The German campaign of conquering Britain




 
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September 18th, 2006  
MightyMacbeth
 
 

Topic: The German campaign of conquering Britain


What about this topic, can you say? give or enlighten?

Let me be more specific. I am interested in knowing all about it. The beginning, till the faliure of the German forces. From the beginning I mean from the German conquest of France and reaching to the western coast.

Also, why did the Germans lose? How they were powerful at the beginning, but as time progressed, how they slowly started to be defeated etc..

Hope some one is willing to help here. Might be long, but I hope someone can help

Thanks
September 18th, 2006  
systemlord
 
 
well, at first, have a look here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_britain
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Sealion
September 19th, 2006  
Ollie Garchy
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MightyMacbeth
What about this topic, can you say? give or enlighten?

Let me be more specific. I am interested in knowing all about it. The beginning, till the faliure of the German forces. From the beginning I mean from the German conquest of France and reaching to the western coast.

Also, why did the Germans lose? How they were powerful at the beginning, but as time progressed, how they slowly started to be defeated etc..
Brutally tough questions, Mighty Macbeth. The many reasons for the Allied defeat of Germany are still hotly debated 60 years after the war ended. I do not think that forum members will offer anything enlightening. Historians have not for decades. The problem is related to the complexity of the issue. Some Holocaust historians have even suggested that the German killing program directed important resources away from the war effort and helped seal Germany's fate. It this is true, and I am not in a position to answer yes or no, then almost any factor that you can dream up is equally true. A sensible answer is crushed under the weight of possibilities. A good answer would have to cover military, economic, industrial, social, political and individual attitudes, achievements and actions. Truly massive.

One thing, though. There was no German campaign to conquer Britain. London declared war on Germany...not the other way around. The Battle of Britain and Sea Lion were responses to the British declaration of war and military actions against Germany. As in other forum discussions, all of this comes back to the Polish question and your own subjective stand on "German World Domination". You need a lot of imagination to believe that the Germans threatened Britain prior to September 1939. It is sort of biased (or insane) to believe that the Germans would have surrendered to Britain after defeating them in France. The momentum of the war moved the Germans to think about a cross channel invasion. This was true of many German actions such as the invasion of Denmark and Norway, Yugoslavia, Greece or even Italy later in the war. But the war was either started by (1) Germany and the USSR for invading Poland or (2) Britain and France for declaring war on Germany. I lean towards the latter because invasions characterized the 1920s and 1930s and were moreorless tolerated. The simultaneous Soviet invasion of Poland was tolerated by the same governments who declared war on Germany and later handed Warsaw to the communist thugs in 1945.

(I apologize for bringing up this lame issue...again)
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September 19th, 2006  
perseus
 
 
Quote:
You need a lot of imagination to believe that the Germans threatened Britain prior to September 1939. It is sort of biased (or insane) to believe that the Germans would have surrendered to Britain after defeating them in France. The momentum of the war moved the Germans to think about a cross channel invasion. This was true of many German actions such as the invasion of Denmark and Norway, Yugoslavia, Greece or even Italy later in the war. But the war was either started by (1) Germany and the USSR for invading Poland or (2) Britain and France for declaring war on Germany. I lean towards the latter because invasions characterised the 1920s and 1930s and were more or less tolerated.


Ollie

I think you mean Insane to believe Britain surrendering to Germany?

The difference in the case of Poland is that this was an ultimatum with a threat of war. At what point should unopposed German expansion have been stopped? In the case of Austria, the Rhineland and the Sudetenland it is difficult to justify since the population of these areas genuinely wanted to be part of Germany (OK probably only a significant part in the case of the Sudentanland). Only after the rest of Czechoslovakia fell was war actually threatened. Leave it any longer and the Soviet sphere would have been attacked. Given the impression of Russian strength at the time it would have been assumed they would have been easily defeated, leaving Hitler with an enormous empire and resources to economically and if necessary militarily dominate the world. True the League of Nations did little in Abyssinia and Manchuria, but then the League was dominated by nations with a European interest. I have no problem admitting that every nation acted out of self interest rather than morality, in Britain’s case there was an imbalance of power growing in Europe and as in Napoleons time it was convenient to support the other side.

On the other hand you are almost being unfair to Germany regarding the other countries you mention. They were actions precipitating the invasion of Norway, strong British connections in Norwegian politics, the searching of the Altmark, as well as strategic naval interests and the obvious threat of a blockade. The invasion of Greece was a direct result of Mussolini’s bungling, the last thing Hitler wanted was to invade at that stage. I think Hitler would have preferred some of these nations to remain on the sidelines, and become eventual puppet or at worst neutral states.
September 19th, 2006  
MightyMacbeth
 
 
First , thanks all, your contribitions are much appreciated

Anyway, I understand that its hard to come up with reasons for the defeat of Germany in trying to take Britain, but I ask, what are the reasons that are shared and agreed by many?
And what strong motive made the German military heads think of conquering Britain?

I also read the web pages provided. It sure was plenty, but I also want other points. Simpler and shorter ones.

I thank you again
September 20th, 2006  
perseus
 
 
MightyMacbeth

I think you are confusing two issues, the campaign of conquering Britain with the defeat of Germany. You are talking as if Britain was the dominant force in the defeat of Germany, but it was really a quite minor factor.

Before 1944 in terms of resources and manpower it was dominated by the battle between the Soviets and Germany, and whoever won this stuggle would have dominated the European continent. Britains main asset was its strategic position as a jumping of and supply point from which the massive arsenal of American industry could be deployed. Britain was more of an annoyance which caused Germany to diversify into areas such as naval bulding and air defence and distributed some ground forces.
September 20th, 2006  
MontyB
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by perseus
MightyMacbeth

I think you are confusing two issues, the campaign of conquering Britain with the defeat of Germany. You are talking as if Britain was the dominant force in the defeat of Germany, but it was really a quite minor factor.

Before 1944 in terms of resources and manpower it was dominated by the battle between the Soviets and Germany, and whoever won this stuggle would have dominated the European continent. Britains main asset was its strategic position as a jumping of and supply point from which the massive arsenal of American industry could be deployed. Britain was more of an annoyance which caused Germany to diversify into areas such as naval bulding and air defence and distributed some ground forces.
So what do you think would have happened in North Africa had Britain been taken out of the war in 1940 and most importantly how would the war with Russia have gone had the Germans been able to open a second front into the Caucasus in 1941?

I really think people under estimate the mistake Germany made in not having a plan to secure Britain in 1940.
September 20th, 2006  
Doppleganger
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MontyB
So what do you think would have happened in North Africa had Britain been taken out of the war in 1940 and most importantly how would the war with Russia have gone had the Germans been able to open a second front into the Caucasus in 1941?

I really think people under estimate the mistake Germany made in not having a plan to secure Britain in 1940.

I dunno MontyB. Being British myself I think we have a tendency to overstate our strategic importance in WW2. True our island status gave us a geographical importance that was necessary for the eventual liberation of Europe. Aside from that though, we did not really influence Germany enough to make a major impact to the outcome of the war. In fact, our island status served to hinder us in that regard for the same reasons it protected us. Military speaking, the fighter losses the Luftwaffe sustained in the Battle of Britain did mean that over the skies of Moscow these same fighters were not available when they were sorely needed. Africa was a sideshow compared to the Eastern Front and the Germans never would have had the resources to open a 2nd Caucusus front anyway, not without freeing up resources further North which could only have happened with either a defeat of, or armistice with, Russia. The implications of the latter were that the European war would have been effectively over anyway.
September 20th, 2006  
MightyMacbeth
 
 
okay sorry for not being cery clear.

-What I mean is, what motivated(caused) the German military leaders to try on conquering Britain? What made them begin raids etc..
What did they try to achieve from getting Britain?
Was it because they got France and so were high spirited and tried to take Britain too? etc..

-Then, why or what were the causes that made the Germans fail in getting Britain and what they hoped for. I am not talking about the whole war, but just specifically in the begining years when Germany tried to take Britain. The introduction of the spitfire and the Radar for example. The simple causes and the more significant ones.

-And also, the effect it had on the Germans (aftermath). Like the cause and effect. What did the failure cost the Germans? losing some of their best pilots for example, etc..

Thanks
September 20th, 2006  
Ollie Garchy
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by perseus
On the other hand you are almost being unfair to Germany regarding the other countries you mention. They were actions precipitating the invasion of Norway, strong British connections in Norwegian politics, the searching of the Altmark, as well as strategic naval interests and the obvious threat of a blockade. The invasion of Greece was a direct result of Mussolini’s bungling, the last thing Hitler wanted was to invade at that stage. I think Hitler would have preferred some of these nations to remain on the sidelines, and become eventual puppet or at worst neutral states.
Sorry for making my last post so unclear. I tried to make exactly your point. That is, the momentum of the events after September 1939 moved the Nazi administration towards contemplating and then actually attempting military operations against Britain. All of that stank of opportunism and was characterized by extremely poor strategic judgement. In Hitler's mind, only the invasion of the Soviet Union mattered. It was this attitude, in my opinion, that killed the chances for a logical and consistent Nazi military policy...if such a thing was ever possible.

Turning to Britain, the same could be said of diplomatic efforts to stop Germany from regaining the territories lost after 1918. They were haphazard, poorly planned and poorly executed. British policy was directed by utopian beliefs. London wanted to impose a brutal treaty on a country that had the intrinsic power to strike back...and hard. Caught between the need to accomodate German interests and yet salvage Versailles to "keep Germany down", London ultimately chose war. Poland was just as unimportant as Bohemia. London and Paris wanted something more revolutionary in 1939. They wanted to hold fast to an outdated Versailles system that Germans no longer had to accept. That is, London and Paris wanted to hold onto their own system of European domination and denied the realities of German power. Catastrophic is the only word that can describe this mindset.

Remember, all of Germany's actions during the 1930s were linked to Versailles. The Sudetenland was German. Danzig was German. Anyway, Hitler's brand of nationalism did not accept the right of Bohemia to exist as an independent state. Sound funny? Not really. The French state continually questioned the right of Prussian to exist until it was abolished in 1946 or 1947. And Prussia was around for a lot longer. London could not know that Hitler was bent on attacking the Soviet Union...especially after the non-aggression pact. And why would London care about Moscow, anyway? Until the invasion of the Soviet Union, German policy was hardly revolutionary or even aggressive. 1930s German territorial claims and Berlin's response to the Allied declaration of war were normal and mild...to say the least.

WWII started as an Allied operation against Germany...not the other way around. The fact that the British often see themselves as victims of Nazi aggression is just an illusion constructed to justify a general policy of German repression. London could not know how bad Hitler's gang actually was...and should have reached a settlement with Streseman during the 1920s instead of trying to control Hitler during the Depression.
 


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