Yesterday, June 22nd was the 65th anniversary of Operation Barbarossa: Hitler’s invasion of the Soviet Union. Ultimately the struggle with the Soviet Union destroyed the German Wehrmacht and Nazi Germany. Arguably the war was lost for Hitler by 30 SEP 41: the staggering losses in the Infantry branch were never made good and the carnage in the Panzerwaffe limited future operations drastically. Then to raise bad judgment to a new level Hitler gratuitously declared war on the U.S. in December.
Hitler ignored the empirical evidence of looming catastrophe, and thank god for that. He surrounded himself with sycophants and called contradiction treason. He thought this latest reckless venture could still be won, if only by a strength of will. But will is an neutral thing, it can allow for either great feats or utter failure. What will doesn’t do is change any facts.
Hitler was concerned with the home front, in his opinion the German home front cracked in 1918, causing Germany to lose the Great War. The facts in evidence do not support that. The German Army in both wars was defeated. Wilhelmine Germany had the good sense to surrender after their army was irredeemably defeated but before incipient revolution got out of hand at home. Hitler’s Germany, through propaganda, terror, patriotism, bribery and complicity got a home front that never wavered till the end.
Hitler’s will and the solidity of the German home front in WW2 led that country to the greatest defeat of a first world country in modern times. The defeat was utter, without mitigation and most importantly undeniable. Thus was made a fertile field for reconstruction.
I’m proud America helped the U.K. and U.S.S.R. rid the world of Hitler and his brand of Totalitarian Capitalism. The outcome wasn’t ideal, but it beat the heck out of the alternative. The Soviet Bloc heads had the good sense to only poach around the edges of the Western Alliance, but avoid world war.
Fortunately for America, the Soviet leadership believed too long in their preposterous ideology. I thank the Russian people for beating the crap out of Hitler: glad we could help. And thank you for quietly forgoing empire at long last. Too bad we have botched the great opportunity that provided.