The European theatre of WWII was perhaps most shaped by around the time of the fall of Berlin. The events of the rest of the war would go down in history.
The Fall of Berlin and Death of Hitler
As with the will of Adolf Hitler upon his death the executive position of power shifted from himself to Admiral
Karl Dönitz. Dönitz was to take the title of President and set up a government in the city of Flensburg in Northern Germany. The war was going poorly for Germany which had lost much of its lands to the allies. Many wished for Dönitz to negotiate a surrender.
Dönitz was a loyal man. He believed in following orders and greatly admired the late Adolf Hitler. He once said that anyone who thought that they could lead better than Hitler is stupid. As such he listened to big time Nazis like Hitler and Goebbels. Both of the men called for total war. They demanded that every man fight in defense of the Reich. An Article in Das Reich on April 22nd by Gobbels called for all to resist and continue fighting.
As such Dönitz was in a tough place. He admired Hitler and Nazism. He decided to treat this as his final order. He relocates the Flensburg Government to Norway where the Germans still have some control. The Government which consisted of a cabinet like a real government called for the continuation of total war.
The War Continues
Despite initial hopes by the Allies that the Fall of Berlin would signal the defeat of the Germans it appeared that The new Flensburg Government would continue to fight on. Right of the bat the Germans suffered major defeat. On May 5th the Residence of Prague in occupied Czechoslovak staged a successful uprising that resulted in the Soviets rolling in days latter. Troops Stationed in the Netherlands, Denmark, and Northern Germany began to evacuate North to Norway.
The evacuation which included several concentration camp prisoners consisted of packed Naval Ships traveling north towards the Norwegian coast. Unfortunately for them and hundreds of prisoners the Allies bombed the ships and effectively destroyed the thousands of soldiers on board. The Troops who remained in Denmark surrendered shortly there after to the British Effectively eliminating German occupation of Mainland Europe limiting them to Norway.
Dönitz would have to make do with would he had after the retreating forces were decimated by bombers. Norway was still in German hands. A Russian advance in October of 1944 has stalled in created a no mans land between the Germans and Russians in the Norther Norwegian county of Finnmark. By the time the Flensburg Government had taken control most of the region would be in Allied hands with the battle line being drawn along the boarded with another county Troms.
In Norway a puppet government under the leadership of Prime Minister Vidkun Quisling existed. President Dönitz arrived at the Royal Palace with several SS soldiers and had Quisling commit to Total War. Norway was run by Military Governor Josef Terboven who agreed that Total War would be adhered to. He had Quisling institute National Service similar to the Volkssturm that existed between November 1944 and May 1945. All Norwegian men between 16 and 60 would be required to serve unless needed elsewhere. Those who refused were shot. The Quisling Government was then removed and Dönitz Government took over placing the Capital of the Reich in Oslo.
Norway did have several concentration camps in it. All were liquidated. An act led by Minister of Justice Otto Georg Thierack As the guards were needed on the front lines.
Despite attempts by the Allies they could not get Dönitz to negotiate a surrender and the German Forces prepared for invasion. Joint British and Russian forces push south into Troms. When word reaches the Axis lines that the British would be handling prisoners many Norwegians lay down their arms and surrender. They see being taken prisoner by the western allies as preferable to fighting to the death. Dönitz responds by ordering the execution of anyone attempting to surrender.
American and British Forces in the south who have complete control of Denmark plan their invasion of southern Norway. Norway is carpet bombed similar to Dresden in February as the Luftwaffe has been completely wiped out and the Germans can not combat the bombers. The bombing destroys the defenses in Southern Norway and in early June the Americans and British land near Kristiansand. Most of the Wehrmacht and SS units remain in southern Norway. Many Wehrmacht members happy to surrender to western allies do so and Dönitz order is not followed in shooting surrenders. The fanatical SS fight on. About 20,000 German Soldiers are station in defense from the beach from about 200,000 Allied Soldiers. Needless to say the Germans are decimated and can not even commit to a scorched earth retreat as not enough survive without being captured to do damage during the retreat.
Dönitz proclaims in a speech on June 11th that the Norwegian People are now in defense of their homeland from the allied invaders. After establishing a beachhead the same day Dönitz makes his speech the Americans and British chase the retreating Germans up north. Meanwhile Soviet reinforcements from the German front arrive in Northern Norway. They number 1,000,000 strong and are lead by General Zhukov against 100,000 Norwegian and German defenders. Both fronts begin the race to Oslo.
Dönitz recalls 10,000 troops back to Oslo to prepare for the onslaught. On June 15th with American and British Forces just miles from Oslo The Norwegian Defenders stage an uprising against Dönitz Government. The SS Units fail to suppress the uprising as the forces on the northern front surrender. Allied Forces enter Oslo later that day and are met with little resistance. Dönitz makes one last radio broadcasting ordering all Germans and Aryans to scatter and prepare for the rise of National Socialism once again. Not wanting to surrender like a coward Dönitz joins the Waffen-SS unit defending the Royal Palace and is killed in the fight.
Quisling is subsequently captured by civilians are paraded through the streets before being stung up like a pinata by his feet and beaten to death by the civilians. The Germans lay down their arms and WWII in Europe finally comes to a close.