General Zhukov was the most successful Russian general in World War II.

zhukov.jpgZhukov "the man who did not lose a battle" was born on December 2, 1896 in the village of Strelkovka southwest of Moscow. His family were peasants. His father was a shoemaker and his mother was a farm worker. In 1915 Zhukov joined the Russian Imperial Army serving as a private in the cavalry squadron. He was studing military tactics before being sent to the Front. On November 6 1917 the Bolsheviks seized power. When civil war broke out he sided with the communists and enlisted as a private in the Red Army. He quickly rose throguh the ranks and by 1922 he was serving as a commander of the cavalry squadron. At the end of the civil war he was presented with the Red Banner award which was the Soviet Union's top war-service award.

After the Civil War ended Zhukov studied the use of armored warfare in battle. He had seen first-hand the number of human lives that were lost as a result of outmoded warfare and developed his own ideas on how armored vehicles could be used in combat. His knowledge and skill impressed Joseph Stalin who had used the Purges to rid himself of many senior Red Army Officers. In 1940 he was appointed Chief of Staff by Stalin. Zhukov knew that failure would not be tolerated by Stalin

The Pincer movement
The Pincer movement
In 1939 the Japanese begin to push into Soviet territory which begin a war between the Soviets and the Japanese. Zhukov was now a Lieutenant-General and was assigned to the Frist Soviet Mongolian Army Group. After that he began to prepared to take on the Japanese. On August 20, 1939 the Battle of Khalkyn-Gol begain. Through the bold and unconventional use of tanks, mobile units, disinformation, and surprise, Zhukov was able to outflank them using the Pincer Movement. Zhukov sent half his men to the left and right of the other army in order to flank them, a move he was made famous for. He was able to defeat them within three days, but he lost about 40% of his forces.

After his victory he was awarded the title of 'Hero of the Soviet Union". He was also given the command of the Kiev Military District. On August 23, 1939 Stalin signs a nonaggression pact with Germany's Nazi dictator, Adolf Hitler, carving up Eastern Europe into German and Soviet spheres of influence, with the USSR claiming Estonia, Larvia, Lithunania, Finland, part of the Balkans and half of Poland. On September 1, 1939 German troops invade Poland. Britain and France declare war on Germany two days later. The 2nd World War has begun. Stalin acts to secure the USSR"s western frontier without bothering Hitler and at the same time supplying the German war effort with oil, wood, copper,manganese ore, rubber, grain, and other resources.


On April 14, 1945 Russian forces captured Vienna. Joesph Stalin ordered 20 Armies, 8,500 aircraft, and 6,300 tanks to march toward Berlin. Stalin told both General Zhukov and General Ivan Koniev, who did not like each other, to race the Western Allies for the glory of Berlin as the Allies were only 60 miles away from the city. However, General Dwight D. Eisenhower's interest was elsewhere and instead, moved his men to the south of Berlin to stop the Germans from escaping to the southern mountains instead of going to Berlin. With the Western Allies just securing the industrious region of the Ruhr River, the Russian troops surrounded Berlin before the western Allies.

On April 15, 1945 Zhukov’s troops began to shell the city to soften the German resistance. For thirty minutes he pounded the city, raining half a million shells five miles deep in to the German lines. The whole time there was no answer from their guns. Then Zhukov used his secret weapon, 143 search light dipped low enough to aim into the eyes of the German defenders. With the Germans blinded the Russian infantry and armor charged forward. Soon the battle field was filled with fog, smoke and dust which actually reflected the light back to the eyes of the Russian soldiers and the order to turn off the lights was given. After Zhukov crossed the river both Zhukov and Koniev were charging full speed at Berlin. The commander of the Berlin defenders Helmuth Reymannonly had 41,253 men at his disposal including 1,713 policemen, 1,252, Hitler Youth and Labor Service boys and men, and 2,400 Volksstrum troops that were mostly old men and those previously deemed too sick or weak to fight. He had little to arm his men with little more than 773 sub-machine guns, 1,953 light machine guns, 263 heavy machine guns and a small stock of mortars and field guns. The Allies initiated a large scale bombing attack on Berlin in order for Zhukov and the Russians to move in a take over Berlin.

His success and fame was his undoing as Joesph Stalin could never tolerate someone in Russia being more famous than he and could take away all of his fame. In 1946 Zhukov was demoted by none other than Stalin who transferred him to a regional post in Russia where he was sidelined. When Stalin died in 1953, Zhukov regained the prestige his career merited. In 1953 he was promoted the Executive Committee of the Communist Party though, in 1957, he was sacked from both positions as he was accused of putting the military before the party.

From 1965 to 1968, Zhukov wrote articles for the Russian periodicals but found them to be heavily censored by the government. Zhukov, "the man who never lost a battle", who lead the Russian military during World War II had a nice quiet life in retirement.

Gregory Zhukov died in 1974 at the age of 78.

Events in Zhukov life