What would have happened if Germany had acquired nuclear capability before the Allies?

Question
Mudassir Ali 9 months 1 Answer 123 views

Answer ( 1 )

  1. First of all, let’s review the words of one of the operatives of the Alsos Mission, which was charged with evaluating the German nuclear effort.

    “It was so obvious the whole German uranium set up was on a ludicrously small scale. Here was the central group of laboratories, and all it amounted to was a little cave, a wing of a small textile factory, a few rooms in an old brewery. To be sure, the laboratories were well equipped, but compared to what we were doing in the United States it was still small-time stuff. Sometimes we wondered if our government had not spent more money on our intelligence mission than the Germans had spent on their whole project.”

    There are several reasons for this, not least of which is that Hitler never took nuclear power seriously, possibly because he had spent much of his earlier political career denouncing the “Jewish science” of such as Einstein. Be that as it may, the point is that what we’re discussing here was never a serious prospect.

    There is NO evidence that ANY German scientists ever worked on a plutonium bomb. This means the best they could do would be to produce a handful of uranium bombs each year. They would NOT have had two in 1944, even if they’d known how to make them. They might have had one, if somehow their version of Oak Ridge managed to avoid Allied bombing.

    Hitler might have used a bomb or two on Leningrad and Moscow, though the latter is questionable because uranium bombs were quite heavy and the Germans might not have been able to deliver one that far afield. But it’s equally likely, IMO, that he might have used such devices on advancing Russian troops. A nuke placed in the center of an advancing army, in that time, would have had a major psychological effect, as Soviet soldiers began to sicken from radiation poisoning and other troops began to re-evaluate their plans in light of this development. Germany had, by that time, lost the war, but it still hoped for a WWI-type solution that left the Nazis in power in Germany. If Hitler were rational, never a winning proposition but if he were, he might have used nukes to slow and maybe even stop the Allied advance into his heartland.

    As for mounting a uranium bomb on a V-3 and launching it on London, there is no way a rocket built during the war could have handled a payload like that. If Hitler wanted to use nukes on civilians, hoping they’d demand an armistice, his best bet would have been to put one in the submarine, sail it into New York harbor, and set it off there.

    As the Japanese could have told him, the idea that a sneak attack was going to make the American public less inclined to continue the fight was a fatal delusion.

Leave an answer