On June 22, 1941, in spite of the secret non-aggression agreement (the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact of 1939) and the close military and economic cooperation between Germany and the USSR, Nazi Germany attacked Soviet units along the entire border line from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea. The German-Soviet war of 1941-1945 began as part but the main part of the Second World War.
Ukraine suffered most from Hitler's aggression and from the pernicious miscalculations of Stalin's leadership. The crushing wave of war twice went through its territory, reaching the smallest populated areas.
Ukraine, according to Hitler's Operation "Barbarossa", was one of the main directions. At the beginning of December 1941, the Wehrmacht forces occupied almost the entire territory of Ukraine. The purpose of the Nazi regime was the conquest and colonization of Ukraine and the destruction of its population. The territory of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic was divided and covered with a network of death camps. Tens of thousands of people of different nationalities were shot in Kyiv, Kharkiv, Dnipropetrovsk, Rivne and other cities and villages. The destruction of the civilian population at Babi Yar in Kyiv was a terrible tragedy during the occupation. In all, during the years of occupation in Ukraine, 3.9 million civilians were killed. About 2.4 million people were taken to Germany from Ukraine. Tens of thousands of them died.
Ukraine from all countries of the world suffered the greatest losses during the Second World War. In addition, Ukraine sustained human losses more than Britain, Canada, the United States and France combined. The total loss of Ukraine in this war is estimated at 8-10 million lives, among both military and civilian population. Such were the consequences of the collision of two totalitarian regimes.
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