TM-E 30-451 Handbook on German Military Forces

[DISCLAIMER: The following text is taken from the U.S. War Department Technical Manual, TM-E 30-451: Handbook on German Military Forces published in March 1945. — Figures and illustrations are not reproduced, see source details. — As with all wartime intelligence information, data may be incomplete or inaccurate. No attempt has been made to update or correct the text. — Any views or opinions expressed do not necessarily represent those of the website.]



1. General

a. DEVELOPMENT. The Germans, comparatively speaking, neglected their artillery during the early stages of the war and since have been compelled to give increased thought to it. The German concept of modern war in 1939 was that of the Blitzkrieg or "Lightning War", in which armor and the dive bomber jointly were to dominate the battlefield. The enemy was to be softened up by bombing and smashed by the tanks, and artillery scarcely had more than a subsidiary role. The Blitzkrieg was successful against inadequately equipped armies, but the gradual recovery of Germany's enemies and the complete bankruptcy of the "Lightning War" theory have compelled the Germans to attempt a refurbishing of their artillery doctrine.

b. DIVISION ARTILLERY. The division artillery weapons with which Germany started the war were all of the "18" class (10 cm le. F.H. 18, 10 cm K. 18, 15 cm s. F.H. 18), and all these guns are still standard. Various experimental modifications may be standardized eventually as "42" series, but no fundamental redesign of any of their weapons appears to be contemplated at present.


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