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Could the Axis Powers have won in the Mediterranean and North Africa?

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  • #61
    Originally posted by dutched View Post
    How about the elephant in the front room? Keep mining the Strait of Gibraltar like was done with the German Bight and the same with Port Alexandria? It would not be a war winning strategy, but could it provide much needed relief to the Axis in the Med.?

    Ed.
    If the Axis had seized Vichy NA, Axis airpower would dominate Gibraltar and shut down the Atlantic route.

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    • #62
      Originally posted by broderickwells View Post
      I did. I suggest you adjust you optical prescription as the port of Tripoli appears to be the size of Bizerte and Tunis combined. That Port de plaisance in Bizerte is a marina.
      Flip to satellite view and look again - the port facilities in Bizerte extend far into Lake Bizerte. They dwarf Tripoli. Now, if you're saying that Bizerte was not as developed in 1941, I'm all ears.

      10 mpg out of a 5T truck? I budgeted on that from my '47 Buick car. Let's quarter it.
      I used 10 mpg for the planning factor.

      Next, the average speed of a convoy...<snip>
      1 trip per truck every six days is the planning factor.

      What other theatres could the British fight in in 1941? In terms of grand strategy it sucks in British resources that may have been available to the USSR or a cross-channel attack as well as maintaining an ally (very important).
      For Great Britain the only relevant question was the addition of other allies; the USSR and USA. Should the USA join the war, the Allies did not need the ME and it was irrelevant whether Germany took Egypt or not; the USAAF did not require Egypt to bomb Germany.

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      • #63
        Originally posted by NoPref View Post
        I was trying to point out that creating a secure shipping lane did not mean that more stuff would actually get shipped.
        The big logistics questions I see are dispatch port capacity, shipping capacity, available escorts, available fuel for the ships, destination port capacity, distance from the supply head, NA supply network. In order to take Alexandria, all these problems had to be resolved, and the evident solution was Vichy territory - both Tunisia, (which solves destination port capacity) and Marseilles (which solves dispatch port capacity and shipping capacity, as well as finishes the Gibraltar route). In terms of Barbarossa, I see no chance to resolving the ship fuel problem or the NA supply network problem with the German army in Russia.

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        • #64
          Originally posted by Glenn239 View Post
          If the Axis had seized Vichy NA, Axis airpower would dominate Gibraltar and shut down the Atlantic route.
          It would not : the Axis had not the power to seize Vichy NA, there would be no axis airpower, and every one who can read a map knows that Gibraltar was irrelevant for the Atlantic route .

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          • #65
            If Italy had been given special transit rights through Tunisia, it would have eased the supply situation a great deal. They may have had to extend the French tail roads into Libya, though.

            Pruitt
            Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

            Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

            by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

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            • #66
              Originally posted by Pruitt View Post
              If Italy had been given special transit rights through Tunisia, it would have eased the supply situation a great deal. They may have had to extend the French tail roads into Libya, though.

              Pruitt
              I fail to see how landing supplies even further away from the front lines will ease the supply problems

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              • #67
                Originally posted by redcoat View Post
                I fail to see how landing supplies even further away from the front lines will ease the supply problems
                Ask Draco.

                Regards
                Scott Fraser
                Ignorance is not the lack of knowledge. It is the refusal to learn.

                A contentedly cantankerous old fart

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                • #68
                  Your a bad man...
                  Credo quia absurdum.


                  Quantum mechanics describes nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And yet it fully agrees with experiment. So I hope you can accept nature as She is - absurd! - Richard Feynman

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                  • #69
                    Originally posted by redcoat View Post
                    I fail to see how landing supplies even further away from the front lines will ease the supply problems
                    The greatest danger to Italian Supply Ships was to the subs based in Malta and the Bombers, Fighter Bombers based in Egypt. The Italians would have had to extend the rail lines in Tunisia into the network in Libya. The project would have been far enough away from Egypt to keep the bombers away. Once built and running there would also be a net savings in fuel oil consumed to get to Africa as well. It would have also been easier to protect the shipping lanes from Sicily to Tunisia. Who would actually build them and pay for it is the interesting part..

                    Pruitt
                    Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

                    Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

                    by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

                    Comment


                    • #70
                      That actually happened ...

                      ... but Vichy got the message, and it stopped.

                      Darlan and Raeder actually became quite chummy (based on correspondence, and items Raeder sent to Hitler on Darlan), when it came to North Africa it was largely Weygand’s doing that the Germans feared France might attack the Italians in the rear. Darlan was involved in the negotiations with Ambassador Otto Abetz for an actual peace treaty to replace the Armistice terms, which resulted in the Paris Protocols. He tried to obtain better terms for France and while he may not have actually traded the Navy, he did trade the use of French naval bases, and part of the merchant marine.


                      For example, consideration was given for using French bases in the Med., German transit privileges to assist the Iraqis, AND using the ports in Tunisia to increase the tonnage going to Rommel, some supplies were indeed sent in French hulls. The British and Free French blocked the latter, then were sufficiently provoked and alarmed to attack and seize the Levant, which was lost to France, to prevent the former. Vichy got the message, they would lose the rest of the Empire if they persisted. The use of French bases and transit privileges through Tunisia were quickly revoked, not a large amount of tonnage for Rommel had been moved anyway.

                      While an actual peace treaty was never reached, and the 4 Paris Protocols never ratified, it was largely fear of the British launching a TORCH-like operation (GYMNAST, or something like it) on their own that prevented Vichy & Darlan from snuggling even closer to their German overlords.


                      Originally posted by Pruitt View Post
                      The greatest danger to Italian Supply Ships was to the subs based in Malta and the Bombers, Fighter Bombers based in Egypt. The Italians would have had to extend the rail lines in Tunisia into the network in Libya. The project would have been far enough away from Egypt to keep the bombers away. Once built and running there would also be a net savings in fuel oil consumed to get to Africa as well. It would have also been easier to protect the shipping lanes from Sicily to Tunisia. Who would actually build them and pay for it is the interesting part..

                      Pruitt
                      "I am Groot"
                      - Groot

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                      • #71
                        What message did Vichy get after Dakar?

                        Pruitt
                        Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

                        Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

                        by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

                        Comment


                        • #72
                          Originally posted by Glenn239 View Post
                          If the Axis had seized Vichy NA, Axis airpower would dominate Gibraltar and shut down the Atlantic route.
                          Oh go on G2 you are making jokes again, you are a one!!! lcm1
                          'By Horse by Tram'.


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

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                          • #73
                            Originally posted by Glenn239 View Post
                            Flip to satellite view and look again - the port facilities in Bizerte extend far into Lake Bizerte. They dwarf Tripoli. Now, if you're saying that Bizerte was not as developed in 1941, I'm all ears.
                            The modern Port of Bizerte is the same approximate size as Tripoli, Tunis and Benghazi. The anchorage in Lake Bizerte is not port facilities, though there is a small secondary port on the south shore of the lake at Menzel Bourguiba (rated the same size as Tobruk or Derna). These two, Tunisia and Libya, give excellent comparative data and history.
                            I used 10 mpg for the planning factor.

                            1 trip per truck every six days is the planning factor.
                            Light on the gas consumption, about right on the round trip guestimate. But remember the average German truck was only 2.5T capacity.
                            For Great Britain the only relevant question was the addition of other allies; the USSR and USA. Should the USA join the war, the Allies did not need the ME and it was irrelevant whether Germany took Egypt or not; the USAAF did not require Egypt to bomb Germany.
                            Britain had access to a huge manpower pool via the Commonwealth/Empire, as well as a reasonably large manufacturing base. It also needed to eliminate the minor Axis powers as they could threaten British trade/supply lines. You are aware of the scale and scope of the Italian empire in 1939?

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                            • #74
                              Originally posted by Pruitt View Post
                              The greatest danger to Italian Supply Ships was to the subs based in Malta and the Bombers, Fighter Bombers based in Egypt. The Italians would have had to extend the rail lines in Tunisia into the network in Libya. The project would have been far enough away from Egypt to keep the bombers away. Once built and running there would also be a net savings in fuel oil consumed to get to Africa as well. It would have also been easier to protect the shipping lanes from Sicily to Tunisia. Who would actually build them and pay for it is the interesting part..

                              Pruitt
                              Marseille to Tunis as well - if breaking up Vichy anyways, no point in not seizing the mother load of available neutral shipping.

                              Comment


                              • #75
                                Originally posted by lcm1 View Post
                                Oh go on G2 you are making jokes again, you are a one!!! lcm1
                                Only a fantasist of the most determined sort could imagine the Gibraltar route would be usable should Axis airpower be established in Algeria.

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