Wunderwaffen

Wunderwaffe (“Miracle Weapon”) was a term assigned during World War II by the Nazi propaganda ministry to several revolutionary weapons. This time, the ministry got it right – deployment of each of these weapons became a genuine revolution in military technology and in warfare in general.

Nazi Germany, of course, was not the only military power that produced revolutionary weapons. However, it developed, mass-produced and deployed many more weapons than all other World War II participants combined.

The Soviet Union developed four revolutionary weapons – T-34 medium tank (although how revolutionary it really was is debatable); KV-2 self-propelled howitzer (all modern self-propelled guns follow essentially the same design); mass-produced bulletproof vest (now a standard body armor for the military) and radio-controlled explosive devices (the infamous Babiy Yar massacre of Jews was a German retaliation of the first use of these devices).

Great Britain developed three (all related to radar technology) – ground-based radar (which made a vital contribution to British victory in Battle of Britain), air-to-air radar (and thus the night fighter) and air-to-ground radar (which, however, did not make night bombing precise enough to avoid massive civilian casualties).

The United States developed surprisingly none – the Trinity test of the first nuclear bomb happened two months after the end of the Second World War in Europe.

Nazi Germany developed twenty-four revolutionary weapons. Actually, most modern weapons were initially developed by the engineers of the Third Reich.

In this section, I will briefly cover every revolutionary weapon developed by the Nazis (including some advanced prototypes) and explain why despite having all these Wunderwaffen still lost the war.

And, of course, explain why the Germans managed to develop much more of the revolutionary weapons than Allies did (and why their weapons were much more revolutionary than the ones developed by the Allies).

 

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