If Sealion was impossible, what were the British so worried about?

Wartime newspapers only printed what the Government permitted them to, they are not reliable sources for what the Government or people actually thought.
A good book to gauge the feelings of the general public at the time is "Listening to Britain" which is a compilation of reports gathered by the Ministry of Information by regional inspectors (spies) from formal surveys and informal eavesdropping.
 
The Ministry of Information was a long way ahead of Goebbels on the PR front. Considering both the success of Britain in getting international sympathy, aid and support versus Germany and fact that Britain didn't need a Gestapo to keep the population firmly behind the government.
Well while I admit there was a lot made for US consumption I like to think we were a more sympathetic case than Germany in 1940, even without PR :)?
 
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To me it is very obvious that the British, at least the guys without detailed military knowledge, didn't knew an invasion was impossible.

Barbarossa was a very reasonable choice, given the common knowledge at the time. Not only in Germany, in the UK and in the US the opinio was that the USSR would fall within months. Offering Hitler yet anohter massive victory and resources to continue the war further. In hindsight we know it was a very stupid idea. Yes, the data to prove that Germany would get beaten was there, but it wasn't common knowledge.

I would posit is the same with Sealion, we know it was impossible. The average British and British Parlamentarian did not. Maybe Churchill did know with detailed military data.
 
British troops got out of Dunkirk but their equipment mostly got left behind. Tanks, heavy guns, transports, all were in short supply. This was part of the reason for developing the STEN within the year.
 
It's not so much that the German could take over the British Isles if they landed, but about the damage they could do in the process of trying. The Brits had to endure bombing raids and (relatively) minor infrastructure damage and could keep the will to fight.

The Brits would have to fight on home territory, not having done so for centuries (I'm not counting the Jacobites here) and that could have a heavy blow on morale.
They massively overestimated Germanies capabilities. Good video on that:

 
British troops got out of Dunkirk but their equipment mostly got left behind. Tanks, heavy guns, transports, all were in short supply. This was part of the reason for developing the STEN within the year.
The British between April and Sept 1940 Built 306 Cruiser Tanks and 338 Infantry Tanks (Matilda II) along with 78 light tanks - that is significantly more than what they took to France by May 1940 (not including useless light tanks and tankettes)

Between May - Sept they built 294 x 25 pounders and 800 odd 2 pounders - with most of those going to the tanks - but that still leaves about 150 guns for the Infantry

(Above according to Hyperwar)

And not everything went to France and some of what did came back!

So the above is in addition too what the army had in May 1940

This link goes into depth what the British had in the months following Dunkirk

What is interesting is that by June 1940 Bren gun production was @ just under 3500 guns a month - enough for the full establishment of 3 Divisional slices per month

So while artillery numbers remained low for the year - that was still a lot of guns

And given that any German invading force would have between zero and no tanks and very little artillery in the first (and very likely only) week.
 
Shock, no one had expected the Germans to be able to conquer France in 6 weeks so to many it looked like they could do anything. Once people had time to catch their breath and think a more realistic assessment of the chances of a successful German landing was possible.
Exactly.. Britain still envisioned Germany with its WW1 navy. And look Holy crap.. They just blew through Poland, France, low countries and didn't even cough.

Crap and now they are bombing us...

Even if the Germans don't its enough to make the brits commit to thinking about it with real resources
 
The British between April and Sept 1940 Built 306 Cruiser Tanks and 338 Infantry Tanks (Matilda II) along with 78 light tanks - that is significantly more than what they took to France by May 1940 (not including useless light tanks and tankettes)

Between May - Sept they built 294 x 25 pounders and 800 odd 2 pounders - with most of those going to the tanks - but that still leaves about 150 guns for the Infantry

(Above according to Hyperwar)

And not everything went to France and some of what did came back!

So the above is in addition too what the army had in May 1940

This link goes into depth what the British had in the months following Dunkirk

What is interesting is that by June 1940 Bren gun production was @ just under 3500 guns a month - enough for the full establishment of 3 Divisional slices per month

So while artillery numbers remained low for the year - that was still a lot of guns

And given that any German invading force would have between zero and no tanks and very little artillery in the first (and very likely only) week.
Hence why I was referring to getting a German invasion underway ASAP after Dunkirk for it to have a snowball's chance in summertime Arizona - give the UK until September and it gives them a chance to fortify and resupply.
 
The whole idea of a German invasion of the UK is a complete absurdity.

Check out this good reference book.

book.jpg


Goering went after the wrong target according to Raeder.

He was going beserk over the Luftwaffe's tactics in the campaign as he wasn't bothered about the RAF . . . but the RN as they'd mostly come over in the dark anyway rendering the RAF impotent!. Landing troops on the South Coast wasn't the problem, it was getting them there and supplying them via the Channel, and he couldn't do that while the RN was a fighting force. He felt it was better to not only drive the RN completely from the Channel ports but sink as many destroyers and battleships as possible.

Even the Admiral of the Fleet (1st Sea Lord of the RN) wasn't to bothered about the RAF loosing the Battle of Britain.

To quote the book, he wasn't too worried about the RAF loosing the BoB as it stood as he knew full well that he had 80 or so destroyers in home waters . . . plus further assets on Atlantic convoy duty which could've been back home in just a few days, each one capable of firing a full 7 inch broadside at the German invasion barges. Even at night the forces available would've caused that much carnage and death against the Germans that to all intents and purposes there would've been a good chance of him and the RN being charged with war crimes after the war.

Regards filers
 
Hence why I was referring to getting a German invasion underway ASAP after Dunkirk for it to have a snowball's chance in summertime Arizona - give the UK until September and it gives them a chance to fortify and resupply.
In order to fight the british army you first have to get past the british navy and air force... so yeah, good luck with that...
 
The whole basis was the old risk v hazard. We expect specialist airport fire fighting vehicles etc. to be at airports even though the same effort in the normal fire fighting services would save more lives. The risk is small (e.g. the old canard that one is more at risk driving to the airport than flying from it) but the hazard, if ones aeroplane did catch fire, is so great that we respond to the hazard not the risk. In the case of the USM the risk of it succeeding was certainly low but the hazard, should it do so, was exceedingly large so the defence measures were proportionate to the hazard, even if not to the risk.
 

Ian_W

Banned
The whole basis was the old risk v hazard. We expect specialist airport fire fighting vehicles etc. to be at airports even though the same effort in the normal fire fighting services would save more lives. The risk is small (e.g. the old canard that one is more at risk driving to the airport than flying from it) but the hazard, if ones aeroplane did catch fire, is so great that we respond to the hazard not the risk. In the case of the USM the risk of it succeeding was certainly low but the hazard, should it do so, was exceedingly large so the defence measures were proportionate to the hazard, even if not to the risk.
To be fair, the OTL 1940 British government looked at the risk, and then reinforced Egypt with armor.
 
Hence why I was referring to getting a German invasion underway ASAP after Dunkirk for it to have a snowball's chance in summertime Arizona - give the UK until September and it gives them a chance to fortify and resupply.
Totally - and they had no chance of conducting an invasion then (or realistically later as it turns out)

I guess the point I am making in ref to the OP is that while there might have been a concern among the UK leadership it would have rapidly reduced month on month - but it remained sensible to maintain precautions and to have conducted anti invasion preparation / attacks on invasion ports etc, build up of Home Guard and beach defenses as well as the Auxiliary naval Forces in case they did try.
 
Just keep up the Kanalkampf and drain away UK coastal traffic.
Add a few Dieppe style raids in the mix.
Maybe try and steal some radar equipment from Chain Home?
 
Just keep up the Kanalkampf and drain away UK coastal traffic.
Add a few Dieppe style raids in the mix.
Maybe try and steal some radar equipment from Chain Home?
The Kanalkampf was effectively won by August. The British either stopped or drastically reduced coastal convoys via the Channel.

It might have run some round the North of Scotland and down the East coast to Hull. But that would be out of range of fighter escort so LW losses would far exceed British.

(Did convoys run down to London in the hours of darkness?)

Dieppe style raids? No, IMHO. Not against the light ships and coastal defence forces in the South of England. Any force would be intercepted and its extraction met by a superior naval force.
 
The Kanalkampf was effectively won by August. The British either stopped or drastically reduced coastal convoys via the Channel.

It might have run some round the North of Scotland and down the East coast to Hull. But that would be out of range of fighter escort so LW losses would far exceed British.

(Did convoys run down to London in the hours of darkness?)

Dieppe style raids? No, IMHO. Not against the light ships and coastal defence forces in the South of England. Any force would be intercepted and its extraction met by a superior naval force.
Yes. In addition to 'regular' naval forces (which included a BB in the threat area) the British had the Coastal forces which by Sept numbered over 900 armed vessels - everything from machine gun armed power boats to armed trawlers with a a 3 pounder and some Lewis guns - of which hundreds were 'abroad' each night.
 
Add a few Dieppe style raids in the mix.
I think the Dieppe Raid is probably not the best example for you to have chosen. However, if the Germans had tried to drive Panzer IIIs and IVs on England's south coast beaches in 1940 and 1941, the planning for the genuine Operation Jubilee might have been somewhat more thorough and effective.
 
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