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Examining the reasons of the german surrender in stalingrad

Capturing the city would cut Soviet transport links with southern Russia, and Stalingrad would then serve to anchor the northern flank of the larger German drive into the oil fields of the Caucasus. In addition, siezing the city that bore the name of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin would serve as a great personal and propaganda victory for Adolf Hitler.

On June 28, 1942, operations began with significant German victories.

The Soviet-German War 1941 - 1945

Battle of StalingradIn the Battle of Stalingrad 1942—43the advancing Germans were finally stopped by the Red Army in desperate house-to-house fighting. From The Second World War: On July 9 Hitler altered his original plan and ordered the simultaenous capture of both Stalingrad and the Caucasus.

The division of forces placed tremendous pressure on an already-strained logistical support system.

  • The roots of the war lie in the appointment of Adolf Hitler as German chancellor in 1933;
  • However it is more likely that it was a radio message and had to be short and straight to the point instead of a long detailed message incase Paulus was cut off;
  • The message was from Von Paulus who at the time was a General, and would therefore know the state that his men were in as he would have been suffering the same himself;
  • Twenty-two generals surrendered with him, and on February 2 the last of 91,000 frozen starving men all that was left of the Sixth and Fourth armies surrendered to the Soviets;
  • The other reasons for the defeat that are not stated are that the German supply line was cut off and that the Germans were not prepared for the harsh Soviet winter, and therefore thousands of men who were already weak from starvation perished.

It also caused a gap between the two forces, allowing Soviet forces to escape encirclement and retreat to the east. Hitler intervened in the operation again and reassigned Gen.

  1. Nor did the USSR enjoy an advantage in economic resources.
  2. These figures differ between the sources because of a number of factors.
  3. This is useful because, as a political cartoon would often reflect public opinion, in this case that the Soviet Union were stronger that Germany and they would soon defeat them.

Stalin and the Soviet high command responded to the summer offensive by forming the Stalingrad Front with the Sixty-second, Sixty-third, and Sixty-fourth Armies, under Marshal Semyon Timoshenko. While the initial Soviet response to Fall Blau was to maintain an orderly withdrawal and thus avoid the massive encirclements and troop losses that had characterized the early months of Operation Barbarossaon July 28 Stalin issued Order No.

  1. On July 9 Hitler altered his original plan and ordered the simultaenous capture of both Stalingrad and the Caucasus.
  2. Camouflage, surprise and misinformation were brilliantly exploited to keep the German army in the dark about major Soviet intentions.
  3. This cartoon was drawn in January 1943, so probably before the surrender, however it is still primary evidence and drawn around the time of the defeat. Also during this period was the Cold War, so the Soviets would want it to appear that they defeat the Germans on their own with little help from the other Allies.
  4. After the outbreak of war in 1939 came the added fear of Soviet expansion in Eastern Europe, while Germany was fighting the British Empire and France in the west. In Source A, the reasons for the German defeat at Stalingrad are not explained adequately.
  5. The Soviet Sixty-second Army was pushed back into Stalingrad proper, where, under the command of Gen. Some were terrorised into doing so, particularly the millions of camp labourers who worked fully for the war effort.

For his part, Hitler continued to directly intervene at the operational level, and in August he ordered Hoth to turn around and head toward Stalingrad from the south. The Red Armyhowever, put up a determined resistanceyielding ground only very slowly and at a high cost to the Sixth Army as it approached Stalingrad. The Soviet Sixty-second Army was pushed back into Stalingrad proper, where, under the command of Gen. Chuikovit made a determined stand. By mid-September the Germans had pushed the Soviet forces in Stalingrad back until the latter occupied only a 9-mile- 15-km- long strip of the city along the Volga, and that strip was only 2 or 3 miles 3 to 5 km wide.

The Soviets had to supply their troops by barge and boat across the Volga from the other bank. At that point Stalingrad became the scene of some of the fiercest and most-concentrated fighting of the war; streets, blocks, and individual buildings were fought over by many small units of troops and often changed hands again and again.

  • The original date, set for May 1941, had to be revised to complete the vast preparations for the attack - following other German attacks on Yugoslavia and Greece in April;
  • In the same year, Soviet coal output was 75 million tons, while German output was 317 million;
  • This war was supposed to be over in a matter of months, but it lasted for four years, and grew into the largest and most costly conflict in all history;
  • Source F, does not give the number of Soviet casualties or the number of Germans that eventually returned, it is only focussing on the positive achievements made by the Soviets.

The most-critical moment came when on October 14 the Soviet defenders had their backs so close to the Volga that the few remaining supply crossings of the river came under German machine-gun fire.

The Germans, however, were growing dispirited by heavy losses, fatigue, and the approach of winter.

The turning point of the battle came with a huge Soviet counteroffensive, code-named Operation Uranus November 19—23which had been planned by Generals Georgy Konstantinovich ZhukovAleksandr Mikhailovich Vasilevsky, and Nikolay Nikolayevich Voronov. It was launched in two spearheads, some 50 miles 80 km north and south of the German salient whose tip was at Stalingrad.

The counteroffensive utterly surprised the Germans, who thought the Soviets incapable of mounting such an attack.

Those flanks were vulnerably exposed on the open steppes surrounding the city and were weakly defended by undermanned, undersupplied, overstretched, and undermotivated Romanian, Hungarian, and Italian troops.

Does Source A adequately explain the reasons for German Surrender at Stalingrad?

The attacks quickly penetrated deep into the flanks, and by November 23 the two prongs of the attack had linked up at Kalach, about 60 miles 100 km west of Stalingrad; the encirclement of the two German armies in Stalingrad was complete. Hitler declared that the Sixth Army would be supplied by the Luftwaffebut the air convoys could deliver only a fraction of the necessary supplies.

The Soviets then resumed the offensive Operation Saturn, begun on December 16 to shrink the pocket of encircled Germans, to head off any further relief efforts, and to set the stage for the final capitulation of the Germans in Stalingrad. The Volga River was now frozen over solid, and Soviet forces and equipment were sent over the ice at various points within the city.

Hitler exhorted the trapped German forces to fight to the death, going so far as to promote Paulus to field marshal and reminding Paulus that no German officer of that rank had ever surrendered.

Battle of Stalingrad

With Soviet armies closing in as part of Operation Ring begun January 10, 1943the situation was hopeless. The Sixth Army was surrounded by seven Soviet armies. On January 31 Paulus disobeyed Hitler and agreed to give himself up. Twenty-two generals surrendered with him, and on February 2 the last of 91,000 frozen starving men all that was left of the Sixth and Fourth armies surrendered to the Soviets.

Germans surrender at Stalingrad

The Soviets recovered 250,000 German and Romanian corpses in and around Stalingrad, and total Axis casualties Germans, Romanians, Italians, and Hungarians are believed to have been more than 800,000 dead, wounded, missing, or captured.

Of the 91,000 men who surrendered, only some 5,000—6,000 ever returned to their homelands the last of them a full decade after the end of the war in 1945 ; the rest died in Soviet prison and labour camps.

The German surrender at Stalingrad

On the Soviet side, official Russian military historians estimate that there were 1,100,000 Red Army dead, wounded, missing, or captured in the campaign to defend the city.

An estimated 40,000 civilians died as well. The memorial was finished in 1967; its focal point is The Motherland Callsa great 52-metre- 172-foot- high statue of a winged female figure holding a sword aloft. The tip of the sword reaches 85 metres 280 feet into the air.

In the Mamayev complex is the tomb of Chuikovwho went on to lead the Soviet drive to Berlin and who died a marshal of the Soviet Union almost 40 years after the Battle of Stalingrad.