Today in History
Travel to Germany
Facts About Germany
Thirty Years' War
German Chocolate Cake
How To in Germany
World War II - Defeat
In June 1944, American, British, and Canadian forces invaded France,
driving the Germans back and liberating Paris by August. A German counteroffensive
in the Ardennes began in late December was beaten back after heavy fighting
in what became known as the Battle of the Bulge. Soviet troops, meanwhile,
advanced from the east. Western forces reached the Rhine River in March
1945; simultaneously, Soviet armies overran most of Czechoslovakia and
pressed on toward Berlin. Although faced with certain defeat, Hitler insisted
that every German city, every village, and "every square meter" be defended
or left behind as "scorched earth." The Western Allies and the Soviet
forces made their first contact, in Saxony, on April 27. Three days later,
Hitler committed suicide in a Berlin bunker.
May 9, 1945. Red Square, Moscow. May 9 marks the official observance of the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany in World War II, a conflict in which over 27 million Soviets lost their lives.
Berlin fell to the Soviet
forces on May 2; on May 7, the Third Reich surrendered unconditionally.
It is estimated that about 55 million people died in the European theater
during World War II. About 8 million of these dead were German.
The members of the provisional government were arrested on May 23 and subsequently found guilty of war crimes at Nuremberg.
- The Third Reich, 1933-1945:
Consolidation of Power
- Foreign Policy
- The Outbreak of World
- Total Mobilization, Resistance,
and the Holocaust