History 29/12/19 What the Soviet trophies, the Germans loved the most
Looting refers to the number of serious war crimes, as taking stuff off of dead or wounded enemy soldiers is an action not compatible with concepts such as valor and honor. However, no war in the history of mankind even without looting. For example, the German fascist invaders often examined the corpses of dead soldiers and officers of the red army in search of booty.
the well-Known Wehrmacht commander Heinz Guderian described the domestic side of the war in his book “memories of a soldier” (Heidelberg, 1951 edition). The General noted in his memoirs that the military campaign against the Soviet Union was not carefully considered by the leadership of the Third Reich. Drunk with easy and quick victories over the forces of Western Europe, German policymakers have underestimated a number of factors: the weather conditions of Russia before the dedication of the soldiers of the red army.
According to the plan “Barbarossa”, even before the winter of 1941-1942, Hitler’s troops had to win, after what the Nazis had intended to leave the USSR only a small military force designed to suppress possible pockets of resistance. But there it was. The red army was a very serious opponent to make blitzkrieg the Nazis failed.
the Doctor of historical Sciences V. V. Alekseev in his scientific work “Influence of frost on the course of the winter campaign of 1941-1942” wrote that in the suburbs the first frost hit in early November, and the second half of the month the average temperature was minus 10 to 14 degrees Celsius in some days of December, forecasters recorded a sharp decrease to 30-40°C below zero.
General Franz Halder, head of the General staff of land forces of the Wehrmacht, in his three-volume “war diary” (Stuttgart, 1962-1964 edition) compll, that in the autumn of 1941 began to fear the harsh Russian winter. And he was right: extreme cold caused the German fascist invaders significant damage.
on 20 December 1941 the above-mentioned General Guderian reported to Hitler and other leaders of the Third Reich at the next meeting that the bullets and shells of the red army bring half as much damage to the military units of the Wehrmacht than the harsh Russian winter.
Almost 40% of Germans froze their feet, hands and cheeks. There were times when weapons of war were frozen to the open parts of the skin of the soldiers that the iron barrels had to tear off with the skin.
However, General frost decimated people, not looking for invaders, or defenders. If the losses of the Wehrmacht, associated with the harsh winter of 1941-1942, according to military experts, amounted to 228 thousand people in the red army from frostbite suffered approximately 180 thousand soldiers.
it is Not surprising that the first thing from the corpses of Soviet soldiers and officers, the Nazis removed the boots, boots, ear-flapped fur hats, overcoats, jackets, cotton trousers, fur gloves, wool socks. In General, all the possible warm clothes.
As he recalled Guderian, sometimes in appearance the soldiers of the Wehrmacht did not differ from the partisans or the red army. Dressed in quilted jackets, rolled up woolen shawls confiscated from the peasant women, with fur hats on the heads of the Nazis was reminded that dressed to the nines the army of the Third Reich, which entered the territory of the USSR just a few months ago.
German greatcoat were designed for the mild climate of Western Europe, and boots not suited for the Russian winter. The command was issued to the soldiers and officers of the ammunition strictly by size: further insulate the inside shoes did not work. In addition, the metal studs were literally oledeneli in the cold, as additional conductors of cold.
this fact Marshal Georgy Zhukov wrote in his book “Memories and reflections” (Moscow, 1969 edaniya). Legendary Soviet military commander noted: “the Germans did not pay attention to the fact that since the eighteenth century, Russian soldiers received the boots one size bigger than you need, which gave them the opportunity to fill them with straw, and more recently with Newspapers, and thus avoid frostbite”.
the Situation with the lack of warm things in the army of the Wehrmacht were so critical that after the meeting at which Guderian reported on the number of frostbites, propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels appealed to residents of Germany. He urged people to collect and donate warm clothes for soldiers fighting on the Eastern front.
soldiers of the red army, of course, also lacked fur and wool items, but the situation was significantly better. After all, the Soviet command knew what the Russian winters. Not coincidentally Marshal J. K. Zhukov wrote in his memoirs that he always equated the boots, coats, warm underwear and jackets to one more effective type of weapons.
submachine Gun Shpagina (PPSH)
From the severe cold suffered equipment army Wehrmacht machines of the Nazis could not deny it can not be said about domestic developments. The Germans were not weapons lubricant suitable for use at extremely low temperatures. The flamethrowers were useless, because the fuel mixture is not ignited in this cold, stalling armored vehicles, artillery guns were jammed.
Contrary to popular belief, military ammunition and weapons of the red army, almost not inferior to the German, and in some ways surpassed. Therefore, in addition to boots and padded jackets, the Nazis were taken from dead Soviet soldiers PPSH – submachine gun, developed by designer G. S. Shpagin in 1940. In many pictures of times of the great Patriotic war, you can see the Germans, who pose with the Soviet PPSH.
well-Known military historian David Naumovich Bolotin in his monograph “Soviet small-arms for 50 years” (Leningrad, 1967 edition) described all the benefits that a submachine gun Shpagina onhave Bladel compared to the MP-40, developed by the designer Henry Folmer.
the fact that the drum from the PCA was calculated on cartridge 71, and his German competitor – 32. When you consider that in combat to reload your weapon is almost impossible, it is clear that the Nazis will run out of ammo that often cost them their lives.
in addition, the PCA weighed approximately 800 grams less than the MP-40. To curb the Soviet submachine gun “pulled” by 4.16 kg, whereas the German Maschinen pistole in the modification of the fortieth year could not weigh less than 5 pounds.
the Nazis appreciated the easy-to-use and secure Soviet weapons. They tried to copy it. The production of the German version of PCA, called MP-41(r), was established at the Dachau concentration camp in 1944, but this is little help to the Nazis.
self-loading rifle Tokareva (SVT)
Appreciated by the Germans and the Soviet SVT – self-loading rifle, developed by an engineer-constructor F. V. Tokarev. This weapon had two modifications: 1938 and 1940 (SVT-38 and SVT-40). Military units automatic rifle affectionately called “Sveta”. First and foremost, it entered service in the border and the elite units of the red army. The heroic defenders of the Brest fortress fought off enemy attacks by fire SWT.
General Guderian in his memoirs, praised the fighting qualities of the rifle F. V. Tokarev. In the Wehrmacht were not weapons that would be analogous to the “Svetka”. Only in 1943 was developed semi-automatic rifle Gewehr 43, which, though announced a modification of the Gewehr 41, but it has reflected structural features of the SVT. Therefore, in 1944, the Germans renamed this weapon Karabiner 43 (K-43).
And yet, Tokarev’s rifle was superior to even a later German counterpart. “Sveta” has better ballistic qualities, and were equipped with a bayonet, making it convenient and in close combat. Besides, SVT weighed a pound less than the K-43 (3.8 tog without bullets and bayonet against 4,33 kg without ammunition).
Not surprisingly, the Germans took away the weapon from the hands of the fallen soldiers of the red army.
Gold and valuables
However, among the invaders were those looters, who do not shun the personal belongings of dead soldiers and officers. If the concentration camps from the corpses removed gold teeth, then why not do it on the battlefield? The deceased was thoroughly searched, took away from them everything that seems valuable: engagement rings, watches, cigarette cases, compasses, binoculars and even pocket knives.
German troops were well supplied with cigarettes, so on the Soviet shag looters usually coveted. Yes, and too vigorous, strong she seemed the invaders, accustomed to cigarettes Reemtsma brands or Eckstein, which were produced at factories in Hamburg and Dresden.
By the way, Soviet soldiers also did not disdain the things of enemies killed. Especially prized trophy binoculars, lighters. And if military ammunition was Nazi symbolism (e.g. belt buckles), it mashed or just cut in place of the swastika five-pointed star.
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