- Nov 2019
- United States
But the invasion of Anvil didn't accomplish it's real goal in the actual war because it wasn't viewed as the goal of wincing off all those forces in the pincer that I am imaginied could have occurred. Instead we visualized what; marching across Belgium and the Netherlands through an easily defended region with one highway to support or invasion plan of Germany? The game is instead to capture the forces to the South and any forces we can draw into Normandy, Then swing through the Saar Valley and take as, was ultimately accomplished the Ruhr. The forces to the North are now moot, Hitler has to move them to fight off the real battle that would win the war.I hate defending Hitler but even a broken clock is right occasionally. While many of his no retreat orders in 44-45 were ludicrous, they were based on political and strategic decisions, which unfortunately trump operational. He couldn't give up terrain needed for resources (like Romanian oil) just because a nervous, defeatist general wanted to retreat. Nor could he retreat too much without freaking out other Axis allied countries, who Germany depended on for various things (more natural resources, manpower, some production and trade, etc).
Lastly, while many crap on Festung Platz, Fortress Cities, concept of purposely allowing entire divisions or corps to be encircled, it worked to a charm in France in 44, when the Allies had three army groups crowded on the border of germany banging on their door but were only supplied by the single artificial pier at Normandy, the small port of Orne, the slightly larger port of Cherbourg, Marsailles allllllllll the way in Southern France, and that's about it, all because Festung Platz were holding out.
Maybe that only worked against the Western Allies because the Germans knew that if they surrendered months after fighting tenaciously they'd still be treated well, versus the Red Army notoriously treating any Axis POWs badly but ever so much worse if they were hold outs. That's my pet belief anyway.
But anyway, Hitler was right in a way to not give up ground. What other choice did he have? An elastic defense doesn't work if the enemy has air dominance. WW2 had already proven no defensive line on a river or anywhere was incapable of being breached if the enemy was willing to pay the price. So any retreat was defeat.