Final Exam Essay 2 - Spilkowitz 1 Stephan Spilkowitz HIST...

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Spilkowitz 1 Stephan Spilkowitz December 10, 2007 HIST 371, Sec: 6 Professor Weiss Final Exam Question 3:L Arguments are bound to arise in discussing which nation was responsible for the defeat of Nazi Germany in World War II. Seeing as Hitler’s conquest cast a shadow over so many countries and seeing as the effort against the Nazis was a conglomeration of a multitude of nations, it may seem difficult or even incorrect to attribute victory to any one individual nation. Although the US, Britain, and their allies made significant contributions to the liberation of Europe and the defeat of the Nazis, the single nation whose fight against the Nazis directly influenced the fall of the Third Reich, was the Soviet Union. As for the genocidal Nazi campaign against the Jews, the liberation of the concentration camps by the Allies may be viewed as a victory of sorts, yet in this “second war” there was no victor. The German defeat by the Soviets was a combination of Soviet military tactics, environmental influences, and the outcome of several strategically important battles which turned the tide of the war. To understand why the Soviet Union was the first European nation to stop the German advance after nearly all of Western Europe had capitulated to the Nazis, it is important first to look at the motivations of and conditions of the Red Army. A large factor in the success of the Red Army was their immense feelings of moral for defense of the motherland. Each individual soldier in the Red Army had to pledge to, “protect with all his strength the property of the Army and the People and to cherish unto death his People, the soviet homeland and the government of the Workers and Peasants; also to respond at the first call from the government of the Workers and
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Spilkowitz 2 Peasants to defend the homeland, the USSR.” Stalin extended the effort for defense when
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