originally posted by: Ohanka
Incidentally many of Germany's military failures can be attributed to Hitler's stupidity and sheer incompetence as a military commander. Which is in
stark contrast to this public perception as him as some great warlord.
It isn't entirely accurate to claim that Hitler was an incompetent military commander, considering that he had captured and controlled most of Western
Europe through both military and political leadership.
What failed the Nazis was hubris, which is the same Achilles' Heel for any empire really. The Nazis fell too hard for their own propaganda and ended
up underestimating the Soviets. The Nazis also overestimated their Western Allies, whom had backed Nazi Germany for quite some time as they used
Fascist regimes in Europe as their proxies to wage war against the USSR.
Imperial Russia, and later the Soviet Union, had waged continuous war for decades and as such, developed some serious countermeasures over the years.
The initial Nazi blitzkrieg to conquer strategic Soviet regions failed for a variety of reasons. The winter played a part, but the reason why the
Nazis failed their objectives before the winter came down to logistics.
Most people don't know this, but when the Russians built their massive railroad networks, they included a key design feature: the tracks were a
different width from the European standard. This was done intentionally to hold up any invasion into Russian from Europe, because trains were the key
mode of logistical transport. So not only could the Nazis not move the optimal volume of logistics, but they had to consume much more in transport
costs via motorized logistics.
Add to that the failure of the Nazis to capture and maintain supply lines to oil producing regions around the Caucasus/Caspian. Securing this fuel
economy, along with other resource assets, was the primary reason as to why the Nazis made the decision to invade the USSR in the first place.
However, the USSR maintained control over these assets which proved to their advantage in their victory on the Eastern Front- and was also the key
disadvantage that held back the Warmacht for the rest of their war.
After the Soviets captured Berlin, they immediately rolled in next-generation military units like heavy MBTs to show the Western Allies that they were
prepared to continue fighting, in order to force a cessation to hostilities in Europe.
On the Pacific Front, the Americans had already worn down the Japanese war economy. Japanese territory that was previously captured was now falling,
and war production, social welfare and morale were collapsing for the Japanese. The Soviets rallied veteran armies to the East and liberated
Manchuria. They had an invasion force primed to capture the Japanese homeland, as they said they would do at Yalta. And then the Americans forced
Japanese capitulation to them with their deployment of nuclear weapons. This was no coincidence, and the Soviets churned out their own nuclear
weapons program soon afterward to stave off American aggression.
As for modern times? The USA maintains a global economic empire backed by its military. The American Republic is far past its climax and its
military economy is inflated to crushing levels. The Cold War-era tenants for global hegemony require control over Eastern Europe, the Middle East,
and East Asia. The USA pushed their sphere of dominance further into Europe, while being simultaneously challenged by Russia and China elsewhere.
South America, historically a strategic resource frontier for the USA, has been heading towards emancipation from such colonial ties.
The American government is stocked full of chickenhawks and neoconservatives that feverently believe in economic expansion through military conquest.
They are easily predictable and non-aligned blocs have prepared for inevitable defensive military confrontation. The USA has to maintain logistics
throughout non-aligned regions in order to sustain its military in a conventional world war. The USA has so many enemies that it would never be able
to do so without substantial losses, and it will have to sacrifice control over some regions in order to agglomerate control in others. Even in a war
with another military power, other enemies of the USA will take opportunistic action when they can, and neoliberal economic ties will ensure all out
war involving allies for the sake of dealing with their own economies and social unrest.
Another key aspect that will define the decline of American morale will be in the loss of all their fancy war toys. Hardware like AWACS planes, super
carriers, and 5th gen fighters have been promoted as symbols of the USA (in reality a PR campaign to justify funding), and rival militaries have
developed weapon systems to specifically target this hardware. A loss of a single carrier or a Raptor would cause a lot of social unrest and economic
criticism inside of the USA. War in general would already be a contentious issue inside of the USA, and you can bet that Russians, Chinese or any
other military rival have vastly superior morale in regards to overt conflict with the Americans.
In summary, the USA would not be able to maintain a prolonged military effort against another superpower. As time goes on and the demands of economic
growth expand, the USA will end up in such a war anyway.