Originally Posted by Desert Fox
Hitler had been planning the invasion for over 10 years you cant blame the invasion of Russia on the Russians.
The Failure of Nazi Ideology at the Eastern Front
by Paul Fleming, Jr.
On June 22,1941, German troops invaded the USSR, thus beginning one of the most violent and devastating wars ever. The German army (Wehrmacht) had begun planning this invasion in July 1940, under the code name Otto, then Fritz, and finally Barbarossa. <1> In planning the invasion, the Wehrmacht basically had the choice of two strategies: the first was to wage a war of attrition, while the second was to win by military annihilation in the tradition of Napoleon. <2> In choosing, the Germans would have been wise to consider the consequences the latter strategy had in the invasion of Russia for Napoleon. However, the Germans and their Nazi leaders felt that defeating the Soviet Union would be fairly easy, and thus chose the strategy of military annihilation. One reason for this is that the Nazis had been stressing such traditional German concepts as Lebensraum (living space) and Drang nach Osten (push to the East), as well as promoting racism and anti-Semitism. <3> All four concepts "justified" a war of annihilation.
The reasons Germany undertook such an invasion are simple. First, in the 1930s the Nazis had made the "struggle" against Bolshevism a "central theme in domestic and foreign policy." <4> Thus a war against Bolshevik Russia was merely the logical outcome of this belief. Secondly, Germany was still at war with Britain, and Hitler believed that if the Soviet Union could be defeated quickly, the British would be more willing to accept peace terms. <5> Moreover, the Germans had had great success and felt that the USSR. would be "one more lightening victory, particularly fought against the inferior races of the East. <6> Author Alan Bullock gives a much more practical explanation. He states that, "Hitler invaded Russia for the simple but sufficient reason that he had always meant to establish the foundations of his thousand-year Reich by the annexation of the territory between the Vistula and the Urals." <7> These reasons justified, at least in the minds of the Nazi and Wehrmacht leadership, tactics which are today still considered barbaric and immoral.