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All in the Mind? The psychological effect of Tiger Tanks and 88ís

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  • #16
    There was the equivalent of about 1 or half a battalion operational at any time in that sector. Still, they were dwarfed by other AFV types.

    Tigers are prevalent in American accounts and it comes to me as just a "catch all" term for "tank". They see a german tank and just call it a tiger.
    Zhitomir-Berdichev, West of Kiev: 24 Dec 1943-31 Jan 1944
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    • #17
      Originally posted by the ace View Post

      Considering it took the Western Allies AND the Soviet Union 6 years to beat them, I think we can take that as read.
      Well of course we should.
      However some posters and WWII pundits still aren't (and probably never will be) comfortable with the idea.
      Witness attempts to minimise Wittmann's outstanding achievements in the East and West (and for the umpteenth time he served a vile cause!) and the ignoring of the reality that the Germans were vastly under resourced.

      Regards lodestar

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      • #18
        What the fook's 'outstanding' about cabbaging a dozen Bren Gun Carriers then...getting the best tank in Normandy blown out from under yer...
        by a PIAT bomber!!!???

        The long toll of the brave
        Is not lost in darkness
        Over the fruitful earth
        And athwart the seas
        Hath passed the light of noble deeds
        Unquenchable forever.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Cult Icon View Post
          There was the equivalent of about 1 or half a battalion operational at any time in that sector. Still, they were dwarfed by other AFV types.

          Tigers are prevalent in American accounts and it comes to me as just a "catch all" term for "tank". They see a german tank and just call it a tiger.
          HI CI, as I remember, it did not matter one bloody bit what brand of tank it was, if it was German you fired at it or got out of the way of it, depending on the circumstances. Light infantry were not always prepared to take them on. It is only the post war experts with their books that have made a big thing of it. lcm1
          'By Horse by Tram'.


          I was in when they needed 'em,not feeded 'em.
          " Youuu 'Orrible Lot!"

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Von Richter View Post
            What the fook's 'outstanding' about cabbaging a dozen Bren Gun Carriers then...getting the best tank in Normandy blown out from under yer...
            by a PIAT bomber!!!???

            I agree with the 'Dead horse'! Von, all the German tanks were nasty buggers anyway, they were inclined to shoot at you, whatever there brand!! lcm 1
            'By Horse by Tram'.


            I was in when they needed 'em,not feeded 'em.
            " Youuu 'Orrible Lot!"

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Cult Icon View Post
              There was the equivalent of about 1 or half a battalion operational at any time in that sector. Still, they were dwarfed by other AFV types.

              Tigers are prevalent in American accounts and it comes to me as just a "catch all" term for "tank". They see a german tank and just call it a tiger.
              Last quote appears spot on.

              Concerning Tigers, I spoke to David Fletcher, one time curator and librarian at the Bovington Tank Museum, and he stated that while the British tank crews DID think German tanks were better, "they simply got on with it." There was never any mention of Tigers preventing Allied tank crews from doing their job.
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              • #22
                Originally posted by lodestar View Post

                Well of course we should.
                However some posters and WWII pundits still aren't (and probably never will be) comfortable with the idea.
                Witness attempts to minimise Wittmann's outstanding achievements in the East and West (and for the umpteenth time he served a vile cause!) and the ignoring of the reality that the Germans were vastly under resourced.

                Regards lodestar
                Wittmans exploits may well be true, but when the main source of reference is the Nazi propaganda machine, they may not.
                Wittmans attack at Villars Boccage was an excellent surprise attack, one which any veteran German officer could have achieved. That said, he did achieve an outstanding tactical victory. He did inflict severe damage on the HQ element of an armoured division, debilitating it in the very short term.

                The Germans were vastly under resourced, but whose fault is that? Although the W Allies were vastly greater resourced, it did not prevent them from running out of fuel, hence the reason for Market Garden. Further, from British cabinet records, it is clear from the supply side, they thought VE Day would be in June 45. While Nazi defeat was inevitable, it actually ended slightly sooner than the Allies hoped and planned for.
                How to Talk to a Climate Skeptic: http://grist.org/series/skeptics/
                Global Warming & Climate Change Myths: https://www.skepticalscience.com/argument.php

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Nick the Noodle View Post

                  Wittmans exploits may well be true, but when the main source of reference is the Nazi propaganda machine, they may not.
                  Wittmans attack at Villars Boccage was an excellent surprise attack, one which any veteran German officer could have achieved. That said, he did achieve an outstanding tactical victory. He did inflict severe damage on the HQ element of an armoured division, debilitating it in the very short term.

                  The Germans were vastly under resourced, but whose fault is that? Although the W Allies were vastly greater resourced, it did not prevent them from running out of fuel, hence the reason for Market Garden. Further, from British cabinet records, it is clear from the supply side, they thought VE Day would be in June 45. While Nazi defeat was inevitable, it actually ended slightly sooner than the Allies hoped and planned for.
                  Half of Eastern Europe tainted by the German war machine was starving and it had finally caught up with Germany itself both at home and in the forces and there was only one thing that would save thousands of men women and children starving to death and that was defeat for that would bring aid from the Western Allies, which I saw personally on a minor scale, being handed out by the victorious men of the Allied Armies. lcm1
                  'By Horse by Tram'.


                  I was in when they needed 'em,not feeded 'em.
                  " Youuu 'Orrible Lot!"

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Cult Icon View Post
                    There was the equivalent of about 1 or half a battalion operational at any time in that sector. Still, they were dwarfed by other AFV types.

                    Tigers are prevalent in American accounts and it comes to me as just a "catch all" term for "tank". They see a german tank and just call it a tiger.
                    The Mark IV with the extra 'skirt' armor tends to look a bit bulkier and from a distance has some similarity in appearance to a Mark VI Tiger. Perhaps part of that American tendency was confusion ...

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                    • #25
                      I think Mr. Bock's nailed it. How many books have you seen where a 'General', safe and sound in his 'Armchair', has captioned a Mk. IV as the dreaded Tiggy?
                      Seems an easy mistake for the PBI to make in much more stressful situations!

                      The long toll of the brave
                      Is not lost in darkness
                      Over the fruitful earth
                      And athwart the seas
                      Hath passed the light of noble deeds
                      Unquenchable forever.

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Von Richter View Post
                        I think Mr. Bock's nailed it. How many books have you seen where a 'General', safe and sound in his 'Armchair', has captioned a Mk. IV as the dreaded Tiggy?
                        Seems an easy mistake for the PBI to make in much more stressful situations!

                        You may be right for early reports, but later on, Tiger appears to be a catchall name for most enemy tanks, if not most afv's. I presume you've seen the difference in size being any Cat and a IV, it is huge.
                        How to Talk to a Climate Skeptic: http://grist.org/series/skeptics/
                        Global Warming & Climate Change Myths: https://www.skepticalscience.com/argument.php

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                        • #27
                          Saw a you tube clip by the 'Chieftain' saying that the Sherman was pretty much fine against the German Cats particularly the 76mm Shermans.
                          "To be free is better than to be unfree - always."

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                          • #28
                            The western front of 1944 compared to the eastern front in late 1942 and early 1943 when the first Tiger 1's were introduced on the eastern front and later in North Africa, was a totally different situation. Its like comparing apples to oranges.

                            The Tigers had a high rate of success on the eastern front initially (all of 1943-44) and even in when they were used as fire brigades to help the retreating Wehrmacht in 44-45. Also in defense of the "designated fortresses" by Hitler.

                            On the western front the Tigers, along with the whole of the German panzer arm, failed miserably. This was due to a myriad of reasons one of the main ones being complete air superiority of the allies. One example would be the s.Pz.Abt 503 consisting of Tiger 2 tanks which on July 18 1944 were virtually wiped out by the allied carpet bombing preceding operation Goodwood. The offensive was started with over 2000 allied bombers dropping over 3000 tons of ordnance on various German positions. Some of the 65 ton Tiger 2 tanks were actually lifted and turned upside down by the intensity of the bombing.

                            Also the allied tactics when engaging the German tanks was much better then their Soviet friends. Combined with the Germans trying to use the same tactics they used with success on the eastern front on the western front, coupled with the fact that their reconnaissance was extremely limited owing to the allied air superiority and you have disaster.

                            Sure the Germans, who were always a disciplined and determined foe made the best out of their dismal situation and had success here and there but ultimately they had to retreat by the masses after almost being annihilated in the Falaise pocket.

                            The Americans and British, although they were probably awestruck when they saw the size of the Tigers and the damage they could do, continued unabated with their business of breaking out of Normandy.

                            The Soviets, on the other hand, definitely saw the Tigers as the "boogie man" as they were highly successful and destructive on the eastern front. At Kursk the Soviets reported "hundreds" of the beasts. One commander reported spotting 500 in his sector alone!!. There was just one complete s.Pz.Abt., the 503, consisting of 45 Tiger 1 tanks attached to the Third Pz. Corps in Army detachment Kempf situated on the right flank of the 2 SS Pz. Corps in which each of these 3 divisions were allocated 15 Tigers. So there were actually less then 100 Tigers in the southern "pincer group" of E. Manstein where these Soviet reports of groupings of hundreds of Tigers was taking place.
                            Last edited by Kurt Knispel; 02 Oct 18, 15:57.
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                            • #29
                              Shifting back to the towed 88 mm AAA and anti tank guns.

                              I've seen accounts of these guns holding up allied armored columns from North Africa and into France. I've never understood it.

                              I'm thinking of it from an artillery mans prospective. Typically an attacking unit would have a field artillery observation team with them.

                              An allied armored tank column advances accompanied by infantry. This could be an American or British force. Hidden 88's open up quickly knocking out several tanks. The tanks start to return fire and seek cover. The infantry join in, returning fire with rifles, machine guns and mortars. The artillery observation team (for U.S. forward observers, FO for short) brings in a fire mission. High explosive projectiles are adjusted onto the enemy position. As a final measure they are hit with white phosphorus.

                              The German gun positions and their supporting infantry have taken casualties. Maybe even some of the guns are knocked out. They are stunned by the high explosives and blinded by the white phosphorus. The allied force continues to pour fire onto the German position. Infantry close in and finish off the German defenders.

                              Alternatively to closing with the German position Allied mortars and artillery continue to bring fire on it suppressing it. The Germans are stunned by waves of high explosives and blinded by white phosphorus . The allied column moves on.

                              The mathematics of war is brutal. A few tanks are lost, a defensive position is lost. The offensive rolls on.

                              For anti tank work the 88 on a AAA mount is much more vulnerable due to its high platform.
                              Last edited by 17thfabn; 07 Oct 18, 11:44.
                              "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it" Beatrice Evelyn Hall
                              Updated for the 21st century... except if you are criticizing islam, that scares the $hii+e out of me!

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by 17thfabn View Post
                                Shifting back to the towed 88 mm AAA and anti tank guns.

                                I've seen accounts of these guns holding up allied armored columns from North Africa and into France. I've never understood it.

                                I'm thinking of it from an artillery mans prospective. Typically an attacking unit would have a field artillery observation team with them.

                                An allied armored tank column advances accompanied by infantry. This could be an American or British force. Hidden 88's open up quickly knocking out several tanks. The tanks start to return fire and seek cover. The infantry join in, returning fire with rifles, machine guns and mortars. The artillery observation team (for U.S. forward observers, FO for short) brings in a fire mission. High explosive projectiles are adjusted onto the enemy position. As a final measure they are hit with white phosphorus.

                                The German gun positions and their supporting infantry have taken casualties. Maybe even some of the guns are knocked out. They are stunned by the high explosives and blinded by the white phosphorus. The allied force continues to pour fire onto the German position. Infantry close in and finish off the German defenders.

                                Alternatively to closing with the German position Allied mortars and artillery continue to bring fire on it suppressing it. The Germans are stunned by waves of high explosives and blinded by white phosphorus . The allied column moves on.

                                For anti tank work the 88 on a AAA mount is much more vulnerable due to its high platform.
                                There weren't enough M7/ Priest SPGs to go around at first. Later your scenario would be more likely
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