Victory in the Great Patriotic War and World War II was given to Soviet soldiers with hard work. However, in order to effectively realize their goal, namely to protect their fatherland and native land, on the fields where the battles took place, in addition to courage and courage, it was necessary to master the art of war at a sufficiently high level. It was the generals who had such talent.
Operations carried out by Soviet military leaders during the period of hostilities are still being studied in various military schools and academies around the world. By the end of the war, the most prominent commanders, who should be known to all generations, occupied the commanding positions. But many were forgotten, especially after the change of the General Secretary of the USSR, some were removed from their high posts and pushed into the shadows.
Soviet commander, Marshal of Victory - Georgy Konstantinovich Zhukov was born in 1896 and by 1939 (a couple of months before the start of World War II) took part in hostilities with the Japanese. Russian-Mongolian armycrushed a group of eastern neighbors on the Khalkhin Gol.
When news of the beginning of the Great Patriotic War broke into the Soviet Union with the speed of a hurricane, Zhukov was already the head of the General Staff, but after a while he was reassigned to the active troops. In the first year of the war, he was appointed to lead army units in the most critical sectors of the front. Strict requirements for discipline helped the Soviet commander, Marshal of the Soviet Union, prevent the capture of Leningrad and cut off the oxygen to the Nazis on the outskirts of Moscow in the direction of Mozhaisk.
By the beginning of 1942, Zhukov was at the head of the counter-offensive near Moscow. With his help and thanks to the reactive actions of Soviet soldiers, the Germans were thrown back from the capital for a long distance. The following year, Zhukov was the coordinator of the front-line troops near Stalingrad, as well as during the breakthrough of the blockade of Leningrad and during the Battle of Kursk. At that time, the great Soviet commander was the representative of the Supreme Commander.
In the winter of 1944, Zhukov led the First Ukrainian Front, replacing Vatutin, who was seriously injured. The Soviet commander carried out a planned operation to liberate the right bank of Ukraine. The operation was of an offensive nature, therefore, with the skills of Zhukov, the troops were able to quickly break through to the state border. By the end of 1944, the outstanding Soviet commander took command of the First Belorussian Front and went to Berlin. As a result, it was he who accepted the surrender of the Nazis and the recognition of defeat. In 1945year took part in both the Moscow Victory Parade and in Berlin.
Despite all the accomplished feats, after the end of the Great Patriotic War, Zhukov was relegated to the background, entrusting him with the command of only individual military districts. After Stalin's death, Khrushchev appointed him deputy defense minister, and soon he headed the ministry, but in 1957, having fallen out of favor with the General Secretary, he was removed from all posts and positions. The Soviet commander, Marshal of Victory Zhukov, passed away in 1974.
The great name of Rokossovsky thundered throughout the country during the Second World War. Before the start of the war, the future Soviet commander was in places not so remote. In 1937, Konstantin Konstantinovich was repressed, and only three years later he was able to return to his former powers thanks to Marshal Timoshenko.
It was Rokossovsky who was able to provide worthy resistance to the German troops in the first days of hostilities. His army stood on the defense of Moscow near Volokolamsk, and at that time it was one of the most difficult areas. In 1942, the Soviet commander was seriously wounded, and after recovery, he took over as commander of the Don Front. Thanks to Rokossovsky, the battle with the Nazis near Stalingrad ended in favor of the Soviets.
The famous commander of the Soviet Union also participated in the Battle of Kursk. Then he was able to convince Joseph Vissarionovich that it was necessary to provoke the Germans to strike first. He calculated the exact zone of attack and, right before the enemy attacked, unleashed an artillery avalanche on him,completely undermined the German forces.
But the most famous feat of the great Soviet commander, Marshal Rokossovsky, was the liberation of the Belarusian people. This operation was later included in all military art textbooks. The code name for the operation was "Bagration", thanks to correct calculations, the main group of fascists - the "Center" army - was destroyed. Shortly before the victory, Zhukov took the place of Rokossovsky, while Konstantin Konstantinovich was sent to the second Belorussian front, located in East Prussia.
Despite this, the Soviet commander with really outstanding leadership qualities was very popular among Soviet soldiers. After 1945, Rokossovsky headed the Polish Ministry of Defense, before his death he managed to work as Deputy Minister of Defense of the USSR and even wrote a memoir called "Soviet duty".
The next famous Soviet commander commanded the Western Front. Ivan Stepanovich Konev, who assumed authority in 1941, suffered a major defeat at the very beginning of the Second World War. Not having obtained permission to withdraw his troops from Bryansk, he endangered 600,000 Soviet soldiers, who ended up surrounded by the enemy. Fortunately, another great Soviet commander, Marshal Zhukov, saved him from the tribunal.
In 1943, Konev, commanding the troops of the second Ukrainian front, liberated Kharkov, Kremenchug, Belgorod and Poltava. And in the Korsun-Shevchen operation, the Soviet commanderWorld War II was able to surround a large group of Nazis. On the western border of Ukraine in 1944, Konev successfully carried out an operation, opening a passage to Germany.
Also, the army of the commander of the Soviet Union Konev distinguished himself in the battle for Berlin. In that significant period, a rivalry began between Zhukov and Konev: who will occupy the capital and put an end to this war first? Moreover, strained relations between them remained after the war.
Soviet commander of the Great Patriotic War, Marshal of the Soviet Union Vasilevsky was Chief of the General Staff since 1942. His main duty was to coordinate the actions of all fronts of the Red Army. Moreover, Vasilevsky took part in the development and commissioning of all large-scale operations of the Second World War.
The main plan to encircle the Nazi troops near Stalingrad was also planned by the commander of the Soviet Union Vasilevsky. When General Chernyakhovsky passed away at the end of the war, Marshal Vasilevsky filed a request for his release from the post of Chief of the General Staff, and he himself took the place of the deceased comrade. He stood at the head of the troops and went to storm Koenigsberg.
After the victory in 1945, Vasilevsky was transferred to the East to the Japanese, where he defeated the Kwatun Army. Then he again took the place of Chief of the General Staff and was promoted to Minister of Defense of the USSR, but after the death of the great leader, the figure of the commander and hero of the Soviet Union Vasilevsky went into the shadows.
Soviet commander of the Great Patriotic War, marshalFedor Ivanovich Tolbukhin, after the outbreak of hostilities, became the head of the Transcaucasian Front. He led the development of an accelerated operation for the landing of the Soviet army in the northern territories of Iran. He also developed an operation to transfer the Kerch landing to the Crimea, which was supposed to bring success in the release of the latter, but failed. Due to significant losses, he was removed from his post.
True, when Tolbukhin distinguished himself in the battle of Stalingrad, commanding the 57th Army, he was appointed to the post of commander of the Southern Front or the Fourth Ukrainian. As a result, he liberated Crimea and most of the Ukrainian lands. Under his leadership, the Soviet army liberated Romania, Yugoslavia, Hungary, Austria, and the Iasi-Chisinau operation entered the textbooks on military art. After the end of the war, Tolbukhin again returned to command of the Transcaucasian Military District.
Kirill Afanasyevich Meretskov once fought with the White Finns on the Karelian Isthmus. In 1940 he received the post of Chief of the General Staff, and in 1941 he served as Deputy People's Commissar of Defense of the Soviet Union for almost a year.
After the declaration of war, he became the representative of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief on the fronts near Karelia and the northwestern part of the country. In 1941, the 4th and 7th armies were under his control. In 1942, he led the 33rd Army. In 1944, the Karelian Front was given under his leadership. In 1945, the great commander of the Soviet Union became the commander of the troops of Primorye and the first Far Eastern Front.
Meretskov brilliantly coped with the defense of the northern capital, participated in the liberation of the polar and Karelian territories. Moreover, he carried out counterattacks in the battle with the Japanese in Eastern Manchuria and the Far East. When the fascist expansion was stopped and defeated, Meretskov took turns heading several military districts, including the Moscow one.
In 1955, he assumed the position of Assistant Secretary of Defense for military schools. In 1964, he was enrolled in the Group of General Inspectors of the USSR Ministry of Defense. Marshal Meretskov was awarded seven Orders of Lenin, four Orders of the Red Banner, two Orders of Suvorov I degree, the Order of the October Revolution, etc.
Leonid Alexandrovich Govorov was a veteran and Soviet commander of the Civil War. He was educated at two military academies. After graduating from the latter, in 1939 he became the head of the 7th Artillery Army during the period of hostilities with the White Finns.
In 1941, Govorov was put in charge of the Military Artillery Academy, at the same time he became commander of the artillery forces of the Western Front. Govorov commanded the Soviet soldiers in the 5th Army when it defended the approaches to the capital from Mozhaisk. His skillful tactical decisions secured for him the glory of a strong-willed commander, well versed in combined arms combat. In 1942, Govorov became the commander of the Leningrad Front and successfully carried out several operations to break the blockade of the city: Tallinn, Vyborg, etc. Moreover, at the same time,while remaining at his post, he helped coordinate the actions of the army on the B altic fronts.
After the end of the Second World War, Govorov changed several positions, managed to be the commander of the military district of Leningrad, the chief inspector of the ground forces and even the chief inspector of the USSR Armed Forces.
For four years (since 1948) he was the commander of the air defense forces and at the same time served as deputy defense minister. He was awarded five Orders of Lenin, two Orders of Suvorov I degree, the Order of the Red Star, three Orders of the Red Banner and many other medals of the USSR.
Rodion Yakovlevich Malinovsky became twice a hero of the USSR, a hero of Yugoslavia. He began his military activity with the First World War, continued in the Civil War. At one time, Malinovsky went to France as part of the Russian expeditionary force.
At the beginning of his career, he took the place of a machine gunner of the 27th Infantry Division, and when he graduated from a military school, he was appointed to the post of battalion commander. In 1930, Malinovsky became the head of a cavalry regiment. In 1937 he went as a volunteer to participate in the Italian Civil War. In 1939 he began to teach classes at the military academy. In 1941, Malinovsky became the commander of the 48th Rifle Corps in Moldova.
With the beginning of the Great Patriotic War, he held back the enemy forces on the Prut River. In the same 1941, he became the commander of the 6th Army, later the main one on the Southern Front. In 1942, under his control was the 66th Army, which fought in the north ofStalingrad. Then he was moved to the post of deputy commander of the Voronezh Front and the Second Guards Army near Tambov. It was the latter in the winter of 1942 that defeated the Nazis, who intended to free the army of Paulus from the blockade.
In 1943, thanks to the forces of the Southwestern Front, Malinovsky liberated the Donbass and the right Ukrainian coast. In 1944, Odessa and Nikolaev were liberated, from the same year he was appointed head of the second Ukrainian front. Malinovsky took part in the already mentioned Iasi-Kishinev operation, which is considered one of the most important and outstanding for the entire period of the Second World War. By the spring of 1945, he had developed operations to defeat German forces in Hungary, Czechoslovakia and Austria. In the summer of the same year, he, commanding the troops of the Trans-Baikal Military District, took part in the defeat of the Japanese forces.
After the successful extermination of fascism and the end of the Second World War, Malinovsky remained as commander of the troops of the Far East. In 1956, at the insistence of Khrushchev, he was approved as first deputy defense minister and commander of the Soviet ground forces. 10 years (since 1957) Malinovsky was the Minister of Defense of the USSR.
For all his activities, the marshal was awarded five Orders of Lenin, three Orders of the Red Banner, two Orders of Suvorov, I degree, etc.
Soviet Army General Nikolai Fedorovich Vatutin, who lived only 43 years old, was Deputy Chief of the General Staff before the start of the war. When the Germans attacked the borders of the Soviet Union, Vatutinasent to the Northwestern Front. Near Nizhny Novgorod, Vatutin carried out a couple of serious counterattacks that h alted the movement of Manstein's tank division.
In 1942, Vatutin was the leader in the operation called "Little Saturn", thanks to which the Italian and Romanian accomplices of Hitler could not approach Paulus' encircled army.
In 1943, Vatutin became commander of the first Ukrainian front. It was with his help that it was possible to achieve success in military operations on the Kursk Bulge. With the help of his strategic actions, it was possible to liberate Kharkov, Kyiv, Zhitomir and Rovno. The military operations carried out in these cities made Vatutin a famous commander.
He participated in the Korsun-Shevchenko operation. At the beginning of 1944, the car in which Vatutin followed was fired upon by Ukrainian nationalists. For a month and a half, the general fought for his life, but died due to wounds incompatible with life. Many streets in the Russian Federation are named after Vatutin, but few people know who this great man was and what role he played in the victory over fascism.
General and great commander of the Soviet Union Alexei Innokentyevich Antonov, who was awarded the Order of Victory, participated in the Civil War. He helped in the defeat during the Kornilov rebellion, was assistant chief of staff of the first Moscow division on the Southern Front, and then was transferred to the post of chief of staff of a rifle brigade.
Then he was put in charge of the headquarters of the rifle brigade, with which he passed the Sivash and took partin the battle with the Wrangels on the Kramskoy Peninsula. Like many commanders, Antonov graduated from two military academies. His military career began with the head of the operations department at the headquarters of the division, he was able to rise to the post of chief of staff of the Moscow Military District. He also managed to work as the head of the department of general tactics of the Frunze Military Academy.
During the period when Hitler declared war on the Soviet Union, Antonov was deputy chief of staff of the Kyiv Military District. Later, he was given the post of chief of the formation of the Southern Front, and in 1941 he became the chief of staff of the Southern Front.
In 1942, Antonov became chief of staff of the North Caucasian Front, after the Transcaucasian Front. It was during this period that he managed to show his highest skill in military affairs. At the end of 1942, Antonov was appointed first deputy chief of the General Staff, as well as chief in operational management. The general took part in the development and implementation of many strategic plans during the Great Patriotic War.
In early 1945, Antonov was transferred to the post of Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Soviet Union. In the same year, Antonov was sent as part of a delegation to the Crimean and Potsdam conferences. From 1950 to 1954, Antonov commanded the troops of the Transcaucasian Military District, but eventually returned to the General Staff, taking the post of first deputy chief. He was a member of the collegium of the Ministry of Defense. In 1955, Antonov became the chief of staff of the armies of the countries participating in the Warsaw Pact and until the end of his days he worked in this post.
Alexey Innokentyevich Antonov has beenawarded three Orders of Lenin, four Orders of the Red Banner, the Order of Kutuzov I degree, many other orders of the Soviet Union, as well as 14 foreign orders.