Die Stalingrad-Protokolle was compiled by German historian Jochen Hellbeck, professor at Rutgers University in New Jersey, who gained access to the archives at the Soviet Academy of Sciences in Moscow, where he found several thousand interviews with Second World War Red Army soldiers.
Mr. Professor, could you briefly tell us the story of the “Stalingrad Protocols” and why they remained in the archives for so many years?
The Stalingrad Protocols emerged as the result of the work of the Moscow’s Commission of historians. A small delegation was sent to Stalingrad in December 1942 before the battle was over. They collected hundreds of interviews to the Defenders of Stalingrad. They talked to commanders, famous people, but also simple soldiers and civilians. All together they created a huge documentary imprint that was then hidden, because it is about the people’s war. That was good for the regime during the conflict when the regime needed the people backing. But after the war Stalin claimed the victory just for himself. These documents were dangerous for him and they disappeared.
* * * Author: Giuseppe D’Amato
Jochen3inglese – Interview
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