Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

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Carl Schwamberger
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Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 14 Sep 2020 21:18

I'm curious about the losses of the Wehrmacht in the west outside of the Falaise pocket tally. Across France & Belgium there was a fair sized bag of prisoners, on top of the killed and wounded. ie the Mons pocket. Anyone able to point to some reliable analysis or description of the men lost in France, Belgium, Netherlands, and the German frontier in August September.

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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 26 Sep 2020 17:26

No one can recommend useful references for this?

Richard Anderson
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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Richard Anderson » 26 Sep 2020 20:09

Carl Schwamberger wrote:
26 Sep 2020 17:26
No one can recommend useful references for this?
We've had a couple of stem-winder discussions here about it over the years.
"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

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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Thumpalumpacus » 26 Sep 2020 20:18

There's also the Heer garrison forces that, while not lost, were masked and rendered ineffective for anything except typing down troops.

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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 26 Sep 2020 20:41

Uh, references guys ? A link ?

Michael Kenny
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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Michael Kenny » 26 Sep 2020 20:52

It has been done to death here over the years. The threads got pretty heated because the boys from Brazil/Munich wished to confine the discussion to 'bloody losses' and ignore POWs!




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Spoiler:

There are no definitive totals only various overlapping collated totals for various branches on various dates and revisions of said totals done late in 1944.

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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 26 Sep 2020 21:07

Hm,, so you are recommending none of the references you know of as useful?

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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Michael Kenny » 26 Sep 2020 21:37

There are conflicting totals so you will never get a definitive answer.


viewtopic.php?f=54&t=3325&start=30&hili ... hluesselte

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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Richard Anderson » 26 Sep 2020 23:09

Carl Schwamberger wrote:
26 Sep 2020 21:07
Hm,, so you are recommending none of the references you know of as useful?
Carl, send me an email and I'll send you my write-up, which includes all the sourcing.
"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

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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 27 Sep 2020 05:59

Richard Anderson wrote:
26 Sep 2020 23:09
Carl Schwamberger wrote:
26 Sep 2020 21:07
Hm,, so you are recommending none of the references you know of as useful?
Carl, send me an email and I'll send you my write-up, which includes all the sourcing.
Why not just post it?

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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Art » 27 Sep 2020 08:38

I guess, "reliable" is the problem. Anyway, here are losses reported by the OKW:
https://web.archive.org/web/20161109232 ... okw44.html
Total 37,194 men missing in action (Army+Air Force +Navy) in August-September plus 166,043 MIA for a period of 1.8-10.9.44 additionally reported in November 1944. Or more than 200,000 missing combined.

For, comparison SHAEF counted about 200,000 German POWs in August-September 44, which however doesn't include South France, if I understand it correctly:
POWs_Western Front.JPG
According to US history ("Riviera to the Rhine") American-French forces captured nearly 100,000 POWs in South France up to mid-September 1944.
You should keep in mind that all this reporting could lag behind actual events.
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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Richard Anderson » 27 Sep 2020 16:34

Art wrote:
27 Sep 2020 08:38
I guess, "reliable" is the problem. Anyway, here are losses reported by the OKW:
https://web.archive.org/web/20161109232 ... okw44.html
Total 37,194 men missing in action (Army+Air Force +Navy) in August-September plus 166,043 MIA for a period of 1.8-10.9.44 additionally reported in November 1944. Or more than 200,000 missing combined.

For, comparison SHAEF counted about 200,000 German POWs in August-September 44, which however doesn't include South France, if I understand it correctly:
POWs_Western Front.JPG

According to US history ("Riviera to the Rhine") American-French forces captured nearly 100,000 POWs in South France up to mid-September 1944.
You should keep in mind that all this reporting could lag behind actual events.
Indeed Art, "reliable" is the issue. For example, those figures do not actually agree with those found in NARA RG 331, SHAEF General Staff, G-1 Administrative Section Decimal File 383.6/1, Daily POW Reports. It breaks down the PW reports by capturing nation as (UK/US/Total):

June 12,683/17,017/29,700
July 451/52,369/52,820
August 42,105/106,898/149,003

Nor do those correspond exactly with the reports of captures by the British found in NARA RG 331, SHAEF General Staff, G-1 Administrative Section Decimal File 704/6 or by the Americans in NARA RG 331, SHAEF General Staff, G-1 Administrative Section Decimal File 704/1-6. All are reporting subtly different things and periods of time.
"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

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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 29 Sep 2020 22:12

Reviewing the several sets of numbers presented I'm surprised by the large quantity attributed to September. 3 to 4 x what I'd have guessed. The books refer to the large take in Normandy June-August, but I cant recall anyone mentioning this mass of surrendering German soldiers in September. It suggests why so many Allied leaders thought the German army had collapsed.

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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Richard Anderson » 30 Sep 2020 01:47

Carl Schwamberger wrote:
29 Sep 2020 22:12
Reviewing the several sets of numbers presented I'm surprised by the large quantity attributed to September. 3 to 4 x what I'd have guessed. The books refer to the large take in Normandy June-August, but I cant recall anyone mentioning this mass of surrendering German soldiers in September. It suggests why so many Allied leaders thought the German army had collapsed.
I am not sure why the figures Art posted exceed those recorded by SHAEF by 61,004. I will have to dig out my file with the figures for September, but I suspect they were much lower than 119,374. The major September captures were in the Mons pocket, in the Channel Ports (Boulogne and Le Havre) and at Brest.
"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

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Re: Losses in West. Aug Through September 1944

Post by Art » 30 Sep 2020 07:09

Carl Schwamberger wrote:
29 Sep 2020 22:12
Reviewing the several sets of numbers presented I'm surprised by the large quantity attributed to September. 3 to 4 x what I'd have guessed. The books refer to the large take in Normandy June-August, but I cant recall anyone mentioning this mass of surrendering German soldiers in September. It suggests why so many Allied leaders thought the German army had collapsed.
21 Army Group claimed about 67,000 prisoners captured beginning from 25 August until the end of September (from "Notes on operations of the 21 Army Group"). That includes some 16,000 in the operation "Market Garden" (the same source) and also the garrisons of Le Havre, Boulogne and Calais (about 30,000 combined). Add to that the Mons pocket (the usual figure is 25,000) and more than 30,000 POWs at Brest and that would make SHAEF stats look reasonable enough.

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