Ukraine: real and mythological military casualties

In March 1946, Stalin formally declared that the Soviet Union in the war against Germany and its allies lost 7 million of its citizens. But then part of how the officers and generals of the Soviet army and civilian intellectuals doubted this figure. Because before their eyes were completely different picture than described by official propaganda. No one publicly doubts for obvious reasons, not expressed (and there was nowhere to Express it), but in the environment of reliable people called all other figures.

In the diary of Alexander Dovzhenko is an eloquent record of September 6, 1945: “Ukraine lost during the war, the thirteen million people. And this is, so to speak, with an optimistic inaccuracy… that is, when we add two or three million, it is unlikely to be mistaken. In Siberia the expelled before the war half a million from Western Ukraine, and are now sending much. And the birth will go back to normal, except that only in 1950. Thus, Most Widow has lost forty percent of their killed, burned, tortured, exiled exile, banished to foreign lands to eternal wandering… And no one still haven’t told me about this historic horror crying or at least sad. No. Either silent, remain silent or indifferent or smiling among other things, to not think someone is that it is a pity, because it would be “politically harmful””. Those people that is talking Dovzhenko, is a high-ranking nomenklatura, including Nikita Khrushchev.

However, the Director made a mistake in the evaluation of Khrushchev. The one in 1961 called the new, much higher, the number of deaths of citizens of the USSR — 20 million. This figure was comparable with the figure of the losses of all countries in the First world war and it seemed much more likely. However, it was not known (or rather — has not been announced) the number of losses of the red army and other armed forces (Navy, NKVD, partisans, etc.). But the military and “soldiers of the ideological front” was a common informal figure is no less than one third of the total human losses. And in the time of Leonid Brezhnev’s rule of “20 million losses” has quietly turned into “more than 20 million human losses”…

And in 1990, at the height of Perestroika, was officially announced the final number — “almost 27 million” killed in the war and the war of Soviet citizens.

However, immediately raised doubts about the methodology of counting: why the victims of the war ranked as those Soviet citizens who died in the concentration camp “Auschwitz”, and ignored the victims in Pechorlage? And considered anyone of those who officially went missing, and in fact, almost all (95-99%) were killed or died of wounds? And, by the way, what kind of statistical count was recorded of those who died from wounds at the front and rear of diseases in hospitals and at home during the war?

Then began the collection and collation of data on citizens of the USSR who died in the war. The result was something that did not fit into the new framework. In the memorial Museum on Poklonnaya hill in Moscow in the mid-1990s was assembled a data Bank on the 19.5 million killed, dead and missing citizens of the USSR — combatants. Among these records were duplicates, when the same person could be mentioned twice. On the other hand, given that data were collected during the tumultuous collapse of the Soviet Union, fighting in numerous “hot spots” and the economic crisis, it was about far incomplete list of the victims.

In Ukraine during the presidency of Leonid Kuchma has done a lot of work to create a “memory Book of Ukraine”; but the number of casualties among the military, according to the makers of this “Books” was not entered those who had been in German captivity and died there, as well as “rooks”, “cernovicky” and “gray jackets”, mobilized in 1943-44 and “Ostarbeiters”, taken to the army already in the territory of the Third Reich.

“Today, Shklovsky told me that the fighting killed a great many of the mobilized Ukraine liberated citizens, they are called seem to cernovicka. They are fighting in home clothes, without any preparation, as penalty, they are seen as perpetrators.” It’s another “Diary” Dovzhenko. And now a fragment from the memoirs of one of these “chernosvitov”, “rooks” or “grey jackets” Anatoly Dimarov: “When the village was freed, all men from 16 to 60 years — all, only to be leg-arm, and the blind-deaf — no matter — began to take in the army. Us “armed” — gave a half-brick and — “go, wash krovoj guilt” because we are in occupied territory was. Like, you throw bricks, and let the Germans think it’s a grenade! Us 500 souls drove on the ice of the reservoir, opposite — some kind of factory, the Germans knocked in the wall of the battlements. The wall height of three meters. Try to climb through it, and ice to it to run. The Germans have let and hit dagger fire. To go back was impossible — it was aimed smershevtsy with us in the back with machine guns… mine exploded, I again concussion, I fell. When I, unconscious, picked up in hospital could not have the bricks to pull out, so I grabbed her, and he in me had frozen. I, as a soldier, a weapon on the battlefield is not left behind… the Guys said that out of 500 souls, only 15 survived! And Raisins ten thousand of these unarmed put! And so massacred men throughout Ukraine”.

Therefore, it is possible to at least roughly estimate how many hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people have died in similar circumstances across the USSR in 1943-1944. And not only in Ukraine — according to the Belarusian researcher Sergei Zakharevich, this practice was very common in the BSSR during the offensive of the red army; as “cannon fodder” used by tens of thousands of local partisans. A Russian historian, author of “Day” Boris Sokolov describes the same thing in the Bryansk region… But the main thing here is that all these “rooks”, “black scrolls” and “grey jackets” is not officially recruited into the Red army, it was not taken into account; only survivors of the first battles was dressed in a soldier’s uniform and made a list of personnel. This approach enabled the commanders at all levels to understate the numbers of their combat losses and to the order for his actions. And so it was clear that is underestimated and the figure of 27 million.

Shortly before his death, academician Alexander Yakovlev, the officer-soldier, said that the victims of the war were more than 30 million Soviet citizens. Of them, as the Commission established under the President of Russia under the leadership of Yakovlev, 954 thousand soldiers was shot by his own for real, and most of all — for imaginary crimes. “The Germans were advancing, we were waiting for them, and when that happens, it becomes scary. And here’s a guy eighteen-year-old jumped up and ran. It would just stop, fell to the ground, and 5 minutes later he would woke up, he was aware of, he was beside himself. And the company commander he is immediately shot in the back, recalled Yakovlev. — I came to the front, and there the Commissar of the battalion instructs: when you say “attack”, and they don’t get up — a shot itself in the first shoot — and immediately rise.”

Need any comments on that? Except for one thing. If we take the data on the losses of the red army in the battles with the UPA (Ukrainian insurgent army — banned organization in Russia — approx. ed; such fights were basically forces of the NKVD, NKGB, MGB and MVD; punitive losses should be in a special account, now we are talking about the army), we will see that the Bolsheviks, on the directives of its leadership destroyed about 100 times more soldiers of the red army, the Ukrainian nationalists during the clashes. So someone who actually “shot in the back?”

And recently emerged next sensation: in the state Duma of the Russian Federation the organizers of the action “Immortal regiment” was named much higher numbers: 42.9 million victims. These figures are more similar to the truth. However, it seems that the number of civil here recorded, and “rooks” and “OST”, and this is still millions of those who died in the war, and fell on the battlefields… But don’t forget: the Second world war for Ukraine began not on 22 June 1941, but much earlier, on 1 September 1939. About 200 thousand Ukrainians resisted the Wehrmacht in the Polish army and the Red army was preparing to March on the West to support their Nazi allies and to join the Kremlin’s Empire, the Beresteyshchyna, Galicia, Volhynia, and Grodno region. Only in Kiev and Kharkov military districts in the Red army in those days were mobilized more than a million soldiers and commanders, on the territory of the USSR have been deployed on the Ukrainian front.

Do not forget about the fact that without a break — the last day of November 1939 the Red army invaded Finland. Even up to half a million Ukrainians have gone through this brutal Winter war. And tens of thousands (exact data are still unknown) did not return from her. Sometimes almost entirely lost surrounded and captured the whole division, deployed from Kiev and Odessa districts (say, 44th infantry, which was commanded by Mykola Shchors). And what funerals have become commonplace even then… But back in the summer of 1940 and the first half of 1941, thousands of Ukrainians in the Polish forces and the French Foreign Legion fought against the Nazis on the Western front and in the middle East. In General, however, until 22 June 1941 in the various armies fell at least 100 thousand Ukrainians. Meanwhile, say, Britain, which fought both in Europe and in the Pacific, and Africa (and fought desperately), during the entire war, from September 1939 to September 1945, lost about 400 thousand people. Really all that was till 22 June 1941, — a trifle, not worth attention?

So in the end it seems that the recorded. according to Khrushchev numbers of Ukrainian losses in the war close to the truth. Whether these losses are in vain? Not really. One of the “world evil” in the Second world has become smaller, and the second “world evil” are unable to fully implement their far reaching expansionist plans (“Our slogan is a worldwide Soviet Union”, — was sung in the official anthem of the Stalinist Comintern), taking control of “only” Eastern Europe and some Asian countries. In addition, acquired as a result of war, the status of Ukraine as member-co-founder of the UN (albeit formal) helped to implement an almost bloodless dismantling of the Soviet Union. And finally, those warriors who were captured, and then in the camps of the Gulag, became the striking force of the uprisings in the camps, thereby playing a crucial role in the elimination of “Archipelago” as an important component of the Stalinist system.