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Was Sealion ever possible to carry out?

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    Posted: 11 Jul 2009 at 06:00
I've been thinking recently since I've seen this operation mentioned alot especially recently for some reason. I would explore it more.

Well anyways thinking I've gotten the impression that Operation Sealion the German operation to invade and conquer Britain. Would have been alot more difficult to carry out if not impossible to carry out in reality. I say this for a number of factors listed below.

.The the Kriegsmarine and other German seaborne units had suffered very heavy, if not crippling losses during the Norwegian Campaign. A perspective invasion of Britain would have been alot riskier then Norway and would have involved alot more seaborne units both naval and transport to land forces. Something that would have stretched the Kriegsmarine to the breaking point. Not to mention the presence of the Royal Navy which would have been very hard to destroy and even if weakened would have remained a threat ether way.

. Much of the terrain in and around the possible German landing zones was rough. As well as the fact that much of the landing zones were fortified with a whole array of defenses as well as the presence of British forces at the perspective beach heads. I would think the Germans given some of the trouble they had in Norway landing forces would be even harder pressed in the British Isles.

.The British Army was a much more formidable foe then their Norwegian counterparts and was much more prepared for an invasion then previous German Campaigns throughout the Blitz.

. German intelligence had a poor or outdated understanding of much of the geography and infrastructure of Britain, including such things like misrepresenting where certain key bridges or roads where. As well as including some key roads, bridges, and landmarks that weren't even there to begin with. This combined with British attempts to confuse the Germans by moving signs misleading where key infrastructure was I have to think all of this would have played right into the hands of British & Commonwealth forces.

.The German's logistics network would have been hard pressed by an invasion attempt perhaps to the point of impossibility.

. A Sandhurst wargame along with other research carried out in the 1970's had evidence pointing to a German invasion attempt being repulsed eventually due to difficulty holding on to a beachhead . As well as a combination of the factors mentioned above.

Looking at all of these I would think one of Hitler's original plans to attempt to cut off and isolate the British Isles/more effective strategic bombing to force Britain into an armistice . Would have been more beneficial to Germany's strategic goals if the issues with it could have been worked out.

Well that's just my opinion on Sealion. I wonder what everyone else thinks of this perspective operation?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Paul Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Jul 2009 at 06:36
At the time operation Sealion was planned to lauch Germany possessed a grand total or 2 landing craft. Both newly built pioneerlandungsboot type 39 which means they could have invaded with a total of two whole companies.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Zagros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Jul 2009 at 08:34
Refer to very lengthy thread in the archive on this very same topic.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kevin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Jul 2009 at 14:20
Originally posted by Paul Paul wrote:

At the time operation Sealion was planned to lauch Germany possessed a grand total or 2 landing craft. Both newly built pioneerlandungsboot type 39 which means they could have invaded with a total of two whole companies.


Really?

Because I could have sworn the Germans had more then two? Although still a small number of landing craft/barges considering the operation was still in it's early phases of planning.    
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Birddog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Aug 2009 at 20:31
The problem with the barges were that they were mostly flat bottomed river barges and a large number of them could not travel on their own power. (They got towed down canals by big horses and oxen on the bank). Taking flat bottomed barges (many being towed) full of soldiers into the English Chanel in good weather would be very exciting and diffucult. Taking out hundreds at one time, trying to cross the Chanel at night....
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Parnell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Aug 2009 at 21:30
In fairness, the Germans could have built more ships. I don't think this was the great stumbling block. As everyone knows, the Germans tried their best to attain air superiority first; when this didn't happen it made an invasion impossible, as the Royal Navy was still quite strong, despite all the U-boats knocking about the Atlantic. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Aug 2009 at 06:36
Let us be realistic here. The logistics for Sealion did not represent a far-reaching operational endeavour coupled to industrial production as an integral part of German military planning, in fact the possibility was only taken under consideration as of November 1939. Instead, other than as fodder for a Harry Turtledove alternate history novel, the physical invasion of the United Kingdom was beyond the air and naval resources of the Reich. When one takes into consideration how long the industrial production of the United States required to marshall the men and materiel--as well as experience--for D-Day, then the reality of any such effort on the part of Germany becomes totally illusory. Given that the "paper" life of Sealion was of but 22 months duration, one must perforce suspend belief in order to contemplate a successful enterprise. To even discuss the topic one has to entertain such an endless series of "what ifs" that their number renders the possibility moot.

Edited by drgonzaga - 24 Aug 2009 at 06:38
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Birddog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Aug 2009 at 11:45

The English Channel was a warzone and although the Royal Navy had already been hurt in Norway they still had dozens of destoryers, MTB's, MGB's, corvets etc ready to steem our of ports in southern England within a few minutes of an invasion fleet leaving France. That's why the flat bottomed barges would not have worked. But even with hunderds of proper landing craft the Germans would still had needed to dominate the channel to invade England.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TheRedBaron Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Aug 2009 at 20:16
Originally posted by Parnell Parnell wrote:

In fairness, the Germans could have built more ships. I don't think this was the great stumbling block. As everyone knows, the Germans tried their best to attain air superiority first; when this didn't happen it made an invasion impossible, as the Royal Navy was still quite strong, despite all the U-boats knocking about the Atlantic. 
 
Yes they could have built more boats.
 
Of course they wouldnt know what sort to build as they have no amphibious experience or doctrine... Besides the fact that building a new fleet of purpose built landing craft takes a long time...
 
So lets live in a world of make believe, where the Germans can somehow build landing craft, and have the decades of amphibious expertise and doctrinal influence needed in order to correctly design them and use them.
 
Lets even say they win the Battle of Britain and the Royal Navy is sunk...
 
 
There is the small matter of losses from the fighting in Europe that curtails an invasion of the UK in 1940.
 
For example, the 1st Flieger Division is worthless. The Fallschirmjager are a spent force in 1940 and will require a period of six to nine months to replace heavy losses sustained in Belgium, Holland and Norway. Not too mention the loss of the best Airborne strategists - Student - who is in hospital with a serious head wound after being shot in Holland. This removes the Fallschirmtruppe from taking any part in Sea Lion.
 
Add to this the heavy losses in the Luftwaffe transport fleets during 1940. Well over 50% of the transport fleets is out of service after massive losses in Norway and Holland. More serious is the loss of highly trained pilots for the transport fleets. In order to accurately drop Fallschirmjager and deliver airborne troops, many of the transport crews were highly trained bomber crews, many even training personnel from the bomber schools. These losses would effect the Luftwaffes ability to train bomber crews for the rest of the war.
 
Finally the losses to personnel of the Heer during the Battle for France was not inconsiderable and all units would require rest and refit. They would also require several weeks of intensive training in order to conduct an ampibious operation. Again not feasible till atleast 1941.
 
The lack of German intelligence on British defences and deployed forces. German intel of the proposed battle area is virtually non-existant. Troops would be landing 'blind' on enemy held territory.
 
So even when you remove the RAF, the Royal Navy and give German the amphibious doctrine it needs, and the landing craft, it still is not feasible to be carried out in the Autumn of 1940. If Germany has to wait till 1941 then all manner of events either take place or dont happen and its unlikely Hitler would have put off Barbarossa to try and captured the British Isles.
 
In short, the Germans have no ability to capture the UK. Their poor performance at Crete in conducting a seaborne invasion shows how bad it could have been.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Birddog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Aug 2009 at 21:06
I agree with The Red Baron. When the thought of invasion of UK by Hitler comes up people often think of it from the British point of view with Dad's Army guarding the cliff's of Dover with shot-guns and pikes. We need to see the German side of things too. They couldn't do much at all.
The Battle of Britian was just a German attempt to frighten the UK into submission.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Parnell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 2009 at 00:17
Originally posted by TheRedBaron TheRedBaron wrote:

Originally posted by Parnell Parnell wrote:

In fairness, the Germans could have built more ships. I don't think this was the great stumbling block. As everyone knows, the Germans tried their best to attain air superiority first; when this didn't happen it made an invasion impossible, as the Royal Navy was still quite strong, despite all the U-boats knocking about the Atlantic. 
 
Yes they could have built more boats.
 
Of course they wouldnt know what sort to build as they have no amphibious experience or doctrine... Besides the fact that building a new fleet of purpose built landing craft takes a long time...
 
So lets live in a world of make believe, where the Germans can somehow build landing craft, and have the decades of amphibious expertise and doctrinal influence needed in order to correctly design them and use them.
 
Lets even say they win the Battle of Britain and the Royal Navy is sunk...
 
 
There is the small matter of losses from the fighting in Europe that curtails an invasion of the UK in 1940.
 
For example, the 1st Flieger Division is worthless. The Fallschirmjager are a spent force in 1940 and will require a period of six to nine months to replace heavy losses sustained in Belgium, Holland and Norway. Not too mention the loss of the best Airborne strategists - Student - who is in hospital with a serious head wound after being shot in Holland. This removes the Fallschirmtruppe from taking any part in Sea Lion.
 
Add to this the heavy losses in the Luftwaffe transport fleets during 1940. Well over 50% of the transport fleets is out of service after massive losses in Norway and Holland. More serious is the loss of highly trained pilots for the transport fleets. In order to accurately drop Fallschirmjager and deliver airborne troops, many of the transport crews were highly trained bomber crews, many even training personnel from the bomber schools. These losses would effect the Luftwaffes ability to train bomber crews for the rest of the war.
 
Finally the losses to personnel of the Heer during the Battle for France was not inconsiderable and all units would require rest and refit. They would also require several weeks of intensive training in order to conduct an ampibious operation. Again not feasible till atleast 1941.
 
The lack of German intelligence on British defences and deployed forces. German intel of the proposed battle area is virtually non-existant. Troops would be landing 'blind' on enemy held territory.
 
So even when you remove the RAF, the Royal Navy and give German the amphibious doctrine it needs, and the landing craft, it still is not feasible to be carried out in the Autumn of 1940. If Germany has to wait till 1941 then all manner of events either take place or dont happen and its unlikely Hitler would have put off Barbarossa to try and captured the British Isles.
 
In short, the Germans have no ability to capture the UK. Their poor performance at Crete in conducting a seaborne invasion shows how bad it could have been.
 
Alright, settle down son
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 2009 at 01:28
Well, Parnell, he did have a point over all of this "what iffing"...and a perfect example of constrained German production with regard to materiel and supply lines can be gauged by the fate of the Afrika Corps.
 
Perhaps an Operation Walrus--the invasion of Ireland--would have achieved a modicum of successWink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TheRedBaron Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 2009 at 04:37
Originally posted by Parnell Parnell wrote:

Originally posted by TheRedBaron TheRedBaron wrote:

Originally posted by Parnell Parnell wrote:

In fairness, the Germans could have built more ships. I don't think this was the great stumbling block. As everyone knows, the Germans tried their best to attain air superiority first; when this didn't happen it made an invasion impossible, as the Royal Navy was still quite strong, despite all the U-boats knocking about the Atlantic. 
 
Yes they could have built more boats.
 
Of course they wouldnt know what sort to build as they have no amphibious experience or doctrine... Besides the fact that building a new fleet of purpose built landing craft takes a long time...
 
So lets live in a world of make believe, where the Germans can somehow build landing craft, and have the decades of amphibious expertise and doctrinal influence needed in order to correctly design them and use them.
 
Lets even say they win the Battle of Britain and the Royal Navy is sunk...
 
 
There is the small matter of losses from the fighting in Europe that curtails an invasion of the UK in 1940.
 
For example, the 1st Flieger Division is worthless. The Fallschirmjager are a spent force in 1940 and will require a period of six to nine months to replace heavy losses sustained in Belgium, Holland and Norway. Not too mention the loss of the best Airborne strategists - Student - who is in hospital with a serious head wound after being shot in Holland. This removes the Fallschirmtruppe from taking any part in Sea Lion.
 
Add to this the heavy losses in the Luftwaffe transport fleets during 1940. Well over 50% of the transport fleets is out of service after massive losses in Norway and Holland. More serious is the loss of highly trained pilots for the transport fleets. In order to accurately drop Fallschirmjager and deliver airborne troops, many of the transport crews were highly trained bomber crews, many even training personnel from the bomber schools. These losses would effect the Luftwaffes ability to train bomber crews for the rest of the war.
 
Finally the losses to personnel of the Heer during the Battle for France was not inconsiderable and all units would require rest and refit. They would also require several weeks of intensive training in order to conduct an ampibious operation. Again not feasible till atleast 1941.
 
The lack of German intelligence on British defences and deployed forces. German intel of the proposed battle area is virtually non-existant. Troops would be landing 'blind' on enemy held territory.
 
So even when you remove the RAF, the Royal Navy and give German the amphibious doctrine it needs, and the landing craft, it still is not feasible to be carried out in the Autumn of 1940. If Germany has to wait till 1941 then all manner of events either take place or dont happen and its unlikely Hitler would have put off Barbarossa to try and captured the British Isles.
 
In short, the Germans have no ability to capture the UK. Their poor performance at Crete in conducting a seaborne invasion shows how bad it could have been.
 
Alright, settle down son
 

Er what?
 
Is a reasoned discourse on your statement to your dislike?
 
Or do you just see people that disagree with you as aggresive...?
 
And please dont call me 'Son'... You have no idea of my age and the term is rather condescending.
 


Edited by TheRedBaron - 28 Aug 2009 at 04:39
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Birddog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 2009 at 14:40

Operation Walrus? I've never heard of that one and it sounds interesting. Did the Germans expect Irish support against the British? I can think of many ways that occuping of Ireland could have helped the German war effort against the British, if they could have kept the occupying force supplied. Where can I find out more about Walrus? 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Parnell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Aug 2009 at 09:45
Originally posted by TheRedBaron TheRedBaron wrote:

Originally posted by Parnell Parnell wrote:

Originally posted by TheRedBaron TheRedBaron wrote:

Originally posted by Parnell Parnell wrote:

In fairness, the Germans could have built more ships. I don't think this was the great stumbling block. As everyone knows, the Germans tried their best to attain air superiority first; when this didn't happen it made an invasion impossible, as the Royal Navy was still quite strong, despite all the U-boats knocking about the Atlantic. 
 
Yes they could have built more boats.
 
Of course they wouldnt know what sort to build as they have no amphibious experience or doctrine... Besides the fact that building a new fleet of purpose built landing craft takes a long time...
 
So lets live in a world of make believe, where the Germans can somehow build landing craft, and have the decades of amphibious expertise and doctrinal influence needed in order to correctly design them and use them.
 
Lets even say they win the Battle of Britain and the Royal Navy is sunk...
 
 
There is the small matter of losses from the fighting in Europe that curtails an invasion of the UK in 1940.
 
For example, the 1st Flieger Division is worthless. The Fallschirmjager are a spent force in 1940 and will require a period of six to nine months to replace heavy losses sustained in Belgium, Holland and Norway. Not too mention the loss of the best Airborne strategists - Student - who is in hospital with a serious head wound after being shot in Holland. This removes the Fallschirmtruppe from taking any part in Sea Lion.
 
Add to this the heavy losses in the Luftwaffe transport fleets during 1940. Well over 50% of the transport fleets is out of service after massive losses in Norway and Holland. More serious is the loss of highly trained pilots for the transport fleets. In order to accurately drop Fallschirmjager and deliver airborne troops, many of the transport crews were highly trained bomber crews, many even training personnel from the bomber schools. These losses would effect the Luftwaffes ability to train bomber crews for the rest of the war.
 
Finally the losses to personnel of the Heer during the Battle for France was not inconsiderable and all units would require rest and refit. They would also require several weeks of intensive training in order to conduct an ampibious operation. Again not feasible till atleast 1941.
 
The lack of German intelligence on British defences and deployed forces. German intel of the proposed battle area is virtually non-existant. Troops would be landing 'blind' on enemy held territory.
 
So even when you remove the RAF, the Royal Navy and give German the amphibious doctrine it needs, and the landing craft, it still is not feasible to be carried out in the Autumn of 1940. If Germany has to wait till 1941 then all manner of events either take place or dont happen and its unlikely Hitler would have put off Barbarossa to try and captured the British Isles.
 
In short, the Germans have no ability to capture the UK. Their poor performance at Crete in conducting a seaborne invasion shows how bad it could have been.
 
Alright, settle down son
 

Er what?
 
Is a reasoned discourse on your statement to your dislike?
 
Or do you just see people that disagree with you as aggresive...?
 
And please dont call me 'Son'... You have no idea of my age and the term is rather condescending.
 


I had something like 20 seconds left on a public computer when I wrote that. Didn't even have time to put in a full stop. Your location of 'British Eire' gave me immediate cause to dislike you, and I was posting from a computer in Derry. All the elements were adding up to a couple of sentances aimed at condescension.

But anyway, welcome to AE, and apologies for the gruff welcome from myself.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Buckskins Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Feb 2012 at 05:12
Sealion was not realistic, however the invasion of Britain was.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Birddog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2012 at 07:35
Buckskins, read your sentance...feel confused Wacko.
 
A little allaboration if you please?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Buckskins Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2012 at 09:02
Sure, no problem. Sealion never had much of a chance. An alternate, and more realistic scenario was very possible indeed.
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Don't keep me guessing. Explain the realistic scenario, please.
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Originally posted by Birddog Birddog wrote:

Don't keep me guessing. Explain the realistic scenario, please.

The same way they ran the Brits out of Crete. A couple of captured air ports. A secured sea port or two, what more did they need? Remember Crete was yet to happen. The German paras were intact and ready for a fight. I doubt the RN could get out of Scapa Flow for the used tea leaves blocking their passage, and they were ready to bolt for Canada anyway. The British army had just had it's butt handed to them by the Germans. I honestly think Hitler could care less about the UK. Remember this was prior to the United States entering the war. Hitler figured he could take care of the Brits at a later date. He figured he had bigger fish to fry.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Birddog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2012 at 11:09
How many paratroops do you think Hitler had?
 
The Germans got 14000 paraptroops into Crete, (in seperate waves because they didn't have the transport to move them all at once). They got shot up on Crete by a couple of bashed up divisions of Australians and New Zealanders who had lost most of their equipment in Greece in 1941.
 
You fly your 14000 Germans to Uk and drop them in (provided that all of them get past the Anti-aircraft fire and the occasional fighter the RAF might get of the ground). Then what? You got to keep them supplied every day. Look what happened at Arnhem, and the Engloish channel is a bit wider than the Rhine. 550000 British and French troops were evacuated from France. Even with clubs they could have handled 14000 German Paratroops.
 
Can you prove that the RN was ready to bolt to Canada?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Captain Vancouver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2012 at 11:19
Originally posted by Buckskins Buckskins wrote:

Originally posted by Birddog Birddog wrote:

Don't keep me guessing. Explain the realistic scenario, please.

The same way they ran the Brits out of Crete. A couple of captured air ports. A secured sea port or two, what more did they need? Remember Crete was yet to happen. The German paras were intact and ready for a fight. I doubt the RN could get out of Scapa Flow for the used tea leaves blocking their passage, and they were ready to bolt for Canada anyway. The British army had just had it's butt handed to them by the Germans. I honestly think Hitler could care less about the UK. Remember this was prior to the United States entering the war. Hitler figured he could take care of the Brits at a later date. He figured he had bigger fish to fry.
 
One of Hitler's most serious mistakes of the war was to turn east and attack the Soviet Union while leaving the west undone and uncertain. Britain and the empire were still intact, and the US was still hovering about at the door of the pawn shop. This was not exactly a secure flank.
 
Even by 1940, airpower was such that a large scale amphibious invasion would have been impossible without air superiority. Britain was already pulling ahead of Germany, both qualitatively  and quantitatively, in airpower by 1940. Germany would have faced murderous losses in attempting to secure a beachhead- an airport or seaport- with weaker air and sea forces.
 
Hitler was probably hoping against hope that he could do some sort of deal with both Britain and the US; that they would watch in detachment as he took the Soviet Union, and acquired the resources to face off with them in the future.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2012 at 11:28
Originally posted by Buckskins Buckskins wrote:

Originally posted by Birddog Birddog wrote:

Don't keep me guessing. Explain the realistic scenario, please.

The same way they ran the Brits out of Crete. A couple of captured air ports. A secured sea port or two, what more did they need? Remember Crete was yet to happen. The German paras were intact and ready for a fight. I doubt the RN could get out of Scapa Flow for the used tea leaves blocking their passage, and they were ready to bolt for Canada anyway. The British army had just had it's butt handed to them by the Germans. I honestly think Hitler could care less about the UK. Remember this was prior to the United States entering the war. Hitler figured he could take care of the Brits at a later date. He figured he had bigger fish to fry.


That is a very interesting point of view. However, i think the German general staff plus Hitler recognized the major differences between an airborne invasion of Crete versus one being done in the UK. It would have been an entirely different affair where the defender had the home advantage. Plus, i could be wrong, but i seem to remember reading in the past that Hitler was extremely nervous at using his paratroops even against Crete.

And even though the Kriegsmarine was a thoroughly professional force, they lacked aircraft carriers, destroyers & corvettes of all types, they had too few battleships a handful of pocket battleships and Torpedo boats worthy of only brown water coastal defense. All they ever had in abundance were submarines. Those alone are quite ineffective of bottling up a major sea power such as the RN. There was absolutely no way the Germans could have bottled up the RN.

I believe the Germans followed the more pragmatic rational course in doing what they could with what they had by taking the fight out into the vulnerable Atlantic shipping lanes. They did so much more damage there to British and the US then they ever could at bottling up a major sea power. It was simply put, more cost effective for them and a high price for the allies to pay, including the USN, in forgetting the lesson from the first great war.

Now, having said all of that. I think that if the Germans could have somehow managed to get across the channel magically within the first year after Dunkirk, they no doubt would have pressed the exhausted British forces back quite a bit in the southern part of the island, but i certainly don't think they could have overran the UK islands entirely, much less control the areas where ever there troops would have been. What it would have boiled down to is logistics and control of the channel.

The German war machine was an awesome sight to behold on land to be sure, but their logistics left a lot to be desired. Big dog, short leash. The forces they would have on the British isles would have been whittled down over time, like they were in North Africa, especially when they had no feasible means in securing the channel for vital logistical purposes against the powerful RN, not even for a short term like maybe a month or less, and even then that is being charitable. You may not like it, but the Germans would have made excellent target practice for the British solely because they would be fighting on British terms and not their own.


Edited by Panther - 03 Apr 2012 at 11:31
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2012 at 23:09
Originally posted by Captain Vancouver Captain Vancouver wrote:

Originally posted by Buckskins Buckskins wrote:

Originally posted by Birddog Birddog wrote:

Don't keep me guessing. Explain the realistic scenario, please.

The same way they ran the Brits out of Crete. A couple of captured air ports. A secured sea port or
 two, what more did they need? Remember Crete was yet to happen. The German paras were
intact and ready for a fight. I doubt the RN could get out of Scapa Flow for the used tea leaves
blocking their passage, and they were ready to bolt for Canada anyway. The British army had just
had it's butt handed to them by the Germans. I honestly think Hitler could care less about the UK.
Remember this was prior to the United States entering the war. Hitler figured he could take care of
the Brits at a later date. He figured he had bigger fish to fry.
 
One of Hitler's most serious mistakes of the war was to turn east and attack the Soviet Union while leaving the west undone and uncertain.
He didn't have much choice. He made exactly the same decision as Napoleon in 1805 for exactly the same reason - given that the RAF won the battle for air control and sea control was the same.
 
"I cannot say they will not come. I can only say they will not come by sea" said St Vincent. The Battle of Britain and superior British technology - radar, construction, other than fighter aircraft - ensured they would not come by air either.  
Quote
 Hitler was probably hoping against hope that he could do some sort of deal with both Britain and the US; that they would watch in detachment as he took the Soviet Union, and acquired the resources to face off with them in the future.
 
Hence of course Hess's mission to suggest terms.


Edited by gcle2003 - 03 Apr 2012 at 23:11
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Paradigm of Humanity Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Apr 2012 at 02:25
This was a dummy operation plan to keep British busy. No sane man could attempt such a... What I am saying? Don't even worth to talk about it...

Edited by Paradigm of Humanity - 04 Apr 2012 at 03:06
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Apr 2012 at 04:12
Originally posted by Captain Vancouver Captain Vancouver wrote:

Originally posted by Buckskins Buckskins wrote:

Originally posted by Birddog Birddog wrote:

Don't keep me guessing. Explain the realistic scenario, please.

The same way they ran the Brits out of Crete. A couple of captured air ports. A secured sea port or two, what more did they need? Remember Crete was yet to happen. The German paras were intact and ready for a fight. I doubt the RN could get out of Scapa Flow for the used tea leaves blocking their passage, and they were ready to bolt for Canada anyway. The British army had just had it's butt handed to them by the Germans. I honestly think Hitler could care less about the UK. Remember this was prior to the United States entering the war. Hitler figured he could take care of the Brits at a later date. He figured he had bigger fish to fry.
 
One of Hitler's most serious mistakes of the war was to turn east and attack the Soviet Union while leaving the west undone and uncertain. Britain and the empire were still intact, and the US was still hovering about at the door of the pawn shop. This was not exactly a secure flank.
 
If he didn't invade the USSR in 41 the USSR would have invaded him by 42. It was just that simple.
 
He knew first hand that it won't be untill 44 at the earliest before Britain could muster enough support from the empire and allies to pose any kind of a serious threat to continental europe and with the complete inability of the Brits to secure a clear victory over the Italians in North Africa the only danger posed from the British was the strategic bombing campaign which was hurting the Germans.
 
What really changed the game was the enterance of the US into the war. Even with the USSR under attack Britain still could not provide enough support to drag German divisions from the east and in fact, it nearly lost Egypt trying.
 
Originally posted by Captain Vancouver Captain Vancouver wrote:

Even by 1940, airpower was such that a large scale amphibious invasion would have been impossible without air superiority. Britain was already pulling ahead of Germany, both qualitatively  and quantitatively, in airpower by 1940. Germany would have faced murderous losses in attempting to secure a beachhead- an airport or seaport- with weaker air and sea forces.
 
Landing troops into Britain and maintaining them via sea route was not impossible if we exclude the air forces since naval guns could easily reach the British coast from Calaise. Unfortunately for Hitler, air force was decisive for such a campaign. His best planes only came after the Russian campaign started. Germany's production was pathetic and only surpassed those of England in the first half of 1944.
 
Originally posted by Captain Vancouver Captain Vancouver wrote:

Hitler was probably hoping against hope that he could do some sort of deal with both Britain and the US; that they would watch in detachment as he took the Soviet Union, and acquired the resources to face off with them in the future.
 
All the body of evidence suggest this. The Germans could have easily taken Dunkirk well before the evacuation started. Hitler issued his halt order partly to assert his authority and partly to encourage a political coupe by which he would secure an armistace if not an outright alliance against the USSR.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Buckskins Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Apr 2012 at 04:45
I don't believe I said anything about German paras invading anywhere. Their mission would be to hold and secure a couple of airports and sea ports. If anyone thinks the Australians and New Zealanders were a pushover in Crete they are very much mistaken. The Australians and New Zealanders were the very best the allies had.

I was having lunch with my G/F at the time, in a small Cretan village about half way between Chania and Maleme. It just so happened it was the date and anniversary that the New Zealanders fought the Fallschirmjager in that village. The village changed hands several times over a few days. Every year that village flies the flag of New Zealand in gratitude and remembrance. It was flying they day we were there.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Apr 2012 at 04:54
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

He knew first hand that it won't be untill 44 at the earliest before Britain could muster enough support from the empire and allies to pose any kind of a serious threat to continental europe and with the complete inability of the Brits to secure a clear victory over the Italians in North Africa the only danger posed from the British was the strategic bombing campaign which was hurting the Germans.
I agree with most of the rest of the post, but not that higlighted bit. The Italian army was effectively destroyed by Operation Compass in the winter of 1940/41. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Compass
Italian army, January 1941:
 
The total defeat of the Italians necessitated the sending of the Afrika Corps, which did gain an early advantage, but by the end of 1942 the whole campaign was won by the Commonwealth forces, without in fact any US aid.
Quote
Landing troops into Britain and maintaining them via sea route was not impossible if we exclude the air forces since naval guns could easily reach the British coast from Calaise.
Don't see your point there. Naval guns could easily, by the same token, reach Calais from Britain. And Britain had a hell of a lot more naval guns available, not just in fixed mounts, as well as more trained naval gunners.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Apr 2012 at 05:05

I know about early Italian defeats. My point is the victory was simply incomplete. Had Tripoli fallen in 1941 there would be no Afrika Korps and Rommel would be be freezing in Russia rather than sun bathing in Toubruk. As it happened the Germans rebounded and the see-saw battles of 41, 42 and finally 43 cost both sides (especially the Germans and Italians) over a million men in casualties and thousands of lost equipment and delayed attempts on europe until late 43 instead of 41.

 
As for the guns, of course the British had more guns but my point is that if the germans concentrated their artillary and planned the operation well they could pull it albeit with massive losses including attempting to take Ireland as a diversion. Air power negated all that of course.
 
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