Ziemke, Earl F.
The Red Army, 1918-1941: From Vanguard of World Revolution to America's Ally
London: Frank Cass / Taylor and Francis, 2004
See also more books from:
See also more books on the same topic(s):
Operation Barbarossa, June - December 1941
Polish campaign, 1939: Soviet intervention
Russo-Finnish War, 1939-1940
Soviet Union: Armed forces
Soviet Union: Armies and ground forces
Soviet Union: Strategy, tactics, doctrine, planning, and training
See also references to this book:
Reference in news archive July 2004
Feedback from visitors
Feedback from Thomas Titura on Monday, 26 July 2004
Rates this book:
Ziemke now also presents Stalin's offensive plans against Germany.
The latest book by Earl Ziemke is a step forward in examining the intentions of Stalin and the role of the Red Army at the outbreak of war with Germany. Ziemke presents important Soviet war plans from the years 1940 - 1941 in some detail. Especially the now famous “Considerations….” from 15 May 1941, where a pre-emptive strike against German troops in former Poland was advocated, are discussed. This is an important development,because until recently Stalin's plans for a pre-emptive war against Hitler have been downplayed and ignored. But now Ziemke follows Prof. Richard Raack (Stalin's Drive to the West, 1938-45: Origins of the Cold War) and Prof. Albert Weeks (Stalin's OtherWar. Soviet Grand Strategy 1939-1941) who both have demonstrated that Stalin was not the peace-loving politician that has been portrayed by generations of traditional historians, but rather an aggressive, expansionist dictator. Ziemke acknowledges the offensive deployment and intentions of the Red Army at the eve of World War II. It can now be demonstrated with the aid of documents from the former Soviet Union that Stalin was preparing to attack Hitler in 1941. And this offensive deployment and doctrine was a causal reason for the defeats the Soviet Union suffered at the beginning of the war. Had the Red Army been deployed for defensive war, the German invasion would have led to dramatically different results in 1941. But Ziemke confirms, although notas strongly and outspokenly as one would have wished, that the strong concentration of Tank Corps in the two salients around Lvov and Bialystok had only one reason: to attack German forces according to the war plan of 15 May 1941. The offensive deployment of aerodromes for the Red Airforce close to the border with Germany had the same reason: to strike a surprise blow against German airfields and communications centers in former Poland. Had Stalin prepared for a German attack, both tanks and airplanes would have been deployed much further to the rear. The claim that the book is based on the latest documents from formerly secret Soviet archives is a bit far-fetched: Ziemke is not aware of or at least not using the important books of German, Austrian, American und Russian historians like Walter Post (Unternehmen Barbarossa), Heinz Magenheimer (Entscheidungsjahr 1941), Joachim Hoffmann (Stalin's Vernichtungskrieg), Melthiukov, Nevezhin, Raack and Weeks. But despite these shortcomings, Ziemke makes another important contribution to our understanding of Stalin's strategy and the Red Army. Recommended
Also recommended: Albert Weeks: Stalin's Other War. Soviet Grand Strategy 1939-1941. Richard Raack: Stalin's Drive to the West, 1938-45: Origins ofthe Cold War.
Send us your feedback if you've read this book and have some thoughtful words to contribute about it.
We welcome and encourage your thoughtful feedback about this book. Unfortunately, due to a few hooligans,
all feedback must be manually reviewed and approved
before it is displayed. We'll take care of that as soon as possible. Please be patient. Thanks.