Summer 1942 — the most severe and most alarming summer war. Most of our people it is clear that at this time the fate of the country. The Battle of Stalingrad began prince, but for some reason not many people know that there was another battle, the significance of which is so to this day to end and not appreciated — a battle for Voronezh. About her for some reason only in passing from time to time our famous generals mentioned in his memoirs, and less than that is not particularly favor fighting for his attention Voronezh and our historians, perhaps because of the fact that the coming of the enemy in this direction was a complete surprise to most Supreme Command, it is assumed that, like last year, the coming of summer unfold on the central front in the direction of Moscow.
But in the end everything turned out in front, at the end of June, own the brunt of the enemy struck just at the junction of 2-Russian fronts Bryansk and South-West, Army Group von Weichs started coming to the forces of Voronezh German 2nd Army, the Hungarian 2nd Army and 4th Panzer Army. With all this 4th Tank army Gotha acted as the main striking force of the grouping. Operation codenamed «Blau» commanded by Field Marshal von Weichs. Voronezh was a major turning point of German connections to the south, is also the main base with which supposed to provide flank cover the basic strategic direction of the entire military campaign in 1942 in the direction of Stalingrad.
From the first day or coming in during the first week of the German air force once daily mass raids were carried out specifically on himself Voronezh, the stories emerging from the nightmare of witnesses, bombarded the city with devilish precision and it’s not surprisingly, as far been Lipetsk, where in the late 20 ‘s future Luftwaffe commanders paid to have learned the Red Army airfields military aviation science, so that the area that was very well known to them, and without topographic maps.
As a result, at the end of the first week of the coming of the Germans as early as July 6, went to the river Don, due to the fact that the main bridge across the Don in Semiluki by someone’s negligence was not blown up while the Germans without much difficulty forced the primary water barrier and burst into streets of the town. Voronezh to defend the initial stage street fighting against such armada while in the main fighters had several regiments and battalions of the NKVD, and local militias from among civilian officials, on the outskirts of the town also defended portion 232 DM, which stretched its defense on the front of virtually 80 km. Yet the city did not give up on the streets turned violent street fighting, the battle in the streets of the town continued to be involved and separate the waste of the Southwestern Front, also reserves hastily thrown into the battle right to the wheels.
Realizing the seriousness of the situation, the Russian command all the same could pull up to Voronezh part of the retreating 40th Army, 60th Army, 5th Panzer Army and the newly formed Tank Corps. Languid tank battle took place on the outskirts of the town, where, faced with the best infantry and tank formations enemy, our troops have suffered the loss of languishing and eventually a massive counter-offensive operations of the Red Army of success, as annoying as it sounds would not have had. The bill bruised on both sides went on many machines weave, glow fighting reached such bitterness that died in battle not only the rank and file, and the rank of generals commanding. Yet, rokadnoe highway to Moscow our troops still managed to hold. Oh, so these days are days of dramatic wrote the British historian John Fuller, «began the scramble for Voronezh, and, as we shall see, for the Germans, it was one of the most fatal of the war. Russian-focused … north of Voronezh, fit to return to save the day, maybe they helped the campaign. There is no hesitation that the situation was exactly the case. «
Who ever been in Voronezh, one surely knows that a large part of the town, so called right to keep, is located between the rivers Don and Voronezh, and its lowest part, the so called left in store, — on the left bank of the river Voronezh. While in town on different data remained, at least, half, which is about 200 thousand of its inhabitants, in other words, thousands of civilian people have in essence on the front of the band, where fierce street battles unfolded. After a few days most of the right-bank (main) part of the town ran across the control of German troops. The exception was the only northern town for Agricultural Institute, where multi-day battles were simply horrific in nature, for the most part, running into a melee for every house. Bridges over the river Voronezh were blown up (not counting zhelezdnodorozhnogo) on the surviving pillars of the bridge to the right bank, the northern part of the town, on the left in the hands of our troops foothold, constantly exchanging reinforcements and ammunition. Our main units and elements entrenched in the left-bank part of the town. But on July 7, the commander of the German group von Weichs announced their fighters on the final capture of Voronezh, but it was not so far away, it was only the beginning of the Battle of Voronezh. On the same day the Voronezh Front was formed. Sovinformburo for a few weeks and did not dare to tell the country the truth about the terrible beating is not a life and death on campus, replacing it with a streamlined with the words «… the stubborn fighting in the Voronezh area.»
Not all was well with the awareness and the Germans, as the commander of Army Group «South» von Bock reported to Hitler on the complete capture of the town, but the information was incorrect and did not correspond to the real situation, in the end the battle for Voronezh affected the fate of the von Bock, in the next he was relieved of his command of Army Group «South» (the official language — a disease) and sent to the Führer reserve.
The German command was trying to further develop our own success, in other words, to take over the city, at one point, even the Nazis managed to cross to the left Preserving the south of the town of Voronezh, but moving towards the center, their units were attacked by our destroyer battalion and eventually completely destroyed, more attempts to capture the left-bank part of the town the Germans did not decide, and thought only of one how to keep their positions.
The commander of the Voronezh Front, Colonel-General NF Vatutin the observation Fri
All we know about Nevsky Spot in the defense of Leningrad, but not enough people know that was your own Nevsky Spot and Voronezh — it Chizhovsky beachhead in late August and September 1942, the Red Army took command of the samples secure a bridgehead on the right bank of Voronezh. Not the first time, but our troops have succeeded. Chizhovsky foothold in fighter nicknamed «valley of death», started on the right bank of the water meadows and ascended the steep coastal hills south of town. To get a foothold on the troops needed to boost the Voronezh River, crossing the river for Russian military engineers have invented and used underwater crossing, night fighters were building this crossing of concrete debris and broken bricks, half a meter on the waters of the veiled and invisible from the air. According to her one night on the right-sparing technique was transported infantry and, as a result of one time of the attack, was captured a bridgehead on the right bank of the town which, in spite of repeated trials discard our enemy troops, remained behind our soldiers. Fight for Chizhovka did not stop until the liberation of the town, many of our soldier died there, just so it is not clear so far in these areas continue to search for the remains of the soldiers, now in a mass grave at the bridgehead Chizhovsky buried more than 15,000 people, but the names are known only 3545 people. This is the great burial times majestically Russian War in Voronezh. Specifically Chizhovka suffered from one of the major blows to the enemy troops in the liberation of the town in January 1943 ..
In the end, the process does not stop bloody fighting in the Voronezh direction was constrained by a tremendous group fighting the enemy, which the Germans did not manage to use at Stalingrad. The seriousness of this sector of the front to the Germans and says that at the height of the fighting in Voronezh they had been transferred from the division even under Stalingrad. The Battle of Voronezh has made all the conditions and prerequisites for the victory of our troops at Stalingrad.
In autumn 1942 in a hostile defense in Voronezh was formed ledge, a kind of «Voronezh arc», a depth of about 100 km length of the base at about 130 km. Placed inside of the projection 10 German divisions of the 2nd Army and two Hungarian divisions. Russian Supreme Command decided to attack the flanks of the ridge. Voronezh-Kastornoye operation began Jan. 24, 1943, as a result of this operation on January 25 were absolutely exempt all areas of the town captured by the Germans, and the whole direction of Voronezh entire enemy’s faction was completely surrounded, went so called Stalingrad on the upper Don. Fierce fighting continued until February 17. The enemy tried to break through the encirclement, but was defeated. The enemy lost up to 11 divisions (9 German and Hungarian 2), virtually all heavy weapons and equipment. The defeat of German forces at Voronezh in Voronezh-Kastornoye operations rightfully can read about it as a great success of the Russian troops in 1943.
After the fight. Shot a German tank column Russian Tank KV-1C (High) and his tank crew perished. Voronezh front
Himself city Voronezh was the third, after Leningrad and Sevastopol, on the length of time the band on the front, 212 days and nights, the front line ran through the town specifically. Throughout the war there were only two of the town — Stalingrad and Voronezh, where the front line ran through himself city. Voronezh was among 12 cities in Europe, more victims of the second world war and in the top 15 cities in the USSR requiring immediate restoration of destroyed up to 95% of all the buildings of the town.
Forever remembered Voronezh and our enemies, especially the Hungarians, they actually lost at Voronezh my whole more efficient army, but only on the direction of Voronezh was destroyed 26 German divisions, the 2nd Hungarian (completely) and the 8th Italian Army, and Romanian units. The number of prisoners was more than at Stalingrad, the total number of captured enemy soldier, taken in the Voronezh Front was about 75,000 soldiers and officers.
For all this, according to various sources, the loss of the German forces and their allies were 320 thousand soldiers and officers. Even more lost our army in battles on land Voronezh killed about 400,000 Russian soldiers.
In the years when the country began to celebrate their town special title of «Hero City», the then leaders of Voronezh, papers were presented by the assignment of a noble title of Voronezh. But, unfortunately, the response to this initiative in the metropolitan areas of control and then she found, limited only awarded the Order of the town of Russian War I level.
February 16, 2008 for heroism intercessors town during the occupation by German troops, who gave them not quite grab one of the main centers of the country, the town was given the honorary title of Russian Federation «City of Military Glory» and stands shyly Voronezh among the cities of military glory, the city never became the hero-city.