posted on Oct, 17 2006 @ 04:24 PM
Blitzkreig or 'Lightening War', was not a new conception, if you consider the Sturmtruppen of the German Imperial Army of
The 'close assault' groups or Grenadiers were tasked was to locate, fix and if possible, destroy enemy machinegun emplacements, command
bunkers and forward artillery observation trenches or posts and also to find and secure weak points in allied wire and trench systems, allowing the
heavier infantry to push through.
Their groups were always small in number and were never fully supported either by machineguns or artillery so were virtually ineffective. But it was a
Blitzkreig itself was innovative in that it was the first time the German armed forces operated as 'one' unit and, as TheSilentProtagonist stated,
it was the first effective deployment of mechanized forces, utilising advanced tanks (The german panzers vastly outperformed allied tanks initially)
mechanized infantry, and the use of dive bombers to perfrom the role of artillery.
One must remember that most of the Wehrmacht and early Waffen-SS units were horse-drawn, as was the artillery and that the A1 and A2 Echelons - Supply
Indeed, only the so called elite units such as the LSSAH, Das Reich and the Gross Deutschland Panzergrenadier regiments were almost fully mechanized
and even then, most trucks were of the early '30s vintage.
Having said that, I do take issue with you TheSilentProtagonist, when you say the German tanks vastly outperformed allied tanks initially. They
didn't! The PzKpfw Mk I were lightly armoured and mounted twin MG 34s whilst the Mk IIs, were armed with a 20cm cannon and a single MG 34 and had
slightly thicker frontal armour.
When confronted by the superior French Char 'B' and the British Matilda, they usually came off second best. It was the superior German tactics of
combined operations that gave the Germans the edge over the Anglo-French armour because the Brits and French did not know how to utilise their armour
With regards to the Gulf War, the so called 'Shock and Awe' posted by WestPoint23
is almost certainly derived from Blitzkreig - overwhelming forces of armour, mechanized infantry, tracked and towed artillery and superior aircraft,
all combined to deliver a 'Blitzkreig' against an inferior enemy.
Had the Iraqis been similarly equipped, trained, and better led, I often wonder what would have happened.