Which mistakes on Hitler's part in his campaign against the Soviets?stg 44 wrote: ↑12 Nov 2021 00:10That is why pulling back to a shorter line + strong positions allows you to form reserves so once a break-in does occur the reserves clean up the penetration or at least contain it. The value of fortified positions is that they cost a LOT to achieve a break-in and then even more to try to turn that into a breakthrough assuming there aren't sufficient reserves to stop them.wm wrote: ↑11 Nov 2021 23:50The problem with the linear defense is you are weak everywhere and strong nowhere.
While your enemy could concentrate in a few places and overwhelm you with ease.
During my military training, they hammered this into us: defense is the last resort in war, if have to do it you're probably dead anyway.
The Poles tried that during the Polish-Soviet War (using former German fortifications) and it didn't work, at all.
Poland was vastly weaker than the Germans relative to the Soviets, so that is a horrible example. Even the much stronger Poles of 1939 got ROFL stomped vs. the Germans, who then went on to stomp the Soviets in 1941 extremely badly. Were it not for Hitler's mistakes and Soviet strategic depth they would have been defeated. In 1943 especially given that there was no line worth the name on the Dnieper anyway and they still checked Soviet penetration for several months had they really had a prepared line and pulled back in time to avoid units being overrun in the treat of September it would have been reasonable to hold indefinitely.
BTW, here's an underlooked factor in Poland's 1939 loss to Germany: The fact that Poland had to defend a 1,500 kilometer frontier against Germany. In other words, there was plenty of available room for Germany to break out somewhere. Poland (or at least the Soviet Union's Polish puppets) learned this lesson after the end of World War II, which is why they insisted on a much shorter Polish-German border in the form of the Oder-Neisse Line.