German Wündertanks vs Shermans

I wasn't talking about liberty ships, It is 116kms from Alexandria to El Alamein. A half dozen sub 1000t coasters or even bigger nile riverboats, could cover that distance, carrying the men. Needing, one or two larger ships for the heavier guns. What was the strength of the Med Fleet in Alex, on the day of the battle ?
Oh so it's River barges now, is it? Admit it, you're a master spy and you just stole the Op Sealion plans and deleted a couple of zero's from the number of troops to be landed.

Lets leave it on that positive note, with a shred of dignity intact.
Awww, I was just about to start having fun, asking where the troops loaded into the river boats were going to crap, drink and sleep.

OK, I couldn't find detail about Arnhem, but assumed some were used as per 6th Airborne on D-day. To focus on the D-day use then, they were the reconnaissance unit, not armoured support so I think my core point that there weren't enough to be effective even if they are a 'fit for purpose' vehicle stands.
6th AAR squadron dropped something like sixteen (from memory) Tetrarches into Normandy but were very quickly re-equipped with Cromwells.
By a strange quirk of fate I've got a book out in October with a short chapter on one of the alternative ideas for landing airborne armour, and some of the tanks and AFV's considered for it. Then it all went to pants and they went with the Hamilcar.

T9's were dropped for the Rhine crossing but about the closest thing to armour dropped n market garden, may have been either a carrier or those 82nd (?) airborne armoured recce jeeps. Again caution, this is all from memory.

But in reality, the General staff thought the T9, A.17 and A.25 were all pretty useless as tanks. there was some talk of dropping armorued cars instead.

Nope, my real name is David Lister though.
 
Re Tetrarchs:

No light tanks were used in Arnhem. 16 of the Hamilcars were used to carry the airlanded RA 17pdrs (each carrying the gun plus tractor). The 6pdrs were all carried by Horsa. From memory, another 9 or so Hamilcars were used to carry Universal Carriers (2 per glider), which would be used to carry supplies for the Para and Airlanding Bns (their armour in theory made them better for collecting supplies from exposed supply DZs). Some more Hamilcars were used to fly in bulk supplies and a load more were kept back for a USAAF airfield engineering battalion that was meant to have been flown in to build an airfield capable of taking Dakotas. The Dakotas would then bring in the bulk of 52nd (Lowland) Division (these last lifts were cancelled).

In Normandy, 6AARR flew 20 Tetrarchs in by Hamilcar. More Hamilcars carried the regiment's Universal Carriers, Loyd battery carrier and 'Rotatrailers'. As Listy says, these were gradually replaced with Cromwells. After Normandy Tetrarchs were binned and the regiment was reorganised, now having two troops of 4x Cromwells (1 tank troop per squadron) for ground ops and 'alternate equipment' of 4x M22 Locusts per tank troop for airborne ops.

In the event, the Cromwells and Locusts were used simultaneously on the Rhine: The bulk of the regiment, with the eight Cromwells, crossed the Rhine by conventional means and the eight Locusts (with a 4.2-inch mortar troop) flew across by glider. One Locust actually fell out of its glider over the Channel (the glider went down with it) and only three made it off the LZ, whereupon they drew so much enemy fire that they were kept under cover and stayed there until the RA adopted them as OP tanks. I met one old boy at Bovington who 'landed' at Hamminkeln upside-down in his Locust, which skidded across the LZ at a high rate of knots on its turret when the glider crashed! Astonishingly, all three tank crew survived.
 
Oh so it's River barges now, is it? Admit it, you're a master spy and you just stole the Op Sealion plans and deleted a couple of zero's from the number of troops to be landed.



Awww, I was just about to start having fun, asking where the troops loaded into the river boats were going to crap, drink and sleep.



6th AAR squadron dropped something like sixteen (from memory) Tetrarches into Normandy but were very quickly re-equipped with Cromwells.
By a strange quirk of fate I've got a book out in October with a short chapter on one of the alternative ideas for landing airborne armour, and some of the tanks and AFV's considered for it. Then it all went to pants and they went with the Hamilcar.

T9's were dropped for the Rhine crossing but about the closest thing to armour dropped n market garden, may have been either a carrier or those 82nd (?) airborne armoured recce jeeps. Again caution, this is all from memory.

But in reality, the General staff thought the T9, A.17 and A.25 were all pretty useless as tanks. there was some talk of dropping armorued cars instead.



Nope, my real name is David Lister though.
The Soviets apparently received some Tetrarch tanks for evaluation but came to the conclusion that they couldn't find a practical use for them at that stage of the war. The handful they had received were used for training purposes.
 
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IIRC it was a joint planning effort with the RAF. Based on the RAFs fears around the flak concentrations north of Arnhem ruling out use of DZs/LZs closer that were possibly available north of the town. It was also believed that the polders, south of the road bridge where a coup-de-main force could have been landed ala 6AB in Normandy was too soft for the gliders. Something that turned out to be untrue. Why a parachute landing on the same location couldn't have been attempted instead is another matter.
I said in an earlier post, the entire RAF Bomber command, should have reduced Driel airbase and the AAA to rubble, despite the civvie casualties. Or, scrub the operation certain death cheers monty.
 
I said in an earlier post, the entire RAF Bomber command, should have reduced Driel airbase and the AAA to rubble, despite the civvie casualties. Or, scrub the operation certain death cheers monty.
All though Monty gets a lot of the blame for MG you must understand that every man and his dog from Marshal down wanted to use AB forces and if it hadn't gone ahead, or something similar, then a lot of the 1st AAA would have been returned to normal units. Many commanders saw the excellent manpower of AB forces sitting in England drinking beer when there was a great need of them in Europe.

1st AAA was not overly confident that USAF crews could find the DZ/LZs at night so demanded daylight drops which restricted them to only one drop on day one and not two as in the original plan.
 
All though Monty gets a lot of the blame for MG ...
Monty gets a lot of blame for everything. IMHO, some of this criticism is deserved, but at least an equal amount can be put down to two causes:

1. Regardless of his undoubted skill as a General, Bernard Law Montgomery was such a colossal penis that virtually everyone was happy to stick the knife in.
2. The old fashioned British habit of deciding that once you've hoisted someone up on a pedestal, they're ripe for knocking off it.
 
The Soviets apparently received some Tetrarch tanks for evaluation but came to the conclusion that they couldn't find a practical use for them at that stage of the war. The handful they had received were used for training purposes.
Interesting, as the Red Army had been very keen on airlanding armour pre-war as part of the deep battle concept and later went back to the idea.

The USSR’s Air-Dropped Fighting Vehicles Tore Through Cold War Conflicts

By September, Somali forces had overrun the 25,000 troops defending the town of Jijiga near the strategic Kara Marda Pass, and in November laid siege to the walled city of Harar, the regional capital. There, an army of 40,000 Ethiopian troops bolstered by Cuban soldiers and Soviet advisers brought the Somali advance to halt.

While the Ethiopians built up their strength during the rainy season, Soviet Gen. Vasiliy Petrov planned a pincer counterattack. As Cuban tanks tackled the Somalis head on in February 1978, Mi-6 transport helicopters landed 70 BMD-1 fighting vehicles and ASU-57 assault guns at Kara Marda, dozens of miles behind the Somali defenses.
 
Would sound an eminently sensible thing to do. I have always been curious about the scene. For all the criticism of the British army, I said earlier, they did make it to the rhine despite all the problems.

On Monty, the el alamein position was a formidable position, with enigma in his back pocket and the Auks plan in his front pocket, he didn't deserve as much credit as he got.

Purely on a what if, I recall manstein op in kerch and patton in sicily, couldn't Monty have tried an amphibious landing ? even a few battalions would have completely ruptured the german rear area.
At that point in time a positive good news story was needed. Hence the reason for the’ this is not the end’ speech by Churchill. You can only start critiquing Monty after the event, and even then hindsight is a wonderful thing.
 
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At that point in time a positive good news story was needed. Hence the reason for the’ this is not the end’ speech by Churchill. You can only steady critiqueing Monty after the event.
At Alamein, there was a near mutiny, by several armoured officers, not overly keen on sending anymore men to die on a narrow front, dominated by 88s and a panzer division. Similarly, the Infantry Commanders were screaming for armoured support, giving the roving panzers behind the german gun line.

The plan lacked any understanding of armour and failed in the first 24 hrs. I originally, offered my so called op certain death, as a way around the narrow frontage problem. But that was blown out of the water, with the perceived lack of logistics and a lack of understanding of my intent.
 
At Alamein, there was a near mutiny, by several armoured officers, not overly keen on sending anymore men to die on a narrow front, dominated by 88s and a panzer division. Similarly, the Infantry Commanders were screaming for armoured support, giving the roving panzers behind the german gun line.

The plan lacked any understanding of armour and failed in the first 24 hrs. I originally, offered my so called op certain death, as a way around the narrow frontage problem. But that was blown out of the water, with the perceived lack of logistics and a lack of understanding of my intent.
And yet it succeeded. Prior to that Auchinlek and Waverley had great success that was unsustainable.

As I say, up until Monty came on the scene it had been strategic defeat after defeat. I’m not going to put it all down to Monty, the increase in men and material was a key factor, but when you’re involved in propaganda you tend to highlight individuals, not an improvement in the logistical supply train.
 
And yet it succeeded. Prior to that Auchinlek and Waverley had great success that was unsustainable.

As I say, up until Monty came on the scene it had been strategic defeat after defeat. I’m not going to put it all down to Monty, the increase in men and material was a key factor, but when you’re involved in propaganda you tend to highlight individuals, not an improvement in the logistical supply train.
This is key imo. Monty was able to resist the political pressure from Churchill to get going with an attack. How he managed when Auk & Waverley had sometimes bowed to pressure I don't know.

IIRC that Monty insisted on a cpl of months delay in the attack to allow supplies to be build up & the new arrivals to be trained properly.
 
This is key imo. Monty was able to resist the political pressure from Churchill to get going with an attack. How he managed when Auk & Waverley had sometimes bowed to pressure I don't know.

IIRC that Monty insisted on a cpl of months delay in the attack to allow supplies to be build up & the new arrivals to be trained properly.
You can always take the p*ss if you’re new in. Politically, Churchill couldn’t keep on sacking Generals:

I don’t doubt many will continue to debate Montgomery’s effectiveness, but his men believed in him and that is often forgotten. A bit like Haig.
 
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This is key imo. Monty was able to resist the political pressure from Churchill to get going with an attack. How he managed when Auk & Waverley had sometimes bowed to pressure I don't know.

IIRC that Monty insisted on a cpl of months delay in the attack to allow supplies to be build up & the new arrivals to be trained properly.
Spot on, the key to him winning the attritional battle was that rest period. The downside, was he allowed the germans a long time to fortify. Its impossible to see what auk and Wavell would have done with a similar deck of cards, but I would be surprised, if they followed montys plan.

On veterans, is the view on monty widespread, or restricted to a particular group. So 8th army veterans opinions, do they differ to 21st army group ?
 
At Alamein, there was a near mutiny, by several armoured officers, not overly keen on sending anymore men to die on a narrow front, dominated by 88s and a panzer division. Similarly, the Infantry Commanders were screaming for armoured support, giving the roving panzers behind the german gun line.
A near mutiny, really? Or was it leaders of different arms fighting their own corner? El Alamein was an attritional battle, because there was no practicable alternative (as shown by your very own Op Certain Death which has more holes than a holy thing).

The plan lacked any understanding of armour and failed in the first 24 hrs.
Considering that (pre-Monty) the British received wisdom on deployment of armour in the desert was to charge toward the enemy's anti tank screen without infantry or artillery support with predictable results, I call bullshit. As for "failing in the first 24 hrs", it's a good job the battle lasted longer than that, and Monty didn't give up.
I originally, offered my so called op certain death, as a way around the narrow frontage problem. But that was blown out of the water, with the perceived lack of logistics and a lack of understanding of my intent.
I understood your intent, I just thought your plan to achieve it was unachievable.
 
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A near mutiny, really? Or was it leaders of different arms fighting their own corner? El Alamein was an attritional battle, because there was no practicable alternative (as shown by your very own Op Certain Death which has more holes than a holy thing).


Considering that (pre-Monty) the British received wisdom on deployment of armour in the desert was to charge toward the enemy's anti tank screen without infantry or artillery support with predictable results, I call bullshit. As for "failing in the first 24 hrs", it's a good job the battle lasted longer than that, and Monty didn't give up.

I understood your intent, I just thought your plan to achieve it was unachievable.
No, the Generals concerned knew their own trades. Monty refused to listen and ordered another failed attack. Finally, he arranged another set piece opening and brought up reserves to punch through.

Read about Dorman-Smith and the Auk, who both switched tactics, to stop the armoured charge, which had already been ditched by 7th armoured after crusader. Only the UK newly deployed, still had the cavalry mentality.

Certain death was an operational concept, to a tactical problem, whether it would have worked or not, is a moot point.
 
No, the Generals concerned knew their own trades. Monty refused to listen and ordered another failed attack.
Pretty sure he didn't order a "failed attack"... that WOULD have been grounds for mutiny.
Finally, he arranged another set piece opening and brought up reserves to punch through.
...and won the battle.
Read about Dorman-Smith and the Auk, who both switched tactics, to stop the armoured charge, which had already been ditched by 7th armoured after crusader. Only the UK newly deployed, still had the cavalry mentality.
I'm not overly familiar with Dorman Smith other than his being cordially hated by the rest of the Army and a predilection for the IRA. Whilst he assisted Auchinleck with planning First Alamein, I'm not aware that he was an innovative armour tactician.
 

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