Could we have stopped the bear?

Londo

LE
Just finished reading that.
I was on Ex Brave Defender mid eighties, always wondered how the closing of the road network to civilian traffic would work in real life...very interesting article.
I've read some other offerings by the same author , might have been on another forum from that one though .
One of my favorites was 'a Soviet Sealion' . A Russian airborne invasion of the UK .
It culminated in a large UK/German v Russian tank battle right where I live .
 
If my memory serves me well, as a mere Radio Telegraphist* at Harrogate, we were expected to achieve a minimum morse speed of 25wpm both send and receive.
Special Telegraphists (Spec Ops) were achieving speeds much higher than that - well above 30wpm.

*Despite this, Radio Telegraphists referred to each other as “Gods Trade”! :smile:

18wpm was the speed to get a passing grade at TTS in my day. Most exceeded that into the eaely 20s.
50% kicked off each course during my time due to hitting the wall between 12 - 14 wpm. Those that couldn't get through the wall were sent to be Wombats or DTGs after a second chance on the folowing course, though I did know of one or two who managed to wangle a chance at a tech's course but I think they had to sign on for 9 if they were on the 6 year option.
 
My understanding was that the first couple of waves of Soviet tanks would not be their first class troops in the best quality armour.
They would however have to be stopped.
We would be expending valuable ammunition and fuel containing them before the 3rd wave of higher trained in most modern armour were released into the fray, probably where the first two waves had made any impact
Rather like the Turks sending in the irregular bashi bazouks to whittle away the opposition's resolve before unleashing the Janisaries.

 
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Dwarf

LE
Chatting about this with a mate who is ex-RE and was in 4 Amrd Div, the covering force. He reckoned that the obstacle plan with minefields and blowing bridges would have slowed them enormously if not stopped them. He was quite confident that they would have had major problems with this.

He also observed that after the fall of the Wall, the same weekend he went across the border to Dresden. The road infrastructure was still essentially pre-war and while in the West the autobahns and roads had been improved and extended whereas in the East they hadn't. This would have given us a major advantage in reinforcing and resupply and they would have had the consequent problems of an inferior road network. This with their prodigious expenditure of munitions and the need to relieve units as they were used up in the standard WP way of fighting keeping a unit in the line till it had taken too many casualties to continue.
 

Issi

LE
I’m pretty sure that we were told that we’d never even know that it had all kicked off, as we were on an airfield closeish to the IGB, and they would have struck as with non persistent nerve agent, before using the airfield to leapfrog ahead towards the coast.

There was also the idea that we’d deploy to our pre determined locations, send the whole Lynx Sqn eastwards. Wait for two or three to return, refuel and rearm them, and then as they flew off, we’d bug out to the West, as there was no chance that the last couple of Lynx would ever return.

These may have been wind ups to scare a Nig, but that’s what I was led to believe at the time.
 
Chatting about this with a mate who is ex-RE and was in 4 Amrd Div, the covering force. He reckoned that the obstacle plan with minefields and blowing bridges would have slowed them enormously if not stopped them. He was quite confident that they would have had major problems with this.

He also observed that after the fall of the Wall, the same weekend he went across the border to Dresden. The road infrastructure was still essentially pre-war and while in the West the autobahns and roads had been improved and extended whereas in the East they hadn't. This would have given us a major advantage in reinforcing and resupply and they would have had the consequent problems of an inferior road network. This with their prodigious expenditure of munitions and the need to relieve units as they were used up in the standard WP way of fighting keeping a unit in the line till it had taken too many casualties to continue.

That was another of the 'unknowables' that might have determined the outcome of the war.

Would NATO have had the political will to implement the combat engineering plan - in time - with all the damage and disruption that it would have caused to civilian society?

Given a few hours, even a half section of assault pioneers with a landrover and trailer full of kit can seriously foul up a route. Divisional engineers, and helpful German civil contractors can turn the entire countryside into one dangerous obstacle.

A motor rifle division is basically just a 1,000 vehicle traffic jam waiting to happen. If NATO had been sufficiently ruthless about trashing the countryside in their path, most of those vehicles might have been obliterated by air and artillery, or swingfire and MCT.
 
That was another of the 'unknowables' that might have determined the outcome of the war.

Would NATO have had the political will to implement the combat engineering plan - in time - with all the damage and disruption that it would have caused to civilian society?

Given a few hours, even a half section of assault pioneers with a landrover and trailer full of kit can seriously foul up a route. Divisional engineers, and helpful German civil contractors can turn the entire countryside into one dangerous obstacle.

A motor rifle division is basically just a 1,000 vehicle traffic jam waiting to happen. If NATO had been sufficiently ruthless about trashing the countryside in their path, most of those vehicles might have been obliterated by air and artillery, or swingfire and MCT.
There were prepared barrier installations with blast shafts and other obstacles; in the Bundeswehr there were special Wallmeistergruppen who were responsible for setting them up, maintaining them, etc.

01wartung.jpg


04sprengschachto.jpg
08klappen2.jpg
10kaeseladung.jpg
 

Bubbles_Barker

LE
Book Reviewer
A motor rifle division is basically just a 1,000 vehicle traffic jam waiting to happen. If NATO had been sufficiently ruthless about trashing the countryside in their path, most of those vehicles might have been obliterated by air and artillery, or swingfire and MCT.
This.

See the traffic obstruction problems we had for GOODWOOD in 1944 for an example of the issues you have when trying to concentrate massed armour for a major assault. Imagine if the Germans had local air superiority at the time….
 

LD17

MIA
Check the 80s docudrama Threads for a look at road closures.

For my money, the best part of the TTW would be rounding up left wing extremists and putting them behind barbed wire on the Isle of Wight and the Isle of Man.

The TA RMP were allocated that job, but I'd give them a hand... :twisted:
According to the Government War Book a Guards Bn was also allotted to this task as MACA for the Plod.
 

LD17

MIA
That was another of the 'unknowables' that might have determined the outcome of the war.

Would NATO have had the political will to implement the combat engineering plan - in time - with all the damage and disruption that it would have caused to civilian society?

Given a few hours, even a half section of assault pioneers with a landrover and trailer full of kit can seriously foul up a route. Divisional engineers, and helpful German civil contractors can turn the entire countryside into one dangerous obstacle.

A motor rifle division is basically just a 1,000 vehicle traffic jam waiting to happen. If NATO had been sufficiently ruthless about trashing the countryside in their path, most of those vehicles might have been obliterated by air and artillery, or swingfire and MCT.

21 SAS had the role of road watch and eliminating WP Traffic Control personnel for this very reason. As I related in another thread, BRIXMIS had witnessed the hilarity that would ensue when Traffic Control didn't show up and Soviet units were forced to map read on their own....

edited to include their other role of road watch
 
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That's the point isn't it? We in the West were waiting for Ivan to come charging down the autobahns, while they were over there convinced that the traffic would be coming in the other direction. I mean it's absurd isn't it, attack Russia from the middle of Germany, no one would ever dream of doing that, would they?

The Russians were in the Warsaw Pact countries because they were convinced if they weren't there NATO would move in and be right up against the borders of the Russian homeland, who knows, NATO might even have gone into what was actual Soviet territory.

Russian paranoia of course, why on earth would NATO move into Poland or Czechoslovakia or Romania or perish the thought into the territory of the USSR like Lithuania or Latvia? Ridiculous, it would never happen...

...oh, wait.
except that Lithuania and Latvia chose to become part of NATO - as did Poland, Czechia, Slovakian Romania and Bulgaria, They did not choose to become part of the Soviet Union.. and as free nations they are now not now Russian territory. There is a difference - choice - so **** anything Russia says about it.
 

LD17

MIA
@Proff3RTR

If you haven't seen my work yet, please, if you have a chance peruse it and check my 3 RTR entry.


I have been on this since before 2013, I am currently writing up the development of the GDP from 1983 to 1987 and then my speculation up to 1989 (I can't seem to find the relevant docs yet) so there will be an updated version soon.

As if BAOR could of stopped 3rd Red Banner Combined Arms Army (3rd Shock changed their name in 1954 according to this site: http://www.ww2.dk/new/army/armies/3oa.htm)?

Well in around 1983, Bagnall had an Afghan Army Colonel who had defected (he had previously attended the Voroshilov General Staff Academy) play the Soviets. From what I am able to research he threw a few MRDs at 1 BR Corps to hold their attention, then steamrolled the Dutch and Belgians, surrounding 1 BR & 1 GE Corps. This was an eye opener and why a NORTHAG wide GDP eventually came to be where units would be used where needed across Corps and National boundaries, without making this post pages long, plans were put into place to back stop the Dutch and Belgians using German British units to cover the deployment of 1 NE & 1 BE Corps.

From my research, by 1989, 1 BR Corps was on its way, equipment wise, to give the Soviets a tough time.....IMHO if the Cold War continued, when full deployment of Warrior/Chally 2/MLRS the Soviets would have an almost impossible time. Now this is predicated on the war lasting two weeks, I am trying to get hard numbers on WMR of equipment and ammo, but it looks like two weeks were the max unless there was some sort of extended tension where stocks could of been built up.
 

LD17

MIA
@Proff3RTR

While we are at it, I have found anecdotal evidence that Chieftain, though saddled with a crap engine, was actually more reliable when it was run almost constantly. It seems that the BATUS Chieftains and the ones used for training at Catterick had better availability because of this. Any truth to this?
 

goodoldboy

MIA
Book Reviewer
@Proff3RTR

While we are at it, I have found anecdotal evidence that Chieftain, though saddled with a crap engine, was actually more reliable when it was run almost constantly. It seems that the BATUS Chieftains and the ones used for training at Catterick had better availability because of this. Any truth to this?
Just like any other IC engine then...
 
Chatting about this with a mate who is ex-RE and was in 4 Amrd Div, the covering force. He reckoned that the obstacle plan with minefields and blowing bridges would have slowed them enormously if not stopped them. He was quite confident that they would have had major problems with this.

He also observed that after the fall of the Wall, the same weekend he went across the border to Dresden. The road infrastructure was still essentially pre-war and while in the West the autobahns and roads had been improved and extended whereas in the East they hadn't. This would have given us a major advantage in reinforcing and resupply and they would have had the consequent problems of an inferior road network. This with their prodigious expenditure of munitions and the need to relieve units as they were used up in the standard WP way of fighting keeping a unit in the line till it had taken too many casualties to continue.
In 1988, laid-off from work as a prospector for Noranda (northern Mantoba Canada), having been in the CAF from 1974-85, and having made a friend in the DDR (and one in Poland and one in Russia), I went off to visit them. My DDR friend lived in Warren (Mecklenburg). It was a garrison area for Soviet troops. The roads were exactly that - all pre-war and narrow - and patched up. As an aside, in Berlin, in entering the DDR, I had problems - the problem being by accident I crossed the border but not at the official spot. Being completely confused, I asked an official-looking gent where I was (in what german I knew) and he was rather surprised and asked me how i got there. He then directed me to go back the way i came - and to take such and such tram and get to the official crossing point. It seems that if you are a genuinely confused tourist, you could go anywhere... I found the same while attached to UNEFME, the Ismailia camp was sahred between Canada and Poland, and sometimes I ate in their mess (actually, the food was better, but the Catsup, worse).
 
21 SAS had the role of eliminating WP Traffic Control personnel for this very reason. As I related in another thread, BRIXMIS had witnessed the hilarity that would ensue when Traffic Control didn't show up and Soviet units were forced to map read on their own....
One or two actions at key junctions,could paralyse traffic movement...anybody below the rank of Major wouldn't have access to a map and, they would have no idea where they were anyway.

Most armour/tracks would move along a number of designated known and mapped (by Brixmis) 'tac routes' that started at the Polish border and, headed West,with feeder routes along their length.

They would also have to build up a momentum,that would become obvious very quickly to both satellites and, eyes on the ground...one of the main reasons for the AMLM's in the DDR were to keep a lookout for any 'Indicators of Hostility' !

The Bottom line was,we knew every track,road and, bridge in the DDR capable of taking military traffic...WP forces knew all the main and minor roads in the FRG but, not all the local country roads and dirt tracks which we could/would use...our mapping of the DDR was much better than the East German forces had ! ;)
 
In 1988, laid-off from work as a prospector for Noranda (northern Mantoba Canada), having been in the CAF from 1974-85, and having made a friend in the DDR (and one in Poland and one in Russia), I went off to visit them. My DDR friend lived in Warren (Mecklenburg). It was a garrison area for Soviet troops. The roads were exactly that - all pre-war and narrow - and patched up. As an aside, in Berlin, in entering the DDR, I had problems - the problem being by accident I crossed the border but not at the official spot. Being completely confused, I asked an official-looking gent where I was (in what german I knew) and he was rather surprised and asked me how i got there. He then directed me to go back the way i came - and to take such and such tram and get to the official crossing point. It seems that if you are a genuinely confused tourist, you could go anywhere... I found the same while attached to UNEFME, the Ismailia camp was sahred between Canada and Poland, and sometimes I ate in their mess (actually, the food was better, but the Catsup, worse).

Waren,West of Neustrelitz. Used to be out of PRA, a nice little 'cut through' but, then the Sov's joined two PRA's and it ended up inside PRA...lovely little town. ;)
 

QRK2

LE
21 SAS had the role of road watch and eliminating WP Traffic Control personnel for this very reason. As I related in another thread, BRIXMIS had witnessed the hilarity that would ensue when Traffic Control didn't show up and Soviet units were forced to map read on their own....

edited to include their other role of road watch

Not just 21 SAS of course, and it was practised (sort of) in reverse in the bigger exercises when such units played the opposition. One gentleman who ended as a TA 2* caused traffic havoc with a certain amount of chutzpah and an RMP beret that he just happened to have in his bergen.
 
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