Why Hitler failed to defeat Russia

Why Hitler failed to defeat Russia

Operation Barbarossa was the code name for Adolf Hitler's invasion of the Soviet Union. Beginning in June 1941, this blitzkrieg attack on Russia and its leader Joseph Stalin would ultimately decide the Second World War. Despite early success against an unprepared Soviet army, the invasion began to slow down and eventually ground to a halt in December just 20km short of Moscow. At that moment the Russians struck back with a surprise winter counter-attack, bringing the offensive to an end. In this episode of IWM Stories, John Delaney takes a look at why Operation Barbarossa failed with the help of archive film, photographs and battle maps.

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German motorcycle troops and infantry pass a long column of Russian prisoners during the advance into the Soviet Union, 1941.
© IWM (HU 111371)
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