During Operation Barbarossa the Germans decide that they want all the oil fields of the Caucasus region. They began to siege Stalingrad on September 1st, 1942. The Germans captured the majority of the city through street to street fighting. On November 23rd 1942, the Germans were trapped in the city. The German Commander Von Poulus ordered that all of the soldiers were to fight to the death. Between January 31st and February 2nd, a two day period, 300,000 German troops surrendered. This was a major turning point on the Eastern Front of World War II. This was the largest battle in human history with 2 million casualties.