On May 8, 1945, after 6 years of war, the German Wehrmacht surrendered to the Allies in Berlin. War in Europe was finally over. 1945, however, saw the final throes of a powerful military; as the American and British forces pushed forward on the western front, Soviet forces advanced tirelessly from the east, closing in on Berlin. Struggling to defend their homeland, German soldiers proved to be fierce warriors, even when outnumbered or encircled. The war would not end as easily as expected.