Environmental Impacts on the German Blitzkrieg in World War Two

Jonathan Dillon Kuhl

Abstract


The Blitzkrieg was the combined use of tanks, air craft and infantry hitting hard and fast to seize the initiative in World War II.  While there have been other avenues pursued by historians for understanding the Blitzkrieg, few have focused on the role of the environment played one of the most important factors in the implementation of the blitzkrieg. This paper uses primary and secondary sources pertaining to all of the aspects of the Blitzkrieg, from the common infantry man, to the Panzer divisions, and also the Luftwaffe.  With all of these elements, the environment played possibly the most important factor in the success or failure of German blitzkrieg tactics. From the Panzer Vs becoming bogged down in the mud during Operation Barbarossa, to the Luftwaffe becoming grounded due to severe snow storms or fog during the Battle for Britain, the environment played the most direct role in determining the outcome of each situation. Other evidence suggests that the German High Command knew of the environmental conditions and tried to evade them.


Keywords


Blitzkrieg; World War Two; WWII; Environment

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