Operation Barbarossa and Icebreaker

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Heraklit
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Operation Barbarossa and Icebreaker

Post by Heraklit » 22 Dec 2002 17:55

"Operation Barbarossa: Why?" by Kurt Johmann at
http://www.johmann.net/commentary/barbarossa.html
has me somewhat puzzled. Mr. Johmann refers to a book entitled "Icebreaker: Who Started the Second World War?" by Viktor Suvorov. Have these works ever been a matter of discussion on the Third Reich Forum? Is either author credible?

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Starinov
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Post by Starinov » 23 Dec 2002 17:06

The subject has been discussed at least a dozen times. The author is a former GRU major who fled to England in 1978. He wrote three books on that matter (Icebreaker, M-day, Last Republic) Most of western historians reject his theories even if many facts poinyts that USSR was set to an aggression against Germany. Some people will even agree it could happen in 1942 but the main thesis is that it would happen on Ju;ly 6th 1941.

On one hand, Suvorov, sometimes, misuses and takes his quotes out of context. For that Western historians try to lynch him. On the other side, Suvorov show many facts that could not happen if the RKKA was not planning to attack Germany in 1941.

The German historians (like Hoffman's Stalin's war of Extemination) may agree with that thesis since it would give them a reason why Hitler attacked Germany.

Some historians will reject his adeas, some will follow them. For example, David M. Glantz is totally againstt the idea of a "preventive strike" while W. Nevezhin (a known russian historian who works in the Main Russian Historical Archives) says that the entire political and ideological life from the january 1941 was set for a agressive war against Germany.

I guess the best way to find out if you think that Icebreaker is plausible is to read it (well, the three tomes if you can) and then to read books written by authors like David M. Glantz (Stumbling Colossus or When Titans Clashed) who do not agree with the theory. It would give you a small idea about the subject.

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WaffenSS27
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Operation Barbarossa

Post by WaffenSS27 » 23 Dec 2002 19:18

I feel that Hitler should have concentrated all his efforts in crushing England and after the war in the west was won then turn to the East. Hitler got so close to Moscow he should have used paratroops to drop into Moscow because if you seize the capital you seize the country. Also Hitler should have not made the same mistake as Kaiser Wilhelm made in the first world war and start a 2 front war. These kinds of wars will always spell disaster to the country who started it.

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Re: Operation Barbarossa and Icebreaker

Post by Roberto » 23 Dec 2002 19:38

Heraklit wrote:"Operation Barbarossa: Why?" by Kurt Johmann at
http://www.johmann.net/commentary/barbarossa.html
has me somewhat puzzled. Mr. Johmann refers to a book entitled "Icebreaker: Who Started the Second World War?" by Viktor Suvorov. Have these works ever been a matter of discussion on the Third Reich Forum? Is either author credible?


Well, if a guy writes stuff like

Once Germany had been defeated and enslaved by the Big Four, and could no longer defend itself, a true Holocaust against the Germans was carried out; while, beforehand—so as to cover those great crimes by diverting attention from them, and to justify them—the Big Four declared the reality of a fictitious Holocaust carried out by the Germans against the Jewish nation.


there can be no question as to his credibility. It's zero.

As to Suvorov, consider the following assessment of the fellow's writings by a German historian:

Operation Barbarossa

On 22 June 1941 153 divisions of the Wehrmacht of National Socialist Germany – together with units of the armies of allied states like Finland, Romania and Hungary – crossed the borders of the Soviet Union. Since the Second World War this operation, prepared under the code name “Barbarossa”, was unanimously considered by research on contemporary history as the classic example of a war of aggression. Only a secondary question was controversially discussed: Did the “Führer” of the Third Reich in his decision to attack principally intend to serve the goal contained in his ideology, i.e. the goal, insistently propagated since “Mein Kampf”, to conquer “living space in the East” for the German nation and for a German world empire? Or was the motivation stronger that resulted for him when, after the victorious campaigns in eastern, northern and western Europe, he was faced with the fact that the still unbeaten Great Britain did not think of acknowledging his domination of the European continent, and therefrom derived the conclusion that he must deprive the British government of the hope on its last “continental blessing” by conquering Russia?
Recently, however, the assertion has come up that Hitler’s attack barely anticipated a preventive war by Stalin, and some in the meantime go as far as maintaining that Hitler’s attack was a preventive strike not only objectively but also intended to be one by the “Führer”. The last to come up with this was “Victor Suvorov”. This pseudonym allegedly stands for a Soviet officer – or a group of officers – who until the beginning of the 1980s, until he (they) went over to the West, worked for the military secret service of the USSR. In his book ‘The Icebreaker. Hitler in Stalin’s Calculus’ “Suvorov” even gives the date of Stalin’s assault: 6 July 1941. The fact that reviewers in the German press manifested themselves impressed by the ‘Icebreaker’, however, has to do only with the widespread demand for apologetic literature and not at all with the quality of the writing. For a closer look reveals that “Suvorov” cannot provide plausible arguments let alone documentary evidence in support of his theses. This is not surprising given that in the encirclement battles of 1941 the German troops, although the staffs of armies and army groups fell into their hands, did not capture a single document that would indicate plans by Stalin for a preventive war, and such are lacking to this day. All that “Suvorov” does is to arbitrarily declare the dislocation of the Red Army in the spring of 1941 to have been a marching-up for a preventive strike, and the few citations from memoirs of Soviet military men that he tries to support this act of arbitrariness with are revealed by examination as shameless forgeries of the original texts. The political agenda of such pamphlets, i.e. the warning against a basic aggressiveness of Soviet foreign policy, is obvious.
In fact Hitler and the leading circles of the Third Reich grasped the idea of soon attacking Russia still during the campaign in France, as Chief of General Staff Franz Halder recorded in his diary. As long as they hoped they could count on the British giving in after the conquest of Western Europe, that “Führer” and his National Socialist minions thought of the war for “living space” required by National Socialist ideology, while for instance the military considered the march into the Baltics and the Ukraine to be tempting because their inherited German-national imperialism reawakened when they saw the triumph in the West in sight.
As early as 21 July 1940 Hitler ordered to prepare the attack on the Soviet Union, having the autumn of 1940 in mind as the time. After his military advisers had convinced him that the marching-up would take considerably longer and that additional forces were required, Hitler on 31 July gave the order to direct the planning towards an attack in the spring of 1941. On 18 December 1940 there followed Directive Number 21 with the final setting of “Operation Barbarossa”. The date was 15 May 1941, which then had to be exceeded by several weeks due to the perceived need of conquering Yugoslavia and assisting the Italian ally in Greece. Hitler’s ideological motivation was there as before, though now ever more overlaid by the argument that Great Britain must be deprived of the USSR as a potential ally. Both were independent of recognized or even suspected Soviet behavior. Not for an instant did Hitler believe that the Soviet Union – internally unstable and depending on an army without the power required for an offensive against a modern enemy, for it was equipped with qualitatively insufficient weapons and had lost a high percentage of its officer corps through Stalin’s purges of 1937-1939 – was able to carry out an attack on the German Reich, especially after the latter’s successes in Poland, Norway, Western Europe and most recently in the Balkans.
Stalin was of the same opinion, but until the spring of 1941 he convinced himself that Hitler would not be so foolish as to attack Russia, which after all was strong in the defensive, as long as Great Britain was still unbeaten. Warnings from London about the German intentions of attack he for a long time considered to be attempts to induce him to hostile actions against Germany in order to take the pressure off Great Britain. Only in April and May 1941, when the German marching-up had taken a dimension that could no longer be interpreted as a basis for political pressure maneuvers, there began unsystematic reactions including a transfer of troops from the eastern parts of the Union to the western regions, and only from mid-June onward, after Churchill had been able to provide an exact image of the German marching-up and the German planning on hand of decoded German radio messages, Stalin ordered radical defensive measures, which due to the now inevitable hectic did more harm than good, however, and contributed to the heavy Soviet defeats in the first weeks of the war.


I translated the above from an article by Hermann Graml published in Wolfgang Benz et al, Legenden, Lügen, Vorurteile, 12th edition 2002 by dtv Munich, page 194.

Most historians in Germany and elsewhere accordingly laugh at Suvorov's nonsense. One of the few exceptions is the late Joachim Hoffmann, whose theses have been discussed on the thread

"Stalin's War of Extermination", by Joachim Hoffma
http://www.thirdreichforum.com/phpBB2/v ... 2941d2db7d

In my posts of Fri Nov 08, 2002 1:50 pm and Fri Nov 08, 2002 5:13 pm on section 4 of that thread:

http://www.thirdreichforum.com/phpBB2/v ... 2941d2db7d

you will find examples of Suvorov’s misrepresentations of the statements of high-ranking Soviet military men in support of his absurdities.

The other part thereof seems to consist of weird assertions for which he offers no evidence whatsoever, such as there having been a million Soviet paratroopers, and similar fantasies. If you read German, have a look at this site:

http://www.h-ref.de/lit/s/suworow/eisbrecher.shtml

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Operation Barbarossa and Icebreaker

Post by Heraklit » 23 Dec 2002 21:28

Thank you gentlemen for the foregoing very informative commentary.
After looking further in Kurt Johmann's website, I discovered much that does not reflect favorably on his logic or his power of reasoning. Amazingly he possesses a Ph.D.

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Re: Operation Barbarossa and Icebreaker

Post by savantu » 31 Dec 2002 16:21

Roberto wrote: ...............

Well, if a guy writes stuff like

Once Germany had been defeated and enslaved by the Big Four, and could no longer defend itself, a true Holocaust against the Germans was carried out; while, beforehand—so as to cover those great crimes by diverting attention from them, and to justify them—the Big Four declared the reality of a fictitious Holocaust carried out by the Germans against the Jewish nation.


there can be no question as to his credibility. It's zero.

...........



Where did he write that???

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Starinov
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Re: Operation Barbarossa and Icebreaker

Post by Starinov » 31 Dec 2002 16:33

Roberto wrote:
Heraklit wrote:"Operation Barbarossa: Why?" by Kurt Johmann at
http://www.johmann.net/commentary/barbarossa.html
has me somewhat puzzled. Mr. Johmann refers to a book entitled "Icebreaker: Who Started the Second World War?" by Viktor Suvorov. Have these works ever been a matter of discussion on the Third Reich Forum? Is either author credible?


Well, if a guy writes stuff like

Once Germany had been defeated and enslaved by the Big Four, and could no longer defend itself, a true Holocaust against the Germans was carried out; while, beforehand—so as to cover those great crimes by diverting attention from them, and to justify them—the Big Four declared the reality of a fictitious Holocaust carried out by the Germans against the Jewish nation.


there can be no question as to his credibility. It's zero.


I understand we are talking about Johmann's credibility here.

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Roberto
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Re: Operation Barbarossa and Icebreaker

Post by Roberto » 31 Dec 2002 17:25

Starinov wrote:
Roberto wrote:
Heraklit wrote:"Operation Barbarossa: Why?" by Kurt Johmann at
http://www.johmann.net/commentary/barbarossa.html
has me somewhat puzzled. Mr. Johmann refers to a book entitled "Icebreaker: Who Started the Second World War?" by Viktor Suvorov. Have these works ever been a matter of discussion on the Third Reich Forum? Is either author credible?


Well, if a guy writes stuff like

Once Germany had been defeated and enslaved by the Big Four, and could no longer defend itself, a true Holocaust against the Germans was carried out; while, beforehand—so as to cover those great crimes by diverting attention from them, and to justify them—the Big Four declared the reality of a fictitious Holocaust carried out by the Germans against the Jewish nation.


there can be no question as to his credibility. It's zero.


I understand we are talking about Johmann's credibility here.


Of course, as the quote was taken from his online article.

But Suvorov doesn't seem to be much better.

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Starinov
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Post by Starinov » 31 Dec 2002 17:36

Roberto wrote:But Suvorov doesn't seem to be much better.


Well, at least Suvorov does not deny the Jewish Holocaust....

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Post by savantu » 31 Dec 2002 17:56

Starinov wrote:
Roberto wrote:But Suvorov doesn't seem to be much better.


Well, at least Suvorov does not deny the Jewish Holocaust....


He discusses that in his books : many tend to atribute him things he never wrote/said.

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Post by savantu » 31 Dec 2002 18:29

One thing about the so called misinterpretations that Suvorov does.

I read what others said about Meretkov and "the Rubicon" thing.

One must ask himself : if the communists planned an invasion,with the goal of eliberatingthe world( "the world revolution" was real,nobody can deny that.If Stalin planned an attack on Germany is a different problem.) would they openly admit that???

Would they alow the Red Army generals to write in their memoirs how they planned to invade Europe, to reach "the walls of London" ???.
I doubt that.

Most of those who were in key positions in those times,who knew the situation didn't want to write their memoirs.Those who were forced( Zhukov) wrote unimportant things so you can't discover what really happened.

Also they play with numbers (Zhukov said that their army has 1800 tanks,while they had 24000).Could the second most important man in the Red Army not know how many tanks he had under command??

Of course not.This brings us to a breakthrough : soviet generals lie about the early days,about the sept 1939-june 1941 time period.
Most don't discuss that at all in their books.Why do they lie??Because if they planend something,they aren't so silly to let the cat out.

A criminal won't admit that he planned killing the victim.He presents himself like an innocent victim.

Suvorov discuss just about any aspect of the problem in his books.Chapters where he discusses why the generals lie are the most interesting.Of course the generals let small bits of info,from where you can make a picture of the situation.How you interpret those pieces of info is your problem.

About Meretkov-some accused Suvorov of modifying what he said- can't be trusted.
Why ??

A quote from Roberto,thread "Stalin's war of extermination " by joachim Hoffa

few pages later, in connection with the border clashes at Khalkin-Gol with Japan in 1939, Grigorenko explicitly writes the following:
"Already then we, all freshly baked general staff officers, understood that our gigantic empire was completely unprepared for a war." (p. 189)
Nothing there about an army "completely prepared for a war of aggression”, that is.


-Completly unprepared for war-Makes me laugh.
Roberto continues : "Nothing there about an army "completely prepared for a war of aggression" " :D

Lack of memory,maybe it was late in the night,and he didn't realized the connection??

What happened in late august 1939 at Khalkin Gol??

The most severe defeat ever of the Japanese land army;a brilliant blitzkrieg made by the book.It had all the ingredients of a knock-out.

Wonderfully planned and executed.The japs did not know what hit them.

If you analyze Khalkin Gol it's obvious that those weren't only clashes,but a demonstration of using modern battle tactics(aka blietzkrieg,invented by the russians anyway) and modern weapons(the combination of tanks,paratroopers and attack planes along motorized infantry).

It was the prelude of the German blietzkrieg.Meretkov said that the gigantic empire is not prepared for war,Roberto adds something more -a war of agression-,but history shows the opposite.

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Post by Starinov » 31 Dec 2002 18:29

savantu wrote:
Starinov wrote:
Roberto wrote:But Suvorov doesn't seem to be much better.


Well, at least Suvorov does not deny the Jewish Holocaust....


He discusses that in his books : many tend to atribute him things he never wrote/said.


Well, I never read that Suvorov was denying the Holocaust.

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Post by savantu » 31 Dec 2002 18:31

Starinov wrote:
savantu wrote:
Starinov wrote:
Roberto wrote:But Suvorov doesn't seem to be much better.


Well, at least Suvorov does not deny the Jewish Holocaust....


He discusses that in his books : many tend to atribute him things he never wrote/said.


Well, I never read that Suvorov was denying the Holocaust.


Agree.But he was accused of being anti-jew.I saw no proof of that. :roll:

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Roberto
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Post by Roberto » 31 Dec 2002 20:05

savantu wrote:One thing about the so called misinterpretations that Suvorov does.

I read what others said about Meretkov and "the Rubicon" thing.


Was it Meretkov, or was it Vasilevskij?

Vasilevskij in the original:
“By refusing to put the troops in the frontier zone into a state of battle readiness Stalin wanted to avoid giving the slightest pretext for Hitler’s Germany to fell provoked and accuse the USSR of aggressiveness. At the same time, and considering the fact that our country was not yet sufficiently prepared for a great war, he endeavored to gain time in order to strengthen the state’s defense capacity as much as possible (...)
But his fault lay in that he did not see, not realize the line beyond which such a policy was not only unnecessary but even harmful. It would have been necessary to bravely cross that line, to put the armed forces into a state of combat readiness as soon as possible, to carry out mobilization, to convert the country into an armed camp (...)
Evidence that Germany had made preparations to assault our country militarily there were enough; in our time it is difficult to hide such preparations. Concerns that there might be noise in the West on account of alleged aggressive intentions of the USSR had to be pushed aside. We had, because of circumstances not depending on us, reached the Rubikon of war, and it was necessary to make a decisive step forward. The interests of our homeland demanded it.”
Source: A. Vasilevskij: V te surovye gody. In: Voenno-istoriceskij zurnal, 2 (1978), p.65-72, here S.68 (= A. Vasilevskij: In those hard years. In: Militäry History Review 2 (1978), p.68 ). – Source pointed out by Mrs. Prof. Bianka Pietrow-Ennker, University of Konstanz; translation from Russian: Mr. Oskar Obracaj, Tübingen)


Vasilevskij according to Suvorov:
“The central question of my book is the following: If the Red Army could neither turn back nor spend a long time in the frontier regions, what room for maneuver was left to it? (...) All Communist historians are afraid to answer this question.
For this reason I refer to the opinion of a general who since May 1940 has been the Deputy of the Head of Operational Leadership at the General Staff (…), Marshall of the Soviet Union A.M. Vasilevskij, you have the word:
‘The concern that in the West they might make noise on account of the allegedly aggressive intentions of the USSR had to be pushed aside. We had (...; omission by Suvorov. W.B.) reached the Rubikon of war, and the step forward had to be made with firm intention.’ (Military History Review, 1978, No. 2, p.68 ).“
(from: Viktor Suvorov: The Icebreaker. Hitler in Stalin’s Calculus. Stuttgart 1989, p.339)
What is it that general Vasilevskij actually says on page 68 of the Soviet Military History Review named by Suvorov as a source?


Both quotes from my translation of an article by German historian Wigbert Benz on the discussion forum under

http://www.nfhdata.de/premium/forum_index.html

savantu wrote:One must ask himself : if the communists planned an invasion,with the goal of eliberatingthe world( "the world revolution" was real,nobody can deny that.If Stalin planned an attack on Germany is a different problem.) would they openly admit that???

Would they alow the Red Army generals to write in their memoirs how they planned to invade Europe, to reach "the walls of London" ???.
I doubt that.


All very wonderful, but that doesn't get Suvorov et al over their lack of evidence that the Soviet were in fact planning an attack, let alone over the substantial evidence to the contrary.

savantu wrote:Most of those who were in key positions in those times,who knew the situation didn't want to write their memoirs.Those who were forced( Zhukov) wrote unimportant things so you can't discover what really happened.

Also they play with numbers (Zhukov said that their army has 1800 tanks,while they had 24000).Could the second most important man in the Red Army not know how many tanks he had under command??

Of course not.This brings us to a breakthrough : soviet generals lie about the early days,about the sept 1939-june 1941 time period.
Most don't discuss that at all in their books.Why do they lie??Because if they planend something,they aren't so silly to let the cat out.


If they "lied", there may have been a number of reasons for this.

Picking the one that best fits what you would like to believe, without a shred of evidence in support of your contentions, is not likely to get you anywhere.

savantu wrote:A criminal won't admit that he planned killing the victim.He presents himself like an innocent victim.

Suvorov discuss just about any aspect of the problem in his books.Chapters where he discusses why the generals lie are the most interesting.Of course the generals let small bits of info,from where you can make a picture of the situation.How you interpret those pieces of info is your problem.


Well, Suvorov himself seems to be a liar.

The "Hoffman" thread contains various documented instances of deliberate misrepresentations of statements by Soviet generals to fit Suvorov's theses.

So I wouldn't put it past him to also have constructed those supposed lies of Soviet generals by misrepresenting what they actually said.

savantu wrote:About Meretkov-some accused Suvorov of modifying what he said- can't be trusted.
Why ??


It's not "some accused".

German historians have looked up the original text of statements quoted by Suvorov and found that he twisted them to fit his theses.

How about reading the respective assessments more carefully?

savantu wrote:A quote from Roberto,thread "Stalin's war of extermination " by joachim Hoffa

few pages later, in connection with the border clashes at Khalkin-Gol with Japan in 1939, Grigorenko explicitly writes the following:
"Already then we, all freshly baked general staff officers, understood that our gigantic empire was completely unprepared for a war." (p. 189)
Nothing there about an army "completely prepared for a war of aggression”, that is.


-Completly unprepared for war-Makes me laugh.


Why so?

Did the Red Army show itself to be prepared for war when it attacked Finland in 1939?

Or when the Germans attacked it in 1941?

savantu wrote:Roberto continues : "Nothing there about an army "completely prepared for a war of aggression" " :D

Lack of memory,maybe it was late in the night,and he didn't realized the connection??


What's that supposed to mean, by dear boy?

First of all, Roberto was quoting Albrecht Kolthoff, a German historian.

And Kolthoff's issue was not whether Grigorenko’s statements were accurate or not.

What he demonstrated was that Suvorov deliberately misrepresented Grigorenko’s statements, which makes Suvorov come across as a liar.

As simple as that.

Albrecht Kolthoff wrote the following in post no. 20 of the thread "Zur These vom Praeventivkrieg im Osten" under

http://www.nfhdata.de/premium/forum_index.html

(my translation):

[…]A further “key witness” of Suvorov is Pjotr Grigorenko, who in the "Icebreaker" on page 406 Suvorov lets introduce a chapter ("How Hitler foiled Stalin’s War") as follows:
"They had completely prepared us for a war of aggression. And it was not our fault that the aggression had not come from us."
The source given is the following: "General Major P.G. Grigorenko, Im Keller trifft man nur Ratten (‘In the Basement you only meet Rats’), p. 138".
In the context this citation is obviously meant to be related to the situation in 1941.
In this respect it should first be pointed out that Grigorenko was transferred to the Western Front only in 1943; until then he served with the Far East troops. Furthermore Grigorenko held the rank of a First Lieutenant during almost the entire period of the war.
In the annex the source is stated to be a Russian edition that appeared in New York in 1981; a German edition appeared in 1961 under the title "Erinnerungen" (“Memoirs”).
Of course it is possible that in the translation of the original Russian edition of the “Icebreaker" into German deviations also of this quotation may have happened; at any rate the German edition of Grigorenko’s “Memoirs” was not taken into account.
Neither is the citation to be found in this form in the "Memoirs".
A similar passage appears in the following form:
"As we grew up in such an atmosphere, we of cause saw ourselves as soldiers in an upcoming war, saw the peaceful phase in which we lived as the last stage in which the conflict was gathering. War propaganda, always in the name of defense of the country, acquired an ever harsher tone; since the beginning of the 1930s the military striking power was constantly increased. We were also convinced that the Party would from one moment to the next call upon us for the “final decisive battle”. Only it was not then our fault that the attack did not come from our side. Prepared for this we were at any moment, but the leadership turned out to be incapable of taking advantage of this basic mood in the whole army. On the contrary: it neutralized our military preparedness by violently destroying the army’s best cadres." (p. 110)
Grigorenko was speaking of the time when he had just become a soldier and was studying at the Military Technological Academy in Leningrad – in the autumn of 1931. He does not say anything about a “war of aggression". Contrary to the Suvorovian “us”, which meant the Soviet Union as a whole, it becomes clear that Grigorenko’s “us” referred to the young soldiers, whose preparedness and attitude he holds against the military leadership.
A few pages later, in connection with the border clashes at Khalkin-Gol with Japan in 1939, Grigorenko explicitly writes the following:
"Already then we, all freshly baked general staff officers, understood that our gigantic empire was completely unprepared for a war." (p. 189)
Nothing there about an army "completely prepared for a war of aggression”, that is.
In an even more detailed manner Grigorenko addressed the questions of the Red Army’s deficient preparation in a long article he wrote in 1966 in the context of the Nekrich Affair. Alexander Nekrich had in 1965 published a book in Moscow that analyzed the Red Army’s defeat in the days after 22 June 1941 and in the sequence of the XXth Party Congress of the Soviet Communist Party established that Stalin was not only responsible, but also heavily guilty of the combat inefficiency of the Red Army. Nekrich was harshly attacked and later excluded from the party; Grigorenko, who defended him and even intensified his statements, was later deprived of citizenship during a trip abroad. Both Nekrich’s book and Grigorenko’s essay as well as other material from the affair (for example the protocol of an extremely controversial discussion at the Institute for Marxism-Leninism at the Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party) are included in the recommendable volume “Genickschuß” (“Shot in the Neck”), which furthermore offers a fascinating insight into the “thaw weather period” and the end thereof.
Conclusion: Also here Suvorov comes across as a forger who partially invents a citation, tears it out of its context and conveys the opposite of the general message that the person cited intended to convey.[…]


savantu wrote:What happened in late august 1939 at Khalkin Gol??

The most severe defeat ever of the Japanese land army;a brilliant blitzkrieg made by the book.It had all the ingredients of a knock-out.

Wonderfully planned and executed.The japs did not know what hit them.


Aren't you exaggerating a bit here?

Richard Overy (Russia's War, pages 56 and following) wrote:The Winter War was the largest conflict undertaken by the Red Army since the civil war twenty years before, larger even than the border battles with the Japanese at Khalkin-Gol fought the previous summer, where the Red Army's blushes were saved by the intervention of General Zhukov. Victory over the Japanese relied on Zhukov's exceptional battlefield skills, but also on the more effective deployment of modern weapons in open terrain against an enemy with poor mobility. Zhukov ensured that the logistical tail was well in place before risking battle. None of these things was present against Finland. Here the Red Army fought as an unmodernized army, relying on primitive infantry tactics, with poor intelligence, weak supply lines and, significantly, no Zhukov. Against the Japanese Zhukov acted with characteristic independence, rejecting recommendations from senior officers and instilling in poorly trained troops a better sense of purpose than their comrades displayed in Finland.[...]


savantu wrote:If you analyze Khalkin Gol it's obvious that those weren't only clashes,but a demonstration of using modern battle tactics(aka blietzkrieg,invented by the russians anyway) and modern weapons(the combination of tanks,paratroopers and attack planes along motorized infantry).

It was the prelude of the German blietzkrieg.


Wonderful. Looks like the German army learned something from observing Khalkin Gol, whereas the Soviet Army learned nothing, which led to its messing up against Finland in 1939/40 and being caught with its pants down by the German attack in 1941.

savantu wrote:Meretkov said that the gigantic empire is not prepared for war,


Well, was it?

An army that could barely hold its own on its home ground is supposed to have been prepared to stage an all-out offensive, something the Red Army wasn’t able to successfully pull off in summertime until the battle of Kursk and Orel in 1943?

Give me a break, man.

savantu wrote:Roberto adds something more -a war of agression-,


Here’s something about Stalin’s requirements for launching offensive war that may interest you. Stalin seems to have been a friend of playing it safe, requiring an overall superiority of at least two to one for a successful offensive. At least that’s what he told his generals at a conference at the Kremlin on 13 January 1941, following a war game that was run off between January 8 and 11 for top-ranking officers:

Harrison E. Salisbury wrote:[…]Other listeners were deeply disturbed by Stalin’s pronouncement (faithfully approved by the meeting) that a superiority of at least two to one[my emphasis] was required for a successful offensive not only in the area of the principal breakthrough but on the whole operational front[my emphasis]. The application of such a doctrine would require numbers, equipment and rear support far beyond anything heretofore contemplated. The Soviet commanders agreed that overwhelming superiority was needed at in the breakthrough area, but they did not see why such great numerical concentrations were required on the non-active part of the front.[...]


Source of quote: Harrison E. Salisbury, The 900 Days, 1970 Avon Books, New York, pages 75 and following.

And here’s how close the Red Army was to living up to those requirements in June 1941. On pages 97 and following of the same book,

Harrison E. Salisbury wrote:[...]By June 21, 1941, the Soviets had deployed about 2.9 million troops in the Western defense districts against an estimated 4.2 million Germans. The total strength of the Soviet military establishment had been strongly expanded from the 1939 level – up to 4.2 million in January, 1941, against 2.5 million in January, 1939. The total stood just below 5 million June 1. The air force had been tripled and land forces increased 2.7 times. The army had 124 new rifle divisions.
But the numbers were deceptive. The army had only 30 percent of the automatic weapons provided by the table of organization; only 20 percent of the planes were of new modern types and only 9 percent of the tanks. When General M. Shtemenko took over the 34th Cavalry Division in July, 1941, he found it had no arms whatever. He finally got some 1927 vintage cannons but was unable to obtain enough rifles or ammunition to equip his troops. There were no antitank guns – nothing but Molotov cocktails (gasoline bottles with wicks). He got twelve antitank guns, but not until October 1941.[...]


savantu wrote:but history shows the opposite.


What history?

History as becomes apparent from the evidence?

Or history as Suvorov would like to have it?

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Toivo
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Post by Toivo » 31 Dec 2002 20:51

Greetings,
Starinov wrote:
"... while W. Nevezhin (a known russian historian who works in the Main Russian Historical Archives) says that the entire political and ideological life from the january 1941 was set for a agressive war against Germany."

Ho. I'm very interested what people who know public opinion on Nevezhin or have read his writings think about him. If he worked in Main Archives and is russian, he can't be probably pro-nazi, revisionist or western spy (just kidding:). So, I'm very interested on info about him.

Regards

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