Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by Osorno13, Sep 26, 2019.
Well, Simard did want Collins to go in on the deck. Wrong ordnance.
If Germany is defeated quicker in Europe, the USSR will be able to turn its attention to east earlier and accelarate the collapse of Japan even in the scenario where the Pacific War has more or less gone as it did IOTL.
From 1941 Japanese strategy had revolved around a neutral USSR at its back. After the collapse of Germany that changed to the hope a split between the western Allies & the USSR could be exploited by Japan. The DoW by the USSR proved the bankruptcy of that strategy. Were the USSR to declare war in 1944, or earlier it would as a profound event as the loss of the Marianas defense zone. That brought on the fall of the Tojo government & the first search for alternatives by the new PM Suzuki. Were both the main defense position in the Pacific defeated, and the USSR to declare war in 1944 its going to double down the pressure on the Cabinet & the Army fanatics to see reality. Not that I expect a swift surrender/ One of the major delaying factors in 1944 was the Army could claim it was not yet defeated. It was even still winning offensives in China & Burma. Were the Army defeated in Manchuria & Korea by early 1945 Suzukis position might be strengthened & the Emperor intervene earlier.
DEBATABLE. The situation is certainly true that the USN is not ready for a central battle before February 1944. But neither is the Red Army logistically able before late 1944 to mount any kind of east Asia offensive. They don't have the trucks or disengaged men.
An early German collapse, implies the situation changes little. LOGISTICS takes time. American logistics which is as much an underpin of Soviet army capability as it is of American navy capability depends on cargo lift over rail, by truck and by cargo ship.
It turns out British lend lease saves Russia in 1941-1942, but American lend-lease 1943 and 1944 makes Red Army offensives cross country across a shattered communications desert possible.
Even at that, ever wonder why the Russians could not stay in China?
Logistics... it takes time, and it cannot be rushed.
Why is this man laughing?
He isn't. He's DRUNK. That photo is RTL after FDR told him the RN was going to tag along for the final act against Japan despite him and to shut up and Navy about it.
Not enough flattops and trained aviators for the USN in 1943 to risk the Marianna Islands confrontation yet. Nor is the fleet train too steady yet. Remember Philippine Sea was about 900 USN aircraft against about 800 IJNAS and IJA aircraft. Despite the lopsided naval victory, the USN lost 14% of its airpower against those tyros and failed to close the deal. This won't happen at Leyte Gulf either and that is because not even the American admirals had learned yet, despite Midway and the Solomon Islands campaign, that sea control is as much a function of shore based air as it is of surface fleets. As long as the Japanese have runways and aircraft and fuel, they can contest, no matter how feebly the use of the sea within the combat mission radius of their aircraft. At Leyte Gulf this is seen as McCain has to move outside the battlespace to "rest, replenish and repair" mid-battle. (Whether he should have is debatable, but to R^3 he had to meet the fleet trains at a safe distance to the east and was not promptly available when Kurita came a calling.) The fleet trains cannot be risked within the air power mission combat radius of the Japanese shore based air forces (USS Princeton) even that late in the war until land based runways and shore based air can take up the air defense coverage mission. (Iwo Jima was taken not for fighter escort to protect the B-29s or to provide an emergency runway, it was to set up a fighter air defense shield to protect the Marianna islands bases from Japanese night air raids launched from Japan and staged through Iwo Jima by the Betty bomber squadrons that flew in the missions.)
The Russians are still fighting Germans. No Manchurian Strategic Offensive Operation is possible when the overland logistics lines of communication are involved east to west. The million men necessary, much less the equipment and stockpiled supplies (About 8 million tonnes for 3 months combat against a still 1944 formidable Kwantung Army) is not available, neither is the frontal aviation. The Russians never had the sea lift or seapower to mount any naval threat in theater, either.
Now when the Berlin Maniac was kaput in April 1945; how long did it take for the Moscow Madman and his generals to shove sufficient forces west to east along that rather slender and highly vulnerable railroad OLLOC? About 3 months. That is ~1/3 of available SU combat land power by the way. Think that could have been peeled off to fight in a 2 front war with 1943 Germans still in the Game? How about 1944 Germans? I really don't think so.
Half your text here is gibberish as I made no proposal the US prosecute a earlier offensive in the central Pacific. You have a dependable habit of jumping to odd conclusions on other folks remarks. Neither did I propose a million man offensive by the Red Army. OTL it was the abrupt unexpected DoW by the USSR 8th August that shattered a important leg of Japanese strategy. Note the Japanese decision to surrender 9th August came a day after the Soviet DoW. It was the fact of war between the two that illustrated the impossible position. The Red army attack was barely began 9 August & the later defeat of the border defense was unknown and unforeseen when the Emperor & Cabinet came to their final decision.
In 1944 the loss of the Marianas islands brought down Tojos government & initiated the euphemistic alternative victory policy. Were the USSR to end its neutrality with Japan then vs a year later, even without large scale attack two legs of Japans strategy would be removed simultaneously. How fast that would accelerate the eventual decision to surrender is not perfectly clear, but it drive how the impossible stratigic position of Japan.
A third point is this:
...my remarks about the eventual Japanese defeat in Manchuria revolved around a quicker defeat of Germany in Europe. Which makes your remark
& argument following a bit meaningless.
A declaration without a confirmed report of action to undertake is meaningless. IOW, a Russian declaration of war is a null event in 1943/1944. It is not an odd conclusion to take the declared thesis and subject it to a possibility test based on potential factors in play. Since the Marianas Island defense zone is not penetrable before the USN is strong enough and has the logistics to execute such an action before 1944, that knocks half of your ATL supposition out. The other is can the Russians fight a 2 front war. Not declare a 2 front war, I mean FIGHT it, because the Japanese are not going to be panicked by a mere declaration when they know the logistics problems as well or probably better than the Russians do. In fact it was not the declaration by Moscow, it was the actual reports of the Kwantung Army of the Russian action; that goaded the Tokyo cabal to realize the Russians were not available as middle men; because the actual bargaining chips the Japanese were prepared to offer Russia to betray the co-belligerency were being Russian taken on the ground.
How the heck is the mere Russian declaration going to actually panic the Japanese? It doesn't and never did. The notation I make of the OLLOC problem is why, just as the lack of a stable fleet train and the lack of flattop based aviation to face Japanese shore based air until early 1944 is why the central Pacific offensive is a bit hung up. When the Japanese realize both problems have been allied solved, (Okinawa) that is when they know they are done.
Already stated why this was not RTL so. (Atomic bomb shocks, don't forget those. Third pillar of the stool.)
Again logistics dependent upon the United States. The all-terrain trucks, the Russians need from the US to motorize their supply echelons, don't arrive in the SU in quantity until AROUND MID 1943.
Maybe I shorthand too much, but I have a very clear picture of what you wrote and why it may not be so. Imperial Japan was one tough cookie with one very peculiar factor in their governmental deliberations: decision was always the result of group consensus, the army and the navy had to agree and they never agreed on anything in their two separate wars. China is firewalled from the Pacific War by this service decision schism. As the Russians enter the Pacific war, it has to be remembered that they were in a state of truce, and the Russians and Japanese knew it. Technical war in abeyance, sort of like the result, for example, after the Korean War in east Asian political practice. So the Russian declaration would be meaningless in the context to Tokyo for much like many statements each side made that came after the Korean War example were meaningless since words mean nothing but acts seen are not refutable, like the cutting down of a tree, an actual act was noted in Pyongyang and caused the North Koreans to desist in their own aggressive acts. The ability to do something that the Japanese did not believe possible has to be demonstrated to both the Japanese army and navy to make them agree on anything.
I think that the Japanese would have kept fighting in the home islands until it was demonstrated to them that the Americans could land, stay and compel. Russians be damned. The atomic bombs substituted for DOWNFALL and convinced the Tokyo cabal that the Americans could do as they said they would do.
Let's look at what the Japanese said about why they quit, because it clues us in to what they thought were the actual reasons to make that decision.
Note what is omitted? The enemy, who has the new and most cruel bomb... "has begun to employ a new and most cruel bomb".
Note the identification of the emperor as the head of Japan's family?
Now we will look at the Potsdam declaration.
Note that the Potsdam declaration.
a. Did not mention the Soviet Union as a participant (Potsdam Declaration)? (When the Emperor accepts the Allied terms he does not recognize the Soviet Union as a military factor, though he mentions them as a co-belligerent with the US/UK and China.)
b. Did declare the allied intent to bring combat to the Japanese home islands. (The emperor specifically mentions the atomic bombings as the demonstration that the enemy (America) can do what he says he intends. No mention of the Russians in this regard of effect, as they are a null factor to Japan proper.)
c. Set the terms and conditions of surrender, but did not exclude the emperor by name? (See the underlined article, often overlooked by historians as a major reason why the Japanese "took no notice" of the declaration in the first place as they sought "clarification" and demonstration of capability.) The Americans missed that Suzuki clue and bungled the follow up communications, thus prolonging the war.
Article 4 has always appeared to me to have been crafted by utter US State Department imbeciles who were advised by rather incompetent US trained Japanese cultural experts (alleged anthropologists) to say exactly (infer actually) that the Japanese will have to see their emperor put into the dock as one of those militaristic advisors. The English text does not translate article 4 into Japanese very well, so the Japanese have their own problems actually seeing that the Americans are offering terms that could be accepted. Sometimes one has to spell things out with great named precision, and even then, as a foreigner, do them as deeds in Japan before one is believed to be serious in a dealing.
Now this went far afield off the OP, but it is thoroughly based on the RTL debacles I noted above to show why a mere Russian declaration is worthless, but the loss of Saipan specifically, could cause the Tojo government to fall. An act fulfilled is the impetus for the Japanese to politically react; just as it would be for any other sane polity.
His last action is to chew on the carpet as he slips away...
As someone else mentioned avoiding the Philippines altogether and focusing on the Central Pacific along with taking Formosa and Okinawa earlier would help somewhat in the Pacific.
Dugout Doug is killed/crippled/injured in PI, so can't push for the Philippines Campaign, and thus, material spent there can be put into projects that are more useful, like the Central Pacific Campaign.
1. Earlier development of nukes.
2. Hitler assassination.
3. In 1944, UK clears the estuary to Antwerp 3 months earlier. Leads to Allies getting to Berlin by early 45.
4. Japan bogs down in Malaya and Singapore becomes an allied hub for counterattack in the Pacific.
I am not sure if Antwerp 3 months earlier is possible
The First Convoy entered Antwerp on 28th November - Antwerp was liberated on Sept 4th - so all other things being equal 3 months earlier is Aug 28th!
Your looking at the wrong timeframe. The chief reason Antwerp wasn't brought online was because the approaches couldn't be done demined until the estuary could be cleared of enemy forces and shore defenses, something that wasn't even started until October 8th and wasn't finished until November 8th. That tells us that demining was always going to take around 20 days, but also that the real set date isn't the time between Antwerp's liberation and it's operation, but the Scheldt's liberation and Antwerp's operation, which was 20 days. Assuming the estuaries are prioritized for capture and seized in the immediate aftermath of Antwerp, say by the 11th of September, that would allow the first convoy to enter Antwerp by October 1st.
It took time to clear the Scheldt and to then enable the clearing of Walcheren island which then enabled the mine clearing of the waterways to be conducted.
Also at 4th Sept the forces that had liberated Antwerp were well ahead of the rest of the 21st Army group which was still clearing channel ports and isolated pockets of Germans.
Granted had Ike and Monty properly appreciated the difficulties that the 1st Canadian Army would experience in clearing the Sheldt then they would have very likely have provided greater forces etc (or at least shifted Army Boundaries to lessen the burden etc)
11th Sept is massively over optimistic
This could only realistically happen if the Germans totally abandon the south bank area
Given the same conditions even with an earlier appreciation of the challenges facing 1st CAN Army much of its fighting power is still fighting along the coastal region
This is a pretty good document that covers those operations
Yes? And? I mentioned that.
Depends on how fast the Canadians move and with what force. Two British armored divisions represented a quite potent force, at least on paper, certainly compared to what the Germans had in the area (which at the time Antwerp fell was barely anything). As your own document notes, the German 15th Army was still to the south of the Scheldt at the time it took Antwerp, not yet set up to defend it. Instead of exploiting this, the WAllies wound-up giving Germany all of September to redeploy, reinforce, and dig-in, which greatly increased the difficulty and time of the subsequent task.
Separate names with a comma.