MIL OSI Translation. Region: Russian Federation –
The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation continues to work to preserve the memory of the heroism and courage of the Red Army soldiers who died in the struggle for the freedom of the whole world from Nazism. Within the framework of the project “No statute of limitations” on the Internet portal of the military department was opened new multimedia sectiondedicated to the heroic storming of Berlin and the soldiers of the Red Army who died in the fight against Nazism at the final stage of the war. It published documents from the funds of the Central Archives of the Ministry of Defense: registration card of the memorial complex in Treptow Park, documents from the personal file of one of the creators of the memorial, combat logs of units and subdivisions of the 1st Belorussian Front, personal lists of irrecoverable losses, award lists and descriptions feats of soldiers and commanders.
The section begins with an account card of the memorial complex and the mass grave located in Berlin’s Treptower Park, in which the soldiers who died during the storming of the capital of Nazi Germany are buried. The document contains a diagram of the memorial complex and a description of the majestic sculpture of Yevgeny Vuchetich “The Liberator Warrior”: “The parterre ends with the main monument. It is made in the form of a green mound, on top of which a monumental figure of a Soviet soldier rises. With a sword, the warrior breaks the fascist swastika and tramples its fragments with his foot, in his left hand he holds a girl clinging to him. The memorial card indicates that 7,200 Red Army soldiers are buried here, the names of 2,770 of whom are known.
The creation of a complex in Berlin dedicated to the soldiers of the Red Army who heroically fought against the Nazi invaders began in 1946. The head of the project was the sculptor-artist of the front-line soldier Yevgeny Vuchetich, who later, with his sculptures “The Warrior-Liberator” and “The Motherland Calls!” made a huge contribution to the preservation of the memory of the heroes of the Red Army.
The section contains documents from the personal file of Evgeny Vuchetich. From his track record, a visitor to the site learns that Vuchetich already in July 1941 volunteered for the people’s militia, where he served as platoon commander of the 5th rifle division of the people’s militia named after M.V. Frunze of the 33rd Army. From March 1943 until the end of the war, he was an artist at the Military Artists’ Studio named after M. B. Grekov.
At the end of April 1945, in the place where the memorial complex to Soviet soldiers now stands, units of the 5th Shock Army of the 1st Belorussian Front broke through with heavy battles to the Reichstag. The most detailed picture of these battles is provided by the April 1945 combat journal of the 5th Shock Army published in the section. The document testifies that the assault was a very difficult combat mission: “The closer the army’s troops advanced to the center of Berlin, the more and more the intensity of the fighting increased.” The magazine says that the Soviet troops had to act “… in difficult street battles, often reaching hand-to-hand combat.”
Berlin was turned into a walled city by German troops. “The enemy began building defensive structures on the approaches and in the city of Berlin in February 1945,” the magazine says. The very defense of the city “… was divided into 8 sections – sectors, named in the order of the Latin alphabet, and the ninth central section, called the citadel (the area of government quarters) and the adjacent Tiergarten Park”. When describing the advantages of the German positions, the document says: “The defense of Berlin was facilitated by the presence of a large amount of destruction carried out by the Allied aircraft. Streets in some areas were so littered with bricks of collapsed buildings that moving along them without first clearing not only tanks and artillery, but even transport vehicles was impossible. “
The stations and tunnels of the Berlin subway were also adapted for stubborn defense. “… In the areas of the metro station, the enemy had strong strongholds, which he stubbornly defended, – the journal of military operations testifies. “The subway tunnels that were not flooded with water were illuminated by searchlights and shot through with machine-gun fire.” It also says that underground structures, including metro stations and tunnels, were widely used as firing points, maneuver routes (exits to the attackers in the rear, advance of reserves, retreat), warehouses and shelters for the wounded.
In the conditions of urban battles, the troops of the Berlin garrison used small combat groups: “One of the features of the battles in Berlin was the widespread use by the enemy of small groups and individual machine gunners and snipers both for actions on the front line and in areas occupied by our troops,” evidenced by the pages of the document.
The magazine contains photographs of key buildings in the German defense system of the city (telegraph, the buildings of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Gestapo, as well as the Reichstag). Their ruined appearance testifies to the fierce, bloody battles for each building, which the Nazis defended with the desperation of the doomed.
But, despite the stubborn resistance of the enemy, already “… 2.5.45, as a result of decisive nine-day offensive battles, our troops broke the stubborn resistance of the enemy and completely captured the capital of Nazi Germany, Berlin”, – stated in the combat log of the 5th shock.
According to the “Vedomosti of losses in the personnel of the 5th Shock Army”, in only one month – April 1945 – of almost continuous battles, the losses of the army amounted to 17.5 thousand soldiers and commanders.
To the left of the 5th Shock, the 8th Guards Army was advancing. The operational documents of its units and subunits presented in this section also testify to the serious preparation of the Berlin garrison for battles for the city. Thus, in the war log of the 27th Guards Chernivtsi Regiment it is written: “All stone houses were adapted for firing and were occupied by troops, trenches were dug for the Faustists near houses and stone fences.” An example of high professionalism is the feat of the commander of the 3rd motorized rifle battalion of the guard, Major Bezmaternykh, described in the combat log. On April 22, his battalion, breaking into the suburbs of Berlin and capturing several blocks, “… managed to organize a perimeter defense and provide resistance until the main forces of the brigade approached.” Further in the magazine it is noted: “… the commander of the 3rd meb. Fought bravely and led the battle. guards Major Bezmaternykh, for which he was nominated for the title of Hero of the Soviet Union.
In the section on the website of the military department, for the first time, little-known military documents of the Dnieper flotilla that took part in the storming of Berlin were published. Organizationally, it was included in the 5th Shock Army.
According to the war log of the flotilla for the period from April 14 to May 3, during the assault on Berlin itself, “a detachment of half-gliders (10 units) 1 BRK / brigade of river ships /, transferred by motor vehicles to the Karlhorst area, 23-25.04.45 rendered assistance SK 5UA / 9th Rifle Corps of the 5th Shock Army / when crossing the Spree River “. Based on the results of the battles, the conclusion follows from the journal: “The experience of the operation indicates the urgent need to attract funds from the flotilla when the spacecraft units cross the water lines.”
In a published petition dated April 30 to the chief of staff of the 1st Belorussian Front, the commander of the flotilla, Rear Admiral Grigoriev, wrote: “The ships of the 1st brigade of the flotilla have been operating from 24.04 to the present as part of the 5th shock army within the city of Berlin. During their combat work, the ships under heavy enemy fire were transported across the river. Spree one division from the 9th SK 5A, earning high marks from the commanders of the spacecraft. ” Subsequently, at another request of the flotilla commander, this brigade was given the name “Berlin”.
The historical section also contains maps of the operation and operational zone of the Dnieper flotilla, which clearly show the contribution of the Dnieper sailors to the success of the Berlin offensive operation.
From the reports it follows that the Berlin offensive operation was carried out at the highest level.
However, as documents testify, “the Germans, squeezed in a tight ring from all sides (…), still relying on buildings, fortifications, barricades and all kinds of ground and underground structures prepared for defense in advance, continue to offer stubborn resistance with the doom of suicide bombers.” And many losses among the advancing Red Army men could not be avoided …
Many Soviet soldiers and officers are buried in a mass grave in Treptow Park, under the famous monument to Vuchetich, the majestic Liberator Warrior.
Among them there are many servicemen of the 5th Shock Army, whose units, in the area of Treptow Park, broke through to Berlin in fierce battles. Many of them were awarded posthumously for the feats they performed during the stubborn city battles.
The commander of the rifle battalion of the guard, Captain Konstantin Voloshchuk, was posthumously awarded the title of Hero of the Soviet Union. He has been participating in the Great Patriotic War since June 1941, and during this time he has accomplished not a single feat. In the published award list of April 29, 1945, it is indicated that on April 16, when a well-fortified German defense was broken through, the battalion under his command was the first to break into the enemy’s trenches and ensure the success of the offensive. April 17 “… Comrade Voloshchuk with a rifle battalion was the first to cross the Alte-Oder River, on the western bank repelled 4 enemy counterattacks, held the occupied line and thereby made it possible for our reinforcements to overcome the water line with minor losses.” In the suburbs of Berlin, the battalion of the guard of Captain Voluschuk “… fought off block after block with intense battles.” On April 24, Konstantin Voloshchuk died a heroic death while crossing the Spree.
The commander of a rifle platoon of the guard, Lieutenant Anatoly Lapshev, also became a Hero of the Soviet Union. The award list of April 26, 1945 describes several of his exploits, including those performed during the battles for Berlin, which characterize him as a skilled commander. “Taking part in night hostilities on the outskirts of the city of Berlin, officer Lapshev with his platoon, carefully scouting the enemy’s firing points that hindered the advance of our infantry, managed to outflank and cut off the enemy’s escape route.” As a result of the battle, his platoon destroyed over 80 soldiers and officers, captured 40 people and captured over 16 guns of various calibers, up to 20 light machine guns, 6 trucks and an artillery depot. In subsequent battles after the death of the company commander, the guard lieutenant took over command. According to the personal list of irrecoverable losses of personnel of the 23rd Guards Dnovo division, Anatoly Lapshev was killed on April 26, 1945.
In the award list dated May 12, 1945 to the Order of the Patriotic War of the II degree for the commander of the guard department, foreman Grigory Mayorov, the following combat episode is described: “Comrade. Mayorov received a combat mission with his squad to get behind enemy lines and destroy him. By a hidden maneuvering detour, the squad burst into the house and engaged in hand-to-hand combat with the enemy. In this hand-to-hand combat comrade. Mayorov killed 5 enemy soldiers and put the rest to flight. ” As follows from the list of irrecoverable losses of personnel of the 89th Guards Rifle Belgorod-Kharkov Division, he died on April 26, 1945.
The feat of the commander of the submachine gun squad, senior sergeant Kasim Khaisarov, demonstrates one of the many tactics of interaction between infantry and tank units in street battles. In the award list dated April 29, 1945 to the Order of the Patriotic War of the 1st degree, it is written: “… comrade. Khaisarov, one of the first landing troops on tanks, burst into the city, dragging the rest of the soldiers with him, where he destroyed 9 fausts in street battles and captured 11 enemy soldiers, thereby giving our tanks the opportunity to move forward unhindered. ” On April 26, his squad destroyed up to 25 grenade launchers, captured 37 soldiers and 5 officers, while senior sergeant Khaisarov personally killed 7 grenade launchers and captured 3 officers. On May 1, 1945 Kasim Khaisarov died heroically.
Senior radiotelegraph operator of the Guard Sergeant Zinaida Serkova was posthumously awarded the Order of the Patriotic War, II degree. The award list of May 5, 1945 says that, despite any difficulties during the battles, Serkova provided the corps with stable communication with the army command, always transmitting reports on time. April 24 “… comrade. Serkova, together with the headquarters of the corps, crossed the Teltow Canal and, despite the air raid, remained at her post, continuing to keep in touch with the army command. Direct hit by a bomb Comrade Serkova was killed. “
The section also publishes documents on the servicemen of other armies buried in the grave, participating in the storming of Berlin, in particular, the map of the initial burial of the motorcyclist of the guard company of the Guard of Private Mikhail Nikitov and his posthumous award to the Order of the Patriotic War II degree. In a short summary of the feat it is written: “On April 25, 1945, in the district of Berlin, Nikitov returned with a report from the battalions to the brigade headquarters. He was attacked by a group of German soldiers up to 15 people. Shooting back, Nikitov killed 7 Germans in this battle, where he himself was wounded. Bleeding, Nikitov delivered the report to the brigade headquarters, where he died. “
The section contains “post-victory” political reports on the mood in the units of the 35th Guards Rifle Division. One of them tells about the many rallies that arose among Soviet soldiers and officers on the streets of the city. “A large group of soldiers and officers has gathered near the Brandenburg Arch itself (…),” the political instructor describes what he saw. – In the center of the group is the front-line poet Yevgeny Dolmatovsky. At the request of soldiers and officers, he reads fresh poems “We are in Berlin” (…). Soldiers and officers give a joyful ovation to the poet Dolmatovsky … “.
Another published political report cites the symbolic words of the commander of a platoon of intelligence guards, Lieutenant Sobko: “The news of victory in Europe reached every soldier and officer as the most joyful event in the life of each of us. We remember the ruins of Stalingrad, we are proud of the victory in Berlin (…). With the capture of Berlin and the achievement of complete victory, we once again glorified in battles the power of Russian weapons, Soviet soldiers, whose glory will not die for centuries!
All the historical evidence presented in the section clearly show that the Victory in the Great Patriotic War of the Soviet people against the Nazi invaders was won by the skillful leadership of the commanders, the skill and valor of the soldiers who selflessly gave their lives for the future of the world, believing that they would never again there will be no Nazism anywhere.
Archival documents included in the exposition of the multimedia section have been declassified and published within the framework of the project “No statute of limitations”, implemented on behalf of the President of the Russian Federation.
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EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.