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snapper
07 Feb 13,, 09:29
Say the great Anglo American invasion of France in June 1944 had failed... it's not inconceivable after all. So around July 1-3 Montgomery, still in operational command, is badly mauled and with no main harbours and the artificial 'mulberry' harbours wrecked the reinforcement rate simply isn't enough to support a build up and break out. He decides he has to get as many men back across the Channel as possible and a second Dunkirk occurs.

Hitler then offers an armistice... He will liberate France.

How long before the Anglo Americans can again launch a cross channel attack? 1945? Do they decide to enter the Balkans instead? Accept an armistice and get France? The French would urge an acceptance presumably. The US would Navy would want to get on with the Japanese war and might be inclined to accept.

If the Western allies don't accept the armistice does Hitler have enough time to transfer forces to the Eastern front and stabilise if not defeat the Russian front before another cross channel invasion can be launched?

If Britain and the US do accept the armistice does Hitler win in the East? How far does he go?

Doktor
07 Feb 13,, 10:12
I don't think Hitler would offer France right after his troops repelled the allies from landing in the said France.

Even if he can send ALL of the western troops to the East, I don't believe he could have stopped the Soviets. Even more, it's commonly accepted opinion that failure of Overlord would bring Soviets at least to Rhine.

snapper
07 Feb 13,, 10:58
Hence an Anglo American intervention in the Balkans to stop the Soviet advance to the Atlantic. Hitler never wanted 'lebensraum' in the Balkans or in the West and would trade France and the Balkans for his Eastern colonisation.

Skywatcher
07 Feb 13,, 16:59
We (the U.S.) could just go back home and stock up on nuclear weapons and B-36 bombers.

Albany Rifles
07 Feb 13,, 18:47
Simple.

Once the Germans leave the Allies come back into France and now push to the German frontier with limited battles.

Germany starts the fall on 1944 in the same position....but the Allies are actually stronger and their logistics position is better.

No way in hell that FDR, Churchill, the American people and the people of the Commonwealth were going to the Nazis control central Europe.

War ends in fall of 1945 as a couple of German cities are taken out with atomic bombs 3 & 4.

By 1944 unconditional surrender was the ONLY way out for Germany.

Mandala
16 Jun 13,, 20:19
Hitler then offers an armistice... He will liberate France.



I do not think the liberation of France without an invasion was likely. In planning the Battle of the Bulge, and the defense of Berlin, Hitler demonstrated that he was intent on going down fighting. The failure of the invasion of Normandy would have convinced Hitler and many of his wavering generals that some kind of victory was still possible.

Also I doubt Hitler would have trusted an armistice. He would suspect that if he gave up France the Allies would still invade Germany from the west.

There may have been another invasion of France. It would have made more sense from the beginning to invade further south where German defenses were lighter.

If an additional invasion of France had failed I suspect that the U.S. would have used atomic bombs on Germany, and that the War would have ended with the Soviet Army occupying all of Germany.

Chogy
16 Jun 13,, 22:06
We (the U.S.) could just go back home and stock up on nuclear weapons and B-36 bombers.

Exactly. Once a major German city is nuked, the allies can dictate whatever terms they want. The alternative is nuclear fire and an obliterated Reich.

Not as sexy as a campaign in the Balkans or through Italy and France, but much easier to execute. The Germans were nowhere near a nuke, and would have been unable to respond.

Mihais
16 Jun 13,, 22:46
V2&chemical weapons..Not as fancy as fatties and little boys,but lethal nevertheless.

If Overlord fails,the war in the East gets prolonged.For a start,there is the stabilization on the Vistula and the prevention of Romania renouncing the alliamce with Germany(with the subsequent collapse of the Germans in the Balkans,the invasion of Hungary as well as the survival of many German troops that got lost in these battles.With the arrival of ~half the Germans from Normandy & the Romanian front stable,the force ratio in Poland looks much nicer for Germany.More important,the density of the defense is incresead,mobile reserves are strong and the Germans have more fuel to maneuver. Guderian is the man leading the show.A Soviet victory is not certain.Forget about reaching Berlin in 2 months.The big question is not how fast the Soviets can reach the Rhine,but how many Seelow's can they afford.
The Soviets can't become better,but the Germans can.Six months to prepare fortifications and train men,without being bothered in the West.
If the Soviets don't win decisevely in their winter offensive,they have a problem.They are on their last manpower resources and have the perspective of breaking increasing fortified lines on narrower fronts,with little opportunities for surprise.Add the Allied sitting on their butts and Joe will think twice.

Doktor
16 Jun 13,, 22:58
Can the allies gamble leaving the Soviets in full offensive?

Let's say they do get better and reach Rhine, when they gonna stop?

Mihais
16 Jun 13,, 23:04
If Overlord fails,the Allies are done for.The sea storms begin,a new operation is needed.You don't do this overnight.Landing in France is easy from a logistic pov.You have one day trip by ship.A major operation in the Med is not feasible in 1944.Landing in S France was a supporting effort and they faced little resistance.

So the allies have no choice,but wait.And the Red Army can't get to Rhine.Because we're talking of Stalin here.The man doesn't wants to face the Allies with no army.Because that's what it takes to get to the Rhine.There's plenty of Seelow's and many Berlins in the path.

Doktor
16 Jun 13,, 23:19
Was gonna comment about Soviets reaching Berlin with vast army and how French were already more in favor of the commie acceptance...

But, you are right, Stalin would want to place 3 million soldiers in Paris :biggrin:

astralis
17 Jun 13,, 00:21
think it would depend on how badly overlord failed.

if it was close, then the allies continue pushing in italy and elsewhere, and try again with a buffed up operation dragoon, is my guess.

if it wasn't, then just the first...and then Hitler gets to have the first few atomic bombs go his way.

mihais,


A Soviet victory is not certain.Forget about reaching Berlin in 2 months.The big question is not how fast the Soviets can reach the Rhine,but how many Seelow's can they afford.
The Soviets can't become better,but the Germans can.Six months to prepare fortifications and train men,without being bothered in the West.

even without an allied success at normandy, the germans still need to commit resources to having stopped the attack. plus, hitler's paranoia would almost definitely mean that even after a normandy failure, he'd put more troops in the west to forestall another invasion. obviously it wouldn't be as much as what happened with a successful landing, but it wouldn't be insignificant, either.

operation bagration and the lvov–sandomierz offensive still results in a stunning soviet success. you're right that the next soviet offensives would hit a better-resourced Wehrmacht (no Falaise pocket), but what's the difference? by august 1944, when the freed up western front units could be transferred over, the russians are already at the gates of warsaw.

i can't see the germans being able to throw together more than 350,000-450,000 men to reinforce the eastern front by fall 1944 (roughly what they lost in normandy). i don't think that's sufficient to stop the russians. moreover with no race to berlin, stalin wouldn't have a geopolitical incentive to insist on berlin at all costs.

Bigfella
17 Jun 13,, 01:25
think it would depend on how badly overlord failed.

if it was close, then the allies continue pushing in italy and elsewhere, and try again with a buffed up operation dragoon, is my guess.

if it wasn't, then just the first...and then Hitler gets to have the first few atomic bombs go his way.

Resources get redeployed.

The loss at Normandy isn't going to be Stalingrad or Tunisia redux. Allied air power is too strong. Most of those who went ashore and are able to travel get home. The exception here is probably airborne troops - who get hit really hard. Heavy equipment losses, but that can be replaced. That which can shifted to the Med is shifted, in part for a beefed up Dragoon.

German forces are going to pay a heavy price for victory. Allied & naval power are going to hurt them badly (if they are pressuring withdrawing Allied troops on the coast naval artillery comes into play). many of those troops will have just enough time to catch breath & do a bit of reorganizing refitting before they get sent south to face Dragoon. Some will stay on the coast. Next to none will end up on the Eastern front.

The Allies won't accept any sort of deal. Sth France isn't a great place for Germany to fight - longer & more vulnerable supply lines. The Allies have issues too - big enough to ensure that this doesn't become the basis for a drive to the Rhine in '44 - but they are in better shape to supply their front with most stuff than Germany. Allied priorities also change - they need to force the Germans out of Nth France before they can really drive into Germany. My bet is that priority will be given to taking Toulouse & taking a port somewhere in the bay of Biscay. Once that is done Allied forces can be more easily supplied & reinforced, further stretching German resources.

Of course, in the end Hitler eats a nuke....providing there is still a Germany to bomb by mid-1945.


even without an allied success at normandy, the germans still need to commit resources to having stopped the attack. plus, hitler's paranoia would almost definitely mean that even after a normandy failure, he'd put more troops in the west to forestall another invasion. obviously it wouldn't be as much as what happened with a successful landing, but it wouldn't be insignificant, either.

Correct. There may be a few more troops for him to juggle than in OTL, but it doesn't free up huge amounts of resources.


operation bagration and the lvov–sandomierz offensive still results in a stunning soviet success. you're right that the next soviet offensives would hit a better-resourced Wehrmacht (no Falaise pocket), but what's the difference? by august 1944, when the freed up western front units could be transferred over, the russians are already at the gates of warsaw.

Germany would be lucky to slow events by 6 months. Once Russia sweeps through the Balkans (which will still happen) it is going to be able to concentrate forces on 2 sides of Germany & probably join up with Allied forces in Yugoslavia.


i can't see the germans being able to throw together more than 350,000-450,000 men to reinforce the eastern front by fall 1944 (roughly what they lost in normandy). i don't think that's sufficient to stop the russians. moreover with no race to berlin, stalin wouldn't have a geopolitical incentive to insist on berlin at all costs.

That is probably an upper limit. Remember that Germany is still going to have a front in France and still has a long coast to defend. Not losing those troops is great, but they will still be needed. One thing about the liberation of France is that is shortened German defensive lines & threw those troops back on their lines of supply - Sth France was barely defended in OTL from memory & the two fronts quickly merged further north. In this TL German forces will be trying to defend in Southern France on a longer front.

The Russians are still coming.

Mihais
17 Jun 13,, 06:56
think it would depend on how badly overlord failed.

if it was close, then the allies continue pushing in italy and elsewhere, and try again with a buffed up operation dragoon, is my guess.

if it wasn't, then just the first...and then Hitler gets to have the first few atomic bombs go his way.

mihais,



even without an allied success at normandy, the germans still need to commit resources to having stopped the attack. plus, hitler's paranoia would almost definitely mean that even after a normandy failure, he'd put more troops in the west to forestall another invasion. obviously it wouldn't be as much as what happened with a successful landing, but it wouldn't be insignificant, either.

operation bagration and the lvov–sandomierz offensive still results in a stunning soviet success. you're right that the next soviet offensives would hit a better-resourced Wehrmacht (no Falaise pocket), but what's the difference? by august 1944, when the freed up western front units could be transferred over, the russians are already at the gates of warsaw.

i can't see the germans being able to throw together more than 350,000-450,000 men to reinforce the eastern front by fall 1944 (roughly what they lost in normandy). i don't think that's sufficient to stop the russians. moreover with no race to berlin, stalin wouldn't have a geopolitical incentive to insist on berlin at all costs.

The German losses due to Allied landing far extend their losses on the Western Front.Romania switching sides is due to Western presence in Europe and the (misguided) belief they were going to keep the Soviets at bay,somehow.That means the loss of AG South Ukraine,the defensive positions in the Carpathians,the oilfields at Ploiesti,the Balkans,Hungary.The indirect losses caused by the Allied landing far outreached what was caused in Normandy.

The Red Army was defeated in the first Iasi-Chisinau operation and with some mobile reserves can be beaten again.The Vistula -Oder offensive will face thrice the forces it historically faced,with increased depth and operational reserves.It's outcome is uncertain in such circumstances.

Doktor
17 Jun 13,, 08:36
Mihais,

Would the allies just quit strategic bombing?

Besides, who holds more in reserve, Soviets or Axis?

bigross86
17 Jun 13,, 09:20
I was actually planning on asking this a coupla months ago and forgot all about it.

Couldn't the allies just redirect to Italy and work from there? Would it be possible to take the British and US troops out of Africa and launch them into Italy to begin a much stronger push from there, and then maybe try Normandy in a year or so, once the Germans were more depleted by the simultaneous Russian push from the East and the US/British push from the South?

Doktor
17 Jun 13,, 09:36
Ben,

The way I see it, there is the terrain which is very favorable for the defenders (Germany) and the thing that once Allies reach the North of Italy they'd face opposition from North West and East.

Bleh, it's only me ;)

PS. I forgot to mention it, but the allies were massing in UK since 1942.

bigross86
17 Jun 13,, 10:29
The Allies were also surrounded on all three sides in Normandy, didn't seem to stop them.

Seems to be that an inland run from Italy in any direction might be something tailor-made for Patton. If Patton were to break through from Italy all the way to Normandy, ~2,000 km in a quick run, clean out Normandy from behind and the Italy and Normandy groups could link up in a month or so. Following the link up, Hitler now has a massive US-British-Canadian line to deal with on his west flank, a massive Russian line on his right flank, and whatever is left in Sicily to hold the line and act as a base, until Hitler's forces are weakened enough for them to push north as well. One of the benefits to this is that Switzerland stands as a partial buffer between Germany and Italy, giving the Allies some breathing room and security on their right flank.

Another option instead of the overland run all through Italy is to use Sicily as a staging area and invade into France from the Marseilles region, once again cleaning out Normandy from behind, allowing the landing and the linking up of the groups.

Doktor
17 Jun 13,, 10:35
Dude,

Look at the Calendar when Rome was taken ;)

Now, add up the time for logistics to mass up for your Patton run.

If I understand you correctly in both of your plans you risk to get outflanked.

Bigfella
17 Jun 13,, 12:55
The Allies were also surrounded on all three sides in Normandy, didn't seem to stop them.

Not by mountains. Italy sucked. It played to Germany's strengths due to the central mountain range & lots of lateral rivers. Made it very hard for the Allies to either stretch germa nlines via maneuver or 'breakout' once a defensive line was breached. Freeing up transports from Overlord might make flanking by sea easier, but those don't seem to have gone so well for most of the campaign. The point is that extra forces don't necessarily help as much as you might think.


Seems to be that an inland run from Italy in any direction might be something tailor-made for Patton. If Patton were to break through from Italy all the way to Normandy, ~2,000 km in a quick run, clean out Normandy from behind and the Italy and Normandy groups could link up in a month or so. Following the link up, Hitler now has a massive US-British-Canadian line to deal with on his west flank, a massive Russian line on his right flank, and whatever is left in Sicily to hold the line and act as a base, until Hitler's forces are weakened enough for them to push north as well. One of the benefits to this is that Switzerland stands as a partial buffer between Germany and Italy, giving the Allies some breathing room and security on their right flank.

1) Normandy is already gone.

2) if it is holding on then those troops are being pumped in to the pocket to hold it.

3) Even if you take the whole of Italy there is only a narrow coastal strip along which to move anything - very vulnerable.

4) Even if you do take all of Italy the obvious move is into Yugoslavia & Austria. Of course, you hit more mountains eventually, but it makes more sense logistically than basically driving all the way around the Alps clockwise.

5) The logistics are nightmarish & probably don't work - if he couldn't get enough fuel to do his thing in the relatively good supply environment of Nth France he sure isn't going to get it gong the long way around from Italy....which won't happen anyway because Italy isn't falling in a hurry.



Another option instead of the overland run all through Italy is to use Sicily as a staging area and invade into France from the Marseilles region, once again cleaning out Normandy from behind, allowing the landing and the linking up of the groups.

You must have missed the references Asty & I made to operation Dragoon. In OTL this took place in mid-August 1944. Extra forces & supplies designated for Normandy can be re-routed here. Check out my post for details on possible outcomes. If Normandy goes down this is where the major effort will fall.

astralis
17 Jun 13,, 14:12
yeah, as BF said, the allies weren't going to break out of the alps, not without some insane casualties. the fights that the US did have -close- to the area were bad enough, the gothic line offensive.

mihais,


The German losses due to Allied landing far extend their losses on the Western Front.Romania switching sides is due to Western presence in Europe and the (misguided) belief they were going to keep the Soviets at bay,somehow.That means the loss of AG South Ukraine,the defensive positions in the Carpathians,the oilfields at Ploiesti,the Balkans,Hungary.The indirect losses caused by the Allied landing far outreached what was caused in Normandy.

The Red Army was defeated in the first Iasi-Chisinau operation and with some mobile reserves can be beaten again.The Vistula -Oder offensive will face thrice the forces it historically faced,with increased depth and operational reserves.It's outcome is uncertain in such circumstances.

oh, i agree that the soviets will take more casualties.

however, recall that the Soviets threw ~1.5 million men into taking Berlin, and had what, another million+ in reserve. they threw another 1.6 million men at the japanese in Aug 1945, after the insane bloodletting of Berlin.

in the case of the vistula-oder offensive, even if the germans threw in 3x the troops (which i find quite unlikely; not as if the western Allies were going to be sitting around doing nothing), that means the Germans are outnumbered 2x instead of 6x. even assuming all went insanely well for the germans, a grinding April 1945 stalemate where the Soviets are sitting on Poznan and Danzig and Eastern Prussia (instead of Berlin) probably does not bode too well for them.

especially if the Allies decide that now's the time to try again for France, although my guess is that they'd already be there by then.

seems to me that a normandy victory buys Germany at most another 6 months, which in reality means they buy themselves a ticket on the nuke train. it would suck to be european, though, because that means another six months of getting worked over, and most likely a whole bunch more central/eastern europeans will get conscripted to Mother Russia and the proletarian cause.

Leor Rubin
19 Jun 13,, 06:26
Fortress Russia one side to the other.
T
otal number of Soviet and European German troops.

Date German forces Red Army forces
June 1941 3,767,000 (900,000 in the west) 2,680,000 (in theater) 5,500,000 (overall) (~700,000 in Far East[30])
June 1942 3,720,000 (80% in the East) 5,313,000 (~700,000 in Far East[30])
July 1943 3,933,000 (63% in the East) 6,724,000 (~700,000 in Far East[30])
June 1944 3,370,000 (62% in the East) 6,425,000 (~700,000 in Far East[30])
Jan. 1945 2,330,000 (60% in the East) 6,532,000 (Soviet build up in Far East accelerated greatly since February[30])
Apr 1945 1,960,000 6,410,000

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/96/Eastern_Front_1943-08_to_1944-12.png
^note position of the Russian advance as of 30th of April

My belief is that The Belorussian Offensive would have had to have started earlier but would still have been a success plus the Russians had the best General on their side Adolf Hitler.

D2theShizzle
12 Jul 13,, 00:08
I don't think Hitler would have offered France back to the Allies, and here's why: the simple reason that the U-Boat ports stood on the coast of the Bay of Biscay. Since the U-Boat fleet was one of the most essential parts of the German arsenal, it's doubtful that he would have done anything of the sort. If Overlord had indeed failed, the US could easily have ferried supplies over to Great Britain, paving the way for another and even more destructive assault on Normandy in 1945 or '46.

zraver
12 Jul 13,, 02:40
seems to me that a normandy victory buys Germany at most another 6 months, which in reality means they buy themselves a ticket on the nuke train.

I am not so sure that Germany was(/would/could???) be a viable nuke target for the early A-bomb designs. At least not until the B-36 or B-47 enters service. German air defenses even right up to the very end were much more effective than Japan. A solo bomber or 3 ship flight invites annihilation if tried against the Luftwaffe. The allies might be able to hit a border city once they were up to the German border, but anything deeper invites destruction. Plus if the allies are already up to the German border there is no need for a nuclear attack.

The B-29 flew high enough and fast enough to make intercepting it with Japanese or Russian aircraft a challenge. To the Luftwaffe with the Me-262, FW-190d and Ta-152 supported by robust radar, C3 and AAA assets a single ship or 3 ship formation wouldn't even break a sweat.

astralis
12 Jul 13,, 04:05
A solo bomber or 3 ship flight invites annihilation if tried against the Luftwaffe.

the luftwaffe was destroyed over the course of the Combined Bomber Offensive, which would have continued irrespective of Normandy's success or failure.

and if the Allies had a bomb they would have used it, regardless of whether or not allied troops were already close to the German border. recall during planning for Operation Downfall, the US considered using up to 7-15 (!!) nuclear bombs in a tactical (!!!) role.

zraver
12 Jul 13,, 06:00
the luftwaffe was destroyed over the course of the Combined Bomber Offensive, which would have continued irrespective of Normandy's success or failure.

and if the Allies had a bomb they would have used it, regardless of whether or not allied troops were already close to the German border. recall during planning for Operation Downfall, the US considered using up to 7-15 (!!) nuclear bombs in a tactical (!!!) role.

My point is the skies over Germany were never swept free of Luftwaffe fighters. The probable loss of the 3 ship flights that hit Japan would have likely happened if they were sent over Germany all the way to the end of the war. At least until the B-36 (high and fast) or B-47 (really fast) made it into operational status. Figure with war time compression of development time the B-36 could have been in squadron service by mid-late 1947. Before that, nuking Berlin is a bridge too far me thinks. That is why I said they might hit a border city like Aachen, but wouldn't need to. Well Patton would have loved to nuke Metz.