Office of the special assignments of the General Staff of the Red Army
In the pre-war years, the Soviet Union maintained diplomatic relations with almost all European states, as well as with the main Far Eastern countries, some states of the Near and Middle East and the Western Hemisphere. Communications were also purposefully developed along military lines, which were carried out by military, airborne, and naval attaches.
At the end of 1940, the beginning of 1941. military attachés at the USSR embassies operated in the capitals of the 20 states. They represented the interests of the People's Commissariat of Defense of the USSR and the General Staff of the Red Army. At the same time, the military attaches were advisers to diplomatic representatives on military issues. The activities of the Soviet military-diplomatic missions were led by the Special Task Directorate of the General Staff of the Red Army, headed by an experienced military diplomat.
Soviet military and diplomatic missions operated at the embassies of the USSR in England (military attache, Colonel Sklyarov, IA), Bulgaria (Colonel Dergachev, IF), Hungary (Colonel Lyakhterov, NG), Germany (Commissar Purkaev, MA ), Italy (Colonel Mazunov V.F.), USA (Colonel Sarayev I.M.), Finland (Major General Smirnov I.V.), France (Major General Susloparov I.A.), Czechoslovakia (Colonel Yakovlev A.V.), Sweden (Col. Nikitushev N.I.), Yugoslavia (Major General Samokhin A.G.) and Japan (Col. Gushchenko I.V.).
The offices of Soviet military attaches at the Soviet embassies also operated in Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, China, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Estonia.
Military ties with representatives of the military aviation foreign countries supported the apparatus of the air attache, which operated at the embassies of the USSR in Berlin, London and Paris. In Germany, for example, the apparatus of the air attache was headed by Colonel N. Skornyakov, in Great Britain - brigade commander Cherniy II, in France - commander Vasilchenko N.N.
In the capitals of some states, military naval attaches operated, representing the interests of the USSR Navy Commissariat. Such devices operated at the Soviet embassies in the UK, Germany, Spain, Italy, USA, Turkey and Japan. The duties of the naval attache in Berlin were performed by Captain 1 of the rank Vorontsov MA, Ankara and Athens - Rear Admiral Rodionov KK, Madrid - Captain of the 2 Rank Kuznetsov N.G. (1936 – 1937), Rome - Captain 2 Rank Slavin S.V., Tokyo - Captain 1 Rank Kovalev A.S. etc.
The military, air and naval attache staffs were headed by highly educated generals and officers who were tasked to study a wide range of military and political issues in the host countries, to conduct operational work related to maintaining and developing ties between the USSR military departments and the host country .
Following the instructions of the Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army, the leaders and staff of the military, air and naval attaches studied the armed forces of the host countries, by their activities contributed to the development of military-technical cooperation, organized visits of official Soviet military delegations and return visits of representatives of military departments to USSR, visited military units and got acquainted with the combat training of the troops of the host countries, contributed to the training of Soviet military specialists in the country destination, involved in the dissemination of objective information about the Red Army and Soviet military equipment, as well as other tasks of military-diplomatic nature. In general, the apparatus of the Soviet military attaches solved a wide range of information, organizational and representative tasks.
One of the important activities of the leaders of the military attaches was the study of the orientation of the foreign policy of the host country and the assessment of the military-political situation in the regions of responsibility. After the outbreak of World War II, Soviet military diplomats operating in the main European countries received instructions from Moscow to study and evaluate the real foreign policy goals of Nazi Germany, Italy, Japan and other countries that were part of an aggressive military-political coalition formed in the world. In assignments that were directed by the Soviet military attache, it was repeatedly pointed out the need for an objective assessment of Hitler’s attitude and his closest aides to the Soviet Union.
Soviet military diplomats who acted in 1940 and the first half of 1941 in the capitals of European states paid primary attention to collecting information that would allow an objective assessment of the direction of foreign policy of Nazi Germany towards the USSR. In one of the Center’s instructions, the military attache had the following task: “In assessing various kinds of information and rumors, one should proceed from the general international situation and from who the information comes from ... Collect facts, analyze them and draw your conclusions in the international context ".
Soviet military attaches operating in Berlin, Budapest, Bucharest, Rome, Helsinki and the capitals of other European states, from June 1940 to June 1941 sent a significant number of reports to the Center, which, in general, objectively evaluated the increase in military threat from side of Nazi Germany, who secretly carried out preparations for the perfidious attack on the Soviet Union. The most effective during this period of time were military attaches, Major-General V.I. Tupikov, I.A. Susloparov and A.G. Samokhin. The reports of these military diplomats not only indicated the real signs of Germany’s preparation for war against the USSR, but also objectively evaluated the gradual increase of the military threat.
It is known that Hitler 18 December 1940, signed the directive number 21 on the preparation of war against the USSR. Ten days later, the Soviet air attache in Berlin, Colonel Skornyakov N. D. reported to Moscow: “Hitler gave the order to prepare for war against the USSR. The war will be declared in March 1941. ” Colonel Skornyakov received this information from I. Stebe, who at that time worked in the German Foreign Ministry and had the opportunity to receive reliable information from a high-ranking official of this Ministry, Rudolf von Shelia.
At the beginning of 1941, Hitler and the command of the German armed forces intensified preparations for the attack on the Soviet Union. All activities for the upcoming aggression were strenuously masked, as well as accompanied by measures of misinformation. Misinformation information was disseminated through various, including military-diplomatic channels, and was undertaken to mislead, above all, Soviet military intelligence and Soviet military diplomats operating in Berlin, Rome, Budapest, Bucharest and the capitals of other European states. It is fair to say that some misinformation information was carefully prepared and sometimes perceived by some heads of the Soviet military attaches as reliable and used to prepare reports to the Center.
Hitler and his closest assistants, distracting attention from the preparation of an attack on the USSR, spread reports that in the spring or summer of 1941 Germany was activating military actions against England, which allegedly was the main opponent of the Third Reich. Distribution of this kind of information was carried out in Berlin, as well as through diplomatic channels in the capitals of the states of the German bloc. This was done skillfully, information was spread, as a rule, on a trusting basis and deliberately communicated to the staff of official Soviet missions, including Soviet military diplomats. Therefore, in Moscow, from some of the military attaches received messages that contained misinformation information. In particular, the 13 of May 1941 from Rome to Moscow, the military attache said: "On the 15 of June, the axis countries are preparing a big offensive against England."
As the military threat from Nazi Germany grew, the General Headquarters of the Red Army took measures to strengthen the staff of the military attaches by qualified specialists. At the beginning of 1941, for example, Colonel RG Baz was sent to Tehran as a military attache. In Sofia, the military attache was headed by Major-General Ikonnikov I. In Beijing, the post of military attache was occupied by Lieutenant-General V.I. Chuykov. In Tokyo, the naval attache was headed by the captain of the 2 rank, Yegorichev IA, and the military attache in Berlin was headed by Major-General VI I. Dead ends.
Measures aimed at strengthening the apparatus of military attaches allowed in the 1940-th - early 1941. Soviet military diplomatic missions are more qualified to assess the military-political situation and prepare reports to the Center, which, in general, objectively reflected the foreign policy of the leadership of Nazi Germany.
At the beginning of 1941, the German leadership and command of the armed forces intensified the dissemination of misinformation information. Not only employees of the German official representations, but also military-diplomatic bodies of the countries of the Nazi bloc took part in carrying out disinformation events.
For example, employees of the military diplomatic service of the Hungarian Ministry of War were actively involved in the dissemination of misinformation information. In Budapest, the apparatus of the Soviet military attache, led by Colonel Lyakhterov NG, acted. 13 March 1941. He was invited to the Hungarian Defense Ministry, where he was informed that false rumors were spreading among the diplomatic corps in Budapest about the preparations of Germany and Hungary for an attack on the USSR. Colonel Lyakhterov was invited to tour the country, visit the border with the USSR regions of Hungary and draw their own conclusions.
Colonel Lyakhterov N.G. sent a report to Moscow in which he detailed the content of the negotiations in the foreign affairs department of the Hungarian military department, said that the Hungarian press also made a refutation about the mobilization and concentration of troops on the Soviet border allegedly conducted in the country, and notified the agreement with the “military ministry about a trip to the Carpathian Ukraine from 17 to 20 in March. ”
On a trip around the country, Colonel Lyakhterov went along with his assistant - an employee of the military attache office. “I’ll check these rumors with my personal observation,” the military attache told Moscow.
Hungarian authorities prepared for the trip of Colonel Lyakhterov. All signs of preparation for an attack on the USSR were carefully camouflaged, troops redeployed, military equipment was hidden. During the trip, Colonel Lyakhterov and his assistant could not reveal any signs of excessive concentration of troops in the border area, which the military attache hurried to report to Moscow. This report from Budapest was reported to Stalin I.V., to the People's Commissar of Foreign Affairs V.M. Molotov, to the People's Commissar of Defense S.K. Tymoshenko. and the Chief of General Staff Zhukov G.K. The collection of information about the military preparations of Nazi Germany against the USSR was effectively carried out by military attaches, Major-Generals Tupikov V.I., Sklyarov I.A., Susloparov I.A. and Samokhin A.G.
Major General Susloparov IA, for example, 4 March, 1941 reported to Moscow that, according to data received from a prominent Hungarian official, “this year Germany will oppose the USSR”. 27 March 1941 Mr. Susloparov said that the grouping of troops created by the Germans was directed mainly against Ukraine, which should become the food base of Germany.
In June, the military attache 1941 I. Susloparov. continued to send disturbing reports to Moscow. 21 June 1941 g. He reported that, "according to reliable data, the German attack on the USSR is scheduled for 22 June 1941 of the year." This data was provided by Major-General I. Susloparov. the head of the military intelligence illegal residency L. Trepper, who operated in France.
The report of the military attache was reported to I.V. Stalin. His resolution was preserved on the report form: “This information is an English provocation. Find out who is the author of this provocation, and punish. "
Alarmingly, as it is now possible to judge, reports to the Center and Major General Tupikov V.I., appointed to the post of military attache at the USSR Embassy in Berlin in January 1941, sent reports to the Center. In the second half of March, 1941, the General Major Tupikov V.I. sent to Moscow "Report on the combat and numerical strength of the deployed German army and its grouping as of 15.03.1941." The report contained more than 100 typewritten sheets, 30 schemes of organizational structures of combat units of the German army, the general grouping of the Wehrmacht forces, the grouping scheme of the German air forces and other military information.
In the second half of April, Major General VI Tupikov. sent to Moscow another report on the "grouping of the German army as of 25.04.1941".
In a letter accompanying the report, the military attache reported: “During the three and a half months of my stay here, I sent you up to a hundred and fifty telegrams and several dozen written reports. The information contained in these telegrams and reports relates to different areas, different reliability and different values.
But all of them are grains of the answer to the main question: is it, not as a general perspective, but as a specific task, in the plans of German policy and strategy for a war with us; what is the timeline for the start of a possible collision; What will the German side look like? Studying everything that has been available for these three and a half months has led me to a definite conclusion, which I report to you ... ”.
Analyzing the state of Soviet-German political relations, Major-General VI Tupikov. reported to Moscow that the collision between Germany and the USSR is “a question of timing and timing is not so remote,” since the German leadership, which initiated an open anti-Soviet propaganda campaign, cannot plan for the long term sustainability of Soviet-German relations on an anti-Soviet basis.
Major General Tupikov V.I. drew the attention of the leadership of the General Staff of the Red Army to the fact that the grouping of the German army from the autumn of 1940 was constantly shifting to the east and approaching the Soviet western border. According to the Soviet military attache, “the qualitative condition of the armed forces on political and moral grounds, training and equipment is now at its zenith, and it’s not a reason for the Reich’s leaders to expect it to last at this level for a long time the slightest complications hinting at a possible delay in the war, cause acute nervousness among the general population. "
Based on the information at his disposal, Major General Tupikov V.I. I came to the conclusions reported to Moscow. He wrote: “1. In the German plans of the USSR appears as another opponent. 2. The time of the start of the collision is as short as possible and, of course, within the current year. ”
Reliable information testifying to Germany’s preparation for war against the USSR was sent to Moscow and to the military attache at the Soviet embassy in Yugoslavia Major General Samokhin A.G. In early March, 1941 reported to Moscow: “The Minister of the Court in Belgrade received information that the German General Staff had refused to attack the British Isles. The immediate task set - the seizure of Ukraine and Baku. The armed forces of Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria are now preparing for this. ”
In general, the activities of the military attaches at the diplomatic missions of the USSR in Berlin, Budapest, Paris, Rome, Belgrade to reveal the preparation of Nazi Germany for the attack on the Soviet Union were characterized mainly by reliable information reports prepared by them for the Center on the basis of information obtained from various sources. Among them were ministers, reputable journalists, military diplomats from the United States, Great Britain and other countries, heads of major military-industrial corporations and employees of military ministries. Soviet military attaches operating in the capitals of European states did not have access to secret military documents of Nazi Germany, however, in general, they correctly assessed the growing military threat to the security of the Soviet Union and correctly oriented the Red Army’s command of preparing Germany for an attack on the USSR.
In the pre-war years, the naval attache captain 1 of the rank of MA Vorontsov successfully solved information tasks in Berlin.
Naval attache captain 1 rank Vorontsov MA in the spring, 1941 informed the People's Commissariat of the Navy about the state of the German naval industry, about the implementation of naval construction programs and the basing of the German naval forces and the direction of the foreign policy of the leadership of the Third Reich.
In May, 1941 in reports to the Navy Commissariat Captain 1 of the rank Vorontsov MA repeatedly reported on the preparation of Nazi Germany for war against the Soviet Union. Among his reports were reliable information, as well as misinformation, deliberately disseminated in Berlin by the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs, political and military intelligence of the Third Reich. May 15, for example, Vorontsov MA mistakenly reported to Moscow that a clash with the USSR before the end of the war between Germany and England is excluded. Apparently, the Soviet naval attache was misinformed, like some other military diplomats of Western countries. 13 June 1941 Captain 1, Rank M. Vorontsov reported to Moscow that “the Germans, in the period from 21 to 24.06.1941, scheduled a surprise attack against the USSR. The strike will be directed at airfields, railway junctions and industrial centers, as well as at the Baku region. ”
In mid-June, the naval attache, M.N. Vorontsov, 1941. was summoned to Moscow for a personal report to the People's Commissar of the Navy Kuznetsov N.G. on the state of the military-political situation in Germany and the possible prospects for the development of relations between the USSR and Germany.
June 20, 1941 captain 1st rank M. Vorontsov completed his military diplomatic mission, left Berlin and returned to Moscow. After the end of World War II, Admiral fleet Kuznetsov N.G. in his memoirs he wrote: “At 20:00 M.A. came Vorontsov, who had just arrived from Berlin. That evening, Mikhail Alexandrovich told me about 50 minutes what was being done in Germany. He repeated that the attacks must be expected from hour to hour. “So what does all this mean?” I asked him point blank. “This is war!” He replied without hesitation. ”
Judging by this fragment of the memoirs of Admiral Kuznetsov NG, naval attache captain 1 of the rank Vorontsov MA quite objectively assessed the military intentions of the leadership of Nazi Germany and reported on the growing threat of war to the people's commissar of the USSR Navy.
Thus, the main activities of the Soviet apparatuses of the military, air force and naval attaches in the prewar year were:
solving information tasks in the military and military-political field;
assisting in the implementation of bilateral interstate treaties and agreements in the military and military-technical sphere;
ensuring visits by Soviet government and military delegations;
solving other representative tasks according to the assignments of the Office of the Special Assignments of the General Staff of the Red Army
In January –June 1941, the main focus of the activities of the staff of the military attache’s offices at the USSR embassies in European countries was to collect information on the direction of Germany’s foreign policy. In an effort to maintain military relations with representatives of the Third Reich, officers of Soviet military diplomatic missions reported to Moscow that Germany was preparing to attack the USSR.
The participation of military diplomacy in the organization of international cooperation
In the very first hours after the start of the Great Patriotic War, Soviet military-diplomatic missions operating in European countries — allies of Nazi Germany — were subjected to coercive influence by counterintelligence agencies and the police of these states. In Berlin, Budapest, Bucharest, Rome, and Helsinki, military diplomatic missions were blocked, and the staff of the Soviet military attaches were interned. Timely and promptly measures taken by the military attaches made it possible to destroy all documents regulating the activities of military diplomatic missions, as well as all their secret correspondence with the Center, codes and codes.
In June, 1941 continued its activities by military attachés at the Soviet diplomatic missions in Afghanistan, Bulgaria, Great Britain, Iran, Iraq, China, USA, Sweden and Japan. New military devices were created, which began to operate in Argentina, Canada and Mexico.
The perfidious German attack on the Soviet Union made major changes in the activities of Soviet military diplomacy. The main tasks of military diplomatic missions were:
promoting the formation of a system of international cooperation in wartime conditions;
ensuring the work of Soviet government delegations at international conferences;
assistance to military and military-economic cooperation of the countries of the anti-Hitler coalition;
obtaining information about the plans of warfare by Nazi Germany against the USSR;
evaluation of the attitude of the governments of the USA and Great Britain to the war of Germany against the Soviet Union
In accordance with the tasks of the Chief of the Special Task Directorate of the General Staff of the Red Army, Major General N.V. Slavin Soviet military diplomatic representatives had to solve other tasks. But the main thing was the creation of a union of states capable of confronting the German bloc, providing decent resistance to Nazi Germany and achieving victory in the war. This union could and should have entered the USSR, the USA, the United Kingdom, as well as other states that opposed Hitler Germany and the Nazi ideology of its leaders.
The difficulties of forming the anti-fascist bloc of states consisted in the fact that before Germany started World War II, the Soviet Union, on the one hand, the United States and Great Britain, on the other, were different in structure and ideology, state-political formations, did not have bilateral treaties on countering aggression and providing military and other assistance in the event of an attack on them. Moreover, the efforts of Soviet diplomacy in 1938 – 1939. the formation of a collective security system in Europe and countering the aggressor were not supported either in London or in Washington, which created additional favorable conditions for Hitler and his allies to start World War II and the occupation of most European states.
These political and ideological differences in 1939 — the first half of 1941. adversely affected the development of military cooperation between the USSR and the United States, Great Britain, Poland, France and some other states that were not part of the alliance headed by Hitler Germany. To achieve victory over Germany and its allies, it was necessary first of all to overcome contradictions and mutual fears and create a legal framework for organizing military, political-political, military-economic and military-technical cooperation of countries condemning the aggressive foreign policy of Nazi Germany, or already under occupation by her troops. After the German attack on the USSR, the need to create such a system of international military cooperation became apparent both for the leaders of Great Britain and the United States, and for the governments of other states that had settled in London after the German troops occupied the territories of their countries that were under the control of Hitler's appointees.
In July-October 1941, the foreign affairs agencies of the USSR, the USA and Great Britain began to search for ways to organize international military cooperation. The staffs of the military, air force and naval attaches were also connected to the solution of this important and new task.
Among the leaders of Western countries, the first to support the Soviet Union in the war against Hitler Germany was declared by the British Prime Minister Winston Churchill 22 June 1941: “Any person or state who fights against Nazism will receive our help ... We will help Russia and the Russian people all the help we can. ” W. Churchill's statement was promising, but it turned out to be not a simple matter to put it into practice.
It was not immediately possible to form the anti-Hitler coalition; its formation process went through several stages and ended only in the first half of 1942. Throughout this period, the Soviet Union waged a purposeful struggle to create a militant alliance of peoples in the war against fascism. Soviet diplomacy, including the heads of the military attache’s offices, carried out explanatory work in the host countries, explaining the need to unite the efforts of democratic forces in the struggle against Nazism.
The first negotiations on possible prospects and directions of military and economic cooperation began at the end of June 1941, when the British military-economic mission headed by the British ambassador to the USSR S. Cripps arrived in Moscow.
The delegation included Lieutenant General M. McFarlane and Rear Admiral J. Myles. Ambassador S. Cripps and members of his mission at the airport were greeted by representatives of the USSR People's Commissariat of Foreign Affairs (NCID), members of the Directorate of Special Assignments of the General Staff of the SC and Rear Admiral N.М. Kharlamov, who was included in the group who met at the direction of the Navy Commissar of the Navy, Admiral N. G. Kuznetsova.
Meeting with the head of the British delegation, the USSR Commissar for Foreign Affairs V.M. Molotov declared the need for the Allies to open a second front in Europe, the desirability of stipulating mutual assistance in the war against Germany by a political agreement. The head of the British delegation to this proposal responded evasively, only making it clear that the government of England is not yet ready for a political agreement with the USSR.
During the negotiations between V.M. Molotov and S. Cripps discussed the issue of organizing military cooperation between the USSR and Great Britain. 27 June 1941 Commissar of Foreign Affairs of the USSR V.M. During the next meeting with S. Cripps, Molotov expressed the interest of the USSR in the British strengthening of the aerial bombardment of Germany.
The question of military cooperation in conversations with S. Cripps was raised three times. In general, the British ambassador said that, in principle, the British government is ready to do everything to help the Soviet government in its fight against Nazi Germany. At the same time, he stressed that the English fleet could not undertake any operation, not knowing what, in fact, it would be.
During the third meeting with V.M. Molotov, a member of the British delegation, General M. McFarlane, stated that his task was to quickly obtain detailed information about the actions and plans of the Soviet troops. In this case, according to the general, the British command will work out an appropriate plan for its own military operations.
The members of the British military mission, Lieutenant General M. McFarlane and Rear Admiral J. Miles, were received by the People's Commissar of the Navy Admiral NG Kuznetsov ¬. At this meeting, the security problems of northern maritime communications were discussed, and agreements were reached on the exchange of military-technical information on electromagnetic mines and advances in the field of radar.
The head of the British delegation during the conversations with the People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs V.M. Molotov said that the British government was ready to do everything to provide the USSR with military-technical and economic assistance. Speaking about the scale and extent of possible assistance, Ambassador S. Kripps noted that he sees no reasons that would limit its size, nor, in general, can determine the limit of the help that is necessary for both countries to achieve a common goal - victory over the enemy.
During the meetings V.M. Molotov and N.G. Kuznetsov and the British ambassador S. Cripps formed the idea of an exchange of military missions between the USSR and Great Britain, which in the future had to solve all the questions of Soviet-British cooperation in the military field. Moscow believed that the main task of the military missions should be to facilitate the efforts of the governments of the two states aimed at their interaction in the military field and to create prerequisites that could facilitate the early opening of a second front in Europe.
12 July 1941 in Moscow, an agreement was signed "On the joint actions of the Government of the Soviet Union and His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom in the war against Germany." At the signing of this agreement, I.V. Stalin, Deputy Commissar of Defense Marshal of the Soviet Union B.M. Shaposhnikov, Commissar of the Navy, Admiral N. G. Kuznetsov. On behalf of the British government, the agreement was signed by the British ambassador to the USSR, S. Kripps, who was accompanied by embassy officials and the entire British military-economic mission in Moscow.
In this agreement, article 1 stated that "both governments mutually commit themselves to assist each other in every way in the war against Germany." In the 2 article, the contracting parties stated that “in the continuation of this war, they will neither negotiate, nor conclude an armistice or a peace treaty, except with mutual consent”.
In the fourth quarter of 1941, the British government pledged to supply 800 aircraft, 1000 to the Soviet Union. tanks and 600 wedges. Preliminary agreement was reached on the exchange of information about Germany and its armed forces.
The Soviet-British agreement was the first political document that marked the beginning of the formation of the anti-Hitler coalition. The signing of this agreement in Moscow created the necessary legal and regulatory framework for the subsequent development of cooperation between the USSR and Great Britain in the war against Germany and the intensification of interaction between the military attache apparatuses.
The stay of Ambassador S. Cripps in Moscow initiated a return visit to London by the Soviet military mission. By decision of I.V. Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army — Chief of the Intelligence Directorate of the General Staff of the Spacecraft, Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov. Before leaving Moscow, Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov was adopted for an instructive conversation by the USSR Commissar for Foreign Affairs V.M. As a young, People's Commissar for Defense Marshal of the Soviet Union SK Timoshenko, Commissar of Foreign Trade A.I. Mikoyan and the Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army B.M. Shaposhnikov. On the eve of departure to London, Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov invited for guidance and I.V. Stalin. The mission of F.I. Golikov included Rear Admiral N.М. Kharlamov, Colonel N.N. Pugachev, Col. V.M. Dragoon, military engineer of 2 rank P.I. Rams.
Mission F.I. Golikova arrived in London on July 8 1941 and was in the British capital for four days. The head of the Soviet military mission held talks with British Foreign Secretary A. Eden and the head of the military department G. Morgenson. Already after the end of World War II, recalling a meeting with G. Morgenson, Lieutenant General F.I. Golikov wrote: "... political antipathies and the reluctance of the Minister of War of England to see the Red Army as their militant ally ... were striking."
Negotiations F.I. Golikov with the chiefs of staff of the British armed forces as a whole ended in a positive way. W. Churchill's promise to assist the Soviet Union in the war against Nazi Germany began to take concrete forms.
During the visit of the Soviet military delegation to London, it was about reaching an agreement with the British government on organizing joint actions against a common enemy. The Soviet delegation, during meetings with the leaders of the command of the British armed forces, attempted to reach agreement on the sequential implementation of several operations against the German forces with the participation of the British armed forces.
On behalf of the command of the Red Army, Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov sought to create a common front with the British in the north of Europe. According to the Soviet side, the British could send their naval forces (Navy), air force and several infantry divisions to this front. The Soviet government considered it expedient for the Allies to occupy the islands of Svalbard and Medvezhiy, which was necessary to ensure sea communications between the USSR and Great Britain, as well as between the USSR and the USA.
On behalf of the Soviet command of F.I. Golikov also invited representatives of the British military department to carry out the landing of a contingent of troops in the north of France. The head of the Soviet military mission told representatives of the high command of the British armed forces that Moscow considered it particularly important to carry out this "French operation."
During meetings with representatives of the British command, Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov offered to start the fighting of the British troops in the Balkans, which would ease the tension on the Soviet-German front.
As a result of the work done in London by the Soviet military mission led by the deputy chief of the General Staff of the Red Army, Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov, the British government already at the end of July 1941 decided to transfer to the Soviet Union 200 fighters "Tomahawk" from among those who supplied England with the United States of America. The Soviet mission sought that the British government also transfer the Tomahawk 700 fighters, which were at that time in Cairo, to the USSR, but representatives of the British government refused to satisfy this request, citing a shortage of British combat aircraft in the Middle East. 20 July 1941 The British Admiralty sent a minelayer Adventure to the Soviet Union loaded with depth charges onboard, magnetic mines, parachutes and other materials. About other previously promised deliveries to the Soviet Union, Lieutenant General F.I. Golikov in London failed to agree.
USSR Ambassador to Britain Maisky I.M., Lieutenant-General Golikov F.I. and Rear Admiral Kharlamov N.M. London, 1941
Mission visit F.I. Golikov to London in the process of forming a system of military cooperation between the USSR and Great Britain, in which the Soviet government was extremely interested, did not introduce. Proposals for military operations in northern Europe, France and the Balkans were heard in the War Department of Great Britain, but remained unanswered. In London, they did not believe in the potential capabilities of the Red Army and did not rush to intervene in the war between the USSR and Germany.
Nevertheless, the visit of the Soviet military mission to London nevertheless allowed to expand mutual understanding between representatives of the military departments of the two states, secured working contacts, laid the foundations for the formation of international cooperation, the first outlines of which were determined during the visit to Moscow by the British military-economic mission with the British ambassador to the USSR S. Cripps.
Negotiations Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov in London with British officials also allowed to determine the parameters and main directions of Soviet-British cooperation in the military-economic field.
The trip of Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov and the officers who accompanied him in July 1941 to London was the first attempt by Soviet military diplomacy in the context of the outbreak of World War II to expand cooperation with the military departments of the states that could become part of the anti-Hitler coalition. The documents show that the British side "reluctantly went to tie themselves with military-political obligations."
During the time when the Soviet military mission in London was located, the organization of its activities in the British capital was handled by the staff of the military attache at the Soviet embassy. Assistance to Lieutenant General F.I. During his meetings with British officials, Golikov was provided by the military attache, Colonel I.A. Sklyarov and his assistant, an employee of the military attache's office, Major B.F. Shvetsov.
After the departure of Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov from London was appointed head of the Soviet military mission in the British capital, Rear Admiral N. Kharlamov, who had no special military and diplomatic training, but an experienced naval commander, who had well-developed personal and business qualities and was able to solve complex tasks. including military-diplomatic nature.
In mid-July, 1941 was ordered by I.V. Stalin Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov at the head of the second Soviet military mission was sent to Washington to negotiate with US officials. Before departure, F.I. Golikov to Washington he was also received by I.V. Stalin, who clearly defined the tasks to be accomplished by the head of the Soviet military mission during negotiations with US officials. The Soviet Union was interested in acquiring individual samples in the US weapons, military equipment, military materials, products and medicines. Golikov also had to find out the attitude of the American government to the formation of a political union in the form of an anti-Hitler coalition capable of achieving victory over Germany. At the end of June 1941, Moscow already received the first signals that the US government condemned the perfidious German attack on the USSR. 24 June 1941 US President F.D. Roosevelt at a press conference stated the need to assist the Soviet Union in the war against Nazi Germany. 26 July The US government announced the non-application of the law "on neutrality" in relation to the USSR and extended the Soviet-American trade agreement signed by 4 August 1937. These and some other steps of the administration of President F.D. Roosevelt testified that the mission of F.I. Golikova to Washington could and should have opened a new page in Soviet-American relations.
However, the negotiations F.I. Golikova with representatives of the State Department and the US Department of Defense were difficult. In Washington, the head of the Soviet military mission was listened to but not heard. Golikov realized that American officials did not believe that the Red Army would be able to hold back the onslaught of the advancing fascist armies, change the situation at the front and achieve victory. Therefore, they did not show their interest in rendering any assistance to the Soviet Union.
During a visit to Washington, the head of the Soviet military mission, Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov with the help of the Soviet ambassador K.A. Umansky achieved a meeting with F.D. Roosevelt.
During the meeting with the American President 31 July 1941, F.I. Golikov told F.D. Roosevelt on the difficulties that arose during negotiations with representatives of the Ministry of Defense and the US State Department. The head of the Soviet military mission asked the American president to personally intervene in the process of establishing Soviet-American cooperation, put an end to the red tape and help form a real anti-Hitler coalition capable of countering the combined capabilities of democratic states to fascist Germany.
In general, during a visit to Washington, Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov managed to achieve positive results, which defined the contours of future agreements on the supply of American military materials to the USSR.
Comprehensive assistance to Lieutenant General F.I. During his stay in Washington, Golikov was represented by military attache Colonel I.I. Saraev.
The visits of the Soviet military mission to London and Washington, in general, had a positive impact on the development of cooperation between the USSR and the United States and Great Britain in the military, military-economic and military-political spheres.
An important step in the formation of the anti-Hitler coalition was the signing of the Atlantic Charter, promulgated by 14 August 1941. In this document, the American President F.D. Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill expressed the opinion that it was in the interests of the United States and Great Britain to render assistance to the USSR with armaments and equipment. However, this document has not yet expressed the idea of combining the efforts of the three states to conduct joint or coordinated military operations against Nazi Germany.
The government of the USSR as a whole approvingly approached the Atlantic Charter. September 24, 1941 at the inter-union conference in London, USSR Ambassador I.M. Maisky declared support for the principles of the charter by the Soviet government. The statement of the Soviet ambassador noted that the practical application of the principles of the Atlantic Charter should be consistent with obligations, needs and historical features of a particular country and to promote the concentration of all economic and military resources for the full and as soon as possible the liberation of the peoples of European countries occupied by German troops.
The next important document expanding the framework of cooperation between the USSR and Great Britain in the war against Germany was the Soviet-English treaty “On Alliance in the War against Nazi Germany and its accomplices in Europe and on cooperation and mutual assistance after the war.” The signing of this agreement 26 in May 1942 in London became possible after the visit of the mission of F.I. Golikov to the British capital, repeated visits by British high-ranking British diplomats to Moscow and the tireless activities of the Soviet ambassador I.M. May in London.
An important factor that had a positive influence on the development of Soviet-British cooperation in the war against Nazi Germany was the defeat of the German divisions in the battle of Moscow and the first major counteroffensive of the Red Army in the spring of 1942, during which the Soviet troops advanced in the north-western direction on 50 - 70 km, west - on 80 - 250 km, and southwest - almost 100 km. This success demonstrated the potential of the Soviet Union to confront Germany.
In the first part of the Soviet-British treaty "On the Alliance in the War against Hitler Germany and its Associates in Europe and on Cooperation and Mutual Assistance after the War," it was said that military and other assistance in the war "against Germany and all those states associated with it in acts of aggression in Europe. " The governments of the USSR and Great Britain reaffirmed their commitments made in 1941, which prohibited them from negotiating with Germany and its allies "only by mutual agreement".
11 June 1942 an agreement was signed between the governments of the USSR and the USA “On the principles applicable to mutual assistance in waging a war against aggression”.
The Soviet-British and Soviet-American treaties signed in 1942, in general, completed the formation of the legal framework on which the subsequent years of the war carried out military, military-political and other cooperation of the USSR, USA and Great Britain in the war against Nazi Germany. These and other similar bilateral agreements and treaties guided in their activities and the apparatus of the Soviet military attaches, operating in Washington, London and the capitals of other states that were part of the anti-Hitler coalition. The same international documents regulated the activities of the Soviet military missions operating in London, under the commander-in-chief of the allied forces in Italy, under the commander-in-chief of the National Liberation Army of Yugoslavia (NOAA), and also at the headquarters of the American General D. MacArthur.
The brutal conditions of the Second World War forced the allies in the anti-Hitler coalition to use the most diverse forms of military-diplomatic activity in the fight against the aggressor. Employees of military attachés and military missions actively participated in organizing conferences of heads of state and government, multilateral and bilateral working meetings of representatives of military departments, meetings of intergovernmental working bodies on international military cooperation. Military diplomats, following the instructions of the Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army, organized an exchange of intelligence information about the enemy with the allies, transferred captured samples of military equipment and weapons, and facilitated the exchange of experience in organizing sabotage combat in the enemy's rear.
Large-scale was the activity of the Soviet military mission in London. The head of the mission, Rear Admiral N.M. Kharlamov was personally involved in creating a common front with the British in the north of Europe, organizing escort operations that began in the summer of 1941.
While in London, Rear Admiral N.M. Kharlamov maintained contact with the commanders of the armed forces of the United States and Great Britain. On instructions from the chief of the Soviet General Staff, Kharlamov resolved issues related to the supply of weapons and military materials to the USSR, supervised their timely loading onto transports and sending them to the Soviet northern ports guarded by Soviet and British escort ships.
At one of the British warships, Rear Admiral N.М. 6 Kharlamov June 1944 took part in crossing the English Channel in the Normandy region and was personally present when the Anglo-American troops landed on the French coast.
After the completion of a business trip and the return of Rear Admiral N.М. Major-General A.F. Kharlamov to the Soviet Union was headed by the Soviet military mission in London. Vasiliev.
An example of constructive allied relations between the USSR, the USA and Great Britain had a positive effect on the formation of the system of relations between the USSR and other anti-Hitler coalition states. In early July, 1941, the Soviet government declared its willingness to normalize relations with Poland, Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia and to provide the peoples of these countries with all-round assistance in the war against fascist Germany.
18 July 1941 The Soviet government concluded an agreement with the émigré government of Czechoslovakia, located in London, on the joint action 1 in the war against fascist Germany.
This agreement marked the entry of Czechoslovakia into the anti-Hitler coalition and laid the foundations for military cooperation with the Soviet Union. The Soviet government agreed to assist Czechoslovakia in the formation of national Czechoslovak military units on the territory of the USSR under the command of a person appointed by the Czechoslovak government with the consent of the USSR government. In order to immediately implement the Soviet-Czechoslovak agreement 27 on September 1941 in Moscow, representatives of the high commands of the USSR and Czechoslovakia signed a military agreement regulating the activities of Czechoslovak military units in the USSR. Soon the first Czechoslovak military unit began to form in the Soviet Union. For its maintenance and armament, the Soviet government provided 22 on January 1942 with the necessary financial and material resources to the Czechoslovak government. The agreements signed in Moscow intensified the formation of Czechoslovak military formations on the territory of the USSR and created the legal basis for the purposeful interaction of Soviet and Czechoslovak military diplomats who operated in London, Washington and Stockholm.
30 July 1941 in London was signed by the Soviet-Polish agreement, which provided for the restoration of diplomatic relations between the two states, the provision of assistance and support in the war against Nazi Germany. The Soviet government agreed to the creation in the territory of the USSR "of the Polish army under the command appointed by the Polish government with the consent of the Soviet government." This army was supposed to operate on the territory of the USSR, to obey in operational terms the Supreme Command (Supreme Command) of the Red Army.
In the second half of 1941 and in 1942, legal foundations were created for military cooperation between the USSR and France, Albania, and other states. 12 July 1942. The Soviet government established diplomatic relations with Canada, which created the prerequisites for expanding military cooperation between the two states and opening a military attaché office in Ottawa, Colonel N.I.
The governments of the Soviet Union and England interacted with each other on the issue of assisting the resistance movement in France, led by the Free France organization led by General Charles de Gaulle. In London at the beginning of August 1941, the negotiations of the Soviet Ambassador I.M. Maisky with a representative of the French National Committee. They culminated in a positive decision that was in the interests of the USSR and France and was supported by the British government. 26 September 1941, the Soviet government and the Free French National Committee exchanged notes, indicating that relations were established between the USSR and General de Gaulle’s organization, which allowed them to unite their efforts in the struggle against a common enemy.
The formation of the anti-Hitler coalition made it possible to consolidate forces in the war against Nazi Germany, to make the most of the resources at the disposal of democratic states, to make timely military decisions, adequate to the situation prevailing on the fronts. Conditions were also created for active military cooperation, expressed in coordinating the efforts of the states that fought against Germany and its allies, coordinating individual military operations, using the territory of friendly countries for basing air and naval forces, and exchanging intelligence information.
An important tool for strengthening cooperation between the USSR, the United States and Great Britain was a well-organized correspondence between the Chairman of the USSR Council of Ministers and the Presidents of the United States and British Prime Ministers, during which not only bilateral Soviet-American or Soviet-British relations were discussed, but also current problems of the Allies war against nazi germany. This correspondence was carried out throughout the war. Judging by the documents published, I.V. Stalin sent the leaders of the United States and the United Kingdom and received about 900 documents from them. During the exchange of messages, the leaders of the USSR, the United States and Great Britain exchanged views on important military and military-political issues, discussed the implementation of agreements on the supply of military cargo to the USSR, gave characteristics to officers appointed to the posts of heads of military missions, made recommendations on the implementation of bilateral treaties and reminded each other of the need to clearly implement the agreements reached and the signed agreements.
International military-political cooperation aimed at organizing the defeat of Nazi Germany and militarist Japan, was carried out throughout the Second World War, had periods of high activity, positive achievements and recessions that arose as a result of the emergence of major contradictions between the allies. In general, the most important events in the formation and formation of the anti-Hitler coalition were the decisions of the governments of Great Britain and the United States to support the USSR in the war against Germany, the conclusion of the Soviet-English agreement 12 July 1941, the Declaration of 26 states, the Soviet-English agreement and the Soviet-American agreement signed in 1942. 2 Soviet military diplomats took an active part in the preparation of these important documents.
The formation of the anti-Hitler coalition led to the formation of the necessary legal and regulatory framework for the interaction of democratic states in the military, military-political and military-economic spheres and contributed to the expansion of the front against Nazi Germany and its satellites.
Military diplomacy during the preparation and holding of international conferences in 1943 – 1945.
Acute military and military-political problems that arose in relations between the USSR, the USA and Great Britain were resolved during personal meetings of I.V. Stalin, F.D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill during international conferences. The staff of the USSR Foreign Affairs Commissariat, the command of the General Staff of the Red Army and the Special Task Directorate of the General Staff of the Spacecraft, as well as Soviet military attaches and heads of military missions took part in organizing these meetings. The most complex and important issues were addressed during the Tehran (1943), Yalta (1945) and Potsdam (1945) conferences. 3 The staff of the Soviet military attaches took an active part in organizing these conferences. The most difficult and difficult was to organize the first meeting of the leaders of the USSR, the USA and the UK, which was held in Tehran on November 28 - December 1 1943. During the preparation of the Soviet government delegation for this conference, military attachés operating in London, Washington and Tehran played an important role .
On the instructions of the Chief of the General Staff of Marshal of the Soviet Union A.M. Vasilevsky military attache, Major General I.A. Sklyarov in London and Colonel I.M. The sheds in Washington were to inform the General Staff of the Red Army about the main military objectives that US President FD Fischer had planned to achieve during discussions on military issues. Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill. The head of the Soviet government delegation preparing for the trip to Tehran was most interested in one question, namely, when would the Allies undertake to open a second front in Europe?
Major General I.A. Sklyarov first sent a response to the request of the Center. October 9 1943 he reported to Moscow: “The second front in Western Europe does not open for purely political reasons. It is believed that the Russians are not sufficiently weakened and still represent a great force, which is feared both in England and in America. In England, the 500-thousand Expeditionary Army has already been created, which is contained in full readiness and which is provided with everything necessary, including the fleet, to land on the continent ... Most of all, our allies are afraid of the Russian invasion of Germany, as it may cause communist revolution in all countries of Europe ... ".
Information that in October 1943, Major General I.A. Sklyarov sent to Moscow on the preparation of the Allies for Operation Overlord, based on documents received on a trust basis by one officer of the military attache’s office.
Sklyarov became aware that the development of a plan for the invasion of the Allied forces in Europe was quite successful and, in general, was completed in July-August 1943, when a tank battle on the Kursk Bulge, unprecedented in the history of wars, was ongoing on the eastern front. But the United States and Great Britain refrained in those days from opening a second front in Europe, which could ease the situation of the Red Army. The Soviet troops suffered huge losses in the Battle of Kursk, but defeated Hitler’s selected tank divisions.
Studying the content of the plan of Operation Overlord, Sklyarov noted that this important document contained everything, except the dates for the start of its implementation. If the British and Americans really wanted to land their expeditionary forces in France in the summer of 1943, they, as Sklyarov believed, could do it. The situation on the eastern front would be much more favorable for the Red Army.
Sklyarov had extensive contacts in London among political and military leaders, maintained friendly relations with military diplomats of the anti-Hitler coalition countries. Many of them had information about Germany and its armed forces. Such information was of interest to the Soviet General Staff. Visiting the British military, at receptions in diplomatic missions, meetings with representatives of the British government, during friendly conversations with representatives of the allies, General Sklyarov exchanged information about Germany, current events at the front and prospects for interaction between the USSR, the USA and Great Britain. To achieve victory over Nazi Germany, it was necessary to know not only when, where exactly, how many and what divisions Hitler would send to the eastern front. It was also important to understand the plans of the allies of the USSR in the anti-Hitler coalition.
During meetings and confidential conversations with high-ranking British politicians and the military, Sklyarov was convinced that in 1943, the United States and Great Britain would not start landing their expeditionary forces in northern France. This is what he reported to Moscow.
Valuable information was sent to the Center and an officer of the military attache at the Soviet embassy in Washington, Major L.А. Sergeev. He said that “the State Department and the military command do not believe in the possibility of reaching an agreement with the Soviet government on post-war issues. They fear that the Union will be the main force in Europe. Hence the tendency not to rush with the second front in order to bleed the Soviet Union and dictate its policy to it. ”
Sergeyev was able to obtain detailed information about the results of the negotiations of US President F.D. Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill in Quebec. Sergeyev reported to Moscow on the position of the allies on the opening of the second front: "... the leaders of the United States and Britain decided not to open a second front this year." And further: “Consent was expressed for the convocation of a conference with the participation of the USSR, aimed, in essence, to a delay in time. At this conference, it is supposed to pose the main problems of the post-war problems. At the conference, the Allies will point out that this year it is too late to open a second front through France and Holland, and that the only opportunity for this time is spring 1944 of the year. The main incentive for convening a conference in Quebec was the unexpected transition of the Red Army to the offensive. ”
The information indicated in the report indicated that the draft plan of the operation had been drawn up, but its implementation was due to many reasons. In particular, the command of the armed forces of the United States and Great Britain can open a second front in Europe only when Nazi Germany is finally weakened by the war against the Soviet Union, when German troops can not provide the Anglo-Americans with serious resistance and will not be able to restrain the offensive of the allies.
In general, information about the draft plan of Operation Overlord, obtained on a confidential basis in London and Washington, was interesting for the Soviet leadership. They testified that the Allied forces were ready for an invasion, but would not start it until the most favorable situation for the war with Germany, and the Allies would demand some additional obligations from the USSR.
The information obtained was also useful in the preparation of the head of the Soviet delegation, V.M. Molotov to negotiations with the heads of US and British foreign ministries at the Moscow conference held in the Soviet capital from 19 to 30 in October 1943. In the course of negotiations with V.M. Molotov, the head of the British delegation, A. Eden, and the head of the American delegation, C. Hell, spoke evasively about preparing the landing of Allied forces on the Atlantic coast of France, made various kinds of reservations and avoided answering the question about the specific dates for the start of the invasion operation.
The meeting of the foreign ministers of the Allied Powers ended on October 30. The communiqué of the Moscow Conference stated that the Allied Powers recognized "the primary goal is to accelerate the end of the war", but the ministers could not agree on the exact timing of the opening of a second front in Europe.
In general, Moscow was pleased with the results of the meeting, which opened up prospects for negotiations at a higher level. The results of the Moscow meeting in Washington were also positively evaluated. British diplomats also appreciated the results of the Moscow meeting. Major General I.A. Sklyarov told the Center: "... in the British Foreign Office you can only hear commendable reviews about the conference and see a pleasant surprise about the friendliness and tact of the Russians."
Information received by military diplomats in Washington and London objectively covered the attitude of the governments of the United States and Great Britain to the opening of the second front and made it possible to adjust the preparations of the Soviet government delegation to Tehran.
November 12 Major General I.A. Sklyarov reported to the Center: “On November 10 cocktail I had a long conversation with the brigadier Kirkman. Speaking about the situation on the western front, I said that now is the best moment to strike at Germany from the west and thereby speed up the end of the war. When asked what point you consider most favorable for attacking Germany from the west, Kirkman replied that the collapse of Germany and its inability to conduct effective defense in the west could become such a moment. I asked him if bad weather would prevent the landing of your troops. To this he replied that in the event of the collapse of Germany, we will land our troops, no matter what the weather. ”
This is a report from Major General I.A. Sklyarov was reported to I.V. Stalin, V.M. Molotov and First Deputy Chief of the General Staff, General of the Army A.I. Antonov. It became finally clear that the Allies were ready to land their troops in France, but still waiting for an opportune moment, not connected with the fulfillment of their commitments, but most likely with the pace of advance of Soviet troops to the west and the further weakening of Nazi Germany. These messages of the military attaches were taken into account when preparing negotiations of the Soviet government delegation with FD. Roosevelt and W. Churchill on the timing of the opening of a second front in Europe.
An important condition for the adoption of I.V. Stalin made the final decision to hold a meeting with F.D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill obtained information about the position of the United States and Great Britain on the most important issues of the forthcoming conference, including the allies' position on Iran, obtained by the intelligence officers of the Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU) of the General Staff of the Spacecraft.
Tehran was chosen as a venue for the meeting of the leaders of the USSR, the USA and the UK. The territory of Iran was controlled by Soviet, British and partly American troops introduced into this country at the end of 1941 to suppress the activities of German intelligence agents, who turned Iran’s territory into a training arena for a military attack on the Soviet Union, as well as to ensure uninterrupted supplies to the USSR of US military cargo lend-lease. The embassies of the USSR, the United States and Great Britain and military attaches operated in the capital of Iran. The activity of Soviet military diplomats in Iran was led by Col. Razin B.G.
October 14 1943 Col. B.G. Razin from the General Staff of the Red Army received the following instruction: “The 182 th Mountain Regiment stationed in Tehran, apart from the rest of its division and serving with scattered garrisons, is not able to conduct systematic combat training. In connection with this, the General Staff of the Red Army decided to withdraw the regiment from Tehran to the quartering area of the 68 Mountain Division.
Another rifle regiment of the Transcaucasian Front will be redeployed to Tehran to replace the 182 Mountain Regiment. Immediately find out the attitude of the Iranians to the planned event and immediately inform. ”
Responding to an urgent request from Moscow, Colonel B.G. Razin reported: “... At present, representatives of Moscow and Tashkent have worked out a plan for the redeployment of the 182 Mountain Regiment and the arrival of a regiment from the Union.
The main part of the regiment is located in Tehran at the central airfield of Kale Morga, where foreigners are denied access. Officially, Iranians know that we have a special team in Tehran for the distillation of vehicles intended for servicing the airfield. We have taken all measures to ensure that the redeployment goes unnoticed. The Iranians were not asked this question, and the latter do not show any interest. I will follow this issue and if there is new data I will immediately inform you.
This is a report from Colonel B.G. Razin was reported by V.M. Molotov, L.P. Beria and General S.M. Shtemenko, responsible for the preparation of the Soviet government delegation to the Tehran Conference.
In mid-October, 1943, Col. B.G. Razin reported to Moscow that he accompanied Iranian Prime Minister Mohammed Reza Shah Pahlavi during his visit to the Soviet garrison stationed in Mashhad. The young monarch, who turned 1943 of the year in 22, was pleased with the meeting with the Soviet officers. At a reception hosted in his honor, the Shah declared "his sympathy for the Soviet Union and the Red Army."
All questions of arrival and accommodation in Tehran of the members of the Soviet delegation were thought out in advance and carefully. The government delegation of the USSR was supposed to stay on the territory of the Soviet embassy. At the suggestion of I.V. Stalin was stationed in the Soviet embassy and the American delegation led by US President F.D. Roosevelt.
Tehran discussions continued from November 28 to December 1 1943. During the talks, the leaders of the anti-Hitler coalition countries discussed all their concerns that affected the war against Nazi Germany, agreed on the timing of Operation Overlord, discussed the prospects for postwar Europe and the war against Japan . A common understanding was reached on a number of important issues.
In the course of discussions on the situation on the Soviet-German front and the prospects for a war against Nazi Germany, F.D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill promised I.V. Stalin opened a second front in Europe no later than May 1944. The final date for the start of the landing of the Allied forces in Normandy was to be determined in the first half of 1944.
In the course of the discussion of the forthcoming Allied invasion operation, the British Prime Minister made a proposal for joint efforts to carry out special measures aimed at misleading the German command regarding the place and the start of the landing of Allied forces in Europe. I.V. Stalin supported this proposal. A preliminary agreement was reached that the Soviet General Staff would take part in the development and conduct of this operation. The document fixing the military decisions stated: “The conference took note that Operation Overlord would be undertaken during May 1944, along with the operation against Southern France. This last operation will be undertaken on a scale to which the availability of landing craft allows. The conference further noted the statement by Marshal Stalin that the Soviet troops would launch an offensive at about the same time in order to prevent the transfer of German troops from the eastern to the western front. ” And further - the Conference “agreed that the military headquarters of the three powers should henceforth maintain close contact with each other with regard to forthcoming operations in Europe. In particular, it was decided that a plan of mystification and deception of the enemy with respect to these operations should be agreed between the respective headquarters. ”
In concluding the work of the Tehran Conference, the text of the final declaration was agreed. The declaration stated that the conference participants agreed on plans for the destruction of the German armed forces and came to a complete agreement on the scale and timing of the operations to be undertaken from the east, west and south. “Having finished our friendly meetings,” said Roosevelt, Stalin and Churchill, “we are confidently waiting for the day when all the peoples of the world will live freely, not subjected to tyranny, and in accordance with their various aspirations and with their conscience ...”.
During the meetings, I.V. Stalin and F.D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill discussed questions about the possible borders of Poland, about the future of Germany and the sovereignty of Iran.
Evaluating the course of discussions in Tehran, the head of the American military mission, Major General J. Dean, wrote after the war: “It seemed that Stalin knew exactly what he wanted at this conference.” And further: “The conference in Tehran became a triumph for Soviet diplomacy ... The British and American delegations were surprised: the British because they ran into a hostile Soviet position where it could rightly count on some support; the Americans because they came up with support, although they expected objections from the Soviet Union. ” The assessment of Major-General J. Dean, head of the US military mission, is the best evidence that Soviet military diplomats in their reports almost exactly described the preparation of the American and British delegations for the talks in Tehran and suggested tactics for discussing the main military and military-political problems.
During his stay in Tehran I.V. Stalin heard a report by Colonel B.G. Razin about his work. I.V. Stalin was interested in the general condition of the Iranian army, spoke about visiting the Shah and measures to organize tank and aviation schools in Iran with Soviet equipment and instructors. During the meeting with the military attache, the head of the Soviet government gave the following instructions: “The Shah and his closest assistants are intimidated by the English influence, but adhere to our orientation, what needs to be supported, encouraged their intentions and confirmed by our work ...”.
I.V. Stalin told the military attache that the Soviet government proposed to allocate Iranians about 20 aircraft and the same number of tanks, pointed out the need to select Iranian personnel who could be trained in the USSR.
Concluding the conversation with the military attache, Colonel B.G. Razin, the leader of the USSR said: “Look carefully at the situation and help the Iranians ...”.
The Soviet delegation left Tehran in the afternoon of December 2. Military Attache Colonel B.G. Razin accompanied members of the delegation to the airfield and reported to Moscow via radio about the departure of I.V. Stalin from Tehran.
The Soviet military attaches, operating in London and Washington, did significant work during the preparations for the Yalta conference, which took place in Crimea from 4 to 12 in February 1945. Military attaches to Major General I.A. Sklyarov, Colonel I.M. Sarajevo and Major A.F. Sizov, appointed military attache under the governments of the anti-Hitler coalition countries operating in London, prepared and sent 1944 to Moscow in January a significant number of reports, which reflected the goals and objectives of the US and British governments at the final stage of the Great Patriotic War.
In general, the activities of the military attaches' apparatus during the preparation and holding of the Tehran, Yalta and Potsdam conferences received a positive assessment from I.V. Stalin, Commissar of Foreign Affairs of the USSR V.M. Molotov and contributed to the solution during the conference of complex military and military-political problems that arose in relations between the USSR, the United States and Britain during the Second World War.
Actual problems arising during the war against Germany were also discussed at other international conferences - in Moscow, Dumbarton Oaks (Washington) and San Francisco.
Efforts of military diplomacy to organize military cooperation with the United States and Great Britain
From the very first days of the Great Patriotic War, the Soviet government, organizing opposition to the aggressor, showed interest in organizing military cooperation with the United States and Great Britain. It was extremely important for the Soviet Union to step up opposition to the Hitler forces not only on the Soviet-German, but also on other fronts, the formation of which depended on the will and desire of the governments of Great Britain and the United States.
Sending to London at the beginning of July 1941 a Soviet military mission led by the deputy chief of the General Staff of the Red Army, Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov, I.V. Stalin proposed that he discuss with the leaders of the British armed forces the possibility of opening a front in Northern Europe, in France or in the Balkans.
Visit F.I. Golikov to London and the results of his talks with high-ranking representatives of the British government and the command of the armed forces testified that in July 1941 the British leadership was not ready to discuss military cooperation with the USSR, therefore, without much interest, they considered proposals to open a second front in France or start fighting against Germany in the Balkans or in Northern Europe.
In Washington to the proposal of Lieutenant-General F.I. Golikov about the organization of joint military actions of the armed forces of the USSR and the USA in the war against Germany and its allies also reacted without much interest. The development of the situation on the Soviet-German front, which was negative for the USSR, demanded that Soviet diplomats take new efforts to find conditions that would allow organizing cooperation between the USSR, the USA and Great Britain in the military field. The leaders of the Soviet embassies in the United States and Great Britain, as well as military attaches in Washington and London were involved in this important work.
As the situation on the Soviet-German front changed, as well as after Japan’s sudden attack on the US naval base Pearl Harbor 7 in December 1941 in Washington and London, attitudes toward the idea of military interaction with the Soviet Union began to change. The parameters and directions of military cooperation were discussed by the leaders of the USSR, the USA and Great Britain in their personal correspondence, which was actively carried out during the war, during their meetings at the Tehran, Crimea and Potsdam conferences, as well as during numerous negotiations held by military attaches and heads of military missions of three leading states of the anti-Hitler coalition.
The interests of the US High Command in Moscow were represented by a military mission led by Major General J. Dean. British military mission in Moscow in 1942 – 1944 headed by Lieutenant-General G. Martel, and in 1944-1945. - Lieutenant-General MB Burrows American military diplomats in 1942 have repeatedly spoken in favor of the Soviet Union entering the war against Japan. The same urgent proposal was addressed to I.V. Stalin US President F.D. Roosevelt during the Tehran and Yalta conferences, as well as the President of the United States of America, G. Truman during the Potsdam Conference. Calling on the Soviet Union to enter the war against Japan, the leaders of the United States and Great Britain, however, did not hurry with the opening of a second front in Europe.
The first joint act of a military nature can be considered the introduction in August 1941 of Soviet and British troops into Iran. This military-political operation was coordinated by the governments of the USSR and Great Britain and conducted by the commanders of the armed forces of these countries in order to prevent Hitler’s Germany from using Iran’s territory to implement its plans in the war against the USSR and subsequently conquer British India. Despite the fact that the Iranian government 26 on June 1941 declared its neutrality, the Soviet military attaché, operating in Tehran, received information about the intensification of German military intelligence in Iran, Admiral V. Canaris’s visit to Tehran, as well as about that pro-fascist forces in Iran were preparing to carry out a coup d'état. Such a development in Iran could create a threat of the use of Iranian airfields by German military aircraft for attacking Soviet targets.
The British government was afraid of losing its control over the oil fields in Iran, which carried out the largest British oil companies. Therefore, Churchill declared it desirable, jointly with the “Russians, to conduct a joint campaign” in Iran and instructed 11 in July to the joint committee of the chiefs of staff of the British armed forces to consider the possibility of conducting an operation together with the Soviet Union in Iran. The issue was discussed tentatively by I.V. Stalin in conversations with the British ambassador S. Cripps, when assessing the possibility of deliveries of British military goods to the USSR, not only on the northern route to Arkhangelsk or Murmansk, but also through the Persian Gulf and the territory of Iran. Soviet Ambassador I.M. Maisky also discussed this issue with Winston Churchill. The Soviet government, in deciding on the entry of Soviet troops into Iran, acted on the basis of the Soviet-Iranian treaty of February 26 from 1921.
25 August Red Army troops entered the territory of Iran. The operation was attended by troops of several armies and Soviet aircraft, which made about 17 thousands of combat missions, as well as ships of the Caspian flotilla.
On the same day, August 25 1941, Anglo-Indian troops entered Iranian territory. They occupied the southwestern territory of Iran and the ports in the Persian Gulf.
The joint Soviet-British operation, which was carried out as agreed in Moscow and London, ended with the meeting of the Allied troops in the District of Sanandaj on August 29. By mutual agreement, Soviet and British troops did not enter the area adjacent to the Iranian capital. During the Iranian operation, the Red Army troops suffered some losses. In particular, 50 soldiers and officers died, more than 100 Red Army soldiers were injured. The losses of the British army were 22 killed and 45 wounded.
30 August 1941 Mr. W. Churchill in a personal secret message reported I.V. To Stalin: "With all the importance of protecting oil sources, the goal of our entry into Persia was to an even greater degree the desire to establish another cross-cutting path to you, which cannot be cut ...". Responding to the message of Winston Churchill, I.V. Stalin 3 September 1941 assessed the joint Soviet-British military operation: “Deal with Iran really turned out well. But Iran is only an episode. The fate of the war will be decided, of course, not in Iran. ” In the same letter I.V. Stalin, referring to the state of Soviet-Japanese relations, wrote: “The Soviet Union, like England, does not want war with Japan. The Soviet Union does not consider it possible to violate treaties, including the neutrality agreement with Japan. But if Japan violates this treaty and attacks the Soviet Union, it will meet with a fitting rebuff from the Soviet troops. ”
The introduction of a contingent of Soviet troops into Iran required the expansion of the activities of the staff of the military attache apparatus, led by Colonel B.G. Razin. Soviet military diplomats conducted explanatory work among officers of the Iranian armed forces with whom they had to communicate, as well as with representatives of the local authorities, explaining to them the objectives of the presence of Soviet troops in Iran.
Members of the military councils of the 44, 47 and 53 separate armies entered the territory of Iran communicated with local leadership at the locations of the Soviet troops. In accordance with the orders of the command of the occupying forces of the Red Army, all the leaders of the local government, the police and the gendarmerie, who had not resisted, were to continue to fulfill their official duties, and all economic and commercial enterprises and centers function.
The entry of Soviet troops into Iran was met differently by the local population. Therefore, in the areas occupied by Soviet troops, targeted outreach was required. It was carried out through personal interviews with the commanders of army headquarters and through the distribution of specially prepared leaflets. In general, this work had a positive impact and in the long term ensured the loyalty of the majority of Iranians to the presence of Soviet troops in their country’s territory. The start of the transfer of Anglo-American cargo along the trans-Iranian road to the Soviet Union was guarded by Soviet and British troops not so much from the Iranians as from the possible sabotage acts of special groups of German military intelligence operating in Iran.
Further military cooperation between the USSR, Great Britain and the USA was built on the basis of signed bilateral agreements and treaties, but was carried out with the overcoming of significant conventions and difficulties, both objective and subjective.
The cooperation of the USSR with the USA and Great Britain in the military field was carried out along different lines and in various forms. Its essence was to harmonize the military efforts to defeat fascist Germany on land, sea and air. In 1942 – 1943 military interaction was most actively carried out in the field of ensuring the security of northern sea lanes and convoys and conducting shuttle bombardments using Soviet military air bases. In London, Rear Admiral N.M. Kharlamov. In August 1943, he was called to Moscow for a report. During his stay in the capital N.M. Kharlamov was invited to receive IV. Stalin. During the conversation with the Supreme Commander, the rear admiral requested to send him to the active fleet. Pointing to the importance of the work that Kharlamov performs as the head of the Soviet military mission, Stalin said that his request could be satisfied only after the Allied troops landed in France. Before leaving for London N.M. Kharlamov was again invited to the Kremlin. I.V. Stalin told Rear Admiral N.M. Kharlamov, that the military mission led by him is obliged to fully facilitate the opening of the second front.
In general, being in the military diplomatic work with 1941 on 1944, Rear Admiral N.М. Kharlamov, heading the Soviet military mission in London, actively sought to "establish close cooperation with the allies of the anti-Hitler coalition, and especially with the British. Here, shoulder to shoulder with the employees of the Commissariat of Foreign Affairs, he went through all the vicissitudes of the diplomatic struggle to open a second front, "made a great contribution to the organization and maintenance of the northern sea lanes, the supply of weapons and strategic materials."
The offices of military attachés and military missions operating in London, Moscow, and Washington resolved issues related to the bombing of allies by the Allies' aircraft. Aviation units and groups of three states acted independently. The joint efforts of the General Staff of the Red Army and representatives of the main command of the United States agreed to ensure the "shuttle operations" of American bombers, departing from the bases of the Mediterranean, and their landing on Soviet airfields deployed on the territory of Ukraine, to refuel and get a new combat stock. On the return flight to their air bases in the UK, these aircraft bombed new enemy military targets. The practice of “shuttle operations” fully justified itself and, with the exception of some minor misunderstandings that arose during the negotiations of Major General J. Dean with Soviet officials, inflicted significant damage on the enemy, was approved and supported by the Soviet command. For the base of the Allied bomber on the Soviet territory in 1944, the air bases in the region of Poltava, Mirgorod and Pyritin were identified. These three settlements were almost completely destroyed during the occupation by their German troops, and American pilots could not count on any comfort. The main residence of the representatives of the American command 15 on April 1944 was placed in Poltava, where they were provided with all possible assistance by the staff of the Office of Special Assignments of the General Staff and Major General N.V. Slavin.
American and Russian soldiers very quickly overcame the language barrier, found a combination of words for daily communication. At the end of May, the 1944 airfields were fully equipped, and on the threshold of the English-American forces crossing the English Channel, “shuttle operations” of American bombers began.
Through the channel of military missions of the USA and Great Britain in Moscow, the command of the Allies for 1-2 days informed the General Headquarters of the Red Army when and which objects (settlements, airfields, transportation hubs, industrial enterprises) in Germany were planned to be bombed.
Representatives of the US and British military missions, at the direction of their headquarters, sometimes informed the Soviet command of the results of air strikes against enemy targets. For example, 28 February 1944. Rear-Admiral D. Fisher, Acting Head of the British Military Mission, and Major-General J. Dean, Head of the United States Military Mission, sent Major-General Slavin N.V. for a report to the Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army a summary report on the combined bombardment of objects by American and British aircraft in Germany. In a letter to Major General N.V. Slavin indicated that the heads of the US and British military missions operating in Moscow had received instructions from the chiefs of the joint headquarters to submit periodic reports to the General Staff of the Red Army regarding the development of the “Point Blank” and “Overlord” operations. The report indicated that in January 1944, the Allied bomber aircraft dropped 10571 tons of bombs on Berlin during six raids. As a result of these raids, “a large number of factories producing aircraft engines and aircraft parts” were put out of action. As a result of the November 1943 raids on Berlin, “photo exploration showed that it was destroyed to 4% of buildings in Berlin, and approximately 14% was seriously injured”.
Further, the report indicated that as a result of three air strikes by bomber aircraft of the US and British air forces, 4098 tons of bombs were dropped on Brunswick. The prefabricated plant that produced the final 55 assembly of Me-110 twin-engine fighters per month was decommissioned, which is about 22% of the total production of twin-engined fighters in Germany ... It is assumed that this plant will not be restored. ” The report also indicated how many tons of Allied aviation bombs were dropped on the cities of Kiel, Magdeburg, Frankfurt, Stettin and others.
The air raids on the enemy’s military facilities were particularly intensively carried out by Allied long-range bomber aircraft during the preparation for the invasion of Anglo-American troops in Normandy and during the final stage of the war. To exclude unforeseen situations in the air, the Soviet 24 command of April 1945 came to an agreement with the allies to establish a bomb-boundary line, which determined the enemy’s territory to be attacked by Soviet and Anglo-American aircraft. This line was held on the following landmarks: Warnemünde - Rostock - Güstrow - Cyrits - Brandenburg, Wittenberg, r. Elba to Melnik - Prague.
Interaction in the field of joint use of air bases was carried out in other directions. In particular, implementing the military decisions of the Tehran Conference, the State Defense Committee decided in order to assist the National Liberation Army of Yugoslavia to create a Soviet aviation group based on the Allies in Bari (Italy). The squadron of military transport aircraft intended for the transfer of military cargo for the Yugoslav Army was included in the special purpose aviation group. At the same time, the conditions for the creation at the headquarters of Marshal IB were agreed. Tito Soviet military mission.
The first was agreed on the formation of the Soviet military mission. The British Foreign Office asked the USSR Commissar for Foreign Affairs V.M. Molotov provide detailed information about the personnel of the future mission. Major General N.V. Slavin reported to London that Lieutenant-General KN Korneev V.N. was appointed head of the mission at Tito's headquarters, and Major-General A.P. Gorshkov was appointed his deputy. The second deputy is Major General S.V.
Soviet military mission at the headquarters of IB Tito was supposed to "get acquainted with the current situation and collect the necessary information for the Soviet government." About this the USSR Commissar for Foreign Affairs V.M. Molotov also reported to London. The British military mission was already operating at the headquarters of NOAU.
17 July 1944 in Moscow signed a decree of the USSR State Defense Committee on the establishment in Bari of a base and an aviation group for the delivery of cargo for the Yugoslav Army. The resolution on the creation of a special-purpose aviation group indicated that 12 Y-2 fighter jets and two U-2 communication planes were assigned to it for combat support of transport aircraft. In addition, Marshal I.B. Tito transmitted four U-XNUMX communication aircraft.
As the Balkan and Mediterranean countries were liberated from the German occupation, the scope of activities of Soviet military diplomacy in the region expanded. Where it was not possible to create military missions, representatives of the General Staff of the Red Army were sent as liaison officers to establish contacts with the leaders of the anti-fascist forces. They were supposed to act at the headquarters of the national resistance forces, to ensure, as necessary, their connection with Moscow, to solve other tasks and to assess the state and prospects for the development of the internal political situation. That is, in fact, perform tasks of a military diplomatic nature.
At the beginning of 1945, for example, Major K.P. was appointed as the representative of the General Staff of the Red Army under the Supreme Headquarters of the People’s Liberation Army of Albania. Ivanov. The reports of this officer to the Center about the internal political situation in Albania were sufficiently accurate, timely, and often used to prepare reports by I.V. Stalin. In one of the reports, for example, Major Ivanov reported to Moscow about the difficult situation in Albania and the forces that prevented the normalization of the situation in the country. “The deteriorating every day food situation and the economic dependence of the peasants on the bey, which has been preserved due to the lack of land reform until now, poses a threat of a part of the population moving to the side of reaction. The internal political situation that is being created is aggravated by the intervention of the British in the internal life of Albania, ”KP Ivanov reported. to the General Staff.
The collapse of the Third Reich, which was approaching in the spring of 1945, intensified the struggle for the division of the "inheritance" of Hitler's Germany. Therefore, in Albania, military units of the British armed forces became more active in its territorial waters. These changes were noticed and correctly assessed by Major K.P. Ivanov. Using his reports to the Center, the head of the Main Intelligence Directorate, Lieutenant-General I.I. Ilyichev reported to the Supreme Commander I.V. Stalin: “Major Ivanov reports that the provocative activities of the British do not stop in Albania and the Albanian territorial waters. At the end of January 1945, English warships near the port of Saranda, one kilometer from the coast, captured an Albanian barge carrying cargo. A few days later, the same ship seized another barge with the troops of the Albanian government and tried to disarm the soldiers and officers on it. ” And further: “Recently, a small group of English soldiers, led by an officer, tried to disembark without the permission of the Albanian government and local authorities on the coast of Albania. This attempt failed. ”
The communications officer at the supreme headquarters of the People’s Liberation Army of Albania, Major K.P. Ivanov in the spring of 1945, on the whole, objectively reported to Moscow on the state of the situation in Albania and provided, as necessary, the connection of the Albanian headquarters with the General Headquarters of the Red Army. Informational reports of Major Ivanov testified that already in the spring of 1945, the British made every effort to create a government in Albania, on which the influence of the Soviet Union would be kept to a minimum.
At the same time, Soviet liaison officers G.M. Popov and V.A. Troyan, whose presence in this country has displeased the British Foreign Ministry, as evidenced by the appeals of British Foreign Secretary A. Eden and Ambassador A. Kerr to the USSR Commissariat of Foreign Affairs of the USSR. The leaders of British diplomacy asked for information "about the sending of the Soviet mission to Greece, as well as an explanation about the sending of the Soviet mission to Albania."
Soviet ambassador to London, F.T. Gusev visited 5 on September 1944 of the British Foreign Secretary and handed him a reply regarding the arrival of Soviet military diplomats in Greece.
13 May 1944 The governments of the USSR, the USA and Great Britain have demanded that Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania and Finland cease their participation in military actions on the German side. This appeal was not immediately, but it was nevertheless noticed in the capitals of the states that were allies of Germany during the Second World War. Representatives of the governments of these states began to look for opportunities to negotiate conditions for withdrawing from the war. In such negotiations, the Soviet ambassadors took part, whose advisers were military attaches. In particular, in the capital of Sweden, representatives of the Finnish government began secret negotiations with the Soviet ambassador A.M. Kollontai, assisted by the Soviet military attache, Lieutenant Colonel N.I. Nikitushev. The first discussions did not bring positive results. But still 4 September 1944, the Finnish government announced it was breaking off relations with Nazi Germany. On September 19, representatives of the USSR and the UK signed an armistice agreement with Finland. The coalition of supporters of Nazi Germany began to disintegrate.
Acting during the Great Patriotic War in the capital of Sweden, Soviet military attache Lieutenant Colonel N.I. Nikitushev actively maintained working contacts with military attaches of Great Britain and the United States. Having established that the German command secretly uses the territory of neutral Sweden to transfer its troops from Norway to Finland and back, as well as the use of the Swedish airspace by German military aircraft, the military diplomats of the three anti-Hitler coalition states initiated their governments' efforts to ban German transit traffic. In the spring of 1944, the transfer of German troops through Sweden ceased.
After Finland left the war, Soviet military attache Lieutenant Colonel N.I. Nikitushev established contacts with the Finnish military attache and maintained a mutually beneficial relationship with him until the end of World War II.
During the war years, the apparatus of the Soviet military attache, led by Colonel Zotov SD, acted in Sofia in difficult conditions.
In January - April, 1945, Col. Zotov, S.D. sent to Moscow several important reports on the situation in Bulgaria, which were reported to I.V. Stalin and the USSR Commissar for Foreign Affairs V.M. Molotov and G.M. Dimitrov.
Hungary’s withdrawal from Germany’s allies was accompanied by many conventions and difficulties that were difficult to understand, since they were shaped by uncoordinated actions by representatives of Hungary on the one hand, and on the other by uncoordinated efforts of the Anglo-Americans pursuing their goals and representatives of the Soviet command. The officers of the headquarters of the United States and Great Britain, who was in Caserta, were the first to establish contacts with representatives of the regent of Hungary, Admiral Horthy. Seven days before the departure of the official representative of Horthy to Kazetru, US Ambassador to Moscow W. Harriman informed the Commissar for Foreign Affairs V.M. Molotov on the conditions under which the Hungarian government could conclude a truce. Moscow reacted critically to the proposals of the Hungarian side, which demanded to give time for the withdrawal of the German army units from Hungary and to preserve the Hungarian armed forces with weapons and equipment "to enable them to maintain order in Hungary and protect the country from a possible German attack." There was no doubt that representatives of Admiral Horthy, who had collaborated with Hitler throughout the war against the USSR, did not want to allow the arrival of the Red Army on the territory of Hungary.
The People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs of the USSR informed the allies that the Soviet government in principle does not object to negotiations with the representative of Hungary in Italy, if he has legal authority. Hungarian Colonel-General Istvan Nadai, who arrived in Caserta on September, did not have official documents certifying his authority. Nevertheless, the British offered the USSR and the United States to begin negotiations.
September 25 1944 on one of the sectors of the 4 of the Ukrainian Front, commanded by Army General I.Ye. Petrov, an event occurred that, as it turned out, also had to do with the problem of the exit of Hungary from the Hitler coalition. A group of Hungarians, members of the unofficial delegation of Hungarian patriots, led by Baron Edda Atsel, crossed the front line at night. Among the members of the delegation were engineer I. Dudash, publisher I. Faust and employee of a bank A. Glesser. The Hungarians arrived on the territory occupied by Soviet troops to ascertain the possibilities and the desire of the Soviet command to receive the official Hungarian delegation. The purpose of the arrival is to condemn the terms of the armistice. The members of the Hungarian unofficial delegation met with the commander of the front, Army General I.Ye. Petrov, then the Hungarian parliamentarians were sent to Moscow, where a representative of the international department of the Central Committee of the CPSU (B) met with the Hungarians.
After the end of the negotiations, the delegation of Baron E. Atzel returned to Hungary. After some time, on one of the sections of the 1 of the Ukrainian Front, commanded by Marshal of the Soviet Union I.S. Konev, the official Hungarian delegation headed by Colonel-General Farago arrived at the Soviet side. Marshal Konev received the head of the delegation, talked with him and organized the departure of the Hungarians to Moscow. October 5 negotiations began, in which the Deputy Chief of the General Staff, Army General A.I. Antonov.
During the first day of negotiations, the head of the Hungarian delegation said that Hungary was ready to stop military operations against the Soviet Union and, together with the Soviet troops, to fight against the Germans, as well as provide the Soviet troops with the opportunity to freely advance through the territory of Hungary in any direction.
October 6 1944 USSR Commissar for Foreign Affairs V.M. Molotov handed over to the heads of diplomatic missions of Great Britain and the United States a Memorandum in which he reported on the negotiations that had begun and the proposals of the head of the Hungarian delegation.
During the talks, the Soviet government proposed to representatives of the USSR, the USA and Great Britain to work out terms of a truce and, in case the Hungarian government accepts these preliminary conditions, sign them in Moscow.
Hitler and the German command did everything to prevent Hungary from withdrawing from the war, to keep the Hungarian capital and especially the oil region of Nagykanizsa. In Budapest, a coup d'état was carried out. The replacement of Admiral Horthy with the leader of the Crossed Arrows organization Salashi had an ambiguous impact on the soldiers and officers of the Hungarian army. The command of the Wehrmacht supported Salash and considered the main task of the troops of Army Group South to delay the advance of the Soviet troops in Hungary and prevent them from reaching the south-eastern borders of Germany.
On the territory of Hungary, Soviet troops met with fierce resistance from the Wehrmacht and were to conduct Budapest, Balaton and other operations. As a result, the German Army Group South was defeated, and Soviet troops were given the opportunity to begin the preparation and conduct of operations in Austria, Czechoslovakia and the provision of assistance to the Yugoslav People's Liberation Army. In the course of these operations, the communication of the Red Army command with the national resistance forces was carried out: in Yugoslavia - Lieutenant-General N.V. Korneev, in Slovakia - Major I. Violin, in the Czech Republic - Major A.V. Fomin, in Poland - Lieutenant Kolos I.A. The military-diplomatic work of these generals and officers of the Red Army, who had to act not in the capitals of foreign countries, but to maintain contact between the General Staff of the Red Army and the patriots who fought against Germany, was connected with the fulfillment of responsible tasks and was conducted in a combat situation.
While at headquarters I.B. Tito, Lieutenant-General N.V. Korneev, for example, liaised between the leader of the National Liberation Army of Yugoslavia and I.V. By Stalin. In particular, 5 July 1944, when General N. Korneev. was summoned to Moscow to report on the situation in Yugoslavia, I.B. Tito gave him two letters. One of them was addressed to I.V. Stalin, the second - to the USSR Commissar for Foreign Affairs V.M. Molotov. In the letter of I.V. I.B. Stalin Tito reported: “I assure you that the arrival of your Military Mission in Yugoslavia was of great importance for our national liberation struggle, because both our peoples and our army were even more convinced that they had the largest and most sincere people in the Soviet Union. friend Although the head of your military mission, Lieutenant-General Korneev, will report in detail to you on the state of affairs here, I still would like to dwell on a few of the most important issues ... ”.
Further, I.B. Tito presented a number of questions and suggested that they should be discussed in Moscow.
In the letter of V.M. Molotov, the leader of the Yugoslav resistance, Marshal IB Tito highly appreciated the diplomatic and material assistance rendered by the Soviet Union to Yugoslavia earlier, and expressed the hope that this assistance will be provided in the future, since “it is needed more in these fateful days than ever”, that “quickly is increasing, and if we get a weapon in time, we will have at least 10 divisions in Serbia in a short time. ”
Seeking to neutralize “the British’s attempts to restore the king’s power in Yugoslavia, at least in Serbia,” Tito informed Molotov of his intention to delay the creation of a unified government as long as possible in order to gain time to strengthen the position of the national liberation movement in Serbia, linking such opportunity "with the approach of the Red Army to the Balkans."
Lieutenant-General N.V. Korneev 9 July 1944 flew to Moscow with messages of IB Tito, addressed to I.V. Stalin and V.M. Molotov. While in Moscow, he supported the proposal to visit IB Tito to Moscow and justified the need for increased material assistance to the Yugoslav army.
The recommendations of the head of the Soviet military mission at the headquarters of the PLAA were taken into account by the Soviet government. The State Defense Committee (GKO) 7 September 1944 adopted a resolution on the expansion of assistance to Yugoslavia. In particular, it stated: “In order to improve the practical work on supplying NOAJ, better organization of training for officers and non-commissioned officers in the USSR and forwarding them to Yugoslavia, the State Defense Committee decides:“ To form a special department for NKOs of 15 military personnel and three civilian personnel. Head of CO approve Comrade. Bednyakova A.F. To subordinate SO of NPO to the head of the Main Intelligence Directorate ... ”.
Lieutenant-General N.V. Korneyev was accompanied by Marshal I.B. Tito during his visit to Moscow, which began on September 21 1944. While in the Soviet capital, I. B. Tito met with I.V. several times. By Stalin. It was agreed that the Red Army would enter the territory of Eastern Serbia and, jointly with the forces of NOAJ, take part in the liberation of the eastern regions of the country and the capital of Yugoslavia, Belgrade. It was also agreed that the Yugoslav military units would be the first to enter the capital of Yugoslavia.
The fighting for Belgrade lasted from 14 to October 20 and were fierce in nature. The first to break into the city were units of the 4-th Guards Motor-Cavalry and 1-th Proletarian NOAJ divisions. They fought for every quarter, street and house. 23 February 1945 The Yugoslav newspaper “Struggle” wrote: “We are deeply convinced that the participation of the Red Army in the war against fascism was the main condition that ensured our victory for national liberation. The participation of the Red Army in the struggle against Germany and Italy caused our popular uprising. Without this participation, it is impossible to imagine our guerrilla war. Without the struggle of the Soviet Union and its Red Army against the fascist enslavers, our uprising would have been doomed to defeat in advance. ”
In general, the Soviet military mission led by Lieutenant-General N.V. Korneyev. during the Second World War, made a significant contribution to the development of military and military-political cooperation between the USSR and Yugoslavia.
Lieutenant Kolos I.A. on the instructions of the commander of the Belarusian Front 1 K.K. Rokossovsky was sent to Warsaw, where, unexpectedly for the Soviet command in the summer of 1944, an armed uprising broke out, organized by the Polish government in exile. This rebellion was poorly organized, did not have the necessary material support from the Anglo-Americans and was doomed to complete failure. At the request of Prime Minister S. Mikolajczyk, at the same time being in Moscow and meeting with I.V. Stalin, the insurgent Poles, the Soviet government decided to assist. In order to establish the connection of the Soviet command with the 21 of September 1944 that had risen to Warsaw, Lieutenant Kolos IA flew out. He established contact with the leadership of the insurgent Poles, provided communication with the front command, coordinated the delivery of Soviet military cargo, weapons, ammunition and food by air to Warsaw, and also performed several other tasks, some of which could be attributed to military-diplomatic missions. .
Special mission I.A. Kolosa in rebellious Warsaw ended 2 October 1944 g. In 20 years in 1964 the government of the Polish People's Republic awarded Kolos I. Order of the Cross of the Brave. In 1994, the Government of the Russian Federation appropriated Kolos I.A. title of Hero of the Russian Federation.
At the beginning of 1944, military contacts between the USSR, the USA and Great Britain intensified. Implementing the military decisions of the Tehran Conference, the general staffs of the three states began final planning for strategic offensive operations on the Eastern and Western fronts. These operations were supposed to begin at about the same time and pursued a single goal — to inflict a crushing defeat on the German army and bring the victorious end of the war in Europe closer.
The Allies were preparing to conduct a strategic offensive operation "Overlord" in the summer of 1944, the purpose of which was to land Anglo-American troops in Normandy, liberate France and attack in the direction of Berlin. The Allies wanted to be the first to enter the capital of Germany.
The Soviet General Staff planned in the summer of 1944 to carry out Operation Bagration, aimed at the complete liberation of Belarus from the German troops and the transfer of hostilities in the countries of Eastern Europe.
In accordance with the military decisions of the Tehran Conference, the general staffs of the armed forces of the USSR, the United States and Great Britain were supposed to intensify interaction in the spring of 1944 and carry out "mystification and deception of the enemy" in order to introduce the German intelligence and Wehrmacht high command into error regarding the place, time and composition of forces the allies who were to take part in forcing the English Channel. Coordination of activities that were supposed to organize and conduct the general staffs in the field of disinformation of the German High Command in the spring of 1944 was carried out through the US and British military missions in Moscow. Major-General N.V., the head of the Directorate of Special Assignments of the General Staff of the Red Army, maintained contact with the leaders of these missions. Slavin. On the instructions of the British imperial general staff, the head of the military mission, Lieutenant General MB In March-April, Barrows repeatedly addressed Major General N.V. Slavinu on the organization of joint efforts aimed at misleading the enemy. Cooperation in the spring of 1944 with the head of the British military mission was clear, intense and productive. In one of his messages to Major General Slavin N.V. Lieutenant-General MB Burrows expressed his satisfaction with the work done, which, according to the British General Staff, turned out to be extremely useful during the Operation Overlord.
The head of the US military mission, Major General J. Dean, was displeased with the intensity of the preparation of the Soviet General Staff for Operation Overlord. Arriving in April 1944 in Washington, he reported on his subjective impression to the American command. The official representative of the joint headquarters of the American armed forces invited the Soviet military attache, Major-General I.М. Sarajevo and informed him about the opinion of Major-General J. Dean. On this occasion, Major General I.I. He reported to Moscow: “The head of the US military mission in Moscow, General Dean, returned to Washington and reported on the strained relations in Moscow. Dean believes that only a major change in policy towards Russians can affect the improvement of relations and working conditions. The Americans are unhappy with the large number of petty misunderstandings, some insults, the landing of their aircraft, as well as the mistreatment of American prisoners of war and wounded pilots. "
In the course of strategic offensive operations on the western and eastern fronts, cooperation along the military-diplomatic line continued. Rear Admiral N.M. Kharlamov was invited to participate in the crossing of the English Channel, and Major General J. Dean, along with Major General Slavin N.V. visited the headquarters of the commander of the Belarusian Front 3 Col. Gen. I.D. Chernyakhovsky. Summing up his impressions of the trip to the front, Major General J. Dean wrote, not without satisfaction: “The joint bombing of the Western Allies deprived the Germans of oil, therefore most of the German artillery and vehicles that we saw used horses. Thus, the Russians, with their superior motorized and mechanized weapons, managed to outperform the Germans in maneuverability with both manpower and equipment. American aid should also be taken into account. In addition to the already mentioned trucks, there were a large number of American Sherman tanks lined with German artillery fire and standing without traffic. ”
In his memoirs about a trip to the front at the beginning of July 1944, Major General J. Dean also wrote that he was introduced to the Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army, Marshal of the Soviet Union A.M. Vasilevsky and had a short conversation with him. Dean was also introduced to the front commander, Colonel-General I. D. Chernyakhovsky. These meetings made a great positive impression on the American general.
The heroes of the Belarusian strategic offensive operation were, of course, the American Sherman tanks not destroyed by German artillery, as Major General J. Dean wrote in his memoirs after the end of the war, and the Red Army soldiers and commanders and first-class Soviet-made industrial enterprises had tanks , artillery installations and combat aircraft.
The Allied forces, on the whole, successfully carried out the plan of Operation Overlord. However, at the end of December 1944 - early January 1945. they found themselves in an extremely difficult position in the Ardennes. British Prime Minister Winston Churchill on January 6 addressed Supreme Commander IV Stalin asked to organize an offensive on the eastern front in order to weaken the onslaught of the Germans in the West. The British Prime Minister wrote to Stalin: “Very heavy battles are taking place in the West ... General Eisenhower is very desirable and necessary to know in general terms what you intend to do, as this, of course, will affect all of his and our most important decisions.” Then W. Churchill wrote: “I will be grateful if you can tell me whether we can count on a major Russian offensive on the front of the Vistula or anywhere else during January and at any other points about which you may wish to mention. "
I.V. Stalin invited the Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army, Marshal of the Soviet Union, A.M. Vasilevsky. After listening to his report on plans for the conduct of the nearest offensive operations on the Soviet-German front, the Supreme Commander asked if it was realistic to start the Vistula-Oder operation ahead of schedule due to the difficult situation of the Allied forces in the Ardennes. Vasilevsky asked for an additional study of the situation on the central sector of the Soviet-German front and the conduct of additional calculations. After that, the Supreme Command decided to launch an offensive on the Vistula and in East Prussia early on 12 – 14 on January 1945.
January 7 1945 Stalin told Winston Churchill: "You can be sure that we will do everything that is possible to do in order to assist our glorious allied forces."
Fulfilling its allied obligations, the Soviet Union 12 January 1945, that is, earlier than the scheduled date, launched a new powerful offensive on a broad front from the Carpathians to the Baltic Sea. The swift advance of the Soviet troops in the western direction made it possible for the Allied command to restore the situation on its front sector and prepare for new offensive actions.
Issues of military cooperation between the Soviet Union and Great Britain and the United States were also discussed at the Crimea Conference held from 4 to 11 in February 1945. The leaders of the three powers, besides other important military and military-political issues, discussed the problems of war against Japan. The Soviet delegation was ready to discuss this issue. According to the instruction of I.V. Stalin Chief of General Staff, Army General A.I. Antonov thoroughly informed the representatives of the United States and Great Britain about the progress in preparing the Far Eastern campaign.
The question of the participation of the USSR in the war against Japan was initially discussed in 1943 during the Teheran meeting of Stalin, Roosevelt and Churchill. In Tehran, the Soviet government agreed in principle to take part after the defeat of Germany in the war against Japan in the interest of the early end of World War II.
During the negotiations I.V. Stalin and F.D. Roosevelt, which took place in Yalta 8 February 1945, agreed on the political conditions for the USSR to enter the war against Japan. It was assumed that the agreement will be agreed with the Government of China. The Soviet Union was supposed to enter the war against Japan two or three months after the surrender of Germany, preserving the existing status of the Mongolian People’s Republic, returning South Sakhalin to the Soviet Union and its surrounding islands, the transfer of the Kuril Islands, the internationalization of the commercial port of Dalniy (Dayren) with the provision of preferential interests of the Soviet Union, the restoration of the lease on Port Arthur as the USSR naval base.
The question of the participation of the Soviet Union in the war against Japan was also discussed during the Potsdam Conference in July 1945. On the eve of the hostilities in the Far East, members of the American delegation put forward a number of favorable proposals. The first of these was that the Soviet Union would allow the United States to create two weather monitoring stations on its territory: one in Khabarovsk, the other in Petropavlovsk. The second and third sentences related to the coordination of the northern border for the conduct of sea and air operations by the armed forces of the USA and the USSR. The fourth proposal concerned the creation of a liaison group to organize interaction between the Allied headquarters in the Far East. The fifth request was related to an agreement on the use of Soviet air and sea strongholds.
All these proposals were developed by the head of the American military mission in Moscow, General J. Dean. At the end of the first meeting, Admiral U. Lehi presented the list with these requests to the Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army, General of the Army A.I. Antonov.
At the second meeting, Army General A.I. Antonov told the Americans that Marshal Stalin gave President G. Truman an answer to the questions of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff. At the request of the American military, which, as it turned out, Truman did not introduce Stalin’s answers, Antonov set forth the comments of the Soviet General Staff on servicing American weather stations with a reduced number of specialists. The proposal to exchange groups of liaison officers between the Soviet and American main headquarters was approved. Lieutenant-General Derevyanko KN was appointed representative of the Supreme High Command in the Far East at the headquarters of General D. MacArthur.
During the work of the Potsdam Conference, Army General A.I. Antonov did not agree only with the request of the Americans about the joint use of strong points for the Navy and the Air Force.
American radio and meteorological stations were located where requested by Admiral W. Leahy. When the Soviet Union appealed to the US government to place similar Soviet stations on American territory, this proposal was rejected under the pretext that US law prohibits the deployment of foreign military facilities in the United States.
The meeting of the delegations of the USSR, the USA and Great Britain in the suburbs of Berlin ended on August 2.
6 August 1945. American pilot Colonel Tibets dropped the first atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima. On August 9, a second bomb from an American bomber was dropped on the city of Nagasaki.
Soviet military diplomats operating in the Japanese capital received a task from Moscow to collect information on the results of atomic bombings. In 1945, the military attache unit in Tokyo was headed by Lieutenant Colonel KP Sonin. The assistant to the military attache was captain A. Kositsyn.
The unit of the naval attache at the USSR Embassy in Tokyo was headed by the captain of the 1 rank A. Rodionov. The translator in the naval attache was Lieutenant Kikenin NP, who was fluent in Japanese.
Carrying out the assignment of the Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army, General of the Army A.I. Antonov, military diplomats, lieutenant colonel Romanov, captain Kositsyn, and lieutenant Kikenin visited the destroyed cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Somewhat later, these empty settlements were visited by the military attache, Lieutenant Colonel Sonin KP. In the reports on visits to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the officers of the military and naval attaches described in detail what they had seen, assessed the damage caused and provided the collected samples needed by Soviet scientists.
During the years of the Great Patriotic War, the military and naval attache apparatuses, operating in neutral countries: Afghanistan, Turkey and Sweden, determinedly fulfilled their responsible tasks. Throughout the war in Ankara, for example, the apparatus of the military attache, headed by Colonel Lyakhterov N.G., appointed to this post after returning to Moscow from Budapest, was active.
Being at the military-diplomatic work in Ankara, Colonel Lyakhterov N.G. maintained working contacts with representatives of military, diplomatic and government circles of Turkey, explained the foreign policy of the Soviet government aimed at achieving victory over Nazi Germany, exposed attempts of German diplomacy and military intelligence to draw neutral Turkey into the war against the Soviet Union, ensured the fulfillment of official requests as a Soviet General headquarters of the Turkish side, as well as of the Turkish High Command, who addressed various requests to the commanders Red Army.
The same tasks were solved by the apparatus of the Soviet naval attache at the USSR Embassy in Turkey, led by Rear Admiral Rodionov KK, who at the end of 1945 was appointed Soviet ambassador to Greece and headed the activities of this embassy until September 1947.
At the final stage of the Great Patriotic War, members of the military councils of the fronts, who after the expulsion of German wax from the territory of the Soviet Union liberated Austria, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Czechoslovakia and other European states, carried out considerable information and propaganda work among the local population. Members of the military councils of the fronts interacted with the local national administration, assisted them in organizing their activities, explained the foreign policy of the Soviet government, fulfilling, in fact, a wide range of diplomatic tasks, the solution of which contributed to the normalization of life in these countries.
The apparatus of the Soviet military, air and naval attache was led by highly educated officers and generals of the Red Army, as well as officers and admirals of the Navy.
Thanks to their efforts and diligence, professional approach to solving military-diplomatic tasks, it was possible to timely resolve the contradictions that arose between the military departments of the anti-Hitler coalition countries, strengthen their interaction and create favorable prerequisites for strengthening international cooperation in the military and military-economic fields.
Promotion of military-economic cooperation
During the Great Patriotic War, the Soviet government engaged in military-economic and military-technical cooperation with the United States, Britain and Canada. This cooperation was built on the basis of treaties and agreements, in the development of which I.V. Stalin, F.D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill, as well as heads of diplomatic departments of the three states, embassy staff and military diplomats.
7 November 1941. The American president, on the basis of the decision taken by the US Congress, signed a document on the extension of the Lend-Lease Act to the Soviet Union.
Washington wanted the Soviet Union to pay its bids in gold. The Soviet government expressed its willingness to do this, and 15 in August 1941 entered into an agreement under which the USSR received a loan of 10 million dollars under an obligation to transfer US 903 thousand troy ounces of gold. On October 16, the Soviet ship Dneprostroi, and on November 5 1941 - Azerbaijan delivered the first shipments of gold at 5 million dollars each to the USA.
Lend-Lease military and other materials came to the USSR along three routes: the northern, southern (“Persian Corridor”) and the Far Eastern via the Pacific Ocean. The most actively used were the southern and northern ones — more rational routes, which made it possible, as far as possible, to shorten the supply of arms, military equipment, ammunition, food and medicine to the USSR.
4,16 million tons of cargo, 184 112 vehicles and other military equipment were transferred through the Persian Corridor. 646 ocean transports, including American 614, British 20, Soviet 6 and 6 ships from other countries took part in the delivery of this mass of cargo to the Persian Gulf. German submarines destroyed American 23, English 3 and Soviet 1 transport. During the Great Patriotic War, 78 convoys were carried out along the northern route, which included 1570 transports, of which 85 died and 41 did not return to home ports for various reasons.
Deliveries of cargo along the northern, shortest route were accompanied by significant dangers that created the ships of the German submarine and surface fleets and combat aircraft, hunting for convoys and sometimes mortal blows on them. The forces of the Northern Fleet took part in the military actions in the north from the Soviet side, from the British - surface and submarines of the Royal Navy, as well as aircraft of the British Air Force. In London, Rear Admiral N.M., the head of the Soviet military mission, discussed issues to be agreed with the British representatives. Kharlamov. He successfully performed these tasks.
In his activities in London, Rear Admiral N.M. Kharlamov was guided by the instructions of the Main Naval Staff of the Soviet Navy, who, together with representatives of the British Navy, developed the basis for the interaction of British and Soviet ships in the northern waters. N.M. Kharlamov maintained constant contacts with the British Admiralty and promptly resolved with him all the questions of the organization and protection of the Allied convoys. In 1943, Rear Admiral N.M. Kharlamov happened to provide transit through the Panama Canal to five Soviet submarines from Vladivostok to the Northern Fleet. During the stay in one of the naval bases in the UK, new British equipment was installed on these boats (hydroacoustics and radar).
During the Great Patriotic War, thousands of tons of various military supplies, food and medicine were supplied to the Soviet Union under a Lend-Lease. Airplanes, armored vehicles, automobiles and other equipment occupied a significant place in these deliveries.
Under the Lend-Lease in the Soviet Union were supplied and naval equipment. Most of these deliveries were made at the final stage of the war.
In addition to ships and aircraft, the Allies set up 555 radar stations for various purposes, 329 sonars, a large number of ship engines and generators in the USSR.
The total cost of allied supplies to the Soviet Union in 1941 –1945. amounted to about 13,3 billion dollars (11,36 billion dollars from the US, 1,693 billion dollars from the UK and 200 million dollars from Canada).
Evaluating the significance of Lend-Lease for the United States, American government officials recognized that it was an unavoidable and beneficial for the United States of America form of participation in the military efforts of the anti-Hitler coalition. President G. Truman said: "... the money spent on land-lease, of course, saved a lot of American lives."
In general, the military-economic and military-technical cooperation of the countries of the anti-Hitler coalition, carried out during the Great Patriotic War, was an additional factor that contributed to the achievement of the victory of the Soviet Union in the war against Hitler's Germany. Rear Admiral N. Kharlamov, heads of the Soviet military mission in London, also coordinated efforts in this area. and Lieutenant-General Vasilyev AF, Military Attache at the USSR Embassy in the USA, Colonel I. IM Saraev, Military Attache at the USSR Embassy in Canada, Col. N. Zabotin and employees of the Soviet procurement commissions.
Exchange of information about the enemy
The cooperation of the military-diplomatic services of the USSR, the USA and Great Britain, which also included military diplomats from Belgium, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia and some other countries of the anti-Hitler coalition, in the field of information exchange about the enemy was an important direction that ensured the activities of the Allied armies in the war against Nazi Germany. This interaction was regulated by bilateral agreements and treaties, was built on a mutually beneficial basis, developed not without difficulties, but, in general, was positive, focused and productive. The main feature of cooperation in the exchange of information about the enemy was that information about Germany and its armed forces was obtained by the intelligence services of the USSR, the USA and Great Britain, which, due to the nature of their activities, did not have the right to interact with each other. Moreover, in the prewar years, these intelligence services were collecting information about the armed forces of the states whose interests they had to defend during the Second World War.
The decision of the Supreme Commander I.V. Stalin's priority in the exchange of intelligence information about the enemy was carried out mainly through the Office of Special Assignments of the General Staff of the Red Army, which was led by Major General Slavin N.V. For the first time, the question of organizing the exchange of information about Germany was initiated by the British Ambassador S. Cripps. 18 July 1941. He sent a message to the Deputy People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs of the USSR, in which he asked to transfer to the British all the correspondence of German citizens passing through the USSR.
The leadership of the USSR NKID suggested that the General Staff with the participation of the People's Commissariat of Internal Affairs prepare a list of questions for which "... it would be desirable to receive information from the British."
Such a list was prepared and transferred to the British Embassy. The list noted that I would like to receive information on “... the number, deployment and numbering of large formations of German troops actually in Germany, France, Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Norway, Italy, Bulgaria, in the Balkan Peninsula, and also in depth Western Poland, in Slovakia, Hungary and Romania. " An interest was shown in the information where new formations are being made for the German army, which shipments of German troops and weapons are noted in the direction of the eastern front and to Finland, who lead the army groups on the eastern front, what changes occur in the top commanders, where the main command rate is the armed forces of Germany and Hitler. "
Thus began the cooperation between the USSR and Great Britain in the field of the exchange of intelligence information about fascist Germany.
In 1942 – 1943 the British gave the Soviet command some information about fascist Germany, its armed forces and the new military equipment.
The exchange of intelligence information about the enemy and his plans between the USSR and Great Britain was carried out mainly through the Office of Special Assignments of the General Staff of the Spacecraft. However, in special cases, this exchange was made in personal correspondence between I.V. Stalin and W. Churchill. The Soviet and British leaders informed each other about the situation on the fronts, about Hitler’s well-known plans for them, about the plans of the operations of the German command. For example, in spring 1942, Mr. I.V. Stalin informed the British Prime Minister about plans for the German command to use chemical warfare agents against the forces of the Red Army.
Using information obtained by the Soviet military intelligence, I.V. Stalin through the Soviet ambassador in London I.M. Maisky informed W. Churchill that Germany plans to use chemical warfare agents on the eastern front. 21 March 1942 The British Prime Minister sent a private secret message to Stalin saying: “... Ambassador Maisky visited me for breakfast last week and mentioned some signs that the Germans, when trying to launch their spring offensive, can use gases against your country. After consulting with my colleagues and chiefs of staff, I want to assure you that His Majesty’s Government will consider any use of poisonous gases as weapons against Russia just as if these weapons were directed against us. I created enormous reserves of gas bombs for dropping from airplanes, and we will not fail to use these bombs for dropping on all suitable objects in West Germany, starting from the moment when your armies and people are attacked by similar means ... ”.
Further, Churchill continued: “... It seems necessary to consider the question of whether we should, at the appropriate moment, make a public warning that this is our decision. Such a warning could have kept the Germans from adding a new horror to the many into which they had already plunged the world. I ask you to tell me what you think about this, and whether the signs of preparation for a gas war by the Germans justify this warning ... ”.
“I think,” wrote Stalin in a response message to Churchill, “that it would be entirely expedient if the British Government made a public warning in the near future that England would consider the use of poisonous gases against the USSR by Germany or Finland, as if this attack had been made against England itself, and that England would have responded by using gases against Germany ... ”
10 April 1942 The British Prime Minister informed the Soviet leader: “... In early May, I will make a statement in which the Nazis will be warned about our use of poisonous gases in response to similar attacks on your country. The warning, of course, will apply equally to Finland, and it will also be mentioned, although I don’t see how we get to it. ”
Thanks to the timely exchange of information between I.V. Stalin and W. Churchill, Hitler's plans for the use of chemical agents were thwarted. On the Soviet side, the head of the Soviet military mission in London, Rear Admiral N.M., was the initiator of the exchange of intelligence information between the headquarters of the Soviet and British armed forces. Kharlamov. He established cooperation with the leadership of the British military intelligence, the heads of the main departments of the military department, the heads of the ministry of economic war, other British government agencies that had information about fascist Germany.
Rear Admiral Kharlamov was well aware that the exchange of intelligence about the enemy between the USSR and Great Britain could be carried out only on the basis of reciprocity. He often had to overcome the resistance of not only high-ranking officials in London responsible for Soviet-British military cooperation, but also in Moscow. Nevertheless, almost every month Kharlamov reported to Moscow: “... I am reporting changes in the combat composition, deployment and organization of the German army troops over the past month, according to the data of the British Ministry of War ...”.
In 1944, when Vice-Admiral N.M. Kharlamov was recalled to Moscow, before the end of World War II, the secular military mission in London was headed by Lieutenant-General A.F. Vasiliev, who continued to perform tasks in the field of information on the enemy with the British command.
In Moscow, Soviet intelligence information about the German army was received by the head of the British military mission, Lieutenant General G.-L.-K. Martel At the beginning of May 1943, for example, he reported to the Soviet General Headquarters information about the preparation by the German command of a new offensive in the area of the Kursk Bulge.
In February, 1944, Lieutenant General MB, was appointed head of the British military mission in the USSR. Burrows He also frequently asked for intelligence information about Germany at the General Headquarters of the Red Army. Burrows requests were generally satisfied without delay. Major General N.V. personally supervised their implementation. Slavin.
11 May 1944, for example, Major-General N.V. Slavin informed the head of the GRU, Lieutenant-General I.I. To Illychev, that the head of the British military mission, Lieutenant-General Barrows, addressed him with a letter in which he reported: “The Chief of the Military Intelligence Directorate of the Military Department of Great Britain 25 April received Mr. Rear-Admiral Kharlamov and Mr. Major-General Vasilyev and acquainted them with the opinion of the British General Staff on the following issues:
1. Categories of German divisions in the West and their combat effectiveness. The measures taken by Germany to supply Hungary and Romania, and its further intentions.
2. UK opinion on the ability of Romania and Hungary to resist.
3. Formation of new German divisions and divisions of its satellites, as well as future opportunities.
4. Fortifications built by Germany on the Eastern Front, in particular, on the borders with Hungary and Romania ... ".
Burrows reported to Slavin: “... the head of the Main Directorate of Military Intelligence of Great Britain believes that the General Headquarters of the Red Army may have made an opinion on these issues and has information on them, comparing them with the opinion of the British General Staff may be instructive, and the exchange of which will lead to mutual improvement of the knowledge of the enemy.
Therefore, he instructed me to contact the General Headquarters of the Red Army with the request to acquaint me with his opinion on the above issues. In addition, I would be grateful for you to familiarize me with the opinion of the General Staff of the Red Army on the following German, Hungarian and Romanian questions:
a) human resources and maximum mobilization capacity;
b) military industry;
c) raw materials;
d) food, clothing, etc .;
d) the assessment of the German divisions on the Eastern Front ... ".
By sending this letter to Burrows to the head of the GRU, Major General N.V. Slavin wrote: “... I ask you to select an officer to conduct a conversation with General Burrows. About the decision, please inform ... ".
The head of the British military mission in the USSR received detailed answers to all the questions that interested the head of the Main Directorate of Military Intelligence of the Military Ministry of England.
Recognizing that during the years of the Great Patriotic War, between the military departments of the USSR and Great Britain, intelligence information about the enemy was exchanged, it should be noted that such cooperation was episodic and was subject to many rather serious restrictions. Representatives of the headquarters of the two countries gave each other information, as a rule, in cases where personal written or oral requests were received from representatives of the military missions of the two countries.
Evaluating the cooperation of the Soviet and British intelligence services during the Great Patriotic War, we can say that, in general, it was useful, but was limited to strict requirements set forth in the secret instructions of the special services of the USSR and Great Britain.
Collaboration with the British and US military headquarters in the field of intelligence sharing of the enemy continued. In 1943 - 1944 an active role in the development of this cooperation was played by the Soviet military missions at the headquarters of the commanders of the combined forces of allies in the southern and western theaters of military operations in Europe. Major-General A.P. was appointed head of the Soviet military mission at the headquarters of the commander of the Mediterranean expeditionary allied forces in 1944. Kislenko.
By order of the Supreme Commander IV Stalin, Major General A.P. Kislenko 29 April 1945 took part in the signing of the surrender of the group of German troops stationed in Northern Italy.
Major General of Artillery I.A. was appointed head of the Soviet military mission in France at the headquarters of the allied forces in November 1944. Suslopar. He maintained contact with the Supreme Command Headquarters with the headquarters of the commander of American forces in Europe, General D. Eisenhower, and took part in the preliminary signing of the surrender of the German armed forces in Reims on May 7.
Commander of the American 5 Army, General MM Clark gives a speech after the delivery of the Soviet order to him by the head of the Soviet military mission in France at the headquarters of the allied forces, Major General I.A. Susloparovym. France,
The leaders of the Soviet military missions, while being at the headquarters of the allies, often carried out the requests of American, British, French and Yugoslav generals, passing them intelligence information about Germany, Italy, Hungary and Japan and their armed forces, which they received through the Office of the Special Assignments of the General Staff of the Red Army.
Cooperation in the exchange of information about the enemy between the general staffs of the armed forces of the USSR and the USA was less productive. In 1941, the American command was interested in the exchange of information about Germany. However, the US military representatives immediately demanded that the Moscow military attache be granted the right to visit the Soviet General Staff twice a week, where he could work with secret documents reflecting Soviet assessments of the situation on the Soviet-German front.
In Moscow, the demand of the Americans was rejected as inadequate. The Soviet side was ready to transmit to the Americans information about the German armed forces, but was against providing them with operational documents of the Soviet General Staff.
The question of the exchange of information about the enemy between the headquarters of the armed forces of the USSR and the USA re-emerged only at the end of 1943, when the Americans completed the planning of Operation Overlord. The command of the US armed forces was extremely interested in receiving additional intelligence information about Germany and its armed forces. The pragmatic approach of the Americans in the field of intelligence exchange in Germany and Japan was obvious.
In August of the same 1943, the assistant of the American military attache at the Allied governments sent a letter to the Soviet military attache to Major General I.A. Sklyarov asking him to clarify whether the Japanese had deployed the 52, 53 and 54 divisions to Manchuria. Sklyarov informed the contents of the letter of the Assistant US Military Attache to Moscow and received the following answer “... we exchange information with the Americans and the British on the German army. There is no information exchange about the Japanese army ... ”
24 December 1943 arrived in Moscow with a group of American intelligence experts headed by Major General William D. Donovan, director of the United States Central Intelligence Agency (Office of Strategic Services), OSS. The purpose of the visit is to enhance the exchange of intelligence information about Germany and Japan. During the negotiations with the USSR People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs V.M. Molotov and representatives of the Foreign Intelligence Directorate of the People's Commissariat of State Security (NKGB) agreed on cooperation between the intelligence services of the USSR and the USA.
As a result of the negotiations of Donovan in Moscow on February 4, the instruction “Intelligence Information to be Transferred to the USSR” was sent to all OSS divisions. This instruction indicated that Russia could be "transmitted the original intelligence information of the OSS, which is useful to the country waging war against Germany."
In Moscow and Washington began to prepare for the official exchange of information by representatives of the intelligence services. However, this cooperation was curtailed, and not having time to find any specific forms. The US federal bureau of investigations, E. Hoover, and several other influential American politicians spoke against USS cooperation with Soviet intelligence.
President Roosevelt sent a telegram to his ambassador William Harriman in Moscow, stating that the exchange between the USA and the USSR of representatives of the intelligence services was being postponed indefinitely.
During April-May 1944, the head of the American military mission in Moscow, Major-General J. Dean, handed over information about Germany with a total volume of more than 2 thousand pages to the heads of the Foreign Intelligence Directorate of the NKGB. This was mainly reference material. An insignificant part of the transferred materials (87 sheets) accounted for intelligence reports on specific issues.
American intelligence, without a doubt, owned a significant amount of reliable information about Germany and its armed forces. But Americans did not pass on such information to the Soviet representatives.
The exchange of information about the enemy with military representatives of other countries of the anti-Hitler coalition (Belgium, Poland, France, Czechoslovakia, etc.) was carried out more productively. In London, the organization of interaction in the information field with representatives of the Allied military bodies was carried out by Soviet military attaches, Major-General I.A. and Colonel Sizov A.F.
In 1942 Sizov A.F. did considerable work to expand his useful ties among military diplomats of the offices of the anti-Hitler coalition in London, whose territories were occupied by German troops. He established good relations with the Assistant Military Attache of Czechoslovakia, Lieutenant Colonel L. Svoboda, Polish Lieutenant Colonel S. Gano, Chief of the Czechoslovak Military Intelligence Colonel F. Moravec, Head of Intelligence Services of Belgium, Holland, Norway, France and Yugoslavia who were in the British capital. Cooperation in the exchange of information about the enemy was carried out on a disinterested basis, it was operational, efficient and high-quality.
In 1944, for example, Colonel Sizov A.F. received from Czechoslovak colleagues about 200 materials on various military and military-political issues.
The composition of the apparatus of the military attache of Colonel Sizov A.F. included engineer-captain P. Tyurin, lieutenant P. Nikonov, lieutenant of administrative service Y. Zhemchuzhnikov.
In 1944, Colonel Sizov A.F. sent 425 reports and a significant amount of documentary materials to Moscow. Many of the reports of Colonel Sizov were used to prepare special reports to I.V. Stalin, V.M. Molotov and the Chief of the General Staff A.M. Vasilevsky.
At the final stage of the war, serious problems arose in the exchange of information about the enemy between the USSR, the USA and Great Britain, which required the personal participation of I.V. Stalin in their resolution.
In March, 1945, for example, I.V. Stalin was forced to turn to US President F.D. To Roosevelt and to express the opinion of the Soviet government on the inadmissibility, without the knowledge of the USSR, that the American representatives would negotiate with the German General C. Wolf on the conclusion of an agreement on the surrender of the German forces that opposed the Anglo-American forces in Italy. The conduct of such negotiations violated the previously signed Soviet-British and Soviet-American agreements.
After the appeal of I.V. Stalin to F.D. Roosevelt in Moscow and Washington agreed on the presence at these negotiations of a representative of the USSR who appointed Major General A. Kislenko, who in late April 1945 in Caserta took part in the ceremony of signing the act of surrender of the group of German troops deployed in Northern Italy.
Supreme Commander I.V. Stalin was also forced to turn to US President FD. Roosevelt on the transfer of unreliable information about the transfer of the German SS 6 Panzer Army to the Soviet-German front by the staff of the US and British military missions to the General Headquarters of the Red Army. “In February of this year,” 7 reported on April 1944 in the city of I.V. Stalin to the American president, General Marshal gave a number of important messages to the General Staff of the Soviet troops, where he, on the basis of his data, warned the Russians that in March there would be two serious German counterstrikes on the eastern front, one of which would be sent from Pomerania to Thorn, and the other is from the region of Moravská Ostrava in Lodz. In fact, however, it turned out that the main blow of the Germans was prepared and was carried out not in the above-mentioned areas, but in a completely different area, namely in the Lake Balaton area, south-west of Budapest ... ”.
The American side tried to refute the statement of I.V. Stalin, but she did not succeed. The statements of the Soviet leader were based on reliable facts, timely obtained by the intelligence of the USSR People's Commissariat of Defense.
Thus, Soviet military diplomacy in 1941 – 1945. quite successfully carried out its main functions - communication and information. Military diplomats assisted the Soviet representatives in conducting negotiations on military, politico-military and military-economic issues, facilitated the conclusion of interstate agreements and treaties, participated in the expansion of interstate relations in the military field, organized the exchange of information about the enemy and, thus, their efforts, strengthening anti-Hitler coalition, contributed to the victorious conclusion of World War II.
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