Battle Of Stalingrad Timeline
The Battle of Stalingrad began on 17th July 1942 and ended on 2nd February 1943. This battle is one of the most significant battles fought during the Second World War. It is believed that this particular battle changed the tide of the war. The Russians were responsible for resounding defeating an invading German army. This was the first time during the course of the war that the German army suffered such a resounding defeat.
The German Sixth Army lent support to the Fourth Panzer Army as it advanced in Stalingrad. This occurred in September. The Sixth Army was under General Paulus. The main objective of this army was to seize the oilfields and then proceed to Baku. Stalingrad was considered an important city, as it housed the communications center of the USSR and was a manufacturing hub.
The Russian army was already reeling under the Blitzkrieg which occurred as a part of Operation Barbarossa, but it decided to defend the city, which was named after Joseph Stalin. Also, the army had strict instructions from Stalin himself not to allow the Germans to get hold of the oilfields.
This battle turned in a street battle, where opposing armies fought for each street in the city using hand to hand combat. While the German army was successful in conquering large part of the city, it was unable to gain full control. Any area that was taken by the German army was retaken by the Russian army during the nights.
However, by mid-November the Russians had managed to regroup and help was sent to the city. Six army divisions comprising of 1 million soldiers surrounded Stalingrad. This trapped the Germans within the city. While General Paulus could have got out of this, he had instructions from Hitler not to do so. As a result, the German army had to spend the winter in the city without harsh temperatures, and hardly any food, heat and ammunition.
By the end of January the following year, Paulus and his army surrendered to the Russians. The remaining German troops that came to the aid of Paulus and his Sixth army were led by General Schreck. They surrendered on 2nd February 1943, bringing the Battle of Stalingrad to an end.
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History Learning Site: The Battle Of Stalingrad