Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

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danebrog
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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by danebrog » 01 May 2021 16:33

Available Wehrmacht Stocks in:
1st Jan ´41 avgas – 613kt Motor gas – 499 kt Diesel – 296 kt Total: 1.408 kt
1st Jan ´42 avgas – 254 kt Motor gas – 379 kt Diesel – 164 kt Total: 797 kt
31st Dec ´42 avgas - 299 kt Motor gas – 334 kt Diesel – 156 kt Total: 789 kt

Here you can clearly see a significant drop by nearly 50% in total.
The estimates of the lowest saftey stock margin (distributal minimum) were 800 kt of all three fuels
to ensure efficient distribution throughout the Reich and the occupied countries.

The problem was not the production of fuel, but the sudden increase in consumption during the major offensives - here the demand could only be met by tapping into the reserves, drastic reduction of civilian consumption, rationing by all other consumers (including driving and flying schools) and gradually expanding the output of the hydrogenation plants.
Nevertheless, total consumption was higher than new production, which is reflected in the list above.
It was only with great difficulty that the German leadership managed to restore this tendency, at least to some extent: the slight recovery in avgas came at the expense of motor fuel production.

Meanwhile in the SU:
On September 9, 1942, martial law was declared in Transcaucasia. The emergency measures which had been prepared beforehand were set into operation- destroying the functioning wells so that the Germans wouldn't get a single drop of oil.

In October, 1942, State Defense Committee decided to transfer the main forces of oil enterprises and more than ten thousand oil workers of Baku to the regions of Volga, Ural Mountains, Kazakhstan and Central Asia for the enforcement of the oil extraction there.
All the nine drilling offices, oil-expedition and oil-construction trusts as well as various other enterprises with their staffs were transferred to an area near Kuybishev, (Russia Federation in Tartarstan near the Ural Mountains north of Kazakhstan).
Despite the severe frost the drillers started searching for oil and thanks to day and night working, the Bakuis in the region of Povolzhye increased the fuel extraction in "Kinelneft" trust that first year by 66% and by 42% in entire region of Kuybishev.
As a result, five new oil and gas fields were discovered and huge oil refinery construction projects were undertaken, including the first pipeline between Kuybishev and Buturslan that same year.

I don't know what the ratio of reserves/consumption was in the SU, but in the ATL scenario assumed, both sides would have to spend the year '42 essentially drawing on the available substance if Baku ceased to operate as an oil source

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by Aida1 » 01 May 2021 18:52

danebrog wrote:
01 May 2021 00:20
If the ATL offensive were successful, then a certain deadlock would have been created in the oil supply.
Also, Western Allied oil supplies could no longer be routed via Persia, leaving only Murmansk and Arkhangelsk.

I am already looking forward to the discussion of what will now happen in the international framework....
The problem is the ATL is not really an ATL as AGS was really ordered to advance to the Caucasus at the same time of Typhoon and this failed because it was impossible by far given weather, russian resistance and insurmountable logistical problems. There is no way AGS could ever reach the Caucasus. The demand to do this by Hitler and the OKH was already unrealistic at the time and there is no way anybody can invent a
realistic scenario where it could be.

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by History Learner » 01 May 2021 19:22

ljadw wrote:
01 May 2021 07:13
The problem was not the number of airmen that were trained in 1942 or 1944, but when these airmen became available for the front units .If the front units lost 200 airmen in a month and during that month they received only 100 replacements, there was a problem .The only way to solve this problem was not to increase the number of airmen that would start the training, but to shorten the training and to send that month 2 groups to the front units : one that was fully trained and one that was partially trained .The LW lost in a month of 1944 1000 airmen , but there were no 1000 airmen who finished that month the training . The only possibility was to shorten the training . It was always a question of time .
The front units needed quantity, not quality .It was better to receive 200 airmen of whom 100 partially trained than 100 airmen fully trained .
In 1942 239 Nachtjäger were trained ( source : Stilla ),in 1943 1664 . It is obvious that 1664 Nachtjäger were better than 239, even if they were less trained .
And training was cut because of fuel constraints. You're not making your case here at all, particularly by transparently avoiding the questions I've asked. If you feel the issue isn't fuel, then show us fuel allotments compared between earlier years and 1944.

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by danebrog » 01 May 2021 20:31

ljadw seems to be starting from the wrong data sets or interpreting them in a rather unorthodox way:
The stocks were not exhausted in October 1941. The stocks of motor oil were at the end of 1941 379000 ton, of avgas 254000 ton.
Apparently he was not aware of the fact that the fuel reserves had de facto halved since January '41, as I have shown in my list.
Nor does he take into account the contemporary German calculations of an absolute strategic minimum reserve of 800,000 tons.
These primarily served the purpose of balancing out peaks that occurred during large-scale operations, because total production was never completely sufficient.

He also seems not to have fully understood the problems of the increasingly restrictive fuel rationing on operational warfare. The (steadily decreasing) fuel reserves mean little or nothing in this context.

And finally, I suspect that he has either not read Stilla in full or has not understood its content. For it is precisely this author who has now more than extensively described the increasingly serious fuel shortage of the Luftwaffe and the resulting problems - especially as far as training is concerned.
there is no way anybody can invent a realistic scenario where it could be.
My expertise in this area would not reach that far either.
But I wanted to outline that neither the conquest nor the destruction of Baku would have brought about THE decisive turn in the war in the short term.
Especially since the USA had been involved since the end of 1941.

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by ljadw » 01 May 2021 21:00

That the fuel reserves had halved since January 1941 does not mean that they were exhausted in October 1941 .About the strategic reserves of 800000 ton :they were 1,5 million ton at the end of 1940,790000 at the end of 1941, 775000 at the end of 1942,1,120 at the end of 1943 ,390000 at the end of 1944 .
The military situation was better at the end of 1942 than at the end of 1943,this proves that the amount of the stocks is meaningless and can not be used as an argument .
Neither can be used the fuel consumption : the WM consumed 4,7 million ton of fuel in 1943 and 4,4 million in 1942,but the military situation was not better in 1943 than in 1942 .
It is the same for the fuel production .
A lot of people can not understand that 80 years ago,fuel had not the importance it has today and that the economies of the European states (AND of the US ) were depending more on coal than on oil .

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by ljadw » 01 May 2021 21:22

History Learner wrote:
01 May 2021 19:22
ljadw wrote:
01 May 2021 07:13
The problem was not the number of airmen that were trained in 1942 or 1944, but when these airmen became available for the front units .If the front units lost 200 airmen in a month and during that month they received only 100 replacements, there was a problem .The only way to solve this problem was not to increase the number of airmen that would start the training, but to shorten the training and to send that month 2 groups to the front units : one that was fully trained and one that was partially trained .The LW lost in a month of 1944 1000 airmen , but there were no 1000 airmen who finished that month the training . The only possibility was to shorten the training . It was always a question of time .
The front units needed quantity, not quality .It was better to receive 200 airmen of whom 100 partially trained than 100 airmen fully trained .
In 1942 239 Nachtjäger were trained ( source : Stilla ),in 1943 1664 . It is obvious that 1664 Nachtjäger were better than 239, even if they were less trained .
And training was cut because of fuel constraints. You're not making your case here at all, particularly by transparently avoiding the questions I've asked. If you feel the issue isn't fuel, then show us fuel allotments compared between earlier years and 1944.
Training was cut , but not because of fuel constraints, but because of shortage of pilots .
The fuel allotments I have given for 1944 are the only that are available .
The front units needed desperately more pilots . The only way to give them more pilots was to shorten the training,and if the training was curtailed, the training schools needed less fuel .
Some 12000 airmen were leaving the training schools in 1943 = 1000 a month .But 1000 was not enough for the front units ,thus,it would be better if the training was curtailed by 2 months ,because that would mean that the front units would receive each month not 1000 but 1200 airmen .And if the training was curtailed by 2 months, the training schools would need less fuel .
About the effects of this curtailment : they are unproven . All we know is that till the Autumn of 1944 the LW remained a very dangerous opponent : Harris lost the Battle of Berlin ,and the USAAF suffered heavy losses above Schweinfurt .
The training of airmen was more, much more than the number of flying hours .
Fuel was the least problem for the training schools : they needed instructors,specialized aircraft with two steering wheels and sufficient cadets .
At the end of the war,soldiers with only a very small training were sent to the front, not because there was a shortage of weapons,etc in the Ersatzheer, but because the front losses were higher than the replacements .Tank crews were going to the front with only a few hours of training, not because there was not enough fuel to train them , but because the front needed more tanks .
It was the same for the training schools of the LW .

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by History Learner » 01 May 2021 22:21

ljadw wrote:
01 May 2021 21:22
History Learner wrote:
01 May 2021 19:22
ljadw wrote:
01 May 2021 07:13
The problem was not the number of airmen that were trained in 1942 or 1944, but when these airmen became available for the front units .If the front units lost 200 airmen in a month and during that month they received only 100 replacements, there was a problem .The only way to solve this problem was not to increase the number of airmen that would start the training, but to shorten the training and to send that month 2 groups to the front units : one that was fully trained and one that was partially trained .The LW lost in a month of 1944 1000 airmen , but there were no 1000 airmen who finished that month the training . The only possibility was to shorten the training . It was always a question of time .
The front units needed quantity, not quality .It was better to receive 200 airmen of whom 100 partially trained than 100 airmen fully trained .
In 1942 239 Nachtjäger were trained ( source : Stilla ),in 1943 1664 . It is obvious that 1664 Nachtjäger were better than 239, even if they were less trained .
And training was cut because of fuel constraints. You're not making your case here at all, particularly by transparently avoiding the questions I've asked. If you feel the issue isn't fuel, then show us fuel allotments compared between earlier years and 1944.
Training was cut , but not because of fuel constraints, but because of shortage of pilots .
The fuel allotments I have given for 1944 are the only that are available .
The front units needed desperately more pilots . The only way to give them more pilots was to shorten the training,and if the training was curtailed, the training schools needed less fuel .
Some 12000 airmen were leaving the training schools in 1943 = 1000 a month .But 1000 was not enough for the front units ,thus,it would be better if the training was curtailed by 2 months ,because that would mean that the front units would receive each month not 1000 but 1200 airmen .And if the training was curtailed by 2 months, the training schools would need less fuel .
About the effects of this curtailment : they are unproven . All we know is that till the Autumn of 1944 the LW remained a very dangerous opponent : Harris lost the Battle of Berlin ,and the USAAF suffered heavy losses above Schweinfurt .
The training of airmen was more, much more than the number of flying hours .
Fuel was the least problem for the training schools : they needed instructors,specialized aircraft with two steering wheels and sufficient cadets .
At the end of the war,soldiers with only a very small training were sent to the front, not because there was a shortage of weapons,etc in the Ersatzheer, but because the front losses were higher than the replacements .Tank crews were going to the front with only a few hours of training, not because there was not enough fuel to train them , but because the front needed more tanks .
It was the same for the training schools of the LW .
Okay, you're now contradicting yourself; you conceded earlier the supply of aircraft was not a factor but now say it is. Training being cut because of needs of pilots does not pass as an argument because then you would simply increase the graduating classes if so; if, as you say, fuel and aircraft numbers aren't the issue, then there is no reason why they couldn't increase the number of pilots they were training. So, I ask again, what was the 1944 fuel allotment and the 1942 fuel allotment, then show us the number of pilots.

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by ljadw » 02 May 2021 09:41

I have given the 1944 fuel allotment, the 1942 one is not available and I have given the number of airmen that left the training schools in 1942 and 1943 .
The number of airmen that was leaving the training schools in a specified year,was depending on the number of airmen that started the training in a specified year, minus the losses ( some 20 % ) and can not be increased .
Besides : the RAF also used during the Battle of Britain pilots with a small number of flying hours,because there was a shortage of pilots not because there was a shortage of oil and during WWII the training of the West Point cadets was halved from 4 years to 2 years,because there was a shortage of officers .
If you start with 100 men, you can't finish with more than 100 men,this is a fact .And if you need more than 100 men,the only solution is to shorten the training so that you will have 2 graduating classes at the same moment .
1000 cadets who would graduate in 1946 can not be used during the war . It is as simple as that .

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by ljadw » 02 May 2021 09:51

In 1940 the RAF had sacrificed quality to quantity(Source :Second world war flying training-Taking flights ) .
In 1944 the LW was also forced to sacrifice quality to quantity .Even if more fuel was available for the training schools, the training would have been shortened .The fuel shortage is a false argument .

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by danebrog » 02 May 2021 13:23

I think we are going in circles here and should perhaps first agree on a specific year:

For 1941 it is indeed true that there was a decided lack of aircraft and training opportunities. Fuel supply was not the dominant problem

In 1942, fuel supply became the crucial bottleneck in pilot training: In the context of the summer offensive on the Eastern Front, the Army claimed most of the available fuel - From spring to autumn 1942, flight training was almost at a standstill.

And this was due to the verifiable fact that the stocks had halved in '41. This was still not critical, but already forced rationing measures that had long-term consequences

In the larger context of OTL/ATL regarding OP Barbarossa/Typhoon for '41 - '42, one can therefore say that fuel was scarce, but with consistent savings in favour of offensive actions, it was just about enough.

The negative effects of the rationing measures then slowly made themselves felt in 1943, but this does not play a role in the context of the thread topic.

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by Peter89 » 02 May 2021 14:53

ljadw wrote:
02 May 2021 09:41
I have given the 1944 fuel allotment, the 1942 one is not available and I have given the number of airmen that left the training schools in 1942 and 1943 .
The number of airmen that was leaving the training schools in a specified year,was depending on the number of airmen that started the training in a specified year, minus the losses ( some 20 % ) and can not be increased .
Besides : the RAF also used during the Battle of Britain pilots with a small number of flying hours,because there was a shortage of pilots not because there was a shortage of oil and during WWII the training of the West Point cadets was halved from 4 years to 2 years,because there was a shortage of officers .
If you start with 100 men, you can't finish with more than 100 men,this is a fact .And if you need more than 100 men,the only solution is to shorten the training so that you will have 2 graduating classes at the same moment .
1000 cadets who would graduate in 1946 can not be used during the war . It is as simple as that .
I really do love the way you make fun of things, but this is really not your best. If you start a class with 200 students, that is exactly twice the number of a class with 100 students. But if you don't have the fuel (and instructors and planes) to train 200 people properly, and you still need the 200 students, then you lower the quality of the training.

On the other hand, the need for more and more aircrew, the lack of good instructors and training planes were the direct consequence of the faulty deployment of the Luftwaffe; something that an increase of the avgas would not solve.
“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

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by Aida1 » 02 May 2021 18:52

danebrog wrote:
30 Apr 2021 14:07
The main target of the '42 offensive was the oil fields in the Caucasus. The lack of fuel was the strategic Achilles' heel of the Third Reich. What was extracted from Romania, Hungary and the hydrogenation plants was just enough to get by. A fact that the Soviets were well aware of.

But ATL would have had exactly the same problem as OTL:
1. the oil wells would have been unusable and, according to estimates at the time, it would have taken about two years until they could have produced again.
2. Ludendorff had to realise already in 1918 that the possession of the (intact) oil wells was worth nothing as long as the necessary infrastructure to transport the oil "home to the Reich" was missing.

Enormous resources would have been tied up in order to remedy this. This would have been aggravated by the fact that, as long as a Soviet air force still existed, the extremely sensitive infrastructure would also have required considerable resources for its protection.
(I cannot say in this context to what extent the Western Allies would have flown attacks from the direction of Persia - but plans for bombing already existed in 1939).

And as long as Moscow was not yet in German hands, there would still be a huge long flank to secure. That, too, would have tied up considerable German forces.
(To what extent Churchill would have prevailed with his "Mediterranean obesssion" in order to possibly build up a new front here, I cannot survey.)
In this context, one can also take a look back at 1917/18: After the Peace of Brest-Litovsk and a Russian empire shattered by the revolution, Germany nevertheless had to leave so many security troops in the east that it was of little use to the western front.

In short, expanding and securing the Caucasus as a primary source of oil would have tied up almost the entire Eastern Army for the next few years, as well as considerable economic resources.
In order to bring about a strategic relief here, it would have been necessary IMHO to conquer Moscow as well or at least to persuade the SU to conclude a peace treaty. I do not see the all too simple equation: "Caucasus conquered - war won".

And now, at the latest, there are so many variables in the equation that it is definitely too hypothetical for me to make any further considerations.
But it is an interesting thought experiment in any case...
The ATL is unrealistic anyway as it is nowhere explained in what way AGS could better than it historically did and that is not a matter of more forces available but for a large part a logistical problem

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by ljadw » 02 May 2021 19:13

Peter89 wrote:
02 May 2021 14:53
ljadw wrote:
02 May 2021 09:41
I have given the 1944 fuel allotment, the 1942 one is not available and I have given the number of airmen that left the training schools in 1942 and 1943 .
The number of airmen that was leaving the training schools in a specified year,was depending on the number of airmen that started the training in a specified year, minus the losses ( some 20 % ) and can not be increased .
Besides : the RAF also used during the Battle of Britain pilots with a small number of flying hours,because there was a shortage of pilots not because there was a shortage of oil and during WWII the training of the West Point cadets was halved from 4 years to 2 years,because there was a shortage of officers .
If you start with 100 men, you can't finish with more than 100 men,this is a fact .And if you need more than 100 men,the only solution is to shorten the training so that you will have 2 graduating classes at the same moment .
1000 cadets who would graduate in 1946 can not be used during the war . It is as simple as that .
I really do love the way you make fun of things, but this is really not your best. If you start a class with 200 students, that is exactly twice the number of a class with 100 students. But if you don't have the fuel (and instructors and planes) to train 200 people properly, and you still need the 200 students, then you lower the quality of the training.

On the other hand, the need for more and more aircrew, the lack of good instructors and training planes were the direct consequence of the faulty deployment of the Luftwaffe; something that an increase of the avgas would not solve.
In war quantity is more important than quality : in 1940 the RAF used pilots they would not use in peacetime .
The front units preferred to have 100 pilots with a low training than 50 pilots with a full training .
And the problems of the LW were not the consequence of a faulty deployment , but the consequence of the fact ( which no one could foresee in 1942/1943 ) that the LW would have more missions and losses in 1944 .
Last point : more training time does not improve the qualities of airmen : what counts is experience, which is different from training .

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by ljadw » 02 May 2021 19:40

If one would look at ww 2 aircraft ;thread : RAF pilot training hours in 1940, one would see that in January the training lasted 28 weeks and in August 22 weeks and that in the US in 1940 the flight hours were between 1000 and 600 and in 1942 300 .
The Germans did the same in the second half of WW2,for the same reasons ,which is not shortage of oil, but shortage of pilots and shortage of time .
No one said that the US/British decisions were wrong and had a bad influence on the allied air war .
The German decision to shorten the training time ( not only the flight hours ) were also not wrong and had also not a bad influence on the axis air war, till end 1944.

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Re: Operation Typhoon aimed at southern USSR in 1941

Post by ljadw » 02 May 2021 19:59

danebrog wrote:
02 May 2021 13:23
I think we are going in circles here and should perhaps first agree on a specific year:

For 1941 it is indeed true that there was a decided lack of aircraft and training opportunities. Fuel supply was not the dominant problem

In 1942, fuel supply became the crucial bottleneck in pilot training: In the context of the summer offensive on the Eastern Front, the Army claimed most of the available fuel - From spring to autumn 1942, flight training was almost at a standstill.

And this was due to the verifiable fact that the stocks had halved in '41. This was still not critical, but already forced rationing measures that had long-term consequences

In the larger context of OTL/ATL regarding OP Barbarossa/Typhoon for '41 - '42, one can therefore say that fuel was scarce, but with consistent savings in favour of offensive actions, it was just about enough.

The negative effects of the rationing measures then slowly made themselves felt in 1943, but this does not play a role in the context of the thread topic.
There was fuel in 1942 to supply Stalingrad, in 1943 to supply the forces in Tunisia and to defeat Bomber Command during the battle of Berlin .
And, one can not say that the pilots who left the training schools with less flying hours than their predecessors, did a worse job than their predecessors .
The fact that in 1943 more than the double of airmen left the training schools than in 1942,debunks the claims that the fuel problems were bigger in 1943 than in 1942 .
Thus, I like to see the proofs of these negative effects : a pilot with less training hours is not a priori a bad pilot .The US pilots at Midway were not worse than those before Pearl Harbour .

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