The Workers' and Peasants' Red Army shortened to Red Army was the army and the air force of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, after 1922, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. The army was established after the 1917 October Revolution; the Bolsheviks raised an army to oppose the military confederations of their adversaries during the Russian Civil War. Beginning in February 1946, the Red Army, along with the Soviet Navy, embodied the main component of the Soviet Armed Forces; the Red Army provided the largest land force in the Allied victory in the European theatre of World War II, its invasion of Manchuria assisted the unconditional surrender of Imperial Japan. During operations on the Eastern Front, it accounted for 75–80% of casualties the Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS suffered during the war and captured the Nazi German capital, Berlin. In September 1917, Vladimir Lenin wrote: "There is only one way to prevent the restoration of the police, and, to create a people's militia and to fuse it with the army."
At the time, the Imperial Russian Army had started to collapse. 23% of the male population of the Russian Empire were mobilized. The Tsarist general Nikolay Dukhonin estimated that there had been 2 million deserters, 1.8 million dead, 5 million wounded and 2 million prisoners. He estimated the remaining troops as numbering 10 million. While the Imperial Russian Army was being taken apart, "it became apparent that the rag-tag Red Guard units and elements of the imperial army who had gone over the side of the Bolsheviks were quite inadequate to the task of defending the new government against external foes." Therefore, the Council of People's Commissars decided to form the Red Army on 28 January 1918. They envisioned a body "formed from the class-conscious and best elements of the working classes." All citizens of the Russian republic aged 18 or older were eligible. Its role being the defense "of the Soviet authority, the creation of a basis for the transformation of the standing army into a force deriving its strength from a nation in arms, furthermore, the creation of a basis for the support of the coming Socialist Revolution in Europe."
Enlistment was conditional upon "guarantees being given by a military or civil committee functioning within the territory of the Soviet Power, or by party or trade union committees or, in extreme cases, by two persons belonging to one of the above organizations." In the event of an entire unit wanting to join the Red Army, a "collective guarantee and the affirmative vote of all its members would be necessary." Because the Red Army was composed of peasants, the families of those who served were guaranteed rations and assistance with farm work. Some peasants who remained at home yearned to join the Army. If they were turned away they would prepare care-packages. In some cases the money they earned would go towards tanks for the Army; the Council of People's Commissars appointed itself the supreme head of the Red Army, delegating command and administration of the army to the Commissariat for Military Affairs and the Special All-Russian College within this commissariat. Nikolai Krylenko was the supreme commander-in-chief, with Aleksandr Myasnikyan as deputy.
Nikolai Podvoisky became the commissar for Pavel Dybenko, commissar for the fleet. Proshyan, Steinberg were specified as people's commissars as well as Vladimir Bonch-Bruyevich from the Bureau of Commissars. At a joint meeting of Bolsheviks and Left Socialist-Revolutionaries, held on 22 February 1918, Krylenko remarked: "We have no army; the demoralized soldiers are fleeing, panic-stricken, as soon as they see a German helmet appear on the horizon, abandoning their artillery and all war material to the triumphantly advancing enemy. The Red Guard units are brushed aside like flies. We have no power to stay the enemy; the Russian Civil War occurred in three periods: October 1917 – November 1918: From the Bolshevik Revolution to the First World War Armistice, developed from the Bolshevik government's nationalization of traditional Cossack lands in November 1917. This provoked the insurrection of General Alexey Maximovich Kaledin's Volunteer Army in the River Don region; the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk aggravated Russian internal politics.
The situation encouraged direct Allied intervention in the Russian Civil War, in which twelve foreign countries supported anti-Bolshevik militias. A series of engagements resulted, amongst others, the Czechoslovak Legion, the Polish 5th Rifle Division, the pro-Bolshevik Red Latvian Riflemen. January 1919 – November 1919: Initially the White armies advanced: from the south, under General Anton Denikin; the Whites defeated the Red Army on each front. Leon Trotsky reformed and counterattacked: the Red Army repelled Admiral Kolchak's army in June, the armies of General Denikin and General Yudenich in October. By mid-Nove
40th Army (Soviet Union)
The 40th Army of the Soviet Union's Soviet Army was an army-level command that participated in World War II from 1941 to 1945 and was reformed for the Soviet–Afghan War from 1979 to circa 1990. The Army became the core for the Soviet occupational force in Afghanistan in 1980s named as the limited contingent of Soviet forces in Afghanistan, it was first formed, after Operation Barbarossa, the German invasion of the Soviet Union, had commenced, from elements of the 26th and 37th Armies under the command of Major General Kuzma Petrovich Podlas in August 1941 at the boundary of the Bryansk Front and the Soviet Southwestern Front. By 25 August 1941 the 135th and 293rd Rifle Divisions, 2nd Airborne Corps, 10th Tank Division, 5th Anti-Tank Brigade had been assembled to form the force; as part of the Southwestern Front, it took part in the Battle of Kiev, where the Army was badly shattered, General-Major Semenchenko's 10th Tank Division was reduced to twenty tanks. By the time of the main German offensive against Moscow at the end of September, 40th Army was on the extreme right flank of Southwestern Front defending the Kursk axis.
The German offensive was directed at Soviet forces to the north of 40th Army, though the attack of the German 48th Motorised Corps, operating on the extreme southern flank of Second Panzer Group hit 40th Army's right flank positions. 40th Army began a steady retreat to the east. By 3 November 40th Army had been driven from Kursk, but by the end of the month it had brought the German advance to a halt near the town of Tim some 50 kilometres further east; as part of a general winter offensive by the Red Army across the entire Eastern Front, on 1 January 1942 40th Army, by based on six rifle divisions and two tank brigades, attacked German positions east of Tim. Off 40th Army's right flank the 13th Army had for several weeks been conducting offensive operations towards Orel, advancing some 50 kilometres to the west and retaking Elets and Kastornoye in the process; the advance of 40th Army was less rapid. By 3 January 40th Army, in conjunction with 21st Army further south, was involved in heavy fighting on the line of the Seym river as the two armies attempted to advance on Kursk and Oboyan respectively.
40th Army retook Tim and advanced to within 30 kilometres of Kursk before being stopped by determined German resistance in mid-January. Thereafter the frontline stabilised west of Tim through the rest of the winter and through the spring. On 3 April its sector of the frontline was assigned to the command of Bryansk Front. On 12 May 1942 Southwestern Front launched a major offensive to retake Kharkov by an encirclement from north and south. At the same time Bryansk Front was preparing an offensive of its own to retake Orel. However, by 16 May the offensive by Southwestern Front north of Kharkov had stalled and Bryansk Front was ordered to divert the bulk of its combat aircraft to 40th Army in the south and to launch an immediate offensive by 40th Army to support Southwestern Front's right wing. However, this hurriedly prepared offensive by 40th Army in the second half of May made little progress. In June 1942, Operation Blau saw Hoth's Fourth Panzer Army thrust in full force against 40th Army, which had its headquarters overrun by 24th Panzer Division on 29–30 June.
The 40th Army fell back from the Kastornoye area back to Voronezh, alongside the 4th, 17th, 24th Tank Corps. In response, the STAVKA hastened to establish the new Voronezh Front. During July, 40th Army, subordinated to Voronezh Front, was assigned to defend the river Don along the Liski - Pavlovsk sector, positions that it held throughout the remainder of 1942. On 12 January 1943 40th Army began offensive operations against the left flank of the Hungarian Second Army north of Liski; this offensive was coordinated with an attack by a Soviet tank army further south to surround Axis forces on the Liski - Novaya Kalitva sector of the Don front. By 18 January most of the Hungarian army and an Italian corps had been surrounded east of Alekseyevka; the advance of 40th Army had left the German Second Army in exposed positions at Voronezh and, in a hurriedly prepared offensive coordinated with three other Soviet armies further north, 40th Army struck north on 24 January to surround much of Second Army east of Kastornoye.
Having completed this operation, on 2 February 40th Army was launched into an offensive on the Kharkov axis to the southwest. It reached Belgorod four days later. Continuing to the southwest, 40th Army had reached Akhtyrka northwest of Kharkov by 23 February, but by a German counter-offensive on the Kharkov axis had developed and 40th Army was pushed back to defensive positions east of Sumy; these defensive positions, which were to form part of the southern face of the Kursk Salient, remained unchanged through April and June 1943. In March 1943 6th Pontoon Bridge Brigade joined the army. On 5 July 1943 Germany's last strategic offensive on the Eastern Front opened with attacks on the northern and southern shoulders of the Kursk Salient; the objective was to envelop and destroy the defending Central and Voronezh Fronts north and south of Kursk. At that time 40th Army, occupying what was expected to be a quiet sector of the frontline facing the left flank of the German Fourth Panzer Army, was based on seven rifle divisions with armoured support.
During the Battle of Kursk, where the Army fought as part of Voronezh Front, it transferred a number of reinforcements to 6th Guards Army to help 6th Guards hold back the 48th Panzer Corps, including the 29th Tank Destroyer Brigade and the 1244th and 869th Tank Destroyer Regiments, a total of over 100 antitank guns. 40th Army transferred a tank brigade
World War II
World War II known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries; the major participants threw their entire economic and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China, it included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, the only use of nuclear weapons in war. Japan, which aimed to dominate Asia and the Pacific, was at war with China by 1937, though neither side had declared war on the other. World War II is said to have begun on 1 September 1939, with the invasion of Poland by Germany and subsequent declarations of war on Germany by France and the United Kingdom.
From late 1939 to early 1941, in a series of campaigns and treaties, Germany conquered or controlled much of continental Europe, formed the Axis alliance with Italy and Japan. Under the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact of August 1939, Germany and the Soviet Union partitioned and annexed territories of their European neighbours, Finland and the Baltic states. Following the onset of campaigns in North Africa and East Africa, the fall of France in mid 1940, the war continued between the European Axis powers and the British Empire. War in the Balkans, the aerial Battle of Britain, the Blitz, the long Battle of the Atlantic followed. On 22 June 1941, the European Axis powers launched an invasion of the Soviet Union, opening the largest land theatre of war in history; this Eastern Front trapped most crucially the German Wehrmacht, into a war of attrition. In December 1941, Japan launched a surprise attack on the United States as well as European colonies in the Pacific. Following an immediate U. S. declaration of war against Japan, supported by one from Great Britain, the European Axis powers declared war on the U.
S. in solidarity with their Japanese ally. Rapid Japanese conquests over much of the Western Pacific ensued, perceived by many in Asia as liberation from Western dominance and resulting in the support of several armies from defeated territories; the Axis advance in the Pacific halted in 1942. Key setbacks in 1943, which included a series of German defeats on the Eastern Front, the Allied invasions of Sicily and Italy, Allied victories in the Pacific, cost the Axis its initiative and forced it into strategic retreat on all fronts. In 1944, the Western Allies invaded German-occupied France, while the Soviet Union regained its territorial losses and turned toward Germany and its allies. During 1944 and 1945 the Japanese suffered major reverses in mainland Asia in Central China, South China and Burma, while the Allies crippled the Japanese Navy and captured key Western Pacific islands; the war in Europe concluded with an invasion of Germany by the Western Allies and the Soviet Union, culminating in the capture of Berlin by Soviet troops, the suicide of Adolf Hitler and the German unconditional surrender on 8 May 1945.
Following the Potsdam Declaration by the Allies on 26 July 1945 and the refusal of Japan to surrender under its terms, the United States dropped atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on 6 and 9 August respectively. With an invasion of the Japanese archipelago imminent, the possibility of additional atomic bombings, the Soviet entry into the war against Japan and its invasion of Manchuria, Japan announced its intention to surrender on 15 August 1945, cementing total victory in Asia for the Allies. Tribunals were set up by fiat by the Allies and war crimes trials were conducted in the wake of the war both against the Germans and the Japanese. World War II changed the political social structure of the globe; the United Nations was established to foster international co-operation and prevent future conflicts. The Soviet Union and United States emerged as rival superpowers, setting the stage for the nearly half-century long Cold War. In the wake of European devastation, the influence of its great powers waned, triggering the decolonisation of Africa and Asia.
Most countries whose industries had been damaged moved towards economic expansion. Political integration in Europe, emerged as an effort to end pre-war enmities and create a common identity; the start of the war in Europe is held to be 1 September 1939, beginning with the German invasion of Poland. The dates for the beginning of war in the Pacific include the start of the Second Sino-Japanese War on 7 July 1937, or the Japanese invasion of Manchuria on 19 September 1931. Others follow the British historian A. J. P. Taylor, who held that the Sino-Japanese War and war in Europe and its colonies occurred and the two wars merged in 1941; this article uses the conventional dating. Other starting dates sometimes used for World War II include the Italian invasion of Abyssinia on 3 October 1935; the British historian Antony Beevor views the beginning of World War II as the Battles of Khalkhin Gol fought between Japan and the fo
5th Guards Tank Army
The 5th Guards Tank Army was a Soviet Guards armored formation which fought in many notable actions during World War II. The army was formed in February 1943; until the aftermath of the Vilnius Offensive in July 1944, it was commanded by Pavel Rotmistrov. Its organisation varied throughout its history, but in general included two or more Guards Tank Corps and one or more Guards Mechanized Corps, it was considered an elite formation. Under Red Army doctrine of deep operations, Tank Armies were to be used for large-scale exploitation of major offensives. Once a breach in enemy lines had been made by other units, the tank army would be inserted into the gap to drive deep into enemy territory, attacking rear areas and seizing major communications centers to disrupt the enemy reactions. Tank armies were expected to penetrate up to several hundred kilometers into the enemy rear. After the war, the 5th Guards Tank Army moved to the Belorussian Military District, it was downsized to division size in late 1946 and became a mechanized army in 1948.
The designation "5th Guards Tank Army" was restored in 1957. The army was taken over by the Belarus Ground Forces in June 1992 and became an army corps two months later; the 5th Guards Army Corps was disbanded in 2001. Its headquarters became the headquarters of the Belarus Ground Forces; the 5th Guards Tank Army was formed on 25 February 1943 based on a Stavka order of 10 February 1943. It was part of the Reserve of the Supreme High Command; the army included the 3rd Guards and the 29th Tank Corps, the 5th Guards Mechanized Corps, the 994th Night Bomber Aviation Regiment and other smaller units. In 1943, it played a significant role in the Battle of Kursk, being one of the formations tasked with the counterattack at the Battle of Prokhorovka. Subordinated to the Steppe Front, at Kursk the Army controlled the 18th Tank Corps, 29th Tank Corps, 2nd Tank Corps, 5th Guards Mechanised Corps plus smaller units with a total of 850 tanks. Early in 1944, it took part in the reduction of the Korsun-Cherkassy Pocket.
In June 1944, the 5th Guards Tank Army was used as the main exploitation force during the Soviet summer offensive, Operation Bagration. The formation was committed to an attack along and parallel to the main Moscow–Minsk road, following initial breakthroughs by the rifle divisions of 11th Guards Army, was instrumental in completing the encirclement and destruction of German forces at Minsk, it was employed in the third phase of Operation Bagration. High casualties in this campaign, led to the unit's commander Lieutenant-General Pavel Rotmistrov being relieved of command and replaced with Vasily Volsky. Late in 1944, the 5th Guards Tank Army was committed against 3rd Panzer Army as part of the Baltic Offensive, pushing the German forces into a pocket at Memel, it was moved south and took part in the East Prussian Operation as part of Konstantin Rokossovsky's 2nd Belorussian Front. However, by March 1945, the 5th Guards Tank Army was being drawn down, with the subordinate 10th Tank Corps moved first to direct subordination of the 3rd Belorussian Front and the STAVKA Reserve by 1 April 1945.
This left the 5th Guards Tank Army with the 29th, under its control. This reduction in strength coincided with the hospitalization of the 5th GTA's commanding general, Vasily Volsky, for tuberculosis. Volsky did not return to the army and Major General Maxim Sinenko took command from 16 March 1945 to the end of the war. After the war, Rotmistrov wrote a history of the unit, The Steel Guards. In July 1945, the army was relocated to part of the Baranovichi Military District. In February 1946, it moved to Bobruisk, after the Baranovichi and Minsk Military Districts had been combined into the Belorussian Military District; the army moved to Belarus with the 8th Guards and 29th Tank Divisions, the 8th Mechanized Division, all formed from the corps of the same numbers after the end of the war. There, the 8th Mechanized Division was transferred and the newly created 15th Guards and 12th Mechanized Divisions joined the army; the army was redesignated the 5th Guards Mechanized Army on 12 June 1946, was reduced to the mobilization 5th Guards Mechanized Division on 31 October 1946, with its divisions reduced to regiments.
The unit was expanded into the 5th Guards Mechanized Army on 28 October 1948 as Cold War tensions increased. In the early 1950s, the 22nd Mechanized Division replaced the 15th Guards. By 1955 the army numbered 1,219 tanks and self-propelled guns, including 161 IS-4, 893 T-54, sixteen T-34/85, 75 PT-76, 74 ISU-122, 24 ZSU-57 self-propelled anti-aircraft guns, 705 guns. From until the late 1980s the army's composition remained unchanged – only the mechanized divisions were redesignated in 1957. On 20 May of that year, the army was redesignated as the 5th Guards Tank Army; the 22nd Mechanized became the 36th Tank Division the 193rd in 1965, while the 12th Mechanized Division became the 5th Heavy Tank Division and was disbanded in 1960. On 21 February 1974, the army was awarded the Order of the Red Banner. In August 1979, the 84th Motor Rifle Division was attached to the army at Marina Gorka after transferring from the 28th Army; until the late 1980s, the army included three tank divisions – the 8th Guards at Marina Gorka, the 29th at Slutsk, the 193rd at Bobruisk-25.
Support units included the 302nd Anti-Aircraft
25th Army (Soviet Union)
The 25th Army was a Red Army field army of World War II that served in the Russian Far East. Formed in June 1941, the 25th Army did not see combat until the Soviet invasion of Manchuria in August 1945, when it advanced into northern Korea. After World War II it was responsible for the Soviet Civil Administration in the northern Korean Peninsula, helped establish a Communist state in North Korea under the rule of Kim Il-Sung; the army remained in North Korea until it was withdrawn in 1948, was stationed in Primorsky Krai until its 1957 disbandment. It was formed in the Soviet Far East Front on the basis of the headquarters of the 43rd Rifle Corps on 20 June 1941 in accordance with an order of 8 March. Headquartered at Voroshilov, it was commanded by Lieutenant General Filipp Parusinov; the army comprised 39th Rifle Corps with 32nd Rifle Division, 40th, 92nd Rifle Divisions, as well as the 105th Rifle Division and the 106th, 107th, 108th, 110th, 111th Fortified Areas as Army troops. The army was responsible for defending the border in Primorsky Krai.
On 10 August 1943, the army became part of the Maritime Group of Forces, which on 20 April 1945 became part of the Far Eastern Front, was soon directly subordinated to the Stavka. In June, Colonel General Ivan Chistyakov took command of the army. On 5 August, the army became part of the 1st Far East Front, redesignated from the Maritime Group of Forces in preparation for the Soviet invasion of Manchuria. At the time, the 393rd Rifle Division and the 7th and 113th Fortified Areas were in the army's direct subordination. By the beginning of the invasion on 9 August, the army included the 39th Rifle Corps with the 40th, the 384th, the 386th Rifle Divisions, the 393rd Rifle Division, the 7th, 106th, 107th, 108th, 110th, 111th, the 113th Fortified Areas. During the Soviet invasion of Manchuria, the army fought in the Harbin-Kirin Offensive. By the end of 10 August the army overcame Japanese resistance to capture the Dongning, Dongxin-zhen, the Hunchun fortified areas, cut the Dongning-Tumyntsa-Hunchun road, advanced through Japanese defenses to a depth of 15 kilometres to 20 kilometres.
On 11 August, the 25th Army captured Laoheishan and Hunchun, on the next day captured the ports of Unggi and Rason on the east coast of Korea alongside landing forces of the Pacific Fleet. As a result of its advances, the army received the 5th Army's 17th Rifle Corps and the 88th Rifle Division and 10th Mechanized Corps from front reserve. With the reinforcements, the army received a new task: to advance south and cut the communications between Japanese troops in Korea and those in Manchuria, in cooperation with the Pacific Fleet landing forces, to capture ports on the east coast of Korea. In fulfilling this task, the army defeated parts of the Japanese 3rd and 34th Armies and captured Wangqing on 15 August, Chongjin on 16 August and Yanji on 17 August, among others. Between 18 and 20 August, the army disarmed surrendered Japanese troops, was redeployed to the Pyongyang area at the end of the month; the army's headquarters was established at Pyongyang on 26 August after Chistyakov rejected the option of Hamhung on the previous day after the 25th Army was given the task of occupying what would become North Korea.
The location of the 25th Army's headquarters in Pyongyang determined the location of the future North Korean capital. After the end of the war with Japan it included 39th Rifle Corps and 88th Rifle Corps and 8 fortified regions but they were all reorganised in 1946 into machine-gun artillery divisions. There were the 72nd, 76th, 218th, 259th Tank Brigades. On 1 October, the army became part of the Primorsky Military District; the two corps were disbanded in August 1946 and 65th Rifle Corps was transferred to the 25th Army from the 5th Army. The division of Korea between the United States and the Soviet Union after the defeat of Japan had been agreed to at the Tehran Conference in 1943; the 25th Army served as the occupation force in north of the 38th parallel while the U. S. Army Military Government in Korea was established in the south. Under the Soviet Civil Administration the 25th Army helped place Kim Il-Sung and the Korean Workers' Party into power, they assisted with the purges of former collaborators, businessmen and religious leaders.
These people would either flee to the future South Korea or would be banished or imprisoned in the Hamgyong Province. In late 1948, the army was withdrawn from North Korea and stationed in southern Primorsky Krai on the Korean and Chinese borders, as well as on the Peter the Great Gulf coast, its headquarters was located in Shkotovo. In March 1953 the army included the 9th, 10th, 21st, 24th Machine-Gun Artillery Divisions; the 10th Mechanized Division had become part of the 65th Rifle Corps by this time, the 40th Rifle Division was directly subordinated to the army. In April 1953, the Primorsky Military District was disbanded, the army became part of the Far Eastern Military District; the army's last commander was Lieutenant General Ivan Rubanyuk, who assumed command on 18 May 1953. The 65th Rifle Corps and its divisions were disbanded in the summer of 1956 and the remaining 25th Army rifle divisions became motor rifle divisions in the spring of 1957. On 1 May, the army included the 40th, 84th, 147th, the 148th Motor Rifle Divisions.
In December 1957, the army was disbanded and its remaining divisions transferred to the 5th Army. The 84th, 147th, 148th Divisions were disbanded along with the 25th Ar
44th Army (Soviet Union)
The 44th Army of the Soviet Union's Red Army was an army-level command active during World War II. Part of the Transcaucasian Front, its main actions included the Anglo-Soviet invasion of Iran and the Kerch amphibious landings, before being transferred to the Southern Front on 6 February 1943. There it took part in the Rostov and Melitopol offensives; the army was disbanded in November 1943 and its units were transferred to other armies. The 44th Army was formed on 1 August 1941 from the 40th Rifle Corps, ostensibly to guard the Soviet-Iranian border in the Transcaucasian Military District, it was composed of the 20th and 77th Mountain Rifle Divisions, as well as the 17th Cavalry Division and other smaller units. Former 40th Rifle Corps commander Major General Alexander Khadeyev became the army's commander. On 23 August, it became part of the Transcaucasian Front. On 25 August, the army began its fighting in the Anglo-Soviet invasion of Iran by crossing the border and moving into Gilan Province.
It captured Bandar Rasht by the next day. By 1 September, the 220th Separate Antiaircraft Artillery Battalion, 36th and 265th Fighter Aviation Regiments and the 205th Separate Sapper Battalion had joined the army. In October 1941, the army was relocated from Iran to Makhachkala. In late November, it transferred to the Black Sea coast at Anapa. From 25 December, it fought in the Battle of the Kerch Peninsula. Along with the 51st Army and units of the Black Sea Fleet, the army helped capture the Kerch Peninsula, it was landed at Feodosiya. On 30 December, the army transferred to the Caucasian Front. On 15 January 1942, Pervushin was wounded when an airstrike hit his command post. Major General Ivan Dashichev became acting commander, leading the army during its retreat from advancing German troops; the army suffered heavy losses from the German counterattacks and Dashichev was replaced in command by Major General Serafim Rozhdestvensky on 21 January. He was arrested soon after for "negligence in command" and would serve 10 years in the gulag.
The army moved to control of the Crimean Front on 28 January 1942. Rozhdestvensky was replaced in command on 11 February by Lieutenant General Stepan Chernyak; the army launched several unsuccessful attacks during April. On 8 May, German troops launched Operation Trappenjagd. Troops of the XXX Army Corps broke through the front lines of the 44th Army. A German landing behind the main line of resistance unhinged the 44th Army's second echelon; the army's line soon collapsed, the German troops captured 4,514 prisoners by the end of the day. The army was evacuated to the Taman Peninsula; the army suffered heavy losses during the battle. On 20 May, the 44th Army became part of the North Caucasian Front and was concentrated in Tikhoretsk, it moved to Makhachkala soon after. On 29 May, Chernyak was relieved of command because of the defeat in Crimea, he was replaced by Major General Andrei Khryashchev. On 16 June, the army was composed of the 138th, 156th, 157th, 236th and 302nd Rifle Divisions, among other units.
It was transferred to the Transcaucasian Front. Until August, the army held a defensive line from Gudermes to the mouth of the Terek River. During this time, Khryashcev was replaced in command by Major General Ivan Yefimovich Petrov. On 9 August, the army became part of the front's Northern Group of Forces. During the fall of 1942, it fought in defensive battles in the Caucasus. On 10 October, Petrov was promoted to command the front's Black Sea Group of Forces and was replaced by Major General Kondrat Melnyk. In November, Melynk was transferred to command the 58th Army and was replaced by Lieutenant General Vasily Khomenko. In December, the army pushed German troops back to positions north of Mozdok during a series of counterattacks. During January 1943, the army attacked towards Stavropol during the North Caucasian Strategic Offensive, it captured Stavropol on 21 January. On 24 January, it became part of the reformation of the North Caucasian Front; the army transferred to the Southern Front on 6 February.
It captured Azov on 7 February. By 18 February, the army reached the line of Ryasnyi on the left bank of the Sambek River, east of Taganrog; the army held the line until the beginning of the Donbass Strategic Offensive in August. During the offensive, the army helped capture Taganrog on 30 August. Along with units of the Black Sea Fleet, the 44th Army captured Mariupol on 10 September. From 26 September, it fought in the Melitopol Offensive. At the end of October, the army was placed in regrouped northeast of Kakhovka; the army was soon placed in relieving elements of the 5th Shock Army. It defended the line of Zavadovka and Britsantsy. Lieutenant General Khomenko and army artillery commander Major General Bobkov mistakenly drove their vehicles into German lines on 9 November and were killed. Stalin feared that the generals had disbanded the army, its units were transferred to other armies
Voronezh is a city and the administrative center of Voronezh Oblast, straddling the Voronezh River and located 12 kilometers from where it flows into the Don. The city sits on the Southeastern Railway, which connects European Russia with the Urals and Siberia, the Caucasus and Ukraine, the M4 highway, its population in 2016 was estimated to be 1,032,895. The first chronicle references to the word "Voronezh" are dated 1177, when the Ryazan prince Yaropolk, having lost the battle, fled "to Voronozh" and there was moving "from hail into hail." Modern data of archeology and history interpret Voronezh as a geographical region, which included the Voronezh river and a number of settlements. In the lower reaches of the river, an unique Slavic town-planning complex of the 8th – early 11th century was discovered, which covered the territory of the present city of Voronezh and its environs. By the 12th – 13th centuries, most of the old “hails” were desolate, but new settlements appeared upstream, closer to Ryazan.
For many years, the hypothesis of the Soviet historian Vladimir Zagorovsky dominated: he produced the toponym "Voronezh" from the hypothetical Slavic personal name Voroneg. This man gave the name of a small town in the Chernigov Principality. In the XI or XII centuries, the settlers were able to "transfer" this name to the Don region, where they named the second city Voronezh, the river got its name from the city. However, now many researchers criticize the hypothesis, since in reality neither the name of Voroneg nor the second city was revealed, the names of Russian cities repeated the names of the rivers, but not vice versa; the linguistic comparative analysis of the name "Voronezh" was carried out by the Khovansky Foundation in 2009. There is an indication of the place names of many countries in Eurasia, which may be not only similar in sound, but united by common Indo-European languages: Varanasi, Verona, etc. A comprehensive scientific analysis was conducted in 2015–2016 by the historian Pavel Popov.
His conclusion: "Voronezh" is a probable Slavic macrotoponym associated with outstanding signs of nature, has a root voron- in the meaning of "black, dark" and the suffix -ezh. It was not “transferred” and in the 8th - 9th centuries it marked a vast territory covered with black forests - from the mouth of the Voronezh river to the Voronozhsky annalistic forests in the middle and upper reaches of the river, in the west to the Don; the historian believes that the main "city" of the early town-planning complex could repeat the name of the region – Voronezh. Now the hillfort is located in the administrative part of the modern city, in the Voronezh upland oak forest; this is one of Europe's largest ancient Slavic hillforts, the area of which – more than 9 hectares – 13 times the area of the main settlement in Kiev before the baptism of Rus. Folk etymology claims the name comes from combining the Russian words for raven and hedgehog into Воронеж. According to this explanation two Slavic tribes named after the animals used this combination to name the river which in turn provided the name for a settlement.
There is not believed to be any scientific support for this explanation. In the 16th century, the Middle Don basin, including the Voronezh river, was conquered by Muscovy from the Nogai Horde, the current city of Voronezh was established in 1585 by Feodor I as a fort protecting the Muravsky Trail trade route against the raids of the Nogai and Crimean Tatars; the city was named after the river. In the 17th century, Voronezh evolved into a sizable town. Weronecz is shown on the Worona river in Resania in Joan Blaeu's map of 1645. Peter the Great built a dockyard in Voronezh where the Azov Flotilla was constructed for the Azov campaigns in 1695 and 1696; this fleet, the first built in Russia, included the first Russian ship of the line, Goto Predestinatsia. The Orthodox diocese of Voronezh was instituted in 1682 and its first bishop, Mitrofan of Voronezh, was proclaimed the town's patron saint. Owing to the Voronezh Admiralty Wharf, for a short time, Voronezh became the largest city of South Russia and the economic center of a large and fertile region.
In 1711, it was made the seat of the Azov Governorate, which morphed into the Voronezh Governorate. In the 19th century, Voronezh was a center of the Central Black Earth Region. Manufacturing industry as well as bread, cattle and the hair trade developed in the town. A railway connected Voronezh with Moscow in 1868 and Rostov-on-Don in 1871. During World War II, Voronezh was the scene of fierce fighting between Russian and combined Axis troops; the Germans used it as a staging area for their attack on Stalingrad, made it a key crossing point on the Don River. In June 1941, two BM-13 artillery installations were built at the Voronezh excavator factory. In July, the construction of Katyushas was rationalized so that their manufacture became easier and the time of volley repetition was shortened from five minutes to fifteen seconds. More than 300 BM-13 units manufactured in Voronezh were used in a counterattack near Moscow in December 1941. In October 22, 1941, the advance of the German troops prompted the establishment of a defense committee in the city.