Soon, with one degree or another degree of probability, the country will try to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Victory in the Great Patriotic War.
We have a certain advantage in this regard, we are all meeting here virtually, and no one will be able to prevent us from doing this.
First of all: artillery preparation has already begun. And on the Web, and on TV screens began to appear "expert opinions" of people, excuse me, not from a machine gun, who began to talk about "how it was."
All that falls out can be perceived in two ways. But the main leitmotif is simple, like a land mine: the Germans had little equipment, but they knew how to fight, we had a lot of equipment and people, they didn’t know how to fight. Links, arguments - in stock.
Why in two ways? Everything is simple. We have no distortions in any way. And if in Soviet times we were told about “tank armadas "of the Nazis and hordes of dive bombers over their heads, now the skew is going in the other direction. Yes, like "corpses filled up".
Truth, it is always in the middle.
My goal is also very simple. Show TU the very version that may be as close as possible to the truth.
We have already spelled out the letters and at one time came to the conclusion that the LaGG-3 was not a flying coffin, and the MiG-3 was not such a lightly armed plane. To the mutual pleasure of true connoisseurs stories and the vicious pant of all "we-know-corpses-Stalin-failed."
What did I want to start talking about? Naturally, about the planes!
Georgy Konstantinovich Zhukov pushed me to this, I am a very respected person, I must treat his words with attention, but not axiomically. Why? Yes, because Zhukov helped write. Someone from the heart, and someone censored and strangled censorship.
I was just wildly lucky, I have at my disposal the famous “ten”, reissue No. 10 of “Memoirs and Reflections”, 1990, which is as close as possible to the original.
And I'll start with a quote from Marshal of Victory.
“According to updated archival data, from January 1, 1939 to June 22, 1941, the Red Army received 17745 combat aircraft from industry, of which 3719 new types of aircraft ... Yak-1, MiG-3, LaGG-3 fighters, and Il- "2, the diving bomber Pe-2 and many others are only about twenty types."
Professionals and fans, did you also want to shout “Stop!”? Yes me too.
I'll start with “about twenty types” of new aircraft. Alas, I think that here Zhukov was a little framed by assistants. Twenty or so new types - I can definitely say that our series is stunted aviation industry simply could not overpower.
The real problem was the start of production of any aircraft, and the engines for them ... However, we will talk about engines a little lower.
But really, what was new?
Yak-1, MiG-3, LaGG-3, Su-2, Pe-2, IL-2, Er-2, Ar-2, TB-7. Moreover, TB-7 / Pe-8 is very conditional, since they were tortured by a little thing in Kazan and less than a hundred were tortured. Well, with Er-2 and Ar-2, too, you can’t say that you’ve overstrained. 450 and 200 pieces respectively.
Yes, for the sake of justice, it would be possible to add the Yak-2 (approx. 100 pcs) and the Yak-4 (less than 100 pcs). But the small-scale production of these aircraft simply does not give the right to say that they really could have at least some influence on the course of the war.
I do not see 20 models. And you do not see.
There is, however, the idea that the "new" recorded modifications. Then yes, there is where to roam. I-16 with M-62, I-16 with M-63, I-153 with M-63, Su-2 with M-88.
No, I agree with those who say that the I-16 with the M-63 was quite imagined. Pilots responded very positively, it is. And in 1942 they even wanted to put it on stream again. But such a huge BUT: it was an obsolete aircraft in all respects, except, perhaps, maneuverability. And he simply was not able to compete with the new Bf.109F. There, the speed difference reached almost 100 km / h, so there was simply nothing to catch.
Somehow 3 new Zhukov planes are not drawn. No, you can dial “by barns and gantry” by writing all new planes to the new ones, which I listed above. Another question, have they become new and formidable from this? I doubt it.
But a complete expanse for those who want to show how we did not know how to fight.
Therefore, when in other sources, albeit less loud-sounding, I see a figure of 1500 new planes - yes, I believe it.
In addition, the figure 1500 again appears in the case when it is said about the number of aircraft on the contact line in the enemy. That is, in the western districts.
However, do not forget that the planes arrived not only in the regiments, but also in training centers for retraining pilots. Yes, not very much, but a figure of 10-15% of the total is drawn. In addition, retraining is a constant accident, repairs and the need for new aircraft.
Meanwhile, in the center and in the Far East, pilots also had to be retrained for new equipment.
Now about quantity.
Yes, in 2,5 years, our industry has produced more than 17 thousand aircraft of all types. And, it is possible (just below) that they all fell into parts and formations.
A lot? Yes, I agree.
However, let's not forget about the expense.
First, the planes beat (mercilessly) during training / retraining of young (and not only) pilots. Quite a lot of memoirs have been left about this, both those who beat and those who acted.
Secondly, do not forget that before the very beginning of the indicated period there was a conflict on about. Hassan and the Spanish Civil War. There were losses, it was necessary to compensate them.
Then we have Khalkhin Gol and the war with Finland. Where losses also took place.
Plus, the systematic decommissioning of old aircraft (I-5, R-5, I-15 and so on).
As a result, a logical doubt arises: how correctly and honestly to accept this figure? Obviously, she is very doubtful. 17-odd thousand manufactured aircraft - this does not mean that they all stood in even rows at the "peacefully sleeping" airfields and waited for the Germans to bomb them. It doesn’t mean at all.
I also have claims about the figure of "1500 new types of aircraft" in the frontline districts. Zhukov gives this figure to himself (on page 346, who cares), moreover, he gives a link to “The History of the Second World War 1939-1945.”, But if someone meticulous goes further, where did the figure come from, then the detective begins .
In general, the work “History of the Second World War” was written for more than one year and was completed only in 1982. Starting from a four-volume edition, in the end it was an edition in 12 volumes.
So, this figure, which Zhukov cites, is taken in such work as “Documents and Materials of the Institute of Military History of the USSR Ministry of Defense”. There is (naturally) an indication of the fund, an inventory, a case, pages are indicated.
Everything is spoiled by the official certificate that on April 13, 1990 the document was destroyed at the direct direction of our main military historian, head of the Institute of Military History, Dmitry Volkogonov.
For what purpose Volkogonov ordered the destruction of a number of documents, it is difficult to say today.
My personal opinion is to confirm the myth that we had a huge number of aircraft on 22.06.1941/XNUMX/XNUMX. Sorry, I have no other explanation.
However, so much has been written about the role of Dmitry Volkogonov in the "preservation" of the historical heritage of the Great Patriotic War that there is simply no desire to repeat it. And, alas, there has been no demand from Colonel General Colonel since 1995.
As there is no confirmation or refutation of how many planes really were at the disposal of the Red Army Air Force.
A separate question is how did they determine how many aircraft were in the Red Army Air Force at the beginning of the war?
A common table, which was published by several authoritative publications at once, and on which many authors of historical materials and studies relied. Even in school history books hit.
As you see, we have almost 11 thousand aircraft, the Germans have almost 5 thousand. Do not want to think about it. It is clear, of course, that if the German were all as one Me.109 of the latest modifications, and we have I-15, I-153 and “only” 1500 new ones, it would be difficult for us.
Although, if you suddenly believe the memoirs of pilots who knew how to fly, that “messer” on the “donkey” didn’t sweat too much. And we had a lot of them.
You know, you can, of course, say that "the German aces were cooler than the wind," but ... But didn’t they get rid of ours in Spain? Yes, the Germans walked well in Europe, but, excuse me, is Poland a powerful air power? France ... Well, yes, France. But France was smashed on earth. And they clashed quite well with the British, but did they win? No, the Battle of Britain remained with the British pilots.
That question is about the invincibility of the German aces. More precisely, very big doubts. Yes, I support those who believe that all of their hundreds of accounts are fiction and nonsense.
Ours also did not pollinate corn. Yes, there were few in Spain, but they fought with the Japanese and Finns. So if there were ours with less combat experience, then not by much.
And now the figure of the planes as of June 22.06 also causes doubts about its fluctuation, although the fluctuation is quite normal. From 9 576 to 10 743. Ask why it’s normal? Yes, just that. different sources used different numbers.
The secret is simple: some authors used the number of aircraft accepted by military acceptance, while others used parts. Difference? There is a difference. As between a ship launched and commissioned.
There is a big difference between the acceptance of the aircraft by the military representative at the plant and the actual delivery of the aircraft. Both in fact and in time.
The plane, which was flown by a military test pilot and for which, after testing, issued all the financial documents for calculation with the plant, already actually belongs to the Air Force. But he is still in the factory.
But when it is transferred to the unit’s airdrome, or, even more difficult, it will be disassembled, packed, brought by rail, unloaded, assembled again, checked and circled again - then it becomes the accepted part and put into operation.
Considering our distances and the capabilities of our transport network in the 30-40s of the last century, as much time could pass.
Plus, even the factory team had to get to the plane in order to collect it and hand it over to the pilots. Someone was lucky, and the brigades rode along with a train carrying aircraft, while others did not, the planes arrived in boxes and waited for the factory workers to be free and arrive.
Pokryshkin described it.
That’s why the numbers are somewhat different, it all depends on at what point the information is taken and from what source. There are figures that are given on June 30. The end of the month is normal, the end of six months is also nothing.
However, here are the nuances: already in July, two urgently formed special aviation regiments arrived at the front, armed with MiG-3 fighters (commanders - test pilots S. Suprun and P. Stefanovsky), a regiment of diving bombers on Pe-2 (commander - pilot -test A. Kabanov), an attack regiment on the IL-2 (commander - I. Malyshev).
Got it, right? Planes from the June (and what else!) Plan came to the front in July. Where and how were they recorded? In the June plan, right. But they got to the front already after they were counted, as expected on 22.06. But actually it was not so.
Four regiments - this is solid. And these are only regiments that were formed from experienced test pilots. And as it was in fact, we will not know. But the fact that many writers on the alignment of forces as of June 22.06 clearly neglected the fact that all the data on the number of aircraft belonged to the end of the first half of 1941, i.e. by June 30, and not by June 22, 1941, when the war began. And they used theoretical calculations on the number of aircraft.
Well, you must admit, 4 regiments that went to the front on June 30 really cannot be counted on 22.06.
As could not be taken into account at least 1 combat aircraft were at the factories of the 24st Main Directorate of the NKAP on June 1941, 449. Although, according to other sources, this figure is even higher: 690 combat aircraft Pe-2, Il-2, Er-2, MiG-3, LaGG-3, Yak-1, Su-2 accepted by military representatives, but not sent in part .
And there was:
- 155 MiG-3 aircraft at plant number 1.
- 240 LaGG-3 aircraft at factories 21, 23, 31.
- 74 Yak-1 aircraft at factory number 292.
- 98 units of IL-2 at the factory number 18.
And it was on these airplanes that the pilots of the hastily formed militia special-purpose regiments from test pilots and the leading engineering and technical staff of the Scientific Research Institute of the Air Force KA, military acceptance, instructors of the Air Force, academies, partly factory test pilots and technicians were planted.
These were highly qualified pilots, who, armed with the latest technology, could not but provide real resistance to the enemy. But this will be a completely different story.
Well, you must admit that it’s still absurd to consider these planes “in service” on 22.06.1941/XNUMX/XNUMX.
And if their 1500 conditional aircraft of new designs are otminusovat from what is not included in the part, then the picture is not quite quite rosy. For the calculator says that 1500-690 = 810 aircraft.
No, this is also a really good figure, but ... 100 Yak-2, 100 Yak-4, 50 TB-7 and so on. In reality, the aircraft of new designs (as confirmed by the same Pokryshkin, Golodnikov and many others) simply did not get to the parts and were "in service" only on paper.
In the six-volume edition of the history of the Great Patriotic War, the first volume contains the figures:
In the first half of 1941, industry produced:
- fighters of a new type MiG-3, LaGG-3 and Yak-1 - 1946;
- Pe-2 bombers - 458;
- attack aircraft IL-2 -249.
- fighters of a new type MiG-3, LaGG-3 and Yak-1 - 1946;
- Pe-2 bombers - 458;
- attack aircraft IL-2 -249.
Add, we get 2 653 aircraft. Converges. Reading further, one can find a very important remark that "part of the new machines was just beginning to enter service with the factories."
So, in the first half of 1941, out of 2 aircraft, part was sent to the part, and part was only planned for delivery. It is logical that it was from unsent vehicles that 653 air regiments were manned in July. The air regiment is about 4 aircraft. We can say that we have already found 40 aircraft that did not end up in units on June 160.
Thus, of the 2653 aircraft of a new type adopted by military envoys in the 1st half of 1941, only a part went into service.
What part of these aircraft was actually delivered to the combat units of the Air Force?
The answer can be quite easily found in that part of the Air Force Directorate that was engaged in the retraining of flight personnel. It was called the “Office of the Formation, Acquisition and Combat Training of the Red Army Air Force,” and its competence included keeping records of the actual delivery of aircraft to combat units.
During the war, this department was called the Main Directorate of training, formation and combat training of the Air Force. It was headed by Colonel General A.V. First Deputy Commander of the Air Force. Nikitin.
From the documents of this Office, one can extract the following:
In total, in the combat units of the Soviet Air Force by the beginning of the war there were 706 combat aircraft of a new type, in which 1354 pilots were retrained. The retraining process went according to the approved schedules.
It was possible to find out that the units of the Air Force of the spacecraft at the time the war began had:
- MiG-3 fighters - 407 and 686 trained pilots;
- Yak-1 fighters - 142 and 156 pilots;
- LaGG-3 fighters - 29 and 90 pilots;
- Pe-2 bombers - 128 and 362 pilots.
Data on the IL-2 is not available, respectively, there were no aircraft.
And then the specifics began. Of the 1540 supposedly “combat” aircraft, not even 810 remained, as I had counted before, but 706. But this is for all the air forces of the spacecraft, and this, excuse me, is still the center of the country and the Far East too.
Specifically, in the air forces of the Western border districts there were 304 fighters and 73 Pe-2s, a total of 377 aircraft of a new type.
And it turns out that at the beginning of the war, the new type of combat aircraft in the combat units of the spacecraft had not 2 units, as it is “officially” accepted, but 739, which is almost 706 times less.
Accordingly, in the five Western border districts there were only 377 of them, and not 1, as it is also “officially” considered, that is, also 540 times less.
In general, in my opinion, the picture is more or less clear. It remains to ask the very last question: why and who needed it, such a distortion of the picture at the highest level?
That it was not a gag is a fact. I remember these numbers very well, from school. The stories that the Luftwaffe had all the planes were super (well, even if it does, it doesn't get any easier), and we had junk that was simply unrealistic to fight at.
Why, then, overestimate the figures, talking about the allegedly small number of aircraft of new brands, deliberately exaggerating 4 times?
A strange situation that requires a separate reflection, do not you?
In general, we are already used to the fact that, let’s say, the merits of the Germans are somewhat exaggerated by those who received from them. The Tirpitz and Bismarck were such superlinkers that King George 5 and Yamato were coal barges next to them.
"Tiger" and "Ferdinand" - well, just awful. The best that could be invincible and unkillable. The fact that the first released 1355, and the second and completely 91 pieces, no one cares.
I’m silent about the 190th Fokke-Wulf. To read the British - well, a beast, not a plane. How they shot down ours, I don’t understand.
And so in everything.
As for 22.06, then everything is more complicated. The Luftwaffe did not have quite a number of modern aircraft. There the Germans themselves flew on such rubbish, so what, "Stuck" - was it a modern airplane? Do not make me laugh. Heinkel 51? Plus everything that they gathered from Europe there ...
Perhaps readers will have their own versions, with pleasure I will familiarize myself.
It’s not entirely clear to me why it was necessary to exaggerate the numbers of new aircraft models. Either just a careless attitude to the issue (we can), or some kind of malicious intent.
If we show that we had German aces on modern airplanes, we met with the I-15 and I-16 all the time - it was so. As you can see, the new generation aircraft was really nothing at all.
If you decide to show that the German military machine was so cool that it could grind one and a half thousand new planes, then yes, it is possible. We had many generals and marshals who simply needed to show that the enemy was not just strong, but almost invincible. Justifying this own cowardice and stupidity.
Or perhaps the truth is somewhere in between. And it is possible that all versions have the right to life. We have the right to speculate, because we will never know who and why slipped Zhukov’s not entirely correct figures, why Volkogonov destroyed the archives, and so on.
And the farther from 1941, the harder it will be to find out the truth. But we will try our best.
Zhukov G.K. Memoirs and reflections. T. 1.P. 339-346.
History of the Second World War 1939-1945 T. 4.P. 25-26.
1941: experience in planning and using the air force, lessons and conclusions.