Operation Barbarossa 1941: Hitler against Stalin

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Operation Barbarossa 1941: Hitler against Stalin

Operation Barbarossa was the largest military campaign in history. Springing from Hitler’s fanatical desire to conquer the Soviet territories, defeat Bolshevism and create ‘Lebensraum’ for the German people, it pitted two diametrically opposed armed forces against one another.

The invasion began with 4.5 million troops attacking 2.3 million defenders. On one side was the Wehrmacht, without any doubt the world’s most advanced military force. On the other were the Soviet armed forces, downtrodden, humiliated, decapitated and terrorized by an autocratic and crude dictator with no military education whatsoever.

Initially Operation Barbarossa led to a row of unparalleled tactical victories for the attackers. In just five months, an area of around 1.4 million square kilometres was captured. Tremendous losses were inflicted on the Soviet armed forces. 566,852 troops were listed as killed in action, 2,335,482 as missing in action (including POWs), and around 500,000 Soviet reservists had been captured while still mobilizing - making a total of approximately 3.4 million total losses. But by the end of December 1941, Operation Barbarossa had ground to halt; how was this possible? Christer Bergström tells the story in great detail; as with The Battle of Britain: An Epic Conflict Revisited he combines facts and figures with the human stories behind the action, and draws new conclusions based on many years of research in German and Russian archives.

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European Theater Hitler & Third Reich Soviet Union Operation Barbarossa 1941: Hitler against Stalin Operation Barbarossa was the largest military campaign in history. Springing from Hitler’s fanatical desire to conquer the Soviet territories, defeat Bolshevism and create ‘Lebensraum’ for the German people, it pitted two diametrically opposed armed forces against one another.

The invasion began with 4.5 million troops attacking 2.3 million defenders. On one side was the Wehrmacht, without any doubt the world’s most advanced military force. On the other were the Soviet armed forces, downtrodden, humiliated, decapitated and terrorized by an autocratic and crude dictator with no military education whatsoever.

Initially Operation Barbarossa led to a row of unparalleled tactical victories for the attackers. In just five months, an area of around 1.4 million square kilometres was captured. Tremendous losses were inflicted on the Soviet armed forces. 566,852 troops were listed as killed in action, 2,335,482 as missing in action (including POWs), and around 500,000 Soviet reservists had been captured while still mobilizing - making a total of approximately 3.4 million total losses. But by the end of December 1941, Operation Barbarossa had ground to halt; how was this possible? Christer Bergström tells the story in great detail; as with The Battle of Britain: An Epic Conflict Revisited he combines facts and figures with the human stories behind the action, and draws new conclusions based on many years of research in German and Russian archives.
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