On June 22nd, 1941, the German invasion of the Soviet Union was launched, and Operation Barbarossa has come in front of people. It was considered to be the biggest military operation in history. It was borne out of the desires of Hitler in defeating Bolshevism and conquering the Soviet territories. More than that, Operation Barbarossa was a major part of racial fantasy by Hitler. It was towards establishing “lebensraum” that is nothing but living space in the east.
The operation took place between two armed forces against one another. One was the Wehrmacht which was the world’s most advanced and best military force. Another was humiliated and downtrodden Soviet armed forces. The later one has men with little military education. German troops failed at this point in defeating Soviet forces. More than that, this was the campaign that gave a different signal altogether, and it was the crucial turning point in World War II.
Myths Surrounding This Campaign
In the very popular speech that was into the 20th Congress of the Communist Party in February 1956 of the Soviet Union, Nikita Khrushchev, the secretary, stated something. This speech revealed that the first disaster was severe, and this defeat made Stalin think it was the end.
More than that, in one of Stalin’s Speeches of those days, he said that Lenin created so much, and at this point, we have lost everything. After this time, he was not interested in anything, and he was completely ceased.
We should put light on this statement, that is because there is a big misconception that is surrounding his paralyzation. Stalin completely ceased after Operation Barbarossa, and this leads to long-lasting misunderstandings after the campaign. But there was research that mainly focused on Operation Barbarossa and Stalin’s paralyzation by Steven Main at the University of Edinburgh. He says the above quote is nothing more than disinformation that made on behalf of Khrushchev.
Main’s research even showed that on the day of his collapse, the Soviet dictator worked for 22 hours and 35 minutes. It was an exhausting day. After that, on June 24th, he worked for just 5 hours, and that is the reason why Khrushchev came up with such allegations.
Soviet soldiers And Their Mass Surrenders
The German attack started on June 22nd, 1941, but surprisingly, German succeeded in taking over 400,000 prisoners by 1941 July 11th in the war on the Eastern Front. We should understand that contrary to popular belief, there were no mass surrenders. Large units were enveloped and that was because they owed to Stalin’s orders. We should observe that many isolated units till fought on stubbornly, and they fought until they ran out of ammunition.
Operation Barbarossa: Master Spy Sorge
Sorge contributed to the major misunderstanding of relocation armies that belonged to the Soviet Far East. The main allegation and misunderstanding are, these armies saved Moscow.
There were not more than three divisions and these came from the Far East. They went towards the Moscow sector during this time. The actual period is between October–December 1941. The divisions present were 32nd, and 78th Rifle divisions and one more was the 58th Tank Division.