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Thread: WWII what-ifs

  1. #676
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    Have you even read about Italian military performances during the war? Mussolini was no Hitler. The Italians barely won against the Ethiopians. The Germans had to rescue the Italians from the Brits and the Greeks.

    Mussolini's Italy was nothing like Hitler's Germany.
    Chimo

  2. #677
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    This is a "what if" subforum and a ww2 "what if" thread. Hence the "what if" question.

  3. #678
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    Sure. What if the Martians sided with Hitler?

    There has to be some sort of factual basis for this thread to work and those facts are the Germans have to be Germans, the Americans have to be Americans, the British have to be British, the Japanese have to be Japanese. What's more, Hitler has to be Hitler, Stalin has to be Stalin, Tojo has to be Tojo, Churchill has to be Churchill, FDR has to be FDR ... and the Italians have to be Italians and Mussolini has to be Mussolini.

    Otherwise, you can have Gandalf in command of the Deathstar in this thread.
    Chimo

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    I failed to see that notice. If it exists somewhere, i am sorry for asking something against the rules. Usually what if ww2 scenarios are interesting precisely because they tests the balance of power to the point it changes sides. If only miniscule changes are allowed then absolutely every what if scenario ends with: Allies win eventually because of nukes and economy. Where's fun in that?

  5. #680
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redbluesky View Post
    I failed to see that notice. If it exists somewhere, i am sorry for asking something against the rules.
    It's not a rule but you've got to set boundaries somewhere or as I said, we could insert Gandalf in command of the Deathstar.

    Quote Originally Posted by Redbluesky View Post
    Usually what if ww2 scenarios are interesting precisely because they tests the balance of power to the point it changes sides. If only miniscule changes are allowed then absolutely every what if scenario ends with: Allies win eventually because of nukes and economy. Where's fun in that?
    You're in a forum of combat vets. We're more interested in how the given what you've got, how could you achieve victory.

    In your example, Italian combat performances was subpar during the war. It makes no sense to give them SS-Waffle performance levels half way through the war.
    Last edited by Officer of Engineers; 02 Aug 16, at 16:24.
    Chimo

  6. #681
    Senior Contributor Doktor's Avatar
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    But...

    To be fair, you can always kill Mussolini, swap his generals (what generals?), go back to 1920something and make a twist.
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

  7. #682
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redbluesky View Post
    What if Italy and italian populace was just as dedicated to the cause as germany and just as obediant to their leader as germany? furthermore, what if Italy was as technologically advanced as germany, and as industrialized as germany.

    Finally, as addition to all that, what if a canal network from mediterranean to north sea was worked on for years and completed by 1939, connecting those two, allowing for passage of small destroyers and most submarines.
    Italy's problem, like that of Japan and France was she was ahead of the game... too far ahead. Armies live and die by modernization cycles. Italy embarked on a major re-armament in the early 30's. This spent her bolt so even armed with the lessons of the Spanish Civil war, she lacked the finances needed to adopt them. The UK, USSR and Germany came to the dance late and started re-arming in the late 30's. Germany was able to use the same Spanish Civil War to decided what it needed to invest in. This might not seem like much but in many cases its an entire technological generation. Had WWII started in 1936, Italy would have looked much better in equipment comparisons. Instead she took a 1935 army into a 1940 war and that single 5 year gap made a huge difference.

  8. #683
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    in this context, though, the people matter more than the tech. the Italian army was led by buffoons-- they had trouble beating the likes of Ethiopia and Greece.
    There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

  9. #684
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    A few thought/observations of my own.

    Italy, like Japan had some key technical and geographic weaknesses to overcome. For example it's air force (like Japan) stressed the importance of maneuverability over speed, armament and protection and like Japan pilot training emphasized the importance of dog fighting over all else. Which becomes a key issue when your enemies refuse to dog fight.

    Their navy had good modern designs but was crippled by ready access to reliable fuel supplies (again like Japan - later in the war at least) and early on when it mattered no radar, technology the Allies forces rushed to deploy asap. Their army had excellent, professional artillery units which by all accounts gave a good account of themselves in North Africa but their armor designs/units (again like the Japanese) were geared for infantry support and fighting colonial wars against enemies with little or no armor of their own. Not against Western powers fielding their own tank forces.

    As for the infantry - it was largely conscript based and poorly lead. Its soldiers would no doubt have achieved much better results historically if this last issue had been addressed by proper training and organizational changes during the prewar years but Mussolini's regime was more interested in political reliability than it was in military competence.

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    What if Poland joined Axis and fought off Russians on the eastern front? Or - would Hitler still launch an invasion on Moscow?

    One of possible scenarios I found on it:

  11. #686
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    Quote Originally Posted by Monash View Post
    A few thought/observations of my own.

    Italy, like Japan had some key technical and geographic weaknesses to overcome. For example it's air force (like Japan) stressed the importance of maneuverability over speed, armament and protection and like Japan pilot training emphasized the importance of dog fighting over all else. Which becomes a key issue when your enemies refuse to dog fight.

    Their navy had good modern designs but was crippled by ready access to reliable fuel supplies (again like Japan - later in the war at least) and early on when it mattered no radar, technology the Allies forces rushed to deploy asap. Their army had excellent, professional artillery units which by all accounts gave a good account of themselves in North Africa but their armor designs/units (again like the Japanese) were geared for infantry support and fighting colonial wars against enemies with little or no armor of their own. Not against Western powers fielding their own tank forces.

    As for the infantry - it was largely conscript based and poorly lead. Its soldiers would no doubt have achieved much better results historically if this last issue had been addressed by proper training and organizational changes during the prewar years but Mussolini's regime was more interested in political reliability than it was in military competence.
    Part of Italy's problem was she lead the pack in modernization... in the early 30's. When war rolled around later, she had slipped to the back of the pack.

  12. #687
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunnut View Post
    There was really not much Germany could do after the invasion of France. The die was cast. Germany was at war with the British Empire, and soon to be with USSR. There was to be no peace with USSR. Everyone knew that.

    Germany would lose simply because it couldn't physically conquer UK. There was no way. Germany's logistics was abysmal. UK would remain in the war for as long as the Royal Navy existed. Conquering the middle east, assuming getting by/through Turkey, served no purpose. Germany would have problem supplying the army group going to the middle east and then Egypt. UK still had Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and India.

    If Germany concentrated on the British, then the Red Army got stronger with each passing day. Deep Operation wasn't just a battlefield tactic, it was the core of the Red Army and Soviet Union. The Red Army not only would be the largest army on the field, it would be the largest fastest.

    Germany probably could have fought either the British Empire or the Soviet Union to a stand still, or even coming out on up with a favorable peace treaty. Not against both. Germany didn't have the industrial base nor the population size to occupy all the lands it conquered.
    A belated congratulations to gunnut. This is WAB's 1 millionth post.

  13. #688
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ironduke View Post
    A belated congratulations to gunnut. This is WAB's 1 millionth post.
    damn, congrats!

  14. #689
    Official Thread Jacker Senior Contributor gunnut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ironduke View Post
    A belated congratulations to gunnut. This is WAB's 1 millionth post.
    Wow seriously? That's pretty awesome, and a serious post too, not one of my hijacking posts.

    "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

  15. #690
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    I remember reading about a scenario in which the Red Army didn't stop at Berlin, but continued to march west.

    I probably have asked this before but what would have happened?

    Red Army attacking the western allies in Germany in 1945. Western armies were not German forces Red Army was used to fight. Western armies would be well supplied and had firepower an order of magnitude greater than German army. US artillery may not be big but they show up fast and accurate. US tanks weren't the beasts like Tigers but there were thousands more and they didn't break down trying to make a right turn. USAAF ruled the skies and fielded thousands of advanced fighters piloted by experienced flyers operating in teams. West's bomber force was something the Red Army had never seen before.

    Western allies defending against the Red Army would face a humongous artillery barrage followed by waves of large and capable tanks plus hordes of infantry. The individual training might not be as good as German soldiers but the continued pounding at the same point on the line would break it.

    There would be an initial shock, followed by confusion, and then retreat west. How far would the Red Army get? Could the western allies form a cohesive defensive line before they get pushed into the ocean? Would this line be in France? Germany? Rhine?

    I see the biggest problem for the Red Army would be that they could not mass forces to prepare a major offensive like they did against the Germans. Any troop concentration would invite thousands of bombers. They would not be able to move anything in daylight. Supply depots would be identified and bombed. The supply line into central Europe would be juicy targets. Soviet fighters would be ineffective after they use up high octane avgas from the Americans. Once the Soviet fighter force is gone, the ground forces would be open game for allied air power. But would that be in time before the Red Army pushed the Anglo-American army into the Atlantic?

    What would happen to Japan without August Storm?

    This scenario just popped into my head when I was taking a shower after my hockey game. I do a lot of thinking in the shower. Probably because the hot water is very relaxing.
    "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

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