The hidden war: Partisans – cooperation and class struggle within the anti-fascist front


The 60th anniversary of the end of the Second World War was commemorated by the bourgeoisies of the imperialist bloc in rare unity: the then lethal enemies celebrated themselves and each other as victors and victims alike. Victors in the sense that they finally managed to do away with socialism, especially in the form of the Soviet Union, which by the way always was the actual agenda of ALL imperialist powers during the Second World War. Victims in the sense that they regretted all the evils they had to inflict on each other during wartime and which ALL of them would rather have inflicted on their common enemy, the Soviet Union. Therefore, the common celebrations in the Normandy for them were of much greater significance than the ones in Moscow.

Although the Soviet Union does not exist any more, Russia, as a matter of patriotic pride and self-assertion, celebrated the Soviet victories with glorious events and references to her predecessor state. And, ignored by the world’s bourgeois media, stood the great achievements of the partisans, the ones who made up the real second front during the war and finally helped to overthrow fascism. It is to their contribution in several countries that we briefly turn in what follows.

Soviet Union – Motherland of the partisans’ movement

In the Soviet Union the partisans’ war was in close cooperation with the regular troops of the Red Army. Already in preparation for the war, responsible cadres had been selected, especially in the Ukraine and Byelo-Russia, and depots were installed with weapons and supply. It was the CPSU who laid the foundation for a true people’s war.1

Apart from the CPSU’s organisation of the partisans’ war, the fascist occupiers contributed to an accelerated growth of the movement by their bestial behaviour. The attacking troops which in their brutality ignored any laws of warfare were followed by so-called special commands (e.g., battalion “nightingale” which was headed by Mr. Oberlaender who after the war became a minister in Adenauer’s cabinet) responsible for the murder of thousands of citizens in Polish and Soviet cities.

In 1942 the formation of partisans’ battalions started in the Ukraine, Byelo-Russia and the Baltic States, as well as the creation of partisans’ zones. These battalions reached a size of 6,000 – 12,000 troops and, during the course of the war, became equipped with trench mortars and machine guns. Overall the partisans committed more than 2,500 diversion acts to destroy railways between November 1942 and March 1943 whereby about 750 locomotives and 4,000 wagons were put out of action as well as more than 100 kilometres of rail destroyed.

The fascists reacted with the utmost brutality at every act of the resistance. In retaliatory measures for partisans’ actions they shot hostages or destroyed complete villages. They also created nationalist troops – such as the bandits of Banderas who did their killing in the Ukraine and in Poland, and also used other traitors and criminals including former white guards. However, they had to be supported by regular front troops and partly even by complete tank divisions to fight the growing partisans’ army. The fascists had to incur huge losses in this war.

The Eastern Front Partisans

In Byelo-Russia alone the partisan troops amounted to more than 500,000. And one of the strongest movements emerged in Yugoslavia, which could keep up to ten fascist divisions busy including several special quads. At the same time the resistance movement was not united, as different class interests prevailed within the movement. There was a fundamental contradiction to cope with. On the one hand, the struggle against fascism required an alliance of several classes, i.e. the proletariat and the peasants had to ally with progressive sections of the bourgeoisie, and, at the same time, conservative groups built up their own “resistance” who in turn were likely to be supported by the regular troops of the imperialist allies (esp. Anglo-American imperialism).

The “Rankin” plan, agreed by Roosevelt and Churchill at the Quebec conference in August 1943 and defined more precisely on 8 November 1943, designed as it was to “forestall the Russians”, provided for a corresponding strategy of warfare. In the event of German defences breaking down, the following cities were to be occupied: in Germany – Bremen, Luebeck, Hamburg, the Ruhr Area, Cologne, Berlin, Dresden, Stuttgart and Munich; in Italy – Turin, Milan, Rome, Naples and Triest; in Southeast Europe – Budapest, Bucharest and Sofia. “Symbolic forces” were to be sent to The Hague, Brussels, Lyon, Prague, Warsaw, Belgrade and Zagreb (to help the liberation fighters). Finally, control was to be established over Denmark, Saloniki and Rhode Island.2 With this clear Anglo-American imperialist agenda the class consideration was always present in anti-fascist warfare and the Soviet Union as the most progressive social force had to show the greatest of diplomatic skills to handle these contradictions in a way that would not jeopardise the main cause – the defeat and annihilation of the fascist aggressors.

Poland

Within five years of occupation the German fascists in Poland alone killed six million people, i.e. 25% of the total population. 64% of the industrial plants (10,200 in numbers), 2,677 hospitals, 6,000 schools, 3,337 museums and theatres, 300,000 buildings in cities and more than 450,000 in villages were destroyed.3

The Polish resistance movement was essentially split into two major groups. First there were the feudal-bourgeois reactionary forces (members of the Polish “Pan”, i.e. feudal landlords), represented by the Polish government in exile, based in London, which in turn was represented by the so-called “Delegatur” in Poland and its own army, the “Armija Krajowa” (AK) established in February 1942 under the leadership of reactionary generals such as Bor-Komorowski.

Second, the anti-fascist democratic and revolutionary forces, which united in July 1944 in the “Polish Committee of National Liberation” (PKWN). This Committee consisted, among others, of the (communist) Polish Workers Party which had been founded in 1942, together with its own army named “Gwardia Ludowa” (GL), and which at the same time was the leading force of the people’s army “Armia Ludowa” (AL). Furthermore there were the Polish Socialist Party, the Polish Peasants Party, the Democratic Party and non-party members that joined the people’s front. The program of this broad front was to subject the big industry, banks, trade and transport enterprises to state administration, further to return private property to citizens, peasants, traders, craftsmen, small and medium-sized companies and to the church who had been expropriated by the German occupants. These were the necessary bourgeois-democratic demands.

The PKWN acted in close connection with the Red Army. The Soviet Union regarded the PKWN as the only legitimate power in Poland which took over complete control in the liberated territories. The “Delegatur” of the exile government, however, fought the PKWN vigorously and did not refrain from killing its partisans. They also killed Soviet soldiers and officers and committed acts of sabotage in the Red Army’s rear.

The most fatal act of sabotage, however, turned out to be the so-called Warsaw uprising which was organised together with the government in exile, based in London, and with the consent, and secret support, of the British government. Plan “Burza” paved the way for an insurrection against the fascist occupiers twelve hours before the arrival of the Soviet troops in Warsaw with the aim of presenting the Polish government in exile as the legitimate government of Poland. In fact the Red Army still had to cross the Weichsel which required a lot of military effort.

Marshall Rokossowski, commander-in-chief of the First Byelo-Russian Front remembers: “The timing was so inconvenient that it seemed the rebellion was intentionally instigated to let it fail. At this time the 48. and the 65. armies fought 100 km east and northeast of Warsaw … In the Western media I was accused of deliberately not supporting the Warsaw rebels and exposing them to destruction. This has to be said: The Byelo-Russian operation was without a precedent. The right wing of the front had overcome a distance of 600 kilometres. Our troops, after breathless battles, mobilised their last forces to solve the task set by the headquarters. The liberation of Warsaw [by the Red Army] … required a big offensive operation – which finally took place. However, in August 1944 we would not have been able to take Warsaw even as only a bridgehead without a huge amount of measures.”4

The Soviet Union all the same did everything to support the civil population involved in the Warsaw uprising as far as possible. “Stalin talked to me directly about this problem. After my report on the situation at the front and all issues regarding Warsaw, Stalin asked whether the troops at the front were in a position to launch an immediate operation to liberate Warsaw. When I replied in the negative he asked me to do everything to ease the plight of those involved in the uprising.” (ibid)

Rokossowski commanded Soviet troops to land on the Western bank of the Weichsel, however, they were not able to get in touch with the leaders of the uprising. Afterwards it turned out that the units of AK (Armija Krajowa) had withdrawn into the inner city before the landing of the Soviet troops. In view of this, it is not surprising that the Soviet troops, unable to get the cooperation of General Bor-Komorowski and his forces, found themselves in a difficult situation and had to stage a tactical withdrawal, thereby putting paid to the planned intervention. It was not until 1944/45 that the Red Army liberated Poland completely at a cost of 600,000 killed Soviet soldiers. On 5 January 1945 the Soviet government entered into diplomatic relations with the “Provisional Government of the Polish Republic” which had been established by the PKWN on 12 December 1944.

Poland is a significant example of how class contradictions determined the course of the war. Because of bourgeois class egoism the number of victims in Poland amounted to 200,000 in the course of the failed Warsaw uprising alone from 1 August to 2 October 1944. It revealed an open alliance between the national-reactionary forces and imperialist class interests in the form of the British bourgeoisie who, though a “partner” of the Anti-Hitler coalition, did not miss an opportunity to support the most reactionary forces with their own anti-Soviet agenda, against the democratic-revolutionary forces which were in turn supported by the Soviet Union.

Bulgaria

In Bulgaria there was a strong revolutionary democratic movement headed by the Bulgarian Workers Party under the leadership of Georgi Dimitrov, general secretary of the Comintern from 1935-1943, and Wassili Kolarov. From 1942 the movement was organised in an anti-fascist “Patriotic Front” with members of all classes of the Bulgarian society. The aim of this alliance was to pull Bulgaria out of the fascist coalition, to liberate Bulgaria from the German fascists and to get Bulgarian occupation forces withdrawn from Yugoslavia and Greece; furthermore it aimed at the overthrow of the Bulgarian monarchist-fascist dictatorship and the fight for bourgeois-democratic rights, a democratically elected government which would enter into friendly relations with the Soviet Union.

From 1943 this struggle against the dictatorship was lead by a well organised partisans’ movement with partisan troops which developed into a peoples liberation army of 28,000 fighters by the summer of 1944. The ruling clique on its part got into contact with the Western allies while at the same time providing shelter for the German army withdrawing from Romanian territory and the German navy in Bulgarian ports, thus jeopardising her neutrality obligations towards the Soviet Union. When the Soviet Union forced the Bagrjanov government to step down for its violation of neutrality the succeeding Murawiev government, however, continued this policy and let the German South-Ukrainian army withdraw to Bulgarian territory after its defeat in Romania.

Dimitrov’s partisans acted in close coordination with the Red Army. They could build on the traditional friendship between the Bulgarian and the Russian people.

After a meeting with Stalin on 27 August 1944, Dimitrov passed a directive to the central staff of the liberation army to mobilise all the forces of the people to disarm German fascist groups including the Gestapo, to break any resistance against the Patriotic Front and the Red Army and to install a government of the Patriotic Front. After the Third Ukrainian Army crossed the Bulgarian border on 8 September it was supported by the synchronised offensive of the peoples liberation army on the night of 9 September 1944 in Sofia. The Bulgarian people, as well as Bulgarian soldiers and officers of lower rank, welcomed the victorious Soviet troops with boundless enthusiasm, thus forcing the Bulgarian high command against the idea of fighting against the Soviet troops.

However, Major General Marinov, commander-in-chief of the Bulgarian army, was unexpectedly visited by a group of British and American officers on 17 September who claimed control of a Bulgarian airport and a port where British ships were allegedly expected to anchor. General Marinov immediately contacted General Birjusov from the Soviet high command in Bulgaria who told the British and American officers that “their help was not needed”. Though militarily absolutely correct, Molotov criticised this reaction as diplomatically inadequate. They should have politely advised the British and American officers to direct such questions to Moscow.5 As a consequence, there was a further meeting with Stalin on the subject, who advised his generals on the basics of international law and diplomatic rules that apply in contact with representatives of foreign states. Stalin also gave orders against the arbitrary arrests of pro-fascist elements in Bulgaria. All the so-called infringements that the bourgeois media are never tired of complaining about were forbidden and punished on Stalin’s instructions.

The liberation of the Bulgarian people took place without a bloodbath such as in Poland as the peoples’ progressive forces acted in close unity and coordination with the Red Army.

Romania

Romania was also of great importance for the Western allies, especially Great Britain. With the so-called Balkans strategy Churchill wanted to first crush the fascist troops in Romania in order to further advance to Bulgaria and Yugoslavia and thus forestall the Soviet Union. Like Hungary, Romania was a fascist satellite and a German ally. In the course of the Red Army’s victories, however, the Romanian army was in disarray as many soldiers and low-ranking officers deserted to the Red Army and joined the fight against the German fascists. Bourgeois and monarchist generals on their part tried to conclude a separate peace with the Western allies and, when this failed, to secure the withdrawal of German troops and diplomats.

An important role was played by the Communist Party of Romania (CPR) which combined the struggle against fascist occupation with the fight against the Romanian landlords and the bourgeoisie which had been supporting the fascist dictatorship of Antonescu. Together with the Social-democratic Party, the CPR founded the “Workers United Front” in April 1944 which was opened to the progressive bourgeois parties in June to form the “National-democratic Bloc”. On 23 August 1944 the CPR gave the signal for the rebellion and started the armed battle against the German troops. Out of 8,000 fighters the CPR provided 2,000 from its own ranks. The Red Army supported this anti-fascist struggle and waived all territorial claims except the re-integration of former Bessarabia (Moldavia) into the Soviet state. It helped to gain back Transylvania which Hitler had handed over to Hungary.

Czechoslovakia

Czechoslovakia emerged from the defeat of the German Kaiser-reich and Austria-Hungary in 1918 as a sovereign state. To direct German fascist aggression against the Soviet Union, France and England approved in the Munich Agreement of 1938 the annexation of the “Sudeten-German Territories”. Following Munich, fascist Germany marched into Sudeten Territories and subsequently occupied the Czech part militarily and, by cruellest terror, turned it into the protectorate “Bohemia and Moravia”. Regarding Slovakia, Germany entered into a “Security Agreement” with the clerical-fascist government of Tiso which allowed the German fascists to run military plants and to interfere in Slovak foreign policy. Occupied Czechia, as well as former Czechoslovakia, was represented by a government in exile under the left-wing bourgeois Benes located in London.

The Slovak army was split. Many soldiers and even officers openly deserted to the Red Army, whereas the rest supported the Tiso government. Furthermore, a Czechoslovak army was set up in the Soviet Union to restore the unity of the country and to fight side by side with the Red Army.

A resistance movement was formed under a broad anti-fascist alliance headed by the Slovak Communist Party and in close coordination with the Red Army, the exiled Czechoslovak Communist Party located in Moscow, and the Ukrainian staff of the Soviet partisans movement. The struggle was aimed at the liberation from fascist occupation as well as against the landlords and the bourgeoisie. On 29 August 1944 an uprising took place in Slovakia with partisan troops amounting to 16,000 – to coincide with the rebellions in Warsaw and in Sofia. During September 1944 the rebel army swelled to 60,000 fighters within the liberated territories, among them prisoners of war and antifascists who could flee from the fascist concentration camps. The liberation army was supported by the Soviet airforce with weaponry, food and medicines.

Benes on his part as representative of the Czech bourgeoisie expected the US troops to liberate the Western part of Czechoslovakia to forestall the Red Army. Within Slovakia he wanted to prevent a real people’s rebellion. He therefore, with anti-fascist, however ideologically bourgeois, generals and officers of the Slovak army, initiated a separate “people’s” rebellion. As the Czechoslovak government in exile, based in London, was an ally of the Soviet Union, Benes could gain the support of the Soviet First Ukrainian Army to meet the Slovak troops in the Carpathian Mountains where at the same time the German fascists had built strong defences. However, owing to treachery within the Slovak army, the Slovak divisions were disarmed by the German fascists. As a result, the Red Army, hand in hand with the partisans and the Czechoslovak exile army, under the leadership of Ludvik Svoboda, who was later to become the president of CSSR, fought against the fascists without any assistance from the Slovak army – emerging finally victorious in autumn 1944.

Yugoslavia

In Yugoslavia already in 1942 a regular peoples liberation army emerged from the partisan troops, amounting to more than 400,000 (!) soldiers. At the 1943 Teheran conference, Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt accepted it as an ally to the anti-fascist alliance with a provisional government in the form of the National Committee for the Liberation of Yugoslavia (AVNOJ). However, there were problems of armament. The army depended on rifles taken from the Italian and German enemies whereas artillery, mortars, tanks and aircrafts were not available. The Red Army was strongly involved in the battles of Stalingrad and Kursk and thus could not deliver any significant support. Only in September 1944 could Tito officially ask Stalin for the Red Army to invade Eastern Yugoslavia. This was the moment when the Red Army and the Yugoslav peoples army marched side by side, notwithstanding severe problems of class struggle within and outside the country.

The official government in Yugoslavia was still the monarchist government in exile, based in London, which, siding with the German and Italian fascists, openly fought the liberation army. There were some 270,000 Cetniks and Croatian fascist Ustashis who literally drowned the Yugoslav population in a bloodbath. The German High Command, on the other hand, was after Tito who was finally transferred by the Soviet Union to a place at the Romanian border in the dead of night. Stalin’s policy showed a great amount of sensitivity in this connection. Because of its obligations to her allies and the still approved Yugoslav government in exile, the Soviet Union had to tread carefully so as not to jeopardise the anti-fascist alliance. In a careful balancing act, the Soviet Union on the one hand sheltered the peoples liberation army of Yugoslavia, and on the other hand asked Tito to delay the fight for the abolition of the monarchy until the successful liberation of Yugoslavia from fascist occupation. By way of courtesy and respect for Yugoslav national feelings, the Red Army officially invaded Belgrade on 20 October 1944 side by side with the Yugoslav army, in spite of the latter’s much smaller strength. The Yugoslav infantry was brought by Soviet tanks and lorries into Belgrade.

The Yugoslav example again demonstrated how the class contradictions and class alliances affected the course of events. On the side of the proletariat the Soviet Union stood together with the Yugoslav liberation army, on the side of the bourgeoisie the Yugoslav exile government allied with fascist Ustashis and Cetniks against the Yugoslav people.

Greece

On the initiative of the Communist Party of Greece anti-fascist forces united already in September 1941 in a national liberation movement. Under the party’s leadership the partisan troops developed into the National Peoples Liberation Army (ELAS). By the middle of 1943 it had liberated one third of the Greek mainland from German fascists. In March 1944 the Political Committee of National Liberation (PEEFA) was founded and during elections received the votes of 80% of the Greek electorate. England suspected the preparation of a socialist change and forced the PEEFA into a common government together with the government in exile, based in Egypt, which was under the leadership of the social-democrat Papandreou. As a “compensation” the PEEFA was offered 25% of the seats within the government, i.e., a clear minority.

In spite of this blatant interference in internal Greek matters ELAS was successful in completely liberating Greece from the fascist occupation by the end of 1944. This was the time when England took the offensive and destroyed ELAS by force of arms after it had occupied the police stations in Athens. Churchill openly claimed responsibility for the crushing of ELAS in his memoirs:

“… I interfered in the handling of this subject. When I learnt that the communists had occupied nearly all the police stations in Athens and to a great extent killed policemen not in accordance with them, while at the same time being only more than one kilometre away from the governmental buildings, I gave orders to general Scobie and his 5,000 British soldiers – who had been cheered by the population as liberators just ten days earlier – to intervene and to fight the betraying aggressors by force of arms. It does not make sense to do such things half-heartedly. The violence of the mob with which the communists wanted to take the city to present themselves to the world as the desired government of the Greek people could only be met by guns. There was no time to invoke a cabinet meeting.”6

Britain frankly revealed its imperialist interests. With the fall of Greece into socialist hands a geo-strategically important bridgehead would have been lost for imperialist post war strategies.

The Partisans on the Western Front

By way of concluding, we will have a look at the partisans movement on the Western front, especially in France and Italy.

France

General de Gaulle did not accept the capitulation of his country and General Petain’s collaboration with fascist Germany in the Vichy government. Already, on 23 September 1941, he founded the national committee “Free France”, became commander of the “Free French Army” and opened the national committee to the “French National Liberation Committee” which also included the Communist Party of France. Objectively de Gaulle represented the progressive section of the bourgeoisie who entered into the anti-fascist struggle. With a small army of only 7,000 soldiers he managed to receive the status of an ally of the anti-Hitler coalition and could take part in the post-war decisions of the victorious powers.

The significance of the French Résistance for the battles on the Western front is described by Peter Gingold, one of the most famous German communists who was a fighter in the ranks of the French resistance and who escaped from the clutches of his violent torturers after imprisonment in a concentration camp, by the following words: “The military contribution of the Résistance to smash the Wehrmacht [German fascist army] was enormous. More than a million soldiers and officers of the fascist armies had been put out of action. 25,000 military trains were destroyed including a big amount of military equipment. Movement of the troops of Hitler’s Wehrmacht in Normandy were interrupted for days when the allies finally succeeded in building a bridgehead. This significantly contributed to the extension of the bridgehead and enabled the fast advance of the allies. ‘The French Résistance spared me 20 divisions’, General Eisenhower once declared, then Commander of the Allied Forces at the second front in the West.”7

The French Résistance really was an international liberation movement in which Armenians, Germans, Italians, Yugoslavs, Austrians, Poles, Romanians, Russians, Spaniards, Czechoslovaks and Hungarians fought together against the fascist beast.

Italy

In Italy, ally of fascist Germany, the first aim of the resistance movement was to overthrow the fascist dictatorship. A palace revolution on 26 July 1943 only replaced Mussolini by the so-called “Slaughterer of Abyssinia”, Marshall Pietro Badoglio. Fascist Germany reacted by occupying Northern and Middle Italy and the re-installation of Mussolini’s government as a puppet regime in the occupied part of the country. A Committee of anti-fascist allies formed the Comitato di Liberazione Nationale (CLN) which called for armed resistance. First, partisan troops emerged which developed within months into a strong army. Since the anti-fascist alliance under the leadership of Luigi Longo (member of the ECCI of the Comintern) and Togliatti (leader of the Communist Party of Italy – PCI) also included monarchists, the PCI could, as a tactical manoeuvre, force the partisans in the occupied territories into an alliance with monarchist soldiers and officers and delay the fight against the monarchy at this stage (see situation in Yugoslavia).

In March 1943 the fascist government under Mussolini received its first heavy blows in the huge strikes of more than 100,000 workers in Turin and Milan. These were the first remarkable strikes in a fascist state. When the allied armies took Rome on 4 June 1944 the King had to step down and Badoglio had to be dismissed. The CLN received governmental power in Northern Italy and the remaining liberated regions. On 7 December 1944 official relations between the partisans army and the Anglo-American Command where established by the “Rome Protocol”. The partisans army had grown, by the end of the war, to 256,000 fighters with the PCI providing the biggest contingent of 155,000. Within the liberated regions partisan republics emerged in which the CLN under communist and socialist leadership initiated anti-fascist-democratic changes.

In Italy as well as in Germany the successes of the partisans were finally reaped by the Western allied forces, i.e. Anglo-American imperialism. They, of course, sought by all means to prevent the liberated countries within their sphere from taking a socialist development. Another story which is well known to the reader …

Honour and glory to the Partisans

The brave battles of the partisans on the side of the most progressive social force, the Soviet Union, made a significant contribution to the anti-fascist victories in the Second World War against fascism. In fact the partisans were the real second front which was denied for so long by the Anglo-American ‘allies’ and finally only opened to harvest the crops sown by the blood of the Red Army and the partisans. In the words of Le Combat, the newsletter of the French Résistance:

“From the Northern Cape to the frontiers of the Pyrenees, from the Channel coast to the Aegean Sea, millions of people, whatever their habits and languages may be, are standing in the same battle against the same enemy, in the fight of freedom against slavery, justice against injustice, right against violence. We are witnesses of a miracle emerged from blood and tears. The miracle of resistance.”8

We know the material basis of this miracle: the Soviet Union, which, under the leadership of the Bolshevik party, and its undisputed leader Joseph Stalin, mobilised everything to emerge from medievalism to a most modern, industrialised country in the most progressive society mankind had ever created; mobilised everything to fight the German fascist aggression and to help every country and resistance movement to liberate itself from the fascist yoke; mobilised to finally achieve a victory unparalleled in the history of mankind and an irreversible basis of any new attempt to overthrow the rotten, moribund and decadent system of imperialism!

NOTES

1. Directive of the Council of People’s Commissars of the USSR and the Central Committee of the CPSU dated 29 June 1941 (excerpt): “In the occupied territories partisans and diversion squads have to be established for the battle against units of the enemy’s army to unfold a partisan’s war everywhere, to destroy bridges, streets, telephone and telegraph connections, to burn down supply depots etc. Within the occupied territories unbearable conditions have to be created for the enemy and his supporters, they have to be persecuted everywhere and destroyed, all their activities shall be jeopardised.”

Resolution of the Central Committee of the CPSU dated 18 July 1941 (excerpt): “We have the task … to create a grid of our bolshevik illegal organisations to lead all activities against the fascist occupiers … To extend this battle behind the German troops with the greatest of efficiency it is necessary that all leaders of the Republic’s, territorial and regional committees of the party and soviet organisations take over the task themselves with immediate effect.” (Deutsche Chronik [German Chronicle] 1933-1945, 2nd Edition, Verlag der Nationen [Publishing House of the Nations], Berlin (GDR) 1981, p. 414)

2. Ulrich Huar: “Stalins Beiträge zur marxistisch-leninistischen Militärtheorie und – politik – Kooperation und Klassenkampf in der Antihitlerkoalition 1944″ [Stalin’s Contribution towards a marxist-leninist Military Theory – Cooperation and Class Struggle within the Anti-Hitler-Coalition in 1944], offensiv, 8/2004, p. 16

3. Antipenko: “In der Hauptrichtung” [In the main direction], Moscow 1971/Berlin 1977, p. 216, quoted in Ulrich Huar (ibid.), p. 15

4. Rokossowski: “Sodatenpflicht. Erinnerungen eines Frontoberbefehlshabers” [Soldier Duties. Memories of a commander-in-chief], Moscow 1968/Berlin 1971, p. 341.

5. Schtemenko: “Im Generalstab” [Within the general staff], Vol. 2, Moscow 1973/Berlin 1985, 3rd Ed., p. 169

6. Winston S. Churchill: “Der Zweite Weltkrieg” [The Second World War], Frankfurt/Main, 2003, p. 1007 (translation from the German edition)

7. Peter Gingold: Vom Widerstand zur Befreiung” [From Resistance to Liberation], Marxistische Blätter, Vol. 2, 2005, p. 33

8. Quoted in: Peter Gingold (ibid.)