The B.E.F (British Expeditionary Force) along with French troops (338,000 soldiers in total) were evacuated by the British as a result of Hitler’s indecision. These soldiers lived to rejoin the fight and eventually helped defeat Hitler.
Impact of the Battle of Britain
(August and September 1940)
The German invasion of Britain (Operation Sea Lion) was stalled and abandoned.
After this failure, Germany launched “Operation Barbarossa.”
The Battle of Britain gave British people hope for future success against Germany.
"Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.”Winston Churchill
It is thought that as many as 20 million Russians died.
Initially very successful, but turned to a disaster with the onset of a brutally cold Russian winter.
The defeat of the Germans by the Russians was vital to the Allies overall victory in Europe. Over two-thirds of the German army was in the Russian war and its defeat meant that the Allies in the west (GB, France and USA) had more chance of success against a smaller force. Winston Churchill stated that it was the Russians who "tore the heart out of the German army."
Impact of the Battle of El Alamein
The Allied victory at El Alamein led to the retreat of the Afrika Korps and the German surrender in North Africa in May 1943.
The Afrika Korps led by General Rommel (the “desert fox”) contained some of Hitler's finest soldiers and a vast amount of first class equipment was lost by the Germans including the newly designed battle tanks.
Also this victory did expose the south of Italy to invasion and the Allies.
25,000 Germans and Italians had been killed or wounded in the battle and 13,000 Allied troops in the Eighth Army.
Germany’s Afrika Korps was defeated by Britain’s General Montgomery. This was Britain’s first decisive victory against Germany in WWII. It allowed Britain to maintain control over the vitally important Suez Canal region of North Africa.
Impact of the Battle of Stalingrad
(Sept.1942 to Feb. 1943)
The defeat of an entire German army at Stalingrad was a disaster for the Germans and some historians consider this battle the turning point of World War II.
After this defeat, the Germany Army was in full retreat.
With such a massive loss of manpower and equipment, the Germans simply did not have enough manpower to cope with the Russian advance to Germany when it came.
When the German Army in Stalingrad surrendered, Hitler commented "The God of War has gone over to the other side."
The Battle of Midway, fought in June 1942, must be considered one of the most decisive battles of World War II.
The Battle of Midway effectively destroyed Japan’s naval strength when the Americans destroyed four of its aircraft carriers.
Japan’s navy never recovered from their losses at Midway and it was on the defensive after this battle.
Impact of the Normandy Invasion (D-Day)
D-Day was one of the major events of World War II. D-Day saw a vast Allied armada deliver 100,000’s of soldiers to the shores of Normandy at the start of the drive to Berlin. D-Day itself was on June 6th 1944.
The plan was to land about 135,000 men on D-Day and about 20,000 vehicles.
The planning for D-Day began in 1943 at the Quebec Conference in Canada. The planned invasion was given the code-word "Overlord".
Despite the enormous complexity of D-Day, it was a huge success.