prelude to berlin the red armys offensive operations in poland and eastern germany 1945

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Prelude To Berlin

Author : Richard W. Harrison
ISBN : 1912390477
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Prelude to Berlin: The Red Army's Offensive Operations in Poland and Eastern Germany 1945 offers a panoramic view of the Soviet strategic offensives north of the Carpathians in the winter of 1945. During the course of this offensive the Red Army broke through the German defenses in Poland and East Prussia and eventually occupied all of Germany east of the Oder River. The book consists primarily of articles that appeared in various military journals during the first decade after the war. The General Staff's directorate charged with studying the war experience published these studies, although there are other sources as well. A particular highlight of these is a personal memoir that offers a rare insight into Soviet strategic planning for the winter-spring 1945 campaign. Also featured are documents relating to the operational-strategic conduct of the various operations, which were compiled and published after the fall of the Soviet Union. The book is divided into several parts, corresponding to the operations conducted. These include the Vistula-Oder operation by the First Belorussian and First Ukrainian Fronts out of their respective Vistula bridgeheads. This gigantic operation, involving over a million men and several thousand tanks, artillery and other weapons sliced through the German defenses and, in a single leap, advanced the front to the Oder River, less than 100 kilometers from Berlin, from which they launched their final assault on the Reich in April. Equally impressive was the Second and Third Belorussian Fronts' offensive into Germany's East Prussian citadel. This operation helped to clear the flank further to the south and exacted a long-awaited revenge for the Russian Army's defeat here in 1914. This effort cut off the German forces in East Prussia and concluded with an effort to clear the flanks in Pomerania and the storming of the East Prussian capital of Konigsberg in April. The study also examines in considerable detail the First Ukrainian Front's Upper and Lower Silesian operations of February-March 1945. These operations cleared the army's flanks in the south and deprived Germany of one of its last major industrial and agricultural areas.

The Berlin Operation 1945

Author : Richard W. Harrison
ISBN : 9781912174621
Genre : History
File Size : 86. 57 MB
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Berlin Operation, 1945, tells the story of the Red Army’s penultimate offensive operation in the war in Europe. Here the forces of three fronts (Second and First Belorussian and First Ukrainian) forced the Oder River and surrounded the defenders of the German capital, reduced the city and drove westward to link up with the Western allies in central Germany. This is another in a series of studies compiled by the Soviet Army General Staff, which during the postwar years set itself the task of gathering and generalizing the experience of the war for the purpose of training the armed forces’ higher staffs in the conduct of large-scale offensive operations. The study is divided into three parts. The first contains a brief strategic overview of the situation, as it existed by the spring of 1945, with special emphasis on German preparations to meet the inevitable Soviet attack. This section also includes an examination of the decisions by the Stavka of the Supreme High Command on the conduct of the operation. As usual, the fronts’ materiel-technical and other preparations for the offensive are covered in great detail. These include plans for artillery, artillery and engineer support, as well as the work of the rear services and political organs and the strengths, capabilities and tasks of the individual armies. Part two deals with the Red Army’s breakthrough of the Germans’ Oder defensive position up to the encirclement of the Berlin garrison. This covers the First Belorussian Front’s difficulty in overcoming the defensive along the Seelow Heights along the direct path to Berlin, as well as the First Ukrainian Front’s easier passage over the Oder and its secondary attack along the Dresden axis. The Second Belorussian Front’s breakthrough and its sweep through the Baltic littoral is also covered. Part three covers the intense fighting to reduce the city’s defenders from late April until the garrison’s surrender on 2 May, as well as operations in the area up to the formal German capitulation. This section contains a number of detailed descriptions of urban fighting at the battalion and regimental level. It closes with conclusions about the role of the various combat arms in the operation.

Operation Bagration 23 June 29 August 1944

Author : Richard W. Harrison
ISBN : 9781912174553
Genre : History
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The Rout of the German-Fascist Troops in Belorussia in 1944 covers the Red Army's Belorussian strategic operation: the linchpin of the 10 major Soviet offensive efforts launched that year to clear the country of the invader. During the course of this operation, the German position along the western strategic direction was destroyed and the stage was set for an advance into Poland and Germany. The success of this operation also set the stage for the Red Army's subsequent advance into the Baltic and South-Eastern Europe. Like most works generated by the General Staff, the Belorussian study divides the operation into two parts: preparation and conduct. The first deals with the massive efforts by the First Baltic and the First, Second and Third Belorussian Fronts to accumulate the men and materiel to break through the German defenses in the swampy and forested terrain of Belorussia. This section contains valuable information on the overall correlation of forces, equipment and troops' densities along the breakthrough sectors and Soviet plans for supplying the offensive, as well as detailed information regarding the employment of the various combat arms. The second part deals with the actual conduct of the several front operations that comprised the overall effort. This section covers the initial breakthrough battles and the encirclement of the Vitebsk and Bobruisk garrisons, followed by the capture of Minsk and the encirclement of sizeable German forces east of the city. The narrative then continues with the follow-on operations to cut off German forces in the Baltic States and to seize crossings over the Vistula River in Eastern Poland. Compiled and written by professional staff officers, this study provides a detailed look at the conduct of one of the major operations of the Second World War. This latest work, along with other studies in this series, offers another insight into the Red Army's conduct of the war at the operational-strategic level.

The Battle Of Moscow 1941 1942

Author : Soviet General Staff
ISBN : 9781912174614
Genre : History
File Size : 37. 23 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 Fall Of Berlin 1945

Author : Antony Beevor
ISBN : 1101175281
Genre : History
File Size : 72. 78 MB
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"A tale drenched in drama and blood, heroism and cowardice, loyalty and betrayal."—Jonathan Yardley, The Washington Post The Red Army had much to avenge when it finally reached the frontiers of the Third Reich in January 1945. Frenzied by their terrible experiences with Wehrmacht and SS brutality, they wreaked havoc—tanks crushing refugee columns, mass rape, pillage, and unimaginable destruction. Hundreds of thousands of women are children froze to death or were massacred; more than seven million fled westward from the fury of the Red Army. It was the most terrifying example of fire and sword ever known. Antony Beevor, renowned author of D-Day and The Battle of Arnhem, has reconstructed the experiences of those millions caught up in the nightmare of the Third Reich's final collapse. The Fall of Berlin is a terrible story of pride, stupidity, fanaticism, revenge, and savagery, yet it is also one of astonishing endurance, self-sacrifice, and survival against all odds.

The Great German Escape

Author : Charles Whiting
ISBN : 1848840322
Genre : History
File Size : 72. 47 MB
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Throughout the Second World War there had been a potentially lethal Trojan horse inside Britain; from Comrie in Northern Scotland, down to Devizes in Wiltshire, in every city, in every race course of any note, in every football ground, were German POWs. Nearly a quarter of a million of them in fact; fit, virile young men, and a goodly number of them fanatical National Socialists. Now what would these young men do if they were armed and given a plan which transcended merely escaping? What if these desperate young men, were given the promise of an airborne landing by German forces in Britain: the vital support they needed to capture their main objective London? This is the gripping story of their abortive mass escape plan and the covert operations that went with it.

South Africans Versus Rommel

Author : David Brock Katz
ISBN : 9780811766081
Genre : History
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After bitter debate, South Africa, a dominion of the British Empire at the time, declared war on Germany five days after the invasion of Poland in September 1939. Thrust by the British into the campaign against Erwin Rommel’s German Afrika Korps in North Africa, the South Africans fought a see-saw war of defeats followed by successes, culminating in the Battle of El Alamein, where South African soldiers made a significant contribution to halting the Desert Fox’s advance into Egypt. This is the story of an army committed somewhat reluctantly to a war it didn’t fully support, ill-prepared for the battles it was tasked with fighting, and sent into action on the orders of its senior alliance partner. At its heart, however, this is the story of men at war.

The Soviet Strategic Offensive In Manchuria 1945

Author : David Glantz
ISBN : 9781135774998
Genre : History
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This critical examination of the final Soviet strategic offensive operation during World War II seeks to chip away at two generally inaccurate pictures many Westerners have of the war. Specifically, Westerners seem to think that only geography, climate, and sheer numbers negated German military skill and competency on the eastern front, a view that relegates Soviet military accomplishments to oblivion.

The Chief Culprit

Author : Viktor Suvorov
ISBN : 9781612512686
Genre : History
File Size : 79. 16 MB
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“A remarkable book. A delayed bombshell that includes very pertinent new research and discoveries Suvorov has made since 1990. He makes savvy readers of contemporary and World War II history, of a mind to reexamine the Soviet past in terms of what historians call ‘present interest.’ None of the ‘new Russian’ historians can match his masterful sweep of research and analysis.” —ALBERT WEEKS, Professor Emeritus of International Relations, New York University, author of Stalin’s Other War: Soviet Grand Strategy, 1939-1941 In The Chief Culprit, bestselling author Victor Suvorov probes newly released Soviet documents and reevaluates existing historical material to analyze Stalin’s strategic design to conquer Europe and the reasons behind his controversial support for Nazi Germany. A former Soviet army intelligence officer, the author explains that Stalin’s strategy leading up to World War II grew from Lenin’s belief that if World War I did not ignite the worldwide Communist revolution, then a second world war would be necessary. Suvorov debunks the theory that Stalin was duped by Hitler and that the Soviet Union was a victim of Nazi aggression. Instead, he makes the case that Stalin neither feared Hitler nor mistakenly trusted him. He maintains that after Germany occupied Poland, defeated France, and started to prepare for an invasion of Great Britain, Hitler’s intelligence services detected the Soviet Union’s preparations for a major war against Germany. This detection, Suvorov argues, led to Germany’s preemptive war plan and the launch of an invasion of the USSR. Stalin emerges from the pages of this book as a diabolical genius consumed by visions of a worldwide Communist revolution at any cost—a leader who wooed Hitler and Germany in his own effort to conquer the world. In contradicting traditional theories about Soviet planning before the German invasion and in arguing for revised view of Stalin’s real intentions, The Chief Culprit has provoked debate among historians throughout the world.

Patton Versus The Panzers

Author : Steven Zaloga
ISBN : 0811717895
Genre : History
File Size : 49. 73 MB
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In September 1944 Hitler ordered an attack on Gen. George Patton's Third Army, which was deep inside France making for the Rhine and threatening the German industrial heartland beyond. The ensuing battle near Arracourt--the U.S. Army's largest tank-versus-tank clash until the Bulge--went badly for the Germans, who committed their armor piecemeal and whose offensive was shattered in a series of intense, close-range tank duels with the Americans. Armor expert Steven Zaloga deftly reconstructs the battle and shows how American Sherman tanks bested superior German Panthers. Features legendary panzer general Hasso von Manteuffel and U.S. commanders John "Tiger Jack" Wood ("America's Rommel") and Creighton Abrams (namesake of the M1 Abrams tank) Thoroughly researched narrative draws on newly discovered American and German records that provide unprecedented detail

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