KOSTORNICHENKO V.N. “Oil Factor” in the Planning of the German Army’s Offensive on Stalingrad and the Caucasus (1940–1943)

DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu4.2022.1.7

Vladimir N. Kostornichenko

Doctor of Sciences (Economics), Candidate of Sciences (History), Associate Professor, Professor,

Department of Historical Sciences and Archival Studies, Moscow State Linguistic University,

Ostozhenka 38, Bld. 1, 119034 Moscow, Russian Federation

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Abstract. Introduction. Historians of World War II have in one way or another drawn attention to the role of the “oil factor” when planning military operations of the Nazi German command in their research. In the proposed article the author, for the first time, consistently and comprehensively has traced the evolution of Adolf Hitler’s strategy towards the conquest of the oil fields in the Caucasus as part of the Nazi German government’s plan for world domination. The lower chronological border (1940) is defined by the year when the first military plans of Nazi German’s leadership for capture of oil reserves in the Caucasus were developed. The upper chronological border is defined by the end of the military operations in the city of Stalingrad and in the Caucasus, which put an end to the “global ideas” of the Nazi German command.

Methods and materials. The methodology of the research is based on the application of both traditional methods of historical and economic sciences (comparative, statistical, problemchronological) and new approaches (factor analysis, elements of behaviorist method, involving analysis of the actions of actors, procedures for making certain decisions depending on their value priorities, character traits). The author of the article utilized an interdisciplinary approach towards their research, given that it helped to achieve the goal of the study. The conclusions are based on the documents of the national archives, memoirs of military leaders, statistical information, etc. In the course of the work the authors collected and analyzed a significant amount of archival material, examined domestic and foreign historiography on the subject.

Analysis. Thus, the article has analyzed the indicators of oil balance of Nazi Germany in the certain period and examined peculiarities and changes of the “oil” directives in the military strategic plans of the Nazi German command.

Results. Through the analysis of Adolf Hitler’s “oil strategy”, the authors of the article have revealed the influence of the “oil factor” in Nazi Germany’s military and political decisions and general causes of failures of the military operations near Stalingrad and the Caucasus.

Key words: The Great Patriotic War, oil, Stalingrad, the Caucasus, Maykop, Khadyzhensk, the German strategy of war.

Citation. Kostornichenko V.N. “Oil Factor” in the Planning of the German Army’s Offensive on Stalingrad and the Caucasus (1940–1943). Vestnik Volgogradskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Seriya 4. Istoriya. Regionovedenie. Mezhdunarodnye otnosheniya [Science Journal of Volgograd State University. History. Area Studies. International Relations], 2022, vol. 27, no. 1, pp. 80-89. (in Russian). DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu4.2022.1.7.

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“Oil Factor” in the Planning of the German Army’s Offensive on Stalingrad and the Caucasus (1940–1943) by Kostornichenko V.N. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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