on 14 February in Moscow was a salute — 75 years since the liberation of Budapest from the Nazis. The battle for the Hungarian capital lasted 108 days. The Hungarians were the last ally of Hitler and with the German army provided the red Army’s fierce resistance. Historians call Budapest a second Stalingrad, as the battle was for each house. As the Red Army liberated Budapest?
Budapest was besieged for three months. Visco. Hard. Hitler declared the city as the last fortress of Germany. Is Germany. Not Hungary. From the time of Miklos Horthy, Hungary was a loyal ally of the Third Reich.
In Hungary — three of the monument to Miklos Horthy. One of them is in the center of Budapest. Beautiful place. Called Liberty square.
Hungarian army attacked the USSR on 27 June 1941. Hungarian occupants often feared more than the Wehrmacht — from the Carpathians to Voronezh. In Stalingrad on the side of the Nazis fought the Second Hungarian army. Two hundred thousand people. Almost all stayed there.
Veteran Leo Kaptsevich with the Hungarians faced for the first time at Stalingrad. And under the Budapest already knew what to expect.
“How hard it was for the infantry there. All Buda covered with canals and passageways. They know things, they know them well. And our down is impossible. Idea to go down to a Russian soldier to a certain death. And they are retreating in this place, went under the underpass and get out somewhere in the rear of us,” says the veteran.
These stormtroopers were called “crayfish.” They were clad in armor. Threw them down on the reinforcements from the reserve when the fighting was not at the street or house — for every room.
“Mostly Budapest was defended by the Germans. And to a smaller degree the Hungarian troops. But the most ardent Nazis were not at war. They were engaged in looting. Don’t think Budapest was defended by ardent Nazis. They drank, plundered, guzzled,” — said Joseph Balint, researcher, writer.
By this time Horthy no longer in the country. In the autumn of 1944 he begins the surrender negotiations with the British and the Americans. Asks for a truce from the red Army.
the Germans were aware of these events, as the talks in the Hungarian headquarters and at each time Horthy was attended by the Deputy chief of the General staff Colonel-General Laszlo, who turned German agent. The German Embassy was next to the Royal castle, and in 5 minutes was aware of every step Horthy and General staff. Real name Laszlo — Lauck. He is of German descent, like most of the Hungarian generals.
Hitler kidnaps the son of Horthy, and then arrest him. Taking to Germany. Shall appoint another Hungarian Ferenc Salashi. But during the siege and it is not in the Hungarian capital. The garrison is commanded by a German General Pfeffer-Wildenbruch.
on the Eve of the anniversary of the liberation in different places of Budapest stood in the stands with photos. Almost all the pictures of the ruins. Torn, ruined city. About the same thing — that some kind of exhibition in the subway. It was opened by the mayor of Budapest görgey Karachi.
“Young people (the extreme right) do not even know what political ideologies are followed. Ideas that destroyed the city. We must learn from history and not allow politics to confuse victims and heroes,” he said.
Budapest was a chance to remain whole, because we wanted to offer a decent surrender. The German-Hungarian group was surrounded by the armies of Malinovsky and Tolbukhin. Hopeless.
Miklos Steinmetz was Hungarian. In the ‘ 40s he put the monument, and at the end of the 80s was dismantled and moved away from the eye in place, which is delicately referred to as “the Museum under the open sky”. Now in Budapest, the decision of the authorities is another monument to the victims of sexual violence during the war. We could not ask the mayor where going to put it.
“This is a historical trauma, which was silent. We don’t know yet what will be the concept of the monument and where he will stand. Therefore open publicGov. debate where to place and what will be the art concept,” said Karacan.
“But no one suggests that our three years how many Soviet women were raped. A word about it there. I therefore very much against the monument, because not talking about it. All victims are the same, although the Hungarian soldiers and the German soldiers were not punished for it. But many Russians even shot,” said Tamas Kraus, historian, Professor of the Budapest Corvinus University.
In the Holocaust memorial center is also a lot of photos of the destruction. But there is something almost was not in the city exhibitions. Maybe because it’s too scary. Events, persons, people. Live, yet alive and already dead.
This touching monument is about some kind of inhuman, calculated cruelty. People are not just dumped into the Danube were forced to jump. They were told to take off their shoes before doing this. And now all this shoes — women’s shoes, worn shoes could stay here on the waterfront forever.
She was 9, when in November 1944 were herded into the ghetto. A few blocks surrounded by a wooden fence. To come out was impossible. To take gave 20 kilograms of Luggage that myself. So wore 2-3 layers of clothing. Began to starve almost immediately. “Adults have received about six hundred calories per day. The children are about eight hundred, and patients — nine hundred. Many people died of starvation. In the ghetto were 70,000, and when released had 7000 who had survived. Everywhere were piles of dead people. On the market square Clausal, in shops, piled dead people. The names of those who we saved. It is not the Jews. It is Christians. The Savior lives,” said Catalina Sommer.
“the Red Army entered Hungary, not pursuing the acquisition of any part of the Hungarian territory or changes in the existing political system of Hungary. In occupied by the red Army districts, Councils and government bodies VLAsti is not to create it.”, — stated in the Decree of the State defense Committee.
the Devastation and chaos left after the Hungarian Alliance with Germany. Trains the Germans exported values, equipment, food. Factories, shipyards had to understand from scratch. The company started full-fledged operation in less than six months.
“after 4 months returned to the owners of these plants. Moreover, the capitalists. Returned solemnly. Meeting, minutes, speeches, drank and returned the plants to the owners,” said Yaser Balint.
the Losers took revenge. They were fed bread. Hungarian Newspapers have published funny cartoons about the panic of the speculators. “As the winner of the Councils would exercise their rights. However, they answered our crazy actions such a nice gesture that our people and expect it not to dare,” wrote media.
Then, in 1945, no one had any question who the hero and who is the victim. Except, of course, who along with the Nazis had to flee far to the West.
Remembering the bravery and sacrifices of the red Army, the more bitter to realize that in countries such as Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, Poland and Bulgaria today, the monuments to Soviet winners of fascism is not honored. If they are demolished, somewhere rearrange or insult. Bitter.
Text: “News of the week”