By Jochen Hellbeck
Im Dezember 1942 reiste eine Gruppe von Moskauer Historikern nach Stalingrad. Sie wollten die seit Monaten anhaltende Schlacht, die von der Weltöffentlichkeit mit angehaltenem Atem verfolgt wurde, für die Nachwelt festhalten. Im Beisein von Stenographinnen sprachen sie mit Kommandeuren und einfachen Soldaten, mit Kommissaren, Scharfschützen und Sanitäterinnen. Auch Bewohner der Stadt berichteten schon während der Kämpfe von ihren Erlebnissen – offen und hautnah. Diese einzigartigen Gesprächsprotokolle verschaffen einen gänzlich neuen Blick auf die Schlacht, die den Wendepunkt im Zweiten Weltkrieg markierte. Sie enthüllen das Selbstverständnis und die Motivation der Rotarmisten und ihre Wahrnehmung der deutschen Gegner. Nach dem Krieg gerieten die Stalingrader Protokolle unter Verschluss und verschwanden im Archiv. Siebzig Jahre nach der Schlacht werden sie nun von Jochen Hellbeck in Zusammenarbeit mit Historikern der Russischen Akademie der Wissenschaften präsentiert.
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Extra info for Die Stalingrad-Protokolle
Cit. 40 Aktenuermerk, Fuehrerhauptquartier 16. T. op. , XXXVIII, pp. 86-94. 41. Doc. 1027-PS. Files of Office of Chief of Counsel for War Crimes. , op. , XXVI, pp. , pp. , pp. 576--80. 41. , op. cit. XXVIII. 86-94. 43 Abschriftzu Rk. 10714 B. 41. T. op. , XXIX, pp. 235-37. PREINVASION PLANNING 19 district Kommissare. 44 Taken together with Himmler's "preparation," there was to be nothing benevolent about this administration. What the Russian people thought or felt did not matter, and there was to be no real attempt to draw them over into the German camp.
In general the supply situation was satisfactory. Time was the important element, for the early Russian winter was approaching and the attack had to be launched regardless of other considerations. This final drive opened on 2 October, and by the end of the second clay had broken the resistance along almost the entire front. Meanwhile Guderian had disengaged his units from the Kiev front and before the endof September was pushing hard to the northeast to join the lower jaw of the trap. By the day of the opening of the attack he had gained considerable operational freedom and his advance elements were nearing Orel.
The main effort continued with Von Kleist's armor still in the van, the Seventeenth Army to the south moving more slowly on a broad front. GERMAN OPERATIONS TO THE STALINGRAD DEBACLE 29 By 11 July one panzer unit had reached the outer defenses of Kiev, but violent tank-led counterattacks from both north and south in the vicinity of Zhitomir and Berdichev, the twin cities that controlled the western approaches to the Ukrainian capital, brought forward movement to a halt and inflicted heavy casualties on several of the armored divisions.