At which point does "unconditional surrender" becomes unavoidable for Germany?

At which point does "unconditional surrender" becomes unavoidable for Germany?

  • From the very beginning (1939)

  • After Battle of Britain (1940)

  • After Battle of Moscow (1941)

  • After Battle of Stalingrad (1942-43)

  • After Casablanca Conference (1943)

  • After Battle of Kursk (1943)

  • After Tehran Conference (1943)

  • After D-Day (1944)


Results are only viewable after voting.
At which point in war is Germany put in a position that the only thing they are getting is unconditional surrender?
Meaning allies are 100% sure they are going to win, Therefore there is no need to negotiate with the Nazis .
 
I don't think the issue was that the allies needed 100% sure they'd win. The issue was they didn't want Germany to start round 3 in 10-20 years. And that Hitler already broke every treaty and agreement he had made, so they knew he couldn't be trusted.
 
There's a difference between "the Allies agree only to accept unconditional surrender, even if Germany won't accept it just yet", "the Allies would have accepted a conditional surrender, but they are so confident of victory that this isn't needed" and "Germany realises that they are beaten, but it's too late to offer anything other than unconditional surrender".
 
Stalingrad. After that point, the Soviets were going to get to Berlin and destroy it if it took hell or high water to get there...
 

CalBear

Moderator
Donor
Monthly Donor
The day FDR says the words. The Soviets (actually, more properly, Hitler's amateur meddling in tactical battle planning) had already ensured that the Reich wasn't going to win with Operation Uranus, FDR's position meant that there was going to be no separate peace and the War was going to end when an Allied Army planted its Flag in Berlin.
 
Define unconditional. Japan unconditionally surrendered on the condition that the Emperor got to still be Emperor.

I could see Germany being allowed to surrender on "conditions" that the allies didn't actually mind. "Germany agrees to surrender on the basis that its independence be restored within a decade of this capitulation".
 
Last edited:
The aftermath of WW1 ensured that the Allies would not stop until after Allied boots were on German soil, and probably all the way to Berlin. If the Allies wanted to ensure there was no WW3 it had to be made plain to the German people that they REALLY LOST. The "stab in the back" myth meant Allied boots had to be in Berlin.
 
Define unconditional. Japan unconditionally surrendered on the condition that the Emperor got to still be Emperor.

I could see Germany being allowed to surrender on "conditions" that the allies didn't actually mind. "Germany agrees to surrender on the basis that its independence be restored within a decade of this capitulation".
I'm assuming said conditions would include things like "amnesty for mid- and low-ranking Nazi Party members", and "Germany gets to keep everything it had before X date". I.e. things that the Allies wouldn't be particularly happy with short of a successful Operation Valkyrie.
 
The day FDR says the words. The Soviets (actually, more properly, Hitler's amateur meddling in tactical battle planning) had already ensured that the Reich wasn't going to win with Operation Uranus, FDR's position meant that there was going to be no separate peace and the War was going to end when an Allied Army planted its Flag in Berlin.
This would be my answer as well. Once FDR says it, Berlin loses all incentive to run up the white flag while getting a huge propaganda windfall - just like OTL.
 
As soon as the Germans executed a surprise attack on the Soviet Union in mid-1941, they ensured their complete isolation and eventual doom. The only way for the Reich to survive the war would be to limit it in scope and admit that anything beyond domination of Greater Germany and Central Europe would be too ambitious .
 
The day FDR says the words. The Soviets (actually, more properly, Hitler's amateur meddling in tactical battle planning) had already ensured that the Reich wasn't going to win with Operation Uranus, FDR's position meant that there was going to be no separate peace and the War was going to end when an Allied Army planted its Flag in Berlin.
Unconditional surrender wasn’t agreed upon until 1943 after Stalingrad, and even after that the Soviets still had peace feelers as late as September 1944.

Source :
A World at Arms: A Global History of World War II (1994)
Gerhard Weinberg
 
What was the deal offered and why would there be any peace feelers that late in the war when it was obvious that Germany was going to lose?
The Soviets wanted to return to pre Barbarossa borders. Stalin felt the Western Allies were trying to screw him and felt that they weren’t taking the war seriously. He literally sent spies to Italy to make sure they were serious about the war. A mix of battlefield success and the conclusion that the Western Allies took the war seriously from the spy mission lead him to continue the war.
 
The Germans had no real chance of victory after Pearl Harbor. Without the U.S. they possibly could have gotten a deal with the U.K. and U.S.S.R, but after American entry, and the failure of Case Blue, there was no way to get a negotiated peace barring an officer's coup.
 
I believe the Reich could have plausibly defeated the USSR but I still admit the only way they “win” after the US enters the war is if things settle into a cold war like in AANW due to the ocean of blood and treasure (not to mention the years it would take) that it would take to defeat a much stronger Germany that now stretches from the Spanish border to the Urals (and nuclear weapons wouldn’t be a magic bullet either as some believe).

I give this scenario around a 40% chance of happening with the longer the air/sea campaigns take before anything like Overlord can even be attempted against a Heer and Luftwaffe that hasn’t been bled white in Eastern Europe only increasing the chances of the WAllies calling it quits. They weren’t mindless robots as some believe and it isn’t guaranteed the American/British public would go along once the human cost becomes apparent and fatigue sets in.
 
Last edited:
Stalingrad made sure the Germans would lose the Eastern Front, which made sure they would lose the war. The only way around unconditional surrender at that point is a deal with the Soviets, which won't happen as long as the WAllies are visibly fighting hard (which they were OTL and would in any plausible TL with a post-Stalingrad POD) and both the Soviets and the Germans feel the costs of the war are too high.
 

CalBear

Moderator
Donor
Monthly Donor
Unconditional surrender wasn’t agreed upon until 1943 after Stalingrad, and even after that the Soviets still had peace feelers as late as September 1944.

Source :
A World at Arms: A Global History of World War II (1994)
Gerhard Weinberg
Which is why I stated it was after FDR announced it. His announcement was after Uranus had succeeded.
 

CalBear

Moderator
Donor
Monthly Donor
I believe the Reich could have plausibly defeated the USSR but I still admit the only way they “win” after the US enters the war is if things settle into a cold war like in AANW due to the ocean of blood and treasure (not to mention the years it would take) that it would take to defeat a much stronger Germany that now stretches from the Spanish border to the Urals (and nuclear weapons wouldn’t be a magic bullet either as some believe).

I give this scenario around a 40% chance of happening with the longer the air/sea campaigns take before anything like Overlord can even be attempted against a Heer and Luftwaffe that hasn’t been bled white in Eastern Europe only increasing the chances of the WAllies calling it quits. They weren’t mindless robots as some believe and it isn’t guaranteed the American/British public would go along once the human cost becomes apparent and fatigue sets in.
The Luftwaffe died over Inner Germany.
 
True but my point about the Heer being bled white at the hands of the Red Army still stands. The Luftwaffe may have suffered most of its losses at the hands of the WAllies but they still suffered a significant percentage in Eastern Europe that would make the air war tougher if the USSR was knocked out of the war between 1941 and 1943.
 
Top