Victory at Stalingrad tells the gripping strategic and military story of that battle. The hard-won Soviet victory prevented Hitler from waging the Second World War for another ten years and set the Germans on the road to defeat. The Soviet victory also prevented the Nazis from completing the Final Solution, the wholesale destruction of European Jewry, which began with Hitler’s "War of Annihilation" against the Soviets on the Eastern Front.
Geoffrey Roberts places the conflict in the context of the clash between two mighty powers:their world views and their leaders. He presents a great human drama, highlighting the contribution made by political and military leaders on both sides. He shows that the real story of the battle was the Soviets’ failure to achieve their greatest ambition: to deliver an immediate, war-winning knockout blow to the Germans.
This provocative reassessment presents new evidence and challenges the myths and legends that surround both the battle and the key personalities who led and planned it.
Soviet expert Roberts (The Unholy Alliance) depicts Hitler's mammoth effort to bring the Russians to their knees and Stalin's struggle to defeat the German troops at any cost in this intelligent introduction to the epic Battle of Stalingrad (1942-3). Interweaving excerpts from the work of contemporary scholars with his own brisk and clear, if not necessarily elegant, narrative, Roberts's historiography enumerates the offensives and counter-offensives, supply chains, military pronouncements and strategies in the siege of the Volga River city that became such a brutal war of attrition. The volume's format bears some similarity to that of a textbook's, with its glossary of terms, biographical notes and guide to further reading. Readers seeking original research and a gripping narrative might want to stick with the Antony Beevor's bestselling 1998 volume on the subject-or for a broader view, Alexander Worth's 1964 Russia at War, as Roberts himself recommends-but those who want a relatively quick and detailed account of this decisive battle will find most of their questions answered here. Also, two concluding sections-covering "the battle that changed history" and "the battle that history changed"-provide an excellent summary of the battle's aftermath both in WWII and in historical memory.