The Rzhev Slaughterhouse

Author: Svetlana Gerasimova
Publisher: Helion and Company
ISBN: 1910294179
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Historians consider the Battle of Rzhev "one of the bloodiest in the history of the Great Patriotic War" and "Zhukov's greatest defeat". Veterans called this colossal battle, which continued for a total of 15 months, "the Rzhev slaughterhouse" or "the Massacre", while the German generals named this city "the cornerstone of the Eastern Front" and "the gateway to Berlin". By their territorial scale, number of participating troops, length and casualties, the military operations in the area of the Rzhev - Viaz'ma salient are not only comparable to the Stalingrad battle, but to a great extent surpass it. The total losses of the Red Army around Rzhev amounted to 2,000,000 men; the Wehrmacht's total losses are still unknown precisely to the present day. Why was one of the greatest battles of the Second World War consigned to oblivion in the Soviet Union? Why were the forces of the German Army Group Center in the Rzhev - Viaz'ma salient not encircled and destroyed? Whose fault is it that the German forces were able to withdraw from a pocket that was never fully sealed? Indeed, are there justifications for blaming this "lost victory" on G.K. Zhukov? In this book, which has been recognized in Russia as one of the best domestic studies of the Rzhev battle, answers to all these questions have been given. The author, Svetlana Gerasimova, has lived and worked amidst the still extant signs of this colossal battle, the tens of thousands of unmarked graves and the now silent bunkers and pillboxes, and has dedicated herself to the study of its history. Svetlana Aleksandrovna Gerasimova is a historian and museum official. After graduating from Leningrad State University with a history degree, she worked in the Urals as a middle school history teacher, before moving to Tver, where she taught a number of courses in history and local history, and about museum work and leading excursions in the Tver' School of Culture. She earned her Ph.D. in history from Tver State University in 2002. For more than 20 years, S.A. Gerasimova has been working in the Tver' State Consolidated Museum, and is the creator and co-creator of a many displays and exhibits in the branches of the Museum, and in municipal and institutional museums of the Tver' Oblast. Recent museum exhibits that she has created include "The Battle of Rzhev 1942-1943" and "The Fatal Forties … Toropets District in the Years of the Great Patriotic War." She has led approximately 20 historical and folklore-ethnographic expeditions in the area of Tver' Oblast and is the author of numerous articles in such journals as Voprosy istorii [Questions of History], Voenno-istoricheskii arkhiv [Military History Archive], Voenno-istoricheskii zhurnal [Journal of Military History] and Zhivaia starina [The Living Past], and of other publications. In 2009, she served as a featured consultant to a Russian NTV television documentary about the Battle of Rzhev, which quickly became controversial for its very frank discussion of the campaign. Stuart Britton is a freelance translator and editor residing in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He has been responsible for making a growing number of Russian titles available to readers of the English language, consisting primarily of memoirs by Red Army veterans and recent historical research concerning the Eastern Front of the Second World War and Soviet air operations in the Korean War. Notable recent titles include Valeriy Zamulin's award-winning 'Demolishing the Myth: The Tank Battle at Prokhorovka, Kursk, July 1943: An Operational Narrative ' (Helion, 2011), Boris Gorbachevsky's 'Through the Maelstrom: A Red Army Soldier's War on the Eastern Front 1942-45' (University Press of Kansas, 2008) and Yuri Sutiagin's and Igor Seidov's 'MiG Menace Over Korea: The Story of Soviet Fighter Ace Nikolai Sutiagin' (Pen & Sword Aviation, 2009). Future books will include Svetlana Gerasimova's analysis of the prolonged and savage fighting against Army Group Center in 1942-43 to liberate the city of Rzhev, and more of Igor Seidov's studies of the Soviet side of the air war in Korea, 1951-1953.

Enduring The Whirlwind

Author: Gregory Liedtke
Publisher: Helion and Company
ISBN: 1911096877
Size: 78.48 MB
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This work seeks to address the notion of German numerical-weakness in terms of Germany's ability to replace its losses and regenerate its military strength, and assess just how accurate this argument was during the crucial first half of the Russo-German War (June 1941-June 1943).

The First Day On The Eastern Front

Author: Craig W. H. Luther
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 0811767655
Size: 71.69 MB
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Sunday, June 22, 1941: three million German soldiers invaded the Soviet Union as part of Hitler’s long-planned Operation Barbarossa, which aimed to destroy the Soviet Union, secure its land as lebensraum for the Third Reich, and enslave its Slavic population. From launching points in newly acquired Poland, in three prongs—North, Central, South—German forces stormed western Russia, virtually from the Baltic to the Black Sea. By late fall, the invasion had foundered against Russian weather, terrain, and resistance, and by December, it had failed at the gates of Moscow, but early on, as the Germans sliced through Russian territory and soldiers with impunity, capturing hundreds of thousands, it seemed as though Russia would fall. In the spirit of Martin Middlebrook’s classic First Day on the Somme, Craig Luther narrates the events of June 22, 1941, a day when German military might was at its peak and seemed as though it would easily conquer the Soviet Union, a day the common soldiers would remember for its tension and the frogs bellowing in the Polish marshlands. It was a day when the German blitzkrieg decimated Soviet command and control within hours and seemed like nothing would stop it from taking Moscow. Luther narrates June 22—one of the pivotal days of World War II—from high command down to the tanks and soldiers at the sharp end, covering strategy as well as tactics and the vivid personal stories of the men who crossed the border into the Soviet Union that fateful day, which is the Eastern Front in microcosm, representing the years of industrial-scale warfare that followed and the unremitting hostility of Germans and Soviets.

The Red Army And The Second World War

Author: Alexander Hill
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1316720519
Size: 70.87 MB
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In a definitive new account of the Soviet Union at war, Alexander Hill charts the development, successes and failures of the Red Army from the industrialisation of the Soviet Union in the late 1920s through to the end of the Great Patriotic War in May 1945. Setting military strategy and operations within a broader context that includes national mobilisation on a staggering scale, the book presents a comprehensive account of the origins and course of the war from the perspective of this key Allied power. Drawing on the latest archival research and a wealth of eyewitness testimony, Hill portrays the Red Army at war from the perspective of senior leaders and men and women at the front line to reveal how the Red Army triumphed over the forces of Nazi Germany and her allies on the Eastern Front, and why it did so at such great cost.

Barbarossa Derailed The German Advance To Smolensk The Encirclement Battle And The First And Second Soviet Counteroffensives 10 July 24 August 1941

Author: David M. Glantz
Publisher: Casemate Publishers
ISBN: 1906033722
Size: 33.23 MB
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"This study exploits a wealth of Soviet and German archival materials, including the combat orders and operational records of the German OKW, OKH, army groups, and armies of the Soviet Stavka, the Red Army General Staff, the Western Main Direction Command, the Western, Central, Reserve, and Briansk fronts, and their subordinate armies to present a detailed mosaic and definitive account of what took place, why and how during the prolonged and complex battles in the Smolensk region from 10 July through 10 September 1941 ... The series will consist of a detailed two-volume chronological narrative of the course of operations, accompanied by a third volume, containing an extensive collection of specific orders and reports translated verbatim from Russian, and a fourth (atlas) volume containing newly-commissioned colour maps"--Jacket.

The Viaz Ma Catastrophe 1941

Author: Lev Lopukhovsky
Publisher: Helion and Company
ISBN: 1910294187
Size: 75.29 MB
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This book describes one of the most terrible tragedies of the Second World War and the events preceding it. The horrible miscalculations made by the Stavka of the Soviet Supreme High Command and the Front commands led in October 1941 to the deaths and imprisonment of hundreds of thousands of their own people. Until recently, the magnitude of the defeats suffered by the Red Army at Viaz'ma and Briansk were simply kept hushed up. For the first time, in this book a full picture of the combat operations that led to this tragedy are laid out in detail, using previously unknown or little-used documents. The author was driven to write this book after his long years of fruitless search to learn what happened to his father Colonel N.I. Lopukhovsky, the commander of the 120th Howitzer Artillery Regiment, who disappeared together with his unit in the maelstrom of Operation Typhoon. He became determined to break the official silence surrounding the military disaster on the approaches to Moscow in the autumn of 1941. In the present edition, the author additionally introduces documents from German military archives, which will doubtlessly interest not only scholars, but also students of the Eastern Front of the Second World War. Lopukhovsky substantiates his position on the matter of the true extent of the losses of the Red Army in men and equipment, which greatly exceeded the official data. In the Epilogue, he briefly discusses the searches he has conducted with the aim of revealing the circumstances surrounding the deaths of Soviet soldiers, who to this point have been listed among the missing-in-action - including his own father. The narrative is enhanced by numerous photographs, color maps and tables. Lev Nikolaevich Lopukhovsky graduated from the prestigious Frunze Military Academy in 1962 and spent the next ten years serving in the Soviet Union's Strategic Rocket forces, rising to the rank of colonel and a regiment commander, before transferring to a teaching position in the Frunze Military Academy in 1972 due to health reasons. Lopukhovsky is a professor with the Russian Federation's Academy of Military Sciences (2008), and has been a member of Russia's Union of Journalists since 2004. Since 1989 he has been engaged in the search for those defenders of the Fatherland who went missing-in-action in the Second World War, including his own father Colonel N.I. Lopukhovsky, who is now known to have been killed while breaking out of encirclement in October 1941. Motivated by his father's disappearance, he had previously taken up the intense study of the Viaz'ma defensive operation and wrote the initial manuscript of the present book. In 1980 this manuscript was rejected by military censors, because it contradicted official views. Lopukhovsky is the author of several other books about the war, including Prokhorovka bez grifa sekretnosti [Prokhorovka without the seal of secrecy] (2005), Pervye dni voiny [First days of the war] (2007) and is the co-author of Iiun' 1941: Zaprogrammirovannoe porazhenie [June 1941: A Programmed Defeat] (2010). For his active search work, he was awarded the civilian Order of the Silver Star. Stuart Britton is a freelance translator and editor residing in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He has been responsible for making a growing number of Russian titles available to readers of the English language, consisting primarily of memoirs by Red Army veterans and recent historical research concerning the Eastern Front of the Second World War and Soviet air operations in the Korean War. Notable recent titles include Valeriy Zamulin's award-winning 'Demolishing the Myth: The Tank Battle at Prokhorovka, Kursk, July 1943: An Operational Narrative ' (Helion, 2011), Boris Gorbachevsky's 'Through the Maelstrom: A Red Army Soldier's War on the Eastern Front 1942-45' (University Press of Kansas, 2008) and Yuri Sutiagin's and Igor Seidov's 'MiG Menace Over Korea: The Story of Soviet Fighter Ace Nikolai Sutiagin' (Pen & Sword Aviation, 2009). Future books will include Svetlana Gerasimova's analysis of the prolonged and savage fighting against Army Group Center in 1942-43 to liberate the city of Rzhev, and more of Igor Seidov's studies of the Soviet side of the air war in Korea, 1951-1953.

Why Germany Nearly Won A New History Of The Second World War In Europe

Author: Steven D Mercatante
Publisher: ABC-CLIO
ISBN: 0313395926
Size: 55.39 MB
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• Detailed maps show the position and movement of opposing forces during the key battles discussed in the book • More than 30 charts, figures, and appendices, including detailed orders of battle, economic figures, and equipment comparisons

The Battle Of Moscow 1941 1942

Author: Soviet General Staff
Publisher: Helion and Company
ISBN: 1912174618
Size: 49.96 MB
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"The Battle of Moscow, 1941–1942: The Red Army’s Defensive Operations and Counteroffensive Along the Moscow Strategic Direction" is a detailed examination of one of the major turning points of World War II, as seen from the Soviet side. The Battle of Moscow marked the climax of Hitler’s “Operation Barbarossa,” which sought to destroy the Soviet Union in a single campaign and ensure German hegemony in Europe. The failure to do so condemned Germany to a prolonged war it could not win. This work originally appeared in 1943, under the title "Razgrom Nemetskikh Voisk pod Moskvoi" (The Rout of the German Forces Around Moscow). The work was produced by the Red Army General Staff’s military-historical section, which was charged with collecting and analyzing the war’s experience and disseminating it to the army’s higher echelons. This was a collective effort, featuring many different contributors, with Marshal Boris Mikhailovich Shaposhnikov, former chief of the Red Army General Staff and then head of the General Staff Academy, serving as general editor. The book is divided into three parts, each dealing with a specific phase of the battle. The first traces the Western Front’s defensive operations along the Moscow direction during Army Group Center’s final push toward the capital in November–December, 1941. The study pays particular attention to the Red Army’s resistance to the Germans’ attempts to outflank Moscow from the north. Equally important were the defensive operations to the south of Moscow, where the Germans sought to push forward their other encircling flank. The second part deals with the first phase of the Red Army’s counteroffensive, which was aimed at pushing back the German pincers and removing the immediate threat to Moscow. Here the Soviets were able to throw the Germans back and flatten both salients, particularly in the south, where they were able to make deep inroads into the enemy front to the west and northwest. The final section examines the further development of the counteroffensive until the end of January 1942. This section highlights the Soviet advance all along the front and their determined but unsuccessful attempts to cut off the Germans’ Rzhev–Vyaz’ma salient. It is from this point that the front essentially stabilized, after which events shifted to the south. This new translation into English makes available to a wider readership this valuable study.

The Siege Of Brest 1941

Author: Rostislav Aliev
Publisher: Pen and Sword
ISBN: 1473826942
Size: 80.83 MB
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On 22 June 1941, soon after 3am, the first German shells smashed into the Soviet frontier fortress of Brest Ð Hitler's Operation Barbarossa had begun. Across a massive front stretching from the Baltic to the Black Sea, the Wehrmacht advanced, taking the Red Army by surprise, brushing aside the first stunned resistance, breaking through and taking thousands of prisoners, but the?isolated stronghold of Brest held out. The defenders, trapped and without hope of relief, put up a tenacious resistance against an entire German division as the Soviet front collapsed behind them. ??The heroic defence of Brest has become one of the legends of the Second World War on the Eastern Front, an example of selfless Soviet heroism in the face of Nazi aggression. Rostislav Aliev, in this gripping narrative, describes the fighting in vivid detail, hour by hour. In the process he strips away the myths and exaggerations that have grown up around this famous story. ??Using eyewitness testimony and fresh research, he reconstructs each stage of the siege Ð the shock and violence of the initial artillery barrage, the disorder among the defenders as they struggled to organize resistance, their doomed counter-attacks, the continuous, merciless pounding of the fabric of the fortress by German guns and bombs, the grim fate of the Soviet survivors, and the extraordinary aftermath Ð the suicidal resistance of small groups of Red Army soldiers operating underground in the passages and dungeons of the shattered fortress.

Tomb Of The Panzerwaffe

Author: Aleksei Isaev
Publisher: Helion & Company
ISBN: 1912174693
Size: 67.41 MB
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In March 1945 the German Wehrmacht undertook its final attempt to change the course of the war by launching a counteroffensive in the area of Lake Balaton, Hungary. Here, the best panzer forces of the Third Reich and the elite of the Panzerwaffe were assembled - the panzer divisions SS Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler, Das Reich, Totenkopf, Wiking and others, staffed by ardent believers in Nazism and armed with the most up-to-date combat equipment, including up to 900 tanks and self-propelled guns. At the time, this was considered a secondary axis for the Red Army, and thus the troops of the 3rd Ukrainian Front had to stop the German counteroffensive with their own forces and could not count upon reinforcements from the Stavka Reserve, which were needed for the decisive storming of Berlin. Relying upon their combat skill and rich combat experience, the Soviet troops carried out this task with honor, stopping the tidal wave of German armor and inflicting a decisive defeat and enormous, irreplaceable losses upon the enemy. The defeat of the Sixth SS Panzer Army became a genuine catastrophe for Germany, and Balaton became the tomb of the Panzerwaffe. In this book, penned by two leading Russian military historians, this major defeat suffered by the Wehrmacht has been described and analyzed for the first time using data from both Soviet and German archives. It focuses not only on Operation Spring Awakening, but also describes the preceding Konrad offensives conducted by the Germans in the effort to come to the aid of the encircled and desperate German and fascist Hungarian defenders of Budapest. This edition is lavishly illustrated with over a hundred rare photographs of destroyed or disabled German armor taken shortly after the battle by a Soviet inspection team, besides other photographs and specially commissioned color maps.