Why SMERSH counterintelligence called the best in history

History 06/03/20 Why SMERSH counterintelligence called the best in the history

OF SMERSH there is a lot of conflicting information, caused primarily by the secrecy of this organization. However, the archives are slowly opening, and with them, be available to new facts.

Special body

In recent years, the word SMERSH became almost synonymous with the secret police. So, the head of the “Union of Right Forces” Leonid Gozman even compared SMERSH to the Nazi SS, finding between them the only difference in the form, and a representative of the society “memorial” Nikita Petrov called sky-high numbers of victims of SMERSH – 70 thousand were shot.

However, these data can be easily disputed. Enough to raise the statistics of law enforcement and to see that over the entire period of the existence of SMERSH (1943-1946), was was made a little more than 14 thousand death sentences, including ordinary crimes.

First of all, SMERSH was created as a body against intelligence-subversive activities of Nazi Germany in the Soviet rear, which intensified after the German defeat at Stalingrad. According to the decision of the State Defense Committee, SMERSH was to replace the Management of special departments of NKVD.

the Original name of the special body sounded like “Sternes” (“Death to German spies”), but Stalin this option is not satisfied: “if other intelligence against us do not work?”, – said the Supreme commander. 21 APR 1943, he was drafted the final version of the SMERSH.

In action

the real SMERSH showed itself on the eve of the battle of Kursk. His agents not only managed to uncover the plans of the Germans regarding the attack on the Kursk direction, but also to determine the place and time of the transaction. We must note that Soviet counterintelligence was opposed by experienced and resourceful agents of the German intelligence services, including the Abwehr.

By the beginning of 1943 about 200 of the German special forces were preparing saboteurs to be dropped in the Soviet rear. Abwehr and SD, developed and tried to implement a plan according to which the Republic of Kalmykia, North Caucasus, Kazakhstan, the Crimea and other ethnic regions were to become hotbeds of civil war.

that there has been no “stab in the back” – the main merit of SMERSH. A big role was played by approximately 3,000 Soviet agents, who have successfully suppressed operations of the German secret service in enemy territory at the stage of preparation.

a Separate kind of activity of SMERSH were the so-called “radio games” – a deliberate transfer of the German side misinformation through recruited by German agents. From 1943 to 1945, the Soviet counterintelligence spent 186 such “radiogr”, almost completely depriving the Germans of the ability to get military secrets, while removing more than 400 Nazi spies.

the Result of three years of work SMERSH was the neutralization of more than 30 thousand spies and saboteurs of the enemy. Such results can not boast of any exploration of the world.

At the forefront

Agents of SMERSH fought not only in the rear but on the front. Moreover, their activities were often associated with more risks than the soldiers of regular units. According to statistics, operative served on the frontlines for more than three months, a falling out as a result of injury or death. In total, the war killed more than 6 thousand employees of SMERSH. Four of them posthumously were awarded the title hero of the Soviet Union.

A Smershevtsy showed miracles of heroism, as, for example, the senior Lieutenant A. F. Kalmykov, who with a group of friends rushed into the village, where numerous German garrison. Calling the fire itself, Kalmykov allowed the Soviet forces to destroy about 300 Nazis and liberate the settlement.

a well-Known episode that occurred during the battle of Berlin, when counterintelligence 47-th guards rifle division 8-th army 1 St Belorussian front carried out an operation to capture one ands headquarters of the Abwehr. Intelligence was able to detect the building of the Abwehr on the outskirts of the German capital disguised as an agricultural College.

the Struggle against treason

One of the tasks of SMERSH was to fight with the traitors. For these purposes, its agents was developed in a very original way. We are talking about the re-enactment of the surrender of whole groups of soldiers, under the guise of which were experienced employees of counterintelligence. Two such operations were conducted on 2 and 3 June 1943. As soon as the agents disguised as defectors began to close in on the German soldiers, they threw grenades at the enemy. This preventive measure allowed in the future to expect that the German troops in the emergence of these deserters will meet them with fire.

the Filter

Immediately after the victory of the allies of the USSR fulfilling the agreements began to return home, many Soviet citizens, including prisoners of war and those who fought against their former compatriots on the side of Nazi Germany. In the USSR they were met by the staff of the SMERSH. Speaking as a kind of filter, they weed out the trustworthy from the suspect.

Historians, focuses on the punitive and repressive activities of the SMERSH, wrote that the Soviet secret service ruthlessly dealt with prisoners, sending them instead of the Nazi camps in the Stalin. However, the evidence suggests that this system of screening was not blind.

So, in may-June 1945 staff of the SMERSH has identified 36 generals of the red Army returning from the front. They were all taken to Moscow, where each of them was made a separate decision based on the collected materials. In the end, the 25 commanders were acquitted, and 11, in respect of which has been proven facts of collaboration with the Nazis were brought to justice.

Just a test filter SMERSH passed 58 686 people, of whom 16 456 people, including former soldiers and officers of the red Army, 12 160 people ostarbaiters of military ageTA. After multistage inspections revealed 378 people in varying degrees, involved in the cooperation with the Nazi regime. They were not shot without trial, as claimed by some historians. They were all sent to the investigators for more in-depth doznania.

Taras Repin

© Russian Seven

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