Book Review of The Viaz’ma Catastrophe

The Viaz'ma Catastrophe, 1941: The Red Army's Disastrous Stand against Operation TyphoonThe Viaz’ma Catastrophe, 1941: The Red Army’s Disastrous Stand against Operation Typhoon by Lev Lopukhovsky

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Excellent treatise

This book should be on the shelf of every military historian. This copy is a translation but still a very good one. You can get the sense of the desperate defense of the Eastern Front, the mistakes made by both the Russians and the Germans, and the general culture in Stalinist Russia. You can get the sense that there was a party line imposed on everyone, from top generals to professors and statisticians, that they were to cover up the sheer magnitude of the losses of men and materiel. Why? Because it made Stalin look bad. And as Stalin allegedly said, one death is a tragedy, a million deaths is a statistic.

For decades, the truth about the author’s father was covered up. To this day, the author’s father who fought at Via’zma still remains unknown but the author has helped veterans regain their honor, setting the record straight. Even if decades have passed, the veterans are already dead, but the knowledge that these men paid the highest price should not be forgotten.

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