The Russian Ministry of Defense has published new evidence of the persecution of the German Nazis in Voronezh.
MOSCOW, January 25 – RIA Novosti. The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation on Wednesday published on its official website a new documentary project “Voronezh. Unconquered City-Front”, which for the first time presents pre-classified documents that testify to the atrocities of the German Nazis and their Hungarians and Romanians. Accomplices during the occupation of Voronezh and the Voronezh region.
This project is dedicated to the 80th anniversary of the liberation of Voronezh. It contains various documents from the central archive of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation: reports, war reports, war diaries, photographs that testify to the great scale of destruction and atrocities of the fascist invaders in the occupied territories of the Voronezh region.
People are enslaved
According to documents released by the Russian military department, German, Hungarian and Romanian fascists began to enforce de facto orders to own slaves in the occupied territory of the Voronezh region.
Thus, in the village of Yekaterinovka, the Hungarian invaders forced all residents “from young to old” to work 12 hours a day or more in the field and other work, “paying with the whip”.
Also, not far from the village itself, the Nazis set up a concentration camp “Knock Machine”, where almost all men and women were placed.
“Everyone had to work hard without taking care of their health. Hundreds of people died of exhaustion and only a few managed to escape from the camp,” says the law on atrocities published by the RF Ministry of Defense. Hungarian invaders in the village of Yekaterinovka.
violence against women
The Nazis did not spare women either. Thus, the German invaders, having entered the village of Rossosh, took everything “to the last potato” from the collective farmer Natalya Danilovna and burned the hut. When she began begging him to leave her some bread and potatoes (she had four children), a German soldier beat and abused her. This is not the only case of rape and brutal murder of women in this village.
The regional center of Voronezh was also badly damaged: fierce fighting and the scorched earth tactics of the Germans led to the almost complete destruction of the city. More than 18 thousand buildings out of 20 thousand houses were destroyed. The vast scale of the destruction is evidenced by both Soviet and captured German photographs of that time presented in the project.
Among the declassified materials of the Ministry of Defense are records of military operations, which show that from the very beginning of the Voronezh wars both sides suffered heavy losses.
“The 604th Rifle Regiment occupied separate houses on both sides of the north-east of the cemetery, continuing the offensive. <…> In the report of the 195th Infantry Division dated 14 July 1942, the regiment suffers heavy losses amounting to 70% of all personnel.
At the same time, the Germans lost 40 thousand killed in Voronezh in July alone.
Birth of assault teams
In addition, from the submitted documents it becomes clear that in the Voronezh battles the Red Army began to use the special tactics of assault groups.
A combat report of July 22, 1942, at the command of the troops, states: “In the evening, the units act as separate assault groups in the attack zone with the task of blocking and capturing individual buildings”.
According to war records, skirmishes were particularly stubborn in the “hospital town” area that changed hands more than once. During the wars, the building of the district hospital was almost completely destroyed. Only the pillars holding up the broken dome remained. The preserved ruined building of the hospital (“Rotonda”) has become a memorial to the war and a reminder of the bloody battles for the city.
Heroism in Liberation
The collection of documents also provides evidence of the heroism of Soviet soldiers during the liberation of the city. Among them is an article dedicated to the ensign of the regiment, Alexander Alaverdov, in the “Army Truth” of January 26, 1943. On the eve of the liberation of the city, by his example, he removed the chain of attacks.
“Heavily fortified, the Nazis fired fierce fire. The attackers’ chains began to thin. The enemy pressed the attackers to the ground. <…> When the battalions came under enemy fire, Alaverdov kissed the banner and looked at the commander, as if to say, “We will not disgrace our Flag with cowardice!” The commander allowed him to enter the battlefield. <…> The appearance of a red banner unfurled on the battlefield inspired the warriors. Everyone remembered the sacred oath – to faithfully serve their Fatherland, to donate neither blood nor life. The battalions stood up and moved to attack the enemy fortifications,” says the publication.
Archival materials also tell about the success of Senior Lieutenant Bulavko, deputy commander of the 2nd battalion of the 796th rifle regiment of the 141st rifle division for political affairs, fighting with the enemy near the village of Khmelevy Les.
“In the conflict, a large number of personnel were eliminated, the battalion commander Captain Vasin was killed, the deputy battalion commander, senior lieutenant Rynkov was wounded. The battalion was in a difficult situation. Comrade Bulavko took command. In the report of the political department of the 60th Army of January 27, 1943, he collected the remains of the battalion with his own hands and collected 150 Acting with forces of up to 1 person, he repelled several counterattacks of the enemy, “he says.
liberation of voronezh
The troops of the Voronezh Front, which went on the offensive on January 25, 1943, completely liberated Voronezh, the battle of which lasted 212 days. All this time, the front line passed through the city – part of Voronezh was in the hands of the Red Army, the other – under the occupation of the Nazis. Showing courage and heroism, the Red Army held back some 30 fascist divisions here, including German, Romanian, Italian and Hungarian formations, thereby foiling the enemy’s plans of action. During Operation Little Uranus, the troops of the Voronezh and Southwestern fronts, with their active action in this direction, thwarted the Nazi attempt to liberate Paulus’ 6th Army near Stalingrad.
In the post-war period, Voronezh was awarded the Order of the Patriotic War, I degree, and later the honorary title “City of Military Glory”. For exploits on the fronts of the Great Patriotic War, more than 300 thousand residents of Voronezh were awarded military insignia, of which 274 were Hero of the Soviet Union, 65 were full holders of the Order of Victory. Currently, 26,791 defenders of the city are buried in 46 mass graves on the territory of Voronezh.
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