Adolf Hitler didn’t know when to quit.
It was clear to any military man that the Third Reich was going to lose. It no longer had the resources. The industrial might of the United States was overpowering. The Russians had a seemingly inexhaustible supply of soldiers. Allied forces were on German soil, and the German army was all but spent. They were low on ammunition, low on fuel, low on food, low on manpower.
If any general dared to advise Hitler to seek terms, to save his country from being utterly destroyed, he was called a traitor and shot.
Allied bombing raids were wiping whole cities off the map, but Hitler would not give in. He refused to believe he could lose. He imagined armies that no longer existed coming to his aid to drive the Russians out of Berlin and win a miraculous, come-from-behind victory.
It wasn’t until Berlin was in ruins and the Soviet army was only a few city blocks from his bunker that he realized it was over.
But even then, he would not surrender. His generals told him that he could save lives, save cities, save infrastructure by giving up. He refused.
Hitler decided it wasn’t his fault. There was no way HE could lose. It had to be Germany’s fault. The people were weak, so they deserved to be obliterated. Let the Allied bombs kill them all. Let them flatten the cities and burn the soil.
Hitler refused to surrender out of spite. And then he took the coward’s way out and killed himself. The German people did not deserve to be saved. They had betrayed HIM. Such was his delusion until the moment he bit a poison capsule and pulled the trigger.
One man can destroy an entire nation, an entire continent. All it takes is people who believe his delusions or refuse to stand up to him.