The collapse of Nazi Germany could be attributed to several factors. Primarily, the lack of a concrete strategy and poor leadership were the main reasons for the collapse. Various decisions made by Adolf Hitler and the Nazi leaders specifically facilitated the failure. Additionally, the loss of trust in Hitler’s leadership, as indicated by the refusal of his ministers to support his directives towards the end of the war also hastened the process of collapse. An example of this was the case of Armaments Minister, Albert Speer, who prevented Hiltler’s scorched earth decree from being implemented fully in 1944 following Hiltler’s directive that people should fight to the end (Yons 242-243). Such blatant disregard for instruction confirms the distrust of leaders, which undoubtedly shows that there was no unity of command unlike in the allied opponents’ forces.
The strategic considerations made by both the allied forces and the Nazi forces also contributed to the fall of the Nazi. From the beginning, Germany had insufficient resources for fighting on many warfronts simultaneously. The allied forces took advantage of this and attacked on several fronts from the end of 1943 (Lyons 169). The Soviet Forces pushed westwards after the battle of Kursk, while the Americans and British forces attacked Germany. Another strategic consideration that facilitated the collapse was the dependence of Germany on the oil produced in Romania and Hungary (Lyons 119). At the time of U.S entry into the war in 1943, the focus of the allied forces was on destroying the oil fields and bomber planes were directed intentionally to the oil fields, leading to significant shortages in the fuel supply for the German war machinery.
The allied opponents also had various strengths which they leveraged against Germany’s weaknesses to attain advantage. Germany’s main undoing was the dependence on Hitler’s decisions alone. On the other hand, the allied opponents depended on international consultations and decisions made were based on extensive information. Some of the strategic decisions made were related to the leadership of the forces. Questions relating to leadership (whether to be united or divided in command), how to strike and have the greatest effect, as well as where to strike, were discussed before taking action (Lyons 162). The decisions made resulted in quite impactful decisions that overwhelmed the Nazis. For instance, the decision for the U.S. to attack the two sides of Attu on 11 May 1943 when Japan was also on the Aleutian Islands of Kiska is one of the confirmations of the strategic decisions made by the allied opponents and resulted in a 5-to-1 advantage for the U.S in terms of the size of the forces (Lyons 165). This decision contributed significantly to the progress towards an eventual win by the allied opponents.
The wins realized by the allied opponents in various battles and various important events also contributed to the loss of popular support for Hitler. For instance, the conflict between Wehrmatch and the Red Army from June 1944 dwarfed every other battle ever fought during the war (Lyons 181). The U.S support contributed significantly to the success of the allied forces and Germany could not successfully counter-attack the west due to the massive capacity of the U.S in the production of weaponry relative to that of Germany (Lyons 237). One of the important events that led to the end of the Second World War was the Yalta Declaration reached between 4th and 11th February 1945, in which a declaration of independence by the European countries was reached (Lyons 262-263). The declaration set Europe on the path of freedom by withdrawing all support for Germany, and subsequently exposing Germany to failure (Lyons 174). Ultimately, Hitler and his wife Magda committed suicide on 2nd May 1945, bringing to an end the Nazi leadership in Germany and letting the Germans free to sign the German Instrument of Surrender by 8th May 1945 (Lyons 271). The surrender marked the official end of war and of the Nazi regime.
Lyons, Michael J. World War II: A Short History, 5th Edn. London & New York: Routledge.