6th Army Break Out From Stalingrad

German campaigns and battles 1919-1945.

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Mike36
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Post by Mike36 » Wed Oct 31, 2007 4:02 pm

Hello Sid............Thank you for the info...I will check these out..

"One must remember that the Axis allies on the Eastern Front were unable to publish their own histories of the Eastern campaign because they were under Soviet control for over four decades after the war. This left the field free for German memoirs to blame them for almost anything."

Good point.There may be more to the story then meets the eye.

Mike

Eduard
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defend stalingrad

Post by Eduard » Mon Dec 17, 2007 3:11 am

Hi,

I think that the order to the 6th army to defend the fortress of Stalingrad could have been interpreted in another way.

Paulus elected to concentrate its forces around the city forming a defensive ring. I would have sent most of my forces in the direction most easy to link with the other armies and "look like" the relief was possible while defending the city... Probably stalingrad would be lost in a few days... but most of the army, at least the men would be on the german side...

Of course, the guns of the artillery and most of tanks and transport and supplies would be lost.

Yes Paulus would have risked its life but actually I think that not losing all the army would have helped him....

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Blame

Post by timobrienwells » Wed Dec 26, 2007 6:39 pm

"This left the field free for German memoirs to blame them for almost anything"
This is complete bollocks Sid!The germans blamed OKW for the disaster and not their allies.Manstein paid great tribute to the romanians.They were excellent soldiers.They just did not have the equiptment and/or logistical support to handle a strong Soviet offensive.Many romanian formations performed far better than the luftwaffe field divisions.
The hungarians and italians were never meant to be more than a temporary defensive screen along the Don river,and it was Hitler who,despite inumerable warnings,allowed the Red army to build up opposite them.
So which memoirs "blame" the allies for the disaster in southern russia?
tim wells

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Re: Blame

Post by dragos03 » Thu Dec 27, 2007 8:23 pm

timobrienwells wrote:"So which memoirs "blame" the allies for the disaster in southern russia?
Many. Some German officers blamed their allies for any defeat where allies were present. This is the case of Romanians, at least, but I guess they did the same about their other allies.

However, it must be said that most of the German commanders that were in direct contact with the Romanian troops did not blame them for the defeats, but rather the OKW like you said. There are still exceptions (like Hans Friessner for example).

Sadly, most English books or TV programs rely 100% on German sources and give a false account on the battles where Axis Allies were present. I've just seen a documentary on Discovery Channel about the battles in the Crimeea where Romanians are barely mentioned at all, despite the fact that Romanian troops were vital for both Mainstein's campaign and the defense of the peninsula in 1944.

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Post by Michate » Sat Dec 29, 2007 10:57 am

Many. Some German officers blamed their allies for any defeat where allies were present. This is the case of Romanians, at least, but I guess they did the same about their other allies.
Could you give the names of these officers, and the basis of your "guesses"? From what I have read there is no unified line in what "the German generals" write (though some patterns may exist), rather they have a lot of individual opinions on many different questions, including attacking themselves or their colleages quite often (as often as attacking the various allies).

BTW, is there any Romanian general who is not blaming the Germans or at least the German leadership, but instead himself or the Romanian army's leadership for defeats where the Romainan army was involved?

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Post by dragos03 » Sat Dec 29, 2007 4:41 pm

Michate wrote:
Many. Some German officers blamed their allies for any defeat where allies were present. This is the case of Romanians, at least, but I guess they did the same about their other allies.
Could you give the names of these officers, and the basis of your "guesses"? From what I have read there is no unified line in what "the German generals" write (though some patterns may exist), rather they have a lot of individual opinions on many different questions, including attacking themselves or their colleages quite often (as often as attacking the various allies).

BTW, is there any Romanian general who is not blaming the Germans or at least the German leadership, but instead himself or the Romanian army's leadership for defeats where the Romainan army was involved?
Hmm, Freissner, Fretter-Pico and Rudel, to name only a few. I'm sure there was no "unified line" among them, I only wrote that some German officers did it.

About the opinion of the Romanian generals, most of those that fought on the Eastern front did not have the chance to write their memoires, since they were arrested and murdered soon after the war. Some of those that did, blamed the Romanian leadership in some cases. Most officers believed for example that the leadership of the Romanian 4th Army during the siege of Odessa (although this was not a defeat in the end) was very bad.

At least two generals that took part in the battle of Stalingrad (Constantin Sanatescu and Platon Chirnoaga) thought that the Romanian high command had its share of responsability for the defeat. While none of them questioned the leadership and decisions of the commander of the 3rd Romanian Army (Gen. Petre Dumitrescu), both thought that Antonescu and the Romanian General Staff shouldn't have allowed Romanian units to be placed in such an exposed position.

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Generals Talk

Post by timobrienwells » Fri Jan 04, 2008 6:14 pm

Well,I would very much like to hear exactly what those guys said about the "allies"and their performance during 1942/43.I strongly doubt that they would have laid the blame for the disaster on the rumanians,italians,and hungarians.The whole of the German high command knew very well the limitations and the fighting capacity of those allied armies,but it was Hitler himself who ignored the intelligence warnings,and expected them to handle a full scale soviet offensive.
Even the italians,who performed quite lamentably,cannot be held accountable,because once again it was well known that they were not up to the task even before they went to Russia.
tim wells

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Re: 6th Army Break Out From Stalingrad

Post by marderII » Sun Jan 23, 2011 11:52 pm

This post is probably 'way too late" to be relevant....... However, as this subject is the premise for my first book, I couldn’t help adding my "two cents'.......the truth of the matter, whether or not you are "pro" Axis, or Soviet, is this; The German/Axis forces could have only "successfully" broke out of the pocket during the first week to ten days "AFTER" the encirclement or trap was closed near Kalach After that the indisputable facts are the Soviet forces would have simply been too overwhelming for a successful breakout. Any attempt would have simply created a "traveling pocket". And as much as i hate to side with the great German Military leader of WWII....in this case stayiing put after 10 December 1942 was probably the only real option available to the German forces

Thanks for letting me pipe up

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mellenthin
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Re: 6th Army Break Out From Stalingrad

Post by mellenthin » Sat Jan 29, 2011 11:54 am

marderII wrote:This post is probably 'way too late" to be relevant....... However, as this subject is the premise for my first book, I couldn’t help adding my "two cents'.......the truth of the matter, whether or not you are "pro" Axis, or Soviet, is this; The German/Axis forces could have only "successfully" broke out of the pocket during the first week to ten days "AFTER" the encirclement or trap was closed near Kalach After that the indisputable facts are the Soviet forces would have simply been too overwhelming for a successful breakout. Any attempt would have simply created a "traveling pocket". And as much as i hate to side with the great German Military leader of WWII....in this case stayiing put after 10 December 1942 was probably the only real option available to the German forces

Thanks for letting me pipe up
Heeresgruppe Don gave the instruction for the breakout on 01/12/1942 and 6th army made the necessary prpeparations for the attack to the southwest to linkup with the relief force. The order for the execution of the attack towards the relief force was given by Manstein on 19/12/1942 but Paulus would not move as long as he did not have certain minimum amounts of fuel and ammo.This condition could never be met and so nothing happened.

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mellenthin
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Re: 6th Army Break Out From Stalingrad

Post by mellenthin » Sat Mar 05, 2011 2:59 am

marderII wrote:And as much as i hate to side with the great German Military leader of WWII....in this case stayiing put after 10 December 1942 was probably the only real option available to the German forces

Thanks for letting me pipe up
Strange phrase in view of the chronology of the events. If the attack to linkup with the relief force ordered on 19 december would have been attempted, risks would have been high but success was possible. Actually not trying anything was not an option.
Unfortunately Paulus lacked the personality to execute the risky breakout.

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