By Robert Kirchubel
Whilst Hitler ordered the beginning of Operation Barbarossa, thousands of German infantrymen flooded into Russia, believing that their swift blitzkrieg strategies may lead to the a simple victory just like those loved through the Wehrmacht over Poland and France. however the large human assets on the disposal of the Soviet Union, and the numerous distances and overstretched offer traces that the Germans needed to triumph over, observed the probably invincible armored spearheads begin to sluggish. ultimately, in sight of Moscow, the German invasion floor to a halt. Hitler's goals of a brief victory have been shattered and the resultant struggle of attrition used to be to bleed Germany white, robbing her of manpower and gear in a single of the bloodiest episodes in human background. absolutely illustrated with special Osprey paintings, new maps, and modern pictures, Operation Barbarossa tells the tale of 1 of the definitive campaigns of global struggle II and examines how the failure of the invasion contributed to the ultimate defeat of Nazi Germany.
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Additional resources for Operation Barbarossa: The German Invasion of Soviet Russia
However, the planned one-two punch never occurred. Barbarossa suffered from a liability common to other Wehrmacht operations, namely the absence of a unifying strategic objective. The entire plan appears to be a combination of operational-level solutions to a war with the USSR; strategy was relegated to the realm of wishful thinking. Traditionally directed at enemy forces rather than geographic objectives, the German forces therefore chased a moving target with mission accomplishment accordingly hard to judge.
Then, as later, a single division could successfully take on two or three Russian divisions. indd 37 03/05/2013 09:34 38 PREVIOUS PAGE: Half-tracks, Sturmgeschütze, and other vehicles of the LVI Panzer Corps in the open terrain characteristic of Barbarossa’s early weeks. Once past the Velikaya River von Manstein’s lightning advances fell foul of more difﬁcult terrain. (NARA) OPERATION BARBAROSSA in the West. Although Ludendorff’s defensive line ultimately stretched from Finland to the Crimea, the German forces and their Habsburg allies had ample experience with Russian weather and terrain.
Since von Lossberg started his plan five weeks later than Marcks and as Jodl was closer than Halder to Hitler – both in thinking and proximity – we can assume the former plan was more in line with Hitler’s concept. Von Lossberg’s main contribution was to clarify Hitler’s thoughts with regard to Barbarossa’s later phases, specifically the turns north and south preparatory to the assault on Moscow and flexibility in subsequent operations that would prove the most controversial features of the campaign.