Friday, April 25, 2014

This Day in WWII History: Apr 25, 1945: Americans and Russians link up, cut Germany in two

 us soviet troops elbe April 25, 1945   East meets West

File:Happy 2nd Lieutenant William Robertson and Lt. Alexander Sylvashko, Russian Army, shown in front of sign (East Meets... - NARA - 531276.tif

On this day in 1945, eight Russian armies completely encircle Berlin, linking up with the U.S. First Army patrol, first on the western bank of the Elbe, then later at Torgau. Germany is, for all intents and purposes, Allied territory.

File:Zhukov 1945 E010750410-v8.jpg

The Allies sounded the death knell of their common enemy by celebrating. In Moscow, news of the link-up between the two armies resulted in a 324-gun salute; in New York, crowds burst into song and dance in the middle of Times Square. Among the Soviet commanders who participated in this historic meeting of the two armies was the renowned Russian Marshal Georgi K. Zhukov, who warned a skeptical Stalin as early as June 1941 that Germany posed a serious threat to the Soviet Union.

File:Torgau Denkmal.JPG

Zhukov would become invaluable in battling German forces within Russia (Stalingrad and Moscow) and without. It was also Zhukov who would demand and receive unconditional surrender of Berlin from German General Krebs less than a week after encircling the German capital. At the end of the war, Zhukov was awarded a military medal of honor from Great Britain.

File:Elbe Day Memorial Arlington.jpg

 File:Battle of Berlin 1945-b.png

Taken from: [25.04.2014]

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