Jump to content

Was lend-lease essential in securing a Soviet victory?


Recommended Posts

  • Replies 297
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

In winter in other titles you get an 'appearance' choice between 'greatcoat' or 'winter' uniforms in the editor. CMRT will be following the same practice. Russian greatcoats have shoulder boards so ra

Michael E - "what other choices did the Germans have besides packing up and going home?"   The economists have determined that everything the Germans extracted in the Ukraine by force during the occ

A relly interesting discussion. When it comes to 4-engine bombers being 'ineffective'--I think that is a very bold and unsupported claim. The strategic bombing of Germany basically shaped the war as a

Posted Images

The O'Brien argument is certainly well crafted but it has a number of issues which lessen its authority.

1) He only counts 1943 onwards and ignores the fact that the Russo-German war was won by mid 1943

2) His assertion that WW2 was a war of machines really only applies to the Western powers, many other countries successfully fought a war based on man power.

3) Given this economic output is not the only measure of military activity

4) Writing in 2000 post-Bosnia one of his objectives is to rehabilitate air power which had been shown to be less than effective in destroying ground forces in certain terrains.

The argument needs to address the fact that in order to defeat Germany you need to defeat its army and air power cannot do that especially in western Europe and given the level of technology.

A better argument would give equal weighting to economic and manpower issues in which case his calculations would swing back eastwards.

Link to post
Share on other sites
...The argument needs to address the fact that in order to defeat Germany you need to defeat its army and air power cannot do that especially in western Europe and given the level of technology.

You don't necessarily need to defeat its army. My fantasy scenario where the USA fights Germany alone goes like this:

The USA eliminates Germany's navy and airforce. Ground forces, combined with air, and where applicable, navy, contain German ground forces, but do not attempt major offensives to avoid casualties.

Then, the USA begins wiping German cities off the map, one by one, until Germany surrenders or ceases to exist. Ground forces advance only when the German military has ceased to put up a fight.

The USA would have the bomb by '45 and the ability to destroy cities by bombing before that. The complete destruction of Germany's navy and airforces by the USA is a given. So...

it is a question of industrial production timetables and a willingness to use the required force on the USA's part.

This is why I commented that Germany can be thankful that it chewed up most of its army fighting the Soviets. I'm pretty confident that the USA would have turned to such a strategy, rather than suffer the casualties of fighting in a way that it wouldn't have had to.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1) He only counts 1943 onwards

That's not entirely true. The reason he focusses on 1943 in particular is explained in the paper. The tl;dr version is that that's when German production really started ramping up, and it's also the year that historians have traditionally used to excoriate the Western effort - "See? The Reds won this thing in 1943 while you guys just sat around on your thumbs."

2) His assertion that WW2 was a war of machines really only applies to the Western powers, many other countries successfully fought a war based on man power.
The bit after the comma is obviously untrue.

* Germany beat Poland in a war of machines. There were a lot of marching and horse drawn infantry, but they were essentially along for the ride.

* Germany beat France in a war of machines. There were a lot of marching and horse drawn infantry, but they were essentially along for the ride.

* Britain beat Germany in the Battle of Britain in a battle of machines. There were a lot of marching and - south of the Channel - horse drawn infantry down below, but they were all but irrelevant.

* Germany whipped Russia in a war of machines in 1941 and for most of 1942. There were a lot of marching and horse drawn infantry, but they were mostly just along for the ride.

* Russia increasingly whipped Germany in a war of machines from 1943 onwards. There were a lot of marching and horse drawn infantry, but they were mostly just along for the ride.

* The US and UK beat Germany in the Atlantic in a battle of machines. Man power had nothing to do with it.

* The US and UK trashed Germany in a war of machines from 1943, and especially from 1944, onwards.

* Japan started a war of machines in the Pacific, but discovered within 6 months that it didn't have enough machines.

* The USSR spanked Japan like a red headed stepchild in a ___ __ ________. (fill in the blanks)

* Italy tried a war based on manpower. Heh.

* Japan and China fought a long and indecisive war based on manpower that only ended when the machines won elsewhere.

The bit before the comma ("only applies to the Allies") is partially true (see list above) but O'Brien's point is that Germany couldn't fight the war of machines they wanted in the east because most of their machines were too busy in the west.

3) Given this economic output is not the only measure of military activity
True. Effective application of force matters, a point amplified by Overy in Why the Allies won. But when trying to fight a economic war with a pants economy, your application had better be spot on.

4) Writing in 2000 post-Bosnia one of his objectives is to rehabilitate air power which had been shown to be less than effective in destroying ground forces in certain terrains.
Um ... that's kind of a long bow you're drawing there.

The argument needs to address the fact that in order to defeat Germany you need to defeat its army and air power cannot do that especially in western Europe and given the level of technology.
No, your strawman needs to address the minor point that O'Brien makes no such claim as that airpower alone would win the thing.
Link to post
Share on other sites

The several issues with using "economic activity" as the measure of military capability can be summarised as:

1) High tech items do not produce the same level of military capability as economic cost. A heavy bomber is expensive to produce from an economic point of view but produces a military effect that is less than an equivalent number of say, tanks. Of course it produces and economic effect by destroying factories but overall technology increases the cost of killing an enemy soldier it just allows you to do it at range or with less cost to your own soldiers. The V1 and V2 programmes are a good example of a high tech military weapon that in reality kills few people and has little economic effect. By comparison the humble sea mine was very low tech and yet produced a huge economic effect.

2) Manpower is an economic asset on the balance sheet and could be counted alongside economic output. In O'Briens argument he has Germany deploying 60% of her economic output against the West but only a third of her army while the other 40% of the economy and 2/3rds of her army are sent east. The causalities see 20% in the West and 80% in the east for military personnel. What needs to be included in this is workers, anti-aircraft gunners, firemen and reconstruction crews but even then, the West appears to be spending a lot of economic activity for little in the way of dead German soldiers.

3) Delivering economic capability is not the same as deployed military capability, a lot of US production was spent in simply delivering the military assets to their battlefield. The Pacific is a good illustration of this as we all know that it took 25 men to supply the 1 man at the front line.

What is less well understood is that Germany suffered a similar problem in that she found it hard to deploy her economic capability into Russia. Trying to do this via rail meant years of upgrading the railway network, building new roads and expending precious fuel in getting her troops the 2000km from Germany into the front line in Russia. It is by no means clear that even had she wanted to send more material eastwards that Germany would have been able to deliver it. The war in the West was easy to supply as it was fought across good communications at a distance of only 500km from Germany.

4) I have some sympathy with the planners of the war of machines as they had only the experience of the Great War to go on. It was by no means clear that a bombing campaign against Germany industry was going to produce a political change in Germany, nor that they could damage it sufficiently to effect a collapse of German military strength which would need to be effected before a political change could be made. Nor could they base their strategy on a future super-weapon which may or may not have arrived on time or at all. Viewed from the position of the 1940s.

Modern conflicts have shown that a country faced by an economically strong, technologically advanced opponent can still win - the Vietnam War is testament to the most unequal struggle. Bosnia shows that you can "bomb them into the Stone Age" and yet to produce political change requires "boots on the ground". Bosnia also shows how hard it can be to destroy a military force from the air even with ultra high tech aircraft a point that has been repeated in Afghanistan. The point has been often made that High Tech armies are best at destroying other High Tech armies and that technology often struggles to cope against the Low Tech.

I am not putting forward an alternative argument to O'Brien, I am just pointing out the problems with his argument. His numbers have meaning but not in the way that he is using them to justify that the West won the war.

Link to post
Share on other sites

One interesting aspect of his argument is that in many ways the Heer did not attempt to fight a High Tech war against the Soviets but fought a Traditional war against them while the Kreigsmarine and Luftwaffe did fight a High Tech war in the West. The reason for this was their belief that you needed mass armies not small armies with high tech weapons.

By the way does anyone have a copy of this article that they could post here or say at the Axis History Forum (which accepts bigger file uploads)? So that people could read it in full.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you're focusing too much on airpower, and aircraft specifically. That is part of it, and the major part of what Germany turned her economy towards, but it isn't the whole story.

A war of machines means all the machines. Trucks, trains, bombes, radios, radars, bombers, fighters, tanks, halftracks, jeeps, bailey bridges, liberty ships, destroyers, mulberries, typewriters, telephones, H2S, harbour tugs, field kitchens, and on and on and on.

100.000 men are useless against a squadron of aircraft or a well supplied regiment of tanks. And, funnily enough, that's exactly what the Germans found in Russia - they didn't need more men in Russia. They had plenty of men, but they kept dying in huge numbers out on the steppe, run over by increasing mechanized Russian forces who were backed by an increasingly motorised supply system. The Germans needed more machines. More trucks to carry supplies, more bulldozers to build roads to move the trucks on, more trains and rails carry the supplies forward from Germany, more radios so they could figure out what was going on and coordinate themselves, and yes more planes to strike at the Russian and protect the Germans.

The Germans threw plenty of men at Russia. They three 4 million warm bodies across the border in 1941, and never let up on the flow. But it didn't help them, because they were missing the thing they needed: machines. Because the machines were busy in the west.

Edit: "the Heer did not attempt to fight a High Tech war against the Soviets"

But ... they very much did do exactly that in 1941 and 1942. They explicitly adopted a high tech war of machines, concentrating as many as they could muster in just a few places.

"does anyone have a copy of this article"

JSS are a bit twitchy about their articles being released in the wild. A good university library of city library should have a copy. The full reference is in post #144.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think we have fundamentally different definitions of what constitutes a "war of machines". As JasonC said

The basic thrust of his article is that the German ground forces only consumed a very small part of the German economy.
so i just do not see the German war on the Soviet Union in 1941 and 1942 as a "war of machines".

300 Divisions most of which are horse drawn and of which 15-20 could really be called motorised (remember Panzer Divisions had been cut in half to double their numbers just before the invasion). That is 5% of the force. For every encirclement, Infantry Divisions were needed to do the fighting, the Panzer Divisions made the breakthrough and caused the confusion but were too weak to destroy the enemy. Not really a war of machines, more like the Great War.

Link to post
Share on other sites
300 Divisions most of which are horse drawn and of which 15-20 could really be called motorised (remember Panzer Divisions had been cut in half to double their numbers just before the invasion). That is 5% of the force.

Sure, and which bit did the heavy lifting in terms of breakthroughs, ground gained, and encirclements - the 95% of the force which had 5% of the machines, or the 5% of the force with 95% of the machines?

The way the Germans would have liked to fight the whole of the war in the east is obvious, and while they were able to dictate the tempo they were - to a certain extent - able to do what they wanted.

Edit: by the by, it was me that said "The basic thrust of his article is that the German ground forces only consumed a very small part of the German economy", not Jason. And I think you misunderstand the point there. It was a war of machines. Defeating the economy and the machines it created meant defeating the enemy.The Russians did defeat a lot - most, if you prefer - of the ground based component of the German armed forces, but (and this is the point of the bit you quoted) the ground based component was the cheapest and most machine-poor element. The Western Allies defeated most of the German economy and its machines - in the air, at sea, some on the ground, and a lot of it directly in Germany.

Link to post
Share on other sites

JonS - outputs are not inputs. The French had as many machines and as good in the west in 1940, and lost decisively. Why? Outputs are not inputs. The war was not decided by machines it was decided by intelligence and command and training and tactics. Once everyone learns those to a solid professional level, the ratio between two sides might remain close enough for numbers to tell, as in the classic Clausewitz expectation. As long as either side doesn't know what it is doing, it is "unbounded below" for the weaker side.

So does that mean it was a war of brains not machines? The machines, too, are just "along for the ride".

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've already said that application matters. But why do we have machines? Leverage.

The French were pants in 1940 ... but do you think they'd have been good enough to beat Wellington at Waterloo? Answers on a postcard.

And, as you noted ...

If the war lasts into late 45, Berlin and the Ruhr are smoking, radiated ruins.

... which has exactly nothing to do with "intelligence and command and training and tactics".

Link to post
Share on other sites
The several issues with using "economic activity" as the measure of military capability can be summarised as:

I agree, economic activity is not the same thing at all as military capability. However nor can you divorce them. I think you are slightly oversimplifying the issue. I will put a few comments in response to some of your points.

1) High tech items do not produce the same level of military capability as economic cost. A heavy bomber is expensive to produce from an economic point of view but produces a military effect that is less than an equivalent number of say, tanks. Of course it produces and economic effect by destroying factories but overall technology increases the cost of killing an enemy soldier it just allows you to do it at range or with less cost to your own soldiers.

You are right at one level - the 'general' effectiveness of a unit of appropriate technology tanks is probably higher than the equivalent bomber of the same cost. However you seem to divorce 'economic' effect from 'military' effect. They are two aspects of the same thing in the medium/long term. Why was Germany defeated (at the very highest level of thinking)? Because they could not stop the advance of the Allies, to occupy Germany, and physically prevent the elimination of their capability to resist. Why was that? Because (ignoring the poor leadership decisions so capably discussed above) their economy could not produce/sustain enough combat capability to resist that of the Allies (I include replacement troops in the 'economy', as you have to in this style of thought - people are 'machine operators' in this way of machines, and the recovery mechanic, repair facility etc are at least as important as the tank driver in this respect). Why couldn't the German economy produce/maintain the combat capability? Because of all aspects of the war. The aim is to render the machines of the enemy ineffective. You can blow them up on the battlefield, behind the battlefield, in the depot or the factory. You can strand them in any of the above, you can prevent them getting spares and ammo, etc etc. The only question in anything other than the short term is who can do all the above most effectively. Note: not efficiently - USSR was not efficient by Western standards, but by goodness it was effective! (I know that the money spent per dead German, by USSR was probably less than the West, but you need to normalise the equation -USSR was a low wage economy. It was damaging its economy far more to kill one German than the West was- the west spent primarily non-human resources that could be sustained in the medium term, the USSR spent finite, though large, human ones)

The V1 and V2 programmes are a good example of a high tech military weapon that in reality kills few people and has little economic effect. By comparison the humble sea mine was very low tech and yet produced a huge economic effect.

Completely agree. But in late 1944, the sea mine, whilst economically still efficient, was fast becoming less effective. If Germany put the V1 programme resources in to sea mine production, would it have produced the same effect as the V1 programme? No, because it did not have the means to deploy them, and they are easily countered by sweeping. The V1 programme was not ineffective. Hitler had vastely over inflated expectations, sure, and the pure material effect was not huge, but it distorted Allied air and ground strategy, caused a huge diversion of medium and heavy bomber sorties to launching sites etc. A 'V1 sized mine programme' would have been countered far easier and far less cost, and hence the extra bomber sorties would have been spent doing something to reduce Germany's power faster.

2) Manpower is an economic asset on the balance sheet and could be counted alongside economic output. In O'Briens argument he has Germany deploying 60% of her economic output against the West but only a third of her army while the other 40% of the economy and 2/3rds of her army are sent east. The causalities see 20% in the West and 80% in the east for military personnel. What needs to be included in this is workers, anti-aircraft gunners, firemen and reconstruction crews but even then, the West appears to be spending a lot of economic activity for little in the way of dead German soldiers.

Killing soldiers is not the right measure of success in war. Look at France 1940 and 1914. Far fewer casualties in 1940. So presumably 1914 is the better victory? No - rendering troops combat ineffective is far more efficient economically.

3) Delivering economic capability is not the same as deployed military capability, a lot of US production was spent in simply delivering the military assets to their battlefield. The Pacific is a good illustration of this as we all know that it took 25 men to supply the 1 man at the front line. What is less well understood is that Germany suffered a similar problem in that she found it hard to deploy her economic capability into Russia. Trying to do this via rail meant years of upgrading the railway network, building new roads and expending precious fuel in getting her troops the 2000km from Germany into the front line in Russia. It is by no means clear that even had she wanted to send more material eastwards that Germany would have been able to deliver it. The war in the West was easy to supply as it was fought across good communications at a distance of only 500km from Germany.

Which is exactly what I am arguing. Military effectiveness is inextricably linked to other factors. If European Russia was like France in terms of road net, would things be different? Yes - I suspect Germany would have got further east, but fundamentally, the Russians still build up faster than being defeated, German Navy still loses the Battle of the Atlantic, the bomber war stays as history.... Germany is able to exert more combat power in to Russia, and the war lasts a little longer, but the ecomonic balance remains unchanged and hence the war remains unchanged in the very highest level.

4) I have some sympathy with the planners of the war of machines as they had only the experience of the Great War to go on. It was by no means clear that a bombing campaign against Germany industry was going to produce a political change in Germany, nor that they could damage it sufficiently to effect a collapse of German military strength which would need to be effected before a political change could be made. Nor could they base their strategy on a future super-weapon which may or may not have arrived on time or at all. Viewed from the position of the 1940s.

Modern conflicts have shown that a country faced by an economically strong, technologically advanced opponent can still win - the Vietnam War is testament to the most unequal struggle. Bosnia shows that you can "bomb them into the Stone Age" and yet to produce political change requires "boots on the ground". Bosnia also shows how hard it can be to destroy a military force from the air even with ultra high tech aircraft a point that has been repeated in Afghanistan. The point has been often made that High Tech armies are best at destroying other High Tech armies and that technology often struggles to cope against the Low Tech.

Here we get out of Total war and in to limited wars. You have to be very careful not to mix the two, and draw invalid conclusions. Political will to pursue a war is a whole other issue, and not really relevant to WW2, with a couple of notable exceptions (France 1940, Japan 1945), where the final prevention of physical ability to continue to resist was pre-empted by a collapse of political will. I do not intend to divert by arguing these, as we could be here for ever debating what actual resistance (e.g.) France could have continued to put up. The point we need to be clear is that modern conflicts have not shown that high tech armies cannot defeat low tech ones. They have shown that the modern myth that high tech armies can do so without significant losses or economic effect is incorrect. Thus the 'low tech side' can lose the battle militarily but because their ability to resist is not eliminated, they can continue until the high tech side gives up.

I am not putting forward an alternative argument to O'Brien, I am just pointing out the problems with his argument. His numbers have meaning but not in the way that he is using them to justify that the West won the war.

My view is that it is pointless to argue who won the war more. Which of your two legs helps you walk more? If you take one away you cant move right? No, you just have to move differently. So with the war - USSR undoubtedly suffered more, no contest. But this does not mean they 'won the war', nor does it mean they didn't.

Link to post
Share on other sites
But in late 1944, the sea mine, whilst economically still efficient, was fast becoming less effective.

I think this is not so, at least as stated. In 1945 the USAAF was able to place and maintain a mine barrage around Japan that was possibly the Allies most effective tool in preventing Japanese merchant shipping from getting through. The difference of course is that the USAAF could do that while the Luftwaffe could not. But that says nothing about the effectiveness of the sea mine itself as a weapon per se.

Michael

Link to post
Share on other sites
I think this is not so, at least as stated. In 1945 the USAAF was able to place and maintain a mine barrage around Japan that was possibly the Allies most effective tool in preventing Japanese merchant shipping from getting through. The difference of course is that the USAAF could do that while the Luftwaffe could not. But that says nothing about the effectiveness of the sea mine itself as a weapon per se.

Michael

Yeah, but the Japanese were absurdly inept with regard to even recognising, never mind countering, the threats to their merchant shipping.

In fact the Japanese make a terrible example for almost everything to do with WWII, having as they did, pretty weird blinkers on concerning just about every aspect of the war.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well put. For the entire war they pretty much assumed they were still facing the 1941 enemy. The Air Force fighter wing was the only arm to try seriously to modernize at all (relying heavily on German fighter designs and radar sets brought in by U-boat, or is that a myth?), and by then they no longer had the pilots.

I'd credit US submarines, dud torpedoes notwithstanding, well ahead of sea mines when it comes to the battle of the Marus; and in 1945, tactical airpower: "When they radioed for air cover only American planes showed up."

Link to post
Share on other sites
In fact the Japanese make a terrible example for almost everything to do with WWII...

Well, to be fair, they were pretty damn good at night time naval combat until the USN got improved radar and figured out how to use it. And the Japanese had a dramatically better torpedo and better tactics for using them. That was nowhere near enough to win the war, but in the waters around Guadalcanal the USN had its head handed to it as often as not.

Michael

Link to post
Share on other sites

ME - other Japanese advantages - their early war naval pilots were experienced and trained to an unbelievable degree, and consistently outperformed their allied opponents; their torpedo bombers in particular got launch to hit rates exceeding typical USN levels (even late war ones) by a factor of 2-3x; their night surface scouts outperformed radar (!); they fought to the death and practically never surrendered (not that the late war US gave them many chances); their overly aggressive early war ground combat tactics were indeed poor, but they learned by Saipan and Iwo Jima, and learned a lot more by Okinawa; their late war aircraft designs were very good e.g. the Frank, they just didn't have good pilots left by then.

Was any of that enough to take on half the world industrial base with 1/40th of world industrial output? No. But they had their strengths...

Link to post
Share on other sites

JC, I agree with all you posted, and would add to this:

...their late war aircraft designs were very good e.g. the Frank, they just didn't have good pilots left by then.

They also had the problem all through the war but especially the last year of not being able to manufacture nearly enough of their better late model designs. But as you say, even if they had had the planes, they simply had no way to train enough pilots up to the level required to survive and prevail in combat.

Michael

Link to post
Share on other sites

The Japanese certainly produced fewer planes than the US did, but aircraft production was actually a relatively long suit. They built 53,000 combat aircraft in the period 1943 to 1945 - Germany managed 72,000 in the same stretch. Considering the size of their overall economies and prewar industrial base, that is amazingly close. Their pilot training could not keep up. Yes the US easily exceeded those figures, producing 225,000 in the same interval.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, the Japanese war mentality has always interested me because especially at the start of the war in some areas they were way ahead of the U.S. and everyone else, yet in other areas they made huge strategic, doctrinal, and tactical misjudgements and seemed be completely incapable of changing course. It's a curious mindset that I've never quite been able to fathom.

Link to post
Share on other sites

YD - it is a fair comment and accurate. As for the why, I have always put it down to a combination of considerable personal brilliance and excellence at one's calling, combined with a cultural fear of challenging superiors even when they are obviously screwing up and a lack of moral courage from below, more generally. Plenty of the physical kind toward the enemy, but a big deficit of the social kind toward superiors. It is dishonorable to tell the admiral he is being an idiot, so the smart fellows on the staff just don't bring it up, they suck in their gut and grind their teeth and let the plan go down with a crash. And call it loyalty and honor.

Extending remarks - see, the line commander is a geriatric fellow who got there by seniority and loyalty to the group, and compared to the rigorously selected experts around him he can't think his way out of a paper bag. His experts give him unconditional loyalty - and then everything depends on what kind of man he is and what he does with that loyalty. The clever and humble ones understand that the way he is supposed to use being in charge and being given unconditional loyalty, is to *ask* his subordinates what he is supposed to do, hear them out, then do it - and everything goes brilliantly. The thicker and more arrogant ones think that being in charge and receiving unconditional loyalty means they are supposed to *tell* their subordinates what to do - and so they tell them whatever, and the subordinates know it is crazy but they try to do it anyway, and everything goes down in flames.

Call it loyalty culture, which works if the higher ups repay the deference given to them, but fails utterly if they misuse it, instead.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Yeah, the Japanese war mentality has always interested me because especially at the start of the war in some areas they were way ahead of the U.S. and everyone else, yet in other areas they made huge strategic, doctrinal, and tactical misjudgements and seemed be completely incapable of changing course. It's a curious mindset that I've never quite been able to fathom.

I would place alongside Jason's usual penetrating analysis the following consideration. Japan came to industrialization and its accompanying cultural adjustments relatively late. And I would submit that by WW II those adjustments had not penetrated every corner of life to the extent that they had in the West (which indeed was going through its own evolutions). So in areas that they had concentrated on, they could very well produce excellence. But in others, not so good. The tricky thing was that their late 19th. century and early 20th. century successful war experience had been such as to leave unrevealed whatever shortcomings existed in their system. This was often a fault in all nations that eventually fought WW II, but Japan's blind spots were especially large it seems to me.

Michael

Link to post
Share on other sites

Apart from simple bad decisions and sometimes byzantine command relationships, I think there is also a tendency by Western observers to underestimate the very serious resource and geographical constraints faced by Japan and some other countries.

Some of the famous "bizarre" decisions, like not having armour on the Zero, which are sometimes attributed to cultural factors like "samurai spirit" were really about compromises. In the Zero's case they couldn't achieve the range required (remember the Pacific is huge) with armour, at least not given their engine tech, so it was either or. The poor equipment of the Japanese army was also partly due to resource constraints, with the navy and air force having priority.

In the ETO Germany's allies (and to a degree Germany itself) where also quite constrained, and in several cases unable to manufacture e.g. armour plate. Plus of course there was never enough oil to go around, which answers some of the classical "why didn't they...? questions (e.g. "why didn't Germany build a strategic bomber force?").

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...