Operation Sea Lion: The Invasion Itself

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by Die Kaiserin, Jun 19, 2014.

  1. Die Kaiserin Killer Queen of Trans-Terra

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    Ignoring the impossibility of an actual landing and getting troops into Britain, and assuming they somehow get supplies, how would an actual invasion of Britian roll out, like battles, what would happen first, what would fall first, etc.
     
  2. MUC Member

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    The German troops would fall from the barges into the cold waters of the Channel...
     
  3. Riain Well-Known Member

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    I think the first thing to fall would be the German lodgement in Kent. If the Germans did wrong-foot the RN and RAF on day one and get ashore I doubt they'd be able to sustain the lodgement logistically. Fighter Command would contest the skies over the lodgement allowing Bomber Command and the Home Fleet to cut the German transport across the Chanel. This battle would only take a couple of days to sort out, then the Germans would be stranded in Britain.
     
  4. Derwit Well-Known Member

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    As Riain has pointed out the problem is logistics. There are no big ports in the south eastern coast of England, (just lots of small ones) where the invasion was planed. This was a major reason for the allied invasion of Normandy instead of the Pas de Calais in 1944. Therefore even if the small ports could be captured intact in the initial assault, (which would be a big if as these where the points which where the most heavily defended and prepared for demolition in OTL) the Germans wouldn't be able to sustain an army in Britain large enough and for long enough to defeat the British. Forget the barges over open beaches even without enemy action the wear and tear on these non sea going vessels will soon reduce a German fleet that wasn't really big enough to begin with.
     
  5. oshron Emperor of Rplegacy

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    i think the idea of this thread is to ignore the impossibility of Sealion and discuss what directions it could go in IF it were successful, or what the German war aims would be upon invasion (where they'd hit first and then the following objectives, etc.)
     
  6. sharlin Banned

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  7. Die Kaiserin Killer Queen of Trans-Terra

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    Exactly this.
     
  8. The Red A virulent, ignorant bigot

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    The original plan was based purely on the capture of South East England, going no further Northampton and the encirclement and besiegement of London. It was expected that this would be enough to force a British surrender/negotiated peace. Presuming the Germans can somehow get that far, the main actions are likely to be centered around the capture of ports such as Folkestone and Avonmouth as well as the breaking of the GHQ line at Bristol, Basingstoke and Canvey, following with the encirclement of London. This is purely speculation but afterwards the Germans might attempt to push towards Boston in an attempt to cut off British remaining forces in the South from retreating into the Midlands and if the British still haven't agreed to an armistice then it's possible the Germans attempt an assault further north to remove British industry now exposed from Nottingham to Liverpool before moving in on starved and firebombed London.
     
  9. DoomBunny Well-Known Member

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    Even ignoring the RAF/RN, the invasion will stall under its own logistical weight. Add to that the increasing resistance on the ground as British formations move to the beachhead, and the Germans aren't going to get much further past their initial lodgements.
     
  10. Forcon Well-Known Member

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    It's difficult to say how they wouldd have continued, but possibly they would have driven around London to envelope the city instead of trying to capture it outright at first. They could then starve the city out, combined with relentless air raids on the city.
    I think that, facing defeat, on the battlefield, the British would have used chemical and biological weapons rather than be occupied.
    Also, didn't the British have civlians pre-organised into resistance groups prepared for an invasion? I could be wrong, but I saw it in a documentary.
     
  11. MattII Well-Known Member

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    Yes, the Home Guard and Auxiliary Units (a sort of Home Guard 'secret service') would be around, and they'd be armed with not only conventional weapons, but many unconventional ones as well. The difference here was that the British were expecting the Germans to be able to overrun the army, and so prepared for the long-term, rather than with most other nations which generally relied only on the official armed forces for their defence.
     
  12. sharlin Banned

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    Yes there was small groups of Home Guard who would have acted as for all intense and purposes as terrorists against the German forces, they were mainly game hunters and people who knew the land round where they lived intimately and had various staches where they could hide, emerge, cause damage and withdraw.
     
  13. Derwit Well-Known Member

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    Assuming the landing is feasible logistically then after the initial assault there would be a period of consolidation as the Germans got the ports repaired and brought in their heavy equipment. During this period the British would redeploy their forces to bring the greatest pressure on the Beach heads and try to drive the Germans into the sea (hampered no doubt by the victorious Luftwaffe). There would then be a massive breakout battle followed by either a series of short encirclement's designed to destroy the British Army in the field before it could redeploy behind the GHQ Line, or a deep armored thrust like the Manstein Plan used in France designed to kill the brain of the British armed forces perhaps by encircling/ occupying London as other posters have proposed.

    However Britain wasn't France as others have pointed out, auxiliary forces had been set up to allow a greater defense in depth, albeit only to slow the panzers for a few hours at each defended point. Other forces had been designated to hit the German rear areas. However my understanding of Churchill's secret army was that the life expectancy of the men was expected to be just a few weeks as they where expected to fight a high intensity campaign during the early critical phase of the invasion.
     
  14. sharlin Banned

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    If I recall the Aux-forces (if they were called that) were far from your average Home Guard too.
     
  15. Michele Well-Known Member

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    You should define successful. As in, getting some troops ashore? That might happen. But in that case the direction they would take is a couple of miles inland, obviously, and they would be quite unlikely to get beyond that.

    Or successful as in, the plan goes like clockwork and all the british servicemen in all arms and branches play dead? In that case, you only need to look up your Schenk.

    Where they'd hit first? Ditto.

    War aims? As the plan stood, to force the British to surrender. There wasn't the wherewithal in the plan, even assuming it went 100% right, to do much else, the British will to continue fighting had to collapse. If that did not happen, the Germans would play by ear, as usual.
     
  16. Michele Well-Known Member

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    I think the word you are looking for might be guerrillas, for those who would fight in plain clothes, and commandos, for those units that were planned to remain in uniform.
     
  17. MerryPrankster Donor

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    I remember reading somewhere the British would have used gas to defend the beaches.
     
  18. theirishdreamer Banned

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    hm,m

    https://www.alternatehistory.com/discussion/showthread.php?t=103866
    A Better Show does a good job of a plausible effort at Sealion I think, though personally I think it'll be over within a fortnight with the 100,000 Heer surrendering not far from their LZ's, all those river barges, eboats, remaining surface force sunk and the Luftwaffe wrecked. Personally Id think if you get Operation Sealion you'll get Case Green as well, knowing the usual Nazi press your luck strategy. In a best case scenario the Germans make landfall and last a month before surrendering.
     
  19. Michele Well-Known Member

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  20. oldironside Life is not a third conditional.

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    It was one of the first complete timelines I read when I joined the board. Very entertaining and plausible too. I can still see that beached battleship in my mind's eye.