Europe 1942: Case Blue
With the German bid to capture Moscow thwarted, Hitler turned his attention to the southeast. In the 1942 Summer Offensive, he attempted to seize the oil fields of southern Russia and the Caucasus. However after dramatic initial successes, the attack ground to a halt, both in the Caucasus foothills and at the strategic city of Stalingrad.
28 Jun–19 Nov 1942 Case Blue▲
The Germans began Case Blue, their great Summer Offensive of 1942, by advancing on Voronezh and Rostov, along the Don River in Soviet Russia. After securing the lower Don in July, they swept across southern Russia, moving on Stalingrad and the Volga in the north and the oilfields of the Caucasus in the south. However by late August they had lost their momentum, facing difficulties across the front—especially in their attempt to capture Stalingrad.
1–27 Jul 1942 First Battle of El Alamein▲
By the beginning of July 1942 the Panzer Army Africa under Field Marshal Erwin Rommel had rapidly advanced across Egypt’s Western Desert to reach El Alemein, just 106 km from Alexandria. Here the British and Commonwealth Eighth Army under General Claude Auchinleck prepared to make a stand after a 500 km retreat which had initially started in Gazala the previous month. Aided by their defensive position and proximity to supplies, the British eventually repelled the Germans after a month-long battle.
4 Jul 1942 Fall of Sevastopol▲
In October 1941 the Germans had overrun Crimea, occupying the entire peninsula except for the major port of Sevastopol. After direct attacks on the Soviet city failed, the Germans settled in for a siege until mid-1942. On 2 June they launched a new offensive by land, sea, and air, forcing Sevastopol and its 95,000 remaining defenders to surrender in early July.
19 Aug 1942 Dieppe Raid▲
In August 1942 the British led over 6,050 infantry, mostly Canadian, and a regiment of tanks in an amphibious attack on the German-occupied port of Dieppe, northern France. The intention was to capture and hold the port for a brief period and demolish important structures, but aerial and naval support proved inadequate to enable the ground forces to achieve their objectives. After less than six hours, German fire forced the Allies to retreat with losses of 3,623 killed, wounded, or captured.
19 Aug–15 Oct 1942 Sinyavino Offensive▲
In August 1942 the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics launched the Sinyavino Offensive on German positions on the southern shore of Lake Ladoga, in an attempt to break the Siege of Leningrad. The offensive was gradually ground to a halt by German resistance, allowing the Germans to counterattack on September 21, restoring the front line to its pre-battle position by October 10. Despite the Soviet failure, the battle forced the Germans to cancel their plan to capture Leningrad (Operation Northern Light).
23 Aug 1942 Battle of Stalingrad begins▲
As part of Case Blue, the German 6th Army and 4th Panzer Army advanced through Soviet territory to the Don in July 1942, heading for the city of Stalingrad, strategically placed on the bottleneck between the Don and the Volga. Fighting through Soviet resistance, the Germans formed bridgeheads across the Don on 20 August, reaching Stalingrad three days later. With the aid of the Luftwaffe, they quickly captured most of the city west of the Volga, although the Soviets held out in parts and remained strong on the east bank.