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What if Italy had been a capable air/naval power?

Discussion in 'What If - Mediterranean & North Africa' started by Skontos1, Jan 28, 2012.

  1. Prospero Quevedo

    Prospero Quevedo Active Member

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    Stalin had built the tras Siberian rail road telling the people it was a necessary expense for prosperity in the country being able to moe goods and people. Stalin knew if he wa going to compete with the west his new factories were going to need raw material. Most of the raw material was in the east and Stalins industrial cities were in the west. Plus Stalin understood the need of a rail road to mo e large armies quickly. But we did send a huge supply of rails and stock cars. I wonder if the cars were kits allowing the Russians to set the gusge of the wheels and we sent so much rails it made me wonder if they resmelted it for armor for their tanks and other production. They were using steel at such a high rate not just for tanks but weapons and trucks and munitions planes. We sent lots of trucks because they had such a huge army they couldnt produce enough for their huge army like what at the peak four million or was it more. Lol studebsker will live long in Russia don't know if they were copying but they had bunches of studebakers. Troop carriers, tankers, my favorite katyusha. Anyway they did use much of the rails to expand their rail system needed to build spurs to all those new relocated factories and stock cars to move all the troops and eauiptment in the east to the west. This was hitlers biggest blunder he was so sure the Japanese would tie up those troops but that never happened the Japanese were too engaged with their pacific expansion plus Russian tank technology gave them a wooping before and the Japanese were still far behind I don't think they felt they were ready to take on the Russians. Let's face it Japanese tanks were on the low rung and they had very few tanks at all the army didn't go into building large numbers of tanks mostly because Japan had a huge shortage of steel most went to the navy for ships and planes weapons tanks were at the bottom a bad decision a decent tank in large numbers could have changed a lot of the out come of the war. Made the taking of the islands a lot harder and maybe given them the Idea they could take the Russians. The war in 39 was over a part of land rich in oil and Japan was in need of oil. Might have made them want to get those oil fields again.
     
  2. Prospero Quevedo

    Prospero Quevedo Active Member

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    Yeah you have to give credit to the Brits when they had the money they pioneered s lot of naval technology the first true carriers then the angled deck they did the experimenting and we benefited from it we had to develop new engineering for our super carriers but Britain helped with the initial carrier design we just took it farther than anyone else so far unless the Chinese stop bragging and actually build that one they swear will be a half again larger than the Nimitz class. That would be much larger than even our latest. Too bad for the British navy these days can barely have the budget to maintain the ships they have and mothballed a bunch just to afford what they have left. The military budget is so low the army has mothballed their tanks I think their going to regret that. All major engagements in the last hundred years has Ben won by who had the better tanks or tank support. What are they going to do in a engagement like desert storm or with Russia who is still building tanks trying to build the next generation of tanks no aren't we building or working on s next generation upgrade for the Abrams
     
  3. Prospero Quevedo

    Prospero Quevedo Active Member

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    Yeah for the light brigade, didn't the Russians get a bunch of Germans subs and German surface ships including the unfinished Graf Zeppelin which they tried to finish but failed. They also wanted some Japanese subs but the navy took the latest ones and got rid of them giving them the older not worth worrying about ones the ones that had advance technology even better than us they didn't want them to get and supposedly are the ones found scuttled in Hawaiian waters which I can't remember if they admit or deny. I think you can pay for a submarine ride to see them or was might be out of business now. If you go on the one on Oahu make sure you go when the sun is overhead to see everything better unfortunately we got there late, late afternoon the lighting was already getting bad could see very well
     
  4. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ..c
    .....culture/etc......the Germans and Japanese were very disciplined/organized/etc....this helps greatly in training/manufacturing/movements/battle/etc.....some cultures are '''''un-industrious''/etc
     
  5. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Mussolini said to Hitler Italy was ready for war in 1942-43 but the country never really started any production for war truly.
     
  6. GunSlinger86

    GunSlinger86 Well-Known Member

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    They created the Mafia for god's sake, the most cold-blooded and cold-hearted organization there is. They did have a modern navy, however England pulled a Pearl Harbor on them, and they had capable fighters, just barely any.
     
  7. Prospero Quevedo

    Prospero Quevedo Active Member

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    Maybe poor training lots of nations had large armies with equipment but had poor training or didn't evolve their training still using old outdated practices. The French did a lot of that used the tanks like cavalry didn't coordinate infantry and tanks together. They Germans on the other hand had been training for years for modern mechanized warfare and showed the French how it was supposed to be done the British almost broke the Germans but just didn't have the fire power to break the line and didn't have control of the air to send enough bombers to cause disarray for the Germans.
     
  8. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    The BEF and The French were in Belgium while the Sichelschnitt was behind their back.

    The Brits had bomber attacks to destroy the bridges the Germans used but the German AA was made strong and the Bf 109's also were strong enough to shoot them down. It was a massacre.
     
  9. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ...culture has a lot to do with poor training ..Germans were and are known for discipline...I was one of the best shooters in my company because of my discipline ....it takes discipline to train/clean weapons/patrolling/shoot/etc--all aspects of military tactics
    ...I could give a specific example, but I'll leave it at that....it's too ====== ''sensitive''--but true--fact..some people are hurt by the truth...they don't like facts
     
  10. Prospero Quevedo

    Prospero Quevedo Active Member

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    Does it relate to economics as well. I read that most countries military production and research as well as training fell considerably because of funding. Like at Tunisa our guys thought they were well trained, the Germans said they couldn't believe how inexperienced and untrained the US were. They took out all the attacking tanks and the US with all the firing they did did not take out one enemy tank. This just encouraged the Germans to be more aggressive. The M3 and M4s helped the Brits turn the tide but the Brits had experience and fought well with our tanks. So why were we so bad in the beginning was it poor training and poor tactics. On WGTB they said it was a combination of poor training and outdated tactics they still used wwi style formations. Yes the Germans had great discipline and great training they trained for years before the war but trained aggressively like they were already at war and developed tactics well into the new generation of mechanized warfare. The use of radio in everything also changed war you didn't have to send a runner or courier or look for flags. Now you could change your battle lines during battle get up to the minute reports. And better coordination with aircraft and support units. One of the things Italians had few of radios in their vehicles but the Italians had most vehicles with radios by the late part.
     
  11. Prospero Quevedo

    Prospero Quevedo Active Member

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    Lol, yeah it was amazing how long the swordfish stayed in service and the missions they did. I really can't believe that the Bismarck couldn't shoot down a single one and the damaged ones five all limped back to the carrier. The Brits did a lot of work on carrier design that we incorporated in our engineering but we took it to a new generation so fast we were building carriers larger and better than anything they could have imagined, our Essex class then the angle deck Essexs, has anyone done a plastic one yet like dml or tamiya or hasagawa.
     
  12. Prospero Quevedo

    Prospero Quevedo Active Member

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    When I did 2400 warships we used sea power rules. I had the Italians loved the Roma class. Had one painted up,really nice had the light grey and medium grey looked great and the air recognition on the fore deck. My buddies would joke look I'm Italian hey you stupid British look here I am bomb the hell outta me, lol, kind of felt the same way. Look here I am see my bright red and white stripes.
     
  13. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ...sure, funding affects it ...but. like I've said, a mediocre weapon in motivated, trained hands, is better than a great weapon in unmotivated, untrained hands .....and, of course, training, discipline, etc is affected by the leaders--top - down
     
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  14. Prospero Quevedo

    Prospero Quevedo Active Member

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    I agree with you, leader ship can make a huge difference, they say the French lost because most of their generals were selected more out of their family or status than for military experience. Look at the turn around in North Africa our troops got beat three times straight then Patton takes command and we hold the Germans till they run out of supplies. Rommel gave the allies a run with so much less for quite a while. Isn't he still the tank commander most studied even today's?
     
  15. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ..leaders run different training, different amounts, and, critically--different ''intenseness'' of the training
     
  16. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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    “The Australian troops are fighting magnificently and their training is far superior to ours.” Field Marshal Erwin Rommel. Writing to his wife, Lucia, about the stubborn defence he was encountering at Tobruk.

    And another i thought i'd throw in...

    “My God, I wish we had 9th Australian Division with us this morning”. MAJ GEN Freddie de Guingand, CoS Allied Land-force HQ Europe, 1944 about the D-Day landings.
     
  17. Prospero Quevedo

    Prospero Quevedo Active Member

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    The Australians have proven themselves to be great soldiers through out history from the wars of Africa to wwi and wwii. I read a book the Italians were terrified of the Australian soldiers the way they would woop and scream as they charged and the rumors that all Australians were cold bloody cut throats because they came from murderers and criminals since Australia was a penal colony. They say they British were actually the ones to start the rumors, a bit of psychological warfare?
     
  18. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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    I’d like to say yes…but have read too many reports of Aussies running into battle with a smile… : ) A beautiful Australian smile….
     
  19. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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    Don’t forget Vietnam…after Long Tan they refused to engage with us…our ground war was effectively over. And Korea…and Afghanistan…

    The kiwis or Maoris were the cold blooded killers…
     
  20. Sheldrake

    Sheldrake Member

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    It may be because historically, and for Italy this was recent history, the country had not needed to win battles to benefit from war. The Kingdom of Sardinia evolved into the Kingdom of Italy through war. Sardinia was on the side of the French in 1854 in the Crimea and in the 1859 war against Austria. Despite largely failing in the battle of San Martino, Sardina gained much of Lombardy and the central Italian states. In the 1866 (Seven Weeks) War Piedeont/Sardinia allied with the Prussians. Despite losing the battle of Custozza and the naval battle of Lissa, Italy aquired the Venito and Fruli. Despite achieveing very little apart from high casualties in WW1 Italy gained the South Tyrol and the Dodecanese Islands. So the lesson from history was that Italy needed to have enough armed forces to be potentially useful but these did not need to be much good, as long as Italy's allies won. To a certain extent Mussolini was right to extole the sacrifices of Italian war dead. They had bought the expansion of taly.

    Mussolini's dictatorship was based on the appearance of power. That infected the armed forces from the very top. It was enough to look good. Italian troops were under trained and the NCO and Officer corps was very weak.

    Another major reason that Italian forces were so bad was that the Italian industrial base was not sufficiently developed to develop the kinds of weapons necessary for WW2. Italy's automobile industry was unable to build enough trucks to motorise their partially motorised army. This would be a big disadvantage in North Africa and Russia. Italy did not develop as good an aircraft engine as British Germans or Americans. Their front line fighters of 1940 were the Mc200 and the Cr 42. Their bombers had three engines because they did not have good enough engines to build bombers with only two! The Mc202 and 205 were good fighters - but needed German engines.
    Much artillery was obsolescent and dated from WW1. Their AFVs were under armoured. Although some italian offiicers embraced the opportunities offered by aircraft and tanks to revolutionise war, Italy lacked the means to do so.

    Mussolini joined the war in June 1940 having decided that Hitler was going to win.
     
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