German war effort in World War

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By late 1943 the Germans war efforts in Russia where looking more and more bleak. With a large number of German forces still entrenched in the Russian heartland problems that they faced where surmounting quickly. One would have to look back at 1942 to see the beginning of the difficulties the Germans faced both on the frontlines and back in Germany.
In July 1943, the battle of Kursuk began, which was given the codename of Operation Citadel by the Germans. This battle was to be one of the wars largest armored engagements of the war on the eastern front. This battle lasted less than a month. The attitude of the German High Command is seen when Keegan states “No one was readier to admit defeat than Hitler. ‘That;s the last time I will heed the advice of my General Staff, ‘he told his adjutants after a meeting with Manstein and Kluge on 13 July to decide the future of the operation, and he ordered Citadel to be closed down.” (Keegan pg 471) German panzer production was well below the expected output of 1000 a month, in actual production of only 300 plus panzers a month. During the short, but decisive, battle of Kursuk approximately half of the monthly output had been lost in the short period when the operation began until Hitler called it off.
German war equipment and logistical support was being hampered by the Allied bombing of major industrial centers and city centers. Overy points out that “The bombing offensive caused German military leaders to drain much needed air strength away from the main fighting fronts to protect the Reich, weakening German resistance in the Soviet Union and the Mediterranean.” (Overy, pg 129) German aircraft production turned from bombers to fighters, which reduced the bombing effect on the Soviet front. The treat of German air strikes during the Battle of Kursuk and the following German retreat was severely reduced with the Allied bombings in Germany. The intense bombing had a very disheartening e