Before America’s long slog across the Pacific, beginning with the massive effort it took to rebuild a ruined navy, struck down in a surprise attack by Japan, the rest of the nations of the world had been wrestling with a con man who promised to make Germany Great Again. Adolph Hitler told the Germans what they wanted to hear. After all, they were the "Master Race".

A few may recall that Hitler and Stalin teamed up and quickly divided Poland, a nation that from its inception only gained freedom following the First World War for the brief span of 20 years.

The Germans were quick to sign a non-aggression pact with Russia in 1939 and there being no honor among predators, both nations lusted after oil. Russia had a lot in the Caucasus. In Romania, there was even more. 
June 22, 1941, Three German Army groups began a race toward Leningrad, (now St. Petersburg) in the north of Russia; toward Moscow, the capital of the USSR, and toward Stalingrad (now Volgograd) in the Russian Southwest. This was “Operation Barbarossa”.   At one point it covered 300 miles of an advancing German front, much of it burning farms and barren fields.

The Wehrmacht began to bog down in the August mud. And it began to get colder, and colder and colder.

Time and again the Germans attacked across the Volga and well into Stalingrad and the Russians counter-attacked through the rubble.

This lasted for five months one week and three days; the largest number of combatants ever, often engaged in hand to hand fighting, before the Germans surrendered on February 1st of 1943.

The Germans had 800,000 dead, wounded or missing. The Russians counted 1-million, one hundred thousand dead, missing or wounded members of their armed services in that confrontation alone.

40,000 Russian civilians were also killed in the fighting.

In 1945, Stalingrad was officially recognized a Hero City of the Soviet Union.

-– Phil Richardson, Editor

Our unending thanks to Jim Bromley, who programs our Archive of Prior Commentaries

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Tommy Ross follows his older brothers to be an apprentice in the hazardous trade of mining coal. It is doubly dangerous, for his father has been sent to organize a local union in a "company owned" coal camp. "The Prosperity Coal Company" is a novel based on actual events that occurred all across the coal belt, when America was on the cusp of the great depression, and union wars raged. This book is available on Amazon (link below).

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