Some eight decades have passed since what is arguably the largest land invasion in modern times kicked off,
Unternehmen Barbarossa, pitting 3.8 million German, Hungarian, Italian, Finnish, Slovak, and Romanian troops against the scandalously unexpecting Soviet legions of Generalissimo Stalin.
German soldiers crossing Soviet border post ,June 22, 1941, Barbarossa
Safronov Viktor Alekseevich (b. 1932.) – June 22, the border
Red Army anti-tank gun crew wiped out. “They fought for Homeland.” By G. M. Zykov
Although the wave would eventually break on the outskirts of Moscow– even Napolean had at least captured the vacated Kremlin some 120 years prior– the war on the Eastern Front was far from over and would claim millions on both sides.
Today, Barbarossa is seen through the lens of a myriad of conflicting issues even today in Germany.
Meanwhile, the Russians have a view that nothing is forgiven, or forgotten.
I hope your 2018 is finding its way out in acceptable fashion. Thank you for reading and following.
Here’s to a great 2019!
Oh, and of course, Victory will be Ours!
Soviet New Year Red partisan propaganda card (S Novym godom), 1942, after all, the Communists couldn’t celebrate Christmas, but everyone loves New Years. Good symbolism with the grizzled “old” year leaving followed by the new, fresh-faced young new year arriving. And yes, I’m loving the PPSH-41 and MP40 combo
There, under the Krinkov, is a German StG44 in exploded view, which would probably be OK on any monument except that of Mikhail Kalashnikov
As I covered over at Guns.com, the Russians spent 35 million rubles (about $580K US) on a sprawling monument to the late firearms engineer Mikhail Kalashnikov that was unveiled in Moscow last week. Besides a nearly 30-foot high statue of Kalashnikov, the base of a monument to St. Mikhail, the Orthodox patron of gunsmiths and warriors, contains a representation of several of the engineer’s designs including an AK42 sub gun, AK47, AKM and AK74 rifles, as well as RPK and PK machine guns.
However, as noted by some sharp-eyed firearms enthusiasts and reported by Russian-based Kalashnikov magazine, just under a Krinkov AKS-74U is what appears to be the parts diagram for a German StG-44 Sturmgewehr.
Which some (notably outside of the Motherland) have contended that the AK was based on for decades.
This has caused understandable heartburn in Russia, and, as Russian firearms wonks pile on to disagree with the lineage of the AK– noting it is as Russian as a Florida pirated movie salesman, the offending diagram has been torched out.
British trained (and often led) Syrian soldiers of the Arab Legion during the Battle of Jerusalem, 1948. Note the French Chauchat light machine gun of Great War infamy– likely in 8mm– to the left with a spare mag to the side of and another behind the gunner. The Syrian to the right of the frame has a German MP40 submachine gun of more recent vintage.
Founded in 1920 as a gendarme force by the British in their new Transjordan mandate, the force began with a mix of Chechen locals, former Ottoman Army troops and a smattering of Arabs still around from Lawrence’s days. Swelling to almost 2,000 by 1939, they fought with the British during WWII and by 1948 had grown to about 10,000.
It was during WWII that the Arab Legion was key in Operation Exporter, the hard-fought two month liberation of the Vichy French-controlled Syrian Republic and French Lebanon in 1941 (where the Chauchat was likely picked up) and Operations Sabine/Regulta and Regatta, the seizure of Iraq in the face of German support (where the MP40 may have originated).
ATI, who has been importing all sorts of stuff from everywhere the past few years is fast becoming a major player in the interesting overseas gun biz. I’ve talked to them at a number of shows and they seem to have a lot of irons in the fire in a good way (including a polymer 1911 and a .410 AR upper that I saw in New Orleans last year)
They have long sold a .22LR MP40 replica made by German Sports Guns, and now are rounding the bend on a 9mm version.
Of course, its semi-auto only, departs from the original in with the use of screws (rather than rivets) and polymers where possible, but its still pretty neat and if you SBR it the company will supply you with the folding stock. MSRP is $650-ish.
According to ATI:
Now that we know that the gun is importable officially, GSG & American Tactical will purchase the factory equipment and parts to begin production, this will take set up time.
American Tactical will be selling these through our distribution network so gun stores will be buying them from wholesalers. These guns will only be available for direct purchase via our website when there is overstock in our warehouse. It will be a while before there is any warehouse overstock, so your local gun dealer is the way to go to get one. There is no waiting list, unless you are one of our distributors (listed on our website) you cannot order one from us.
Our best estimate for delivery of the first shipment is 6-8 months right now, which is not a lock and is subject to change depending on production gear up and any potential issues that may occur.
I’ll be sure to keep an eye out at their booth in Louisville in May.