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An introduction to the history of the german surrender at stalingrad

One of the largest and longest battles in history, it encompassed both maneuver and static warfare, steppe and urban fighting, and summer and winter conditions.

The Soviet-German War 1941 - 1945

It began with Operation Blau Bluethe German summer offensive in 1942, aimed at capturing the oilfields in the Caucasus region, and it ended with massive Soviet counteroffensives in November, culminating in the surrender of the German 6th Army in February 1943. Casualty figures range from 1 to 2 million civilian and military deaths. These events were a turning point in the war—some say, the turning point.

After Stalingrad, Germany never regained the strategic initiative.

  1. Above all, Soviet tactics in 1941-2 were extremely wasteful of manpower. Overy emphasizes the continued use of terror and repression by the Soviet state.
  2. The original date, set for May 1941, had to be revised to complete the vast preparations for the attack - following other German attacks on Yugoslavia and Greece in April.
  3. The Soviet people also played their part. This classic set continues to offer much to readers willing to delve deeply into Soviet military operations.

It achieved primary importance, largely because of the symbolism of its name, by the late summer of 1942.

Fighting degenerated into urban warfare, with the Red Army desperately holding its bridgeheads and the Wehrmacht equally desperately trying to take control of the entire city. The 62nd Army was sent just enough reinforcement to prevent a collapse, while the Soviets channeled their main effort into building forces for the counteroffensive.

Operation Uranus, launched on 19 November 1942, was a major success, easily blowing through the Axis forces on the German flanks and leaving the 6th Army encircled and trapped. The battle of Stalingrad has achieved mythic proportions, eclipsing the massive operations that preceded it Operation Blue and those that ended it operations Uranus and Saturn.

Popular histories in particular have tended to focus on the dramatic urban warfare phase, neglecting the much larger operations that occurred before and after.

Many of the best works are available only in Russian or German. World War II Histories The battle of Stalingrad cannot be understood outside the broader context of World War II, so a necessary first step in research is to read two or three good general histories of the war, especially the war on the Eastern Front. Erickson 1984 is the foundation on which all other works in English are built, and this and its companion volume Erickson 1983 see General Overviews are must-reads for anyone researching this topic in depth.

Bellamy 2007 is the best overall history of the war and an excellent introduction to the war on the Eastern Front in broad context. Overy 1997 should be read for its analysis.

Mawdsley 2007 is the best source, with a stronger military focus especially at the strategic level, and focuses solely on the Eastern Front, as does Glantz and House 1995the best single volume that emphasizes details of military operations at the operational level. Dunn 1994 is the best source for understanding the wartime transformation of the Red Army in economic and institutional contexts. The essays in Stone 2010 bring fresh perspectives based on recent research to a variety of war-related topics.

Boog 2001 presents the best of recent German scholarship. Soviet Russia in the Second World War. Incorporates recently available Russian sources and fresh interpretations; useful for researchers at all levels.

Germany and the Second World War. Oxford University Press, 2001. This volume includes coverage of Stalingrad. Extensive citations and maps. The Red Army, 1930—1945. Argues, controversially, that after 1943, Stalin no longer needed a second front to defeat Germany.

The Road to Stalingrad: This classic set continues to offer much to readers willing to delve deeply into Soviet military operations.

Related History documents

Erickson set the standard for astute analysis of Soviet sources and accurate and balanced description of Soviet military activities. The preface is a guide to using sources that every researcher should read. Best for graduate students and above. How the Red Army Stopped Hitler. University Press of Kansas, 1995.

  1. Mawdsley 2007 is the best source, with a stronger military focus especially at the strategic level, and focuses solely on the Eastern Front, as does Glantz and House 1995 , the best single volume that emphasizes details of military operations at the operational level. Many women joined the partisan movement operating behind the German lines...
  2. Many of the best works are available only in Russian or German.
  3. The essays in Stone 2010 bring fresh perspectives based on recent research to a variety of war-related topics. After the outbreak of war in 1939 came the added fear of Soviet expansion in Eastern Europe, while Germany was fighting the British Empire and France in the west.
  4. But others did so from a genuine patriotism or a hatred of German fascism. Not until December 1940, however, did Hitler make a final decision to go ahead with what became known as Operation Barbarossa.

Excellent appendix on archival sources, and no serious researcher should fail at least to skim the extensive, substantive notes.

Thunder in the East: The Nazi-Soviet War 1941—1945.

The German surrender at Stalingrad, February 1943 Sources Question

Accessible and nicely structured to keep readers on track. A glossary, chronology, and other supporting appendices are useful. Focuses on key historiographical issues, the brutality of the war, and effects on civilian populations. Overy emphasizes the continued use of terror and repression by the Soviet state.

The Soviet Union at War, 1941—1945.