End of World War II, 1945

Special End of World War II, 1945

"It's over!": The End of World War II

April 1945: The Red Army stood before Berlin, the Western Allies had long since crossed the Rhine in the west and had marched into Germany. The defeat of the Nazi Reich and the Axis powers in World War II was inevitable. Hitler's "Volkssturm" was no more than a suicide mission, the Auschwitz concentration camp had already been liberated earlier that year. On April 29, the US Army also liberated the camp in Dachau. Adolf Hitler shot himself the next day in the Führer's bunker in Berlin. The double-sided advance of the Allied forces had turned millions of civilians into refugees and millions of German soldiers into prisoners of war. On May 7th and 8th, the unconditional surrender of the German armed forces was finally signed in both Reims and Berlin-Karlshorst, the war in Europe was finally over. Churchill, Truman and Stalin divided the remaining ruins of Germany into occupied zones at the Potsdam Conference. By launching the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945, America brought Japan to their knees. In the end, the largest military conflict in human history had caused 65 million dead soldiers and civilians worldwide.