The Battle for Stalingrad (now Volgograd, Southern Russia), will remain one of the biggest references when it comes about war history. It took place between 23 August 1942 and 2 February 1943, on the Eastern Front of WW2. Nazi Germany together with its allies, deployed troops in what had to became an enormous coffin. Hitler’s great obsession for capturing the city, led to disastrous results. The Stalingrad Battle is regarded as the bloodiest and largest in the history of warfare. Around two and a half million of soldiers were deployed, resulting in 2 million of wounded, killed or captured.
The entire 6th German Army was destroyed at Stalingrad. They were surrounded and overrun, having no supplies or functional communications. Hitler ordered that surrender wasn’t an option, so the soldiers were doomed and destined to die. Around the beginning of February 1943, after months of heavy fighting in the encirclement, the survivors of the 6th German Army remained without any food or ammunition, having as only option to surrender. Beside the German 6th Army, there were also Romanian, Hungarian, Italian and Croatian troops:
– The German lost 900 aircrafts, 500 tanks and 400.000 soldiers.
– The Romanian lost 200.00 soldiers.
– 130.000 Italian soldiers were killed or captured.
– 120.000 Hungarians were killed.
– The USSR had 1,129,619 casualties, among killed, wounded or missing.
History Key made a selection for you, 20 images all from the Stalingrad Battle and immediate surroundings. For a moment, try to imagine how it was there.
1. German soldier in the city’s ruins.
Note how he’s using a Soviet PPSh machine gun, instead of German equipment.
2. Piled frozen bodies.
3. Frozen German soldier, used as street sign.
It was common for Soviet soldier to mistreat the bodies of dead German soldiers.
4. Rare moment of relax between battles.
Group of German soldiers are having a cup of what seems to be champagne.
5. Crashed German fighter plane
6. Soviet troops waving the red flag at the end of a battle.
7. Moment of relax for Soviet soldiers
8. Soviet troops attacking
9. German soldiers around the Red October factory
10. Soviet combat nurse, bandaging a wounded soldier during an attack.
11. German soldiers returning from battle. Note their look.
12. German soldier bandaging wounded civilian.
13. Fountain in the central Stalingrad square – one of the symbols of the battle.
14. German soldier sniper shot.
Not an execution, considering that he was fully equipped.
15. Soviet assault troops fighting in the city ruins.
One of them is equipped with full steel body armor and the other is operating a flamethrower.
16. Dead German soldier with the grenade in his hand
17. German soldier smoking pipes in a moment of relax after a battle around the Red October factory.
18. Soviet troops inside the Red October factory.
They are using a German MG machine gun, very probably captured during the clashes inside the factory.
19. The 100 yards stare
20. The surrender of Friedrich Paulus, the Commander of the German 6th Army