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A Mea Culpa and Explanation

Posted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 5:34 am
by Doug Nash
Well, now that Victory Was Beyond Their Grasp is being shipped out by the publisher (including signed copies to Marc, Christian et al), I need to post a correction in order to head some of my critics off at the pass, to use the well-worn cowboy expression.
In the book, I state that the Volks-Grenadier Division was the last evolution in the development of the German infantry division. This is both true and not technically correct. Technically, the so-called "Infanterie-Division 45" was the final evolution of the German infantry division, but differed very little from the Volks-Grenadier Division structure and, in fact, was nearly identical.
On 10 Dec. 1944, ALL infantry divisions of the field army were ordered to convert to the Inf.Div. 45 structure. This order had only minimal impact on existing VGDs but all the other infantry divisions (excepting Jaeger and Gebirgsjaeger Divs) organized under the old "Inf.Div.n.A." aka Kriegsetat 1944 structure had to undergo transformation in order to comply. Exempted from this order was the 1. Inf.Div. (which kept the old 1941 structure) and 6 infantry divisions in Norway (210., 230., 270., 274., 280., and 295.).
In actual terms, the Inf.Div. 45 differed from the VGD structure by acknowledging changes that had already been adopted in the field by existing VGDs, by formalizing the restoration of the Fuesilier Kompanie back into a Fuesilier Battalion and by adding a 3rd Kompanie back to the Pionier-Bataillon.
Also, all the old remaining two-regiment infantry divisions (each regiment with 3 battalions) were converted to the Inf.Div. 45 structure, if time and troops & equipment were available. This affected 11 of this type of division - the 199., 281., 361., 711., 712., 719., 702., 715., 347., 84., and 89. However, the planned conversions of these divisions in several cases never came to fruition as they were either destroyed before they could undergo the process or the war ended before their reorganization was completed.
Bottom line, the Inf.Div. 45 was nearly identical to the VGD table of organization and did not represent a new design, unlike the case of the VGD, which in fact represented a significant departure from how earlier divisions were manned, armed and equipped.
Since I knew this when I wrote the book, I did not really spend much time dwelling on it. However, since I know that readers of this website and elsewhere will attempt to call me on it, I will include this little bit of information in the next edition of VWBTG.
Doug Nash
PS: I do not mention the 4 RAD divisions in this context since tecnically they were formed primarily from RAD personnel using the framework of shattered regular divisions. From everything that I can gather, it seems that they were supposed to follow the Inf.Div. 45 aka VGD structure, but formation of these units seems to have been haphazard at best, with substantial deviations in equipment.

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 10:53 am
by Frederick L Clemens
If you don't have your own website, Doug, I'd suggest creating even just a simple one where you can post stuff like this and promote your books. Take a look at Danny Parker's website as an example. You don't have to recreate everything yourself though. You can mostly have links to sites like RZM and Feldgrau for interested people to follow.

Congrats on your new book. Haven't seen it yet, but a friend told me it was good.


Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 10:58 am
by Doug Nash
Thanks much - yes, I've been told by a couple of other people that I need to do that. Actually started one at the Author's Guild but haven't finished it yet. Guess I need to get that up and running ---

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 11:13 am
by Jason Pipes
In the mean time (and in addition) feel free to continue to use this section of the forum and this site in general to promote and provide updates and errata for your books. With thousands and readers coming here a day you are bound to get the word out pretty quickly and effectively!

If you need some help coming up with a web presence let me know as I'm considering offering space/service to those not inclined to do so on their own.

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 11:28 am
by Frederick L Clemens
Yeh, Jason, I wasn't suggesting he or anyone else abandon Feldgrau. He could avoid having to build his own forum by linking back here to Feldgrau to have anything discussed that he posted on his website.

If you have the time to build it, there probably would be people who would take you up on your satellite sites - call it FeldSpace. :wink:

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 11:35 am
by Jason Pipes
Yep, wasn't suggesting otherwise just letting it be known we are actively engaged in building and growing this section as a major resource for readers and authors alike.