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Old December 26th, 2017, 11:22 AM   #41

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I overlooked this post. In fact, Manstein wrote (In Lost Victories) that "in the time in question ( spring '43) it ( fighting the USSR to a standstill) was far from being wishful thinking."




The losses were due in part to poor tactical deployment, like infantry made to hold the frontlines even if the terrain wasn't well-suited to defense. They also resulted from poor strategic deployment, the result of a Soviet misinformation (the dismissal of Manstein was no doubt another factor). But they also owed much to the decision to keep 10 panzer divisions-including some of the reich's best-in the West where they (and their logistical tether) were bound to be cut up by overwhelming enemy air superiority. Give Manstein those extra divisions and a free hand in the East and the outcome would've been different, perhaps stunningly so.
Why on earth are you taking Mannstein at face value?

By April 1943 the Soviets had crushed the 6th Army, and forced the Germans out of the Caucasus. The Germans were preparing to abandon the Rzhev salient, and the Allies were gearing up to invade Italy.

Last edited by zincwarrior; December 26th, 2017 at 11:26 AM.
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Old December 26th, 2017, 12:01 PM   #42

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Nobody says they could've won in the sense of beating the allies just fighting them to a standstill.
How? The Allies were outproducing them, could call on far more troops and material, and had better intel and strategists. The Luftwaffe and Kreigsmarine were both shot too, and all of the Axis were on the back foot in all theatres. There is no way they could have fought to a standstill.
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Old December 26th, 2017, 12:18 PM   #43

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I'm sure the Soviets would've been all too happy to negotiate then, or in the summer of '42, but German hubris made that impossible.
Soviets tried to negotiate (unofficially, with Aleksandra Kołłontaj as emissary), Stalin said: "Wy need new The Treaty of Brest-Litovsk", but Hitler said: "No, because the Bolsheviks are Jews!"
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Old December 26th, 2017, 12:18 PM   #44

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Again any delay of more than a few months means the Allies start employing nukes. Time is a factor to save German lives.
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Old December 26th, 2017, 12:56 PM   #45

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So German needed victory before USA join the war, because USA had Manhattan Project.
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Old December 26th, 2017, 01:26 PM   #46

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Reminder- Germany declared war on the US...
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Old December 26th, 2017, 01:37 PM   #47

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Reminder- Germany declared war on the US...
German said: "Now USA fight unofficially, because help United Kingdom. Official war will be better."
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Old December 26th, 2017, 02:15 PM   #48

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What if the Wehrmacht decides to suspend the Holocaust in return for Jewish help with atomic bomb physics which is where the Germans couldn't get their act together, so that the Germans at least get on the right track as far theory went with regards to what is the required critical mass etc.
Any Jewish scientist of note in this field had already fled to either Britain or the USA by this time, so it will change nothing.
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the German military also takes operational control in the East so military operations start to make more sense tactically, for example no declaring fortress cities that are to be held to the last man, and outflanked units are given permission to withdraw without unnecessary delay, or Citadel gets canned in favor of a more limited offensive or going in the defensive or all of 1943.
Best hope is the military will realise all is lost, and surrender sooner, 1943 is far too late to change the outcome of the war.
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Old December 26th, 2017, 03:02 PM   #49

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What if the German military deposed Hitler in a coup in 1943 before Citadel, leaving Hitler as a powerless figurehead? And say von Rundstedt gets appointed as chief of the OKW and Keitel gets a mega estate somewhere in Poland as a retirement gift? What if the Wehrmacht decides to suspend the Holocaust in return for Jewish help with atomic bomb physics which is where the Germans couldn't get their act together, so that the Germans at least get on the right track as far theory went with regards to what is the required critical mass etc. How will these change the course of the war? Basically the Germans decide to hold the entire Jewish population hostage in return for the bomb, the German military also takes operational control in the East so military operations start to make more sense tactically, for example no declaring fortress cities that are to be held to the last man, and outflanked units are given permission to withdraw without unnecessary delay, or Citadel gets canned in favor of a more limited offensive or going in the defensive or all of 1943.
The problem with this is it reads like a fantasy wishlist of changes that have been produced with the benefit of hindsight, chosen in such a way as to engineer a German win but completely ignoring how implausible these changes are and lacking any explanation for how these unlikely things would happen. For these changes to work you would need to totally change the way people thought and acted at the time in a way that would be entirely out of character. In other words this is ASB territory.

In any case by 43 Germany has no realistic way of winning against Britain and the USA, and not much prospect of beating the Soviets either. Time was running out. Hence the decision to attack at Kursk rather than wait for the enemy to grind Germany into oblivion.

A separate peace with the USSR might have been a good idea. There were Soviet-German peace talks in Sweden from April to November 1943 and the USSR's terms were a return to the 22 June 1941 borders. Mussolini urged Hitler to accept this peace offer in April 1943. But he refused.

After October 1943 unconditional surrender might be the best option. Not likely though. More realistically the war carries on and ends up as it did in our scenario, although at least Germany might surrender before the Russians reach Berlin.

Last edited by SufiMystic; December 26th, 2017 at 03:18 PM.
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Old December 26th, 2017, 04:42 PM   #50

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German said: "Now USA fight unofficially, because help United Kingdom. Official war will be better."
That... Did not turn out so well.
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