Biggest Blunders in Military History - Page 8




 
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March 13th, 2005  
chewie_nz
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charge_7
Yes, of course there was a WWII prior to America's joining it. What's your point? It was still early in the war when we did join it. I think you say these things just to argue.

You're comparing one small unit on a one-time raid to an entire air force's effects over years?
ok...i'll refine. you can't compare what the US fielded at their entry into WWII (ie 1942) to what the english were fielding at the START of WWII (ie 1939). so, in what role were B-17's being used for in 1939/1940? i believe it was not as a heavy bomber, and what was the US's front line fighter in 1939.

my point is that after "the war to end all wars" not alot of time was spent in developing modern tools or tactics for war. cause there wasn't going to be another one...no matter how bad it got (apeasment & isolationism) also, because of the depression there wasn't the money for weapons development. the US army was tiny and they were only just phasing out cavelry (as were many other countries)

in fact france had some of the most advanced weapon in theatre in 1939, it was their tactics that were outdated.

~now, as for as the USAAF daylight bombing raids went...i am not trying to belittle any effort of either ally. but by no stretch of the imagination can you call ANY of the normal day/night raids "precise". it was Districts we were bombing, nothing smaller than that.
but what i am saying is; flying at night...in smaller formations...with no fighter cover....and STILL being able to hit your targets, is something worthy of at least SOME praise.
March 13th, 2005  
Charge 7
 
 
None of which disproves my contention that saying "allied inability to produce up to date aircraft at the start of WWII" was in error.
March 13th, 2005  
chewie_nz
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charge_7
None of which disproves my contention that saying "allied inability to produce up to date aircraft at the start of WWII" was in error.
~this really deserves to be split into another thread.....~

no it wasn't in error, but i do think it was a blunder...if germany was able to produce cutting edge aircraft before hostilities commenced ( ie Me 109, Ju 88 & the He 111) why weren't the allies? the hawker hunter & spifire being the notable exceptions. what was the USAAF's frontline fighter? i believe it was the grossly under-powered mohawk fighter.

in fact the wellington bomber (with it's very advanced construction) was almost cancelled as "un-neccesary"


some info on early use of the B-17;

European air attacks early in the war showed that massed land based air power could destroy ships at sea. However the American experience was far from convincing, primarily because there were not have enough aircraft to make massive attacks.
A single B-17 bomber could carry a lethal bomb load, but had to attack from high altitude to escape shipborn antiaircraft fire. At high altitudes, a strategic bomber could not hit a maneuvering target. A bomber had to fly straight and level to the target to align the bombsight with where the bombardier thought the target would be after the bombs made a long fall. During that period, as the bomber was committed, a ship could maneuver for several minutes to confuse the airplane and to avoid the falling bombs.
The army B-17 was sold for coast defense before the war. The press was primed for B-17 success and reported splashes as hits. In fact, in all of 1942, one Japanese destroyer was sunk, and it was stopped to pick up survivors from a ship sunk by carrier planes. B-17s did damage several warships and sank several transports in harbor or convoy. 1943 saw another DD, a seaplane carrier, and more transports.


~and~

This is before the period of American dominance with the:
o Chance Vought F4U Corsair - first combat with USMC on Guadalcanal 13Feb43 with 12,570 built.
o Grumman F6F Hellcat - first combat from Yorktown 31Aug43 with 4,423 built.
o Curtiss SB2C Helldiver - first combat in the second strike on Rabaul 11Nov43 with 6,000 built.
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March 13th, 2005  
MontyB
 
 
I think you have to remember that much of the allied effort after WW1 was put towards avoiding war and therefore the prevailing "hope" was that they would not need to spend money on development, on top of this the Germans pretty much had to start from scratch with their military so they were always going to benefit from new technology.
March 13th, 2005  
Doppleganger
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MontyB
I think you have to remember that much of the allied effort after WW1 was put towards avoiding war and therefore the prevailing "hope" was that they would not need to spend money on development, on top of this the Germans pretty much had to start from scratch with their military so they were always going to benefit from new technology.
It isn't true that the Germans had to start from scratch. They still had armed forces under the Versaille Treaty and like every other industrialized nation their military hardware saw its roots in WW1 technology. For example, the Bismarck class of battleship was a WW1 design. What is true is that because of the limitations imposed on their armed forces, the Germans were more inclined to invest in new techniques and strategies as a way to get round the treaty.

Hitler also has to be given some credit because he was very open to new ideas. A big part of why Germany was so initially successful was Hitler's willingness to allow novel thinkers like Guderian to carry out theories that were ignored in other countries. Guderian was allowed free reign to develop the German panzer arm and fully encouraged to develop all his ideas and theories, including most famously Blitzkrieg.

So as far as experimental technology was concerned, jet propulsion, chemicals and rocketry for instance, Germany was a world leader. As far as traditional military hardware was concerned they were certainly well to the fore, but no further ahead in general than the Allies were. One good example is in AFV design where at the outbreak of war the Soviet Union was the world leader with the T-34 medium tank.
March 13th, 2005  
MontyB
 
 
Quote:
It isn't true that the Germans had to start from scratch. They still had armed forces under the Versaille Treaty and like every other industrialized nation their military hardware saw its roots in WW1 technology.
When I made the statement this is pretty much what I meant, they werent allowed tanks or an airforce so when they finally abandoned the restrictions of the treaty their armour and aircraft were always going to be state of the art.

As for the rest I agree completely.
March 13th, 2005  
Charge 7
 
 
It should also be pointed out the the Germans worked very closely with the Soviets during the 1920s in developing technologies that included, tanks, aircraft and submarines. All done very secretively at the instigation of General von Seeckt and others.

http://www.feldgrau.com/ger-sov.html
March 13th, 2005  
serbianpower
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doppleganger
Quote:
Originally Posted by MontyB
I think you have to remember that much of the allied effort after WW1 was put towards avoiding war and therefore the prevailing "hope" was that they would not need to spend money on development, on top of this the Germans pretty much had to start from scratch with their military so they were always going to benefit from new technology.
It isn't true that the Germans had to start from scratch. They still had armed forces under the Versaille Treaty and like every other industrialized nation their military hardware saw its roots in WW1 technology. For example, the Bismarck class of battleship was a WW1 design. What is true is that because of the limitations imposed on their armed forces, the Germans were more inclined to invest in new techniques and strategies as a way to get round the treaty.

Hitler also has to be given some credit because he was very open to new ideas. A big part of why Germany was so initially successful was Hitler's willingness to allow novel thinkers like Guderian to carry out theories that were ignored in other countries. Guderian was allowed free reign to develop the German panzer arm and fully encouraged to develop all his ideas and theories, including most famously Blitzkrieg.

So as far as experimental technology was concerned, jet propulsion, chemicals and rocketry for instance, Germany was a world leader. As far as traditional military hardware was concerned they were certainly well to the fore, but no further ahead in general than the Allies were. One good example is in AFV design where at the outbreak of war the Soviet Union was the world leader with the T-34 medium tank.
the best german weapon in WW2 was german soldier with his profesionalism, endurance, traininig... they achieved this with help of versaille limitations. in germany after WW1 only the best candidates could join the military since there could be only 100000 soldiers. it was big honour to be a soldier because it meant that you are the best of the best. this soldiers were core of german military power in WW2. we all know how did they perform on battlefield during the war, specialy their CO.
March 20th, 2005  
The Other Guy
 
 
mmm...

I'm not sure if anyone brought up a mention on the battle of the siene (or whatever you call it.)
March 20th, 2005  
Charge 7
 
 
Do you mean the Battle of the Somme? Yes, it has been mentioned.