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"Italy Benefited Germany" Topic

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456 hits since 22 May 2024
©1994-2024 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian22 May 2024 8:53 a.m. PST

You were asked – TMP link

…would Germany have been better off if Italy hadn't joined Germany in attacking France?

53% said "no, Germany would not have been better off alone"
30% said "yes, Germany would have been better off alone"

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP22 May 2024 9:42 a.m. PST

Well the Italian contribution to the attack on France was hopeless, counterproductive in fact. It certainly alienated the US.

The real question was whether Italy entering the war at any stage benefits Germany.

Most "What If?" books suggest that Italy proved a poor ally and drained more resources than it offered. A non-Belligerent Italy, like Spain, would still have needed major British/Commonwealth commitment in the Mediterranean, sitting there "just in case".

Personal logo McKinstry Supporting Member of TMP Fezian22 May 2024 9:55 a.m. PST

Mussolini's fantasies about an Italian dominated Mediterranean ended up forcing the Germans to commit resources to bail out Italian failure in North Africa, Greece and Yugoslavia. German airborne forces were essentially gutted on Crete instead of the potentially much more decisive Malta and ultimately over 300,000 troops were wasted in Tunisia.

Italian participation in WW2 ended up being a not inconsiderable long term bonus for the Allies.

BattlerBritain22 May 2024 11:38 a.m. PST

Reminds me of a supposed quote of a conversation between Churchill and Von Ribentrop, the German Foreign Minister(?), probably just before war started.

Von Ribentrop was trying to convey how strong Germany was.
"Why we've even got Italy on our side!".

"Seems only fair – we had them last time!!"
was Churchill's reply.

(Italy was on the Allied side in WW1).

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP22 May 2024 11:45 a.m. PST

Where they actually were not that bad, in WWI. Way above WWII but they did have their problems against the Germans and not the Austrians.

TimePortal22 May 2024 2:27 p.m. PST

Advantage of having Italy as a partner, has several strategic considerations. One was it gave a foothold in North Africa. With Libya and Tunisia. Later having troops in Italy allowed them to establish the defensive lines that delayed the Allies. If Italy had been neutral like Spain or had to be conquered like France, the amount of resources needed would have delayed the German strategy. So having Italy was an advantage.
I concede that Italian performance was weak. However I blame Germany's failure to supply Italy with better equipment or designs for self production was a mistake. Germany could have given captured Czech and French tanks at a minimum.

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