When and how the Soviet troops came to frontier of the USSR?By the beginning of 1944 “according to the General Staff, on sovetsko - the German front worked 198 German divisions and six crews, three German air fleet, and also 38 divisions and 18 crews of allies of Germany. These troops totaled 4,9 million people, were armed with more than 54,6 thousand tools and mortars, 5,4 thousand tanks and assault tools, 3,1 thousand planes.
In our operating troops there were more than 6,3 million people, 95,6 thousand tools and mortars, 5254 tanks and SAU, 10 200 planes. Undoubtedly, the fact that at us, though it is temporary, was less, than at the opponent, tanks attracts attention. It is explained, first of all, by considerable losses of tanks in huge offensive operations of 1943“, - A. M. Vasilevsky wrote.
Stalin allocated ten blows of our troops, and 1944 was designated by contemporaries year of “Ten Stalin blows“.
The first blow was struck by forces of three fronts: Leningrad, Volkhov and 2 - go Baltic. The Soviet troops had in this operation advantage before the opponent in people in - 1,7 times, in tools - twice, in tanks and SAU - by 4 times. As a result, as we know, the Siege of Leningrad was completely raised and are released Leningrad and part of the Kalinin area, the base on the river Narva is occupied, the ancient Russian cities of Novgorod and Luga are freed, our troops entered on the territory of Estonia.
The second blow was struck during seven military operations with the purpose of release from the enemy of Right-bank Ukraine. “On the southern wing sovetsko - the German front Hitlerites had one of the largest strategic groups at the beginning of 1944. Against four Soviet Ukrainian fronts from the river Pripyat to coast of the Black Sea operated on a site: group of Yug armies the general - the field marshal Manstein (4 - I and 1 - I tank, 8 - I and 6 - I field armies) and group of armies “A“ the general - the field marshal Kleyst (3 - I Romanian and 17 - I German armies, 44 - y the German separate army case; in the first of February in the last from Yug group it was transferred 6 - I am field army). These troops were supported by aircraft 4 - go air fleet.
In only both groups of the German troops there were 1,76 million soldiers and officers, 16 800 tools and mortars, 2200 tanks and assault tools, 1460 planes. Under the most strict order of Hitler, they at any cost had to retain the richest grain areas Right-bank and the western areas of Ukraine, Nikopol with its enterprises for production and processing of manganese, the Kryvyi Rih basin rich with iron ore, and the Crimea, strongly covering communications of the southern wing germano - the Soviet front.
Hitlerite command still hoped for restoration of the defense across Dnieper“, - continues to describe a ratio of forces and sirs of Hitlerites A. M. Vasilevsky, and further writes: “Much I saw on the century of an impassability of roads. But such dirt and such off road terrain as in the winter and spring of 1944, did not meet neither earlier, nor later. Even tractors and tractors slipped. Gunners dragged guns on themselves. Fighters by means of local population transferred on hands shells and cartridges from a position to a position for tens of kilometers“.
Our troops did not manage to intercept ways of withdrawal of the opponent. But also the enemy suffered from an impassability of roads and was compelled, receding, to throw part expensive, powerful, heavy arms. The big positive role in these fights was played by our tanks T - 34 which in cross-country conditions possessed in comparison with other equipment the highest passability. And not the easy platform sole, but the average tank possessing the huge striking ability possessed such remarkable feature.
In this second blow it is especially necessary to allocate Korsun - the Shevchenkovsky offensive operation performed by forces of troops 1 - go and 2 - go the Ukrainian fronts during the period from January 24 to February 18, 1944. When carrying out this operation the large group of the German troops was surrounded. After presentation of the ultimatum which is not accepted by the opponent, our troops started extermination of the surrounded enemy. The opponent lost only the killed 55 thousand soldiers and officers. 18 thousand Hitlerites were taken prisoner. All equipment which was available for the crushed German group remained in the battlefield.
I. S. Konev writes: “And even in such desperate for the surrounded German - fascist troops to a situation Hitlerite monsters continued to create scandalous atrocities. In Shenderovke they drove residents of the village in church and school and set fire to them. Fascist bandits ran on huts and shot defenseless old men, women and children, burned down houses. From the burning church, from school, from huts cries of despair and damnations to executioners rushed“ and further continues: “Heroes there were thousands. Many of them gave life for our victory. The Soviet people will eternally store about them light memory.
Together with soldiers of active armed forces in the back of the enemy our guerrillas courageously battled. They gave big help to troops of the front, destroying the German echelons, suitable to the front, with ammunition and equipment, held down actions of bodies of the back of Hitlerite troops … All people of cleared regions rose by the help to Red Army. In the conditions of an impassability of roads when our back experienced serious difficulties in the organization of delivery of ammunition to troops, the help of the population played, undoubtedly, a big role in performance of the task facing troops 1 - go and 2 - go the Ukrainian fronts in defeat korsun - shevchenkovsky group of the enemy.
Never to us to forget a feat of women, children, elderly people when they together with soldiers sometimes undressed in bad clothes, half-starved went tens of kilometers on dirt to bring to troops ammunition …
B of Korsun - Shevchenkovsky operation the Soviet military art gained over military art of Hitlerite generals up again. The red Army showed the moral and material superiority over army of the opponent, our brave soldiers once again confirmed that to them any tasks of a shoulder including such responsible and difficult as a full environment and defeat of the opponent“.
In fights for Right-bank Ukraine on February 29, 1944 during firefight it was seriously injured, and the commander 1 - m the Ukrainian front Nikolay Fyodorovich Vatutin died on April 15.
“Grandiose approach 1 - go, 2 - go, 3 - go and 4 - go the Ukrainian fronts, begun at the end of December, 1943, ended in the middle of April, 1944 not only liberation of Right-bank Ukraine, but also transferring of military operations on a number of sites sovetsko - the German front out of borders of the USSR …
in the course of fights for Right-bank Ukraine 1 - I and 4 - I tank armies of the enemy suffered huge losses: not less than 200 thousand soldiers and officers the killed and wounded, over 2000 thousand tanks and assault tools, more than 4500 artillery trunks, over 53 thousand cars and tractors, to 1000 armored cars and armored troop-carriers.
I. S. Konev`s troops, having crushed the main forces 8 - y the German army., at the end of March came to frontier across the Prut, and then, having forced it, entered on the territory of Romania and seized the cities of Botoshani, Redeutsi, Pashkani and many other settlements …
of Army 3 - go the Ukrainian front inflicted a severe defeat 6 - y German and 3 - y Romanian over armies. Only to Entre Rios of Dnieper and the Southern Bug were crushed nine infantry and a tank division of the enemy. Suffered serious losses and twenty more infantry, tank and motorized divisions of the enemy lost fighting capacity. According to testimonies of prisoners and according to the German archives, the opponent lost 51 thousand soldiers and officers the killed and prisoners here. By April 14 of army 3 - go the Ukrainian front exempted all left coast of Dniester from Tiraspol to the Black Sea. Having straight off forced Dniester, our troops occupied the base on its west bank.
The huge help in fight against fascist hordes at release of the Right bank and the Western areas of Ukraine was rendered to Red Army by guerrillas. In their groups there were over 70 thousand people here. Interacting with troops, they blew up trains; struck blows to the enemy from the back; took and kept certain settlements, bridges, river crossings, lines and communication centers before approach of regular connections; complicated to enemy command management of troops; prevented stealing in fascist slavery of many thousands of Soviet people“.
Our troops came to frontier of the Soviet Union - the river Prut and straight off forced it during Umansko`s carrying out - Botoshansky operation about which I. S. Konev in the book wrote the following: “From all operations about which it is told in this book Umansko - Botoshanskaya was the most difficult. History of wars does not know wider on the scope and difficulties in the operational relation of operation which would be carried out in the conditions of full off road terrain and spring flood of the rivers“.
The specified operation belongs to operations on liberation of Right-bank Ukraine too. During approach of army 2 - go the Ukrainian front promoted with fights on 200 - 250 km. 10 divisions of the opponent which were among the above-stated losses of the opponent lost 50 - 75% of staff and almost all heavy arms. Advance parties of our troops came to frontier on March 25.
“Developing approach, on March 26 in 85 - a kilometer strip to the Prut there was a shock group 2 - go the Ukrainian front … The released frontier site across the Prut took under protection 24 - y a boundary regiment which was ordered by the lieutenant colonel Mr. Kapustin. Divisions of this regiment accepted the first battle with the enemy here at the very beginning of war“, - I. S. Konev remembered.
In honor of the troops which came to frontier of the Soviet Union, Moscow saluted 24 volleys from 324 tools. Day became on March 26, 1944 history of the Great Patriotic War as unforgettable date.