A modern look back at war in Europe and its effect….

Essay by JasonBargCollege, UndergraduateA-, November 2014

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Jason Bargerstock

Hist 450 - 54322

Essay 5


"I shall write…."

On a June day, not long after the Allied Normandy invasion, a senior signals officer with the 12th SS Panzer Division quipped that "Should we win this war…I shall write a book about why we should have lost it". He spoke those words like a man that knew he was part of the victorious side. History on this subject has already played out and, as we know, the Allies rallied and eventually defeated the Axis powers led by Germany. If only the senior signals officer knew what was to come, he most likely would have said something very different. He might have said "If I survive this losing war, I shall write a book about why we should have won it". Let us suppose what such a book might say.[1: Max Hastings, Overlord: D-Day and the Battle for Normandy (New York: Vintage, 1984) 179]

Surely it would contain many stories of bravery and honor.

It is true that the German soldier fighting in WW2 was most likely excellently trained in all the most up to date methodology of war. In fact, it was noted by American Brigadier General Williams that the Germans often times adjusted much better to changing conditions than his own side did and that they were "by and large, better soldiers than we were. The Germans liked soldiering, we didn't". A great example of this was the adjustment to changing conditions on the battlefields of Normandy. The Germans correctly assessed the battlefield should an Allied invasion happen there, and developed a plan which used the landscape to their advantage. Seeing that the country would allow for only slow, plodding movement, they developed a plan to work small parties behind Allied positions and turning their flanks.