The Second World War / World War Two

Naughty_Felid

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#1
Couldn't find a specific World War Two and I don't think this belongs in the forgotten history thread either so here's to a new thread.

Good interview with Galland and the troubles he had with Goering and Hitler. Interestingly after the war he lectured British Pilots on tactics some of them he'd fought against. Also friends with Barder.

http://www.historynet.com/interview...waffe-general-and-ace-pilot-adolf-galland.htm


This article was written by Colin D. Heaton and originally appeared in the January 1997 issue of World War II.
 

rynner2

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#2

Naughty_Felid

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#3
You mean Douglas Bader.

There's loads of stuff here on WWII - try that as a search term.
It's the dyslexia Rynner.

Is there a specific thread? I can't find one. I thought rather than clogging up the forgotten history thread with stuff that is hardly forgotten and if anything quite well known I'd make a new thread.
 

Cavynaut

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#4
It's strange how one thing leads to another, but, as a history fan, I thought that I was so tired of reading about the Second World War that I would never read anything about it again. Having grown up in the sixties, Sunday afternoon almost always meant a World War Two film on the TV, my Mum and Dad would constantly regale me with stories of the home front, and my history A level was the usual rise of Hitler and his eventual downfall.

And then about 8 months ago, I decided, on a whim, to start building Airfix kits again(it's probably an age thing!) I started with the Cromwell tank...then the King Tiger....then the Panther etc etc.

So I'm looking on the internet for information to complete my models as accurately as possible and a whole new world opened up! The tank battle of Villers-Bocage for instance. On a par with Kursk in historical and tactical significance if not size.

So here I am. The purchase of one Airfix kit has got me revisiting a period I thought I was utterly tired of.

If anyone is interested, my current build is another tank....the Cromwell Mark IV in 1/32 scale. :)
 

Naughty_Felid

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#5
It's strange how one thing leads to another, but, as a history fan, I thought that I was so tired of reading about the Second World War that I would never read anything about it again. Having grown up in the sixties, Sunday afternoon almost always meant a World War Two film on the TV, my Mum and Dad would constantly regale me with stories of the home front, and my history A level was the usual rise of Hitler and his eventual downfall.

And then about 8 months ago, I decided, on a whim, to start building Airfix kits again(it's probably an age thing!) I started with the Cromwell tank...then the King Tiger....then the Panther etc etc.

So I'm looking on the internet for information to complete my models as accurately as possible and a whole new world opened up! The tank battle of Villers-Bocage for instance. On a par with Kursk in historical and tactical significance if not size.

So here I am. The purchase of one Airfix kit has got me revisiting a period I thought I was utterly tired of.

If anyone is interested, my current build is another tank....the Cromwell Mark IV in 1/32 scale. :)
I was never a big WWII fan my interest in history was basically from the beginnings of the Roman empire to High/Late middle ages.

I got into tanks, specifically WWII tanks playing World of Tanks with some mates, I then switched to War Thunder which was a much more accurate presentation of what tanks were like.

Then various documentaries on TV on in the background and then watching and onto reading about the broader picture behind World War two.

In War Thunder the British tank line is considered one of the hardest to play as although the tanks are usually well armored their guns and specifically the solid shot used makes it difficult to take out tanks without being destroyed by returning fire.

British tanks during WWII were certainly a mixed bag and I think pre-war thinking really hampered us.

I use a captured PZ.Kpfw Churchill in my German line up with my StuG III G, PZ.IV G and Wirbelwind my favorite lineup in the game.

 

titch

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#6
I was never a big WWII fan my interest in history was basically from the beginnings of the Roman empire to High/Late middle ages.

I got into tanks, specifically WWII tanks playing World of Tanks with some mates, I then switched to War Thunder which was a much more accurate presentation of what tanks were like.

Then various documentaries on TV on in the background and then watching and onto reading about the broader picture behind World War two.

In War Thunder the British tank line is considered one of the hardest to play as although the tanks are usually well armored their guns and specifically the solid shot used makes it difficult to take out tanks without being destroyed by returning fire.

British tanks during WWII were certainly a mixed bag and I think pre-war thinking really hampered us.

I use a captured PZ.Kpfw Churchill in my German line up with my StuG III G, PZ.IV G and Wirbelwind my favorite lineup in the game.

FB_IMG_1495695264792.jpg I win! ( from the tank museum, Bovington)
 

George_millett

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#8
I was never a big WWII fan my interest in history was basically from the beginnings of the Roman empire to High/Late middle ages.

I got into tanks, specifically WWII tanks playing World of Tanks with some mates, I then switched to War Thunder which was a much more accurate presentation of what tanks were like.
Real men sink Battleships

Then various documentaries on TV on in the background and then watching and onto reading about the broader picture behind World War two.
Whilst not many of us are likely to be alive for it, I hope that when the centerary of WW2 roles round someone dusts of the idea behind The Great War Youtube channel. Weekly broadcasts detailing what happened 10 years ago that week, and assorted special episodes going into specific subjects in greater detail again broken down into appropriate series so playlists on the assorted countries involved in the war and Biographies of the major players. I've only been watching the channel for month and already learned a lot more than we were taught in school.


In War Thunder the British tank line is considered one of the hardest to play as although the tanks are usually well armored their guns and specifically the solid shot used makes it difficult to take out tanks without being destroyed by returning fire.

British tanks during WWII were certainly a mixed bag and I think pre-war thinking really hampered us.
Same more most of the countries that won the First World War. It does seem that it is the losers in a conflict that seem to learn the best lessons and are better tatically prepared for the next conflict. Both us and the French made the assumption that the Second World War would be a refight of the First with the same or simaler trench lines getting used again.

Unfortunately the Germans had learned the lessons of the First World War a lot better and completely out manovered us.

As an aside do they have any of Hobart's Funnies on War Thunder?
 

rynner2

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#9
WWII is too big a topic for one thread. It's possibly too big for a complete website. The war covered huge areas of land and sea, and so much happened that it's not surprising that people have forgotten a lot of it. There were millions of people involved, and hence there are millions of stories. Maybe even the top commanders didn't see the full picture.

It's probably better if we bumble along as we have, with different threads covering people's individual interests.

Sir Winston Churchill won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1953 for his six-volume history of World War II!
http://www.history.com/topics/british-history/winston-churchill
I doubt we can match that! :p
 

Cavynaut

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#10
British tanks during WWII were certainly a mixed bag and I think pre-war thinking really hampered us.

I use a captured PZ.Kpfw Churchill in my German line up with my StuG III G, PZ.IV G and Wirbelwind
My dad, a gun fitter on Centurions in Egypt in the early 1950's , always used to tell me that the main problem with British tanks was the thin 'belly armour'. As far as I understand it, that was the reason for the 'hedge cutter' device fitted to Cromwells. It allowed the tanks to cut through obstacles and so avoid riding up exposing their underbelly to the opposition. Do you know if that's correct?

Nice Churchill btw.....apparently a Panther was captured and used by the 6th Guards Brigade in Holland and named "Cuckoo".
 

titch

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#11
I dont think that British tanks where that bad, the main problem for a lot of them in the early war years, was the lack of an HE shell for the main gun, and some where mechanically unreliable, the Matilda 2 was a very good early war tank and the centurion would have been a very very good late war tank, if it had not arrived just a bit too late.
 

EnolaGaia

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#12
The belly armor vulnerability was common among Allied tanks, and trying to simply drive over a earthen dike / hump exposed this vulnerability.

This became a big problem during the first weeks' push inland from the Normandy beaches. The original sawtooth / prong apparatus was one of multiple devices or contraptions conceived and tested on the battlefield. The eventual production version originated with US units equipped with Sherman tanks. The first ones were built in the field using metal recycled from the Germans' beach defense obstacles.

The Americans passed the concept to the British, both Allies built and deployed the devices in the field, and both contacted their respective rear echelons in the UK to equip additional tanks prior to shipment across the Channel.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhino_tank
 

Cavynaut

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#15
As an aside do they have any of Hobart's Funnies on War Thunder?
Don't know about War Thunder, but kits are available for almost every kind of specialised AFV. Bridge layers, mine clearance, AVRE, Sherman/Matilda Calliopes......and if the kit isn't available, then you can almost guarantee that someone somewhere will be producing a conversion pack.
 

Naughty_Felid

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#16
Real men sink Battleships



Whilst not many of us are likely to be alive for it, I hope that when the centerary of WW2 roles round someone dusts of the idea behind The Great War Youtube channel. Weekly broadcasts detailing what happened 10 years ago that week, and assorted special episodes going into specific subjects in greater detail again broken down into appropriate series so playlists on the assorted countries involved in the war and Biographies of the major players. I've only been watching the channel for month and already learned a lot more than we were taught in school.




Same more most of the countries that won the First World War. It does seem that it is the losers in a conflict that seem to learn the best lessons and are better tatically prepared for the next conflict. Both us and the French made the assumption that the Second World War would be a refight of the First with the same or simaler trench lines getting used again.

Unfortunately the Germans had learned the lessons of the First World War a lot better and completely out manovered us.

As an aside do they have any of Hobart's Funnies on War Thunder?
Think it's been talked about but not implemented, a bit like the Bob Semple tank https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bob_Semple_tank
 

Naughty_Felid

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#17
WWII is too big a topic for one thread. It's possibly too big for a complete website. The war covered huge areas of land and sea, and so much happened that it's not surprising that people have forgotten a lot of it. There were millions of people involved, and hence there are millions of stories. Maybe even the top commanders didn't see the full picture.

It's probably better if we bumble along as we have, with different threads covering people's individual interests.

Sir Winston Churchill won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1953 for his six-volume history of World War II!
http://www.history.com/topics/british-history/winston-churchill
I doubt we can match that! :p

That's fine if you don't want to pop in Rynner. :)

Everyone has got a rough idea on how WWII happened. I thought a one stop general thread would be a good idea for those of us who enjoy talking about the conflict. We have a World War I thread after all.
 

Yithian

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#19
I'm reading old unit diaries for home units in 1939-40 (mostly 54th Infantry Division) and the sense of anxiety is palpable, even through the somewhat staid prose of adjutants and intelligence officers.

It's clear than nobody quite knew what to expect and there was a growing realisation that this was not going to be over quickly. It also became increasingly apparent that even when the call-up and training was complete the forces available were not going to be adequate to meet minimum defence requirements; there were also shortages of pretty much every kind of materiel.

Even when things settled down and the nation became inured to hearing bad news from the continent, of military setbacks and allies folding in hours, there were still continual flaps about incidents that would soon become utterly commonplace as the war progressed (aircraft crashes, equipment shortages, invasion scares). It's perhaps exemplary that the first shots fired by my grandfather's battalion during wartime were at a figure lurking in the shadows around an airfield, who fled when challenged. They never discovered who he was--it was that sort of time: there was a lot of rumour, a lot of uncertainty and a lot of excessively hopeful planning, but I can't help thinking that it must also have been an electric period through which to have lived, despite the fear and danger.
 
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rynner2

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#20
That's fine if you don't want to pop in Rynner. :)

Everyone has got a rough idea on how WWII happened. I thought a one stop general thread would be a good idea for those of us who enjoy talking about the conflict.
So far it seems to be mostly about tanks, which don't interest me much - I prefer ships and planes.

As I said, WWII is too big a subject for one thread. This one could be renamed the Tanks thread! :twisted:
 

Naughty_Felid

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#22
Watched a recent doco on the Battle of Britain and they mentioned the big foofah over the effectiveness of the 'Big Wing" in meeting the German air threat.

I seem to remember reading about it in the press that a few old vets took a pop at ol' tin legs Douglas Larder about it a few years ago as he favored/may have invented it.

http://www.battleofbritain1940.net/document-39.html

From that summary it seemed to be a clash of two or three personalities arguing that they knew best, (sound familiar?), in this casse "Big Wing" or "Penny Pockets" formations.
 
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titch

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#25
So far it seems to be mostly about tanks, which don't interest me much - I prefer ships and planes.

As I said, WWII is too big a subject for one thread. This one could be renamed the Tanks thread! :twisted:
Don't worry! I will spam my grandads adventures on the Russian convoys here soon
 

EnolaGaia

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#27
OK - here's a topic relating to the Second World War overall ...

It's common to see the daunting casualty (injured; killed) numbers from WWII. It's less common to be reminded how many souls remain in analytical limbo (i.e., MIA / unaccounted-for) over 70 years later.

MIA estimates range into the millions for Germany (circa 2 million) and the Soviet Union (circa 4 million).

According to the US Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency:

http://www.dpaa.mil/Our-Missing/Past-Conflicts/

... 73,057 WW2-era American defense personnel remain unaccounted for - the majority of whom were in the Pacific theater, with the bulk of those lost at sea.
 

Yithian

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#28
Watched a recent doco on the Battle of Britain and they mentioned the big foofah over the effectiveness of the 'Big Wing" in meeting the German air threat.

I seem to remember reading about it in the press that a few old vets took a pop at ol' tin legs Douglas Larder about it a few years ago as he favored/may have invented it.

http://www.battleofbritain1940.net/document-39.html

From that summary it seemed to be a clash of two or three personalities arguing that they knew best, (sound familiar?), in this casse "Big Wing" or "Penny Pockets" formations.
Many accounts have Bader as Leigh-Mallory's stooge. I find that somewhat hard to square with the interviews I've seen of him, but I suppose he was a much younger man then. Anyway, he had the operational reputation and a lot of victories over France and with 12 Group, so he could be called upon for practical support of 'theory' and overawe the men in suits. Leigh-Mallory was basically jealous of the fame and reputation of 11 Group, which when your nation is fighting for its very survival should not be your priority.

If there are three men in the RAF who were treated remarkably shabbily they were Hugh Dowding, Keith Park and Arthur Harris.

The first very literally saved the county in sticking to his guns and refusing to release more fighters to throw into the futile Battle of France. Churchill viewed it as a political necessity, but their inevitable loss would have very likely led to a subsequent loss in the Battle of Britain. This, quite apart from actually establishing the method by which the coming battle would be won, should have placed him on the wartime pantheon.

Park was the dogged tactician to Dowding's strategist. Shuttling around from airfield to airfield in his own plane, he brought advice and psychological support to his men, predicting, anticipating, allocating, gambling and winning day after day after day. Understandably, then, he had as little time for internal service politics as Dowding; that did for the both of them as soon as the Battle of Britain was over--they hadn't garnered the allies or marshalled the arguments to prevent their replacement by Portal (through another enemy Sholto Douglas) when the putsch came. If his earlier service wasn't enough, he then picked up sticks and did it all again in the Battle of Malta.

Harris was essentially betrayed by Churchill. Encouraged from late '42 onward to pursue relentless area bombing in the hope of breaking the nerve of the German populace and (essentially) killing its industrial workforce, he was then left out in the cold when the reality of what this actually did to people and ancient cities and civilians on the ground transpired. It is to our enduring shame as a nation that the men of bomber command (45% of whom were killed) never received a campaign medal for their truly vast sacrifice; it took 60-odd years to get a damned clasp.

A large proportion of the flight crews were men from the Commonwealth/Empire who returned to fight and in many cases die for the home country--there are no words to express what we owe them. It brings literal tears to my eyes to contemplate the ordeal they put themselves through.

Recommended (read in this order): Bomber Command by Max Hastings; Bomber by Len Deighton; No Moon Tonight by Don Charlwood; Lancaster Target by Jack Currie.
 
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