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Discussion in 'OT (OFF Topic) Forums' started by markjay, Jul 8, 2017.
For those who are interested....
Don't let it be said you spread less happiness than Katrina & The Waves. :bannana:
For Stalingrad read Aleppo, Sarajevo, Gaza, Mosul etc such misery still goes on to this day.
Incapsulated well in Enemy at the Gates.
[YOUTUBE HD]/4O-sMh_DO6I[/YOUTUBE HD]
best book Antony Beevor's Stalingrad
This particular documentary is about new material found in archives which provides a different view to the traditional narrative. Plus interviews with people who served on both sides.
It's not about the sufferings of the civilian population as such, although it is mentioned.
They did say that the civilian death toll was higher than Hiroshima and Nagaski combined... so perhaps not quite akin to Gaza, Mosul, etc - possibly more like Hamburg and Dersden in terms of the scale of the carnage.
1 Million Russians killed by Russians in WW2
Yes, the documentary also covers the role of the NKVD, who they say did a better job at taking-out Red Army troops than the German did. The NKVD killed an estimated 10,000 Russian soldiers in the battle of Stalingrad alone. At Stalin's orders, I should add.
They also claim that the City of Stanlingrad had no particular strategic importance in itself, and much of the fierce fighting was due to both Hitler and Stalin making a point regarding a city that bears the Russian leader's name. Its importance was symbolic; and changing the name from Volgograd to Stalingrad proved detrimental for the city's civilian population.
Stalingrads strategic significance derived from its position the Volga. Indeed without military re-supply from the east bank the Russians would have succcumbed fairly quickly . Basically they were never completely surrounded which eventually is what happened to the Germans forcing their surrender.
The Germans would have done well to avoid the city and go around it, as they did in other places. The besieged Red Army would have eventually surrendered when supplies ran out.
And Stalin could have abandoned the City altogether (very few civilians remained anyway following the heavy aerial bombardment campaign that preceeded the ground attack, the documentary estimates their number as little as 15,000) and establish a defensive line behind the Eastern bank of the Volga.
I've always thought it was the severe Russian winter that caught out Hitlers army, as they were ill prepared for such extreme weather, and accelerated their defeat, maybe this did play a part.
The main point raised in this documentary is that based on interviews with soldiers and officers who fought on both sides, and newly released documents, the Russians made some fatal strategic mistakes and were only saved by the Germans' military miscalculations (sending in infantry without armoured cover etc) and General Winter.
This is in contrast to the official post-War Russian version of events, portraying Stalin as a genius master planner.
The winter and some debatable strategic choices definitely didn't help.
The arithmetic of geography and numbers was what left them them undone. Their one chance was lost after they failed to take Moscow and the Soviet government did not collapse.
The problem with geography was the logistical stretch and the sheer breadth of the front.