Ideological training and congruity of all party comrades with the interests of the German nation were the principal tasks of the NSDAP/AO. It was assigned the mandate of uniting all NSDAP party members (and members of NSDAP-affiliated organizations) living abroad in a loosely affiliated group and to educate them in the philosophy, ideology and political programs of the NSDAP for the betterment of Germany. The AO was not a Fifth Column organization [ citation needed ] and had ten basic principles to be followed that included:
Following the Battle of Stalingrad, Hitler was eager to prove that the Germany army was still a formidable fighting force. After months of delay, Hitler decided to put his troops to the test in one great offensive aimed at eliminating the Soviet amry at Kursk that Hitler said "will shine like a beacon around the world." Though the town was of minor strategic importance, Hitler believed its capture would allow the Germans to stop the Red Army from further advancement and allow the Nazis to direct more resources to the Mediterranean front.