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American GIs Meet the Reds on the Elbe <BR><br />(Newsweek & Yank Magazines, 1945)American GIs Meet the Reds on the Elbe

(Newsweek & Yank Magazines, 1945)
In late April of 1945, American tank crews south of Torgau (Germany) began to pick up the chattering of Soviet infantry units on their radios - the transmissions were generated by the advanced units of Marshal Konev's (1897 - 1973) First Ukrainian Army and both the allied units were elated to know that the other was nearby, for it meant one thing: the end of the war was at hand.

Thankfully, Yank's correspondent Ed Cummings was with the U.S. First Army when the two groups met at the Elbe River and he filed the attached article.

Ukrainian Partisan Witnessed to Nazi Murders at Babi Yar <br />(Collier's Magazine, 1945)Ukrainian Partisan Witnessed to Nazi Murders at Babi Yar
(Collier's Magazine, 1945)
The attached 1945 article from COLLIER'S by George Creel (1876 1953) was one of the very first pieces of wartime journalism to report on the Nazi atrocities committed in the forest of Babi Yar, just outside Kiev, Ukraine. Under the command of Reichskomissar Erich Koch (1896 1986) 33,000 Ukrainian Jews were slaughtered by German soldiers over a five day period during the month of September, 1941; this brief article tells the tale of Ukrainian partisan Yefim Vilkis, who resisted the Nazi occupation and witnessed the massacre.
German Letters from the Russian Front <br />(Coronet Magazine, 1943)German Letters from the Russian Front
(Coronet Magazine, 1943)
"When 22 divisions were cut off by the Russians at the gates of Stalingrad, the Nazis had to rely on air transport for contact with the surrounded troops. One mid-December day a German cargo plane was shot down on its way from the ringed divisions. The wreckage yielded some three hundred letters from doomed soldier of der Fuehrer. The Soviets selected and published a typical one:"

"It is hard to confess even to myself, but it seems to me that at Stalingrad we shall soon win ourselves to death."

Click here to read an assessment of the late-war German soldier...

An Observer on the Russian Front <br />(Collier's Magazine, 1945)An Observer on the Russian Front
(Collier's Magazine, 1945)
During the late war period, leftist playwright Lillian Hellman (1905 1984), was twice denied permission to travel to war-torn Britain on the grounds that she had been recognized as an active communist. Yet, ironically, those same pencil-pushers in the State Department turned around a few months later and granted her a passport to visit the Soviet Union in August of 1944 - as a guest artist of VOKS, the Soviet agency that processed all international cultural exchanges. It was during this visit that she penned the attached eyewitness account of the Nazi retreat through Stalin's Russia:

"Five days of looking out of a train window into endless devastation makes you sad at first, and then numb. Here there is nothing left, and the eye gets unhappily accustomed to nothing and begins to accept it..."

Click here to read a 1939 STAGE MAGAZINE profile of this writer.

The Siege Of Leningrad <br />(Collier's Magazine, 1944) The Siege Of Leningrad
(Collier's Magazine, 1944)
Reporting by radio from the city of Moscow, the celebrated Russian poet Vera Inber (1890 - 1972) gave an account of the difficult life lived by the civilians of Leningrad when the Nazi war machine laid siege to that city between September 8, 1941 through January 27, 1944:

"I will never forget the winter of 1941 - 42, when the bread ration was 4.4 ounces daily - and nothing else but bread was issued. In those days, we would bury our dead in long ditches - common graves. To bury your dead in separate graves, you needed fourteen ounces of bread for the gravedigger and your own shovel. Otherwise, you would have to wait your turn for days and days. Children's sleighs served as hearses to the cemetery."

The Drive On Berlin <br />(Newsweek Magazine, 1945The Drive On Berlin
(Newsweek Magazine, 1945
The Battle of Stalingrad <br />(Newsweek Magazine, 1942)The Battle of Stalingrad
(Newsweek Magazine, 1942)
The Newsweek report on the under-supplied Red Army counter-offensive at Stalingrad.

"Russia's hope was Hitler's despair. His schedule for the year had already been irreparably disrupted and none of his major objectives - Stalingrad, the Caspian Sea, the oil of the Caucasus - had yet been attained. And already the Nazi soldiers could feel the cold breath of winter through their summer uniforms..."

The Eastern Front Becomes The Western Front <br />(Newsweek Magazine, 1945)The Eastern Front Becomes The Western Front
(Newsweek Magazine, 1945)
The Partisan War <br />(PM Tabloid, 1941)The Partisan War
(PM Tabloid, 1941)
The German Eastward Thrust <br />(PM Tabloid 1941)The German Eastward Thrust
(PM Tabloid 1941)
"Sub-surface evidence that the war on the Russian Front is going into a more crucial phase is mounting... if the present German drive achieves the bulk of its objectives, the Russians will have had some of their resistance power taken away from them. They will not have quite the same communications, the same supply facilities or the same freedom of movement they have had to work with thus far."
All-In for the Eastern Front <br />(PM Tabloid, 1942)All-In for the Eastern Front
(PM Tabloid, 1942)
"In a message to the German Red Cross, Hitler referred to Russia as 'an enemy whose victory would mean the end of everything'"

"When Hitler says 'the end of everything' he means the end of Nazism."