Would a Japanese Invasion of the USSR during Barbarossa have actually helped?

Submarine warfare wasn't Japan's strong suit, from experience in the North Atlantic allies were very good at anti-submarine warfare.
Even at the end of the war japanese submarines were not going after merchant ships, they were still concentrating on sinking warships
Well there'd have been enough military ships to shoot at, as the IJN would have sent warships north, prompting the USN to send their own in to keep the IJN away.
 
And if Japan invades, those formations are heading to Vladivostok, not Moscow. In addition, the Persian Corridor was not operational until mid-1942.
Thing is if the OTL changes than there will be other changes in response to that, i.e. if the Persian corridor becomes a more vital supply route then the allies will recognise that and make greater efforts to secure and expand it. So unless there is some separate independent or inherent reason that makes that impossible they won't not do it just so everything else proceeds as per OTL except for the Japanese invasion.
 
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Well there'd have been enough military ships to shoot at, as the IJN would have sent warships north, prompting the USN to send their own in to keep the IJN away.
Thing is that's war between Japan and the US, so Japan's reward for helping Germany by invading Russia is now being involved in a 2nd large Asian war, and now fighting the US.

There is a risk of just looking at these suggestions through the eyes of the Germans and the lens of what helps them, but Japan is going to be looking out for itself too!
 
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IOTL, the shipping through the Northern Sea Route was about 6% of what went through Vladivostok - and convoys with icebreakers only could use the Northern Sea Route 3 months of the year. The flow would be a dribble assuming the Arctic ports could receive much more with their limited port / rail capacity.

The one that only took 450k tons of supplies for the entire war?
Look, this all depends totally on how realistic this scenario is anyway.

I'm not fully sure but i heard they unloaded a lot of supplies during winter in Petropavlovsk anyway(mostly because the Japanese blocked off the tsushima strait during winter regardless of neurality). The Japanese are going to have to give some extra effort to cut off supplies coming from all the way over there. If the Americans do that anyway in winter and in the summer do use the Soviet Arctic route then supplies will not stop. I don't know how they get supplies over land through Kamchatka and beyond, but apparenlty they did.

In the new developments regarding supplying the Soviets they will have to improvise to keep the supplies coming, they can do that. They can build railroads, use planes, increase the number of ships used in the Soviet Arctic route(and find the captains to navigate it), it will be riskier, it will cause more losses, but they have to.

And how far are the japanese gonna get anyway? There are 2 scenarios possible, either they are at war with China or they aren't when they attack the Soviets. In the first scenario its complete suicide. Sure they can get Vladivostok, thats on the border, but that doesn't mean lend-lease can't reach the Soviet Union anymore. They'd have to reach far up north, middle of nowhere, to cut off all routes. Also, its a lot of sea to control north of Sachalin. The Ochotsk sea combined with the Bering sea are as large as the South China sea.

In the second, more likely, scenario they might attack the Soviets but not the US. Still suicide though as they can't be so stupid not to reinforce their territories against possible Allied DoW, making the invasion of the USSR less fruitfull since they miss a lot of firepower. In the likely case the US will declare war on Japan they are screwed anyway if they aren't prepared. They won't get much further than if their armies are busy with China. And what would they do? Invade Alaska? Land forces along the Soviet Coast? All too risky and stupid.
 

nbcman

Donor
Look, this all depends totally on how realistic this scenario is anyway.

I'm not fully sure but i heard they unloaded a lot of supplies during winter in Petropavlovsk anyway(mostly because the Japanese blocked off the tsushima strait during winter regardless of neurality). The Japanese are going to have to give some extra effort to cut off supplies coming from all the way over there. If the Americans do that anyway in winter and in the summer do use the Soviet Arctic route then supplies will not stop. I don't know how they get supplies over land through Kamchatka and beyond, but apparenlty they did.

In the new developments regarding supplying the Soviets they will have to improvise to keep the supplies coming, they can do that. They can build railroads, use planes, increase the number of ships used in the Soviet Arctic route(and find the captains to navigate it), it will be riskier, it will cause more losses, but they have to.

And how far are the japanese gonna get anyway? There are 2 scenarios possible, either they are at war with China or they aren't when they attack the Soviets. In the first scenario its complete suicide. Sure they can get Vladivostok, thats on the border, but that doesn't mean lend-lease can't reach the Soviet Union anymore. They'd have to reach far up north, middle of nowhere, to cut off all routes. Also, its a lot of sea to control north of Sachalin. The Ochotsk sea combined with the Bering sea are as large as the South China sea.

In the second, more likely, scenario they might attack the Soviets but not the US. Still suicide though as they can't be so stupid not to reinforce their territories against possible Allied DoW, making the invasion of the USSR less fruitfull since they miss a lot of firepower. In the likely case the US will declare war on Japan they are screwed anyway if they aren't prepared. They won't get much further than if their armies are busy with China. And what would they do? Invade Alaska? Land forces along the Soviet Coast? All too risky and stupid.
The supplies that were offloaded in Petropavlovsk as well as at Magadan were to lighten the ships to transit the Strait of Tartary (to the west of Sakhalin Island) as well as to remove military cargoes . The cargo was then picked up by Soviet coastal craft and delivered to Vladivostok.

The supplies that went on the Northern route were carried to ports near major rivers and then transferred to river vessels and barges.

Here's a link to a website that discusses Pacific route based on Soviet documents which goes into more detail on the topic:

 
Could be that America then focusses on Alaska more, come torugh the North over the Kuril Islands and the Hokkaido?
I would imagine that Japan actively bringing the USSR into the Pacific War means Stalin is much more likely to acquiesce to any American suggestions to using Far East bases to support the war effort against Japan and this in turn will quickly open up the possibility of a northern thrust from Alaska/the Aleutians down the Kuril Islands and into Hokkaido by the Americans as you rightly noted. (Stalin at this point might only want to get southern Sakhalin from Japan after the war). This might change the entire dynamic of the Pacific War as the Japanese would now have to be far more focused on protecting northern Japan. In fact Allied strategy might well change since an American push down the Kurils in say 1942-1943 might well take them into Hokkaido in 1943 and at that point the Home Islands have already been invaded and the Americans are much better placed to land on Honshu for 1944 and push on to Tokyo. Whilst the Germany First strategy of OTL might still happen here, it certainly seems possible that by 1942-1943 the Allies might look for a way to knock Japan out of the war first (and pivot towards Asia) if a Kurils push really brings them onto Hokkaido in 1943 and within striking distance of Tokyo in 1944. This in turn might delay European actions for a year, but mean that if Japan really is knocked out by 1944/1945 then Germany is going to face a much larger set of forces coming from east and west by 1945.

Japan itself will no doubt be in an entirely alien situation and it would be extremely difficult to guess how the Japanese military leadership and various Japanese units would react to the fact of successful Allied landings in Hokkaido in 1943 and Honshu in 1944 (and potentially the fall of Tokyo in 1944/1945!). A potential collapse in the Japanese front in the USSR, China and the Pacific islands and South East Asia in 1943-1944 might well occur either from Tokyo rapidly trying to bring units back to the Honshu to protect Tokyo or because the actual fall of Tokyo shatters Japanese morale.

The Soviets would likely also try to build infrastructure into Petropavlovsk to support Lend-Lease supplies reaching the unoccupied portions of the USSR in the Far East, Siberia and thence onward to the European USSR.
 
What are the odds of a japanese blunder in that scenario? From quick browsing, the Kwantung Army does enjoy a numerical advantage over the Far Eastern Front on paper, and some soviet forces are likely to be transferred west. But by 1941 the Japanese haven't remedied the weaknesses that led to their defeat at lake Khassan and Khalkhin Gol - overreliance on infantry and dreadful logistics, foremost (according to Lopez). These are likely to hit hard if the Japanese do try to attack north. Moreover, by 1941 the soviet army is in somewhat better shape than it was in 1938. So, how much bad luck would it take for the Japanese to just fail their attack?
 
The supplies that were offloaded in Petropavlovsk as well as at Magadan were to lighten the ships to transit the Strait of Tartary (to the west of Sakhalin Island) as well as to remove military cargoes . The cargo was then picked up by Soviet coastal craft and delivered to Vladivostok.

The supplies that went on the Northern route were carried to ports near major rivers and then transferred to river vessels and barges.

Here's a link to a website that discusses Pacific route based on Soviet documents which goes into more detail on the topic:

yes thats the article i was reading. During wintertime they would fully unload in Petropavlovsk and during the summer lighten the ships only. Logical they would then go over sea again to dleiver it, with Soviet coastal ships, instead of going over land, stupid of me.

But anyway, if the cargo was picked up again by Soviet ships toward Vladivostok, and Vladivostok is occupied by the Japanese, couldn't they sail into the rivers all along the Khabarovsk Krai at Nikolajevsk and Tsjumika?
 
I know this gets discussed enough, has anyone ever gamed out the invasion? How long does it take Japan to capture Vladivostok? How much equipment is captured, destroyed, evacuated, etc.? How much industry is destroyed, captured, evacuated? People have said Stalin won't commit extra resources to defend or retake any land in the east until Germany is defeated, and I agree, but does he lose material for the west without the far east? How many soldiers, tanks, trains, planes, shells will not be produced? On the question of rerouting lend lease, it would require building up infrastructure on the other routes. Where do those materials come from especially with the loss of material coming through the east in the meantime? And who is going to build it and what else would they have been building?
 
I know this gets discussed enough, has anyone ever gamed out the invasion? How long does it take Japan to capture Vladivostok? How much equipment is captured, destroyed, evacuated, etc.? How much industry is destroyed, captured, evacuated? People have said Stalin won't commit extra resources to defend or retake any land in the east until Germany is defeated, and I agree, but does he lose material for the west without the far east? How many soldiers, tanks, trains, planes, shells will not be produced? On the question of rerouting lend lease, it would require building up infrastructure on the other routes. Where do those materials come from especially with the loss of material coming through the east in the meantime? And who is going to build it and what else would they have been building?
Bobthebarbarian I think might have, he has a lot of that info if you want.
 

nbcman

Donor
yes thats the article i was reading. During wintertime they would fully unload in Petropavlovsk and during the summer lighten the ships only. Logical they would then go over sea again to dleiver it, with Soviet coastal ships, instead of going over land, stupid of me.

But anyway, if the cargo was picked up again by Soviet ships toward Vladivostok, and Vladivostok is occupied by the Japanese, couldn't they sail into the rivers all along the Khabarovsk Krai at Nikolajevsk and Tsjumika?
The sea going ships could sail to the river entrances during the months of the year without severe ice issues in the Arctic Ocean but I doubt that the sea going ships would have a small enough draft to be able to sail up the rivers. The Soviets would most likely need to get more barges and river going vessels.
 
All that a Japanese invasion of the USSR would have produced was more mass death, more human suffering, and might have resulted in communism becoming even more widespread throughout Asia.

Bobthebarbarian I think might have, he has a lot of that info if you want.
BobTheBarbarian has done numerous detailed posts on the topic that you can find if you search.
I know this gets discussed enough, has anyone ever gamed out the invasion?
From memory, a Quora user (I know, not the most reliable source) claimed that this scenario is commonly studied by the Chinese Armed Forces in modern times. They (the Red Chinese military) allegedly concluded that it would have been extremely difficult for the Soviets to win.

How long does it take Japan to capture Vladivostok? How much equipment is captured, destroyed, evacuated, etc.? How much industry is destroyed, captured, evacuated?
The Japanese made various estimates about how long it would have taken their army to conquer the Siberian "Maritime Province" (Primorye). The 1940 war plan estimated two months, the IJA General Staff estimated 6 to 8 weeks in 1941 (post-Barbarossa), and the timetable for an early version of the Kantokuen plan (22 divisions) worked out to 36 days (10 September to 15 October 1941).

According to @Admiral Fischer, "Senshi Sosho" (Japan's official military history of the war) reports that this timeframe further shrank to only 21 days in the 29 July version of Kantokuen . I suspect that the main reason for this was because the Japanese army felt pressured to at least bring the first phase of their campaign to an end before the onset of winter, which would have severely hampered operations in Siberia and northern Manchuria. The Kantokuen plan's 'Primorye offensive' was also incrementally strengthened by an additional 3 divisions compared with the July 8th version (16 divisions in the first wave vs 13, with a central reserve of 5 divisions in both). A later version drawn up after July 31st increased this number again to 17 divisions with a further 5 divisions concentrated at Mutanchiang.

Personally, given the nature of the terrain, geographic constraints, and the size of the forces involved I consider the 3 week timetable very unlikely despite some militarily questionable plans by the Soviet army outlined below. The border area was hilly and heavily forested, and the Soviets constructed several layers of defensive positions, including concrete bunkers, ranging from approximately 1 to 12 kilometers in depth. There were gaps between their "fortified regions" but due to the number of Soviet military personnel (about 500,000 men along a frontage of 500 miles/800 km, most of whom were concentrated south of Lake Khanka) combat probably would have taken on an attritional character in most places. In my opinion, the most likely location for the Japanese to have broken through was at Iman (Dal'nerechensk) north of Lake Khanka, which would have turned the flank of the main Soviet army and created a gigantic Singapore or Bataan-type situation ending at Vladivostok.

The Soviets' insistence on an all-out defense of the border zone and actually planning an offensive toward Fujin and Baoqing probably wouldn't have helped their military situation either. The attack on Fujin by the 15th Army, in particular, would presumably have involved not one but two major river crossings (of the Amur and Sungari), to be accomplished by the 25th day of hostilities. The Soviets' apparent aversion to defense in depth and offensive designs in NE Manchuria may have left them vulnerable to a breakthrough in the event the Japanese pierced the 'crust' of their defensive belts and all Soviet reserves were already committed to the front.

People have said Stalin won't commit extra resources to defend or retake any land in the east until Germany is defeated, and I agree, but does he lose material for the west without the far east? How many soldiers, tanks, trains, planes, shells will not be produced?
According to the directives sent to the Soviet Far East forces on 16 March 1942, planned reinforcements totalled just four tank brigades, five artillery regiments, six guards mortar regiments, and five armored train divisions all together.

Historical Soviet transfers from the Far East to Europe between June 22 and December 1, 1941 amounted to 2,209 tanks, 122,000 men, 2,000 artillery pieces, 1,500 tractors, and nearly 12,000 automobiles (per Glantz and some Russian sources). Overall, the Russian historian Kirill Cherevko cites figures of 344,676 men, 2,286 tanks, 4,757 guns and mortars, 11,903 motor vehicles, and 77,929 horses transferred from the Far East prior to May 9, 1945, most of which logically would have been sent before early 1943.

In 1945, the Japanese estimated Far Eastern Russia's output of military hardware to be 400 aircraft, 150 tanks, 30 armored cars, and 550 artillery pieces; I don't know how well these numbers reflected the situation in 1941 (or even 1945), but the loss of even one year's production at those rates would not have been small.

On the question of rerouting lend lease, it would require building up infrastructure on the other routes. Where do those materials come from especially with the loss of material coming through the east in the meantime? And who is going to build it and what else would they have been building?
The Soviets probably would have pressured the Allies to expand the Persian and White Sea routes, though the latter was quite dangerous due to German military activities.
 
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Simple question, I guess.

If the Japanese had somehow been coerced/convinced to attack Russia in 1941/1942, would opening that second front have actually done anything to help the Germans continue the advance in the west?
There's no way that Japan can attack the USSR, fight in China AND attack Britain, the Netherlands and the US. So pick any two, so long as China is one of the two.

At the time Japan entered the war in OTL, the Germans were rapidly closing in on Moscow and were convinced themselves (and telling the Japanese) that the Soviets were almost out of the war. Indeed, the apparently close victory of the Germans in the Soviet Union might be why the Japanese launched their desperate attack on the Europeans and US when they did - Germany was at the time wooing them, since Hitler wanted their navy causing problems for the US (who Hitler already saw as being in an undeclared war with Germany due US support for Britain and USN actions against Germany's uboats) but if they joined the war before Moscow fell and the Soviets surrendered, they'd have a lower place in the new German world order. Much as Mussolini attacked France rashly in an effort to get a good position for Italy when it appeared that the Germans would quickly defeat the French and British.

So if they are convinced to attack the USSR, one of these changes is likely:

1) For some reason the Germans believe in 1941 that they can't defeat the Soviets alone. Is this because they actually do some competent intelligence gathering and realize the Soviet armed forces are much bigger than they believed in OTL? Because the Soviets are resisting much more effectively making the Germans realize that there's no way they can reach the Soviet oil wells before they run out of oil themselves? (If this last, how? Because most ways that the Soviets could do better in 1941 are in things like avoiding the Kiev or Bryansk pockets - and likely Germany wouldn't notice they were missing vital victories since everything else would still be going better than expected for them.)
2) Japan doesn't launch its Southern expansion strategy in December of 1941, meaning that they are being convinced to attack in 1942.

The people running Japan were desperate, and certainly had more than their fair share of nasty beliefs. But they weren't stupid. They aren't going to attack some futile invasion of the USSR if all the petrol and ammunition is already allocated twice over to fighting the US, UK and China. Going South and North at the same time cannot be supported by a Japan that already knew that attacking to the South was an act of pure optimism and everything would need to go perfectly to even have a chance of success.

So the most likely case for Japan to invade the USSR is if it has resisted the temptation to throw itself at the USA. Given how little the Japanese can gain from an attack into the USSR (Siberia is pretty poor) and the losses the Japanese would suffer (effort will be diverted from China, the Japanese know full well just how well the Soviets can fight and this attack will probably lead to interruptions of the oil they were getting from Sakhalin, possibly long ones depending on how well the Soviets can sabotage production before they're overwhelmed on the island, as well as the diplomatic repercussions of launching an attack against someone they had a non-agression pact with) the Japanese will need more reasons to launch this attack than "because they are evil" or "because the Germans tell them to". But let's say they become convinced by some combination of fear that the US will attack them once Germany is done, frustration over Allied aid to China and effective German bribery (perhaps in fairly portable things like blueprints and engineers who can be sent to Japan by submarine?)

Potentially Japan can do quite alot of damage to the USSR. Mainly by choking the flow of supplies from the US to Vladivostok and down the TransSiberian. It's interesting to speculate on where the Japanese might try to threaten this supply line though. In OTL, the Japanese were careful to not molest US shipping going to Vladivostok. Obviously they might opt to interdict shipping to the port in TTL. But I suspect they would want to avoid provoking the US while fighting the USSR. So I could see them putting their effort into cutting the TransSiberian line, rather than directly attacking (in TTL) neutral shipping. I am unsure whether they'd be able to have any success. As I said, potentially this is a disaster. With the TransSib getting cut and the USSR facing even worse starvation than it did in OTL. Possibly famines bad enough to push an already shaky USSR into collapse. 1942 was their worst year of the war. On the other hand, in 1942 the Germans can't win either. They have the same problem in the Soviet Union that the Japanese did in China - at a certain point they just don't have enough manpower and resources to fully conquer even European Russia or the strength to decisively destroy whatever Soviet government (governments maybe?) claims power in the areas outside German reach. Many millions more die in this scenario, and the Soviets/Russians wouldn't be in any condition to take Berlin in this scenario, but the Germans can't raise crops and repair oil wells and coal mines and railroads and build locomotives fast enough to get the resources to stop the in this scenario much more focused US juggernaut. In OTL it is fair to say that the US wasn't the most important Ally in the war, but the thing that really doomed Germany was Wendell Willkie's campaign for US President in 1940. After that point, if one of the Allies weakened or were defeated, the US had the economy and manpower to make good the difference. It would take something like Germany completely defeating the UK AND the USSR to stand a chance and I don't see any plausible way for that to happen.

And that's assuming the Japanese do really well and a more Europe-focused US doesn't make their efforts in the far east for nought. In OTL, the Soviets refused British and US offers of troops. Would they do so in this scenario where more Soviet manpower will need to be kept on farms in the absence of a torrent of US foodstuffs coming from Vladivostok? Will a USN completely focused on the Atlantic be able to significantly increase pressure on Germany or open other supply routes to the USSR? For example, can the USN improve the efficiency of shipping to Archangel? Even taking the Northern strip of Norway to deny German airbases in the area would allow the WAllies to shorten the journey to Archangel and to get supplies through more reliably.

But is it plausible that the Japanese do as well as I am proposing? It may not be. As others have pointed out, the USSR hadn't exactly neglected their Eastern defenses. And while the Japanese army is better than given credit for (with their equipment being unfairly compared to European equipment when they weren't fighting in Europe and thus had very different needs) in 1942 they can't resource an attack into Siberia as well as they need for best performance. So the Japanese will be under performing against a distracted Soviet Union... They can achieve local success, but it isn't a sure thing.

fasquardon
 
All that a Japanese invasion of the USSR would have produced was more mass death, more human suffering, and potentially might have resulted in communism in Asia becoming even more widespread.
How do you figure that Asia would see even more widespread communism ITTL? If anything it would see less.
 
How do you figure that Asia would see even more widespread communism ITTL? If anything it would see less.
Because I don't think that a Japanese invasion of Siberia would have knocked the USSR out of the war. It might have, but I think a more likely outcome is that the US would have become involved at some point (perhaps the Japanese would have tried to invade SE Asia in spring 1942) and after Japan's defeat the Soviets, having fought the Japanese for several years in this scenario, would have extracted significant concessions from the western Allies under a Yalta or Potsdam equivalent regarding "spheres of influence." This could have possibly included Korea as well as Manchuria, even if the USSR didn't conquer either by force of arms.
 
All that a Japanese invasion of the USSR would have produced was more mass death, more human suffering, and might have resulted in communism becoming even more widespread throughout Asia.





From memory, a Quora user (I know, not the most reliable source) claimed that this scenario is commonly studied by the Chinese Armed Forces in modern times. They (the Red Chinese military) allegedly concluded that it would have been extremely difficult for the Soviets to win.



The Japanese made various estimates about how long it would have taken their army to conquer the Siberian "Maritime Province" (Primorye). The 1940 war plan estimated two months, the IJA General Staff estimated 6 to 8 weeks in 1941 (post-Barbarossa), and the timetable for an early version of the Kantokuen plan (22 divisions) worked out to 36 days (10 September to 15 October 1941).

According to @Admiral Fischer, "Senshi Sosho" (Japan's official military history of the war) reports that this timeframe further shrank to only 21 days in the 29 July version of Kantokuen . I suspect that the main reason for this was because the Japanese army felt pressured to at least bring the first phase of their campaign to an end before the onset of winter, which would have severely hampered operations in Siberia and northern Manchuria. The Kantokuen plan's 'Primorye offensive' was also incrementally strengthened by an additional 3 divisions compared with the July 8th version (16 divisions in the first wave vs 13, with a central reserve of 5 divisions in both). A later version drawn up after July 31st increased this number again to 17 divisions with a further 5 divisions concentrated at Mutanchiang.

Personally, given the nature of the terrain, geographic constraints, and the size of the forces involved I consider the 3 week timetable very unlikely despite some militarily questionable plans by the Soviet army outlined below. The border area was hilly and heavily forested, and the Soviets constructed several layers of defensive positions, including concrete bunkers, ranging from approximately 1 to 12 kilometers in depth. There were gaps between their "fortified regions" but due to the number of Soviet military personnel (about 500,000 men along a frontage of 500 miles/800 km, most of whom were concentrated south of Lake Khanka) combat probably would have taken on an attritional character in most places. In my opinion, the most likely location for the Japanese to have broken through was at Iman (Dal'nerechensk) north of Lake Khanka, which would have turned the flank of the main Soviet army and created a gigantic Singapore or Bataan-type situation ending at Vladivostok.

The Soviets' insistence on an all-out defense of the border zone and actually planning an offensive toward Fujin and Baoqing probably wouldn't have helped their military situation either. The attack on Fujin by the 15th Army, in particular, would presumably have involved not one but two major river crossings (of the Amur and Sungari), to be accomplished by the 25th day of hostilities. The Soviets' apparent aversion to defense in depth and offensive designs in NE Manchuria may have left them vulnerable to a breakthrough in the event the Japanese pierced the 'crust' of their defensive belts and all Soviet reserves were already committed to the front.



According to the directives sent to the Soviet Far East forces on 16 March 1942, planned reinforcements totalled just four tank brigades, five artillery regiments, six guards mortar regiments, and five armored train divisions all together.

Historical Soviet transfers from the Far East to Europe between June 22 and December 1, 1941 amounted to 2,209 tanks, 122,000 men, 2,000 artillery pieces, 1,500 tractors, and nearly 12,000 automobiles (per Glantz and some Russian sources). Overall, the Russian historian Kirill Cherevko cites figures of 344,676 men, 2,286 tanks, 4,757 guns and mortars, 11,903 motor vehicles, and 77,929 horses transferred from the Far East prior to May 9, 1945, most of which logically would have been sent before early 1943.

In 1945, the Japanese estimated Far Eastern Russia's output of military hardware to be 400 aircraft, 150 tanks, 30 armored cars, and 550 artillery pieces; I don't know how well these numbers reflected the situation in 1941 (or even 1945), but the loss of even one year's production at those rates would not have been small.



The Soviets probably would have pressured the Allies to expand the Persian and White Sea routes, though the latter was quite dangerous due to German military activities.
Thanks Bob. I know I've seen your analysis before and definitely didn't mean to make you dredge it all up again on demand. I wanted to reframe the discussion for all the people who thought there would be minimal effect on Soviet fighting in the west by looking at the fact that the east was still a net producer for them through the war. Your analysis makes that pretty clear. Beyond the acute loss in Lend-Lease while other routes are expanded the loss of hundreds of thousands of men, thousands of tanks and planes and tens of thousands of vehicles would surely be felt.

For the question of enticing Japan to attack, could the Germans basically promise them resources from the Soviet Union and equipment from Germany after the Soviet defeat? There was no shortage of optimism for either general staff. I could see an assessment that the two front war would force a Soviet surrender by 1942 with the transfer of oil, tanks and planes starting within months. I'm not saying this would be the outcome, but I could see both Germany and Japan believing it. As for whether Germany would be willing to give these concessions to Japan, with Stalin defeated they may still have to face the WAllies, but they should have some breathing room.
 
There's no way that Japan can attack the USSR, fight in China AND attack Britain, the Netherlands and the US. So pick any two, so long as China is one of the two.
I am not sure I agree with the premise. The Japanese Army high command was fixated on China but what if there were to view their position more objectively. They could have just accepted a stalemate and it is even possible Chiang Kai-shek would have accepted a truce. There certainly is no reason to suspect Chiang would have been any more active in response to a Japanese stand down or lessening of activity. There may have been a Soviet initiative for an attack against the Japanese in Burma. To me the decreased flow of Lend Lease supplies would be the most significant factor.
 
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