The probe assesses the significance of the Germans strategic defects and how they contributed to their licking at the conflict of Stalingrad. In order to judge the significance of these defects, the probe will measure the mistakes and failings in Hitler ‘s military determinations during the conflict, every bit good as the unpreparedness of the German Army prior to the struggle. Two beginnings that will be used in this probe: Volgograd: the Turning Point by Geoffrey Jukes is examined for an overall position of the war, every bit good as the German and Russian military tactics. Enemy at the Gates by William Craig is a digest of private documents and diaries of the German commanding officers ; these can be used to widen the reader ‘s apprehension of the grounds behind the Germans ‘ military determinations. These beginnings will be evaluated for their beginnings, intents, values and restrictions.
B. Summary of Evidence
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Two old ages into the Second World War, “ the German Army no longer had the strength and resources for a renewed violative ” ( Jukes 6 ) as they had antecedently during the initial invasion of Russia in 1941. Hitler ‘s following program of action was to suppress the Caucasus oil Fieldss in chase of oil, in order to power the German armored combat vehicles and heavy weapon. This program was known as Operation Blue. Initially, the program did non affect the invasion of Stalingrad ( Craig 8 ) , nevertheless Hitler himself insisted that it was necessary. One of the chief grounds Hitler wanted to prehend Stalingrad was because the metropolis ‘s name had symbolic value to the Russian leader of the clip, Stalin. Suppressing “ the metropolis of Stalin ” ( Jukes 6 ) would hold a heavy impact on the morale of the Red Army.
Hence, the Germany Army was divided into two separate divisions. One group would capture the Caucasus oil Fieldss and the 2nd group would be responsible for suppressing Stalingrad. The group that set off towards Stalingrad arrived at the metropolis in mid-July and originally consisted of about one million work forces. The onslaught started off with a heavy air raid, with around 1000 bombs being dropped on the metropolis during the summer and autumn of 1942 ( Bergstrom 72 ) . This was followed by uninterrupted heavy weapon barrage of the metropolis. In a affair of yearss the metropolis was in ruins. Weeks subsequently, “ the Germans held most of Stalingrad ” ( Cassidy 230 ) and remained on the violative until mid-November. Then to the complete surprise of the unsuspicious Germans “ the counter offense was launched on November 19th ” ( Jukes 7 ) . After merely 5 yearss, the Russians had created a complete blockade of the metropolis and what was left of the German Army at Stalingrad was now trapped inside the kessel.
“ Stalin [ … ] had managed to hide non merely the strength of the Russian militias but [ besides ] the badness of the Russian winter ” ( 11 ) . The Germans ‘ efforts at directing in supplies by air were deficient, go forthing those inside the blockade badly unprepared for the Russian winter and “ without any winter vesture, the work forces suffered cruelly from the cold ” ( Lederrey 101 ) . However, Hitler did non let any kind of effort to interrupt out of the blockade ( Jukes 7 ) because in making so, he saw this as a resignation to the Russians, which was a mark of failing. Alternatively Hitler sent more divisions to assist interrupt the blockade. These divisions were met by the Red Army and defeated before they even got to Stalingrad.
Even though it seemed to be “ an about hopeless state of affairs ” ( Cassidy 222 ) for the Germans, it was Hitler ‘s narcissistic attitude that allowed him to believe that the German Army was unbeatable. “ Hitler would allow no backdown ” ( Jukes 7 ) and he was willing to give the one-fourth of a million work forces trapped inside the kessel, before he even considered the possibility of a German resignation. However, on January 31st,1943, General Freidrich von Paulus surrendered to the Russians ; to Hitler, this was considered a immense embarrassment, but for Stalin and Russia, it was an of import triumph.
Word Count: 489
C. Evaluation of Beginnings
Volgograd: the Turning Point by Geoffrey Jukes was written in 1968 and it is a outline of the actions that took topographic point before and during the conflict of Stalingrad. It besides provides penetration to the strategic determinations of both the Russians and the Germans. British military historiographer and strategian, Sir Basil Liddell Hart, remarks on the writer ‘s extended cognition of Russian beginnings, particularly the six-volume history of the Great Patriotic War of the USSR, which allows him to accurately portray the conflict ( 7 ) . Although, the fact that his chief beginning was a revised history, published during the period when Khrushchev was taking the Soviet Union, can be considered one of its restrictions. This is because it tends “ to over-emphasize, his [ Khrushchev ‘s ] influence on the Stalingrad battle while minimizing that of Stalin ” ( 7 ) . This distorts the overall image of the history by below the belt knocking Stalin ‘s function in the conflict.
Enemy at the Gates by William Craig is a non-fiction novel about two work forces from opposing ground forcess, who encounter one another throughout the conflict. The secret plan of the narrative is a digest of existent historical grounds from multiple first manus histories from the conflict. This is a valued beginning because it contains existent memoirs and diaries from soldiers of both sides, every bit good as assorted private documents from the generals involved in the conflict. Although the book tries to be historically accurate by utilizing historical records and probes, its intent as a novel is to entertain. So, although the historical truth presented in primary memoirs and diaries can be really precise, the writer may ignore certain facets of the war if they are non relevant to the narrative. For illustration, the largest disregard of historical truth is that the novel fails to picture the conflict as the major turning point of the war. Furthermore, it besides insufficiently portrays the agony of the soldiers during the Russian Winter of 1942.
Word Count: 315
There is much grounds to turn out that the Germans had serious defects in their scheme at the Battle of Stalingrad. For illustration, before the conflict had even begun, the Germans were running low on supplies and needed more in order to go on their invasion of Russia. “ The German Army no longer had the strength and resources for a renewed violative [ … ] , but Hitler was unwilling to remain on the defensive ” ( Jukes 6 ) . Although the Russians cutely lured the German Army deep into Russia, stretching the bounds of the German supply lines, Hitler should hold known that the Germans did non hold the ammo to go on at full strength. Yet he ignored this quandary and allowed the German Army to go on with their violative onslaught, deeper into Russia.
The Russian winter was awfully more terrible than any other conditions that the Germans had of all time encountered. They were non prepared for such utmost conditions because they did non possess the appropriate garb for their quandary. In the August of 1942, even before the winter, the German General Staff had warned Hitler “ that it would be impossible to keep the line of the Don as a defensive wing during the winter ”
( 7 ) . However, Hitler, in his passion to suppress Stalingrad, ignored the warnings from the German officers.
The original program called entirely for the gaining control of the Caucasus oil Fieldss but so Hitler made the determination to suppress Stalingrad at the same clip. And so “ the Germans made the fatal error of spliting their forces ” ( Cassidy 224 ) . Merely as in the first World War, the splitting of the ground forces weakened both groups, but Hitler ‘s belief in the high quality of Germany, impaired his logic and hence he decided to take both countries at the same time.
By the 14th of October, from the position of the Russians, the Germans seemed effortlessly in control. However UK military strategian, Geoffrey Jukes, believed that the Germans were rapidly losing work forces and their restlessness and annoyance was mounting as the conflict dragged on thirster ( Jukes 7 ) . This left the Germans vulnerable because they were non anticipating a Russian countermove. The Russians had launched a well-planned countermove which proved to be effectual. This onslaught, in add-on to the oversight in concentration by the Germans contributed to the German licking at Stalingrad. This allowed the Russians to derive impulse and violative control.
With the Russians environing what was left of the German Army, the Germans were put into an unfamiliar place and were forced to make defensive tactics. Hitler had to do a determination rapidly. His immediate program of action proved to be fatal to many of the German soldiers trapped inside the kessel. Hitler would non let anyone to get away. ( 7 ) After the Germans ‘ effort at directing supplies to the at bay soldiers had failed and seeing as the staying German Army was easy outnumbered by the Russian supports, the possibility of a German triumph was extremely improbable. Yet Hitler egotistically ignored this fact and did non give up, which, in the terminal, cost Germany many unneeded casualties.
There were many specific defects in the Germans ‘ tactics at the conflict of Stalingrad but overall there was besides a re-occurring error within them. Throughout the full conflict and much of the war, the Germans were cocksure and underestimated Russia every bit good as their other oppositions. This assurance caused them to undervalue the power of the Russians militias and besides impaired their readiness of the Russian winter. In the terminal, this over-confidence was one of the factors taking to the errors made in the German tactics which proved to be a important cause for Germany ‘s inability to capture Stalingrad.
Word Count: 596
The Germans made many critical errors at the conflict of Stalingrad. Altogether these errors allowed the Russians to make a strong violative scheme, which would penalize the Germans for their deficiency of supplies and readying. The Germans went into the conflict with an deficient sum of heavy weapon, supplies and vesture that were indispensable in order to last temperatures of the Russian winter. This was because their
over-confidence led them to believe that the conflict would be over before the winter. This over-confidence allowed them to believe that merely one half of the originally planned ground forces could suppress Stalingrad. This weakened the German violative which gave the Russians clip to support and invent a countermove. In add-on, Hitler did non let any kind of interruption out of the blockade, taking to the unneeded deceases of many German soldiers and in bend decreasing Germany ‘s already slender opportunity of triumph. Jointly, many errors were made by the German Army and this allowed Russia the chance to recover Stalingrad and derive impulse in World War Two.
Word Count: 172
Entire Word Count: 1713