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Heroes Community > Other Side of the Monitor > Thread: Greatest War Empires, Heroes, and Strategies
Thread: Greatest War Empires, Heroes, and Strategies [ This thread is 6 pages long: 1 2 3 4 (5) 6 ]
Ichon
Ichon


Responsible
Famous Hero
posted July 30, 2001 03:07 PM

Crassius

Well, I want to look up that about the legions in Syria I might be wrong, I think the consul's name was Crassius or Cennius or something like that, but I'm not remembering rightly I'm sure, maybe also the legions? It might have been only 4 legions, anyway from 4-8 legions were lost and never had a good explanation how or why.

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Defreni
Defreni


Promising
Famous Hero
posted July 30, 2001 04:57 PM

Hmmmm.....

The biggest problem with the Tigers where the huge amount of oil they consumed, something the Germans didnt have unlimited supply off. As for El Alamein, it wasnt a british counterattack, but rather a massive buildup which left the germans outnumbered in effective usefull troops and materials 1:3 and in aircraft 1:5.
The reason Rommel was so outnumbered was not that Hitler shifted emphasis from the desert to the eastern front. Hitler never wanted a war in the desert, he merely sent the DAK`s to help out the Italians from being totaly embarrased.
The simpel logistic part of the desert war ment that Rommel had his supplies shipped to Tripoli, and then by truck for over 1200 km through the desert, while the british had their supplies sent to Alexandria and then a measly 180 km to El Alamein.
Rommel actually begged Hitler to let him withdraw from that position to make his supply lines shorter, but was denied.
That is also the reason why Germany never seriously considered to attack Kaukasus from the turkish border, it would be impossible to get even a few division that way around, even with Iraq as an allied.
Tigers in the desert, Im sorry but as far as I remember the Tiger wasnt operational untill 1944, about a year after the Germans was kicked out of North Africa.

Great strategic minds after WW2, must surely be Ho Chi Minh, in that aspect you can only begin to grasp what a remarkable person he was by visiting the country, and studying the way the Vietnam war, or as they call it the American war went down.
Eventhough the Tet-offensive was a military victory for the americans, they lost the war at that point. The american public, and the world opinion turned against the U.S after seing VC`s fight american MP`s in the American embassy in Saigon.
The first time ever a propaganda stunt was pulled off to turn the tides off war.
Hmmmmmm. prolly not totally true, but at least it was masterfull use of the combined world press.

Defreni
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pluvious
pluvious


Promising
Adventuring Hero
posted July 30, 2001 05:47 PM

About the romans not losing battles as mentioned by Ichon...he mentioned the enlisting of barbarians who eventually became citizens.  Many historians now believe this is what cause their eventual downfall and not so much from barbarian invasion.  The integration of non-roman citizens may have led to a decrease in cultural pride and belief in the empire...along with decadence of course.  

Also, some open talk of hitler and rommel here may be a sensitive sugject to some.  Phrases like "too bad the germans didn't do this or that" may be in poor taste.  
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-The Storm Before the Calm-

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Sha_Men
Sha_Men


Responsible
Supreme Hero
Jack-Of-No-Trades
posted July 31, 2001 01:23 AM

Pluvious...

I think all here agree that Hitler wasn't so brilliant humanist and surely everybody agree that it was the best that Germany didn't win that war.
Even as a finn who's country fought alongside with Germany I would say that it was better that Axis lost. If somebody wants to criticize me about way I see German army as one of the mightiest ever or maybe even the most mightiest there's no way you're going to accuse me of favoring German ideology.
What I personally mean by saying too bad that german this or that is purely talk about military might and nothing else by even longshot.


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Wyvern
Wyvern


Promising
Famous Hero
posted July 31, 2001 03:41 AM

Azerbaijan?

Ichon, I don't think it's correct from you to compare Azerbaijan to Bulgaria. Well, the Roman empire is really one of the greatest states from all times, but Bulgaria is the oldest country in Europe that still exists - are 1300 years few? What about Azerbaijan? And there are actually different invaders in Bulgaria - Avars, Hazars, Russians, Magiars, Serbians, Byzantines, Latins (do you know about Baldwin of Flandre's death?), Turks from the Ottoman empire? By the way, can you find the Roman empire nowadays?

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Defreni
Defreni


Promising
Famous Hero
posted July 31, 2001 03:47 AM

Hmmmm Pluvious, I would be extremely carefull how I choose my words.
"The integration of non-roman citizens may have led to a decrease in cultural pride and belief in the empire...along with decadence of course."
Dunno what others may think, but this could have been a quote from "My Kampf". Dont mean any insults Pluvious, but actually ur completely wrong, one off the things that made Rome so powerfull was precisely the thing u believe lead to its downfall.
The true reason why Rome fell was actually a pressure from central Asia where the population rose dramatically during the 3. and 4. century A.C. This lead to a huge migration, some off which werent at all peacefull.
Along with an impressive line of useless and incompetent emperors, this lead to Rome being sacked 369 A.C ( Or something like that, cant remember the exact date)
And eventually the division of the Roman empire into 2 different ones.

Defreni


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Titan_888
Titan_888


Known Hero
Wind of Change
posted July 31, 2001 05:58 AM
Edited By: Titan_888 on 31 Jul 2001

Greetings all Wiseguys.

This is really interesting reading you guys make
Keep on writing.

P.S. Wish defreni plays as good as he writes.. maybe we would have had many more division Wins... LMAO j/k



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Defreni
Defreni


Promising
Famous Hero
posted July 31, 2001 07:34 AM

Hehee, luckily I sucks at playing, so there

Defreni
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Titan_888
Titan_888


Known Hero
Wind of Change
posted July 31, 2001 10:05 AM

Defreni... i couldnt agree more...
IF YOU EVER BLOCK ME IN CASTLE AGAIN... I WILL HAUNT YOU DOWN..

hehehe
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Defreni
Defreni


Promising
Famous Hero
posted July 31, 2001 11:23 AM

Damn, then I shouldnt have given u my adress
LOLOL

Defreni
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Ichon
Ichon


Responsible
Famous Hero
posted July 31, 2001 06:12 PM

Romans

I have to agree with Defreni about the Roman Empire. A large part of it's strength was giving most of it's subjects a chance to become Roman citizens a few decades after they were conquered. Several consuls, a few emperors, and many generals came from the provinces, especially Hispanola, and even some from Trier and other Roman colonies in northern Europe, actually all over the empire. The only really unique situations where the conqueroed weren't given suffrage as Roman citizens, were the Jews in Syria, Nubians in Egypt, and Germans north and east of the Rhine. All of those which Rome came later to regret. If the Germans had had something to protect as Roman citizens they could have been a buffer from the vast migrations that were a large part of the fall of Rome outside of the corruption in Rome itself and a series of incompetent rulers. Instead the Germans became the first to rebel and led many of the initial migrations.

It's true in Africa that length of supply lines as well as amount of supply was a factor. There were times when Rommel had nearly half his mechanized armor and infantry using captured British equipment. Well, actually Hitler did have some interest in Egypt and wanted to capture it, he was much more interested in the Soviets though. I've read he initially planned to use a combined attack with Rommel coming in through the desert and airborne landings, but after the disasterous fighting on Crete where German airborne were decimated and the initial over-estimation of Malta's strength Hitler canceled that plan, but left Rommel stranded. Malta was a very important strategic factor in all the war in Africa and Greece, Yugoslovia, and the landings in Italy. Actually if the Germans had used the Italian navy for a seaborne and airborne assault on either Malta or Egypt early on, it likely would have succeeded as the British were still reeling from Dunkirk then soon after the evacuation of Greece.

Yes, I think the war in Vietnam is very interesting. Not only did the Vietnamese defeat the US(analogous to US defeating the British), but they defeated the French before them and held off the Chinese after. I would say that Vietnam was more politics than brilliant military strategy, but it was politics designed with a military goal in mind so I'd say it falls under military greatness.

Bulgaria and Azerbaiijan. Well, I wasn't comparing them directly as nations, Bulgaria as a nation has existed much longer than any other nation in Europe with the exceptions of perhaps Switzerland(cantons weren't a nation strictly intrepreted but loose federation acting in conjunction to protect regional interests, but could qualify)and perhaps Briton, or Sweden. I think it's interesting though in the context of the geographical barriers that existed in the other 3 cases, but Bulgaria isn't as isolated. Afghanistan and the hill peoples of central asia have been fighting invaders nearly the whole history of recorded time, more than Bulgaria certainly and that is the context they were mentioned in.

As for where Rome exists today, well Rumania was a province of Rome and draws it's name from there, but that isn't really the chief place even. First look at the US whose symbol is the Roman Eagle still flying after nearly 2,500 years. Then look at the law codes of nearly every western nation and soon to entire world thanks to trade globalization. Next you can count many of the langugaes of Europe whose descent is based from Latin. Next look at many of the largest cities in Europe, North Africa, and the middle east- the capitols or Roman provinces and many still bearing the same names. Also the modern engineering system first layed out by Roman engineers who built roads from the coast of France to the shores of the Black Sea. Modern tripartite division of power in Democracy and finally- banking. The engine of world commerce today was first set in motion by the stability of the Pax Romana and the trade routes it fostered.

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Sha_Men
Sha_Men


Responsible
Supreme Hero
Jack-Of-No-Trades
posted August 01, 2001 05:34 AM

Something to add...

I can't disagree with Ichon as he speaks truth in his voice...
Rome is affected modern world more than many of use even believe. Now I have again mention hellenism and Alexander the Great because basically Rome rise from the ashes of Alexanders' empire. I believe that assumption which declares that Rome never couldn't have been this great empire as it standed without Alexanders legacy is the right one. Alexander greatly put effort to allow people have their own ways but sametime trying to keep them close to another so no rebelling or corruption would have been possible. Rome basically copied this idea but they couldn't change their own ways and saw themselves many times superior compared to other people. This is possible the thing that finally drew Rome apart.

Well, there were many reasons why Rome really well and one of the thinks was economics and some little food crisis. Finally Rome couldn't keep the empire together and people started rebelling. And usually rebelling has this kind of snowball effect where one thing leads to another. Religion had its fair share too but we cannot really tell what took this great empire over the edge. Was it the fact that Romans didn't know what kind of ruler this kind of empire should have had? Surely there was mass amount of people moving through europe but why Rome couldn't stop them? It was possible too late and the roots of the fall of the empire could be far way in history...

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Ichon
Ichon


Responsible
Famous Hero
posted August 01, 2001 11:48 PM

Fall

Well, aside from the political corruption and bad leadership in Rome there was a serious change in climate that precipitated the mass migrations. The northern areas of Europe used to get even a warmer ocean current influencing their climes and were considerably more moderate. As the climate changed large amounts of people had to move south. This forced other migrations in all directions. In large part the Roman empire resisted this pressure until the Germans decided it was more worthwhile for them to go their own way then become citizens of the empire. That started a chain reaction that the rulers in Rome totally ignored for the most part too busy struggling for power amongst themselves for a rapidly falling apart empire.

At the same time population movements in the north were causing massive upheaval, other areas of the empire were rethinking their alliegance as increasingly heavy taxes only fueled the corruption as each official tried to extort more to fuel their rise to power back at the center of the government. A combination of factors contributed to the decline, but it wasn't until Constantine moved the seat of government to the eastern half of the empire that the last provinces who had been loyal(Spain, North Africa, Switzerland- decided they were being left to their own devices for protection. The Roman legions had been being recalled for years replaced with barbarian auxilareis from beyond the borders of the empire who didn't see the glory of citizenship, but rather the spoils to be looted. After Rome trained their military talents these men promptly returned to their own lands and raised armies that could defeat the shrunken legions.  

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mklthrkngl
mklthrkngl


Known Hero
posted August 03, 2001 02:24 AM

maybe never heard of these guys

azi One of my fav. historical conquerers you will prob. not have heard of. Of course he never used military means. His favorite weapon was his astounding fertility in the bedroom and an amazing political mind. By using the simple methode of arranged marriages Otto Von Hapsberg in reallity, if not officially, became the emporer of all of europe and also much of north africa All without ever waging a single military campaign!! He even had one of his sons made Pope, thereby completing his conquest of both the earthly realm and the spiritual realm. A feit not accomplished since the roman emporers declared themselves gods.

Vietnam was lost not due to any great strategy on the part of the vietnamese, but due to lack of political will on the part of the Americans. No war can be won when the people who have to fight and support it don't beleive in it. Add to that the almost criminal support of an obviousely corrupt regime in South vietnam which would eventually lose them all creditability even with there own troops.

As for WW2, worst and best thing to happen to the nazis  was Adolf Hitler. He had the political geniuse to bring them to power and then he promptly went insane and basicaly shot the nazi war effort in the foot. Although his obviousely tallented generals, who were probably the best in the war, never really had a chance at victory, i cann't say i feel sad for there bad luck at being commanded by a mad man

German Tanks? summed up in 4 statements:
1. Best Armour All thru the war.
2. Best gunnery All thru the war.
3. Slowest to develope and produce All thur the war.
4. Worst mechanically, All thru the war. ( Tigers were particularly well known as "Nazi Cookers", due to there horrible leaky fuel systems and the fact that more of there crews were lost to accidental fires then enemy fire

Little known fact, as far as empire is concerned and longevity, Persia arguably had longest running empire. It was an entity in one form or another for well over a thousand years. Much of it's history has been obliterated by later Greek and western historians. The winners in the end write the history

For those who would like to know more about saladin, i got one thing to say, Great man, tragic ending. If ya wanna find out why, pick up a book and read it

Mongols? The size of there armies cannot really be known or even estamated due to many of the factors that ichon has mentioned. A very fluid tribal society with no set military structure. There enemies that were defeated and from whom we get most of our records of them were in most cases inacurate due to mongol tactics making there numbers seem larger than they were and in many cases to outright lies.
On many occasions the military actions he spoke of them doing in europe were not even a part of mongol expansion plans so much as just a group of the tribes getting together to go and raid for booty. Much land taken in mongol conquest was by accident and then would be given over to the great khan. To ascribe any true military geniuse to ghengis and khublai i would think is less strategic and more the fact that they had the tech and methode superiority of there day and enough ruthlessness to exploit it to it's fullest. Just as had the romans before them, and Alexander before that.

Alexander the great? Without a doubt a great general and motivator. Tactician? Not really. A little known general named parmenion basicly planned all his campaigns and battles. As for him conquering the world as he knew it with only an army of 40 thousand, sorry it's fiction. The army he started out with was maybe only 40G strong, but by the time he finished adding all his other troops from the rest of greece, and what ever else he could find along the way, his force would on average be in the 60-100 thousand range.This number would fluctuate depending upon the amount of casualties taken as opposed to troops absorbed from which ever nation had just been conquered. Alexanders true geniuse was in being able to motivate and inspire loyalty in even the people he conquered! This was the main reason he forced cultural and racial integration wherever he went.

P.S just wanted to see if i could be as long winded as ichon!!

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Ichon
Ichon


Responsible
Famous Hero
posted August 03, 2001 09:37 PM

We'll see about that!

Well, I think you managed to be more long winded than me by a little bit, but that won't stand!

The Hapsburgs came to rule through almost entirely political means it's true, but at the same time they were vulnerable to the same means. Otto's legacy did last a fair number of years you could say, but not really as a formal Empire. Even as a de facto family run enterprise there was no real central authority and the family itself split very often, only to reunite it's true in the face of opposition. It lasted until WWI and somewhat the affects of it's unraveling also contributed to WWII.

Well, as for Vietnam- the Americans were never totally dedicated to victory it's ture, yet that doesn't dismiss the Vietnamese achievements entirely. If the air war had gone on with operation rolling thunder(first major air offensive)then perhaps it might have achieved more. Instead it only warned the Vietnamese of the need to aquire more anti-air weapons. The northern part of Vietnam was for years the most intensely fortified airspace in the world. What did the US raids succeed in? Wasting a huge amount of napalm in the jungles and pissing off the population whom the US was supposedly there to protect. Also in Hanoi itself the air raids accomplished only limited success. Compared to the tons of materiel dropped on Japan and Germany- Vietnam suffered far less. On the ground the Vietnamese did sustain substantial losses, but really the real genius of Minh was that he lost mostly Chinese 'volunteers' and southern rebels who were greatly distrusted anyway. Most of the norths regular soldiers didn't participate in any offensives outside of Tet and the fighting against French soldiers before the americans arrived and the final drive on Saigon. Plus some battles in isolated areas also. In fact, the largest success of the air raids was to force the Vietnamese to invent ways around moving en masse and during the day. That fact meant they never concentrated in large enough numbers for a decisive battle or defeat. Also the war fought in the political arena was masterful in large part, the only mistake being the treatment of the war prisoners.

As for WWII- Adolf Hitler was the Nazi party. I think there would have been a WWII without Hitler. The reason Germany rearmed so quickly was the broad support of the entire population and total opposition to the versailles treay. Hitler was clearly a madman, and his politics weren't that brilliant either, but he was a very good motivator and public speaker. If you watch his videos and understand German, there is just something memerorizing about the way he spoke. Of course many of his orders and ideas worried those who were aware of them, but Hitler's aides actually hid many of his more outrageous statements early on until after he was Chancellor. He was helped to power by the greed of those around him, but one thing Hitler was also good at was reading people- until his meglomania totally took over anyway, but he did pick people loyal either to him or to the Nazi party of which he was the titular head and which couldn't exist without him. The advent of the brownshirts was helped by Germany's strong nationalism, Hitler recruited many thugs into the ranks for the dirty work of Krytsalnacht and all the other daily atrocities against jews and those who opposed the Nazis. Germany was the dominate state in Europe, but after WWI was constrained in so many ways... there was bound to be conflict. If you read the memoirs of many of the generals on all sides of the treaty and even some few statesmen they all thought it only did one thing well, and that was to provoke a second war. The politicians ignored their warnings however. One thing people forget about Hitler was his constant vehemence against Communism. It is concievable that Germany could have had it's own revolution, it's remote but many Germans feared this idea anyway. Hitler's rampage especially pleased those in the military, but not many of them actually dreamed of of invading the Soviets, mostly the idea was the contain the Soviets within the present borders, because of the fear of what ended up happening after WWII, the Iron curtain and eastern europe falling under Soviet dominion for nigh onto half a century.

I don't attribute Hitler anything for the Ribbontrop-Moltav Pact which split Poland and brought France and England into the war. Stalin knew Hitler would provoke the western europeans and then he planned for the Soviets to reap the rewards of the fallout, he just was misinformed of the might of the German military(which actually was smaller and on paper less equipped than the Red Army). Stalin also never thought the German army capable of invading Russia so quickly or with such initial success. There are many documents around that showed Stalin beleived Hitler would eventually order an invasion or at least do something that Stalin could use as a pretext to enter the war, but only after France and England were worn out- the rapid fall of France and the British disaster at Dunkirk stunned the world, and pretty much made mincemeat of Stalin's initial plans- however, because of the Pact between Russia and germany, the allies were forced into the position of courting Stalin rather than condemning him for joining with the enemy. If the Soviets had backed the Germans England would have fallen for sure. Of course that wasn't very likely but those were very scary days for the English with the unthinkable happening everywhere so they thought it might actually be possible, or at least they had a dim awareness of an eventual push into Germany as had happend in WWI, but with a totally unstoppable Soviet army coming the other way and this time not retreating, which was eventually what did happen, just years and millions of lives later then Stalin planned or the allies feared.

German Tanks- contrary to popular belief the German tanks weren't superior throughout the war. The Soviets had several tank models that were better in armor and firepower at various tims, and almost all Soviet models were more reliable which was a huge advantage on the eastern front with miles and miles to cross breakdowns were the stuff of nightmare. The main things the Soviets lacked at first were good tank commanders or a tactical doctrine combining all the forces. Even at the end of the war Soviet doctrine was pretty standard, huge artillery barrage then general advance with as many men as possible- this method of war with a few exceptions(Zhukov some other soviet commanders also, and the insertions of Soviet troops through German lines in the winter with great organization of the defences of key cities(Leningrad, Moscow, Stalingrad...)prolonged the war in Russia longer than it might have gone, but what the Russians lacked there the Germans had in abundance. Also the German army was much more motivated and trained than the Soviets. Stalin had been murdering dissadents for years and until the end of the war Germany had about 200,000 russian soldiers who joined to fight against the Soviet system. Even more Russians helped the Germans at first, look in the pictures of those times and you will see german troops marching into Russian towns to be greeted by flowers and blown kisses just as they had been greeted in Czechlosovakia and Austria. Of course the Nazi idea that slavs were inherently inferior and the SS brigads Hitler ordered in behind the frontlines quickly changed potential german allies into enemies, also a skillful Soviet propaganda campaign.

Persia did have a long empire, and probably should be included along with the other great Empires- afterall the first nation states which competed so fiercly arose in and around Persia.

The Mongols- it's true that many of the Mongols in europe were raiders and not conqueors, but those were the ones which came across the Russian steppes, the Mongols who came from central Asia had leaders from the Khan's own family and the way they organized states with local rulers and actually left behind administrators argues for an ambition to empire. Still, you are mostly right about how their empire started- but I disagree with your idea of Ghengis as a military leader- there aren't many records about how he achieved dominance over all the Mongol tribes in central asia by such a young age, but the few records that exist show it was through war. To fight the best armies in the world and win, then go out and beat half the world takes more than mere technical superiority or military ruthlesness.

Alexander- well here you are partly right and partly wrong, Alexander didn't organize all the strategies for every battle his soldiers fought, but he did lead them, and his use of calvary(Alexander was probably the first European to understand the potential of calvary)won him many victories. Of course as his empire grew he had to leave behind garrisons in every area, soon his army shrank until when he finally crossed into India there were barely 30,000 left and so the legend of his own troops forcing him to turn back.  I totally agree that Alexanders greatest legacy was motivating the native populations of the lands he gained- and spreading the gains of Greek culture at the same time learning from the gains in the native cultures. HIs empire was one which probably furthered human civilization which isn't something you can say about many conqueors.

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Redstorm_Ent...
Redstorm_Entertainment


Hired Hero
Entertainer
posted August 03, 2001 11:16 PM

Thanks Ichon for the 3 page book report nicely done (_8^(0)
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(_8^(I)

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Sha_Men
Sha_Men


Responsible
Supreme Hero
Jack-Of-No-Trades
posted August 04, 2001 06:30 AM

Their finest hour...

Vietman war was really big mistake by americans. Everything went wrong for them. First of all this little theory of domination is really straight from the book "how to fight in cold war and live in illusion". USA was so scared about the Soviet Union and China that they had to invent some kind of war in Vietnam. They just heritaged the position of France and didn't understand what kind of country Vietnam really were. First it didn't help send military advisors as South Korean army had no effort at all and nobody even knew what they wanted. Then send some "green" soldiers to die for their country as USA did, never really helped to succeed in war. USA lost the war both strategically and politically. It wasn't only those all protests against the war. It could be said that USA did almost all the mistakes to fighting in hostile country. Ichon here mentioned already them so no need to repeat...

I think the beginning of the WW2 was critical for the things to come. These are some points of mine which would have changed the war almost before it really begun:

1. Ribbontrop-Moltav Pact
2. Winter war (Soviet attack to Finland)
3. Operation Sea Lion
4. Italy

1. What would have happen if this pact wouldn't have come true? Would Hitler have such a courage that he would have attacked anyway to Western Europe or would he have turned immediately against Soviets or waited perhaps? Despite that pact was only small paper nothing else for both I think Hitler heavily trusted to it or at least hoped that nothing would happen before Western Europe had fallen. Maybe Hitler was already madman before war, I have read psychology and had some studies about Hitler. He had surely problems in his childhood, problems with jewish! art teacher and traumatic experiences of Germanys loss in WW1. But I think in the beginning of war he had his intelligence left and did many things politically that would have never succeeded if done somebody else. However the constant pressure of leadership and the dream of controlling whole world make him finally insane. He did eat pills like food in the final parts of war maybe even before and if you look at medicine they used those days it possible it changed his whole view of world and led to mistakes like in the Eastern Front when commanding germans to stop before Moscow.

2. I did listed this not because of my patriotism but because if soviets would have taken Finland they would have gained chance to attack Sweden and also Norway. This would have lead Germany into real trouble as they wouldn't have the north safe as it were. Also Soviet Union learned many ways to fight from Winter war that was propably very important in winter fighting against Germany.

3. Germany attacked british with almost all airpower they had. Something went wrong. Germany hadn't clear plan what to attack in airraids and couldn't concentrate into essential, destroying the defenses of british air force.
"Never been so many been in dept to so few" these were the words of Churchill (I'm not sure about were these his exact words) about british fighterpilots. And I couldn't agree more. If Germany would have won first the air war and then finally launched operation Sea Lion in it's full scale it's very possible England would have fallen. This would have mean lot to Hitler and Nazi Germany as they would have get the chance to concentrate into Soviet Union. Of course at the same time Stalin could have launched attack to Germany. How about United States? Would they have joined the war and fighted side by side with british? Because of all these factors Battle of Britain was surely one of the "turning points" of war.

4. If somewhere Germany had problems that was mediterrian. Italian forces were so weak (not naval forces included) that they couldn't take one piece of land without huge losses or help of Germany. I think Italian success early in the war in Mediterrian would entirely changed the whole war as they could have controlled the area from Tunisia to Egypt. Italy didn't have really any war heroes in the war or I have entirely skipped them when reading...
Anyone know any?

These are of course cases that changed how war would go in the beginning of war, later on Eastern Front was the essential element how war would end.
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Ichon
Ichon


Responsible
Famous Hero
posted August 04, 2001 04:39 PM

Sha-man

Just to touch on two points;

Battle of Britain- here again Hitler made very bad orders. Even Goring wanted to destroy the defences of the RAF first, but he didn't protest Hitler's plans to bomb the cities. The first cross channel raids did hit air strips, fuel and ammo depo's and many RAF targets, after two weeks of this Hitler ordered to bomb the cities. Totally ruined the Luftwaffe. First of all Germany never had long range bombers that would be capable of enough destruction to make city raids worthwhile. It's fighter-bombers were designed for more precise attacks, against tanks, airstrips, ships etc- 1/4 of the RAF was destroyed on the ground in the first two weeks. That alone lets you know if Hitler hadn't interfered the RAF would have been gone in less than a month as a signifigant threat. The landing craft and men for Operation Sea Lion actually were gathered, the British had barely a few regiments of infantry to defend the home island at that time. The only problem was the landing craft were totally succeptible to air or sea attack, and the RAF flying recon for Britains superior navy would have ended the invasion at sea. Destroy the RAF and the British navy couldn't leave port or at least enter the channel without risking destruction. Instead the Luftwaffe lost 2/3's of it's bombers and hundreds or thousands of it's best pilots who were better trained than the RAF initially. The RAF did have superior fighters, but only in altitude attainable and range, German fighter were faster and had more firepower. This decision and Hitler changing orders of Rundstedt and Manstein on eastern front a year later caused the German military more losses than anything except Stalingrad. It gave the Allies air superiority for the rest of the war as the Luftaffe could never produce enough planes, or pilots capable of flying after the losses in Britain. The Germans had jet fighters in WWII- before any other nation, not in large numbers but of the two engagements I am aware of right before the end of the war, less than a squadron of german fighters downed two dozen allied planes in only a few hours. The allies simply couldn't shoot them down unless they got lucky. Of course this isn't really related to Battle of Britain as at that time the German jets were barely off the drawing board, but that also is Hitler's fault, he thought the war would be over in two year. If Germany had entered the war prepared for even a 5 year conflict, things might have gone different even with Hitler issuing insane orders. It's lucky for Britain they fought a madman.  

Italy... I think this is my favorite whatif of WWII. So many thing went wrong for Italy it's amazing. First of all Italy had a large navy, it combined with what was captured from France was actually larger than the British navy in everything except aircraft carriers, but the British only had a few down there for most of the war. I think Italy had a few light carriers, but really they were only useful for recon as Italian planes were useles versus RAF fighters. However, Battleship tonnage was tremendous, and when Italy entered the war the RAF hadn't learned anything from the Pacific war yet... the problem was in the minds of the Italian military who were so scared to the British they would flee almost an chance of an engagement. The Italian army wasn't much better. Except for a few men who fought with under Rommel and became something of an elite unit(at least Rommel convinced them they were)hardly any of the Italians wanted to be in a war. The germans did setup some schools for the Italian military namely airborne and demolition schools. The Italian sapper engineers were actually very good and contributed many times to the war, the airborne also were not as good as the Germans, but not much worse either, the problem there was the small numbers available. They were mostly used for parades and demonstration jumps for Italian brass most of the war.

Some Italian miny submarines are also famous, most have heard the stories about them.  Also some other Italian subs scored the few navy victories for the Italians in WWII. Part of the problem of the Italians was obvious when they were defeated by Greece even before Italy entered the war. The Italians actually had more mechanized infantry than the Germans for a long time, it was just never used. If the Italians had even been aggresive, no need for them even to win, but if they had bothered to attack the British they could have so frustrated them that the Germans would have won in Africa. It's really tiny the hold the British kept onto everything in the Meditaranean. A nudge here or there would have been all it took to make it collapse. The other thing about Italy is that Spain probably didn't enter the war as a result of Italy's alliance with Germany. If Spain had entered the war as an Axis country Gibraltar would have fallen to the axis and sealed the British doom.


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pluvious
pluvious


Promising
Adventuring Hero
posted August 04, 2001 06:03 PM

Defrini, that was insulting.  Completely wrong?  Probably not a wise choice of phrases when discussing something in the past that many people have different theories about.  

Maybe you shoud read my post again also.  I was simply stating that one of the roman empires reasons for falling was that rome lost a sense of itself.  This factor ties into others like economics, having to constantly wage war and deal with masses of immigrants, as well as others.  I was pointing this out as a cause leading to an effect.  I could, however, be wrong about the cause/effect relationship.  But that was not the nature of your argument against my opinion so your "completely wrong" statement appears extreme and unnecessary.  

Maybe you were upset about my german comment?  If so then I see where you are coming from...otherwise I do not.
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...Pluvious...
-The Storm Before the Calm-

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Defreni
Defreni


Promising
Famous Hero
posted August 06, 2001 06:01 AM

Well Pluvious, as I wrote in my initial post, no insults was meant.
I just pointed out how strange ur post was to me. First u give reason for the Roman empires downfall, which if not completely wrong, then at least not recognized by any respected historians (Off course new research may prove me, and everybody else wrong on that point, but I doubt that very much).
And then u proceed to speak of poor taste in discussing the second world war. This discussion has been of a completely military nature, and not one have said anything positive of Hitler or Nazism. I just wanted to point that out to u, but if u did get insulted please accept my apologies.
And yes, Im one off those guys who believe u can speak of completely wrongs when u discuss topics like history or philosophy. Might be more difficult to speak of completely rights, but thats a whole different matter.

As far as german armour being superior during ww2, a small note of some interest. The French tanks was actually better unit for unit than the Germans during the fall of France in 1940. The reason ppl think the Germans had so much better tanks was purely how they used them, and how well trained their troops where. ( Well I think Im completely right here )

Defreni
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