Schwerin is the capital and second-largest city of the northeastern German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. It has a population of about 100,000. Schwerin was first mentioned in 1018 as Wendenburg and was granted city rights in 1160 by Henry the Lion, thus it is the oldest city of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, it is globally known for its romantic Schwerin Palace, situated on an island in the Lake Schwerin. The palace was one of the main residences of the dukes and grand dukes of Mecklenburg until 1918 and is the official seat of the state parliament since 1990; the city has a intact old town, thanks to only minor damage in World War II. Schwerin is located within the metropolitan region of Hamburg and close to that of Berlin, to nearby regiopolises of Rostock and Lübeck. Major industries and employers include high technology, machine building, government agencies, railway supply, consumer goods and tourism. Schwerin has the FHM, HdBA and the Design School. Schwerin is enclosed by lakes; the largest of these lakes, the Schweriner See, has an area of 60 km2.
In the middle part of these lakes there was a settlement of the Slavic Obotrite. The area was called Zuarin, the name Schwerin is derived from that designation. In 1160, Henry the Lion defeated the Obotrites and captured Schwerin; the town was expanded into a powerful regional centre. A castle was built on this site, expanded to become a ducal palace, it is haunted by the small, impious ghost, called Petermännchen. In 1358, Schwerin became a part of the Duchy of Mecklenburg, making it the seat of the duchy from on. About 1500, the construction of the Schwerin Palace began, as a residence for the dukes. After the division of Mecklenburg, Schwerin became the capital of the Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin. Between 1765 and 1837, the town of Ludwigslust served as the capital. In the mid-1800s, many residents from Schwerin moved to the United States, many to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Today Milwaukee and Schwerin are sister cities. After 1918, during the German Revolution, resulting in the fall of all the German monarchies, the Grand Duke abdicated.
Schwerin became capital of the Free State of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern thereafter. At the end of World War II, on 2 May 1945, Schwerin was taken by United States troops, it was turned over to the British on 1 June 1945, one month on 1 July 1945, it was handed over to the Soviet forces, as the British and American forces pulled back from the line of contact to the predesignated occupation zones. Schwerin was in the Soviet Occupation Zone, to become the German Democratic Republic, it was the capital of the State of Mecklenburg which at that time included the western part of Pomerania. After the states were dissolved in the GDR, in 1952, Schwerin served as the capital of the Schwerin district. After reunification in 1990, the former state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern was recreated as one of the Bundesländer. Rostock was a serious contender for state capital but the decision went in favour of Schwerin; the urban area of Schwerin is divided into each with a local council. The districts consist of one or more districts.
The local councilors have between 15 members depending on the number of inhabitants. They are determined by the city council for the duration of the election period of the city council after each municipal election; the local councilors are to hear important matters concerning the district and have a right of initiative. However, the final decisions are made by the city council of the city as a whole; the eighteen current districts are the following: District 1: Schelfstadt, Schelfwerder District 2: Altstadt, Paulsstadt, Lewenberg District 3: Grosser Dreesch District 4: Neu Zippendorf District 5: Mueßer Holz District 6: Gartenstadt, Ostorf District 7: Lankow District 8: Weststadt District 9: Krebsförden District 10: Wüstmark, Göhrener Tannen District 11: Görries District 12: Friedrichsthal District 13: Neumühle, Sacktannen District 14: Warnitz District 15: Wickendorf Locality 16: Medewege Locality 17: Zippendorf Locality 18: Mueß City buses and trams are run by NVS. Schwerin Hauptbahnhof is connected by rail to Berlin and Rostock.
The landmark of the city is the Schwerin Palace, located on an island in the lake of the same name. It was, for centuries, the residence of the Dukes of Mecklenburg and today is the seat of the Landtag. Schwerin Cathedral, built in 1260–1416 in Brick Gothic style; the Alter Garten square, surrounded by buildings such as the 18th-century Altes Palais, the neoclassical Staatliches Museum Schwerin, the Staatstheater. The town hall. Schelfkirche built 1238, but rebuilt in 1713 after destruction by a storm. TV Tower Schwerin-Zippendorf; the Staatliches Museum Schwerin-Kunstsammlungen houses a remarkable collection of 17th-century Dutch paintings and German art from medieval and renaissance masters up to the present day. There are a collection of Greek vases, the notable collection of Paintings of Jean-Baptiste Oudry, a collection of sculptures of Houdon, German 18th-century court paintings, works by such modern artists as Max Liebermann, Franz Stuck, Marcel Duchamp etc; the Graphic cabinet houses rich collections of Dutc
21st Guards Motor Rifle Brigade
The 21st Guards Motor Rifle Brigade is a formation of the Russian Ground Forces. It was formed on 1 June 2009 from the 27th Guards Motor Rifle Division as a result of the 2008 Russian military reform. In 2014, the brigade was involved in the Russian military intervention in Ukraine. In August 2014 the brigade's units fought in the Battle of Ilovaisk. On 29 August, during a Ukrainian breakthrough attempt from Ilovaisk, a "northern" column of Ukrainian forces took the fight with 21st brigade's troops on a road between Voznesenka and Horbatenko villages. Ukrainian T-64 tank and several BMP-2s of 51st Mechanized Brigade were able to destroy two T-72BA tanks and a BMP-2 of the 21st Motor Rifle Brigade. Another 21st brigade's T-72BA tank was destroyed near Kumachove village by a Tochka-U rocket strike of the 19th Rocket Brigade. A Ukrainian Headquarters briefing held on 11 March 2015 noted the 21st Motor Rifle Brigade units are operating near Yenakiiyeve, Ukraine
A field army is a military formation in many armed forces, composed of two or more corps and may be subordinate to an army group. Air armies are equivalent formation within some air forces. A field army is composed of 100,000 to 150,000 troops. Particular field armies are named or numbered to distinguish them from "army" in the sense of an entire national land military force. In English, the typical style for naming field armies is word numbers, such as "First Army". A field army may be given a geographical name in addition to or as an alternative to a numerical name, such as the British Army of the Rhine, Army of the Niemen or Aegean Army; the Roman army was among the first to feature a formal field army, in the sense of a large, combined arms formation, namely the sacer comitatus, which may be translated as "sacred escort". The term is derived from the fact that they were commanded by Roman emperors, when they acted as field commanders. While the Roman comitatensis is sometimes translated as "field army", it may be translated as the more generic "field force" or "mobile force".
In some armed forces, an "army" has been equivalent to a corps-level unit. Prior to 1945, this was the case with a gun within the Imperial Japanese Army, for which the formation equivalent in size to a field army was an "area army". In the Soviet Red Army and the Soviet Air Forces, an army was subordinate in wartime to a front, it contained at least three to five divisions along with artillery, air defense and other supporting units. It could be classified as either tank army. In peacetime, a Soviet army was subordinate to a military district. Modern field armies are large formations which vary between armed forces in size and scope of responsibility. For instance, within NATO a field army is composed of a headquarters, controls at least two corps, beneath which are a variable number of divisions. A battle is influenced at the field army level by transferring divisions and reinforcements from one corps to another to increase the pressure on the enemy at a critical point. NATO armies are commanded by a general or lieutenant general.
Armeeoberkommando Military unit Military history List of numbered armies
Battle of Berlin
The Battle of Berlin, designated the Berlin Strategic Offensive Operation by the Soviet Union, known as the Fall of Berlin, was one of the last major offensives of the European theatre of World War II. Following the Vistula–Oder Offensive of January–February 1945, the Red Army had temporarily halted on a line 60 km east of Berlin. On 9 March, Germany established its defence plan for the city with Operation Clausewitz; the first defensive preparations at the outskirts of Berlin were made on 20 March, under the newly appointed commander of Army Group Vistula, General Gotthard Heinrici. When the Soviet offensive resumed on 16 April, two Soviet fronts attacked Berlin from the east and south, while a third overran German forces positioned north of Berlin. Before the main battle in Berlin commenced, the Red Army encircled the city after successful battles of the Seelow Heights and Halbe. On 20 April 1945, Hitler's birthday, the 1st Belorussian Front led by Marshal Georgy Zhukov, advancing from the east and north, started shelling Berlin's city centre, while Marshal Ivan Konev's 1st Ukrainian Front broke through Army Group Centre and advanced towards the southern suburbs of Berlin.
On 23 April General Helmuth Weidling assumed command of the forces within Berlin. The garrison consisted of several depleted and disorganised Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS divisions, along with poorly trained Volkssturm and Hitler Youth members. Over the course of the next week, the Red Army took the entire city. Before the battle was over and several of his followers killed themselves; the city's garrison surrendered on 2 May but fighting continued to the north-west and south-west of the city until the end of the war in Europe on 8 May as some German units fought westward so that they could surrender to the Western Allies rather than to the Soviets. Starting on 12 January 1945, the Red Army began the Vistula–Oder Offensive across the Narew River. On the fourth day, the Red Army broke out and started moving west, up to 30 to 40 km per day, taking East Prussia and Poznań, drawing up on a line 60 km east of Berlin along the Oder River; the newly created Army Group Vistula, under the command of Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler, attempted a counter-attack, but this had failed by 24 February.
The Red Army drove on to Pomerania, clearing the right bank of the Oder River, thereby reaching into Silesia. In the south the Siege of Budapest raged. Three German divisions' attempts to relieve the encircled Hungarian capital city failed, Budapest fell to the Soviets on 13 February. Adolf Hitler insisted on a counter-attack to recapture the Drau-Danube triangle; the goal was to secure the oil region of Nagykanizsa and regain the Danube River for future operations, but the depleted German forces had been given an impossible task. By 16 March, the German Lake Balaton Offensive had failed, a counter-attack by the Red Army took back in 24 hours everything the Germans had taken ten days to gain. On 30 March, the Soviets entered Austria. Between June and September 1944, the Wehrmacht had lost more than a million men, it lacked the fuel and armaments needed to operate effectively. On 12 April 1945, who had earlier decided to remain in the city against the wishes of his advisers, heard the news that the American President Franklin D. Roosevelt had died.
This raised false hopes in the Führerbunker that there might yet be a falling out among the Allies and that Berlin would be saved at the last moment, as had happened once before when Berlin was threatened. No plans were made by the Western Allies to seize the city by a ground operation; the Supreme Commander Allied Expeditionary Force, General Eisenhower lost interest in the race to Berlin and saw no further need to suffer casualties by attacking a city that would be in the Soviet sphere of influence after the war, envisioning excessive friendly fire if both armies attempted to occupy the city at once. The major Western Allied contribution to the battle was the bombing of Berlin during 1945. During 1945 the United States Army Air Forces launched large daytime raids on Berlin and for 36 nights in succession, scores of RAF Mosquitos bombed the German capital, ending on the night of 20/21 April 1945 just before the Soviets entered the city; the Soviet offensive into central Germany, what became East Germany, had two objectives.
Stalin did not believe the Western Allies would hand over territory occupied by them in the post-war Soviet zone, so he began the offensive on a broad front and moved to meet the Western Allies as far west as possible. But the overriding objective was to capture Berlin; the two goals were complementary because possession of the zone could not be won unless Berlin were taken. Another consideration was that Berlin itself held useful post-war strategic assets, including Adolf Hitler and the German atomic bomb programme. On 6 March, Hitler appointed Lieutenant General Helmuth Reymann commander of the Berlin Defence Area, replacing Lieutenant General Bruno Ritter von Hauenschild. On 20 March, General Gotthard Heinrici was appointed Commander-in-Chief of Army Group Vistula replacing Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler. Heinrici was one of the best defensive tacticians in the German army, he started to lay defensive plans. Heinrici assessed that the main Soviet thrust would be made over the Oder River and along the main east-west Autobahn.
He decided not to try to defend the banks of the Oder with anything more than a light skirmishing screen. Instead, Heinrici arranged for engineers
East Pomeranian Offensive
The East Pomeranian Strategic Offensive operation was an offensive by the Soviet Red Army against the German Wehrmacht on the Eastern Front. It took place in Pomerania and West Prussia from 10 February – 4 April 1945; the operation happened in four phases: Konitz-Köslin Offensive Operation 24 February – 6 March 1945 Danzig Offensive Operation 7–31 March 1945 Arnswalde-Kolberg Offensive Operation 1–18 March 1945 Altdamm Offensive Operation 18 March – 4 April 1945 It was the East Pomeranian Offensive that prevented Zhukov from reaching Berlin in February, since it became a priority to clear German forces from Pomerania first. The 2nd Belorussian Front—under Konstantin Rokossovsky—had been tasked with advancing westward north of the Vistula River toward Pomerania and the major port city of Danzig, with the primary aim of protecting the right flank of Zhukov's 1st Belorussian Front, pushing towards Berlin. During the East Prussian Offensive, Rokossovsky was ordered to wheel directly north toward Elbing.
This left substantial German forces intact in Pomerania, where they threatened the right flank of Zhukov's formations. As a result, once the initial phase of the East Prussian Offensive was over, the 2nd Belorussian Front was redeployed with the intention of attacking westwards into Pomerania, eliminating the possibility of a German counter-offensive; the need to secure the flanks delayed the Soviets' final push towards Berlin, planned for February, until April. Joseph Stalin's decision to delay the push toward Berlin from February to April has been a subject of some controversy among both the Soviet generals and military historians, with one side arguing that the Soviets had a chance of securing Berlin much quicker and with much lower losses in February, the other arguing that the danger of leaving large German formations on the flanks could have resulted in a successful German counter-attack and prolonged the war further: the Germans did in fact mount a surprise counter-attack in Pomerania in mid-February, Operation Solstice.
The delay did, allow the Soviets to occupy significant parts of Austria in the Vienna Offensive. As early as 13 February, German intelligence services had deduced that the Soviets would seek to clear Pomerania before advancing on Berlin; the 2nd Army—defending a large and exposed sector running through Pomerania eastward toward the edge of East Prussia at Elbing — sought permission to withdraw, but this was denied by Adolf Hitler. Graudenz, on the Vistula, was surrounded on 18 February. Army Group Vistula 2nd Army XXXXVI Panzer Corps VII Panzer Corps XXVII Panzer Corps XXIII Corps XVIII Mountain Corps Fortress garrisons of Graudenz and Danzig Eastern flank of 3rd Panzer Army III SS Panzer Corps X SS CorpsThe corps of the Second Army were understrength by this time, being composed of fragmentary or ad hoc units; the 3rd Panzer Army had been rebuilt using the korps of the formed 11th SS Panzer Army, the original formation having been destroyed in Lithuania and East Prussia, where its remnants were now defending Königsberg.
2nd Belorussian Front Eastern flank of 1st Belorussian Front 3rd Shock Army 1st Guards Tank Army 2nd Guards Tank Army Rokossovsky opened the offensive on 24 February using the fresh troops of Kozlov's 19th Army, but after an initial advance of some 20 km they were halted by intense German resistance. On 26 February, he inserted the 3rd Guards Tank Corps east of Neustettin, where they achieved a penetration of 40 km, relieved Kozlov of command; the 3rd Guards Tank Corps broke through at Baldenburg, while Neustettin on the Front's left flank fell to the 3rd Guards Cavalry Corps on 27 February. Weiß had hurriedly assembled the VII Panzer Corps, including the remnants of the 7th Panzer Division, at Rummelsburg to threaten 19th Army's flank. However, after a Soviet breakthrough at Köslin on 2 March, the 2nd Army found itself cut off from the rest of its Army Group. Zhukov's right wing—a grouping of the 3rd Shock Army and 1st and 2nd Guards Tank Armies—went over to the offensive on 1 March, striking northward with the main force concentrated at Reetz.
The entire left wing of 3rd Panzer Army was cut off by their breakthrough, after Guderian refused Raus' request for withdrawal. On 4 March, forward Soviet tank units reached the Baltic, the German forces in Pomerania were trapped in a series of encirclements; the 2nd Army began to fall back on the Danzig fortified area, while the X SS Corps of the 3rd Panzer Army had been surrounded at Dramburg. Rokossovksy opened the second phase of his offensive on March 6; the 2nd Shock Army threatened to cut off the defending forces in the fortress of Marienburg, evacuated two days while in the east Elbing fell on 10 March. The defence of Marienburg was conducted by a Kampfgruppe under the nominal control of the staff of the 7th Infantry Division, including marine, SS and other units. Weiß, having warned that the Elbing pocket could not be held, was relieved of command on 9 March and replaced by Dietrich von Saucken; the troops of the German 2nd Army withdrew in disarray into Danzig and Gdingen, where the 2nd Belorussian Front besieged them.
Zhukov's forces meanwhile, cleared the remainder of 3rd Panzer Army from the east bank of the lower O
Perleberg is the capital of the district of Prignitz, located in the northwest of the German state of Brandenburg. The town received city rights in 1239 and today has about 12,000 inhabitants. Located in a agricultural area, the town has a long history of troops being stationed here and as an administrative center for local government. Perleberg is located in the heart of the district of Prignitz, about halfway between the two largest German cities Berlin and Hamburg, it is surrounded by the municipalities Karstädt in the north-west, Gross Pankow in the north-east, Plattenburg in the south-east. The Stepenitz flows from northeast to southwest through Perleberg; the town's historic center is built on an island between two arms of the river. One of the city's oldest buildings is St James's church. First mentioned in 1294, it was altered and extensively remodelled in the 1850s. In German, it is called the Jakobikirche, therefore sometimes mistakenly called St Jacob's in English. In the 14th century the town was on its height as part of the Hanseatic League.
In 1523 it was the muster-point for an army assembled by Elector Joachim I in support of his brother-in-law Christian II of Denmark's attempt to recover his throne. The Thirty Years' War caused serious damage to the town: of 3,500 inhabitants, only 300 survived; the mayor responsible for rebuilding the city after this period was Georg Krusemarck. On November 25, 1809, Lord Benjamin Bathurst disappeared in Perleberg. Accounts of the incident exaggerated the circumstances to such an extent that the disappearance is sometimes claimed to have been caused by paranormal phenomena. Lotte Lehmann, born here Dörte von Westernhagen, born here Ernst Ehrenbaum, biologist James Broh, lawyer and politician Media related to Perleberg at Wikimedia Commons
Group of Soviet Forces in Germany
The Western Group of Forces known as the Group of Soviet Occupation Forces in Germany and the Group of Soviet Forces in Germany, were the troops of the Soviet Army in East Germany. The Group of Soviet Occupation Forces in Germany was formed after the end of World War II from units of the 1st and 2nd Belorussian Fronts; the group helped suppress the Uprising of 1953 in East Germany. After the end of occupation functions in 1954 the group was renamed the Group of Soviet Forces in Germany; the group represented Soviet interests in East Germany during the Cold War. After changes in Soviet foreign policy during the late 1980s, the group shifted to a more defensive role and in 1988 became the Western Group of Forces. Russian forces remained in Eastern Germany after the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the German reunification until 1994; the Group of Soviet Occupation Forces, Germany was formed after the end of the Second World War from formations of the 1st and 2nd Belorussian Fronts, commanded by Georgy Zhukov.
On its creation on 9 June 1945 it included: the Soviet 1st Guards Tank Army · 8th Guards Mechanised Corps, the 11th Guards Tank Corps 2nd Guards Tank Army · Soviet 1st Mechanized Corps, 9th Tank Corps, 12th Guards Tank Corps 4th Guards Tank Army · 5th Guards Mechanised Corps, 6th Guards Mechanised Corps. 49th Army 70th Army First Polish Army Dnieper Flotilla 16th Air Army An order of 29 May 1945 had ordered the disestablishment of the 47th, 77th, 80th, 89th, 25th, 61st, 91st, 16th, 38th, 62nd, 70th, 121st, 114th Rifle Corps, of the 71st, 136th, 162nd, 76th, 82nd, 212th, 356th, 234th, 23rd, 397th, 311th, 415th, 328th, 274th, 370th, 41st, 134th, 312th, 4th, 117th, 247th, 89th, 95th, 64th, 323rd, 362, 222, 49th, 339th, 383rd, 191st, 380th, 42nd, 139th, 238th, 385th, 200th, 330th, 199th, 1st, 369th, 165th, 169th, 158th, 346th Rifle Divisions. The 89th Rifle Division was not instead transferred to the Caucasus. In January 1946, the 2nd Shock Army left the Soviet Zone. A month the 47th Army was disbanded, with its units withdrawn to the Soviet Union.
In October the 5th Shock Army was disbanded. In 1947 the 3rd and 4th Guards Mechanized Divisions, former mechanized armies, arrived in the group from the Central Group of Forces. In 1954 the 3rd Shock Army became the 3rd Red Banner Combined Arms Army; the 3rd Guards Mechanized Army became the 18th Guards Army on 29 April 1957. On the same day, the 4th Guards Mechanized Army became the 20th Guards Army. After the abolition of the occupation functions in 1954, the Group of Soviet Occupation Forces in Germany became known as the Group of Soviet Forces in Germany on 24 March; the legal basis for the GSVG's stay in East Germany was the Treaty on Relations between the USSR and the GDR of 1955. Withdrawals from East Germany in 1956 and 1957/58 comprised more than 70,000 Soviet army personnel, including 18th Guards Army Staff; the GSFG had the task to ensure for the adherence to the regulations of the Potsdam Agreement. Furthermore, they represented the military interests of the Soviet Union. In 1957 an agreement between the governments of the USSR and the GDR laid out the arrangements over the temporary stay of Soviet armed forces on the territory of the GDR, the numerical strength of the Soviet troops, their assigned posts and exercise areas.
It was specified that the Soviet armed forces were not to interfere into the internal affairs of the GDR, as they had done during the Uprising of 1953 in East Germany. Following a resolution of the government of the Soviet Union in 1979 and 1980, 20,000 army personnel, 1,000 tanks and much equipment were withdrawn from the territory of the GDR, among them the 6th Guards Tank Division, with headquarters at Wittenberg. In the course of Perestroika the GSFG was realigned as a more defensive force regarding strength and equipment; this entailed a clear reduction of the tank forces in 1989. The GSFG was renamed the Western Group of Forces on 1 June 1989; the withdrawal of the GSFG was one of the largest peacetime troop transfers in military history. Despite the difficulties, which resulted from the dissolution of the Soviet Union in the same period, the departure was carried out according to plan and punctually until August 1994. Between the years of 1992 and 1993, the Western Group of Forces in Germany, halted military exercises.
The return of the troops and material took place by the sea ro