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could the nazis have invaded England?

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Topic: could the nazis have invaded England?
Posted By: Guess
Subject: could the nazis have invaded England?
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 00:38
If Hitler did not change strategies and attack cities and continued to hit military targets, could the Germans have been able to invade Britain?

Could the British navy have stopped the invasion?
Would the Germany air force be able to hold off the British navy?
Did the British navy have any large air craft carriers like the Americans and Japanese?
Would the British have used poison gas to defend their island?
Would the Soviets have attacked the Germans while they were bogged down in Britan?



Replies:
Posted By: Julius Augustus
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 00:50
Depends, I think Stalin would have kept the Treaty with Germany concerning borders and not attack because it would have been costly for him during this time, it was only when Germany attacked Russia did the USSR retaliated. If Hitler would have focused westward, I think things might have been different. 


Posted By: red clay
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 01:21
The German Army had little or no experience with large scale amphibious operations.  Some contend that the operation would have been a disaster no matter the conditions or having control of the air.  Consider the effort that went into the Normandy landings.  The secondary support ships alone numbered more than the entire German navy.
 
 


Posted By: Darius of Parsa
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 01:23

I know little about the World War II era, but with the information that I have seen, the German war machine could have annexed the island known as Britain. The problems came for the Germans when Hitler attacked Russia. I agree with Julius, if Hitler aimed at attacking Britian instead of world wide domination, the outcome would be much the opposite.



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Posted By: Paul
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 01:35
Could the British navy have stopped the invasion?
Britain did, it's called the Battle of Britain.

Would the Germany air force be able to hold off the British navy?
First it would have had to destroy the RAF, but it lost to them. Hence the Battle of Britain.

Did the British navy have any large air craft carriers like the Americans and Japanese?        Loads, but sea based aircraft were unecessary so close to land.

Would the British have used poison gas to defend their island?
It's possbile. It wasn't particularly effective in WWI.
 
Would the Soviets have attacked the Germans while they were bogged down in Britan?       It was impossible for the Germans to get to Britain, they lost the battle of Britain. However the Soviets were building up to attack Germany but would have liked to wait a few years. Each month that went by Soviet production was catching German up. The germans knew this so started an early war.
 
 


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Posted By: pikeshot1600
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 01:38
Originally posted by Darius of Parsa Darius of Parsa wrote:

I know little about the World War II era, but with the information that I have seen, the German war machine could have annexed the island known as Britain. The problems came for the Germans when Hitler attacked Russia. I agree with Julius, if Hitler aimed at attacking Britian instead of world wide domination, the outcome would be much the opposite.

 
red clay said it well.  The Germans had neither the resources, the naval assets nor the experience to pull off Operation Sea Lion.
 
My thought has always been that Germany lost the war when she attacked Soviet Russia.  Others have made the argument that she lost the instant she left an undefeated world empire at her rear, supported by the resources of the Americas. 
 
When you consider the pluses and minuses, Germany's moves, against opponents with far greater resources than Germany could ever match, amounted to suicide.  Germany was doomed from the beginning.
 
 


Posted By: Guess
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 02:13
the germans lost the battle of britain in large part because they changed strategies and attacked civilian targets farther from the continent. didn't the germans have the british down to 100 serviceiable aircraft before they changed strategies?

what if the germans didn't change strategies.


Posted By: kafkas
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 04:37
Also the Luftwaffe didn't have radar at the time I believe while the RAF did...Well like someone else said before, Operation Sea Lion failed, and even if they managed to finish the RAF they'd still have to deal with the British Navy. 

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Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 10:58
Originally posted by Guess Guess wrote:

If Hitler did not change strategies and attack cities and continued to hit military targets, could the Germans have been able to invade Britain?

No, the British were planning an invasion and they were prepared for it.

Originally posted by Guess Guess wrote:


Could the British navy have stopped the invasion?

Well, if 16 aircrafts brought down the Prince of Wales,






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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: gcle2003
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 12:13
Originally posted by Guess Guess wrote:

the germans lost the battle of britain in large part because they changed strategies and attacked civilian targets farther from the continent.
Southampton, Plymouth and London are further from the Continent?  The Germans switched strategies because they were being so heavily defeated in daytime raids. The Battle of Britain was already over by then.
Quote
didn't the germans have the british down to 100 serviceiable aircraft before they changed strategies?
No, not at all. Britain was outproducing Germany with aircraft since the beginning: 8,000 in 1939, 15,000 in 1940 and 20,000 in 1941, against Germany's 8,000, 11,000 and 12,000 respectively. Moreover US companies like Lockheed and Curtis were already producing aircraft for the RAF before the war started.
 
Not only that, Britain was not losing as many pilots as the Luftwaffe was, since they were parachuting or crash landing on home soil. They could fly again, whereas Luftwaffe pilots were gone for the duration even if they lived through the crash.
Quote
what if the germans didn't change strategies.
They'd have gone on being hammered into oblivion.


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Citizen of Ankh-Morpork
Never believe anything until it has been officially denied - Sir Humphrey Appleby, 1984.


Posted By: longshanks31
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 16:29
germany had no real chance in either direction, an invasion would have been a distaster for them, and going to russia we know about.
There best best would have been consolodating what they had and defending it until the british lost interest, afterall in spite of the navy we had, we couldnt have liberated europe on our own, merely defend our own borders.
They overstretch themselves, russia and the british empire were too big a task.


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long live the king of bhutan


Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 17:15
The problem Britain had wasn't with aircraft numbers or production; there was simply a shortage of pilots to fly them.

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Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 17:17
Originally posted by longshanks31 longshanks31 wrote:

germany had no real chance in either direction, an invasion would have been a distaster for them, 


They had a chance: increase the number of U-boats so that the supplies and convoys from the USA would be brought down. More aircrafts.
The Germans had time to wait, the whole north see was in range of their bombers. No major treat in Europe except the USSR, but they would have not attacked (pact of non-aggression). Some more V1, V2 and the whole Britain would be Coventrated.

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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: Ahmed The Fighter
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 19:42

it is hard to give answer because after dunkirk evacuation many things happened,all the resources mentioned that the Germans forces were nearest to the dunkirk than the British forces they were easily could cut off the retreating line of the Britishs but they didn't, a ristrict orders came from hitler, the message was clear from the whermacht keep your position don't occupy dunkirk and do scout operation only.
if the German destroy the british expedition forces they maybe conquer the Island(maybe).
Britain will be defeceless the morale is very low due to the defeat and the surrender of the whole british forces as well as the using of the german airborne forces instead of consuming it at arnhim in holland with no reasoable cause only the marshes.
so the full attack by small boats,luftwaffe,airborne and a full scale attack(suicidal) from the German navy to reduce the pressure on the other forces,maybe it could be happened as well as another scenario in dunkirk.
but hitler let the british retreated in Dunkirk and postponded lion sea operation many times for political reasons cause he want to make peace with GB not to crush it,but he made one of his first mistakes in the war.
so who was expecting that the Germn will cross the ardine and crush France so easily.
answer no one  even the german so I mentiond maybe above it just theories.

 


 



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"May the eyes of cowards never sleep"
Khalid Bin Walid


Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 20:11
Originally posted by Ahmed The Fighter Ahmed The Fighter wrote:

 he want to make peace with GB not to crush it



Yes, that was the main reason why actually they did not pushed forward.


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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: longshanks31
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 20:33
Originally posted by Illirac Illirac wrote:

Originally posted by longshanks31 longshanks31 wrote:

germany had no real chance in either direction, an invasion would have been a distaster for them, 


They had a chance: increase the number of U-boats so that the supplies and convoys from the USA would be brought down. More aircrafts.
The Germans had time to wait, the whole north see was in range of their bombers. No major treat in Europe except the USSR, but they would have not attacked (pact of non-aggression). Some more V1, V2 and the whole Britain would be Coventrated.
 
The germans had nowhere near the right types and quantities of kit to do the job of invading britain, if the english hadnt been there, the story would be very different, but as it is the channel is worth a million men to us in terms of defence.
 
The most likely result if germany had left russia alone, would have been stalemate with britain, germany wouldnt have been able to invade us, and an invasion of europe was beyond us.
Operation sealion was abandoned for very good reasons, in many ways the war might have been won for the allies quicker if the germans had tried to invade, a chance for britain to inflict serious equiptment loss on the invader.
 
Gas was going to be used, it was in the plans anyway.
But i dont think that would make much difference, gas is not very efficient, in terms of an attempted operation sealion, i think it would have had limited use.


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long live the king of bhutan


Posted By: deadkenny
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 20:35
I believe there was another thread more or less on this topic.  In any case, IMHO by the time the Germans 'switched' targets in their air attacks it was already too late for the Germans to successfully invade.  The weather was worsening and the British had already had time to re-equip the forces evacuated from Dunkirk (sans their equipment) and prepare their defenses.  The potential loss of the BEF (if Guderian had been allowed to 'cut off' the BEF from Dunkirk) might have opened a 'window of opportunity' for the Germans.  One should appreciate that the total forces (on both sides) in an invasion of Britain in 1940 would have been much smaller than D-Day.  The Germans would have been (relatively) much more dependant upon air lifted forces and supplies than the Allies were with the D-Day landings.  In any case, the real point of vulnerability of the British was July (according to the British themselves, and presumably they knew).  The Germans weren't even attacking in earnest until August.  By Sept., the window of opportunity was pretty well closed.  The switch of targets was effectively a recognition of that reality, and simply represented a last shot at 'terror bombing' Britain into quitting the war.
 
If one wishes to construct a scenario where the Germans have a realistic chance at successfully landing in Britain, it would probably have to involve Guderian 'catching' most or all of the BEF at Dunkirk.  Then the Germans would have had to start preparations (e.g. conversion of river barges to landing craft) much earlier, i.e. in May.  The aerial portion of the Battle of Britain needed to start by the end of June (following the 'surrender' of France) or early July at the latest, with the landings themselves occurring in July.  The objective of the Luftwaffe needed to be to render the RAF Fighter command temporarily incapable of intervening effectively against the landings, not to 'destroy' the RAF completely (an unrealistic objective, given the 'depth' of Fighter command).  Of course the RN would attempt to intervene to defeat the invasion.  The Germans would have had to use a combination of minefields and divebombing to fend off the RN.  It would have been a tough fight, with heavy losses and the outcome far from certain for either side.


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"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." George Santayana


Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 20:59
Originally posted by longshanks31 longshanks31 wrote:

 The most likely result if germany had left russia alone, would have been stalemate with britain,
 

I don't think so, if they had left Russia alone and continued to attack and bomb, Britain would probably be defeated. Yes, war are not win by bombing, but they could prepare for a full scale invasion.
Originally posted by longshanks31 longshanks31 wrote:


 germany wouldnt have been able to invade us,

With time they would, Britain was surrounded by Germans: France, Norway, and the U-boats where every where.

Originally posted by longshanks31 longshanks31 wrote:


Operation sealion was abandoned for very good reasons,

The reason was: Hitler wanted to conquer all the territory up to the Ural mountain so that he may endure a longer war. And the other reason was that (as ahmed already wrote) he did not wanted to destroy the English.


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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 21:00
But then, the weather saved them from the invasion as it was getting worse. 

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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: Paul
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 22:01
Originally posted by deadkenny deadkenny wrote:

I believe there was another thread more or less on this topic.  In any case, IMHO by the time the Germans 'switched' targets in their air attacks it was already too late for the Germans to successfully invade.  The weather was worsening and the British had already had time to re-equip the forces evacuated from Dunkirk (sans their equipment) and prepare their defenses.  The potential loss of the BEF (if Guderian had been allowed to 'cut off' the BEF from Dunkirk) might have opened a 'window of opportunity' for the Germans.  One should appreciate that the total forces (on both sides) in an invasion of Britain in 1940 would have been much smaller than D-Day.  The Germans would have been (relatively) much more dependant upon air lifted forces and supplies than the Allies were with the D-Day landings.  In any case, the real point of vulnerability of the British was July (according to the British themselves, and presumably they knew).  The Germans weren't even attacking in earnest until August.  By Sept., the window of opportunity was pretty well closed.  The switch of targets was effectively a recognition of that reality, and simply represented a last shot at 'terror bombing' Britain into quitting the war.
 
If one wishes to construct a scenario where the Germans have a realistic chance at successfully landing in Britain, it would probably have to involve Guderian 'catching' most or all of the BEF at Dunkirk.  Then the Germans would have had to start preparations (e.g. conversion of river barges to landing craft) much earlier, i.e. in May.  The aerial portion of the Battle of Britain needed to start by the end of June (following the 'surrender' of France) or early July at the latest, with the landings themselves occurring in July.  The objective of the Luftwaffe needed to be to render the RAF Fighter command temporarily incapable of intervening effectively against the landings, not to 'destroy' the RAF completely (an unrealistic objective, given the 'depth' of Fighter command).  Of course the RN would attempt to intervene to defeat the invasion.  The Germans would have had to use a combination of minefields and divebombing to fend off the RN.  It would have been a tough fight, with heavy losses and the outcome far from certain for either side.
 
One of the reasons for the delay was the higher than predicted damage done by the Luftwaffe by the French. Add this to the unexpected damage done over Dunkirk, the Luftwaffe had to recuperate, this was part of the reason for the delay. If Guderian had gone for Dunkirk the Huricanes would have inflicted an awful lot more damage on the Luftwaffe. Could an early channel crossing even been thinkable after that.
 
 


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Posted By: Maharbbal
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 22:06
In my opinion we are giving two groups of people way too much credits:
- Fighter pilots. The Luftwaffe had proved at Dunkirk a European air force was not able to prevent an amphibian operation.
- General. They should have known that fighter pilots were not that good.

We are referring to the Japanese navy pilots. But the guys of the RAF were not the over trained ship-killers that attacked Pearl Harbour and sunk the Prince of Wales. The Operation Pedestal and the convoys to Russia or the Tokyo express in Guadacanal are good evidence that when the Navy wanted to go through, it did go through.

True, the same holds for the RN that could have crushed anything the Nazi threw at her. But what the Germans needed to do was merely to establish a bridge head. After that the Kriegsmarine + Luftwaffe + UBoats + mines + land-based artillery could have kept opened a safe corridor in the Channel.

True, the Brits could have won at home. But the French and the Poles also were playing at home and had been badly defeated. The BEF's actions in France don't really show that they could have been a strong opponent to Guderian and Rommel. The Brits fancy themselves as special and think the last infant would have become a guerrillero throwing Molotov cocktails in baby bottles to the Panzers. But the experience in the Channel Islands points to a different direction.

England would have collapsed. It might have taken some time due to the difficulties related to the crossing of the Channel, but the Huns would have gone through and taken Edinburgh by Christmas 1940 at the latest. Of course some amazing event could have happened, you know the silly mistake that destroys the best laid plan, but the same could have happened to the English, so…

In my opinion, the Nazi didn't do it because they were afraid. The Germans had lost less than 20,000 men since the beginning of the war. 1940 is not 1943, they were not ready to sacrifice a fourth of the army to save the 3 others as they did in Stalingrad. The British propaganda had done a wonderful work at convincing the German soldiers that seal lion would be a blood bath.

Ultimately, it was a mistake since much less German soldiers would have died in the invasion of England than did in the later battles against the English. I am sure the German commanders would have come out with a brilliant plan to overcome the English and won once more.


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I am a free donkey!


Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 22:17

Obviously nothing can be certain, but the comparison of miniscule islands without any hope of supply or support is incomparable to an operation in Great Britain.  The Nazis would have been pushed back into the water.



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Posted By: deadkenny
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 22:35
Originally posted by Maharbbal Maharbbal wrote:

In my opinion we are giving two groups of people way too much credits:
- Fighter pilots. The Luftwaffe had proved at Dunkirk a European air force was not able to prevent an amphibian operation.
- General. They should have known that fighter pilots were not that good.

We are referring to the Japanese navy pilots. But the guys of the RAF were not the over trained ship-killers that attacked Pearl Harbour and sunk the Prince of Wales. The Operation Pedestal and the convoys to Russia or the Tokyo express in Guadacanal are good evidence that when the Navy wanted to go through, it did go through.
 
But it wasn't 'fighters' that would have been attacking German shipping in any case.  The RN would have been attacking the German invasion forces.  The Luftwaffe needed to attack the RN with their bombers.  The RAF Fighter Command would have been trying to keep the Luftwaffe bombers away from the RN ships.


Originally posted by Maharbbal Maharbbal wrote:


In my opinion, the Nazi didn't do it because they were afraid. The Germans had lost less than 20,000 men since the beginning of the war. 1940 is not 1943, they were not ready to sacrifice a fourth of the army to save the 3 others as they did in Stalingrad. The British propaganda had done a wonderful work at convincing the German soldiers that seal lion would be a blood bath.

Ultimately, it was a mistake since much less German soldiers would have died in the invasion of England than did in the later battles against the English. I am sure the German commanders would have come out with a brilliant plan to overcome the English and won once more.
 
German losses in the invasion of Poland in 1939 were approx. 44,000, including over 16,000 dead.  In the invasion of France in 1940 the German losses were approx. 155,000 including about 45,000 dead.  You are rather understating German losses up to that point, and I believe are underestimating Hitler's willingness to accept losses.  Hitler would have been more concerned about the potential political 'damage' that attempting and failing an invasion of Britain would have entailed.


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"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." George Santayana


Posted By: deadkenny
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 22:39
Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

Obviously nothing can be certain, but the comparison of miniscule islands without any hope of supply or support is incomparable to an operation in Great Britain.  The Nazis would have been pushed back into the water.

 
It depends on when the invasion took place, and what the British had to repell it.  In the historical situation in Sept., I agree entirely.  If the Germans had captured the BEF at Dunkirk and invaded Britain in July, what would the British have had to push the Germans back into the Channel?


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"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." George Santayana


Posted By: Paul
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 22:54
Originally posted by deadkenny deadkenny wrote:

But it wasn't 'fighters' that would have been attacking German shipping in any case.  The RN would have been attacking the German invasion forces.  The Luftwaffe needed to attack the RN with their bombers.  The RAF Fighter Command would have been trying to keep the Luftwaffe bombers away from the RN ships.
 
And 6000 RAF bombers attacking the open top barges.
 
Germany needed to knock out the RAF fighters so their own fighters could engage the bombers.
 
 


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Posted By: deadkenny
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 23:06
Originally posted by Paul Paul wrote:

  
And 6000 RAF bombers attacking the open top barges.
 
Germany needed to knock out the RAF fighters so their own fighters could engage the bombers.
 
 
 
I don't doubt for a moment that the British would have thrown 'everything' at the Germans in order to stop them.  However, the RAF Bomber Command was intended to be a 'strategic' bombing force, so it is questionable how effective they would have been against shipping.  The Americans similarly found 'high altitude' level bombing was ineffective against shipping at sea.  British bombing efforts against the the converted barges in port was somewhat effective though.


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"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." George Santayana


Posted By: Paul
Date Posted: 05-Apr-2008 at 23:28
They weren't all strategic, don't forget the Bristol Blenheim's.
 
Also the Wellington's were anti-submarine bombers, so maybe able to better a barge or two.
 
 
 


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Posted By: Maharbbal
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 00:50
Hum, remember the flying circus (not the monty python, the wwi tactics). The one who attacks has a logical numerical lead.
Some of the airfields would have been captured by paratroopers, diversions would have fooled the Brits into sending their part of their planes somewhere else, part of the crossing would take place at night (no risks of being bombarded then), etc. The invading force would thus only face 10 to 30% of the RAF while itself being at full force. For two or three critical hours, the Brits would have been wiped off the skies. And even if they hadn't most of their planes would be busy fighting the planes and thus would have no impact on land.

If the Germans had tried to send say 2 divisions as a first wave and 1 airborne they could have been successful. Based on Omaha Beach, Market Garden, Crete and Tarawa, heavy losses don't necessarily take off the fighting abilities of an invasion force. It is likely that the first day 10,000 men could have landed and still be ready to fight by midnight. Once the breach is made: blitzkrieg… And the BEF had proved to be incapable of facing that victoriously (and they would again in Africa and Greece).

DK you were right I was mistaking Poland and the whole 39-40 period. You are also right, Hitler might have dread above all the risk of defeat, but still, fear may have been the reason why they didn't dare.


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I am a free donkey!


Posted By: gcle2003
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 10:49
Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

The problem Britain had wasn't with aircraft numbers or production; there was simply a shortage of pilots to fly them.
 
While that's true, the situation was even worse for the Luftwaffe. In fact the British advantage in this respect was one of its major ones.


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Citizen of Ankh-Morpork
Never believe anything until it has been officially denied - Sir Humphrey Appleby, 1984.


Posted By: gcle2003
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 10:56
Originally posted by Illirac Illirac wrote:

Originally posted by longshanks31 longshanks31 wrote:

germany had no real chance in either direction, an invasion would have been a distaster for them, 


They had a chance: increase the number of U-boats so that the supplies and convoys from the USA would be brought down.
They tried that in WWI. It brought the USA into the war.
(As a matter of fact, the British tried something similar in the war against Napoleon, and that brought the US into the war on Napoleon's side.)
Quote
More aircrafts.
???
The British had more aircraft, were producing them faster and also buying them in from the US (and after the first months of the war, pilots from the Commonwealth and from eastern Europe (mostly Poland) were also coming on stream. The longer that went on the greater Britain's air superiority would have been.
Quote
The Germans had time to wait, the whole north see was in range of their bombers. No major treat in Europe except the USSR, but they would have not attacked (pact of non-aggression). Some more V1, V2 and the whole Britain would be Coventrated.
The V2 was dangerous because it was difficult to defend against. But as an aggressive weapon it was useless because not targetable. All it did was knock down houses and kill civilians. (And of course the V2 bases were in range of British fighters and bombers.)


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Citizen of Ankh-Morpork
Never believe anything until it has been officially denied - Sir Humphrey Appleby, 1984.


Posted By: Paul
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 13:00
Originally posted by Maharbbal Maharbbal wrote:

Hum, remember the flying circus (not the monty python, the wwi tactics). The one who attacks has a logical numerical lead.
Some of the airfields would have been captured by paratroopers, diversions would have fooled the Brits into sending their part of their planes somewhere else, part of the crossing would take place at night (no risks of being bombarded then), etc. The invading force would thus only face 10 to 30% of the RAF while itself being at full force. For two or three critical hours, the Brits would have been wiped off the skies. And even if they hadn't most of their planes would be busy fighting the planes and thus would have no impact on land.
 
 
Very exciting and pure speculation....
 
.....Nice storyline though. Are you writng a screenplay?
 
 
 


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Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 13:30
Originally posted by deadkenny deadkenny wrote:

Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

Obviously nothing can be certain, but the comparison of miniscule islands without any hope of supply or support is incomparable to an operation in Great Britain.  The Nazis would have been pushed back into the water.

 
It depends on when the invasion took place, and what the British had to repell it.  In the historical situation in Sept., I agree entirely.  If the Germans had captured the BEF at Dunkirk and invaded Britain in July, what would the British have had to push the Germans back into the Channel?


Yes and my inclination is that even with the annihilation of the BEF a Nazi invasion could have been fought off.  A Nazi Invasion would not be a surprise attack like Omaha etc were - its landing location would be predictable.  And I don't know whether you have seen the Kentish coastline or not, but it's not the most hospitable to amphibious assault.   The RAF could provide enough air support  to keep the Luftwaffe busy and the Royal navy would pummel the Germans in the channel.

German paratroop planes would get intercepted by the RAF and/or the troopers would land - occupy some town or village, get surrounded and destroyed while their supporting amphibious forces would barely make it to any beach.


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Posted By: Cryptic
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 14:43
And what about the Home Fleet?  What would be the effect of even a few heavy units firing on the improvised barges?
 
German Naval Heavy Units could not stop the better trained and better led British Fleet. There were very few U-Boats available to protect the invasion fleet and even then, high speed warships are difficult to target, especialy when screened by Anti Submarine patrols, and they can absorb more than one Torpedo hit.
 
Likewise the ability of the luftwafe to protect the invasion fleet was very limited. Not only would the British fleet be overflown by the RAF, but German pilot lacked training in sea attacks.


Posted By: red clay
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 16:46
Originally posted by Paul Paul wrote:

Originally posted by deadkenny deadkenny wrote:

But it wasn't 'fighters' that would have been attacking German shipping in any case.  The RN would have been attacking the German invasion forces.  The Luftwaffe needed to attack the RN with their bombers.  The RAF Fighter Command would have been trying to keep the Luftwaffe bombers away from the RN ships.
 
And 6000 RAF bombers attacking the open top barges.
 
Germany needed to knock out the RAF fighters so their own fighters could engage the bombers.
 
 
 
 
6,000 RAF bombers?  Even after the 8th Air force arrived there weren't that many bombers available, let alone the RAF on it's own.
 
 
The Nazis couldn't have, wouldn't have, invaded England.  One reason, one word, Fuel.
They lacked any intelligent means of providing a steady supply of fuel for their mechanized units and they knew it.  They also knew that without the Mechanized units they had no chance.   England relied solely upon import for their fuel so there wasn't anything to rely on by capture.  They would have had to transport it by tanker across the Channel.  In theory the Brits wouldn't have had to go after anything else, just concentrate on the fuel ships.  In short time the German army would have run dry, and their luck would have run out.
 
The Allies recognized this problem also.  Their solution was to use the same technology as was used for the Trans Atlantic Cable and laid a flexible pipeline under the Channel, terminating in France.  Amazingly this only took about 10 days to accomplish.
 
 


Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 17:46
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

The British had more aircraft, were producing them faster

Yes, and where have they producing it? In all of its empire: India, Africa, etc. How many were they producing at home? by the 1944 the German production of aircraft was double then that of the Brits, so they could easily have that production in 1940 if they were planning to invade. The question was: could the nazis have invaded England?
Answer: if they would have planned it from the beginning, they would, and probably would conquer it. Since they were not planning they did not, and did not conquer it.


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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 17:47
Originally posted by Cryptic Cryptic wrote:

German Naval Heavy Units could not stop the better trained and better led British Fleet.
 


I wonder, why were the English so afraid of the German fleet then?


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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 18:05
Why wouldn't they be?  That is why they made a point of destroying the Bismarck, in addition to obliterating the Vichy Navy and Italian Navy.  The German navy was reduced to primarily sub-marine operations and trhere is a reason for that.

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Posted By: gcle2003
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 18:15
Originally posted by Maharbbal Maharbbal wrote:

Hum, remember the flying circus (not the monty python, the wwi tactics). The one who attacks has a logical numerical lead.
Some of the airfields would have been captured by paratroopers, diversions would have fooled the Brits into sending their part of their planes somewhere else, part of the crossing would take place at night (no risks of being bombarded then), etc. The invading force would thus only face 10 to 30% of the RAF while itself being at full force. For two or three critical hours, the Brits would have been wiped off the skies. And even if they hadn't most of their planes would be busy fighting the planes and thus would have no impact on land.

If the Germans had tried to send say 2 divisions as a first wave and 1 airborne they could have been successful. Based on Omaha Beach, Market Garden, Crete and Tarawa, heavy losses don't necessarily take off the fighting abilities of an invasion force. It is likely that the first day 10,000 men could have landed and still be ready to fight by midnight.
Big deal, even if 'likely'is a wild overstatement for 'possible but difficult to believe'. What good would 10,000 troops do?
Quote
Once the breach is made: blitzkrieg…
Blitzkrieg depends entirely on armour and tactical air superiority. With the RAF dominant in the air, and the 10,000 troops lackong armour, where does the blitzkreig come from?
 
The Germans would have been outnumbered and underequipped and wide open to air attack. Generally speaking that combination does not indicate likely success.
Quote
 And the BEF had proved to be incapable of facing that victoriously (and they would again in Africa and Greece).
Greece (Crete) is perhaps relevant, but there was no blitzkrieg in Africa. You may not have noticed but the British defeated the Germans in Africa, without any US support.
Quote
DK you were right I was mistaking Poland and the whole 39-40 period. You are also right, Hitler might have dread above all the risk of defeat, but still, fear may have been the reason why they didn't dare.
They had good reason to be afraid. Once the initial battle had been lost against the RAF, they knew there was no chance of a successful invasion. They were rather better informed about comparative strengths than you appear to be.


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Posted By: gcle2003
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 18:38
Originally posted by red clay red clay wrote:

Originally posted by Paul Paul wrote:

Originally posted by deadkenny deadkenny wrote:

But it wasn't 'fighters' that would have been attacking German shipping in any case.  The RN would have been attacking the German invasion forces.  The Luftwaffe needed to attack the RN with their bombers.  The RAF Fighter Command would have been trying to keep the Luftwaffe bombers away from the RN ships.
 
And 6000 RAF bombers attacking the open top barges.
 
Germany needed to knock out the RAF fighters so their own fighters could engage the bombers.
 
 
6,000 RAF bombers?  Even after the 8th Air force arrived there weren't that many bombers available, let alone the RAF on it's own.
In 1940 the RAF had 6,000 Blenheims and Whitleys alone. And of course somewhere around were nearly 12,000 Wellingtons, though some of those were built after 1940.
 


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Posted By: red clay
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 19:34
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by red clay red clay wrote:

Originally posted by Paul Paul wrote:

Originally posted by deadkenny deadkenny wrote:

But it wasn't 'fighters' that would have been attacking German shipping in any case.  The RN would have been attacking the German invasion forces.  The Luftwaffe needed to attack the RN with their bombers.  The RAF Fighter Command would have been trying to keep the Luftwaffe bombers away from the RN ships.
 
And 6000 RAF bombers attacking the open top barges.
 
Germany needed to knock out the RAF fighters so their own fighters could engage the bombers.
 
 
6,000 RAF bombers?  Even after the 8th Air force arrived there weren't that many bombers available, let alone the RAF on it's own.
In 1940 the RAF had 6,000 Blenheims and Whitleys alone. And of course somewhere around were nearly 12,000 Wellingtons, though some of those were built after 1940.
 
 
 
Total production figures for both medium and light bombers from 1938 to late 1940 was just under 6,000.
 
Production of heavy bombers didn't begin until 1941, with acceptance figures at a little over 400.
 
I'm counting the Wellington as a medium bomber, in so doing I'm coming up 12,000 short of the numbers your quoting.
 
 
Also, if there were as many bombers available this early on, why was it that Harris had to "scrape together every bomber available, including those of the advanced training squadrons" to put up his first 1,000 plane raid in early 42.  Of those nearly a hundred had to abort due to mechanical problems. So it really wasn't a 1,000 plane raid.  If England indeed had a total of 18,000 planes at it's disposal, it doesn't make sense.
 
 


Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 20:21
Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

Why wouldn't they be?


My point was that if they were so far better trained a far more powerful they should not have been afraid of a "weaker" enemy, which the Germans were not. They only had less numbers


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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 20:25

If ther eis ever a lesson to be learned from history it is that a seamingly weaker enemy should ALWAYS be respected.  Why should the RN take any chances?  The fact that they were superior in the sea was demonstrated there is no debte there.   You are resorting to rhetoric and as such resigning yourself from fact with such statements.



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Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 20:36
Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

If ther eis ever a lesson to be learned from history it is that a seamingly weaker enemy should ALWAYS be respected.  Why should the RN take any chances?  The fact that they were superior in the sea was demonstrated there is no debte there.   You are resorting to rhetoric and as such resigning yourself from fact with such statements.



How much superior if they could not stop the U-boats, were afraid of few battleships? Anyway to the Germans were necessary more aircrafts, not ships, they already gathered 2000 barges and the first plan was to send 150000 troops, but then, they decided that firstly the RAF had to be destroyed. So, if RAF was destroyed there would have been an invasion, even with all the English fleet still alive.


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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: red clay
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 21:47
Originally posted by Illirac Illirac wrote:

Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

If ther eis ever a lesson to be learned from history it is that a seamingly weaker enemy should ALWAYS be respected.  Why should the RN take any chances?  The fact that they were superior in the sea was demonstrated there is no debte there.   You are resorting to rhetoric and as such resigning yourself from fact with such statements.



How much superior if they could not stop the U-boats, were afraid of few battleships? Anyway to the Germans were necessary more aircrafts, not ships, they already gathered 2000 barges and the first plan was to send 150000 troops, but then, they decided that firstly the RAF had to be destroyed. So, if RAF was destroyed there would have been an invasion, even with all the English fleet still alive.
 
 
And it would still have been a disaster.  First the 2,000 barges you speak of were Canal barges, never meant for open water use, let alone the English Channel.  Some of them had to be fitted with engines as they had originally been towed.  By the time Sea Lion had been canceled they had only been able to fit 900 for use.   They still had no clear cut plan for supporting these troops.  Fatso Goering had declared the Luftewaffe could supply them from the air. [sound familiar?] And they still hadn't come up with a solution for Fuel transport.
Considering Hitler once stated"On land I am a lion, on the sea I am a coward" I don't believe he ever was serious about Sealion.
 
 
 


Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 21:54
Originally posted by Illirac Illirac wrote:


How much superior if they could not stop the U-boats, were afraid of few battleships?
 
The U-Boats could only be detected after they had attacked at this point, which made them very formidable against merchant shipping - the Germans would NOT willingly engage a warship with a U-boat because once one had been discovered its chances of survival were slim pretty at best.  And u-boats serve no purpose in an amphibious assault.
 
As the war progressed, techniques were developed for detecting and destroying U-boats such that their activities were irrelevant by 1944.
 
Quote Anyway to the Germans were necessary more aircrafts, not ships, they already gathered 2000 barges and the first plan was to send 150000 troops, but then, they decided that firstly the RAF had to be destroyed. So, if RAF was destroyed there would have been an invasion, even with all the English fleet still alive.
 
Red Clay corrected you there and also I will emphasise that these barges would have been death traps for the Germans.
 
The testament to German potential in an invasion of Great Britain is in its failure to carry it out.  Simply put: it did not have the capability to successfully launch such an operation and the Germans at the time themselves knew as much, and I suppose they would be thankful that opinions such as yours were not a positive factor in their decision making.


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Posted By: Paul
Date Posted: 06-Apr-2008 at 22:26
2000 open top barges and 150,000 troops would have been a risk few would been willing to take, even with the RAF gone.
 
English Channel is not the Mediterranean lake, its a tidal Northern Sea, it also has the most shipwrecks per metre of anywhere in the world. The weather can change in minutes and 25ft waves suddenly appear.
 
For the allies who went in seaworthy craft on D Day it would have meant loss of the operation, for the Germans in unseaworthy craft, the loss of the whole army. Flip a coin with 150,000 troops....
 
 
 
 
 


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Posted By: gcle2003
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 11:32
Originally posted by Illirac Illirac wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

The British had more aircraft, were producing them faster

Yes, and where have they producing it? In all of its empire: India, Africa, etc. How many were they producing at home?
Most of them. However, the point is irrelevant anyway - what does it matter where they were produced?
 
I'm glad though that you recognise that Germany wasn't just fighting Britain but the whole Empire, even though it took time to mobilise it.
Quote
 
by the 1944 the German production of aircraft was double then that of the Brits, so they could easily have that production in 1940 if they were planning to invade.
Then why didn't they? What happened in 1944 was irrelevant to what was happening in 1939-40. Moreover what kind of planes were the Germans producing? Once they were on the defensive they produced advanced fighter planes but never managed to produce a decent heavy bomber.
Quote
The question was: could the nazis have invaded England?
Answer: if they would have planned it from the beginning, they would, and probably would conquer it. Since they were not planning they did not, and did not conquer it.
You might give at least some suggestion as to why a force that was outnumbered, underequipped, and underresourced, as the Luftwaffe and the German navy were, would win the battle, attacking one of the world's most difficult defensive barriers. Generally speaking the weaker side loses, especially when it has lost any advantage of suprise, and doesn't have the money to buy the weapons it cannot produce itself.
 
The German High Command didn't think they could win, and I can't see any reason to second-guess them.
 


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Citizen of Ankh-Morpork
Never believe anything until it has been officially denied - Sir Humphrey Appleby, 1984.


Posted By: gcle2003
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 12:00
Originally posted by red clay red clay wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by red clay red clay wrote:

Originally posted by Paul Paul wrote:

Originally posted by deadkenny deadkenny wrote:

But it wasn't 'fighters' that would have been attacking German shipping in any case.  The RN would have been attacking the German invasion forces.  The Luftwaffe needed to attack the RN with their bombers.  The RAF Fighter Command would have been trying to keep the Luftwaffe bombers away from the RN ships.
 
And 6000 RAF bombers attacking the open top barges.
 
Germany needed to knock out the RAF fighters so their own fighters could engage the bombers.
 
 
6,000 RAF bombers?  Even after the 8th Air force arrived there weren't that many bombers available, let alone the RAF on it's own.
In 1940 the RAF had 6,000 Blenheims and Whitleys alone. And of course somewhere around were nearly 12,000 Wellingtons, though some of those were built after 1940.
 
 
 
Total production figures for both medium and light bombers from 1938 to late 1940 was just under 6,000.
I won't quarrel much with that since it's still in the same ballpark. I thought they had stopped building Blenheims and Whitleys by 1941. But even if there less than 6,000 of them, you have a couple of thousand Battles, 1500 or so Hampdens, a few Wellesleys to make up the number.
 
And those 12,000 Wellingtons started being produced in 1936 going on to 1945 though I'm know about year-to-year production.
 
Certainly it's enough to justify Paul's assertion that the RAF had 6,000 bombers.
Quote
 
Production of heavy bombers didn't begin until 1941, with acceptance figures at a little over 400.
 
I'm counting the Wellington as a medium bomber, in so doing I'm coming up 12,000 short of the numbers your quoting.
Which ones would they be? All I was doing was justifying Paul in claiming the RAF had 6,000 bombers available - how can you be 12,000 short on 6,000?
 
If you look up the individual planes in wikipedia you'll get all the figures I've quoted (to within a hundred or two) plus in some cases the years they were produced.
Quote  
Also, if there were as many bombers available this early on, why was it that Harris had to "scrape together every bomber available, including those of the advanced training squadrons" to put up his first 1,000 plane raid in early 42.  Of those nearly a hundred had to abort due to mechanical problems. So it really wasn't a 1,000 plane raid.  If England indeed had a total of 18,000 planes at it's disposal, it doesn't make sense.
Harris needed heavy and medium strategic bombers - primarily the Lancaster and the Halifax. What he didn't have at that point was 1,000 bombers capable of bombing Germany - and getting back.
 
For knocking out invasion barges and tactical bombing you had those Blenheims and Whitleys and Battles to make up the 6,000. Also there can be no doubt that Admiralty would have brought Coastal Command into action along with the Fleet Air Arm to defend against an invasion, whereas they refused to give any planes to Harris.
 
Defending the coast from invasion is rather different from bombing Cologne.
 


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Never believe anything until it has been officially denied - Sir Humphrey Appleby, 1984.


Posted By: gcle2003
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 12:02
Originally posted by Illirac Illirac wrote:

Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

Why wouldn't they be?


My point was that if they were so far better trained a far more powerful they should not have been afraid of a "weaker" enemy, which the Germans were not. They only had less numbers
 
Where do you get the idea from that the Royal Navy was 'afraid' of the German navy? The RN spent its time seeking out German ships in the attempt to knock them out. It was the German navy that cowered in harbour.


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Citizen of Ankh-Morpork
Never believe anything until it has been officially denied - Sir Humphrey Appleby, 1984.


Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 19:43
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by Illirac Illirac wrote:

Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

Why wouldn't they be?


My point was that if they were so far better trained a far more powerful they should not have been afraid of a "weaker" enemy, which the Germans were not. They only had less numbers
 
Where do you get the idea from that the Royal Navy was 'afraid' of the German navy? The RN spent its time seeking out German ships in the attempt to knock them out. It was the German navy that cowered in harbour.


Cowered oh really? Because they had no fuel?

Ok, I know that an invasion was impossible, but it's not fun if everyone agrees with it Wink


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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 19:51
No, they did actually cower in harbour after the sinking of the German battleship Bismarck in the early stage of the war.  Thy stood no chance in a naval confrontation before that and conclusively lost all motive after.

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Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 20:02
Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

No, they did actually cower in harbour after the sinking of the German battleship Bismarck in the early stage of the war.  Thy stood no chance in a naval confrontation before that and conclusively lost all motive after.


The Italians as well had a very powerful fleet, and yet it was (mostly) destroyed...


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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: red clay
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 20:43
Originally posted by Iliac Iliac wrote:

Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

No, they did actually cower in harbour after the sinking of the German battleship Bismarck in the early stage of the war.  Thy stood no chance in a naval confrontation before that and conclusively lost all motive after.


The Italians as well had a very powerful fleet, and yet it was (mostly) destroyed...
 
 
The Italians had a fleet of "pretty ships" fast, sleek, but poorly armored, under gunned and an officer corps that needed help tying their shoes. 
 
 


Posted By: Illirac
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 20:52
Originally posted by red clay red clay wrote:

 an officer corps that needed help tying their shoes. 


LOLLOLLOL
LOL

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For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it.


Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 20:57
They were destroyed while in harbour.  I wouldn;t say so much trouble tying shoe laces as more concerned with enjoying the finer things in life as Italians have an aversion to do.

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Posted By: Temujin
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 21:18
Originally posted by red clay red clay wrote:

The German Army had little or no experience with large scale amphibious operations. 
 


LOL if i'd get an Euro everytime soemone says "xy had no experience in amphibious operations".... the German Army in 1918 conducted two sucessfull ambhibious operations against Finland and Georgia. and how much experience did the allies had prior to D-Day? how much did the Japanese had prior to their conquest of Philippines & Indonesia? how much experience did the German Army had in "Blitzkrieg" prior to 1939?


Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 21:21
Gallipoli, apart from the massive training exercises which took place for a year before D-day.

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Posted By: Temujin
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 21:25
Americans at gallipoli? history must be rewritten...


Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 21:51
Quote and how much experience did the allies had prior to D-Day?
 
Or maybe your own post should be reread - by you! Apology accepted.


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Posted By: Paul
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 21:55
Originally posted by Temujin Temujin wrote:

and how much experience did the allies had prior to D-Day?
 
Pachino, Siciliy, Taranto, Salerno, Dieppe, Operation Torch........ Enough?


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Posted By: Temujin
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 22:06
Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

 
Or maybe your own post should be reread - by you! Apology accepted.


Entente and Allies are not the same... Tongue


Posted By: Zagros
Date Posted: 07-Apr-2008 at 22:11

Just admit you made a mistake =P - you referred specifically to the allies of WW2 and the British were a constituent of this alliance (to which I referred) and therefore transferred their expertise and experience from WW1 to the WW2 alliance as a whole.

 


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Posted By: pikeshot1600
Date Posted: 08-Apr-2008 at 01:44
Originally posted by Paul Paul wrote:

Originally posted by Temujin Temujin wrote:

and how much experience did the allies had prior to D-Day?
 
Pachino, Siciliy, Taranto, Salerno, Dieppe, Operation Torch........ Enough?
 
How about Guadalcanal, Betio, Makin, Tarawa, New Guinea (numerous landings), Kwajelein, Eniwietok.  All before June, 1944.
 
Pacific warfare lessons were also learned with Allied blood.  Knowledge is transmitted among commanders and troops who speak the same language.  The theory behind modern amphibious warfare had been developing since Gen. J. A. Lejeune had been Commandant of the Marine Corps in the 1920s.  The reality developed with war time industrial production and with experience.
 
I don't understand this concept that continental land powers like Germany and Russia had some kind of handle on amphibious warfare.  The 20th century manual on amphibious warfare was written by the United States navy and its 500,000 marines.  Those lessons were put to work, with local knowledge and local physical realities, at Normandy in June, 1944.  No experienced marines, but that made it all the more amazingly successful.
 
 


Posted By: deadkenny
Date Posted: 08-Apr-2008 at 01:56
Originally posted by Temujin Temujin wrote:

  if i'd get an Euro everytime soemone says "xy had no experience in amphibious operations".... the German Army in 1918 conducted two sucessfull ambhibious operations against Finland and Georgia. and how much experience did the allies had prior to D-Day? ...
 
Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

Gallipoli, apart from the massive training exercises which took place for a year before D-day.
 
Gallipoli wasn't very relevent with regard to D-Day.  For one thing there was only one improvised 'landing craft' (the River Clyde) and the rest being towed to shore in lines of row boats tied together.  On the other hand Jubilee, Torch, Husky, Avalanche, Slapstick are highly relevent. 


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"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." George Santayana


Posted By: deadkenny
Date Posted: 08-Apr-2008 at 02:04
Originally posted by Paul Paul wrote:

 
One of the reasons for the delay was the higher than predicted damage done by the Luftwaffe by the French. Add this to the unexpected damage done over Dunkirk, the Luftwaffe had to recuperate, this was part of the reason for the delay. If Guderian had gone for Dunkirk the Huricanes would have inflicted an awful lot more damage on the Luftwaffe. Could an early channel crossing even been thinkable after that. 
 
Sorry, I don't see why the Luftwaffe would have suffered more heavily at the hands of the RAF fighters if Guderian had been given the go ahead to take Dunkirk.  In any case, even the 'early' invasion attempt I am hypothesizing about would have been in July, 2 months after the capture of Dunkirk I am suggesting.  Furthermore, the Luftwaffe would have been better off fighting the RAF over Dunkirk than over SE England.  Even if the Luftwaffe had taken somewhat heavier losses, the RAF would have as well and under circumstances more likely to result in the loss of pilots (i.e. over France).


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"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." George Santayana


Posted By: deadkenny
Date Posted: 08-Apr-2008 at 02:21
Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:


Yes and my inclination is that even with the annihilation of the BEF a Nazi invasion could have been fought off.  A Nazi Invasion would not be a surprise attack like Omaha etc were - its landing location would be predictable.  And I don't know whether you have seen the Kentish coastline or not, but it's not the most hospitable to amphibious assault.   The RAF could provide enough air support  to keep the Luftwaffe busy and the Royal navy would pummel the Germans in the channel.

German paratroop planes would get intercepted by the RAF and/or the troopers would land - occupy some town or village, get surrounded and destroyed while their supporting amphibious forces would barely make it to any beach.
 
Of course it is all speculative.  However Kenneth Macksey wrote an interesting 'alt. history' book, "INVASION:  The German invasion of England July 1940" in which he decided upon a German victory.  Where I disagree with him is that he has the RN ultimately deciding to preserve it main force in order to continue the struggle, whereas I believe they would have accepted much heavier losses in order to intervene in the Channel.  However, the main problem for the British was that the bulk of their forces were left with limited mobility after having lost so much of their motorized transports.  The British would have been hard pressed to react quickly with unengaged forces to German landings, and likely unable to contain any German breakout.   I doubt that the Germans would have been landing in Kent regardless, although historically the British were still concerned enough to defend it.
 
IMHO you are viewing this as rather too 'easy' for the British.  If you consider the dire straits RAF Fighter Command was in at the darkest moments in the historical Battle of Britain, it is not likely that it would have been so easy to intercept German forces and provide 'cover' for the RN operating in the Channel.  Nor am I suggesting that it would have been 'easy' for the Germans.  The loss of the 225,000 'veterans' at Dunkirk would certainly have made things much tougher for the British.


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"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." George Santayana


Posted By: Peteratwar
Date Posted: 08-Apr-2008 at 14:51
Basically, Germany had only one chance of invading Britain and that required that the RAF be totally defeated  and that the BEF had been destroyed.
 
The RAF were in some difficulties in the South of England BUT those stationed north of the Thames were fine (see what happened to the abortive raid on the North). The German fighters were at the extremem edge of their endurance.
 
The BEF was poor in heavy equipment but not in skilled and trained soldiers who had held off direct assaults by the Germans. By September/October the armaments were improving and the UK had started to send a quantity of their armour to the Middle East.
 
Given those 2 problems with the time-scale involved, the Germans had no realistic chance of a successful invasion.


Posted By: Temujin
Date Posted: 08-Apr-2008 at 20:03
Originally posted by pikeshot1600 pikeshot1600 wrote:

Originally posted by Paul Paul wrote:

Originally posted by Temujin Temujin wrote:

and how much experience did the allies had prior to D-Day?
 
Pachino, Siciliy, Taranto, Salerno, Dieppe, Operation Torch........ Enough?
 
How about Guadalcanal, Betio, Makin, Tarawa, New Guinea (numerous landings), Kwajelein, Eniwietok.  All before June, 1944.


yeah Ok, but no one cared to explain why you need experience in the first place and why the Japanese and Germans (in case of Blitzkrieg) lacked it and yet were still very sucessfull at it while they haven't done something similar before (= no exp)?


Posted By: pikeshot1600
Date Posted: 08-Apr-2008 at 22:38
Well having experience is better than not having it.  At Guadalcanal, the necessity for purpose built landing craft in very large numbers became obvious.  The design features of those benefitted from the experience in the Solomons.
 
At Tarawa, the reefs in the atoll were not well known at all.  Landing craft and amphibious vehicles became hung up 4 or 500 yards out from the beach, and the marines had to wade in there under fire.  Who the hell had ever been to Tarawa, anyway?  The necessity for advance knowledge of the landing ground became imperative.  Missions by UDT (modern SEALs) and raids like Dieppe before Normany were instituted to get as much information as possible about what to expect, and what needed to be prepared for...equipment; specialized personnel, etc.
 
Any military force is better if it is experienced, and can improve on needed materiel and technique.  The Germans were better in France because of Poland.  The Russians were better after Moscow (for a number of reasons). 
 
I think the Japanese showed initiative in Malaya, and that was impressive, but their experience there should have taught them more than they showed in New Guinea where the terrain was somewhat similar, and the distances from landing to objective shorter.  Once the Australians stopped them, amphibious lessons learned in the Solomons were put to use, they were outflanked time and again, chased further away from their supply lines coming from Rabaul, and they never recovered.
 
Was Malaya just Yamashita's genius, or didn't they absorb experience?  I don't know that.  The US got better at what they did; the Japanese mounted banzai attacks and kamikaze missions. 
 
So, Anzio was a mess, but the Allies learned from it.  Dieppe was tragic, but things were learned from that as well.  The use, design features and construction of adequate assault ships, landing craft and how to assess the obstacles and neutralize them all were encountered in spades in the Pacific.  Without a lot of that, Overlord may have had to go in at Calais where the Germans thought it would.
 
    


Posted By: The Cosmic Fool
Date Posted: 09-Apr-2008 at 09:38
Without getting too much involved in logistics and semantics; I don't think it's possible.

Even if Hitler and Stalin honored the pact, there would probably be enough reason for both sides to continue having a large military buildup on their respective borders. Those are key troops and the German military was already stretched across France and the Balkans.

If you were Nazi Germany, you'd need a substantial military force to break open Britain. They've been preparing for countless months for an invasion. Not to mention, trying to get past or destroy the British Home Fleet would have been impossible. They're still the foremost naval power at this point. Basically, in the end it would require immense manpower and logistics, and that only applies if you can get around the naval problem.




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"The future is dark, the present burdensome. Only the past, dead and buried, bears contemplation."


Posted By: deadkenny
Date Posted: 09-Apr-2008 at 14:05
Originally posted by The Cosmic Fool The Cosmic Fool wrote:

Without getting too much involved in logistics and semantics; I don't think it's possible.

Even if Hitler and Stalin honored the pact, there would probably be enough reason for both sides to continue having a large military buildup on their respective borders. Those are key troops and the German military was already stretched across France and the Balkans.

If you were Nazi Germany, you'd need a substantial military force to break open Britain. They've been preparing for countless months for an invasion. Not to mention, trying to get past or destroy the British Home Fleet would have been impossible. They're still the foremost naval power at this point. Basically, in the end it would require immense manpower and logistics, and that only applies if you can get around the naval problem.


I agree if you are considering the invasion in the longer term - i.e. a much better prepared German invasion against much better prepared British defenses.  However,  I still maintain that there was a window of 'vulnerability', which the Germans mostly let 'close' when they stopped Guderian's planned attack on Dunkirk before the BEF was there in force.  If you combine a possible 'capture' of the bulk of the BEF with earlier German preparations and invasion by July 1940, the equation is much different because the British defenses are much weaker (although admittedly so are the attacking German forces). 

Regarding the RN, keep in mind that it would have suffered heavy losses from air attacks in the Channel if it had tried to maintain 'standing' patrols.  In order to sortie 'into' the Channel, it would have had to get past mines and u-boat 'screens'.  Also note that it would have been easier for the Germans to replace their losses of infantry and converted river barges than it would have been for the British to replace their RN ship losses.  I'm not saying that the RN couldn't or wouldn't do it, just that it would have been a definite 'trade off' in effectiveness 'defending' the Channel vs. ship losses.


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"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." George Santayana


Posted By: The Cosmic Fool
Date Posted: 09-Apr-2008 at 21:37
You're right. There were windows. But even then the Nazis would have had to compound on their own successes in order to win. Being able to use one victory to compound on another is really what wins wars.

So even if the Nazis succeeded in damaging the Home Fleet, there are lots of other logistical nightmares to be solved. And you have to remember in this hypothetical situation, we're assuming both countries had their respective generals. Given Hitler's passion for stonewalling his own generals, the British come out on the end strategically.

Finally, remember that defenders always have the advantage! ;)


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"The future is dark, the present burdensome. Only the past, dead and buried, bears contemplation."


Posted By: sammysnake
Date Posted: 31-Jan-2009 at 19:46
Without a doubt Germany could have initially invaded Britain. But at huge cost.

Initially using a land force in a shallow harbor speed would have been the essence of the attack. Paratroopers would have been used in an attempt to secure small towns villages in between the south downs and London.

The attempt would have been a disaster within 2 weeks though. As we all know now Britain had been developing a very sophisticated defence strategy in which any attack  would have made Leningrad look like a trip to the park for the Germans.

The 100,000 troops landing would have lost 30% on the beaches, leaving the remaining 70,000 to battle it out with the every increasing numbers of British amour and soldiers blocking any move toward London. The retreat back would have been costly not only for the Germans but also for the civilian population of the south, who would have been using every tactic possible to annihilate and hinder any German advance or retreat

The disaster then lay in the sea, by which the British Navy would have left scapaflow and made easy work of the German navy and troop carriers. It would have been highly plausable to expect very few German prisoners to be taken due to the level of venom against any German at that time. The RAF would not have take pity of troop carrying ships either.

All in all. Britain was no France, Hitler knew it.




Posted By: pakhtun--gurl
Date Posted: 01-Feb-2009 at 04:57
Yes they could have, if they did not attack USSR (current Russia) Then they might have won and deafeted Britain and captured it :) The Russians would be on their side



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