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rommel versus patton

Discussion in 'Leaders of World War 2' started by Quillin, Mar 22, 2006.

  1. Roel

    Roel New Member

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    They certainly were not, in spite of what they did. My point is that they were very poor and still performed admirably. You can't say they were the best units because they won, that is a circular argument.

    Wasn't this also the case in the East?

    The units I mentioned not only prided themselves in fancy names; most of them had cores of hardened veterans and experienced officers leading fanatical if green soldiers.
     
  2. ilija

    ilija New Member

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    Ok then what units were the best unts or among the best in Western front at that time.

    The great number of people who fought in the western units were people who saw combat for the fisrt time,while in the east this there was great number of veterans who did have expirience with the horors of the war.
     
  3. Roel

    Roel New Member

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    12th Infantry, some of the units of the 1st Fallschirmjäger Army, the 116th Panzer Division...

    Do you have any proof that the ratio of veterans and experienced NCOs to recruits was greater in the East than it was in the West?
     
  4. sinissa

    sinissa New Member

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    Mostl gemran veterans died/wounded/captured in the east,coz there was only real fight in that time (till 1944,especialy in Leningrad),after that,when Germany loss they human resources they regrut ppl who r not ment to be soldiers in the begining (from hitlerjungen,chieldrens,old mans,basicly all what can carry a gun) so naturaly number of real soldiers,and veterans was drop in flavor of green ones,that count for bouth fronts.But geman ocupation forces in France,and German front line forces in Russia,u must admit that expiriance cannot be the same:)
     
  5. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 New Member

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    Sorry what exactly where the German losses against the USSR up to July 1941 again? What overall was the ratios of German lost per enemy combatant? How do you use these to rate the German soldiers in the East as being better than those in the west?
     
  6. ilija

    ilija New Member

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    Why do you think that this are the best units in west.

    Well most of the troops on the western front saw combat for the very first time and on the eastern front there was fighting from the very begining and surley not all members in all armys there were dead.
     
  7. Roel

    Roel New Member

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    Experience, leadership, equipment, morale, recent resting periods.

    A large number of units on the Western front were stationed there to rest and refit after taking heavy losses in the East; the Germans were constantly moving units around between the three fronts on which they fought. There is no clear watershed between "Western" and "Eastern" units, divisions, or soldiers, except in certain cases where units specialized on particular frontline areas or conditions. Both in the East and the West, many units were made up of fresh recruits, few units were truly experienced.
     
  8. ilija

    ilija New Member

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    And the units that manage to throw back Allies were poor.What experience did this unit's had.
    This was the case when there was no fighting in France.
     
  9. Roel

    Roel New Member

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    They were either units that had recieved their baptism of fire in Normandy and were consequently destroyed, scattered and then rallied in the Netherlands, or they were completely inexperienced.
    And afterwards.
     
  10. ilija

    ilija New Member

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    But the same thing happened and with the units that you say were the best,they also had fresh soldiers in them.
    Where is the logic in sending your units in France to refit when there is fighthing there. :-?
     
  11. ilija

    ilija New Member

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    And when I wrote about British taking on the best troops in Market Garden i was thinking about forces from II SS Panzer Corps.
     
  12. smeghead phpbb3

    smeghead phpbb3 New Member

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    The notion that any one of the allied powers took a significantly higher casualty ratio is a myth... The combat 'ratio' of the Eastern Front is somewhere in the vincinity of 3:4 if you remember the fact that most military casualties suffered by the Red Army were POW's... The Germans murdered between 4 million and 6 million Red Army POW's in the course of the war... Actual combat losses were not too different (in ratio) to that of the west. Tactically the Germans dealt more damage than they recieved against all enemies... Not just the Russians and not just the Allies

    In this analysis I am taking the lowest estimation of Allied deaths and the lowest estimation of Soviet POW deaths, (as well as being extremely generous with the Axis casualties in the west)so as best to maximise the probability of proving the flawed hypothesis that the German combat Ratio was notably higher in the east than the west...

    Military Deaths on the Eastern front:

    ~3,100,000 German military
    359,000 German POW's
    ~700,000 Axis Allies (Italians, Romanians, Hungarians)

    ~4,000,000 Soviet military
    ~100,000 Polish military
    ~4,000,000 Soviet POW's

    Military Deaths on all other Fronts (except the pacific):

    ~360,000 German military
    ~ 56,000 German POW's
    ~100,000 Axis Allies (Mainly Italy)

    ~200,000 British Military
    ~250,000 American military
    ~200,000 French military
    ~300,000 Yugoslav military


    Military death ratio in the East: (Axis/USSR)

    3 : 4 (not incl. POW's) - 1 : 1.33
    3 : 8 (incl. POW's)------ 1 : 2.66

    Military death ratio in the West: (Axis/Allies)

    45 : 100 (not incl. POW's) - 1 : 2.22
    1 : 2 (incl. POW's)---------- 1 : 2

    So in fact you see the actualy disparity is not too different between the fronts, even with the POW's included... Feel free to correct any statistics if you think they are wrong...

    If you find this hard to understand, look at this picture for a rough idea on military casualties... Focus on France and Italy for a general idea upon what the combat ratio was in the west...
    http://users.erols.com/mwhite28/ww2-loss.htm
     
  13. Roel

    Roel New Member

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    Yes, and? We can still objectively judge them as better than units that were either completely green, newly formed out of stragglers, or completely exhausted.

    I said the Germans were constantly moving units around between fronts, which continued after D-Day. These were not sent there to refit though, but to fight. Even so, when France was lost, many units were still sent to Western Germany or to the Netherlands to refit.

    This Corps had 9,000 men ready for action on September 17th 1944, a thousand men less than the British airborne division dropped on them. These soldiers had been in continuous combat for two months, from fending off British attacks around Caen to fighting rearguard actions to facilitate the retreat of others during the rout from France. The 10th SS Panzer division had no tanks, the 9th SS Panzer division had most of its vehicles in repair.
     
  14. jeaguer

    jeaguer New Member

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    .

    this idea of one front having " the best " units is a bit of a fool's errant
    the normal patern was for the german units to be smashed in the east ,
    an if they were lucky or too far gone , send to western garnisons
    for rest and refit ,
    notoriously the ss divisions who had a very high rate of " wear "
    the best equiped western units were send east , usually on an emergency
    basis , while the troop in garnison were pretty much pillaged of their
    transports ,leaving the occupation west in pretty poor shape militarily
    that's why crack units had to be taken from the east to stiffen the western
    front when the real shooting started !

    If you think about it , it make sense to move the biggest bang for the
    smallest tranport buck , faster too .


    :)
    .
     
  15. ilija

    ilija New Member

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    Here are some nice quotes from this two.

    Patton: "How many officers did you lose today?"
    Ward: "We were fortunate today, we didn't loose any officers."
    Patton: "Goddammit Ward, that's not fortunate. That's bad for the moral of the enlisted men. I want you to get more officers killed."
    Ward: "You're not serious, are you?"
    Patton: "Yes goddammit, I'm serious. I want you to put some officers out as observers, keep them well up front until a couple get killed. It's good for enlisted morale".


    Conversation between George Patton and Orlando Ward, Orlando Ward Papers 1941-43,Biographic notes by Gugeler, Chapter X, MHI


    "Gentlemen, you have fought like lions and been led by donkeys."


    Erwin Rommel to British POWs at Tobruk


    "Men are basically smart or dumb and lazy or ambitious. The dumb and ambitious ones are dangerous and I get rid of them. The dumb and lazy ones I give mundane duties. The smart ambitious ones I put on my staff. The smart and lazy ones I make my commanders."


    Erwin Rommel
     
  16. Grieg

    Grieg New Member

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    There are many quotes attributed to these two men, many of them apocryphal. The ones you choose to list can paint a picture of your choosing which may or may not accurately reflect the man's true attitudes, (if anyone can find truth in short pithy quotes).
    Patton was certainly an aggressive commander who insisted that his officers lead from the front.
     
  17. canambridge

    canambridge Member

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    Patton also wanted to avoid his enlisted men thinking that officers gave orders and enlisted men died. Something about leadership by example, shared risk, tlak the talk, walk the walk ...
     
  18. ilija

    ilija New Member

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    What am I supose to think about men who says this.

    "we won't just shoot the ba****** we will ripe there living guts out and use them to grease the treads of our tanks"

    "Just give me the word general, and I'll push those commie ba****** back to the great wall of china"


    Like the world didn,t see enough deads allready and he was in need for this.
     
  19. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 New Member

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    I would be careful before I accused anyone of Lying. Where exactly in my post did I lie? As far as I am aware I have never deliberately lied on this or any other forum and I resent such implication from you or anyone else. Watch what you accuse others of in future please, at the very least be prepared to back up such accusations if you're going to make them which your post does not.
     
  20. Roel

    Roel New Member

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    Simon, I think he's talking about the myth you're criticizing in your own post. As in, "the idea that German soldiers in the East were superior is a myth at best, a lie at worst".
     

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