July 30, 2014

A Russo-German Parade

Guderian and Krivoshein attending the victory parade at Brest
Generals Heinz Guderian and Semyon Moiseevich Krivoshein attending
the victory parade at Brest-Litovsk (
Brest) on September 22, 1939.

Guderian’s XIX Armeekorps (mot.) reached the outskirts of Brest-Litovsk on 16 September 1939 and occupied the famous fortress the next day. As it turned out Guderian’s assault on the fortress was unnecessary, because under the Nazi-Soviet Pact Brest was given to the Russians. Brest was entered by XXIX Light Tank Brigade, commanded by Brigadier Semyon Krivoshein. Krivoshein found Guderian at the city’s town hall; both men could speak French. They organized a parade for the afternoon; after that the Germans left.

Natalie Kisovska (later Nathalie Hartmann) was twenty years old at the time and an eyewitness of the parade. She remembered the German soldiers as being well dressed in clean uniforms and shinning boots; armed with modern weapons. On the contrary she described the Soviet troops as being dirty, unwashed, their overcoats torn to shreds, armed with old-fashioned weapons.

Guderian and Krivoshein
2. Close up of Guderian and Krivoshein. The officer behind Guderian is
Generalleutnant Mauritz von Wiktorin commander of 20. Infanterie-Division (mot.).

Russian BT-5 tanks and German Kradschützen
3. Russian BT-5 tanks and German Kradschützen assembled for the parade.

BA-20 Recon vehicle
4. This Lieutenant with his BA-20 Recon vehicle was the first Russian to enter Brest. 

Talking with about the demarcation line
5. Same officer talking with the Germans about the demarcation line.

German and Soviet soldiers
6. German and Soviet soldiers east of Brest.

Davies, Norman. Europe at War 1939-1945: No Simple Victory. Macmilan, 2006.
Guderian, Heinz. Panzer Leader. Da Cappo Press, 2001.

Photos attribution
1. Bundesarchiv, Bild 101I-121-0011A-23/CC-BY-SA-3.0-de, via Wikimedia Commons
2. Bundesarchiv, Bild 101I-121-0011A-22/Gutjahr/CC BY-SA 3.0 de, via Wikimedia Commons
3. Bundesarchiv, Bild 101I-121-0012-30/CC BY-SA 3.0 de, via Wikimedia Commons
4. Planet News photographer, via Wikimedia Commons
5. Associated Press photographer, via Wikimedia Commons
6. Bundesarchiv, Bild 101I-121-0008-25/Ehlert, Max/CC-BY-SA-3.0-de, via Wikimedia Commons

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