Download Berlin 1945: The Final Reckoning by Karl Bahm PDF

By Karl Bahm

A finished background of the final conflict of Nazi Germany, this booklet starts with a examine of the history to the conflict and an outline of occasions at the japanese and western fronts earlier than the Soviet forces reached Berlin. The strategic significance of town to the German struggle attempt and morale is taken into account, and the explanations why the Western allies halted their improve at the Elbe instead of race the Soviet troops to the Reichstag.

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German losses in the east were estimated by the Soviets to IDe 295,000 dead, 86,000 prisoners, 15,000 guP_s and mortars, 2995 tanks, 26,000 machine guns, 34,000 motor vehicles and 552 aircraft. By the end of March, the only territory west of the Rhine still held by the Germans was the rapidly diminishing salient near Landau in the Palatinate, north-west of Karlsruhe. In the east, K~rland and East Prussia, with 51 divisions between them, had effectively been written off, cut off and surrounded by the Soviets.

You will note that in none of this do 1 mention Berlin. That place has become, as far as I am concerned, nothing but a geographical location, and 1 have never been interested in these. ' Although the dispute continued for some days, the US Combined Chiefs of Staff gave Eisenhower their unqualified support on 31 March, discounting the British leadership's second-guessing of Eisenhower's judgement: 'The battle of Germany is now at the point where the Commander in the Field is the best judge of the measures which offer the earliest prospect of destroying the German armies or their power to resist ...

The sacrifice of our most cherished ideals is too great a price,' Hitler explained to Speer, when the latter had proposed enlisting women for the industrial sector. While Great Britain had managed to call two-and-a-quarter million women into economic service, only just over 180,000 were similarly employed in Germany. However, sending old men and young boys to their deaths was apparently no sacrifice of a cherished ideal to the Nazis. During autumn 1944, the conscription age was amended to include boys between 15 and 18, and men between 50 and 60.

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