Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

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Re: Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

Postby Thonar » Wed 22 Oct 2014 12:13

Darth-Lampshade wrote:Ikalugin, NATO (or at least the US) had a relatively accurate thought of how the Soviets would fight if the Cold War went hot. They knew VDV and Spetsnaz would attempt to secure locations that would enable the motor rifle and tank regiments to keep on driving foward. They knew a fresh MRR would be right behind one that smashed itself to pieces to achieve a breakthrough. I think you are underestimating the amount of freedom US officers were given to maneuver.


And from this point on I doubt your whole post... or at least the part about the Sovjets.
Yes, ikalugin underestimates NATO (naturally)... but what you describes doesn't really sound like the Red-Army.

In fact the Red Army (AFAIK), unlike NATO, doesn't enforce breakthrough by force, but by creating gaps in the enemy line and pushing through them.
Thus the usual 3-line-attack: Line 1 is stopped, Line 2 on the right of Line 1 gets stopped because NATO uses its reserves -> so Line - 3 on the far right gets all Divisional support and reserves to breakthrough, because Blue-Forces are all bound on Line 1 and 2... voila: Breakthrough.

Its not like they throw anything into a meatgrinder...

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Re: Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

Postby orcbuster » Wed 22 Oct 2014 12:37

ikalugin wrote:@DrRansom, thanks for your contribution.

To clarify, I wasn't specifically talking about the politicians, but the decision makers in general, such as high ranking military officers. The other point I was trying to make is that information about the impeding attack takes a long time to get to the people in charge of responding to this information.

Capture of Denmark would preclude NATO from reinforcing there under the REFORGER and other such operations (ie securing a strategic flank in the Baltic), pressuring neutrals (such as Sweden and Finland) with the gains in Denmark and Norway to get into a more favorable position to the Soviets (though probably still maintaining a degree of neutrality and independence).

Forces allocated for such an operations would be Polish, plus relevant amphib and airborne assets. That Front would probably also later participate in the offensive against Low countries (and maintain general northern flank of WP forces) should need arise.

I think materials regarding those operations were disclosed by the Polish and were even posted here during the good old ALB times.


Denmark would also have to be secured before any eventual operations against southern norway.
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Re: Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

Postby Liare » Wed 22 Oct 2014 13:32

ikalugin wrote:@liare

I don't assume that, I only state the well known time delays within the relevant decision making systems of the time. And this is based not only on my theoretical research, but also statements by relevant veterans, some of which were made online.

If cold war went hot it would (with sufficiently high probability) escalate to a total, long term war, regardless of how initial European campaign went. As this was unacceptable both politically and ideologically for both parties (them believing to have an inevitable historical victory while maintaining overall status quo) it did not happen.

May you please remind me about the 4 Germany divisions, which apparently were to cover the LANDJUT, as to which W.German grouping they belonged to. Unfortunately I fail to find them, though probably it is due to my insufficient research efforts, which stem from me posting from a mobile device.



Decision making process is all the same, it would still take the same amount of time to collect and process the relevant intelligence and pass it to the decision makers. What you refer to is the speed at which the decision makers would initiate war time preparations, in your case it appear as that at least 24 hours would pass (should the intelligence be instantly collected and rapidly transfered to decision makers, should they make an instant decision, should mobilisation go according to plan) between WP initiation of preparations and the initiation of the same by the Denmark.

In realistic scenario however this would take longer on average due to the imperfect Intel collection/analysis, delays in decision making and so on.



I see, however what kind of significant operational reserve did LANDJUT have (NORTAG would be fighting a different WP Front)? And there is a world of difference between 3 other divisions sending in a brigade- as reinforcements to another sector and a division being sent to the same sector from Corps' reserves.
as i already posted, the 4 divisions was a excageration, just as your claim regarding "2-3 polish armies" was, simply put, NORTHAG would not have permitted those forces to get into LANDJUT's operational area undamaged, it would open up a significant flanking opportunity down trough the Netherlands.
the practical division can be illustrated on the following picture
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LANDJUT was under BALTAP command, with the "interface" to NORTHAG handled by the 6th Panzergrenadier Division.

you seem to be largely basing your assumptions here on that the decision making process would actively hinder any NATO response, but the only scenario where that could, practically, be the case is a pre-emptive conventional attack that only has a single outcome, nuclear holocaust.

re : Reinforcements, it would come from the "european reserve", the UK's 1st Infantry Brigade and the US's 9th Infantry Division where "earmarked" for deployment in this area, with further forces to be deployed if the fighting justified it, but no plan survives contact with reality and it would come down to what was needed and where.

DrRansom wrote:On the issue of Denmark, I don't have any particular information to add to this discussion other than: Why dedicate military resources to invade Denmark? The Danish military wasn't particularly mechanized and Denmark isn't a vital military resource in the beginning of the war. The time required to de-mine the Skaggerak and clear out the diesel subs might be as long as the time required to bring the conflict to a resolution in the Central Front.

The question of mechanized break through is also odd, because Denmark just isn't big enough for meaningful mechanized warfare. The whole peninsula is a strategic cul de sac, on the time scale required to win the war in the West. If you assume that the centralized command elements will have a short and exciting war, before they are bombed / nuked to oblivion, then basing the defense on centralized methods is very fragile.

Likewise, an offense which requires the tight coordination of central command, e.g. when to release the second echelon into the hole created by the first echelon, is susceptible to a de-capitation strike. In that case, the second echelon will not be committed or may commit itself too soon. In the case of premature second echelon attack, the whole first and second echelon will be trapped in a tight area and vulnerable to conventional (or nuclear) strikes. Thus the centralized system can produce impressive results, but if the centralized control is eliminated, then independent parts have to function in a manner contrary to their doctrinal preparation.

(I don't think that it would have been a long war, the loss rates would exhaust most militaries within weeks and left attackers and defenders with the choice of negotiations or full scale atomic warfare. Not a choice likely to produce continued conflict.)
Denmark commands entry and exit of the Baltic, there would be no way for the fleet units at Leningrad to threaten the convoys going across the Atlantic without contesting Denmark, every belt is narrow enough that regular 105mm guns can reach across with relative ease, meaning a full-on boots-on-the-ground military invasion would be required.

the overall NATO plan was to conduct the main "resistance" in Skagerrak, but the Danish fleet planned to mine the straits and conduct guerilla type actions using a mixture of Willemoes class FAC's and old fashioned torpedo boats near the entry areas to the straits themselves, it's something that would likely have cost a lot of lives on both sides.

moreover, Esbjerg, Aalborg and Odense where major port areas with good connections to the rest of the european road network.

to put it bluntly, everybody knew Denmark would lose, the army only kept 7 days worth of supplies for full-on fighting for that very reason, any forces left by then would either be so "shattered" that a major reorganisation would be required, simply not existing or the Warzaw pact invaders would be repelled, and things would need to get reorganized anyway.

the vast majority of fighting men would be volunteers on foot in the shape of the home guard, and they didn't arm, plan or train to fight conventional pitched battles, it was always intended to be a "tripwire" to detect landings that would rapidly become a armed insurgency, Home Guard doctrine was, and remains a two part role, one is to secure the assigned objective and once that's contested by more than the company (or companies) can handle, fall back, let the enemy pass and focus on delaying and running interference.

fighting pitched battles with these was the Army's job.

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Re: Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

Postby Mikeboy » Wed 22 Oct 2014 14:55

Liare wrote:the vast majority of fighting men would be volunteers on foot in the shape of the home guard, and they didn't arm, plan or train to fight conventional pitched battles, it was always intended to be a "tripwire" to detect landings that would rapidly become a armed insurgency, Home Guard doctrine was, and remains a two part role, one is to secure the assigned objective and once that's contested by more than the company (or companies) can handle, fall back, let the enemy pass and focus on delaying and running interference.


This is why it amused me so much when MadMat said Finland wasn't included because it was a guerilla army. :roll:

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Re: Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

Postby Kraxis » Thu 23 Oct 2014 15:22

What the hell did I create here...
[EUG]MadMat wrote:MadMat says so many things ... :twisted:

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Re: Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

Postby quigglebert » Fri 24 Oct 2014 11:52

A beautiful organic discussion, please let it ride, I'm learning an aweful lot
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Re: Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

Postby Regnar » Fri 24 Oct 2014 21:00

Soviet military science makes me hard.

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Re: Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

Postby GBNATO » Fri 24 Oct 2014 21:16

Darth-Lampshade wrote:I can't speak for the Brits as their tanks certainly reflected a mindset of "dig in and hold" but they can be a very stubborn sort that would probably prove more of a challenge than that Soviet report suggests.


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Re: Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

Postby Mitchverr » Fri 24 Oct 2014 21:29

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Re: Why does the warrior need to stop to fire?

Postby Regnar » Fri 24 Oct 2014 22:39

The "stubbornness" of British tanks was their Achilles' heel. I would expect them to have been outmaneuvered rather easily.

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