I'm currently reading about a us infantry man's
exp. in france and germany in ww2 and i'm curious, what was the us soldiers exp. in N. africa like?
Did the united states play a significant role?
I don't know jack shit about, which is odd, considering what i know about d-day and the battle of the bugle. was it just brits and grits, or did the americans really go all out on the germans for the first time?
American land involvement in North Africs proper was fairly limited. The fist action you see them in is Operation Torch, in November of 1942, only about half a year before the Axis were driven back to Italy.
That being said, there were some battles, most famously Kasserine, and the Americans were quite involved in the Tunisian campaign.
I would recommend The Path To Victory by Douglas Porch if you're interested in the subject ( and just the Mediterranean theater in general)
I don't know much about anything, but from what I gather North Africa was American forces' testing ground in the European theater (it might not be, but I always grouped in the North African fighting with Europe for simplicity).
It didn't do so great at first, with the Battle of Kasserine Pass, but it got better with Patton taking over. Montgomery was able to hold out until until outside aide came in, and once Rommel's forces were defeated in the region, the Allies were able to move on to Sicily.
Also, I can't even think of the trials those men faced at the Battle of the Bugle. So much musical brass.... fallen..... wasted, musical, youth.
Originally the Americans were planning an invasion of France for the spring of 1943 but Churchill was able to convince them to postpone it and instead get in the fight earlier in North Africa. It was controversial, pissed a lot of people off including Eisenhower, but the general consensus is that it was the correct action; Green American troops, the lack of a sizable invasion fleet, and the Luftwaffe still dominant over Northern Europe.
It was validation of the Sherman as it outclassed all German tanks at the time. I'm assuming you mean the Lees and Grants?
It was also the first display of American artillery, one of the few areas of the American military that spent the interwar years developing new weapons and tactics instead of downsizing. They were effective immediately would arguably become the best artillery of the entire war.
>the Lees and Grants?
both of which performed well against german armor, given their good armor and armament, with only their high silhouette preventing going hulldown being a disadvantage
Soviet artillery was rudimentary but used en masse. Also often horse drawn.
American artillery and munitions were modern and they had developed tactics like time on target. They were also the only fully mechanized army on the planet. It's common in German memoirs to read how they feared spotter planes, or after being taken prisoner asking about the "automatic cannons." They complained that Americans fought war "like rich men," and "why send a man when you can send a shell?"
It's was a made for TV remake of Sahara.
perhaps in terms of operational planning and massed use but american artillery was unparalleled, no one came close, when it came to artillery command/organization and the fire control net - and two factors closely tied to the above, which were radio use and ballistics data/maps - basically american artillery fires were brought down in a matter of roughly between thirty seconds and like three minutes, which boggles the mind when compared to other countries with a reaction times of 15 minutes + like the germans or even more like the soviets (and really even than the british with about 5 to 10 minutes between calling arty up and defensive fires)
>15 minutes +
as in 15+ minutes - german batteries would usually respond between about 15 and half an hour while it could take more than 45 minutes for a soviet battery to respond accurately
What are you talking about? Artillery was the one area the Soviets were clearly lacking in compared to all other major European combatants. They lacked in quantity, they lacked in quality, and they lacked in coordination.
>They lacked in quantity
the soviet union produced roughly the same number of guns as the us, uk, and germany COMBINED
>they lacked in quality
certainly in that they fielded many near obsolete models whose problems even the 34 or 37 models did not fix
but certainly not in that the most numerous of their guns like the ml20 or m30 or d1 or zis3 were quality models and their production runs went into several thousands
>and they lacked in coordination
certainly true at the lower level but soviet operational planning including massed artillery use was top notch
>They started with a lower number
yes, that much is obvious
they still had
2800 odessa + 7800 kiev + 6400 western + 3600 baltic + 3000 leningrad
artillery pieces deployed west at the start of the war, while the germans committed just over seven thousand pieces to barbarossa
>and had six times the divisions.
divisions are a meaningless empty term unless accompanied by a number of men
at the start of barbarossa the axis forces outnumbered the enemy facing them by about a million troops
US first taste of combat. Initially do quite badly and need to be bailed out by the brits. They improve relatively quickly. Most of the campaign done by brits and tge war in North Africa is essentially won by the time US forces get involved.
Rommel opinion of US forces developed in North Africa. He called then the brits Italians. The battle of the bulge later in the war was directed at US forces as Rommel thought they were more likely to break than the brits.
Rommel was three months dead by the time and no part in the planning of Herbstnebel, having been relieved of command of Army Group B at the end of July. You lying, shit-eating fuckface.
>i dont need to, all the information i have posted is already readily available in virtually any history book dealing with ww2
What history book dealing with WW2 says the Soviet army was equal or smaller in size than the US army?
I've got an English great great great uncle who was with the 69th infantry brigade at El Alamein 2 sand in my butt crack boogaloo and an Italian great great grandfather with the 185th Airborne Division Folgore who was also there, weird to think they could have been fighting each other. the English uncle died at Anzio so who knows if they were ever trading lead at some point.
But yeah, even though Italians make great soldiers, their officers have been notoriously shit throughout history(some blame falls on miscommunication between the vastly different dialects) , which my grandfather attested to, so maybe the Germans were the ones who did the more significant actions and outshone the Italians?
Not the guy you're responding to but it's not just officer quality, although that was certainly terrible. The Italian forces in North Africa at war's outset were primarily a peacekeeping force, there to keep the local berbers in check. They were almost criminally unmotorized, and in the rapid, flowing, fluid battles of the North African campaign, they just were never able to keep up. You either had to spread out and dilute your firepower, or concentrate and risk being outflanked.
I'm pretty sure Graziani said somewhere that a motorized battalion was worth an entire infantry division where he was fighting. But if you look at instances when the movement stopped and they settled in for slugging matches, like at Tobruk (both times) or along the Mareth line, the Italians did pretty well.
Literally any history book dealing with the Eastern Front. The Germans deployed more men originally to the Eastern front than the Soviets did. The Soviets were not expecting war. The Soviet army at the start of Barbarossa was not fully mobilized and definitely not prepared to take on the Axis powers. They also had a fair amount of divisions deployed in the far east due to the fact that there was a war going on over there as well and they had been subject to border skirmishes with the Japanese in the past. The Germans had a numerical advantage in the first 5 months or so of war with the USSR.
You were the only person in this thread who ever made such a claim. Nobody said that the Soviet Army was in equal or smaller size to the US army. Because this is not true. The Soviet Army of 1941 was greater in size to the US army of that year, but amount of Soviet troops facing the Axis troops during Barbarossa was less than that of the Axis forces they were opposing. I don't know why this is hard to understand.
Congratulations. You came into a discussion about artillery density between the US army and Red army, spurging like an autist about some completely irrelevant topic, and successfully won the debate.
THIS DISCUSSION WASN'T EVEN ABOUT THAT, IT WAS ABOUT AMERICAN PERFORMANCE IN NORTH AFRICA.
Yeah but then someone tried to argue that Soviet artillery was the best in the war. Which was a stupid fucking claim to make.
Reading Glantz should make it clear that the Red Army was an unbalanced, tank-heavy paper tiger that was sorely lacking in artillery, AT guns, and motorized transport.
I feel like this is getting turned around. I thought we were discussing German/Soviet numerical superiority on the eastern front. The Germans had the numerical advantage in the opening months of the Eastern front. I never said that Soviet artillery wasn't outdated, because it was. Also I like Glantz too. Why are we arguing.
Fine. The U.S. did pretty poorly in northern Africa. They mostly lost their battles, and all amounted to little consequence for the war on a grand scale. It was the Brits who carried the day in that campaign.
It did provide the U.S. with much needed experience. The U.S. to their credit studied their battles like a science. They learned a lot about their own flaws, and made a lot of changes to their tactics, doctrine, and command structure. Military historians often credit it with providing much help for their later campaigns in Italy and France.