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- Russia's War: A History of the Soviet Effort: 1941-1945
- Russia's War by Richard Overy | iwojafevazyx.ml
Russia's War was an illuminating read, and surprisingly readable considering the difficult subject matter. Jul 03, Kate rated it really liked it Shelves: This text was published as a companion book to a 10 episode television series produce by IBP Films London. It covers the rise of Stalin and his endless suspicions and purges from which few were safe, and Stalin's joining alliances with the west who he was highly suspicious of which led to his non-aggression pact with Germany after Germany invaded Czechoslovakia. The bulk of the book covers the actual war once Germany turns on Russia and attacks in June to its defeat when the Russians roll i This text was published as a companion book to a 10 episode television series produce by IBP Films London.
The bulk of the book covers the actual war once Germany turns on Russia and attacks in June to its defeat when the Russians roll into Berlin in This book is a grand overview, which shows some sympathy for the Russian ethos while addressing the tremendous cost the ordinary Russian paid in mass arrests, executions and internment due to Stalin's paranoia seeing enemies both within and without With each text that covers any aspect of the Second World War each author will mention something another writer will have felt too obscure to cover.
For me it was the treatment of the tiny Republic of Chechnya in February of The Chechens were invited to join the celebrations of Red Army Day and the growing victories over the German occupation. They Chechens showed up in their town squares prepared to celebrate and each town square was surrounded by NKVD and a Russian official stepped forward and announced that they were to be deported as the NKVD moved in to contain them, those who dared to try to escape were shot on the spot and they were rounded up and transported to the camps in the Gulag where they were held until where those who had managed to survive were allowed to return home.
This is a story I was not familiar with and will have to track down as there is sure to be some books which cover the Chechen's plight. Having read several books on certain battles on the Eastern front from both the German and Russian perspective, the very best book I have read was the fiction of Vasily Grossman, whose books were confiscated by the State.
Sometimes you can find more truth in fiction about what the Russian commanders and soldiers faced than the mere fact that political commissars were assigned to make sure that no one exhibited the slightest incorrect idea while fighting the Germans. A good overview of the utter insanity of Stalin's policies and how in spite of all of the suffering imposed on the military and civilian population that they at great sacrifice managed to push the Germans out of the Motherland and pursue them to Berlin and their defeat. Only to at wars end to have to suffer further as millions were rounded up as being suspect and executed and sent off to slave labor and prison camps where survival was as difficult as their chances were during the desperate battles against their occupying enemy.
Excellent general account of the war from the Russian perspective that tries to cover all aspects off the war. For more purely military accounts, you will need to find another book. Overy had earned his spurs in Russian sources before he wrote this account, so his grasp of the subject is very good. It starts out with establishing the revolutionary roots of the army and its attempts to both modernise and find a balance between ideological purity and military professionalism. I Reads very smoothly. It then moves to the countdown to war, where it records frantic Russian attempts to keep out of the conflict and grave insecurity of the Soviet state from within and without.
This leads to sudden shifts in power between ideology and professionalism in the years before Barbarossa. This is what leads to Russia still being halfway preopared for the conflict but with its deployment based on outdated concept of war, which leads to the destruction of the Red Army on the borders. There's continuous attention for Stalin's difficult relationship with the military and the top generals. He wasn't a very good soldier and made many stupid mistakes.
On the other hand he steadied quite a few crises with determination and ruthlessness. He played a central role in the handling of the war. That would also affect his postwar stature. Within the largely chronological account, a whole chapter is devoted to the holocaust, German treatment of occupied terrotories, the moral mobilisation of Russian resistance, the partisans and the relocation of Russian population and industry to the east.
A good way to focus on this important part of the war it was an ideological as much as a military contest instead of diluting it over the course of the book. Although published 15 years ago it is still quite in tow with current scholarship on the subject, using the flood of new material coming out of Russian archives and memoirs in the early s. Large parts of this book deal with old myths e. A short yet very comprehensive account of the Soviet Union's bloody struggle to defeat Nazi Germany after the initial rout which followed Operation Barbarossa.
The Nazis' initial success wasn't as clear cut as many believe. From the beginning and throughout the war, the bravery and resilience of the Red Army surprised the German generals who had been taught to regard the peoples of Eastern Europe as "Untermenschen" i. According to Heinrich Himmler, the war in the East was to be one A short yet very comprehensive account of the Soviet Union's bloody struggle to defeat Nazi Germany after the initial rout which followed Operation Barbarossa.
According to Heinrich Himmler, the war in the East was to be one of "decimation" of the Slavic people. It was the battle skills of the entire Red Army, from generals down to the ordinary soldier and the incredible economic revival of the Soviet Union's military-industrial complex aided by the USA's Lend-Lease policy - the latter grudgingly admitted by Stalin which were the main reasons for the Allied victory against Hitler - but at a monumental cost in human lives and suffering. Overy does not shirk from detailing the atrocities perpetrated by the Soviet authorities against satellite states such as the Ukraine, due to deliberate starvation, resettlement and official incompetence.
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He includes a history of Stalin's rise to power and his many vindictive campaigns of persecution - scores of purges and pogroms - against his own people, which saw millions starved to death, murdered, imprisoned or sent to the gulags and work camps, where they died in their hundreds of thousands over 3 decades. Nor does he ignore the rapes and needless killings of tens of thousands of German civilians during the Red Army's march through Germany during and immediately after the final battles. Overall though, this is the history of the massive suffering endured by the Russian people and the other peoples of Eastern Europe from to and how an almost miraculous turn around in Soviet industrial output and military planning finally turned the tide against the until then all conquering German military and eventually destroyed the might of Nazi Germany.
Apr 26, Bou rated it really liked it Shelves: This book is a nice introduction to the war on the Eastern Front. It starts with an explanation of the pre-war years, by dealing with the purges and war doctrine. After that, it tells about the struggle on the eastern front from year to year, roughly divided by , and and onwards. It doesn't go into very deep tactical details, which makes it a nice introduction to this theater of war. One remarkable subject is the Polish uprising in Warsaw, with the Red Army waiting and not coming t This book is a nice introduction to the war on the Eastern Front.
One remarkable subject is the Polish uprising in Warsaw, with the Red Army waiting and not coming to help. The author more or less explains and defends the Russian point of view, in the case that at that point the Red Army was stressed to the end of its limits after the succesfull Operation Bagration in and not able to assist the Polish resistance.
The book doesn't end at the end of the war, but also tells us about the aftermath, the demoting of the Russian Marshall's like Zjoekov and Vasilevsky until the death of Stalin in This book offers the reader a decent and non-bias account of Russia's wartime effort during the Second World War. Although not as detailed as John Erickson's two volume account of the Soviet military effort its a lot more easier to understand and follow. Also you aren't left with the impression that the book was full of Russian propaganda.
It tells the story as it really was, showing both the good and the bad side of the Russian leadership and its role in trying to stem the German onslaught into This book offers the reader a decent and non-bias account of Russia's wartime effort during the Second World War. It tells the story as it really was, showing both the good and the bad side of the Russian leadership and its role in trying to stem the German onslaught into Mother Russia.
I think that we tend to forget the effort and loss of life that Russia bore during WW2 although the author does not dismiss the West's aid to Russia during the War. It was a nice compliment to the TV series which is currently showing in Australia. Well worth the time to sit down and read. Apr 07, Venky rated it really liked it Shelves: Professor Richard Overy in this eye opener, details the gargantuan Soviet effort in amassing men and material, which on hindsight turned out to be the most colossal feat of World War II.
From the very brink of humiliating defeat after being taken unawares of the German Blitzkrieg - courtesy Operation Barbarossa - to hoisting the Communist Flag at the Reich stag in Berlin, Russia overcame obstacles of every sort, both natural and man made; posed by friend and foe alike to emerge triumphant in som Professor Richard Overy in this eye opener, details the gargantuan Soviet effort in amassing men and material, which on hindsight turned out to be the most colossal feat of World War II. From the very brink of humiliating defeat after being taken unawares of the German Blitzkrieg - courtesy Operation Barbarossa - to hoisting the Communist Flag at the Reich stag in Berlin, Russia overcame obstacles of every sort, both natural and man made; posed by friend and foe alike to emerge triumphant in some of the bloodiest battles of attrition.
When the fighters and bombers finally stopped their savage sorties and the lumbering monstrous tanks ground to a halt, signaling the end of the greatest incursion of mankind into the depths of folly, the casualties suffered by Stalin's countrymen were mind numbing. Out of a total mobilized manpower of 34,,, 11,, were either dead or were captured as Prisoners Of War or were missing in action. The total number killed in action, or who perished on account of their injuries was 6,, The death toll from amounted to 8,, An unspeakable price to pay for securing freedom.
Overy by concentrating on the physical as well as the psychological factors motivating the Russian War efforts provides various astounding insights which when read together, brings the reader to the startling and sickening realization that the Russian victory could have been achieved at a much lower loss of life, limb and livelihood.
For example the atrocious 'purges' following the internal civil war in , where a paranoid administration went about culling 'suspected' traitors from the officer corps - not before subjecting them to unspeakable bouts of torture with a view to forcing out 'confessions' - ensured that by the time Hitler mounted his rampaging attack on June 22, , the Soviet army was in virtual disarray with a grievous lack of leadership capabilities.
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These abominable purges continued well into the war and even after the World War itself came to an excruciating end. Having a morbid fear of dying, the despotic Stalin not only had himself surrounded by the dreaded NKVD Security guards, but also had a phalanx of cronies and lackeys, who with an objective of scaling great heights of power, committed treachery and treason against their own brethren.
Professor Overy also highlights the alarming situation of the Soviet ground and air troops itself at the height of the German invasion. Forced to fight behind feeble emplacements and substandard fortifications, the Russian soldier - or 'Ivan' as the Germans were wont to term him - was equipped with outdated rifles and inferior weaponry.
Against the clockwork precision of the German army equipped with the dreaded Panzer tanks, these pitiful soldiers had only prayers as their best chance of survival. The Russian Air Force was in an even greater mess. From a position of dire disadvantage, the Soviet Union through a process of remarkable political, economic and military transformation, worked a veritable miracle by bringing forth a level of discipline and sophistication hitherto seen in any Armed forces.
Even as Germany was bombing the living daylights out of Russian villages and cities, workers transported entire factories over railroads or what remained of them to isolated places in Kazakhstan and Siberia and embarked on a mass production initiative of military stockpile. However the most back breaking labour was extracted at an unfair cost. Most of the toil formed the exclusive preserve of the unfortunate prisoners sentenced to a long tenures at the 'gulags' or the despicable labour camps.
Sleeping on straw beds or even at times, in holes carved out from earth, these prisoners were driven to work in appalling conditions. Braving temperatures of minus thirty degrees and minuscule food rations, hundreds of thousands of brave men and women literally worked themselves to death.
By the Soviet Armed and Air forces boasted technological prowess that was equal to or in some cases even superior to those possessed by their enemy. The top political echelons also underwent a positive paradigm shift in mindset. Stalin left the dynamics of strategy in the hands of extraordinarily brave and capable generals such as Zhukov the hero of both Stalingrad and Leningrad ; Chuikov, the indomitable general who was wounded four times each time on the 20th of a month and yet refused to back down an inch, and Rossokovsky. Even though Stalin insisted on being the ultimate Generalissimo, he rarely interfered in the carefully chalked out battle strategies formulated by his generals.
This was in direct contrast to the workings of the sociopath Hitler, who insisted on micro managing every front, a disastrous decision which as psychotic as the man's ambitions, and which ultimately led to the decimation of the Third Reich. Russia's War was indeed a consequence of a monumental catastrophe! Aug 17, Philip rated it liked it. The book followed a miniseries, which might explain its strengths and weaknesses. Further, paragraphs are frequently too long and often lack topic sentences. I s The book followed a miniseries, which might explain its strengths and weaknesses.
I skipped chapters seven and eight out of sheer misery. Either he never learned to write well, or, because this history accompanied a documentary miniseries, he hastily assembled it. I do take interest in the argument that Allied success - according to Mr. Overy - depended significantly upon Stalin's brutal modernization campaign of the s, without which the Soviets and entire Alliance would likely have perished. History is rather messy and morally ambivalent sometimes. Oct 10, Sumit rated it really liked it. An interesting account of Russian side of the eastern front war and some intriguing claims about Russia's foreign policy leading to and during early war years.
Russia's War: A History of the Soviet Effort: 1941-1945
The authors benefits from new documents recently declassified from the Russian archives, and sheds light on previously unknown and heavily speculated aspects of Russian policy. Book is relatively small and doesnt go in too much of details about fine aspects of battalion movement. What it does is provide a good mix of strategic and tactica An interesting account of Russian side of the eastern front war and some intriguing claims about Russia's foreign policy leading to and during early war years.
What it does is provide a good mix of strategic and tactical aspect. The book also provides a small view into some of the biggest names on Russian sides such as Stalin, Zhukov, Beria, Molotov and many others.
Interesting read for someone looking for a nice read on eastern front. The narrative is very captivating and lively as the testimonies claim. I didn't watch the hour documentary to which the book's supposed to be a thorough companion but the book itself made me want to watch it. It's fairly short and makes a good intro for anyone who wants to dive into the Operation Barbarossa. My reason in picking it up The narrative is very captivating and lively as the testimonies claim.
My reason in picking it up was I felt I knew very little about the Soviet view of the war, and even less about the Soviet generals. It was a crash course on them for me. So I wouldn't really recommend it to anyone who already has a good grasp of WW2 in general. At less than pages, this is a short history of Russia's more accurately, the Soviet Union's participation in the Second World War. Overy had to make choices in his coverage of the conflict: His account describes the major battles in broad strokes, with enough detail to make the reader understand the strategic choices that the Soviet leadership made, but also gives due emphasis to the experience of the population, the shifts of power in the leadership, and the war production effort that mad At less than pages, this is a short history of Russia's more accurately, the Soviet Union's participation in the Second World War.
His account describes the major battles in broad strokes, with enough detail to make the reader understand the strategic choices that the Soviet leadership made, but also gives due emphasis to the experience of the population, the shifts of power in the leadership, and the war production effort that made victory possible.
The result is an excellent high-level overview of the conflict, though perhaps it does not do full justice to the human story of the people who experienced the conflict on the ground. Access to Soviet wartime archives, after the end of the Cold War, allowed the Soviet side of the conflict to be much better understood than before. The book not contain many big surprises, but it does have a few; and it certainly provides a better insight on what happened on the Eastern front than works written before And perhaps against expectations, what happened then remains very relevant today: While hearing about the conflict in the Ukraine and Crimea today March it is fascinating to read about the role played during WWII by the Ukrainian nationalists, caught between hammer and anvil in the world war that rolled over their country; and to read that armed conflict continued in this country for several years after WWII ended.
With a fluent, very readable writing style, a handful of well-chosen maps, and limited technical detail, this is a pleasantly readable account of a bloody conflict. Jul 25, Mark rated it really liked it Shelves: The book goes far toward demonstrating that, while the American operations in Europe commencing with D-Day were important to the defeat of Nazi Germany, they were not truly the vital factor in the outcome of the European war; those honors properly belong to Soviet Russia, with all its faults and foibles, as well as its heroes and incredible stamina under pressure. Richard Overy's account helped me finally understand the incredibly unlikely Nazi-Soviet nonaggression pact of ; the part that always bothered me was the question, "how could Hitler and Stalin ever have trusted each other?
They both got something out of it; and while Hitler probably got the better of the deal initially, in the end the Soviets won all-- though not easily. The book suffers mainly from its relationship to a British television series, and goes for summary rather than detail, so it's not a truly deep look at the war. However, for someone unfamiliar with the vital Eastern Front, it's the best introduction to it I've ever encountered.
While the Soviet partisans accomplished much against the Germans, many of them were far from being the heroes which Soviet propaganda claimed. Other aspects of how Soviet civilians survived and died in the countryside and the cities are investigated, including the massive suffering of Jews under both Hitler and Stalin. The program does not include interviews with Germans who were involved in the war and occupation in Russia, although this is to be expected because of the focus of the documentary. It also presents one of the most haunting images of misery that I have seen: Sadly, this program presents many other images which are comparable.
At the same time, along with all of the misery and oppression that is documented, there are stories included that are deeply inspiring.
Russia's War by Richard Overy | iwojafevazyx.ml
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