Which was a bigger mistake made by the Axis in WW2?

Which was the bigger mistake by the Axis?

  • Total voters
Jun 2011
The question presumes a much more cohesive strategic alliance than actually existed. After Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, Germany didn't need to actually declare war on the United States much in the same manner that the German invasion of the Soviet Union didn't lead to a Japanese assault on the Far East. Part of the reason for this were the unsuccessful skirmishes the Japanese had with the Soviets in the 30s and the 'Strike North' school gave way to the 'Strike South' school.


Former Staff
Mar 2007
No 4 engine bombers.

Letting Der Fuehrer run the war as his personal Risk set.

The ones listed were lesser errors. But I had to pick, the Russian front.


Former Staff
Aug 2006
Based on the choices, the German invasion of the Soviet Union. It opened a 2 front war when there was a treaty in place to prevent such a thing. Also because the US was choking oil supplies to Imperial Japan, you'll find a lot of writings in agreement Japan really had no choice, the US effectively started the war with Japan by limiting it's energy supply, Pearl Harbor was just a way to cripple American capablitily while Japan made it's smash and grab for energy. Pearl Harbor bought the Japanese years.
Nov 2010
Japanese bombing Pearl Harbor, as we ended up kicking their ass. Also, it got us into the European war, which helped kick the German's ass. The Soviet invasion was definitely a mistake and opened up another front, but that didn't really influence the pacific theater.


Former Staff
Jan 2008
Since your question is about the Axis powers in the aggregate I would have to agree with Hollywood & say they were both huge mistakes!
Opening a 2 front war by invading tractless Russia almost ensured Germany's ultimate defeat while Pearl Harbor brought the "Arsenal of Democracy" into the war against Japan,Germany & Italy.
Either mistake pretty much doomed the Axis....... imo.
Last edited:
Nov 2006
Which was a bigger mistake made by the Axis in WW2?
I think both actions sealed the fate for the respective countries but Hitler made the bigger mistake. He made it impossible to succeed taking on the USSR and the west at once. I don't think you can say Japan lost the war because of Pearl Harbor but you can make the case that Germany lost because it was 2 against 1 and that was Hitlers choice.

I'm not so sure I would say Pearl Harbor was a mistake for Japan. If you are determined to wage war with someone you might as well sucker punch him first in attempt to weaken him. It didn't work but the strategy is understandable.
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