Georgy Zhukov

Georgy Konstantinovich Zhukov (Russian: Георгий Константинович Жуков; 1 December 1896 – 18 June 1974) was a Soviet Russian general and Marshal of the Soviet Union. He also served as Chief of the General Staff, Minister of Defence, and was a member of the Presidium of the Communist Party (later Politburo). During the Second World War, Zhukov was responsible for some of the Red Army's most decisive victories.

Born to a poor peasant family from central Russia, Zhukov was conscripted into the Imperial Russian Army and fought in the First World War. He then served in the Red Army during the Russian Civil War. Gradually rising through the ranks, by 1939 Zhukov was given command of an army group and won a decisive battle over Japanese forces at Khalkhin Gol, for which he won the first of his four Hero of the Soviet Union awards. In February 1941, Zhukov became chief of the Red Army's General Staff.

Following the German invasion of the Soviet Union, Zhukov lost his position of chief of the general staff. Subsequently he organized the defense of Leningrad, Moscow and Stalingrad. He was further involved in the planning of several major offensives, including the Battle of Kursk and Operation Bagration. In 1945, Zhukov commanded the 1st Belorussian Front and took part in the Vistula–Oder Offensive and the Battle of Berlin, which resulted in the defeat of Nazi Germany, and the end of the war in Europe. In recognition of Zhukov's role in the war, he was chosen to personally accept the German Instrument of Surrender.

After the war, Zhukov's success and popularity caused Joseph Stalin to see him as a potential threat; he was subsequently stripped of his positions and relegated to military commands of little strategic significance. After Stalin's death in 1953, Zhukov returned to favour and supported Nikita Khrushchev's bid for Soviet leadership. He was appointed Defence Minister and made a member of the Presidium. In 1957 Zhukov again lost favour and was forced to retire. He never returned to power and died in 1974.

Georgy Zhukov
Zhukov LIFE
Zhukov in 1944
Minister of Defence of the Soviet Union
In office
9 February 1955 – 26 October 1957
First SecretaryNikita Khrushchev
Preceded byNikolai Bulganin
Succeeded byRodion Malinovsky
Personal details
Born
Georgy Konstantinovich Zhukov

1 December 1896
Strelkovka, Russian Empire
Died18 June 1974 (aged 77)
Moscow, Soviet Union
Political partySoviet Communist Party
Spouse(s)
  • Alexandra Zuikova (m. 1920)
  • Galina Semyonova (m. 1953)
ChildrenMargarita and 3 others
Awards
Signature
Georgy Zhukov's signature
Military service
Allegiance
  •  Russian Empire
  •  Soviet Russia
  •  Soviet Union
Branch
Service years1915–1957
RankMarshal of the Soviet Union
Commands
Wars Hungarian Revolution

Career

Born into a poverty-stricken peasant family of Russian[1] ethnicity in Strelkovka, Maloyaroslavsky, Kaluga Governorate, Zhukov became an apprentice furrier in Moscow.

According to Zhukov his mother, Ustinina Artemievna Zhukova, was a person with considerable strength who could carry 80 kilograms (180 lb) of wheat on her shoulder. Zhukov thought he had inherited his strength from his mother. His father was a shoemaker who had been adopted as an orphan by Ms. Anuska Zhukova at the age of two.

World War I

In 1915, Zhukov was conscripted into the Imperial Russian Army, where he served in the 10th Dragoon Novgorod Regiment. During World War I, Zhukov was awarded the Cross of St. George twice, and promoted to the rank of non-commissioned officer for his bravery in battle.

He joined the Bolshevik Party after the 1917 October Revolution; in party circles his background of poverty became a significant asset. After recovering from a serious case of typhus, he fought in the Russian Civil War, serving with the 1st Cavalry Army, among other formations. He received the Order of the Red Banner for his part in subduing the Tambov Rebellion in 1921.[2]

Interwar period

Georgy Zhukov 3
Zhukov as a regimental commander, 1920s

At the end of May 1923, Zhukov became a commander of the 39th Cavalry Regiment.[3] In 1924, he entered the Higher School of Cavalry,[4] from which he graduated the next year, returning afterward to command the same regiment.[5]

In May 1930, Zhukov became commander of the 2nd Cavalry Brigade of the 7th Cavalry Division.[6] In February 1931, he was appointed the Assistant Inspector of Cavalry of the Red Army.[7]

In May 1933, Zhukov was appointed a commander in the 4th Cavalry Division.[7] In 1937, he became a commander of the 3rd Cavalry Corps, later of the 6th Cavalry Corps.[8] In 1938, he became a deputy commander of the Belorussian Military District for cavalry.[9]

Khalkhin Gol

Командир корпуса Георгий Жуков
Zhukov as Komkor (Corps Commander), 1939

In 1938, Zhukov was directed to command the First Soviet Mongolian Army Group, and saw action against Japan's Kwantung Army on the border between the Mongolian People's Republic and the Japanese-controlled state of Manchukuo. The Soviet–Japanese Border Wars lasted from 1938 to 1939. What began as a border skirmish rapidly escalated into a full-scale war, with the Japanese pushing forward with an estimated 80,000 troops, 180 tanks and 450 aircraft.

These events led to the strategically decisive battle of Khalkhin Gol. Zhukov requested major reinforcements, and on 20 August 1939, his Soviet offensive commenced. After a massive artillery barrage, nearly 500 BT-5 and BT-7 tanks advanced,[10] supported by over 500 fighters and bombers.[11] This was the Soviet Air Force's first fighter-bomber operation.[12]

Командующий 1-й армейской группой комкор Жуков в войсках перед наступлением
Zhukov speaking with his troops on the front before an offensive, August 1939

The offensive first appeared to be a typical conventional frontal attack. However, two tank brigades were initially held back and then ordered to advance around on both flanks, supported by motorized artillery, infantry, and other tanks. This daring and successful manoeuvre encircled the Japanese 6th Army and captured the enemy's vulnerable rear supply areas. By 31 August, the Japanese had been cleared from the disputed border, leaving the Soviets clearly victorious.[12]

This campaign had significance beyond the immediate tactical and local outcome. Zhukov demonstrated and tested the techniques later used against the Germans in the Eastern Front of the Second World War. These innovations included the deployment of underwater bridges, and improving the cohesion and battle-effectiveness of inexperienced units by adding a few experienced, battle-hardened troops to bolster morale and overall training.[13]

Evaluation of the problems inherent in the performance of the BT tanks led to the replacement of their fire-prone petrol (gasoline) engines with diesel engines, and provided valuable practical knowledge that was essential to the success in development of the T-34 medium tank used in World War II. After this campaign, Nomonhan veterans were transferred to units that had not seen action, to better spread the benefits of their battle experience.[14]

For his victory, Zhukov was declared a Hero of the Soviet Union. However, the campaign—and especially Zhukov's pioneering use of tanks—remained little known outside of the Soviet Union itself. Zhukov considered Nomonhan invaluable preparation for conducting operations during the Second World War.[15] In 1940, Zhukov became an army general.

Pre-war military exercises

Жуков и Тимошенко, 1940 год
Zhukov and Semyon Timoshenko in 1940

In the fall of 1940, Zhukov started preparing the plans for the military exercise concerning the defence of the Western border of the Soviet Union, which at this time was pushed further to the west due to the annexation of eastern Poland.[16] In his memoirs, Zhukov reports that in this exercise he commanded the Western or Blue forces—the supposed invasion troops—and his opponent was Colonel General Dmitry Pavlov, the commander of the Eastern or Red forces –the supposed Soviet troops. He noted that Blue had 60 divisions, while Red had 50 divisions. Zhukov describes the exercise as being similar to actual events during the German invasion.[17]

Historian Bobylev reports the actual details of the exercises were reported differently in different memoirs of their participants.[18] He reported that there were two exercises; one from 2 to 6 January 1941, for the North-West direction; another from 8 to 11 January, for the South-West direction.[18] During the first, Western forces attacked Eastern forces on 15 July, but the Eastern forces counterattacked and by 1 August, reached the original border.[18]

At the time, the Eastern forces had a numerical advantage: 51 infantry division against 41; 8,811 tanks against 3,512 – with the exception of anti-tank guns.[18] Bobylev describes how by the end of the exercise the Eastern forces did not manage to surround and destroy the Western forces, which, in their turn, threatened to surround the Eastern forces themselves.[18] The same historian reported that the second game was won by the Easterners, meaning that on the whole, both games were won by the side commanded by Zhukov.[18] However, he noted that the games had a serious disadvantage since they did not consider the initial attack by Western forces, but only a attack by Eastern forces from the initial border.[18]

According to Marshal Aleksandr Vasilevsky, the war-game defeat of Pavlov's Red Troops against Zhukov was not known widely, but the victory of Zhukov's Red Troops against Kulik was widely propagandized, which created a popular illusion of easy success for a preemptive offensive.[19] On 1 February 1941, Zhukov became chief of the Red Army's General Staff.[20]

Soviet offensive controversy

From 2 February 1941, as the chief of the general staff, and Deputy Minister of Defense, Zhukov supposedly took part in drawing up the "Strategic plan for deployment of the forces of the Soviet Union in the event of war with Germany and its allies."[21] The plan was completed no later than 15 May 1941. Some researchers like Victor Suvorov allege that on 14 May, Soviet People's Commissar of Defense Semyon Timoshenko and Zhukov suggested to Stalin a preemptive attack against Germany through Southern Poland.

Soviet forces would occupy the Vistula Border and continue to Katowice or even Berlin—should the main German armies retreat—or the Baltic coast, should German forces not retreat and be forced to protect Poland and East Prussia. The attacking Soviets were supposed to reach Siedlce, Deblin, and then capture Warsaw before penetrating toward the southwest and imposing final defeat at Lublin.[22]

Historians do not have the original documents that could verify the existence of such a plan, or whether Stalin accepted it. In a transcript of an interview on 26 May 1965, Zhukov stated that Stalin did not approve the plan. However, Zhukov did not clarify whether execution was attempted. As of 1999, no other approved plan for a Soviet attack had been found.[23]

Red Army scholars David Glantz and Jonathan House argue that "the Soviet Union was not ready for war in June 1941, nor did it intend, as some have contended, to launch a preventative war."[24] This is supported by Gerhard Weinberg, a scholar of Nazi foreign policy, who argues that the decision to launch Barbarossa was not launched out of a sense of urgent foreboding, but rather from a "purposeful determination."[25]

Eastern front of World War II

RIAN archive 2410 Marshal Zhukov speaking
Zhukov speaking in 1941

On 22 June 1941, Germany launched Operation Barbarossa, an invasion of the Soviet Union. On the same day, Zhukov responded by signing the "Directive of Peoples' Commissariat of Defence No. 3", which ordered an all-out counteroffensive by Red Army forces: he commanded the troops to encircle and destroy [the] enemy grouping near Suwałki and to seize the Suwałki region by the evening of 24 June" and "to encircle and destroy the enemy grouping invading in [the] Vladimir-Volynia and Brody direction" and even "to seize the Lublin region by the evening of 24 June."

Despite numerical superiority, this manoeuvre failed and disorganized Red Army units were destroyed by the Wehrmacht. Zhukov subsequently claimed that he was forced to sign the document by Joseph Stalin, despite the reservations that he raised.[26] This document was supposedly written by Aleksandr Vasilevsky.[27]

On 29 July, Zhukov was removed from his post of chief of the general staff. In his memoirs he gives his suggested abandoning of Kiev to avoid an encirclement as a reason for it.[28] On the next day the decision was made official and he was appointed the commander of the Reserve Front.[28] There he oversaw the Yelnya Offensive. On 10 September, Zhukov was made the commander of the Leningrad Front.[29] There he oversaw the defence of the city.

On 6 October, Zhukov was appointed the representative of Stavka for the Reserve and Western Fronts.[30] On 10 October, those fronts were merged into the Western Front under Zhukov's command.[31] This front then participated in the Battle of Moscow and several Battles of Rzhev.

In late August 1942, Zhukov was made deputy commander in chief and sent to the southwestern front to take charge of the defence of Stalingrad.[32] He and Vasilevsky later planned the Stalingrad counteroffensive.[33] In November, Zhukov was sent to coordinate the Western Front and the Kalinin Front during Operation Mars. In January 1943, he—together with Kliment Voroshilov—coordinated the actions of the Leningrad and Volkhov Fronts and the Baltic Fleet in Operation Iskra.[34]

Жуков и Конев
Zhukov with the commander of the Steppe Front Ivan Konev during the Battle of Kursk, 1943

Zhukov was a Stavka coordinator at the battle of Kursk in July 1943. According to his memoirs, he played a central role in the planning of the battle and the hugely successful offensive that followed. Commander of the Central Front Konstantin Rokossovsky, said, however, that the planning and decisions for the Battle of Kursk were made without Zhukov, that he only arrived just before the battle, made no decisions and left soon afterwards, and that Zhukov exaggerated his role.[35]

From 12 February 1944, Zhukov coordinated the actions of the 1st Ukrainian and 2nd Ukrainian Fronts.[36] On 1 March, Zhukov was appointed the commander of the 1st Ukrainian Front until early May following the ambush of Nikolai Vatutin, its commander, by Ukrainian Insurgent Army near Ostroh.[37] During the Soviet offensive Operation Bagration, Zhukov coordinated the 1st Belorussian and 2nd Belorussian Fronts, later the 1st Ukrainian Front as well.[38] On 23 August, Zhukov was sent to the 3rd Ukrainian Front to prepare for the advance into Bulgaria.[39]

Подписание акта капитуляции Германии 1945 г. 2
Zhukov during the signing the German Instrument of Surrender at the Soviet headquarters in Karlshorst, 1945

On 16 November, he became commander of the 1st Belorussian Front which took part in the Vistula–Oder Offensive and the battle of Berlin.[40] He called on his troops to "remember our brothers and sisters, our mothers and fathers, our wives and children tortured to death by [the] Germans ... We shall exact a brutal revenge for everything." More than 20 million Soviet soldiers and civilians died as a result of the war. In a reprise of atrocities committed by German soldiers against Soviet civilians in the eastward advance into Soviet territory during Operation Barbarossa, the westward march by Soviet forces was marked by brutality towards German civilians, which included looting, burning and rapes.[41]

Zhukov was chosen to personally accept the German Instrument of Surrender in Berlin.[42]

Post-war service

Soviet occupation zone

After the German capitulation, Zhukov became the first commander of the Soviet occupation zone. On 10 June 1945, Zhukov returned to Moscow to prepare for the Moscow Victory Parade of 1945. On 24 June, Stalin appointed him commander in chief of the parade. After the ceremony, on the night of 24 June, Zhukov went to Berlin to resume his command.[43]

In May 1945, Zhukov signed three resolutions to improve living standards in the Soviet occupation zone:

  • 11 May: resolution 063 – provision of food
  • 12 May: resolution 064 – restoration of the public services sector
  • 13 May: resolution 080 – provision of milk supplies for children

Zhukov requested the Soviet government to transport urgently to Berlin 96,000 tons of grain, 60,000 tons of potatoes, 50,000 cattle, and thousands of tons of other foodstuffs, such as sugar and animal fat. He issued strict orders that his subordinates were to "hate Nazism but respect the German people," and to make all possible efforts to restore and maintain a stable living standard for the German population.[44]

Inter-allied diplomacy

Montgomery receives Order of Victory HD-SN-99-02756
Zhukov sharing a toast with Eisenhower, Montgomery and other Allied officals, June 1945

From 16 July to 2 August, Zhukov participated in the Potsdam Conference with the fellow representatives of the Allied governments. As one of the four commanders of the Allied occupational forces, Zhukov established good relationships with his new colleagues, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery, and Marshal Jean de Lattre, and the four frequently exchanged views about such matters as the sentencing, trials, and judgments of war criminals, geopolitical relationships between the Allied states, and how to defeat the Japanese and rebuild Germany.

Eisenhower seemed to be especially satisfied with, and respectful of, his relationship with Zhukov. Eisenhower's successor, General Lucius D. Clay, also praised the Zhukov–Eisenhower friendship, and commented: "The Soviet–America relationship should have developed well if Eisenhower and Zhukov had continued to work together."[45] Zhukov and Eisenhower went on to tour the Soviet Union together in the immediate aftermath of the victory over Germany.[46]

Decline of career

Маршал Советского Союза Г.К. Жуков на первомайском параде в Свердловске
Zhukov at a post-war victory parade in Sverdlovsk, between 1948-1950

Zhukov was not only the supreme military commander of the Soviet occupation zone, but became its military governor on 10 June 1945. A war hero, hugely popular with the military, Zhukov was viewed by Stalin as a potential threat to his leadership. He replaced Zhukov with Vasily Sokolovsky on 10 April 1946. After an unpleasant session of the main military council—in which Zhukov was bitterly attacked and accused of political unreliability and hostility to the Party Central Committee—he was stripped of his position as commander in chief of the Soviet Army.[47]

He was assigned command of the Odessa Military District, far from Moscow and lacking in strategic significance and troops. He arrived there on 13 June. Zhukov suffered a heart attack in January 1948, spending a month in hospital. In February 1948, he was given another secondary posting, this time command of the Urals Military District. Tsouras described the move from Odessa to the Urals as a relegation from a "second-rate" to a "fifth-rate" assignment.[48]

Throughout this time, security chief Lavrentiy Beria was apparently trying to topple Zhukov. Two of Zhukov's subordinates, Marshal of Aviation Alexander Novikov and Lieutenant-General Konstantin Telegin, were arrested and tortured in Lefortovo Prison at the end of 1945. Novikov, was forced by Beria into a "confession" which implicated Zhukov in a conspiracy.[49] In a conference, all generals except GRU director Filipp Golikov defended Zhukov against accusation of misspending of war booty and exaggeration of Germany's strength. During this time, Zhukov was accused of Bonapartism.[50]

In 1946, seven rail carriages with furniture that Zhukov was taking to the Soviet Union from Germany were impounded. In 1948, his apartments and house in Moscow were searched and many valuables looted from Germany were found.[51] In his investigation Beria concluded that Zhukov had in his possessions 17 golden rings, three gemstones, the faces of 15 golden necklaces, more than four kilometers (2.5 mi) of cloth, 323 pieces of fur, 44 carpets taken from German palaces, 55 paintings and 20 guns."[52] Zhukov admitted in a memorandum to Zhdanov: "I felt very guilty. I shouldn't have collected those useless junks and put them into some warehouse, assuming nobody needs them any more. I swear as a Bolshevik that I would avoid such errors and follies thereafter. Surely I still and will wholeheartedly serve the Motherland, the Party, and the Great Comrade Stalin."[53]

When learning of Zhukov's "misfortunes"—and despite not understanding all the problems—Eisenhower expressed his sympathy for his "comrade-in-arms."[54] On February 1953, Stalin relieved Zhukov of his post as Commander of the Urals Military District, recalling Zhukov to Moscow. It was thought Zhukov's expertise was needed in the Korean War; however, in practice, Zhukov received no orders from Stalin after arriving in Moscow. On 5 March 1953, at 09:50, Stalin died of a stroke. Following Stalin's passing, Zhukov's life entered a new phase.[45]

Relationship with Stalin

Парад Победы на Красной площади 24 июня 1945 г. (23)
Zhukov with Stalin and Semyon Budyonny during the Soviet Victory Parade of 1945

During the war, Zhukov was one of only a few people who understood Stalin's personality. As the chief of staff and deputy supreme commander, Zhukov had hundreds of meetings with Stalin, both private and during Stavka conferences. Consequently, Zhukov understood Stalin's personality and methods well. According to Zhukov, Stalin was a strong and secretive person, but he was also hot-tempered and skeptical. Zhukov was able to gauge Stalin's mood: for example, when Stalin drew deeply on his tobacco pipe, it was a sign of a good mood. Conversely, if Stalin failed to light his pipe once it was out of tobacco, it was a sign of imminent rage.[55] His outstanding knowledge of Stalin's personality was an asset that allowed him to deal with Stalin's outbursts in a way other Soviet generals could not.[56]

Both Zhukov and Stalin were hot-tempered, and both made concessions necessary to sustain their relationship. While Zhukov viewed his relationship with Stalin as one of a subordinate–senior, Stalin was in awe and possibly jealous of Zhukov. Both were military commanders, but Stalin's experience was limited to a previous generation of non-mechanized warfare. By contrast, Zhukov was highly influential in the development of contemporary combined operations of highly mechanized armies. The differences in their outlooks were the cause of many tempestuous disagreements between the two of them at Stavka meetings. Nonetheless, Zhukov was less competent than Stalin as a politician, highlighted by Zhukov's many failures in politics. Stalin's unwillingness to value Zhukov beyond the marshal's military talents was one of the reasons why Zhukov was recalled from Berlin.[57]

Significant to their relationships as well was Zhukov's bluntness towards his superior. Stalin was dismissive of the fawning of many of his entourage and openly criticized it.[58] Many people around Stalin—including Beria, Yezhov, and Mekhlis—felt obliged to flatter Stalin to remain on his good side.[59] Zhukov remained obstinate and argumentative, and did not hesitate to publicly contradict Stalin to the point of risking his career and life. Their heated argument about whether to abandon Kiev due to the Germans' rapid advance in summer of 1941 was typical of Zhukov's approach.[60] Zhukov's ability to remain skeptical and unwavering at giving into pressure did garner him the respect of Stalin.

After Stalin

Arresting Beria

After Stalin's death, Zhukov returned to favour, becoming Deputy Defence Minister in 1953. He then had an opportunity to avenge himself on Beria. With Stalin's sudden death, the Soviet Union fell into a leadership crisis. Georgy Malenkov temporarily became First Secretary. Malenkov and his allies attempted to purge Stalin's influence and personality cult; however, Malenkov himself did not have the courage to do this alone. Moreover, Lavrentiy Beria remained dangerous. The politicians sought reinforcement from the powerful and prestigious military men. In this matter, Nikita Khrushchev chose Zhukov because the two had forged a good relationship, and, in addition, during World War II, Zhukov had twice saved Khrushchev from false accusations.[61][62]

On 26 June 1953, a special meeting of the Soviet Politburo was held by Malenkov. Beria came to the meeting with an uneasy feeling because it was called hastily—indeed, Zhukov had ordered General Kirill Moskalenko to secretly prepare a special force and permitted the force to use two of Zhukov's and Bulganin's special cars (which had black glass) in order to safely infiltrate the Kremlin. Zhukov also ordered him to replace the MVD Guard with the guard of the Moscow Military District. In this meeting, Khrushchev, Malenkov and their allies denounced "the imperialist element Beria" for his "anti-Party", "anti-socialist" activities, "sowing division", and "acting as a spy of England," together with many other crimes.

Finally, Khrushchev suggested expelling Beria from the Communist Party and bringing him before a military court. Immediately, the prepared special force rushed in. Zhukov himself went up to Beria and shouted: "Hands up! Follow me," Beria replied, in a panic, "Oh Comrades, what's the matter? Just sit down." Zhukov shouted again, "Shut up, you are not the commander here! Comrades, arrest this traitor!" Moskalenko's special forces obeyed.[63][64]

Zhukov was a member of the military tribunal during the Beria trial, which was headed by Marshal Ivan Konev.[65] On 18 December 1953, the Military Court sentenced Beria to death. During the burial of Beria, Konev commented: "The day this man was born deserves to be damned!" Then Zhukov said: "I considered it as my duty to contribute my little part in this matter."[63][64]

Minister of Defence

When Nikolai Bulganin became premier in 1955, he appointed Zhukov as Defence Minister.[65] Zhukov participated in many political activities. He successfully opposed the re-establishment of the Commissar system, because the Party and political leaders were not professional military, and thus the highest power should fall to the army commanders. Until 1955, Zhukov had both sent and received letters from Eisenhower. Both leaders agreed that the two superpowers should coexist peacefully.[66] In July 1955, Zhukov—together with Khrushchev, Bulganin, Vyacheslav Molotov and Andrei Gromyko—participated in a Summit Conference at Geneva after the USSR signed the Austrian State Treaty and withdrew its army from the country.

Zhukov followed orders from the then-Prime Minister Georgy Malenkov and Communist Party leader Khrushchev during the invasion of Hungary following the Hungarian Revolution of 1956.[67] Along with the majority of members of the Presidium, he urged Khrushchev to send troops to support the Hungarian authorities and to secure the Austrian border. Zhukov and most of the Presidium were not, however, eager to see a full-scale intervention in Hungary. Zhukov even recommended the withdrawal of Soviet troops when it seemed that they might have to take extreme measures to suppress the revolution.

The mood in the Presidium changed again when Hungary's new Prime Minister, Imre Nagy, began to talk about Hungarian withdrawal from the Warsaw Pact. That led the Soviets to attack the revolutionaries and to replace Nagy with János Kádár. In the same years, when the UK, France, and Israel invaded Egypt during the Suez crisis, Zhukov expressed support for Egypt's right of self-defence. In October 1957, Zhukov visited Yugoslavia and Albania aboard the Chapayev-class cruiser Kuibyshev, attempting to repair the Tito–Stalin split of 1948.[68] During the voyage, Kuibyshev encountered units of the U.S. Sixth Fleet and "passing honours" were exchanged between the vessels.

Fall from power

Георгий Константинович Жуков в военной форме
Zhukov c. 1960

On his 60th birthday, in 1956, Zhukov received his fourth Hero of the Soviet Union title – making him the first person to receive the honor four times. The only other four time recipient was Leonid Brezhnev. He became the highest-ranking military professional who was also a member of the Presidium of the Central Committee of the Communist Party. He further became a symbol of national strength. Zhukov's prestige was even higher than the police and security agencies of the USSR, and thus rekindled concerns among political leaders.

Going even further than Khrushchev, Zhukov demanded that the political agencies in the Red Army report to him before the Party. He demanded an official condemnation of Stalin's crimes during the Great Purge. He also supported the political vindication and rehabilitation for Mikhail Tukhachevsky, Grigoriy Shtern, Vasily Blyukher, Alexander Yegorov and many others. In response his opponents accused him of being a Reformist and Bonapartist. Such enviousness and hostility proved to be the key factor that led to his later downfall.[69]

The relationship between Zhukov and Khrushchev reached its peak during the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in 1956. After becoming the First Secretary of the Party, Khrushchev moved against Stalin's legacy and criticised his personality cult in a speech, "On the Cult of Personality and Its Consequences." To complete such startling acts, Khrushchev needed the approval—or at least the acquiescence—of the military, headed by Minister of Defense Zhukov.

At the plenary session of Central Committee of CPSU held in June 1957 Zhukov supported Khrushchev against the "Anti-Party Group", that had a majority in the Presidium and voted to replace Khrushchev as First Secretary with Bulganin. At that plenum, Zhukov stated: "The Army is against this resolution and not even a tank will leave its position without my order!"[70]

In the same session the "Anti-Party Group" was condemned and Zhukov was made a member of Presidium. But, in that same year, he was removed from the Presidium of the Party's Central Committee and the Ministry of Defense, entering forced retirement at age 62. These things happened behind his back, when he was on a trip to Albania at the invitation of General Colonel Beqir Balluku.[71] The same issue of the Krasnaya Zvezda that announced Zhukov's return also reported that he had been relieved of his duties.[72] According to many researchers, Soviet politicians—including Khrushchev himself—had a deep-seated fear of "powerful people."[73][74]

Retirement

Георгий Константинович Жуков на отдыхе в Сочи
Zhukov on vacation to Sochi

After being forced out of the government, Zhukov stayed away from politics. Many people—including former subordinates—frequently paid him visits, joined him on hunting excursions, and waxed nostalgic. In September 1959, while visiting the United States, Khrushchev told President Eisenhower that the retired Marshal Zhukov "liked fishing." Zhukov was actually a keen aquarist.[75] In response, Eisenhower sent Zhukov a set of fishing tackle. Zhukov respected this gift so much that he is said to have exclusively used Eisenhower's fishing tackle for the remainder of his life.[76]

After Khrushchev was deposed in October 1964, Brezhnev restored Zhukov to favour—though not to power—in a move to use Zhukov's popularity to strengthen his political position. Zhukov's name was put in the public eye yet again when Brezhnev lionised Zhukov in a speech commemorating the Great Patriotic War. On 9 May 1965, Zhukov was invited to sit on the tribunal of the Lenin Mausoleum and given the honour of reviewing the parade of military forces in Red Square.[77]

Zhukov had begun writing his memoirs, Memories and Recollections, in 1958. He now worked intensively on them, which together with steadily deteriorating health, served to worsen his heart disease. In December 1967, Zhukov had a serious stroke. He was hospitalised until June 1968, and continued to receive medical and rehabilitative treatment at home under the care of his second wife, Galina Semyonova, a former officer in the Medical Corps. The stroke left him paralysed on his left side and his speech became slurred and he could only walk with assistance.

His memoirs were published in 1969 and became a best-seller. Within several months of the date of publication of his memoirs, Zhukov had received more than 10,000 letters from readers that offered comments, expressed gratitude, gave advice, or lavished praise. Supposedly, the Communist Party invited Zhukov to participate in the 24th Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in 1971, but the invitation was rescinded.[78]

Death

On 18 June 1974, Zhukov died after another stroke. Contrary to Zhukov's last will for an Orthodox Christian burial, and despite the requests of the family to the country's top leadership,[79] his body was cremated and his ashes were buried at the Kremlin Wall Necropolis alongside fellow generals and marshals of the Soviet Union and later the Russian Federation.

In 1995, a large statue of Zhukov was erected in front of the State Historical Museum, depicting him on a horse.[80] On the 100th anniversary of Zhukov's birth, a panikhida Orthodox memorial service was conducted at his grave, the first such service in the history of the Kremlin Wall Necropolis.[81]

Family

Father
Konstantin Artemyevich Zhukov (1851–1921); a shoemaker
Mother
Ustinina Artemievna Zhukova (1866–1944); farmer from a poor family
Siblings
1. Maria Kostantinovna Zhukova (born 1894)
2. Alexei Konstantinovich Zhukov (born 1901); died prematurely
Spouse
1. Alexandra Dievna Zuikova (1900–1967); common-law wife since 1920; married in 1953; divorced in 1965; died after a stroke
2. Galina Alexandrovna Semyonova (1926–1973)[82]; married in 1953; medical corps officer, at Burdenko hospital; specialized in therapeutics; died of breast cancer
Children
1. Era Zhukova (born 1928); by Alexandra Dievna Zukova
2. Margarita Zhukova (1929–2010); by Maria Nikolaevna Volokhova (1897–1983)
3. Ella Zhukova (1937–2010); by Alexandra Dievna Zukova
4. Maria Zhukova (born 1957); by Galina Alexandrovna Semyonova

Legacy

Dmitry Medvedev in Mongolia August 2009-3
Russian president Dmitry Medvedev and Mongolian president Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj visit the monument to Georgy Zhukov in Ulaanbaatar, near the Zhukov Museum in Zhukov Street (Mongolian: Жуковын гудамж) in memory of the Battle of Khalkin Gol
Moskva Marsal Zukov1a
Statue of Zhukov on horse in Moscow, with symbology below the horse denoting victory over Germany.

The first monument to Georgy Zhukov was erected in Mongolia, in memory of the Battle of Khalkin Gol. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, this monument was one of the few that did not suffer from anti-Soviet backlash in former Communist states. There is a statue of Zhukov on horseback as he appeared at the 1945 victory parade on Manezhnaya Square at the entrance of the Kremlin in Moscow. Another statue of Zhukov in Moscow is located on Prospekt Marshala Zhukova. A statue of Zhukov is located in the town of Irbit, in the Sverdlovsk Oblast. Other statues of Zhukov are found in Omsk, Irkutsk and Yekaterinburg.

A minor planet, 2132 Zhukov, discovered in 1975, by Soviet astronomer Lyudmila Chernykh, is named in his honor.[83] In 1996, Russia adopted the Order of Zhukov and the Zhukov Medal to commemorate the 100th anniversary of his birthday.

Nobel laureate Joseph Brodsky's poem On the Death of Zhukov ("Na smert' Zhukova", 1974) is regarded by critics as one of the best poems on the war written by an author of the post-war generation.[84] The poem is a stylization of The Bullfinch, Derzhavin's elegy on the death of Generalissimo Suvorov in 1800. Brodsky draws a parallel between the careers of these two famous commanders. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn re-interpreted Zhukov's memoirs in the short story Times of Crisis.

In his book of recollections,[85] Zhukov was critical of the role the Soviet leadership played during the war. The first edition of Vospominaniya i razmyshleniya was published during Brezhnev's premiership only on the conditions that criticism of Stalin was removed, and that Zhukov add a (fictional) episode of a visit to Leonid Brezhnev, politruk on the Southern Front, to consult on military strategy.[86]

In 1989, parts of previously unpublished chapters from Zhukov's memoir were published by Pravda, which his daughter said had been hidden in a safe until they could be published. The excerpts included criticism of the 1937–1939 purges for annihilating "[M]any thousands of outstanding party workers" and stated that Stalin had played no role in directing the war effort, although he often issued orders devised by the general staff as if they were his own.[87]

Appraisals of Zhukov's career vary. For example, historian Konstantin Zaleski claimed that Zhukov exaggerated his own role in World War II.[88] Marshal Konstantin Rokossovsky said that the planning and decisions for the battle of Kursk were made without Zhukov, that he only arrived just before the battle, made no decisions and left soon after.[35]

Zhukov also received many positive comments, mostly from his Army companions, from the modern Russian Army, and from his Allied contemporaries. General of the Army Eisenhower stated that, because of Zhukov's achievements fighting the Nazis, the United Nations owed him much more than any other military leader in the world. "The war in Europe ended with victory and nobody could have done that better than Marshal Zhukov – we owed him that credit. He is a modest person, and so we can't undervalue his position in our mind. When we can come back to our Motherland, there must be another type of Order in Russia, an Order named after Zhukov, which is awarded to everybody who can learn the bravery, the far vision, and the decisiveness of this soldier."[89]

Marshal of the Soviet Union Aleksandr Vasilevsky commented that Zhukov is one of the most outstanding and brilliant military commanders of the Soviet military forces.[90] Major General Sir Francis de Guingand, chief of staff of Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery, described Zhukov as a friendly person.[91] John Gunther, who met Zhukov many times after the war, said that Zhukov was more friendly and honest than any of the other Soviet leaders.[92]

John Eisenhower—son of—claimed that Zhukov was really ebullient and was a friend of his.[66] Albert Axell in his work "Marshal Zhukov, the one who beat Hitler" claimed that Zhukov is a military genius like Alexander the Great and Napoleon. Axell also commented that Zhukov is a loyal communist and a patriot.[93] At the end of his work about Zhukov, Otto Chaney concluded: "But Zhukov belongs to all of us. In the darkest period of World War II his fortitude and determination eventually triumphed. For Russians and people everywhere he remains an enduring symbol of victory on the battlefield."[94]

Decorations

Dmitry Medvedev in Mongolia August 2009-2
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev laying a wreath at a monument to Zhukov in Ulaanbaatar, while on a state visit to Mongolia in August 2009.
Marshal Zhukov Depicted on Kursk Memorial - Prokhorovka - Russia
Marshal Zhukov depicted on facade of Victory Memorial, Prokhorovka, Russia

Zhukov was a recipient of decorations. Most notably he was awarded the Hero of the Soviet Union four times. Aside from Zhukov, only Leonid Brezhnev was a four-time recipient (the latter's were self-awarded).

Zhukov was one of only three recipients to receive the Order of Victory twice. He was also awarded high honors from many other countries. A partial listing is presented below.

Imperial Russia

RUS Georgievsky Krest 3st BAR Cross of St. George (3rd and 4th class)

Soviet Union

Hero of the Soviet Union medal.png Hero of the Soviet Union medal.png Hero of the Soviet Union medal.png Hero of the Soviet Union medal.png Hero of the Soviet Union (29 August 1939, 29 July 1944, 1 June 1945, 1 December 1956)
Ordervictory rib Order of Victory (Serial No. 1, 10 April 1944 and Serial No. 5, 30 March 1945)
Order of Lenin ribbon bar Order of Lenin (16 August 1936, 29 August 1939, 21 February 1945, 1 December 1956, 1 December 1966, 1 December 1971)
Order october revolution rib Order of the October Revolution (22 February 1968)
Order of Red Banner ribbon bar Order of the Red Banner (31 August 1922, 3 November 1944, 20 June 1949)
Order suvorov1 rib Order of Suvorov, 1st class (Serial No. 1, 28 January 1943 and Serial No. 39, 28 July 1943)
Defstalingrad Medal "For the Defence of Stalingrad"
Defleningrad Medal "For the Defence of Leningrad"
Defcaucasus rib Medal "For the Defence of the Caucasus"
Ribbon bar for the medal for the Defense of Moscow Medal "For the Defence of Moscow"
Ribbon Medal For The Liberation Of Warsaw Medal "For the Liberation of Warsaw"
Caputureberlin rib Medal "For the Capture of Berlin"
Victoryjapan rib Medal "For the Victory over Japan"
OrderStGeorge4cl rib Medal "For the Victory over Germany in the Great Patriotic War 1941–1945"
20 years of victory rib Jubilee Medal "Twenty Years of Victory in the Great Patriotic War 1941–1945"
20 years saf rib Jubilee Medal "XX Years of the Workers' and Peasants' Red Army"
30 years saf rib Jubilee Medal "30 Years of the Soviet Army and Navy"
40 years saf rib Jubilee Medal "40 Years of the Armed Forces of the USSR"
50 years saf rib Jubilee Medal "50 Years of the Armed Forces of the USSR"
100 lenin rib Jubilee Medal "In Commemoration of the 100th Anniversary since the Birth of Vladimir Il'ich Lenin"
Soviet 250th Anniversary Of Leningrad Ribbon Medal "In Commemoration of the 250th Anniversary of Leningrad"
800thMoscowRibbon Medal "In Commemoration of the 800th Anniversary of Moscow"
Именная шашка.png Honorary weapon – sword inscribed with golden national emblem of the Soviet Union (22 January 1968)

Foreign

Heroy MNR.jpg Hero of the Mongolian People's Republic, 1969
Med XXXth anniversary of chalkin gol victory rib Medal "30-year anniversary of the battle of Khalkhin Gol" (Mongolian People's Republic, 1969)
OrdenSuheBator Order of Sukhbaatar (Mongolian People's Republic, 1968, 1969, 1971)
OrdenZnam Order of the Red Banner (Mongolian People's Republic, 1939, 1942)
50 Years Anniversary of the Mongolian Revolution rib Medal "50 years of the Mongolian People's Republic" (Mongolian People's Republic, 1971)
Med 50th anniversary of mongolian people's army rib Medal "50 years of the Mongolian People's Army" (Mongolian People's Republic, 1971)
Medal for victory over japan rib Medal "For Victory over Japan" (Mongolian People's Republic)
Order of the White Lion Order of the White Lion, 1st class (Czechoslovakia, 1945)
TCH CS Vojensky Rad Bileho Lva 1st (1945) BAR Military Order of the White Lion "For Victory", 1st class (Czechoslovakia, 1945)
Czechoslovak War Cross 1939-1945 Ribbon Czechoslovak War Cross (Czechoslovakia, 1945)
POL Order Krzyża Grunwaldu 1 Klasy BAR Cross of Grunwald, 1st class (Poland, 1945)
POL Virtuti Militari Wielki BAR Grand Cross of the Virtuti Militari (Poland, 1945)
POL Polonia Restituta Komandorski ZG BAR Commander's Cross with Star of the Polonia Restituta, (Poland, 1968, and Commander's Cross, 1973)
POL Za Warszawę 1939-1945 BAR Medal "For Warsaw 1939–1945" (Poland, 1946)
POL Medal za Odrę Nysę i Bałtyk BAR Medal "For Oder, Neisse and the Baltic" (Poland, 1946)
US Legion of Merit Chief Commander ribbon Chief Commander of the Legion of Merit (US, 1945)
Order of the Bath UK ribbon Honorary Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath (UK, 1945)
Legion Honneur GC ribbon Grand Cross of the Legion of Honor (France, 1945)
Croix de Guerre 1939-1945 ribbon Croix de guerre (France)
Sino Soviet Friendship Ribbon Medal "Sino-Soviet friendship", (China, 1953 and 1956)
Orden slobode Order of Freedom (Yugoslavia, 1956)
EGY Order of Merit - Grand Cross BAR Grand Cross of the Order of Merit (Egypt, 1956)
OrderOfBraveryRibbon Medal "90th Anniversary of the Birth of Georgiy Dimitrov" (Bulgaria)
Bulgarian25thAnniversaryRibbon Medal "25 Years of the Bulgarian People's Army" (Bulgaria)
Garibaldi Medal Garibaldi Partisan Star (Italy, 1956)

References

Footnotes

  1. ^ Герои Страны
  2. ^ (in Russian) B. V. Sokolov (2000) В огне революции и гражданской войны, in Неизвестный Жуков: портрет без ретуши в зеркале эпохи, Minsk: Rodiola-plus.
  3. ^ Zhukov 2002, pp. 79, 90.
  4. ^ Zhukov 2002, p. 87.
  5. ^ Zhukov 2002, p. 89.
  6. ^ Zhukov 2002, p. 99.
  7. ^ a b M. A. Gareev (1996) Маршал Жуков. Величие и уникальность полководческого искусства. Ufa
  8. ^ Zhukov 2002, p. 151.
  9. ^ Zhukov 2002, p. 158.
  10. ^ Coox 1985, p. 579.
  11. ^ Coox 1985, p. 590.
  12. ^ a b Coox 1985, p. 633.
  13. ^ Coox 1985, pp. 991–998.
  14. ^ Coox 1985, p. 998.
  15. ^ Coox 1985, p. 996.
  16. ^ "Folio 37977. inventory 5, file 564, sheets 32–34". Central State Archive of the Red Army. TsGAKA.
  17. ^ Zhukov 2002, pp. 224–225.
  18. ^ a b c d e f g П. Н. БОБЫЛЕВ "Репетиция катастрофы" // "Военно-исторический журнал" № 7, 8, 1993 г. [1]
  19. ^ Vasilevsky 1973, p. 24.
  20. ^ Zhukov 2002, p. 205.
  21. ^ A. M. Vasilevsky (May 1941) "Соображения по плану стратегического развёртывания сил Советского Союза на случай войны с Германией и её союзниками". Archived from the original on 19 December 2007. Retrieved 4 June 2012.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link). tuad.nsk.ru
  22. ^ Viktor Suvorov (2006). Стратегические замыслы Сталина накануне 22 июня 1941 года, in Правда Виктора Суворова: переписывая историю Второй мировой, Moscow: Yauza
  23. ^ M. I. Melyukhov (1999) Упущенный шанс Сталина. Советский Союз и борьба за Европу, 1939–1941. Moscow
  24. ^ Uldricks 1999, p. 629.
  25. ^ Uldricks 1999, pp. 629–630.
  26. ^ Zhukov 2003, p. 269.
  27. ^ P. Ya. Mezhiritzky (2002), Reading Marshal Zhukov, Philadelphia: Libas Consulting, chapter 32.
  28. ^ a b Zhukov 2003, p. 353.
  29. ^ Zhukov 2003, p. 382.
  30. ^ Zhukov 2003, p. 8.
  31. ^ Zhukov 2003, p. 16.
  32. ^ Chaney 1996, pp. 212–213.
  33. ^ Chaney 1996, p. 224.
  34. ^ Махмут А. Гареев Маршал Жуков. Величие и уникальность полководческого искусства. М.: – Уфа, 1996.
  35. ^ a b Военно-исторический журнал, 1992 N3 p. 31.
  36. ^ Zhukov 2003, p. 205.
  37. ^ Zhukov 2003, pp. 209–217.
  38. ^ Zhukov 2003, p. 222.
  39. ^ Zhukov 2003, p. 246.
  40. ^ Zhukov 2003, p. 259.
  41. ^ William I. Hitchcock, The Bitter Road to Freedom: A New History of the Liberation of Europe (2008) pp. 160–161.
  42. ^ Zhukov 2003, p. 332.
  43. ^ Shtemenko 1989, pp. 566–569.
  44. ^ Grigori Deborin (1958). Вторая мировая война. Военно-политический очерк, Moscow: Voenizdat, pp. 340–343.
  45. ^ a b Axell 2003, p. 356.
  46. ^ Chaney 1996, pp. 346–347.
  47. ^ Spahr 1993, pp. 200–205.
  48. ^ Tsouras, P.G. (1994). Changing Orders: The evolution of the World's Armies, 1945 to the Present. Facts on File, Inc. pp. 43–44. ISBN 0-8160-3122-3.
  49. ^ Kornukov, A. M. [2] (Chief Marshal of Aviation AA. Novikov – His 100th Birthday) Warheroes.ru. Retrieved on 2019-07-08.
  50. ^ I. S. Konev (1991) Записки командующего фронтом (Diary of the Front Commander). Voenizdat. Moscow. pp. 594–599. Warheroes.ru. Retrieved on 2013-07-12.
  51. ^ Boris Vadimovich Sokolov (2000) Неизвестный Жуков: портрет без ретуши в зеркале эпохи. (Unknown Zhukov), Minsk, Rodiola-plyus, ISBN 985-448-036-4.
  52. ^ Жуков Георгий Константинович. БИОГРАФИЧЕСКИЙ УКАЗАТЕЛЬ. Hrono.ru. Retrieved on 2013-07-12.
  53. ^ Военные архивы России. – М., 1993, p. 244.
  54. ^ The New York Times. 29 July 1955.
  55. ^ G. K. Zhukov. Reminiscences and Reflections. vol. 2, pp. 139, 150.
  56. ^ Axell 2003, p. 280.
  57. ^ Chaney 1996.
  58. ^ Shtemenko 1989, p. 587.
  59. ^ Vasilevsky 1973, p. 62.
  60. ^ A. I. Sethi. Marshal Zhukov: The Great Strategician. New Delhi: 1988, p. 187.
  61. ^ Vasilevsky 1973, p. 137.
  62. ^ Sergei Khrushchev (1990). Khrushchev on Khrushchev. An Inside Account of the Man and His Era, Little, Brown & Company, Boston, pp. 243, 272, 317. ISBN 0316491942.
  63. ^ a b K. S. Moskalenko (1990). The arrest of Beria. Newspaper Московские новости. No. 23.
  64. ^ a b Afanasyev 1989, p. 141.
  65. ^ a b Associated Press, 9 February 1955, reported in The Albuquerque Journal p. 1.
  66. ^ a b John Eisenhower (1974). Strictly Personal. New York. 1974. p. 237, ISBN 0385070713.
  67. ^ Johanna Granville (2004) The First Domino: International Decision Making During the Hungarian Crisis of 1956, Texas A & M University Press, ISBN 1-58544-298-4
  68. ^ Spahr 1993, pp. 235–238.
  69. ^ Spahr 1993, p. 391.
  70. ^ Afanasyev 1989, pp. 151–152.
  71. ^ Chaney 1996, pp. 444–445.
  72. ^ Spahr 1993, p. 238.
  73. ^ Afanasyev 1989, p. 152.
  74. ^ Chaney 1996, pp. 453–455.
  75. ^ Nowak, Eugeniusz (1998). "Erinnerungen an Ornithologen, die ich kannte". J. Ornithol. (in German). 139: 325–348.
  76. ^ Korda, M. (2008) Ike: An American Hero
  77. ^ Axell 2003, p. 277.
  78. ^ Spahr 1993, p. 411.
  79. ^ Маршал Жуков – Воспоминания дочери (Марии)
  80. ^ Williams, C. J. (2 May 1995). "At Last, a Soviet Hero Gets Respect: Marshal Georgi Zhukov was demoted twice after leading victorious World War II forces. Now he is being honored with a medal, a monument and a museum". LA Times. Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  81. ^ Станислав МИНАКОВ. Жуков как сын церкви (Еженедельник 2000 выпуск № 51 (347) 22–28 декабря 2006 г.) Archived 29 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  82. ^ Tony Le Tissier (1996). Zhukov at the Oder: The Decisive Battle for Berlin. London, p. 258, ISBN 0811736091.
  83. ^ Schmadel, Lutz D. (2003). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names (5th ed.). New York: Springer Verlag. p. 173. ISBN 3-540-00238-3.
  84. ^ Shlapentokh, Dmitry. The Russian boys and their last poet. The National Interest. 22 June 1996 Retrieved on 2002-07-17
  85. ^ G. K. Zhukov (2002) Воспоминания и размышления. Olma-Press.
  86. ^ Mauno Koivisto Venäjän idea, Helsinki. Tammi. 2001.
  87. ^ "Soviets Print Excerpts of Attack by Zhukov on Stalin's War Role". New York Times. 21 January 1989. Retrieved 20 March 2018.
  88. ^ Залесский К. А. Империя Сталина. Биографический энциклопедический словарь. Москва, Вече, 2000; Жуков Георгий Константинович. Хронос, биографии (in Russian)
  89. ^ Dwight D. Eisenhower (1948) Crusade in Europe, New York.
  90. ^ Vasilevsky 1973, p. 568.
  91. ^ Sir Francis de Guingand. Generals at War. London. 1972
  92. ^ John Gunther. Inside Russia Today. New York. 1958.
  93. ^ The general who defeated Hitler. 8 May 2005. BBC Vietnamese (in Vietnamese)
  94. ^ Chaney 1996, p. 483.

Bibliography

Further reading

  • Goldman, S. D. (2013). Nomonhan, 1939: the Red Army's victory that shaped World War II. Annapolis: NIP. ISBN 9781591143390.
  • Hill, A. (2017). The Red Army and the Second World War. Cambrige: CUP. ISBN 9781107020795.

External links

Battle of Moscow (film)

The Battle of Moscow (Russian: Битва за Москву, Bitva za Moskvu) is a 1985 Soviet two-part war film, presenting a dramatized account of the 1941 Battle of Moscow and the events preceding it. The films were a Soviet-East German-Czechoslovak-Vietnamese co-production directed by Yuri Ozerov who also wrote the script. It was made in time for the 40th anniversary of the Allied victory over Nazi Germany and the 20th anniversary of the proclamation of the Victory Day holiday and Moscow's declaration as a Hero City.

Georgy Zhukov (footballer)

Georgy Zhukov (born 19 November 1994) is a Kazakh footballer who currently plays for FC Kairat in the Kazakhstan Premier League.

Margarita Zhukova

Margarita Georgievna Zhukova (Russian: Маргарита Георгиевна Жукова; 6 June 1929 – 13 May 2010) was a Soviet and Russian educator and scientist.

She was also a member of the Russian Union of Journalists and wrote many publications about her father, Marshal Georgy Zhukov.

Medal of Zhukov

The Medal of Zhukov (Russian: медали Жукова) is a state award of the Russian Federation initially awarded to veterans of the Great Patriotic War but now awarded to serving members of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation. It is named in honour of Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgy Zhukov, the most decorated general in the history of the Soviet Union.

Mikhail Ulyanov

Mikhail Alexandrovich Ulyanov (Russian: Михаи́л Алекса́ндрович Улья́нов; 20 November 1927 – 26 March 2007) was a Soviet and Russian actor who was one of the most recognized persons of the post-World War II Soviet theatre and cinema. He was named a People's Artist of the USSR in 1969 and a Hero of Socialist Labour in 1986 and received a special prize from the Venice Film Festival in 1982.

Operation Polyarnaya Zvezda

Operation Polyarnaya Zvezda (Russian: Операция Полярная звезда, Operatsia Polyarnaya Zvezda; English translation: Operation Polar Star) was an operation conducted by the Soviet Leningrad, Volkhov and Northwestern Fronts in February and March 1943. The operation was planned by Georgy Zhukov in the wake of the successful Operation Iskra and envisaged two separate encirclements. One was to be carried out in the north by the Leningrad and Volkhov Fronts near Mga and one was planned to be carried out further to the south, by the Northwestern Front, near Demyansk.

The operation succeeded in recapturing the Demyansk salient but failed to encircle the German forces. The northern part of the operation failed, without gaining much ground. With the battles in the south near Kharkov and, later, Kursk using reinforcements for both sides, the frontline near Leningrad stabilised until July 1943.

Operation Solstice

Operation Solstice (German: Unternehmen Sonnenwende), also known as Unternehmen Husarenritt or the Stargard tank battle, was one of the last German armoured offensive operations on the Eastern Front in World War II.

It was originally planned as a major offensive but was executed as a limited attack, due to hasty planning by the Germans and it being partially compromised by Soviet military intelligence. Intended to relieve the city of Küstrin, Sonnenwende was launched on 15 February 1945 from Stargard, Pomerania. By 18 February, the Soviet 1st Belorussian Front led by Georgy Zhukov had defeated the attack, prompting the Germans to call off the offensive. Despite its failure, the operation had forced Soviet High Command (Stavka) to postpone the planned attack on Berlin from February to April, focusing forces on the East Pomeranian Offensive, launched on 24 February and not concluded until 4 April.

Order of Victory

The Order of Victory (Russian: Орден «Победа», romanized: Orden "Pobeda") was the highest military decoration awarded for World War II service in the Soviet Union, and one of the rarest orders in the world. The order was awarded only to Generals and Marshals for successfully conducting combat operations involving one or more army groups and resulting in a "successful operation within the framework of one or several fronts resulting in a radical change of the situation in favor of the Red Army." In its history, it has been awarded twenty times to twelve Soviet leaders and five foreign leaders, with one revocation. The last living recipient was King Michael of Romania, who died on 5 December 2017.

Order of Zhukov

The Order of Zhukov (Russian: Орден Жукова) is a military decoration of the Russian Federation. The order is named in honour of Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgy Zhukov (1896–1974).

Soldiers of Freedom

Soldiers of Freedom (Russian: Солдаты свободы) is a four-part 1977 film epic directed by Yuri Ozerov and starring Mikhail Ulyanov, Yevgeny Matveyev, Vasily Lanovoy. It is a World War II historical drama and the sequel to Liberation.

Stalingrad (1990 film)

Stalingrad (Russian: Сталинград) is a 1990 two-part war film written and directed by Yuri Ozerov, and produced by Quincy Jones and Clarence Avant. Revolving around the eponymous Battle of Stalingrad, the film was a co-production between the Soviet Union, East Germany, Czechoslovakia, and the United States. It stars an ensemble cast featuring Powers Boothe, Mikhail Ulyanov, Bruno Freindlich, Fernando Allende, Sergei Garmash, Nikolai Kryuchkov, and Ronald Lacey.

Take Aim

Take Aim (Russian: Выбор цели, romanized: Vybor Tzeli) is a 1974 two-part Soviet historical film directed by Igor Talankin.

The Death of Stalin

The Death of Stalin is a 2017 satirical black-comedy film written and directed by Armando Iannucci and co-written by David Schneider, Ian Martin and Peter Fellows. It stars Steve Buscemi, Simon Russell Beale, Paddy Considine, Rupert Friend, Jason Isaacs, Michael Palin, Andrea Riseborough, and Jeffrey Tambor, with Olga Kurylenko, Paul Chahidi, Dermot Crowley, Adrian McLoughlin, and Paul Whitehouse in supporting roles. Based on the French graphic novel La Mort de Staline, the film depicts the power struggle following the death of Soviet revolutionary and politician Joseph Stalin (Adrian McLoughlin) in 1953.

The Death of Stalin was screened in the Platform section at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival and received critical acclaim. It was released by eOne Films in the United Kingdom on 20 October 2017, in the United States by IFC Films on 9 March 2018, and in France on 4 April 2018. The film was banned in Russia, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan because of its perceived anti-Soviet theme. It received a Magritte Award nomination in the category of Best Foreign Film.

The Fall of Berlin (film)

The Fall of Berlin (Russian: Падение Берлина; translit. Padeniye Berlina) is a 1950 Soviet war film and an example of Soviet realism, in two parts separated in the manner of a serial, directed by Mikheil Chiaureli, released by the Mosfilm Studio. The script was written by Pyotr Pavlenko, and the musical score composed by Dmitri Shostakovich. It starred Mikheil Gelovani as Joseph Stalin.

Portraying the history of the Second World War with a focus on a highly positive depiction of the role the Soviet leader played in the events, it is considered one of the most important representations of Stalin's cult of personality.

The General (1992 film)

The General (Russian: Генерал) is a 1992 Russian biographical war film directed by Igor Nikolayev about officer Alexander Gorbatov.

Vistula–Oder Offensive

The Vistula–Oder Offensive was a successful Red Army operation on the Eastern Front in the European Theatre of World War II in January 1945. It saw the liberation of Kraków, Warsaw and Poznań.

The Red Army had built up their strength around a number of key bridgeheads, with two fronts commanded by Marshal Georgy Zhukov and Marshal Ivan Konev. Against them, the German Army Group A, led by Colonel-General Josef Harpe (soon replaced by Colonel-General Ferdinand Schörner), was outnumbered 5:1. Within days, German commandants evacuated the concentration camps, sending the prisoners on their death marches to the west, where ethnic Germans also started fleeing. In a little over two weeks, the Red Army had advanced 300 miles (483 km) from the Vistula to the Oder, only 43 miles (69 km) from Berlin, which was undefended. But Zhukov called a halt, owing to continued German resistance on his northern flank (Pomerania), and the advance on Berlin had to be delayed until April.

White Coke

White Coke (Russian: Бесцветная кока-кола, tr. Bestsvetnaya koka-kola, lit. "colorless Coca-Cola") is a nickname for a clear variant of Coca-Cola produced in the 1940s at the request of Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgy Zhukov. Like other clear colas, it was of the same original flavor, virtually unchanged by the absence of caramel coloring.

White Tiger (2012 film)

White Tiger (Russian: Белый тигр, translit. Belyy tigr) is a 2012 Russian war film, directed by Karen Shakhnazarov and co-written with Aleksandr Borodyansky based on the novel Tankist, ili "Belyy tigr" (The Tank Crewman, Tanker or The White Tiger) by Russian novelist Ilya Boyashov. The film is about a badly wounded Soviet tank commander on the Eastern Front of World War II who becomes obsessed with tracking down and destroying a mysterious, invincible Nazi tank, which the Soviet troops call the "White Tiger". The Soviets design a new, more powerful T-34 tank and assign the tank commander the job of destroying the White Tiger.

The film was selected as the Russian entry for the Best Foreign Language Oscar at the 85th Academy Awards, but it did not make the final shortlist.

Zhukov (disambiguation)

The name Zhukov often refers to Georgy Zhukov (1896–1974), a Soviet military leader, vice admiral. It may also refer to:

Zhukov (surname)

Zhukov (inhabited locality), name of several inhabited localities in Russia

2132 Zhukov, an asteroid named after Georgy Zhukov

USS Zhukov (NCC-62136), a Federation Ambassador class starship in the fictional Star Trek universe, named after Georgy Zhukov

Additional positions
Member of the 20th Presidium of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
In office
29 June – 29 October 1957
Candidate
27 February 1956 – 29 June 1957
Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army
In office
15 January – 30 July 1941
Preceded byBoris Shaposhnikov
Succeeded byKirill Meretskov

Languages

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