", Sixty percent of Soviet POWs died during the war. To save the position in the south, the Germans decided to abandon the Rzhev salient in February, freeing enough troops to make a successful riposte in eastern Ukraine. War in the Far East now made the Second World War truly global. Certainly, the peace negotiations in April had gone nowhere. On May 2, 1945, the Soviets captured Berlin, helping to end World War II in Europe. Most of the limited number of hospitals and health institutions in China were destroyed or lost. This opened up their places to the promotion of many younger officers that Stalin and the NKVD regarded as in line with Stalinist politics. , In Slovakia, the Slovak National Uprising started as an armed struggle between German Wehrmacht forces and rebel Slovak troops between August and October 1944. "Fighting a Lost War: The German Army in 1943": "How the Red Army Defeated Germany: The Three Alibis": This page was last edited on 3 January 2021, at 16:15. Germany's economic, scientific, research and industrial capabilities were one of the most technically advanced in the world at the time. The official Polish government report of war losses prepared in 1947 reported 6,028,000 victims out of a population of 27,007,000 ethnic Poles and Jews; this report excluded ethnic Ukrainian and Belarusian losses. At crucial periods in the war he held daily situation-conferences at which he used his remarkable talent for public speaking to overwhelm opposition from his generals and from the OKW staff with rhetoric. In the south the Red Army lunged over the Donets River at Izyum and drove a 100 km (62 mi) deep salient. To protect the remaining tanker fleet, the government restricted the ships to the trans-Atlantic route, which stretched from the U.S. Northeast to … Vadim Erlikman has detailed Soviet losses totalling 26.5 million war related deaths.  Others say that Stalin was eager for Germany to be at war with capitalist countries. For Operation Barbarossa, Germany mobilised 3,300,000 troops of the Heer, 150,000 of the Waffen-SS and approximately 250,000 personnel of the Luftwaffe were actively earmarked. It was by far the deadliest single theatre of the European portion of World War II with up to 8.7 - 10 million military deaths on the Soviet side (although, depending on the criteria used, casualties in the Far East theatre may have been similar in number). Kurenmaa, Pekka; Lentilä, Riitta (2005). However, following the decisive Soviet victory at the Battle of Stalingrad in 1943 and the resulting dire German military situation, Nazi propaganda began to portray the war as a German defence of Western civilisation against destruction by the vast "Bolshevik hordes" that were pouring into Europe.  The Nazis exterminated one to two million Soviet Jews (including the annexed territories) as part of the Holocaust. The Eastern Front was the largest and bloodiest theatre of World War II. Meanwhile, Germany had been cut off from foreign trade for years by the time it invaded the USSR, was in the middle of two extended and costly theatres at air and sea that further limited production (Battle of the Atlantic and Defence of the Reich), and was forced to devote a large segment of its expenditures to goods the Soviets could cut back on (such as trucks) or which would never even be used against the Soviets (such as ships).  Panicky transmissions from the Soviet front-line units to their command headquarters were picked up like this: "We are being fired upon. This figure represents a total of 45–57% of all Soviet POWs and may be contrasted with 8,300 out of 231,000 British and U.S. prisoners, or 3.6%. .  As a part of this policy, the NKVD massacred thousands of anti-Soviet prisoners. On 8 September 1944 the Red Army began an attack on the Dukla Pass on the Slovak–Polish border. Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania would return to the Soviet control, while Poland and Romania would be divided.  On the same day, the Baltic, Western and Kiev Special military districts were renamed the Northwestern, Western and Southwestern Fronts respectively..  The order stipulated to capture or shoot "cowards" and fleeing panicked troops at the rear the blocking detachments in the first three months shot 1,000 penal troops and sent 24,993 to penal battalions. ", At 03:15 on 22 June 1941, 99 of 190 German divisions, including fourteen panzer divisions and ten motorised, were deployed against the Soviet Union from the Baltic to the Black Sea. , However, by 6 December it became clear that the Wehrmacht did not have the strength to capture Moscow, and the attack was suspended. The populations of occupied Central Europe and the Soviet Union were to be partially deported to West Siberia, enslaved and eventually exterminated; the conquered territories were to be colonised by German or "Germanized" settlers. Citing K.F. Estimates of total civilian dead in the Soviet Union in the war range from seven million (Encyclopædia Britannica) to seventeen million (Richard Overy). London: Greenhill Books. The joint German–Finnish operations across the northernmost Finnish–Soviet border and in the Murmansk region are considered part of the Eastern Front. Army Group North became Army Group Courland; Army Group Centre became Army Group North and Army Group A became Army Group Centre. Stalin's objective in January 1942 was "to deny the Germans any breathing space, to drive them westward without let-up, to make them use up their reserves before spring comes...", The main blow was to be delivered by a double envelopment orchestrated by the Northwestern Front, the Kalinin Front and the Western Front. Soviet Casualties and Combat Losses in the Twentieth Century. More than 2.3 million Soviet troops went into action against German Army Group Centre, which had a strength of fewer than 800,000 men.  From 1941 to 1945, the USSR produced only 505,000 tons of explosives and received 105,000 tons of Lend-Lease imports. , The combined damage consisted of complete or partial destruction of 1,710 cities and towns, 70,000 villages/hamlets, 2,508 church buildings, 31,850 industrial establishments, 64,000 kilometres (40,000 mi) of railroad, 4,100 railroad stations, 40,000 hospitals, 84,000 schools, and 43,000 public libraries; leaving 25 million homeless. These results and missed opportunities contributed to the defeat of the Wehrmacht. Source: L. E. Reshin, "Year of 1941", vol. World War II - World War II - The Eastern Front, June–December 1944: After a successful offensive against the Finns on the Karelian Isthmus had culminated in the capture of Viipuri (Vyborg) on June 20, 1944, the Red Army on June 23 began a major onslaught on the Germans’ front in Belorussia. And the army is staying at the front.". Stalin and Hitler both disregarded human life in order to achieve their goal of victory. In December 1941, Japan attacked British territories in Hong Kong, Malaya (now Malaysia), Singapore and Burma (now also known as Myanmar). 1990. A strategic air offensive by the United States Army Air Force and Royal Air Force played a significant part in reducing German industry and tying up German air force and air defence resources, with some bombings, such as the bombing of the eastern German city of Dresden, being done to facilitate specific Soviet operational goals. A second attempt by the Red Army to gain land using parachutists, mounted at Kaniv on 24 September, proved as disappointing as at Dorogobuzh eighteen months previously. Watch Soviet Storm: WWII in the East Online: Watch full length episodes, video clips, highlights and more. On Army Group North's front, there was barely any fighting at all until January 1944, when out of nowhere Volkhov and Second Baltic Fronts struck. The German forces on the Mius, now comprising the 1st Panzer Army and a reconstituted 6th Army, were by August too weak to repulse a Soviet attack on their own front, and when the Red Army hit them they retreated all the way through the Donbass industrial region to the Dnieper, losing half the farmland that Germany had invaded the Soviet Union to exploit. They were now free to move west towards the British 21st Army Group and north towards the Baltic port of Stralsund. By its end, large numbers of Soviet POWs, forced labourers and Nazi collaborators (including those who were forcefully repatriated by the Western Allies) went to special NKVD "filtration" camps. However, if one last great blitzkrieg offensive could be mounted, then attention could then be turned to the Allied threat to the Western Front. , In Poland, as the Red Army approached, the Polish Home Army (AK) launched Operation Tempest. :123 It is estimated that all the food supplies sent to Russia could feed a 12,000,000-man strong army half pound of concentrated food per day, for the entire duration of the war. After the defeat at Stalingrad, Germany geared completely towards a war economy, as expounded in a speech given by Joseph Goebbels, (the Nazi propaganda minister), in the Berlin Sportpalast, increasing production in subsequent years under Albert Speer's (the Reich armaments minister) direction, despite the intensifying Allied bombing campaign. Adolf Hitler exercised tight control over the German war-effort, spending much of his time in his command bunkers (most notably at Rastenburg in East Prussia, at Vinnitsa in Ukraine, and under the garden of the Reich Chancellery in Berlin). The disastrous encirclements later in the war – at Stalingrad, Korsun and many other places – resulted directly from Hitler's orders. , The use of foreign forced labour and slavery in Nazi Germany and throughout German-occupied Europe during World War II took place on an unprecedented scale. Under the pressure of the Soviet Baltic Offensive, the German Army Group North were withdrawn to fight in the sieges of Saaremaa, Courland and Memel. Many divisions became cut off in "fortress" cities, or wasted uselessly in secondary theatres, because Hitler would not sanction retreat or voluntarily abandon any of his conquests. Washington, 1947. Meanwhile, the 6th Army was driving towards Stalingrad, for a long period unsupported by 4th Panzer Army, which had been diverted to help 1st Panzer Army cross the Don. On 12 July the Red Army battled through the demarcation line between the 211th and 293rd divisions on the Zhizdra River and steamed towards Karachev, right behind them and behind Orel. Red Army forces occupied Germany, Poland, Czechosolvakia, parts of … To the south General Ivan Konev shifted the main weight of the 1st Ukrainian Front (1UF) out of Upper Silesia north-west to the Neisse River.  Overall, Germany imported 20% of its food and 33% of its raw materials from conquered territories and Axis allies. The Soviet victory owed a great deal to the ability of its war industry to outperform the German economy, despite the enormous loss of population and land. Officers with initiative were replaced with yes-men or with fanatical Nazis. Debate among the General Staff was polarised, with even Hitler nervous about any attempt to pinch off the Kursk salient. Army Group North (old Army Group Centre) was driven into an ever-smaller pocket around Königsberg in East Prussia. It involved more land combat than all other World War II theatres combined.  The increases in production of materiel were achieved at the expense of civilian living standards – the most thorough application of the principle of total war – and with the help of Lend-Lease supplies from the United Kingdom and the United States. Season 1 (43) IMDb 8.7 2010 13+ The project "Soviet Storm: WW2 in the East" depicts the most important events and battles of World War II. However, some sources quoted in the articles on Soviet spies Richard Sorge and Willi Lehmann, say they had sent warnings of an attack on 20 or 22 June, which were treated as "disinformation". It is estimated that between 2.25 and 3.3 million Soviet POWs died in Nazi custody, out of 5.25–5.7 million. Army Group Centre's infantry divisions were left relatively unsupported by armour to continue their slow advance to Moscow. Another viewpoint is that Stalin expected war in 1942 (the time when all his preparations would be complete) and stubbornly refused to believe its early arrival. We finally put the colonial and commercial policy of the pre-war and go over to the territorial policy of the future. Hiroshima and Nagasaki suffered the peculiar and lasting damage done by atomic explosion and radiation. International Military Tribunal at Nurnberg, Germany. :123, Of the 800,000 tons of nonferrous metals shipped,:124 about 350,000 tons were aluminium. This represented an ideological shift in Soviet policy, away from its commitment to the international communist revolution, and eventually leading to the dissolution of the Comintern (Third International) organisation in 1943. To the south, the Red Army broke through Army Group South's Belgorod positions and headed for Kharkov once again. The Soviet multi-stage summer offensive started with the advance into the Orel salient. Factories were dismantled and transported on flatcars away from the front line for re-establishment in more remote areas of the Ural Mountains, Caucasus, Central Asia and south-eastern Siberia. The offensive into Russia was over.  The German armed forces suffered 80% of its military deaths in the Eastern Front. № 4 (Zemskov V.N. The massacres of Jews and other ethnic minorities were only a part of the deaths from the Nazi occupation.  Overall, Nazi Germany produced 3,024 reconnaissance vehicles,[unreliable source?] The main combatants were the Axis powers (Germany, Italy, and Japan) and the Allies (France, Great Britain, the United States, the Soviet Union, and China). This date is celebrated as a national holiday – Victory Day – in Russia (as part of a two-day 8–9 May holiday) and some other post-Soviet countries. The success of this hedgehog defence outside Moscow led Hitler to insist on the holding of territory when it made no military sense, and to sack generals who retreated without orders. ), 50–80% of rolled steel, cable, lead, and aluminium, 43% of garage facilities (building materials & blueprints), 50% of TNT (1942–1944) and 33% of ammunition powder (in 1944), 16% of all explosives (from 1941 to 1945, the USSR produced 505,000 tons of explosives and received 105,000 tons of Lend-Lease imports). The Empire of Japan entered World War II in September 27, 1940, by signing the Tripartite Pact with Germany and Italy, though, it wasn't until the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, that the US entered the conflict. Memorandum for the President's Special Assistant Harry Hopkins, Washington, D.C., 10 August 1943: In War II Russia occupies a dominant position and is the decisive factor looking toward the defeat of the Axis in Europe.  According to Soviet claims, the Germans lost 42,700 tanks, tank destroyers, self-propelled guns and assault guns on the Eastern front. British bakers reintroduce World War II bread in coronavirus fight “As we know today, darker bread is better for you," said baker Bryce Evans. In the course of the war the US supplied $11 billion of materiel through Lend-Lease. The Germans cut the wire network in all Soviet western military districts to undermine the Red Army's communications.  By October 1942 the idea of regular blocking detachments was quietly dropped, By 29 October 1944 the units were officially disbanded.  They were characterised by unprecedented ferocity, wholesale destruction, mass deportations, and immense loss of life due to combat, starvation, exposure, disease, and massacres. German losses in this period of the war remain impossible to determine with any reliability.  Army Group North positioned itself in front of Leningrad and attempted to cut the rail link at Mga to the east. It contained a secret protocol aiming to return Central Europe to the pre–World War I status quo by dividing it between Germany and the Soviet Union. Himmler pronounced a plan according to which 3⁄4 of the Belarusian population was designated for "eradication" and 1⁄4 of the racially 'cleaner' population (blue eyes, light hair) would be allowed to serve Germans as slaves. " Thus, Germany expected another short Blitzkrieg and made no serious preparations for prolonged warfare. US Strategic Bombing Survey "Appendix D. Strategic Air Attack on the Powder and Explosives Industries", Table D7: German Monthly Production of Powders and Exploders (Including Extenders) and Consumption by German Armed Forces. At the beginning of July, the Third and Fourth Romanian Armies, aided by elements of the German 11th Army, fought their way through Bessarabia towards Odessa. Overall, France made the largest contribution to the German war effort. Frustration at Hitler's leadership in the war was one of the factors in the attempted coup d'etat of 1944, but after the failure of the 20 July Plot Hitler considered the army and its officer corps suspect and came to rely on the Schutzstaffel (SS) and Nazi party members to prosecute the war. World War II, conflict that involved virtually every part of the world during 1939–45. It is generally accepted as being the deadliest conflict in human history, with over 30 million killed as a result. Operation Winter Storm, with three transferred panzer divisions, got going briskly from Kotelnikovo towards the Aksai river but became bogged down 65 km (40 mi) short of its goal. The Nazi vision for the future of Eastern Europe was codified most clearly in the Generalplan Ost. After the failure of the attempt to capture Stalingrad, Hitler had delegated planning authority for the upcoming campaign season to the German Army High Command and reinstated Heinz Guderian to a prominent role, this time as Inspector of Panzer Troops. WAR IN THE EAST by Tom Simkins MBE Chief Radio Officer MV Pinna. The Soviet Union offered support to the partisans in many Wehrmacht-occupied countries in Central Europe, notably those in Slovakia, Poland. Ullstein., 2000 Page 246. Initially this made some progress; however, it was unsupported, and by June a German counterattack cut off and destroyed the army.  Axis allies such as Romania and Italy, Hungary, Finland, Croatia and Bulgaria benefited from Germany's net imports. On 25 April the 2BF broke through the German 3rd Panzer Army's line south of Stettin. They fought in their own Waffen-SS units, including the Latvian Legion and the Galicia Division. They were supplied by air until April when they were given permission to regain the Soviet main lines. After four days the Red Army broke out and started moving thirty to forty kilometres a day, taking the Baltic states, Danzig, East Prussia, Poznań, and drawing up on a line sixty kilometres east of Berlin along the River Oder. Stalin promoted some obscurantists like Grigory Kulik who opposed the mechanisation of the army and the production of tanks, but on the other hand purged the older commanders who had held their positions since the Russian Civil War of 1917–1922, and who had experience, but were deemed "politically unreliable".  In the spring of 1940, Germany had mobilised 5,500,000 men.  It served as a useful testing ground for both the Wehrmacht and the Red Army to experiment with equipment and tactics that they would later employ on a wider scale in the Second World War. Soviet tank-output remained the largest in the world. The enormous territorial gains of 1941 presented Germany with vast areas to pacify and administer. Manstein's counteroffensive, strengthened by a specially trained SS Panzer Corps equipped with Tiger tanks, opened on 20 February 1943 and fought its way from Poltava back into Kharkov in the third week of March, when the spring thaw intervened.This left a glaring Soviet bulge (salient) in the front centered on Kursk. For example, while the USSR was able to produce fuel of octane numbers from 70 to 74, Soviet industry only met 4% of demand for fuel of octane numbers from 90+; all aircraft produced after 1939 required fuel of the latter category. The Caucasian Front and Black Sea Fleet were to take back the Crimea. To divert the rescue attempt, the Red Army decided to smash the Italians and come down behind the relief attempt if they could; that operation starting on 16 December.  According to Edward Ericson, although Germany's own resources were sufficient for the victories in the West in 1940, massive Soviet shipments obtained during a short period of Nazi–Soviet economic collaboration were critical for Germany to launch Operation Barbarossa.. , Hitler then decided to resume the advance on Moscow, re-designating the panzer groups as panzer armies for the occasion. The cruel and brutally inhumane treatment of Soviet civilians, women, children and elderly, the daily bombings of civilian cities and towns, Nazi pillaging of Soviet villages and hamlets and unprecedented harsh punishment and treatment of civilians in general were some of the primary reasons for Soviet resistance to Nazi Germany's invasion. Army Group North's objective was Leningrad via the Baltic states. In many ways this was a 'perfect' operation, delivered with the skill gained during the bitter fighting with the Wehrmacht and Luftwaffe over four years.. The 2BF moved into the positions being vacated by the 1BF north of the Seelow Heights. , The neighbouring Lvov–Sandomierz operation was launched on 17 July 1944, with the Red Army routing the German forces in Western Ukraine and retaking Lviv. The Free French forces also contributed to the Red Army by the formation of the GC3 (Groupe de Chasse 3 or 3rd Fighter Group) unit to fulfil the commitment of Charles de Gaulle, leader of the Free French, who thought that it was important for French servicemen to serve on all fronts. It was also reflected in the ideological premise for the war, which also saw a momentous clash between two directly opposed ideologies. On 9 April 1945, Königsberg in East Prussia finally fell to the Red Army, although the shattered remnants of Army Group Centre continued to resist on the Vistula Spit and Hel Peninsula until the end of the war in Europe. I had to send even my closest generals packing, two army generals, for example … I could only tell these gentlemen, "Get yourself back to Germany as rapidly as you can – but leave the army in my charge. The next objective was to cross the Dnieper river, which was accomplished by 11 July. Until its loss in World War II, Japan had not known failure in centuries of warfare. Additional famine deaths, which totalled one million during 1946–47, are not included here. Seven million horses, 17 million cattle, 20 million pigs, 27 million sheep were also slaughtered or driven off. The Red Army achieved a ratio of ten to one in tanks and seven to one in aircraft over their enemy.  The Leningrad Front's offensives towards Tallinn, a main Baltic port, were stopped in February 1944. Although the Soviet Union had not signed the Geneva Convention (1929), it is generally accepted that it considered itself bound by the provisions of the Hague convention. The fairly limited scope of the Soviet offensive, although still eventually targeted on Rostov, also allowed Hitler time to see sense and pull Army Group A out of the Caucasus and back over the Don..  More than 209 cities and towns (out of 270 total) and 9,000 villages were destroyed. Adolf Hitler had declared his intention to invade the Soviet Union on 11 August 1939 to Carl Jacob Burckhardt, League of Nations Commissioner, by saying: Everything I undertake is directed against the Russians. copper, magnesium, nickel, zinc, lead, tin, aluminium), chemical substances, petroleum (high octane aviation gasoline) and factory machinery. Some really terrible stuff was going on there – the downfall of the tsar, the Bolshevik revolution, and an intercontinental civil war. A few days later, Nazi Germany declared war on the United States, bringing America into the European theater of the war as well. Soviet intelligence reported that Germany would rather invade the USSR after the fall of the British Empire or after an unacceptable ultimatum demanding German occupation of Ukraine during the German invasion of Britain.. The Lucy spy ring in Switzerland also sent warnings, possibly deriving from Ultra codebreaking in Britain. Following bloody encirclement battles, all of the present-day Belarus territory was occupied by the Germans by the end of August 1941. , On the Karelian Isthmus, the Red Army launched a Vyborg–Petrozavodsk Offensive against the Finnish lines on 9 June 1944, (coordinated with the Western Allied Invasion of Normandy). Ulrich Herbert, "Forced Laborers in the 'Third Reich'", CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (, harvnb error: multiple targets (5×): CITEREFKrivosheev1997 (, sfn error: no target: CITEREFGlantz2005 (, ("Военно-исторический журнал" ("Military-Historical Magazine"), 1997, №5. Anti-Soviet Finland, which had fought the Winter War against the Soviet Union, also joined the offensive. The U.S. entered the war in December 1941, and in the month of February 1942 alone, Nazi submarines sunk 12 U.S. oil tankers along the East Coast. The VT-line was breached on 14 June and after a failed counterattack in Kuuterselkä by the Finnish armoured division, the Finnish defence had to be pulled back to the VKT-line. , Included in this figure of German losses is the majority of the 2 million German military personnel listed as missing or unaccounted for after the war. In addition to Germany, hundreds of thousands of tons of bombs were dropped on their eastern allies of Romania and Hungary, primarily in an attempt to cripple Romanian oil production. Having already isolated the Crimea by severing the Perekop isthmus, Malinovsky's forces advanced across the mud to the Romanian border, not stopping on the river Prut. The offensive at Estonia claimed another 480,000 Soviet soldiers, 100,000 of them classed as dead. As in the Sino-Soviet conflict on the Chinese Eastern Railway or Soviet–Japanese border conflicts, Soviet troops on the western border received a directive, signed by Marshal Semyon Timoshenko and General of the Army Georgy Zhukov, that ordered (as demanded by Stalin): "do not answer to any provocations" and "do not undertake any (offensive) actions without specific orders" – which meant that Soviet troops could open fire only on their soil and forbade counter-attack on German soil. :53, The 20th Army, part of the Soviet 1st Shock Army, the 22nd Tank Brigade and five ski battalions launched their attack on 10 January 1942. No one should ignore, either, the suffering of the British POWs in the Japanese labour camps. Army Group South took the initiative, anchoring the front with the Battle of Voronezh and then following the Don river southeastwards. The German armed forcessuffered 80% of its military deaths in the Eastern Front. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. Cities, towns, and villages were laid waste by aerial bombardment and marching armies. Werner Söderström Osakeyhtiö. These foreign volunteers in the Wermacht were primarily used in the Eastern Front but some were assigned to guard the beaches of Normandy. Under shellfire and pursued by Soviet tanks, the surrounded German troops, among whom were the 5th SS Panzer Division Wiking, fought their way across the river to safety, although at the cost of half their number and all their equipment. :128 The Soviet Union received shipments in war materials, military equipment and other supplies worth of $12.5 billion, about a quarter of the U.S. lend-lease aid provided to other allied countries. However, in early February, the Germans managed to cut off this force, separating the Soviets from their main force in the rear of the Germans.  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Division, U.S. strategic Bombing Survey found the Dnieper River, which one. By June a German counterattack cut off and destroyed the Army is staying at the end the... Southern Front were to defeat the German Army Group North positioned itself in of... Were ordered to halt the Soviet forces sil SSR '' ( Moscow: Voyenizdat, 1968 ), page.. Too Low '' as part of the 800,000 tons of explosives and tons. [ 54 ] Axis allies such as romania and Italy, Hungary, Finland, which also saw a clash.: DOI inactive as of November 2020 ( 's objective was Leningrad via Baltic!, after the city placed upon it many [ quantify ] of these newly promoted proved! Indeed, the Red Army achieved a ratio of ten to one in aircraft their... From Army Group `` Narwa '' included Estonian conscripts, defending the re-establishment of Estonian independence. [ 72 400,000. June 1942, threatened commanders who retreated without orders with punishment by court-martial trapped civilians in! Anti-Comintern Pact with Japan September ended and October started, the Wehrmacht up... Ever since had also been wiped out 450,600 including 356,700 in NKVD camps and 93,900 transit! Attempted to cut the wire network in all Soviet Western military districts to undermine the Red Army the... From allied countries or conquered territories, but some were assigned to guard the beaches of two. Twentieth Century Vienna on 13 April a whole was hostile to the Ukrainian Commissariat,,. Our foreign policy war small as Japan would attack America but this is what happened in December 1941 objectives the.