Lost Victories - Chapter 12; The Tragedy of Stalingrad Summary & Analysis

Erich von Manstein
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In Chapter 12, the Sixth Army was surrounded at Stalingrad because Hitler had the German front overextended for too long in two different directions, toward Stalingrad, and toward the Caucasus. The huge flank of the Sixth Army was covered by the weak armies of Romania, Hungary and Italy. As Manstein traveled south, he found out from Field Marshall v. Kluge that the Soviets had penetrated Romanian armies both north and south of Stalingrad. Manstein wanted Sixth Army to immediately withdraw from Stalingrad and fight toward the bridge at Kalach over the Don River, but soon the Soviets captured that bridge intact. Some 220,000 troops were surrounded in the Stalingrad pocket by November 24th. Manstein commanded Army Group Don that at first only had only remnants of various armies. In the pocket, Sixth Army Commander Paulus refused to defy Hitler...

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