SMERSH - Counterintelligence Counter-Intelligence


SMERSH military counterintelligence was established in the Soviet Union in 1943. Only after years of 70 years, with many operations carried out by counterintelligence, was removed the "top secret".

The main task of this unit was not only to counter the German Abwer, but also to introduce Soviet counterintelligence officers to the highest echelons of fascist Germany and intelligence schools, destroy sabotage groups, conduct radio games, and fight against traitors to the Motherland. It should be noted that the name of this special service was given by I.Stalin himself. Initially, there was a proposal to name the SMERNESH division (that is, “death to German spies”), to which Stalin declared that there was a lot of spies on other Soviet states and that they also had to fight against them, so it’s better to call the new body SMERSH. His official name was the counterintelligence department SMERSH of the NKVD of the USSR. By the time the counterintelligence was created, the battle of Stalingrad was left behind, and the initiative in the conduct of hostilities began to gradually shift to the troops of the Union. At this time, the territories that were under occupation began to be freed, a large number of Soviet soldiers and officers fled from German captivity. Some of them were sent by the fascists as spies. Special departments of the Red Army and Navy needed reorganization, therefore they were replaced by SMERSH. And although the unit has existed for only three years, they still speak about it.

The work of counterintelligence to search for saboteurs and agents, as well as nationalists and former White Guards, was extremely dangerous and difficult. To systematize the work, special lists, collections and photo albums of those people who needed to be found were compiled. Later, in 1944, a collection of materials relating to German intelligence agencies at the front was published, and a few months later a collection on Finnish military intelligence was published.
Identifying agents who in the past rendered assistance to the fascists, but later surrendered, provided active assistance to the Chekists. With their help, we managed to identify a large number of saboteurs and spies who operated in the rear of our country.

The search and foreign intelligence was carried out by the 4 department of SMERSH, at the head of which was first Major General P. Timofeev, and later Major General G. Utekhin.

Official information states that from October 1943 to May 1944, Soviet counterintelligence officers were transferred to the enemy’s rear, 345 of them were recruited from German agents. After completing the assignments, the entire 50 agent returned. 102 intelligence officers managed to infiltrate enemy reconnaissance, from which 57 later returned, and 31 remained to carry out the task. In total, 26 of the enemy counterintelligence agent and 1103 official employees were identified during this period.

Below are examples of several successful operations conducted by SMERSH.

Junior Lieutenant Bogdanov, who fought on the 1-m Baltic Front, was captured in August 1941. He was recruited by German military intelligence officers, after which he underwent an internship at the Smolensk sabotage school. When he was transferred to the Soviet rear, he surrendered, and in July 1943, he returned to the enemy as an agent who had successfully completed the task. Bogdanov was appointed platoon leader of the Smolensk school of saboteurs. During his work, he managed to persuade saboteurs to cooperate with the Soviet counterintelligence officers 6. In October of the same 1943, Bogdanov along with the 150 students of the school were sent by the Germans to perform a punitive operation. As a result, the entire personnel of the group went over to the side of the Soviet partisans.

SMERSH - Counterintelligence Counter-Intelligence

Beginning in the spring of 1941, information from Olga Chekhova, a famous actress who was married to Anton Chekhov’s nephew, began to arrive from Germany. In 20's, he moved to Germany for permanent residence. Very soon, she gained popularity among Reich officials, becoming Hitler’s favorite and making friends with Eva Braun. In addition, his friends were the wives of Himmler, Goebbels and Goering. Everyone admired her wit and beauty. The ministers, Field Marshal Keitel, industrialists, gauleiters, and designers, repeatedly asked for help from her, asking her to put in a word before Hitler. And no matter what was discussed: the construction of rocket ranges and underground factories or the development of "weapons retaliation. " The woman wrote down all the requests in a small notebook with a gilded binding. As it turned out, not only Hitler knew about his content.

The information that Olga Chekhova transmitted was very important because it came “first hand” - the Führer’s inner circle, Reich officials. So, it became known from the actress about when exactly the attack would take place near Kursk, about how much military equipment was being produced, and about the freezing of the atomic project. It was planned that Chekhov would have to take part in the assassination attempt on Hitler, but at the very last moment Stalin ordered the interruption of the operation.

German intelligence officers could not understand where the leak occurred. Very soon, they went to the actress. Himmler volunteered to interrogate her. He came to her house, but the woman, knowing in advance about his visit, invited Hitler to visit.

The woman was arrested by SMERSh officers at the very end of the war, allegedly for harboring Himmler’s adjutant. At the first interrogation, she called the operational pseudonym - “Actress”. She was called to the reception, first to Beria, and then to Stalin. It is clear that her visit to the Soviet Union was kept in strict confidence, so she could not even see her daughter. After returning to Germany, she was provided with lifelong maintenance. The woman wrote the book, but did not say a word about her activities as a scout. And only a secret diary, which was discovered after her death, indicated that she really worked for the Soviet counterintelligence.

Operation Berezino was another successful operation that caused significant damage to enemy reconnaissance. In 1944, in the forests of Belorussia, around 2 of thousands of German soldiers, headed by Colonel Sherhorn, were surrounded. With the help of the saboteur Otto Skorzeny, Hitler's intelligence decided to turn them into a detachment of saboteurs who would act in the Soviet rear. However, for a long time the detachment could not be found, the three Abwehr groups returned with nothing, and only the fourth made contact with the surrounded ones.

For several nights in a row, German planes dumped the necessary cargo. But for the intended purpose, almost nothing came up, because instead of Colonel Sherhorn, who was taken prisoner, Colonel Maklyarsky, who looked like him, and state security major William Fisher were introduced into the squadron. After conducting a radio session with the “German colonel,” Abwehr ordered the detachment to wade into German territory, but not a single German soldier managed to return to his homeland.

It must be said that another of the most successful operations of the Soviet counterintelligence was the prevention of the assassination of Stalin in the summer of 1944. This was not the first attempt, but this time the Nazis prepared more thoroughly. The beginning of the operation was successful. The saboteurs Tavrin and his wife, a radio operator, landed in the Smolensk region, and, using a motorcycle, took direction to Moscow. The agent was dressed in the military uniform of the officer of the Red Army with orders and the Star of the Hero of the USSR. In addition, he also had “ideal” documents from the head of one of the SMERSH departments. To avoid any questions at all, especially for the “major” in Germany, the Pravda number was printed in which an article about awarding it with the Star of a Hero was placed. But the leadership of the German intelligence service did not know that the Soviet agent had already managed to report on the impending operation. The saboteurs were stopped, but the patrol officers did not immediately like the behavior of the “major”. When asked where they were going from, Tavrin called one of the remote settlements. But it rained all night, and the officer himself and his companion were completely dry.

Tavrina was offered to go to the guardhouse. And when he took off the leather jacket, it finally became clear that he was not a Soviet major, because during the “Interception” plan for the capture of saboteurs, a special order was issued regarding the procedure for wearing awards. The saboteurs were neutralized, and a radio station, money, explosives and weapons, which until now no one from the Soviet military had been seen, were removed from the motorcycle carriages.

It was a Panzerknack, a miniature grenade launcher, which was developed in the laboratory of the General Directorate of State Security of Germany. He could easily fit in the sleeve of his overcoat. In addition, Tavrin was also a powerful explosive device as a backup option, which was placed in the portfolio. In the event that it was not possible to make an attempt on the first try, Tavrin planned to leave the portfolio in the meeting room. During interrogations, he confessed everything, but this did not help him. Later the saboteur was shot.

Radio games that were conducted by the Soviet special services on the air are also well known. Conducting such games with the enemy on the radio gave an excellent opportunity to supply German headquarters with disinformation. In total, 183 radio games were conducted during the war. One of the most famous and successful was the radio game Aryans. In May, 1944, near the Kalmyk settlement of Utta, landed an enemy aircraft with 24 German saboteurs on board. Fighters were sent to the landing area. As a result, managed to capture prisoners 12 paratroopers, saboteurs. During a follow-up radio game, 42 radiograms containing misinformation were transmitted to Berlin.

SMERSH existed until 1946. After the war, military counterintelligence again became part of various special services: first the MGB, and then the KGB. But even now the work of SMERSHEVs during the war years is admirable and admirable.
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  1. +2
    April 10 2012 08: 51
    Something is not clear. On the photo of the SMERSH certificate, written by NPO, i.e. People’s Commissar of Defense, and the article itself says that the administration of the SMERSH of the NKVD of the USSR was created.
    1. ivachum
      April 10 2012 09: 12
      SMERSH (short for "Death to Spies!") Is the name of a number of independent counterintelligence organizations in the Soviet Union during World War II [1].

      The Main Directorate of Counterintelligence "SMERSH" in the People's Commissariat of Defense (NPO) of the USSR is military counterintelligence, the head is Viktor Abakumov. It reported directly to the Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, Joseph Stalin.
      Counterintelligence Directorate "SMERSH" of the People's Commissariat of the Navy, chief - Lieutenant General of the Coast Service P. Gladkov. Subordinated to the narcotics of the fleet N. G. Kuznetsov.
      Counterintelligence Division “SMERSH” of the People’s Commissariat of Internal Affairs, Head - S. Yuhimovich. Obeyed the drug addict Lavrentiy Beria.

      Thanks to many scientific and journalistic articles, literary works and feature films, the Smersh People's Commissariat of Defense of the USSR is most famous.

      drinks am
  2. +12
    April 10 2012 09: 47
    That's how it is necessary to love and protect the Motherland ... Professionals of the highest class ... plus ...
    1. Mr.Advokat
      April 11 2012 14: 26
      SMERSH did a lot of things, and it didn’t always work out well. But the structure was necessary, the situation required the creation of such counterintelligence agencies.
  3. CEO
    April 10 2012 09: 59
    Good article. I caught myself thinking what to read from the art on this topic. Tell me what is interesting in the literature on the topic "SMERSH", brothers.
    1. cubinecz
      April 10 2012 10: 20
      CEO, Bogomolov "In August 44" -classic
      1. CEO
        April 10 2012 11: 10
        Thank you, this is really a classic.
      2. +3
        April 10 2012 12: 11
        The book is called The Moment of Truth. "August 44th" is the title of the film based on this book.
        1. +1
          April 10 2012 14: 58
          Under both names printed in different years.
        2. Nymp
          April 10 2012 20: 54
          [quote = Siga] The book is called The Moment of Truth. "In August 44th" is the title of the film based on this book. [/ Quote "The Moment of Truth" is the second title of this book, and the first is "In August 44th" the film is named after the original title of the novel.
      3. Sniper 1968
        April 10 2012 15: 11
        "moment of truth", if I'm not mistaken.
        1. Zynaps
          April 10 2012 17: 46
          The Moment of Truth is the second title of the book. I have a 1973 edition, "Pain in my Heart" - the stories and stories of V. Bogomolov. his main novel is called "In August 44".
    2. +2
      April 10 2012 15: 17
      It would be interesting to read about those American agents and their accomplices who worked in the 90 years and are now working in Russia.
    3. Charon
      April 11 2012 09: 17
      Fleming can be read.
      James Bond very successfully fought with Smersh, circling his finger no worse than the Stirlitz Gestapo.
  4. vylvyn
    April 10 2012 10: 58
    Today, tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars are found in the vaults of senior officials. It is interesting how this would have been regarded in those war years and how long the investigation on such facts would have lasted?
    Today SMERSH of those times is needed more than ever.
    1. +8
      April 10 2012 11: 47
      Quote: vylvyn
      Today SMERSH of those times is needed more than ever.

      Do not gratify the soul. Now a lot would come in handy from the arsenal of that time.
  5. FIMUK
    April 10 2012 11: 40
    somehow, while still a schoolboy, he came to his father in the unit, his father was not there, he was waiting for him in the office for about an hour, wandering his eyes around the corners and shelves of the office, I saw a book on the bookshelf - "in August 44th" after reading, I was greatly impressed by the book ... we can say that she became interested in history.
    thanks to his father, the book was read much more interesting, since his father with a red felt-tip pen crossed out the whole nonsense with which the book abounds.
    1. +9
      April 10 2012 11: 49
      Fomka, compose on the go. Peysatel.
    2. FIMUK
      April 10 2012 12: 15
      Yes, I beg your pardon - the "moment of truth" book
      1. +5
        April 10 2012 12: 30
        And what is strongly communist about her? I re-read it ten times in childhood; I don’t remember anything like that. Although, perhaps, I forgot it over the years ago.
        1. Dust
          April 10 2012 12: 34
          Yes, and I do not remember anything like this in this book! You just had to let a little anti-Soviet stench, "comrade"?
          A lot of books were written - I myself read several options about preventing assassination attempts on Stalin using a grenade launcher from a sleeve ...
        2. FIMUK
          April 10 2012 12: 43
          damn well there are a bunch of different posts on the type-a text at which time at a meeting of trartaaa under the chairmanship and faithful helmsman of the communist party of the USSR they decided to stop liquidating the nonsense, probably at that time a normal book about the war could not be released without reference to the all-seeing eye of the party and its permanent leaders.
          1. +3
            April 10 2012 16: 20
            Quote: FIMUK
            -At this time, at a meeting of trarataaa, under the chairmanship and faithful helmsman of the Communist Party of the USSR, it was decided to stop eliminating itp

            I wonder what do you think is correct in a historical novel? Who headed the Defense Committee? Roosevelt? In the novel about the Northern War, one cannot mean to mention Peter the Great and Karl # 12, delete from "War and Peace" all references to Napoleon and Emperor Alexander ..... Cleverly, cleverly .... Where are the Nobel Prizes in Literature given out?
            1. FIMUK
              April 10 2012 16: 32
              you write obvious things, but they can be presented in different ways as an example or in two lines or painted on a page .... I speak for a bunch of pathos text, sometimes in the novel reaching a page or even two in a chapter.
              1. Zynaps
                April 10 2012 17: 43
                Quote: FIMUK
                I speak for a bunch of pathos text, sometimes in the novel reaching a page or even two in a chapter.

                it’s contraindicated for certain poets to read good books - the inter-ear ganglion is so flies so stupid.
              2. -1
                April 10 2012 21: 53
                Fima, you remind me of a lady from a joke ... I invited the police officer ... in the window opposite a naked peasant ... the police officer came in, looked ... ugly ... and you climb into the closet ...
          2. Zynaps
            April 10 2012 17: 33
            it is now evident that conspiracy theology is contagious, or inherited.

            it looks like your daddy, in a rage, ran out of the whole novel. otherwise you would know that Stalin has only a few pages allotted in the novel, in which it is shown without pathos and choking how important it was to capture the Neman group, since it was taken over by the Headquarters. for a homo sapiens everything is extremely clear and consistent there.

            you will chat about "nonsense" when you yourself go through the front from beginning to end and write at least one cult booklet, having shoveled a lot of archival material.
          3. OSHA
            April 10 2012 21: 48
          4. 0
            April 10 2012 21: 51
            Well, flipping through ... nothing .... Byak you Fima ...
        3. +5
          April 10 2012 15: 13
          Yes, even that which contradicts American interest is equated with communist propaganda! For the West and Russian bandits, communism is the worst! It is no accident that in the first days of the91 coup, the monument to Dzerzhinsky was immediately removed! Even the monument is afraid laughing
          And not in vain!
    3. Zynaps
      April 10 2012 17: 24
      Is your dad an anti-espionage specialist? and your dad doesn’t review textbooks on neurosurgery or astrophysics for an hour, with a felt-tip pen?
      1. FIMUK
        April 10 2012 17: 56
        in the posts of the Zynaps user, there is a constant transition to personalities, and expressing my opinion in some sort of brutally offensive form, I will not conduct a polemic with him, but the forum administration would ask me to take reasonable measures to instruct the user I indicated.
        with respect. if my point of view does not suit some users, this is not a reason to slip into personal insults.
        Sent to site administration.
        1. OSHA
          April 10 2012 21: 49
          SO GO
        2. -1
          April 10 2012 21: 54
          Sweetheart, yes you are sex and provocateur ...
    4. OSHA
      April 10 2012 21: 51
    5. freedom
      April 10 2012 22: 51
      And the main character was renamed Mykola, and Mykola fought against the red saboteurs, and Mykola prevented five attempts on Hitler.
      And your name is probably Nosov.
  6. FIMUK
    April 10 2012 12: 00
    Think how you want your free country *))
    Although, of course, it’s hard for you to imagine how it’s the beginning of an officer of the Russian army in the past, an officer of the Soviet army and not an orthodox communist, but how it can be.
  7. Num lock U.A.
    April 10 2012 12: 39
    the article is interesting, except that the name is bewildering - any counterintelligence is classified secretly everywhere, not just SMERSH
    1. -1
      April 10 2012 13: 00
      Especially Hoh ... Sorry, Radyanska !!!
      1. Num lock U.A.
        April 10 2012 15: 55
        didn't understand the humor
        counterintelligence is either there or not, if there is - then "classified"

        pysy actually understood "humor", but not appreciated
        1. +1
          April 11 2012 18: 57
          Yes, there is no difficulty .. and secrecy.
          As you call a ship, it will sail.
          No one ever hid counterintelligence. Flaunted, the KGB is the same. And here are the methods .... ho ho. So far ..00.

          SMERSH, namely, a big name, to catch fear.
          The fact that they were gaining fear in reality - in the same "Moment of Truth" very well Tamantsev tells .. in the beginning that a spy is immediately at an expense. And now - God forbid, if you scratch him - they will immediately prescribe an enema with ski and gramophone needles. Those who were lucky enough to go behind the "front end" - what did the owners tell?
          The situation is binding - as the French say.
          Death to Spies means death ... not radio games. And counterplay.
          And in real life - ....?
  8. markus112
    April 10 2012 13: 09
    well said!
  9. Bat1stuta
    April 10 2012 14: 19
    for many, after all, no one will ever know anything. and things were done archival! real fighters of the invisible front. good
  10. M_I_T_YA_89
    April 10 2012 14: 35
    The contribution of SMERSHA during the Second World War is difficult to overestimate.
    1. FIMUK
      April 10 2012 16: 52
      it is difficult to overestimate the contribution of hungry children 10-12 years old for 12 hours, or even a standman at the machine tool, women dragging a sheep instead of a tractor and much more that was under the slogan everything for the front everything for victory, and SMERSH did his job and as it turned out later, did well.
      1. OSHA
        April 10 2012 21: 51
      2. 0
        30 May 2012 17: 13
        I went through this time .....
  11. Nymp
    April 10 2012 20: 58
    Good article, thanks to the author! Young people should especially know history, otherwise then a vacuum in knowledge will fill the disinformation that the Baltic states and other former Hitler’s minions are actively planting.
  12. posad636
    April 10 2012 23: 12
    Chekhov was not an SMERSH agent! What does she have to do with it?
    "Chauffeur Brotherhood"
  13. dmitriy2012
    April 11 2012 10: 25
    I admire the professionals from SMERSH. Young people !!!!
  14. Odinplys
    April 11 2012 16: 38
    Gorbachev ... Latynina ... Nemtsov ... Udaltsov ... Novodvorskaya ................. etc. d.
    And de ... their DEATH ... today
  15. Nechai
    April 11 2012 17: 32
    Olga Chekhova is a stunning woman. Josof Goebels is a famous ladies' man, simpletons began to harass her. And then one day Olga agreed to accept the invitation of the giant not only propaganda to his out-of-town villa. She arrived in a huge "Horch" donated by Hitler. In general, la-la-poplar, she says: you go, dear, undress in the bedroom, and I'll wait for you in the hall, turning off the light. "Don Juan" did not force himself to be persuaded. He galloped off, galloped back and began to ask - give a voice, longed for! And then the light comes on - an oil painting. The whole family of Goebels, their wife Magda and all of his children, are sitting on chairs arranged in a row. (Olga and Magda were very friendly), and opposite them is their spouse and their folder. Breaking the protracted silence, Magda, turning to the children, says - here, children, if you eat badly and don't play sports, then grow up as rickety and bow-legged like your dad. Josef was furious! But when he learned that this trick really liked Adolf - he laughed to tears, over the story of Magda Goebels, and calmed his ardor.
    It was planned that Chekhov would have to take part in the assassination attempt on Hitler, however, at the very last moment, Stalin ordered the operation to be interrupted.
    I recently met the details of the planned action. It was not just the elimination that was being prepared, but the posthumous discrediting of Hitler. A preparation was created to increase male potency (Viagra's legs grow from here, a reduced dosage and a modified formulation) and arterial pressure, respectively. Then everything is as simple as an apple. Olga seduces Adolf. Advises to take an awesome remedy or in the "dark treats", lethal shameful outcome. He died on his mistress. The operation was terminated because the impudent Yankees were already looking for exits to a separate world with the top of the Reich. And the elimination of Adolf was only in their hands.