War Plans -Roosevelt and British leader Churchill meet Now officially fighting together as Allied forces -Germany is top priority Defeat Hitler first, then worry about Japan in the Pacific -only an unconditional surrender is acceptable -Battle of the Atlantic Allied Navies Battle Germany for Control of the Atlantic Ocean convoy system Surround important ships with ships with combat capabilities for protection Liberty ship building program was producing great numbers of ships to supply war 140 ships produced each month -Allies begin strategic bombing of Germany to destroy war capabilities
Eastern Front - initial victories in USSR turn into stalemate and the Russian winter stops German advances Hitler wants oil fields and the industrial Stalingrad -Germany surrounds key city of Stalingrad, 1942 Germany won 9/10 of the city until winter; with no supplies, Germans surrounded and forced to surrender - Germany is defeated at Stalingrad at great cost turning point of the European war Soviets begin moving toward Germany, Germany on defense - Stalin wants another “front’ to occupy Germany Russia asks Allies to attack in Western Europe to divert Hitler; Allies not ready yet “Stalingrad is no longer a town. By day it is an enormous cloud of burning, blinding smoke; it is a vast furnace…Animals flee this hell; the hardest stones cannot bear it for long; only man endures.” Lt. Weiner, German Officer
Africa/Italy - invasion of Northern Africa by British and American troops to fight against Germany’s Africa Corps led by Erwin Rommel, the Desert Fox Allies launch operation in North Africa, led by Eisenhower - Rommel’s forces eventually defeated at El Alamein Allies surround Germans, forced to surrender -”Soft underbelly” campaign attack Germany through Italy Mussolini stripped of power and forced to leave Italy - German troops make Italian campaign last many months Hitler does not want to fight in Germany; keeps attacking in Italy until 1945
D-Day -Allies had planned an invasion of the mainland Invade France and free European mainland from Hitler -Operation Overlord -planned by Dwight Eisenhower 3 million British, U.S., Canadian troops invade France at Normandy -June 6, 1944 - paratroopers invaded behind enemy lines, thousands stormed beaches of Normandy, France Omaha Beach Utah Beach Germans massacred thousands during invasion -France liberated within weeks General George Patton Headed towards Germany to invade
“People were yelling, screaming, dying, running on the beach, equipment was flying everywhere, men were bleeding to death, crawling, lying everywhere, firing coming from all directions…we dropped down behind anything that was the size of a golf ball” Omaha soldier Felix Branham
The End is Near Allies took the first German town -Battle of the Bulge Dec. 1944 last German counter-offensive Attempt to break Allied lines in Germany; succeeds at first but later fails Germany is now in retreat Lost troops, tanks, planes -massive bombing raids Wearing Germany down -Roosevelt wins 4th term with Harry Truman -Soviet armies pushing into Germany from the east Liberating concentration camps as they do so
“We started smelling a terrible odor and suddenly we were at the concentration camp at Landsberg…we saw hundreds of burned and naked bodies…for the first time I truly realized the evil of Hitler and why this war had to be waged.” Soldier Robert Johnson
“The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today. Let us move forward with strong and active faith.” Franklin Roosevelt “When they told me yesterday about Roosevelt’s death, I felt like the moon, the stars, and all the planets had fallen on me.” Harry Truman
V-E Day -Big 3 Continue to discuss end of war -U.S. British forces pushing toward Berlin Trapping Germany -death camps found and Holocaust is revealed Nazis try to cover up crimes but cannot - kill more in doing so -Roosevelt dies and Truman becomes President Never sees V-E day; dies by a stroke while getting portrait -Hitler commits suicide as Russians invade Berlin -Germany surrenders May 1945 -V-E Day (Victory in Europe) War not over yet; still must deal with Japan in the Pacific
V-E Day In his underground quarters in Berlin, Hitler prepared for the end. On April 29, he married Eva Braun, his longtime companion. The same day, he wrote out his last address to the German people. In it he blamed the Jews for starting the war and his generals for losing it. “ I die with a happy heart aware of the immeasurable deeds of our soldiers at the front. I myself and my wife choose to die in order to escape the disgrace of … capitulation. The next day, Hitler shot himself while his wife swallowed poison. In accordance with Hitler ’ s orders, the two bodies were carried outside, soaked with gasoline, and burned.
A Family PortraitNazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels brought his wife, Magda, and their six children with him to the bunker. The children became the delight of the inmates, a diversion from the dreariness and boredom of bunker life. But after Hitler's death, in what can only be described as something written for a horror story, Magda killed her children using cyanide capsules. While Joseph once commented, "Neither my wife, nor a single one of my offspring, will be among the survivors of the coming debacle," it was Magda who did the dirty work. Taking her children into a small room as if to tuck them into bed for the night, Magda gave each a cyanide capsule. Later, evidence of the remains showed that in all probability the five youngest died unknowingly, while the eldest had put up a fight.
National World War II Memorial: Atlantic View “Our debt to the heroic men and valiant women in the service of our country can never be repaid. They have earned our undying gratitude. America will never forget their sacrifices.” Harry Truman