Author Topic: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration  (Read 14766 times)

Offline taiidantomcat

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #50 on: October 10, 2019, 01:41:45 AM »
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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #51 on: October 10, 2019, 09:27:11 AM »
Its a simple fact, when wars start you go with what you have, you produce what is ready and any new equipment is driven by operational need and how quickly it will be available.


Offline Kelmola

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #52 on: October 10, 2019, 06:42:08 PM »
War on Terror is an extremely poor comparison to just about any full-scale war. If the OPFOR is assumed to be a few thousand paramilitaries with AK's (who only during the last couple of years have gotten tech-savvy) then of course stealth helicopters and railgun-toting destroyers are not needed to defeat them, especially as the economy is still in peacetime footing and there is no massive mobilization of troops for large-scale war. Looking back into 2001, with Russia still in shambles and China only catching up the pace (and being still mostly a regional power in Asia and also challenged by Russia) there was no need for a Cold War style buildup either and the money saved from acquisitions could be used for increased operational costs.

US entering WW2 in 1939-40 means that its opponents - industrial nations instead of guerillas - are in many fields ahead of it in military technology and fielding massive conscription armies. What will follow is the mobilization of entire industry and full scale consription. The needs and resources (read: budget) available could not be more different.

If anything, WW2 meant that development of new equipment was accelerated and while in the short term production of existing equipment was prioritized, once the needs outweighed the benefits of undisturbed logistics, new equipment was pressed into service even though it was only half-ready in many cases.

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #53 on: October 10, 2019, 08:06:47 PM »
War on Terror is an extremely poor comparison to just about any full-scale war. If the OPFOR is assumed to be a few thousand paramilitaries with AK's (who only during the last couple of years have gotten tech-savvy) then of course stealth helicopters and railgun-toting destroyers are not needed to defeat them, especially as the economy is still in peacetime footing and there is no massive mobilization of troops for large-scale war. Looking back into 2001, with Russia still in shambles and China only catching up the pace (and being still mostly a regional power in Asia and also challenged by Russia) there was no need for a Cold War style buildup either and the money saved from acquisitions could be used for increased operational costs.

US entering WW2 in 1939-40 means that its opponents - industrial nations instead of guerillas - are in many fields ahead of it in military technology and fielding massive conscription armies. What will follow is the mobilization of entire industry and full scale consription. The needs and resources (read: budget) available could not be more different.

If anything, WW2 meant that development of new equipment was accelerated and while in the short term production of existing equipment was prioritized, once the needs outweighed the benefits of undisturbed logistics, new equipment was pressed into service even though it was only half-ready in many cases.

The M-26 was available for Normandy but not used, the 76mm gunned Shermans were not even seen as necessary, the only reason the USN had the Iowas is because they stayed out of the war until December 41, if they had joined two years earlier the Iowas would have gone the way of the Montanas and the RNs Lions.

The war on terror is the perfect example, true it wasn't a fight for survival, it was a counter insurgency writ large, but it still resulted in programs with billions of sunk investment being cancelled and huge sums of money being diverted to what was needed for the war at hand.  This is exactly the point I have been making from the start, when the shooting starts, anything that will not be ready in time, or is seen as unnecessary for the current conflict, will be cancelled or put on the back burner.  This is very different to accelerating stuff that is needed, or developing stuff resulting from lessons learned and responding to tactical / strategic needs, which is what you are talking about.  Lots of out of the box stuff is considered, but except for real times of desperation, rarely results in anything, rather its evolution of existing, or occasionally, if their is spare capacity, something exceptional may get up, again very, very rare.

Do you seriously believe North American would have been allowed to develop the Mustang for the UK if the US had already been at war?  War is just about the biggest disrupter you can get, it doesn't make things better easier or quicker, it actually derails lots of things and makes them harder, less efficient and often results in failure.

Offline taiidantomcat

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #54 on: October 10, 2019, 11:56:08 PM »
Its a simple fact, when wars start you go with what you have, you produce what is ready and any new equipment is driven by operational need and how quickly it will be available.

By that logic the US wouldn't have produced anything new from December 1941-August 1945 in real life




but technological revolution occurred.

Its the "pressure cooker of war" phrase I see often. People actually get more bold and take more risks, not fewer. the A-bomb there is a helluva an example, but its not the only one. Moreover the US was already ticking up its military

Its not a hard and fast rule, In some cases yes innovation is stifled in favor of production and In other cases it isn't. A lot of it depends on the pressure that's applied.

One could make the case the US would actually be Green lighting MORE projects in a time of panic, not fewer.

Quote
  War is just about the biggest disrupter you can get, it doesn't make things better easier or quicker, it actually derails lots of things and makes them harder, less efficient and often results in failure.


The state of the US military at that stage vs the size of it only a few years later is quite telling.  By 1945 the numbers were:

ARMY             USN             USMC      COAST GUARD             TOTAL
8,267,958   3,380,817   474,680            85,783                 12,209,238

That reflects a bit over a 3550% increase!!!



But the war did make things better easier quicker and more efficient how else does one increase 3,550 percent? One big advantage the US had (and it was BIG) was a massive industry that was immune from serious enemy attack not to mention multiple weapons companies.

The war was not a "disrupter" it was a motivator ideas that in peace would not have been considered, or deemed to expensive or risky were brought to the fore.
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Offline taiidantomcat

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #55 on: October 11, 2019, 12:12:49 AM »
if they had joined two years earlier the Iowas would have gone the way of the Montanas and the RNs Lions.

are you sure? I thought battleships would still be seen as the kings of the sea without any of the carrier battles  ;)

Quote
The war on terror is the perfect example, true it wasn't a fight for survival, it was a counter insurgency writ large, but it still resulted in programs with billions of sunk investment being cancelled and huge sums of money being diverted to what was needed for the war at hand.  This is exactly the point I have been making from the start, when the shooting starts, anything that will not be ready in time, or is seen as unnecessary for the current conflict, will be cancelled or put on the back burner.  This is very different to accelerating stuff that is needed, or developing stuff resulting from lessons learned and responding to tactical / strategic needs, which is what you are talking about.  Lots of out of the box stuff is considered, but except for real times of desperation, rarely results in anything, rather its evolution of existing, or occasionally, if their is spare capacity, something exceptional may get up, again very, very rare.

While things like EFV/AAAV being (shortsightedly) canceled is true, there are plenty of other projects (F-35, Any kind of Submarine, most conventional weapons, nuclear, cyber etc etc) has gone forward now before we point out that a lot of these programs have origins in the 1990s (true, or even earlier sometimes) Very little of the US military is actually useful for the GWOT or insurgency in general and a lot of other programs and other gear has come up since 2001, and of course lots of other stuff has gone into retirement, and lots of other production has ceased which would bely the "make more of what you already have!" argument.

So basically we had programs with billions invested cancelled, and programs with billions invested continued. Just like peacetime. :-\

The simple fact is there are examples of both with GWOT. so it becomes what one wants to weigh or count using the GWOT as an example the US Military is massive and costs around (using the actual budget) around or over 700 billion per anum. Thats a lot of money in things that are not just GWOT but everything from a dentist to cyber warfare to Nuclear arsenals.

the constant battle thats been waged in the halls of the pentagon and elsewhere has been how to find a "balance" of conventional warfare and unconventional warfare, and it only gets more muddy and complicated every year. The USMC's new boss just finally laid down the gauntlet and said "we are getting ready for war with China." which has been really refreshing. Wish we had that EFV now...

« Last Edit: October 11, 2019, 12:14:35 AM by taiidantomcat »
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Offline LemonJello

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #56 on: October 11, 2019, 01:53:33 AM »
Reading all of the discussion here, I come back to this line of thinking: Without a direct threat to the US homeland, what does it matter if the US enters the war earlier? Manpower, industry, resources are the same as RW, right? US farming ramps up to feed armies.  US industry ramps up to clothe and equip armies.  US population mobilizes to expand the military while also manning the assembly lines.  It's unlikely the US goes straight onto the offensive in either Europe or the Pacific, instead using whatever time it has to train, equip and plan, though maybe relying on Allied advisors for foundational doctrine? 


Offline taiidantomcat

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #57 on: October 11, 2019, 04:00:00 AM »
Reading all of the discussion here, I come back to this line of thinking: Without a direct threat to the US homeland, what does it matter if the US enters the war earlier? Manpower, industry, resources are the same as RW, right? US farming ramps up to feed armies.  US industry ramps up to clothe and equip armies.  US population mobilizes to expand the military while also manning the assembly lines.  It's unlikely the US goes straight onto the offensive in either Europe or the Pacific, instead using whatever time it has to train, equip and plan, though maybe relying on Allied advisors for foundational doctrine?

that kind of where I am at, same thing just a couple years sooner. (theres going to be differences in gear etc, which is what makes the GB fun)
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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #58 on: October 11, 2019, 04:24:30 AM »
If the US did enter the war earlier, one might see the Martin Maryland (as the A-22 - see XA-22 below) enter USAAC service along with the A-20 entering service a little earlier.

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Offline jcf

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #59 on: October 11, 2019, 04:36:37 AM »
Me three. There is no way that the US would be as stupid as Canada, Australia and New Zealand
and blindly follow Britain into a European war that had nothing to do with them, an idiotic
repeat of their actions in the First World War. Plus Hitler wouldn't have been stupid enough to
declare war on the US in 1939, as Kim points out they had plenty of reason to do so in 1940,
but they didn't, the German declaration of war on the US following Pearl Harbor is considered
one of their biggest strategic missteps.

Using Paul's logic the Brits wouldn't have developed anything beyond what they had on hand;
no Lancaster from Manchester, no Typhoon then Tempest, no Churchill etc. etc. But we know
that's exactly what they did.

BTW Paul, the Martin B-26 was ordered into production before it's first flight, already being at
war wouldn't have changed that reality. US development and expansion plans were under way
before Sept. 1939 and were increased in scope and accelerated afterwards.
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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #60 on: October 11, 2019, 04:38:22 AM »
One other thing an earlier US entry doesn't mean that Japan would have joined in,
they weren't ready in 1939-40 and they knew it.
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Offline Old Wombat

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #61 on: October 11, 2019, 10:38:11 AM »
Another point: The GB doesn't state WHEN the early entry is. Most people seem to be assuming 1 Sep 1939, or shortly thereafter, but it could be any time prior to 7 December 1941.

So, what if the US didn't enter the war until mid-1940, or even mid-1941? Many of the weapons used to win the war were under development in that era but hadn't had all the rough edges knocked of, yet. Entry into the war may have seen some expansion of manufacturing of older tech to boost initial numbers & for training purposes, military forces don't expand 3500% overnight, but, as in the RW, much would have been dedicated to developing & producing new equipment.

Britain's biggest issue post-Dunkerque (apart from the fact that most of the men it lost in France were professional soldiers, the ones needed to train new recruits) was the massive loss of materiel which needed to be replaced post-haste. This was why the British couldn't afford to change over to new equipment. Until then many of its factories had been tooling up to produce new & better weapons & equipment but had to delay that process to replace the stuff lost in France.

In what scenario could that have happened to the US military?

As I see it, an early US entry into WW2 means you'd see more older stuff involved in initial actions but be quickly replaced by newer, if somewhat different, equipment within the first 12 months, which would equip the newly trained armed forces. Also, with the US industrial base directly supporting it, I think you'd see the British introducing new & better weapons earlier. For example, if the US supplied the British with 37mm guns to replace the 2-pounders lost in France without having to even try to appear neutral, British gun manufacturers could have focused on introducing the 6-pounder earlier & developing tanks to use it.

At sea the Italians & Japanese had a decent number of new battleships but the biggest threat was still land-based air-power & the ol' battlewagon wasn't designed to cope with that. Aircraft carriers & AA cruisers were, so I think that would have been the biggest focus for naval development & production. The big boys would still have been built as the big-arsed floating artillery they became it the RW.


However, that is all moot because the GB is about the early entry of the US into WW2 & what equipment it would have started with, which is where I think our discussions should be focusing.
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Offline Brian da Basher

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #62 on: October 11, 2019, 10:39:50 AM »
One other thing an earlier US entry doesn't mean that Japan would have joined in,
they weren't ready in 1939-40 and they knew it.



Oops.

 :-[

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #63 on: October 11, 2019, 11:01:35 AM »
I am not saying all development stops, I am not saying all innovation stops, if anything innovation increases and ideas that were previously seen as too radical or risky do get looked at and sometimes get up.  What I am saying, and it has been seen over and over again, entering a war has a very different effect to preparing for a war, or watching and learning from someone else's war.

When the choice is between producing extra M1903s or not deploying units because you don't have enough Garands you produce extra M1903s, when the choice is between finalising the design and building the Iowas, which likely will not be ready in time, or ordering additional South Dakotas, you build the existing design.  When the choice is between producing P-39s and P-40s, or designing, developing, testing and then producing P-51s you go for the in production type.

When your hull is holed you don't stand there deciding which shipyard to go to or worry about whether you weld a patch over the hole or pull the ship out of the water to remove and replace the damaged plating, you hammer wooden chock in the hole and seal it as best you can until the ship is safe, then you worry about the wheres and hows of fixing it.

Its a very simple concept, one that has been demonstrated over and over again, when wars start you use what you have and only produce what you can usefully get to the front in your time of need.  As wars drag on and lessons are learned existing systems are evolved and new ones are introduced, but they are very different to those that would have been developed had you not been at war. 

There is massive investment in production, there is massive investment in R&D, but the priorities are set by the strategic situation.  Battleships and carriers are great and needed but when the enemy.s submarines are devastating your merchant fleet you need to invest escorts.  Bombers are great but when you are being bombed you need fighters.  Amphibious assault vehicles are great but when you are fighting in the desert you need land vehicles.  R&D is necessary but when an ally gives you tech and design data for something better than you have (but maybe not as good as what you are developing) you produce that.

Because the US had an extra couple of years to prepare and was physically removed from the industrial disruption of being bombed and starved of raw materials, manpower etc, they were able to design and develop many (or even most) of the war winning systems used from 43 onwards.  Had they joined tha war earlier they would have been in a situation more similar to the UK than not, and the effects would have been similar.  With more time for R&D and testing the British tanks would have been much better, bug ironed out of the better designs, the bad designs (ordered of the drawing board) identified and cancelled before production. With more time and less pressure the Cromwell would have been more like the Comet and the Churchill would have been superseded by something like the Centurion.  The Crusader would have had thicker armour and a 6pdr from the start, as well as being more reliable.  The Lions would have been built, Hood and Repulse would have been rebuilt, there would have been more large cruisers, the L and M type destroyers would have been perfected and standardised instead.  Westland Whirlwind (and the Peregrine) would have been fully sorted and in full production, along with one of the twin Merlin heavy fighters being developed. I could go on.

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #64 on: October 11, 2019, 11:03:44 AM »
Another point: The GB doesn't state WHEN the early entry is. Most people seem to be assuming 1 Sep 1939, or shortly thereafter, but it could be any time prior to 7 December 1941.

So, what if the US didn't enter the war until mid-1940, or even mid-1941? Many of the weapons used to win the war were under development in that era but hadn't had all the rough edges knocked of, yet. Entry into the war may have seen some expansion of manufacturing of older tech to boost initial numbers & for training purposes, military forces don't expand 3500% overnight, but, as in the RW, much would have been dedicated to developing & producing new equipment.

Britain's biggest issue post-Dunkerque (apart from the fact that most of the men it lost in France were professional soldiers, the ones needed to train new recruits) was the massive loss of materiel which needed to be replaced post-haste. This was why the British couldn't afford to change over to new equipment. Until then many of its factories had been tooling up to produce new & better weapons & equipment but had to delay that process to replace the stuff lost in France.

In what scenario could that have happened to the US military?

As I see it, an early US entry into WW2 means you'd see more older stuff involved in initial actions but be quickly replaced by newer, if somewhat different, equipment within the first 12 months, which would equip the newly trained armed forces. Also, with the US industrial base directly supporting it, I think you'd see the British introducing new & better weapons earlier. For example, if the US supplied the British with 37mm guns to replace the 2-pounders lost in France without having to even try to appear neutral, British gun manufacturers could have focused on introducing the 6-pounder earlier & developing tanks to use it.

At sea the Italians & Japanese had a decent number of new battleships but the biggest threat was still land-based air-power & the ol' battlewagon wasn't designed to cope with that. Aircraft carriers & AA cruisers were, so I think that would have been the biggest focus for naval development & production. The big boys would still have been built as the big-arsed floating artillery they became it the RW.


However, that is all moot because the GB is about the early entry of the US into WW2 & what equipment it would have started with, which is where I think our discussions should be focusing.

 :smiley:

Offline jcf

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #65 on: October 11, 2019, 11:46:39 AM »
May 1940 somewhere over the Atlantic.

Having received a diagnosis of terminal cancer at the end of 1939 Reinhard Heydrich
conceives a secret plan to strike at the heart of the Zionist banking conspiracy:
New York city.

With a small cadre of dedicated SS men Heydrich secretly takes possession of the
Fw 200 V1 D-ACON which is still in its record flight S-1 configuration of 1938 with
2,400 gal fuel capacity.

The mission will be one way, the target is the Statue of Liberty.

Heydrich is the pilot, he has with him only two others, one as co-pilot/navigator, the
other as flight engineer. The attack will be in daylight and Heydrich will broadcast in
the clear who they are and why they are attacking, he will crash the Condor into the
sculpture dying for the glory of Ein Folk, Ein Reich, Ein Führer.

Hitler doesn't know, Himmler doesn't know, the attack will come as a surprise to the
Nazi hierarchy and the rest of the world.

How will the US react? How will Hitler react? Will Churchill dance a jig?

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Offline apophenia

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #66 on: October 11, 2019, 02:30:18 PM »
A totally believable scenario! Doubtless SS-Gruppenführer Heydrich's excessive foaming-at-the-mouth aided in his terminal brain cancer diagnosis  ;)
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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #67 on: October 11, 2019, 02:35:12 PM »
Nice, I like.

Offline Old Wombat

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #68 on: October 11, 2019, 05:51:39 PM »
Just as believable but even more violent:


16 March 1940: A convoy of US troops en route to the Philippines, to bolster the local forces & ensure Filipino neutrality is maintained as Japanese intentions to move down through SE Asia become clear, is torpedoed. 3 ships are sunk & 300 US lives lost. The Japanese claim it was an accident & that the ships appeared to be sailing towards China.

17 March 1940: A small passenger ship carrying 143 American missionaries to Equatorial Guinea (a Spanish colony) is torpedoed & sunk mid-Atlantic. Over 130 lives are lost. The U-boat commander claims to have believed the missionaries to be soldiers as they were all in khaki work clothes.


Does the United States of America just accept these as the "fortunes of war" or retaliate?
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Offline kim margosein

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #69 on: October 13, 2019, 10:37:48 AM »
Well, it seems more reasonable than Brian da Basher having the Japanese Navy launching a sneak attack on Tuscon.

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #70 on: October 13, 2019, 12:50:10 PM »
How about the IJN slipping into the Gulf of California and launching raids on the southern portion of the Southwest United States?  I'm not sure if US relations with Mexico would allow them to slip in and out undiscovered or not, but I suspect money into the right hands (with or without Germany's assistance) would definitely assist that.

Offline Brian da Basher

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #71 on: October 14, 2019, 01:15:58 AM »
Well, it seems more reasonable than Brian da Basher having the Japanese Navy launching a sneak attack on Tuscon.

When the enemy is very highly motivated, anything can happen.

 ;D ;D ;D

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #72 on: October 14, 2019, 08:40:46 AM »
Making some progress Brian.


Gamma-01
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Work in progress ::

I am giving up listing them. They all end up on the shelf of procrastination anyways.

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #73 on: October 14, 2019, 11:45:36 AM »
Just started reading American Light Tanks M2, M22 "Locust" and M24 "Chaffee" and apart from making my eyes bleed with the shocking translations it made the point that at the start of WWII the US didn't even have a tank design they could mass produce, other than prototypes and limited production types evolved from the Vickers 6 Ton.  Everything had to be done from scratch, not just vehicle design, but doctrine, and the actual configuration of the required armoured formations. 

That they achieved what they did in two short years between the start of the European War and joining the conflict in Dec 41 is incredible, to have had any expectation of them being able to do it quicker is completely unrealistic.  Without the time the evolve the M2 medium into the M3 and then M4 it is likely that they would have had no choice but to adopt and evolve foreign designs.

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Re: U.S. Enters WWII Early (1940) GB Inspiration
« Reply #74 on: October 15, 2019, 12:56:56 AM »
Making some progress Brian.


Gamma-01
by Big Gimper, on Flickr

Wow is that coming along splendidly, Mr Gimper! No doubt the Axis will be compelled to surrender at the mere sight of those fearsome spats.  :-*

Ironically, I'm in the midst of something non-spatted:



Brian da Basher
« Last Edit: October 15, 2019, 12:58:50 AM by Brian da Basher »