Operation Barbarossa

By Brady Bates

Preparation

On June 22, 1941, Adolf Hitler sent his armies into the soviet union to invade. Three army groups with three thousand tanks and over three million German soldiers broke across the frontier into Soviet territory. The invasion took place on a front from the North Cape to the Black Sea, which was a distance of two thousand miles. It was the second largest battle during the war, and it held many unfortunate consequences for the Russians.

Hitler's Strategy and Goals



The technique that Hitler used for invading the Soviet Union was one that involved three different army troops. He assigned each group to different regions of Russia, where they were to invade and capture. The first group was Army Group North, commanded by Von Leeb, and they were located in the Baltics/northern Russia, and their city to destroy and capture was Leningrad. Second was Army Group Center, led by Von Bock, who were in the west/central regions of Russia, and their city was Moscow. The third group was Army Group South, led by Von Rundstedt. They started out in Ukraine, where they were to take the city of Kiev. Once that was accomplished they continued towards southern Russia and continued until they made their way to the Volga River. Hitler was trying to prevent the Red Army from entering Russia, so he planned another Blitzkreig that was going to end up very similar to the one that was used to invade Poland. The element of surprise was very emphasized.

Outcome and Impacts

The closest Germany ever got to completely invading Russia was arriving at Kremlin near the end of 1941. Stalin had prepared his troops to defend Moscow and after a very large battle with many casualties, they were able to drive the Germans back until they surrendered. This impacted the war greatly because this was the start of the downfall of Germany and the start of the end of World War II.