The Soviets forced Germans to dismantel the plant for shipment to the Soviet Union where it coukld be reassembled. Possssion of the Soviet oil fields in the Caucasuses would permanently solve Germany's petroleum and these were supplies that could not be interdicted by the Royal Navy. A-Frames & Y-Straps. This was asouthern strategy championed by Admiral Raeder and others. The British did not, hoever, cooperate. From there there was nothing standing between the Germans and the oil resources of the Midde East, both in Iraq and Iran. Tanks and other vehicleswe primarily trabnsported by rail. The Wehrmacht planners estimated they had the fuel for only about one-third to one-half of the distance to the main objective--Antwerp. This was a major achievement, but it was not the most importat domestic source. With Gibraltar in their hands, the Mediteranean would be essetially an Axis lake. When the famed T.E. The ther prong headed east for Stalingrad. Nearly 70 percent of the town were destroyed. Soviet forces in the Caucauses managed to stop the German drive in the moutanous terraine short of Grozny. Now was his opportunity to seize it. But Rashid Ali al-Gailani’s March 1941 coup, led by the secret “Golden Square” society, had toppled this careful settlement. The P�litz plant alone was especially important, producing 15 percent of the Reich's synthetic fuels, mote than 575,000 tons (1943). 79.] Also in April, the German Twelfth Army would overrun Greece in a lightning three-week campaign, forcing a wholesale evacuation of British forces to the island of Crete only to be ejected once again by a German airborne invasion. Nearly 32 million barrels were imported or over 70 percent. And substatial repairs were needed requiring a great deal of equipment and material. German oil production: 1,920,000 tons/yeare, some 8-900,000 came from the Austrian fields, 6-700,000 tons/year from the Hanover district, 2000,000 tons/year from Heide and the remainder from Baden and the Polish frontier area. This was particulrly aroblem or the Luftwaffe which needed high octane aviation fuel. The fallm of France also mean that the Royal Navy no longervhad te support of the French fleet and woufd have to go it alone. As Germany industrialized in the 19th century, this was not a problem. Russia was by far the largest supplier in 2018, delivering 31 million tonnes, or about 36 percent of oil imports. Britain declared wr (Septemnber3, 1939) abnd France followed suit. (United States Bureau of Mines, Office of Synthetic Liquid Fuels. A large portion of the Italian supply convoys were destroyed through British air and submarine attacks, Here Malta played a key role. With the German invasion of Belgium, the British declred war and with French cooperation instituted a naval blockade of Germany. They used an indirect process, meaning the coal is gasified and then converted to liquid fuels. Then once the Mediterranean was in Axis hands, the Germans could proceed to drive on British-held Suez from Italian Libya. More has been written about the German U-boats than the Allied naval blockade, but the U-boats failed and the Allied blockade suceeded. When the Red army arrived, the plesti fields and refineries were left a total wreck. Maikop alone would have given the Germans what they needed. German secret agents, spies for the famed Abwehr of Admiral Wilhelm Canaris, had carefully infiltrated Iraq, under the very noses of the British, fomenting discontent and building support for their candidate for power, Rashid Ali. After 1938, the Austrian oil fields were available also, and the expansion of crude oil output was chiefly effected there. The Soviets as part of the NaZI-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact (August 1939) delivered oil to the NAZIs. Then, toward the end of August 1944, Russia captured the Rumanian oil fields, which meant the Germans could no longer get even what little remaining oil … The 8th Air Force had sustanined substantial losses on trgets in western Germany during 1943. The British Ambassador, Sir Kinahan Cornwallis, was held hostage in the embassy. "I implored Hitler ... to reserve a significantly larger part of the fighter plane production ... to protecting the home hydrogenation plants ...." (July 28). Ultimately the flow of oil was cut off by American bombing. Birkenfield, Wolfgang. If they persist at it this time, we will soon no longer have any fuel production worth mentioning'." While Germany did not have much oil, it did have coal and the the most advanced chemical industry in the world. [Tomberg, p. The advancing unitswere outrunning supply lines. 4 (December 1984), pp. De Chair described this colorful and barbaric cavalcade: “We were a motley crowd. Of this total, domestic crude oil production accounted for only 3.8 million barrels while 60 percent (roughly 28 million barrels) of German oil was imported from overseas where the United States controlled the lion’s share of production. And finally he writes, "Meanwhile the army, too, had become virtually immobile because of the fuel shortage." The Ardennes was hardly the perfect location for an armored offensive--especialy for the large German Panthers and Tigers. History of the Raid on the German Oil Supply in Ploesti The oil fields and eight massive refineries that surrounded Ploesti, Romania, spread over about eighteen square miles. [Karlsch and Stokes, pp. When Barbarossa failed before Moscow (December 1941), Hitler designed the 1942 Summer offensive to seize the Soviet Caucasan oil fields. Just as these events were unfolding, a worse blow fell. At the time the SS was preparing planson how to deal with the British if an invasion was necessary--NAZI occuption plans. The German fields were primarily located in northwestern Germany. [Contributions] [Return to Main World War II page] and Egypt a Modest 500,000 tonnes the Indian Army was Given the Job to protect the Iranian Oil fields and 150 Mile Pipe line and all this Oil was Going to the British Throughout WW2 Even so, large areas of the economy was not mechanized. All told, the plan called for the use of 3.3 million German soldiers, as well as an additional 1 million from Axis nations such as Italy, Romania, and Hungary. By the time of El alemaine, this meant a logistical train of over 1,000 miles. [Home front] This would have permaneltly sloved the German oil problem. The only major oil exporter not part of the Seven Sisters was the Soviet oil indutry. The destruction of the Luftwaffe opened up Germany to an unrelenting bombing campaign by the massive American and British strategic bombing forces built up in Britain as well as additional forces flying from liberated Italy. At the time, total German oil imports from the USSR were 912,000 tons, [clarification needed] with German stockpiles [citation needed] at 1,350,000 tons. Still facing an Afrika Korps bent on the conquest of the Land of the Pharaohs, the British daringly assembled a strike force for the advance on Baghdad. Model had been one of the Wehrmacht's great mastersof mobility ob the Eastern Front. The arrangementwas tht Sovietswoukd deliver grain and raw mterials and the Germans manufactured goods desired by the Soviets. Military preparadnes became increasingly important and overrode commercial concerns. Capturing the Caucasus oil fields would require draining dry the accumulated German oil reserves. United States Strategic Bombing Survey (USSBS). (May 19, 1944) The Soviets delivered 4 million barrels of oil in 1940 and 1.6 million barrels during the first half of 1941. One of his generals had a plan to do just that. Already the German Army had formed two special units trained and ready to assist the Iraqis, the 287th and 288th Brandenburg companies [the 288th was commanded by Colonel Menton, an old friend of Rommel’s from the Great War]. It was clear that something had to be done about Rashid Ali in Baghdad. [Return to Main World War II economics page] Germany had very limited oil resources. German Holster. They faced a largely imobilized German Army. Most of North Africa was already in Axis hands. As he did not expect the British and French to declare war, he did not thinkn oil would be a problem. NAZI diplomacy continued this effort. Go to previous slide - Best Selling. These companies controlled approximately 85 percent of the global oil reserves. Hitler had assumed that the British would be ensible and sign an armistice after the fall of France (June 1940). There were of course many other enducements, including Ukrainian grain and Donets coal, but oil was the most pressing problem. 196.]. On March 24, Lt. Gen. Erwin Rommel, soon to be known as the legendary “Desert Fox,” dealt the British its first defeat by his Afrika Korps at El Agheila in Libya. The Germans then drove further south to the larger fields and refineries at Grozny and Baku. The product was then refined to create a synthetic liquid fuel. One factor was the superp P-51 Mustang, a marriage of the North American air frame and the Rolls Royce Merlin engine. When Barbarossa failed before Moscow (December 1941), Hitler designed the 1942 Summer offensive to seize the Soviet Caucasan oil fields. In addition the small German oil industry had only a small number of qualified men who were capable of redrilling the wells. Possssion of the city on the Volga would have prevent the Soviets from sending reinforcements into the Caucasuses to protect the oil fields and to get the oil north. See more ideas about ww2, world war two, wwii. By April 12, Rommel would drive the hard-pressed British Tommies back to the very gates of Egypt itself, threatening the vital Suez Canal. And thanks to Stalin, this time there was no longer a French Army in the West to divert resources. Navigate the CIH World War II Section: Bags & Rucksacks. 37 The reversal of Nazi Germany's invasion of the Soviet Union at Stalingrad marked the greatest extent of German imperialism and the turning point of Nazi Germany's quest to exploit foreign oil. One third were to be killed ourtright, one third were to be driven beyond the Urals into Asia (where most woud perish), and one third were to become a slave labor force for German colonists. And the raw material for synfuel was coal. At the most recent maneuvers the Persian Army had displayed ninety tanks; and we could not rule out the possibility that Germany was going to ‘borrow’ these from Persia to reinforce the Iraqis.”. P38 Holster. Hitler with aeries of impressive victories was convinced he could destroy the Soviet Union in a short summer campaign. The Arab Legion was formed to control the Bedouin tribes in his new domain, and to defend it from outsiders. After the War cost became important and neither of the two main processes were competitive with imported oil. In addir\tion tgeGermanswere not paying for the oil and promissied deliveries of coal and other items were not arriving. Here, the Kriegsmarine's 13th U-boat flotilla had its headquarters. Dienstglas. At the beginning of WWII, German troops supported their field equipment via a system of aluminum belt hooks attached to canvas suspenders that were worn inside their tunics. The next step was going after the synthetic fuel plants. The initial raids were infefectual nd their were heavy losses. And with the destruction of the Luftwaffe, this was finally possible (January-March 1944). The British never had a fuel or oil problem throughout WW2 . Significant oil and gas containing stratigraphic units of the North-West German Basin The North-West German Basin as part of the North German Basin belongs to the great north-west European epicontinental basin, which is located south-western of the Fennoscandian Massif. The Americans joined by the reconstituted French Army after the Bulge pressed forward to the Rhine. I love Duc Quyen's answer and I am tempted to agree with him but I find it just too simplistic. 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