A Brief History Of The European Theater Of World War Two
Is this the start of the war?
Is this the start of the war?
Some argue that World War II began with Germany’s invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939, and Britain’s ultimatum that a State of War would ensue unless Germany withdrew. Needless to say, the Germans did not retreat, and WWII began on September 3rd, 1939, with Britain, France, Australia, and New Zealand declaring war on each other.
Others say that World War II was only a continuation of World War One. The continuation of the conflict between the Axis and the Allies would culminate in the end of European supremacy of the globe and the loss of their colonial empires, despite the fact that the main countries were unaware of it.They simply secured their own destruction by resuming the struggle, regardless of who won.
Some have contended that the Treaty of Versailles was “harsh and unjust,” and so planted the germ for World War II. Germany would make an effort to right this error. In reality, the provisions of the Treaty of Versailles were no worse than those imposed on the Russians by the Germans in 1917/18, when Russia was compelled to secede huge swaths of land and pay significant indemnities under the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk.
The fact that many Germans believed they had never lost the first world war was, in fact, the primary cause of the second world war. The troops believed they had never lost since German land had not been attacked. In actuality, the army had to return to Germany to keep the country from collapsing due to internal opponents posing a bigger threat than the threat provided by the allies. As a result, many people believe that Germany only lost the war because of a domestic stab in the back.This disintegration, on the other hand, was the product of a state under enormous duress succumbing to economic and political pressure. In order to win a modern war, success in the field is no longer enough; victory over the opposing nation’s whole system is required. (i.e. suffocate its desire to fight). Germany had lost the strategic struggle, its system had disintegrated, and as a result, the war had been lost. Even if the Navy hadn’t shown itself in open conflict, the British Navy had succeeded in blockingading Germany’s economy, resulting in its collapse and defeat.
Nonetheless, the illusion that they had not been truly vanquished engendered bitterness at being labeled losers. Almost all of Germany’s problems were soon traced back to prior wrongdoings. The Great Depression was the final nail in the coffin. A suitable climate for an extreme political party to acquire enough support to take center stage was created by mass unemployment and hyperinflation. In this example, the Nazis obtained enough political power through a mix of nationalism, racism, authoritarianism, and the promise of better times to begin the takeover and turn a democracy into a dictatorship.
Complete tyranny was achieved by carefully manufactured incidents such as the burning of the Reichstag and outright bully boy methods. In order to keep his promises, Hitler, as the embodiment of the state, had to expand, first through appeasement, then through outright war.
The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, struck on August 23, 1939, gave Hitler carte blanche to split up Poland with the support of the Soviet Union.
The German army soon overtook Poland because to Bitzkrieg tactics and greater ordanance. With France and the United Kingdom disgraced by their inaction on the Western Front.
Following the defeat of Poland, Germany solidified its position by invading Denmark and Norway on April 9, 1940, ensuring access to Swedish iron ore and opening up the North Atlantic. The invasion of France began on May 10, 1940, and involved a coordinated assault of the Netherlands, Luxembourg, and Belgium. Despite meticulous German preparation yielding magnificent results, the invasion of France failed before it ever began. A lack of determination just hastens the defeat. The failure to kill the British at Dunkirk (which began evacuating on the 26th May 1940) and the inability to take the French Navy had already planted the seeds of Germany’s final loss.This, paired with onerous jobs, resulted in a hardening of the will. Victory had won Italy as a partner, but it was to be a doomed union, with Italy proving to be a hindrance rather than an aid. For the time being, however, the Third Reich delighted in France’s defeat, and the French signed an armistice on June 22, 1940. Germany had vanquished all of its foes save the British Empire in less than two months after launching its war.
Towards the East:
From historical records, it is evident that Germany lacked the capability to invade Britain, and that Hitler lacked the patience to wait for his present advantageous position to pay off, allowing him to solidify the situation and build up the requisite naval supremacy and landing craft to invade Britain. Nor will they be able to manufacture the big bombers needed to effectively bomb Britain into oblivion. This lack of patience, combined with overconfidence in what had previously been accomplished, resulted in the catastrophic decision to attack Russia.
This strategy was further jeopardized by the invasion of Yugoslavia and Greece on April 6, 1941, which was precipitated by Italy’s failure and Germany’s rescue, a scenario that would later be repeated in North Africa. The cost of delaying Operation Babarossa would be high.
On June 22, 1941, Operation Babarossa commenced. Three German army groups laid in wait to invade Russia, with an Axis force of almost four million troops, and Comrade Stalin was ‘asleep at the wheel,’ having ignored British information regarding Hitler’s invasion intentions.
With the onset of winter and confirmation to Stalin that Japan had no intention of invading, the Germans’ success was doomed within sight of the Kremlin, freeing up the Siberian Army to be transferred to the defense of Moscow and the winter offensive, in which the Russians began a counterattack on the 5th of December 1941. The unprepared German soldiers died of frostbite.
The Russians have launched a counter-offensive in Moscow.
On the 11th of December 1941, Germany foolishly declared war on the United States (After Pearl Harbour 7th December 1941). Officially, the countries were at odds, with the United States sending weaponry to the United Kingdom and the Soviet Union, and US warships combating U-boats in the Atlantic. However, Hitler’s decision to formalize it with a declaration of war was the epitome of folly.
A second chance to roll the dice.
After failing to conquer Moscow or Leningrad and join up with the Finns, Hitler launched an attack on Stalingrad and the Caucasus oil deposits on August 22, 1942. When the Germans arrived in Stalingrad on September 8th, Bitzkrieg tactics reigned supreme once more. Once again, Hitler failed by allowing his army to engage in an unsuitable urban firefight, allowing the Russians to spring a giant trap and destroy an entire army (surrendering on 31st January 1943). This, combined with Allied success in North Africa, which resulted in the destruction of another German army, resulted in an irreversible change in the course of the war, with the Germans doomed to destruction.
The Allies retaliate.
With increasing success in the Battle of the Atlantic and the victory at El Alamein on November 4th, 1942, the Allies went on the offensive, launching Operation Torch on November 8th, 1942, to force the Germans out of North Africa. They next attacked Italy, beginning on July 10, 1943, with the invasion of Sicily. They moved on to the boot of Italy, but owing to topography that favored the defense, this proved to be an expensive exercise, with Rome not being freed until 4 June 1944.
The invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944, marked the start of the actual endgame (D-Day). With the invasion and breakout of the bocage’s success. The Falaise Pocket’s and Kursk’s victories sealed Germany’s destiny.
The Big Finish
Despite Hitler’s gamble during the Battle of the Bulge (December 1944), the end seemed near, with the Allies destroying Germany from the air and the Russians destroying Germany with massive artillery and infantry. The devastation of Berlin and Hitler’s death on April 30, 1945, reaffirmed to die-hards that the war was finished, with V-E day falling on May 8th, with the Germans having surrendered the day before.
Why did Germany lose World War II?
It lost the diplomatic war, failing to persuade another fascist country, Spain, to join the cause. It did not succeed in converting occupied countries into allies. It was unable to come up with a united strategy with its partners. Consider what would have happened if Japan had been persuaded to attack Russia instead of striking Pearl Harbor. Consider what might have happened if the United States had been urged to stay out of the war for another year. In other words, Germany failed to win hearts and minds in Poland and Russia as a result of the repressive activities of the SS and others, rather than winning over those who would have happily joined in the overthrow of Stalinism and helped ensure German triumph.With its German nationalist foundations and open bigotry, Nazism had little to offer non-Germans.
Although Germany made amazing technological advances in rockets and other areas, it either failed to produce the really important technology early enough, such as radar and nuclear weapons, or failed to recognize and exploit to their full potential advances that really made a difference, such as jet power.
Until Albert Speer took over the economy late in the war, the Germans had not fully exploited available resources. The Nazi attitude toward women barred women from working full-time and serving in the military. The Russians, on the other hand, had no reservations about women participating in active front-line forces. The Nazis squandered tremendous military and human resources by murdering Jews and others considered undesirable. These resources may have been put to better use. To make up the difference, the Germans used slave labor, but Britain and the United States had an army of volunteer laborers in “Rosie the Riveter.”Thousands of guns would have been more useful on the front as anti-tank batteries and the men in manpower it took to operate them than the Atlantic wall (which didn’t even stop the Allies for one day) and anti-aircraft guns, which absorbed thousands of guns that would have been more useful on the front as anti-tank batteries and the men in manpower it took to operate them. It also drew resources away from other important wars, such as those in Greece and North Africa. It trusted its own propaganda, making fatal errors as a result. Failure to recognize that the enigma machine had been corrupted was one of these deadly blunders. Because the Nazis felt it was “unbreakable,” they were unaware that information was flowing.Aside from a major accomplishment in compromising the Dutch resistance, other catastrophic failures included failing to win in the intelligence battle; most German intellegience efforts paled into insignificance when compared to British Intell. That’s not to suggest British intelligence was flawless, but Churchill said it best when he said, “In war, the truth is so valuable that it must be clothed in a layer of falsehoods.” The Pas of Calais was marketed to Hitler as the genuine invasion point. Furthermore, putting all of its faith in the Fuhrer resulted in the calamity of Stalingrad, among other things. Hitler may have considered himself a military genius, but following the invasion of France, he made just a few successful contributions.What would have occurred if the German Generals had been given control of the situation?
I feel that if the German economy had been completely prepared for the war from the start, and if some of the aforementioned concerns had been handled, they would have had a far better chance of succeeding. We should not assume that the outcome of World War II was predetermined; victory was only attained after great sacrifice by the allies.
This article is devoted to all those who battled to end Nazism’s atrocities. In particular, my Great Uncle Ivan HARRIS, who died on July 22, 1942, while fighting for New Zealand in North Africa.