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That's a great question. I think it has to do with trying to figure out the motivations people would have had to continue fighting and dying and allowing the destruction of their cities when they were well past the point that there was any hope at all that holding out would bring them anything other than more death.
In the American Civil War, which is the only comparison that comes quickly to mind, the leaders of the Confederacy up until the very end, I think, were still hoping that, if they could just keep the battle going, the North would finally get sick of it all and offer terms that would win the Southerners at least some of what they'd been fighting for. But in World War 2, the Allies had made it clear that there would be no political solutions on offer and that total surrender was the only way the war would end.
At least that's the way I understand those two situations. I'm sure there are lots of subtleties, if that's the right word in such a case, that I've left out.
I don't underestimate that, certainly, but I was thinking more of the ordinary citizen and soldier. The book you've offered here looks fascinating. Thanks for that. I recently read a very good novel, All for Nothing by German author Walter Kempowski about that final days before the Russian occupation in eastern Prussia. Kempowski lived through the times he was writing about. One of the factors that book highlights was the German sense of denial of what was about to befall them, even as they could hear Russian artillery just over the horizon.
Stormtroopers is very enlightening on how this mindset was indoctrinated into the general population by the SA.
At the Battle of Milne Bay Australian soldiers and airmen fought and defeated Japanese forces in the defence of vital airfields constructed by US Army engineers at the Eastern tip of Papua New Guinea. An interesting read about a largely forgotten battle.