Most pivotal battle of WWII?

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

  1. Baron Max Registered Senior Member

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    ...LOL! Prior to Pearl Harbor, practically the entire congress was against going to war against Hitler.

    Propaganda??? What's with that? ...LOL!

    Baron Max
     
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  3. ashpwner Registered Senior Member

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    Tell me Baron are you one of those people who think that America did evrything? Well the british involvement was crucial in the war battle of britian without out that there would be no stepping stone for d.day, and without britian i dout it's comon wealth would be involved.
     
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  5. Baron Max Registered Senior Member

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    No.

    Baron Max
     
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  7. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    America was sending escaping Jews back to Europe and pretending Japan was just a silly little country until it was brought to our doorstep. We have a history of that. We don't get involved in helping people til it effects us. We didn't bother with the Taliban til 9/11. I think we need to be in Darfur more than Iraq, but that won't happen.

    Pearl Harbor was a WWII battle. It would be arrogant to think it wasn't a World War til we got involved. If we hadn't been brought into it, the Axis would have won. The Eastern front would have had more resources because they wouldn't have been dealing with us. The pacific was ruled by Japan's Navy til we got there.
     
  8. dixonmassey Valued Senior Member

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    You shall acquaint yourself with the history of American involvement into WWI before taking unwillingness of the entire congress as a constant. Yes, state propaganda agency was created to sway public opinion on WWI, back then they didn't use orwellian language.
     
  9. dixonmassey Valued Senior Member

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    I would not call 700+ military bases abroad as "we don't bother anyone". Also, Clinton has ordered missile attacks on Afganistan long before 9/11.
     
  10. Fenris Wolf Banned Banned

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    Well, there is your first problem. Come the day things never work out according to plan.
    In France in 1944 after d-day the allies were very nearly thrown back off the beaches on more than one occasion - the regular history books fail to note in most cases how close things actually were. D-day itself was a much larger operation, landing more troops, more supplies and more weaponry than any potential German invasion of England. In addition, they had what some might call the advantage of surprise. Yet still, they nearly failed.
    Germany, on the other hand, was up against a Britain completely convinced they were about to be invaded, and were without half the resources available to the allies 4 years later.
    Also to be considered is that the British were defending their homeland, something the Germans in France were not doing. The Dunkirk survivors were not "mostly rear echelon troops", they were the same ones who'd survived the Blitzkreig in Holland and stopped it. They and their commanders already knew the Germans weren't invincible. Lacking heavy equipment, yes... but then any German invasion of England would have been in the same position until they'd consolidated a foothold. It's all very well to list expected equipment landed, but events will often lay waste to the best plans, and those Brits would have been fighting for something more substantial than they were in France.

    What... like it did in the first war?

    The Luftwaffe failed to do that during the Battle of Britain without also needing to support an invasion force. Normandy succeeded partly because of a huge air effort as well - would Germany have been able to provide that?
    Unsupported bombers over england trying to support an invasion force would have met with an even worse fate than they did with fighter cover.
    The ME109 was a good fighter, at least the equal of the spitfire of the time and superior to the Hurricane. It's achilles heel, however, was its lack of range and operational capability over Britain.It would have been completely unable to support any German bomber activity over Britain and it is extemely unlikely the Germans could have captured and held an airfield in Britain itself for quite some time.
    An invasion without air support - good luck.

    "The Plan" for the Battle of Britain also required that - but they couldn't do it.
     
  11. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    Just because we have military bases all over doesn't mean we are helping them. We are helping ourselves otherwise we wouldn't be there. If we were helping them, we would have a hell of a lot more bases in Africa.

    And Clinton worked with the Taliban. During secret meetings with U.S. officials in 1998, top Taliban officials discussed assassinating or expelling bin Laden in response to al Qaeda's bombings of U.S. embassies in Africa, according to State Department documents. We didn't care about any of them til it effected us.

    Sorry about the hijack. This is a WWII battle thread right?
     
  12. ashpwner Registered Senior Member

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    O.k im just going to say this, DIspite what baron was saying i still do think britian was as important as america in ww2.
     
  13. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    Without question. Europe would have been gone in a heartbeat in Britian hadn't held. You also can't count out Australia in the Pacific theatre. We swooped in at the end of it all and claimed a lot of glory. It may not have been won because of us BUT the war was ended because of us.

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  14. ashpwner Registered Senior Member

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    ah loving those ausies so crafty.
     
  15. nietzschefan Thread Killer Valued Senior Member

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    Good points regarding the Caspian, I still think Stalingrad could have been isolated kinda like Leningrad(though more entangling as you allude to).

    However, I wish to discuss El Alamein/mideast strategy and try to show my thinking here...

    Basically the Idea was(the Rommel Fantasy scenario) was to yes get the Oil of Irak and Persia. As I said before, I think that if Rommel showed up with a full fledged army group(or even a few divisions one of them armoured), Irak would have declared for the axis. I also think Persia might have. Even if they didn't, they could have been easily defeated. Having them ally would have been good, as they could cover the wastelands of pommie upstarts and of course crush any partisans(if any).

    Then the Caspian could have been a 2 front deal. With 2 armies bordering the Turks, whom were very close to throwing in with Germany(having been burned in WWI, they wanted to make sure to bet on a winner this time). Baku would be an easy sack(perhaps even before lighting up rigs/etc), in this case. At any rate, if we want to talk of supply it, would certainly be possible along the Black Sea, perhaps even via Turkey. Such a loss for Russia, would arguably be more devastating than Moscow(which leadership could easily go to siberia with small factories).

    Again, Once the Suez is in axis hands all they need to do is hold it. A job for unmechanized Germans/Italians(except Alpini - needed in mountain filled N Persia and caucauses). The battle of the med turns to the west at the Gibraltar isthmus, a far better deal for the direct fire Italian navy. Perhaps even some harrassing from the Scharnhorst, Gneisenau and Prinz Eugen off the coast of Spain though such coordination might be asking a bit much.

    Of course I am talking out my ass, as alternate history is difficult to perceive. However at least I show how I think that the caspian/mideast oil grab was Germany's only chance.
     
  16. nietzschefan Thread Killer Valued Senior Member

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    Absolutely correct, SeaLion was never going to happen. Germany had did not have any gearing for a serious invasion of any sort. Hardly any landing craft, few transports, little training in amphibious assaults. No Carriers to obtain open naval superiority(never finished Graf Zepplin). They never planned to have to fight the U.K at all. They were a constant question mark to the whole Hitler strategy and his absolute inability to shift strategy/compensate, spelled doom for his whole war from 1939 on.
     
  17. Baron Max Registered Senior Member

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    No, you're not talking out of your ass. What you say is probably very true. But as you've so indicated, alternative histories can never be proven or even shown possible in many cases.

    But, ...for all of that, I think you're right. And moreover, I think many in Germany thought the same think, and tried to get Hitler to give more support to Rommel ....which he didn't do!

    Baron Max
     
  18. Fenris Wolf Banned Banned

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    As to that, my opening post in this thread conluded with "The seeds for Germany's eventual defeat were sown long before Stalingrad, before Normandy and before Anzio. They were sown at Dunkirk."
    Later I changed my thinking to include Khalkin-Ghol... because that is where the rise of Japan was stopped and sent in a different direction, long before their attack on America and perhaps even being an eventual catalyst for it.

    My way of thinking is that in order to answer the question of the most pivotal battle (not a pivotal battle), you cannot go beyond 1939.

    Your point in many places has been that predicting events would be difficult, had a particular battle gone the other way, is essentially correct.
    However, you can cut down the number of options available to the axis forces. Going back to the oft-suggested Stalingrad, for example, I ruled that out simply because it may not have been ever fought without prior events - and given the results of those events, if it was was fought the outcome would in all probability have been completely different. In fact, the entire Russian effort in WW2 would have been less had Japan been sitting in Siberia.
    They barely managed to hold on as it was, and needed the aid of the Russian winter. But having to fight Japan in the East, and Germany in the west (probably invading earlier than they did), my guess would be goodbye, Russia. And really, that's not even a guess.
    Stalingrad is often named as "the" most because that is where the Germans were finally broken in Russian and went on the defensive (not even strictly true...) but one could use the same argument when putting forward Kohima and Imphal regarding Japan.

    I don't think the Pacific war would have had a different outcome if they'd won at Khalkin-Ghol. The Japanese would have never been able to defeat America in the long run. However, the question would become one of would they ever have attacked to begin with. The same reasoning applies to both Midway and Guadalcanal - the Pacific war in general.

    In the end, there are a lot of individual battles which one might call "pivotal" for one reason or another - Keren, Alamein, Guadalcanal, Midway, Stalingrad, Kursk, Moscow, the Battle of Britain, Imphal and Kohima, Anzio and Overlord, Operation Crusader... but all of these would be non-existent or significantly different without earlier events. Therefore I can't get past Khalkin Ghol in 1938 and Dunkirk in 1939. East and West. Khalkin Gol wins out finally as "the" most because in the end it probably had the most direct, and long term, influence on the entire war rather than one theatre of it.
     
  19. nietzschefan Thread Killer Valued Senior Member

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    You have convinced me of Khalkin Gol(lots to learn in this thread!). In the official timeline of 1939-1945, I stubbornly stick to El Alamein for the potential after effects of a decisive Axis victory.
     
  20. Fugu-dono Scholar Of Shen Zhou Registered Senior Member

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    From the little I know it's probably the Battle Of Stalingrad. The Axis lost between 850000 to 900000 in manpower, and also lost plenty of equipment and supplies. This would be critical to their eventual retreat from Eastern Europe.
     
  21. Nasor Valued Senior Member

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    Several people have pointed out that none of the Pacific battles were ever really “pivotal,” since Japan had little hope of ever winning – even if they had destroyed the entire US Pacific Fleet and the Americans had to start from scratch, they still would have won. The Japanese winning any given naval battle would merely have delayed the inevitable for a few years.

    I agree with this, but I think that exactly the same reasoning also applies to Stalingrad and the Axis invasion of Russia in general. Russia had massively more industrial capacity than Germany, and even if the Germans had won at Stalingrad and gone on to capture the Caspian oil fields, it would probably only have delayed the inevitable.

    To give you an idea how mismatched Russia and Germany were, consider the fact that in 1942 (after the Russians had had a year to switch their industry over to war production) Germany produced 4100 tanks while the Russians produced about 25000 tanks.

    The entire German invasion was centered around the erroneous belief that the Russian government would quickly collapse in the face of an invasion and that the Russian population wouldn’t be willing to fight. Germany initially made rapid advances into Russian territory mainly because they caught the Russians completely by surprise and because the Russian economy and industry hadn’t switched over to a war footing. Once the Russians actually started gearing up for war and mass-producing tanks, small arms, and aircraft, they first stopped the Germans cold at Stalingrad, then overwhelmingly defeated them during the series of battles on the Kursk salient. Then they just started walking west and didn’t stop until they ran into the allies.

    Even if the Germans had pushed through Stalingrad and captured the Caspian oil fields, they probably couldn’t have held them long enough for them to have mattered anyway. They would almost certainly have had to completely rebuild the oil infrastructure there before it could be useful for them, because the Russians probably wouldn’t have left anything intact for the Germans to capture.

    The Japanese attack on Pear Harbor and the German invasion of Russia were very similar in that they both involved a smaller country attacking a much larger country that they realistically had very little chance of defeating, but they both attacked anyway because they mistakenly believed that the larger country wouldn’t be willing to actually put up a fight.
     
  22. aaaa Registered Member

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    More on Sealion....

    MORE ON SEALION.

    The victors write the history books ,and the bulk of all writing on this subject is from English sources. So we always have to call them on such what ifs cause most of these writings are self serving,…IE reinforcing the concept of National Security.

    The English were military incompetent in the first couple of years of the war, that is why they refer to their early victories as 'miracles'. I recently posted the May 1941 invasion of Crete. In these clashes the RN had intelligence on the expected Italian /German invasion plans and almost every warship they sent in had radar when the Italians had none and the Brits knew this. This allowed the to set up ideal ambush situations that they couldn’t loose. In total the Italians sent in 4 groups of ships totaling >70 ships/boat , escorted by 5 Destroyers/Torpedoboot.

    The two 800 ton Italian Torpedo boat were each sporting 3 x 3.9" guns & 4 x 18" torps,


    while the three 2500 ton Italian Destroyers had 6 x 4.7" guns 6 x 21”Torps but no radars.
    The RN had 7 light cruisers many had either 5000 ton 10 x 4"/5.5" HA guns
    or 9000 ton 8 x 6" guns plus 4 x 4" flak + 8 Torps
    and 6 destroyers mostly 1350 -1700ton with 4 -6 x 4.7"guns & 8-10 Torps.


    So all up the Italians had 21 x 3.9" /4.7" guns & 26 x 18”/21" torps vs the RN with 116 x 4"/4.7" / 5.3/6" guns plus 104 x 21" torps. So overall the RN out gunned the Italians 4-5:1 However while each invasion group was escorted by only one groups of Italian warships they faced the the RN cruiser destroyer flotillas alone out numbered 7:1. When this is factored in the firepower advantage was more like ~ 8:1 in the RNs favor. There was no excuse for failure at all!

    Few people would put the Italian navy man for man on par with the RN and yet despite this massive firepower advantage, the RN was only able to sink one of the 4 invasion groups and damage another, while the others got away . The Italians lost 5 merchants 3 destroyers plus 11 barges out of > 50 barges. There is little doubt that Luftwaffe bombers contributed to the mayhem, but they would also do so over the channel.

    Several RN cruisers were damaged in the exchange, while the two Italian Torpedoboot, were also damage. The Italian barge fleets escaped back to Greece, were under orders from the Italian Admiral in charge who was fighting blind against a much superior naval force 300 km away. A German admiral finding himself in similar situation in The Channel would have no choice but to continue, especially since the operational control of the crossing in Sealion was under army control. They are not going to abandon the effort for a few lost barges and escorts.

    Clearly the RN couldn't punch there way out of a paper bag. But this was by no way unique. When people read about naval clashes in the early years, they always read about Narvik, Bismarck and the Graf Spee, but these were just 5 out of 23 naval clashes between German and allied naval vessels in the first few of years of the war. What happened in the rest of the encounters? Well it looks like the Germans won most of them despite the fact they were outnumbered and out gunned.

    * In one 1939 battle two German destroyers snuck up on two British Destroyers at night and mined right under their noses before the clash occurred, in which one British Destroyer was crippled with a Torpedo strike. The RN warships had slightly more firepower than the Germans, but aggressive German leaderships set the stage.


    * In the 1939 Graf Spee encounter, the pocket battleship crippled a heavy Cruiser and damaged two light cruisers & suffering damage in the exchange. Questionable German leadership lead to the Pocket Battleships being scuttled.


    *In a 1940 encounter during the Norway Invasion, a German heavy cruiser and one destroyer clashed with a British Destroyer and battered it in near gale force winds. Despite the fact that the lone British Destroyer was out gunned 4 to 1 it attacked and collided with the German cruiser causing serious damage before it was sunk. Brave British captain and crew evened the score.

    =In another related Norway Invasion clash, a British Battleship and 8 escorting destroyers attacked a pair of German battleships exchanging limited damage in heavy seas. Fire power was fairly even on each side and the encounter was inconclusive.

    *In several other Norwegian harbor attacks during the Invasion , five German Destroyers and Torpedoboot clashed with two Norwegian coastal defense ships and several minesweepers, with two warships being sunk on either side. Despite the fact the Norwegians were out gunned two to one. The ancient Norwegian coastal defense ships suffered from lack of modern fire control and the range was so short and visibility poor, the Norwegians were sunk with torps.

    * Near the end of the invasion a British Carrier and two escorts were sunk in a rather one sided encounter with a pair of German battleships…but no less one sided than the Narvik massacre was. Poor leadership on the British side was determining factor.


    @@ In the two Narvik clashes, 6 RN warships were sunk or crippled for the loss of 10 German Destroyers. While the firepower was quite even, the heavy armor of the British Battleship and the confined fighting space contributed. However it needs to be noted that British and German destroyers fought very well and strong leadership of the initial British attack and poor leadership of the Germans probably was the determining factor. Out of the context of the harbor, the out come would have been completely different.


    * In the English Channel late in 1940, a patrol of British 4 armed trawlers were wiped out by a flotilla of old German Torpedoboot 1923/24. When the British destroyer squadron finally showed up 8 hours later, they were out witted by the German flotilla commander despite the fact he was out gunned nearly 2:1 by the best RN destroyers of the day. Superior German leadership determined the outcome.

    * Days later another German destroyer flotilla went hunting convoys in the channel. About 12 hours later a large British cruiser/destroyer squadron on alert caught up with the Germans. Out numbered and out gunned [2:1], German destroyers got away with occasional shell damage. Skill full use of Torpedo on the German side allowed them to escape.


    *A month later in the same area, the Flotilla of German Destroyers were back at it sweeping the channel sinking /damaging four tugs and a merchant ship. The alert British Squadron of 5 modern destroyers reacted fast [2 hours] . However in the exchange a torpedo barrage crippled one of the RN destroyers even though the British out gunned and out numbered the Germans nearly 2:1. Poor British leadership contributed to the German success.

    * On Christmas 1940 a German heavy cruiser attacked a convoy, escort by three British cruisers crippling the heavy cruiser and several convoy merchants in the process for no loss. Meanwhile Other German surface raiders were rampaging through the shipping lanes sinking > 30 more allied merchant ships.

    * @ In May of 1941 Bismarck & Prince Eugen sank the Battle cruiser Hood with a lucky shot and damaged the Prince of Wales in a clash with the two British capital ships & two heavy cruisers. Bismarck suffered some damaged in the encounter, but got away despite the fact the Brits out gunned and out numbered them ~ 2:1. Days later the Bismarck by her self , damaged several cruisers and destroyers that were shadowing her, before another British battle group of two battleships and heavy cruisers got in close and sank her after her steering was badly damaged by a air attack. At that time the British group out gunned the Bismarck between nearly 3:1. Luck featured in both Battleship encounters with the Bismarck; one for and one against. But the Germans abandoned their ‘hit only inferior and run from superior’ doctrine. IE poor German leadership contributed to the loss.

    @ Later that year off Norway in an easterly gale, two British light Cruisers attacked a troop convoy escorted by a single German training boat and a couple of VBoot. In the exchange [in which they out gunned the Germans ~ 7:1], the train ship was sunk but not before it inflicted damage on one of the Cruisers and the Convoy got away. The British were so confused, they thought they were fighting a couple of destroyers and an FBoot . Poor visibility does that.

    =In Dec 1941 a flotilla of 4 German destroyers attacked a couple of large British MS. While one of the Minesweepers suffered the loss of its main batteries, the Germans failed to complete destroy the smaller RN group, despite the fact they also had only ½ the speed of the German destroyers. Poor torpedo technology and limited visibility contributed, but this visibility also allowed the Germans to escape the Heavy Cruiser and couple of destroyers scrambled to intercept two hours later.

    The British won 4 encounters and lost 10, while several of encounters were inconclusive. Mean while several encounters with Soviet warships also went the German way. One historian was to comment. “The Germans continued to make use of the Channel as they pleased. No less than twenty-nine major ships and eleven destroyers pass through the Straits between April and June 1941 without loss or hindrance”.

    *Things didn’t improve much in 1942 either. In Feb a pair of German Battleships escorted by 20 Destroyers and Torpedoboot, dashed through the channel over an 18 hour period. Despite the fact that Admiralty knew about the dash ahead of time, it still took them 13 hours to react to the lengthy channel dash! Worse after 600 RAF sortie , they had only manage to sink a V boot and damage a couple of the Torpedoboot. The Brave RN Destroyer flotilla still attacked launching 27 torpedos without results in heavy weather and seas, suffering 2 out of 5 of their Destroyers crippled /damaged. The Germans still got through, but were damaged by mines near the end of their dash.

    *In March 1942 a German Auxiliary Cruiser also dashed through the channel with 5 TB and 8 MBoot escorts. The British counter attacked several times with MTB before a Destroyer flotilla showed up ~8 hours later! This attack was also driven off with the bulk of the British Destroyer being damaged and one crippled. Since the Germans could muster twice as much firepower, this may not have been much of a surprise. So the Auxiliary Cruiser got through.



    **Over the next couple of months, several other Auxiliary Cruisers got through with escort before the British finally nailed the HK Komet in Oct 1942. However German Flotillas would continue to humiliate them in the channel through 1943. Meanwhile other encounters occurred between the Brits and German flotillas with similar consequences.

    =In March 1942 a flotilla of 3 German Destroyers clashed with a RN flotilla with one Cruiser & 5 Destroyer which out gunned them > 2:1. The Germans lost a destroyer but the Brits suffered a crippled cruiser and destroyer in the exchange.

    *In May 1942 another German flotilla of 3 Destroyers clashed with a RN flotilla of 8 destroyers and escorts covering a convoy. In the exchange the British suffered a couple of lightly damaged destroyers and one crippled with out any German losses. The German Destroyers had fewer guns but they were mostly 6” guns, which would have given them an advantage. But the skill full British leadership frustrated 6 attacks on the convoy by these German destroyers although they did manage to sink one of the freighters.


    *The next day the same German Destroyer flotilla hunted down a British Cruiser just crippled by German submarine U 456 . HMS Edinburgh was only able to make 2 knts and escorted by two destroyers and 5 Minesweepers. The attack paid off sinking the Cruiser and crippling two of the RN Destroyers for the loss of one of his destroyers and another damaged. In the two days this German flotilla had sunk a cruiser and a merchant plus crippled three destroyers and damaged two more, for the loss of one destroyer and another damaged.


    Late in 1942 a British Convoy was attacked by a large German naval group of 2 x heavy cruisers [one a PBC with 11” guns] and 6 x destroyers. The convoy escorts could muster a force of 2 x Light Cruisers, 5 x Destroyers and 3 x Sub chasers. In the clash the Germans out gunned the RN force about 1.5:1 , the Germans sunk or crippled 3 of the escorts and damaged a couple more , while the British crippled one of the heavy Cruisers and sank a destroyer. Clearly the inability of a PBC lead flotilla to out maneuver a much less capable RN convoy escort was poor reflection of the flotilla commanders leadership. Again poor timid leadership did most to determine the outcome of this naval clash, like so many before it.


    From this point out Hitler placed increasingly suffocating restrictions on the use of the navy after he sacked Raeder. This combined with the growth of the allied fleets plus American assistance, demoralized the Kreigsmarine into defeat. They were however still able to humiliate the RN flotillas in the Channel in 1943/44 when certain Torpedoboot commanders were able to out fight larger RN cruiser/destroyer flotillas.

    In several English Channel exchanges, Flotilla leader Franz Kohlauf lead his flotilla of 3-5 x “Flottentorpedoboot 1939” to victory against larger RN flotillas [one with 5 DD and two each with a cruiser & 4-6 DD]. With the loss of one TB sunk and another 2 damage, he managed to sink a cruiser & DD plus crippled 2 DD and damaged 6 more. So the Germans still managed to inflict > 3:1 kill ratio in spite of the fact that they were out numbered and outgunned ~ 1.5:1.


    Over the first three years of these naval surface clashes, the Germans won 16 encounters with the Brits and lost 4 encounters with 4 additional inconclusive clashes. Over the 24-recorded encounters, 127 RN Cruisers ; Destroyers and Battleships clashed with 86 German Cruisers ; Destroyers and Battleships. The Germans sank or crippled 27 RN warships while damaging another 19. Another dozen auxiliary/merchant ships were also crippled or sunk. In exchange the RN sank or crippled 24 German warships and damaged another 15.

    However 15 of the crippled/sunk German warships and 4 damaged, were in the Narvik clash, which was a unique naval event [5 out of ten German Destroyers were crippled/sunk & 4 damaged in the first attack, while the 8 survivors were sunk in the subsequent attack]. If this clash is removed as an exceptional event, then the result is 22 vs 9 in Germany favor [19 vs 11 damaged]. That’s 112 RN warships vs 68 German warships or 1.7:1 ratio. In other words in > 90% of the battles, despite the fact the RN out numbered and out gunned the KM warships nearly 2:1, the Germans still inflicted 2.5:1 kill ratios against the RN.

    Over all in each encounter, the Germans could average one RN warship sunk or crippled plus another damaged in any clash, while the RN could count on crippling sinking one German warship , with a good chance of damaging another. If we remove Narvik encounters, the Germans can still be counted on to sink or cripple one RN warship, while damaging another. However the RN would likely only hit one KM warship, in which case ½ the time it would be crippled or sunk, but only damaged in the other ½ of the cases.

    Given that the Brits counted so heavily on the RN fleet being vastly superior to the German fleet to protect the UK from invasion, this poor battle record hardly breaths any confidence into the British case. Most likely, in any invasion the RN would loose most exchanges with the KM warships even if they out numbered and out gunned them 2:1.

    For Operation Sealion the Germans could muster 15 heavy and light destroyers [Z 1934/1934A and Torpedoboot 1923/24] backed up by a dozen new Torpedoboot 1935 and another dozen captured /modernized WW-I Torpedoboot [similar to the Italian Torpedo boat off Crete in 1941] plus 4 light Cruisers. In reserve there would be another dozen un modernized WW-I Torpedoboot/FBoot available. Given that Stuka attacks before the cross channel invasion could count on sinking/crippling 50-60 RN Destroyers [with the RN being bottled up in port in daylight hours to be on alert/patrol at night], the RN would have a hard time amassing more than 60-80 Destroyers/cruisers to counter the German fleet effectively when the cross channel invasion comes. Even then the RN flotilla would loose twice as much as they destroy.

    These would be hit and run operations or similar in style to the Italian torpedoboot counter attacks by singular German Torpedoboote. In any event the effect of such counter attacks are effective but not all the time. In dunkirk after one week the RN destroyer fleet showed signs of cracking leading to demoralizing actions. This would express itself in terms of 'being driven off' rather than continuing on after the clash.


    But the fact remains, RN flotillas will get through to the invasion fleet. How will they do? Crete doesn't bode well for them. But inbetween the barge fleet and the attackers would be a fleet of minesweepers VBoot and other auxiliary escorts. We will have to examine what happened when these vessels clashed historically to get a yard stick on performance.
     
  23. Fugu-dono Scholar Of Shen Zhou Registered Senior Member

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    Informative and nice but please get to the point and say reasoning why it's the most pivotal.
     

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