What's new
US Message Board 🦅 Political Discussion Forum

Register a free account today to become a member! Once signed in, you'll be able to participate on this site by adding your own topics and posts, as well as connect with other members through your own private inbox!

Was Rommel all that?

Mushroom

Gold Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2012
Messages
1,739
Reaction score
576
Points
198
Location
Near Baghdad By The Bay, California
As I recall my history, the Germans were initially welcome as liberators by many who suffered under Stalin.

Primarily in the area around the Ukraine, which felt the heel of Stalin's pogrom's and mass starvation the most seriously.

However, Germany was unable to be a "kindly occupier", and even what support they often got normally eroded quickly. And in the end, even many hardened anti-Communists held their nose and supported the Soviets back in.
 

Mushroom

Gold Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2012
Messages
1,739
Reaction score
576
Points
198
Location
Near Baghdad By The Bay, California
Too bad you weren't there to tell that to Hitler, he considered Slavs to be inferior to Aryans.

Hitler is a nutcase racist. He also considered all Asiatics as inferiors as well. Until Japan joined the alliance. And a lot of Japanese even today look down on Koreans. Even though it has been genetically proven that their distant ancestors were Koreans who simply moved to a large island in prehistory.

Racists do not have to make sense, that is why they are Racists in the first place.
 

DudleySmith

Platinum Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2020
Messages
4,673
Reaction score
2,907
Points
918
At least I know that it did not open until the fall of 1943. Once the Med had been cleared, the Africa Campaign won, and most of the Italian and German navies in the region destroyed. By that time, the shipments of supplies were nowhere near as critical as they had been earlier in the war. The Axis powers were being pushed back on all fronts, and the Soviet War Machine had itself just started to reach it's full potential. Not like back when it first started.

The difference is, I understand the differences here. And can place it in the context of when and where we are talking about.

Literally, you are talking about a late war shortcut. Where ass before all shipments sent around Africa because of Germany and Italy in the Med. If they had no been so thoroughly defeated, there never would have been a "Persian" route.

Literally your excuses for ignorance are too late, you already babbled ignorant nonsense; now run along and troll some other thread, and try and do some basic research before posting snarky stupidity next time.
 

DudleySmith

Platinum Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2020
Messages
4,673
Reaction score
2,907
Points
918
As I recall my history, the Germans were initially welcome as liberators by many who suffered under Stalin. Had it not been for their racism and brutality they might have gotten stronger as they 'liberated' more of Russia.

Hitler's mishandling of the locals in his invasions is a major contributor to his losses; many did indeed treat the Germans as liberators at first, Russians included, and the Nazis proceeded to try and outdo Stalin in mass murders and abusing the locals. He managed to create a lot of partisans behinds his line the Brits exploited to good effect as well as not being able to use the conquered populations as farmers and labor. There are even records of SS men complaining about how stupid it was to do so before they were certain of victory. Unlike the Soviets, the Germans could have armed a lot of them as well.
 

SavannahMann

Gold Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2016
Messages
7,924
Reaction score
2,802
Points
325
This is a much more complicated question than can be answered in few paragraphs. After reading dozens of books, I can tell you that some of history is incorrect, but going after the career of one of the leading Generals, well that is tougher.

It will be easier to consider the issue of the defense of Europe. First, you have to realize that the German plans all called for the invasion to happen at Calais. The Germans believed a Harbor would be vital. So they put a majority of their defenses into the Harbors and strung defenses along the rest of the coast.

It showed a fundamental misunderstanding of how Seaborne Invasions happen. Rommel was just as guilty as any other German General. But you learn by doing, and they haven’t done any. Minor invasions of places like Norway, against an unprepared enemy, and their seizing the harbors worked, so that was how you did it.

The Germans also discounted the use of Airborne troops. After their disaster in Crete they never again conducted any major airborne actions. Crete was a vital defeat. The Germans had enough troops to do a major operation against either Malta or Crete. They would have been well served to attack Malta. Because later in the war, Malta became vital in interdicting supplies destined to the North African Front. Reducing the vital supplies that Rommel needed to conduct operations.

Back to D-Day. As I said, Rommel and the Germans had a fundamental misunderstanding of Seaborne Operations. Their planning for Sea Lion, the invasion of England, is a prime example. They treated the invasion as a large scale River Crossing. They didn’t understand the difficulties, difficulties the Allies were learning about with every operation, North Africa, Sicily, Italy, and all the invasions of the Pacific as test beds for tactics and strategy.

This led Rommel to install massive defenses assuming that the Invasion, if it came, would come at High Tide. It seemed to make sense. A shorter distance to cover from the water to the shore where cover and defenses would be. A shorter distance for troops to cross to get to the enemy.

But Rommel was wrong. The Allies would come ashore at low tide, leaving all the defenses high and dry out of the water.

Rommel was an aggressive Commander accustomed to the attack, not defense. So he tried to design the defense on what he would do on the attack. Instead of learning about what the Allies were doing on the various attacks, with plenty of examples from the Pacific if the Japanese would share the information, and in Europe, there was ample evidence that they would come at Dawn, and at low tide.

There was also plenty of evidence that the Allies would not come ashore at a port or harbor.

They would come ashore on a beach and move inland to seize the port from the rear.

Partly this is Hitler, who was in his mind a Military Genius, and partly it was as I have said, a fundamental misunderstanding of seaborne operations.

Rommel wanted the troops held back, able to act as a reserve force and move to wherever the invasion would come. This was madness. The Allies had air superiority and gathering the troops at concentration points for the march to the site of the invasion would subject them to constant attack from the air.

Rundstedt wanted all the troops down on the beach with no reserve. This was also madness. They would be subjected to unstoppable bombardment from the sea with artillery so large it defied the imagination.

In reality both were wrong, and both were right. Hitler showed his political brilliance by trying to do both. That doomed the German Effort. There were not enough troops on the beaches to hold. And the reserve was too spread out and subject to too many superiors to be usefully employed in a timely fashion.

Finally Hitler required his personal order to release the best units, the ones who could theoretically throw the Allies back in the sea. On the night of June 5th, Hitler took a sleeping pill with orders not to be awaken. For the vital time, he slept. And when he woke, he was furious that the Generals were denuding the defense of Calais. That was where the real invasion would come from.

So was Rommel a good General? Yes. His design of the defenses was brilliant. He multiplied the effectiveness of each German Soldier, costing tens of lives for each German killed. A good attack against prepared defenses take a three to one advantage. At least. If the Allies had come ashore with that, they would have lost. They came ashore with much much more.

But the war was essentially won before that. Remember the argument between Rundstedt and Rommel. Each were right, putting the troops where the other general wanted was madness because they would be subjected to overwhelming attack from the Allies. Rommel was correct. Troops on the beaches would be subjected to massive preparatory artillery bombardment from the overwhelming number of Allied Ships including Battleships with 14 inch and 16 inch guns. Rundstedt was also correct. Troops gathered in the rear in sufficient numbers to be effective would be easy targets because the Allies had Air Superiority.

What do both points admit? Massive Allied Superiority. Control of the Sea, and the Air.

At this point the Germans couldn’t contest the air even over Europe. The Allies had too many planes. Too many pilots. For every plane the Nazi’s could put up in the sky, the Allies had five or six. It is why they were working on Superweapons. The Germans no longer thought of numerical superiority, they now needed weapons which were the technological marvel and would allow them to cleave a path through hundreds or even thousands of enemies.

Each day hundreds of planes made their way to Europe. Bombers were flying directly from the United States and landing in England. Fighters were flying long paths that ended in Europe too.

Planes in crates were brought over by ships with the U-Boats were unable to make a dent in with Hunter Killer teams searching for them day and night.

Imagine forming your plans for the defense of Europe making these two concessions. 1) The Allied Fleet could sit offshore. Literally dropping anchor and pound the shore for days uncontested. 2) Allied planes could and would fly overhead during all daylight hours. From dawn to dusk there would be an umbrella of enemy planes controlling the sky and you would be unable to contest it.

Rommel was realistic enough to know if the Allies got ashore, and got a foot hold to go inland, the war was over. Germany could never win. He was smart enough to realize that if it lasted more than a single day, there would be no way to throw the Allies back into the sea. From then on, just as they were doing on the Eastern Front, it would be a delaying action.

The only hope Germany had at that point was if they could prevent the invasion, they could transfer hundreds of thousands of troops to the Eastern Front to give a check to the Russians and give themselves time to consolidate and perhaps negotiate a cease fire and end to the war.

So to answer your question. Was Rommel a good general? Yes. Was he brilliant? Yes. Was he doomed by circumstances? Yes. Was he the best general in the War? No. That honor would have to go to Georgy Zhukov.

Yes the Soviet Commander was better IMO than Patton or any other General. Why? He turned the tide at Moscow, at Stalingrad, and again at Kursk. At Kursk, Zhukov destroyed more Germans than even Stalingrad had. And from that moment on, the Germans were never again on the Offensive on the Eastern Front.
 

Dayton3

Gold Member
Joined
May 3, 2009
Messages
1,287
Reaction score
467
Points
198
Primarily in the area around the Ukraine, which felt the heel of Stalin's pogrom's and mass starvation the most seriously.

However, Germany was unable to be a "kindly occupier", and even what support they often got normally eroded quickly. And in the end, even many hardened anti-Communists held their nose and supported the Soviets back in.

If Nazi Germany had been a "kindly occupier" it wouldn't have been Nazi Germany.
 
Joined
Sep 15, 2016
Messages
8,523
Reaction score
823
Points
155
Location
All in your mind
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..
Venimus, Vidimus, Vicimus

I realized the same thing about Julius Caesar. Without the competent and dutiful but unexciting junior officers, like his father was, the great military geniuses wouldn't have been able to accomplish their brilliant victories. Maybe lack of that is why Hannibal failed.
 
Joined
Sep 15, 2016
Messages
8,523
Reaction score
823
Points
155
Location
All in your mind
as usual with ''what ifs''' like your post, they are ridiculous AND there are many ''what ifs' to counter your ''what ifs''
...Germany is not defeating Russia--too big --and a population more than twice of Germany
...I just went over this:
.....the longer Germany goes into Russia, it gets weaker EXPONENTIALLY
1. supply lines longer
a. more man power etc needed for those lines
2. the supplies needed are EXPONENTIALLY much greater
LOGISTICS!!!!!!! logistics were the KEY to battle = the war
..the outcome of the war was decided on 22 June 1941
Draw Play

Stalin purposely provoked Hitler into attacking and orchestrated a fake retreat, knowing it would trick Hitler into thinking the Germans could win before winter set in. FDR thought so, too, accelerating his own provocations against Japan.

Stalin set up a fake German cake-walk not only to get us to intervene—Hitler taking Russia would have made the Nazis that much stronger when they inevitably attacked the United States—but also to trick Hitler into stretching the German supply lines to the breaking point. Only when all his schemes fell into place did Stalin start to fight back: on December 7, 1941.
 

USMB Server Goals

Total amount
$95.00
Goal
$350.00

New Topics

Most reactions - Past 7 days

Forum List

Top