07 February 2007

The Battle Remembered

2nd of February was the 64th anniversary of the Battle of Stalingrad. As a summary, it was the high watermark of the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union (actually the Germans never managed to cross the Volga) and a turn of the tides of the war in general. From then on, the battle raged for 2 more years from the west bank of the Volga to the Reichstag in Berlin.

The strange instance was that I just finished my book "Stalingrad" by Anthony Beevor just last week and paid a visit to the Great Patriotic War Museum once again. (A lot of the expats don't know about that but it is behind the gigantic needle monument in Park Pobedy near Kutuzovsky Prospekt...and has a great open-air pool of WWII armor - one can even see a Tiger there).

I deeply regret that I couldn't have a chance to visit that city (now Volgograd) but definitely will, after this dreadful winter comes to an end.

Note: My dear friend Nikolay has sent a comment that there are no Tigers in that museum. I agree that it could be a Panther (but they still share the same Porche turrets). He also added that a genuine King Tiger is displayed in a Tank Museum near Moscow (How can we go there anyway?). It will be great surprise to see an intact King Tiger, since no more than 350 are produced and most of them destroyed in action (maybe after destroying hundreds of enemy tanks themselves)

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