Thursday, August 30, 2007

Today In History:..and it just got worse from there.

As the opening maneuvers of the Great War got underway, Imperial Russia launched what was intended to be a decisive blow at the German holdings in East Prussia. Two huge Russian armies, 190,000 men in total, closed in a vast pincers on the Jerry forces near Tannenberg on the Polish frontier.

When the dust settled on 30 August, 1914, 30,000 of those Russkie troops would be casualties and another 95,000 would be on the wrong side of the barbed wire in German POW camps. Then things really started to go downhill for the Czar...

9 comments:

Dr. StrangeGun said...

Samsonov: "Whoops."

Matt G said...

"Then things really started to go downhill for the Czar..."

Yeah, come October.

Matt G said...

Alas, who fought there live anymore.

The two living German Great War vets fought elsewhere. The one Polish vet living wasn't there.
No Russian veterans of that war live.

7.62x54r said...

But how quickly the Battle of Gumbinnen is forgotten! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Gumbinnen

To put it all in perspective: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?t=h&om=0&ie=UTF8&msa=0&msid=105073304682538879946.0004356b15aa54e5a8271&ll=46.503258,34.674739&spn=28.819453,59.765625&z=4

Some other similar maps:
http://7.62x54r.net/MosinID/MosinMaps.htm

7.62x54r said...

If that 2nd link doesn't work you'll find it on the page of the 3rd link.

Tam said...

It's not forgotten, it's just that the subsequent events render it, in hindsight, as more a prelude to Ludendorff's crushing victory.

triticale said...

History has proven that the best way to deal with an invasion of Russia is to pull back and let them keep advancing.

Anonymous said...

It is a shame, Russia at that period was FINALLY getting it stuff together and getting more prosperous, more liberal (in the good, less autocratic way), and developing a serious western style middle class...and then they come down with 80 years of communism.

Billy Beck said...

"Russia at that period was FINALLY getting it stuff together..."

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn argued that the pistol shot that killed Pyotr Stolypin is the single most important shot fired in the whole of the Twentieth Century, because he was the very last chance to head-off October 1917.

It's a compelling argument with enormous implications. For instance; it's obvious to me that there is no way to seriously teach Twentieth Century American history without foundational reference to the Bolshevik Revolution.