Mystification, however, is normal routine in any delusional man’s mind. For Hitler, this took on a character in its own; with him drunk from his victories Hitler now saw himself as a type of demi-god, a super-human who was the first of the superior Aryan race. He disregarded criticisms of his policies while viciously attacking any source of doubt or dissent by virtue of his enlightened position: no one else could be correct, only his own thoughts could decide the future of Germany.
Obviously, this is a strange stance for anyone to take. Especially since while he had indeed won impressive victories he had yet to bring England to heel and possessed only lukewarm allies who tried their dandiest to appease without submission. Together these events, failures truly, stood in stark contrast to Hitler’s imagined position on the world stage.
To correct this wrong Hitler began, if somewhat unconsciously, a massive build-up to a conflict with Russia. Now imagining that only war with Russia would tip the balance in his favor Hitler started endless tirades in regards to the question of “living space” and how only with the collapse of the Soviet Union could Germany force her enemies to meet her demands and end the war.
While such an idea-conflict with the Soviet Union-was wildly unpopular with his military commanders (especially those who detested Hitler’s brutal tactics in regards to Jews and other prisoners) they knew better than to speak out; dissent was not rewarded and often ended with harsh ridicule and even possibly a demotion. The great transport of troops and war material continued, unimpeded with only a minor conflict with Greece standing out as the only delay.
As usual, Hitler overrode all dissent and launched his invasion of the Soviet Union. Utilizing over three million German soldiers, thousands of tanks and planes, the German army burst through the Russian frontier to win an astounding series of quick victories over the disorganized Red Army.
Indeed the initial successes were so grand that many international military observers believed the war would be over within weeks with some die-hard supporters believing it would be as little as thirteen days!
Obviously, their hopes were ludicrously abloom. They won their amazing string of wins primarily due to Stalin’s shock at the invasion; for so long he had been trying to please Hitler to buy time for a military build-up, and believed that it would come until the following year, that when he heard news of the attack he earnestly thought it was a mistake and that Hitler wouldn’t have dared to enter Russia so early. Yet to his disbelief the invasion was no isolated incident: it was real and in full force. Stalin, not knowing what to do, was in shock for several days.
Fortunately for the Soviet Union, however, and unfortunately for Hitler, Stalin regained his composure and brought the panicked Russian masses back into line. He issues a series of directives which restored discipline and rallied the forces defending the capital. Literally, overnight the anti-German resistance stiffened. Counter-offensives were launched resulting in the German army being thrown from Moscow culminating with Hitler himself admitting privately that the war was as good as lost.