The battle of Kursk was monumental for numerous reasons but will almost always be remembered for being the largest clash of armor, certainly during W.W.II and would not be rivaled until the Arab-Israeli wars of the 1960's and 1970's. The vast area around the city of Kursk presented itself as a target with a salient being formed in the Russian line of defense. Hitler needed a victory that would regain the initiative in the east and declared that Operation Zitadelle as it was known" would shine like a beacon to the world" and would avenge the crushing defeat at Stalingrad earlier in the year, but even he had misgivings about the whole affair. The brilliant armor strategist Heinz Guderian once asked Hitler "Was it really necessary to attack Kursk and indeed in the East that year at all. Do you think anyone even knows where Kursk is?" to which Hitler agreed with him saying, "I know. The thought of it turns my stomach."
But Colonel-General Kurt Zeitzler insisted that the offensive go ahead and he became the main avocet of the offensive. The facts however were plain to see as a large salient had been created with the capture of Kharkov by the Germans a few months previous in March and was logically the next sector in which to start an offensive.
Tags: World war 2, WW2, Kursk, Tank battle, tanks, Stalin, hitler, axis, allies, Panzers, T34, offensive, defensive, Air power, truth, facts, dust
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