieg myth : east of the DD line,the geographical situation was the worst possible for a Blitzkrieg .
More motorization would not transform a failed Barbarossa in a successful Barbarossa .It was not a question of more trucks .

Richard Anderson
Member
Posts: 3996
Joined: 01 Jan 2016 21:21
Location: Bremerton, Washington

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Richard Anderson » 11 May 2020 17:50

Paul Lakowski wrote:
10 May 2020 23:27
There is NO need for extra they already have all the horse and wagons they need, they just need to rearrange these divisions FROM THE VERY BEGINNIG. In other-words all infantry divisions from early 1930s on ,would start out as WAGON divisions and every second division would evolve with motorization.
Okay, let's see how that works out...

At the mobilization on 1 September 1939, the Heer had:

6 Panzer Division - 8,400 LKW, 3,360 PKW, 7,800 K
4 leichte Division - 5,600 LKW, 2,400 PKW, 4,400 K
5 Infanterie Division (mot) - 8,500 LKW, 5,000 PKW, 6,500 K
94 Infanterie - 47,000 LKW, 38,800 PKW, 47,000 K
3 Gebirgs Division - c. 1,000 LKW, 800 PKW, 1,000K

So we de-motorize all the infantrie and Gebirgs divisionen, yielding c. 48,000 LKW, 39,600 PKW, and 48,000 K. Each infantry division then requires 1,200 LKW, 600 PKW, and 800 K to motorize it. So enough LKW for 40 divisions, enough PKW for 66 divisions, and enough Kräder for 60 divisions.

So sure, you can "easily" motorize 40 more infantry divisions, leaving 57 divisions with horses and enough PKW and Kräder to function (even nominally horse-drawn units had messengers via motorcycle and of course senior officers need vehicles). Not quite every other division, but okay.

The only problem? You need around 96,000 additional bespannte Fahrzeuge and at least a quarter-million horses. So instead of 885,000 horses called to the colors you increase that initial demand by 20% to over 1.1 million. Where do they come from? Well, sure, the Reich has 3.8 million anyway, so an extra quarter-million means nothing...right? Except they come from the farms. And the 1.4-million on German small farms (under10 hectares) could not be efficiently motorized...and the tractor production is needed for the military...but they did require a team of horses. Then there were the 400,000-odd "large" farms up to 20 hectares, which could be motorized...but again the tractor production is going to the military, right? So a lot of those horses needed to stay on the farm.

All in all, its possible - theoretically - but impractical given the actual constraints faced by the Wehrmacht and the Nazi leadership obsession to maintain food security during wartime.
"Is all this pretentious pseudo intellectual citing of sources REALLY necessary? It gets in the way of a good, spirited debate, destroys the cadence." POD, 6 October 2018

User avatar
T. A. Gardner
Member
Posts: 2408
Joined: 02 Feb 2006 00:23
Location: Arizona

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by T. A. Gardner » 12 May 2020 03:02

Eugen Pinak wrote:
10 May 2020 13:52
"Plenty" - it's for the Facebook. What sources claim German army in 1941 had hundred of thousands of extra horses and wagons?
Then you have to consider that horses and wagons are slower and can operate less hours a day than motor vehicles meaning that the division, even with the same load capacity, is more limited to the distance from a rail head that it can operate resulting in reduced mobility. It also means that some things like the division's 15 cm guns in the artillery regiment have to go as they are almost impossible to tow with a horse team. It weighs nearly 7 tons in travel condition.

While I suppose it would be possible under good conditions, the one tow vehicle would have to be replaced by like 8 to 10 horses. This would reduce the mobility of the battery considerably limiting its ability to displace in a fluid situation.

So, German infantry divisions now have a much bigger issue keeping up with the advance of the mechanized units, creating the real issue that the later could be cut off from the former more easily.

More horses also means more fodder and other foodstuffs for them. Grazing isn't going to work with military horses. That puts an additional strain on the rail system in terms of volume taking more train space carrying food for the horses forward, and then more space in the available wagons hauling it from the rail head to the unit locations.

So, the conversion to an all-horse unit isn't so simple as replacing the capacity of the trucks with capacity of the wagons. It will take more wagons than trucks in terms of capacity to service an all-horse unit.

User avatar
TheMarcksPlan
Member
Posts: 2061
Joined: 15 Jan 2019 22:32
Location: USA

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 13 May 2020 23:24

German infantry divisions of the good waves - i.e. nearly all of those committed to Barbarossa - should really be considered partially motorized divisions.

What the "all horse" proposal fails to understand is the reason for this configuration.

Decisive combat elements were motorized - including anti-tank, pionier (combat engineer), and reconnaissance units. Motorized AT allowed the ability to fight against tank forces on an even tactical basis defensively. The Dubno-Brody "tank" battle, for instance, was largely won by German infantry divisions. Motorized reconaissance and combat engineers greatly enhanced offensive capability.

Trucks likewise greatly enhanced logistics, especially in a pinch.

These logistical and tactical combat advantages explain a lot of why the Ostheer was able to beat the Red Army in '41 despite lacking numerical superiority. The headline stats in which the Red Army was superior, such as numbers of tanks, ignores the fact that Ostheer had 200,000 more trucks.

Later in the war the mobility balance swung towards the Red Army, thanks largely to Lend Lease.

The evolution of relative truck strength over the course of the war is one of the hidden factors that conceal the qualitative decline of the Red Army, relative to Ostheer, after '41 (another factor is ammunition). The '41 Red Army was decently-trained and inflicted casualties on the Heer at a rate slightly better than the Wallies did in '40, despite glaring logistical issues and terrible operational/strategic choices. Had the Red Army possessed its '44 numerical strength and OTL tactical quality in June '41, Stalin might have taken Berlin in '41 (definitely by '42).
https://medium.com/counterfactualww2
"The whole question of whether we win or lose the war depends on the Russians." - FDR, June 1942

Eugen Pinak
Member
Posts: 997
Joined: 16 Jun 2004 16:09
Location: Kyiv, Ukraine

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Eugen Pinak » 16 May 2020 16:36

Paul Lakowski wrote:
10 May 2020 23:27
Eugen Pinak wrote:
10 May 2020 13:52
Paul Lakowski wrote:
09 May 2020 16:59
Eugen Pinak wrote:
09 May 2020 12:28
Paul Lakowski wrote:
07 May 2020 02:55
To free up all this motorization in each division [222 truck;63 car & 182 M/C] should require 388 more wagons and 86 karts [2 horse] plus 103 mounted horsemen [Officers/Kavalry].
First you have to find horses and wagons - and only then you can start to remove motor vehicles from the units. And no - cavalrymen doesn't grow on trees either.
They had plenty of those, its just a 'shell game' at that level. If you have studied the Wehrmacht you know that few divisions followed actual TOE.
"Plenty" - it's for the Facebook. What sources claim German army in 1941 had hundred of thousands of extra horses and wagons?
I don't have facebook.

There is NO need for extra they already have all the horse and wagons they need, they just need to rearrange these divisions FROM THE VERY BEGINNIG. In other-words all infantry divisions from early 1930s on ,would start out as WAGON divisions and every second division would evolve with motorization.
I see -you just don't understand the details of logistic work during WW II. Fortunately, other forum members already pointed numerous flaws in your plan. Can hardly add more.

Eugen Pinak
Member
Posts: 997
Joined: 16 Jun 2004 16:09
Location: Kyiv, Ukraine

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Eugen Pinak » 16 May 2020 16:39

T. A. Gardner wrote:
12 May 2020 03:02
So, the conversion to an all-horse unit isn't so simple as replacing the capacity of the trucks with capacity of the wagons. It will take more wagons than trucks in terms of capacity to service an all-horse unit.
Yes. More vehicles, more men, more food, longer and less controllable and more vulnerable unit columns, et cetera.

Paul Lakowski
Member
Posts: 1441
Joined: 30 Apr 2003 05:16
Location: Canada

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Paul Lakowski » 03 Jul 2020 04:09

nothing is simple but many things are worth it.

All German Infantry division infantry & artillery regiments/battalions were already 100% -horse-wagon/kart/ bicycle/kav by 1941 with few if any wheeled vehicles , but signals and hospital/veterinary did benefit from some vehicles. The actual combat performance of these divisions was only A weak reflection of the wheel/horse balance. The bulk of all combat effectiveness was determined by the balance of friendly and enemy forces /tons of supplies in battle. [ troops/ guns/ vehicles AFV and training etc etc].That was the larger picture.

Their is a point in the dilution of forces that their are NO HARD AND FAST RULES....just a sliding capability. For example only 1/5 of all German motor vehicles were deployed in the actual field forces of the Wehrmacht [ie the GHQ/ARMY Grp/ ARMY/KORPs /DIVISIONS etc] . The rest was divided between "rear area supply" and the actual "war economy/civil economy"...which BTW had thousands of horse/wagons along with the millions of motor vehicles of its own.

At the start of the war Germany had 4 million vehicles and at the end IN 1945 it was something like 180,000 vehicles. No one can pin point at what point this erosion resulted in defeat...it looks like it had more to do with STRATEGIC fuel supplies than if a 6 battalion infantry divisions had 400 vehicles in 1944 or a 9 battalion infantry division had 850 motor vehicles in 1941 or a 1940 division had 930 motor vehicles. None of these infantry divisions could never match the mobility of the 6 battalion motorized divisions with 2050 motor vehicles plus 1300 motorcycles.

All the extra motorization of the divisional battalions of these infantry divisions -achieved only minor transitory tactical success and sacrificed the major decisive attacks that only mechanized Korp's ATTACKS could provide. Towed ATG exchanged losses with tanks on a one for one bases in Russia , while even the expediency of the same ATG simplistically mounted on a obsolete Pz-I/II chassis , exchanged at 6:1 against same Russian tanks of that era . Its likely had the Germans just removed the wheels/split trails of these ATG and mount them directly on the back of their own towing semi tractors, they would have approached the success of the Panzer Jagger I / MARDER II etc.

Wehrmacht ruthlessly commandeer what ever motor transports they needed to make up short falls and it looks like the Soviets did exactly the same. Both sides had huge horse wagon parks [the soviet horse numbers were higher than German numbers], but the soviet were still more ruthless than the Wehrmacht.It just took them years to relearn how to fight tactical-operational-strategic warfare. The Wehrmacht needed to do the same , but it was too little to late.

User avatar
TheMarcksPlan
Member
Posts: 2061
Joined: 15 Jan 2019 22:32
Location: USA

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 07 Jul 2020 11:35

Upthread I posted a rough estimate of equipment cost for a panzer division: viewtopic.php?f=11&t=243557&start=45#p2216965

Big oops - I added a "0" to the costs of trucks and tanks in that post, causing total divisional cost to be ~5x greater than it should have been.

Here's a better estimate taken from the 1941 Panzer Division TOE in Nigel Askey's Operation Barbarossa

Image

(prices in RM)

The yellow items are basically guesses by me (anyone have better info?).

The unit cost figures come from Wikipedia and/or Sturmvogel. Many of them are for 1944, however. That's impacted by inflation but also by German production rationalization later in the war. As most of the Panzer division's cost is in trucks, halftracks, and armored cars, and as the Germans achieved little in rationalizing this kind of production, it's probably a decent estimate. Open to revisions/comments.

This only makes more emphatic what I've written throughout my threads: land warfare was relatively cheap in WW2; Germany wouldn't have much problem arming a slightly-stronger Barbarossa force.

Ammunition production would have exceeded equipment cost, as it always did. But Germany was producing more ammunition in May 1940 than May 1941 and adjusting for a slightly-stronger Barbarossa would have been relatively easy (and prudent).
https://medium.com/counterfactualww2
"The whole question of whether we win or lose the war depends on the Russians." - FDR, June 1942

User avatar
TheMarcksPlan
Member
Posts: 2061
Joined: 15 Jan 2019 22:32
Location: USA

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 16 Jul 2020 03:16

Upthread I've discussed the famine constraint on Soviet endurance:
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
24 Aug 2019 05:55

During 1942, in fact, the SU reached levels of war mobilization (proportion of soldiers and military workers) that was unsustainable and which caused, among other things, food shortages and resulting famine and famine-induced disease. The SU was forced, during 1942, to order "reverse mobilization" of troops/workers back to the farms. SHF p.151. Over 1942-1943, the proportion of war workers and soldiers dropped from 47% to 35%. See Exhibit A.
When I've made this point elsewhere, some have suggested that the US could relieve Soviet famine via increased LL food shipments.

This ignores the ability and willingness of the U.S. to share its food and the constraints on American food supply in WW2. As I'm often compelled to remind folks, a fundamental myth on the History Channel and AHF is that American resources were basically limitless. From the War Production Board's notes of March 2, 1943:
Mr. Wickard referred to his memorandum on the equipment needs of the food program (Doc. 203) and emphasized that the gravity of the food situation cannot be overstated.
The number of persons working on farms is at the lowest level in the 19 years monthly records have been kept, ag gregating nearly a million less than during the 1935-39 period. In spite of every effort to halt the movement of skilled farm workers into other activ ities, agriculture will continue to suffer a critical labor shortage with a consequent impairment of food production.
The point isn't that American food production declined - it didn't - it's that demand increased (soldiers and factory workers are hungry) and that any further demand increase (such as Soviet famine relief) would have come from American bellies. Would Americans have gone hungry to feed the Soviets? Seems doubtful.

This is all the more true given the long time-horizon of food production: As discussed in the WPB minutes - and as should be clear to common sense - food production depends on labor/seed/capital allocations at the time of planting and only bear fruit at harvest. So an early '43 famine in the SU would draw on the '42 harvest, which would draw on early '42 planting decisions, which would depend largely on late-'41 capital/labor decisions. In short there'd be no way for the U.S. to alleviate emergency mass famine in the SU except by stripping its own cupboards.
https://medium.com/counterfactualww2
"The whole question of whether we win or lose the war depends on the Russians." - FDR, June 1942

User avatar
TheMarcksPlan
Member
Posts: 2061
Joined: 15 Jan 2019 22:32
Location: USA

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 02 Oct 2020 00:42

In other threads certain aspects of this ATL have been addressed by members such as Peter89.

The points I'll address:
  • The long-range implications of different production choices in 1939 and of earlier foreign labor mobilization in 1940.
  • German losses - including aerial losses - on the ATL Eastern Front.
The long-range implications of different production choices in 1939 and of earlier foreign labor mobilization in 1940.

The ATL specified two routes to greater army production:
Most commentators on my ATL have remarked on #2 and ignored #1 (e.g. : viewtopic.php?f=11&t=238638&hilit=only+ ... 5#p2294687); I'm going to re-emphasize the first and discuss its implications in '42 (a year this thread didn't quite get to in detail).

I summarized the research and citations behind earlier foreign workers thus:
TheMarcksPlan wrote:
12 Aug 2019 10:50
As Herbert states, recruitment of civilians in the West was "low-key" initially, with only 25,000 French workers in Germany by April 1941. p97. French civilian labor reached its peak towards the end of 1943 when 666,000 worked in Germany. Dutch labor barely exceeded the pre-war figure during 1941 - only 93,000 Dutch worked in Germany, while Hitler had released over 200,000 Dutch POW's in summer 1940. Belgian labor increased throughout the war. Laborers from the General Government (mostly Poles) increased by 600,000 in the two years after September 1941.
Recruitment was low-key in part because Germans perceived an early end to the war and because domestic industry foresaw an imminent return to peacetime production. Hitler did nothing to counteract this impression; in this ATL - because he accurately perceives the magnitude of Barbarossa's tasks - he ensures that the German people, state, and industry know he envisions a long war requiring continual increases in production. He needn't mention Barbarossa; he can invoke Britain's intransigence and its access to America's vast industry.

After France, Hitler's political capital was effectively unlimited. In addition to greater foreign recruitment, he could have forced activation of the closure/consolidation campaign in industry that stalled after France. See Germany in the Second World War, V.5/1, chapter entitled "Mobilization discontinued" for further details.

OTL the Nazis provided generous unemployment benefits in France and the Low Countries to the disabled economies there. Later they restricted these benefits for those who refused work for Germany. A Hitler appropriately focused on a stronger Barbarossa takes those later steps earlier.

How does this cash out? We should measure additional foreign war workers against the backdrop of total German war-workforce that I discuss here: viewtopic.php?f=76&t=251476#p2288097. There I estimate 13.7mil German war-workers in 1944; in '42 it would have been fewer - say 10mil for our discussion.

Keeping the Dutch as PoW's alone - or using them as bargaining chips for more Dutch worker replacements - is worth 200k workers. Between France, the Low Countries, Poland, and Czechia, it shouldn't be hard to find another 300k war workers for 500k delta total. French labor, for example, increased by a factor ~27 between September '41 and late '43.

The increased army production specified in this ATL is relatively cheap - 1% of war production is almost certainly an overestimate. viewtopic.php?f=11&t=243557&start=450#p2278618

1% of Germany's OTL pre-Barbarossa war-producing labor force is ~100k workers. As discussed above, the path to those workers has many easily feasible routes. Many in the initial recruitment wave would be skilled workers but if we need to allow for productivity curves, make it 300k additional workers to satisfy the initial OTL conditions of 5 new panzer divisions and the motorization of 5 standard ID's. Add another 85k to compensate for drafting personnel equivalent to 5 PzDiv's+slice.

So we don't even need the pre-war Plan Z and Ju-88 ATL modifications but let's discuss some anyway.

Re Plan Z, many objected upthread that Plan Z wasn't around long enough to make a difference. It's not a quantified objection containing any numbers of course and the evidence shows significant Plan Z expenditures. Two H-Class battleships were laid down in two shipyards; a third shipyard had to construct a dock specifically for the H-class. https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trockendock_Elbe_17

Krupp largely completed turrets and guns:

Image
Image
Image

Turrets for the USS Iowa-class BB's cost $1.4mil each or $4.2mil per ship - not including guns. http://www.navweaps.com/Weapons/WNUS_16 ... urret_Data If the guns cost $1mil each that's $13mil per ship or 33mil RM.

H-Class's 4 turrets and 8 16in guns would have been about as expensive as Iowa's 3 turrets and 9 16in guns - let's call it 30mil RM instead of 33mil.

So one H-Class's turrets cost around what building 300 Pz III/IV tanks would have cost - enough for 2 PzDiv's. I'm not sure how many turrets Krupp actually built.

Given the serious and immediate expenditure on turrets and guns, it's likely there was serious and immediate expenditure on propulsion equipment and other items. Anyone have further info?

--------------------------------

Now let's return to discussing long-term Ju-88 production. As we'll see, a cut to 1940 production is consistent with at least as many Ju-88's as OTL in 1942, once we consider the impact of earlier foreign labor recruitment and resulting '41-'42 production levels.

My ATL sees lower Ju-88 production in 1939/40 due to our shift towards the Heer. From mid-1940, however, as foreign labor increases over OTL, resources to accelerate Ju-88 production become available (again the extra army production costs <1% of German military budget).

Most folks know that early production is expensive per unit, later production much cheaper. Unsurprisingly, this was true of the Ju-88. From the article "Fixed-price contracts, learning, and outsourcing: explaining the continuous growth of output and labour productivity in the German aircraft industry during the Second World War," The Economic History Review 2010:

Image
Image
Image

As you can see, Ju-88 production efficiency increased dramatically between 1940 and '42 - often by labor factors of >4 (Heinkel was the only laggard on labor productivity; even it became more capital-efficient).

My timeline trades very expensive 1940 Ju-88's for relatively cheap 1941/42 Ju-88's attained by increasing the '40-'42 labor force.

I can foresee at least two objections: (1) learning effects won't be as great if initial production is lower and (2) labor wasn't the bottleneck; capital was.

Objection #2 is easy to address. From the same article:
as indicated by the upward trend of the
capital–labour ratio of the four firms Arado, ATG, Junkers, and Weser, the growth
of their adjusted fixed assets soon exceeded the growth of their workforce again.
This unbalanced development seems to have been caused by the shortage of
labour that resulted from the increasing number of German male workers that
were recruited by the army.50 The fact that labour was probably the most important
bottleneck in the German war industry
explains why armament manufacturers
were often not able to utilize their production capacity fully by running two or
three shifts
Objection #1 requires a bit more discussion. Production efficiency increases come from two main sources: process improvement and worker learning. German firms were sharing knowledge of process improvement from very early in the rearmament period:
Interestingly enough, the firms in our sample started
exchanging technological knowledge long before Speer ordered newly founded
inter-firm committees to do exactly this. (same article)
Workforce learning would be somewhat retarded by a lower initial labor commitment to the Ju-88 program but greater and earlier reliance on foreign labor would have produced a more-productive overall workforce due to a little-known dynamic of the German war economy:
As early as 1939, the German government had enacted the law on ‘Dienstverpflichtung’, by which German workers in occupations not related to the war industry
could be forced to move to the plants of armament manufacturers. The audit
reports contain some remarks that imply that the aircraft manufacturers were not
at all satisfied with the performance of these male German workers.57 ATG, for
example, told the auditor that this type of worker needed extensive training before
he could be deployed fruitfully.58 The fact that, for example, Arado declared that
in 1942 1,100 workers had to be fired for lack of aptitude59 leads us to the
conjecture that the ‘forced’ German workers (Dienstverpflichtete) obviously tried to
demonstrate incompetence in order to be released.60 As a result, aircraft manufacturers relied more and more on foreign workers, whose productivity was apparently much higher than the racially prejudiced propaganda made the German
people believe. Even a document from the Reich’s aviation ministry, found in the
military archives in Freiburg, stated that the productivity of female Russians and
male Czech skilled workers came up to 90 to 100 per cent of the productivity of
German workers.6


...so basically the Germans needed to rely more on Slavic "untermenschen," as native Germans were relatively lazy and undependable.

-------------------------------------------------------

In conclusion, my ATL would see fewer Ju-88's produced in '39/'40 but more in 1941/42. As a Ju-88 cost ~1/4 as much in 1942 as in '39/40, one needn't be an econ Ph.D. to see that total ATL Ju-88 production by '42 - or even by '41 - would exceed OTL production if one considers the ATL's foreign labor delta in combination with its early-war shift towards Heer production.
https://medium.com/counterfactualww2
"The whole question of whether we win or lose the war depends on the Russians." - FDR, June 1942

User avatar
TheMarcksPlan
Member
Posts: 2061
Joined: 15 Jan 2019 22:32
Location: USA

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 02 Oct 2020 01:00

TheMarcksPlan wrote:The points I'll address:
...
German losses - including aerial losses - on the ATL Eastern Front.
Decided to make this a two-post discussion.

This is a pretty simple point: By advancing deeper into the SU in '41 (at least a line Leningrad-Moscow-Rostov inclusive) and killing/capturing more Soviet soldiers, the SU has ~1/3 less population and industry by November '41 than OTL. As a consequence, they produce on average ~1/3 less of everything - including planes and AA guns.

With ~1/3 fewer Soviet planes and AA guns firing at the LW, the LW has ~1/3 fewer losses in ATL '42 than OTL.

Here's Zamansky's figures for LW losses in the East:

Image

LW's losses in SU for Jan. '42 - Sept. '42 were 2,875 - 3,620.
Removing 1/3 of those losses gives us 958-1,207 fewer LW losses.

If the SU surrenders by September '42, Oct-December's 818-967 losses don't happen either.
[should have nixed all of September's losses but let's stick with this for now]

On net, our ATL LW has 1,776-2,174 more total planes in September '42 than OTL.

Combined with the reassignment of the Ost-LW after the SU's defeat, our ATL LW can redeploy ~4,500 AC against the Wallies in September '42.

[My analysis doesn't address LL AC and AAA but that flow is interdicted by Japan's entry and a Finnish push after Leningrad's fall. 1/3 impact may over- or underestimate the portion of LL weapons not delivered ATL. Whether we call the LW delta 4,000 or 4,500 doesn't make a huge difference to the main point]
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

When considering the worldwide impact of an SU defeat in '42, we must keep in mind that the East remained the LW's primary front in both losses and deployments until 1943. Zamansky and O'Brien correctly remind us not to underestimate Western Europe and the Med in '41-'42, but neither of these theaters consistently exceeded losses against the SU until mid-'43. A '41 weakening of the SU and its '42 defeat would have significantly amplified '42-'43 LW strength against the W.Allies.

@Peter89 - I've hamstrung myself in our other discussions by taking the OTL Ost-LW as the basis for post-SU redeployment.
You've stated elsewhere that LW losses would be greater than OTL because Germany is on the offensive more but that doesn't track: ATL's German offensive periods roughly track OTL with Germany attacking except in winter '41-'42. Plus an attacking Germany inflicted disproportionate VVS losses on the ground so it doesn't even follow that attacking means more LW losses in the East.
https://medium.com/counterfactualww2
"The whole question of whether we win or lose the war depends on the Russians." - FDR, June 1942

Peter89
Member
Posts: 911
Joined: 28 Aug 2018 05:52
Location: Spain

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by Peter89 » 02 Oct 2020 08:56

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
02 Oct 2020 01:00
TheMarcksPlan wrote:The points I'll address:
...
German losses - including aerial losses - on the ATL Eastern Front.
Decided to make this a two-post discussion.

This is a pretty simple point: By advancing deeper into the SU in '41 (at least a line Leningrad-Moscow-Rostov inclusive) and killing/capturing more Soviet soldiers, the SU has ~1/3 less population and industry by November '41 than OTL. As a consequence, they produce on average ~1/3 less of everything - including planes and AA guns.

With ~1/3 fewer Soviet planes and AA guns firing at the LW, the LW has ~1/3 fewer losses in ATL '42 than OTL.

Here's Zamansky's figures for LW losses in the East:

Image

LW's losses in SU for Jan. '42 - Sept. '42 were 2,875 - 3,620.
Removing 1/3 of those losses gives us 958-1,207 fewer LW losses.

If the SU surrenders by September '42, Oct-December's 818-967 losses don't happen either.
[should have nixed all of September's losses but let's stick with this for now]

On net, our ATL LW has 1,776-2,174 more total planes in September '42 than OTL.

Combined with the reassignment of the Ost-LW after the SU's defeat, our ATL LW can redeploy ~4,500 AC against the Wallies in September '42.

[My analysis doesn't address LL AC and AAA but that flow is interdicted by Japan's entry and a Finnish push after Leningrad's fall. 1/3 impact may over- or underestimate the portion of LL weapons not delivered ATL. Whether we call the LW delta 4,000 or 4,500 doesn't make a huge difference to the main point]
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

When considering the worldwide impact of an SU defeat in '42, we must keep in mind that the East remained the LW's primary front in both losses and deployments until 1943. Zamansky and O'Brien correctly remind us not to underestimate Western Europe and the Med in '41-'42, but neither of these theaters consistently exceeded losses against the SU until mid-'43. A '41 weakening of the SU and its '42 defeat would have significantly amplified '42-'43 LW strength against the W.Allies.

@Peter89 - I've hamstrung myself in our other discussions by taking the OTL Ost-LW as the basis for post-SU redeployment.
You've stated elsewhere that LW losses would be greater than OTL because Germany is on the offensive more but that doesn't track: ATL's German offensive periods roughly track OTL with Germany attacking except in winter '41-'42. Plus an attacking Germany inflicted disproportionate VVS losses on the ground so it doesn't even follow that attacking means more LW losses in the East.
Yes, it does mean it, because aircrafts have a range and they are not etheral beings operating completely out of the rules of war.

If you have the enemy bases in striking distance, the conditions still favor the enemy; but if you have to move your airfields and lines of communication with your advance, then the difficulties will increase, higher rate of attrition is ensured.


Adding to Luftwaffe difficulties was the fact that as the army hurtled forward, the distances over which supplies moved rapidly increased. Army Group South was already the farthest removed of the army groups from the supply system. As Sixth Army, with its supporting flak and air force units, approached Stalingrad in August, the nearest supply system railhead was 350 kilometers behind in Stalino. With severe shortages of motorized transport, the Wehrmacht faced an increasing logistical problem as the advance continued.

some shortages, the bulk nature of fuel made it impossible to alter fundamental supply realities. Consequently, the utilization rate began to fall as units deployed forward to new airfields to support advancing ground forces. Poor communications and the slow arrival of supplies, as well as the primitive conditions found on forward operating bases, added to the Luftwaffe's problems.
Murray Williamson: Strategy for defeat

I'd say your numbers are pretty optimistic, but put that aside.

The fact still remains that in OTL MTO the LW has to attack into well-defended positions where the enemy is assisted by superior radar and intelligence networks. They have essentially no way to recover pilots, they can stay airborne for a shorter time than their adversaries and they will not enjoy numerical superiority.
“And while I am talking to you, mothers and fathers, I give you one more assurance. I have said this before, but I shall say it again, and again and again. Your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars." - FDR, October 1940

ljadw
Member
Posts: 11489
Joined: 13 Jul 2009 17:50

Re: One more panzer group in Barbarossa, plans for a two-year campaign

Post by ljadw » 02 Oct 2020 11:44

Hooton gives very different figures in Eagle in Flames P 95 Table 22 : LW losses in the East 1 -27 September 1941 :destroyed : 878 .
The 408 losses in the East in January 1943 are also not very plausible : during the encirclment of the German forces at Stalingrad ( 2 months ) the LW lost 495 transport aircraft (destroyed/damaged ) while supplying 6th army .

Return to “What if”