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Nenonen
Oct 22, 2009



Yeah, it was meant to achieve parity or superiority over UK. Some would say it was a terrible plan because the resources required to build and man a huge surface fleet including aircraft carriers was pointless when it was the submarines that had the biggest effect in both world wars. However if Soviets had capitulated in 1941 and Britain had agreed to peace on German terms, such a large surface fleet would have ensured Germany a dominant position in the post-war world. Because navies are not just military assets, they are also a political tool that can reach anywhere in the world. Imperial Germany was a master of gunboat diplomacy, and Nazis wanted nothing more than being able to do the same.

Whether eg. Plan Z would have helped Germany if the war hadn't started by then, I don't really know - the problem with such hypotheticals is that we don't know what Britain, France or USA might have done to try and counter the German naval program. Eg. it's quite possible that all the submarines built as part of Plan Z would have meant dire times for British merchant fleet. But on the other hand, it could have encouraged them to put more research into sonars and other ASW systems. Above all, it wouldn't have helped against Soviet Union, the biggest hurdle for Hitler's aspirations.

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EvanSchenck
Sep 8, 2010


There are a couple problems with reading the mobilization schedule as indicative of a German master plan.

First, Hitler repeatedly provoked France and Britain, and it was down to their reluctance to fight rather than any plan of Hitler's that war was averted. Additionally, it can be inferred from other events that Hitler and the German military leadership were often pretty unrealistic about their own readiness. The plan to carry out Operation Sealion is a great example of this, because their resources were utterly and completely insufficient to the task of invading Britain by sea, yet they still plotted things out as if it was going to happen. Hitler may easily have told the general staff that they would have all the time they needed, without at all intending to give them that time.

Second, the German financial system was in a permanent crisis state due to a shortage of foreign exchange. Adam Tooze goes into close detail on this in "The Wages of Destruction." Basically Germany needed to import a lot of resources (petroleum, rubber, food, animal fodder, and so on) to keeps its economy functioning at the level necessary for a military buildup, and to buy those goods German firms needed to be able to go to the central bank and exchange their Reichsmarks for pounds, francs, or whatever. The Weimar economic crisis, inflation, and Versailles reparations payments had already left Germany's reserves of foreign currency in a depleted state, which quickly became critical as industry heated up. If the reserves ran out, German firms would not be able to import what they needed to keep operating, which would stop production and put employees out of work throughout the economy, which would cause a recession to cascade through and shake public confidence in Hitler's leadership.

These reserves were actually at critical levels when Anschluss occurred and caused Austria's reserves to become German property, narrowly averting disaster. They were running out again just a few years later, when a short time after the Munich Agreement the Nazis established a protectorate over Czechoslovakia and seized their reserves as well. Finally, the dramatic victories of 1939-1941 solved the problem more directly by giving Germany direct access to the resources it had formerly imported--rather than buying, they could steal. Without these repeated thefts, culminating in the wartime impoverishment of occupied Europe to feed Germany, the Nazi economy would have stalled out and broken down. Tooze makes this argument very convincingly, and I would recommend the book.

So, had Hitler tried to wait until everything was ready, the German economy probably would have shuddered to a halt short of that goal. More seriously, at the very same time as this was going on, the USSR was building up even more quickly than Germany. Even if we assume that a peactime Germany could have kept up the rate of expansion in productive and military powers on into 1945 (which was improbably, as shown above), the USSR would have matched German strength sometime in 1942 and from then on pulled farther and farther ahead. In a lot of ways Hitler historically went to war at the exact moment of his greatest advantage relative to his enemies, and it would not have been to Germany's benefit to have delayed.

Shimrra Jamaane
Aug 9, 2007

Remind me to work out until I also am buff and have to keep a pillow in front of my okay I'll be honest this is like the 50th custom title I've done tonight and I'm just phoning it in now.

Yeah, I've read a bit about the huge mess in the German economy and political system and it's amazing how unstable the whole Nazi structure was. Did Hitler even have a line of succession planned out in the event of his death?(Besides the one he made up on the fly in the bunker.) I doubt that the German people would have had the unwavering worship to another leader like that had to Hitler.

Mr. Sunshine
May 15, 2008

Can anybody find me somebody to love rape and torture?


The thing to understand about Nazi Germany is that for all the talk of German efficiency and the Führerprinzip, the Nazi state was a mess of departments, companies and individuals all working at cross purposes. Hitler mainly ruled by encouraging this and having his subordinates continually backstab each other, thus ensuring that no-one could ever challenge him.

Kemper Boyd
Aug 6, 2007

no kings, no gods, no masters but a comfy chair and no socks


Nenonen posted:

Btw. Germany didn't switch to war economy until 1942. One interesting question is how much could an earlier mobilization of economy have helped in the material war against USSR and USA. Or would it just have led into civilian morale breaking up as store shelves would have been empty already in 1941?

I think that most historians would agree on that this worry about civilian morale was something that in hindsight proved false, since there was never any civilian uprising in Germany at all.

Ghost of Mussolini
Jun 26, 2011


EvanSchenck posted:

Adam Tooze goes into close detail on this in "The Wages of Destruction."

This is an excellent book and I think it is a very important read for anyone who wants to understand either Germany or WW2 better.

EvanSchenck
Sep 8, 2010


Shimrra Jamaane posted:

Yeah, I've read a bit about the huge mess in the German economy and political system and it's amazing how unstable the whole Nazi structure was. Did Hitler even have a line of succession planned out in the event of his death?(Besides the one he made up on the fly in the bunker.) I doubt that the German people would have had the unwavering worship to another leader like that had to Hitler.

Hermann Göring was Hitler's officially designated successor until the last days of the war, when Führerbunker drama resulted in him being dismissed. Basically he tried to carry out his duties as successor slightly too soon for Hitler's liking. Had Hitler suddenly died at some point before then, however, Göring would have had the most legitimate claim to leadership. It's hard to say what would have happened, though, because of the chaos in the Nazi government. Others might have made a play for power, especially considering that Göring was apparently a boorish thug not to mention addicted to morphine.

Wikipedia has a choice quote from a psychiatrist who evaluated him after he was involuntarily committed for his drug abuse:

quote:

The 1925 psychiatrist's reports claimed Göring to be weak of character, a hysteric and unstable personality, sentimental yet callous, violent when afraid and a person whose bravado hid a basic lack of moral courage. "Like many men capable of great acts of physical courage which verge quite often on desperation, he lacked the finer kind of courage in the conduct of his life which was needed when serious difficulties overcame him."
It's likely that his succession would go through on the strength of Hitler's designation, but he would have been unable to manage the disorderly administration Hitler left behind.

Koesj
Aug 3, 2003


Mr. Sunshine posted:

Hitler mainly ruled by encouraging this and having his subordinates continually backstab each other, thus ensuring that no-one could ever challenge him.

Kershaw paints a pretty thorough picture of it being the other way around: Hitler being aloof of the institutional trappings around him and his clique self-radicalizing to stay in his perceived favor. It's an agency issue but the end result was probably still the same.

e: Here's a decent writeup.

Koesj fucked around with this message at Sep 16, 2011 around 14:19

sick trigger
Mar 5, 2010


EvanSchenck posted:

It's hard to say what would have happened, though, because of the chaos in the Nazi government. Others might have made a play for power, especially considering that Göring was apparently a boorish thug not to mention addicted to morphine.

And instead it just went to that Donitz twat:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pje5ROe5Y_w

Amused to Death
Aug 10, 2009

google "The Night Witches", and prepare for

I think by 1943, given the growing size and strength of the SS, militarily and economically, any sudden death of Hitler definitely would've put Himmler in a position to make for a power grab with a reasonable chance of succeeding.

Shimrra Jamaane
Aug 9, 2007

Remind me to work out until I also am buff and have to keep a pillow in front of my okay I'll be honest this is like the 50th custom title I've done tonight and I'm just phoning it in now.

Amused to Death posted:

I think by 1943, given the growing size and strength of the SS, militarily and economically, any sudden death of Hitler definitely would've put Himmler in a position to make for a power grab with a reasonable chance of succeeding.

Wouldn't the Wehrmacht probably tell him to gently caress off at some point? They never swore any oath to him.

Amused to Death
Aug 10, 2009

google "The Night Witches", and prepare for

Shimrra Jamaane posted:

Wouldn't the Wehrmacht probably tell him to gently caress off at some point? They never swore any oath to him.

Hard to say what the general army would've done, especially with it all tied up on the various fronts, it'd mostly come down to what the reserve home army could do at home and what generals could do politically and PR wise. I think it'd be left up to whether there was a power struggle in the army. Many Wehrmacht commanders weren't keen on the nazi leadership, if they united against Goering and Himmler(well really just Himmler because it really doesn't seem like anyone minus Hitler until the end of war really liked Goering. I really can't see any situation where Goering would stay in power that long vs a challenge from either Himmler or the army), they could probably neutralize the SS threat and set up a provisional military government. The general Wehrmacht seems to have had respect among the populace too which is a great plus, while Himmler was really just more feared through institutions like the Gestapo.

Amused to Death fucked around with this message at Sep 16, 2011 around 22:01

Ograbme
Jul 26, 2003

D--n it, how he nicks 'em

Were there any diehard fanatics who didn't accept Doinitz's surrender and kept fighting the Allies?

EvanSchenck
Sep 8, 2010


Amused to Death posted:

I think by 1943, given the growing size and strength of the SS, militarily and economically, any sudden death of Hitler definitely would've put Himmler in a position to make for a power grab with a reasonable chance of succeeding.

Himmler certainly would have maneuvered to increase his power, but Göring would still have a tremendous advantage from being Hitler's designated successor. I think Göring would have been the immediately obvious successor, and I think that would recognized by many other components of the Nazi state like the officer corps and die-hard Hitler loyalists like Goebbels. But as I said Göring did not have the talent to deal with challenges such as that represented by Himmler's ambition, and his comparative inability would have been dangerous for Germany.

Grand Prize Winner
Feb 19, 2007


Either way, it ends with Russian tanks in Berlin.

Shimrra Jamaane
Aug 9, 2007

Remind me to work out until I also am buff and have to keep a pillow in front of my okay I'll be honest this is like the 50th custom title I've done tonight and I'm just phoning it in now.

Grand Prize Winner posted:

Either way, it ends with Russian tanks in Berlin.

Not likely. If the Germans had a regime change they might have sued for peace. If so the western allies would get there a lot faster.

Oxford Comma
Jun 26, 2011
Oxford Comma: Hey guys I want a cool big dog to show off! I want it to be ~special~ like Thor but more couch potato-like because I got babbies in the house!
Everybody: GET A LAB.
Oxford Comma: OK! (gets a a pit/catahoula mix)


Shimrra Jamaane posted:

Not likely. If the Germans had a regime change they might have sued for peace. If so the western allies would get there a lot faster.

If Germany had sued for peace with Russia right after Stalingrad, would the Russians have accepted? Would the Americans have been able to apply enough pressure on Stalin to convince him to keep fighting, even if Stalin had wanted to.

This is getting really speculative, now.

Tab8715
May 20, 2006


I really can't imagine that happening, at least not at that point. The German Army was unbelievably crippled - it's possible we could have avoided the Battle of Berlin.

Delivery McGee
Oct 8, 2004

Bad Angus! Bad!

Mr Crustacean posted:

How the gently caress does the bradley crew not notice a 2km/s, pyrophoric, long rod penetrator spalling the gently caress outta the insides of their vehicle?

As has been said, "barely noticed" in the hyperbolic sense of "were not instantly reduced to paste/ashes and/or riding the turret as it rocketed away from the hull," unlike many T-72 crews involved in the battle. Also it's been awhile since I read it, and I somewhat misremembered the severity of the casualties.

I can't find the report I was talking about, but here's somebody else's commentary on the same information; a few Bradleys did catch fire and melt to a puddle when hit, and several soldiers were killed and a great many wounded by shrapnel from the hit and flash burns from secondaries, but in general a Bradley being hit by a 120mm APFSDS seems pretty survivable. As long as you're not in the path of the round itself and it doesn't hit the stack of AT-4s, you'll probably be able to crawl out and survive. Some of them did keep on truckin', and in most of the ones that were disabled, the crews bailed out then went back to grab supplies and destroy the secret bits.

As for hot hot Abrams-on-Abrams action, the 120mm "silver bullet" will indeed go right through both sides of the hull from certain angles; another was hit three times in and around the turret and the gunner killed with no penetrations.

Only one Abrams took a 120mm to the front; it shrugged it off like a champ, but it had a mine-clearing plow and the hit trashed the plow wiring, causing an electrical fire at the plow controls that gave the driver flash burns and a Halon bath, so they had to bail (after the battle the tank was repaired and operated by a three-man crew, with the loader replacing the injured driver, for a week until somebody decided they really shouldn't be rolling around shorthanded in a tank coated in radioactive dust).

Abrams trivia: There is a canister round for the Rheinmetall 120mm, for when a tank needs to ruin the day of an unarmored opponent up to a mile away. Around 1100 (sources vary) 9.5mm tungsten pellets, basically the 0000 buckshot load from hell. Also really effective as a breaching round at short range -- y'know how the infantry has shotguns/underslung Masterkeys for blowing the hinges off doors to get in? An M1A1 firing a canister round can make a door-sized hole in a reinforced concrete wall.

The East India company always amuses me. You think modern PMCs are bad? The British East India company was pretty much a sovereign imperial power -- it had a private army, collected taxes in its dominions, and was for a large part of its history only answerable to the Crown in a technical sense (either by being too powerful to gently caress with or by having the British parliament in its pocket to an extent modern lobbyists can only dream of).

Mr. Sunshine
May 15, 2008

Can anybody find me somebody to love rape and torture?


Koesj posted:

Kershaw paints a pretty thorough picture of it being the other way around: Hitler being aloof of the institutional trappings around him and his clique self-radicalizing to stay in his perceived favor. It's an agency issue but the end result was probably still the same.

e: Here's a decent writeup.

Yes, that's right. Maybe I phrased myself wrong. Hitler wasn't actively pitting one agency or individual against another, but he never stepped in to actually stop any of the infighting. In fact, the more I study about the man, the more it seems that he ruled by not ruling. He habitually refused to make difficult decisions until it was no longer possible to delay any longer. His subordinates were free to carve out their own little empires within the state until such a time that they broke some unwritten rule or assumed too much, at which time they'd fall out of favour with Hitler and their opponents would rise to take their place.

Sure, the system could luck out and get someone like Speer who turned out to be a natural at the position he found himself in, but you'd also get poo poo like Himmler and the entire parallel SS state he tried to set up. It was pure luck that the Nazi state kept functioning as long as it did under the pressures of war.

Alchenar
Apr 9, 2008

The level of betrayal I felt when Paradox announced their new wallpaper tore something from me that I'll never be able to recover. They tore away my ability to respect anything, and they tore away my ability to feel human.

Ograbme posted:

Were there any diehard fanatics who didn't accept Doinitz's surrender and kept fighting the Allies?

Loads. There isn't any real set date for the end of the war, small scale fighting kept on going (especially in pockets of the Eastern Front) for several weeks in places.

Ghost of Mussolini
Jun 26, 2011


Delivery McGee posted:

The East India company always amuses me. You think modern PMCs are bad? The British East India company was pretty much a sovereign imperial power -- it had a private army, collected taxes in its dominions, and was for a large part of its history only answerable to the Crown in a technical sense (either by being too powerful to gently caress with or by having the British parliament in its pocket to an extent modern lobbyists can only dream of).
The Company was much less of a Company and much more of a state. Initially, while it was still more of a trading operation than anything else, it operated as a monopoly due to having such a strong lobby within Parliament, which could give it legal backing to lock out competition. By 1670, however, Charles II gave it the right to mint its own coins, to expand without crown approval, to carry out justice on its territory and to make war. In 1708 it merged with other enterprises that challenged its monopoly, making the HIEC and effectively enlarging itself as well as maintaining its monopoly. However even with this new power it did not have much land, mostly trade ports and such. Plassey was the true turning point, as after the battle they annexed all of Bengal, after this point the HIEC was effectively a sub-state within the British one.

SeanBeansShako
Nov 20, 2009


It was hilariously mismanaged as well which led to its downfall when it simply didn't bother fully informing the Indian sepoys that the rumours about the fat in the cartridges of the new rifles and assuming their Indian soldiers would always be loyal to the last.

Of course those men had nowhere to go and nothing to fight for when their own villages and families began to treat them like pariahs for simply doing their job as warriors.

Amused to Death
Aug 10, 2009

google "The Night Witches", and prepare for

Tab8715 posted:

I really can't imagine that happening, at least not at that point. The German Army was unbelievably crippled - it's possible we could have avoided the Battle of Berlin.

The Germans suffered a devastating blow at Stalingrad, but I wouldn't say they were completely crippled, they still had the resources to launch the massive Kursk offensive even if it ended in complete failure(and the loss of something like 1,000 tanks and 200,000 men for the Germans). At least in the first half of 1943 the Germans had one massive advantage in terms of a possible bargaining with the Soviet Union. German troops were still deeply inside the Soviet Union, combined with Stalin's dissatisfaction with the lack of a western European front. The failure of Kurks, the retaking of the offensive by the Soviets and the opening of the Italian front was probably the final death blow in terms of Germany having any bargaining chip militarily.

Though if there was a regime change and the regular army took over, the allies could probably be open to a peace deal if Germany conceded to enough concessions.

Nenonen
Oct 22, 2009



Amused to Death posted:

Though if there was a regime change and the regular army took over, the allies could probably be open to a peace deal if Germany conceded to enough concessions.

This would have been contrary to the jointly agreed goals, though. Before Paulus had even surrendered in Stalingrad, Churchill and Roosevelt had given the Casablanca Declaration that they would only be satisfied with an unconditional surrender by the Axis. Allied leaders knew that they would overcome Germany. Any kind of acceptable agreement would have brought Germany back to pre-1938 borders, but then France, Poland and Czechoslovakia would still have had an axe to grind. And I cannot imagine German leaders conceding East Prussia nor any other German areas to Poland or Czechoslovakia, and meanwhile Stalin would not have been willing to give Poland back its eastern parts.

Germany would have needed to reach some kind of wondrous victory on both fronts (eg. success in Zitadelle, abortion of Normandy invasion) to convince them that a negotiated peace would have been a better alternative. Even then I cannot see how it would have lasted for long, Germany had hosed Europe so hard in so little time that it would have been an untenable arrangement. Especially after Japan had surrendered and the Allies would have been free to concentrate all their might in Europe.

Shimrra Jamaane
Aug 9, 2007

Remind me to work out until I also am buff and have to keep a pillow in front of my okay I'll be honest this is like the 50th custom title I've done tonight and I'm just phoning it in now.

On a kind of related note, what the gently caress was up with Goebbels? From what I can tell he was the only high ranking Nazi who actually stayed loyal to Hitler to the end. Even the loyal Himmler, one of the most evil and twisted men to ever live, had the good sense to try and jump ship at the end. Did Goebbels believe in Hitler's crazed delusions of deliverance and victory to the very end? Why else would he stay with him?

Amused to Death
Aug 10, 2009

google "The Night Witches", and prepare for

Goebbels also has the strange distinction of definitely being the most educated(at least in the traditional sense) of the higher officials of the German government, having earned a PhD back in the 20's.

Nenonen posted:

This would have been contrary to the jointly agreed goals, though. Before Paulus had even surrendered in Stalingrad, Churchill and Roosevelt had given the Casablanca Declaration that they would only be satisfied with an unconditional surrender by the Axis. Allied leaders knew that they would overcome Germany. Any kind of acceptable agreement would have brought Germany back to pre-1938 borders, but then France, Poland and Czechoslovakia would still have had an axe to grind. And I cannot imagine German leaders conceding East Prussia nor any other German areas to Poland or Czechoslovakia, and meanwhile Stalin would not have been willing to give Poland back its eastern parts.

Between Operation Uranus and the Kursk offensive though is it, if there was some hypothetical military coup(assuming the Soviets would never trust any high Nazi official close to Hitler), if Germany offered basically a status quo ante bellum to the Soviets, or even some concessions, I think there would've been at least some decent chance Stalin took it. Stalin didn't exactly have great trust in the west(or vice versa), and with German troops still 1,500 miles inside of the Soviet Union, it'd be a pretty appealing offer.

No eastern front all of a sudden puts the majority of the German military there back into the west. The allies may have still gotten a foothold in Italy given the time it'd take for mass troop and equipment movements, but the going would be much tougher, if impossible past the Gustav line.

Though this is just one of a million hypothetical chain of events. Can't wait for the future when the "What if" machine exists.

Panzeh
Nov 27, 2006

Wargames pretty much make you Hitler. It's awesome being Hitler.

Amused to Death posted:

Goebbels also has the strange distinction of definitely being the most educated(at least in the traditional sense) of the higher officials of the German government, having earned a PhD back in the 20's.


Between Operation Uranus and the Kursk offensive though is it, if there was some hypothetical military coup(assuming the Soviets would never trust any high Nazi official close to Hitler), if Germany offered basically a status quo ante bellum to the Soviets, or even some concessions, I think there would've been at least some decent chance Stalin took it. Stalin didn't exactly have great trust in the west(or vice versa), and with German troops still 1,500 miles inside of the Soviet Union, it'd be a pretty appealing offer.

No eastern front all of a sudden puts the majority of the German military there back into the west. The allies may have still gotten a foothold in Italy given the time it'd take for mass troop and equipment movements, but the going would be much tougher, if impossible past the Gustav line.

Though this is just one of a million hypothetical chain of events. Can't wait for the future when the "What if" machine exists.

The problem with Stalin giving in is that basically STAVKA was ready for Kursk. They were so ready for Kursk that they had an entire offensive planned that would key off of it. That's how they basically took back most of the Ukraine in one fell swoop.

wdarkk
Oct 26, 2007

Friends: Protected
World: Saved
Crablettes: Eaten


Also, having the US still at war with Nazi Germany on August 6th could result in Oppenheimer getting his choice of targets.

Amused to Death
Aug 10, 2009

google "The Night Witches", and prepare for

Panzeh posted:

The problem with Stalin giving in is that basically STAVKA was ready for Kursk. They were so ready for Kursk that they had an entire offensive planned that would key off of it. That's how they basically took back most of the Ukraine in one fell swoop.

This is true but I'm thinking of a proposal pre-Kursk, ideally some military coup after the near collapse of the southern front in Uranus. If a revolution did occur Kursk may have never even happened, German troops may have just dug in(in much better positions too if every little retreat didn't face the wrath of Hitler). The Soviets either way still would've had a massive advantage on the eastern front, but in better positions and without the drain caused by the buildup/eventual loss at Kursk the Germans have a much more formidable position. Plus a peace treaty that perhaps even made concessions to the Soviets(monetary payments, land in perhaps the Balkans, Finland, who knows) would look appealing to any leader who has a frontline 1,500 miles into their own country.

WHOLE DIK AND NUTS
Aug 17, 2011

by Duchess Gummybuns


What if Hitler was gay and black? Would the Kursk offensive have panned out differently?

Herv
Mar 24, 2005


It would have been the sell job of the century.

Nazis: So yeah, about that whole war of annihilation, we're thinking about just calling it off. We will even hand over Hitler. What do you think??

Stalin: You wanted a war of annihilation, well you have it.

----

How many millions of Slavic/Jewish/Etc stiffs were already on the books by January 43? I'm not sure I would be accepting anything but unconditional surrender. What the hell can you even compare this situation to? If this wasn't 'game on' at that point, when is it?

Nenonen
Oct 22, 2009



WHOLE DIK AND NUTS posted:

What if Hitler was gay and black? Would the Kursk offensive have panned out differently?

Perhaps he and Ernst Röhm would have been lovers (Ernst was already closer to Adolf than any other Nazi leader), in which case SA would not have been purged and forced aside by the SS. This would have left Wehrmacht free from competition from Waffen-SS and in general simplified German command and logistics. In the best case the SD Einsatzgruppens would not have been ordered to clean occupied Soviet areas of undesirable people, which in turn might have led into better relations between the army and the locals in Belarus and Ukraine, and therefore less partisan activity. All of this would have led into Germans being in much better positions for the battle of Kursk.

I'm not sure how Hitler's blackness would have worked for him. It probably would have resulted in Joseph Kennedy or any other neutralist Americans not trusting his intentions, thereby driving USA to send more Lend Lease support to Europe sooner. This could have easily neutralized the benefits gained by Hitler's homosexuality. Unfortunately I cannot offer any better answer than that because it is yet a lesser studied historical dilemma.

Kemper Boyd
Aug 6, 2007

no kings, no gods, no masters but a comfy chair and no socks


Herv posted:

How many millions of Slavic/Jewish/Etc stiffs were already on the books by January 43? I'm not sure I would be accepting anything but unconditional surrender. What the hell can you even compare this situation to? If this wasn't 'game on' at that point, when is it?

Remember who called the shots. Stalin.

Stalin was most definiently one man who rather got 50% of a sure thing than 100% of something uncertain. Never mind that the Soviet Army outnumbered the Germans: they had serious manpower issues coming up and Stalin knew that. The Soviet industrial base was wrecked and was not able to keep up current production rates indefinitely. Never mind the industrial manpower problems they had.

And Stalin absolutely did not trust the Western allies at all, and he was well aware of the fact that the second front he had been promised might well turn out to be one of those Churchillian strokes of stupidity. Which it actually pretty much was.

SeanBeansShako
Nov 20, 2009


I personally think after the opening weeks of Operation Barbarossa in which the German Invasion forces seized huge amounts of territory, captured and eliminated swathes of the Red Army and pretty much reduced most of the Soviet Airforce to dust that there wasn't going to be any compromise at all between the USSR and Nazi Germany.

EvanSchenck
Sep 8, 2010


Kemper Boyd posted:

Remember who called the shots. Stalin.

Stalin was highly intelligent, well-informed, and fully aware that after Operation Uranus the USSR had the momentum. Even if he was interested in a negotiated settlement, why would he agree to negotiate from a weak position, with German armies occupying Ukraine, the Baltic, and Belarus, and still besieging Leningrad, when it was clear that his position would be far stronger after the next campaign season? Additionally, what would he even gain from a ceasefire? Both sides were fully aware that the USSR and Nazi Germany could not coexist, and one of them would have to destroy the other in war. The Nazi violation of the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact made that very clear. Why would Stalin give his mortal enemy time to recover just when they were beginning to collapse, when he knew he would eventually have to fight them again anyway? Why would he betray the Allies in such a way as to guarantee they would never help him in a subsequent war?

Conversely, why would the Germans approach Stalin with any offer good enough to pique his interest? The front was still deep in Soviet territory, the German army still had the juice for at least one massive offensive aimed at Kursk, and even if that failed they had no reason to believe that they couldn't hold on the defensive. How could they justify abandoning the huge expanse of territory they held, rendering vain the sacrifices of millions of German soldiers? More importantly, not only Hitler but the entire Nazi state had committed from day one to a war of annihilation against the Soviets, and all evidence indicates that a ceasefire on the Eastern Front was inconceivable. Remember that the objective of the 20 July Plot was to make a separate peace with the Western Allies so that all resources could be concentrated on defending Germany from the Soviets. The idea of making peace with Stalin never crossed their minds, for good reason.

The idea simply does not hold water, because from Barbarossa onward there's no point at which it would be advantageous for both the USSR and Germany to come to terms. From Barbarossa to Stalingrad the Germans had too great an advantage to consider it, from Stalingrad to Kursk they were too deep in Soviet territory for either side to consider it, from Kursk to Berlin the USSR had too great an advantage to consider it.

WHOLE DIK AND NUTS
Aug 17, 2011

by Duchess Gummybuns


Nenonen posted:

Perhaps he and Ernst Röhm would have been lovers (Ernst was already closer to Adolf than any other Nazi leader), in which case SA would not have been purged and forced aside by the SS. This would have left Wehrmacht free from competition from Waffen-SS and in general simplified German command and logistics. In the best case the SD Einsatzgruppens would not have been ordered to clean occupied Soviet areas of undesirable people, which in turn might have led into better relations between the army and the locals in Belarus and Ukraine, and therefore less partisan activity. All of this would have led into Germans being in much better positions for the battle of Kursk.

I'm not sure how Hitler's blackness would have worked for him. It probably would have resulted in Joseph Kennedy or any other neutralist Americans not trusting his intentions, thereby driving USA to send more Lend Lease support to Europe sooner. This could have easily neutralized the benefits gained by Hitler's homosexuality. Unfortunately I cannot offer any better answer than that because it is yet a lesser studied historical dilemma.

Perhaps his blackness would be an asset. Many troops that ended up doing the heavy fighting for the Allies on the Western Front and in North Africa were black. Would African American soldiers have defected? An interesting example comes from the Mexican American war, and the Irish Catholics who defected to the Mexican Army. Even more troubling is the thought of French and British colonial troops, particularly from India and Africa. White Hitler already had a fair bit of support in India, if he was black, I think we would have seen a full scale mutiny. Same with the French troops, particularly French West Africans. But would they have joined the Wehrmacht or the SS is the pressing question.

Ghost of Mussolini
Jun 26, 2011


Surely if he was black he would not have enjoyed as much popularity in Germany though. Since we don't have an SS in this timeline, and the SA does not field its own divisions, then the non-white troops would surely join the regular heer. I'm sure aryan officers will be fine with black men in the ranks, after all the fuhrer is black too! Best "what-if" on the thread so far.

edit: If Hitler was not only gay but openly so, there would most probably be a much more relaxed attitude as far as social norms and attitudes go. Considering the period, it would make Nazi Germany much more progressive than anyone else. Also no homosexuals die in the camps! (at least not for being exclusively homosexual) Would Gay Black Hitler still want to gas all the jews?

Ghost of Mussolini fucked around with this message at Sep 18, 2011 around 18:15

Acebuckeye13
Nov 2, 2010

IT GOT HOT


Ghost of Mussolini posted:

Surely if he was black he would not have enjoyed as much popularity in Germany though. Since we don't have an SS in this timeline, and the SA does not field its own divisions, then the non-white troops would surely join the regular heer. I'm sure aryan officers will be fine with black men in the ranks, after all the fuhrer is black too! Best "what-if" on the thread so far.

edit: If Hitler was not only gay but openly so, there would most probably be a much more relaxed attitude as far as social norms and attitudes go. Considering the period, it would make Nazi Germany much more progressive than anyone else. Also no homosexuals die in the camps! (at least not for being exclusively homosexual) Would Gay Black Hitler still want to gas all the jews?

Probably-after all, the narrative that Hitler constructed that outside influences, particularly the Jews, were to blame for Germany's post WW1 downfall was central to his rise to power.

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SeanBeansShako
Nov 20, 2009


Plus gay black Hitler would have gotten into the The Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, either with some artistic flare or sleeping with the Dean.

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