In the years 1937-1941, the Soviet Army grew five-fold, from 1.1 million to 5.5 million. An additional 5.3 million people joined the ranks of the Red Army within one week of the beginning of the war. A minimum of 34.5 million people were used by the Red Army during the war.
In the years 1937-1941, the Soviet Army grew five-fold, from 1.1 million to 5.5 million... This huge increase in the size of the Soviet Army was accomplished primarily by ratification of the universal military draft in the Soviet Union on September 1, 1939… Stalin knew when he established the draft that in two years, in the summer of 1941, the Soviet Union must enter into a major war. …less than one percent of the Soviet Union’s officers died in Stalin’s purge. Soviet military commanders in 1941 were well-qualified to lead Stalin’s war of aggression against Europe.
Editors Comment: Continuing from Germany’s Incredible Courage: How Hitler’s Invasion Surprised Stalin, this series of articles explores the staggering scale of preparations by the Soviet Union from 1927 to build the greatest offensive army ever known. The Soviet 5 Year Plans were effective for this purpose and implemented with barbaric cruelty.
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