Most pivotal battle of WWII?

Discussion in 'History' started by Undecided, Jun 6, 2004.

  1. Undecided Banned Banned

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    On this D-day I think it appropriate if we ask ourselves which allied battle was the most decisive against the Nazi war machine?

    >Stalingrad -1942
    >Kursk- 1943
    >D-Day- 1944

    I vouch for Stalingrad, your thoughts?
     
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  3. Repo Man Valued Senior Member

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    I second Stalingrad, a tragic bloodletting that most in the US are much too ignorant of.
     
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  5. Thersites Registered Senior Member

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    The non-battle of Dunkirk or the Battle of Britain.
     
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  7. Undecided Banned Banned

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    Interesting take on the war, a non-battle scenario. The most important strategic move was Hitler's invasion of the USSR (obviously).
     
  8. Brian Foley REFUSE - RESIST Valued Senior Member

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    Kursk was the most pivotal the material loss for Germany was irreversible from there after Germanys fate was sealed . The offensive momentum of the German war machine was turned into a defencive tactic with no hope of ever mounting a credible military offence other than time delaying offencives .Stalingrad was a defeat for Germany in loss of men but that was easily made up . D-Day not to downplay its material acheivement was is in essence was a large mopping up opeartion . But I would like to venture one other battle which I think should of been there and that was the allied strategic air offensive .
     
  9. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    If by "most decisive", you mean the battle which made it clear that the Nazi war machine was "out of steam", it's hard to argue with Stalingrad. After 1942, Hitler's army clearly moved to the "not-quite-dead-yet" category.
     
  10. Antagonist Muslim Registered Member

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    If Britain had lost the Battle Of Britain during the early years of the war then Germany would not have feared a second front. You must remember that Germany had no desire to attack Britain in the first place, he respected Britain, and Hitler's strongest desire was to ally himself with Britain. But as it was, Churchill's stubbornness denied this and Germany had no other option but to invade Britain out of the fear that Britain would have organised a second front in the west.

    Germany lost the Battle Of Britain and were thus unable to employ a much stronger force in the East -against Russia - out of the deep fear that Britain and the people of it's Empire would orgainise a second front, which of course they did. In other words, Russia would have been up fuck's creek without a paddle much more than they were in reality.
     
  11. Blazin_billy Registered Senior Member

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    whats so important about stalingrad. Sure, millions were lost, but even if the germans had won and conquered the rest of Russia, what difference would that of made. The war would of prolonged a few more years for the American/British troops to reach Berlin. D-Day is my pick.
     
  12. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    If the Germans had won at Stalingrad and the Russian army had collapsed instead, Hitler would have had hundreds of thousands of troops to shore up the West Wall. The Americans, British and Canadians would never have made it across the beach at Normandy.
     
  13. shadowpuppet Registered Senior Member

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    dunkirk, definatly.

    Hitlers startegy, and his strength, lay in his speed and desiciveness. At dunkirk, however, and perhaps like antagonist said in order to find an alliance with britain, Hitler hesitated for the first time.

    Had, at the time, hitler had been able to either 1.) secure an alliance with britain beforehand or 2.) wipe out the large of Britains army before they even got home to britain, then he would have had no 2nd front to worry about in the first place.
     
  14. Repo Man Valued Senior Member

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    For anyone not aware, a quick summary of Stalingrad:
    http://campus.northpark.edu/history/webchron/easteurope/Stalingrad.html
     
  15. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

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    Getting accross the beach was bloody in some places but not really the most crucial part of the d-day undertaking. They needed to secure the land was behind the beaches, and push onwards.

    They had lots of reinforcements (it was a logistics war) but if you can't put them anywhere then they are of no use.

    So you are definitely right that it would have caused a problem, but I don't think the beach itself was a problem.
     
  16. Fenris Wolf Banned Banned

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    Dunkirk. Believe it or not, Dunkirk was the beginning of the end for the Germans.

    Although nominally a loss for the British and French, it had quite a few major effects on the rest of the war. French and British soldiers in their thousands were evacuated across the channel, leaving the British well and truly in the war and paving the way for the Battle of Britain. If they had been truly defeated here, the British may have sued for peace, there would have been no Battle of Britain and the Russian front would have been a diferent story with the full might of the German war machine unleashed there. Stalingrad was pivotal, yes... but without the continued British resistance it would likely have been a Russian defeat. The Germans lost hundreds of aircraft during the battle of Britain, but more importantly, they lost thousands of their most experienced aircrew, crews blooded and experienced during the spanish civil war and later in France. It is not commonly known, but during the Battle for France and the blitzkreig, British air forces inflicted more damage on the Germans than during the Battle of Britain. The entire German strategy from the beginning, personified by blitzkreig, was for a short war, not the protracted affair it became. Those aircrew would have been invaluable at Stalingrad and in other battles. Throughout the entire war, German efforts put into the training of aircrew were of a lesser standard than the allied powers. Research into this has shown that German fighter pilots and bomber crews after the Battle of Britain, had far less experience and training than their allied counterparts, and it had far reaching effects not fully appreciated until after the war's end.

    Stalingrad was vital to the German war effort because it provided access to the oil fields to the south and east. It was vital to the Russians because it bore the name of their leader and became a symbol of Russian resistance. If the German forces tied up in Europe and the Western Desert were free to attack Moscow, the resistance at Stalingrad would have been lessened in the face of a more important defence, and the city would have fallen far more easily, resulting in huge losses in terms of war materials for the Russians and gains for the Germans. There would also have been Italian armies, defeated and demoralised in the desert by the British, free to attack Russia and the Balkans. Not only this, but how much sooner would Hitler have ordered Barbarossa if the Battle of Britain had not occured, thus possibly capturing Stalingrad prior to the Russian winter?

    Without the evacuation and defence at Dunkirk, the Battle of Britain would probably not have happened. Experienced German air crew and land forces would have been available for the assault on Russia - perhaps even another army available for an attack on Moscow at the same time as that on Stalingrad. The Western Desert would not have been an issue. It would have been highly unlikely that the Americans would have entered into the european war at all if the British and French were no longer in it (the French being an occupied nation and Britain being at peace with the Germans, therefore providing no jumpoff point for any allied invasion of France and Germany).

    The seeds for Germany's eventual defeat were sown long before Stalingrad, before Normandy and before Anzio. They were sown at Dunkirk.
     
  17. Lemming3k Insanity Gone Mad Registered Senior Member

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    El Alamein or the battle of Britain
     
  18. Executor Registered Senior Member

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    I agree with stalingrad. I think it is unfair to say that most Americans are to ignorant of Stalingrad and would say D-Day.
     
  19. Lemming3k Insanity Gone Mad Registered Senior Member

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    Although not a battle how about everything Jasper Maskelyne did? Thats fairly decisive.
     
  20. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    While we're deconstructing the war, why not go back to the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand at Sarajevo in 1914?

    No assassination -> no WWI -> no Nazis -> no WWII
     
  21. Antagonist Muslim Registered Member

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    No big bang -> no WWI -> no Nazis -> no WWII
     
  22. shadarlocoth Registered Senior Member

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    Antagonist Muslim your almost as stupid as PM......


    what and the hell you dont think they ever happend and its all a cover up of some consparacy thats out to kill/steal from/rape/pose in some S&M photo's... man you need a life... the world is not out to get you... but the world would be a better place with out you...
     
  23. Undecided Banned Banned

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    I believe the Soviets could have very easily lost the war against the Germans even with the UK in the war. It is not commonly known but Hitler invaded the Soviet Union in July, a month late. The Italians (as usual) made a mess of the Greek invasions and pacification of the Aegean/Balkans. Hitler had to maintain the momentum in the South and fatally redirected his forces to mop up the resistance in the region. If Mussolini’s forces were competent enough to keep the Balkans pacified, and Hitler invaded the USSR in June as planned, the winter of ’41 wouldn’t have played such a big role. All the victories would have happened a month earlier, and Moscow would most likely have been captured by the Nazi’s. Stalin would have either been captured (he refused to leave Moscow), or he and the entire Soviet bureaucracy would have to move to Yekaterinburg. The momentum from the Moscow victory would have been lost. Lebensraum would most likely would have been accomplished, what one month can do.
     

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