Remember the Texas! The United States in World War II (an alternate history)

Why would an invaded country not adopt; "the enemy of my enemy, is my friend"? Finland is the case example.

The Causasus, Balkans and Levant is already 100 roiled, including Turkey which was only "technically" neutral . Turkey does not matter, if Ploesti is torched and ruined.
Perhaps I’m not understanding what you mean. As I understand the situation as Turkey is not being invaded but would join the Axis camp because the Allies attacked Romania, who is part of the Axis.

Turkey may not have much for armed forces at the time but anything piled on while North Africa is in a fluid situation and the Soviets are getting smashed left, right, and center isn’t a sound strategy. Opening multiple fronts doesn’t tend to work out well.
 
As mentioned previously, Axis planning always seemed to only have one foot in reality. So how about this: seeing how well the Germans are doing in Russia, and with promises from Hitler on technological help, the Japanese strike north and invade Kamchatka! Of course first Victor Sorge would have been either turned or fed the info that Japan had no interest in Russia.

ric350
 
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Regarding the Turks, I remember reading somewhere (possibly in Churchill's history of WW2) that the RAF had prepared airfields in Turkey to be used in the event of Axis invasion so Turkey might well have acquiesced in overflights. Sorry I don't have the source to hand. (and to be fair the Turks might like to see some German reverses before allowing this)
 
Perhaps I’m not understanding what you mean. As I understand the situation as Turkey is not being invaded but would join the Axis camp because the Allies attacked Romania, who is part of the Axis.

Turkey may not have much for armed forces at the time but anything piled on while North Africa is in a fluid situation and the Soviets are getting smashed left, right, and center isn’t a sound strategy. Opening multiple fronts doesn’t tend to work out well.
Armed air intrusion by overflight to Romania is an "invasion".

The armed line-up is already 11-7 so Turkey does not matter. They add maybe a quarter point. The key is Russia. No gas for the BM's tanks and the equation drops to 9-7. More manageable.
 
Operation Chariot (part one) New
Operation Chariot
July-September 1941
Admiral Kimmel arrives in London in early July and begins talks with the British Admiralty. After a couple of weeks of evaluating British actions to date, reviewing German dispositions and those of the British, and dealing with important administrative matters, he brings in Admiral Pye when he arrives with the US battle fleet. The most pressing surface threats the British face are the battleship Tirpitz and a pair of pocket battleships and a cruiser in the Baltic that can potentially move to Norway and threaten the convoys to the Soviet Union, and the 3 German heavy ships currently at Brest.

The Germans in the Baltic are out of reach except for air attack, and the British RAF does not seem to be interested, as (in his view) is wasting time trying to bomb German cities. The ships in Brest however are within reach. Intelligence reports that 65% of the Luftwaffe is facing the Russians, including the bulk of their bomber force. Another 20% is deployed in the Mediterranean and Balkans, with 10% (mostly fighters plus the training establishment) is in Germany. That leaves only about 5% of the Luftwaffe in France, and according to intelligence, that amounts to 150 long range bombers and recce aircraft supporting the Uboat arm, another 150 fighters spread across France and the Low Countries, and only around 30 or so Stuka divebombers and a similar number of He111 torpedo bombers. Intelligence also shows that the heaviest guns defending Brest or St Nazaire (site of the Normandie dock) are 280 or 220 mm guns, which reach out to around 20,000 yards. The most serious threat on the coast of France are minefields and the Royal Navy has a large number of vessels available to deal with those.

Admiral Kimmel is well aware that there is a serious threat of war in the Pacific, and he knows that once a war starts, there is a high likelihood his fleet and indeed some of the carriers belonging to Nimitz will be transferred to fight the Japanese. There is a narrow window of opportunity available. He is determined to seize it. A plan is sent to Admiral Stark and Admiral Pound requesting assets from the Royal Navy, Royal Air Force and US Atlantic Fleet in mid September. That plan is that presented to the Combined Chiefs of Staff. Although viewed as risky, and Roosevelt is nervous about those risks, Winston Churchill is enthusiastic. Roosevelt signs off on it at the end of the month and preparations soon begin.

September 1941
British RAF aircraft begin frequent photo reconnaissance missions over the German held French ports, while RAF bombers and fighters begin hitting German airfields throughout France, even conducting night attacks using Bomber Command which is temporarily pulled from missions to German for this purpose. The Luftwaffe fights back as well as ever, and losses are heavy on both sides, but numerous German bases are severely battered and losses to Luftwaffe ground personnel and infrastructure begin to mount. Periodic missions by Bomber Command into Germany also occur to prevent the Luftwaffe from shifting forces from the homeland, while the pace of fighting in the Mediterranean, North Africa and Russia prevent reinforcements from that quarter. By the end of the month, Operation Indra has managed to whittle down the Luftwaffe in France by 50% in terms of operational and serviceable aircraft and the bombers in particular have been pulled back out of fighter range of England.

Meanwhile, the Americans and British have formed W and Y forces, consisting of two groups of carriers and their escorts. Two American (Wasp and Yorktown) and two British (Ark Royal and Victorious) are the heart of the two groups (each consisting of a British and American carrier) along with the needed cruisers and destroyers to escort them, and are exercising together east of Bermuda well away from trade routes and likely Uboats. Meanwhile the Americans have formed their battleships into two task groups, and the British add in the Ramillies, Resolution (fresh out of refit in the United States), and Revenge, giving the Anglo Americans a total of 10 battleships plus escorting destroyers to form X and Z forces. Combined Operations proposes a commando raid to support Operation Chariot but Kimmel feels it adds too much complexity to an already risky operation and persuades Admiral Pound to veto it. In addition to the 4 main forces to be involved, the Home Fleet also prepares to provide support should the Germans sortie into the North Sea or make a run for the Atlantic, while Force H cancels a proposed run to Malta in October to provide back up if the there is a run toward the Bay of Biscay and Atlantic.

The objective is simple in spite of the complexity of the many pieces. The Allies will wreck the German naval bases at St Nazaire and Brest, and eliminate as many German warships as possible while they are in harbor or attempting to escape. The British Royal Air Force and Anglo American carriers will provide air cover while also attacking those same bases. Although the massive submarine pens will likely survive, the base infrastructure that supports them will be destroyed or massively damaged and thus reduce the effectiveness of the German UBoat offensive to a measurable degree. If complete success is achieved, then the Kriegsmarine will lose half of its heavy surface warships and the ability to support them from France, providing substantially less flexibility (and threat) from them, and at the same time freeing up numerous Allied heavy ships for other missions. In the worst case, the Allies might lose one or more battleships and fail to achieve this mission. However it strikes Churchill as exactly the daring plan that Nelson and Fisher would admire and push for, and he persuades Roosevelt that it is worth the risk.

The stage is set for the first Anglo American offensive of World War II.
 

CalBear

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Perhaps I’m not understanding what you mean. As I understand the situation as Turkey is not being invaded but would join the Axis camp because the Allies attacked Romania, who is part of the Axis.

Turkey may not have much for armed forces at the time but anything piled on while North Africa is in a fluid situation and the Soviets are getting smashed left, right, and center isn’t a sound strategy. Opening multiple fronts doesn’t tend to work out well.
Using the available aircraft in a bombing scenario proposed upthread the only way to reach the Romanian oil Fields is by overflying Turkey for about 400 miles from the northernmost part of Syria. This is likely to arouse Turkey's ire.

IMO the bombing idea is unworkable due to range with a useful warload (in perfect conditions the aircraft would literally be landing on fumes, assuming cruising speed is selected and zero evasive action or increased throttle was used). With sufficient fuel to ensure range under combat conditions the aircraft (Martin B-26, initialproduction run) will be limited to its forward bombbay. These were designed to carry two 1,000 pound bombs in the forward bombbay, although field modifications could possibly be made to accommodate 3-4 500 pound bombs.

The difficulty is that less than 200 aircraft have been produced by October of 1941 and a number of those had the normal teething problems, mainly related to landing gear/new pilot error so the total available airframes are around 150. This is insufficient to destroy the Romanian oil fields. In late summer of 1943 the U.S. raided Ploiesti with heavy bombers (177 B-24, 163 made it to the target) each carrying 4,000 pounds of bombs (doughly double the possible bombs that-26 could deliver) . The entire complex was not destroyed, around half of it was undamaged, the rest of the capacity was up to full production/storage before October. B-24 losses, including write-off that made it back to North Africa were around 70%.
 
authors notes
Kimmel planned to begin aggressive raids and perhaps attempting to seize the Marshal Islands as soon as possible when the Japanese attacked, assuming that Pearl Harbor was a safe base of course. He is aggressive enough to suggest this, and keep in mind that the USN did attack a heavily defended port with a fleet present during Operation Torch when they sank a chunk of the Vichy French fleet at Casablanca. This is a much bigger hammer than was directed at Casablanca.

Note the British are providng relatively expendable battleships for this by the way. The RN has a very sizeable minesweeping force and if its defended it can sweep sufficient mines for the gunships to operate within range of the targets. The key issue is air cover. The carriers can stand off and provide fighter cover for the gunships, while the RAF can provide air cover for them. Hammering the Luftwaffe first also weakens the air response by the Germans who at this point have moved most of their aircraft trained in naval strike missions to the Med and Norway and the Baltic, leaving the commerce raiding FW200s and He111s (and few of those) in France, to support the Uboats, and a few Stukas and FW190s training for harassment missions at the UK.

This is a workable plan. The Germans lack guns that can do a lot of damage against the American and British gunships available, being only 11 inch weapons although the German accuracy is outstanding. Obviously the Allies will try to use spotter planes, and that will be a problem (I wouldn't want to fly a float plane near France) against a strong defense. But if the gunships have a wealth of photos to plan with, they can fire at pre planned locations and use radar and spotter planes to better target the German ships.

Historically the Allies never had the available ships to try this... but without Pearl Harbor and lacking a war in the Pacific yet, they have the resources available now. It is indeed risky

But the payoffs if successful are worth it
 
Using the available aircraft in a bombing scenario proposed upthread the only way to reach the Romanian oil Fields is by overflying Turkey for about 400 miles from the northernmost part of Syria. This is likely to arouse Turkey's ire.

IMO the bombing idea is unworkable due to range with a useful warload (in perfect conditions the aircraft would literally be landing on fumes, assuming cruising speed is selected and zero evasive action or increased throttle was used). With sufficient fuel to ensure range under combat conditions the aircraft (Martin B-26, initialproduction run) will be limited to its forward bombbay. These were designed to carry two 1,000 pound bombs in the forward bombbay, although field modifications could possibly be made to accommodate 3-4 500 pound bombs.

The difficulty is that less than 200 aircraft have been produced by October of 1941 and a number of those had the normal teething problems, mainly related to landing gear/new pilot error so the total available airframes are around 150. This is insufficient to destroy the Romanian oil fields. In late summer of 1943 the U.S. raided Ploiesti with heavy bombers (177 B-24, 163 made it to the target) each carrying 4,000 pounds of bombs (doughly double the possible bombs that-26 could deliver) . The entire complex was not destroyed, around half of it was undamaged, the rest of the capacity was up to full production/storage before October. B-24 losses, including write-off that made it back to North Africa were around 70%.
Operation Tidal Wave is indeed well in the future in the Fall of 1941

My god the guts of those crews was astounding, but the mistakes and errors that piled up are enough to make one weep
 

CalBear

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Operation Chariot
July-September 1941
Admiral Kimmel arrives in London in early July and begins talks with the British Admiralty. After a couple of weeks of evaluating British actions to date, reviewing German dispositions and those of the British, and dealing with important administrative matters, he brings in Admiral Pye when he arrives with the US battle fleet. The most pressing surface threats the British face are the battleship Tirpitz and a pair of pocket battleships and a cruiser in the Baltic that can potentially move to Norway and threaten the convoys to the Soviet Union, and the 3 German heavy ships currently at Brest.

The Germans in the Baltic are out of reach except for air attack, and the British RAF does not seem to be interested, as (in his view) is wasting time trying to bomb German cities. The ships in Brest however are within reach. Intelligence reports that 65% of the Luftwaffe is facing the Russians, including the bulk of their bomber force. Another 20% is deployed in the Mediterranean and Balkans, with 10% (mostly fighters plus the training establishment) is in Germany. That leaves only about 5% of the Luftwaffe in France, and according to intelligence, that amounts to 150 long range bombers and recce aircraft supporting the Uboat arm, another 150 fighters spread across France and the Low Countries, and only around 30 or so Stuka divebombers and a similar number of He111 torpedo bombers. Intelligence also shows that the heaviest guns defending Brest or St Nazaire (site of the Normandie dock) are 280 or 220 mm guns, which reach out to around 20,000 yards. The most serious threat on the coast of France are minefields and the Royal Navy has a large number of vessels available to deal with those.

Admiral Kimmel is well aware that there is a serious threat of war in the Pacific, and he knows that once a war starts, there is a high likelihood his fleet and indeed some of the carriers belonging to Nimitz will be transferred to fight the Japanese. There is a narrow window of opportunity available. He is determined to seize it. A plan is sent to Admiral Stark and Admiral Pound requesting assets from the Royal Navy, Royal Air Force and US Atlantic Fleet in mid September. That plan is that presented to the Combined Chiefs of Staff. Although viewed as risky, and Roosevelt is nervous about those risks, Winston Churchill is enthusiastic. Roosevelt signs off on it at the end of the month and preparations soon begin.

September 1941
British RAF aircraft begin frequent photo reconnaissance missions over the German held French ports, while RAF bombers and fighters begin hitting German airfields throughout France, even conducting night attacks using Bomber Command which is temporarily pulled from missions to German for this purpose. The Luftwaffe fights back as well as ever, and losses are heavy on both sides, but numerous German bases are severely battered and losses to Luftwaffe ground personnel and infrastructure begin to mount. Periodic missions by Bomber Command into Germany also occur to prevent the Luftwaffe from shifting forces from the homeland, while the pace of fighting in the Mediterranean, North Africa and Russia prevent reinforcements from that quarter. By the end of the month, Operation Indra has managed to whittle down the Luftwaffe in France by 50% in terms of operational and serviceable aircraft and the bombers in particular have been pulled back out of fighter range of England.

Meanwhile, the Americans and British have formed W and Y forces, consisting of two groups of carriers and their escorts. Two American (Wasp and Yorktown) and two British (Ark Royal and Victorious) are the heart of the two groups (each consisting of a British and American carrier) along with the needed cruisers and destroyers to escort them, and are exercising together east of Bermuda well away from trade routes and likely Uboats. Meanwhile the Americans have formed their battleships into two task groups, and the British add in the Ramillies, Resolution (fresh out of refit in the United States), and Revenge, giving the Anglo Americans a total of 10 battleships plus escorting destroyers to form X and Z forces. Combined Operations proposes a commando raid to support Operation Chariot but Kimmel feels it adds too much complexity to an already risky operation and persuades Admiral Pound to veto it. In addition to the 4 main forces to be involved, the Home Fleet also prepares to provide support should the Germans sortie into the North Sea or make a run for the Atlantic, while Force H cancels a proposed run to Malta in October to provide back up if the there is a run toward the Bay of Biscay and Atlantic.

The objective is simple in spite of the complexity of the many pieces. The Allies will wreck the German naval bases at St Nazaire and Brest, and eliminate as many German warships as possible while they are in harbor or attempting to escape. The British Royal Air Force and Anglo American carriers will provide air cover while also attacking those same bases. Although the massive submarine pens will likely survive, the base infrastructure that supports them will be destroyed or massively damaged and thus reduce the effectiveness of the German UBoat offensive to a measurable degree. If complete success is achieved, then the Kriegsmarine will lose half of its heavy surface warships and the ability to support them from France, providing substantially less flexibility (and threat) from them, and at the same time freeing up numerous Allied heavy ships for other missions. In the worst case, the Allies might lose one or more battleships and fail to achieve this mission. However it strikes Churchill as exactly the daring plan that Nelson and Fisher would admire and push for, and he persuades Roosevelt that it is worth the risk.

The stage is set for the first Anglo American offensive of World War II.
Oh dear God!

So much worse than I expected!

Total fighter cover will be a coupe squadrons of Buffaloes and some Fulmars.

Joy.
 

CalBear

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All I could think of while reading this plan was, “Tora, Tora, Tora!”
Best case its closer to Mers-el-Kèbir.

Knocks the KM surface fleet pretty much entirely out of the war until it no longer matters.

Worst case is any of OTL's withdrawals of IJN forces after shelling or making supply runs to Guadalcanal that got caught by the Cactus Air Force.

Kimmel get his Board of Inquiry, just in a different ocean, and the WAllies lose 2-3 decks.

Be interesting to see how the author games it out.
 
The first three sub pens at St. Nazaire were not completed until June, 1941, with five more under construction until January 1942.
Heavy Flak towers not done til 1943
 
The first three sub pens at St. Nazaire were not completed until June, 1941, with five more under construction until January 1942.
Heavy Flak towers not done til 1943
I noticed that ... most of the guns are still in open pits too

It all comes down to mines, air attack and torpedo attacks by German small craft and submarines, along with the guns that survive the bombardment (including those aboard ships)
 
Buffaloes and Fulmars against -109s and -190s? I weep for those crews. And Vindicators. Jesus, those Air Groups are going to get slaughtered, even against weakened opposition
 
Best case its closer to Mers-el-Kèbir.

Knocks the KM surface fleet pretty much entirely out of the war until it no longer matters.

Worst case is any of OTL's withdrawals of IJN forces after shelling or making supply runs to Guadalcanal that got caught by the Cactus Air Force.

Kimmel get his Board of Inquiry, just in a different ocean, and the WAllies lose 2-3 decks.

Be interesting to see how the author games it out.
to be fair, Churchill considered Mers-el-Kebir a strategic success (and tragic necessity)

Yeah, about what I figured as far as losses go.. gaming it out will take a while. Trying to find mine density information regarding German minefields. I have some basic information immediately available but some reading needed for additional details.
 

CalBear

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to be fair, Churchill considered Mers-el-Kebir a strategic success (and tragic necessity)

Yeah, about what I figured as far as losses go.. gaming it out will take a while. Trying to find mine density information regarding German minefields. I have some basic information immediately available but some reading needed for additional details.
Also might want to take a look at shuttle time for Luftwaffe anti-shipping assets. The Luftwaffe's fighters may not have legs, but the bombers do okay.
 
Buffaloes and Fulmars against -109s and -190s? I weep for those crews. And Vindicators. Jesus, those Air Groups are going to get slaughtered, even against weakened opposition
Given the date , not many 190's around, I'd be surprised if any are actually near Brest. Now I'm assuming the RAF will visit nearby airfields to slow down the German response which together with the time needed to set up an anti shipping strike and the fact none of the German units are specialist Anti-Shipping Units ( those are in the Med or in the East ) will mean its far less dangerous from an air attack point of view than people think.
 
Given the date , not many 190's around, I'd be surprised if any are actually near Brest. Now I'm assuming the RAF will visit nearby airfields to slow down the German response which together with the time needed to set up an anti shipping strike and the fact none of the German units are specialist Anti-Shipping Units ( those are in the Med or in the East ) will mean its far less dangerous from an air attack point of view than people think.
You're talking about the ships. I was talking about the Air Groups. Those planes and pilots are going to get slaughtered going up against the LW.
 
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