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Screwback Order of the Red Banner


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I have received some prelimary results from some research I ordered from a fellow forum member. There may be more that I will share when it comes in... very soon! :jumping:

Anyway, this research is for my screwback Order of the Red Banner. I bought this at a highly discounted price from Igor M back in 1992. It was discounted because some of the enamel had been damaged/replaced. Here is the medal

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PERSONAL PART (top of 1st scan)==

Yefim Pavlovich NIZOV, Captain and Assistant Commander of Staff for reconnaissance/intelligence (same g thing-- there is NONE BETTER in a line unit... the words "po razvedke" make da dawgies sit up and HOWL) of the 911th Rifles Regiment of 244th Rifles Division.

Born in 1904, Russian, Member of the CPSU since 1928.

On the Southwest Front from 27.6.41-31.7.42

Stalingrad Front from 7.8.-22.10.42

Southwest Front since 24 January 1943 (to whenever this was made out-- am translating as I go)

WOUNDED 1 August 1941 near (?Smopantsa ?)

WOUNDED 2 October 1941 near Kharkov (one of the major defeats of 1941 and his division was considered destroyed here near Vyazma, the survivors--including him--being rolled into a "new" 244th Rifles Division with the same regimental numbers by absorbing the remaining survivors of the 469th Rifles Division)

WOUNDED 5 April 1942 (can't read... should come up in other versions of the records)

In the Red Army 1926-38

and since 1941 (which means he was PURGED and very likely DEMOTED!!!!

Joined at Oktyabrsky RVK of the city of Kiev in 1926.

Previously received the Military Merit Medal and Defense of Stalingrad Medal.

Next of kin and address: wife Vera Fedorovna Nizova in the village of Barkino, Sudogotsky Raion (roughly a county), Ivanovsky Oblast (province).

CITATION =

When you read this, you will be audible several miles to sea.

OK, now you need to shut the door to your little secret room and stuff sound proofing all around it, OK?

I have been collecting Soviet for 15 years.

I have

N

E

V

E

R

seen a citation to match this one, bar NONE, ever. Reconnaissance here can also be translated as "scouting."

"Took part in the defense from 5 September to 6 September 1943 at the head of and in charge of the reconnaissance around Hill 199.5 in the staff of a group of scouts--in all 40 riflemen-- breaking through the front line of mistaken (((?))) defenses, in which were destroyed 6 light machine guns and up to 50 enemy soldiers and officers. The enemy in a panic left their defensive positions and fled in the area of the village of Khrestintsa. With this entire distance the opportunity arose to advance forward up to 12 kilometers for the regiment, the division, and the entire 12th Army.

Deserves to be awarded the Order 'of the Red Banner'

26 September 1943 Commander of the 911th RR, Major Veznichenko"

AN ENTIRE ARMY CORPS ADVANCED ALONG ITS ENTIRE FRONT FOR TEN MILES BECAUSE OF THIS GUY AND HIS 40 MEN RAIDING THROUGH THE ENEMY LINES.

You can bet the Generals waaaaaay in the rear got Hero Stars, Suvorovs 1st Class, and all that exotic glittery "espensive" stuff--

THIS GUY MUST HAVE BEEN ON THE ULTIMATE SUPREME SH!T LIST.

Even if we "downplay" the degree of responsibility he had in the enemy's panic and so condescendingly decline to award HIM a Hero's Gold Star... by every single rule and regulation, for a feat like this at his rank he should have received whatever was considered the Supreme Award Possible: a Suvorov 3rd Class.

That he got NEITHER a Hero Star nor a Suvorov, combined with his age and the date he "left" the Red Army (1938) makes me CERTAIN this guy was purged, in the Gulag, brought back in a degraded rank under "suspended" sentence...

and they DELIBERATELY under-decorated him because he was on the Enemies Of The State list.

YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEHHHHHAAAAWWWWW

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Before Ricky gets waay too excited (I think that's already happened though) here's the rest of what came with the research. No personnel file, unfortunately, but that might (might) come later (I just got one 4 years after getting the initial research!) Without further ado:

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ANYBODY else, PLEASE... I cannot keep UP with all this blurry handwriting!!!

Other than him being expelled from the Party in 1947, there are MANY parts of the service record I just cannot read as focussed. Can't read his profession. Can't figure out what it says under foreign languages.

I am hereby on hiatus from massive quantities of German and Russian "decryption" until my weary eyes recuperate! I can't keep up with it ALL.

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I'm operating in the blind right now without my references, but I've got a hunch that the 12th Army crossed the Dnepr sometime around this time. Anyone out there with the references that can tell me when exactly his unit crossed the Dnepr?

Dave

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Guest Darrell

ANYBODY else, PLEASE... I cannot keep UP with all this blurry handwriting!!!

I am hereby on hiatus from massive quantities of German and Russian "decryption" until my weary eyes recuperate! I can't keep up with it ALL.

I say we all pitch in and buy Rick some well deserved R&R behind front lines. The eyeballs must be going crossed looking at all these strange languages in nasty handwriting :unsure::Cat-Scratch:

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I'm operating in the blind right now without my references, but I've got a hunch that the 12th Army crossed the Dnepr sometime around this time. Anyone out there with the references that can tell me when exactly his unit crossed the Dnepr?

Dave

Dave, at 3 AM on September 26th first unit of 12th Army (commander Major-General Danilov) started to cross Dnepr river between villages Petrovo and Svistunovo. It was 333rd Infantry division, to be more precise it was assault group under the command of captain Strizhachenko. This small unit captured a bridgehead and for the whole day was fighting with Germans. Next night (September 27) two regiments of 333rd Infantry division (1116th and 1120th Infantry Regiments) joined assault unit and participated in holding and spreading the bridgehead.

244th Infantry Division crossed Dnepr the same day - early in the morning on September 26, but in a different place (near Zaporozhye).

Edited by Mondvor
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Dave, at 3 AM on September 26th first unit of 12th Army (commander Major-General Danilov) started to cross Dnepr river between villages Petrovo and Svistunovo. It was 333rd Infantry division, to be more precise it was assault group under the command of captain Strizhachenko. This small unit captured a bridgehead and for the whole day was fighting with Germans. Next night (September 27) two regiments of 333rd Infantry division (1116th and 1120th Infantry Regiments) joined assault unit and participated in holding and spreading the bridgehead.

244th Infantry Division crossed Dnepr the same day - early in the morning on September 26, but in a different place (near Zaporozhye).

Thanks Andrew!

That's something more than slightly interesting to note... This citation was written on the SAME DAY that the unit was crossing the Dnepr River. I don't know of too many Soviet units that were not fully engaged during the crossing, and undoubtedly the 911th was as well. I wonder if the units simply started churning out citations that day in order to claim part of the eventual deluge of awards that would come of the Dnepr crossing.

In reading this citation, it seems much like an "attaboy" award. His recon troops dash through the enemy lines (they were retreating anyway in front of a MASSIVE assault by the Soviets) and the resulting confusion allows the tiny portion of the front owned by the 12th Army to move ahead a few kilometers. I wonder if back at the HQ of the 911th, our Comrade was given a pat on the back and that was that. Remember, these units were just part of an utterly massive wave of Soviet troops in the great push to the Dnepr River, where Army-sized units were funneled into much smaller areas in order to keep the momentum of the assault.

Once the unit was over the River, they may well have been given a directive to give awards to either "all officers" or everyone who distinguished themselves in the assault on the River, or in the direction of the River, which Nizov clearly had during the forward assault to the River. That's why there is such a disparity from the date of action (5-6 September) to the date of citation (26 September) to the approval date by the Division (16 October) to the approval by the staff of the 12th Army (3 November.) Ironically, the award was issued by a Prikaz of the 12th Army dated 31 October, three days BEFORE it was actually approved by the Army staff!

In my personal opinion, I think that Nizov was lucky to have gotten himself a Red Banner. Many units were travelling much farther than the distance that he was awarded the decoration for on a regular basis. Imagine an entire Soviet Army group bearing down on one or two single German divisions on the eastern shore of the Dnepr - most of the Germans had already been pulled back across the Dnepr to create fortified defenses of the River. It becomes obvious that the Germans simply could not hold ground in front of an assault like that.

But, where Nizov lucked out was that the unit crossed the Dnepr, and was probably given an entitlement of awards, which they wrote him up for the Red Banner, and which was approved up the entire chain of command, undoubtedly with numerous other Red Banners, Orders of Lenin, Heroes of the USSR and the like. Being that this was Nizov's only award (both his MM and RS were long service awards) does give some food for thought. Hopefully, if the personnel file ever comes out, that might answer some more questions that we can only speculate on at the moment.

Dave

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Thanks everyone. What awards other awards was he given? I know that he would have had the Victory over Germany medal.

Dave, you mentioned the MM and the Order of the Red Star. Rick stated that he had the Stalingrad and MM medal. What other campaign(Defence, Capture, or Liberation) medals would he have eligible for? Based upon when it would have been awarded, would it have been a numbered piece(or hopefully, unnumbered).

Interesting that he was purged... TWICE. Any mention as to why this would have happened?

Thank you all again.

BTW, I am not going to sell this(especially now), but what would a set like this be worth on today's market(ORB with this history)? I am just curious.

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Thanks everyone. What awards other awards was he given? I know that he would have had the Victory over Germany medal.

Dave, you mentioned the MM and the Order of the Red Star. Rick stated that he had the Stalingrad and MM medal. What other campaign(Defence, Capture, or Liberation) medals would he have eligible for? Based upon when it would have been awarded, would it have been a numbered piece(or hopefully, unnumbered).

Interesting that he was purged... TWICE. Any mention as to why this would have happened?

Thank you all again.

BTW, I am not going to sell this(especially now), but what would a set like this be worth on today's market(ORB with this history)? I am just curious.

Paul:

His other awards were a MM number 195339 (I was wrong, it wasn't a long service award - my hit) and a Red Star number 2760332. The latter was definately long service under the 3.11.44 Ukaz with all the other gazillion long service ones.

According to his award card, there are no other awards listed. On his citation though he recieved the Defense of Stalingrad, and (of course) Victory Over Germany. That's all that's listed anywhere.

As far as him being purged... I don't know if he officially was or not. His pre-WW2 departure in 1938 appears to have been part of the great purge that they had at the time. This would, of course, not be in the same definition as the purge of the great Marshals of the USSR at the same time - for him, it looks to me like they just gave him the boot out of the service. Maybe he was a sub-standard officer, or perhaps he was outspoken against the communist party... either way, they dumped him from the active rolls.

After WW2, he was given the boot again in August 1945 "for reaching maximum age" though ironically he was only 41 at the time. Perhaps he reached "high year tenure" (was we call it these days) being a Captain at age 41. Sounds to me that he wasn't the world's best officer and they gave him the quick kiss goodbye so that he wouldn't mess up anything! It could be too (and this was fairly common) that he was a drunk. That could also account for his boot from the communist party later down the road as well... could you see him show up to a meeting and perhaps cuss out the local leadership? Or, as I've seen before, he could have lit a building on fire with the occupants in it (there was an HSU that did that) or got into a fight with his boss (I had a group where a guy did that.) Both of those things would get you the boot out of the party.

My eyes are going buggy from this crappy handwriting (it's AWFUL!) but here's his career path: 1926 was a Red Army Soldier (Krasnoarmeets). Four years later, he becomes an officer candidate and in 1931, they commission him. When he finally gets the boot from the military, it's September 1938, and he's just a Senior Lieutenant, after seven years commissioned service! They recall him in June 1941 and he finally makes it to the front in March 1942. That September, he gets promoted to Captain. Then, he sits at Captain until August 1945 when they tell him "do-svidanya buddy" and boot him from the military again.

This guy would definately be an interesting guy to get the personnel file on.... hopefully it will arrive soon!

Dave

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It is a wonderful piece, that I thought about selling. That is until I heard about the research possiblities. Now I am glad that I kept it.

Rick L, thank you for the repeated proddings on getting it researched. :cheeky:

It might be a bit worn out, but it represents the deeds of a real person. Dave, thank you for helping me to see this badge as more than a piece of damaged memorabilia.

PaulR

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