The Lviv incident as the soldiers first fired at the soldiers of the Wehrmacht

History 30/01/20 Lviv incident as the soldiers first fired at the soldiers of the Wehrmacht

In accordance with the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact in autumn 1939, the Soviet Union was to occupy the Eastern lands of Poland. However, when the Red Army came to the Ukrainian Lviv, the Germans met the Russian artillery fire.

Trek to the “Curzon line”

Beginning the liberation campaign in the West, Stalin was hardly fully confident in its successful outcome. By the time when part of the red army crossed the border of Poland, the Wehrmacht fought a war in this country for more than two weeks and sometimes controlled territory, which by agreement was to be ceded to the Soviet Union.

would the Nazis to voluntarily give up the city in the battle for killed German soldiers? This question could not fail to worry the Soviet leadership. However, on 19 September, two days after the entry of the red Army in Poland, the Germans voluntarily withdrew his troops to the line that was designated in the secret Protocol to the nonaggression Pact and mostly coincided with the “Curzon line”. Hitch left only one place – under the walls of the city.

“Lemberg of discord”

the Germans began a siege of the city. 12 Sep. They showered the city with leaflets calling on the Polish garrison to surrender. The lions had the Nazis not only economic but also symbolic value: up to 1918, he wore the German name Lemberg and was considered a major Outpost of the Austrian Empire in the East.

on 18 September, according to historian Oleg Veslav in the book “on the Eve of 22 June 1941,” the Germans said Soviet diplomats in Berlin that the German sphere of interest include lions and other areas of Western Ukraine.

meanwhile, in the night of 20 September, we reached Lvov advanced units of the red Army. It was a motorized detachment of the 5th cavalry division, composed of 600 cavalry, and 35 pieces of equipment – tanks and promemoria. He commanded a divisionm Colonel Peter Fotchenkov.

a Group of six armored vehicles broke into the city centre, and then two of the crew were sent back East for communication with other forces. And these two cars came under artillery fire of the Germans on the way out of the city. Died in battle, the red army managed to inflict significant damage, destroying two anti-tank guns, killing the officer and four soldiers of the Wehrmacht.

On another episode of that night was remembered by the commander of the reconnaissance Alexander Egorov:

“We gave the Germans to understand that the territory occupied by Soviet troops, should they move should not be, but they opened fire on our tanks. And again the question: how to respond to an obvious provocation? I decided to open fire. After taking a good position, the tankers of the battalion gave a few volleys from the guns. Our fire was quite accurate: stopped two artillery batteries the Germans put forward for direct fire, killed several dozen soldiers and officers.”

Later, at 8 in the morning, the Germans again attacked the Russians occupied parts of the city. Loss 24th lightalloy brigade of the red army in this battle consisted of three pieces of equipment, three killed and four wounded. It came to a clash of Soviet and German aviation. In the air the smell of a big war.

At 9 a.m. Fotchenkov entered into negotiations with the commander of the 137th mountain regiment-infantry division Colonel Slammers. The parties agreed to stop the confrontation and to take away the dead bodies. In Moscow on the same morning the situation was discussed by the military attache of the German Embassy, General Kostring and defense Commissar Kliment Voroshilov. In the end, the incident was swept under the carpet.

“Friendship, bonded by blood,”

Soviet diplomats managed to insist on the original terms of the Pact. September 20, German troops withdrew from the city, which two days later surrendered to the Russians. Hitler’s generals perceived this fact as “the shame of the German political leadership” – they were ready to fight with the Bolsheviks to the last.

However, Hitler clash with USSR in 1939 was unprofitable. His country did not have yet the resources to campaign in the East, especially in the West were not yet divided France.

although the incident in Lviv is not continued, the precipitate, as they say, remains. Maybe it Stalin hinted in December, when a congratulatory telegram from Joachim von Ribbentrop replied in the following words:

“the friendship of the peoples of Germany and the Soviet Union, sealed by blood, has every reason to be long and strong.”

Timur Sagdiyev

© Russian Seven

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