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Encyclopedia > Operation Barbarossa
Operation Barbarossa
Part of the Eastern Front of World War II
Original German plan
Date June 22, 1941–December 1941
Location Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Western Russia
Result Initial Axis operational victories, overall strategic Axis failure.
Belligerents
Flag of Nazi Germany Germany
Flag of Romania Romania
Flag of Finland Finland
Flag of Italy Italy
Flag of Hungary Hungary
Flag of Slovakia Slovakia
Flag of Croatia Croatia
Flag of the Soviet Union Soviet Union
Commanders
Flag of Nazi Germany Adolf Hitler

Flag of Nazi Germany Franz Halder
Flag of Nazi Germany Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb
Flag of Nazi Germany Fedor von Bock
Flag of Nazi Germany Gerd von Rundstedt
Flag of Nazi Germany Ernst Busch
Flag of Nazi Germany Erich Hoepner
Flag of Nazi Germany Alfred Keller
Flag of Nazi Germany Georg von Küchler
Flag of Nazi Germany Günther von Kluge
Flag of Nazi Germany Heinz Guderian
Flag of Nazi Germany Hermann Hoth
Flag of Nazi Germany Albrecht Kesselring
Flag of Nazi Germany Adolf Strauss
Flag of Nazi Germany Carl-Heinrich von Stülpnagel
Flag of Nazi Germany Paul Ludwig Ewald von Kleist
Flag of Nazi Germany Alexander Löhr
Flag of Nazi Germany Eugen von Schobert
Flag of Nazi Germany Walter von Reichenau
Flag of Nazi Germany Albert Kesselring
Flag of Romania Ion Antonescu
Flag of Romania Petre Dumitrescu
Flag of Romania Constantin Constantinescu
Flag of Finland Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim
Flag of Italy Giovanni Messe, CSIR
Flag of Italy Italo Gariboldi, ARMIR
Flag of Hungary Ferenc Szombathelyi
Combatants Soviet Union,[1] Poland, Tannu Tuva (until 1944 incorporation with USSR), Mongolia Germany,[2] Italy (to 1943), Romania (to 1944), Finland (to 1944), Hungary, Slovakia, Croatia, Spain (to 1943, unofficial) Commanders Joseph Stalin, Aleksei Antonov, Ivan Konev, Rodion Malinovsky, Ivan Bagramyan, Kirill Meretskov, Ivan Petrov, Alexander Rodimtsev, Konstantin Rokossovsky... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... Image File history File links Operation_Barbarossa_corrected_border. ... is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... European Russia can be considered the western areas of Russia, where most of the population is centred. ... A strategy is a long term plan of action designed to achieve a particular goal. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Romania. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Finland. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Italy_(1861-1946). ... Anthem Marcia Reale dOrdinanza (Royal March of Ordinance)¹ The Kingdom of Italy at the height of its power in 1940. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Hungary_1940. ... The Slovak Republic (Slovak: Slovenská republika) was an independent national Slovak state and ally of National Socialist (Nazi) Germany during World War II on the territory of present-day Slovakia (with the exception of the southern and eastern parts of present-day Slovakia. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Croatia_Ustasa. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Hitler redirects here. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Franz Halder Franz Ritter Halder (June 30, 1884 – April 2, 1972) was a German General and the head of the Army General Staff from 1938 until September 1942, when he was dismissed after frequent disagreements with Adolf Hitler. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb in a photo from 1946 Wilhelm Ritter[1] von Leeb (September 5, 1876 - April 29, 1956) was a German Field Marshal during World War II. // Born in Landsberg am Lech, Bavaria as Wilhelm Leeb, he joined the Bavarian Army in 1895 as an officer cadet. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Fedor von Bock (December 3, 1880 - May 4, 1945) was an officer in the German military from 1898 to 1942, attaining the rank of Generalfeldmarschall during World War 2. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt (December 12, 1875 - February 24, 1953) was a Generalfeldmarschall of the German Army during World War II. He held some of the highest field commands in all phases of the war. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Ernst Busch (6 July 1885 - 17 July 1945) was a German field marshal during World War II. He was born in Essen-Steele, Germany, and was educated at the Groß Lichterfelde Cadet Academy. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Erich Hoepner Erich Hoepner (September 14, 1886 - August 8, 1944) was a German general in World War II. Hoepner was born in Frankfurt an der Oder, Germany and served in the German Army during World War I. He remained in the army in the post-war years and reached the... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Field Marshal Georg von Küchler Georg Karl Friedrich Wilhelm von Küchler (May 30, 1881 - May 25, 1968) was a German field marshal during World War II. Born in Philippsruhe castle near Hanau, Küchler led the German German Eighteenth Army in 1940 in the invasion of neutral Holland... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Günther “Hans” von Kluge (October 30, 1882 – August 19, 1944), was a German military leader. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... This article is about the World War II general Heinz Guderian. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... General Hermann Hoth Hermann Papa Hoth (12 April 1885 - 26 January 1971) was a general of the Third Reich during World War II, notable for victories in France and on the Eastern Front, and later, after serving six years in prison for war crimes, as a writer on military history. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Albert Kesselring (August 8, 1881 - July 16, 1960) was a German Generalfeldmarschall who commanded Army Group C during World War II. He was nicknamed Smiling Albert or smiling Kesselring. He was born in Marktsteft, Germany, in 1881 . ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... It is requested that this article, or a section of this article, be expanded. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Ewald von Kleist Ewald von Kleist Paul Ludwig Ewald von Kleist (August 8, 1881, Braunfels an der Lahn - ca. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Alexander Löhr (May 20, 1885–February 26, 1947) was an Austrian Air Force commander during the 1930s before the Anschluss and, later on, a Luftwaffe Commander during the Second World War. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Field-Marshal Walther von Reichenau Walther von Reichenau (August 16, 1884 - January 17, 1942), German military commander, was the son of a Prussian general and joined the German Army in 1902. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... ==Biography== Albrecht von Kesselring (August 8, 1881 - July 16, 1960) was a Generalfeldmarschall during World War II. One of the most respected and skillful generals of Nazi Germany, he was nicknamed Smiling Albert or Smiling Kesselring. At least one source claims that Kesselring was born on August 8, 1881 [2... Image File history File links Flag_of_Romania. ... Office Prime Minister, Conducător of Romania Term of office from September 4, 1940 until August 23, 1944 Profession Soldier, politician Political party none, formally allied with the Iron Guard Spouse Rasela Mendel Date of birth June 15, 1882 Place of birth Piteşti, Romania Date of death June 1... Image File history File links Flag_of_Romania. ... Petre Dumitrescu Petre Dumitrescu (February 18, 1882 - January 15, 1950) was a Romanian general during World War II, who led the Romanian Third Army on its campaign against the Soviet Union in the southwest. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Romania. ... Constantin Constantinescu-Claps (1884—1961) was a Romanian state figure and a Corps General from January 24, 1942. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Finland. ... This article is about the Finnish statesman and Commander-in-Chief. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Italy_(1861-1946). ... Giovanni Messe Giovanni Messe (December 10, 1883 - December 19, 1968) was an Italian soldier, politician and quite possibly the most distinguished Italian Field Marshal. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Italy_(1861-1946). ... Italo Gariboldi (born 20 April 1879, Lodi; died 3 February 1970, Rome) was a senior officer in the Italian Army (Esercito Italiano) before and during World War II. In 1935, Gariboldi commanded an Italian division on the northern front during the Second Italo-Abyssinian War. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Hungary_1940. ...

Flag of the Soviet Union Joseph Stalin

Flag of the Soviet Union Georgiy Zhukov
Flag of the Soviet Union Vasily Chuikov
Flag of the Soviet Union Aleksandr Vasilyevskiy
Flag of the Soviet Union Semyon Budyonny
Flag of the Soviet Union Kliment Voroshilov
Flag of the Soviet Union Semyon Timoshenko
Flag of the Soviet Union Markian Popov
Flag of the Soviet Union Fyodor Kuznetsov
Flag of the Soviet Union Dmitry Pavlov
Flag of the Soviet Union Mikhail Kirponos
Flag of the Soviet Union Ivan Tyulenev
Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Josef Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili (Georgian: , Ioseb Besarionis Dze Jughashvili; Russian: , Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili) (December 18 [O.S. December 6] 1878[1] – March 5, 1953), better known by his adopted name, Joseph Stalin (alternatively transliterated Josef Stalin), was General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Unions Central Committee from... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgi Zhukov Georgy Konstantinovich Zhukov (Russian: Гео́ргий Константи́нович Жу́ков) (December 1, 1896 - June 18, 1974), Soviet military commander and politician, considered by many as one of the most successful field commanders of World War II. Prewar career Born into a peasant family in Strelkovka, Kaluga... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Vasily Ivanovich Chuikov Vasily Ivanovich Chuikov (Васи́лий Ива́нович Чуйко́в) (February 12, 1900 - March 18, 1982) was a lieutenant general in the Soviet Red Army during World War II, two times Hero of the Soviet Union (1944, 1945), who after the war became a Marshal of the Soviet Union. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Aleksandr Mikhaylovich Vasilevsky (Russian: , September 30, 1895 – December 5, 1977) was a Soviet military commander, promoted to Marshal of the Soviet Union in 1943. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Semyon Budyonny (also spelled Budennii, Budenny, Budyenny etc, Russian: Семён Михайлович Будённый) (April 25 [O.S. April 13] 1883 – October 26, 1973) was a Soviet military commander and an ally of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ...   (Russian: ), popularly known as Klim Voroshilov (Russian: ) (February 4 [O.S. January 23] 1881 – December 2, 1969) was a Soviet military commander and politician. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Marshal of the Soviet Union Semyon Timoshenko Semyon Konstantinovich Timoshenko (Russian: Семён Константинович Тимошенко) (February 6 O.S (February 18 N.S.), 1895-March 31, 1970), Soviet military commander, was the senior professional officer of the Red Army at the beginning of the German invasion of the Soviet Union in... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Markian Mikhailovich Popov (Маркиан Михайлович Попов) (1902-1969) was a Soviet military commaner, Army General (1953), Hero of the Soviet Union (1965). ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Fyodor Isodorovich Kuznetsov (Фёдор Исидорович Кузнецов) (1898-1961), Colonel General, was a military commander of the Soviet Union. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Dmitry Grigorevich Pavlov (Russian: , 1897-July 22, 1941) was a Soviet general who commanded the key Soviet Western Front during the initial days of the German invasion of the Soviet Union, or Operation Barbarossa, in June 1941. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Mikhail Petrovich Kirponos (Russian: , Ukrainian: ) (January 12, 1892 — September 20, 1941) was a Ukrainian-born general of the Red Army. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Ivan Vladimirovich Tyulenev (1892-1978) was a Soviet military commander, one of the first to be promoted Soviet General of the Army in 1940. ...

Strength
~5.6 million men,
3,600 tanks,
4,389 aircraft[1]
~2.9 million troops initially
12-15,000 tanks,
35-40,000 aircraft (11,357 combat ready on 22 June 1941)[2]
Casualties and losses
Different estimates:
*Almost 918,000 killed, wounded and missing.[3]
*700,000 killed,[dubious ] 604,000 wounded, 36,000 missing.[4]
2,093 aircraft.[5]
At least 802,191 killed,[6] unknown wounded, and some 3,300,000 captured.[3][7]
21,200 aircraft.[8][9][10]

Operation Barbarossa (German: Unternehmen Barbarossa) was the codename for Nazi Germany and Axis powers invasion of the Soviet Union during World War II that commenced on June 22, 1941.[11][12] It was the largest military operation in WWII.[citation needed] Over 4 million troops of the Axis powers invaded the USSR along an 1,800 mile front.[13] The operation was named after the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa of the Holy Roman Empire, a leader of the Crusades in the 12th century. Barbarossa was the major part of the war on the Eastern Front. The planning for operation Barbarossa took several years prior to June 1941; the clandestine preparations and the military operation itself lasted almost a year, from the Spring of 1941, through the Winter of 1941. Combatants  United Kingdom  Canada  United States(1941–5)  Norway Poland Free French Navy  Germany  Italy (1940–3) Commanders  Sir Percy Noble  Sir Max K. Horton  Percy W. Nelles  Leonard W. Murray  Ernest J. King  Erich Raeder  Karl Dönitz Casualties 30,248 merchant sailors 3,500 merchant vessels 175 warships... Strategic bombing during World War II was greater in scale than any wartime attack the world had previously witnessed. ... Attacks on North America during World War II by the Axis Powers were rare, mainly due to the continents geographical separation from the central theaters of conflict in Europe and Asia. ... Belligerents Nationalist Party of China Communist Party of China Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Mao Zedong Strength 4,300,000 (July 1946) 3,650,000 (June 1948) 1,490,000 (June 1949) 1,200,000 (July 1946) 2,800,000 (June 1948) 4,000,000 (June 1949) The Chinese Civil War... Combatants Soviet Union Mongolian Peoples Republic Empire of Japan Manchukuo Commanders Georgy Zhukov Michitaro Komatsubara Strength 57,000 30,000 (initially), 60,000 (as positions reinforced) Casualties Archival research 7,974 killed, 15,251 wounded[1] Japanese government claim 8,440 killed, 8,766 wounded Soviet claim 60,000... Combatants Vichy France Thailand Commanders Jean Decoux Plaek Phibunsongkhram Strength 50,000 men, 20 tanks, ~100 aircraft 60,000 men, 134 tanks, 140 aircraft, 18 vessels Casualties 321 KIA and WIA, 178 MIA, 222 captured, 22 aircraft 54 KIA, 307 WIA, 21 captured, 8-13 aircraft The French-Thai War... Combatants Kingdom of Iraq United Kingdom India Commanders Rashid Ali General Sir Edward Quinan Strength five divisions about two divisions Casualties 2,500 KIA, about 6,000 POWs 1,200 (KIA, MIA, WIA) The Anglo-Iraqi War is the name of hostilities between the United Kingdom and the Iraqi nationalist... Combatants Allies (UK, India and USSR) Persia/ Iran The Anglo-Soviet invasion of Persia was the invasion of Iran by the United Kingdom and the Soviet Union, codenamed Operation Countenance, from August 25 to September 17 of 1941. ... Belligerents China United States1 Empire of Japan Collaborationist Chinese Army2 Commanders Chiang Kai-shek, Chen Cheng, Yan Xishan, Feng Yuxiang, Li Zongren, Xue Yue, Bai Chongxi, Peng Dehuai, Joseph Stilwell, Claire Chennault, Albert Wedemeyer Hirohito, Fumimaro Konoe, Hideki Tojo, Kotohito Kanin, Matsui Iwane, Hajime Sugiyama, Shunroku Hata, Toshizo Nishio... Combatants Republic of Peru Republic of Ecuador Commanders Gen. ... A code name or cryptonym is a word or name used clandestinely to refer to another name or word. ... Nazi Germany, or the Third Reich, commonly refers to Germany in the years 1933–1945, when it was under the firm control of the totalitarian and fascist ideology of the Nazi Party, with the Führer Adolf Hitler as dictator. ... Black: Zenith of the Axis Powers Capital Not applicable Political structure Military alliance Historical era World War II  - Tripartite Pact September 27, 1940  - Anti-Comintern Pact November 25, 1936  - Pact of Steel May 22, 1939  - Dissolved 1945 This article is about the independent countries (states) that comprised the Axis powers. ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... Black: Zenith of the Axis Powers Capital Not applicable Political structure Military alliance Historical era World War II  - Tripartite Pact September 27, 1940  - Anti-Comintern Pact November 25, 1936  - Pact of Steel May 22, 1939  - Dissolved 1945 This article is about the independent countries (states) that comprised the Axis powers. ... An emperorrefers to Nick Herringshaw, a title, empress may only indicate the wife of an emperor (empress consort. ... Frederick in a 13th century Chronicle Frederick I (German: Friedrich I. von Hohenstaufen)(1122 – June 10, 1190), also known as Friedrich Barbarossa (Frederick Redbeard) was elected king of Germany on March 4, 1152 and crowned Holy Roman Emperor on June 18, 1155. ... This article is about the medieval empire. ... This article is about the medieval crusades. ... Combatants Soviet Union,[1] Poland, Tannu Tuva (until 1944 incorporation with USSR), Mongolia Germany,[2] Italy (to 1943), Romania (to 1944), Finland (to 1944), Hungary, Slovakia, Croatia, Spain (to 1943, unofficial) Commanders Joseph Stalin, Aleksei Antonov, Ivan Konev, Rodion Malinovsky, Ivan Bagramyan, Kirill Meretskov, Ivan Petrov, Alexander Rodimtsev, Konstantin Rokossovsky...


The operational goal of Operation Barbarossa was the rapid conquest of the European part of the Soviet Union, west of a line connecting the cities of Arkhangelsk and Astrakhan, often referred to as the A-A line (see the translation of Hitler's directive for details). At its conclusion in December 1941, the Red Army had repelled the strongest blow of the Wehrmacht. Hitler had not achieved the victory he had expected, but the situation of the Soviet Union remained critical. Tactically the Germans had won some resounding victories and occupied some of the most important economic areas of the country, most notably in Ukraine.[14] Despite these successes, the Germans were pushed back from Moscow and were not able to mount an offensive simultaneously along the entire strategic Soviet-German front again.[15] Arkhangelsk (Russian: ), formerly called Archangel in English, is a city in and the administrative center of Arkhangelsk Oblast, Russia. ... This article is about the city in Russia. ... The Arkhangelsk-Astrakhan line or A-A line was the proposed eastern border of the Nazi German empire. ... For other organizations known as the Red Army, see Red Army (disambiguation). ... The straight-armed Balkenkreuz, a stylized version of the Iron Cross, the emblem of the Wehrmacht. ... For other uses, see Moscow (disambiguation). ...


Then the failure of Barbarossa resulted in Hitler's demands for additional operations inside Russia, all of which eventually failed, such as continuation of the Siege of Leningrad,[16][17] Operation Nordlicht, and Battle of Stalingrad, among other battles on the occupied Russian territory.[18][19][20][21][22] Belligerents Nazi Germany Finland[1][2][3] Soviet Union Commanders Wilhelm von Leeb Georg von Küchler Carl Gustaf Mannerheim[4][5][6] Kliment Voroshilov Georgiy Zhukov Leonid Govorov Strength 725,000 930,000 Casualties and losses Wehrmacht (est. ... Combatants Germany Spanish Blue Division Soviet Union Commanders Wilhelm von Leeb Georg von Küchler Agustín Muñoz Grandes Kliment Voroshilov Georgiy Zhukov Strength 725,000 930,000 Casualties Unknown Red Army: 332,059 KIA 24,324 non-combat dead 111,142 missing 16,470 civilians 1 million civilians... Belligerents Germany Romania Italy Hungary Soviet Union Commanders Adolf Hitler Friedrich Paulus # Erich von Manstein Wolfram von Richthofen Petre Dumitrescu Constantin Constantinescu Italo Gariboldi Gusztáv Vitéz Jány Josef Stalin Vasiliy Chuikov Aleksandr Vasilyevskiy Georgiy Zhukov Semyon Timoshenko Konstantin Rokossovskiy Rodion Malinovskiy Andrei Yeremenko Strength Army Group B...


The failure of Operation Barbarossa resulted in the eventual defeat of Nazi Germany and is considered a turning point for the Third Reich. Most importantly, Operation Barbarossa opened up the Eastern Front, which ultimately became the biggest theater of war in human history. Operation Barbarossa and the areas which fell under it became the site of some of the largest and most brutal battles, deadliest atrocities, terrible loss of life, and horrific conditions for Soviets and Germans alike - all of which influenced the course of both World War II and 20th Century history. Nazi Germany, or the Third Reich, commonly refers to Germany in the years 1933–1945, when it was under the firm control of the totalitarian and fascist ideology of the Nazi Party, with the Führer Adolf Hitler as dictator. ... Combatants Soviet Union,[1] Poland, Tannu Tuva (until 1944 incorporation with USSR), Mongolia Germany,[2] Italy (to 1943), Romania (to 1944), Finland (to 1944), Hungary, Slovakia, Croatia, Spain (to 1943, unofficial) Commanders Joseph Stalin, Aleksei Antonov, Ivan Konev, Rodion Malinovsky, Ivan Bagramyan, Kirill Meretskov, Ivan Petrov, Alexander Rodimtsev, Konstantin Rokossovsky...

Contents

German plans

German propaganda made claims that the Red Army was preparing to attack them, and their own assault was thus presented as a pre-emptive war. Hitler's Mein Kampf ("My Struggle"), however, makes clear his intention of an invasion of the Soviet Union. In his book, he made clear his belief that the German people needed Lebensraum ("living space", i.e. land and raw materials), and that it should be found in the East. It was the stated policy of the Nazis to kill, deport, or enslave the Russian and other Slavic populations, whom they considered inferior, and to repopulate the land with Germanic peoples. This policy was called the New Order and was laid out in detail in Goering's Green Folder. The entire urban population was to be exterminated by starvation, thus creating an agricultural surplus to feed Germany and allowing their replacement by a German upper class. The German Nazi-ideologist Alfred Rosenberg suggested that conquered Soviet territory should be administered in the following Reichskommissariates: For other organizations known as the Red Army, see Red Army (disambiguation). ... A preemptive attack (or preemptive war) is waged in an attempt to repel or defeat an imminent offensive or invasion, or to gain a strategic advantage in an impending (usually unavoidable) war. ... Mein Kampf (English translation: My Struggle) is a book by the German-Austrian politician Adolf Hitler, which combines elements of autobiography with an exposition of Hitlers National Socialist political ideology. ... Nazism in history Nazi ideology Nazism and race Outside Germany Related subjects Lists Politics Portal           (German for habitat or literally living space) was one of the major political ideas of Adolf Hitler, and an important component of Nazi ideology. ... A Raw material is something that is acted upon by human labour or industry to create some product that humans desire. ... Look up policy in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Deportation is the expelling of someone from a country. ... Slave redirects here. ... Distribution of Slavic people by language The Slavic peoples are a linguistic and ethnic branch of Indo-European peoples, living mainly in Europe, where they constitute roughly a third of the population. ... New Order (Neue Ordnung) is the name used to denote the political, economic, and social system which the Nazis hoped to establish in Europe in the 1930s and 1940s. ... In the Nuremberg Trials there was a document referred to as the Green Folder of Reichsmarshall Hermann Göring. ... Cities with at least a million inhabitants in 2006 An urban area is an area with an increased density of human-created structures in comparison to the areas surrounding it. ... This article is about extreme malnutrition. ... This page is a candidate to be moved to Wiktionary. ... Upper class is a concept in sociology that refers to the group of people at the top of a social hierarchy. ... An ideology is a collection of ideas. ... Alfred Rosenberg around 1935   (January 12, 1893 Reval (today Tallinn) – October 16, 1946) was an early and intellectually influential member of the Nazi party, who later held several important posts in the Nazi government. ... Reichskommissar (Commissionary of the Empire) was an official title of authorized representative of the Deutsches Reich (after 1871) who was appointed to a special task, e. ...

During the Nuremberg Trials in 1946, Sir Hartley Shawcross announced that in March 1941 in addition to administrative divisions previously created the following divisions in Russian East were planned: Reichskommissariat Ostland was the German name for the Nazi civil administration of so called Eastern Territories of the Third Reich dring World War II, where Ostland (German for Eastern Territories) was the name given to the German occupied territories of the Baltic states, Belarus and Eastern Poland. ... The three Baltic states: Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania The terms Baltic countries, Baltic Sea countries, Baltic states, and Balticum refer to slightly different combinations of countries in the general area surrounding the Baltic Sea. ... This article contains information that has not been verified and thus might not be reliable. ... Southern Federal District (Russian: Ю́жный федера́льный о́круг; tr. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Caucasus Mountains. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... For other uses, see Moscow (disambiguation). ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... European Russia can be considered the western areas of Russia, where most of the population is centred. ... For the town in southern Kazakhstan, see Hazrat-e Turkestan. ... Map of Central Asia showing three sets of possible boundaries for the region Central Asia located as a region of the world Central Asia is a vast landlocked region of Asia. ... For the 1947 Soviet film about the trials, see Nuremberg Trials (film). ... Hartley Shawcross, Attorney-General of England and Wales 1945-51 The Right Honourable Hartley William Shawcross, Baron Shawcross, PC, GBE KC (February 4, 1902–July 10, 2003), was a British barrister and politician and the lead British prosecutor at the Nuremberg War Crimes tribunal. ...

  • Ural (Central and South Ural and nearest territories, created from planned East Russian European territorial reorganization),
  • West Sibirien (Future West Siberia and Novosibirsk held lands),
  • Nordland (Soviet Arctic areas: West Nordland (Russian European north coasts and Ost Nordland (Northwest Siberian north coasts))

Nazi policy aimed to destroy the Soviet Union as a political entity in accordance with the geopolitical Lebensraum idea ("Drang nach Osten") for the benefit of future "Aryan" generations in the centuries to come. Also the A-A Line would give Hitler's Nazi Empire reach to the Ural Mountains. Ural may refer to one of the following: Ural Mountains Ural (region) Ural River Urals Federal District IMZ-Ural, a Russian motorcycle Ural automobile Ural, Krasnoyarsk Krai, an urban settlement in Russia This is a disambiguation page: a list of articles associated with the same title. ... This article is about Siberia as a whole. ... Novosibirsk (Russian: , pronounced ) is Russias third largest city, after Moscow and Saint Petersburg, and the administrative center of Novosibirsk Oblast. ... For the ships, see USS Arctic, SS Arctic, MV Arctic The red line indicates the 10°C isotherm in July, sometimes used to define the Arctic region border Artificially coloured topographical map of the Arctic region The Arctic is the region around the Earths North Pole, opposite the Antarctic... For other uses, see Europe (disambiguation). ... Siberian federal subjects of Russia Siberia (Russian: Сиби́рь, common English transliterations: Sibir, Sibir; possibly from the Mongolian for the calm land) is a vast region of Russia and northern Kazakhstan constituting all of northern Asia. ... Geopolitics is the study that analyzes geography, history and social science with reference to spatial politics and patterns at various scales (ranging from home, city, region, state to international and cosmopolitics). ... This does not cite its references or sources. ... Aryan (/eÉ™rjÉ™n/ or /ɑːrjÉ™n/, Sanskrit: ) is a Sanskrit and Avestan word meaning noble/spiritual one. ... The Arkhangelsk-Astrakhan line or A-A line was the proposed eastern border of the Nazi German empire. ...


The Führer anticipated additional benefits: Nazi propaganda poster. ...

  • When the Soviet Union was defeated, the labor shortage in the German industry could be ended by the demobilization of many soldiers.
  • Ukraine would be a reliable source of agriculture.
  • Having the Soviet Union as a source of slave labour would vastly improve Germany's geostrategic position.
  • Defeat of the Soviet Union would further isolate the Allies, especially the United Kingdom.
  • The German economy needed access to more oil and controlling the Baku Oilfields would achieve this.

The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact had been signed shortly before the German and Soviet invasion of Poland in 1939. It was ostensibly a non-aggression pact but secret protocols outlined an agreement between the Third Reich and the Soviet Union on the division of the border states between them. The pact surprised the world because of their mutual hostility and their opposed ideologies. As a result of this pact, Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union had reasonably strong diplomatic relations and were important trading partners. The Soviet Union supplied oil and raw materials to Germany, while Germany provided technology to the Soviet Union. Despite the pact, both sides remained strongly suspicious of each other's intentions, and as both sides began colliding with each other in Eastern Europe it appeared that conflict was inevitable. A Labor shortage is an economic condition in which there are insufficient qualified candidates (employees) to fill the market-place demands for employment at any price. ... Demobilization is the process of standing down a nations armed forces from combat-ready status. ... Slavery is any of a number of related conditions involving control of a person against his or her will, enforced by violence or other clear forms of coercion. ... Look up ally in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Municipality: Baku Area: 1000 km² Altitude: -28 m Population: 2074,3census 2003 Population density: 1280 persons/km² Postal Code: AZ1000 Area code: 012 Municipality code: BA Latitude: 41° 01 52 N Longitude: 21° 20 25 E Mayor: Hajibala Abutalybov The Baku region. ... Molotov signs the German-Soviet non-aggression pact. ... A non-aggression pact is an international treaty between two or more states, agreeing to avoid war or armed conflict between them even if they find themselves fighting third countries, or even if one is fighting allies of the other. ... In a European context, the term Border states policy, and Border states in a specific sense, refer to attempts during the interbellum to unite the countries that had won their independence from Imperial Russia due to the Russian Revolution, the treaty of Brest-Litovsk, and ultimately the defeat of Imperial... An ideology is an organized collection of ideas. ...


Hitler had long wanted to conquer western Russia in order to exploit what he saw as its untermensch (subhuman) Slavic population. He had signed the pact simply for (mutual) short-term convenience. In addition to the territorial ambitions of both Hitler and Stalin, the contrasting ideologies of Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union made an eventual conflict between them likely. Untermensch (German for under man, sub-man, sub-human; plural: Untermenschen) is a term from Nazi racial ideology used to describe inferior people, especially the masses from the East, that is Jews, Gypsies, Soviet Bolsheviks, homosexual men, and anyone else who was not an Aryan (i. ... Distribution of Slavic people by language The Slavic peoples are a linguistic and ethnic branch of Indo-European peoples, living mainly in Europe, where they constitute roughly a third of the population. ...


Stalin's reputation contributed both to the Nazis' justification of their assault and to their faith in success. During the late 1930s, Stalin had killed or incarcerated millions of citizens during the Great Purge, including large numbers of competent and experienced military officers and strategists, leaving the Red Army weakened and leaderless. The Nazis often emphasized the brutality of the Soviet regime when targeting the Slavs with propaganda. Iosif (usually anglicized as Joseph) Vissarionovich Stalin (Russian: Иосиф Виссарионович Сталин), original name Ioseb Jughashvili (Georgian: იოსებ ჯუღაშვილი; see Other names section) (December 21, 1879[1] – March 5, 1953) was a Bolshevik revolutionary and leader of the Soviet Union. ... The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view. ... The Great Purge (Russian: , transliterated Bolshaya chistka) refers collectively to several related campaigns of political repression and persecution in the Soviet Union orchestrated by Joseph Stalin during the 1930s, which removed all of his remaining opposition from power. ... In military organizations, a commissioned officer is a member of the service who derives authority directly from a sovereign power, and as such holds a commission from that power. ... For other organizations known as the Red Army, see Red Army (disambiguation). ... 1967 Chinese propaganda poster from the Cultural Revolution. ...

We have only to kick in the door and the whole rotten structure will come crashing down

—Adolf Hitler

Operation Barbarossa represented a northern assault towards Leningrad, a symbolic capturing of Moscow, and an economic strategy of seizing oil fields in the south, towards Ukraine. Hitler and his generals disagreed on where Germany should focus its energies, and so Barbarossa was largely a compromise of these views. Hitler considered himself a political and military genius. In the course of planning Barbarossa during 1940 and 1941, in many discussions with his generals Hitler repeated his order: "Leningrad first, the Donetsk Basin second, Moscow third."[11][23] Hitler was impatient to get on with his long-desired invasion of the east. He was convinced that Britain would sue for peace once the Germans triumphed in the Soviet Union, the real area of Germany's interests. General Franz Halder noted in his diaries that by destroying the Soviet Union, Germany would destroy Britain's hope for defeating Germany. Leningrad (Russian: Ленинград) may mean: St. ... For other uses, see Moscow (disambiguation). ... A genius is a person of great intelligence. ... Franz Halder Franz Ritter Halder (June 30, 1884 – April 2, 1972) was a German General and the head of the Army General Staff from 1938 until September 1942, when he was dismissed after frequent disagreements with Adolf Hitler. ...


Hitler was also overconfident due to his rapid success in Western Europe, as well as the Red Army's ineptitude in the Winter War against Finland in 1939–40. He expected victory in a few months and did not prepare for a war lasting into the winter; his troops lacked adequate clothing and preparations for a longer campaign when they began their attack. The assumption that the Soviet Union would quickly capitulate would prove to be his undoing. For other organizations known as the Red Army, see Red Army (disambiguation). ... Combatants Finland Soviet Union Commanders Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim Kliment Voroshilov Semyon Timoshenko Strength 250,000 men 30 tanks 130 aircraft[1][2] 1,000,000 men 6,541 tanks [3] 3,800 aircraft[4][5] Casualties 26,662 dead 39,886 wounded 1,000 captured[6] 126,875 dead...


German preparations

When Barbarossa commences, the world will hold its breath and make no comment.

—Adolf Hitler

In preparation for the attack, Hitler moved 3.2 million German soldiers and about 1 million Axis soldiers to the Soviet border, launched many aerial surveillance missions over Soviet territory, and stockpiled materiel in the East. The Soviets were still taken by surprise, mostly due to Stalin's belief that the Third Reich was unlikely to attack only two years after signing the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. The Soviet leader also believed that the Nazis would likely finish their war with Britain before opening a new front. He refused to believe repeated warnings from his intelligence services on the Nazi buildup, fearing the reports to be British misinformation designed to spark a war between the Nazis and the USSR. The German government also aided in this deception, telling Stalin that the troops were being moved to take them out of range of British bombers. The Germans also explained that they were trying to trick the British into thinking they were planning to attack the Soviet Union, while in fact the troops and supplies were being stockpiled for an invasion of Britain. As a result, Stalin's preparations against a possible German invasion in 1941 were half-hearted.[citation needed] The spy Dr. Richard Sorge gave Stalin the exact German launch date; Swedish cryptanalysts led by Arne Beurling also knew the date beforehand. Mixed reconnaissance patrol of the Polish Home Army and the Soviet Red Army during Operation Tempest, 1944 Reconnaissance is the military term for the active gathering of information about an enemy, or other conditions, by physical observation. ... Material (from the French matérial for equipment or hardware, related to the word material) is a term used in English to refer to the equipment and supplies in military and commercial supply chain management. ... Soviet redirects here. ... Josef Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili (Georgian: , Ioseb Besarionis Dze Jughashvili; Russian: , Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili) (December 18 [O.S. December 6] 1878[1] – March 5, 1953), better known by his adopted name, Joseph Stalin (alternatively transliterated Josef Stalin), was General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Unions Central Committee from... Molotov signs the German-Soviet non-aggression pact. ... Dr Sorge aka Ramsay Richard Sorge (Russian: Рихард Зорге) (October 4, 1895 - November 7, 1944) is considered to have been one of the best Soviet spies in Japan before and during World War II, which has gained him fame among spies, and espionage enthusiasts. ... Cryptanalysis (from the Greek kryptós, hidden, and analýein, to loosen or to untie) is the study of methods for obtaining the meaning of encrypted information without access to the secret information which is normally required to do so. ... Arne Carl-August Beurling (February 3, 1905 - November 20, 1986) was a mathematician and professor of mathematics at Uppsala University (1937-1954) and later at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, USA. Arne Beurling worked extensively in harmonic analysis, complex analysis and potential theory. ...


The Germans set up deception operations, from April 1941, to add substance to their claims that Britain was the real target: Operations Haifisch and Harpune. These simulated preparations in Norway, the Channel coast and Britain. There were supporting activities such as ship concentrations, reconnaissance flights and training exercises. Invasion plans were developed and some details were allowed to leak. Operation Haifisch (Shark) was a German codename for the cover operation against Great Britain in World War II, elaborated by Wilhelm Keitel. ... In World War II, Operation Harpune was the major German deception plan of 1941. ...


Hitler and his generals also researched into Napoleon's failed invasion of Russia. At Hitler's insistence, the German High Command (OKW) began to develop a strategy to avoid repeating these mistakes. Combatants France Italy Naples Duchy of Warsaw Confederation of the Rhine Bavaria Saxony Westphalia Swiss Confederation Austria Prussia Russia Commanders Napoleon Eugène de Beauharnais Jérôme Bonaparte Jacques MacDonald Prince Schwarzenberg Józef Poniatowski Alexander I of Russia Michael Andreas Barclay de Tolly Pyotr Bagration Mikhail Kutuzov Strength... The command flag for the Chief of Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (1938 - 1941) The command flag for a Generalfeldmarschall as the Chief of Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (1941 - 1945) Oberkommando der Wehrmacht or OKW (Wehrmacht High Command, Armed Forces High Command) was part of the command structure of the German armed forces...


The strategy Hitler and his generals agreed upon involved three separate army groups assigned to capture specific regions and cities of the Soviet Union. The main German thrusts were conducted along historical invasion routes. Army Group North was assigned to march through the Baltics, into northern Russia, and either take or destroy the city of Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg). Army Group Center would advance to Smolensk and then Moscow, marching through what is now Belarus and the west-central regions of Russia proper. Army Group South was to strike the heavily populated and agricultural heartland of Ukraine, taking Kiev before continuing eastward over the steppes of southern Russia all the way to the Volga and the oil-rich Caucasus. An army group is a military organization (formation) consisting of several armies, and is supposed to be self-sufficient for indefinite periods. ... Army Group North (Heeresgruppe Nord in German) was a high level command grouping of military units operating for Germany during World War II. The army group coordinated the operations of attached army corps, reserve formations, and direct-reporting units. ... The three Baltic states: Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. ... Belligerents Nazi Germany Finland[1][2][3] Soviet Union Commanders Wilhelm von Leeb Georg von Küchler Carl Gustaf Mannerheim[4][5][6] Kliment Voroshilov Georgiy Zhukov Leonid Govorov Strength 725,000 930,000 Casualties and losses Wehrmacht (est. ... Saint Petersburg (Russian: Санкт-Петербу́рг, English transliteration: Sankt-Peterburg), colloquially known as Питер (transliterated Piter), formerly known as Leningrad (Ленингра́д, 1924–1991) and Petrograd (Петрогра́д, 1914–1924), is a city located in Northwestern Russia on the delta of the river Neva at the east end of the Gulf of Finland... Army Group Centre (Heeresgruppe Mitte in German) was one of three German army formations assigned to the invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941, code-named Operation Barbarossa. ... A view of Smolensk in 1912. ... For other uses, see Moscow (disambiguation). ... Army Group South (Heeresgruppe Süd in German) was a German Army Group during World War II. Germany used two army groups to invade Poland in 1939: Army Group North and Army Group South. ... Map of Ukraine with Kiev highlighted Coordinates: , Country Ukraine Oblast Kiev City Municipality Raion Municipality Government  - Mayor Leonid Chernovetskyi Elevation 179 m (587 ft) Population (2006)  - City 4,450,968  - Density 3,299/km² (8,544. ... This article is about the ecological zone type. ... For other meanings of the word Volga see Volga (disambiguation) Волга Length 3,690 km Elevation of the source 225 m Average discharge  ? m³/s Area watershed 1. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Caucasus Mountains. ...


Hitler, the OKW and the various high commands disagreed about what the main objectives should be. In the preparation for Barbarossa, most of the OKW argued for a straight thrust to Moscow, whereas Hitler kept asserting his intention to seize the resource-rich Ukraine and Baltics before concentrating on Moscow. An initial delay, which postponed the start of Barbarossa from mid-May to the end of June 1941, may have been insignificant, especially since the Russian muddy season came late that year. However, more time was lost at various critical moments as Hitler and the OKW suspended operations in order to argue about strategic objectives.


Along with the strategic objectives, the Germans also decided to bring rear forces into the conquered territories to counter any partisan activity which they knew would erupt in the areas they controlled. This included units of the Waffen-SS and the Gestapo who specialized in crushing dissent and capturing and killing opponents. The Soviet partisans were members anti-fascist resistance movement which fought against the occupation of the Soviet Union by Axis forces during World War II. At the end of June 1941, immediately after the Germans crossed the Soviet border, the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolshevik) (see... Waffen-SS recruitment poster; Volunteer to the Waffen-SS The Waffen-SS was the armed wing of the Schutzstaffel. ... The   (contraction of Geheime Staatspolizei: “secret state police”) was the official secret police of Nazi Germany. ...


Soviet preparations

In the 1940s, the Soviet Union was by no means a weak country. Rapid Soviet industrialization in the 1930s had resulted in industrial output second only to that of the United States, and equal to that of Germany. Production of military equipment grew steadily, and in the pre-war years the economy became progressively more oriented toward military production. In the early 1930s, a very modern operational doctrine for the Red Army was developed and promulgated in the 1936 field regulations. This article does not cite any references or sources. ...

Development of the armed forces of the Soviet Union
from 1939 to 1941
[24]
January 1, 1939 June 22, 1941 % increase
Divisions calculated 131.5 316.5 140.7
Personnel 2,485,000 5,774,000 132.4
Guns and mortars 55,800 117,600 110.7
Tanks 21,100 25,700 21.8
Aircraft 7,700 18,700 142.8

In 1941, the Soviet armed forces in the western districts were outnumbered by their German counterparts, 4.3 million Axis soldiers vs. 2.6 million Soviet soldiers. The overall size of the Soviet armed forces in early July 1941, though, amounted to a little more than 5 million men, 2.6 million in the west, 1.8 million in the far east, with the rest being deployed or training elsewhere[25] , Moreover, on mobilization, as the war went on the Red Army gained steadily in strength. While the strength of both sides varied, in general it is accurate to say that the 1941 campaign was fought with the Axis having slight numerical superiority in manpower at the front. is the 1st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... This article describes military mobilization. ...


In some key weapons systems, however, the Soviet numerical advantage was considerable. In tanks, for example, the Red Army had a large superiority. The Red Army possessed 23,106 tanks,[26] of which about 12,782 were in the five Western Military Districts (three of which directly faced the German invasion front). However, maintenance and readiness standards were very poor; ammunition and radios were in short supply, and many units lacked the trucks needed for resupply beyond their basic fuel and ammunition loads.


Also, from 1938, the Soviets had partly dispersed their tanks to infantry divisions for infantry support, but after their experiences in the Winter War and their observation of German Blitzkrieg tactics against France, had begun to emulate the Germans and organize most of their armoured assets into large, fully mechanized divisions and corps. This reorganization however was only part way through by the dawn of Barbarossa.[27] as not enough tanks were available to bring the mechanised corps up to organic strength. Combatants Finland Soviet Union Commanders Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim Kliment Voroshilov Semyon Timoshenko Strength 250,000 men 30 tanks 130 aircraft[1][2] 1,000,000 men 6,541 tanks [3] 3,800 aircraft[4][5] Casualties 26,662 dead 39,886 wounded 1,000 captured[6] 126,875 dead...


The German Wehrmacht had about 5,200 tanks overall, of which 3,350 were committed to the invasion. This yields a balance of immediately-available tanks of approximately 4:1 in the Red Army's favor. The best Soviet tank, the T-34, was the most modern in the world, and the KV series the best armoured. The most advanced Soviet tank models, however, the T-34 and KV-1, were not available in large numbers early in the war, and only accounted for 7.2% of the total Soviet tank force. But while these 1,861 modern tanks were technically superior to the 1,404 German medium Panzer III and IV tanks, the Russians in 1941 still lacked the communications, training and experience to employ such weapons effectively. The straight-armed Balkenkreuz, a stylized version of the Iron Cross, the emblem of the Wehrmacht. ... The T-34 is a Soviet medium tank first produced in 1940. ... K. 1 is a designation given to two works of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in the original Köchel Verzeichnis. ... Panzer III is the common name of a medium tank that was developed in the 1930s by Nazi Germany and used extensively in World War II. The official German designation was Panzerkampfwagen III (abbreviated PzKpfw III). ... Panzer IV is the common name of a medium tank that was developed in the late 1930s by Nazi Germany and used extensively in World War II. The official German designation was Panzerkampfwagen IV (abbreviated PzKpfw IV) and the tank also had the ordnance inventory designation SdKfz 161. ...


The Soviet numerical advantage in heavy equipment was also more than offset by the greatly superior training and readiness of German forces. The Soviet officer corps and high command had been decimated by Stalin's Great Purge (1936–1938). Of 90 Generals arrested only six survived, of 180 divisional commanders only 36 survived, just seven out 57 Army Corps Commanders survived the purges. In total some 30,000 Red Army personnel were murdered,[28] while more were shipped to Siberia and were replaced with officers deemed more "politically reliable." Three of the five pre-war marshals and about two-thirds of the corps and division commanders were shot. This often left younger, less well-trained officers in their places; for example, in 1941, seventy-five percent of Red Army officers had held their posts for less than one year. The average Soviet corps commander was 12 years younger than the average German division commander. These officers tended to be very reluctant to take the initiative and often lacked the training necessary for their jobs. The Great Purge (Russian: , transliterated Bolshaya chistka) refers collectively to several related campaigns of political repression and persecution in the Soviet Union orchestrated by Joseph Stalin during the 1930s, which removed all of his remaining opposition from power. ... This article is about Siberia as a whole. ... The rank of Marshal of the Soviet Union (Russian: Marshal Sovietskovo Soyuza [Маршал Советского Союза]) was in practice the highest military rank of the Soviet Union. ...


The number of aircraft was also heavily in the Soviets' favor. However, Soviet aircraft were largely obsolete, and Soviet artillery lacked modern fire control techniques.[29] Most Soviet units were on a peacetime footing, explaining why aviation units had their aircraft parked in closely-bunched neat rows, rather than dispersed, making easy targets for the Luftwaffe in the first days of the conflict. Prior to the invasion the Red air force was forbidden to shoot down German reconnaissance aircraft despite hundreds of pre-war flights into Soviet airspace. For other uses, see Artillery (disambiguation). ... Peacetime is the eighth studio album by Eddi Reader released in the UK on January 29, 2007. ... Aviation encompasses all the activities relating to airborne devices created by human ingenuity, generally known as aircraft. ... The Deutsche Luftwaffe or   (German: air force, IPA: ) is the commonly used term for the German air force. ... The Soviet Air Force, also known under the abbreviation VVS, transliterated from Russian: ВВС, Военно-воздушные силы (Voenno-Vozdushnye Sily), formed the official designation of the air force of the Soviet Union. ... A military aircraft used for monitoring enemy activity, usually carrying no armament. ...


The Russian war effort in the first phase of the Eastern front war was severely hampered by a shortage of modern aircraft. The Soviet fighter force was equipped with large numbers of obsolete aircraft, such as the I-15 biplane and the I-16. In 1941 the MiG-3, LaGG-3 and Yak-1 were just starting to roll off the production lines but were far inferior in all-round performance to the Messerschmitt Bf 109 or later, the Fw 190, when it entered operations in September 1941. Few aircraft had radios and those that were available were unencrypted and did not work reliably. The poor performance of VVS (Voenno-Vozdushnye Sily, Soviet Air Force) during the Winter War with Finland had increased the Luftwaffe's confidence that the Soviets could be mastered. The standard of flight training had been accelerated in preparation for a German attack that was expected to come in 1942 or later. But Russian pilot training was extremely poor. Order No 0362 of the People's Commissar of Defense dated 22 December 1940 ordered flight training to be accelerated and shortened. Incredibly, while the Soviets had 201 MiG-3s and 37 MiG-1s combat ready on 22 June 1941, only four pilots had been trained to handle these machines.[30] Combatants Soviet Union,[1] Poland, Tannu Tuva (until 1944 incorporation with USSR), Mongolia Germany,[2] Italy (to 1943), Romania (to 1944), Finland (to 1944), Hungary, Slovakia, Croatia, Spain (to 1943, unofficial) Commanders Joseph Stalin, Aleksei Antonov, Ivan Konev, Rodion Malinovsky, Ivan Bagramyan, Kirill Meretskov, Ivan Petrov, Alexander Rodimtsev, Konstantin Rokossovsky... Flying machine redirects here. ... The Soviet Air Force, also known under the abbreviation VVS, transliterated from Russian: ВВС, Военно-воздушные силы (Voenno-Vozdushnye Sily), formed the official designation of the air force of the Soviet Union. ... The Polikarpov I-15 Чайка Seagull was a Soviet fighter aircraft that first flew in October 1933 by V.P.Chkalov. ... Reproduction of a Sopwith Camel biplane flown by Lt. ... Polikarpov I-16 at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2003 The Polikarpov I-16 was an advanced Soviet fighter aircraft when it was introduced in the mid-1930s, and it formed the backbone of the Soviet Air Force at the beginning of World War II. The diminutive fighter prominently featured in the... The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-3 (Микоян-Гуревич МиГ-3) was a Soviet fighter aircraft of World War II. It was a development of the MiG-1 in an attempt to curb some of that aircrafts handling problems. ... The Lavochkin-Gorbunov-Goudkov LaGG-3 (Лавочкин-Горбунов-Гудков ЛаГГ-3) was a Soviet fighter aircraft of World War II. It was a refinement of the earlier LaGG-1, and was one of the most modern aircraft available to the Soviet Air Force at the time of Germanys attempted... The Yakovlev Yak-1 (originally designated I-26) was a Soviet fighter aircraft of World War II. It was the first of a line of small, nimble fighters, relatively primitive in many respects, but easy to build and maintain, and with fine performance and handling at low altitude. ... German Airfield, France, 1941 propaganda photo of the Luftwaffe, Bf 109 fighters on the tarmac The Messerschmitt Bf 109 was a German World War II fighter aircraft designed by Willy Messerschmitt in the early 1930s. ... Focke-Wulf Fw 190 in flight. ... Combatants Finland Soviet Union Commanders Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim Kliment Voroshilov Semyon Timoshenko Strength 250,000 men 30 tanks 130 aircraft[1][2] 1,000,000 men 6,541 tanks [3] 3,800 aircraft[4][5] Casualties 26,662 dead 39,886 wounded 1,000 captured[6] 126,875 dead... is the 356th day of the year (357th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1940 (MCMXL) was a leap year starting on Monday (link will display the full 1940 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-1 (Микоян-Гуревич МиГ-1) was a Soviet fighter aircraft of World War II. Although difficult to handle, it formed the basis for the MiG-3, which proved to be a capable high-altitude interceptor aircraft and established a reputation for its designers. ...


The Red Army was dispersed and unprepared, and units were often separated and without transportation to concentrate prior to combat. Although the Red Army had numerous, well-designed artillery pieces, some of the guns had no ammunition. Artillery units often lacked transportation to move their guns. Tank units were rarely well-equipped, and also lacked training and logistical support. Maintenance standards were very poor. Units were sent into combat with no arrangements for refuelling, ammunition resupply, or personnel replacement. Often, after a single engagement, units were destroyed or rendered ineffective. The Army was in the midst of reorganizing the armor units into large Tank Corps, adding to the disorganization. For other organizations known as the Red Army, see Red Army (disambiguation). ... Ammunition, often referred to as ammo, is a generic term meaning (the assembly of) a projectile and its propellant. ... For the movement of people or objects, see transport. ...


As a result, although on paper the Red Army in 1941 seemed at least the equal of the German army, the reality in the field was far different; incompetent officers, as well as partial lack of equipment, insufficient motorised logistical support, and poor training placed the Red Army at a severe disadvantage. For example, throughout the early part of the campaign, the Red Army lost about six tanks for every German tank lost.


In the spring of 1941, Stalin's own intelligence services made regular and repeated warnings of an impending German attack. However, Stalin chose to ignore these warnings. Although acknowledging the possibility of an attack in general and making significant preparations, he decided not to run the risk of provoking Hitler. He had fielded officers who were likely indeed to tell him only what he wanted to hear, so that he believed that the position of the Soviet Union in early 1941 was much stronger than it actually was[citation needed]. He also had an ill-founded confidence in the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, which had been signed just two years before[citation needed]. Last, he also suspected the British of trying to spread false rumours in order to trigger a war between Germany and the USSR. Consequently, the Soviet border troops were not put on full alert and were sometimes even forbidden to fire back without permission when attacked — though a partial alert was implemented on April 10 — they were simply not ready when the German attack came. This may be the source of the argument cited below by Viktor Suvorov. The following is a partial list of intelligence agencies, past and present. ... Molotov signs the German-Soviet non-aggression pact. ... is the 100th day of the year (101st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


Enormous Soviet forces were massed behind the western border in case the Germans did attack. However, these forces were very vulnerable due to changes in the tactical doctrine of the Red Army. In 1938 it had adopted, on the instigation of General Pavlov, a standard linear defence tactic on a line with other nations. Infantry divisions, reinforced by an organic tank component, would be dug in to form heavily fortified zones. Then came the shock of the Fall of France. The French Army, considered the strongest in the world, was defeated in a mere six weeks. Soviet analysis of events, based on incomplete information, concluded that the collapse of the French was caused by a reliance on linear defence and a lack of armoured reserves. Military tactics (Greek: Taktikē, the art of organizing an army) are the collective name for methods for engaging and defeating an enemy in battle. ... Military doctrine is a level of military planning between national strategy and unit-level tactics, techniques, and procedures. ... Dmitry Grigorevich Pavlov (Russian: , 1897-July 22, 1941) was a Soviet general who commanded the key Soviet Western Front during the initial days of the German invasion of the Soviet Union, or Operation Barbarossa, in June 1941. ... Bold Bold texttext,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,vvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvMedia:Example. ... In World War II, Battle of France or Case Yellow (Fall Gelb in German) was the German invasion of France and the Low Countries, executed 10 May 1940 which ended the Phony War. ...


The Soviets decided not to repeat these mistakes. Instead of digging in for linear defence, the infantry divisions would henceforth be concentrated in large formations.[citation needed] Most tanks would also be concentrated into 31 mechanised corps, each with over 1000 tanks - larger than an entire German panzer army (though only a few such corps had attained their nominal strength by June 22)[citation needed]. Should the Germans attack, their armoured spearheads would be cut off and wiped out by the mechanised corps.[citation needed] These would then cooperate with the infantry armies to drive back the German infantry, vulnerable in its approach march. The Soviet left wing, in Ukraine, was to be enormously reinforced to be able to execute a strategic envelopment: after destroying German Army Group South it would swing north through Poland in the back of Army Groups Centre and North. With the complete annihilation of the encircled German Army thus made inevitable, a Red Army offensive into the rest of Europe would follow.[citation needed] is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


The Soviet offensive plans theory

Counter-arguments to the usual interpretation have been advanced by former GRU defector Viktor Suvorov, author of Icebreaker. This book argues that Soviet ground forces were extremely well organized, and were mobilizing en masse all along the German-Soviet border for a Soviet invasion of Europe slated for Sunday July 6, 1941. The German Barbarossa, he claims, actually was a pre-emptive strike that capitalized on the massive Soviet troop concentrations immediately on the 1941 Nazi Germany's borders. Suvorov argues therefore that Soviet troop concentrations on Germany's borders were offensive in nature, not defensive as usually described. His interpretation has been thoroughly rejected by various respected historians, in particular David Glantz, and has not found much serious support among Western academic historians. For other uses, see GRU (disambiguation). ... Viktor Suvorov (; real name Vladimir Rezun : ) (born April 20, 1947) is a Russian writer and historian. ... Icebreaker: Who Started the Second World War?, by Viktor Suvorov (Russian title: Ledokol, Ледокол) is a documentary book, which alleges that the World War II started as a result of Joseph Stalins ploy to liberate the working class of Europe and eventually the whole world. ... is the 187th day of the year (188th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... Pre-Emptive Strike is a three track, digital EP released by Five Finger Death Punch on July 10, 2007. ... David M. Glantz is an American military historian and the editor of The Journal of Slavic Military Studies. ...


A study by Russian military historian Mikhail Meltyukhov (“Stalin's Missed Chance”) supports the claim that Soviet forces were concentrating in order to attack Germany. However, he rejects the statement that the German invasion was a pre-emptive strike: Meltyukhov believes both sides were preparing for the assault but neither believed in the possibility of an attack by the other side. Other Russian historians who support this thesis are Vladimir Nevezhin, Boris Sokolov and Valeri Danilov. In key points this argumentation is similar to the interpretation of German historians Werner Maser and Joachim Hoffmann.[31] Mikhail Ivanovich Meltyukhov (Russian: Мельтюхов Михаил Иванович) is a Russian military historian. ... Stalins Missed Chance is a study by Russian military historian Mikhail Ivanovich Meltyukhov (Russian: ), author of several books and articles on Soviet military history. ... Vladimir Nevezhin (Russian: ) is a Russian historian (Doctor of History Sciences), is working as a professor in Moscow, chief scientific collaborator at the Institute of Russian History (of the Russian Academy of Science) and member of the editorial board of the journal Отечественная история (History of the Fatherland). ... Boris Sokolov (Russian: Борис Вадимович Соколов) is a historian and researcher of Russian literature (has Candidate of Science degree in both fields). ... Valeri Danilov (also spelled: Valeriy; Russian:Валерий Дмитриевич Данилов) is a Russian military historian and a retired officer (Colonel). ... Dr. Joachim Hoffmann (December 1, 1930, Königsberg, East Prussia – February 8, 2002, Freiburg) was a German historian and scientific director of the German Armed Forces Military History Research Office. ...


The now published Zhukov proposal of May 15, 1941[32] called for a Soviet strike against Germany. Thus the document suggested secret mobilisation and deploying Red Army troops next to the Western border, under the cover of training. Although generally believed to be a mere draft disapproved of by Stalin,[33] the above mentioned historians have argued, that — given Stalin's concentration of power — the thesis of Soviet generals pursuing a line independent of Stalin's and composing an invasion plan must have been extremely improbable. Moreover, it is argued that the actual Soviet troops concentration was near the border, just like fuel depots and airfields. All of this was unsuitable for defensive operations. (Maser 1994: 376–378; Hoffmann 1999: 52–56) is the 135th day of the year (136th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... Mobilization (or mobilisation in British English) is the act of assembling and making both troops and supplies ready for war. ...


Suvorov presents a piece of evidence favoring the theory of an impending Soviet attack: the maps and phrasebooks issued to Soviet troops. Military topographic maps, unlike other military supplies, are strictly local and cannot be used elsewhere than in the intended target. According to Suvorov, Soviets were issued with maps of Germany and German-occupied territory, and phrasebooks including questions about SA offices — SA offices were found only in German territory proper. In contrast, according to Suvorov, maps of Soviet territory were scarce. Notably, after the German attack, the officer responsible for maps, Lieutenant General M.K. Kudryavtsev was not punished by Stalin, who was known for extreme punishments after failures to obey his orders. According to Suvorov, this demonstrates that General Kudryavtsev was obeying the orders of Stalin, who simply did not expect a German attack.


However, none of this is conclusive evidence of Soviet plans for a strategic attack on Germany, especially since Soviet doctrine emphasised the offensive at the operational level, even if the country was strategically on the defensive.[citation needed]

Strength of the opposing forces on the
Soviet Western border. June 22, 1941
Germany and Allies Soviet Union Ratio
Divisions 166 190 0.87 : 1
Personnel 4,306,800 3,289,851 1.3 : 1
Guns and mortars 42,601 59,787 0.7 : 1
Tanks (incl assault guns) 4,171 15,687 0.27 : 1
Aircraft 4,389[34] 11, 537[35] 0.38 : 1
Source: Mikhail MeltyukhovStalin's Missed Chance” table 47,[36]

is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... German StuG III with high-velocity 75 mm gun, 1943 An assault gun is a gun or howitzer mounted on a motor vehicle or armored chassis, designed for use in the direct fire role in support of infantry when attacking other infantry or fortified positions. ... Mikhail Ivanovich Meltyukhov (Russian: Мельтюхов Михаил Иванович) is a Russian military historian. ... Stalins Missed Chance is a study by Russian military historian Mikhail Ivanovich Meltyukhov (Russian: ), author of several books and articles on Soviet military history. ...

The invasion

Composition of the Axis forces

Halder as the Chief of General Staff OKH concentrated the following Wehrmacht and Luftwaffe forces for the operation: Franz Halder Franz Ritter Halder (June 30, 1884–April 2, 1972) was a German General and the head of the Army General Staff from 1938 until September 1942, when he was dismissed after frequent disagreements with Adolf Hitler. ... The Oberkommando des Heeres (OKH) was Germanys Army High Command from 1936 to 1945. ...


Army Group North (Heeresgruppe Nord) (Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb) staged in East Prussia with (26 divisions): Army Group North (Heeresgruppe Nord in German) was a high level command grouping of military units operating for Germany during World War II. The army group coordinated the operations of attached army corps, reserve formations, and direct-reporting units. ... Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb in a photo from 1946 Wilhelm Ritter[1] von Leeb (September 5, 1876 - April 29, 1956) was a German Field Marshal during World War II. // Born in Landsberg am Lech, Bavaria as Wilhelm Leeb, he joined the Bavarian Army in 1895 as an officer cadet. ... East Prussia (German: Ostpreu en; Polish: Prusy Wschodnie; Russian: Восточная Пруссия — Vostochnaya Prussiya) was a province of Kingdom of Prussia, situated on the territory of former Ducal Prussia. ...

Army Group Centre (Heeresgruppe Mitte) (Fedor von Bock) staged in Eastern Poland with (49 divisions): The German Sixteenth Army (German: ) was a World War II field army. ... Ernst Busch (6 July 1885 - 17 July 1945) was a German field marshal during World War II. He was born in Essen-Steele, Germany, and was educated at the Groß Lichterfelde Cadet Academy. ... The German Fourth Panzer Army (German: ) was a German panzer army that saw action during World War II. It played a part in the invasion of France and then on the Eastern front, the 4th Panzer Army and Guderians 1st Army encircled army after army until it came to... The German Eighteenth Army (German: ) was a World War II field army. ... Field Marshal Georg von Küchler Georg Karl Friedrich Wilhelm von Küchler (May 30, 1881 - May 25, 1968) was a German field marshal during World War II. Born in Philippsruhe castle near Hanau, Küchler led the German German Eighteenth Army in 1940 in the invasion of neutral Holland... Army Group Centre (Heeresgruppe Mitte in German) was created on 22 June 1941 when Army Group B was renamed Army Group Centre. ... Fedor von Bock (December 3, 1880 - May 4, 1945) was an officer in the German military from 1898 to 1942, attaining the rank of Generalfeldmarschall during World War 2. ...

Army Group South (Heeresgruppe Süd) (von Rundstedt) was staged in Southern Poland and Romania with (41 divisions): Insignia of 4th Army The German Fourth Army (German: ) was a field army that fought in World War II. The Fourth Army was activated on December 1, 1938 with Field Marshal Günther von Kluge in command. ... Günther “Hans” von Kluge (October 30, 1882 – August 19, 1944), was a German military leader. ... Panzergruppe 2 (2nd Panzer Group) was formed in November 1940 from the Panzergruppe Guderian and it was called by its commander general Heinz Guderian until October 1941, when it was renamed the Second Panzer Army. ... General Heinz Guderian Heinz Wilhelm Guderian (17 June 1888-14 May 1954) was a military theorist and General of the German Army during the Second World War. ... The German Third Panzer Army (German: ) was a German panzer army that saw action during World War II. The Third Panzer Army was a constituent of Army Group Centre and fought in the Battle of Moscow in late 1941 and early 1942. ... In the fictional universe of Star Wars, Hoth is the sixth planet of a remote system of the same name. ... The German Ninth Army (German: ) was a World War II field army. ... ==Biography== Albrecht von Kesselring (August 8, 1881 - July 16, 1960) was a Generalfeldmarschall during World War II. One of the most respected and skillful generals of Nazi Germany, he was nicknamed Smiling Albert or Smiling Kesselring. At least one source claims that Kesselring was born on August 8, 1881 [2... Army Group South (Heeresgruppe Süd in German) was a German Army Group during World War II. Germany used two army groups to invade Poland in 1939: Army Group North and Army Group South. ... Generalfeldmarschall Gerd von Rundstedt Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt (December 12, 1875 - February 24, 1953) was a Field Marshal of the German Army during World War II. He remains known as one of Germanys best generals, as well as for being apolitical throughout his career. ...

Staged from Norway a smaller group of forces consisted of: The German Seventeenth Army (German: 17. ... It is requested that this article, or a section of this article, be expanded. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Insignia of the German First Panzer Army The First Panzer Army (German: ) was a German tank army that fought during World War II. When formed the First Panzer Army was named Panzer Group Kleist (Panzergruppe Kleist) and was activated on November 16, 1940 with Field Marshal Ewald von Kleist in... Von Kleist is a Prussian noble family. ... The German Eleventh Army (German: 11. ... Eugen Ritter von Schobert was a German general who served in World War I and World War II. He was born Eugen Schobert (the Ritter von was due to his later receipt of Bavarias highest military honor) on March 13, 1883 in Würzburg, in the Kingdom of Bavaria... The Italian war in the Soviet Union, 1941-1943, began as part of Italys involvement in Operation Barbarossa, the German invasion of the Soviet Union. ... was a German field army which saw action in World War I and World War II. It is perhaps best known for its involvement in the Battle of Stalingrad. ... Walther von Reichenau (August 16, 1884 - January 17, 1942), German military commander, was the son of a Prussian general and joined the German Army in 1902. ... The Romanian Third Army was a field army that fought as part of the German Army Group B during World War II. It along with the Romanian Fourth Army bore the brunt of the Soviet Operation Uranus which saw the German Sixth Army encircled and destroyed during the Battle of... 4th Territorial Army Corps Insignia The 4th Territorial Army Corps Mareşal Constantin Prezan (Corpul 4 Armată Teritorial Mareşal Constantin Prezan) is a field army in the Romanian Army, with its headquarters in Cluj-Napoca. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Alexander Löhr (May 20, 1885–February 26, 1947) was an Austrian Air Force commander during the 1930s before the Anschluss and, later on, a Luftwaffe Commander during the Second World War. ...

Numerous smaller units from all over Nazi-occupied Europe, like the "Legion of French Volunteers Against Bolshevism" (Légion des Volontaires Français contre le Bolchévisme), supported the German war effort. Armeeoberkommando Norwegen or AOK Norwegen was a formation of the German Army during World War II. It was directly under the command of the German high command, the OKW. Commanders General-Colonel Nikolaus von Falkenhorst Organisation German XXXVI Corps Gebirgskorps Norwegen (Mountain corps) Finnish III Corps Operations AOK Norwegen took... Nikolaus von Falkenhorst, (January 17, 1885 - June 18, 1968), German General that planned the attack on Denmark and Norway in 1940, Weserübung. ... Stumpf may refer to: Bernd Stumpf Bill Stumpf Carl Stumpf Eddie Stumpf Enoch Stumpf Johann Stumpf (writer), a 16th century Swiss writer Johann Stumpf (engineer), a 19th century German engineer Kenneth E. Stumpf, United States Army soldier and Medal of Honor recipient Peter Stumpf (cellist) Stumpf Field at McMinn Park... Occupied Europe or Fortress Europe was the name given to the countries of Europe which were occupied by the military forces of Nazi Germany at various times between 1939 and 1945. ... The Legion of French Volunteers Against Bolshevism (Légion des Volontaires Français contre le Bolchévisme) was an armed force formed in Vichy France to fight the Soviets on the Eastern Front. ...


Composition of the Soviet Forces

At the beginning of the German Reich’s invasion of the Soviet Union on 22 June 1941 the Red Army areas of responsibility in the European USSR were divided into four active Fronts. More Fronts would be formed within the overall responsibility of the three Strategic Directions commands which corresponded approximately to a German Army (Wehrmacht Heer) Army Group (Heeresgruppen) in terms of geographic area of operations. The history of Germany is, in places, extremely complicated and depends much on how one defines Germany. ... is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... For other organizations known as the Red Army, see Red Army (disambiguation). ... A front, in addition to its common dictionary meanings, may specifically refer to: a weather front, a boundary of two airmasses a military front, an area where armies are engaged in conflict a Front (Soviet Army), a major military subdivision of the Soviet Army a front organization or front company... The straight-armed Balkenkreuz, a stylized version of the Iron Cross, the emblem of the Wehrmacht. ... An army group is a military organization (formation) consisting of several armies, and is supposed to be self-sufficient for indefinite periods. ... An army group is a military organization (formation) consisting of several armies, and is supposed to be self-sufficient for indefinite periods. ...


On Zhukov's orders immediately following the invasion[citation needed] the Northern Front was formed from the Leningrad Military District, the North-Western Front from the Baltic Special Military District, the Western Front was formed from the Western Special Military District, and the Soviet Southwestern Front was formed from the Kiev Special Military District. The Southern Front was created on the 25 June 1941 from the Odessa Military District. Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgi Zhukov Georgy Konstantinovich Zhukov (Russian: Гео́ргий Константи́нович Жу́ков) (December 1, 1896 - June 18, 1974), Soviet military commander and politician, considered by many as one of the most successful field commanders of World War II. Prewar career Born into a peasant family in Strelkovka, Kaluga... The Leningrad Military District is a military district of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation. ... The North-Western Front was a military formation of the Red Army during World War II. It was created on June 22, 1941, the first day of the Soviet-German War on the basis of the Baltic Special Military District. ... The Baltic Military District was a military district of the Soviet armed forces, formed briefly before the German invasion, and then reformed after World War II and disbanded after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. ... Western Front was a term used during the First and Second World Wars to describe the contested armed frontier between lands controlled by Germany to the East and the Allies to the West. ... The Southernwestern Front was one of the Soviet Army fronts during the World War II. In 1941 it took part in the tank battles in western Ukraine and the defensive operation around Kiev, in which the Front Chief of Staff General Mikhail Kirponos was killed and the entire Front captured... The Southern Front is a geographical area where armies are engaged in conflict The Soviet Southern Front was one of the Soviet Fronts in WWII. This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... is the 176th day of the year (177th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ...


The first Directions were established on 10 July 1941, with Voroshilov commanding the North-Western Strategic Direction, Timoshenko commanding the Western Strategic Direction, and Budyonny commanding the South-Western Strategic Direction.[37] Marshal of the Soviet Union Kliment Voroshilov Kliment Yefremovich Voroshilov (Климе́нт Ефре́мович Вороши́лов) (January 23, 1881 - December 2, 1969) was a Soviet military commander and politician. ... There are several people called Timoshenko: Semyon Timoshenko Stephen Timoshenko Yulia Timoshenko This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Semyon Budyonny Semyon Mikhailovich Budyonny (also spelled Budennii, Budenny, Budyenny etc, Russian: Семён Михайлович Будённый) ( April 25, 1883 - October 26, 1973) was a Soviet military commander and an ally of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin. ...


The forces of the North-Western Direction were:[38]

  • The Northern Front was commanded by Colonel General Markian Michailovitch Popov bordered Finland and included the 14th Army, 7th Army, and the 23rd Army as well as smaller units subordinate to the Front commander.
  • The North-Western Front was commanded by Colonel General Fyodor Kuznetsov defended the Baltic region and consisted of the 8th Army, 11th Army, and the 27th Army and other front troops(34 divisions).
  • The Northern and Baltic Fleets

The forces of the Western Direction were: Popov or Popoff (masculine) or Popova (feminine) is a common Russian last name. ... The North-Western Front was a military formation of the Red Army during World War II. It was created on June 22, 1941, the first day of the Soviet-German War on the basis of the Baltic Special Military District. ... Fyodor Andreyevich Kuznetsov, physicist, academician, Soviet Union Fyodor Isodorovich Kuznetsov, military, Soviet Union Fyodor Fedotovich Kuznetsov, military, Soviet Union Nikolai Gerasimovich Kuznetsov, Navy, Soviet Union Nikolai Dmitriyevich Kuznetsov, jet plane motor designer, Soviet Union, twice Hero of Socialist Labor Yuri Kuznetsov, geologist, academician, Soviet Union This is a disambiguation page... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Baltic States. ... Red Banner Northern Fleet (Северный флот in Russian, or Severniy flot), a part of the Soviet Navy, created in 1933 for the purpose of defending Soviet territory beyond the Arctic circle (Заполярье, or Zapolyariye). ... Russian Baltic Fleet sleeve ensign The Baltic Fleet (Russian: Балтийский флот, in the Soviet period - The Double Red Banner Baltic Fleet - Дважды Краснознамённый Балтийский флот) is located at the Baltic Sea and headquartered in Kaliningrad, the other major base is at Kronstadt, located in the Gulf of Finland. ...

  • The Western Front was commanded by General Dmitri Grigoryevitch Pavlov had the 3rd Army, 4th Army, 10th Army and the Army Headquarters of the 13th Army which coordinated independent Front formations(45 divisions).[citation needed]
  • The Pinsk Flotilla

The forces of the South-Western Direction consisted of: Pavlov is either Ivan Pavlov, a Russian scientist, or F.P. Pavlov, the nom-de-plume of A.N. Bykov, a Russian engineer and writer the Soviet platoon commander Yakov Pavlov; see Pavlovs House. ...

  • The South-Western Front was commanded by Colonel General Mikhail Petrovitch Kirponos was formed from the 5th Army, 6th Army, 12th Army and the 26th Army as well as a group of units under Strategic Direction command(45 divisions).
  • The Southern Front was commanded by General Ivan Vladimirovitch Tyulenev created on the 25 June 1941 from the 9th Independent Army and the 18th Army with 2nd and 18th Mechanized Corps in support(26 divisions).
  • The Black Sea Fleet

Beside the Armies in the Fronts, there were a further six armies in the Western region of the USSR: 16th Army, 19th Army, 20th Army, 21st Army, 22nd Army and the 24th Army which formed, together with independent units, the Stavka Reserve Group of Armies which was later renamed the Reserve Front nominally under Stalin's direct command. The Southernwestern Front was one of the Soviet Army fronts during the World War II. In 1941 it took part in the tank battles in western Ukraine and the defensive operation around Kiev, in which the Front Chief of Staff General Mikhail Kirponos was killed and the entire Front captured... The Soviet Fifth Red Banner Army was a Soviet field army of World War II, and is today a Russian Ground Forces formation in the Far East Military District. ... The 6th Army, a field army of the Soviet Red Army was formed in August, 1939 in the Kiev Special Military District. ... is the 176th day of the year (177th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... A Mechanized Corps was a Soviet armoured formation used since before the beginning of World War II. // In Soviet Russia, the so-called armored forces (Bronevyye sily) preceded the mechanized corps. ... Black Sea Fleet sleeve ensign The Black Sea Fleet (Russian: Черноморский флот) is a large sub-unit of the Russian (and formerly Soviet) Navy, operating in the Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea since the early 18th century. ... Steppe Front was a Front of the Soviet Army during the Great Patriotic War. ... Iosif (usually anglicized as Joseph) Vissarionovich Stalin (Russian: Иосиф Виссарионович Сталин), original name Ioseb Jughashvili (Georgian: იოსებ ჯუღაშვილი; see Other names section) (December 21, 1879[1] – March 5, 1953) was a Bolshevik revolutionary and leader of the Soviet Union. ...


Opening phase (June 22, 1941 - July 3, 1941)

Main articles: Battle of Białystok-Minsk, Battle of Raseiniai, and Battle of Brody (1941)
German advances during the opening phases of Operation Barbarossa
German advances during the opening phases of Operation Barbarossa

At 3:15 am on June 22, 1941, the Axis attacked. It is difficult to precisely pinpoint the strength of the opposing sides in this initial phase, as most German figures include reserves slated for the East but not yet committed, as well as several other issues of comparability between the German and USSR's figures. A reasonable estimate is that roughly three million Wehrmacht troops went into action on 22 June, and that they were facing slightly fewer Soviet troops in the border Military Districts. The contribution of the German allies would generally only begin to make itself felt later in the campaign. The surprise was complete: Stavka, alarmed by reports that Wehrmacht units approached the border in battle deployment, had at 00:30 AM ordered to warn the border troops that war was imminent, only a small number of units were alerted in time. Combatants Germany Soviet Union Commanders Fedor von Bock Dmitry Pavlov Casualties Unknown 425,000 The Battle of BiaÅ‚ystok-Minsk was one of the border battles during the opening stage of Operation Barbarossa, the German invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... Combatants Germany Soviet Union Commanders Paul Ludwig Ewald von Kleist Colonel-General Mikhail Karpenos Strength 600 Tanks 1,000 Tanks Casualties Heavy All Soviet Tanks Destroyed The Battle of Brody was a major Tank battle fought between the 1st Panzer Army and 5 Soviet Mechanized Corps in Ukraine. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1256x956, 187 KB) Licensing Summary Description: Axis Invasion of the Soviet Union, 22 June to 25 August 1941. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1256x956, 187 KB) Licensing Summary Description: Axis Invasion of the Soviet Union, 22 June to 25 August 1941. ... is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... Black: Zenith of the Axis Powers Capital Not applicable Political structure Military alliance Historical era World War II  - Tripartite Pact September 27, 1940  - Anti-Comintern Pact November 25, 1936  - Pact of Steel May 22, 1939  - Dissolved 1945 This article is about the independent countries (states) that comprised the Axis powers. ... is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Military districts are territorial entities used for the purposes of military planning and strategizing. ... Stavka (Ставка) was the General Headquarters of armed forces in late Imperial Russia and in the Soviet Union. ...


The shock stemmed less from the timing of the attack than from the sheer number of Axis troops who struck into Soviet territory simultaneously. Aside from the roughly 3.2 million German land forces engaged in, or earmarked for the Eastern Campaign, about 500,000 Romanian, Hungarian, Slovakian and Italian troops eventually accompanied the German forces, while the Army of Finland made a major contribution in the north. The 250th Spanish "Blue" Infantry Division was an odd unit, representing neither an Axis or a Waffen-SS volunteer formation, but that of Spanish Nazis and sympathisers. Belligerents Finland Germany Italy1 Soviet Union  United Kingdom2 Commanders C.G.E. Mannerheim Kirill Meretskov Leonid Govorov Strength 530,000 Finns[1] 220,000 Germans 900,000–1,500,000 Soviets[2] Casualties and losses 58,715 dead or missing 158,000 wounded 1,500 civilian deaths[3] 3401 captured... The Blue Division (Spanish División Azul, German: ), or 250. ... Waffen-SS recruitment poster; Volunteer to the Waffen-SS The Waffen-SS was the armed wing of the Schutzstaffel. ...


Reconnaissance units of the Luftwaffe worked at a frantic pace to plot troop concentration, supply dumps, and airfields, and mark them for destruction. The task of the Luftwaffe was to neutralise the Soviet Air Force. This was not achieved in the first days of operations, despite the Soviets having concentrated aircraft in huge groups on the permanent airfields rather than dispersing them on field landing strips, making them ideal targets. The Luftwaffe claimed to have destroyed 1,489 aircraft on the first day of operations.[39] Hermann Göring, Chief of the Luftwaffe distrusted the reports and ordered the figure checked. Picking through the wreckages of Soviet airfields, the Luftwaffe's figures proved conservative, as over 2,000 destroyed Soviet aircraft were found.[40] The Luftwaffe had achieved temporary air superiority over all three sectors of the front, and would maintain it until the close of the year, largely due to the need by the Red Army Air Forces to manoeuvre in support of retreating ground troops. The Luftwaffe would now be able to devote large numbers of its Geschwader (See Luftwaffe Organization) to support the ground forces. The Soviet Air Force, also known under the abbreviation VVS, transliterated from Russian: ВВС, Военно-воздушные силы (Voenno-Vozdushnye Sily), formed the official designation of the air force of the Soviet Union. ...   (January 12, 1893 – October 15, 1946) was a German politician and military leader, a leading member of the Nazi Party, second in command of the Third Reich, designated successor to Adolf Hitler, and commander of the Luftwaffe (German Air Force). ... The German Luftwaffe of World War 2 had a distinct pattern of organization. ...


Army Group North

Opposite Heersgruppe Nord were two Soviet armies. The Wehrmacht OKH thrust the 4th Panzer Group, with a strength of 600 tanks, at the junction of the two Soviet armies in that sector. The 4th Panzer Group's objective was to cross the River Neman and River Dvina which were the two largest obstacles in the direction of advance towards Leningrad. On the first day, the tanks crossed the River Neman and penetrated 50 miles (80 km). Near Rasienai, the tanks were counterattacked by 300 Soviet tanks. It took four days for the Germans to encircle and destroy the Soviet armour. The Panzer Goups then crossed the River Dvina near Daugavpils. The Germans were now within striking distance of Leningrad. However, due to their deteriorated supply situation, Hitler ordered the Panzer Groups to hold their position while the infantry formations caught up. The orders to hold would last over a week, giving time for the Soviets to build up a defence around Leningrad and along the bank of River Luga. Army Group North (Heeresgruppe Nord in German) was a high level command grouping of military units operating for Germany during World War II. The army group coordinated the operations of attached army corps, reserve formations, and direct-reporting units. ... Two rivers are referred to as Dvina: Western Dvina (also known as Daugava) Northern Dvina This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Leningrad (Russian: Ленинград) may mean: St. ... Daugavpils (Belarusian Дзьвінск Dźvinsk, Russian Двинcк Dvinsk, Lithuanian Daugpilis, German Dünaburg, Polish Dźwinów, DźwiÅ„sk or Dyneburg, Yiddish דענענבורג Denenburg), population 115,265 in 2000 census) is the second largest city in Latvia. ... , Luga (Russian: ; Finnish: ; Votic: Laugaz) is a town in Leningrad Oblast, Russia, located on the Luga River 140 kilometers (87 mi) south of St. ...


Army Group Centre

Opposite Heersgruppe Mitte were four Soviet armies: the 3rd, 4th, 10th and 11th Armies. The Soviet Armies occupied a salient which jutted into German occupied Polish territory with the Soviet salient's center at Bialystok. Beyond Bialystok was Minsk, both the capital of Belorussia and a key railway junction. The goals of the AG Center's two Panzer Groups was to meet at Minsk, denying an escape route to the Red Army from the salient. The 3rd Panzer Group broke through the junction of two Soviet Fronts in the North of the salient, and crossed the River Neman while the 2nd Panzer Group crossed the River Bug in the South. While the Panzer Groups attacked, the Wehrmacht Army Group Centre infantry Armies struck at the salient, eventually encircling Soviet troops at Bialystok. Army Group Centre (Heeresgruppe Mitte in German) was created on 22 June 1941 when Army Group B was renamed Army Group Centre. ... In military terms, a salient is a battlefield feature that projects into enemy territory. ... Białystok (pronounce: [bȋa:wistɔk]) (Belarusian: Беласток, Lithuanian: Balstogė) is the largest city (pop. ... Location of Minsk, shown within the Minsk Voblast Coordinates: Country Subdivision Belarus Minsk Founded 1067 Government  - Mayor Mikhail Pavlov Area  - City 305. ... Belarus (Belarusian: Белару́сь, Russian: Белару́сь (formerly: Белору́ссия)) is a landlocked nation of Eastern Europe with the capital Minsk. ... A myriad of tracks at Clapham Junction, in London, England A junction, in the context of rail transport, is a point at which a branch line or separate route diverges from the main line. ... The Neman (Belarusian: ; Lithuanian: ; Russian: ; Polish: ; German: ) is a major Eastern European river rising in Belarus and flowing through Lithuania before draining into the Baltic Sea near KlaipÄ—da. ... Bug (pronunciation Boog) is the name of two rivers in Europe: Western Bug Southern Bug See also Bug (disambiguation) - other kinds of bugs This is a disambiguation page — a list of pages that otherwise might share the same title. ...


Moscow at first failed to grasp the dimensions of the catastrophe that had befallen the USSR. Marshall Timoshenko ordered all Soviet forces to launch a general counter-offensive, but with supply and ammunition dumps destroyed, and a complete collapse of communication, the uncoordinated attacks failed. Zhukov signed the infamous Directive of People's Commissariat of Defence No. 3 (he later claimed under pressure from Stalin), which demanded that the Red Army start an offensive: he commanded the troops “to encircle and destroy the enemy grouping near Suwałki and to seize the Suwałki region by the evening of June 26" and “to encircle and destroy the enemy grouping invading in Vladimir-Volynia and Brody direction” and even “to seize the Lublin region by the evening of 24.6”[41] This manoeuvre failed and disorganised Red Army units, which were soon destroyed by the Wehrmacht forces. Further complicating the Soviet position, on 22 June the anti-Soviet June Uprising in Lithuania began, and on the next day an independent Lithuania was proclaimed.[42] An estimated 30,000 Lithuanian rebels engaged Soviet forces, joined by ethnic Lithuanians from the Red Army. As the Germans reached further north, armed resistance against the Soviets broke out in Estonia as well.[citation needed] Marshal of the Soviet Union Semyon Timoshenko Semyon Konstantinovich Timoshenko (Russian: Семён Константинович Тимошенко) (February 6, 1895-March 31, 1970), Soviet military commander, was the senior professional officer of the Red Army at the beginning of the German invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941. ... For other organizations known as the Red Army, see Red Army (disambiguation). ... Motto: none Voivodship Podlaskie Municipal government Rada miejska w SuwaÅ‚kach Mayor Józef Gajewski Area 65. ... Panorama of Lublin form Trynitarska Tower Coordinates: , Country Voivodeship Powiat city county Gmina Lublin Established before 12th century City Rights 1317 Government  - Mayor Adam Wasilewski Area  - City 147. ... The Lithuanian 1941 independence was the short period of Lithuanian independence in 1941, between the first Soviet occupation, and the immediately following Nazi occupation. ...


On June 27, 2nd and 3rd Panzer Groups met up at Minsk advancing 200 miles (300 km) into Soviet territory and a third of the way to Moscow. In the vast pocket between Minsk and the Polish border, the remnants of 32 Soviet Rifle, eight tank, and motorized, cavalry and artillery divisions were encircled. is the 178th day of the year (179th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


Army Group South

Opposite Army Group South in Ukraine Soviet commanders had reacted quickly to the German attack. From the start, the invaders faced a determined resistance. Opposite the Germans in Ukraine were three Soviet armies, the 5th, 6th and 26th. The German infantry Armies struck at the junctions of these armies while The 1st Panzer Group drove its armored spearhead of 600 Tanks right through the Soviet 6th Army with the objective of capturing Brody. On June 26 five Soviet mechanized corps with over 1,000 tanks mounted a massive counter-attack on the 1st Panzer Group. The battle was among the fiercest of the invasion lasting over four days; in the end the Germans prevailed, though the Soviets inflicted heavy losses on the 1st Panzer Group. Army Group South (Heeresgruppe Süd in German) was a German Army Group during World War II. Germany used two army groups to invade Poland in 1939: Army Group North and Army Group South. ... Combatants Germany Soviet Union Commanders Paul Ludwig Ewald von Kleist Colonel-General Mikhail Karpenos Strength 600 Tanks 1,000 Tanks Casualties Heavy All Soviet Tanks Destroyed The Battle of Brody was a major Tank battle fought between the 1st Panzer Army and 5 Soviet Mechanized Corps in Ukraine. ... is the 177th day of the year (178th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A Mechanized Corps was a Soviet armoured formation used since before the beginning of World War II. // In Soviet Russia, the so-called armored forces (Bronevyye sily) preceded the mechanized corps. ...


With the failure of the Soviet counter-offensives, the last substantial Soviet tank forces in Western Ukraine had been committed, and the Red Army assumed a defensive posture, focusing on conducting a strategic withdrawal under severe pressure. By the end of the first week, all three German Army Groups had achieved major Campaign objectives. However, in the vast pocket around Minsk and Bialystok, the Soviets were still fighting; reducing the pocket was causing high German casualties and many Red Army troops were also managing to escape. On the final reduction of the encirclement, 290,000 Red Army troops were captured, with 1,500 guns and 2,500 tanks destroyed, but 250,000 Red Army troops managed to escape. Location of Minsk, shown within the Minsk Voblast Coordinates: Country Subdivision Belarus Minsk Founded 1067 Government  - Mayor Mikhail Pavlov Area  - City 305. ...


Middle phase (July 3, 1941 - October 2, 1941)

German advances during Operation Barbarossa, 1941-06-22 to 1941-09-09.
German advances during Operation Barbarossa, 1941-06-22 to 1941-09-09.

On July 3rd, Hitler finally gave the go-ahead for the Panzers to resume their drive east after the infantry divisions had caught up. However, a rainstorm typical of Russian summers slowed their progress and Russian defenses also stiffened. The delays gave the Soviets time to organize for a massive counterattack against Army Group Center. The ultimate objective of Army Group Center was the city of Smolensk, which commanded the road to Moscow. Facing the Germans was an old Soviet defensive line held by six armies. On July 6th, the Soviets launched an attack with 700 tanks against the 3rd Panzer Army. The Germans defeated this counterattack using their overwhelming air superiority. The 2nd Panzer Army crossed the River Dnieper and closed on Smolensk from the south while the 3rd Panzer Army, after defeating the Soviet counter attack, closed in Smolensk from the north. Trapped between their pincers were three Soviet armies. On July 26th, the Panzer Groups closed the gap and 180,000 Red Army troops were captured.[43] The eastern front at the time of the Battle of Smolensk. ... The eastern front at the time of the Battle of Uman. ... Combatants Germany Soviet Union Commanders Gerd von Rundstedt Semyon Budyonny (Removed from duty on Sept. ... Download high resolution version (1201x920, 228 KB)German advances on the Eastern Front of World War II during Operation Barbarossa, 1941-06-22 to 1941-09-09. ... Download high resolution version (1201x920, 228 KB)German advances on the Eastern Front of World War II during Operation Barbarossa, 1941-06-22 to 1941-09-09. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... is the 252nd day of the year (253rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A view of Smolensk in 1912. ...


Four weeks into the campaign, the Germans realized they had grossly underestimated the strength of the Soviets. The German troops had run out of their initial supplies but still not attained the expected strategic freedom of movement. Operations were now slowed down to allow for a resupply; the delay was to be used to adapt the strategy to the new situation. Hitler had lost faith in battles of encirclement as large numbers of Soviet soldiers had continued to escape them and now believed he could defeat the Soviets by inflicting severe economic damage, depriving them from the industrial capacity to continue the war.[citation needed] That meant the seizure of the industrial center of Charkov, the Donets Basin and the oil fields of the Caucasus in the south and a speedy capture of Leningrad, a major center of military production, in the north. Hitler then issued an order to send Army Group Center's tanks to the north and south, temporarily halting the drive to Moscow. Location Map of Ukraine with Kharkiv highlighted. ... Donets Basin also known as Donbass or Donbas ( Russian: Донбасс from Donetskiy bassein) is a historical, economic and cultural region of Ukraine. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Caucasus Mountains. ...


The German generals vehemently opposed the plan as the bulk of the Red Army was deployed near Moscow and an attack there would have a chance of winning the war — also because it was a crucial railway center — but Hitler was adamant and the tanks were diverted. By mid-July below the Pinsk Marshes, the Germans had come within a few miles of Kiev. The 1st Panzer Army then went south while the German 17th Army struck east and in between the Germans trapped three Soviet armies near Uman. As the Germans eliminated the pocket, the tanks turned north and crossed the Dnieper. Meanwhile, the 2nd Panzer Army, diverted from Army Group Center, had crossed the River Desna with 2nd Army on its right flank. The two Panzer armies now trapped four Soviet armies and parts of two others. For other uses, see Moscow (disambiguation). ... poop poop poopy poo poop poopy poo poop Categories: | | | ... Map of Ukraine with Kiev highlighted Coordinates: , Country Ukraine Oblast Kiev City Municipality Raion Municipality Government  - Mayor Leonid Chernovetskyi Elevation 179 m (587 ft) Population (2006)  - City 4,450,968  - Density 3,299/km² (8,544. ...


For its final attack on Leningrad, the 4th Panzer Army was reinforced by tanks from Army Group Center. On August 8 the Panzers broke through the Soviet defenses and the German 16th Army attacked to the northeast, the 18th Army cleared Estonia and advanced to Lake Peipus. By the end of August, 4th Panzer Army had penetrated to within 30 miles (50 km) of Leningrad. The Finns had pushed southeast on both sides of Lake Ladoga reaching the old Finnish-Soviet frontier. is the 220th day of the year (221st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


At this stage Hitler ordered the final destruction of Leningrad with no prisoners taken, and on September 9 Army Group North began the final push which within ten days brought it within seven miles (11 km) of the city. However, the pace of advance over the last ten kilometers proved very slow and the casualties mounted. At this stage Hitler lost patience and ordered that Leningrad should not be stormed but starved into submission. He needed the tanks of Army Group North transferred to Army Group Center for an all-out drive to Moscow. is the 252nd day of the year (253rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


Before the attack on Moscow could begin, operations in Kiev needed to be finished. Half of Army Group Center had swung to the south in the back of the Kiev position, while Army Group South moved to the north from its Dniepr bridgehead. The encirclement of Soviet Forces in Kiev was achieved on September 16th. The encircled Soviets did not give up easily, and a savage battle ensued in which the Soviets were hammered with tanks, artillery and aerial bombardment. In the end, after ten days of vicious fighting, the Germans claimed over 600,000 Soviet soldiers captured but that was false, the German did capture 600,000 males between the ages of 15-70 but only 480,000 were soldiers out of which 180,000 broke out netting the Axis 300,000 Prisoners of war. Geneva Convention definition A prisoner of war (POW) is a soldier, sailor, airman, or marine who is imprisoned by an enemy power during or immediately after an armed conflict. ...


Final phase (October 2, 1941 - January 7, 1942)

Main article: Battle of Moscow
The eastern front at the time of the Battle of Moscow:      Initial Wehrmacht advance - to 9 July 1941      Subsequent advances - to 1 September 1941      Encirclement and battle of Kiev - to 9 September 1941      Final Wehrmacht advance - to 5 December 1941

After Kiev, the Red Army no longer outnumbered the Germans and there were no more directly available trained reserves. To defend Moscow, Stalin could field 800,000 men in 83 divisions, but no more than 25 divisions were fully effective. Operation Typhoon, the drive to Moscow, began on October 2nd. In front of Army Group Center was a series of elaborate defense lines, the first centered on Vyazma and the second on Mozhaisk. Combatants Nazi Germany Soviet Union Commanders Fedor von Bock, Heinz Guderian Georgy Zhukov, Aleksandr Vasilevsky Strength As of October 1: 1,000,000 men, 1,700 tanks, 14,000 guns, 950 planes[1] As of October 1: 1,250,000 men, 1,000 tanks, 7,600 guns, 677 planes[2... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1201x920, 255 KB) from en. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1201x920, 255 KB) from en. ... is the 190th day of the year (191st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... is the 252nd day of the year (253rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... is the 339th day of the year (340th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... The eastern front at the time of Operation Typhoon. ...


The first blow took the Soviets completely by surprise as 2nd Panzer Army returning from the south took Orel which was 75 miles (121 km) south of the Soviet first main defence line. Three days later the Panzers pushed on Bryansk while 2nd Army attacked from the west. Three Soviet armies were now encircled. To the north, the 3rd and 4th Panzer Armies attacked Vyazma, trapping another five Soviet armies. Moscow's first line of defence had been shattered. The pocket yielded 663,000 Soviet prisoners, bringing the tally since the start of the invasion to three million Soviet soldiers captured. The Soviets had only 90,000 men and 150 tanks left for the defense of Moscow. Orel or Oryol (Орёл) is a city in Russia, administrative center of the Oryol Oblast. ... Historic coat of arms of Bryansk (1781). ... Vyazma (Russian: ) is a town in Smolensk Oblast, Russia, located on the Vyazma River, about halfway between Smolensk and Mozhaysk, at , . Throughout its turbulent history, the city defended western approaches to the city of Moscow. ...


On October 13 3rd Panzer Army penetrated to within 90 miles (140 km) of the capital. Martial law was declared in Moscow. Almost from the beginning of Operation Typhoon the weather had deteriorated. Temperatures fell while there was a continued rainfall, turning the unmetalled road network into mud and steadily slowing the German advance on Moscow to as little as two miles (3 km) a day. The supply situation rapidly deteriorated. On October 31 the Germany Army High Command ordered a halt to Operation Typhoon while the armies were re-organized. The pause gave the Soviets, who were in a far better supply situation due to the use of their rail network, time to reinforce, and in little over a month the Soviets organized eleven new armies which included 30 divisions of Siberian troops[citation needed]. These had been freed from the Soviet far east as Soviet intelligence had assured Stalin there was no longer a threat from the Japanese. With the Siberian forces would come over 1,000 tanks and 1,000 aircraft.[citation needed] is the 286th day of the year (287th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 304th day of the year (305th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Dr Sorge aka Ramsay Richard Sorge (Russian: Рихард Зорге) (October 4, 1895 - November 7, 1944) is considered to have been one of the best Soviet spies in Japan before and during World War II, which has gained him fame among spies, and espionage enthusiasts. ...


The Germans were nearing exhaustion, they also began to recall Napoleon's invasion of Russia. General Günther Blumentritt noted in his diary: Kazan Cathedral in St Petersburg and the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow were built to commemorate the Russian victory against Napoleon. ... This does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Günther Blumentritt (February 10, 1897-October 12, 1967) was a German general. ...

They remembered what happened to Napoleon's Army. Most of them began to re-read Caulaincourt's grim account of 1812. That had a weighty influence at this critical time in 1941. I can still see Von Kluge trudging through the mud from his sleeping quarters to his office and standing before the map with Caulaincourt's book in his hand.[44] Armand Augustin Louis de Caulaincourt (December 9, 1773 – February 19, 1827) French general and diplomat, was born of a noble family. ...

On November 15 with the ground hardening due to the cold weather, the Germans once again began the attack on Moscow. Although the troops themselves were now able to advance again, there had been no delay allowed to improve the supply situation. Facing the Germans were six Soviet armies. The Germans intended to let 3rd and 4th Panzer Armies cross the Moscow Canal and envelop Moscow from the northeast. 2nd Panzer Army would attack Tula and then close in on Moscow from the south. As the Soviets reacted to the flanks, 4th Army would attack the center. In two weeks of desperate fighting, lacking sufficient fuel and ammunition, the Germans slowly crept towards Moscow. However, in the south, 2nd Panzer Army was being blocked. On November 22 Soviet Siberian units attacked the 2nd Panzer Army and inflicted a defeat on the Germans. However, 4th Panzer Army succeeded in crossing the Moscow canal and began the encirclement. is the 319th day of the year (320th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Moscow Canal (Russian: Канал имени Москвы; former name - Moscow-Volga Canal (until 1947)) is a canal that connects the Moskva River with the main transportation artery of European Russia - the Volga. ... Places named Tula include: Tula, Tula Oblast, Russia Tula, Hidalgo, Mexico Tula, Tamaulipas, Mexico Tula, Mississippi, USA Tula, Sardinia, Italy Tula, Kenya Other uses: Tula is the professional name of transsexual model/actress Caroline Cossey. ... is the 326th day of the year (327th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


On December 2 the 4th Panzer Army had penetrated to within 15 miles (24 km) of Moscow, but by then the first blizzards of the winter began. The Wehrmacht was not equipped for winter warfare. Frostbite and disease caused more casualties than combat, and dead and wounded had already reached 155,000 in three weeks. Some divisions were now at fifty percent strength. The bitter cold also caused severe problems for their guns and equipment, and weather conditions grounded the Luftwaffe. Newly built up Soviet units near Moscow now numbered over 500,000 men and on December 5 they launched a massive counterattack which pushed the Germans back over 200 miles. The invasion of the USSR would cost the German Army over 250,000 dead and 500,000 wounded, the majority of whom became casualties after 1 October and an unknown number of Axis casualties such as Hungarians, Romanians and Waffen SS troops as well as co-belligerent Finns. is the 336th day of the year (337th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... The Deutsche Luftwaffe or   (German: air force, IPA: ) is the commonly used term for the German air force. ... is the 339th day of the year (340th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 274th day of the year (275th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


Later events

It is sometimes argued that the fatal decision of the operation was the postponement from the original date of May 15 because Hitler wanted to intervene against an anti-German coup in Yugoslavia and Greek advances against Mussolini's occupation of Albania. However, this was just one of the reasons for the postponement — the other was the late spring of 1941 in Russia, compounded by particularly rainy weather during June 1941 which made a number of roads in western parts of the Soviet Union impassable to heavy vehicles. During the campaign, Hitler ordered the main thrust toward Moscow to be diverted southward in order to help the southern army group capture Ukraine. This move delayed the assault on the Soviet capital, although it also helped to secure Army Group Center's southern flank. By the time they turned their sights on Moscow, the fierce resistance of the Red Army, assisted by the mud following the autumn rains and eventually the winter snowfall, brought their advance to a halt. is the 135th day of the year (136th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Yugoslavia (Jugoslavija in the Latin alphabet, Југославија in Cyrillic; English: South Slavia, or literary The Land of South Slavs) describes three political entities that existed one at a time on the Balkan Peninsula in Europe, during most of the 20th century. ... Benito Mussolini created a fascist state through the use of propaganda, total control of the media and disassembly of the working democratic government. ...


In addition, resistance by the Soviets, who proclaimed a Great Patriotic War in defence of the motherland, was much fiercer than the German command had expected. The border fortress of Brest, Belarus illustrates that tenacity: attacked on the very first day of the German invasion, the fortress was expected to be captured by surprise within hours, but held out for weeks (Soviet propaganda later asserted that it held out for six weeks).[45] German logistics also became a major problem, as supply lines became very long and vulnerable to Soviet partisan attacks in the rear. The Soviets carried out a scorched earth policy on some of the land they were forced to abandon in order to deny the Germans the use of food, fuel, and buildings. The Eastern Front1 was the theatre of combat between Nazi Germany and its allies against the Soviet Union during World War II. It was somewhat separate from the other theatres of the war, not only geographically, but also for its scale and ferocity. ... Brest (Belarusian: , Russian: , Polish: ; Alternative names), formerly Brest-on-the-Bug and Brest-Litovsk, is a city (population 290,000 in 2004) in Belarus close to the Polish border where the Western Bug and Mukhavets Rivers meet. ... Look up Logistics in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Belorussian guerrillas liquidated, injured and took prisoner some 1. ...


Despite the setbacks, the Germans continued to advance, often destroying or surrounding whole armies of Soviet troops and forcing them to surrender. The battle for Kiev was especially brutal. On September 19, Army Group South seized control of Kiev, and took 665,000 Soviets prisoner. Kiev was later awarded the title Hero City for its heroic defence. Map of Ukraine with Kiev highlighted Coordinates: , Country Ukraine Oblast Kiev City Municipality Raion Municipality Government  - Mayor Leonid Chernovetskyi Elevation 179 m (587 ft) Population (2006)  - City 4,450,968  - Density 3,299/km² (8,544. ... is the 262nd day of the year (263rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Hero City (город-герой or gorod-geroy in Russian) is an honorary title awarded to twelve cities and one city-fortress in the Soviet Union for outstanding heroism during the Great Patriotic War of 1941 to 1945. ...


Army Group North, which was to conquer the Baltic countries and eventually Leningrad, advanced as far as the southern outskirts of Leningrad by August 1941. There, fierce Soviet resistance stopped it. Since capturing the city seemed too costly, German command decided to starve the city to death by a blockade, starting the Siege of Leningrad. The city held out, despite several attempts by the Germans to break through its defenses, unrelenting air and artillery attacks, and severe shortages of food and fuel, until the Germans were driven back again from the city's approaches in early 1944. Leningrad was the first Soviet city to receive the title of 'Hero City'. The three Baltic states: Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania The terms Baltic countries, Baltic Sea countries, Baltic states, and Balticum refer to slightly different combinations of countries in the general area surrounding the Baltic Sea. ... Saint Petersburg (Russian: Санкт-Петербу́рг, English transliteration: Sankt-Peterburg), colloquially known as Питер (transliterated Piter), formerly known as Leningrad (Ленингра́д, 1924–1991) and Petrograd (Петрогра́д, 1914–1924), is a city located in Northwestern Russia on the delta of the river Neva at the east end of the Gulf of Finland... Belligerents Nazi Germany Finland[1][2][3] Soviet Union Commanders Wilhelm von Leeb Georg von Küchler Carl Gustaf Mannerheim[4][5][6] Kliment Voroshilov Georgiy Zhukov Leonid Govorov Strength 725,000 930,000 Casualties and losses Wehrmacht (est. ... Hero City (город-герой or gorod-geroy in Russian) is an honorary title awarded to twelve cities and one city-fortress in the Soviet Union for outstanding heroism during the Great Patriotic War of 1941 to 1945. ...


In addition to the main attacks of Barbarossa, German forces occupied Finnish Petsamo in order to secure important nickel mines. They also launched the beginning of a series of attacks against Murmansk on June 28, 1941. That assault was known as Operation Silberfuchs. is the 179th day of the year (180th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... Operation Silberfuchs (Silver Fox) was a German operation during World War II. Its main goal was the capture of the Soviet port at Murmansk through attacks from Finnish territory. ...


Causes of initial Soviet defeats

The Red army and air force were so badly defeated in 1941 chiefly because they were ill-prepared for the surprise attack by the armed forces of the Axis, which by 1941 were the most experienced and best-trained in the world. The Axis had a doctrine of mobility and annihilation, excellent communications, and the confidence that comes from repeated low-cost victories. The Soviet armed forces, by contrast, lacked leadership, training, and readiness. Much of Soviet planning assumed that no war would take place before 1942: thus the Axis attack came at a time when new organizations and promising, but untested, weapons were just beginning to trickle into operational units. And much of the Soviet Army in Europe was concentrated along the new western border of the Soviet Union, in former Polish territory which lacked significant defences, allowing many Soviet military units to be overrun and destroyed in the first weeks of war. Initially, many Soviet units were also hampered by Semyon Timoshenko's and Georgy Zhukov's prewar orders (demanded by Stalin) not to engage or to respond to provocations (followed by a similarly damaging first reaction from Moscow, an order to stand and fight, then counterattack; this left those military units vulnerable to German encirclements), by a lack of experienced officers, and by bureaucratic inertia. Marshal of the Soviet Union Semyon Timoshenko Semyon Konstantinovich Timoshenko (Russian: Семён Константинович Тимошенко) (February 6 O.S (February 18 N.S.), 1895-March 31, 1970), Soviet military commander, was the senior professional officer of the Red Army at the beginning of the German invasion of the Soviet Union in... Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgy Zhukov Georgy Konstantinovich Zhukov, GCB (Russian: ) (December 1, 1896 [O.S. November 19]–June 18, 1974), was a Soviet military commander who, in the course of World War II, led the Red Army to liberate the Soviet Union from the Nazi occupation, to overrun... Iosif (usually anglicized as Joseph) Vissarionovich Stalin (Russian: Иосиф Виссарионович Сталин), original name Ioseb Jughashvili (Georgian: იოსებ ჯუღაშვილი; see Other names section) (December 21, 1879[1] – March 5, 1953) was a Bolshevik revolutionary and leader of the Soviet Union. ...


The initial tactical errors of the Soviets in the first few weeks of the Axis offensive proved catastrophic. Initially, the Red Army was fooled by a complete overestimation of its own capabilities. Instead of intercepting German armour, Soviet mechanised corps were ambushed and destroyed after Luftwaffe dive bombers inflicted heavy losses. Soviet tanks, poorly maintained and manned by inexperienced crews, suffered from an appalling rate of breakdowns. Lacks of spare parts and of trucks ensured a logistical collapse. The decision not to dig in the infantry divisions proved disastrous. Without tanks or sufficient motorisation, Soviet troops were incapable of waging mobile warfare against the Germans and their allies. The Deutsche Luftwaffe or   (German: air force, IPA: ) is the commonly used term for the German air force. ...


Stalin's orders to his troops not to retreat or surrender resulted in a return to static linear positions which German tanks easily breached, again quickly cutting supply lines and surrounding whole Soviet armies. Only later did Stalin allow his troops to retreat to the rear wherever possible and regroup, to mount a defence in depth or to counterattack. More than 2.4 million Soviet troops had been taken prisoner by December, 1941, by which time German and Soviet forces were fighting almost in the suburbs of Moscow. Most of these captured Soviet troops were to die from exposure, starvation, disease, or willful mistreatment by the German regime.


Despite the failure of the Axis to achieve Barbarossa's initial goals, the huge Soviet losses caused a shift in Soviet propaganda. Before the onset of hostilities against Germany, the Soviet government had stated that its army was very strong. But, by the autumn of 1941, the Soviet line was that the Red Army had been weak, that there had not been enough time to prepare for war, and that the German attack had come as a surprise.


Viktor Suvorov gives an alternative explanation in his Icebreaker. The larger and better equipped Soviet armed forces, according to Suvorov, were preparing their own surprise offensive against Axis forces, targeting especially their oil supplies in Romania: Suvorov's sources suggest that July 6, 1941 -- two weeks later than the actual German invasion -- had been set as the start of Soviet Operation "Thunderstorm".[46] Russian historian Boris Sokolov, exploring pre-war Soviet planning, also concluded that after the German invasion on June 22, 1941, the Red Army undertook counterattacks within the framework of the planned offensive and that the subsequent defensive operations of the Soviet Army, in view of the absence of pre-war defensive plans, were merely improvised:[47] hence the initial gigantic defeats. Viktor Suvorov (; real name Vladimir Rezun : ) (born April 20, 1947) is a Russian writer and historian. ... Icebreaker: Who Started the Second World War?, by Viktor Suvorov (Russian title: Ledokol, Ледокол) is a documentary book, which alleges that the World War II started as a result of Joseph Stalins ploy to liberate the working class of Europe and eventually the whole world. ... Boris Sokolov (Russian: Борис Вадимович Соколов) is a historian and researcher of Russian literature (has Candidate of Science degree in both fields). ...


Outcome

The climax of Operation Barbarossa came when Army Group Centre, already short on supplies because of the October mud, was ordered to advance on Moscow; forward units came within sight of the spires of the Kremlin in early December 1941. Soviet troops, well supplied and reinforced by fresh divisions from Siberia, defended Moscow in the Battle of Moscow, and drove the Germans back as the winter advanced. The bulk of the counter-offensive was directed at Army Group Center, which was closest to Moscow. Army Group Centre (Heeresgruppe Mitte in German) was created on 22 June 1941 when Army Group B was renamed Army Group Centre. ... The Moscow Kremlin The Moscow Kremlin ( Russian: Московский Кремль) is the best known kremlin ( Russian citadel). ... Combatants Soviet Union Mongolian Peoples Republic Empire of Japan Manchukuo Commanders Georgy Zhukov Michitaro Komatsubara Strength 57,000 30,000 (initially), 60,000 (as positions reinforced) Casualties Archival research 7,974 killed, 15,251 wounded[1] Japanese government claim 8,440 killed, 8,766 wounded Soviet claim 60,000... Combatants Nazi Germany Soviet Union Commanders Fedor von Bock, Heinz Guderian Georgy Zhukov, Aleksandr Vasilevsky Strength As of October 1: 1,000,000 men, 1,700 tanks, 14,000 guns, 950 planes[1] As of October 1: 1,250,000 men, 1,000 tanks, 7,600 guns, 677 planes[2...


With no shelter, few supplies, inadequate winter clothing, chronic food shortages, and nowhere to go, German troops had no choice but to wait out the winter in the frozen wasteland. The Germans managed to avoid being routed by Soviet counterattacks but suffered heavy casualties from battle and exposure.


At the time, the seizure of Moscow was considered the key to victory for Germany. Historians currently debate whether or not loss of the Soviet capital would have caused the collapse of the Soviet Union, but Operation Barbarossa failed to achieve that goal. In December 1941, Germany joined Japan in declaring war against the United States. Within six months from the start of Operation Barbarossa, the strategic position of Germany had become desperate, since German military industries were unprepared for a long war.


The outcome of Operation Barbarossa was at least as detrimental to the Soviets as it was to the Germans, however. Although the Germans had failed to take Moscow outright, they held huge areas of the western Soviet Union, including the entire regions of what are now Belarus, Ukraine, and the Baltic states, plus parts of Russia proper west of Moscow. The Germans held up to 500,000 square miles (1,300,000 km²) of territory with over 75 million people at the end of 1941, and would go on to seize another 250,000 square miles (650,000 km²) before being forced to retreat after defeats at Stalingrad and Kursk. However, the occupied areas were not always properly controlled by the Germans and underground activity rapidly escalated. Wehrmacht occupation had been brutal from the start, due to directives issued by Hitler himself at the start of the operation, according to which Slavic peoples were considered an inferior race of untermenschen. This attitude immediately alienated much of the population from the Nazis, while in some areas at least (for example, Ukraine) it seems that some local people had been ready to consider the Germans as liberators helping them to get rid of Stalin. Anti-German partisan operations intensified when the Russian army units which had dissolved into the country's large uninhabited areas re-emerged as underground forces, which intensified under the repressive policies of the German armies. The Germans held on as stubbornly as possible in the face of Soviet counterattacks, resulting in huge casualties on both sides in many battles. Distribution of Slavic people by language The Slavic peoples are a linguistic and ethnic branch of Indo-European peoples, living mainly in Europe, where they constitute roughly a third of the population. ... Untermensch (German: subhuman) is a term from Nazi racial ideology. ...


The war on the Eastern Front went on for four years. The death toll may never be established with any degree of certainty. The most recent western estimate of Soviet military deaths is 7 million that lost their lives either in combat or in Axis captivity. Soviet civilian deaths remain under contention, though roughly 20 million is a frequently cited figure. German military deaths are also not clarified to a large extent. The most recent German estimate (Rüdiger Overmans) concluded that about 4.3 million Germans and a further 900,000 Axis forces lost their lives either in combat or in Soviet captivity. Operation Barbarossa is listed among the most lethal battles in world history. The Eastern Front was the theatre of combat between Nazi Germany and its allies against the Soviet Union during World War II. It was somewhat separate from the other theatres of the war, not only geographically, but also for its scale and ferocity. ... The following is a list of the most lethal battles in world history. ...


The Soviet Union had not signed the Geneva Convention (1929). However, a month after the German invasion in 1942, an offer was made for a reciprocal adherence to the Hague convention. This 'note' was left unanswered by Third Reich officials.[48] Wikisource has original text related to this article: Geneva Convention (1929) The Geneva Convention (1929) was signed at Geneva, July 27, 1929. ... The Hague Conventions were international treaties negotiated at the First and Second Peace Conferences at The Hague, Netherlands in 1899 and 1907, respectively, and were, along with the Geneva Conventions, among the first formal statements of the laws of war and war crimes in the nascent body of secular international...


Causes of the failure of Operation Barbarossa

The grave situation in which the beleaguered German army found itself towards the end of 1941 was due to the increasing strength of the Red Army, compounded by a number of factors which in the short run severely restricted the effectiveness of the German forces. Chief among these were their overstretched deployment, a serious transport crisis affecting supply and movement and the eroded strength of most divisions. The infantry deficit that appeared by 1 September 1941 was never made good. For the rest of the war in the Soviet Union, the Wehrmacht would be short of infantry and support services. is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ...


Parallels have been drawn with Napoleon's invasion of Russia. Kazan Cathedral in St Petersburg and the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow were built to commemorate the Russian victory against Napoleon. ...


Underestimated Soviet potential

German war planners grossly underestimated the mobilisation potential of the Red Army: its primary mobilisation size (i.e. the total of already trained units that could be put on a war-footing in short time) was about twice as large as they had expected. By early August, new armies had taken the place of the destroyed ones. This fact alone implied the failure of Operation Barbarossa, for the Germans now had to limit their operations for a month to bring up new supplies, leaving only six weeks to complete the battle before the start of the mud season, an impossible task. On the other hand, the Red Army proved capable of replacing its huge losses in a timely fashion, and was not destroyed as a coherent force. When the divisions consisting of conscripts trained before the war were destroyed, they were replaced by new ones, on average about half a million men being drafted each month for the duration of the war. The Soviets also proved very skilled in raising and training many new armies from the different ethnic populations of the far flung republics. It was this Soviet ability to mobilise vast (if often badly trained and equipped) forces within a short time and on a continual basis which allowed the Soviet Union to survive the critical first six months of the war, and the grave underestimation of this capacity which rendered German planning unrealistic. For other organizations known as the Red Army, see Red Army (disambiguation). ...


In addition, data collected by Soviet intelligence excluded the possibility of a war with Japan, which allowed the Soviets to transfer forces from the Far East to the European theatre. Dr Sorge aka Ramsay Richard Sorge (Russian: Рихард Зорге) (October 4, 1895 - November 7, 1944) is considered to have been one of the best Soviet spies in Japan before and during World War II, which has gained him fame among spies, and espionage enthusiasts. ...


The German High Command grossly underestimated the effective control the central Soviet government exercised. The German High Command incorrectly believed the Soviet government was ineffective. The Germans based their hopes of quick victory on the belief the Soviet communist system was like a rotten structure which would collapse from a hard blow. In fact, the Soviet system proved resilient and surprisingly adaptable. In the face of early crushing defeats, the Soviets managed to dismantle entire industries threatened by the German advance. These critical factories, along with their skilled workers, were transported by rail to secure locations beyond the reach of the German army. Despite the loss of raw materials and the chaos of an invasion, the Soviets managed to build new factories in sufficient numbers to allow the mass production of needed war machines. The Soviet government was never in danger of collapse and remained at all times in tight control of the Soviet war effort.


The Germans treated Soviet prisoners with brutality and exhibited cruelty toward overrun Soviet populations. The effect of this treatment instilled a deep hatred in the hearts and minds of the Soviet citizens. Hatred of the Germans enabled the Soviet government to extract a level of sacrifice from the Soviet population unheard of in Western nations.


The Germans underestimated the Soviet people as well. The German high command viewed the Soviet soldiers as incompetent and considered the average citizen as an inferior human being. German soldiers were stunned by the ferocity with which the Red Army fought. German planners were amazed at the level of suffering the Soviet citizens could endure and still work and fight.


A further element in the German defeat is the underestimation of Soviet technical capacity. While Soviet equipment at the beginning of the war was vastly inferior to the technically advanced German equipment[citation needed], this gap was made up for as more advanced designs reached production. While the average Soviet conscript remained woefully under-equipped, Soviet weapons, such as a the PPSh series submachine guns, and the T-34, proved more than a match for their German counterparts. The T-34 tank in particular was a huge distinguishing factor between the early campaign and later Soviet counter-offensives. The PPSh-41 (Pistolet-Pulemyot Shpagina; Russian: ; Shpagin Machine Pistol; nicknamed Pah-Pah-sha, Shpagin and Burp Gun) submachine gun was one of the most mass produced weapons of its type of World War II. It was designed by Georgi Shpagin, as an inexpensive alternative to the PPD-40, which... The T-34 is a Soviet medium tank first produced in 1940. ...


Faults of logistical planning

The start of the war, in the dry summer, was the most favorable for the Germans, as they took the Soviets by surprise and destroyed a large part of the Soviet army in the first weeks. When favorable weather conditions gave way to the harsh conditions of the fall and winter and the Soviet Army recovered, the German offensive began to falter. The German army could not be sufficiently supplied for prolonged combat; indeed there was simply not enough fuel available to let the whole of the army reach its intended objectives.


This was well understood by the German supply units even before the operation, but their warnings were disregarded.[49] The entire German plan was based on the premise that within five weeks the German troops would have attained full strategic freedom due to a complete collapse of the Red Army. Only then would it have been possible to divert necessary logistic support to the fuel requirements of the few mobile units needed to occupy the defeated state.


German infantry and tanks stormed 300 miles (500 km) ahead in the first week, but their supply lines struggled to keep up. Russian railroads could at first not be used due to a difference in railway gauges, until a sufficient supply of trains was seized. The railroad tracks and convoys of slow-moving vehicles were also favorite targets of Soviet partisans, although partisan activity was still low in 1941. Lack of supplies significantly slowed down the blitzkrieg. Rail gauge is the distance between two rails of a railroad. ... The Soviet partisans were members anti-fascist resistance movement which fought against the occupation of the Soviet Union by Axis forces during World War II. At the end of June 1941, immediately after the Germans crossed the Soviet border, the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolshevik) (see... This article is about the military term. ...


The German logistical planning also seriously overestimated the condition of the Soviet transportation network. The road and railway network of former Eastern Poland was well known, but beyond that information was limited. Roads that looked impressive on maps turned out to be just mere dust roads or were only in the planning stages.[49]


Weather

A paper published by the U.S. Army's Combat Studies Institute in 1981 concluded that Hitler's plans miscarried before the onset of severe winter weather. He was so confident of quick victory that he did not prepare for even the possibility of winter warfare in the Soviet Union. Nonetheless, his eastern army suffered more than 734,000 casualties (about 23 percent of its average strength of 3,200,000 troops) during the first five months of the invasion, and on 27 November 1941, General Eduard Wagner, the Quartermaster General of the German Army, reported that "We are at the end of our resources in both personnel and material. We are about to be confronted with the dangers of deep winter."[50]


The German forces were not prepared to deal with harsh weather and the poor road network of the USSR. In autumn, the terrain slowed the Wehrmacht’s progress. Few roads were paved. The ground in the USSR was very loose sand in the summer, sticky muck in the autumn, and heavy snow during the winter. The German tanks had narrow treads with little traction and poor flotation in mud. In contrast, the new generation of Soviet tanks such as the T-34 and KV had wider tracks and were far more mobile in these conditions. The 600,000 large western European horses the Germans used for supply and artillery movement did not cope well with this weather. The small ponies used by the Red Army were much better adapted to this climate and could even scrape the icy ground with their hooves to dig up the weeds beneath. The T-34 is a Soviet medium tank first produced in 1940. ... The Kliment Voroshilov (KV) tanks were a series of Soviet heavy tanks, named after the Soviet defense commissar and politician Kliment Voroshilov. ...


German troops were mostly unprepared for the harsh weather changes in the autumn and winter of 1941. Equipment had been prepared for such winter conditions, but the ability to move it up front over the severely overstrained transport network did not exist. Consequently, the troops were not equipped with adequate cold-weather gear, and some soldiers had to pack newspapers into their jackets to stay warm while temperatures dropped to record levels of at least -30 °C (-22 °F). To operate furnaces and heaters, the Germans also burned precious fuel that was difficult to re-supply. Soviet soldiers often had warm, quilted uniforms, felt-lined boots, and fur hats.


Some German weapons malfunctioned in the cold. Lubricating oils were unsuitable for extreme cold, resulting in engine malfunction and misfiring weapons. To load shells into a tank’s main gun, frozen grease had to be chipped off with a knife. Soviet units faced less severe problems due to their experience with cold weather. Aircraft were supplied with insulating blankets to keep their engines warm while parked. Lighter-weight oil was used.


A common myth is that the combination of deep mud, followed by snow, stopped all military movement in the harsh Russian winter. In fact, military operations were slowed by these factors, but much more so on the German side than on the Soviet side. The Soviet December 1941 counteroffensive advanced up to 100 miles (160 km) in some sectors[citation needed], demonstrating that mobile warfare was still possible under winter conditions.


When the severe winter began, Hitler became fearful of a repeat of Napoleon's disastrous retreat from Moscow[citation needed], and quickly ordered the German forces to hold their ground defiantly wherever possible in the face of Soviet counterattacks. This became known as the "stand or die" order. This prevented the Germans from being routed, but resulted in heavy casualties from battle and cold.


Aftermath

Stalin deported German POWs to labour camps. Ethnic groups were also deported en masse to the east. Examples include: in September 1941, 439,000 Volga Germans (as well as more than 300,000 other Germans from various locations) were deported mainly to Kazakhstan as their autonomous republic was abolished by Stalin's decree; in May 1944, 182,000 Crimean Tatars were deported from the Crimea to Uzbekistan; and the complete deportation of Chechens (393,000) and Ingushs (91,000) to Kazakhstan took place in 1944 (see Population transfer in the Soviet Union). The Volga Germans are ethnic Germans living near the Volga River and the Black Sea, maintaining German culture, German language, German traditions and religions: Evangelical Lutherans or Roman Catholic. ... 1937 flag of the Volga German ASSR Coat of Arms of the Volga German ASSR Volga German ASSR location map Volga German ASSR (Autonome Sozialistische Sowjet-Republik der Wolga-Deutschen) outline map Volga German ASSR (yellow) in 1940 The Volga German Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic (German: Autonome Sozialistische Sowjetrepublik der... Iosif (usually anglicized as Joseph) Vissarionovich Stalin (Russian: Иосиф Виссарионович Сталин), original name Ioseb Jughashvili (Georgian: იოსებ ჯუღაშვილი; see Other names section) (December 21, 1879[1] – March 5, 1953) was a Bolshevik revolutionary and leader of the Soviet Union. ... The Crimean Tatars (sg. ... Motto: ÐŸÑ€Ð¾Ñ†Ð²ÐµÑ‚ание в единстве(Russian) Protsvetanie v edinstve(transliteration) Prosperity in unity Anthem: ÐÐ¸Ð²Ñ‹ и горы твои волшебны, Родина(Russian) Nivy i gory tvoi volshebny, Rodina(transliteration) Your fields and mounts are wonderful, Motherland Location of Crimea (red) with respect to Ukraine (light blue). ... This article covers the Chechen people as an ethnic group, not Chechen meaning citizens of Chechnya. ... The Ingush are a people of the northern Caucasus, mostly inhabiting the Russian republic of Ingushetia. ... Not by Their Own Will. ...


Germany's inability to achieve victory over the Soviet Union in Operation Barbarossa opened up the possibility for Soviet counterattacks to retake lost land and attack further into Germany proper. Starting in mid-1944, the overwhelming success in Operation Bagration and the quick victory in the Lvov-Sandomierz Offensive led to an unbroken string of Soviet gains and unsupportable losses for the German forces. Germany would never again mount a successful attack on the Soviet Union. Operation Barbarossa's failure paved the way for Soviet forces to fight all the way to Berlin, cementing the ultimate fall of Nazism and Germany's defeat in World War II. Combatants Germany Soviet Union Commanders Ernst Busch (to 28 June), Walter Model (Army Group Centre) Georg-Hans Reinhardt (Third Panzer Army) Hans Jordan (Ninth Army) Kurt von Tippelskirch (Fourth Army) Walter Weiss (Second Army) Georgy Zhukov Konstantin Rokossovsky (3rd Belorussian Front) Hovhannes Bagramyan (1st Baltic Front) Ivan Chernyakhovsky (1st Belorussian... Combatants Germany Soviet Union Commanders Josef Harpe (Heeresgruppe Nordukraine) Ivan Koniev (1st Ukrainian Front) Strength 370,000 men 340 AFVs 4,800 guns 1,200,000 men 1,979 AFVs 11,265 guns Casualties 350,000 men 520 AFVs 198,000 men 1,285 AFVs The Lvov-Sandomierz Offensive[1...


See also

Combatants Soviet Union,[1] Poland, Tannu Tuva (until 1944 incorporation with USSR), Mongolia Germany,[2] Italy (to 1943), Romania (to 1944), Finland (to 1944), Hungary, Slovakia, Croatia, Spain (to 1943, unofficial) Commanders Joseph Stalin, Aleksei Antonov, Ivan Konev, Rodion Malinovsky, Ivan Bagramyan, Kirill Meretskov, Ivan Petrov, Alexander Rodimtsev, Konstantin Rokossovsky... Below is the timeline of the events of the Eastern Front of World War II, the conflict between the Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union from 1941 to 1945. ... Belligerents Nazi Germany Finland[1][2][3] Soviet Union Commanders Wilhelm von Leeb Georg von Küchler Carl Gustaf Mannerheim[4][5][6] Kliment Voroshilov Georgiy Zhukov Leonid Govorov Strength 725,000 930,000 Casualties and losses Wehrmacht (est. ... Belligerents Finland Germany Italy1 Soviet Union  United Kingdom2 Commanders C.G.E. Mannerheim Kirill Meretskov Leonid Govorov Strength 530,000 Finns[1] 220,000 Germans 900,000–1,500,000 Soviets[2] Casualties and losses 58,715 dead or missing 158,000 wounded 1,500 civilian deaths[3] 3401 captured... Operation Silberfuchs (Silver Fox) was a German operation during World War II. Its main goal was the capture of the Soviet port at Murmansk through attacks from Finnish territory. ... The so-called Molotov Line was a system of fortifications built by the Soviet Union in the years 1940-1941, along its new western border after it annexed the Baltic States, Eastern Poland and Bessarabia. ... Combatants Germany Spanish Blue Division Soviet Union Commanders Wilhelm von Leeb Georg von Küchler Agustín Muñoz Grandes Kliment Voroshilov Georgiy Zhukov Strength 725,000 930,000 Casualties Unknown Red Army: 332,059 KIA 24,324 non-combat dead 111,142 missing 16,470 civilians 1 million civilians... Belligerents Nazi Germany Finland[1][2][3] Soviet Union Commanders Wilhelm von Leeb Georg von Küchler Carl Gustaf Mannerheim[4][5][6] Kliment Voroshilov Georgiy Zhukov Leonid Govorov Strength 725,000 930,000 Casualties and losses Wehrmacht (est. ... Belligerents Germany Finland Soviet Union Commanders Nikolaus von Falkenhorst (Armee Norwegen) Roman Panin (Northern Front) Strength 200 000 germans and 28 000 finnish 100 000 Casualties and losses 12 000 killed germans, 1000 finnish, 26 000 wounded germans and 4300 finnish 700 lost 8000 killed, 13 000 wounded, 1500 prisoners... Captured tanks and armoured cars in German use on the Russian Front: list of some captured equipment used by the German forces on the Russian front and others areas. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... This article is considered orphaned, since there are very few or no other articles that link to this one. ... The Battle of Russia was the fifth film of Frank Capras Why We Fight propaganda film series. ... Prelude to War depicts the Nazi propaganda machine. ...

Notes

  1. ^ Bergström, p130
  2. ^ Bergström 2007, p. 131-2: Uses Soviet Record Archives including the Rosvoyentsentr, Moscow; Russian Aviation Research Trust; Russian Central Military Archive TsAMO, Podolsk; Monino Air Force Museum, Moscow.
  3. ^ a b About the German Invasion of the Soviet Union
  4. ^ Boog, H, Germany and the Second World War, VoI. 4: The Attack on the Soviet Union (Oxford, 1994)
  5. ^ Bergström 2007, p 118
  6. ^ Krivosheev, G.F, 1997, p.96. Documented losses only
  7. ^ THE TREATMENT OF SOVIET POWS: STARVATION, DISEASE, AND SHOOTINGS, JUNE 1941- JANUARY 1942
  8. ^ Bergström, p117
  9. ^ Krivosheyev, G. 1993
  10. ^ Note: Soviet aircraft losses include all causes
  11. ^ a b Higgins, Trumbull (1966). Hitler and Russia. The Macmillan Company, pp. 11 - 59, 98 -151. 
  12. ^ Bryan I. Fugate. Strategy and tactics on the Eastern Front, 1941. Novato: Presidio Press, 1984.
  13. ^ World War II Chronicle, 2007. Legacy/ Publications International, Ltd. Page 146.
  14. ^ A.J.P Taylor & Colonel D. M Proektor, p106
  15. ^ A.J.P Taylor & Colonel D. M Proektor,p107
  16. ^ Simonov, Konstantin (1979). Records of talks with Georgi Zhukov, 1965–1966. Hrono.
  17. ^ Life and Death in Besieged Leningrad, 1941–44 (Studies in Russian and Eastern European History), edited by John Barber and Andrei Dzeniskevich. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2005 (hardcover, ISBN 1-4039-0142-2).
  18. ^ The siege of Leningrad. By Alan Wykes. Ballantines Illustrated History of WWII, 3rd edition, 1972. Pages 9-61, and, Scorched Earth. (pages 205 - 240) By Paul Carell. Schiffer Military History, 1994. ISBN 0-88740-598-3 and, Finland in the Second World War. Between Germany and Russia. Palgrave. 2002. (pp. 90 - 141)
  19. ^ Military-Topographic Directorate, maps No. 194, 196, Officer's Atlas. General Staff USSR. 1947. Атлас Офицера. Генеральный штаб вооруженных сил ССР. М., Военно-топографическоее управление,- 1947. Листы 194, 196
  20. ^ Russia's War: A History of the Soviet Effort: 1941-1945 ISBN 0-14-027169-4 by Richard Overy Page 91
  21. ^ The World War II. Desk Reference. Eisenhower Center Director Douglas Brinkley. Editor Mickael E. Haskey. Grand Central Press, Stonesong Press, HarperCollins, 2004. ISBN0-06-052651-3. Page 210.
  22. ^ Siege of Leningrad. Encyclopedia Britannica. [1]
  23. ^ Bryan I. Fugate. Operation Barbarossa. Strategy and tactics on the Eastern Front, 1941. Novato: Presidio Press, 1984.
  24. ^ Meltyukhov 2000:446 Table composed by the author according to: История второй мировой войны. Т. 4. С. 18; 50 лет Вооруженных Сил СССР. М., 1968. С. 201; Советская военная энциклопедия. T. I. M., 1976, С. 56; Боевой и численный состав Вооруженных Сил СССР в период Великой Отечественной войны (1941–1945 гг.). Статистический сборник № 1 (22 июня 1941 г.). М., 1994. С. 10–12; РГАСПИ. Ф. 71. Оп. 25. Д. 4134. Л. 1–8; Д. 5139. Л. 1; РГВА. Ф. 29. Оп. 46. Д. 272. Л. 20–21; учтены пограничные и внутренние войска: Пограничные войска СССР в годы Второй мировой войны, 1939–1945. М., 1995. С. 390–400; РГВА. Ф. 38261. Оп. 1. Д. 255. Л. 175–177, 340–349; Ф. 38650. Оп. 1. Д. 617. Л. 258–260; Ф. 38262. Оп. 1, Д. 41. Л. 83–84; РГАЭ. Ф. 1562. Оп. 329. Д. 277. Л. 1–46, 62, 139; Д. 282. Л. 3–44.
  25. ^ A.J.P Taylor & D. M Proektor,p98
  26. ^ N.P.Zolotov and S.I. Isayev, "Boyegotovy byli...", Voenno-Istorichesskiy Zhurnal, N° 11: 1993, p. 77
  27. ^ The Russian Front by James F. Dunnigan, Arms & Armour Press 1978, p 82, 88 ISBN 0-85368-152-X
  28. ^ Rayfield 2004, p. 315.
  29. ^ Dunnigan, Russian Front, pp 93-94
  30. ^ Bergström, p11-12
  31. ^ Bellamy 2007, p. 115.
  32. ^ Russian original
  33. ^ As e.g David Glantz has claimed: Although Defense Commissar S. K. Timoshenko initialed the proposal, there is no evidence either that Stalin saw it or acted upon it.[2]
  34. ^ Bergström 2007, p. 130:Uses figures from German archives. Bundesarchiv-Militararchiv, Frieburg; Luftfahrtmuseum, Hannover-Laatzen; WASt Deutsche Dienststelle, Berlin
  35. ^ Bergström 2007, p. 131-2: Uses Soviet Record Archives including the Rosvoyentsentr, Moscow; Russian Aviation Research Trust; Russian Central Military Archive TsAMO, Podolsk; Monino Air Force Museum, Moscow.
  36. ^ Meltyukhov 2000, (electronic version)
  37. ^ Keith E. Bonn (ed.), Slaughterhouse: Handbook of the Eastern Front, Aberjona Press, Bedford, PA, 2005, p.299
  38. ^ [[John Erickson (historian)|]], The Road to Stalingrad, Cassel Military Paperbacks, 2003 edition, p.172
  39. ^ Bergström, p20
  40. ^ Bergström, p20
  41. ^ as cited by Suvorov: http://militera.lib.ru/research/suvorov7/12.html
  42. ^ (Lithuanian) Gediminas Zemlickas. Pasaulyje—kaip savo namuose, Mokslo Lietuva, 11 February 1998, No. 3 (161)
  43. ^ According to http://www.soldat.ru/doc/casualties/book/chapter5_13_08.html based on German sources (see site reference page)
  44. ^ A. Clark 1995, p. 165.
  45. ^ A Day By Day Diary of WWII. Retrieved on 2006-06-13. See also Charles Messenger, The Chronological Atlas of World War Two (New York: Macmillan Publishing 1989), p. 63.
  46. ^ В. Суворов ', гл. 33 (online text)
  47. ^ Б.В. Соколов Правда о Великой Отечественной войне (Сборник статей).—СПб.: Алетейя, 1999 (online text)
  48. ^ Beevor, Stalingrad. Penguin 2001 ISBN 0141001313 p60
  49. ^ a b van Creveld, Martin. Supplying War: Logistics from Wallenstein to Patton Cambridge, 1977. ISBN 0-421-29793-1
  50. ^ CSI. Retrieved on 2006-04-04.

A. J. P. Taylor (March 25, 1906 - September 7, 1990) (full name Alan John Percivale Taylor) was a renowned British historian of the 20th century. ... A. J. P. Taylor (March 25, 1906 - September 7, 1990) (full name Alan John Percivale Taylor) was a renowned British historian of the 20th century. ... James F. Dunnigan (born 1943) is an author and wargame designer currently living in New York City, notable for his matter-of-fact approach to military analysis. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 164th day of the year (165th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Martin van Creveld (1946- ) is an Israeli military historian and theorist. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 94th day of the year (95th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

Further reading

Wikisource has original text related to this article:
  • Bellamy, Christopher (2007). Absolute War: Soviet Russia in World War Two. Knopf Publishers. ISBN 978-0-3754-1086-4
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  • Wieczynski, Joseph L.; Fox, J.P. "Operation Barbarossa: The German Attack on The Soviet Union, June 22, 1941", The Slavonic and East European Review, Vol. 74, No. 2. (1996), pp. 344–346.
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  • lt. Kolobanov and KV-2. Notable engagements of KV series against outnumbering enemy forces: http://wio.ru/tank/ww2tank.htm

Image File history File links Wikisource-logo. ... The original Wikisource logo. ... John Erickson (1929 - 2002) was a British historian who wrote extensively on the Second World War, with key books on Operation Barbarossa and the Battle of Stalingrad. ... David M. Glantz is an American military historian and the editor of The Journal of Slavic Military Studies. ... Dr. Joachim Hoffmann (December 1, 1930, Königsberg, East Prussia – February 8, 2002, Freiburg) was a German historian and scientific director of the German Armed Forces Military History Research Office. ... For others named John Taylor, see John Taylor. ... Martin van Creveld (1946- ) is an Israeli military historian and theorist. ... is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... The Slavonic and East European Review (not to be confused with , older title of the Slavic Review), the journal of the School of Slavonic and East European Studies (SSEES) at University College London, is a international peer-reviewed multidisciplinary academic journal in the fields of social sciences and humanities founded...

External links

  • Relationship between the campaigns in the Balkans and the invasion of Russia and associated timeline on a US Army website
  • Multimedia map—Covers the invasion of Russia including Operation Barbarossa
  • Operation Barbarossa—Detailed analysis of the operation by author Bevin Alexander.
  • Over 2,000 original German WWII soldier photographs from the Eastern Front, Part 1 and Part 2
  • Lengthy narrative of the war with analysis, Operation Barbarossa Revisited
  • Central Intelligence Agency, Office of Current Intelligence. The Soviet History of World War II, 28 October 1959.

Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Image File history File links Wikibooks-logo. ... Image File history File links Wikiquote-logo. ... Image File history File links Wikisource-logo. ... Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... Image File history File links WikiNews-Logo. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
::Operation Barbarossa:: (917 words)
Operation Barbarossa was the name given to Nazi Germany’s invasion of Russia on June 22nd 1941.
Barbarossa the largest military attack of World War Two and was to have appalling consequences for the Russian people.
Operation Barbarossa was based on a massive attack based on blitzkrieg.
Barbarossa Operation WW2 (2856 words)
Operation Barbarossa (Unternehmen Barbarossa) was the German codename for Nazi Germany's invasion of the Soviet Union during World War II.
The Eastern Front which was opened by Operation Barbarossa would become the biggest theatre of war in World War II, with some of the largest and most brutal battles, terrible loss of life, and miserable conditions for Russians and Germans alike.
Operation Barbarossa was largely the brainchild of Hitler himself.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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