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Most Decisive Battle ......

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Whats the most decisive battle of WWII. For me it is the Eastern Front. Stalingrad or I think , more probably the 3 day Battle of Kursk....

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what about Hitlers orders to stop the Panzers advance to Dunkirk. What would have happened if the BEF had been destroyed and no nation could stand alone to Germany ?

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I wouldn't call it a decisive battle. Even if he had destroyed the BEF , he still would have had to cross the channel and, of course, destroy the RAF. jumping

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Two battles or operations:
1. Stalingrad, without which there would have not been Kursk, however if the germans had pulled off Kursk it would have delayed the soviets possibly 6-8 months, crucil time for the Eastern Front.
2. Falaise-Argentan pocket. This destroyed some of the very best german units, after this is was just a tough run to the reich, but unstopable. :ph34r:

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Horrible battle but was it decisive? Kept the Allies from a fast advance through Italy and indeed the Germans were still in good defensive positions at the end of the War. Superb defence by Kesselring.

What about D Day largest sea bourne invasion and on securing the beachead gave Germany no chance of winning the war.
What could have happened if the invasion was thrown back into the sea?
Germany fight USSR to a standstill and a peace that could of restored the Third Reich's borders to 1941 ?
A possibility or fantasy. Discuss! :D

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I don't think the D-Day landings would have entirely been repulsed. They may have lost a beach or two, which would have given a longer timescale. Also, Allied Naval gunfire was enormous, and as if that wasn't enough, we had total air superiority. Even if Hitler had brought up Tank Divisions, they would have been broken up by the Typhoon , Tempest etc ground attack that proved so destructable at that time.
As for the Russians, they already had the Axis forces in retreat, and had done for some time, so that would be probably an unlikely outcome.

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Economy, Supply & Logistics

Gentlemen,

I assume, that the decisive battle in WW II had been at the "front" of economy, supply and logistics :D .

In those fields the economies of the Soviet Union and also of the USA had been absolutly superior to the economic chaos of the Nazi-Germany.

In terms of "military" battles, Bagration, the destruction of "Heeresgruppe Mitte" in summer 1944 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Bagration , had been THE decisive battle of WW II.

Best regards :beer:

Christian

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In so far as battles go, Kursk did take the initiative away from the Germans in a strategic sense, but they still maintained a cohesive front.

To me the "most" decisive battle had to be the collapse of Army Group Center in the summer of 1944. To quote 3 German officers who became Generals in the Bundeswehr, which "greatly accelerated the collapse of the German state" (Niepold), "an indication that we could no longer win the war" (General von Plato), "The beginning of the end" (von Kielmannnsegg). 50 years later, a full length study of the defeat of Army group Center shows that a disaster greater even than the Allied invasion of France was inflicted upon the Germans many miles to the East.

Edited by Laurence Strong

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Probably one of the most decisive battles was that for the Atlantic.

Imaging, if the Enigma machine had not been captured, Britain would have starved!

Rich

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To me the "most" decisive battle had to be the collapse of Army Group Center in the summer of 1944. To quote 3 German officers who became Generals in the Bundeswehr, which "greatly accelerated the collapse of the German state" (Niepold), "an indication that we could no longer win the war" (General von Plato), "The beginning of the end" (von Kielmannnsegg). 50 years later, a full length study of the defeat of Army group Center shows that a disaster greater even than the Allied invasion of France was inflicted upon the Germans many miles to the East.

Dear Laurence,

as I pointed out, operation Bagration smashed the Wehrmacht in summer 1944 and it has been one of the most brilliant military operations in history.

That's true, the German losses caused by the Allied Invasion had been nothing in comparison to that epic desaster at the Eastern Front.

There is a small, but comprehensive, book about Bagration at OSPREY: http://www.ospreypublishing.com/title_detail.php/title=P4784

Best regards :beer:

Christian

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Probably one of the most decisive battles was that for the Atlantic.

Imaging, if the Enigma machine had not been captured, Britain would have starved!

Rich

Dear Rich,

ENIGMA is a good point :D . I guess, that Polish scientists in England solved that problem :unsure: .

I think, that the German Submarine Force had been too weak and too easy detectable to cause real harm to the supply of the British Isles. Imagine: The Germans lost more than 3/4 of their submariners - more than 30.000 KIAs :speechless1: .

Best regards :beer:

Christian

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I think, that the German Submarine Force had been too weak and too easy detectable to cause real harm to the supply of the British Isles. Imagine: The Germans lost more than 3/4 of their submariners - more than 30.000 KIAs :speechless1: .

Surely that was a result of the Enigma? The allies intercepted U-boat messages and knew where the wolf packs were going to be. Of course, that is only one part of story as they then had to actually detect and sink them after that but it did give the allies the upper hand IMO.

Had the wolf-packs been more successful I'm sure that would have had a major impact on the war. Perhaps the end result would ultimately have been the same but it might have added many more years.

Rich

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to paraphrase winnie:

...not the beginning of the end,

but the end of the beginning....

IMHO, Stalingrad was the battle

during/afterwhich there was no

doubt as to the outcome of the

1000 year reich.

joe

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Surely that was a result of the Enigma? The allies intercepted U-boat messages and knew where the wolf packs were going to be. Of course, that is only one part of story as they then had to actually detect and sink them after that but it did give the allies the upper hand IMO.

Had the wolf-packs been more successful I'm sure that would have had a major impact on the war. Perhaps the end result would ultimately have been the same but it might have added many more years.

Rich

Dear Rich,

yes, Enigma + radar :D .

But there had been far too less of these wolf-packs for getting a major impact to the Allied supply lines, I guess.

Despite their mess and chaos in economy (and also research), they Germans in WW II had been superiour in the design at 3 fields:

- Jet fighters

- Missiles: A 4 (= V 2)

- Submarines

Well, "design" ;) . The Soviets launched the (German designed) MiG-15, US & CCCP used the German ballistic missiles and also their advanced designs of submarines.

The fact had been, that the German had far too less jet fighters, advanced submarines and no missiles with a nuclear warheads.

They lost their war ... :rolleyes:

Best regards :beer:

Christian

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to paraphrase winnie:

...not the beginning of the end,

but the end of the beginning....

IMHO, Stalingrad was the battle

during/afterwhich there was no

doubt as to the outcome of the

1000 year reich.

joe

Dear Joe,

you are right from the "propaganda-effect" :cheers: .

But the historic fact is, that the sacrifice of the 6th Army had been very useful, to rescue all the German Armies in the southern part of Russia - and Feldmarschall von Manstein managed that urgent task.

Kursk summer 1943 had been the "turning of the tide", but Bagration in summer 1944 had been the bitter end of the German "Wehrmacht" at the eastern front.

Best regards :beer:

Christian

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But the historic fact is, that the sacrifice of the 6th Army had been very useful, to rescue all the German Armies in the southern part of Russia - and Feldmarschall von Manstein managed that urgent task.

Kursk summer 1943 had been the "turning of the tide", but Bagration in summer 1944 had been the bitter end of the German "Wehrmacht" at the eastern front.

what a sacrifice....

there is an EXCELLENT article in the "New Yorker" magazine from late

1992(50th anniversary of Stalingrad) about the misery the Sixth Army

faced, the continous unearthing of skeletal remains, and the perseptions

of the German people regarding Stalingrad.

well worth the read.

the "cauldron", the kessel, is aptly named.

your perspective is a stark statement on the value of human life.

joe

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Guest Darrell

I would turn back the clock even further to an Operation. It's really hard to determine how long it would have been before Russia and Germany went to war regardless, Operation Barbarossa was the biggest single miscalculation in Military History. While not a "battle", it led to many decisive ones fought for naught on the Eastern Front.

If I were to pick a "Decisive" battle, I'd throw my hat into Stalingrad.

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Hi Christian

I missed that . Sorry, another good book on that is "Hitler's Greatest Deafet" by Paul Adair ISBN 1-86019841-4

Dear Laurence,

that book is mentioned in the OSPREY-publication, but I don't have it in my bookshelf :( .

David Glantz wrote also something about Bagration.

I have two, rather recently published books, about Bagration telling the perspective from the German side of the front, but they are both in German language.

BTW: I have the honour to have Sergeant Gnitienko's full cavalier "Glory-Trio" in my collection. Gnitienko got his Glory 1cl during the operation Bagration for herioc deeds in Jeglava (Latvia): http://gmic.co.uk/index.php?showtopic=5536 .

Best regards :beer:

Christian

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But the historic fact is, that the sacrifice of the 6th Army had been very useful, to rescue all the German Armies in the southern part of Russia - and Feldmarschall von Manstein managed that urgent task.

Kursk summer 1943 had been the "turning of the tide", but Bagration in summer 1944 had been the bitter end of the German "Wehrmacht" at the eastern front.

what a sacrifice....

there is an EXCELLENT article in the "New Yorker" magazine from late

1992(50th anniversary of Stalingrad) about the misery the Sixth Army

faced, the continous unearthing of skeletal remains, and the perseptions

of the German people regarding Stalingrad.

well worth the read.

the "cauldron", the kessel, is aptly named.

your perspective is a stark statement on the value of human life.

joe

Dear Joe,

do you have a link to the Stalingrad-story at the New Yorker :unsure: ?

Well, it is not my perspective and my stark statement (I am neither von Manstein, nor Hitler ;) ), but it is the sad historic reality.

Best regards :beer:

Christian

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I would turn back the clock even further to an Operation. It's really hard to determine how long it would have been before Russia and Germany went to war regardless, Operation Barbarossa was the biggest single miscalculation in Military History. While not a "battle", it led to many decisive ones fought for naught on the Eastern Front.

If I were to pick a "Decisive" battle, I'd throw my hat into Stalingrad.

Dear Darrell,

that's true: The planning of Barbarossa had been a desastrous miscalculation :jumping: .

The Germans knew nothing about the superiour T-34 or the KV-1 & KV-2 tanks. I have an original and top-secret German handbook for commanding officers from summer 1941 in my collection, which shows ALL the weapon systems of the CCCP - but NO T-34 and NO KV-1 or KV-2 .... :rolleyes:

Supply & logistics had been a desaster during Barbarossa for the Germans :speechless: .

Coming back to the topic "most decisive battle": Stalingrad was "peanuts" in comparison to Bagration ;) .

Best regards :beer:

Christian

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Some of the most decisive battles took place in the Middle East to secure the Oil fields for Britain.

For example in Habbaniya,, Iraq in 1941. Had the pro- German Iraqis not been defeated the oil field could have been piped to Germany through Turkey, this is now speculative but this may have mean that Nazi expansion into Russia was no longer as important and the Western fron would have been bolstered.

Most people opt for the most famous battles of the time, these are famous due to the propaganda of the day. There are plenty of important battles to be discovered accross the globe where thousands of soldiers lie forgotten and buried whilst, sadly, most people still think that WW2 was won at Kursk and Normandy.

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I'm not sure the Iraqis of the uprising were "pro-German". They were, rather, nationalists, trying to throw foreign occupiers out of their country. They may have, perhaps inevitably, fallen into the trap that "the enemy of my enemy is my friend".

There are many parallels to the present day.

It is always good to read unbiased and carefully researched histories by those who know the relevant langauges.

Not sure WWII (just in Europe) wasn't "won" at Kursk (or Bagration or Stalingrad). Normandy was, at best, a footnote.

WWII was, arguably, "caused" at Jarama Valley and/or Madrid.

Edited by Ed_Haynes

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WWII was, arguably, "caused" at Jarama Valley and/or Madrid.

Absolutly correct, Ed :cheers: .

WWII (in Europe) started in Spain :jumping: .

At least the operation "Bagration" had been the true "Endl?sung" for the Nazi-Wehrmacht ;) .

Best regards :beer:

Christian

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