Why the Waffen-SS

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Aida1
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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Aida1 » 04 Mar 2021 18:33

Sid Guttridge wrote:
03 Mar 2021 14:05
Hi Aida1,

You post, “Hindsight”. If you object to hindsight than you are probably on the wrong forum. This is the Axis History Forum. Hindsight is what we do!

You post, “Historians will accept that Hitler could never know there would be no landings.” And I agree. He therefore had to rely on his judgement, but on this occasion his judgement was simply wrong. Not only was there no invasion, there were no plans for an invasion and there weren’t even the means available for an invasion of continental Europe in 1942. As a result of this failure of Hitler's judgement, first two, and later all three, senior Waffen-SS divisions were in the backwater of France at arguably the decisive moment of Germanys war and a good month away from any possibility of entering action anywhere else!


Cheers,

Sid.
No Hindsight is not what we do. Some do but most will not as secondguessing decisions with knowledge not available at the time leads to distorted judgements on these decisions and what alternatives there could have been..Historians will mostly not do hindsight. I never do.
You are too obsessed with waffen ss divisions as Hitler did a lot more than reinforce France with 2 Waffen ss divisions. There was a serious reinforcement of France and Norway, particularly the latter. And no; 1942 was not the decisive moment and 2 or 3 divisions more or less in the east wherever would not affect anything decisively. Hitlers mistakes in the conduct of the campaign in the east where the real issue, not the abscence of a few divisions.

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Aida1
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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Aida1 » 04 Mar 2021 18:42

Sid Guttridge wrote:
03 Mar 2021 14:05
Hi Aida1,


You post, “A scenario where LAH and Das Reich would conveniently be available to help 6 army timely is not realistic.” And I am not suggesting it, either. My question is why was it necessary for all three senior Waffen-SS divisions to be simultaneously absent from any battlefront anywhere, (two of them for half a year!), when only 12% of Army panzer divisions were in that situation?

Cheers,

Sid.
Makes no sense. With the (flawed)intelligence information Hitler had, he could honestly believe the west needed extra mobile divisions. And choosing DR and LAH was obvious as DR was refitting in Germany so near enough and LAH was OKH reserve. Anyway, only you would object to it being waffen ss divisions. :roll: You seem to think Hitler needed to apply a quota system. :roll:

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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Aida1 » 04 Mar 2021 18:58

Sid Guttridge wrote:
03 Mar 2021 14:05
Hi Aida1,



You post, “Where the 9 and 10 ss is concerned …..They were specifically set up because OB west had no mobile reserves anymore after everything had been sent east after Stalingrad.” So why give the task to the Waffen-SS which, because of its limited infrastructure, took twice as long to field them as Army panzer divisions took? The 9th and 10th Waffen-SS divisions took 15 months to reach any battlefront anywhere! (The 12th Waffen-SS Division also took a year to get into action, and then only because action came to it!). The three Army panzer divisions resurrected at the same time as 9th and 10th Waffen-SS Panzer Divisions were created were back on the Eastern Front by October-November 1943, two of them having already served in Italy!

You post, “You would be wrong to think that that is the earliest moment that these SS units could be used in combat.” So you are saying that they could have been deployed on an active battlefront earlier? That months of unnecessary inactivity took place? Sounds a lot like LAH and DR in 1942!


Cheers,

Sid.
Here you you are being devious or plain stupid as you are ignoring that 9 ; 10 and 12 ss were specifically meant as reserve for OB West. The day they entered in combat was not the day they had reached full combat readiness. You will have to leave Hitler the privilege to determine whether a new division is waffen ss or Heer. :lol:
Unless you could teleport divisons :lol: you did need to have diivisions in place before a landing takes place. The allies would hardly give Hitler advance warning to avoid him having to keep divisions for months doing nothing in France. :lol: You seem to have a strange issue with divisions just waiting for allied landings :lol: Hitler had to have a lot of divisions continuously in France and Norway to deal with landings.
It does not inherently take longer to set up a waffen ss division. You are making comparisons that are wrong as i mentioned already.
How combat ready a division is , can only be read in the readiness report. The setting up of a division is a process where the combat readiness goes up gradually as training and equipment progress.

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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Peter89 » 04 Mar 2021 20:46

Guys, this personal crusade pro and con the Waffen-SS is not telling me a lot. What are your points at all? Could you please try to do some steelmanning and argue for the other's point of view without being sarcastic?

At least I'd know you are all aware of what the other is arguing for.

Hochachtungsvoll,
Peter
“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: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Sid Guttridge » 04 Mar 2021 21:04

Hi Peter89,

I would point out that seven of the last eight posts are not by me. This might give you a false idea as to the nature of my contribution to the debate.

As I say in the eighth, I am currently waiting for Aida1 to finish replying before responding.

If you want a better idea of my positions, I would recommend reading a few of my earlier posts in full. They are pretty clear.

All my posts are designed to answer specific points raised by other posters with specific answers, or further questions.

As a short cut, I have put in bold a few of the more salient points in my more recent posts. I hope this helps.

If you still don't understand my position, please come back to me with some specific questions and I would be glad to answer them.

Cheers,

Sid.

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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Aida1 » 04 Mar 2021 21:59

Sid Guttridge wrote:
03 Mar 2021 14:05
Hi Aida1,

You post, “Hindsight”. If you object to hindsight than you are probably on the wrong forum. This is the Axis History Forum. Hindsight is what we do!


You post, “And you seem to think that Hitler knew when the allied landing would happen.” On the contrary, my argument is precisely the opposite – that because Hitler clearly didn’t know when the Allied invasion would take place, he tied down particularly Waffen-SS mechanized divisions in 1942 and 1943 in a sterile invasion watch while the war was being fought on other fronts largely by the Army. The formations affected include every single one of the Reich-raised Waffen-SS panzer divisions.

Cheers,

Sid.
That would be wrong as he only reinforced the Heer divisions already there in 1942. There was a system of using mobile divisions setting up or refitting as mobile reserve for OB West. In general there was a policy of having divisions from the east refitting in France. OB west was used as the reservoir for sending divisions east in exchange for burnt out divisions. This was obiously a disadvantage for OB West.
In 1942 the new 22,23 and 24 pz div which had been in France in 1941 were exchanged for 6,7 and 10 pz. DR and LAH were simply added whens Hitler considered the threat of an allied landing was imminent in july 1942.And there were obviously much more than just mobile divisions tied down in France and Norway. Most were ordinary inf div. And your percentage game does not hold water. Decisions are not based on quotas. :roll:

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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Aida1 » 04 Mar 2021 22:10

Sid Guttridge wrote:
03 Mar 2021 14:05
Hi Aida1,


If so, please explain why? We already know that the 1st, 2nd and 3rd W-SS Divisions were inactive in France for up to six months in the second half of 1942 while 88% of the Army’s panzer divisions were fighting on active battle fronts. As a result, the three senior Waffen-SS divisions were on no active battlefront at arguably the decisive turning point of Germany’s war. We also know that the three Army panzer divisions recreated at the same time as the 9th and 10th Waffen-SS panzer divisions were all back on active battlefronts in 7, 8 and 10 months while the 9th and 10th Waffen-SS Panzer Divisions took 15 months to reach a battlefront and then only, according to you, because circumstances forced it on them.

Cheers,

Sid.
You still keep repeating 3 div were inactive for half a year while one was in Russia until october. :roll:
You cannot rewrite history. It is not realistic to see the 3 senior waffen ss divisions involved in what you think was the decisive campaign.
The last phrase only illustrates your bias. There is a difference between creating and recreating and you are obviously ignoring that the 9,10 and 12 ss divisions were meant to stay in France until the allied landing. Only a crisis on the eastern front caused the 9 and 10 ss to spend some time east. Actually a dumb decision given the time it took them to get and forth and they missed the invasion because of it. Even HItler regretted having sent them away.

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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Sid Guttridge » 04 Mar 2021 23:09

Hi Aida1,

Pending confirmation that you have finished your replies, a couple of points from your last post:

You post, "You still keep repeating 3 div were inactive for half a year....." No, I did not post that. You quoted me correctly immediately above and yet chose to misrepresent me immediately below in your own words. This is a recurrent feature of you posts.

You post, "It is not realistic to see the 3 senior waffen ss divisions involved in what you think was the decisive campaign." Exactly the same applies. I did not post that either. You first quoted me accurately above and then proceeded immediately afterwards to misrepresent what I wrote in your own words.

Why do you do this repeatedly? It is easily checkable and just undermines your credibility.

It also undermines whatever case you are trying to make, however meritorious.

If you can't make an honest case, what are you doing here?

On the up side, it relieves me of the obligation to defend things I never posted!

Cheers,

Sid

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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Aida1 » 05 Mar 2021 19:38

A quote from Kriegstagebuch der Wehrmacht 1942 Teilband 1 Percy Schramm Bernard & Graefe Verlag pp 703-704.
' 09 september 1942
OB west does not want to shift SS div Reich north because in its accomodation area to the nortwest of Angers it is now in a more favourable position as intervention reserve for the U boot bases in Bretagne as for Bretagne and Normandy and for a potential intervention in the Netherlands.
…..
Further in the area of OB west 8 fast divisions should be made suitable for the tropics and be transferred to the east from january 1943 to build the attack group Middle east in the Caucasus. In the area of OB West there are at this time 6 fast divisions and the Göring brigade; will be added in the near future the new to be set up 26 pz , the to be transferred from the east( Army group north) SS Totenkopf division and the motorised div Grossdeutschland . From these totalling 10 divisions, 8 should be transferred to the east and for this 4 fast divisions from the eastern front, namely from Army group north and army group center , should be transferred west so that again 6 divisions will be available. The 4 fast divisions to be released from the east to the west should be replaced on the eastern front by fast divisions from Army Group A and B.'

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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Aida1 » 05 Mar 2021 19:59

Kriegstagebuch des Oberkommando der Wehrmacht 1942 Teilband 2 Percy Schramm Bernard & Graefe Verlag p 1319

' Supplement to operations order nr 2 of 31 december 1942:
1. To be able to execute the relief of 6 army, a strong Panzer force will be assembled up till mid february in the area south east of Charkow.
For this purpose, will be transported from the west at the fastest possible tempo;
SS Adolf Hitler, SS Reich, SS T, from Army Group Center Div Gross Deutschland . Furthermore, by this same time 3 further inf div from the west will be assembled around Kiev; to be moved forward from here by rail ,folowing the motorised group…..'

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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Aida1 » 05 Mar 2021 20:14

Sid Guttridge wrote:
04 Mar 2021 23:09
Hi Aida1,

Pending confirmation that you have finished your replies, a couple of points from your last post:

You post, "You still keep repeating 3 div were inactive for half a year....." No, I did not post that. You quoted me correctly immediately above and yet chose to misrepresent me immediately below in your own words. This is a recurrent feature of you posts.

You post, "It is not realistic to see the 3 senior waffen ss divisions involved in what you think was the decisive campaign." Exactly the same applies. I did not post that either. You first quoted me accurately above and then proceeded immediately afterwards to misrepresent what I wrote in your own words.

Why do you do this repeatedly? It is easily checkable and just undermines your credibility.

It also undermines whatever case you are trying to make, however meritorious.

If you can't make an honest case, what are you doing here?

On the up side, it relieves me of the obligation to defend things I never posted!

Cheers,

Sid
Given when Totenkopf actually arrived in France, you should never even include it in your statement. It did need to be refitted so could hardly be active anywhere. And its refit was very short as it had barely time to train its new recruits.
You have backtracked a little bit from your statement about not being involved in the supposedly decisive campaign but that does not realLy change much as it still ignores the historical context as explained before. You still want the SS divisions on the eastern front despite that scenario being not credible. I am not worried about my credibility as i do not come up with untrealistic scenarios. :lol:
The first quote i gave above illustrates Hitlers thinking in september about the future deployment of the mobile divisions in the west including the 3 ss divisions. Clearly were not going to leave France in 1942.
The second one is the actual deployment order for the by then totally different mission.One can see easily see that GrossDeutschland was also considered by Htiler as his firebrigade.

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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Sid Guttridge » 06 Mar 2021 14:54

Hi Aida1,

On the assumption you have now finished your replies:

You post, “ Hitler did effectively not rush mobile divisions from the west to the east when the encirclement at Stalingrad happened as they would arrive too late for the relief operation. The only solution was divisions already in the east.” Exactly my point. Where were the three senior Waffen-SS divisions at the time? A month away from any active battlefront in France! By contrast, all ten Army motorized divisions were on the Eastern Front all year!

You post, “You effectively allege that you do not reproach the ss divisions that they were not on the eastern front…” Of course I don't. As I have said multiple times, they went where they were sent.

You go on, “…..but you use their abscence against them which is not much different.” Nope. I note their absence from any active battlefront and their inactivity at arguably the decisive point in Germany’s war and I question why this was necessary. Clearly some mobile divisions had to remain in France. However, the Army only had 12% of its panzer divisions in France and none of its motorized divisions, whereas all three senior Waffen-SS divisions were there. Why was the Waffen-SS so heavily over-represented in a passive theatre while the war was arguably being decided elsewhere?

You post, “The historical context is what it is and Hitlers worries about an allied landing in the west are a given.” Yup, even though no Allied invasion was planned, the resources to mount one were lacking and the weather precluded it from the autumn. Just because Hitler displayed bad judgement doesn't mean he had to display bad judgement.

You post, “It is not possible that he would not react to it by reinforcing OB West so the sending of DR and LAH in that context was evident.Why send the two senior Waffen-SS divisions and later the third at such a decisive moment on the Eastern Front? Germany then had ten other Army motorized divisions, all of which stayed on the Eastern Front throughout 1942. Why was it only the senior motorized Waffen-SS divisions who were sent to the passive backwater of France for up to half the year?

You post, “No context can be imagined where Hitler would have sent the divisions back to the east earlier than he did.” “There was no compelling reason to do it a few weeks earlier than when he did end december.” Well, actually, both 6th and 10th Panzer Divisions were sent back to the front from France in November. The former took part in the relief attempt at Stalingrad from 12 December and the latter was already taking part in counter-attacks by late November and early December in Tunisia, both while the three senior Waffen-SS divisions were still in France for several more weeks. Again, why were Army formations sent back to battle, while Waffen-SS divisions weren’t?

You post, “Hitler would need to have been aware of the disastrous developments that would happen in january 1943(the collapse of Army group B) to act otherwise.” So, the surrounding of 6th Army and much of 4th Panzer Army, the destruction of two Romanian armies and part of an Italian army, the start of the precipitate retreat from the Caucasus and the Allied landings in North Africa were not enough to get the senior Waffen-SS divisions back into battle? These major setbacks happened in the two months before the three senior Waffen-SS divisions were even ordered to move from France, let alone arrived on the Eastern Front. How bad does it have to get to shift them?

You post, “The arrival of the full strength ss panzer corps when it did was certainly very useful in Mansteins counterattack.” Yup, but nearly three months after the crisis set in! Some "fire brigade"!

You post, “The campaign in the south was certainly not decisive as Germany could hardly win it and one more division more would hardly make a difference.” The problem is that the three senior Waffen-SS divisions weren’t just not participants in “the campaign in the south”. The problem was that they weren’t on any active battlefront anywhere – two of them for half a year at arguably the decisive juncture in Germany’s war! The combat contribution of the LAH and DR for nearly six months in the second half of 1942 was virtually nothing! This deserves explanation, especially by comparison with the year-round combat operations of their Army equivalents!

You post, “No Hindsight is not what we do.” Yes, it is. This is the Axis History Forum. No Hindsight = No History!

You post, “…..second guessing decisions with knowledge not available at the time leads to distorted judgements on these decisions and what alternatives there could have been.” Nope. It should lead to a more accurate appreciation of what actually happened and why.

You post, “Historians will mostly not do hindsight. I never do.” !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You post, “You are too obsessed with waffen ss divisions as Hitler did a lot more than reinforce France with 2 Waffen ss divisions. There was a serious reinforcement of France and Norway, particularly the latter.” Yup, largely by Ersatzheer Reserve Divisions, not withdrawn from any active battlefront, unlike all three senior Waffen-SS divisions which were withdrawn from any active battlefront anywhere at arguably the decisive moment in Germany’s war, two of them arriving fully formed, according to you.

You post, “2 or 3 divisions more or less in the east wherever would not affect anything decisively.” That may well be true, but that is not the point I am making, is it? My point is why did all three senior Waffen-SS divisions end up idle in France for up to half a year while all ten army motorised divisions remained actively engaged on the Eastern Front throughout 1942? Furthermore, only 12% of the Army’s panzer divisions were in France at the same time.

Whatever the reason, the result was that the three senior Waffen-SS divisions missed arguably the decisive turning point in Germany’s war and had absolutely no influence on key events anywhere at a crucial period.

You post, “With the (flawed)intelligence information Hitler had, he could honestly believe the west needed extra mobile divisions.” Exactly, “flawed”.

You post, “And choosing DR and LAH was obvious as DR was refitting in Germany so near enough and LAH was OKH reserve.” So why, given that, according to you, the Waffen-SS divisions were no more badly hit than equivalent army divisions, did they happen to be already idle in Germany or OKH reserve when all ten Army motorised divisions and all bar 12% of Army panzer divisions were struggling on active battlefronts elsewhere? Why the special treatment for the senior Waffen-SS divisions?

You post, “Anyway, only you would object to it being waffen ss divisions.” I am not objecting. I am point out a clear anomaly and questioning why it occurred? You are not answering. Indeed, you are not even recognizing that there is something anomalous in the situation in the first place when all three senior Waffen-SS divisions are a month away from any active battle front anywhere for up to six months in 1942, while all their more numerous Army equivalents are fighting the actual war on the Eastern Front for the entire year.

You post, “You seem to think Hitler needed to apply a quota system.” Nope. I am merely observing what actually happened. The absence of the three senior Waffen-SS divisions from any active battlefront anywhere while all their direct Army equivalents were struggling at the front is a fact and requires an explanation. Hitler’s supposed “firebrigade” was absent from any fire anywhere for a prolonged period at a key stage in Germany’s war. Why the special treatment?

You post, “Here you you are being devious or plain stupid as you are ignoring that 9 ; 10 and 12 ss were specifically meant as reserve for OB West. The day they entered in combat was not the day they had reached full combat readiness.” Again, I put it to you that you are effectively saying that these divisions were fully battle ready for months and yet were not used on any active battlefront anywhere. If true, this would make these Waffen-SS divisions less flexibly deployable than Army divisions, which could serve on any front anywhere as needed. It would place yet another question mark against the Waffen-SS as an independent institution.

You post, “You will have to leave Hitler the privilege to determine whether a new division is waffen ss or Heer.” Hitler was left the privilege and I would suggest that he got it wrong for some of the reasons we have discussed. It doesn’t require my input to establish that! Even you agree that the intelligence he was operating on was "flawed", but, as the computing community used to say, "GIGO". (Garbage In, Garbage Out).

As I have told you before, it was clearly necessary to have some mobile divisions deployed to oppose an Allied invasion, because their absence was more likely to provoke one. My question for you is why were such a high proportion of those engaged in this largely sterile activity over mid-1942 to mid-1944 were Reich-raised Waffen-SS divisions?

You post, “It does not inherently take longer to set up a waffen ss division.” It certainly shouldn’t, but we know for a fact that it did in the cases of 9th and 10th Waffen-SS Divisions. They began forming properly in February 1943, but didn’t reach a battlefront until April 1944. The 12th Waffen-SS Division took a year before it entered action, and then only because action came to it in the form of an Allied landing.

By contrast, the Army’s 14th, 16th and 24th Panzer Divisions were destroyed at Stalingrad at the beginning of February 1943 and began rebuilding in April, March and March 1943. They were back in active theatres by October, July and August 1943 respectively and in action shortly afterwards.

This creates a very strong impression that in 1943-44 the three new Reich-raised Waffen-SS divisions were being created at a relatively leisurely pace compared with their Army equivalents and behind a shield of hard pressed German Army divisions fighting on the Eastern and Italian Fronts. The prolonged inactivity of 1st and 2nd Waffen-SS Divisions in the second half of 1942 conveys a similar impression.

This leads me to further question the usefulness of the Waffen-SS as an independent military institution in the first place, especially when every man and weapon had to be subtracted from what was available to the German Army, which was arguably then the best in the world.

Cheers,

Sid.

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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Aida1 » 06 Mar 2021 16:37

Sid Guttridge wrote:
06 Mar 2021 14:54
Hi Aida1,

On the assumption you have now finished your replies:

You post, “ Hitler did effectively not rush mobile divisions from the west to the east when the encirclement at Stalingrad happened as they would arrive too late for the relief operation. The only solution was divisions already in the east.” Exactly my point. Where were the three senior Waffen-SS divisions at the time? A month away from any active battlefront in France! By contrast, all ten Army motorized divisions were on the Eastern Front all year!

You post, “You effectively allege that you do not reproach the ss divisions that they were not on the eastern front…” Of course I don't. As I have said multiple times, they went where they were sent.

You go on, “…..but you use their abscence against them which is not much different.” Nope. I note their absence from any active battlefront and their inactivity at arguably the decisive point in Germany’s war and I question why this was necessary. Clearly some mobile divisions had to remain in France. However, the Army only had 12% of its panzer divisions in France and none of its motorized divisions, whereas all three senior Waffen-SS divisions were there. Why was the Waffen-SS so heavily over-represented in a passive theatre while the war was arguably being decided elsewhere?

You post, “The historical context is what it is and Hitlers worries about an allied landing in the west are a given.” Yup, even though no Allied invasion was planned, the resources to mount one were lacking and the weather precluded it from the autumn. Just because Hitler displayed bad judgement doesn't mean he had to display bad judgement.

You post, “It is not possible that he would not react to it by reinforcing OB West so the sending of DR and LAH in that context was evident.Why send the two senior Waffen-SS divisions and later the third at such a decisive moment on the Eastern Front? Germany then had ten other Army motorized divisions, all of which stayed on the Eastern Front throughout 1942. Why was it only the senior motorized Waffen-SS divisions who were sent to the passive backwater of France for up to half the year?

You post, “No context can be imagined where Hitler would have sent the divisions back to the east earlier than he did.” “There was no compelling reason to do it a few weeks earlier than when he did end december.” Well, actually, both 6th and 10th Panzer Divisions were sent back to the front from France in November. The former took part in the relief attempt at Stalingrad from 12 December and the latter was already taking part in counter-attacks by late November and early December in Tunisia, both while the three senior Waffen-SS divisions were still in France for several more weeks. Again, why were Army formations sent back to battle, while Waffen-SS divisions weren’t?

You post, “Hitler would need to have been aware of the disastrous developments that would happen in january 1943(the collapse of Army group B) to act otherwise.” So, the surrounding of 6th Army and much of 4th Panzer Army, the destruction of two Romanian armies and part of an Italian army, the start of the precipitate retreat from the Caucasus and the Allied landings in North Africa were not enough to get the senior Waffen-SS divisions back into battle? These major setbacks happened in the two months before the three senior Waffen-SS divisions were even ordered to move from France, let alone arrived on the Eastern Front. How bad does it have to get to shift them?

You post, “The arrival of the full strength ss panzer corps when it did was certainly very useful in Mansteins counterattack.” Yup, but nearly three months after the crisis set in! Some "fire brigade"!

You post, “The campaign in the south was certainly not decisive as Germany could hardly win it and one more division more would hardly make a difference.” The problem is that the three senior Waffen-SS divisions weren’t just not participants in “the campaign in the south”. The problem was that they weren’t on any active battlefront anywhere – two of them for half a year at arguably the decisive juncture in Germany’s war! The combat contribution of the LAH and DR for nearly six months in the second half of 1942 was virtually nothing! This deserves explanation, especially by comparison with the year-round combat operations of their Army equivalents!

You post, “No Hindsight is not what we do.” Yes, it is. This is the Axis History Forum. No Hindsight = No History!

You post, “…..second guessing decisions with knowledge not available at the time leads to distorted judgements on these decisions and what alternatives there could have been.” Nope. It should lead to a more accurate appreciation of what actually happened and why.

You post, “Historians will mostly not do hindsight. I never do.” !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You post, “You are too obsessed with waffen ss divisions as Hitler did a lot more than reinforce France with 2 Waffen ss divisions. There was a serious reinforcement of France and Norway, particularly the latter.” Yup, largely by Ersatzheer Reserve Divisions, not withdrawn from any active battlefront, unlike all three senior Waffen-SS divisions which were withdrawn from any active battlefront anywhere at arguably the decisive moment in Germany’s war, two of them arriving fully formed, according to you.

You post, “2 or 3 divisions more or less in the east wherever would not affect anything decisively.” That may well be true, but that is not the point I am making, is it? My point is why did all three senior Waffen-SS divisions end up idle in France for up to half a year while all ten army motorised divisions remained actively engaged on the Eastern Front throughout 1942? Furthermore, only 12% of the Army’s panzer divisions were in France at the same time.

Whatever the reason, the result was that the three senior Waffen-SS divisions missed arguably the decisive turning point in Germany’s war and had absolutely no influence on key events anywhere at a crucial period.

You post, “With the (flawed)intelligence information Hitler had, he could honestly believe the west needed extra mobile divisions.” Exactly, “flawed”.

You post, “And choosing DR and LAH was obvious as DR was refitting in Germany so near enough and LAH was OKH reserve.” So why, given that, according to you, the Waffen-SS divisions were no more badly hit than equivalent army divisions, did they happen to be already idle in Germany or OKH reserve when all ten Army motorised divisions and all bar 12% of Army panzer divisions were struggling on active battlefronts elsewhere? Why the special treatment for the senior Waffen-SS divisions?

You post, “Anyway, only you would object to it being waffen ss divisions.” I am not objecting. I am point out a clear anomaly and questioning why it occurred? You are not answering. Indeed, you are not even recognizing that there is something anomalous in the situation in the first place when all three senior Waffen-SS divisions are a month away from any active battle front anywhere for up to six months in 1942, while all their more numerous Army equivalents are fighting the actual war on the Eastern Front for the entire year.

You post, “You seem to think Hitler needed to apply a quota system.” Nope. I am merely observing what actually happened. The absence of the three senior Waffen-SS divisions from any active battlefront anywhere while all their direct Army equivalents were struggling at the front is a fact and requires an explanation. Hitler’s supposed “firebrigade” was absent from any fire anywhere for a prolonged period at a key stage in Germany’s war. Why the special treatment?



Cheers,

Sid.
Not to be taken very seriously. Only your very personal opninion that reflects your bias. You will see no historian making this sort of reflection. :roll:
You always imply that Hitler wanted to spare the waffen ss divisions which is pretty ridiculous as he saw them as this eite fire brigade which he sent to danger spots. Not a coincidence that he at some time intended to send the elite Grossdeutschland to France too in july 1942. Implicitly ,you actually want Htlier to reinforce OB west by one or more of the understrength mobile divisions of AGC or AGN that could not be refitted ,in face of an imminent threat :roll:
And once the ss divisions were in France, they were not going to go back to the eastern front before january 1943 when the big exchange of divisions between OB west and the eastern front was going to happen as you could have read above.
Given Hitlers intention to have the 3 waffen ss divisions operate as a corps, it is not surprising that he sent one Heer pz div when he started to have some worry about the flank of Heeresgruppe B.That the 3 waffen ss divisions had their men checked for suitability for the tropics, illustrates that the corps was intended to be sent to the Caucasus in 1943.

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Aida1
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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Aida1 » 06 Mar 2021 16:44

Sid Guttridge wrote:
06 Mar 2021 14:54
Hi Aida1,



You post, “It does not inherently take longer to set up a waffen ss division.” It certainly shouldn’t, but we know for a fact that it did in the cases of 9th and 10th Waffen-SS Divisions. They began forming properly in February 1943, but didn’t reach a battlefront until April 1944. The 12th Waffen-SS Division took a year before it entered action, and then only because action came to it in the form of an Allied landing.

By contrast, the Army’s 14th, 16th and 24th Panzer Divisions were destroyed at Stalingrad at the beginning of February 1943 and began rebuilding in April, March and March 1943. They were back in active theatres by October, July and August 1943 respectively and in action shortly afterwards.

This creates a very strong impression that in 1943-44 the three new Reich-raised Waffen-SS divisions were being created at a relatively leisurely pace compared with their Army equivalents and behind a shield of hard pressed German Army divisions fighting on the Eastern and Italian Fronts. The prolonged inactivity of 1st and 2nd Waffen-SS Divisions in the second half of 1942 conveys a similar impression.

This leads me to further question the usefulness of the Waffen-SS as an independent military institution in the first place, especially when every man and weapon had to be subtracted from what was available to the German Army, which was arguably then the best in the world.

Cheers,

Sid.
Only your biased personal opninion which is at the level of conspiracy theories :roll: You were told before that 9,10 and 12 ss were meant as mobile reserve for OB West. Sending 9 and 10 ss back and forth to the eastern front was a mistake which Hitler himself came to regret.
It is your personal opinion not supported by any source or authority that the setting up of the 3 abovementioned divisions was intentionally done at a super slow pace. :roll:

Sid Guttridge
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Re: Why the Waffen-SS

Post by Sid Guttridge » 06 Mar 2021 17:05

Hi Aida1,

I see you didn't answer a single on of my questions - again!

You post, "You always imply that Hitler wanted to spare the waffen ss divisions which is pretty ridiculous as he saw them as this eite fire brigade which he sent to danger spots." So why were 1st, 2nd and 3rd Waffen-SS a month away from any active battlefront when crises hit in North Africa and Stalingrad and not moved immediately to one or the other? Army divisions were. It rather looks as though the Army was the real "fire brigade" here!

You post, "Not a coincidence that he at some time intended to send the elite Grossdeutschland to France too in july 1942." But he didn't send it, did he? Like the other ten Army motorised divisions it remained on active operations on the Eastern Front, while one by one the three senior Waffen-SS divisions slipped off to the backwater of France for up to half a year! Why the preferential treatment for the senior Waffen-SS divisions?

You post, "Implicitly ,you actually want Htlier to reinforce OB west by one or more of the understrength mobile divisions of AGC or AGN that could not be refitted ,in face of an imminent threat" What does this mean?

You post, "And once the ss divisions were in France, they were not going to go back to the eastern front before january 1943 when the big exchange of divisions between OB west and the eastern front was going to happen as you could have read above." Why were they all in France doing nothing operationally in the first place while all the Army motorized divisions were struggling to hold the Eastern Front? Why the special treatment?

You post, "Given Hitlers intention to have the 3 waffen ss divisions operate as a corps....." Why did there need to be a Waffen-SS corps headquarters in the first place? The Waffen-SS divisions had never operated together before and had operated perfectly well under Army corps headquarters previously. Besides, the Army never needed to withhold divisions from the front for extended periods just to form a new corps headquarters. The entire Waffen-SS seems to have been a political vanity project without evident military merit and the creation of the first Waffen-SS corps headquarters seems to have been just another manifestation of this, especially as it had to be headed by seconded Army staff officers.

You post, "That the 3 waffen ss divisions had their men checked for suitability for the tropics, illustrates that the corps was intended to be sent to the Caucasus in 1943." Coulda, woulda shoulda. There are an infinite number of things that might have happened, but the fact is that they didn't go there.

This creates a very strong impression that in 1943-44 the three new Reich-raised Waffen-SS divisions were being created at a relatively leisurely pace compared with their Army equivalents and behind a shield of hard pressed German Army divisions fighting on the Eastern and Italian Fronts. The prolonged inactivity of 1st and 2nd Waffen-SS Divisions in the second half of 1942 conveys a similar impression.

This leads me to further question the usefulness of the Waffen-SS as an independent military institution in the first place, especially when every man and weapon had to be subtracted from what was available to the German Army, which was arguably then the best in the world.


Cheers,

Sid.
Last edited by Sid Guttridge on 06 Mar 2021 17:19, edited 2 times in total.

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