The Fall of Nazi Germany in 30 Images

 
Ruins of Berliner Dom Stadtschloss Lustgarten Willys MB Jeep 1945
Ruins of Berliner Dom Stadtschloss Lustgarten Willys MB Jeep 1945
 
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After France was reclaimed by Allied forces, the Germans mustered their own forces for an all-out counterattack in the Battle of the Bulge. They inflicted heavy casualties on the Allies, but ultimately failed to turn the tide.

Needless to say, with this heavy depletion of Germany’s resources, it was the beginning of the end for the Third Reich.

On the other hand, Soviet forces had just conquered Poland and the territory of East Prussia. In March 1945, Allied forces crossed the Rhine River from the west, engaging the Germans and inflicting tremendous damage while rounding up hundreds of thousands of German troops.

On the 16th of April, the Battle of Nuremberg ensued. Before the day ended, American troops captured the border towns of Erlenstegen and Buch. By dusk the next day, the troops captured the airport, crippling German aircraft, and then launched an air raid.

Soldiers of the US 3rd Infantry Division in Nuremberg
Soldiers of the US 3rd Infantry Division in Nuremberg

On April 18, Army Group B was Germany’s last line of defense in the west. However, they were surrounded and captured by American troops. Italy became the last German stronghold, but that was soon to change as Allied forces broke through the defensive line, dealing a heavy blow to the Nazis.

Both Eastern and Western Allied forces rendezvoused near Torgau on the 25th of April.

US Army 2nd Infantry Division Guard with German Prisoners near Schoneseiffen 1945 Germany.
US Army 2nd Infantry Division Guard with German Prisoners near Schoneseiffen 1945 Germany.

More air raids and bombings were carried out in German territory by Allied forces. At first, the Germans were resolute in their defense. But as the Allies surrounded Germany, supplies rapidly deteriorated and people were soon exhausted.

On April 25, the Red Army reached Berlin. The Third Reich ended during the days of fighting that ensued.

35th Infantry Division 137th Infantry Regiment Patrol at Unterbach Germany 1945
35th Infantry Division 137th Infantry Regiment Patrol at Unterbach Germany 1945

The last of the German forces in Finland fled into Norway. In Italy, Milan and Turin were liberated by Italian partisans and the Italian dictator Mussolini was killed.

On the 28th of April, the British executed an attack on Hamburg as the last stop on the way to Berlin, but the Germans seemed more determined than ever to protect their territories, so fierce combat ensued.

Ruins of Hamburg Pferdemarkt Monckebergstrasse St.Petri 1945
Ruins of Hamburg Pferdemarkt Monckebergstrasse St.Petri 1945

Other Allied troops also convened at the River Elbe, launching a joint attack on Hamburg. By late afternoon, the first of the British troops crossed into the city.

The Americans had just won the battle of Nuremberg and Hamburg was quickly becoming a lost battle. With the battle of Berlin raging on and German defenses growing weaker by the minute, the war was already lost.

US Army And Red Army in Torgau Elbbrucke 26 April 1945
US Army And Red Army in Torgau Elbbrucke 26 April 1945

Hitler, afraid that his fate might become similar to that of Mussolini, took his own life on April 30.

On May 8, 1945, Nazi Germany surrendered on all fronts, thus bringing an end to the War.

Keitel signs surrender terms, 8 May 1945 in Berlin
Keitel signs surrender terms, 8 May 1945 in Berlin

 

Group of German Soldiers Captured by Allies in Germany 1945
Group of German Soldiers Captured by Allies in Germany 1945

 

Berghof on the Obersalzberg, the house of Adolf Hitler in ruins
Berghof on the Obersalzberg, the house of Adolf Hitler in ruins

 

Ruins of Garten Reichskanzlei Adolf Hitler Fuhrerbunker Berlin 1945
Ruins of Garten Reichskanzlei Adolf Hitler Fuhrerbunker Berlin 1945

 

British Infantry of 3rd Division In Lingen 1945
British Infantry of 3rd Division In Lingen 1945

 

Koln 1st US Army GIs with M1 Carbine Germany 1945
Koln 1st US Army GIs with M1 Carbine Germany 1945

 

Wehrmacht Soldiers Taken By American 9th Army 1945
Wehrmacht Soldiers Taken By American 9th Army 1945

 

Ruins of Berliner Dom Stadtschloss Lustgarten Willys MB Jeep 1945
Ruins of Berliner Dom Stadtschloss Lustgarten Willys MB Jeep 1945

 

GIs in a heavily bombed railroad yard Near Köln, April 1945
GIs in a heavily bombed railroad yard Near Köln, April 1945

 

White Flag Alley Cologne 1945
White Flag Alley Cologne 1945

 

The ruins of Koln
The ruins of Koln

 

9th Army 30th Inf Div and 2nd Armored Division Tracked Vehicles Magdeburg Germany 1945
9th Army 30th Inf Div and 2nd Armored Division Tracked Vehicles Magdeburg Germany 1945

 

Ruins of Nürnberg – Gugelstrasse Steinbuhl Galgenhof 1945
Ruins of Nürnberg – Gugelstrasse Steinbuhl Galgenhof 1945

 

Civilians Watch US Army 3rd Army Troops Move thru Frankfurt 1945
Civilians Watch US Army 3rd Army Troops Move thru Frankfurt 1945

 

Ruins of Berlin – Friedrichshain Frankfurter Allee Lasdehner Strasse 26 2 1945
Ruins of Berlin – Friedrichshain Frankfurter Allee Lasdehner Strasse 26 2 1945

 

 

Berlin 1945
Berlin 1945

 

Bombed Hohenzollern Bridge Köln (Cologne)
Bombed Hohenzollern Bridge Köln (Cologne)

Read another story from us: The Fall of Berlin at the End of the Second World War

German Youth Soldiers Captured by 6th Armored Division 1945
German Youth Soldiers Captured by 6th Armored Division 1945
 
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