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Soviet Union

Evaluating The German Army and Luftwaffe's Growth From September of 1939 to June of 1941

on Mon, 10/23/2017 - 19:41

In a previous article I detailed why as early as 1939 one could see that at least in terms of the equpping and manning of Nazi Germany's Wehrmacht (armed forces) that quantitative measures were proving less important in comparison to the qualitative in deciding the size and shape of Germany's military machine.

New Interview with Why Germany Nearly Won Author Steven Mercatante

on Tue, 03/12/2013 - 16:34

For those of you who don't know Why Germany Nearly Won: A New History of the Second World War in Europe is about to be published in the United Kingdom by Casemate. As such, Casemate recently interviewed author Steven D Mercatante regarding such topics as how he became interested in World War Two, whether he was nervous about challenging the conventional wisdom on the reasons for the outcome of the War in Europe, and more.

For instance, the interviewer asks "In contesting a widely accepted theory based upon the inevitability of Germany’s defeat, were you nervous of what the response would be

The Hunt For A Missing Polish Hero

on Thu, 08/16/2012 - 19:37

At the storied Powazki Cemetery in Warsaw, Poland (where many of Poland's greatest citizens are buried) a hunt is on for Witold Pilecki; and for others like him believed to have been murdered by Stalin's post Second World War Polish police state and then unceremoniously dumped in unmarked graves.

Though a veteran of the early 1920's war fought between Poland and the Soviet Union, Witold Pilecki remains today best known for his heroism during WWII; when during the 1939-1945 German occupation he served in the Polish underground army.

The End of the Bloodiest War in History: Part III

on Thu, 05/17/2012 - 20:14

Part II of our series on the human cost of the Second World War in Europe detailed Eastern Europe and Poland’s immense suffering. Part III now turns to the country that bore perhaps the worst of Nazi Germany's aggression; the Soviet Union and its Red Army.

Beginning with military losses, the Red Army suffered 29 million casualties during the Second World War; including 11,444,100 killed, missing, or captured with 8,668,400 killed in action.  These figures utterly dwarf those of any other of the war’s major military establishments. Even capture meant death for much of the War.

The End of the Battle for the Ukraine

on Sun, 04/15/2012 - 15:29

During the spring of 1944 the Red Army finally began wrapping up its enormously expensive eight month campaign to evict German forces from the Ukraine. The linchpin of this effort came against Army Group South's left wing - defended by its First and Fourth Panzer Armies. On March 4th Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgy Zhukov's 1st Ukrainian Front, spearheaded by the 3rd Guards Tank Army and 4th Tank Army, attacked German Army Group South's left wing. Zhukov's men forged numerous penetrations in German defensive lines already heavily weakened following the battle for the Korsun pocket.

The Wannsee Conference and Generalplan Ost

on Fri, 01/20/2012 - 18:06

Though the Wannsee Conference of January 20, 1942 is often remembered as the seminal planning event of the Third Reich's genocidal strategic goals; in reality it represented a part of a much larger and horrific plan for mass murder. For on June 21, 1941, Heinrich Himmler had ordered planning to begin for a massive demographic reorganization of Eastern Europe, including the territories of the western Soviet Union. Professor Konrad Meyer authored this plan; labeled Generalplan Ost. Meyer’s genocidal plan went far beyond eliminating Europe’s Jews.

The Fall of the Soviet Union: December 25, 1991

on Sat, 12/24/2011 - 14:22

If in 1919 the question arose regarding which of the Great European Powers stood destined to drive Europe’s twentieth century fortunes, few candidates would have stood out as more unlikely than the Soviet Union. Russia had not only been forced into the Treaty of Brest-Litvosk, but had been occupied by a foreign power from 1917-1921, was in the throes of a Civil War that would kill between three and five million Russian citizens, and had foreign armies again fighting on its soil far beyond the First World War’s end. Then, in 1922 Josef Stalin.

A Note on One of the Second World War's Great Mysteries

on Mon, 12/12/2011 - 01:51

Precisely seventy years ago, on December 11, 1941, Adolf Hitler declared war upon the United States. Today, this declaration of war is remembered as one of history’s great strategic blunders, and rightly so, nonetheless the reasons underpinning this remembrance have little to do with how and why war against the United States led to the Third Reich’s defeat. Conventional wisdom today explains German defeat during World War II as almost inevitable following Germany’s attack on the Soviet Union, and its subsequent declaration of war upon the United States.

Stalin's Daughter Dead at Age 85

on Mon, 11/28/2011 - 21:01

On November 22, 2011 Josef Stalin's sole surviving child, Lana (formerly Svetlana) Peters (her married name following her 1967 defection from the Soviet Union and marriage to her third husband - an American) died of cancer. Born on February 28, 1926 she was 85 years old.

Red Army POW Remains Discovered in Finland

on Tue, 11/22/2011 - 14:57

The remains of six former soldiers from the Red Army are to be reinterred from their current burial location in Finland. Currently located in South Karelia the remains were discovered outside the city of Lappeenranta and will be moved to an official cemetary for Soviet prisoners of war who died during the 1941-1944 war fought between the Soviet Union and Germany and its Axis allies - including Finland.