What the USSR wanted to occupy Churchill in 1942

History 27/01/20 What the USSR wanted to occupy Churchill in 1942

In 1942, the United Kingdom and the United States was not going to open a second front in Europe. However, the allies were ready to join the “first front”, sending troops to the South of the USSR. From the point of view of Marshal Andrei Grechko, commander of the armies in the Caucasus, if Stalin had approved of their intentions, part of the Soviet territory had actually subjected the occupation.


In mid-1942 the situation of the red Army on the southern sector of the front was close to catastrophic. After the Russian suffered defeat on the don and the Donets basin, the Wehrmacht opened the road to Stalingrad and the North Caucasus. In the fall of Winston Churchill proposed to send to the aid of “Stalin’s falcons” 20 British and American squadrons. Thus, the allies expressed a desire to “remove the burden” with the Soviet Union. In the framework of the planned “operation Velvet” the air group was supposed to arrive from North Africa.

Joseph Stalin recognized the weakness of the Soviet air force in the Caucasus and “the shortcomings of fighter aircraft”. However, the potential presence of allies on the front, seem to have inspired him with fear. “Father of Nations” have delayed this discussion until, while in Stalingrad is not a turning point in the war. 18 December, Stalin wrote to Washington that the need for Anglo-American squadrons disappeared. “Now the main battles are played and will be played on the Central front and the Voronezh region”, – he explained.

the Aircraft without aircrew Stalin, however, take refused, citing the fact that pilots in the Soviet Union “more than enough”, but technology is not enough.

What did the allies?

Marshal Andrei Grechko in the book “the Battle for the Caucasus” evaluated the initiative of Churchill and Roosevelt very negative:

“In such “aid” the Soviet Union is not needed. And very soon the ruling circles of the USA and England had to make sure that they are notwould consent from the Soviet Union for conducting “operation Velvet” – the actual occupation of the Caucasus.”

the Opinion of Brezhnev’s Minister of defense shared by some modern authors. Here’s how, for example, outlines this historical story writer Ivan Streltsov in the book “Radioactive war”

“Stalin soon realized that the Soviet Union so-called allies want to cut off from the Azerbaijani oil fields, that is to take the “throat” of our equipment, leaving without fuel is useless dead weight”.

as far As the opinion is grounded?

Without a doubt, the oil-rich Soviet Transcaucasia interest to the British. England already had experience of the occupation of this territory during the Civil war. According to some researchers, to persuade Stalin to implement the plan “Velvet”, the allies suspended shipments of lend-lease just at the time when the need for them was felt particularly acutely. In September, for example, without the consent of the Soviet side was cancelled the transfer of the Airacobra, which was the necessary army at Stalingrad.

At the same time, in correspondence with Stalin Franklin Roosevelt repeatedly emphasized that the submitted pilots will be subject to strategic and tactical command of the red Army. “I think that they should act in the formations under the command of their American bosses, but each group in relation to the tactical objectives will be, of course, under overall Russian command,” said the us President.

in addition, without the participation of infantry, neither of which full occupation of the speech could not be, and to transfer ground forces from the Middle East was difficult. And from a strategic point of view in the case of the defeat of the red Army to keep the Caucasus independently of the US and Britain would have been unlikely even if he had made the Declaration in Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan are independent of governments.

as for the position Grechko, then it should be added that the operation “Frantic” 1944, in which Americans based on three airfields in Poltava region, the Marshal was called the “occupation of Ukraine”. Probably, on the assessment by the commander of the events of the great Patriotic war was influenced by the realities of the cold war: he sought to distance themselves from NATO and to show that the USSR defeated Hitler almost without outside help.

Timur Sagdiyev

© Russian Seven

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