Military Review

Hungary and World War II

44

1918



The Kingdom of Hungary was the oldest ally of the German Reich. Hungarian troops fought against Russia as part of the Austro-Hungarian army on the side of the Central Powers until 1918. The collapse of the Austrian double monarchy left behind a barely united Hungarian state.

More than 70 percent of its national territory has been amputated. And more than 3,5 million ethnic Hungarians suddenly found themselves under the sovereignty of the newly formed neighboring states. There are only 8,6 million citizens left in the country. Hungary was the biggest loser in the First World War. Restoring the borders of "Greater Hungary" became the doctrine of her new army.

Formed in 1919, the army initially consisted of 4000 officers, who, under the leadership of Miklos von Horthy, the last commander-in-chief of the Austro-Hungarian fleet, suppressed the communist revolution of Bela Kun. Thus, anti-communism became the second doctrine of the state, which clung to the fiction of the monarchy and was ruled by its "governor" Horthy.

The victorious powers imposed severe military restrictions on Hungary, similar to those of the Weimar Republic. In the 1920s, Budapest became a hotbed of the "right-wing international", which followed the example of first fascist Italy and then National Socialist Germany. Despite the difficulties associated with reparations payments and the economic depression, the leaders of the Hungarian army have been looking for opportunities for systematic rearmament since the early 1930s. Mussolini's Italy was ready to help, and later Hitler's Germany.

1939


In early 1939, a feverish build-up of the Hungarian armed forces began. There were already 120 of them. Not long before this, the Axis powers had put pressure on Czechoslovakia to return southern Slovakia to Hungary. And in March 000 - after the occupation of Prague by the Wehrmacht - Carpathian Rus again became Hungarian territory.

Horthy, at first surrounded by the states of the French-backed Lesser Entente, pursued his policy with caution. In September 1939, more than 150 Polish refugees were allowed to cross the new Hungarian-Polish border, including tens of thousands of soldiers who traveled through Budapest to France, where they created a Polish army in exile. Berlin in the fall of 000 was more interested in "peace" in the Balkans.

1940


But already at the beginning of 1940, there were plans for a possible German invasion of Romania, in which Hungary, of course, would be indispensable as a deployment zone.

Budapest has taken on its changing strategic role. Germany's friendly chief of staff, Colonel General Henrik Werth, mobilized his country to attack his hated neighbor. At the very last moment, on August 30, 1940, Hitler decided to divide Transylvania between Hungary and Romania. But the Hungarians were still not satisfied with this compromise. And throughout the war there were frequent skirmishes on the new Hungarian-Romanian border.

However, this giant step towards the restoration of Greater Hungary impressed military leaders who believed that in the future the Germans would give them priority over Romania.

Their urgent interest in modernizing the Hungarian army was met with restraint in Berlin. Hungary was still considered “unreliable”. And got planes Tanks and cannons from the gigantic arsenal of the captured weapons Germany, no different from what was transferred to Romania. Measures were taken to ensure that neither side had a noticeable advantage over the other, in order to avoid a potential invasion in any direction. Of course, the Hungarian industry was able to produce its own weapons under a German license and might even consider creating its own armored divisions.

1941


But that was not enough by 1941 to wage any major war for a long period of time.

Therefore, the Prime Minister of Hungary, Count Pal Teleki, was extremely alarmed. When events in the Balkans reached their climax in the spring of 1941, he informed London and Washington that he hoped to keep his country from war.

Army leaders were more optimistic about the situation and could not escape pressure from Romanian Prime Minister Ion Antonescu's attempts to curry favor with Hitler. If Hungary wanted to defend its territories from Romanian troops, it could not lag behind in the arms race. Thus, she immediately demonstrated her willingness to take part in the German invasion of Yugoslavia.

Hungary made a commitment and was able to recapture Bacska, the Mur region and the Baranja lands with a total population of 1 million. Resistance from the local population was met with brute force, the victims of which were Serbs, Jews and even ethnic Germans. Desperate by these political events, Prime Minister Teleki shot himself on April 3, 1941. Three days later, Britain severed ties with Budapest.

By the spring of 1941, army reforms in Hungary were in full swing. The number of troops was increased, but the difficult economic situation did not allow significantly modernizing their equipment. On the other hand, the constant build-up of reserves lagged behind, as did the procurement of modern aircraft, anti-aircraft guns, tanks and anti-tank guns. The army tried to hide these shortcomings by intensive indoctrination of the troops. Army propaganda advertised its soldiers as the best in the world.

Although Berlin recognized the importance of Hungary as an indispensable transit zone in planning Operation Barbarossa, Hitler in December 1940 was still against Hungary's direct involvement in the war.

For a long time Horthy was not sure about Germany's intentions, but assumed that defensive measures along the border with the USSR would be useful to Berlin. A week before the start of the campaign against the USSR, Colonel General Werth insisted on an official proposal from Germany to take part in the war against the Soviet Union. However, the new prime minister Laszlo von Bardossi was worried that his country might split its forces in the face of hostile neighbors (Romania and Slovakia).
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  1. Vladimir_2U
    Vladimir_2U 24 May 2021 05: 05
    +20
    I apologize to the author of this article, but the title "Hungary and the Second World War" does not correspond much to the contents, wherever "Hungary's entry into the Second World War" or something like that goes.
    1. The leader of the Redskins
      The leader of the Redskins 24 May 2021 06: 31
      +7
      Torn off as the article looks. As if they had taken air into their lungs and! ... released without saying goodbye ...
      1. Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
        Paragraph Epitafievich Y. 24 May 2021 07: 09
        +7
        Quote: Leader of the Redskins
        As if they had taken air into their lungs and! ...

        ... released from another place? Yes exactly. Into a puddle. Autor decided to merge the Wikipedia article in small portions into the VO?
      2. vladcub
        vladcub 24 May 2021 12: 51
        +2
        There is such a thing. Some kind of understatement in the text. It was quite appropriate to write: "the ending follows"
  2. parusnik
    parusnik 24 May 2021 06: 01
    +3
    Horthy is just a dove of peace, with an olive branch in its beak. I would not be surprised if the author writes a sequel in which he tells how Hungary, literally by force, was dragged into World War II.
    1. vladcub
      vladcub 24 May 2021 12: 58
      +3
      Lesh, good day. Pure harm: Horthy is ALMOST a dove compared to Salashi.
      In my opinion: Horthy quite successfully 'sat on two chairs "
      1. parusnik
        parusnik 24 May 2021 18: 21
        +1
        Glory, good, it's already evening. But hell, the radish is no sweeter.
        1. vladcub
          vladcub 24 May 2021 18: 58
          +2
          It's like the people say: "two boots are a pair"
  3. Olgovich
    Olgovich 24 May 2021 06: 35
    +2
    Shortly before this, the Axis powers pressured Czechoslovakia to return southern Slovakia to Hungary.


    there was a real war, not just pressure- Slovak-Hungarian Warthat took place in March 1939.

    With participation dozens of aircraft, armored vehicles and artillery , with losses of about a thousand people.

    And when they talk in the west about the beginning of WWII on September 1, 1939, it is a lie: it began with the Munich agreement, and its direct result was the above-mentioned war, dozens of killed and wounded in clashes during the occupation of the Cieszyn region by Poland, clashes on the Czech border and the Sudetenland (hundreds of killed and wounded).

    This is the WWII victims, nStarted September 29, 1939.

    And it is a pity that the USSR did not insist on this date, but agreed with the Western version.
    1. The comment was deleted.
    2. Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
      Paragraph Epitafievich Y. 24 May 2021 12: 23
      +1
      Quote: Olgovich
      And when they talk in the west about the beginning of WWII on September 1, 1939, this is a lie:

      Ash stump - world the war was unleashed by France and Great Britain, declaring it to the Reich on September 3.
      Quote: Olgovich
      it started with the Munich agreement

      Commercials can be considered the beginning of the Versailles or Trianon "agreements". Everything is conditional.
      1. Olgovich
        Olgovich 24 May 2021 14: 07
        +3
        Quote: Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
        The stump is clear - the world war was unleashed by France and Great Britain,

        unconditionally signing the Munich Agreement .After that, and poured blood and guns rumbled - see above.
        Quote: Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
        Commercials can be considered the beginning of the Versailles or Trianon "agreements". Everything is conditional.

        and where in Europe after Versailles blood shed? It happened exactly after Munich.

        and you can start with Adam and Eve.
        1. Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
          Paragraph Epitafievich Y. 24 May 2021 14: 26
          -3
          Quote: Olgovich
          and where in Europe after Versailles blood shed?

          And you do not find a connection between Versailles and, say, the Soviet-Polish war? But Vladimir Ilyich linked the war with the Poles with the destruction of the Versailles system.
          1. Olgovich
            Olgovich 24 May 2021 15: 07
            +1
            Quote: Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
            And you do not find a connection between Versailles and, say, the Soviet-Polish war? But Vladimir Ilyich linked the war with the Poles with the destruction of the Versailles system.

            I find that in an attempt to justify his frantic campaign to take over Europe for its Sovietization, this recent "peace fighter" has come up with many "justifications" and "reasons."

            And Versailles offered the belligerent Poland and the Soviets reasonable border along the Curzon line, which at the Tehran Conference of 1943, Stalin referred to as internationally approved (when justifying the eastern border of Poland)
            1. Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
              Paragraph Epitafievich Y. 24 May 2021 16: 14
              -1
              Quote: Olgovich
              which at the Tehran Conference of 1943, Stalin referred to as an internationally approved

              Stalin, emnip, referred to the Soviet constitution)
              1. Olgovich
                Olgovich 25 May 2021 06: 49
                -1
                Quote: Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
                Stalin, emnip, referred to the Soviet constitution)

                Stalin referred to the Versailles line of Curzon in 1919 - that's for sure, read his direct speech at the 1943 conference.

                In addition, the Treaty of Friendship and the Border between the USSR and Germany of 1939 was canceled, the question with the Polish border is open.
            2. Alexey RA
              Alexey RA 24 May 2021 18: 59
              +1
              Quote: Olgovich
              I find that in an attempt to justify his frantic campaign to take over Europe for its Sovietization, this recent "peace fighter" has come up with many "justifications" and "reasons."

              If my sclerosis does not change me, then the campaign to seize Europe was provoked by Poland itself, which greedily hyena took part in the robbery © territories of the former Empire, deciding on the sly to move their border as far as Kiev and Minsk.
              1. Olgovich
                Olgovich 25 May 2021 07: 01
                -2
                Quote: Alexey RA
                If my sclerosis does not change me, then Poland itself provoked the campaign to seize Europe, which, with the eagerness of a hyena, took part in the robbery © of the territories of the former Empire, deciding to move its border beyond Kiev and Minsk on the sly.

                The same sclerosis should tell you what else in 1918 the Bolsheviks themselves canceled ALL partitions of Poland , i.e. abolished the borders of Russia in the West, so that the Poles followed their own, to the borders of 1772 before the partitions.
                The edge of the RSFSR with Poland did not have borders at all: see the Ukrainian SSR.

                In the same 1918, Muravyov's army was ordered to go from Bessarabia to Hungary, it just didn't work out.

                And yes, Germany, Hungary, etc. where the "fighter against the victims of war" sent his troops, this is not like Poland.
      2. Senior seaman
        Senior seaman 24 May 2021 21: 12
        +1
        Quote: Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
        Commercials can be considered the beginning of the Versailles or Trianon "conspiracy".

        This makes some sense. In any case, after the conference, Marshal Foch said so: - "This is not peace, this is a truce for 20 years."
        And no mistake.
    3. vladcub
      vladcub 24 May 2021 13: 02
      0
      Olgovich, surprised me, I did not know at all about: the Slovak-Hungarian war and clashes in the Sudetenland
      1. Olgovich
        Olgovich 24 May 2021 14: 31
        0
        Quote: vladcub
        did not know about: the Slovak-Hungarian war

        Its name is "Small War", its essence is that Hungary captured part of Slovakia, the Slovaks resisted: dozens of tanks and aircraft took part in the battles, the cities were bombed, i.e. everything was for real, with losses, and for a very short time
        Quote: vladcub
        clashes in the Sudetenland

        you know, this is the basis of Munich.

        There, too, bloody battles and hundreds of dead and thousands of wounded
        1. vladcub
          vladcub 24 May 2021 15: 53
          +2
          Chamberlain, in order for him to lie on glass wool, brought a lot of grief to people in Munich by "appeasement".
          Adolf was wary of Munich before, and then became insolent
          1. Alexey RA
            Alexey RA 24 May 2021 19: 13
            -1
            Quote: vladcub
            Chamberlain, in order for him to lie on glass wool, brought a lot of grief to people in Munich by "appeasement".

            Chamberlain in 1938 did what Stalin did in 1939 - buying time to put his armed forces in order.
            For after a decade and a half of peaceful years and one economic crisis, Britain actually lost its air force and army. Only the fleet survived. And even a sixfold increase in military spending by the "peacemaker" did not help - the degraded military-industrial complex could not cope with the growth of orders.
            Plus, the opposition pressured Chamberlain, accusing him of willingly spending money on weapons of destruction, but he had no money for the unemployed and social security.
            He is more likely to spend on the means of killing than on the means of life, he even looks like death.
            © Herbert Morrison, second man in the Labor Party
        2. vladcub
          vladcub 24 May 2021 19: 11
          -1
          I doubt that the Slovaks had a serious army. The united Czechoslovak army was a significant force, and after the "divorce" and a few weeks later it was a parody of arimia
          1. Olgovich
            Olgovich 25 May 2021 07: 10
            -1
            Quote: vladcub
            I doubt that the Slovaks had a serious army. The united Czechoslovak army was a significant force, and after the "divorce" and a few weeks later it was a parody of arimia

            a parody is not a parody, but it had tanks, planes and guns and combat-ready units, and even fought back the Hungarians and counterattacked.

            but the forces were, of course, unequal.
    4. not main
      not main 24 May 2021 22: 32
      +1
      Quote: Olgovich
      These are already victims of WWII, launched on September 29, 1939

      I think this is a typo! But you still need to be careful. Especially with dates.
      1. Olgovich
        Olgovich 25 May 2021 07: 08
        +1
        sep
        Quote: non-primary
        I think this is a typo!

        of course, since we were talking about Munich, then this is September 29 exactly 1938
        1. not main
          not main 25 May 2021 21: 51
          0
          Quote: Olgovich
          of course, since we were talking about Munich, then this is September 29 exactly 1938

          But you still need to be more careful! By the way, the minus is not mine.
  4. sen
    sen 24 May 2021 06: 50
    +6
    Hungarians more than Germans committed atrocities at the front and in the death camps. Therefore, they were not taken prisoner. And when the events took place in Hungary, many in the army still remembered this.
    1. vladcub
      vladcub 24 May 2021 14: 34
      +3
      I heard about Hungarians from old people. The old people told: the Romanians only saw what to "spioneer" and the Hungarians left a dark memory. My grandmother was barely saved from the Hungarians. <She talked to the children and did not respectfully speak of the Hungarians, but they understood Russian
  5. The comment was deleted.
  6. Vladimir Zyryanov
    24 May 2021 08: 05
    0
    Ghjie jpyfrjvbnmcz c lheubvb vjbvb cnfnmzvb ^
    The birth of agriculture - https://sotoguide.ru/articles14/523/
    Social transformations in the Russian Empire before WWI - https://sotoguide.ru/articles14/524/
    Crimes and their consequences in Ancient Rome - https://sotoguide.ru/articles14/525/
    Austerlitz Fields - https://sotoguide.ru/articles14/526/
    The birth of the feudal system - https://sotoguide.ru/articles14/527/
    The Middle Ages and its alphabet - https://sotoguide.ru/articles14/528/
    Bloody kings in history - https://sotoguide.ru/articles14/529/
    4 ways Ancient Greece changed the world - https://sotoguide.ru/articles14/530/
    The Great Siege of Vienna - https://sotoguide.ru/articles14/531/
    Russia and the World by 1900 - https://sotoguide.ru/articles14/532/
  7. Prometheus
    Prometheus 24 May 2021 08: 24
    +3
    Formed in 1919, the army initially consisted of 4000 officers who, under the leadership of Miklos von Horthy, the last commander-in-chief of the Austro-Hungarian fleet, suppressed Bela Kun's communist revolution.

    In fact, the Soviet power in Hungary was overthrown not by Horthy (who with his micro-army spent the entire period of communist rule abroad, in the KSKhS), but by the Romanian army as a result of the intervention.

    In the 1920s, Budapest became a hotbed of the "right-wing international", which followed the example of first fascist Italy and then National Socialist Germany.

    The Hungarian National Defense Association (as the local fascist party was called) was organizationally formed even earlier than its Italian and German colleagues. It would be more correct to say that both Italian and Hungarian fascists stood at the origins of fascism, independently of each other.
    Although the founder of this business in Hungary, Gyula Gembos, after the establishment of the regency of Horthy, called for doing in Hungary as in Italy, on this basis he had friction with Horthy. But since 1928, they reconciled, Gembos abandoned his most radical slogans and received the post of Minister of Defense.
    1. vladcub
      vladcub 24 May 2021 14: 44
      0
      Gyula Gembesh? I'll have to read it, but I haven't heard of him at all.
      Mussolini probably hid behind the back of the Duce
      1. Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
        Paragraph Epitafievich Y. 24 May 2021 15: 20
        +1
        Quote: vladcub
        Gyula Gembesh? I'll have to read it, but I haven't heard of him at all.
        Mussolini probably hid behind the back of the Duce

        What does Mussolini have to do with it ??? What is the "back of the Duce" ???
        1. vladcub
          vladcub 24 May 2021 15: 43
          +1
          Once again I am convinced that I am not Julius Caesar. He could: dine, make responsible decisions and write poetry. I wrote a comment and spoke on the phone.
          I wanted to write: "Everyone has heard of Mussolini, but Gembesh has not. Probably, the Duce was hiding behind his back."
          1. Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
            Paragraph Epitafievich Y. 24 May 2021 15: 48
            +1
            Quote: vladcub
            Probably, the Duce was hiding behind his back "

            this phrase is meaningless.
  8. BAI
    BAI 24 May 2021 08: 55
    +2
    in the future, the Germans will give them priority over Romania.

    Both Hungary and Romania are Germany's allies in the war against the USSR. All sent their armies to the Eastern Front. And the Germans were rather interested in Romania - they needed oil. So Hungary's hopes do not look very well founded.
  9. Unknown
    Unknown 24 May 2021 09: 30
    +7
    We have had a difficult relationship with the Hungarians since ancient times. It seems that they did not intersect, seriously before. I read somewhere that they cannot forgive the suppression of their actions against the Austrians in 1848-49 by Nicholas-1. And during the battle of Shegeshvar, our Cossacks slashed the Hungarian (Pushkin) Sandor Petofi. But this is at the level of rumors. But no matter how it was, the fact remains, they flooded with the Germans on us. I was always surprised how Hitler managed to put implacable enemies, Hungarians and Romanians at his table. But the hostility of the USSR unites even enemies. The Hungarians were not bad about the Poles
    On the eastern front, the Hungarians did not differ in their peacefulness towards us.
    They were shooting civilians. Our prisoners began to take them in large numbers in 42-year near Voronezh
    And up to 45 years old
    https://waralbum.ru/photocache/36/63/17/366317-files/366317-main.jpg
    [thumb] https://topwar.ru/uploads/posts/2021-05/162183 [center] [thumb] https: / [center]https://waralbum.ru/photocache/34/69/77/346977-files/346977-main.jpg
    /topwar.ru/uploads/posts/2021-05/1621836476_346977-main.jpg [/thumb] [/center ]6246_366317-main.jpg [/thumb] [/center] , were the last allies of the Germans, until the very end of the Reich. Then they quickly pulled up Salashi
    It seemed like they got rid of it and quieted down until the age of 56.
    Ours had to take Budapest again, the sons of those who took in the 45th year
    Well, they took, once again, taught the mind to reason. They were quiet for a while. And even now, unlike the Czechs, they keep quiet.
    1. Zaurbek
      Zaurbek 26 May 2021 07: 12
      0
      Near Voronezh, it seems, there were not many prisoners ... In general, I do not understand the reasons for such Magyar cruelty on our territory.
  10. iouris
    iouris 24 May 2021 11: 55
    0
    Didn't get enough sleep and did not send 2/3 of the copy-paste material. Why is it so?
  11. Chack wessel
    Chack wessel 24 May 2021 14: 29
    0
    Quote: Olgovich
    Shortly before this, the Axis powers pressured Czechoslovakia to return southern Slovakia to Hungary.


    there was a real war, not just pressure- Slovak-Hungarian Warthat took place in March 1939.

    With participation dozens of aircraft, armored vehicles and artillery , with losses of about a thousand people.

    And when they talk in the west about the beginning of WWII on September 1, 1939, it is a lie: it began with the Munich agreement, and its direct result was the above-mentioned war, dozens of killed and wounded in clashes during the occupation of the Cieszyn region by Poland, clashes on the Czech border and the Sudetenland (hundreds of killed and wounded).

    This is the WWII victims, nStarted September 29, 1939.

    And it is a pity that the USSR did not insist on this date, but agreed with the Western version.

    Sobsna speaking, if we are talking about the date of the beginning of the World War, then why are we talking only about Europe !? Why not consider the incident on the Mark Polo bridge on July 7, 1937 as the date of the beginning of WWII !? Japs and Chinese are not chtol people?
    1. Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
      Paragraph Epitafievich Y. 24 May 2021 15: 18
      +1
      Quote: Chack Wessel
      Why not consider the incident on the Mark Polo bridge on July 7, 1937 as the date of the beginning of WWII !? Japs and Chinese are not chtol people?

      Why then not consider the second Italo-Abyssinian 1935 as the beginning of WWII? Why, straight from the Wal-Uale incident in November 1934.
      Or are the Ethiopians and Italians not people or what?
  12. Chack wessel
    Chack wessel 24 May 2021 21: 02
    0
    Quote: Paragraph Epitafievich Y.
    Quote: Chack Wessel
    Why not consider the incident on the Mark Polo bridge on July 7, 1937 as the date of the beginning of WWII !? Japs and Chinese are not chtol people?

    Why then not consider the second Italo-Abyssinian 1935 as the beginning of WWII? Why, straight from the Wal-Uale incident in November 1934.
    Or are the Ethiopians and Italians not people or what?

    This is still a conflict between the two countries, unlike ... Although the proposal is interesting. :)
  13. zenion
    zenion 25 May 2021 18: 28
    +1
    Don't many people know how the Hungarians fought against the population of the USSR, in the occupied territories and near the front? Even the Germans were against the fact that the Hungarians were turning the people against the Wehrmacht and creating partisan detachments to take revenge on the Hungarians and, at the same time, all of Germany's allies.
  14. Altmann
    Altmann 18 July 2021 19: 29
    0
    The article is written in the correct style. The author was able to show the specific state of the army and its efforts to occupy and reunite border areas such as Slovakia, Serbia and others. The Hungarian army was brutal and the soldiers were really rude, brutal and killed and tortured the population of Serbia. Perhaps the author will continue to describe the retreating Hungarian army in the bend of the Dnieper, when they tortured the Russian people worse than the Nazis, who even had to intervene. I don't trust the Hungarians, and even later, in 1956, their attempt to establish democracy was just a terrible uprising. In the Danube, bodies were bathing, which our (Czechoslovak soldiers) pulled out of the Danube and buried. Let's not trust the Hungarians!