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Thread: Fall of France

  1. #196
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigfella View Post
    The Russians made a very serious mess of the Japanese at Khalkin Gol. That was a situation where the Japanese had considerably better fighters than the Russians and the heaviest Russian tanks were the T-26 & BT series. Even then the Japanese struggled to stop Russian tanks.
    Due in large part to a material and manpower disparity and the fact that it was initiated and escalated without direct authorization from the Japanese government. That said even with half the forces the Soviets fielded. The Japanese / Manchukuo army inflicted Soviet losses of

    27,880 casualties
    208 aircraft
    253 tanks destroyed
    133 armored cars destroyed

    as opposed to Japanese losses of

    17,000–20,000 casualties
    162 aircraft
    42 tanks destroyed or crippled
    Many tankettes destroyed
    72 artillery pieces


    Flash forward to 1941 or 1942. Russia has a new generation of aircraft and tanks, better artillery and extensive combat experience in Finland. Japanese aircraft will have improved, but their tanks are still inferior to what Russia had in 1939, let alone T-34s & KV-1s. And Japanese strength is spread all over Asia & the Pacific. Russia will be able to hold its own in the air at the very least, and on the ground it will cut through the Japanese like a hot knife through butter.
    General A. K. Kazakovtsev, was not confident in his army group's ability to stop an invasion if the Japanese committed to it (at least in 1941–1942), commenting: “If the Japanese enter the war on Hitler’s side… our cause is hopeless.”

    Worse, Russia will be taking some of the areas Japan relies on to supply the war - important industrialized areas in Manchuria. Japan will lose an entire army trying to hold Manchuria & eventually sue for peace before Russia takes the Korean peninsular & tears out the rest of the heart of its empire
    Assuming Japanese attention had not been directed toward S.E Asia I find that highly improbable. If Japan had coordinated with Germany in 41 The Soviets would have lost Siberia to the IJA

  2. #197
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toby View Post
    Due in large part to a material and manpower disparity and the fact that it was initiated and escalated without direct authorization from the Japanese government.
    The ususal, "Unless I am countermanded, I am going to initiate such and such action." The countermand never came even after 5 months of combat.

    Quote Originally Posted by Toby View Post
    as opposed to Japanese losses of

    17,000–20,000 casualties
    162 aircraft
    42 tanks destroyed or crippled
    Many tankettes destroyed
    72 artillery pieces
    That's the official Imperial Japanese record, the Soviets buried a lot more bodies than that. At least 30,000 were buried. Post war analysis of the Kwantung Army's return to Manchuria suggests that 60,000 men did not return to garrison.

    Quote Originally Posted by Toby View Post
    General A. K. Kazakovtsev, was not confident in his army group's ability to stop an invasion if the Japanese committed to it (at least in 1941–1942), commenting: “If the Japanese enter the war on Hitler’s side… our cause is hopeless.”

    Assuming Japanese attention had not been directed toward S.E Asia I find that highly improbable. If Japan had coordinated with Germany in 41 The Soviets would have lost Siberia to the IJA
    Start from this point and goes on for several pages. The short of it is, Japan was lucky she didn't attack north and the Germans were lucky the Japanese did not free up the USN by losing to the Soviets and the Chinese.

    http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/sho...=1#post1000470
    Last edited by WABs_OOE; 02 Jan 18, at 19:23.

  3. #198
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    Quote Originally Posted by zraver View Post
    Actually the med is not in the way. You could literally take 2 short ferry rides from Italy to North Africa. The Axis used this route to rapidly build up in Tunisia. The problem is Malta
    and also Mines and submarines and distances involved. Logistically getting those supplies to the front line as it moves further into Egypt must have been a nightmare for the axis

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigfella View Post
    The Russians would stop when they had what they wanted, and then beef up the KMT & Communists with equipment & advisors to make sure the Japanese were kept nice and busy.
    The butterflies would be a lot busier than that. Chiang held back because he was going to let the Americans win the war for him. He was just doing his part by tying down the Japanese while keeping the bulk of his forces in reserves to fight the Communists after WWII. With Stalin in the picture and tacking Manchuria and Korea and supposedly helping out the Communists, then it would become a race to see who would occupy the most ground before The Chinese Civil War round II.

    Most certainly, Stillwell would have been given free reign and by the off chance, Slim might even lead an expeditionary force into China, all to establish KMT dominance over as much of China as possible before a Stalin supported Mao marches down from the North.

    In either case, I would not envy the IJA.
    Last edited by WABs_OOE; 03 Jan 18, at 00:09.

  5. #200
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    Toby,
    I have had a few glasses of the brown liquor so my math could be off. However, even going by the Japanese estimates, the IJA lost. (Ya, Bigfella, you got me.)
    For the Russians, Manpower losses were 40%, aircraft losses 20%, tank losses about 46-51%.
    For the IJA, Infantry losses were 66-45%, airplane losses 40%, tank losses 57%.
    This is a favorable rate for the Russians to trade casualties. To defeat an enemy twice your size, your kill loss ratio must equal or exceed 1:2, or (borrowing an OOE expression) the enemy will be annihilating you faster than you can annihilate him.
    Last edited by Triple C; 02 Jan 18, at 20:51.
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  6. #201
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    In connection to Japanese opening a second front on Russia: contrary to earlier western history, the Russians actually maintained a pretty sizable force on the eastern border with Manchukuo during the entirety of the Stalingrad campaign. Most divisions sent west, iirc, were newly raised divisions, not the ones already guarding the borders. No idea how many troops and tanks that would be, but I don't think the IJA had enough stuff there to win.
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  7. #202
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    Stalin kept 45 Motorized Infantry Divisions in the Far East throughout the war. In comparison, there were 25 foot infantry divisions in the Japanese Kwantung Army and another 20 divisions spread throughout other armies in China.
    Last edited by WABs_OOE; 03 Jan 18, at 00:08.

  8. #203
    Senior Contributor Bigfella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toby View Post
    Due in large part to a material and manpower disparity and the fact that it was initiated and escalated without direct authorization from the Japanese government. That said even with half the forces the Soviets fielded. The Japanese / Manchukuo army inflicted Soviet losses of

    27,880 casualties
    208 aircraft
    253 tanks destroyed
    133 armored cars destroyed

    as opposed to Japanese losses of

    17,000–20,000 casualties
    162 aircraft
    42 tanks destroyed or crippled
    Many tankettes destroyed
    72 artillery pieces
    As the Colonel pointed out, Japanese losses were higher than that. Manchuria was a relative backwater for Russia in 1939 & its forces had little combat experience. Japanese forces had been fighting for years. By 1941 or 1942 Russian forces would have been more experienced and much better equipped. They would also have been fully restructured for offensive armored operations.

    Japanese ground forces would have improved minimally and might even be worse - by 1942 they were spread all over Asia.

    General A. K. Kazakovtsev, was not confident in his army group's ability to stop an invasion if the Japanese committed to it (at least in 1941–1942), commenting: “If the Japanese enter the war on Hitler’s side… our cause is hopeless.”
    Even assuming his assessment was correct, in this scenario Germany isn't involved in the war. Russia has control of all its agricultural and industrial areas undamaged and the populations of those areas as well. It also has full access to the outside world via the Baltic & Black Sea, rather than depending on a risky northern sea route an uncertain overland one via Iran, or, crucially, a vital sea route via Vladivostock (which Japan only briefly closed during 1941).

    The proposed situation here & the situation the General found himself in are not comparable.

    Assuming Japanese attention had not been directed toward S.E Asia I find that highly improbable. If Japan had coordinated with Germany in 41 The Soviets would have lost Siberia to the IJA
    Not the scenario being discussed here. This is Russia intact, at full strength & undistracted by war elsewhere deciding to attack Japan, which was deeply committed all over East Asia and militarily ill equipped to fight a land war against a nation with Russia's doctrines, officers or equipment.

    If it was a naval battle Japan would hand Russia its head on a plate, but this is a land war. Japan is going to get hammered


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  9. #204
    Senior Contributor Bigfella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zraver View Post
    Assuming a Soviet invasion before the IJA pulls half its total troop strength and most of its bes tunits out and still has a sizable airforce in the region. The Soviet Advance will be more expensive. Japanese AT weapons are OK against T-26's and BT series tanks. But more expensive doesn't mean stopped. The biggest Soviet hurdles will be logistics, it takes them a ew years to get it right and they still do set piece offensives of limited duration in 1945. The Soviets will be able to do the sort of dashes with breakthroughs of 60-100 miles every 30-60 days on a broad front. So it will be a series of body blows rather than a brutal body slam we saw in 45. The late war Red Army could do deep battle much more effectively. In part because the tanks had bigger ranges with on board fuel and a much better supply of LL trucks that were 4x4 drive.
    Some good points Z. It won't be 'August Storm' circa 1941/2, but it will be ugly.

    The Russians will be fielding T-34s & KV-1s, if its 1942 in decent numbers. The Japanese will need good luck or mechanical faults (which may be an issue) to stop them. Speed & logistics will be an issue for Russia, but trucks will be in plentiful supply. This is Russia with all its industry intact & not fighting for its life. It won't have to decide between tanks & trucks as it did in OTL. Russian trucks were decent enough. They will do the job.

    Obviously the Russians won't have the experience in 1942 that they had in 1945, so it won't be as quick. Can't imagine the overall result will change, however.


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  10. #205
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigfella View Post
    Some good points Z. It won't be 'August Storm' circa 1941/2, but it will be ugly.

    The Russians will be fielding T-34s & KV-1s, if its 1942 in decent numbers.
    Doubtful. Those need a lot more fuel than the BT's and T-26's. There is still only one semi seasonal route to the Soviet Far East. Given that the T-26 totally outclassed Japanese armor in 39 there is little need to upgrade. The T-26 and BT-5/7's 45mm guns could punch Japanese armor in excess of 1000m and shrug most Japanese return fire outside of 500m.

    The Japanese will need good luck or mechanical faults (which may be an issue) to stop them. Speed & logistics will be an issue for Russia, but trucks will be in plentiful supply. This is Russia with all its industry intact & not fighting for its life. It won't have to decide between tanks & trucks as it did in OTL. Russian trucks were decent enough. They will do the job.
    99% of Russian trucks prior to LL were 2x4 GAZ-AA (License built Ford-AA). The Soviets did not introduce a domestically produced 4x4 truck until 1938. The Soviet's relied on tractors and horses for pre-war cross country movement for the most part.

    Obviously the Russians won't have the experience in 1942 that they had in 1945, so it won't be as quick. Can't imagine the overall result will change, however.
    Here we agree 100%. The Soviet's had an absolute fetish for massed artillery fires. Most of the Soviet artillery in the East will be a mix of 76mm field guns and pre-war/WWI models of 122/152mm guns. A Soviet rifle division had 188 heavy mortars (82-120mm), 33 feild guns (76mm) and 12 heavy howitzers (122mm). Additionally each corps had 12 152mm guns. Your typical Soviet army would have over 1000, heavy mortars, a couple hundred feild guns, near a hundred heavy howitzers and a couple dozen 152mm guns. The Japanese equivalent B division(1 artillery regiment) had 36 field guns of 75mm. An A division (2 artillery regiments) had 32 75mm guns, 4 cannon of 100mm and 12 150mm howitzers but both formations were much lighter in mortars. Additionally, Japanese mortars often had a 50% missfire rate in wet climates due to poor packaging. Japanese tactics of massed infantry assaults is not a winning tactic against massed artillery and machine guns. Soviet Maxims would have done the same butchers work in 1942 that German Maxims did in 1916.

  11. #206
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    Quote Originally Posted by zraver View Post
    Japanese tactics of massed infantry assaults is not a winning tactic against massed artillery and machine guns. Soviet Maxims would have done the same butchers work in 1942 that German Maxims did in 1916.
    It would be far worst than that. In both 39 and 45, the IJA thought fighting the fixing force was the main focus, never figuring out that they were being fixed in place. They had thought they had won a victory when they beaten back the fixing force, only to learn that their reserves and HQ were destroyed by a pincer movement that they never saw. The battle was over once they engaged the fixing force.

    The Germans had that figured out by the time of Sealow Heights and lured the fixing force into a kill zone. Their fallback position was far enough that the Soviet pincer movement met the teeth of German guns.
    Last edited by WABs_OOE; 03 Jan 18, at 04:51.

  12. #207
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    Quote Originally Posted by zraver View Post
    Doubtful. Those need a lot more fuel than the BT's and T-26's. There is still only one semi seasonal route to the Soviet Far East. Given that the T-26 totally outclassed Japanese armor in 39 there is little need to upgrade. The T-26 and BT-5/7's 45mm guns could punch Japanese armor in excess of 1000m and shrug most Japanese return fire outside of 500m.
    Come on Z, its the Red Army. They are going to have thousands of T-34s & KV-1s sitting around. Sure, they won't want to strip the entire West of them, and sure, they won't use them on every axis of advance, but they aren't going to miss a golden opportunity to combat test their shiny new toys. Stalin & the Generals will still be thinking they might have to face Germany one day. No way they miss a chance to find out how these things run for real. Maybe they only kit out the divisions they can best supply, but it will happen.

    99% of Russian trucks prior to LL were 2x4 GAZ-AA (License built Ford-AA). The Soviets did not introduce a domestically produced 4x4 truck until 1938. The Soviet's relied on tractors and horses for pre-war cross country movement for the most part.
    This thing will be planned for. They will produce large numbers of trucks. Perhaps not as many 4x4 as in OTL, but they will be aware of terrain. I'm not suggesting this will go as smoothly as it would have with US trucks, but trucks there will be and in large numbers.

    Here we agree 100%. The Soviet's had an absolute fetish for massed artillery fires. Most of the Soviet artillery in the East will be a mix of 76mm field guns and pre-war/WWI models of 122/152mm guns. A Soviet rifle division had 188 heavy mortars (82-120mm), 33 feild guns (76mm) and 12 heavy howitzers (122mm). Additionally each corps had 12 152mm guns. Your typical Soviet army would have over 1000, heavy mortars, a couple hundred feild guns, near a hundred heavy howitzers and a couple dozen 152mm guns. The Japanese equivalent B division(1 artillery regiment) had 36 field guns of 75mm. An A division (2 artillery regiments) had 32 75mm guns, 4 cannon of 100mm and 12 150mm howitzers but both formations were much lighter in mortars. Additionally, Japanese mortars often had a 50% missfire rate in wet climates due to poor packaging. Japanese tactics of massed infantry assaults is not a winning tactic against massed artillery and machine guns. Soviet Maxims would have done the same butchers work in 1942 that German Maxims did in 1916.
    Japanese units are going to get stuck in place for artillery to pound while, as the Colonel says, the more mobile Red Army divisions go around. There would be some seriously nasty double envelopments. The Russians won't be moving as fast as the Germans in 41 or themselves in 44-45 OTL, but the Japanese won't be moving much at all. The first month could be very, very unpleasant.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigfella View Post
    Come on Z, its the Red Army. They are going to have thousands of T-34s & KV-1s sitting around. Sure, they won't want to strip the entire West of them, and sure, they won't use them on every axis of advance, but they aren't going to miss a golden opportunity to combat test their shiny new toys. Stalin & the Generals will still be thinking they might have to face Germany one day. No way they miss a chance to find out how these things run for real. Maybe they only kit out the divisions they can best supply, but it will happen.
    I can see some KV-2's for the breakthrough role, and a few T-34's in the armored formations but the main upgrade will be the T-50. It took actual combat to birth the idea of a battle tank. With no Barbarossa the original Soviet plan to replace T-26's with T-50's will go forward. In real hisyory the T-50 had a short production run. Give it another year and several dozen to a few hundred more will be made. If the main effort is going East not West these will be sent there. They need less fuel and have some advantages when operating at the far end of a thin ribbon of rail line.

    This thing will be planned for. They will produce large numbers of trucks. Perhaps not as many 4x4 as in OTL, but they will be aware of terrain. I'm not suggesting this will go as smoothly as it would have with US trucks, but trucks there will be and in large numbers.
    Slight correction to my earlier post, it was the Gas-AA and Zis-5 that made up 90% of the Soviet truck fleet. Both were similar sized light trucks. Pre-war Soviet non-armored vehicle construction including trucks, staff cars etc was 272,000. A year long delay in combat won't see massive numbers of 4x4 trucks appear. Soviet operations will be centered on rail lines and rivers.

    Japanese units are going to get stuck in place for artillery to pound while, as the Colonel says, the more mobile Red Army divisions go around. There would be some seriously nasty double envelopments. The Russians won't be moving as fast as the Germans in 41 or themselves in 44-45 OTL, but the Japanese won't be moving much at all. The first month could be very, very unpleasant.
    Only at first I think. Once the Soviets realize the Japanese don't surrender and have to be blasted out a lot of set piece pieces battles will need to be fought. With an advance dependent on rail lines you can't leave the enemy sitting across the tracks. It won't save the Japanese, but it will make it bloodier and slower. I think it will also burn through Soviet ammunition stocks faster than they think it will. Logistics and meat grinder battles will make or break Soviet combat reputations here as they did in real history in the West.

  14. #209
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    Quote Originally Posted by zraver View Post
    Only at first I think. Once the Soviets realize the Japanese don't surrender and have to be blasted out a lot of set piece pieces battles will need to be fought.
    I don't think so. In fact, I think it would be an AUGUST STORM. The Japanese take away from 1939 was that their troops were not brave enough nor determine enough to win the battle. In the IJA's opinion, more determined banzai charges would have carried the day although I can't see how more determined can you get when 60,000 men didn't return to garrison.

    My point here is that the IJA would offer the exact battle the Soviets wanted. Refusal to retreat and determined to charge straight into machine gun and artillery fire.

    In 1945 at least, the lack of manpower forced the Japanese to adapt fall back positions. There's no such incentives here and I would not be surprised if the Japanese would not have tried a pre-emptive invasion of Siberia again.

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    Quote Originally Posted by WABs_OOE View Post
    I don't think so. In fact, I think it would be an AUGUST STORM. The Japanese take away from 1939 was that their troops were not brave enough nor determine enough to win the battle. In the IJA's opinion, more determined banzai charges would have carried the day although I can't see how more determined can you get when 60,000 men didn't return to garrison.
    That 60,000 is a Soviet source, So let me get this right. We don't believe the Japanese source but we do believe the Soviet source...we believe Stalin's soviet union???
    charge straight into machine gun and artillery fire.
    Are we talking about Red army or IJA tactics?....coz if the figures are correct

    8,668,000 to 11,400,000 (old border) Soviet troops were killed as against

    2,100,000 to 2,300,000 Japanese troops in WW2

    Which doesn't look good for Soviet training or tactics ...looks quite murderous actually and does kind of fit nicely into the western image of the Red army.

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