Victims, Victors: From Nazi Occupation to the Conquest of Germany as Seen by a Red Army Soldier
Aberjona Press, 2007 - Всего страниц: 293
Written as a journal of his experiences while a teenager during the German occupation of his village and later, as a memoir of his military service, Victims, Victors describes the confusion and agony of the conquered, and, ultimately, the triumph of avengers over those who invaded and ransacked their homeland. Victims, Victors is, however, much more than a common chronicle of wartime experiences. Only since the demise of the Communist regime can memoirs such as Victims, Victors be openly produced and marketed. Western readers will find that the author's perspective on the events of his youth seem quite alien, but will also find them fascinating. Like Alfred Novotny (The Good Soldier), whose Social Democrat family had openly opposed the ruling regime in Austria, Roman Kravchenko-Berezhnoy's family had openly opposed the Bolsheviks... yet, also like Novotny, who served in Germany's elite Grossdeutschland Division, the young Roman also proudly served in the Red Army. Like the green young American infantryman Frank Gurley (Into the Mountains Dark), who wrote down his account of events as they happened, or like the idealistic SS machinegunner Johann Voss (Black Edelweiss), who wrote his memoir immediately after the war, Roman also kept a detailed diary that rings with the ardor and authenticity of recent-not half-century old-observations and recollections. The horrific, first-hand experiences chronicled by the author combine with the rumors, myths, and misunderstandings that characterized the young diarist's comprehension of the war to create a sometimes strange, sometimes misinformed, but always spell-binding and illuminating and absorbing account... and the author's unvarnished, occasionally brutal descriptions of his combat experiences provide revealing glimpses into the savage nature of fighting on the Eastern Front.
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