Presentation on theme: "“The Global War”. Causes of War… Rise of dictators Mussolini Hitler Stalin Economic Depression Massive unemployment. Failure of the League."— Presentation transcript:
Causes of War… Rise of dictators Mussolini Hitler Stalin Economic Depression Massive unemployment. Failure of the League of Nations Failed to prevent a second World War.
Dictators Hitler: elected chancellor in 1939. Mussolini: elected Head of Government in 1925. Stalin: elected Premier in 1941.
Economic Depression Massive unemployment caused the countries in Europe economies to crash. Currencies in these countries were rendered useless due to hyperinflation. Hyperinflation: Extremely rapid or out of control inflation
Failure of the League of Nations The league failed to keep members such as Italy and Germany. Both countries thought that they were better off on their own than in the league. The headquarters of the league in Geneva closed its doors in 1939. They remained closed throughout the war.
The Major countries involved in WWII… Axis Powers: Germany, Italy, and Japan. Allies Powers: France, England, USSR, and USA.
Before the War: March 1936: German troops marched into the Rhineland. The Rhineland was a region of Germany that was ‘demilitarized’ after the Treaty of Versailles. Germany was not allowed to have troops in the region.
Before the War: March 1938: Nazi Germany annexed Austria Again, this went against the terms of the Treaty of Versailles which banned Germany from uniting with Austria. However, the arrival of German troops was met with great enthusiasm by many Austrian people.
March 1939: Germany invaded Czechoslovakia Hitler had ordered the occupation of a part of Czechoslovakia known as the Sudetenland (in October 1938). Many hoped that that this would be the last conquest of the Nazis. However, in March 1939, he ordered his troops to take over the remainder of Czechoslovakia. This was the first aggressive step that suggested that a war in Europe would soon begin.
August 1939: Germany and Russia signed a non-aggression pact Hitler and Stalin (the Russian leader) signed a ‘non- aggression pact’. They promised that neither country would attack the other in the event of war. As part of the deal, Hitler promised Stalin part of Poland, which he planned to invade soon.
HitlerStalin The non-aggression pact was surprising. Hitler and Stalin were seen as natural enemies. When Hitler talked of taking over new land for Germany, many thought that he meant Russia. Hitler also hated Communism, the form of government in the Soviet Union.
Outbreak of War The War breaks out when the Axis powers invade countries around the World. Germany invades Poland September 1, 1939. France and England Declare war on September 3, 1939.
Germany invades France In May 1940, Germany turns west and invades. The Germans used a form of tactic called Blitzkrieg. Blitzkrieg means “Lighting War.” 3 main areas of attack. (North, South, and Center)
France Falls On June 22, 1940 France surrendered to Germany and Italy. England now stood alone as the last remaining enemy of Hitler’s Germany in Western Europe.
Attack on England After France surrenders, Germany turns its attention to England Hitler uses his Luftwaffe (Air Force) to bombard England into submission. These events are known as the “Battle of Britain.” British RAF German Luftwaffe
Result of Battle of Britain The German Luftwaffe attacked up and down the British coast. The British RAF successfully defended the coast. This was the first time the Germans had suffered defeat in the war and the farthest Western advance of Nazi Germany.
Germany Turns its attention towards the East Hitler orders his generals to abandon the “Battle of Britain” campaign and focuses his attention on the East. It was always Hitler’s intention to take control of land in Eastern Europe. He wrote about it in his autobiography Mein Kampf. Lebensraum: German for "habitat" or literally "living space."
Operation Barbarossa On June 22, 1941, Hitler invaded Russia in Operation Barbarossa The operation encompassed a total troop strength of about 4 million men, making it the biggest single land operation ever Benefiting from initial surprise, by the end of July Hitler had occupied a portion of Russia twice the size of France
Operation Barbarossa German forces were divided into 3 army groups. (North, South, and Center) North: The goal of the North Army was to capture the city of Leningrad. Center: The goal of the Center Army was to capture the Capital city of Moscow. South: The goal of the South Army was to capture the city of Stalingrad.
Phase 1: The Frontier Battles All 3 army groups were in full advance. They advanced through Soviet controlled Poland and other Soviet occupied Eastern European countries. German Luftwaffe gained complete advantage in the air. This allowed them to support the army on the ground. The German advance was going better than they hoped it would.
Phase 1: The Frontier Battles Hitler surprises everyone and orders the armies to halt the advance. He wanted to allow the infantry divisions to catch up to the fast moving Panzer divisions. This decision allowed the Soviets to regroup and mobilize more soldiers to the Eastern front.
Phase 2: Battle of Smolensk After the infantry divisions catch up, Hitler orders the Armies to continue their advance. The center army advanced as far as the city of Smolensk. Armies in the North and South kept pushing towards their ultimate goal of Leningrad and Stalingrad.
Battle of Smolensk German goal was to encircle Soviet forces and ultimately “suffocate” them into defeat. Result: The Germans were about to surround the Soviets. 300,000 Red Army soldiers were captured by the Germans.
Phase 3: Kiev and Leningrad By mid July, the Germans were only a few Kilometers from the city of Kiev. The Germans divided their forces into 2 and invaded Panzer armies advanced at a rapid pace. Again the Germans were on the offensive.
Kiev (Aug-Sep 1941) Just like in Smolensk, the German south army was able to surround the city of Kiev. The German numbers surrounding Kiev were running low. The German center army sends soldier to aid the effort in Kiev. Forces sent: a Panzer division and 2 army divisions In the end, the German armies were victorious. The Soviet army lost over 600,000 men.
Leningrad (Sep 1941-Jan 1944) Meanwhile, in the North, the German army was advancing on the city of Leningrad. The German north army was able completely surround Leningrad within a month. The Soviet forces would not be denied. The Soviets were able to withstand the Siege for over 3 years.
Leningrad continued… The Soviet Red Army was eventually able to push but the German forces surrounding Leningrad. On January 27 th, the Siege of Leningrad officially ended. This is significant because it was the first major German defeat on the Eastern Front.
Phase 4: Operation Typhoon (Oct-Dec 1941) Once the city of Kiev fell, the German forces in the center again continued their advance towards Moscow.
Battle of Moscow With the Germans’ successes in the north and south, Hitler assumed that Stalin’s regime was on the verge of collapse He authorized an advance on Moscow before the onset of winter However the Germans were suffering from serious supply shortages By September the supply system was only meeting current tactical consumption needs No supply stores for the winter season were being built.
Battle of Moscow The Germans caught the Russians unprepared and made great advances. The Soviet Army seemed on the verge of collapse. At this point the weather broke and autumn rains turned the roads to mud. The German advance stalled, allowing the Russians to hurry reinforcements from the interior.
Battle of Moscow By Dec 4 the Germans had clawed their way to Moscow’s outskirts, but they could not continue. That night temperatures were - 25 degrees Fahrenheit. One infantry regiment suffered 300 frostbite casualties. On Dec 6 the Soviets counterattacked.
Battle of Stalingrad: Summer 1942 As a last ditch effort, Hitler ordered the German army to advance on Stalingrad. Hitler believed that capturing the city of Stalingrad would prove vital to turning the tide of the war.
Stalingrad On Aug 24 the Germans attacked Stalingrad’s suburbs and began fighting their way into the city. The nature of the urban fighting favored the defenders and the Soviets mounted a stubborn defense. Stalingrad began to drain the German army but Hitler would not back off.
Stalingrad On Nov 19 the Soviets launched a massive counterattack north of Stalingrad Hitler’s overly centralized and completely out-of-touch command system broke down in the face of the Soviet onslaught The Soviets encircled Stalingrad and Hitler ordered his commanders to stand fast anyway By this point in the war, no one was willing to confront Hitler.
Stalingrad All attempts to breakout or break through failed and on Feb 2 the Germans surrendered Out of 250,000 soldiers trapped in the Stalingrad pocket, approximately 90,000 became prisoners Barely 5,000 survived the war
Summary: Operation Barbarossa Ultimately enormous logistical shortcomings made Barbarossa a failure Germany proved capable of fighting battles very well, but was less capable of fighting a war of prolonged duration In the total four years of fighting on the Eastern Front, an estimated 4 million Axis and 9 million Russians were killed in battle 20 million Soviet civilians were killed as a result of extermination campaigns against Jews, communists and partisans, casual massacres, reprisal killings, diseases, and (sometimes planned) starvation.
The Tide Turns… On December 7 1941, Pearl Harbor was attacked by Japan. US then declares war. The allies wanted an offensive front in Western Europe. They felt that making a 2 nd front for Germany would defend would spread their lines so thin that they would eventually collapse. War in Pacific after the attack on Pearl Harbor was the main focus of the U.S. for about 2 years.
Collins II: World War II Based on what we have discussed today, do you believe World War II could have been prevented? Explain you choice based on the facts presented today.