Explain Why Barbarossa Was a Turning Point Battle

Topics: Operation Barbarossa, World War II, Nazi Germany Pages: 2 (462 words) Published: March 29, 2008
Operation Barbarossa was the German codename for Nazi Germany’s invasion of the Soviet Union during WWII. It was the turning point of Germany’s war effort and arguably resulted in the capitulation of Germany

In preparation for the Invasion of Russia, Hitler moved troops and supplies to the Russian border, as well as launching many aerial surveillances over Soviet territory. The German attack on Russia involved 3 million soldiers, 3580 tanks, 7184 artillery guns, 1830 planes and 750,000 horses. At 3:15 am on June 22, 1941, the German and Axis powers attacked. From the beginning of their campaign and during a reasonable amount of time, The German’s experienced much success and the Russian collapsed under the German’s onslaught. During this time, Moscow was nearly reached, Leningrad was surrounded and the oil fields in the south were increasingly becoming under German control. But all this success would count for nothing as ultimately Hitler himself caused the German failure.

As the Russians retreated they destroyed anything that might be of use to the Germans, under the “scorched earth” policy. This was unexpected from the Germans and severely hindered them. The Germans’ supply lines stretched over a huge area, and the German army faced major shortages as some guerrillas attacked and damaged these lines.

The winter of 1941-1942 was one of the worst in recorded history. Daily temperatures fell to – 40 degrees Celsius. German soldiers hadn’t been given winter clothing as Hitler had believed the invasion would have been over by this time. Soldiers froze to death, diesel froze in fuel tanks and food was short in supply. The major event and turning point that forced the German’s on the retreat was the Battle of Stalingrad. Stalingrad was an important target as it was Russia’s centre of communications in the south as well as being a centre for manufacturing. In early September 1942, the German Army advanced to the city. However, the German’s became...
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