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Go Back   Armchair General and HistoryNet >> The Best Forums in History > Military/History Related Hobbies > Alternate Timelines > Xtreme Alternate History

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  #31  
Old 27 May 15, 15:01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T. A. Gardner View Post
This shows an ignorance of the ACW. The Union might have done so-so in the East on land but elsewhere they were taking the Confederacy apart in short order.
The Mississippi River fell to the Union almost a year before Gettysburg. The last remaining hold out, Vicksburg fell concurrent with the loss by the South at Gettysburg.
At the same time, the USN was ever tightening a blockade of the South strangling it economically.
No one general on either side would have changed the outcome. The South was further hit by its internal political structure that put the states ahead of the central government.
I'll even challenge the 'so-so in the east'. Despite Lee and the AoV being largely unbeaten until '63, the AoP was never beaten in spirit. The fact it hung together in the face of so many defeats, draws, and command changes speaks very well of them as a force. As does the AoV when the tide turned.

And while it wasn't until Gettysburg that they really put the hurt on the AoV, they prevented Lee from taking the fight into the north, and also prevented Lee and/or the AoV from being used elsewhere.

While Lee and the CSA's best army with tangled up by the AoP, the rest of the CSA was dismantled.
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  #32  
Old 27 May 15, 15:59
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Originally Posted by Nebfer View Post
Bronze has some advantages over steel, chiefly you can tell if it's going to bust a lot easier than Iron or steel cannons will, as they had a tendency to burst suddenly and with out warning, plus AFAIK the manor in which they field was different, Iron "shattered", Bronze split.

The main advantages Iron had over Bronze was that it was a lot cheaper and could make a lighter gun (due to it being ~10% lighter than Bronze, though early on that was not available but by this time frame Iron had improved enough to due so).

Also loses due to "exhaustion, disease, medical treatment and malnutrition" where very common back then, even Sun Tsu would of lost a fair number of men in similar circumstances, in any war lasting more than a month or two. Particularly when your factoring in a frontage of thousands of miles that ranges from deserts to mountains to plains to forests to swamps and jungles.

Some how I seriously doubt that Sun Tsu or the like would of defeated the North in 6 months, or where significantly better strategists than their counter parts in the 1860s.

No Germany was defeated because it lost Strategically, it could not keep up industrially and with the shear manpower advantages the allies had. Germany was Strong enough and Good enough tactically to have lasted as long as they did.

Her Allies decided in the first few days of the war that they where not ready to do anything and hence they did little to save Poland. And France was still not ready some 8 months later when Germany came knocking...
I never mentioned grey iron (a cheap, brittle alloy used by poor armies which could not afford bronze or by incompetent leaders), I specified steel, the alloy used by every major civilization to replace bronze weapons, putting an end to the bronze edge. Nobody made muskets or pistols out of bronze for centuries before the ACW and the best leaders used steel for cannon centuries before the supposedly brilliant Lee used bronze cannon.

The S states did receive a few steel cannon from the USA before seceding (the secretary of defense being a southerner, he made sure of that) and captured some steel guns during the war, but even in decisive Gettysburg, most of Lee's guns were completely outdated, outclassed bronze (his shell fuzes were faulty to boot)

It is ironic that the CSA invested thousands of tons of steel to clad ships

Just to illustrate that the lousy leadership of the CSA was more decisive than being overproduced by the USA:
While heroic, barefoot, CSA infantry were forced to perform extremely long marches over and over in short periods and freezing at night for lack of blankets, Georgia alone had enough boots and blankets for the whole army, but refused to allow them to leave the state.

Last edited by Draco; 27 May 15 at 16:11..
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  #33  
Old 27 May 15, 16:04
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Originally Posted by T. A. Gardner View Post
Why is Poland valuable to Norway?
I said that occupying nearby Denmark on 1 Sept, 1939 while the LW and WM are heavily invested in Poland is very much easier than occupying Norway several months after Poland fell, with the whole LW and WM idle and having replenished munitions exhausted in Poland.
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  #34  
Old 27 May 15, 17:58
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Originally Posted by Draco View Post
I never mentioned grey iron (a cheap, brittle alloy used by poor armies which could not afford bronze or by incompetent leaders), I specified steel, the alloy used by every major civilization to replace bronze weapons, putting an end to the bronze edge. Nobody made muskets or pistols out of bronze for centuries before the ACW and the best leaders used steel for cannon centuries before the supposedly brilliant Lee used bronze cannon.

The S states did receive a few steel cannon from the USA before seceding (the secretary of defense being a southerner, he made sure of that) and captured some steel guns during the war, but even in decisive Gettysburg, most of Lee's guns were completely outdated, outclassed bronze (his shell fuzes were faulty to boot)
While steel guns where known, most guns of the time where either cast or wrought Iron or cast Bronze. AFAIK Steel it self was difficult to mass produce until the mid 1800s, with the introduction of the Bessemer process, until then (per your favorite source) Steel was far to expensive to use on cannons on a regular basis. Even then the process at the time made Brittle steels, which would make Bronze popular as it was nowhere as brittle as Iron or early mass produced Steels.

Also using your favorite source, on guns of the ACW, I find that the vast majority of the guns where either cast or wrought Iron, or Bronze, few if any where actually made of Steel, on both sides.
The "12 pound Napoleon" was largely cast Bronze, though some in Iron where made, the 3 inch ordnance wrought Iron, as was the Parrot rifle, though from what I know some ordnace rifles where made from steel, though they used Blister steel IIRC, as by the en of the ACW only two Bessemer forges existed in the north and nether where involved with artillery making (a bit odd as thats part of why Bessemer "invented" the system). However AFAIK the first cast steel guns where provided to the federal government by Sylvanus Sawyer, in late December 1861 (3 guns each costing 550 dollars, later guns where more expensive... - in contrast to a 3 inch ordnance only costing 330 USD in 1861 and a 12 pound Napoleon 490 USD).

Edit: Note their where some cast steel 3 inch ordnance rifles, but these cost 626 USD at the time (almost twice that of a regular iron gun).
By the way for comparison a pound of just about any meat could be had for around 5 to 15 cents (a pound of sausage was 11 cents) in the 1860s, a dozen eggs where 20 cents a bushel of potatoes ~60 cents, pound of butter 21 cents and a barrel of flour was 7.6 dollars (thats around 4 cents per pound AFAIK).

Quote:
It is ironic that the CSA invested thousands of tons of steel to clad ships

Just to illustrate that the lousy leadership of the CSA was more decisive than being overproduced by the USA:
While heroic, barefoot, CSA infantry were forced to perform extremely long marches over and over in short periods and freezing at night for lack of blankets, Georgia alone had enough boots and blankets for the whole army, but refused to allow them to leave the state.
Whats Ironic about it? Massed produced steel was in it's infancy, and still expensive (cannons made where as expensive if not more so than Bronze guns, at lest in the near term), the South did not have many places that could mass produce steel any way (don't believe they had any forges that used Bessemer process at the time).

Last edited by Nebfer; 27 May 15 at 21:10..
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  #35  
Old 27 May 15, 20:13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Draco View Post
It is ironic that the CSA invested thousands of tons of steel to clad ships
Actually, the most common iron cladding of Southern ships was made from railroad track. The next most common was boiler plate usually in 1" thick or less sheets layered over a wood base.

Quote:
Just to illustrate that the lousy leadership of the CSA was more decisive than being overproduced by the USA:
While heroic, barefoot, CSA infantry were forced to perform extremely long marches over and over in short periods and freezing at night for lack of blankets, Georgia alone had enough boots and blankets for the whole army, but refused to allow them to leave the state.
What your diatribe doesn't mention is that each state took precedence (aka "State's rights") over the central government. Mississippi had plenty of uniforms for their troops as did Virginia. South Carolina was one of the more impoverished in this area. Each state raised and supplied its own regiments.
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  #36  
Old 27 May 15, 21:34
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Originally Posted by Nebfer View Post
While steel guns where known, most guns of the time where either cast or wrought Iron or cast Bronze. AFAIK Steel it self was difficult to mass produce until the mid 1800s, with the introduction of the Bessemer process, until then (per your favorite source) Steel was far to expensive to use on cannons on a regular basis. Even then the process at the time made Brittle steels, which would make Bronze popular as it was nowhere as brittle as Iron or early mass produced Steels.

Also using your favorite source, on guns of the ACW, I find that the vast majority of the guns where either cast or wrought Iron, or Bronze, few if any where actually made of Steel, on both sides.
The "12 pound Napoleon" was largely cast Bronze, though some in Iron where made, the 3 inch ordnance wrought Iron, as was the Parrot rifle, though from what I know some ordnace rifles where made from steel, though they used Blister steel IIRC, as by the en of the ACW only two Bessemer forges existed in the north and nether where involved with artillery making (a bit odd as thats part of why Bessemer "invented" the system). However AFAIK the first cast steel guns where provided to the federal government by Sylvanus Sawyer, in late December 1861 (3 guns each costing 550 dollars, later guns where more expensive... - in contrast to a 3 inch ordnance only costing 330 USD in 1961 and a 12 pound Napoleon 490 USD).

Edit: Note their where some cast steel 3 inch ordnance rifles, but these cost 626 USD at the time (almost twice that of a regular iron gun).
By the way for comparison a pound of just about any meat could be had for around 5 to 15 cents (a pound of sausage was 11 cents) in the 1860s, a dozen eggs where 20 cents a bushel of potatoes ~60 cents, pound of butter 21 cents and a barrel of flour was 7.6 dollars (thats around 4 cents per pound AFAIK).


Whats Ironic about it? Massed produced steel was in it's infancy, and still expensive (cannons made where as expensive if not more so than Bronze guns, at lest in the near term), the South did not have many places that could mass produce steel any way (don't believe they had any forges that used Bessemer process at the time).
Wrought iron was not produced in the 19th century, It is a form of mild steel made by beating on red hot sponge iron. Anyway, being mild steel, it is tough and excellent for cannon.

The steel of the time could be excellent if made from abundant, low phosphorous ore and properly desulfurized. The union's rifled guns were made of good steel. Union rifled guns could shoot much longer, pointy, far more aerodynamic and heavier shells with much greater accuracy and range, rendering CSA artillery units completely vulnerable to counter artillery.

As I wrote Brilliant Akhbar used steel cannon centuries before Lee and the British used larger steel cannon in the Crimean war, years before the ACW.

Steel was so expensive that the CSA used several thousand t to make thick ship cladding, but not a thousand t to make rifled fieldguns, which would have contibuted much more to a swift victory than warships.

The CSA was so incompetent that the only large iron works and foundry it had was in Richmond, Va, dangerously close to the front and for a whole month in critical 1861 it did not produce a single cannon for lack of scrap bronze.

Although there was no reason at all to start the war in 1861, since Lincoln had guaranteed slavery in the states where it had long been established and legalized, the S rushed into war w/o planning or preparing at all for war. They chose the worst possible time:
1) They had just lost most of their pigs to a cholera epidemic, so they could produce little salt pork, the staple of the confederate army. They barely survived thanks to northern farmers and smuglers illegally selling them 2 million lb of salt pork at a greatly inflated price at the front.

2) They were receiving better weapons, carriages, carts, drays, boats, medical field equipment, communications systems, RR systems, harbor facilities, etc, from the federal government, northern investors and companies.

3) They started the war in the spring, long before the harvest, instead of waiting for the harvest and sacking northern graineries and leaving the Union little time to counter attack before the winter.

4) They had not prepared adequate stores of essential imported goods, such as wool, strategic metals (steel, copper, zinc, tin, lead, babbit, scrap bronze and brass, etc,), saltpeter, guano (fertilizer from Peru at the time), medications, ammunition, gun powder, grains, salt pork, coal, coffee, etc, they did not hire enough foreign physicians, mercenaries, sailors, etc, before the war, when there was extensive unemployment and they could have paid much less than they did rapidly hiring men after they started the war.

5) Comanche chief Nocona was furious at the massacre of pease river on 18 Dec, 1860 in which the brave Tx rangers killed a score women and children and forcibly rescued Cynthia Ann Parker (she didn't want to be rescued at all), but blew the cowardly mass murder into an epic battle, falsely claiming to have killed Nocona (everything is bigger in Tx). The Kiowa, etc, were also quite mad at the whites repeatedly violating all the treaties and infringing in their lands.

6) They did not plan for adequate forces to prevent slave insurrections during a long war. So after a few months they had to redeploy 400,000 men from the front to deal with this problem far behind the front, dangerously weakening the front.

7) Lincoln had just entered office, so in case of a prolonged war, there would not be any chance for peace negotiations with a less bellicose president until 1864.

8) They had not secretly commissioned and received war steam ships,l arge numbers of field cannon, small arms, etc, from France, Britain, Germany, etc, before the war, so when the war started they had to wait a long time for delivery and smugled the goods past the blockade.

9) They did not move its largest iron works in peacetime to a safer location with reliable water power in their huge territory and did not expand industry considerably, which they could have esily done, had they started the war after harvest in 1863.

10) They did not plan and prepare to place their capital much further from the border, sea or rivers navigable to warships and in an extremely defensible location.

11) The states were more autonomous allied mini nations than members of a nation, as in the case of Georgia refusing to contribute the huge quantities of desperately needed footwear and blankets to units at the front, outside Georgia.

Last edited by Draco; 27 May 15 at 21:43..
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  #37  
Old 28 May 15, 00:27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Draco View Post
Wrought iron was not produced in the 19th century, It is a form of mild steel made by beating on red hot sponge iron. Anyway, being mild steel, it is tough and excellent for cannon.
Oh? So Wrought Iron was not produced in the 1800s and is infact a form of Steel? Well better tell the guys who make the text books, as thats not what they say...

For example Field Artilery Weapons of the Civil War by J. Hazlett and E. Olmstead and M. Humm Parks, distinctly note Wrought Iron, cast Iron Bronze and Steel. The 3-inch ordnance rifle and the parrot Rifle where both described as being made from Wrought Iron

Quote:
The steel of the time could be excellent if made from abundant, low phosphorous ore and properly desulfurized. The union's rifled guns were made of good steel. Union rifled guns could shoot much longer, pointy, far more aerodynamic and heavier shells with much greater accuracy and range, rendering CSA artillery units completely vulnerable to counter artillery.
True though from what I read thats not a cheap option, but union guns where made from Cast or Wrought Iron, not Steel with a few exceptions, the same goes for the Confederates, and both sides used Bronze guns (notably with the 12 pound Napoleon).

Also provide evidence please, of the U.S. use of Steel in Civil war artillery.
The Rodman Guns where cast Iron, the Ordnance Rifle was Wrought Iron, the Parrot was cast Iron with Wrought reinforcement, Dahlgren Guns where Cast Iron, the Napoleon was a Bronze gun (the last of it's kind used by the US military). So where is the Steel your saying they used? Out side of a relitivly small number their neither army used Steel guns.

Quote:
As I wrote Brilliant Akhbar used steel cannon centuries before Lee and the British used larger steel cannon in the Crimean war, years before the ACW.
Who? Ackbar the Great? Provide evidence of that he used a lot of steel guns... Well as for the British, I would not know, though I doubt they had many, and considering that the Armstrong guns used wrought Iron in their construction (later switching to steel reinforced by wrought iron hoops), I feel they most of their guns where Iron and not steel at the time of the ACW. The 68 pounder a British gun of the 1850s was Cast Iron, the RML 64 pounder 64 Ctw gun of 1964 was Wrought Iron. So no the British in the 1860s where not used Steel guns, but Iron, the first references to steel do show up in the 1860s (AFAIK) but dose not seem to become common until the 1870s.

Quote:
Steel was so expensive that the CSA used several thousand t to make thick ship cladding, but not a thousand t to make rifled fieldguns, which would have contibuted much more to a swift victory than warships.
Last I read up on that they where largely using Iron not steel, hence the Term Ironclad...


As for your regular situation, why would the Allies invade Denmark?
What plans do they have in effect that would allow them to do so? With what forces?
This is considering that France and Britain where not exactly ready for war in Europe at the time.
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  #38  
Old 28 May 15, 01:04
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Originally Posted by Draco View Post
Wrought iron was not produced in the 19th century, It is a form of mild steel made by beating on red hot sponge iron. Anyway, being mild steel, it is tough and excellent for cannon.
.
Wrought Iron


Quote:
Before the development of effective methods of steelmaking and the availability of large quantities of steel, wrought iron was the most common form of malleable iron. A modest amount of wrought iron was used as a raw material for refining into steel, which was used mainly to produce swords, cutlery, chisels, axes and other edged tools as well as springs and files. The demand for wrought iron reached its peak in the 1860s with the adaptation of ironclad warships and railways, but then declined as mild steel quality problems such as brittleness were solved and it became inexpensive and widely available.
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Old 28 May 15, 11:12
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Originally Posted by T. A. Gardner View Post
Actually, the most common iron cladding of Southern ships was made from railroad track. The next most common was boiler plate usually in 1" thick or less sheets layered over a wood base.



What your diatribe doesn't mention is that each state took precedence (aka "State's rights") over the central government. Mississippi had plenty of uniforms for their troops as did Virginia. South Carolina was one of the more impoverished in this area. Each state raised and supplied its own regiments.
Tennessee alone had 750 tons of 3 layers of 2" x 10" plate.

Rails can be remelted or forged into excellent guns. The Chinese of the 3rd century would have been glad to have a thousand tons to rails to melt into weapons.

That is precisely what I mean, it is not a cohesive union optimizing uilization of its resources, but a bunch of allied mini nations acting independently and quite inefficiently, with several incompetent leaders, rather a real strategist.
Even the allies had a unified command in WW II.
Virginia's men had dashing uniforms at the beginning of the war and later marched barefoot for quite a while.

It is interesting that the vaunted cavalry of Stuart, etc, had less mobility (fewer horses per men allowed much shorter distances at a lower speed) and weaker firepower than Ghengis' 6 centuries before. The S also made poor use of dragoons (mounted infantry, who dismount before the battle).
They seemed to read a lot about the rather dumb Napoleon and little about the truly great strategists, tactitians, logisticians and diplomats.

Last edited by Draco; 28 May 15 at 11:20..
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Old 28 May 15, 11:33
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Sorry but just because You find something in a book or website, it is not necessarily true.

Wrought iron is a mild (low carbon) steel and was used by ignorant Europeans up to the 18th century. As I said it is made by beating on hot sponge iron, made by exposing iron oxide to CO, removing the oxygen and leaving the iron. Europeans only started melting crucible steel in small quantities a few centuries ago. The Chinese were melting steel over a millenium before that.

Because it required a lot of labor, heat and time, wrought iron was prohibitively expensive for massive production of RR, ships, weapons, etc, In the mid 19th century most steel was produced by puddling iron and later on by the Bessemer and Siemens-Martin methods (both of which converted molten pig iron (grey iron, a very high carbon alloy) by burning the carbon with air. During WW II most steel was made in open hearth furnaces.

Wrought iron is also slightly less tough than puddled iron (both are misnomers since both produce mild steels), because sponge iron contains all the slag in the ore (it remains dispersed in the metal despite the beating or forging of the sponge into a solid mass), whereas in puddled iron, much of the slag floats out and is removed.

Last edited by Draco; 28 May 15 at 11:52..
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Old 28 May 15, 11:46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Draco View Post
Sorry but just because You find something in a book or website, it is not necessarily true.
But, but, but I used Wikipedia your favourite source. Do you mean it's not always accurate? Oh shock oh horror. What are you going to do now? A person of your integrity will have to search elsewhere now for his sources I guess.





Give it a rest, Draco. You've been caught out yet again posting something that even the most cursory of searches shows to be a blatant falsehood.

Here's what you wrote:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Draco View Post
Wrought iron was not produced in the 19th century,
This is not true.

If you have any evidence, any source, any iota of information that proves your claim, please post it.

But you can't and you won't.

Change the subject like you always do, post an off topic vomit of spurious information that you find "ironic" or "interesting" and move on.

Or start another thread like you always do when you're getting schooled.

Don't think that habit hasn't been noticed

Well I'm leaving the quarantine area and moving on...

Toodles
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Old 28 May 15, 12:05
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Really schooled by an ignorant and lame clown, turned metallurgist by a cursory search.

There is no wrought iron without sponge iron, which only Africans, Arabs, etc, were producing in t in the mid 19th century.

Even today ignorant people may call wrought iron the contemporary artistic mild steel work used for balconies, gates, fences, etc, however, there is no wrought iron without sponge iron and a lot of beating it into a solid mass, which nobody with any brains will do. A lot of work for an inferior material.
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Old 28 May 15, 12:45
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Nebfer,
I already explained that the 3 allies get together in the Spring to plan and prepare to defeat Germany in case of an invasion of Poland.

The only way to guarantee supplies to Poland, wipe out the KM and deny Germany access to raw materials, Bofors guns, Soviet grain, etc, through the Baltic is for the allies to take extremely weak and nearby Denmark and the Dutch coast on the first day of the invasion, rapidly land planes and troops there.

The combined allied navy, air force and army are enormous. Landing 2 allied divisions on the first day along the long Danish peninsula and an additional division in the islands is no problem for the allies. Landing 2 more divisions in the Dutch coast to secure airfields and ports is also quite feasible.

Hitler loses several war and cargo ships on the first day to Polish Swordfish, has a large allied fleet in the Baltic and has to decide whether to declare war on Britain and France, rapidly lose the KM, fight on several fronts and be bombed from several airfields in the continent and Britain. On the morning of 2 Sept the allies land in the Baltic countries, guaranteeing supplies and Finnish reinforcements for Poland and the Polish air force is receiving twin engine planes from Denmark and fighters launched from carriers and unloaded crated in the Baltic countries.

Poland's situation looks better every hour and Germany's bleaker. Every hour Hitler delays a war declaration on Britain and France, the allies become stronger around Germany, but if he declares war with his forces in Poland, he will certainly lose.

Raeder would either have a heart attack or shoot himself when he sees allied troops and planes in Denmark and the French and royal navies in the Baltic.

The already poor discipline and performance of the German troops in Poland (as reported by WM generals) deteriorates as the Polish air force becomes stronger, the Polish army begins to deploy Matildas and heavy French tanks against the light WM tanks, Finnish troops begin to appear and LW support weakens.

The question is not why invade Denmark (which opens the Baltic and closes traffic from Norway)?, it is why the hell they didn't invade it to threaten Germany and save Poland? Why the 2 mighty nations did absolutely nothing while Poland fell and then waited months to invade with a poor plan distant and frigid Norway, while Hitler easily invaded Denmark? The answer is poor strategy.

Even supplying a Polish division to land from Britain in Denmark is much wiser for Poland in order to ensure control of the Baltic, planes, supplies and reinforcements than to leave a huge army isolated in Poland completely without supplies and reinforcements

Last edited by Draco; 28 May 15 at 13:15..
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  #44  
Old 28 May 15, 16:34
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the rather dumb Napoleon...
Good God, please let this be a troll...

You can't be serious.
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Old 28 May 15, 17:59
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Originally Posted by BobTheBarbarian View Post
Good God, please let this be a troll...

You can't be serious.
Its Draco. He's very serious.

Its takes a while to really get that.
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