This is the first 1,000 characters of 420 words (1.68 pages) in the essay titled Stalingrad
The attack came as a complete surprise to the leader of the Soviet Union, Joseph Stalin. Despite repeated intelligence warnings, which included the precise day and hour of Germany's incipient assault, Stalin remained convinced that Hitler would not risk an eastern war as long as the British Empire remained undefeated. It has been argued that Stalin in fact planned a pre-emptive attack on Germany for the early summer of 1941, and was then thrown off-balance by the German invasion.
'For two years Soviet forces pushed the German army back into Germany ...'
The evidence makes clear the defensive posture of the Soviet Union in 1941. Stalin did not want to risk war, though he hoped to profit from the German-British struggle if he could. In the event, the shock of attack almost unhinged the Soviet state, and by the autumn German forces had destroyed most of the Red Army and the Russian air force, surrounded and besieged Leningrad - where over one million people died of star...
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