Author Topic: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST  (Read 2598 times)

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Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #15 on: July 13, 2020, 06:07:02 AM »
Thisaway or thataway
------------------------

August 7, 1941, diary of Colonel-General Galder: "The question of what we have to take -- Moscow, or the Ukraine, or Moscow AND the Ukraine -- has to be answered 'Moscow as well as the Ukraine'. That is what we must do, else we shall not manage to smash our foe before autumn sets in."

They have to do both, now, to win the war, because the whole rotten structure needs that much more kicking to crumble.

But they can't do both now, before autumn sets in. It's already too late to outrun the mud and the snow, and they won't even be able to start the Group South offensive for another three weeks! And then after that, preparations to fight have to be made.

Hitler and the Nazi High Command will be impaled on the horns of this dilemma, choosing which way to die. The Nazis have hung on for six and a half weeks into their three week war.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #16 on: July 13, 2020, 06:13:47 AM »
August 11, 1941, Galder's diary, "Supreme Command starved for resources... Have used up our last ounce of strength... The troops are exhausted. What we are now undertaking is the last and questionable attempt to avert a transition to a war of attrition. The command has only very limited resources... We have thrown our last forces into battle."

Yesterday he wrote, "The exhausted German infantry will be unable to oppose with decisive attack measures the enemy's efforts... At the current moment, our troops are heavily exhausted and experience heavy losses."

Seven weeks into their three week war, the Nazis are still in Byelorussia, and have yet to cross the Dnepr in the Ukraine with their last ounce of strength.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #17 on: July 13, 2020, 06:18:27 AM »
August 17, 1941: fuel for tanks and planes (and trucks etc.) is running out.

Galder's diary, "The seriousness of our fuel situation is common knowledge... Only the most urgent needs can be met. Conducting any new operations calling for more fuel is impossible."

Eight weeks into their three week war, even after all the supplies they captured near the border, the only new operation they have enough fuel for, is to strike at Kiev to capture some fuel; so that they can strike at the Crimea to capture some fuel; so that maybe they can strike past Stalingrad and into the Caucasus, to capture some fuel.

Fortunately, most of their equipment on the East Front has always been carried by manpacks and horses! -- a fact Suvorov (along with most other historians) mocks, but which happens to be serving them very well right now.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #18 on: July 13, 2020, 06:30:23 AM »
August 22, 1941: Hitler (finally) switched goals yesterday from Central Group's Moscow, to the Southern Group.

Halder in his diary today writes, "The Fuehrer's note is full of contradictions... The OKH's position [Oberkommand Heer] became insufferable due to the Fuehrer's meddling and attacks. No one else but himself can bear the responsibility for the contradictory orders... In the afternoon, our arguments and discussions were interrupted by a telephone conversation with Field Marshal von Bock, who once again stressed that his troops will be unable to defend themselves for long in the positions they took when they counted that an offensive on Moscow was coming."

The strain may be driving Hitler crazy (or crazier), but Hitler has no more choice -- the whole rotten Soviet Government didn't collapse as estimated and as hoped. So as estimated now, the Nazis only have enough fuel to try to capture more fuel.

Soviet forces in the Kiev sector will be swept up and encircled, netting 665,000 Soviet troops (including officers of every rank), 884 tanks, 3178 cannons, and hundreds of thousands of tons of ammunition, fuel, spare parts, and provisions.

Tactically the operation will be a stunning success. Strategically, the forward push to Moscow must be delayed for most of September -- the final month that the Nazis can fight their three week summer war before October mud seriously sets in, with General Winter coming up hard afterward. Later in "A Soldier Remembers", p.305, Guderian will write, "There is no doubting the battle for Kiev was a major tactical triumph. The issue of whether this tactical success was also of major strategic significance, by contrast, remains in doubt."

But this was no spate of mad indecision by Hitler. Completely aside from no longer having fuel enough for any other operation, Army Group Center was dragging horse-drawn carriages across an utterly unsecured landscape, flanks exposed, with no cover from the rear, no reserves, and with all supplies dependent upon those horses and the heavily damaged Minsk-Smolensk-Viazma-Moscow railway -- itself highly vulnerable to partisan strikes.

Soviet Northwestern Front forces loom on the left flank of Army Group Center, nearly half a million strong, with hundreds of tanks, thousands of heavy guns, and no way for German tanks to reach them on the Valdai Heights. Those Soviets have been counterattacking since late June -- ineffectively for military purposes, but still endangering that fragile supply line. To the south, the one-line railway of the Kiev, Konotop, and Briansk sectors, as well as Army Group South's own horse-drawn wagon trains, face the threat of the Soviet Southwestern and Briansk forces -- over one million troops, plus a thousand tanks, and five thousand cannons. Central Group has an easier road ahead, but would be a mousetrap; Group South won't have as much problem with their own left flank, and will capture their own right flank. Hitler takes Kiev and the Ukraine, so he can hang on longer into his three week war.

From Galder's diary today, "Our most important pre-winter mission is not taking Moscow, but capturing the Crimea as well as industrial and coal-mining areas on the Donyets River, along with cutting off Russian oil supply routes from the Caucasus. In the North, that mission is surrounding Leningrad and supporting the Finnish forces... Capturing the Crimean Peninsula is critical to securing our oil supplies from Romania."

If only Hitler could have motorized his divisions and his logistic lines more thoroughly! But he did, as thoroughly as he could, given his lack of oil and rubber (whether from trees or petrol-based). He had to spread out what motorization he could, and concentrate what mechanized tracks he could (thus the four Panzer Gruppen), along a line stretching from Leningrad to the Crimea.

The Soviet government didn't collapse in July, thanks to the reinforcement of the Second Strategic Echelon (as badly caught as they were themselves). So now Hitler has to capture the Crimea to help his strung-out continental-wide front line do anything, or he loses the war.

Also, if he doesn't take Leningrad, he loses the war.

Also, if he doesn't take the Donyets Basin, he loses the war.

Relatedly, if he doesn't take the Caucasus, he loses the war; so if he doesn't take Stalingrad and Rostov he loses he war.

And if he doesn't take Moscow, he loses the war.

But if the Soviet government doesn't collapse upon him taking Moscow, Hitler will lose the war: Kaza, Kuibyshev, Saratov, and Astrakhan lie beyond, and the Urals beyond that, and, and, and, and...!

-- and there is one week left in August, with Kiev and the Crimea as their only possible operational goal.

The Nazis have hung on almost nine weeks into their three week war.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #19 on: July 15, 2020, 06:22:15 AM »
September 5, 1941, from Halder's diary entry today, "Our units surrendered to the enemy at the bend of the front line near Elnya."

The Nazi Army Group Center can't keep the Soviet 24th Army from pushing them out of the staging ground they need for an attack on Moscow. Hitler will still get to attack Moscow this year, but this delay arguably keeps his forces from ever getting any closer than sight of the Kremlin's domes.

Rokossovsky, in a JMH article, #7, 1991, p.9, recalls, "Upon a realistic evaluation of the situation, and a consideration of the coming winter, the enemy was only left with one choice -- immediate retreat covering great distance." Suvorov wonders in puzzlement why the Nazis didn't retreat.

Almost eleven weeks into their three week war, the Nazis decline that choice and stay the course, keeping up the pressure to crack the Soviet government.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #20 on: July 15, 2020, 06:27:12 AM »
September 13, 1941, Halder writes in his diary, "At the current moment, we cannot forecast the number of troops that can be freed from the Eastern Front upon arrival of winter, and the number of troops that will be needed for conducting operations in the following year."

Suvorov (mostly) correctly observes this means the blitz is over, and a war of attrition has started -- not only before the snow but before the mud has really started! Suvorov calls the war of attrition lethal, which is true, but that doesn't explain a curious detail in Halder's entry: he's planning to bring troops home upon the arrival of winter and send them back the following year!

Why?! Because the Nazis still have a real chance at driving the Soviet government out of Moscow (even if they don't capture Moscow, though they're still going to try), thus maybe fulfilling the goal of causing Stalin's tyranny to implode on itself -- twelve weeks into their three week war.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #21 on: July 16, 2020, 07:47:09 AM »
October 1941: Colonel-General Guderian (who had been present long ago when the predecessor T-28 models were starting to roll off the Soviet assembly line), will remember (from his "A Soldier's Memoirs", 1957, pp.231, 361), "A large number of T-34 tanks were used in battle [near Mtsensk, northeast of Orel], causing significant losses among our tanks. Previously existing hardware superiority of our tank forces was now lost and shifted to the opponent. Therefore, a prospect for rapid and continuous success disappeared." In fact, the T-28 units he has been rolling over and around were also largely superior to his tanks; many of them were just unfitted for combat on Russian territory, and caught progressively out of position as the Nazi blitz rolled forward. "Our 50mm and 37mm anti-tank guns were completely useless against the T-34." Another nail in the blitzkrieg's coffin: the T-34s are arriving in organized and supported numbers in his sector -- instead of being caught in their own blitzkrieg orientation and strung out on trains with few good ways to offload and with their fuel, ammo, and crews, scattered in transit from hell to breakfast.

Lieutenant-General Westphal agrees (in "The Wehrmacht's Fateful Decisions", 1974, p.61), "The arrival of Soviet weapons that surpassed the German ones in quality, was a very unpleasant surprise. One such weapon was the T-34 tank, against which the German anti-tank weapons were powerless." Infantry General Blumentritt (ibid, pp.101-2), "In 1941, the T-34 was the most powerful of all existing tanks... in the vicinity of Verei, the T-34 without any hesitation penetrated the positions of the 7th Infantry Division, reached the artillery positions, and literally squashed the guns. One can imagine what kind of impact it had on the morale of the infantry. The so-called 'tank phobia' started."

The three western Soviet tank production facilities will be lost (Kharkov) or shut off from resources (Leningrad and Stalingrad), but the Soviet Union will still produce more T-34 tanks from September 1940 up through September 5, 1945, than all other tanks of Germany and Britain, and Japan for good measure, combined from September 3, 1939 through 1945: a grand total of 54,853, in the T-34 model alone (including variants), that Germany will need to face somehow. Achtung, Panzer! -- Russian bias, plz nerf!

It doesn't help that the Nazis also have to defeat 711 KV tanks. Fortunately, many of these are practically inoperable for being caught out of position; but trying to destroy even the KV-2 (which wasn't designed designed to fight tanks) once they get going is nightmarish.

Army General K.N. Galitsky, in his memoir "The Years of Hard Trials", 1973, p.79, will describe a battle between one KV and three PzIII, Nazi Germany's sole anti-tank tank during this period: the KV fires two shots, each destroying a PzIII; the third decides to leave but its engine stalls while trying to drive across a ditch, whereupon the lumbering KV catches up and "smashed it with its weight, crushed it like a nut!" In another case, Galitsky recalls how a damaged Soviet KV (probably meaning a KV-2 based on photos from Suvorov elsewhere) was found surrounded by ten destroyed German tanks. The KV was hit by forty-three shells, out of which only three went through the armor.

Colonel-General A.I. Rodimtsev will remember (in "Motherland, These are Your Sons,", 1982, p.291), "During the course of [the first] eleven months of war, we did not know a single instance in which a German gun pierced the armor of this tank. It had happened that a KV tank had ninety to one hundred dents from enemy shells, but still continued to go to battle." German sources of the time indicate that these and other Soviet generals are not exaggerating for sake of propaganda (or not much anyway). British military historian R. Goralski will describe a fight during this period (printed in the "World War II Almanac, 1931-1945", 1981, p.164), where one KV fighting numerous German tanks and anti-tank guns, takes seventy direct hits, none of which get through the armor. American historian Steven Zaloga (regarded by Suvorov as the best foreign expert on Soviet tanks) provides similar examples, such as one KV destroying eight Nazi tanks while tanking thirty direct dents from close range fire (Zaloga and Grandsen, "Soviet Heavy Tanks", 1981, pp.12-13).

The Nazis are sixteen weeks into their three week blitzkrieg war. During October the Nazis will use 561,000 75mm shells -- but Hitler has no way to put his industrial base on a true wartime production schedule, yet. Only 75,000 of those shells are produced in the same month (per Major-General Muller-Hillebrand's "German Ground Forces, 1933-1945", Vol.3, p.50-51).
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #22 on: July 17, 2020, 11:38:27 AM »
Starting around sixty-eight more weeks from now, Hitler will be able to produce and ship just under 6000 Panther tanks (plus just under 940 self-propelled guns based on the Panther chassis) to compete against Stalin's nearly FIFTY-NINE THOUSAND T-34s (and nearly 5100 SPG tank destroyers based on the T-34). Heinz Guderian, who will love the Panther with all his heart, will strive, successfully, to convince Hitler not to halt all other tank production in favor of the Panther and Tiger models: there would be too few of these expensive and complex machines. Explaining his rationale for opposing Hitler on this, Guderian will write (very sardonically) in "Panzer Leader", p.283, "Such a path inevitably led [i.e. would have inevitably led, if implemented] to the defeat of Germany in the near future. The Russians would have won the war without help from the West, and occupied all of Europe. No force on earth could have stopped them. Europe's problems would have been simplified, and we all would have learned what 'real democracy' means!"

Later, the American tank expert Steven Zaloga will consider the production of any Panthers at all to be a mistake! "The decision to enlist among weapons such a large, heavy, and complex tank as the Panther, in the category of medium tanks, was one of the factors that limited the German tank production to a level much lower than the Soviet." (from Zaloga and Grandsen's "Soviet Tanks and Combat Vehicles of World War Two", 1984, p.175.) Well, that and Stalin had been gearing up mega-industrialization for at least fifteen years, in a nation with practically limitless material resources, to produce insane numbers of light and medium tanks -- plus heavy tanks for that matter!

The Panther will really be a heavy tank, to be better compared with the successor to the KV-1, the IS-2, adopted in the same year as the Panther, and which weighed the same. Like the Panther, it will be used for defensive battles, as well as for elite heavy-punch breakthrough strikes. The difference, aside from the IS-2 having much more powerful armor and surpassing the Panther in firepower, is that Stalin could produce more of this equally complex and expensive tank.

The qualitative difference in firepower deserves some clarification. As Suvorov notes from Chalmaev's ZhZL seris of "Malyshev", 1978, p.299, the 122mm gun on the IS-2 only had approximately the same effectiveness against armor as the Panther's 75mm gun, due to the higher speed produced by the Panther's smaller shell diameter and longer barrel-length proportionate to its caliber, 70L! This also translated into the Panther being able to carry 79 to 81 rounds (depending on the mix of shell types) compared to only 28 on the IS-2. (The IS-2 also had less internal volume for storage than the Panther.) Superior German optics meant the Panther could hit as hard as the IS-2, more precisely, about 2-2/3 times as often before needing to restock!

So why claim that the 122mm gun of the IS-2 had superior firepower to the Panther? Because the muzzle energy of the IS-2 was one and a half times higher than the King Tiger; two and a half times higher than the Tiger I; and almost three times higher than any Panther. In October 1943, tests on a newly released and captured Panther at Kubinka demonstrated that an IS-2 with its special anti-armor shell was able to penetrate the frontal armor of this early-model Panther at 1500 meters -- and then had so much remaining energy that the shell tore through the transmission, the armor wall of the weapon section, the engine, and then blasted off the back armor wall of the body along its seams! -- and threw that back several meters!

"In rare instances," Steven Zaloga will write (in Zaloga and Grandsen, "Soviet Tanks and Combat vehicles of World War Two", p.175), "a shell from the IS-2 tank did not pierce the armor of German tanks; but this did not change anything: the energy of the shell was so great that it tore the turret off any German tank." Its anti-personnel shells were even more effective, though not against tanks of course. The IS-2 wasn't really designed to fight Tigers and Panthers so much as to be a proper successor to the KV-2 combined with the KV-1, as a turreted artillery piece for sieging defenses. Instead, the SU-100 tank destroyer will be assigned the main burden of destroying the German heavies during the second half of the East Front.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #23 on: July 20, 2020, 06:28:11 AM »
November 24, 1941: Colonel-General Galder writes in his diary, "Lieutenant-Colonel Kalden [Comms Officer for 2nd Tank Army HQ] delivered situation and troop status report... Army Command feels further offensive operations are impossible."

Another entry from the same day, "Colonel-General Fromm outlined overall military-economic situation. Downtrend! His view: need truce."

The Nazis have hung on for five months and two days into their three week war.

During November, Goebbel's "Reich Ministry for People's Enlightenment and Propaganda" has been steadily filling newspaper and magazine pages with hundreds, eventually thousands, of photographs and articles, chronicling mud, mud, mud, impassable mud, unimaginable lack of roads, the famous "goat paths" that pass for roads in Russia, endless fields, plains, snow, and hurricane-strength wind knocking soldiers off their feet. (In one case such a photo was helped by the propellers of a three-engined J-52 cargo plane adding wind and drama.) If it wasn't for autumn and winter, they would have won the war!

Memoirs of German generals and military staff will add to this impression. Marxist historians and propagandists somewhat surprisingly join the chorus of Nazi voices, declaring that the Soviet Union was completely unprepared for war, and all credit for stopping the Nazi blitz should go to the endless Russian plains, the mud of the Rasputista, and General Winter! -- thus of course proving how much less the peace-loving Soviet Union could have invaded Europe.

Still, all this propaganda from both socialist governments was based on much real truth. For example, from the May 20th, 1990 issue of "Novoe Russkoe Slovo" aka "New Russian World", (page uncited), "Artillery, motorcycles, trucks, and even tanks got stuck in the impenetrable mud; airplane wheels got stuck in the ground on air bases. The supply of ammunition, fuel, and produce to the front was drastically reduced. Early winter suddenly replaced an unusually rainy autumn. When the ground froze in November, many cannon and vehicles were left right there on the spot, where they had gotten stuck in the mud several weeks earlier."

Suvorov is highly sarcastic about this, but the fact remains (as he himself acknowledges in other places, including when quoting Soviet memoirs) that the Nazis did in fact crush the Red Army several times over the course of the war; even several times by this November in 1941! The Nazis have come close to taking Moscow (within sight of the spires of the Kremlin), and while the Soviet government could move to other bases, the social strain of this loss still threatens to accomplish the overall mission: crack the Soviet government, nullifying organized resistance -- and more importantly, nullifying organized invasion of the vulnerable Nazi oil supply.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #24 on: July 20, 2020, 06:34:18 AM »
November 29, 1941: Nazi generals, having worked absolute (if evil) miracles of warfare in largely dealing with the Second Strategic Echelon, and even in brushing and kicking aside the true mere reservists of the Third Strategic Echelon, are sure Stalin has reached the end of his rope.

But the Nazis have also been suffering the mud of the Rasputista for a couple of months, and Germany's arms and ammunition minister Todt counsels Hitler to end the war against the Soviet Union.

As Reinhardt quotes him from "Moscow: the Tide Turning", p.184, Todt estimated that "militarily and economically, Germany had already lost the war." This is despite the Nazis having captured practically all of Stalin's aluminum reserves, and 85 percent of his ammunition's raw materials and factories!

But Stalin has started reconstituting his production capabilities, this time behind the Volga and in the Urals, where they make sense if he is (finally) planning to fight on defense.

The Nazis have hung on twenty-three weeks into their three week war.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #25 on: July 20, 2020, 06:48:06 AM »
December 5, 1941: a few days before Hitler declares war on the United States (forced by diplomatic reasons after the Japanese surprise-attack Pearl Harbor on the 7th), the Soviet counteroffensive outside Moscow starts, stiffened by the ten divisions trained in the Far East by General Kalinin since back when he was pulled off his Far East Second Echelon Army, soon after the start of Barbarossa. Richard Sorge had proof Japan would not try to hit Stalin in the back, but rather was gearing up for a day that would live in infamy (partly thanks to Sorge himself and his manipulations), two days from now.

Even the Soviet heavy tanks, the KV-1 and the (relatively) obsolescent T-35, exert less ground pressure than the Nazi medium and light tanks (the Nazis have no heavies in production yet), so they can move in the snow better, and even moreso the Soviet BT models and the T-34. Von Mellentin, thinking back on this later in his "Panzer Battles", p.429, will write, "The Battle for Moscow was the tipping-point of the war. From then on, victory was already beyond our reach."

The Nazi tank crews (and future historians) blame the snow and the mud, which is partially very true, yet the heavy iconic KV-1 can advance through mud and snow, and lighter Soviet tanks moreso.

The Nazis have hung on for almost twenty-four weeks into a three week war, which they expected to fight and win during the resort season.

It should be noted that afterward for decades, Soviets arguing that the Nazis were ready for war while the Soviet Union was not, will simply ignore the heavy T-35s (the KV-1 predecessor) in their statistics, on the ground that they were "obsolete" and thus not being used, or else were so worthless as to be of no effect. But here in December of 1941, the T-35 still surpasses the weapon platforms of all other nations in the world, including Germany, in the main characteristics of weapons, armor, and engine power; and despite its size and weight it produces less ground pressure than tanks weighing two and three times less. If it's so obsolete as to be removed from the statistics entirely, then every Nazi tank in existence at this time should be removed from statistics entirely, too!

Hitler's army has bogged down in conditions which, although bad, are much better than what the Red Army had to beat to crack the Mannerheim Line in early 1940. No arctic level frost in the ground or the trees; no swamps; the snow is deep but not as deep; no rocky rivers, no steep shores; and Soviet defenses around Moscow, thrown up ad hoc, simply don't compare to the infamous Finnish Line.

During this month (per Major-General Muller-Hillebrand's "German Ground Forces, 1933-1945", Vol.3, p.50-51), the Nazis will use 494,000 75mm shells. They will receive only 18,000 from Axis controlled factories. Hitler has still been unable to shift Germany, and all his captured territories, to a wartime production schedule! He'll be able to gradually start doing so next month, in January 1942. Stalin, of course, has been building his industrial base since the early 20s, and started mobilizing his industries on a wartime production schedule in the first quarter of 1939.

Hitler has been able to take advantage of Stalin's effort, by capturing the production from that industrial mobilization. But he hasn't been able to bring the rotten house down after kicking in the door.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #26 on: July 22, 2020, 06:41:11 AM »
April 5, 1942: the truly Godawful central Russian winter has solidly ended by now, and the Nazis have held onto their front line gains (more or less) despite being in no way prepared for winter. So, does Hitler have any plans for the Nazi East Front to survive another winter?

Well... sort of? According to his Table Talk for today (Pikerís edition, p.173), Hitler insists that ďIn the central zone, we must immediately plant all the marshlands and swamps with cane, so that with the coming of the next winter we can stand the horrible Russian frost.Ē

Suvorov mocks this, and I wish I knew the context for what Hitler is talking about here. The obvious point, however, is that this is what you do AFTER the war is over! Hitler expects to have beaten Stalin and ended organized resistance against his invasion, long before the next winter -- long enough that thereís time to plant cane and for it to mature and be harvested. (Whatever good that might do...?)

So, why does Hitler think on April 5th that heís about to finish off Stalinís government in the next few months? Well...!

Nine months and more into their three week war the basic mission for the Nazi side remains the same: destroy enough of the Soviet Army to trigger a revolutionary uprising against Soviet despotism, and capture enough Soviet supplies to keep going long enough to get this done. The Nazis just can't resist being despotic themselves, which remains a key problem with their plan! But upgraded Panzer IVs in anti-tank kit are arriving! -- so they have that in their favor.

The Southern Front seems the obvious place to try for both goals at once. And the Nazi commanders are one hundred percent correct! -- the forces here are Third Strategic Echelon reservists, numerous but inexperienced.

Veterancy pays off. The 39th Army of Lieutenant-General I.I. Maslennikov is surrounded and perishes near Rzhev -- the gates to the Caucasus oil are opened!

Sure, Stalingrad still sits like a sore on the overland supply route, but Stalingrad's troops aren't in any position to stop the Nazis from taking one of the Soviet Union's key oil sources for their own use. The 33rd Army of Lieutenant-General M.G. Efremov perishes after being pocketed near Vyazma; the 2nd Shock Army of Lieutenant-General A.A. Vlassov is cut off encircled, and forced to surrender (with Vlassov) or die. (Note its designation: armies designed overtly for offense are now openly called "shock armies".) The Crimean Front is broken, during which the Soviet 44th, 47th, and 51st armies are destroyed, along with seven unattached tank and cavalry corps, and a substantial number of reserve divisions, brigades, and regiments. Thousands of tanks, weapons, and ample strategic resources are lost (whether destroyed, or captured for Nazi management), and hundreds of thousands of soldiers and officers are killed or (perhaps worse) taken prisoner. (See: Nazis.)

No opposition remains. This is the end: loss of the Caucasus oil means defeat for Stalin; even the loss of Stalingrad and its oil corridor would mean the same thing, just more slowly. All the Nazis have to do, in that case, is reach the Volga, set up strongholds, and sink all incoming petroleum barges -- but there isn't any need for that, because  capturing the oil sources is now a foregone conclusion.

The Soviet armies are simply running away now. Stalin issues the infamous order #227: the "blocking squads" had been relaxed previously out of sheer necessity, to keep from inflicting more Soviet casualties, but now in desperation they're back in action, firing on their own troops to try to stop the routs; arresting commanders to send them to penal battalions to regain their honor in death.

But the Soviet rout cannot be stopped by monstrous orders. And regular reserves have already been used up during the winter offensive, saving Moscow indeed from Nazis in sight of the Kremlin, but unable to relieve the siege of Leningrad or to prevent defeat in Kharkov and the Crimea.

At last, then: Hitler's victory!  <:-) Can there be such things as miracles for Godless commies?  :2funny: Who will save Stalin and Mother Russia now?!

......wait. Two more corps are lining up between the 4th Panzer Army and the Caucasus oil. Where did these come from?! There shouldn't be anything else! Why is the boss music starting up...!?

Motherland, these are your sons!! -- two fresh and fully manned Guards Rifle Corps, the 10th and 11th, are here! -- riding to the rescue, appearing when all hope has been finally lost (again), ripping victory from the teeth of the Nazi wolves!

How can this be?! Could two mere Rifle Corps stop the advance of a Panzer Army??

YES THEY CAN!!  \m/ These are no Third Echelon rookies. These are elite formations, who have been training hard for years, and they are ready to set up proper (even though hasty) defenses. They punch down the Nazi 4th Panzer Army, saving the Caucasus oil, saving Stalin's government by the way, and saving the Motherland from its final disaster!

The Nazis' winning drive has been tackled at the end zone, and a line of Russian bears is taking the field to keep them out: one of the greatest last-ditch rescues in all the world's history.  :notworthy:

Exhausted Soviet troops are able to catch their breath, rallied by the example of these heroes. Routs turn into organized retreats; retreats turn into regroups; regroups turn into new front lines; and a counteroffensive grows.

Who are these true Russian heroes?! The Red Army had nine prior Guards Rifle Corps, created beginning in September 1941 as a part of Stalin's overall shift from internationalist Communist expansion and assimilation to nationalist Russian patriotism; the title "Guards" itself calls back to the elite Russian defenders of the Tsarist era prior to 1917. But those had long since been drawn into battle, exhausted, and depleted. The surviving units couldn't be withdrawn from where they were fighting. So... who are these?!
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #27 on: July 23, 2020, 06:17:01 AM »
May 18, 1942, Adolf Hitler, "Had we not succeeded in halting Russian troops during their entrance into Romania and forcing them to be content with obtaining only Bessarabia, they would have taken the Romanian oil fields, and no later than that same spring they would have crushed us, for we would have lost all sources of fuel." This is a little odd, and Suvorov doesn't provide the context. (I'm not entirely sure this even comes from the Table Talks.)

Hitler provided no help at all to Romania in the summer of 1940 when Stalin encroached into Bessarabia -- he couldn't have done so, because his forces were spread out still dealing with securing French territory! Romania had to cede Bessarabia or else face the conclusion of the Winter War: the Red Army cannot be stopped by impossible circumstances in conditions much worse than summer in Romania.

Later, in 1941, Stalin had started invading through Bessarabia into Romania as Hitler was launching Barbarossa, and indeed got far enough to wither 50% of the oil production for a while! But that was after "that same spring" of the year.

Possibly there is a mis-translation? -- in any event, had Stalin solidly invaded first and gotten to Romania, Hitler could expect to be hopelessly crushed by the following spring. In fact during the summer of 1940, Hitler and his generals had concluded there was no way to save the oil fields from Stalin except by launching their own pre-emptive attack into the teeth of Stalin's own preparations out of defensive alignment.


May 29, 1942, Hitler watches the famous Soviet film "German Defeat Near Moscow". In his table talk today (Piker's edition, pp.331-2), he speaks about what he saw: "This winter we experienced especially harsh trials, because our soldiers' clothing [and] the level of their motorization and supply did not in any way correspond to the conditions of that winter, when the temperature dropped 50 degrees below freezing... Then the first German prisoners come, who form hordes without coats, gloves, without winter clothing. They dance from the cold, their hands thrust deep into their pockets, which they take out from time to time to rub their ears and noses! [...] Finally, the frozen German tanks, trucks, and cannon stretch in an endless file; all are abandoned, because the General Staff of land forces did not prepare in time sufficient amounts of frost-resistant fuel and winter clothing."

So what is being done to prepare for winter 1942? Not much (aside from the aforementioned cane planting project), per Suvorov.

This is presented by Suvorov as a criminally desperate short-sightedness; but of course if Hitler still expects and plans to crack Stalin's government and start coups against him by destroying Stalin's military power, then there is no more need to plan ahead this year for winter than last year. Besides, the East Front has a lot more pressing military shortages than that to deal with right now...
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #28 on: July 24, 2020, 06:13:06 AM »
June 6, 1942, 50 weeks into their two week war (on three weeks of supplies), the Nazi Oberkommand Wehrmacht evaluates their situation (from Muller-Hillebrand's "German Ground Forces, 1933-1945", Vol.3, p.67), "The supply of fuel and oil materials in the current year will be one of the weaknesses of our military potential. The shortage of oil materials of all sorts is so great that freedom of operations will be threatened in all three branches of the armed forces, and will have a negative effect on military industry as well... A small improvement can be anticipated toward the end of the year[!!], when new factories for the production of synthetic fuel will be launched, but this will not bring a drastic improvement in the supply of Germany."


June 22, 1942, on the one year anniversary of the launch of Barbarossa: Hitler at his table talk for the day declares, "[T]he more we find out what goes on in Russia, the more we rejoice that we delivered the decisive blow in time. The Red Army's weaponry is the best proof that they succeeded in reaching extremely high achievements." The Nazis are fifty-two weeks into the three week war, and despite their many setbacks they can see their elusive victory still within reach -- Hitler even still regards the blow as being already decisive!

The house just hasnít crumbled yet.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.

Offline JasonPratt

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    • The Evangelical Universalist
Re: IceBreakChron XI: AGAINST THE POWER THAT RISES IN THE EAST
« Reply #29 on: July 24, 2020, 06:40:40 AM »
July 1942: the Nazis are fifty-five weeks into their three week war (on two weeks of supplies). Sure, those unexpected bears have punched down the wolves of Operation Edelweiss, but the Nazi wolves themselves regrouped and are steadily, doggedly wearing them down; and not only in the Caucuses but elsewhere. At this very moment, in fact, the Soviet 31st Guards Rifle Division is trapped in "slaughterhouses", and Stalingrad is about to fall; and if that goes, then Stalin's main western supply line will also go, and that will be the end.

At last then! -- a much messier victory than originally hoped, even at the start of the year, but total despair must surely envelop and crush the Russian troops, too exhausted even to flee anymore...

...wait... -- the avenging music is starting up!?

Over the horizon of the steppes, a fresh, new division is riding to the city's relief! It is the new, high-caliber Soviet 32nd Guards Rifle Division!

Argh! -- but no matter. It cannot win, no mere division could, no matter how elite.

But it buys time: hold on, more are on the way! The Soviet 33rd Guards Division arrives; then the 34th! the 35th! the 36th!!

Both Hitler and Stalin are throwing fresh troops into the smoking ruins of Stalingrad, in and around it: the pivotal struggle of the pivotal war of our time!


August 18, 1942: have enough avengers assembled yet? No, the Nazis eat them alive as they arrive!

These new "Guards" may be elite in training, and in equipment; but they lack experience, and can't keep enough supply lines open. The Nazis have been stopped beyond Rzhev, but that doesn't matter: if they shut down the oil at Stalingrad, they themselves won't get that oil but neither will Stalin, and that will be the end for his regime, which will win the war for Hitler. All the Nazis have to do is finish grinding down and grinding up these final several divisions as they arrive in pieces, and then...

...no. No!! The boss music is starting up again!

What is that over there?! How can a monster be coming over the horizon now!? A hulking humanoid beast leaping out from the depths of Russian forests, stronger than any two or three bears!

Behold, Nazi scum! The 1st Guards ARMY!!  <:-) :bd: -- commanded by none other than Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov! Yes, that very same Golikov, former chief of the (now newly and permanently renamed) GRU, who bet his very life that Hitler would not invade before the Politburo accomplished whatever they had been planning to do by activating the General HQ and Fronts Headquarters for sixteen armies and another 77 divisions on the way, ten hours before Hitler invaded!

Is this news a joke?! This has to be propaganda: there have been guards regiments before, guards brigades, Guards Divisions, even Guards Corps, but... No, Comrade, Golikov is bringing another five elite Guards Rifle Divisions under his organization, all at once! A small army, true, but too large to be a Corps. Welcome the heroes of the 37th, the 38th, the 39th, the 40th, and the 41st Guards Rifle Divisions! Just like brand new money, crisp bills in a pack, freshly minted in sequence, they roll up and roll out, fully staffed and with the best men!

The Nazis cannot believe this; don't want to believe it; cannot understand it! Every time they are about to win, Stalin summons new elite formations out of the Russian soil itself, like a wizard!

Fine. Fine! The Nazis will just have to keep winning and winning and winning until they finally, finally... {sigh} win.

Back to work. They can rest from winning when they are dead.
ICEBREAKER THESIS CHRONOLOGY! -- Victor Suvorov's Stalin Grand Strategy theory, in chronological order. Lots and lots of order...

Dawn of Armageddon -- a narrative AAR for Dawn of War: Soulstorm: Ultimate Apocalypse: The Hunt Begins: Insert Joke Here!

Survive Harder! In the grim darkness of the bowl there is only, um, Amazons. And tentacles and midgets. Not remotely what you're thinking! ...okay, maybe a little remotely.

PanzOrc Corpz Generals -- Season One complete; Fantasy Wars AAR, lots of screenies.