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BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?

GUEST,B52 17 Jun 08 - 07:46 AM
Paul Burke 17 Jun 08 - 08:09 AM
Little Hawk 17 Jun 08 - 08:40 AM
GUEST,number 6 17 Jun 08 - 08:58 AM
Little Hawk 17 Jun 08 - 09:10 AM
Keith A of Hertford 17 Jun 08 - 09:15 AM
Little Hawk 17 Jun 08 - 09:29 AM
Rapparee 17 Jun 08 - 09:50 AM
Keith A of Hertford 17 Jun 08 - 10:00 AM
Keith A of Hertford 17 Jun 08 - 10:03 AM
Wolfgang 17 Jun 08 - 10:24 AM
Big Al Whittle 17 Jun 08 - 10:48 AM
Teribus 17 Jun 08 - 11:03 AM
irishenglish 17 Jun 08 - 11:12 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 17 Jun 08 - 11:44 AM
Big Al Whittle 17 Jun 08 - 12:22 PM
Grab 17 Jun 08 - 01:05 PM
Peace 17 Jun 08 - 01:09 PM
GUEST,number 6 17 Jun 08 - 01:25 PM
Peace 17 Jun 08 - 01:26 PM
Rapparee 17 Jun 08 - 01:28 PM
Def Shepard 17 Jun 08 - 01:30 PM
Peace 17 Jun 08 - 01:34 PM
GUEST,number 6 17 Jun 08 - 01:41 PM
Peace 17 Jun 08 - 01:51 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 17 Jun 08 - 02:21 PM
GUEST,Neil D 17 Jun 08 - 02:47 PM
Def Shepard 17 Jun 08 - 02:55 PM
Donuel 17 Jun 08 - 03:18 PM
Polite Guest 17 Jun 08 - 03:28 PM
Rapparee 17 Jun 08 - 03:37 PM
GUEST,Chief Chaos 17 Jun 08 - 03:41 PM
Peace 17 Jun 08 - 03:47 PM
irishenglish 17 Jun 08 - 03:48 PM
Polite Guest 17 Jun 08 - 04:24 PM
Little Hawk 17 Jun 08 - 04:58 PM
Little Hawk 17 Jun 08 - 05:14 PM
Richard Bridge 17 Jun 08 - 06:13 PM
Rapparee 17 Jun 08 - 08:00 PM
Charley Noble 17 Jun 08 - 08:59 PM
Slag 17 Jun 08 - 10:23 PM
Rapparee 17 Jun 08 - 10:40 PM
Folk Form # 1 18 Jun 08 - 06:33 AM
GUEST,B52 18 Jun 08 - 06:46 AM
Keith A of Hertford 18 Jun 08 - 07:08 AM
Grab 18 Jun 08 - 08:19 AM
alanabit 18 Jun 08 - 10:52 AM
Sandy Mc Lean 18 Jun 08 - 11:39 AM
Paul Burke 18 Jun 08 - 12:30 PM
Big Al Whittle 18 Jun 08 - 12:38 PM

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Subject: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: GUEST,B52
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 07:46 AM

Interesting Programme on cable last night about the British in the early 1940´s. Dunkirk, bombing of English cities and poor equipment gave them a gloomy outlook. 7th December 1941 saw American become involved. If we hadn´t come in could the Brits really have defeated the German war machine ?


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Paul Burke
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 08:09 AM

The Russians would probably eventually have beaten the Germans, purely because of logistics. Britain would probably have held off a German invasion, though at great cost, and would have been in no shape to resist Stalin.

By December 1941 Britain had already defeated the first attempts at invasion, and the Germans' involvement elsewhere made an early repeat unlikely, but overwhelming resources were required to stage a counter- invasion.

The Japanese already controlled much of China and French Indo-China, and it's unlikely that they would have kept away from British possessions for long.

So the outcome of Americans failing to become involved would have been a Communist Europe and a Japanese Asia, and possibly India and Australia too. The post-war American hegemony would not have happened at least until after the third world war.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 08:40 AM

No, the UK could not have defeated Germany by themselves without America in the war. However, I doubt that the Germans could have defeated the UK either, but they would have remained in control of western Europe, and probably would have taken much of the Mediterranean/North African theatre...though not necessarily all of it.

If Hitler had gone ahead with his ill-advised invasion of Russia, then the great bulk of the German land and air forces would have been tied down in the East for a long time. The Germans might have eventually defeated the Soviets decisively or they might not have, it's hard to say. I doubt that the Soviets would have been able to stage a counterattack that would have defeated and occupied Germany...not without America also being involved in the war.

Then there's the Japanese and Americans. I think a war between them was absolutely inevitable. Suppose, just for the sake of interest, that the Americans had fought Japan, but not Germany. This would have resulted in an eventual Japanese defeat in the Pacific theatre, because the USA had a much stronger industrial base than Japan.

So here's an alternative theory to ponder...

By 1946 or 1947 you would have had a triumphant USA ruling in the Pacific theatre, a triumphant Germany ruling in western Europe, and in all probability a negotiated settlement for a ceasefire having been agreed to between the UK and the Germans in the West...while in the East the Germans and Russians might still be fighting stubbornly somewhere in central Russia.

The USA would be gathering its strength and looking toward a future rivalry with the Germans. The British would be looking ahead toward a future alliance with the USA to confront the Germans. The Japanese would be conducting a major re-assessment following their failed war in China and the Pacific theatre...and might even be occupied by victorious American forces. The Russians would be in bad shape, but hanging on. The Germans would be feeling untouchable in western Europe and much of the Mediterranean, but still bogged down in the East.

Just another possible scenario... ;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: GUEST,number 6
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 08:58 AM

"Could the UK have defeated Germany ?"

I honestly don't know ... I wasn't there.

biLL


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 09:10 AM

That's uncommonly modest and unopinionated of you, 6. ;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 09:15 AM

Britain did defeat the Luftwaffe in the Battle of Britain, and forced Hitler to abandon the planned invasion.
Britain and Commonwealth alone defeated the Italians and finally turned the tide against Rommel in Africa.
The Royal Navy never allowed the Kriegsmarine to gain control of the seas, and destroyed all their battle cruisers.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 09:29 AM

Yes, the British had a strong enough navy to ensure that the Germans could not gain control of the seas. In fact, Admiral Raeder of the Kreigsmarine had said at the beginning of the war that all the vastly outnumbered German navy could do was show that "they knew how to die gallantly". Given those circumstances, I think it can fairly be said that both the British and the German navies fought exceedingly well. They were worthy adversaries.

The British successfully fended off the German air attacks in 1940 adn prevented an invasion of the UK. I believe they would have been able to continue preventing it indefinitely. This is not to say, however, that they could have ever mounted a successful counterinvasion of western Europe...not without American assistance.

To win a battle is not to win a war. The British won a number of battles. So did the Germans. I don't think that either one of them would have been able to decisively defeat the other if America had stayed out of the European war.

Rommel could definitely have won in Africa if Hitler had arranged to supply him properly in the early stages of the campaign...but Hitler was not all that interested in doing so until it was far too late. That may have been Hitler's 2nd biggest mistake (after the invasion of Russia).


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Rapparee
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 09:50 AM

The US was helping the UK long before Pearl Harbor via Lend-Lease, just as US small arms companies were making rifles for England before the US got into WW1.

And Germany got very close to strangling Britain with its U-boat blockade.

The question as it stands deals only with the UK, not with the assistance of the Commonwealth forces or any assistance from other nations.

Could the UK, alone, have defeated Germany? I doubt it...Germany would have starved the UK into submission, as the UK alone wouldn't have had the material resources.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 10:00 AM

UK and Commonwealth were a single block.
It is meaningless to seperate them.
Britain finally defeated the U Booats, mainly by inventing ASDIC(SONAR).


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 10:03 AM

....by inventing SONAR and airborne RADAR


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 10:24 AM

Germany would have been beaten in roughly the same time without the USA entering the European war. The USSR was too strong. Could Britain have beaten Germany without the USA and the USSR? Yes, due to the Commonwealth backup, but in much longer time. Probably the common influence of a war without end and a dismally failed invasion would have led to Germans becoming tired of the war and the regime breaking down economically.

An invasion might have been successful very shortly after Dunkirk, but there was no preparation of an invasion at that time because the quickness of winning the war in France surprised also the Germans.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 10:48 AM

I always felt with Beckenbauer, they had strength in depth.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Teribus
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 11:03 AM

Could Germany have invaded Great Britain in 1940, or any other time? The answer to that is no, for a number of obvious reasons:

1) They never in their wildest dreams thought that they would ever have to.

2) Because of 1) above they had made no preparations to carry out an amphibious operation on the scale that would be required. It should be noted that even with the unhindered industrial capacity of the US it took the allies four years to mount D-Day - The Dieppe Raid was a test along the lines of the German plan to capture a secondary port intact.

3) After the German invasion and occupation of Norway, Hitler didn't have a navy, an essential for mounting any amphibious operation.

By the bye, Britain would never have "starved to death". If there was one thing that improved out of all recognition during the war it was British agriculture. Even today if Government allowed it and fully supported Britain's farming industry the country could feed itself.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: irishenglish
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 11:12 AM

I would say could they have defeated Germany by themselves-no
Could Germany have successfully invaded the UK-no, definitely not.
Monty Python fans will know that even the blancmanges were defeated, even after turning all of England into Scotsmen! (sorry, bit of a drift there)


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 11:44 AM

I have read, over the years, endless speculation about the Second World War and the various possible outcomes - as opposed to the actual outcome. But no-one ever seems to discuss what would have happened if Germany had won the FIRST World War (I wonder why not?).


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 12:22 PM

cos its pointless......?


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Grab
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 01:05 PM

Lend-Lease made it easier to afford what was *bought* from the US. But unless the US had flatly refused to trade with the UK, the UK would still have kept the convoys running.

The reverse wasn't true of Germany. After serious early problems, the British stomped the Germany submarine fleet with technological superiority. Combined with the fact that the British also ruled the skies (again through technological superiority) and that the British surface fleet was pretty damn good, the German surface fleet contributed little to the war effort except by sapping some British effort in destroying them. So Germany had no way to get supplies any way except overland or through the Med - in other words, Africa or Asia. Asia was out because the Russians beat them big style. And after a whole lot of grief, the British beat them in Africa too.

Without the Eastern Front, things might have been very different. A possible trading partner to supply coal, oil and ore, and a whole lot of spare troops, could have made a big impact. Still though, winning the Battle of Britain and British superiority in the air (not through better planes but through better planning) meant that any amphibious assault would have taken massive casualties.

A more interesting question is what America would be like if it hadn't got involved in the war. Always an insular nation, a decision to stand back would have left the rest of the world to Stalin, Hitler and the Japanese imperialists, and living in that global environment is going to have an effect. Could Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King have had any effect (or even survived) in that kind of a country?

Graham.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Peace
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 01:09 PM

"Could the UK have defeated Germany ?"

Right now the UK is defeating itself on the "more session rudeness" thread. Don't know about Germany.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: GUEST,number 6
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 01:25 PM

""Some chicken....Some neck!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Peace
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 01:26 PM

Rather colourful character was old Winston.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Rapparee
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 01:28 PM

I do not think that the UK could have defeated Germany alone -- without Russia siphoning off German troops, without the assistance of the Commonwealth, without the assistance of the US.

The UK lost all or almost all of its heavy equipment and most of its small arms at Dunkirk (not to mention the troops). The Hurricane and Spitfire were superior, overall, to the ME-109 and the Focke-Wulf, but production wasn't as fast as it should have been -- the Battle of Britain was a damned close thing!

The Germans had radar (albeit nowhere near as good a Britain's), and ASDICS was a multi-national developement:

Asdic was a term used to describe echo location and ranging using high frequency sound waves. It grew out of experiments undertaken by French scientists in the early 1900s on the propagation of sound in water. Of particular note is the Fessenden electromagnetic oscillator which was a precursor to the modern transducers used in sonar, the term now applied to Asdic operations. Other French scientists contributing greatly to the work were Langevin and Chilowsky who developed techniques for transmitting and detecting the sound waves. In 1915, NZ scientist Ernest Rutherford and scientists from the British Bureau of Investigation and Research (BIR) developed the process further and the first Asdics were ordered by the Royal Navy in June 1918. In the USA, experiments continued at Columbia University which lead to the formation of research teams combining the US Navy, the Submarine Signal Company, General Electric and Western Electric at Nahant, MA. Asdic research stepped up at the start of WW1 but it was not ready by the end of the war, and didn't get to sea until 1920, when one was evaluated on the cruiser HMS ANTRIM. Four patrol vessels were also fitted with Asdic on an experimental basis, leading to adoption of a production Asdic system in July 1922. British submarines were fitted with Asdic beginning in 1926. It was in service in British destroyers from 1928.

WW2 was won by team effort, against the Germans, the Italians, and the Japanese. I don't think one country along could have done it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Def Shepard
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 01:30 PM

Sorry I wasn't there, I was born 2 years after World War II ended


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Peace
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 01:34 PM

Me too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: GUEST,number 6
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 01:41 PM

Me 3 .... I did though see it on TV though.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Peace
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 01:51 PM

Are we yhe old farts people warned us about?


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 02:21 PM

Without US involvement, the UK may have suffered a short-lived defeat at Germany's hands, but it would have prevailed in the end. German occupation of Britain would have consumed enough German troops and other resources to have greatly increased vulnerability on other fronts.

I can imagine a German general saying to Hitler, "The good news is that we've finally defeated those pesky British. The bad news is that we're going to have to send 25% of our entire army over there to keep them defeated."


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: GUEST,Neil D
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 02:47 PM

As long as you're not day old beer farts.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Def Shepard
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 02:55 PM

WEll we're obviously not old farty enough to have remembered World War II first hand :-D


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Donuel
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 03:18 PM

No.

Not even with the sole help of the USA

Russia was most instrumental in Germany's defeat.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Polite Guest
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 03:28 PM

"If we hadn´t come in could the Brits really have defeated the German war machine ? "


Oh hell, of course we would of! Not only did we have Churchill, but we had Douglas Bader AND Vera Lynn. :0)

But, even more importantly, the British people, back then, would *never* have let themselves be invaded. We were, and are, an incredible People. We are at our best when facing adversity, always have been. It still runs in our blood.

" 'We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills..." It is said that, as he paused, in the great uproar that greeted these words, Churchill muttered to a colleague next to him 'And we'll fight them with the butt ends of broken beer bottles, because that's bloody well all we've got!'" - taken from 'The Wicked Wit of Winston Churchill'

We would of too.

Just lately though, we've lost our way, given in, when we should actually be 'fighting on those beaches' once again, but this time against the biggest enemy of all, apathy. We need another Churchill, but sadly, right now we have only 'Cutthroats, Crooks and Conmen running this land' (to quote Show of Hands)


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Rapparee
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 03:37 PM

PGuest, I have the highest regard for the stand the British made and would have made against Hitler and his crew. I still remember stuff I read way back when I was what? 12 years old? in a publication* of HMSO entitled "The British Home Guard Manual." Mind you that I had no idea what a Sten gun was back then, but it sure sounded cool, and the receipts for Molotov Cocktails were, ah, enlightening.







*Obtained from the local Public Library.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: GUEST,Chief Chaos
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 03:41 PM

Don't mean to ruffle any feathers here but the singular biggest instrument in Germany's defeat was Hitler himself. I was told of three gigantic blunders made by Hitler.
1. Not allowing full participation of the military in Dunkirk (Luftwaffe alone) which might have resulted in the capture of thousands of soldiers that later fought against the Reich in other theaters.
2. The blunder of opening the Eastern front against Russia and not being preprared for the severe Russian winters which consumed and destroyed troops, equipment and supplies which could have been better used elsewhere.
3. The German belief that the technology they had was sufficient to win the war without further development. As an example, they had the jet engine early in the war and their own version of radar/sonar but Hitler didn't pursue development. THen when things were going badly they didn't concentrate their efforts on a few promising items but began pursuing dozens of them.

Of course this is all up for debate, I'm no historian or expert in any of this.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Peace
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 03:47 PM

"I'm no historian or expert in any of this."

I am. Vanilla beans come from orchids.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: irishenglish
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 03:48 PM

PG-the original question was could the UK have defeated Germany, meaning in the European theatre, to which I still say most likely, no. Could they have successfully invaded the UK, I would say no as well, but there is a difference between the two. Also I believe the lyric says Cuthroats....running this jail, not land.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Polite Guest
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 04:24 PM

Oh yes, I believe we'd have done that too. We didn't give in easily back then. We had emotionally, and spiritually, strong men and women everywhere, deeply determined too. We also had the best leader that any country could have wished for, in such a time.

Don't ask me how we'd have done it, war machine wise, as that's for you boys to sort out, I don't 'do' bombs and tanks, but I 'do' people...We'd have carried on fighting on everyone else's beaches, as well as our own, hidden in their hills, come out on to their streets, stood beside them in their fields..

We may not have had fancy uniforms, chewing gum, or stockings for those girls, we may not have had shiny boots to gleam in the sun, when 'funny marching' was strangely desired, but heavens, we had guts! Your dear British Tommy was a force to be reckoned with, as was Mrs. Tommy back home.



You're absolutely correct, I had the wrong word in that Show of Hands song (Yikes, I'm slipping!) :0)


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 04:58 PM

Hmm. Well, unquestionably the British had a lot of guts.

So did the Germans. Anyone who fought against them can vouch for that.

The Germans lost that war in the end because they were very, very outnumbered in both men and resources...because they took on too many enemies...and because they were being led by a very unstable and unrealistic man with a disastrously unrealistic view of the world.

Anyone else would have lost too in their position, I'd have to say.

Rapaire, you surprised me with this statement: "The Hurricane and Spitfire were superior, overall, to the ME-109 and the Focke-Wulf"

Say WHAT????? The Messerschmitt 109-E was the finest fighter in the western world in 1939-40, bar none. The Focke-Wulf was the finest fighter in the entire world when it entered service in 1941, and it remained so, I would say, until sometime in late '43.

The Spitfire was also a superb defence fighter, ideal for use in the Battle of Britain, and it was a virtual dead match for the German Bf-109, although each plane had certain advantages over the other. The German plane could dive and climb faster and had heavier firepower with its 20mm cannon, the British plane could turn tighter. With those two aerial adversaries it was mostly a question of the better pilot and the tactics he chose as to which one would come out on top.

The Bf-109 was a far superior fighter to the Hurricane...but the Hurricane was a darned good airplane for shooting down the German bombers as it made a very stable firing platform, and so the British tried if they could to have the Hurricanes take on the bombers while the Spitfires dealt with the fighter escort.

The Bf-109 had an extremely short operational range, and that was its greatest weakness in regards to the Battle of Britain. The Spitfire was also quite short in range, but this is not a problem when you are defending over your own territory.

As for the Focke-Wulf, it was markedly superior to the contemporary Spitfire models from its first arrival until late '43...and so superior to the Hurricane that it could have eaten them for breakfast! Fighting Focke-Wulfs with Hurricanes would be fairly much like committing suicide, I should think.

The planes that eventually matched and somewhat surpassed the Focke-Wulf fighter were the American P-47 Thunderbolt, the American P-51 Mustang, and probably some of the late model Spitfires in '44 and '45 as well...although the Focke-Wulf kept being updated constantly, and as a result it fairly much kept stride with the Allied fighters right to the end. The last Focke-Wulfs were the long-nosed D models and the Ta-152s with inline engines, and they were extremely capable fighters.

Germany's key weaknesses in the Battle of Britain were: A superb air superiority fighter that had, however, too short a range (the Bf-109). A fine heavy fighter that was, however, not quite fast or maneuverable enough to dogfight the British Spitfires and Hurricanes (the Bf-110), a superbly accurate dive bomber that was far too vulnerable to fighter attack (the Stuka), and 3 types of medium bomber (He-111, Do-17, and Ju-88) that were all good tactical aircraft for the time...but were not the kind of planes suited to waging a strategic bombing campaign. For that you needed much larger and heavier 4-engine bombers like the British Stirling, Halifax, and Lancaster.

The Germans had an excellent tactical air force, but they lacked a modern and effective strategic bomber force...something that only the British and Americans really managed to create in that war.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 05:14 PM

I also should give some credit to the Russians for fielding some very fine tactical fighers...the Mig-3, the various Yak fighters, and the Lavochkin fighters La-5 and La-7. All of them presented the Germans with tough competition in the air, and the Yaks and Lavochkins eventually won close to complete air superiority in the the Eastern theatre, though at the cost of literally thousands of slain Russian pilots.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 06:13 PM

Probably, in the long term, for Hitler had lethally damaged Germany's educational and research potential, through race discrimination.

The UK gained valuable short term advantage by its superiority in cryptography and by capturing the German Enigma machine.

However, if the Germans had successfully invaded I do not think we could have run a successful guerrilla campaign. We do not make good martyrs in general.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Rapparee
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 08:00 PM

Horse patooties, LH. Granted, the 109 had heavy armament, but it was deficient in the number of guns it carried as well as in it's landing gear when compared to the Spitfire, especially after the Spit added a 20mm cannon.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 08:59 PM

Very interesting with the exception of those who claim that British soldiers are inherently superior to anyone else. Hogwash!

Training and motivation are important but so are technology and supplies, and one needs to factor them all in to speculate on outcomes.

American forces were outfought by the better trained and highly motivated Japanese in 1941-1942; it took several years for the Americans to gear up for total war.

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Slag
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 10:23 PM

IF, IF, IF... If wishes were fishes, we'd all cast nets. I do not know what alternate dimension Grab came from but his WWII doesn't resemble the WWII I learned of. Chief of Chaos has it right. Germany's biggest flaw was Hitler. He eventually would have defeated himself regardless. Mental illness never gets better on it's own, only worse.

Brittan may have held out for quite a while but she was doomed without interventions from the US and Russia. IF Hitler had taken the time to consolidate his advances. IF, he had taken time to lie to the rest of the world and "made nice" while repairing, improving and developing his war machine. IF, IF, IF. Hitler had what would have been the greatest pincer attack in all of history if he could have waited and co-ordinated with Japan against Russia. IF.

Then there are the Japanese "IF's". If Japan had waited but a little longer to attack Pearl. Or if she would have followed up on Pearl and gone for the mainland and at least have set back our ability to respond until Russia had been dealt with. If!

The U-boats weren't trumped by GB. Any urgency that was placed upon Germany was done so by the threat of US entry into the conflict.

One of the key factors that lead Germany to war in the first place was limited access to the oceanic trade routes. German found economic competition particularly tough on the international scene. She needed more ports under her control prior to the war.

Too many IF's. It is too hard to point to a single factor, even Hitler himself. Germany's plight was profound and you could argue that the situation created Hitler (a Hitler). IF.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Rapparee
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 10:40 PM

I'll add some Ifs:

--If Hitler had let the Sixth Army retreat from Stalingrad...
--If Hitler had attacked the BEF at Dunkirk as he should have...
--If France had not depended upon the Maginot Line...
--If Hitler had listened to his Generals...
--If Hitler had let Guderian take Moscow instead of turning him South...
--If the Treaty of Versailles hadn't been vindictive...


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Folk Form # 1
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 06:33 AM

I surrender!!!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: GUEST,B52
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 06:46 AM

Adding the sums up here, looks as if the war had remained European Germany would have won. Better trained soldiers and equipment. No canvas and webbing equipment or "a nail" for a bayonet(SMLE). Germany equipped their soldiers and didn´t depend on those in far off lands who didn´t even know where Britain was.

Same sory today in Iraq, Brit troops looking gear from our guys over there. As for the SA80, it´s a BB gun.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 07:08 AM

Hitler made many and serious mistakes.
British commanders made more and bigger ones.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Grab
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 08:19 AM

In what respect, Slag?

I don't say that the UK could have defeated Germany. Most likely, at best they could have clawed back some of France. But the German invasion of Britain was never on the cards after the Battle of Britain - air power trumped sea power. Crossing the Channel gave a massive home advantage to the defenders on either side, but British Fighter Command was massively coordinated for intercepting enemy aircraft. The British were also the world leaders in radar - no other country had implemented a similar radar net, nor had such advanced detectors. It's also worth remembering that although the Spitfire and Hurricane were instrumental to the RAF's success in the Battle of Britain, later aircraft like the Mosquito were far more potent and outclassed their German equivalents.

The battle for Africa was a battle for control of oilfields - both sides realised that without oil, mechanised warfare simply couldn't carry on. The British and Commonwealth troops won it without American assistance.

Code-breaking allowed the Allies to direct attacks at the most significant parts of the German war machine. This was achieved using Polish intelligence and British engineering, without American assistance.

Convoys from the US provided vital support - raw materials like oil and coal, and industrial equipment and weapons - and without the convoys Britain might well have run out of resources to continue fighting. They weren't free though - Lend-Lease required payment, even though that payment was deferred after the US entered the war in its own right. And Britain would have continued convoys regardless, because they *needed* that stuff. A successful German blockade *would* have worked, but the British navy's anti-submarine warfare outclassed the German submarine fleet through improved detection, developed by British engineers.

What Britain lacked, in short, was manpower, money and raw materials. It could defend itself, but it didn't have the resources to *project* a lot of force. The US provided that. Britain probably couldn't have won on its own, but equally it probably couldn't have been defeated either.

Graham.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: alanabit
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 10:52 AM

A lot of interesting hypotheses here. Going to Keith A's post:

"Hitler made many and serious mistakes.
British commanders made more and bigger ones. "

I think there is some truth in that, but I fear he is overstating his case. As an island, you would have expected Britain to quickly grasp the basic strategies of modern naval operations early in the war. One of the main reasons Britain suffered such a pounding in the early years, was that they had failed to grasp that surface to surface firepower at sea was often irrelevant. Once we grasped the importance of air power and anti submarine warfare, our ships operated better on all fronts.
Strangely enough, one of the reasons that the US waged naval war more effectively from day one was the fact that they were forced to. They lost capital ships rather than aircraft carriers at Pearl Harbour.
However, considering Keith A's point took me back to Wolfgang's post. The most important difference between Germany's command structure (which had superb talent) and the UK's (admittedly of varying quality) was that mistakes were learned from and incompetent commanders could be removed. As long as Hitler was in power, the least capable mind was always going to have the greatest executive power. The German commanders without Hitler could (and quite possibly would) have achieved a negotiated settlement before absolute disaster overtook Germany. As long as Hitler remained in power, that was the only possible ultimate outcome. He simply had the habit of making too many enemies. He would have faced an indefinite terrorist war on several fronts. In short, all of Europe would have become his Iraq.
My own view, for what it is worth, is that a successful German invasion was unlikely, for the reasons given by Teribus and others. Had the Germans succeeded, I do not think the UK would have waged indefinite terrorist warfare against the occupier. Our terrain is unsuitable for it (other than in the cities perhaps) and I like to think we would not sink to that level and the horrible damage, which it would have inflicted on our own people. That is only speculation, of course. We know for certain that in many other parts of Europe the locals had no such inhibitions - notably in the Balkans.
At the end of the day, I will go along with Wolfgang's assertion that Germany's greatest weakness was Hitler himself.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 11:39 AM

The U.K. never fought Germany as a lone entity so the question is moot. The Commonwealth is what stood together from the start and many, many lives were spent in defense of the mother country. The U.S.A. was the prodigal older son joining to help its parent and siblings. Russia was an ally only when in its own interest, but a major force as well.
If the USA stayed home the war with Germany would have been prolonged. If Hitler had more time to develop the A-bomb that would have been a total disaster because he had already developed the V-2 missle as a delivery vehicle. If he was able to deliver atomic destruction to London and Moscow the world may have been in his grasp.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Paul Burke
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 12:30 PM

Nuclear power was "Jewish physics"- the Nazis had been opposed to relativity from the beginning, as evidenced by the 1932 tract "One Hundred Authors Against Einstein". (Einstein's response was "Why 100? If I'm wrong, one is enough!")

Without the physics, they would have been unlikely to develop nuclear weapons. The rocketry would have delivered fairly devastating conventional payloads though, as in fact they did, but again that assumes that they would have not been more preoccupied with the Russians.


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Subject: RE: BS: Could the UK have defeated Germany ?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 12:38 PM

If Napoleon had had access to just one spitfire, Waterloo would have been a different story completely.


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