Hypothetically, could Germany have won ww2? Where did the things go wrong for Hitler?
This question has been argued over for decades, and there are countless ways in which Hitler could have won the war, but also far more where he could have lost it more quickly. There are three main aspects which are largely seen as Hitler’s biggest mistakes; his choice to not act at Dunkirk, his shift in focusing from airfields to cities in the Battle of Britain, and, most importantly, his choice to attack Russia in late summer.
In regards to Dunkirk, in 1940 Hitler’s army had completely defeated the British and French armies and had pushed the Allied forces to a small stretch of coastal land called Dunkirk. The Allied forces were completely surrounded, largely poorly defended, and entirely unequipped. For some unknown reason, possibly out of mercy, Hitler chose to halt his advance and let the Allied troops retreat back to Britain. Many believe that if he had chosen to push forward and destroy these units that Britain would have been either shocked into a surrender or forced to capitulate to the Nazi regime. Instead, the tactical retreat let tens of thousands of soldiers and millions of pounds of equipment be recovered and reused later in the war.
As for the Battle of Britain, in the beginning phase of this combat, which largely focused on air battles between British and German forces, Germany had centered all of their efforts on bombing British airfields and aircraft before they were able to make it into the air. Many British airforce commanders admitted after the war that this tactic was devastating and left them largely paralyzed against the German Luftwaffe. However, just at the point where the British airforce felt they may have lost entirely, the German’s refocused their attentions on bombing English cities in order to reduce the morale of the nation. This gave the airforce time to recover and eventually defeat the German Luftwaffe, which halted Hitler’s ability to invade the last Allied held territory within Europe and gave the Allied forces the foothold which they needed to invade the European mainland in 1944.
Finally, Hitler’s biggest mistake was in his choice to invade Russia at the height of summer, when he had only a number of weeks to capture the largest country in the world. In the beginning, the invasion was an immense success, with the German armed forces completely destroying the unprepared and inexperienced Soviet army. What would finally defeat the German forces, however, was the Russian winter. The weather completely devastated his supply lines and ability to manoeuvre troops, with tens of thousands of soldiers dying from starvation, exposure, or exhaustion. Hitler’s choice to invade Russia when he didn’t need to along with overstretching his supply lines, poorly equipping his soldiers, and underestimating the sheer size of the Russian territory, eventually led to his downfall when the Soviets began their counterattack and eventual advance into Germany.
The war went wrong for Hitler in many places, but more often than not he was extremely lucky and gained far more territory than anyone would have expected. In all, there were countless things that Hitler could have done differently, but it is likely that the sheer size and resources of the Soviet and American armies would have eventually led to his demise