Notice: This is the official website of the All Empires History Community (Reg. 10 Feb 2002)

  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Register Register  Login Login

The WWII myths

 Post Reply Post Reply
Author
Goral View Drop Down
Janissary
Janissary
Avatar

Joined: 19-Jul-2013
Location: Poland
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 25
  Quote Goral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: The WWII myths
    Posted: 11-Aug-2013 at 00:39

One of persistent WWII myth is that the Red Army enjoyed staggering numerical advantage over Axis forces on the eastern front.

If we compare Human resources of Axis country versus Soviet Union, it is difficult to understand haw this myth has persisted for so long.

Population of Soviet Union in  June1941 was 196,716,000. This include newly acquired population of Baltic states, Eastern Poland and territory gained from Romania.

Axis population base was as below;

The Third Reich census of May 1939-population 79,375,281. This included  since 1935 with Saargebiet (Saar district), since 1938 with Ostmark (Austria) and Sudetenland, since March 1939 with Memelland acquired from Lithuania.

Additionally, Germany acquired population of Polish ethnic German1,100,000.

approximately (my estimation)  450,000 Ethnic Germans from Protectorate of Czech and Moravia France, Belgium, Netherlands  and Yugoslavia should be taken under consideration.

This will give total German population on territories controlled in June 1941  by III Reich close to 81,000,000

 

Slovakia population in 1941-2,750,000

Hungary-9,350,000

Romania-13,6000,000

 

Finland (not member of Axis but actively participated in Eastern Front fighting)-3,710,000

 

Total population of Axis Countries and associates in June 1941 was approximately 110,000,000 vs population of Soviet Union approximately 196,000,000.

For clarity, I have not included Italians(Italian army in Russia)  and Spanish Blue Division as well as SS divisions formed from different nationalities such as French, Nordic countries, Croatia, Ukraine, Russian renegades and so on.

During first months of Barbarossa, Germany occupied  all Baltic states, Belarus, Ukraine, territories of Eastern Poland and part of Western Russia with population as below;

Lithuania -2,879,070

Latvia-1,995,000

Estonia-1,134,000

Eastern Poland-13,000,000

Belarus population 1939 census- 5,568,994

Ukraine population 1939 census 23,667,509

Total population loss by Soviet Union Including western Russia-(my estimation) will be in the range of 50,000,000 less population evacuated east during the mass evacuation of industry beyond Ural. This number is unknown but, taking as an example Baltic States, this evacuation did not exceed  20% including mobilised soldiers.

Taking above under consideration, unoccupied Soviet Union population was in the range of 150-160 millions.

Soviet Union industry employed only Soviet Union citizens where Germany used human resources of entire Europe to supply workforce for German economy.

Where the myth of overwhelming Soviet superiority in numbers come from?

Back to Top
lirelou View Drop Down
Colonel
Colonel


Joined: 26-Mar-2009
Location: Tampa, FL
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 528
  Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11-Aug-2013 at 19:00
Interesting, Goral. Correct me if I am wrong, but Finland provided only a single Division for fighting on the Eastern Front. So the number of Finns in the population really has no relevance.
Phong trần mài một lưỡi gươm, Những loài giá áo túi cơm sá gì
Back to Top
Goral View Drop Down
Janissary
Janissary
Avatar

Joined: 19-Jul-2013
Location: Poland
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 25
  Quote Goral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2013 at 01:58

For Finland it was "all out" war. 
They provided over 500,000 troops despite relatively low population.
I'm not a big fan of Wiki as a reliable source but this time they are close to the mark. See link below.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Continuation_War
Back to Top
Mountain Man View Drop Down
General
General
Avatar

Joined: 16-Aug-2012
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 873
  Quote Mountain Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2013 at 11:14
The difference was that Stalin had a lot more replacements for combat losses than Hitler did.

The population figures are meaningless since the only figures that count are able-bodied combatants and those eligible to become replacements, i.e., those coming of age.  By war's end, Germany was drafting children and the elderly and was still unable to replace combat losses.
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
Back to Top
Goral View Drop Down
Janissary
Janissary
Avatar

Joined: 19-Jul-2013
Location: Poland
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 25
  Quote Goral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2013 at 17:27

The population base of Axis countries  and Soviet union was comparable but Stalin's mobilisation was more ruthless than Hitler.

At the end of 1942 Red Army comprised 800,000 women, often in front line combat units. Also the mobilisation upper age for soviet citizens was  higher than in Germany.

Due to colossal loses of Red Army at the beginning of Barbarossa, Axis forces enjoyed numerical parity with Red Army (if not numerical advantage) until the end of 1942. After that, Germany armed forces were drained by commitment in Tunisia and later to counter invasion of Sicily and Italy

Edited by Goral - 12-Aug-2013 at 21:12
Back to Top
lirelou View Drop Down
Colonel
Colonel


Joined: 26-Mar-2009
Location: Tampa, FL
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 528
  Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2013 at 19:54
Goral, thank you for that link, which led me to other links, all of which proved highly informative. I don't mean to derail this thread into a long discussion of Finland, but the links you led me to have further convinced me that if it was "all out war" for Finland, it was only so to recover lost national territory from the Soviets. Indeed, Finland's careful enunciation of those goals, coupled with its military operations, led the Allies to treat it as less than just another Axis power.

In essence, the Finns were in the War to take back their homeland and then defend it against all comers. I believe that Captain Lauri Torni would have agreed. Sadly, I never met him, though I heard much about him.
Phong trần mài một lưỡi gươm, Những loài giá áo túi cơm sá gì
Back to Top
Goral View Drop Down
Janissary
Janissary
Avatar

Joined: 19-Jul-2013
Location: Poland
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 25
  Quote Goral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2013 at 21:21
 Railway.
Originally posted by lirelou

Goral, thank you for that link, which led me to other links, all of which proved highly informative. I don't mean to derail this thread into a long discussion of Finland, but the links you led me to have further convinced me that if it was "all out war" for Finland, it was only so to recover lost national territory from the Soviets. Indeed, Finland's careful enunciation of those goals, coupled with its military operations, led the Allies to treat it as less than just another Axis power.

In essence, the Finns were in the War to take back their homeland and then defend it against all comers. I believe that Captain Lauri Torni would have agreed. Sadly, I never met him, though I heard much about him.

Yes, you are entirely right. Finland was not a member of Axis alliance in full meaning of this word and   they entered the fight to recover territories lost in Winter war 1939-1940.

However the highly skilled and brave (although not very well armed)  Finish troops provided necessary manpower to attack Soviet Union in the northern regions and should be taken under consideration for human resources analysis.

 File:Continuation War December 1941 English.jpg
Finns and German penetrated Soviet Union much further than pre Winter War finish-SU border -however they failed in their strategic objective to cut Murmansk


Edited by Goral - 12-Aug-2013 at 21:31
Back to Top
AnchoritSybarit View Drop Down
Janissary
Janissary
Avatar

Joined: 04-Nov-2006
Location: United States
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 23
  Quote AnchoritSybarit Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13-Mar-2017 at 18:35
Originally posted by Goral

The population base of Axis countries  and Soviet union was comparable but Stalin's mobilisation was more ruthless than Hitler.

At the end of 1942 Red Army comprised 800,000 women, often in front line combat units. Also the mobilisation upper age for soviet citizens was  higher than in Germany.

Due to colossal loses of Red Army at the beginning of Barbarossa, Axis forces enjoyed numerical parity with Red Army (if not numerical advantage) until the end of 1942. After that, Germany armed forces were drained by commitment in Tunisia and later to counter invasion of Sicily and Italy

Put this another way.  The Soviet Union fought on a single unified front.  Unlike Germany they were able to denude the entirety of Siberia of its troops once Stalin was convinced that Japan was not going to take advantage of their involvement against Germany.
Germany on the other hand had to maintain troops in North Africa, Scandinavia, and France.  And in point of fact the Torch landings, the Husky landing and the Salerno landing ALL involved immediate and substantial reallocation of troops from the Eastern front at critical junctures in the East.
What I have I hold.
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Bulletin Board Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 9.56a [Free Express Edition]
Copyright ©2001-2009 Web Wiz

This page was generated in 0.172 seconds.