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Thread: Weltkriegschaft

  1. #1421
    American Fascist Slaughts's Avatar
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    Note: this is not an update. Just a special bonus feature. Hence the brevity.

    The U-bootwaffe


    The majority of Germany’s U-boat arm consists of the Type II submarines built originally as a stepping stone to the true oceangoing attack submarines which the Kriegsmarine planned to build in the late 1930s. When war came five years earlier than Admiral Raeder expected and ten years earlier than he would have liked, he found himself with a pitifully underprepared submarine arm. The Type II boats were small and cramped, with sharply limited torpedo capacity, no deck gun, and speed that was adequate at best. Submerged, they displaced less than a third the tonnage of their British S-class counterparts.

    Raeder made these limitations plain to the War Ministry, and later HKK, both of which concurred with his decision not to initiate unrestricted submarine warfare. The reasons for this were manifold. The Type IIs were not well-suited to Atlantic operations, and still mostly used torpedos that were out of date. In running the constrained waters of the Channel to get to the Atlantic, they would be very vulnerable to British destroyers and mines. In addition to the military considerations, there were highly political ones. The government wanted to avoid provoking a blockade, and there were also lingering fears of another Lusitania-like incident that might draw the United States or Ireland into the war.

    For the first months of the war, the small U-bootwaffe was used in a much more limited role. Its first use was to patrol and mine the Skagerrak in May, when there was still talk of a British Expeditionary Force landing on the Continent in 1936. The General Staff, aware of an aborted plan from the Great War to send an invasion force into the Baltic, feared in the long interval of British inaction that just such an operation was again being prepared. Even as the threat of a “back-door” invasion subsided, the U-boats were maintained on station to deny the Allies access to the Baltic. Gradually, operations were expanded to the eastern part of the North Sea, where U-boats were occasionally able to sink lone merchantmen. Per Raeder’s directive, these sinkings were carried out strictly in accordance with the rules of prize warfare. Beyond that, for the rest of the summer, the Kriegsmarine had found use for the Type II submarines in laying mines and supporting espionage operations. Engagements with Royal Navy warships were rare.



    When Britain declared a general blockade, despite Raeder’s restraint, there were renewed calls for initiation of unrestricted submarine warfare. Nonetheless, HKK maintained its support for the Navy chief’s official policy of holding off on full engagement with the British. One captain, Kapitänleutnant Hans-Gerrit von Stockhausen, was court-martialed when it came to OKM’s attention that without warning he had fired three torpedos at the liner Empress of Britain, all of which missed. He contended that it appeared to be serving as a troopship, and that the presence of a British cruiser on the horizon precluded his U-boat’s surfacing to demand the vessel’s surrender. Although von Stockhausen was exonerated with regard to the most serious charges, the case spurred vigorous debate within the Kriegsmarine. For huge warships like the Empress of Britain could easily outrun a U-boat that made its presence known, and there obviously was no way for a tiny submarine to accommodate the hundreds or even thousands of prisoners that it would be theoretically obliged to take and look after under the current prize rules.

    And so, priority was placed on development of the first class of true attack submarines -- the Type VII, which had been in development for nearly three years.



    The first of these, U-27, had been commissioned in August. On its first operational war cruise, under Korvettenkapitän Hans Ibbeken, it had sunk one Canadian and three British merchant ships for a total of 17,779 tons. He was awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross for this achievement, and the Navy establishment duly was impressed with the promise of this new type of boat.



    The greatest hurdle now for its widespread deployment is production. The Type VIIs take a minimum of 11-12 months construction between being laid down and launched, and even with orders being placed, large numbers will not see combat until late in 1937.

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  3. #1423
    Pantomacatalasecesionanis ta

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheHyphenated1 View Post
    The greatest hurdle now for its widespread deployment is production. The Type VIIs take a minimum of 11-12 months construction between being laid down and launched, and even with orders
    *slap on the ace*

    I hope that the war is still going on by then...
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  4. #1424
    Pantomacatalasecesionanis ta

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheHyphenated1 View Post
    The greatest hurdle now for its widespread deployment is production. The Type VIIs take a minimum of 11-12 months construction between being laid down and launched, and even with orders
    *facepalm*

    I hope that the war is still going on by then...
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  5. #1425
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  6. #1426
    Second Lieutenant SeleucidRex's Avatar

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    Sorry for being away.

    Is it realistic to have Panzer IV's in 1936?!

    Congratulations, though: this AAR has finally surpassed the legendary Where the Iron Crosses Grow in its number of replies. And you havent even invaded England yet.
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  7. #1427
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    Amen to that. I always enjoy the side note stories thrown in for further education of the readers. I dont know where Hypnenated gets the info, or the photos, but they are always top notch.

    Keep it up!!

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  8. #1428
    Second Lieutenant SeleucidRex's Avatar

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    Wait... G.K. Chesterton?!?!

    According to wikipedia he died in june. Did he not die in this timeline? And anyway, he was a prominent Christian writer from what I know of him. What made him switch?
    "The wireless telegraph is not difficult to understand. The ordinary telegraph is like a very long cat. You pull the tail in New York, and it meows in Los Angeles. The wireless is the same, only without the cat."

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  9. #1429
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SeleucidRex View Post
    Is it realistic to have Panzer IV's in 1936?!
    Don't be silly this is Germany as imagined by Tom Clancy.

    They'll be using Tiger IIs and Me-262s by 1937.
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  10. #1430
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    Having 9 Pzkpfw IV at this stage of the war is not what I would call a "decisive twist".
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  11. #1431
    Magister Philosophiæ volksmarschall's Avatar
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    Historically speaking, the Panzerkampfwagen IV was the most produced tank of the war, with her many variants. The very first were being produced in 1936, so there's no problem with that. It's just that they didn't enter service until 1939, and they didn't become the mainstay for the Panzerkorps until 1941 and 1942 replacing the older Panzer III's, especially after they ran into the Soviets T-34's (historically speaking). The Ausf H & J Models were the most widely produced if I can remember correctly (the one's we are most familar with).
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  12. #1432
    Resauce biased economist Beladriel's Avatar
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    He got an Iron Cross for 17,799 tons? Damn, I had to sink 60,000 in SH4 (the exp pack).

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  13. #1433
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    I love these weapons developments. Keep up the good work!

  14. #1434
    Kurt Steiner (1 & 2) - Never you worry, Kurt! The curtain is barely up on this thing .

    Hardraade - Thanks! Let me know if you'd like to hear about anything else before next update.

    SeleucidRex (1) - Welcome back! volksmarschall hits it on the head about the Panzer IV. Historically they existed in 1936, but just as in Weltkriegschaft, were still several years away from service. It remains to be seen whether the exigencies of the war will accelerate that development or other more pressing priorities will slow it. But in either case, it's nowhere near ready. And thank you . It's certainly an honor to be compared to Yogi and his illustrious career in AARland!

    KLorberau - Thank you very much, and I appreciate your continued readership! Information comes from books and internet, modified, of course, by the events of the AAR!

    SeleucidRex (2) - This sounds like a put-on, but it's actually his fascist cousin, A.K. Chesterton. Really, I swear . We'll be hearing more about A.K. Chesterton in future updates. G.K. is still alive as of November 7.

    El Pip - Oh, pish posh! If it was, those tech features would have been about 11 times longer . Tease all you like, though, a close reader will be hard-pressed to find any evidence of such technological liberties being taken . On the other hand, in OTL, Dr. von Ohain did build his first jet engine in 1937, so.....

    Kurt_Steiner (3) - Not unless, as El Pip surely fears, they are equipped with naval guns and and composite armor stripped from an M1A1 Abrams .

    volksmarschall - Excellently put comment, sir! Don't fear too much for the RN capital ships, though. Oberleutnant zur See Günther Prien was aboard U-16 when it was sunk in the Irish Sea. He's safely in captivity after being picked up by a British destroyer. The officers and men of Royal Oak can breathe easy .

    Beladriel - Thanks, and welcome aboard, Beladriel! Thanks for taking the time to comment. I do hope we'll continue to hear from you as you catch up. As to the Knight's Cross, well, pickings are slim. It was the greatest single-patrol total thus far in the war, and lifted Ibbeken to position as tonnage leader.

    Avatar018 - Thanks! I'll try!
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  15. #1435
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheHyphenated1 View Post
    On the other hand, in OTL, Dr. von Ohain did build his first jet engine in 1937, so.....
    He did. And it was a sack of cack, much like rest of the German jet programme which was so awful the grand total of no-one used it post war. German rockets yes. German jets, never.

    Still such minor details have never derailed this German wankathon before so why start now?
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  16. #1436
    ...

    Perhaps I should look for a smiley that unrolls a red-lettered banner that says: "I am kidding, El Pip. Learn to tell the difference between real 'wankathons' and me cheekily baiting you."

    I shall refrain from baiting you so in the future.
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  17. #1437
    Quote Originally Posted by TheHyphenated1 View Post
    ...

    Perhaps I should look for a smiley that unrolls a red-lettered banner that says: "I am kidding, El Pip. Learn to tell the difference between real 'wankathons' and me cheekily baiting you."

    I shall refrain from baiting you so in the future.
    That'll just encourage him.

  18. #1438
    I fear you're right.

    I seem to recall you wishing to break out a similar smiley in your infamous "bodyguards from the future" argument with diziziz about 60 pages ago...
    Weltkriegschaft
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  19. #1439
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dublish View Post
    That'll just encourage him.
    Don't spoil it! I don't think our author has worked out I'm just cheekily baiting him.
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  20. #1440
    Touche, sir!

    And so the dance continues...

    But FYI, terms like "wankathon" showing up on the search page might bring in entirely the wrong kind of clientele .
    Weltkriegschaft
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