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Was Rommel all that?

Otis Mayfield

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Rommel lost in North Africa. People say he failed because he wasn't supported, but a good general would've taken the lack of support in count.

Then Rommel was given the job of fortifying the European coast against invasion. D-Day happened and the allies invaded. Rommel failed in that too.
 

Mushroom

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Rommel lost in North Africa. People say he failed because he wasn't supported, but a good general would've taken the lack of support in count.

Africa was never a battle the Germans wanted.

They only went down there to try and pull Italy's chestnuts out of the fire. They had no interest there, no reason otherwise to be there. But they had to support their Ally Italy, so down they went.
 

skews13

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Rommel lost in North Africa. People say he failed because he wasn't supported, but a good general would've taken the lack of support in count.

Then Rommel was given the job of fortifying the European coast against invasion. D-Day happened and the allies invaded. Rommel failed in that too.

The Axis defeat at El Alamein meant that North Africa would be lost to Hitler and Mussolini. The defeat was due to a variety of factors. These included insufficient Axis numbers, overextended supply lines, and Allied air superiority.

 

Oddball

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Rommel lost in North Africa. People say he failed because he wasn't supported, but a good general would've taken the lack of support in count.

Then Rommel was given the job of fortifying the European coast against invasion. D-Day happened and the allies invaded. Rommel failed in that too.
Africa was a supporting role for Italy, that the German High Command didn't really want....Rommel did the max with what he was given....Got way more out of his troops and equipment than he should have on paper.

As far as the Atlantic Wall is concerned, Rommel was tasked with building static defenses in the age of mobile combined arms warfare.....If he and his General staff didn't need direct orders from Hitler to act, it's an even money bet that they could have made Normandy a bloodbath, if not repelled the invasion altogether.......Would have been a tall order in the face of allied air supremacy, but far more possible nonetheless.

IOW, you're all wet.
 

alang1216

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Rommel lost in North Africa. People say he failed because he wasn't supported, but a good general would've taken the lack of support in count.
He was an excellent general. The Brits had a strong presence in the Mediterranean so supply was difficult. Had he been able to reach the Suez it would have been a real victory. The coming of the Americans sealed his fate.

Then Rommel was given the job of fortifying the European coast against invasion. D-Day happened and the allies invaded. Rommel failed in that too.
Hitler insisted on fortifying the entire coast, Rommel wanted to have a strong, mobile force well away from the coast that could counter attack where ever needed. Hitler was wrong but by 1944 the best Germany could do was delay the inevitable.
 
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Otis Mayfield

Otis Mayfield

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Rommel's reputation get's inflated because he is the guy Americans and British fought. And you can't have a good story without a challenging enemy.

A lot of the American and British authors who wrote books about WWII after the war, pumped Rommel up to make their books more exciting.

I think all the good generals were on the Eastern Front fighting the Soviets and we got the second string.

Rommel was a huge fan of Hitler in the beginning, but then Rommel was accused of an attempted assassination of Hitler and executed.
 
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DudleySmith

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Rommel lost in North Africa. People say he failed because he wasn't supported, but a good general would've taken the lack of support in count.

Then Rommel was given the job of fortifying the European coast against invasion. D-Day happened and the allies invaded. Rommel failed in that too.

Without fuel tanks don't run. He almost took Egypt, and with control of the Canal Zone and pretty much nothing between him and Iran if he had taken Egypt Germany would have had all the oil it needed and shut down the most valuable Lend-Lease route as well. It was probably worth the gamble, but going through Turkey would have been the better and more conservative choice, especially since Germany had to send forces into Greece anyway; might as well have kept the momentum going in that direction and have a much more secure route.

It's not like anybody expected FDR's gamble in North Africa to actually succeed as well as it did; nobody had tried amphibious operations on such a scale before, and we got lucky with some of the Vichy Generals putting up only slight resistance.
 
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Oddball

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Rommel's reputation get's inflated because he is the guy we fought. And you can't have a good story without a challenging enemy.

A lot of the authors who wrote books about WWII after the war, pumped Rommel up to make their books more exciting.

I think all the good generals were on the Eastern Front fighting the Soviets and we got the second string.

Rommel was a huge fan of Hitler in the beginning, but then Rommel was accused of an attempted assassination of Hitler and executed.
None of which has anything to do with the fact that Rommel was an outstanding strategist and tactician, who had a dedication from his troops that is elite ranking of all Generals in the war, from all sides.
 

DudleySmith

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Africa was a supporting role for Italy, that the German High Command didn't really want....Rommel did the max with what he was given....Got way more out of his troops and equipment than he should have on paper.

As far as the Atlantic Wall is concerned, Rommel was tasked with building static defenses in the age of mobile combined arms warfare.....If he and his General staff didn't need direct orders from Hitler to act, it's an even money bet that they could have made Normandy a bloodbath, if not repelled the invasion altogether.......Would have been a tall order in the face of allied air supremacy, but far more possible nonetheless.

IOW, you're all wet.

Allied bombing errors made Normandy the crap shoot it was; they didn't do much damage to the Wall defenses, barely any at all, and they didn't bomb the beach defenses at all, either, for some very specious reasons. The mistakes were not all on Germany's side; we almost beat ourselves, at least on the American beaches.
 

DudleySmith

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None of which has anything to do with the fact that Rommel was an outstanding strategist and tactician, who had a dedication from his troops that is elite ranking of all Generals in the war, from all sides.

He had a great influence on his troops' morale, something many are way too quick to dismiss or ignore altogether as a factor.
 

DudleySmith

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He was an excellent general. The Brits had a strong presence in the Mediterranean so supply was difficult. Had he been able to reach the Suez it would have been a real victory. The coming of the Americans sealed his fate.

And he almost won. Operation Torch threatened his rear, and he couldn't fight on both fronts without fuel, while the U.S could fight on three fronts and supply all of the Allies to boot. The Soviets certainly couldn't win on their own, and neither could Britain.
 

hjmick

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Was Rommel all that...


Let's put it this way, be thankful Hitler was in charge and not Rommel, otherwise things would have been quite different...
 

alang1216

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And he almost won. Operation Torch threatened his rear, and he couldn't fight on both fronts without fuel, while the U.S could fight on three fronts and supply all of the Allies to boot. The Soviets certainly couldn't win on their own, and neither could Britain.
Hard to know what might have been if Hitler hadn't declared war on the US and the US stayed out of Europe. Hitler might have been able to strangle Britain eventually and they could not have retaken Europe. Brits might have held North Africa, maybe. Hitler could not have defeated the USSR so they may have signed a peace treaty and Hitler withdrew to their half of Poland. Hitler and Stalin could then have split Asia and Europe between them. Who knows.
 

Astrostar

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Was Rommel all that...


Let's put it this way, be thankful Hitler was in charge and not Rommel, otherwise things would have been quite different...
Great point! The main reason the allies won the war!
 

Moonglow

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Rommel lost in North Africa. People say he failed because he wasn't supported, but a good general would've taken the lack of support in count.

Then Rommel was given the job of fortifying the European coast against invasion. D-Day happened and the allies invaded. Rommel failed in that too.
Supported as in material and men because most was being lost during the transportation between Sicily and North Africa due to interdiction by the allies.

D-Day was a success for the allies due to the restrictive operations by heavy armor units that could only be used if Hitler ordered them to do as such thus rendering then null and void by the commander in the field.
 

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In WWI Rommel introduced a new strategy of using assault troops closer to the lines and used during artillery shelling by their side to shock the allies in the trenches when they came out of the dugout's after a bombardment, thus earning them the name of "shock troops" still in use today. This occurred when Rommel was in Italy fighting the allies in the mountains..
 

Oddball

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Was Rommel all that...


Let's put it this way, be thankful Hitler was in charge and not Rommel, otherwise things would have been quite different...
Rommel, von Rundstedt, Guderian, Heinrici, von Schweppenburg.....All exceptionally competent Generals, whose talent and troop loyalty that Hitler wasted.

Quite different indeed.
 
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Oddball

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And he almost won. Operation Torch threatened his rear, and he couldn't fight on both fronts without fuel, while the U.S could fight on three fronts and supply all of the Allies to boot. The Soviets certainly couldn't win on their own, and neither could Britain.
Torch was a classic example of overwhelming numerical superiority meeting the fecklessness of the Vichy.
 

DudleySmith

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Was Rommel all that...


Let's put it this way, be thankful Hitler was in charge and not Rommel, otherwise things would have been quite different...

Germany was similar to the U.S., in that it had a lot of mid-level logistical techs, engineers, and managers that could get things done, at least at the start of the war before attrition emptied the ranks of competent and experienced leadership. You could have all the geniuses in the world at the strategic tip levels, but without that competent middle they're all worthless, just trophies posing for busts..
 

Mushroom

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Without fuel tanks don't run. He almost took Egypt, and with control of the Canal Zone and pretty much nothing between him and Iran if he had taken Egypt Germany would have had all the oil it needed and shut down the most valuable Lend-Lease route as well.

You know that Lend-Lease did not travel through there, right? It went basically from Seattle to Russia in the Pacific, and from New York across to England, or up and around to Russia.

They did not try to circumnavigate the globe and have to pass through two different war zones!

Control of the canal would have meant nothing. There was no huge German or Italian fleet to send to aid Japan, and Japan had no interest in helping out in Europe. The UK and US were sending any ships they wanted in other areas via other routes. Around Africa, or through the Panama Canal mostly. And all that oil would have helped Germany very little. Just as it helped the allies little. No way to really get it where it was needed.

And nothing between a German Egypt and Iran? Dude, go and look at a map sometimes, alright? Yes, nothing between them and Iran. Other than the entire Middle East, and some of the most inhospitable terrain in the world. As they had discovered in the First World War.

But as always, thanks again for posting. It is always a good laugh with how silly they are.
 

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