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The German's greatest mistake in WWII

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  • Originally posted by ljadw View Post
    And,discussing "the greatest German mistakes in WWII" is only following the German generals in their subterfuges .
    BTW :such a thread is present in a lot of forums,you always are encountering him,but the thread" the greatest allied mistakes in WWII" is curiously absent .
    Curiously ? No,the German generals have won eople still think that the German mistakes (meaning the mistakes of Adolf) were much more important than the allied mistakes.
    And,why are they thinking this? Because the German propaganda machine told this after the war .
    "This" is : The allies only won,because Adolf was making mistakes,and did not listen to his generals. .
    And,people are still falling in this trap,people as Bevin Alexander and other
    Yes, I think there is a lot of truth in that. In reality, both sides made a considerable number of mistakes. To postulate an outcome where one side makes mistakes and the other does not, over the course of a war lasting nearly six years (for the Germans) is obviously unrealistic.

    If we had made less mistakes, could we have beaten the Axis more quickly? Maybe, but we would still have beaten them.

    If the Germans had made less mistakes during the war, would it have taken us longer to defeat them? Possibly but they would still have been defeated.

    I have considered a scenario where the Germans merely consolidate their gains as of the end of 1940 and refrain from attacking the Soviet Union. What then? But that is a question for Alternate Timelines.


    Edit:

    If anyone is interested in such a discussion, I have started this thread in Alternate Timelines:

    http://www.armchairgeneral.com/forum...27#post2503027
    Last edited by panther3485; 26 Mar 13, 03:09.
    "Chatfield, there seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today!"
    Vice Admiral Beatty to Flag Captain Chatfield; Battle of Jutland, 31 May - 1 June, 1916.

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    • Originally posted by panther3485 View Post
      I think those are good points. Too bad that no WMDs were found after Iraq was taken. Or maybe it is fortunate that they were not found.

      But this is OT, of course. We are supposed to be discussing Germany in WW2 here.
      It is only an exemple of a (post war) decision that ,when it was taken,was defensible,but was later critizised with hindsight .
      Everything can be critizised with hindsight .
      Hindsight is the weapon of those who have the luxury not to have be faced with the obligation to take a decision,to choose.

      Comment


      • Originally posted by ljadw View Post
        It is only an exemple of a (post war) decision that ,when it was taken,was defensible,but was later critizised with hindsight .
        Everything can be critizised with hindsight .
        Hindsight is the weapon of those who have the luxury not to have be faced with the obligation to take a decision,to choose.
        Of course, hindsight is certainly a gift not available to those making decisions at the time. If we accept that Iraq was genuinely suspected, at the very highest level and based on the best possible US intelligence, of being behind 9/11 as well as being in possession of WMDs, then that is fine. There are other theories, of course, but again this is the wrong forum to discuss those.
        "Chatfield, there seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today!"
        Vice Admiral Beatty to Flag Captain Chatfield; Battle of Jutland, 31 May - 1 June, 1916.

        Comment


        • Originally posted by ljadw View Post
          It is only an exemple of a (post war) decision that ,when it was taken,was defensible,but was later critizised with hindsight .
          Everything can be critizised with hindsight .
          Hindsight is the weapon of those who have the luxury not to have be faced with the obligation to take a decision,to choose.
          I've already suggested a thread on Stalin's mistakes, for example, but it garnered little response. I guess people in general exhibit a behaviour similar to that of tourists: they want to discuss and see the things they have already heard a lot about and not the ones still unknown to them.
          www.histours.ru

          Siege of Leningrad battlefield tour

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          • Originally posted by ShAA View Post
            I've already suggested a thread on Stalin's mistakes, for example, but it garnered little response. I guess people in general exhibit a behaviour similar to that of tourists: they want to discuss and see the things they have already heard a lot about and not the ones still unknown to them.
            A thread on Stalin's mistakes (or Soviet mistakes generally) in the lead-up to WW2 and during the conflict, would certainly get my interest.
            "Chatfield, there seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today!"
            Vice Admiral Beatty to Flag Captain Chatfield; Battle of Jutland, 31 May - 1 June, 1916.

            Comment


            • About Stalin :it has been claimed (by the usual ignorants) that1) the initial German successes in Barbarossa were caused by the strategical surprise of the Sowjets and 2) that the reason of the strategical surprise was that Stalin trusted Hitler and 3) refused the reliable informations of his spies.

              Point 1 is very questionable

              Point 2 is nonsens :trust was not one of Stalin's qualities

              Point 3 is a post war invention

              The whole theory:that it all was caused by a mistake (from Stalin) is the usual search for a culprit,for a scape-goat .

              Big failures are not caused by human mistakes(it is giving human decisions an importance they don't have) but by complicated reasons.
              But,most people prefer the easy solution :an individual who made a mistake,a scape-goat .

              Comment


              • Originally posted by ljadw View Post
                About Stalin :it has been claimed (by the usual ignorants) that1) the initial German successes in Barbarossa were caused by the strategical surprise of the Sowjets and 2) that the reason of the strategical surprise was that Stalin trusted Hitler and 3) refused the reliable informations of his spies.

                Point 1 is very questionable

                Point 2 is nonsens :trust was not one of Stalin's qualities

                Point 3 is a post war invention

                The whole theory:that it all was caused by a mistake (from Stalin) is the usual search for a culprit,for a scape-goat .

                Big failures are not caused by human mistakes(it is giving human decisions an importance they don't have) but by complicated reasons.
                But,most people prefer the easy solution :an individual who made a mistake,a scape-goat .
                I would agree in general on all 3 points. The problem is that when you try to discuss Stalin's mistakes, the usual crowd which swarms over "Hitler did that wrong" posts and beats the dead horse, suddenly vanishes and keeps its mouths shut.

                However, what I rather had in mind was his decisions not to withdraw troops from Kiev in August 1941, his premature and overambitious Lyuban offensive and his decision to keep troops in the center in summer 1942 - just for a start.
                www.histours.ru

                Siege of Leningrad battlefield tour

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                • Originally posted by panther3485 View Post
                  A thread on Stalin's mistakes (or Soviet mistakes generally) in the lead-up to WW2 and during the conflict, would certainly get my interest.
                  Here it is http://www.armchairgeneral.com/forum...d.php?t=129959 , and I hope you can see my point that everyone is forever fixated on Hitler, scrutinising him to the slighest detail, while Stalin seems to be some kind of "elemental force". The feedback we get about Stalin so far is like this: "He is sort of a bad guy who did wrong things. Errrr, don't know what exactly, so let's speak at length about what could've happened had Hitler not sneezed at the OKW meeting N2342345 on 01.03.1942 while talking to Manstein, see footnote 5, appendix 10. This was a game changing event, I tell ya!"
                  www.histours.ru

                  Siege of Leningrad battlefield tour

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                  • Comment


                    • Fighting two fronts seems to be the most obvious choice, but if they had won the Battle of the Atlantic earlier on I'm sure it would have been possible to beat the Brits into submission then turn forces East.

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                      • Originally posted by ljadw View Post
                        About Stalin :it has been claimed (by the usual ignorants) that1) the initial German successes in Barbarossa were caused by the strategical surprise of the Sowjets and 2) that the reason of the strategical surprise was that Stalin trusted Hitler and 3) refused the reliable informations of his spies.

                        Point 1 is very questionable

                        Point 2 is nonsens :trust was not one of Stalin's qualities

                        Point 3 is a post war invention

                        The whole theory:that it all was caused by a mistake (from Stalin) is the usual search for a culprit,for a scape-goat .

                        Big failures are not caused by human mistakes(it is giving human decisions an importance they don't have) but by complicated reasons.
                        But,most people prefer the easy solution :an individual who made a mistake,a scape-goat .
                        On point 1: The degree of surprise achieved by the Germans was not the cause of the initial Soviet defeats but IMO it would have made the Soviet response less effective to begin with in many places and I think it certainly helped things along for the Germans. The element of surprise is usually not without value in war.

                        On point 2: Stalin trusting Hitler? No chance! But, I do believe from the evidence I have been able to find, that Stalin seems to have thought an attack in 1941 highly unlikely; and was genuinely shocked when he realized that a full scale invasion was in progress.

                        On point 3: I have insufficient knowledge to comment specifically but I do think Stalin was astute enough to weigh all elements of information that he received carefully, and balance these with his own judgement and instincts. He was not always right, but who is?
                        "Chatfield, there seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today!"
                        Vice Admiral Beatty to Flag Captain Chatfield; Battle of Jutland, 31 May - 1 June, 1916.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by ShAA View Post
                          Here it is www.armchairgeneral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=129959 , and I hope you can see my point that everyone is forever fixated on Hitler, scrutinising him to the slighest detail, while Stalin seems to be some kind of "elemental force". The feedback we get about Stalin so far is like this: "He is sort of a bad guy who did wrong things. Errrr, don't know what exactly, so let's speak at length about what could've happened had Hitler not sneezed at the OKW meeting N2342345 on 01.03.1942 while talking to Manstein, see footnote 5, appendix 10. This was a game changing event, I tell ya!"
                          Thanks, I'll have a closer look over the next couple of days.
                          "Chatfield, there seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today!"
                          Vice Admiral Beatty to Flag Captain Chatfield; Battle of Jutland, 31 May - 1 June, 1916.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by panther3485 View Post
                            On point 1: The degree of surprise achieved by the Germans was not the cause of the initial Soviet defeats but IMO it would have made the Soviet response less effective to begin with in many places and I think it certainly helped things along for the Germans. The element of surprise is usually not without value in war.
                            Here's the book "The Other 1941. The Stopped Blitzkrieg"



                            It was published in 2010 and it became rather popular among amateur historians in Russia, but so far nobody cared to translate it into English. I've got a question for you: is there a special mental block set for the Western audiences, which makes them exceptionally eager to read any kind of 3rd rate regurgitated for the umpteenth time literature, but absolutely blocks their interest in anything about Soviet side. Do they sympathise with the Nazis much more than with the Communists? Why, if they have no interest in such books, they still keep complaining that this information is "oh so hard to get and there's no information about the Soviet side"? Seriously, 30 years have passed since the collapse of the SU, and a lot of books have been written in Russia, based on the declassified archives. Is it a sort of "conspiracy of silence" on part of Western publishing houses and audiences - not to publish and read any modern Russian historical research, or what? I can't find a logical and reasonable answer to this paradox.
                            Last edited by ShAA; 26 Mar 13, 08:15.
                            www.histours.ru

                            Siege of Leningrad battlefield tour

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by ShAA View Post
                              Here's the book "The Other 1941. The Stopped Blitzkrieg"



                              It was published in 2010 and it became rather popular among amateur historians in Russia, but so far nobody cared to translate it into English. I've got a question for you: is there a special mental block set for the Western audiences, which makes them exceptionally eager to read any kind of 3rd rate regurgitated for the umpteenth time literature, but absolutely blocks their interest in anything about Soviet side. Do they sympathise with the Nazis much more than with the Communists? Why, if they have no interest in such books, they still keep complaining that this information is "oh so hard to get and there's no information about the Soviet side"? Seriously, 30 years have passed since the collapse of the SU, and a lot of books have been written in Russia, based on the declassified archives. Is it a sort of "conspiracy of silence" on part of Western publishing houses and audiences - not to publish and read any modern Russian historical research, or what? I can't find a logical and reasonable answer to this paradox.
                              I'd read it...

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by ShAA View Post
                                I would agree in general on all 3 points. The problem is that when you try to discuss Stalin's mistakes, the usual crowd which swarms over "Hitler did that wrong" posts and beats the dead horse, suddenly vanishes and keeps its mouths shut.

                                However, what I rather had in mind was his decisions not to withdraw troops from Kiev in August 1941, his premature and overambitious Lyuban offensive and his decision to keep troops in the center in summer 1942 - just for a start.
                                The information of the usual crowd are the Von fables (Panzerleader and Lost victories).
                                Not using what the good Lord was not giving them,because they were to late at the distribution,the crowd thinks

                                1)The Germans lost because the stupid Adolf made mistakes
                                2)Why was Adold stupid ? Because he made mistakes
                                3)Why did he made mistakes ? Because he was stupid,a bohemian corporal

                                For Stalin,the crowd does not know,the crowd knows nothing ..also nothing about the SU: they know that is cold there,that people are drinking vodka ,that the inhabitants were inferior to the Krauts,who were inferior to US.

                                There is a problem (for the crowd):

                                If Stalin was stupid (as Adolf),why did the SU win? Maybe they were not inferior to the Krauts (horresco referens)

                                If Stalin was not stupid,than he would be a good guyeek,because since 1968,the crowd has been told (in a very simply way,otherwise it would overload their brains) that criminals are stupid,criminals can't be intelligent.
                                Thus,let's draw a veil over it.

                                BTW :I never heard some one saying that Stalin was a georgian corporal .

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