Incendiary cocktail

Home majestically Russian war for the Soviet Union was, at least, poor. For a variety of circumstances had difficulty effectively on all fronts of the front, production and transportation. In addition, it was necessary to mobilize as soon as possible all the ability to provide decent resistance to the enemy. Because in the first weeks and months of the war in the course were a variety of ideas, including a very ordinary at first glance. A striking example of this is the kind of incendiary weapons, which is nicknamed the Molotov cocktail. Bottle with flaming liquid, with all its own simplicity was quite an effective tool against tanks and long-gun emplacements. Well, up to this time, this type of weapon enjoys a certain popularity in certain circles.

According to the most vserasprostranennoy version, throw the enemy bottles of flammable liquid invented by the Spanish Franco. During the Spanish Civil War civilian clothes, they began to fill the bottle with gasoline and do an impromptu plug of tow or rags. Before setting fire to a prominent fighter "plug" and the metal bottle with fuel in the tank republican. Once in it, bottle broke up, gasoline spill on the surface and partly sprayed in the air. Blazing rag or hemp gasoline and set fire to a pair of tank bowed flame. Because of their own strength gasoline just penetrated the inside of the tank, where the crew inflicted burns and set fire to the engine-transmission compartment. Soon after the introduction of the first Franco Molotov cocktails have adopted this idea is not only Republicans, and a huge number of states. But there is also another version about the origin of bottles of flammable liquid. If you believe the Cuban historians, the first time a bottle of kerosene in the enemy flew in 1895. Then, during the War of Independence Cuban rebels surrounded the Spanish garrison and claimed a change. In the case of continued resistance Cubans promised to apply some secret weapon. As is clear from the very fact of its introduction, the Spaniards responded negatively to the ultimatum.

In the Russian Union initially did not give attention to the Spanish tribute bottles with gasoline. Most likely, the impact was a certain distrust of makeshift weapons. Yet, already working on incendiary consistencies were continued with the newest force. Surveys were going on two fronts: the creation of special fuses for incendiary munitions and the development of hypergolic liquid fuels. According to the results of the development was proposed to adopt a little altered chemical fuse system Kibalchicha and ammunition chosen for hypergolic mixture of "KS". Chemists Kachugin A. and P. Solodovnikov been able to achieve such ratios of phosphorus and sulfur, which is in contact with air instantly incinerate flammable liquid — gasoline or kerosene. Not counting the "CN" was created a few consistencies for flammable incendiary ammunition of various kinds.

Russian soldiers and spend an anti-attack with a "Molotov cocktail" — Molotov consistency. As an educational purpose use Russian tank T-34-76.

For a variety of circumstances beginning of this production of all consistencies and ammunition for them took place only after the war began. July 7, 1941 the State Committee of Defense has issued a decree "On anti-incendiary grenades (bottles)." T-bills sought by the People's Commissariat of the food industry in terms of ambulances deployed creation liter bottles with incendiary solutions. Around this same time, are the first mention of the name "Molotov cocktail." It must be said, versions of the origin of folk names for Molotov cocktails, there are several. Some historians have attributed the title of the Finnish Russian nickname rotative-diffusing bombs ("Molotov bread box"). Other signature nod to VM Molotov under the decree of the State Committee of Defense. Still others believe that the title is missing preposition "to" and the initial term Finnish looked like this: "Molotov cocktail."

Regardless of the origin of the term, the troops went two kinds of bottles with flammable liquids. In the first poured liquid "KS", while others were filled with flammable solution number 1 and number 3. "Numbered" consistency were a mixture of gasoline, kerosene, naphtha and other oil products. Also kept their powder curing OP-2, made by a chemist AP Ions. In a certain sense, the consistency of number 1 and number 3 can be regarded as analogues of napalm, which seemed a little later. Because the "license" consistencies and water "KS" was little different: a liter of "KS" burned for about 3 minutes at a temperature of the order of thousands of degrees. Consistencies number 1 and number 3, in turn, only reached 800 ° C and burnt out about a minute. The lowest temperature and duration of burning offset the cost of production, the ability of liquids to stick to the metal and to provide combustion dense dark smoke. As mentioned above, mixture "KS" on contact with air spontaneously ignited. "Numbered" of water had no such power, so we had to make the creation of ampoules fuses. From the 2-to 4 small glass vials with liquid "KS" was attached to the bottle with a consistency number 1 or number three. On target bottle broke up, a mixture of slop, and the destruction of vials heat of the fire led to the "KS" and, as a consequence, the risk of fire flowed out of fuel. Candidate bottles with "KS" and consistency of number 1 and number 3 had bottles with conventional gasoline. To ignite their well-equip ampoules fuses. By the end of the 41th began a large-scale creation of ognesmesi "BGS", developed by chemist KM Saldadze. She was in some measure analogous to "KS" and also had the ability to fire on contact with air.

T-34 on the trials: the engine department of throwing Molotov consistency

The fall of the 41st to the troops went to the first batch of new chemical igniters that could not dangerous to use with all types of non-hypergolic liquids. Instead of water "KS" in the vial was placed sulfuric acid, salt and sweet bertoletova powder. If the damage vials mixture ignited and set fire to the surrounding pair of fuel. Compared with a fuse on the basis of "KS" such deeds were a little cheaper, and in addition it can reduce water consumption hypergolic. But it's brand new cartridge-fuse is not replaced an old and they run together until the end of the war. Another other option fuse design gunsmith G. Korobov had its own base blank pistol cartridge 7,62 x25 mm. The usual mechanism resembling a grenade detonator was attached to the bottle and at the appropriate time by the flash, which set fire to flammable liquid.

August 12, 1941 the People's Commissar of Defense IV Stalin put his signature under the "Regulations on the use of Molotov cocktails." It not only describes the main types of hand incendiary munitions and especially liquids, and needed to be done at the individual regiments and divisions of soldiers, tanks, fighter planes, which owns the disposal of anti-tank grenades and incendiary bottles
. By mid illumine incendiary bottles will not be "property" only destructive groups and appeal to them will teach the entire staff of the Red Army. Tips for using bottles were ognesmesi are ordinary: allow to approach the tank-sacrifice on a small distance (less 30 meters) and throw the bottle under the turret or the roof of the engine compartment. The then tanks still had no means of sealing the case, because at the theoretical level at least some fuel from entering the water on the outer surface of the tank could be fatal for him. Yet, to reduce the flow of ammunition and reduce the risk to personnel specifically advised to throw bottles at vulnerable places enemy armored vehicles. In addition, to reduce the likelihood of injury or death of a fighter-fighter recommended to throw the bottle out of the trench. This, of course, was much safer than going out into the open, but still a lot of soldier died from an accidental bullet or fragment caught in a bottle. In this case, a fighter instantly transformed into a living torch and fighting properties of combustible consistencies did not give him a chance to survive. Well, in the other as a combat soldier's job-tank destroyer was not easy. Although, you need to see the Red Army was still easier to fight tanks with incendiary weapons than the German fighters. The fact that Germany was not unique "Molotov cocktails" and the soldiers of the Wehrmacht in the absence of other abilities to kill a tank proposed by hand watering it with gasoline and set on fire by hand as well. It is clear that the number of destroyed so Makarov Russian armored vehicles to zero. A Russian fighters meanwhile developed new methods for the introduction of incendiary bottles. For example, you could throw a bunch of grenades under the tracks of tanks, this immobilize it and put the lid on the bottle prominently on the engine compartment. Naturally, it sought a good hit and uncommon courage. Either way, regardless of the method used, the most experienced soldiers, tanks, fighter squandered one armored vehicle at least 5 bottles. And the loss was large. Used the incendiary bottles and guerrillas. But the difficulties in the supply did not allow them extensively use these weapons. Most of the bottles for all that has been spent during the Partisans organizations sabotage and ambushes. Fundamentally the use of the guerrillas "Molotov cocktails" is not quite different from the introduction of combat units.

Two wrecked Ferdinand of 654 battalion headquarters company. Station area Ponyri, 15-16 July 1943. Left staff "Ferdinand» № II-03. The car was burned with kerosene bottles consistency after a shell in her damaged chassis.

Red Army soldier's resourcefulness spawned not only new ways of throwing the bottle. The fall of the 41st of Moscow "Molotov cocktails" were first used as fire bombs. Russian engineers were "complete" mines Molotov consistency. So, next to an antipersonnel mine was below one bottle, and by the anti could "attached" to 20. With the explosion of mines defeat the enemy happened shock wave, shrapnel and expanding flammable liquid. In addition, such a combined blast mines rendered and psychological impact — hardly anyone could stay flegmantichnym a fiery pillar height of 10 meters. With the explosion of anti-personnel mines with 2 dozen bottles of flaming mixture to scatter over the area of 300 sq.m.

By late summer, the 41st was invented by another other method of using bottles with "KS" or other solutions. Now he touched throwing. Gunsmiths made a special rifle and mortars that using blanks and wood-piston wad sent a half-liter bottle at a distance of about 80 meters. During the Battle of Moscow commanders tried to equip every small office with one or two such mortars. Unfortunately, the wide spread of new means of propelling prevented by the fact that the fire had been applied far not all the bottles, and only the strongest. In the unlikely event of non-glass mortars flew ordnance and debris and the jet of fire.

Over Lofty Russian war and the gradual configuration of the situation at the front, with a gradual transition to the Russian Union initiative urgency "homemade" incendiary weapon in the form of a bottle with a flame mixture began to diminish. Well, defense companies over time could make the mass production of more severe and non-hazardous manual ammunition. Because since 1943, the issue of "Molotov cocktails" was lowered until it headed for its own minimum. Until the end of the war, the creation of incendiary bottles lasted even the smallest amounts, for example, than in 1942. After the victory of the creation of such incendiary ammunition was stopped and more than not renewed. Over the years majestically Russian, according to available data, using bottles ognesmesi destroyed about 2,500 armored vehicles, 1,200 long-gun emplacements, 2500 bunkers and other fortifications, about 800 vehicles, 65 warehouses and several thousand soldiers and officers.

Soon after the end of the second World War, their version of "Molotov cocktails" were removed from service and other countries in which they were. The last "blow" to the use of Molotov consistency as a means of making anti-rocket-propelled grenades, have still a great reliability and the ability to defeat enemy armored vehicles. Bottle of flammable liquid just could not stand konkurentnst with them, so that out of the consumer even in the armies of the Third World.

Based on:
AN Ardashev Flame-incendiary weapon. — M.: "Astrel", 2001

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