Could the Germans have won WW2?

Been wondering if there was any major issue that they could have changed, leading them to win the last War?

I'd suggest a few possibilities.

1. Keeping out of Russia.
A two front war with such a gargantuan enemy would stretch anyone, let alone an army who had been told they'd not be needing or getting winter kit.

2. Better radio discipline
One issue that helped the Allies break ENIGMA / TUNNY etc was lax net discipline - loyal Nazis signing off "HH" gave the teeniest of windows, which helped BH crack the codes ( one of many factors). No ULTRA, and the Allies would have had a much harder time defeating them.

3. More effort into the Battle of the Atlantic.
Particularly when combined with the above. Churchill said "The only thing that ever really frightened me during the war was the U-boat peril. " Could Doenitz have done anything better? If the Uk had been starved into submission, there would have been no need for Sealion and the US would not have its unsinkable aircraft carrier from which to land close to occupied Europe.

4. Put the economy on a total war footing.
Something we did early on, and AIUI the Germans did too little, too late.

5. Realising that perfect is the enemy of good enough.
Not developing supposed wonder weapons such as the King Tiger, with all the resource that tied up - get a good enough weapon, don't strive for the perfect one. A corollary of attitude this would see, for example, the Me 262 come into service as an exceptional fighter, not a delayed, flawed fighter bomber ( thanks for that, Corporal H).

Any others?
 
Not gassing, shooting or starving large portions of their human resources.
 

Yokel

LE
Interesting thread. Hitler expected Britain to sue for peace after France fell, and part of the reason for attacking Russia was to prevent them from entering the war on our side.

Your mention of radio discipline and the Battle of the Atlantic is also interesting. The U-boats' Wolfpack tactics depended on boats using HF radio to communicate with their headquarters.
 
The only way they could have won was if project fear had succeeded and Halifax had managed to push through the surrender bill:cool:
 

Yokel

LE
Not declaring War on America might have helped their cause....
Yes, but not as much as some might think. Lend Lease was in full swing, the US Navy was escorting convoys half way across the Atlantic, and engagements between the USN and the Germans had already occurred - all before Pearl Harbour.
 
Yes, but not as much as some might think. Lend Lease was in full swing, the US Navy was escorting convoys half way across the Atlantic, and engagements between the USN and the Germans had already occurred - all before Pearl Harbour.
Yes they did, but killing U-Boat's is not a precursor to preparing for an invasion of Europe. The Germans just green lighted the US to throw it's economic might against Germany, whilst they were a bit busy on the Ost Front. The Russians might have killed more Germans, but we the Allies also tied up much of their military capacity on multiple fronts that would have been better used to contain the Soviet Horde.
 

diverman

LE
Book Reviewer
A two front war with such a gargantuan enemy would stretch anyone, let alone an army who had been told they'd not be needing or getting winter kit.
By the time of Barbarosa, he was heading into a five front war, the Atlantic, Russia, Africa Balkans and the Air plus tying down resources pacifing areas of conquest. The amount of resources used in terms of infrastructure and transport in deportations and murder where amazingly large. The other one was using multiple arms programmes instead of concentrating on a few tried and trusted systems.

A lack of raw material resources by 1942 was starting to have an effect in particular oil and metals like tungstun.
 
No.

Regards,
MM
 

DTBA

Old-Salt
No, if it was to be a "World War". Fighting three superpowers at once isn't going to end well.

However, keeping things reined in and limited and they might have had more success.
 

OneTenner

Old-Salt
I find this is quite a good website for WWII resources from the German perspective - it can be critical of both sides where there is shown (with hindsight) to be a flaw in the planning or execution of campaigns, battles or command structure.
For example:-
German Weaknesses

Although the Luftwaffe eventually allocated more resources to the coming campaign than the RAF did during the Battle of Britain in 1940, it failed to commit these resources at a time when the Allied air offensive might have been checked. The Luftwaffe’s key mistakes in leadership, production and training decisions that eventually cost it the campaign were made in 1940–1942. The German leadership failed to develop a coherent air strategy for a long war.

There are some sections of the website that are less neutral in opinion than others, overall, it's a resource that I find facinating to dip in & out of from time to time.

The above snippet does remind me of a couple of German signallers reaction after watching 'Battle of Britain', predictably on BoB day - 'Good film, sad ending!'
 
By the time of Barbarosa, he was heading into a five front war, the Atlantic, Russia, Africa Balkans and the Air plus tying down resources pacifing areas of conquest. The amount of resources used in terms of infrastructure and transport in deportations and murder where amazingly large. The other one was using multiple arms programmes instead of concentrating on a few tried and trusted systems.

A lack of raw material resources by 1942 was starting to have an effect in particular oil and metals like tungstun.
Victory Disease and over extending your abilities. Had the Germans just maintained an unfriendly peace with Russia, an invasion of mainland Europe would not have been possible. But since they decided to have a go at the Ivan's keeping them (the Soviets) in the war was vital to essentially be bullet sponges and absorb ordinance and tie down the majority of the German military. Cynical but practical.
 
Been wondering if there was any major issue that they could have changed, leading them to win the last War?

I'd suggest a few possibilities.

1. Keeping out of Russia.
A two front war with such a gargantuan enemy would stretch anyone, let alone an army who had been told they'd not be needing or getting winter kit.

2. Better radio discipline
One issue that helped the Allies break ENIGMA / TUNNY etc was lax net discipline - loyal Nazis signing off "HH" gave the teeniest of windows, which helped BH crack the codes ( one of many factors). No ULTRA, and the Allies would have had a much harder time defeating them.

3. More effort into the Battle of the Atlantic.
Particularly when combined with the above. Churchill said "The only thing that ever really frightened me during the war was the U-boat peril. " Could Doenitz have done anything better? If the Uk had been starved into submission, there would have been no need for Sealion and the US would not have its unsinkable aircraft carrier from which to land close to occupied Europe.

4. Put the economy on a total war footing.
Something we did early on, and AIUI the Germans did too little, too late.

5. Realising that perfect is the enemy of good enough.
Not developing supposed wonder weapons such as the King Tiger, with all the resource that tied up - get a good enough weapon, don't strive for the perfect one. A corollary of attitude this would see, for example, the Me 262 come into service as an exceptional fighter, not a delayed, flawed fighter bomber ( thanks for that, Corporal H).

Any others?
Personally speaking, they might have, if not for:
- Their allies, the Japanese bombing Pearl Harbor and dragging the U.S. into the war
- The Brits gettting access to the enigma, and more vitally inventing RADAR.
- Them being drawn on two fronts, as everyone here agrees too
- The sheer scale and manufacturing capabilities of the U.S - even if they entered the war a tad later.
- The volunteering from other nationalities who wanted to fight against the whole thing
- Sheer lack of long term resources.

Etc...etc...etc.....

-
 

Yokel

LE
I saw a TV programme the other week which made the point that converting all of their industry to war production early on caused the Nazis problems later in the war when they needed to import metals and other raw materials but had nothing to trade for them
 
Joking apart, as @diverman says, Germany was over-extended even before Barborossa. They’d conquered lands so expansive that their tactically orientated capabilities were unsuited to the increasingly strategic scale of thinking and Operations required.

Stalin would probably have attacked Hitler somewhere anyway and the Soviets were probably the only nation which could’ve defeated Hitler on their own.

In my view, the only thing which could’ve won Hitler the War was the bomb.

Regards,
MM
 
Germany needed to open a second front against Russia in order to secure and hold the oil fields. The lack of oil was Germany's biggest weakness. If they had continued across the Channel straight after capturing France they would have had unrestricted access to the Middle Eastern fields.
 
What if... if Hitler had drawn back from invading Poland at the last hour. has placed all the troops from that planned invasion back to Germany and sent them all on block leave after wiping down their Panzers and cleaning and returning their MP40s and Mausers to the arms cote, then when everyone was in a bit of a spin, asks calmly for a conference with Wenher Von Braun, lebensraum, and not on earth, where would Germany be now, where would be world be now?
 

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