Andrei M. Belov
Kostroma State University
On the major turnaround in the East Front of World War II (according to memoirs of German and Soviet military commanders)
Belov A.M. On the major turnaround in the East Front of World War II (according to memoirs of German and Soviet military commanders). Vestnik of Kostroma State University, 2020, vol. 26, № 2, pp. 68–76 (In Russ.). DOI 10.34216/1998-0817-2020-26-2-68-76
DOI: 10.34216/1998-0817-2020-26-2-68-76
УДК: 94(470.317)"1941/1945"
Publish date: 2020-04-16
Annotation: The author refers in the article to such an important aspect of the major turnaround in the East Front of the Second World War as mastering the combat experience of contemporary warfare, based on the memoirs of German and Soviet military commanders. The author concludes that if, at the initial stage, Germany's sudden attack on the USSR and the use of a large mass of tanks and aircraft in combat led the Wehrmacht to success, by the end of 1941, the Red Army's victory near Moscow had defined a turnaround in the war. The Red Army endured the worst challenges of the initial stage and began to master the methods of conducting contemporary war by Soviet military commanders. Of those commanders who advanced in the future, there were those military commanders who asserted themselves in the battles of Moscow and Stalingrad. Contemporary war required them to master the experience of guiding a large mass of equipment – tanks, aircraft – in accordance with the potential embedded in them. The formation of tank, aviation divisions, corps, armies laid the material foundation for the major turnaround in the war. The ability to anticipate the actions of the enemy and make decisions unexpected to it had become an essential component of the commanders' experience. The experience of coordinating the actions of different fronts and branches of troops, the formation of armies possessing the latest ammunition, the proper provision with arms and other materials became the guarantee of victory around Stalingrad and Kursk, the liberation of the Ukraine on the left bank of the Dnieper and of Donbass, that is, the victories considered to be the major turnaround in the Second World War.
Keywords: major turnaround, memoirs, German and Soviet military commanders, Red Army, World War II.
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Author's info: Andrey M. Belov, Doctor of Historical Sciences, Professor, Kostroma State University, Kostroma, Russia E-mail: Belovi@mail.ru