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The worst case would be an Anzio like beachead, though much larger, with German forces being pounded by sea, air and land power. It may had the added benefit of pulling the Strategic bomber forces away from the fight over Germany, where they were having little success at great cost, and have them do something actually useful for the war effort.

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The worst case would be an Anzio like beachead, though much larger, with German forces being pounded by sea, air and land power. It may had the added benefit of pulling the Strategic bomber forces away from the fight over Germany, where they were having little success at great cost, and have them do something actually useful for the war effort.

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There is the problem of fighting power, though and a Salarno-like landing would not auger well for France43: the Germans almost broke the Allied landing there. How many seasoned divisions could one count on for a 1943 landing in the West...and I am not sure how easily one could shift divisions from Tunisia and make the weather/tide/daylight criteria that might have made a 1`943 landing moot after, say, August? Just guessing here.

 

The Luftwaffe is not defeated in 1943. Ike's six criteria for a successful Overlord only has one accomplished in 1943 and that is the defeat of the U-boat. Landing craft is also an issue, but King Sargent's consistent point about Husky begs the Q of how many were in Europe and where they were in 43-44.

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There is the problem of fighting power, though and a Salarno-like landing would not auger well for France43: the Germans almost broke the Allied landing there. How many seasoned divisions could one count on for a 1943 landing in the West...and I am not sure how easily one could shift divisions from Tunisia and make the weather/tide/daylight criteria that might have made a 1`943 landing moot after, say, August? Just guessing here.

 

The Luftwaffe is not defeated in 1943. Ike's six criteria for a successful Overlord only has one accomplished in 1943 and that is the defeat of the U-boat. Landing craft is also an issue, but King Sargent's consistent point about Husky begs the Q of how many were in Europe and where they were in 43-44.

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We had a couple of topics back when. IIRC there were enough assets and divisions, provided no Italy invasion, up to and including Sicily. Problem was the assets were in the Med, rather than Britain, so it may take time to move the stuff there. Air superiority over Normandy shouldn't be a problem, even if it wasn't as overwhelming as it would be in 1944, as even keeping the Strategic bombing campaign up is going to keep on sucking fighters away from the front. For all their prowess, the Germans were unable to stop any amphibious invasion made by the allies in which they intended to stay.

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Uh Tony, just how much notice did the Germans have of the real goals of Overlord a year later? Hitler thought it was a feint and kept 15th Armee north of the Seine.

 

Besides forces building up in England can have many objectives. Hitler was always thinking that the Allies would go to Norway.... B)

 

Sure, but Hitler would know that he had to keep strong forces in the West even if he didn't know exactly where the blow would fall. I don't think that Norway would fool him - the obvious kick-off place for invading that would be much further north than southern England.

 

A lot can be done to stiffen up coast defences in a short time, as Rommel proved in 1944.

 

Tony Williams: Military gun and ammunition website and discussion forum

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"Canuckistanis"

 

Are some kind of a Pat Buchanan /fox news  what'a  be....... Its Canadians.  And even if you think Canada is too socialist now it was not the case in 43.  Use the correct term.

200446[/snapback]

 

Whoa... keep your shorts on, laddie! Thanks to R011 for catching this before I did, but just to clarify: my family were United Empire Loyalists who arrived here in 1786, and we had people in the War of 1812, WW1 and WW2 (probably in between too). I have served as has my son, and one look at my websites listed in my signature bloc should tell you where my allegiances lie.

 

I have also been a member of the Tanknet community since about 1995, and am one of the founding members and Administrators of this current iteration. R011 is correct, the term 'Canukistanis' is a Tanknet joke which I accept as recognition of our contribution to not only this forum but Western Military History as well. 'Those of Sam' here freely acknowledge that... :)

 

Now pardon me, but I have to go joust with Mr. Estes and Mr. Sargent on the subject matter at hand. Unfortunately methinks "work" demands my presence (pain in the arse, that), which implies a short delay in transmission times. :D

 

Go have a Molson Dry on me - that on top of fried eggs, bacon and French Toast slathered in maple syrup is a fine tradition (eggs, bacon & beans also washed down by beer is an acceptable substitute)!

 

Geoff

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We had a couple of topics back when. IIRC there were enough assets and divisions, provided no Italy invasion, up to and including Sicily. Problem was the assets were in the Med, rather than Britain, so it may take time to move the stuff there. Air superiority over Normandy shouldn't be a problem, even if it wasn't as overwhelming as it would be in 1944, as even keeping the Strategic bombing campaign up is going to keep on sucking fighters away from the front. For all their prowess, the Germans were unable to stop any amphibious invasion made by the allies in which they intended to stay.

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European amphib ops differed markedly from most of the Pacific ones, where delivering the assault force ashore was the major feat. Operational surprise was possible, given the vast distances the Axis had to guard, but reinforcement was the key. In the Pacific, one gave up operational surprise to bombard the defenses for several days, because the other side could not reinforce his land defenses and air/sea intervention remained more difficult.

 

The assault force generally could not count on reinforcing faster than the land defender in Europe. Even after the considerable effort expended on dropping the Seine bridges, etc., it was the daylight fighterbomber sweeps in 1944 that kept 2nd and 10th SS, Pz Lehr, etc. out of contention before the landings were secure. Salerno proved too close-run in my estimation [against weak mobile counterattack forces], and accounts at least in part for the slowness of VI Corps later at Anzio.

 

The fixed defenses of the Atlantic Wall would not be much in 1943, but mobile reserves and air power would have appeared. I cannot imagine Hitler insisting on Zitadell in the east had the Allies been assembling an invasion force vs. France. So we ought to look at total German forces, subtract the minimum for a defense in the east [albeit highly problematic], garrisons in So. Europe & Norway and then take a look at what the Allies would have to land and build-up in Western France. I suspect it will not be a pretty picture: 4th Pz Army and half of Model's mobile formations stationed as PzGrp West?

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I am talking of the initial landings, before there were ports captured.

 

On 10/7/43 the US landed 1,3,& 45 Inf Divs, reinforced by tanks of 2nd AD, and dropped 505 Parachute regiment. The CW landed 1 Canadian, 5 Br, 50 Br, 51 Br InfDivs,  plus 231 Inf Bde and 1 Airborne Bde, plus two Commando units. That is seven divisions that hit the beaches, plus 231 Bde and the Commandos (the airborne units obviously did not require amphibious shipping). That is more than were in the initial waves in Normandy, although the Husky Allies did not have the constant flow of reinforcements coming in that Overlord provided.

 

Nevertheless, there was amphibious shipping for a seven+ division landing available in 1943 in the ETO/MTO. I can't quantify this part, but it is probable that King and Marshall had moved some assets to the PTO that were originaly scheduled for the ETO before Casablanca.

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Here we go again. :D

 

Amphibious lift available for HUSKY was extremely limited and included just 8 RN LSI, while 43 were assigned to NEPTUNE forces. HUSKY also had just 509 "major" landing craft (LST, LCT and LCI) and 1,225 "minor" landing craft (LCA, LCVP and LCM), there were a total of approximately (totals vary) 2,092 "major" and 1,991 "minor" landing craft assigned to NEPTUNE.

 

To illustrate, the HUSKY lift was sufficient to enable US Seventh Army to assault 16 beach sectors in strengths that were between company and battalion-size. Thereafter, ship-to-shore shuttle operations enabled the landing of the rest of the force, but in fact the lift available for the actual assault waves was less than that assigned to OMAHA alone.

 

By 17 July, all of Seventh Army ashore in Sicily totaled just 92,815 officers, NCO and enlisted. In comparison, at the end of the first week in Normandy First Army had 132,333 men in combat divisions alone ashore and 219,290 had entered France "across the beach" while another 17,282 had arrived by air.

 

In terms of armor moved the difference is staggering. For HUSKY the lift included 327 Commonwealth and 125 US tanks landed by 16 July while in Normandy about 1,164 Commonwealth and 680 US tanks had been landed.

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Here we go again.  :D

 

200610[/snapback]

 

We were due. :P

 

Good moment as any other to find those numbers of Panzers in the West in this time frame, but I can't find it, King?

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Okay explain just how these hypothetical invaders of Albania would land and supply a mostly motorized army in a rugged country with zip infrastructure. While you're at it, enlighten us on where the victorious Allied invaders of Albania would go next...

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The Germans had about 70,000 men in Albania and they had their hands full just dealing with the resistance. In southern Albania the resistance had effectively taken control. The landings would be no more difficult than at UTAH beach. Airborne would be used also. Supply would come from the air for a few weeks until a port is built at Vlore. Next.....go North and meet up with Tito.

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Here we go again.  :D

 

Amphibious lift available for HUSKY was extremely limited and included just 8 RN LSI, while 43 were assigned to NEPTUNE forces. HUSKY also had just 509 "major" landing craft (LST, LCT and LCI) and 1,225 "minor" landing craft (LCA, LCVP and LCM), there were a total of approximately (totals vary) 2,092 "major" and 1,991 "minor" landing craft assigned to NEPTUNE.

The figures I have handy indicate that HUSKY was a tad stronger than 8 RN LSIs:

HQ ships: 2 US 3 RN; Attack transports 20 US 37 RN; Attack cargo ships 7 US 0 RN; LSTs 76 US 72 RN; LSI(L) 90 US, 145 RN; LCT 100 US 138 RN; LCM 154 US 241 RN; LCVP/LCA 324 US 272 RN (these figures show that the Allies had not recovered from the almost total losses in Beaching craft in TORCH. It is also highly probable that the US shipping used in the PTO in '43 would have gone to the ETO had the British not weaseled out at Casablanca.

To illustrate, the HUSKY lift was sufficient to enable US Seventh Army to assault 16 beach sectors in strengths that were between company and battalion-size. Thereafter, ship-to-shore shuttle operations enabled the landing of the rest of the force, but in fact the lift available for the actual assault waves was less than that assigned to OMAHA alone.
It appears that you are leaving the British 8th Army out of the picture, and it was bigger than 7th US in the initial lift.
By 17 July, all of Seventh Army ashore in Sicily totaled just 92,815 officers, NCO and enlisted. In comparison, at the end of the first week in Normandy First Army had 132,333 men in combat divisions alone ashore and 219,290 had entered France "across the beach" while another 17,282 had arrived by air.

Speed of reinforcement was largely a factor of availability of transport for the reserve formations. It took longer to get units from Africa to Sicily than to get them across the English Channel. There were also more formations in Blighty than in Africa - reserves for HUSKY were about 1 1/2 divisions each for the US and CW.

 

In terms of armor moved the difference is staggering. For HUSKY the lift included 327 Commonwealth and 125 US tanks landed by 16 July while in Normandy about  1,164 Commonwealth and 680 US tanks had been landed.

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Your figures are ambivalent. The HUSKY lift was accomplished in six days after the landing on 10/7/43. Now are you saying the Allies landed 1844 tanks in Normandy in six days (i.e, by 12/6/44), or was that the total on 16/7/44, five weeks after the initial landing?

 

All of which begs the question that the Germans did not have the armor (or infantry) reserves in 1943 that they had in 1944. Also there is a better possibility of snaffling a port in 1943, their defenses were boosted as part of the Atlantic Wall, which hadn't even begun by summer '43.

 

The war in Tunisia had reached a point where victory was certain and some divisions could have begun the trip back to England before the final capitulation (units were being 'squeezed out' as the containment of the Axis contracted). This would have given a head start in shifting troops, and the amphibious assets (beaching craft) could have started back sooner too. New US production could have gone to the UK instead of the MTO - that would be quicker especially given the port capabilities in the UK as opposed to Africa.

 

If the Allies juggled everything just right and with determination I think they could have staged the landing in France in July '43. Since they weren't doing everything right at the time, I would estimate the date of landing in August.

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The Germans had about 70,000 men in Albania and they had their hands full just dealing with the resistance. In southern Albania the resistance had effectively taken control. The landings would be no more difficult than at UTAH beach. Airborne would be used also. Supply would come from the air for a few weeks until a port is built at Vlore. Next.....go North and meet up with Tito.

200718[/snapback]

What is the purpose of all this? To delay going to France? The British hid a few troops in Greece and the Aegean anyway, to keep them out of France (this was in 1944. They tried in 1943 and got their heads handed to them.)

 

"Building a port at Vlore" in 1943 would have been much more difficult than the MULBERRIES at Normandy. For one thing all the components and facilities would have had to come from the US or UK as opposed to just towing the MULBERRY components across the Channel.

 

And supplying an army in Albania by air was not on in 1943, there simply weren't enough transport assets.

 

"Meet up with Tito?"Why? To collide with the Soviet advance on the East Front? :unsure: ;)

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What is the purpose of all this? "Meet up with Tito?"Why? To collide with the Soviet advance on the East Front?

 

Strategy and grand strategy. The goal of strategy was to push into Austria. With an allied force in the Balkans Hitler would have to decide whether to send divisions to Italy or to Yugoslavia. Or even if he could deploy as many divisions to the eastern front. He could not do all of those deployments. Whichever he chooses would result in fewer somewhere else. That someplace else is where the allied force pushes through.

 

Grand strategy was about being able to dictate to Stalin and avoid the debacle of Yalta. The goal here was to liberate Poland. That was probably out of reach. Ivan would have gotten there first. But certainly Hungary and probably Czechoslovakia was reachable.

 

"Building a port at Vlore" in 1943 would have been much more difficult than the MULBERRIES at Normandy.

 

Not quite that difficult. CBs built ports all over the Pacific in the same fashion.

 

And supplying an army in Albania by air was not on in 1943, there simply weren't enough transport assets.

 

Not an entire field army that would be 500,000 men. Initially a toe hold would be made with only two divisions of mountain and elite infantry. That could be supplied with air transport. The locals would friendly and helpfull.

 

 

To delay going to France?

 

No delay. If as you claim the allies can push 6 division up beaches then 2 would go to Albania 3 to Bordeaux and 1 held in reserve in the Med for use in Italy or Albania as the situation presents itself.

 

The AXIS forces in Albania were largely poor quality and overextended even for anti-partisan operations.They would have been unable to drive 2 US divisions into the Adriatic. After several weeks the ports would have been built and divisions would start deploying.

Edited by JWB
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What is the purpose of all this?  "Meet up with Tito?"Why? To collide with the Soviet advance on the East Front?

 

Strategy and grand strategy. The goal of strategy was to push into Austria. With an allied force in the Balkans Hitler would have to decide whether to send divisions to Italy or to Yugoslavia. Or even if he could deploy as many divisions to the eastern front. He could not do all of those deployments. Whichever he chooses would result in fewer somewhere else. That someplace else is where the allied force pushes through.

 

Grand strategy was about being able to dictate to Stalin and avoid the debacle of Yalta. The goal here was to liberate Poland. That was probably out of reach. Ivan would have gotten there first. But certainly Hungary and probably Czechoslovakia was reachable.

 

"Building a port at Vlore" in 1943 would have been much more difficult than the MULBERRIES at Normandy.

 

Not quite that difficult. CBs built ports all over the Pacific in the same fashion.

 

And supplying an army in Albania by air was not on in 1943, there simply weren't enough transport assets.

 

Not an entire field army that would be 500,000 men. Initially a toe hold would be made with only two divisions of mountain and elite infantry. That could be supplied with air transport. The locals would friendly and helpfull.

To delay going to France?

 

No delay. If as you claim the allies can push 6 division up beaches then 2 would go to Albania 3 to Bordeaux and 1 held in reserve in the Med for use in Italy or Albania as the situation presents itself.

 

The AXIS forces in Albania were largely poor quality and overextended even for anti-partisan operations.They would have been unable to drive 2 US divisions into the Adriatic. After several weeks the ports would have been built and divisions would start deploying.

200920[/snapback]

 

The problem with this is that you are likely to end up exchanging having Albania for loosing Germany. It would have been a bigger sideshow than Italy was, it would have actually freed more valuable mobile formations for use by the Axis in the East and it may even have ended in disaster (since Albania was too far for land based fighter cover and you had to build the airfields from scratch)

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Road networks in Western Europe were poor enough by today's standards (witness problems on the road to Arnhem, 1944), road networks in Albania today are nearly non-existant, in 1943 I'm sure they *were* non-existant. Any sea route to Albania would have been an invitation for Axis air interdiction. Port facilities, nearly non-existant as well. A limited incursion to seize a beachhead? Doable, for no reason I could see. A major invasion to secure port facilities with which to support a major land offensive on the Continent? I need some of what you're smoking.... :blink:

 

The whole idea is a logistical non-starter.

 

You had me when you said "Albania"....

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The figures I have handy indicate that HUSKY was a tad stronger than 8 RN LSIs:

HQ ships: 2 US 3 RN; Attack transports 20 US 37 RN; Attack cargo ships 7 US 0 RN; LSTs 76 US 72 RN; LSI(L) 90 US, 145 RN; LCT 100 US 138 RN; LCM 154 US 241 RN; LCVP/LCA 324 US 272 RN (these figures show that the Allies had not recovered from the almost total losses in Beaching craft in TORCH. It is also highly probable that the US shipping used in the PTO in '43 would have gone to the ETO had the British not weaseled out at Casablanca.

It appears that you are leaving the British 8th Army out of the picture, and it was bigger than 7th US in the initial lift.

200739[/snapback]

 

Sorry, I was going by a hasty count taken from d'Este, who is not always reliable. But in this case the problem appears to be differing definitions. Your total of LST, LCI (not LSI) and LCT, i.e., "large craft", is 621, not much different from 509, but vastly different from NEPTUNE's 2,092. Ditto the "minor" craft, yours is 991, d'Este 1,225 and NEPTUNE 1,991. :D

 

And that 57 APA and LSI were used for HUSKY versus the 43 for NEPTUNE merely illustrates the difference in the operations.

 

BTW, the vessel numbers include both Seventh US and Eighth British Armies, so I'm not sure how one of them is "left out"?

 

Speed of reinforcement was largely a factor of availability of transport for the reserve formations. It took longer to get units from Africa to Sicily than to get them across the English Channel. There were also more formations in Blighty than in Africa - reserves for HUSKY were about 1 1/2 divisions each for the US and CW.
Yes, but that doesn't mean more formations were available in 1943 than in 1944, rather the opposite in fact.

 

Your figures are ambivalent. The HUSKY lift was accomplished in six days after the landing on 10/7/43. Now are you saying the Allies landed 1844 tanks in Normandy in six days (i.e, by 12/6/44), or was that the total on 16/7/44, five weeks after the initial landing?

 

All of which begs the question that the Germans did not have the armor (or infantry) reserves in 1943 that they had in 1944. Also there is a better possibility of snaffling a port in 1943, their defenses were boosted as part of the Atlantic Wall, which hadn't even begun by summer '43.

 

I don't think there is any ambivalence, I think you simply are thinking too hard. :D

 

HUSKY = 452 landed in one week 10-16 July 1943

NEPTUNE = 1,844 landed in one week 6-12 June 1944 (actually more were landed since the British also brought in and issued virtually all "First Reinforcements" while many of the few US reserves were also landed, an exact count appears impossible at this late date)

 

Is that clearer? <_<

 

Actually the seaward defenses were reasonably complete in the ports, while the coastal batteries had not yet been casemated, which eventually proved to be more effective in any case (yep, the best postwar evidence is that the uncasemated batteries in France remained operational and effective longer than the casemated ones :P ).

 

And we can go round and round on numbers of tanks, aircraft, divisions and etcetera again, but the simple problem for the Allies is that the Germans can reinforce much more rapidly than the Allies can land in 1943.

Edited by Rich
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What is the purpose of all this?  "Meet up with Tito?"Why? To collide with the Soviet advance on the East Front?

 

Strategy and grand strategy. The goal of strategy was to push into Austria. With an allied force in the Balkans Hitler would have to decide whether to send divisions to Italy or to Yugoslavia. Or even if he could deploy as many divisions to the eastern front. He could not do all of those deployments. Whichever he chooses would result in fewer somewhere else. That someplace else is where the allied force pushes through.

 

Grand strategy was about being able to dictate to Stalin and avoid the debacle of Yalta. The goal here was to liberate Poland. That was probably out of reach. Ivan would have gotten there first. But certainly Hungary and probably Czechoslovakia was reachable.

A: Strategy = taking something valuable to the enemy. Like Hitler would give a rat's ass about Albania. He wouldn't have had to even reinforce, there was no infrastructure to sustain an offensive in Albania.

B: The goal in 1943 was to beat Germany, not dictate to Stalin. Yalta was far away both in time and attitude. You are really grappling with hindsight here.

"Building a port at Vlore" in 1943 would have been much more difficult than the MULBERRIES at Normandy.

 

Not quite that difficult. CBs built ports all over the Pacific in the same fashion.

NO, they did not. CBs built temporary bases, someplace to collect stuff. A port is someplace sheltered where you can unload large ships full of heavy equipment quickly. Ports need wharves and large cranes. The reason the Axis was always strapped logistically in the Western Desert was that Tripoli could not not handle enough shipping to sustain the Axis forces. The Italians shipped in little convoys because three ships at a time was all Tripoli's facilities could handle, and Tripoli's cranes were not large enough for really heavy loads. That is why the Allies met Tiger tanks in Tunisia instead of Libya - Tunis was the only port in the theater that could unload Tigers.

And supplying an army in Albania by air was not on in 1943, there simply weren't enough transport assets.

 

Not an entire field army that would be 500,000 men. Initially a toe hold would be made with only two divisions of mountain and elite infantry.

Uh... just WHO had Mountain divisions in 1943? The US and CW certainly didn't.
  That could be supplied with air transport. The locals would friendly and helpfull.
They would? They never were in the past. Why would they start in 1943?

To delay going to France?

 

No delay. If as you claim the allies can push 6 division up beaches then 2 would go to Albania 3 to Bordeaux and 1 held in reserve in the Med for use in Italy or Albania as the situation presents itself.

 

The AXIS forces in Albania were largely poor quality and overextended even for anti-partisan operations.They would have been unable to drive 2 US divisions into the Adriatic. After several weeks the ports would have been built and divisions would start deploying.

200920[/snapback]

A: How did Bordeaux get into the picture?

B: "After several weeks." Aside from the fact that building a port and roads would take longer than 'several weeks,' you are getting into winter after that time. Fighting in winter in Italy was bad enough, the Balkans would have been much worse.

C: Two US divisions" Send me whatever you are ingesting that makes you think the US JCS would countenance sending US units to Albania. They were PO'd enough about going to Italy.

 

Going to Albania just makes no sense. There is nothing there that would make it vital in a global war and the effort of getting anywhere vital from Albania is nowhere near commensurate to any reasonable objective.

 

Go to France and you have nice campaigning country with a transport infrastructure in place, even if we had shot it up a bit, and/or the Germans demo'ed it. Repairing damaged infrastructure is a lot quicker and easier than building it from scratch, as would have to be done in Albania.

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Albania, how do you think that Allies that could supply both Albania and France and then also supply troop around Italy. It just won't work and is a waste of resources. What works is going to France and pushing though France to get to germany. the quicker you in Germany the fast you stop stalin. ( which was not the goal of allies to begin with).

 

As it was the Allies were cut of combat troops in the fall of 44. Canada had to pull all of their troops from Italy to con't their advance in Northern France and Holland. Having troops in Albania does nothing to shorten the war or to give the allies a better out come.

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Although the German panzer forces of 1943 lacked the technologicaly edge of 1944, it's worth remembering that the Germans left a lot of tanks, guns and veteran soldiers in Russia between the summer of 1943 and the summer of 1944. An Allied invasion in 1943 pits less experienced Allied soldiers against more experienced German soldiers. If I'm in a Sherman I would rather face a Panther manned by Hitler Youth than two PzIIIs manned by crews who had been touring Europe by tank since 1939.

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[/b]A: Strategy = taking something valuable to the enemy.

 

Strategy: The employment of military forces or national power for the acheivement of goals or objectives.

 

B: The goal in 1943 was to beat Germany, not dictate to Stalin. Yalta was far away both in time and attitude. You are really grappling with hindsight here.

 

Not for Churchill. On page 132 of William Casey's book The secret war against Hitler the author explains and justifies Winnie's strategy for conquering the Balkans. Churchill deeply distrusted Stalin and knew a crisis was going to come up after the war. But the Balkan campiagn was canceled by short sighted US army general officers who wanted to "Hey fiddle diddle let's attack up the middle". Churchill's "soft underbelly" strategy was about taking enough of Italy so that the Dalmation coast could be invaded. That invasion was to happen sometime in early to mid 1944. My strategy was to go in just before winter 1943 with the advance force acting as a combined cadre/partisanadvisor/observers/etc. These soldiers would be protected from AXIS attacks by the winter and grateful partisans.

 

They would? They never were in the past. Why would they start in 1943?

 

The Albanians as well as most of the other ethnic groups wanted Western forces to drive the AXIS out of the Balkans and then have the Westerners leave the region themselves.

 

How did Bordeaux get into the picture?

 

Because Bordeaux in mid to late 1943 was the right time and place for the invasion. That city does have a proper port inside of a large estuary which could be easily upgraded. Bordeaux is connected to Paris by a wide paved road. That road branches off in several directions allowing a force to threaten going East into Germany. Or West to take another harbor at Nantes or the beaches of Normandy. The German forces available to halt an invasion were some of Hitler's worst combat units.

 

Send me whatever you are ingesting that makes you think the US JCS would countenance sending US units to Albania. They were PO'd enough about going to Italy.

 

Tango Sierra for them.

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[/b]A: Strategy = taking something valuable to the enemy.

 

Strategy: The employment of military forces or national power for the acheivement of goals or objectives.

 

B: The goal in 1943 was to beat Germany, not dictate to Stalin. Yalta was far away both in time and attitude. You are really grappling with hindsight here.

 

Not for Churchill. On page 132 of William Casey's book The secret war against Hitler the author explains and justifies Winnie's strategy for conquering the Balkans. Churchill deeply distrusted Stalin and knew a crisis was going to come up after the war. But the Balkan campiagn was canceled by short sighted US army general officers who wanted to "Hey fiddle diddle let's attack up the middle". Churchill's "soft underbelly" strategy was about taking enough of Italy so that the Dalmation coast could be invaded. That invasion was to happen sometime in early to mid 1944. My strategy was to go in just before winter 1943 with the advance force acting as a combined cadre/partisanadvisor/observers/etc. These soldiers would be protected from AXIS attacks by the winter and grateful partisans.

 

Winnie had also sent troops to Greece in 1941, left Malaya out on a limb, and invaded Gallipoli in 1914. He sent troops into the Aegean in 1943 and they got their butts whipped by German "inferior garrison and anti-partisan forces."

 

Winnie had lots of ideas that his own people thought insane, and very few of his schemes worked out.

  They would? They never were in the past. Why would they start in 1943?

 

The Albanians as well as most of the other ethnic groups wanted Western forces to drive the AXIS out of the Balkans and then have the Westerners leave the region themselves.

Assuming we DO go to the Balkans and throw our weight behind one partisan group their rivals would probably fight us. They certainly wouldn't be "grateful."
How did Bordeaux get into the picture?

 

Because Bordeaux in mid to late 1943 was the right time and place for the invasion. That city does have a proper port inside of a large estuary which could be easily upgraded. Bordeaux is connected to Paris by a wide paved road. That road branches off in several directions allowing a force to threaten going East into Germany. Or West to take another harbor at Nantes or the beaches of Normandy.

It is also out of range of air cover from the UK, wide open to U-Boats in near-by bases, and the Bay of Biscay is renowned for storms. An invasion in the Channel in 1943 could be covered; one in the Bay of Biscay couldn't.
The German forces available to halt an invasion were some of Hitler's worst combat units.
Gee, there were sure a lot of "Hitler's worst combat units." The "worst combat units" garrisoning Greece kicked the crap out of Brits trying to take the Dodecanese, including mounting successful amphibious counter-attacks with next to no warning and lead time.
Send me whatever you are ingesting that makes you think the US JCS would countenance sending US units to Albania. They were PO'd enough about going to Italy.

 

Tango Sierra for them.

That's just words; I want the RECREATIONAL CHEMICALS!!!
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Winnie had also sent troops to Greece in 1941, left Malaya out on a limb, and invaded Gallipoli in 1914. He sent troops into the Aegean in 1943 and they got their butts whipped by German "inferior garrison and anti-partisan forces."

 

Gallipoli failed because the generals in charge didn't want go there and were very slow in deploying forces. At the outset the Turks had only 2 divisions available to stop the invasion. By the time Hamilton was enabled to launch the invasion the turks had 6 division and the Brits only 4 plus a french division. When the Mr Georges' government finally decided to go at it with by increasing the force to 12 divisions the Turks had 15.Even then victory was in sight with a push through a sector held by only 12/2 turk battalions. But the British commanders on the scene weren't convinced and wouldn't push.

 

Winnie had lots of ideas that his own people thought insane, and very few of his schemes worked out.

 

His Balkan strategy was favored by the staff.

 

 

Assuming we DO go to the Balkans and throw our weight behind one partisan group their rivals would probably fight us. They certainly wouldn't be "grateful."

 

Not ONE group but all of the groups battling the AXIS forces.

 

It is also out of range of air cover from the UK,

 

The US navy would bring CVs from Pacific as was mentioned earlier.

 

wide open to U-Boats in near-by bases,

 

The U-Boat offensive was halted in May.

 

and the Bay of Biscay is renowned for storms. An invasion in the Channel in 1943 could be covered; one in the Bay of Biscay couldn't.

 

The Channel is renowned for storms.

 

Gee, there were sure a lot of "Hitler's worst combat units." The "worst combat units" garrisoning Greece kicked the crap out of Brits trying to take the Dodecanese, including mounting successful amphibious counter-attacks with next to no warning and lead time.

 

The AXIS units in the Balkans were worse than the ones in Greece. More importantly the indigenous population in Greece was docile. In the Balkans they were extremely violent. Same for Italy. Germans in Italy didn't have to watch their backsides constantly for ambushes. In the Balkans the AXIS forces had become physically and psychologically exhausted.

 

That's just words; I want the RECREATIONAL CHEMICALS!!!

 

If the generals don't like the plan they can stuff it. Just like Stormin' Norman in December 1990

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JWB, so the Allies go Ablania, they take the port.  where do they go from there????

201295[/snapback]

As far North and East as possible. Again the point of all this is to put a thorn into Stalin's foot. That would happen even if the allies never made it past Hungary or Bulgaria. Stalin would still have been forced to make concessions.

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Albania?? Back in 1999, during the Kosovo crisis, all of the US liberals were screaming for immediate US invasion of Kosovo (to make up for their cowardice in Vietnam?). I was in a chat room where the libs were whooping it up for such an action and the few realists there and I began to look at just how it could be done. Looking at pretty good maps of the area, the best way would have been to come up through Salonika as in WWI (not too successful). Getting into Albania was easy. Going anywhere from Albania was extremely difficult (and this was in 1999-imagine 1943). No rail lines and execrable highways over very forbidding terrain.

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