I have been studying some translated German documents about the North African Campaign of WW2. In the past I always read about the brilliant genus Rommel winning victories, who failed because the backwards generals back home could never make him primary and give him the supplies and fuel he needed, even with all the ships they sent to supply him.
What is interesting for me is the endless orders from the High Command to stop offensive operations and to protect what he had, because the UK only had one rail line that didn't even reach the border with Libya, and more important it was a pain in the ass and an extreme drain on fuel and supplies to get these to him, especially with so much of it ending up at the bottom of the Mediterranean.
Given that we are talking about the time of the build up for the Invasion of Russia and to the battle of Stalingrad, I suddenly see a General who's self interest in his own victories was to the determent of the true needs of the war. Given the several hundred tanks he received, plus half tracks, armor cars, trucks, plus the greater amount of these that were sunk, and the fuel and ordnance Rommel used or was sunk, these could have had a big impact in the invasion of the Soviet Union. I see his ignorance of the orders of the High Command as quite possibly a or the major factor to the loss of the war. A few thousand more tanks, even if lite tanks, with all that ordnance and fuel when Tanks were deprived during the drive on Moscow, could have made a major difference.
Suddenly the High Command isn't a bunch of Stodgy old timers hold back the brilliant tactician, but men with a superior knowledge of Strategy and the needs of the war wanting to not invest in a front that really wasn't important.
I seem to think there is a life lesson in this. Self glory that ruins the joint effort is not good, or something like that.
Well, another lesson learned.
Topics related to World History and WW2.
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