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Why didn't the Germans build any aircraft...
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You are currently reading a thread in /k/ - Weapons

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Why didn't the Germans build any aircraft carriers before/during WW2?

Genuinely curious as to what the reasons were.
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>>28446222
Raeder was a "gun club" admiral who thought aircraft carriers were a fad.

Doenitz was rapidly promoted up from U-boat commander, meaning his experiences gave him a significant bias towards subs and away from a surface fleet. Therefore he worked with Speer to focus production on subs.

A lack of carriers really wasn't a huge liability for Germany until 1943, but if they had them, combined with trained crew and recon flying boats, it would have made convoys job more difficult and possibly denied access to the Meditteranean.

The question at that point is one of opportunity cost, where would the resources to build and crew the carriers have come from, and how would that have affected operations elsewhere?
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>>28446291
This isn't a bad explanation. They were never going to be able to produce enough surface ships to truly challenge the allies, so carriers weren't vital to their operations.

The other reason? Germany is in the middle of Europe.

Everywhere they were really fighting they could drive to without a boat. Putting a bunch of money into expensive boats? A bad idea when you are fighting on the continent.
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>>28446222
They had no experience from building them in the 20s/early 30s and the British or Americans sure as hell weren't willing to help them out.


They didn't have a need for carriers because the Luftwaffe wasn't being developed for long range combat (i.e against the British) and was designed for supporting ground operations with close air support. The Navy was hopelessly starved of planes by Goring when Naval-Recon could've greatly helped wolfpacks in the early war.

Japan/USA/UK were the only countries who saw the importance of carriers because of the massive distances for operations in the Pacific.

Any capital/carrier development by Germany would've cut into tank/land-based aircraft production.

There were plenty of reasons why Germany didn't have carriers, it was a land-based military and the three countries listed above were all Naval. You don't just zap carriers, carrier planes and carrier tactics out of thin air.
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>>28446291
No. The real reason was that Goering, as chief of the Luftwaffe felt that giving fighters to the Kriegsmarine will infringe on his turf. Thats it. However tactically advanced and competent the German warmachine in the field, they had shitty top level leadership. Hitler, like most despots feared his underlings ganging up on him. So he purposely had each arm of the military to rival with each other to keep them in check. This, among other reasons was why Germany could have never won, no matter what.
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>>28446222
Well there sorta was the Graf Zepplin.
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>>28446222
>Genuinely curious as to what the reasons were.

Ideologically, Germany sought to build a land empire eastward, displacing the Slavs and relocating them over the Urals.

They never seriously planned for fighting overseas, so the building of a large navy capable of matching the Royal Navy on the surface was never really on the table.

It's the same reason the Soviets never built aircraft carriers.
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>>28446222
Britain declared war on Germany, not the other way round. Does that answer your question?
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>>28448089
>It's the same reason the Soviets never built aircraft carriers.

They did but never in the numbers needed to face off with any major power. Unlike US which with it's ally Canada are basically one huge island of North America. In terms of defense Germans nor Russians never needed huge armadas of carriers.

Had the Germans won the European theater they would've built carriers as part of their incoming invasion fleet.

Meanwhile Submarines/U-boats are very effective way to strike against enemy fleets and supply lines so in a sense they could be considered a defensive weaponry.
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>>28446222
They didn't have naval know-how except subs, plus they didn't have the need for a carrier (or surface ships in general).
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>>28446291
>but if they had them, combined with trained crew and recon flying boats, it would have made convoys job more difficult and possibly denied access to the Meditteranean.
No, a German carrier would not have survived a week in open waters.
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>>28448089
>They never seriously planned for fighting overseas, so the building of a large navy capable of matching the Royal Navy on the surface was never really on the table.
Except they actually had a concrete plan for building a huge navy to match the Royal Navy on the surface. They just couldn't put it to practice due to the lack of resources.
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>>28446222
-Focus on land war
-No chance to win against the British navy so why bother building targets
-Air bases all around europe so aerial support for naval missions was already a given
-No colonies to support so no real need for a large surface navy right then
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They had one, they just never finished it.
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>>28448233
>They just couldn't put it to practice due to the lack of resources.

The resources that would have been needed in building such a fleet were needed by the land forces. Germany was still a continental power with most of its borders on land. Britain is and in a sense North American powers could be considered as Islands so they do not have such a need for a massive high-tech ground forces on their own territories and because of this they could spend resources on building massive fleets even during peacetime when military spenditure is usually not seen as vital as in times of war. Obviously.
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>>28448292
>North American powers could be considered as Islands so they do not have such a need for a massive high-tech ground forces
>Germany
>massive high-tech ground forces
US army had 90 divisions in WW2, which would all be considered panzer division according to German standards. US army divisions were also fully motorized, which was a luxury afforded only a small number of German divisions.
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>>28448322
>US army had 90 divisions in WW2, which would all be considered panzer division according to German standards.

Yes. But how many were there before the war? America is also larger in terms of territory and population. American forces were relatively smaller than German forces.

>US army divisions were also fully motorized, which was a luxury afforded only a small number of German divisions.

I may have given the wrong impression here. It's the goal of land forces of any power to be the most high-tech out there. Germans just didn't have the resources that the americans had. Also the few resources they had were spent in trying to create all sorts of wunderwaffe or wonder weapons. So they basically tried to find the magical silver bullet that would win them everything at once.. Something that modern military leaders think as stupid since instead of one super weapon you need a whole shed of tools and all this in sufficient numbers to wage modern war.
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Germany could barely manage to source and produce enough armaments to wage their land wars, let alone build a proper navy.
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>>28448233
>They just couldn't put it to practice due to the lack of resources.

aka

never seriously planned for fighting overseas.

The goal was always expansion eastward.
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>>28448365
>It's the goal of land forces of any power to be the most high-tech out there.

Goddamnit even that came out wrong. The word I was looking for was efficient. It's the aspiration of every military force out there to be as efficient in their give strategic goals as they can be.
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>>28446222
They weren't allowed to until the Anglo-German Naval agreement of 1935. They couldn't finish an aircraft carrier before the war started so they were suspended because the resources were needed elsewhere.
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>>28448416
>never seriously planned for fighting overseas.
No, they literally had a detailed naval expansion plan which was revised twice and finally put into practice. Except it had to be scaled down because it was impractical.

Aka

Read a book, nigger.
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>>28448365
>Also the few resources they had were spent in trying to create all sorts of wunderwaffe or wonder weapons.
No, the vast majority of Germany's resources were spent in mass producing and perfecting pre-war designs.
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>>28448365
>Also the few resources they had were spent in trying to create all sorts of wunderwaffe or wonder weapons. So they basically tried to find the magical silver bullet that would win them everything at once.. Something that modern military leaders think as stupid since instead of one super weapon you need a whole shed of tools and all this in sufficient numbers to wage modern war.

Like the nuclear bomb? The Germans came up with lots of new inventions towards the end of the war, The Panzerfaust, Stg44, Vampir-systems, Me-262, etc etc.
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>>28448728
>finally put into practice in hitlers imagination only

ftfy
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>>28446222
Why they didn't before;
actually, they did make one. But the war started a bit too early for it to be completed, and different priorities cancelled the project.

Raeder was all about quick surface ship that could outgun anything faster, and outrun anything it couldn't outgun. Focusing on aircraft carriers would be a gamble, as noone yet knew how they would work in battle. Raeder was notoriously conservtive when it came to taking risks.

During the war;
Germany had no chance of combatting the Royal Navy, not even with aircraft carriers. The brits had more capability to produce ships than germany, so germany had to focus on destroying the supply to Britain. This is why they focused on submarines, not to combat the Royal navy, but to destroy their supply. It didn't work, because at the start of the war, Germany had too few subs, and it gave the brits valuable time to come up with countermeasures.
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>>28448228
>Bismark was sunk before it got past England
>Tirpitz spent most if the war in harbor
>Only other noteworthy surface ship blew itself up to escape a trap thst didn't exist
...yeah, they had a pretty horrible track record.
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>>28448783
By the end of the war most everyone except the Russians either had or were testing jet fighters.
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>>28449045
Still, Germans had them first.
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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_aircraft_carrier_Graf_Zeppelin
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Germany has never been a naval power.
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>>28446222
Germany has terrible sea access, ports in the north requiring navigating through various foreign territorial waters. It made some sense to have one after they captured France, but they obviously couldn't hold onto it
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>only two mentions of Graf Zeppelin
Germany did work on building a carrier - the Graf Zeppelin and her cancelled sister - and over the course of the war drew up plans for converting a liner, two steamers, and the cruiser Seydlitz to carriers.

While people may love to blame internal politics for killing the program, the truth is they didn't fit into Kriegsmarine doctrine. A carrier requires an escort fleet, which was something Germany didn't have. The Kriegsmarine was more for commerce-raiding and fleet-in-being activities, both of which a carrier really wouldn't be all that good at. Had the Germans somehow been able to reliably get their ships in and out of the Atlantic, a carrier would have been useful, but we saw with the Bismarck that such a thing was close to impossible.
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>>28446222
They were bulding one. Thing is nobody really believed in the aircraft carriers. Even japs. With one hand they prepared for carrier actions and with other for battleship head bashing. Carriers and naval aviation effectiveness in general was a sort of surprise and it was ad hoc sudden shift of resource into aviation area. Germans didn't have many resource to shift.
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>>28448783

There Germans are nowhere near creating a working atomic bomb because all the Jewish physicists left for some reason.
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>>28450138
>There Germans are nowhere near creating a working atomic bomb because all the Jewish physicists left for some reason.

They were probably building stairs.

Stairs are important. How do you expect to build an atomic bomb without working staircases?
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>>28446222
>Why didn't the Germans build any aircraft carriers before/during WW2?

Graf Zeppelin.

Unfinished due to war demands and ended up being a floating lumber warehouse instead.
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>>28446222
Don't need it when Britain is too much of a pussy to even consider doing anything with the Home Fleet after Tirpitz was sank.
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I wonder why the Germans never made anything like the Japanese I-400 class of submarine.
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Before the war, they were already skirting around treaty obligations by building things like "pocket battleships"

It takes years to build a ship and they didn't want the French or British to stop their rearmament.
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>>28449595
They had a pretty good build up before WWI iirc
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>>28446291
>A lack of carriers really wasn't a huge liability for Germany until 1943

That’s way too late in the war for a German carrier to matter.

Now on the other hand, if they had a carrier in 1939 and managed to pull a Pearl Harbor on the British right out of the gate, it might have made a difference later in the war.
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>>28450686
>They had a pretty good build up before WWI iirc

They still got blockaded.
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>>28452061
How was the British fleet placed around the islands? I know Skapa Flow was one of the bigger places but where else? Just trying to imagine how many places the Kriegsmarine would have to strike to pull a Pearl Harbor-like stunt.
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>>28452061
You mean, damage like 6 old battleships only to see most of them get repaired? Yeah I bet we'd all be speaking German then.
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>>28448728
>No, they literally had a detailed naval expansion plan
Yeah, that's great.

But somewhere down the chain of command someone decided to allocate resources for tanks, artillery and rifles instead. No one gives a single fuck about what may have been, only what was.
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>>28453730
Are you even reading the thread? That poster is responding to someone who claimed that there was never a serious plan to expand the navy.
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