Germany could not win ww2?

No-one in their right mind would believe Hitler on that. He has invaded several countries with sneakattacks, so no, it wouldn't make a big difference.
Nobody would have to believe him but he could have decided not to go to war with the US. History is replete with politicians, especially despots, telling big lies. At the very least he could have privately demanded that Japan attack the Soviet Union as the quid pro quo for Germany going to war with the US. Remember that there is good evidence that Stalin put out peace feelers thought Japan and Sweden in the spring of 1943. If the US were not participating in the war against Germany and was supplying less equipment to the Soviets' and British peace talks in 1943 may have progressed further.
 
Define 'winning'! If the aim is to bulldoze over every country in Europe PLUS the US, PLUS the USSR, AND all at the same time, Germany already lost the war from the start, when the aim was to just 'reverse' the 'injustices' of the treaty of Versailles, they pretty much already won in 1939 bu then they gambled it all away. If the aim was to replace all of the former WWI adversaries with friendly puppet regimes and make them economically vasal states, there are voices out there that say that in the long run Germany DID win that war. It only took them until 1996.
 
Could Germany have won a war to "reverse" Versaille and regain some border territory? Yes. Could they have won Hitler's War? Absolutely not. Hitler could not win the next war, but Germany could have.

That's not to say that they would have, just that they could have.
 
Listen, we've been down similar paths before, I'm seeing no sources I haven't refuted before and I'm not going to get into an opinion slap fight with you again, especially when I know it eventually is going to get to the point of one of us getting frustrated and stopping responding anyway, so I'm just going to say "agree to disagree" and we'll save each other a lot of time and effort as well as the other posters pointless walls of text.
 
Listen, we've been down similar paths before, I'm seeing no sources I haven't refuted before and I'm not going to get into an opinion slap fight with you again, especially when I know it eventually is going to get to the point of one of us getting frustrated and stopping responding anyway, so I'm just going to say "agree to disagree" and we'll save each other a lot of time and effort as well as the other posters pointless walls of text.
Fair enough
 
I guess it is what your definition of winning is for the Nazi/Germany if it is controlling mainland Europe via occupation or alliances then yes they could win. Britain would need to be just be defensive maybe to busy fighting Japan or have an armistice with Germany then Germany can concentrate on slowly pushing the soviets back with fortified supply lines or just creating a defensive wall against Russian attack. That would go against all the tactics that had so far been successful for them so probably not happening while Hitler was still in charge.
 
German Gen. von Seeckt had laid out a theory of cooperation with USSR and China, assumed informed by their WWI wartime shortages, and of course a desire to not fight a two front war.

AH tried a different tack to stitch together Poland, Japan, et al to battle the USSR, while building a kind of attempt at High Seas fleet delusion.

my speculation is always after the death of Marshall Pilsudski in Poland (no one there to make a decision) and Japan being elusive on signing the original Anti-Comintern Pact, they could have just reverted to "original plan" (also France was trying to reach a deal with the USSR, so further impetus)

thus you have an AGNA with UK and renewed trade and clandestine cooperation with the USSR in the '35 - '36 time period. if they are dealing with the Soviets it likely eclipses the Spanish Civil War and alliance with Italy? but that is hardly a terrible downside.
 
Potential History and his quixotic takes on WW2 are insufferable. His videos are littered with a ridiculous number of errors, and yet you still see them being posted everywhere by edgy teenagers. PH has become a leader of this cargo cult of faux historians, vaulted to the top by his ignorant followers. His work is representative of the 'meme history' that has become all too popular on Youtube and other websites. Teens today have a bizarre need to distill their understanding of literally everything down into meme format. This behaviour is very jarring to encounter: It seems to leaks into almost everything they do. Anyway... According to PH, the Germans capturing Moscow would have absolutely no affect on the outcome of the war. Why does he think that? Because, he draws an utterly facile comparison with the French capture of Moscow in 1812 (which did not yield a victory).

The fact that he thinks this illustrates just how little PH actually knows about history. How can someone talk so much about a subject while knowing so little? He doesn't understand how different these two wars were. The Germans did far more damage to the Soviets in 1941 than the French ever did to the Russians in 1812. Why? Because the Heer advanced over a much broader front than the Grand Armee, sowing unimaginable chaos and destruction along the way. [1] The Soviets left nothing untarnished in the wake of their retreat. Scorched Earth tactics can be hit or miss, because you have to burn down the farms & towns that are directly in the path of an invading army. This works fine if an enemy is only moving through a small part of your country (as Napoleon did). But when an invading army is moving across a large part of your territory, scorched Earth tactics will cripple you. The Soviets found this out to their chagrin during the war, when their economy was pushed to the breaking point.

PH also ignores how much larger and more important Moscow was in 1941 as compared to 1812. If Hitlers marauding thugs had captured the city, it would have had grave consequences for the Russians. This was explored in a wonderful book by David Downing, called The Moscow Option. He uses the Operation Typhoon in August 1941! trope [2] to show how enormously disruptive Moscows fall would be to the Soviet railway net, and their ability to deploy and supply their field armys. (Among other things, it would lead to the fall of Leningrad) Losing both of their capital citys would be a huge blow to the prestige of the Soviet Union, and would seriously hurt the Red Armys morale. Another thing PH ignores was Stalins declaration that if the Germans captured Moscow, he would be forced to make peace with Hitler.


[1]The Germans were also able to fight decisive battles with the Red Army close to the border, which is something that the French were unable to do. The Russians kept escaping from them and retreating deeper into the interior, where their resistance would have a more meaningful impact on an overstretched invader.

[2] This particular scenario has come under alot of skepticism in the last decade or so, with critiques coming from David Glantz and David Stahel.
I remember Downing. If Hitler had been killed...ended with him taking command of the army
 
Hitler had been planning to invade Russia from the 30's, and he's being going on about Judeo-Bolshevism for longer. Germany is going to invade. But you are right it doesn't have to be in June 1941 though. But the longer they wait the stronger the Soviets will be, and Germanys resource issues will only increase

but a few points, Germany tried bombing Britain it didn't work (see BoB), in fact by the summer of 1941 it's Britain bombing Germany!

They tried starving Britain but it didn't work (see battle of the Atlantic). also the longer the battle of the Atlantic goes on for the greater the risk Germany will bring the US into the war fully.

V1's rockets were quickly negated by counter measures

V2's couldn't be countered but were massively inefficient in terms of damage dealt.
OK. . .bombing Britain hurt the nation, the Blitz was damaging and unpleasant. The Battle of the Atlantic was also harmful to Great Britain, and had Hitler not invaded the USSR, Germany could have devoted a lot more resources to both the V1 and the V2 program. I think that if Germany were patient and kept hammering away at Great Britain, peace would eventually have ensued. Also, if the Germans were really being smart, eventually they could have just ceased offensive operations against Great Britain and concentrated on extracting resources from its newly conquered territory and building itself up. Let England try to defeat the Nazi Empire all on its own, they could never do that, and would only wear themselves out trying.
 
Dispersion of forces when Moscow should have been the focus.
I read through the Wikipedia article on the Battle of Kiev and I found this:
David Glantz argued, however, that had Operation Typhoon been launched in September, it would have met greater resistance due to Soviet forces not having been weakened by their offensives east of Smolensk. The offensive would have also been launched with an extended right flank. Glantz also claims that regardless of the final position of German troops when winter came, they would have still faced a counteroffensive by the 10 reserve armies raised by the Soviets toward the end of the year, who would also be better equipped by the vast industrial resources in the area of Kiev. Glantz asserts that had Kiev not been taken before the Battle of Moscow, the entire operation would have ended in a disaster for the Germans.
Why do you think Glantz is wrong about this particular issue?
 
I read through the Wikipedia article on the Battle of Kiev and I found this:

Why do you think Glantz is wrong about this particular issue?
That is going to be a long explanation that I'll have to tackle tomorrow. There was another thread here that brought out evidence, courtesy of @per70, showed Glantz got some facts wrong that misinformed his opinion.
 
Last edited:
There was really a slim chance before 1941 and that would have required some expert diplomacy. Something Germany was sorely lacking in.
Post 1941 it came down into a war of attrition which Germany was not going to win.
 
I read through the Wikipedia article on the Battle of Kiev and I found this:
"David Glantz argued, however, that had Operation Typhoon been launched in September, it would have met greater resistance due to Soviet forces not having been weakened by their offensives east of Smolensk. The offensive would have also been launched with an extended right flank. Glantz also claims that regardless of the final position of German troops when winter came, they would have still faced a counteroffensive by the 10 reserve armies raised by the Soviets toward the end of the year, who would also be better equipped by the vast industrial resources in the area of Kiev. Glantz asserts that had Kiev not been taken before the Battle of Moscow, the entire operation would have ended in a disaster for the Germans."

Why do you think Glantz is wrong about this particular issue?
Glantz was wrong about the strength of Soviet forces in front of Moscow in August and September. It would take a while to find the link where Per70 listed the numbers. German forces were also stronger in August and September, not having suffered the heavy losses taken during the Soviet offensive period. Also during 1941 German forces suffered much fewer losses on the attack than the defense, so continuing to attack toward Moscow instead of Kiev or Leningrad in August or September would actually spare losses suffered IOTL during AG-Center's defensive phase, especially given Operation Typhoon's casualty ratios. The only addition by October was 2 full strength fresh Panzer divisions, meanwhile every other part of AG-Center had been weakened during the Soviet offensives toward Smolensk in August-September and both Panzer groups were worn down from attacking toward Leningrad and Kiev despite getting some new equipment in the meantime. Plus in October right at the start the weather changed, which hampered operations throughout the month.

As to the Kiev situation in particular they really offered no thread to AG-Center. AG-South had them largely pinned down and eventually AGS would breakout into Ukraine as they did historically anyway, while 2nd army (not 2nd PG) would be continuing to attack south against Central Front, which would secure the flank of AG-Center against forces in Ukraine. 2nd Panzer Group would be fine with a large open flank given that they had one throughout OTL Kiev campaign and were heavily assaulted by Soviet forces on the flank throughout August-September by forces from the Moscow region while they were pushing on Kiev and never had a problem. Moscow flanking forces were quite a bit stronger than the forces south of AG-Center IOTL, so the flank threat would actually be less if they pushed on Moscow and had an early Vyazma pocket. Plus people seem to forget that the forces along the Moscow axis kept getting more reinforcements and equipment throughout August-September and Ukraine's industry was still pumping out equipment, but that didn't make a difference to the result either. If anything letting Moscow's massive industrial base continue pumping out weapons would be more damaging compared to letting East Ukraine continue to do so for a little while longer than IOTL.

Also Glantz is flat out wrong about the capabilities of Soviet reserve armies over the winter if Moscow falls and does not even factor in the loss in morale and transport/communication abilities if the Soviet capital is lost. Moscow also had the best heated airfields in the USSR (huge for the Wehrmacht in winter), was a huge warehouse for supplies and industry (10% of USSR's industrial output in one city, not even counting the wider Moscow Oblast), plus losing it would mean the USSR loses it's biggest concentration of AAA which then becomes German or at least is removed from the equation, which is rather huge. Plus Moscow had a disproportionate role in Soviet military production, as certain high tech industries were located there. Taking Moscow also cuts off the high capacity rail line to Leningrad, which disrupts Soviet ability to supply or draw reinforcements from that city.

Plus if the capital is lost the Soviet government is pushed back to nearly the Urals, which makes it quite a bit harder to direct the war, while Stalin would likely get heavily irrational and order a bunch of immediate and costly/pointless counterattacks and burn up reserves before they can be properly prepared and equipped, which is really bad news for the Soviets. Not only that, but the Soviet citizens of Moscow would panic like IOTL and flee the city to avoid the Germans (like in most cities in the USSR when they had time to flee) and having 1-2 million refugees flooding the streets and trains would be a humanitarian and military disaster (see the role fleeing French civilians had on disrupting military operation in France in 1940).

Frankly losing Moscow is a blow hard to overestimate in it's impact and Glantz's comment is more wishful thinking than reality.
 
Assuming all of this happens and the USSR is pushed back past the Urals (and effectively knocked out of the war) would the WAllies continue fighting against an extremely formidable Germany that can now direct almost their entire war machine against them or would there eventually be a peace like in AANW with Germany left in charge of the continent?
 
Last edited:
That and not going after Leningrad beyond August.
What was wrong with this decision in your opinion?
Dispersion of forces when Moscow should have been the focus.
still think they needed to capture Leningrad before the end of 1941, that they cannot maintain three groups for the duration, also the Soviets would throw everything at recapturing it, a "meatgrinder" on steroids?

the later Panther-Wotan line makes some sense as a border/boundary, especially if Leningrad was held also, and would allow them to turn on the other participant in this brawl, the UK, for instance they could conduct operations against Malta as was mooted for 1942?
 
Top