Hitler had expected Communist Russia to collapse like a pack of cards. For the first six months it seemed he was right as the German juggernaut rolled on into the Soviet Union.
The turning point came as the Germans reached the outskirts of Moscow. Nature stepped in. The harsh winter set in. The Greece adventure in May 1941 had delayed Barbarossa's start. The stretched German supplies wore thin. And Stalin showed his true nature. The Russian spine stiffened. Mother Russia's call was answered.
Fresh troops from eastern Russia were sent in and the German advance stalled. Barbarossa had failed. Russia did not surrender.
Here are some images of Operation Barbarossa.
This is how the New York Times reported on June 22,
|Germans in October 1941, near Salla on Kola Peninsula, a Soviet-occupied region in northeast Finland. (AP Photo)|
|A German soldier stands guard as a bridge over River Dneiper burns in Kiev, Ukraine|
|Germans crouching in position are about to attack the city of Kiev. 1941|
|Russian soldiers wait for the German attack (LOC)|
|Scorched earth policy by the Russians. Burn everything as you retreat. Leave nothing for the enemy. A Leningrad suburb. October 21, 1941. Russian inhabitants try to save anything they can. (AP Photo)|
|July 2, 1941. Russian POW walk back to the German lines as German assault troops march to the front. (AP)|
|Heinrich Himmler visits a camp for Soviet POW (National Archives)|