In your opinion, what were the main turning points in World War II?
There were many, but probably the biggest was the United States entry into the war after the bombing of Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Yes, the Japanese did awaken a sleeping giant.
That Hitler didn't realise how unprepared Britain was along the south coast! He could have come in just about anywhere! Scary thought!
There were several, but, if I had to pick one, I agree with jainismus: Hitler's attack of Russia. If he hadn't done that, the Germans would probably have been able to invade Britain and, in all likelyhood, mastered all of Europe. The US would not have had a jumping-off point, so Europe would be secure. The Soviet Union and Germany would eventually clash and the Soviets would be stronger, but I believe Germany would also be stronger and in a stronger position.
There were several turning points, but i think that USAs involvement together with Hitlers greed for power was a major one. He decided to fight both battles against Russia and the USA, this plan was doomed before it even began.
If Hitler had followed a general plan of the German high command and gone straight for the heart of Russia at Moscow after the initial attack he probably would have won the war. His underestimation of the Soviets ruined his hopes of Empire, his later underestimation of the United States dug his grave.
I will concur with the majority that have answered this question before me; Hitler's decision to turn against Russia prior to defeating the British was a major turning point in WW2. Diplomatically he had bought off the Russians with the invasion and "sharing/splitting" of Poland in 1939. You figure he would have used this to allow him enough time to secure his western front. Fortunately for the world he did not do this.
(Perhaps if Hitler were ever to appear reincarnated as a household cat we might be able to ask him, why he turned his attention on Russia when he did?)
On another note, Ike's decision not to fuel Patton's astonishing advances in 1944 surely extended the war in Europe by months and allowed for the Soviets to be in a much stronger position in Eastern Europe by 1945. The consequences of this of course were felt during the Cold War.
Hindsight is 20/20 I suppose.
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