Browse Wishlist. The product is already in the wishlist! Additional information. Add to basket. No products in the basket. The Wehrmacht became overstretched, although winning operationally, it could not inflict a decisive defeat as the durability of the Soviet Union's manpower, resources, industrial base and aid from the Western Allies began to take effect. In July the Wehrmacht conducted Operation Zitadelle Citadel against a salient at Kursk that was heavily defended by Soviet troops. The Germans did not achieve surprise and were not able to outflank or break through into enemy rear areas during the operation.
In , David Glantz stated that for the first time, blitzkrieg was defeated in summer and the opposing Soviet forces were able to mount a successful counter-offensive. Allied armies began using combined arms formations and deep penetration strategies that Germany had used in the opening years of the war.
Many Allied operations in the Western Desert and on the Eastern Front, relied on firepower to establish breakthroughs by fast-moving armoured units. These artillery-based tactics were also decisive in Western Front operations after Operation Overlord and the British Commonwealth and American armies developed flexible and powerful systems for using artillery support. What the Soviets lacked in flexibility, they made up for in number of rocket launchers, guns and mortars. The Germans never achieved the kind of fire concentrations their enemies were capable of by After the Allied landings at Normandy , the Germans began a counter-offensive to overwhelm the landing force with armoured attacks but these failed for lack of co-ordination and Allied superiority in anti-tank defence and in the air.
The most notable attempt to use deep penetration operations in Normandy was Operation Luttich at Mortain, which only hastened the Falaise Pocket and the destruction of German forces in Normandy. The Mortain counter-attack was defeated by the US 12th Army Group with little effect on its own offensive operations. The last German offensive on the Western front, the Battle of the Bulge Operation Wacht am Rhein , was an offensive launched towards the port of Antwerp in December Launched in poor weather against a thinly held Allied sector, it achieved surprise and initial success as Allied air power was grounded by cloud cover.
Determined defence by US troops in places throughout the Ardennes, the lack of good roads and German supply shortages caused delays. Allied forces deployed to the flanks of the German penetration and as soon as the skies cleared, Allied aircraft returned to the battlefield.
Allied counter-attacks soon forced back the Germans, who abandoned much equipment for lack of fuel. Blitzkrieg had been called a Revolution in Military Affairs RMA but many writers and historians have concluded that the Germans did not invent a new form of warfare but applied new technologies to traditional ideas of Bewegungskrieg manoeuvre warfare to achieve decisive victory. What makes this story worth telling is the development of one idea: the blitzkrieg. The German Army had a greater grasp of the effects of technology on the battlefield, and went on to develop a new form of warfare by which its rivals when it came to the test were hopelessly outclassed.
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Other historians wrote that blitzkrieg was an operational doctrine of the German armed forces and a strategic concept on which the leadership of the Third Reich based its strategic and economic planning. Military planners and bureaucrats in the war economy appear rarely, if ever, to have employed the term blitzkrieg in official documents. That the German army had a "blitzkrieg doctrine" was rejected in the late s by Matthew Cooper.
The concept of a blitzkrieg Luftwaffe was challenged by Richard Overy in the late s and by Williamson Murray in the mids. That the Third Reich went to war on the basis of "blitzkrieg economics" was criticised by Richard Overy in the s and George Raudzens described the contradictory senses in which historians have used the word.
The notion of a German blitzkrieg concept or doctrine survives in popular history and many historians still support the thesis. Frieser wrote that after the failure of the Schlieffen Plan in , the German army concluded that decisive battles were no longer possible in the changed conditions of the twentieth century.
Frieser wrote that the Oberkommando der Wehrmacht OKW , which was created in had intended to avoid the decisive battle concepts of its predecessors and planned for a long war of exhaustion ermattungskrieg. It was only after the improvised plan for the Battle of France in was unexpectedly successful, that the German General Staff came to believe that vernichtungskrieg was still feasible. German thinking reverted to the possibility of a quick and decisive war for the Balkan Campaign and Operation Barbarossa. Most academic historians regard the notion of blitzkrieg as military doctrine to be a myth.
Shimon Naveh wrote "The striking feature of the blitzkrieg concept is the complete absence of a coherent theory which should have served as the general cognitive basis for the actual conduct of operations". Naveh described it as an "ad hoc solution" to operational dangers, thrown together at the last moment. Hitler had intended for a rapid unlimited war to occur much later than , but the Third Reich's aggressive foreign policy forced the Nazi state into war before it was ready.
Hitler and the Wehrmacht 's planning in the s did not reflect a blitzkrieg method but the opposite. Harris also found no evidence that German military thinking developed a blitzkrieg mentality.
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Citino argues:. Blitzkrieg was not a doctrine, or an operational scheme, or even a tactical system. The Germans never used the term Blitzkrieg in any precise sense, and almost never used it outside of quotations. It simply meant a rapid and decisive victory lightning war Historian Victor Davis Hanson states that Blitzkrieg "played on the myth of German technological superiority and industrial dominance," adding that German successes, particularly that of its Panzer divisions were "instead predicated on the poor preparation and morale of Germany's enemies.
In the s, Alan Milward developed a theory of blitzkrieg economics, that Germany could not fight a long war and chose to avoid comprehensive rearmament and armed in breadth, to win quick victories.
Milward described an economy positioned between a full war economy and a peacetime economy. Overy wrote that blitzkrieg as a "coherent military and economic concept has proven a difficult strategy to defend in light of the evidence". The Germans, aware of the errors of the First World War, rejected the concept of organising its economy to fight only a short war.
Therefore, focus was given to the development of armament in depth for a long war, instead of armament in breadth for a short war.
Hitler claimed that relying on surprise alone was "criminal" and that "we have to prepare for a long war along with surprise attack". During the winter of —40, Hitler demobilised many troops from the army to return as skilled workers to factories because the war would be decided by production, not a quick "Panzer operation". In the s, Hitler had ordered rearmament programs that cannot be considered limited. In November Hitler had indicated that most of the armament projects would be completed by — The construction and training of motorised forces and a full mobilisation of the rail networks would not begin until and respectively.
After the war, Albert Speer claimed that the German economy achieved greater armaments output, not because of diversions of capacity from civilian to military industry but through streamlining of the economy.
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Richard Overy pointed out some 23 percent of German output was military by Between and , 70 percent of investment capital went into the rubber, synthetic fuel, aircraft and shipbuilding industries. Hitler's correspondence with his economists also reveals that his intent was to wage war in —, when the resources of central Europe had been absorbed into the Third Reich.
Living standards were not high in the late s. Consumption of consumer goods had fallen from 71 percent in to 59 percent in The demands of the war economy reduced the amount of spending in non-military sectors to satisfy the demand for the armed forces. Overy presents this as evidence that a "blitzkrieg economy" did not exist. Adam Tooze wrote that the German economy was being prepared for a long war.
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The expenditure for this war was extensive and put the economy under severe strain. The German leadership were concerned less with how to balance the civilian economy and the needs of civilian consumption but to figure out how to best prepare the economy for total war. Once war had begun, Hitler urged his economic experts to abandon caution and expend all available resources on the war effort but the expansion plans only gradually gained momentum in Tooze wrote that the huge armament plans in the pre-war period did not indicate any clear-sighted blitzkrieg economy or strategy.
A blitzkrieg method called for a young, highly skilled mechanised army. In —40, 45 percent of the army was 40 years old and 50 percent of the soldiers had only a few weeks' training.
builttospill.reclaim.hosting/rapunzel-en-espaol-moderno-translated.php The German army, contrary to the blitzkrieg legend, was not fully motorised and had only , vehicles, compared to the , of the French Army. The British also had an "enviable" contingent of motorised forces. Thus, "the image of the German 'Blitzkrieg' army is a figment of propaganda imagination". During the First World War the German army used 1. Half of the German divisions available in were combat ready but less well-equipped than the British and French or the Imperial German Army of In the spring of , the German army was semi-modern, in which a small number of well-equipped and "elite" divisions were offset by many second and third rate divisions".
James Corum wrote that it was a myth that the Luftwaffe had a doctrine of terror bombing , in which civilians were attacked to break the will or aid the collapse of an enemy, by the Luftwaffe in Blitzkrieg operations. After the bombing of Guernica in and the Rotterdam Blitz in , it was commonly assumed that terror bombing was a part of Luftwaffe doctrine. During the interwar period the Luftwaffe leadership rejected the concept of terror bombing in favour of battlefield support and interdiction operations. The vital industries and transportation centers that would be targeted for shutdown were valid military targets.
Civilians were not to be targeted directly, but the breakdown of production would affect their morale and will to fight. German legal scholars of the s carefully worked out guidelines for what type of bombing was permissible under international law. While direct attacks against civilians were ruled out as "terror bombing", the concept of the attacking the vital war industries — and probable heavy civilian casualties and breakdown of civilian morale — was ruled as acceptable. This document, which the Luftwaffe adopted, rejected Giulio Douhet 's theory of terror bombing.
Terror bombing was deemed to be "counter-productive", increasing rather than destroying the enemy's will to resist. Such bombing campaigns were regarded as diversion from the Luftwaffe's main operations; destruction of the enemy armed forces. The bombings of Guernica, Rotterdam and Warsaw were tactical missions in support of military operations and were not intended as strategic terror attacks. Harris wrote that most Luftwaffe leaders from Goering through the general staff believed as did their counterparts in Britain and the United States that strategic bombing was the chief mission of the air force and that given such a role, the Luftwaffe would win the next war and that.
Nearly all lectures concerned the strategic uses of airpower; virtually none discussed tactical co-operation with the Army. Nearly all discussed the use of strategic airpower, some emphasising that aspect of air warfare to the exclusion of others. One author commented that European military powers were increasingly making the bomber force the heart of their airpower. It happened because the German aircraft industry lacked the experience to build a long-range bomber fleet quickly, and because Hitler was insistent on the very rapid creation of a numerically large force.
British theorists John Frederick Charles Fuller and Captain Basil Henry Liddell Hart have often been associated with the development of blitzkrieg, though this is a matter of controversy. In recent years historians have uncovered that Liddell Hart distorted and falsified facts to make it appear as if his ideas were adopted. After the war Liddell Hart imposed his own perceptions, after the event, claiming that the mobile tank warfare practised by the Wehrmacht was a result of his influence.
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