Stalingrad: A Trilogy episode 3 – At the beginning of January 1943, the situation for the soldiers of the 6th Army was hopeless: completely exhausted, half starved and apathetic, the men lay in their positions in freezing temperatures. They can no longer defend themselves, the ammunition is almost gone. Then, on January 8, 1943, the Soviets offered the Sixth Army honorable terms of surrender. But Hitler forbids Paulus to give up the fight. The senseless death goes on.
“The Sixth Army has my word that everything possible will be done to save you. Adolf Hitler.” The radio message reached the besieged soldiers on January 31, 1942. Two days later, the last units surrendered. Hitler was furious. Never before had German army commanders been captured. About 95,000 soldiers were captured and only 6,000 returned home.
This three-part HD documentary by award-winning documentary filmmakers Sebastian Dehnhardt, Christian Deick and Jorg Mullner under the direction of Guido Knopp presents both the German and Russian perspective, contains rare footage shot by soldiers during the siege, and reveals new historical facts with moving eyewitness accounts and confessions from some of Stalingrad’s last survivors. The Russian archives opened their doors to the filmmakers, granting exclusive access to a wealth of previously unreleased material.
The Battle of Stalingrad was one of the most significant and crucial battles of World War II. It took place in and around the city of Stalingrad (now known as Volgograd) in the Soviet Union from July 1942 to February 1943. The battle was fought between the Soviet Red Army and the invading German army, with both sides suffering heavy losses. The battle began in the summer of 1942, when the German army, led by General Friedrich Paulus, launched a massive assault on the city of Stalingrad. The Germans quickly advanced into the city, forcing the Soviet defenders to retreat to a small pocket on the west bank of the Volga River.
For the next several months, the two sides fought a brutal and grueling battle for control of the city. The fighting was intense and often hand-to-hand, with the Soviets and Germans engaging in brutal street-to-street combat. The turning point of the battle came in November 1942, when the Soviet army launched a massive counter-offensive against the German army. The Soviets were able to encircle the German forces and cut off their supplies, forcing them to retreat or be killed.
After months of fierce fighting, the German army was finally defeated in February 1943. The battle was a major victory for the Soviet Union and a major setback for the Germans, who had been on the offensive for much of the war. `Overall, the Battle of Stalingrad was one of the bloodiest and most costly battles of World War II, with both sides suffering heavy losses. The victory was a crucial turning point in the war, and ultimately led to the Soviet Union pushing the Germans out of the Soviet Union and advancing into Eastern Europe.
Stalingrad: A Trilogy episode 3
The battle for Stalingrad, in which at least one million German soldiers, Red Army soldiers and Soviet civilians fell victim, was the bloodiest decisive battle in the ‘war of extermination’ unleashed by Hitler. Like a shock, the catastrophe of the 6th Army made it clear to many Germans that, despite all the propaganda chants, the war would be lost. For Germans and Russians, Stalingrad marked the psychological turning point in the Second World War. How the catastrophe came about and what cruel consequences the battle had for the soldiers and inhabitants of the city are described in the series with many previously unpublished film recordings and unsparing eyewitness testimonies from survivors on both sides.
So far, the Battle of Stalingrad has mostly been presented from a national perspective. Today – on the 60th anniversary of the catastrophe – a trilogy begins in which eyewitnesses from both sides jointly describe what happened in the Stalingrad pocket. Former soldiers of the 6th Army and their former opponents describe – because of their age probably last time – moments that shaped their life: snipers tell on murderous hunts in the ruined world of Stalingrad, where one wrong move could kill, but also civilians make harrowing confessions. The once enemy nations are now showing what was going on and really happened in the inferno of Stalingrad in a joint television production.