Military Review

German mission of General Petrov

20



After the signing of the Nonaggression Pact by the USSR and Germany in 1939, an agreement was reached on a trade and economic agreement between the parties. In exchange for certain types of raw materials, the Germans pledged to supply industrial equipment, modern machine tools, machines, models of military equipment, including aviation.

At the end of October 1939, a group of specialists led by I.F. Tevosyan. It consisted of aircraft designers A.S. Yakovlev and N.N. Polikarpov, director of the plant P.V. Dementiev, First Deputy People's Commissar, Specialist in Engine Engineering V.P. Balandin, as well as the designers A.D. Shvetsov, V.P. Kuznetsov, test pilots S.P. Suprun, I.F. Petrov. The group was led by General A.I. Gusev. The delegation had to become familiar with aviation technology and purchase the most interesting samples for studying or equipping domestic enterprises.

One of the first Soviet delegation was received by German Deputy Minister of Aviation Colonel-General Udet. It was a very famous pilot. During the First World War, he, like Aviation Minister Hermann Goering, became a recognized ace. Udet was still flying; by that time he had just set a new world speed record on a Heinkel plane, and as Goering’s deputy he was in charge of the technical part of the Luftwaffe.

General Udet made a good impression on the delegation from Moscow. He promised to show all the military equipment of Germany - and aircraft, and engines, and the latest aviation equipment. At the airport Ioganistal near Berlin, our specialists have really seen a lot of combat equipment of the Luftwaffe: dive bomber Ju-87, twin-engine bomber Ju-88 and Do-215, fighter He-100, Bf.109, Bf.110,-reconnaissance aircraft FW-187.

The Germans did not hide anything. The Soviet delegation was given the opportunity to get acquainted with the serial production of combat aircraft, as well as with the technological equipment of factory workshops. Our specialists visited Heinkel Aircraft Plants in Rostock, Junkers in Dessau, Dornier in Friedrichshafen, Messerschmitt in Regensburg and Augsburg, Focke Wolfe in Bremen, Henschel in Schönefelde. Daimler Benz motors were shown in Stuptart and Bisdorf, Junkers in Dessau, BMW in Munich. The Germans did not even hide the factories supplying components and equipment for aircraft and motors: Bosch in Stuttgart, Schwartz in Berlin, Junkers in Magdeburg, Karl Zeiss in Jena, Scania Werke in Berlin and many others . As a result of the inspection of the factories and enterprises, our delegation was able to familiarize not only with the existing structures of combat vehicles, but also with the prospects for their further development.

“After returning to Berlin, the Soviet delegation, as originally promised, again received Udet,” recalled A.S. Yakovlev. “However, after the tactless statement of General Gusev that the aircraft shown to Soviet specialists are obsolete and not of interest, the attitude of the German Deputy Minister of Aviation has changed dramatically.” Udet with a sharpness in his voice said that he was an officer, and was responsible for his words, and if representatives of the delegation did not like what they were shown, then no one forces them to buy. So our specialists returned to their homeland.

In the March days of the fortieth year, a decision was taken to send a second trade and economic delegation to Germany. Ivan Fedorovich Petrov recalled that just before his departure, Stalin summoned him to the Kremlin. Ivan Fedorovich had just become an assistant to the head of the Air Force Research Institute, and was sent to Germany as deputy head of the aviation group. Stalin identified Yakovlev as the leader, with whom Petrov was at that time at the leader’s reception. Alexander Sergeevich appealed to Stalin with a request to increase his daily allowance to sent comrades. He said that our specialists in Berlin and in other cities live in bad hotels, save money on transport, on tips, and thus compromise themselves abroad. Stalin phoned Mikoyan, asked how many Soviet seconded employees receive daily subsistence allowance, and upon learning that he had twelve marks, he suggested that they increase to twenty-five.

The team leader thanked Stalin for his support and immediately resolved another problem. The fact is that the bureaucratic system of the state, being improved from year to year, before the war looked already fully established. For example, they decided to buy planes from the Germans. The application is written to the trade mission, it makes a request to Moscow, to the People's Commissariat of Foreign Trade, which will send the application for an opinion to the People's Commissariat of the aviation industry and to the Air Force Directorate. There, in order to solve something, they should think, and this dragged on time. Yakovlev asked Stalin for the permission of the delegation to purchase on the spot what would be deemed necessary under his responsibility. Stalin agreed and asked how much it would take for such purchases of currency. “Thousand one hundred, maybe two hundred,” Alexander Sergeevich modestly estimated. Stalin immediately called Mikoyan again and ordered to allocate one million marks to the delegation. When used up, another million.

The Soviet representatives at that time bought a lot of valuable and necessary aerodrome equipment, all-terrain vehicles, small-sized group cars, technical literature. Ivan Fyodorovichi recalled that they had acquired even the technical process of producing Kullman’s drawing boards. Only half a million marks were spent on everything.

And to Petrov himself, on the eve of his departure for Germany, Stalin gave a personal task. He asked to do as much as possible - to implement the consent of the German side to sell us aircraft and engines. When inspecting the aircraft, it was necessary to determine the German industrial potential. Stalin stressed that it is very important for us to find out how much Germans can produce combat vehicles per day, in wartime.

The already difficult task received by Petrov was complicated by the fact that none of the Soviet delegation was left alone for a minute. Constantly someone from the representatives of the German side accompanied, not giving the opportunity to exchange views or write something down. To I.F. Petrov was first escorted by the colonel of the Gestapo, and then the general was added. Ivan Fedorovich explained such attention to his person by the fact that in those days a decree was introduced in the Soviet press introducing the military rank of general in the Red Army. Among the first 16 people to whom this title was awarded was I.F. Petrov. Pravda placed portraits of sixteen. The Germans were silently silent about the assignment of lampas to an ordinary engineer of TsAGI, as Ivan Fedorovich presented in the delegation’s documents, but the Gestapo general was assigned to him nevertheless. Germans are pedantic people.

219 aviation points inspected the members of the delegation on that trip. More than 200 telegrams were transferred to the Kremlin. After visiting the main aviation enterprises of Germany, P.V. Dementiev, A.S. Yakovlev, N.N. Polikarpov and most of the other members of the aviation group returned to Moscow, and Alexander Sergeyevich entrusted all his care in purchasing and dispatching combat vehicles to his deputy. Petrov, test pilot S.N. Suprun, engineer of the USSR Trade Mission in Germany V.K. Mikhin and translator N.N. Perlova.

German mission of General Petrov


Ivan Fedorovich met Udet, Willy Messerschmitt and Heinkel again. Udet took an interest in the impression made by the German aircraft industry on the Soviet delegation. Petrov replied that the Germans had a powerful industry, at a modern high level, and, apparently, was capable of fulfilling any plans it had set. Udet pondered, then said: "But we have great difficulties with the plan ... The problem is the absence of metal." But the German leadership, according to Udet, confuses little because it expects a lightning war to last for no more than three months. Therefore, plans have been developed for the coming 2-2,5 of the month, and according to them, during the war period in Germany, 70-80 combat aircraft will be produced daily. And then everything will be determined by war and metal. As you can see, it was about increasing the production of aircraft to 70 — 80 copies per month (in the event of the beginning of the war with the USSR) and for a limited period of 2 — 2,5 months. That is, in fact, the German aircraft industry did not produce as many cars, and if it reached this level, it would be able to maintain it for a long time.

The next meeting was with Willy Messerschmitt, who was not too favored by the Russians. A member of the Nazi party, he did not build any special illusions about friendship with the Soviet Union and, when it came to his new plane, the Messerschmitt-209, did not immediately show this car. She has not been brought yet. Russian engineers expressed their opinion to the designer, and then Willy Messerschmitt, tall, thin, discharged a short queue: “I do not like it ?! But, in my opinion, the opinion is a great car! ”



The first plane Ivan Fedorovich Petrov decided to buy from Heinkel. "Non-100" was at that time the fastest fighter in the world. The Germans bargained with our delegation in the office of the chief designer, determined the price of the car and went to the airfield to touch the goods with their hands. Stepan Suprun sat in the cabin, professionally inspected the instruments, control of the aircraft and asked Petrov to check it. Ivan Fedorovich listened Supruna, I realized that the tester figured out in an unfamiliar machine. And both have already asked the Germans permission to start. At the airport they ran, began to fuss. Representatives of the company were not recommended to demonstrate this car in flight. Half an hour later, they approach and declare that there is a strict Goring instruction, according to which only those pilots who have undergone three-month training on this aircraft are allowed to fly on Non-100. The Russian delegation began to explain that Suprun was a test pilot, that he had no price, and what kind of training was there for such an air master ... Company representatives again began to fuss. Half an hour later, a new demand is announced that for the permission it is necessary to pay the full cost of the aircraft - should that ... Petrov signed the corresponding document.



Time is ticking, but the plane is not being towed onto the runway. After a long wait, Ivan Fyodorovich was personally brought a letter, which informed that in the event of a disaster the company was not responsible for the life of the pilot. And this obligation Petrov also signed. Suprun, of course, did not show - not such psychological tests before the flight. After all, the Heinkel was finally pulled onto the runway. Stepan flew into the air and spun aerobatic flying over the airfield.

When Suprun landed, the German pilots rushed to the car, pulled Stepan out of the cabin and carried him to his dining room. The owner of the company Heinkel, according to the memoirs of Petrov, still a strong old man, gave a real banquet there. The famous aircraft designer was so excited about the flight that a Russian pilot had just demonstrated on his plane that he offered to salute him with crystal glasses. The Germans pulled a thick sheet of aviation plywood and, after each toast, emptied wine glasses flew into that wall. By the end of the banquet, a whole slide of broken Bohemian crystal had grown. A lot of good words were then said to the Russians. Heinkel sang a song about Stenka Razin. “I really love Russians. My long-cherished dream is to personally visit Russia, ”the owner of a well-known aircraft manufacturer repeated to Ivan Fedorovich several times. But to visit Heinkel in Russia was not possible. It will take a little more than a year, and Heinkel battle vehicles, loaded with bombs, will head for the east.

Based on the estimates of the aviation group, it was then decided to purchase five Non-100, Bf.110 and Bf.109E fighter aircraft, as well as Ju-88К1 bombers (diving version), Ju-87, and Do-215 fighter planes - two cars each. The experienced Do-217 bombers and the FW-190 fighter decided not to purchase because they were still in the testing phase.

Ivan Fedorovich remembered that Stalin personally punished him, and figured out the possibilities of the German industrial potential. His calculations coincided with the figures voiced by Udet on the 70-80 aircraft per day. Returning to Moscow, Petrov made a message and gave his calculations at the board of the People's Commissariat of the aircraft industry. The colleague was led by the people's commissar A.I. Shakhurin. After the message, he closed the meeting and called the secretary of the Central Committee of the CPSU (b) G. M. Malenkov. There was an order to immediately come to him. As soon as Petrov entered the office, Malenkov asked Petrov to confirm the calculated figure. Then he dialed Stalin and reported to him. Naturally, the judgment of the results of a trip to Germany to Stalin was more appropriate to hear not in someone else's program, but from the one who was given the task. So after the call to Stalin, Malenkov, Petrov and Shakhurin went to his dacha. Stalin, listened to the brief report of General Petrov. Shahurin was tense during the entire meeting. His reaction was understandable. After all, at that time we only produced 26 combat aircraft per day, and, accordingly, the correlation with the German aircraft industry 80: 26 clearly did not speak in favor of the leaders of the aircraft industry.

After listening to the report and reviewing the calculations, Stalin told Malenkov that it was necessary to deploy our aircraft industry to produce daily combat aircraft no less than the Germans, that is, on 70-80 machines per day. A few days after this meeting, Stalin, along with Peter Vasilyevich Dementyev, the future minister of the aviation industry, inspected several aircraft factories. At two factories, General Petrov was with them, and he recalled that while visiting Plant No. XXUMX, Stalin suddenly turned to him: “What is Soviet power, you know?” Petrov confessed how he began to grind something from memorable academic formulations. And Stalin listened, listened, then hopelessly gave up and said: “If there is any problem that does not contradict the laws of physics, mechanics and chemistry, and its solution is necessary for the Motherland, then it will be solved. That's what Soviet power is. ” Dementiev immediately took advantage of the right moment, indicating that to solve the aviation issue, additional production areas, machines, people are needed. “Of course, we are needed,” Stalin agreed. “There, just across the room, sit down and write everything you need, and pass it on immediately to me.” Thus ended the secret mission of General Petrov.

There are several evaluations of the results of the report by Ivan Fedorovich. As we see from his data, the Germans could produce 2100-2400 airplanes monthly, and for a year - 25000-28000 winged cars. According to the same data, our capabilities were 780 machines per month and 9350 per year. Those. the ratio was 1: 3 in favor of Germany. If we take these conclusions as a basis, then the conclusion about the catastrophic situation of our air force and aircraft industry is suggested. However, evidence suggests otherwise.



It turns out that Petrov misled the country's leadership. On the one hand, it initiated the further development and expansion of the production capacity of the Soviet aviation industry, which bore fruit in the war years. On the other hand, the result of the influence of the “German factor” was the fact that the Soviet aviation industry was spending multiple resources to eliminate, as it turned out, a non-existent quantitative lag, producing airplanes of outdated structures in large volumes, but increasing the quantitative index required by management. Therefore, to give an unambiguous assessment of the results of the secret mission of Petrov is impossible today.

Sources:
Stepanov A. Mission of General Petrov // History aviation. 2001. No.2. C. 38-46.
Petrov I. I performed the task of Stalin // Motherland. 1992. No.5. C. 32-34.
Petrov I. I consider it my duty to tell // Inventor and rationalizer. No. 4 C. 28-34.
Gribanov S. The Secret Order of Stalin // Civil Aviation. 1993. No.8. C. 36-37.
Shahurin A. Wings of victory. M .: Politizdat, 1990. C. 102- 106.
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  1. Basil50
    Basil50 8 December 2015 07: 05 New
    +2
    The author lied, a * loan * agreement was concluded, within the framework of which the procurement of German goods was carried out, and the loan was paid for with raw materials. The fact that some representatives of the SOVIET UNION treated dishonestly their duties or respected their own interest, it became known and they were asked for an answer. It was later, under Khrushchev, they declared everyone, Chokh, victims of repression, so they are still considered * victims *.
    1. zenion
      zenion 22 October 2016 21: 22 New
      0
      He worked in Sverdlovsk at the factory. In the workshop where I worked there was a German lathe. How beautiful it was. It was released in 1939. But they could not work on it during the war. There were many such machines, but then they were sent to scrap. It turned out that they were weak. It was impossible to replace the motor there. The best were the Soviet machines DIP-200 and DIP-300. They shook, but pulled. They were certainly ugly, but did everything for the front. There was another trouble in German. The power switch was on the right side of the caliper, and the boys were all right-handed. The leftists worked on German, small parts, but mainly on DIPs. It was made for righties.
  2. V.ic
    V.ic 8 December 2015 07: 50 New
    +5
    The article is confirmed again талант Stalin = leader who saw the bottlenecks better than other specialists.
    1. sherp2015
      sherp2015 8 December 2015 08: 52 New
      +4
      Quote: V.ic
      The article once again confirms the talent of Stalin = a leader who saw "bottlenecks" better than other specialists.


      In any case, the agreement with the Germans, the supply of equipment and technology made it possible to pull up our industry, destroyed after 1917
    2. veteran66
      veteran66 8 December 2015 19: 55 New
      +1
      Quote: V.ic
      The article once again confirms the talent of Stalin = a leader who saw "bottlenecks" better than other specialists.

      Yeah, Glory to Comrade Stalin - the best friend of Soviet aircraft builders! Understood, we must pay tribute to him, Stalin in these subtleties, just with the help of experts, and having such administrative leverage, as they say now, still would not solve such problems. There is no need to make an infallible idol out of him, in Russia there have always been smart and talented people, but not everyone had such opportunities.
      1. Alf
        Alf 8 December 2015 22: 49 New
        +3
        Quote: veteran66
        Yeah, Glory to Comrade Stalin - the best friend of Soviet aircraft builders! Understood, we must pay tribute to him, Stalin in these subtleties, just with the help of experts, and having such administrative leverage, as they say now, still would not solve such problems. There is no need to make an infallible idol out of him, in Russia there have always been smart and talented people, but not everyone had such opportunities.

        An indicator of an excellent leader is the ability to find professionals and place them in the right posts. Stalin possessed this talent to the fullest.
        1. veteran66
          veteran66 9 December 2015 21: 27 New
          0
          Quote: Alf
          the ability to find professionals and place them in the right posts. Stalin possessed this talent to the fullest

          then he exchanged these prohvesionaly like pawns, shooting through one. This is such wisdom, but, in my opinion, ordinary natural selection. Or did Stalin know nothing again?
          1. Alf
            Alf 9 December 2015 23: 00 New
            0
            Quote: veteran66
            then he exchanged these prohvesionaly like pawns, shooting through one.

            And how can a person be checked? Put. Did not cope. Stripped off. So one, the other, the third, and the fourth-hop, turned out to be the one who is needed.
            Here, for example, is a list of finance ministries under Stalin and the years of their work. Zverev turned out to be the best, he taxied USSR money for 22 years, from the 38th to the 60th year
      2. MrK
        MrK 9 December 2015 00: 12 New
        +1
        Quote: veteran66
        There is no need to make an infallible idol out of him, in Russia there have always been smart and talented people, but not everyone had such opportunities.


        You're right. Of course, you do not need to do an idol. Only today, something is not visible the results of the work of smart and talented people, even with the capabilities of Stalin.
        1. Basil50
          Basil50 9 December 2015 12: 56 New
          +1
          An idol from AND IN STALIN is made by * democrats * and other * tiligents *. Criticism only increases respect for AND IN STALIN. Likewise, they increase respect for AND IN STALIN and all subsequent * statesmen * figures.
        2. The comment was deleted.
        3. veteran66
          veteran66 9 December 2015 21: 29 New
          0
          Quote: mrark
          Only today, something is not visible the results of the work of smart and talented people, even with the capabilities of Stalin.

          Does anyone in our state have Stalin's capabilities? You try to drive hard workers to work at least out of hours)))
      3. zenion
        zenion 22 October 2016 21: 24 New
        0
        He was not an idol, he was the leader of a vast country.
  3. qwert
    qwert 8 December 2015 10: 13 New
    +1
    “In exchange for certain types of raw materials, the Germans pledged to supply industrial equipment, modern machine tools, machines, models of military equipment, including aviation.”

    Quote: Vasily50
    The author lied, a * loan * agreement was concluded, within the framework of which the procurement of German goods was carried out, and the loan was paid for with raw materials.


    Personally, I don’t see where anyone lied here. Or did you just specify the settlement procedure, that this was done through a loan? Well, perhaps this nuance is important for a bank employee. And for me, one thing is so important. We give them raw materials, they give us equipment and machinery. It would be possible to delve deeper into the topic of raw materials, for example, Mukhin wrote well what kind of illiquid we sent to Germany. Grain-feed, ore, such that they themselves could not enrich. Can. But the article is not about the Pact and not about the trade and economic agreement. There are separate articles about this. Here the essence is different, it seems that Petrov adjusted the calculations to what Udet said to him. And really misled Stalin. Although such an option is possible. Stalin needed to step up industry and the people's commissars. And here the numbers that Petrov voiced were in the subject. Maybe it was conceived? what
    1. Basil50
      Basil50 8 December 2015 10: 28 New
      0
      Causation is important for understanding the event. First, the Germans allocated a loan, which began the purchase of goods in Germany, and only then, raw materials went into payment. And with figures, a statesman has no right to cheat.
      1. WUA 518
        WUA 518 8 December 2015 10: 52 New
        +4
        The author wanted to write an article on the He-100. A very interesting plane turned out to be.
    2. The comment was deleted.
    3. Alexey RA
      Alexey RA 8 December 2015 14: 50 New
      +1
      Quote: qwert
      Here the essence is different, it seems that Petrov adjusted the calculations to what Udet said to him. And really misled Stalin.

      If you carefully read the article, you will see that Petrov gave production figures based on German potential. I.e, potentially Reich could make 70-80 cars a day. And no one could guarantee that the Germans would not increase output to these values ​​by the time of the war with the USSR. So it was necessary to plan our production for the future big war on the basis of these figures of enemy production.
      Moreover, the numbers of the German industrial potential actually turned out to be real - the Germans reached this level of production in 1943-1944.
      Speer come, put things in order! smile
  4. Alexey RA
    Alexey RA 8 December 2015 13: 55 New
    +3
    It turns out that Petrov misled the country's leadership. On the one hand, this initiated the further development and expansion of the production capacities of the Soviet aviation industry, which paid off in the war years. On the other hand, the result of the influence of the “German factor” was the fact that the Soviet aviation industry spent multiple resources to eliminate, as it turned out, a non-existent quantitative backlog, producing large-scale aircraft of outdated designs, but increasing the quantitative indicator required by the leadership.

    In fact, Petrov did not mislead the leadership. He voiced German industrial potential - that is, the estimated number of cars produced subject to the mobilization of industry. And these figures were achieved under Speer. And before that - the Germans themselves are evil Pinocchio. laughing
    Actually, the same picture was with tanks - our estimates possible German release 1941 coincided with actual production in 1943-1944.

    And the scoring of these figures was played for the domestic aviation industry rather a positive role than a negative one. Because it was precisely because of them that the mobilization of the aviation industry and its allies began before the war. Yes, at first there were not enough personnel, machines and tools. Yes, the marriage has risen sharply. But the NKAP managed to launch production in general and at least somehow educate workers before the war - albeit on older models.
    Now imagine that all this would have to be done during the war - with its evacuation.
    1. Amurets
      Amurets 8 December 2015 16: 12 New
      0
      Quote: Alexey RA
      Because it was precisely because of them that the mobilization of the aviation industry and its allies began before the war. Yes, at first there were not enough personnel, machines and tools. Yes, the marriage has risen sharply. But the NKAP had time to draft production and to somehow train the workers before the war - albeit on older models.
      Now imagine that all this would have to be done during the war - with its evacuation.

      But mobilizing skilled workers in the defense industry to the front still harmed production. And there are many references both in the memoir and in the documentary literature to how to divide the technological process into smaller operations in order to do without highly skilled labor. The advantage of the NKAP was that half of the factories are - I didn’t have to evacuate, because from the very beginning they were in the rear.
      1. Alexey RA
        Alexey RA 8 December 2015 17: 46 New
        +2
        Quote: Amurets
        But mobilizing skilled workers in the defense industry to the front still harmed production. And there are many references both in the memoir and in the documentary literature to how to divide the technological process into smaller operations in order to do without highly skilled labor

        That's right - and it was. But the ambush is that the process of mobilizing and leaving to the front of qualified specialists in 1941 would have been anyway.
        Now imagine the picture: the aircraft industry drives 1941-25 cars a day until June 40. And then the war. As in real life, in June 1941, specialists from aircraft factories began to partially go to the front, and partially to remain - in the same percentage. But the ambush is that with the release of 25-40 cars these specialists at the plants will be numerically smaller. That is, fewer specialists will remain numerically. Which will need to not only train new workers, but also urgently increase aircraft production to those very 70-80. Not just urgent - but extra urgent, because we need airplanes "like bread like air". And also - somewhere to look for equipment and tools for all these workers (in 1940 it turned out that even hammers were not enough).

        If Petrov had not voiced his figures in 1940, then the mobilization of the aviation industry, which in reality was spread for a year and a half, would have shrunk to six months of the war. And the first and most difficult stage of the initial training of personnel and equipping them would have to be carried out not in the greenhouse conditions of peacetime, when the plan and marriage were not so critical, and the necessary equipment and tools could be bought in extreme cases from the same Germans, but in the war . And in its most difficult first six months, when you could count only on yourself.
        Roughly speaking, without the Peter mobilization, the whole marriage that the aircraft factories had driven in 1940, they would have thrown to the front at the beginning of the war.
      2. Alf
        Alf 8 December 2015 22: 53 New
        0
        Quote: Amurets
        But mobilizing skilled workers in the defense industry to the front still harmed production.

        In the 41st year, the country's leadership was faced with a dilemma — either qualified specialists run with a mosquito or they either stand at a machine tool with a German supervisor or, even worse, pass under a gate with the inscription “Arbayt makht fry”. As soon as the situation stabilized even a little, specialists began to be withdrawn from the front.