World War II in photos: Nazis & USSR clashed on Eastern Front 75 years ago
It was on 22 June, 1941, 75 years ago, when Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union began a cataclysmic struggle on Eastern Front during World War ΙI. It nearly for 4 years, till 9 May 1945.
Some 27 million Soviet soldiers and civilians and nearly 4 million German troops lost their lives along the Eastern Front during the Second World War. The warfare was ferocious. It encompassed the largest armored clash in history - Battle of Kursk - and the most costly siege on a modern city, nearly 900 days in Leningrad. It brought utter devastation on thousands of villages, mass deportations, mass executions and countless atrocities that were attributed to both sides.
The war on the Eastern Front, known to Russians as the "Great Patriotic War", was the scene of the largest military confrontation in history.
Fighting in central, eastern and northern Europe often took place during torrential downpours, blinding snow, and deep freezes. Ultimately, it was those harsh conditions that helped Soviet forces (with Allied support) defeat Germany, triggering the fall of Nazi power in Europe and leading to the end of World War II. Russia's victories on the Eastern Front also cemented it as a superpower and the beginning of the Cold War.
The vast scale of the warfare is nearly unimaginable and nearly impossible to capture, so here are mere glimpses of the horrors of the Eastern Front.