The Road to
Stalingrad - Nemesis on the Volga
The Battle for Stalingrad -
The Battle for the Factories
The combat re-supply
in the combat area of
The Battle for Stalingrad -
the military historical literature on the Battle of Stalingrad there is
an insurmountable mountain of books, works and professional articles
that deal with the operative thought, strategic actions, situation
reports and command decisions regarding the progress of the battles
between Don and Volga in the 1942/43 period.
Historians research the causes
and the reasons that led to this catastrophe.
I’m not a historian - I just
'was there' - committed, highly motivated and convinced of the
correctness of my actions. My personall record is to be seen in this
manner, as they are mainly based on my personal experiences and from a
report, which in its language and way of expression one finds where in
the end the orders of the High Command are carried out.
Thus, this is a view from a
‘footslogger’s perspective‘ and not from the exemplary situation map of
the commander or even the Commander in Chief. Here one tells about the
experiences of a young man, who at a young age as a soldier had to
shoulder tasks and responsibilities, which from the start were subject
to extreme conditions and could hardly be imitated by the modern
generation, as she has experienced nothing comparable yet.
These are stories that of course are subjective. They’ll have to be, as
the events and the results of the action are described in the way they
were experienced. I used the form of a ‘diary’ in which daily entries
are made about each day of fighting. In addition there are reports from
letters home as well as documents - which at that time were earmarked
to be stored and analysed later.
The following stories are in chronological order, without any
explanations, without any wisdom and lessons gained after the event,
without any smart-alecky looks forward and without our modern
knowledge. In this it was important to show what took really place
behind the official reports, announcements, news and other publications.
It is a special thing to tell what could only be guessed at behind the
naked numbers, behind the boastful reports and strange place names. In
efforts and suffering, in courage and bravery, in sacrifice and misery,
in poverty and continuous deprivations of all kind for every soldier.
In loyal comradeship and fulfilling of duty, in bitter abandonment and
To make this especially clear every personal story is preceded by the
limited and precise expressions of the ‘Wehrmacht communiqué’s’
of those dates, as far as they make any mention of the situation and
the fighting in my own sector and show the development of the general
This is added to by corresponding reports from the 'War Diary of the
Armed Forces High Command'. The stories of the last weeks in
Stalingrad, in which there was no possibility of writing letters, much
less of transporting them home by mail, and where also the keeping of a
diary stopped, were written from memory. They still remain so clear and
vivid as they tower over everything, I experienced before and had to
let pass me by later. Excepting the inferno after the battle of
Stalingrad with capture by the Red Army and the circumstances and
situations that made that of the 93,000 Stalingrad prisoners of war
only 6,000 that ever saw home again.
Of which I
was allowed to be one.