Events leading to War in Europe

Events 1936

Reichsregierung: The government is challenged by several events. Illegal printing leads to a tightening of reins towards the press causing some temporary dissent. In October a scandal shakens the war ministry leading to a reorganisation. The heads of the military hierarchy the generals Ludwig Beck and Werner von Fritsch are relieved from office.  Leadership is raised 5%, but also Dissent raises some 10%.

All dissent is forgotten when the world attends to the XI. Olympic Games in Berlin. Germany takes the opportunity to show itself from its best side wellcomming athletes from 49 countries. The German public and the guests alike enjoy the peacful atmosphere of the games. End of the year the approval of the NSDAP has gone up to 60%.

Industry: The German industry innitiates extensive basic research in several fields of engeneering. The main technology is mechanical engineering with 10.1 points and the main practical is medium aircraft with 11.5. points. New factories are being built, new air fields are planned, and the road infrastructure gets augmented. The main shortage lies with crude oil and monetary resources. Global trade deeliveres supplies of the German industry. Interestingly the Soviet Union evolves into the most important trade partner.

Heer: The Heer is organising its 12 Armeekorps into 6 Armies. Each Korps is to ideally consist of 3 Infanterie-Divisionen with a recce unit, an artillery group, anti-tank assets, and an engineer battalion. The newly raised 4. Panzer-Division is equipped  with the new Panzer II C.

Luftwaffe: The Luftwaffe has ordered more figters and medium bombers. The main aircraft models are the Junkers Ju 52 bomber and transport and  the Heinkel He 51 fighter. A new generation of aircraft has been tested is now entering production. The Luftwaffe has ordered the first 100 Dornier Do 17 E to equip its latest Kampfgeschwader. An entirely new fighter design is being testet as well, the Messerschmidt Me 109 V prototype.

Kriegsmarine: The “Admiral Graf Spee” is commissioned as the newest vessel in the German naval arm. The 4. U-Boot-Flottille is added to the submarine arm. In the Baltic Sea the new Transportflotte is created with a first flottilla of troop transports.

Auswärtiges Amt:  In January the Spanish crisis offers the aspiring Third Reich the opportunity to show its stance of saving Europe from Bolshewism. German intervention and the offer of funds and material aid is readily excepted by the Spanish nationalists. Much to the annoyance of the fascists the elected Spainish gouvernment restores order quickly and reunites the country under republican rule. A first country in Europe threatens to fall to the Comintern.

Events 1937

Reichsregierung: In May and November the Government gets heavily shaken by skandals involving some of the ministers and their followers. Teporarily the Leadership Modifier is reduced by -10% in May/June and -20% in November/December. Internal strife leads to a fall in the popularity of the NSDAP to a mere 44% at year’s end.

Industry: The Hindenburg Disaster shockes the nation and marks the end of the once promising zeppelin era. A first new idustrial area is completed at Halle. July the nationalisation of some private companies adds 8 IC to the countries production untill October.

The most proficient field of practical engineering knowledge is medium aircraft at 13.8 points followed by rocket science with 10.8 points. In theoretical engineering knowledge the field of mechanical engineering falls to 7.9 points followed by aircraft design at 6.5 points.

Wehrmacht: More divisions, air groups and flotillas are put into service. The transformation to a more mobile motorised Heer is in full swing. The Saar region is fully guarded by 15 Grenzschutz-Regiments with more units to follow on other critical border regions towards France, Poland, and Czechoslovakia.

Auswärtiges Amt: A first major success in foreign policy occurs in July when Japan and its satellites join the Axis fraction. German influence in US domestic politics shows some effect. The German American Bund is at 16% popularity.

Events 1938

Reichsregierung: As the threatening clouds of a possible war draw nearer the NSDAP tightens its organisational grip on the populance reaching a organisational grade of 65.50. Despite of the success in restituting the Reich the gouvernements popularity falls to 36%.

Industry:   Due to this years’ annexations the Reich gains in industrial capacity. Base IC is now at 181 modified to an IC of 257 due to German technological effectiveness. The main field of research is in land warfare, the main engineering practicals lay in aircraft building.

Wehrmacht: The Heer experiences a period of extensive modernisation, motorisation, and specialisation. New tanks are introduced, two Marine-Sturm-Divisionen are being trained, the Schnelle Truppen (rapid forces) raise zu a total of 7 Panzer, 2 light, and 7 motorised divisions.

In December the new pride of the German Kriegsmarine is commissioned the Battleship Bismark. The ship is the largest and most modern military vessel in the world and can easily compete with any British warship.

Auswärtiges Amt: In March the Austrian Republic dissolves and gets incorporated into the German Reich. This creates the long aspired Großdeutsches Reich substacially streagthening th e manpower available for military service. This leads the Pact of Steel with Italy and Ethiopia thereby joining the Axis cause.

More former German territories reunite in April as a consequence of the Treaty of Munich. Czechoslovakia is forced to cede German-speaking provinces to Germany. The Czechoslovakian rest State is not viable and gets annexed into the Reich as Protectorate Bohemia and Moravia to calm the internal conflicts and bring order to the region. The eastern part gains independance as newly created nation of Slovakia and immediately joins the Axis for protection.

Jealous of German restitution and as a reaction to the annexation of Czechoslovakia the British government announces a guarantee of independance of Poland. France and Poland take this as a pretext to mobilise their armed forces. Meanwhile the USA drifts towards the Axis as German propaganda influences the public oppinion into backing away from getting involved in a European conflict.

Events 1939

Reichsregierung: The Führers tough stance in negotiations has agein succeded. The province of Memel rejoins the Reich. In September the government passes legislations that will provide germany with more power in the impending war. Service by requirement, Total Economic Mobilisation, and Heavy Industry Emphasis are implemented.

Industry:   The modernisation of the German industry is in full swing. On this foundation the production of military and civil goods rises to levels unknown of before. Comodities are flowing into the German ecconomy from all over the world.

Wehrmacht: The Wehrmacht has more then 625.000 men under arms. The ground forces are organised in 27 Korps with the following structure

  • 8 Panzer-Divisionen
  • 1 Kavallerie-Division
  • 4 leichte Divisionen
  • 9 Infanterie-Divisionen (mot)
  • 45 Infanterie-Divisionen
  • 1 Luftlande-Division
  • 4 Gebirgsjäger-Divisionen
  • 1 Marine-Division
  • 7 Grenzschutz-Abschnitte
  • 10 Reserve-Divisionen

Auswärtiges Amt: The year is very eventfull with the outbreak of war in Europe due to the treachery of the Entente nations. January the German-speaking province of Memel rejoins the Reich. In June the Hungarians join the Axis adding greatly to the stability of central Europe. August sees a rising of tensions between Poland and the Reich. On the basis of the secret Molotov-Rippentrop-Pact the Reich finally claims the reunification of the Danzig corridor. Deluded by false promises from the Entente Poland opts for WAR!

Strategic Victory Points 09/1939    283 – 339 – 173