Wunderwaffe and the Myth of German Technological Supremacy

Since the end of the Second World War, much has been made of German weapons and their purported superiority over their Allied counterparts. German planes are supposed to have been faster and better armed, German small arms possessed a higher rate of fire, German missiles revolutionized long-range warfare, and German tanks ruled the battlefield. PropagandaContinue reading “Wunderwaffe and the Myth of German Technological Supremacy”

September 3rd in German History: France and the UK begin the blockade of Germany

In every war Germany has fought with the UK, the Royal Navy has been able to cut off Germany from oceanic trade. WWII was no different. On September 3rd, two days after Germany invaded Poland, Great Britain and France used their navies to stop the passage of trade vessels to German ports. The initial phaseContinue reading “September 3rd in German History: France and the UK begin the blockade of Germany”

September 1st in German History: The Death of Albert Speer

Albert Speer was a German architect and industrialist who was responsible for armaments organization during the latter years of WWII. During the decades after the war, he was often credited with significant increases in German weapons production and with being less brutal than other Nazis. He died on September 1st, 1981. Speer was born inContinue reading “September 1st in German History: The Death of Albert Speer”

August 31st in German History: The Gleiwitz Incident

One of the realities of international relations is that even the most bellicose of nations need justification, however flimsy, to initiate war. When Germany invaded Poland on September 1st, 1939, the stated pretext was a series of Polish attacks on German military installations. The most significant of these attacks was the Gleiwitz incident, which sawContinue reading “August 31st in German History: The Gleiwitz Incident”

August 22nd in German History: German Troops Perpetrate the Holocaust of Kedros

While the German occupations of France, Poland, and Yugoslavia are well-known, the occupation of Greece is not often discussed. From 1941 until 1945, Greece was occupied by both Italian and German forces following the invasion of the country. The occupying forces committed numerous atrocities. One of the worst, the Holocaust of Kedros, occurred on theContinue reading “August 22nd in German History: German Troops Perpetrate the Holocaust of Kedros”

August 12th in German History: The Wola Massacre Ends

During the Second World War, Germany was responsible for uncountable massacres, atrocities and genocides. The reasons for these acts were many, but they often boiled down to a combination of racist hatred and a brutally practical desire to eliminate resistance. These motivations were behind the Wola Massacre, the killing of tens of thousands of PolesContinue reading “August 12th in German History: The Wola Massacre Ends”

July 28th in German History: A Firestorm Engulfs the City of Hamburg

Germany began the Second World War confident in its prospects of victory and assured that it would itself see the devastation of conflict. Germany’s leaders promised that German cities would be free of violence, and that the battles would be fought far from the nation’s borders. These promises were broken. Even before Germany itself wasContinue reading “July 28th in German History: A Firestorm Engulfs the City of Hamburg”

June 17th in German History: The Birth of Heinz Guderian

Germany has no shortage of famous generals in its history. During the Second World War, numerous Germans became famous for their victories against the Allied powers. While perhaps not as famous as Erwin Rommel, Heinz Guderian was probably the most skilled of the German tank commanders. His innovative tactics and strategic insight were fundamental toContinue reading “June 17th in German History: The Birth of Heinz Guderian”

April 8th in German History: The Liberation of Crimea

April 8th, 1944, while perhaps a bad day for Germany, was a good day for the world as a whole. On that day, the Soviet Union began its offensive to retake Crimea from the Germans who had occupied it in 1942. The Soviet forces, led by Fyodor Tolbukhin, attacked combined German and Romanian forces underContinue reading “April 8th in German History: The Liberation of Crimea”