Timoshenko, Semyon Konstantinovich

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Timoshenko, Semyon Konstantinovich, born 18-02-1895, into a peasant family in Furmanivka, Bessarabia, Russian Empire (now in Ukraine). In 1915, he was drafted into the army and served as a cavalry soldier during World War 1. In 1917, during the Russian civil war, he sympathized with the communist revolutionaries, joining the communist forces in 1918 and the Bolshevik Party in 1919. During the civil war, he met Joseph Stalin  in Tsaritsyn (later Stalingrad and then Vogograd), which was to be the foundation for his steady rise in the chain of command as Stalin rose to power later. In the 1920s, Timoshenko between the commander of all cavalry forces in the Russian Army. In 1933, he was named the commanding officer of the Russian Army in Byelorussia. In 1935, he became the commanding officer of the forces in Kiev,  Ukraine. In 1937, he was named the commanding officer of forces in the northern Caucasus, and then of Kharkov, Ukraine. In 1938, he returned to Kiev as the commander. In 1939, he was given command of the entire western region of Russia. When the European War began in Sep 1939, Timoshenko led Russian forces in the invasion of Poland. In Jan 1940, he was assigned to the north to join the already commenced Winter War with Finland; Russian troops turned the tide and pushed through the Finnish defensive Carl Gustav Mannerheim

   Line and led to the Russian victory. In May, he was made a Marshal of the Soviet Union for the victory against Finland, and was made a Hero of the Soviet Union. Between 1940 and 1941, as the People’s Commissar for Defence, he was responsible for the introduction of the harsh discipline reminiscent of the Tsarist Army into the military, and also for the modernization of the army by mechanization. When German invaded Russia in Jun 1941, Stalin took over the role of People’s Commissar for Defence and sent Timoshenko to the front lines to conduct a fighting retreat toward Smolensk, Russia, where he was able to lead a bulk of the routed army for the defence of Moscow. In September, he was transferred to Ukraine to hold the lines against the German onslaught, which he was able to do rather successfully. In May 1942, he led a counter-offensive at Kharkov, Ukraine which saw initial success, but ultimately was defeated with extremely high casualties (at least 200,000 wounded, killed, or captured); he was blamed for the defeat, although some secretly thought that the defeat should have been attributed to Stalin, who underestimated German strength in the region when he ordered the offensive. He was transferred to Stalingrad in June 1942; his previous role as the commanding officer of the west was taken over by Marshal, Georgi Zhukov

  . In October 1942, he was named the commanding officer of the northwest, followed by an appointment to Leningrad, Russia in June 1943. He returned to the Caucasus in June 1944, and then served in the Russian-occupied Baltic states in Aug 1944.

Death and burial ground of Timoshenko, Semyon Konstantinovich.

    16934334_116550589296     After the war, Timoshenko became the commanding officer in Byelorussia between March and May 1946. In June 1946, he served in the southern Ural Mountains. He returned to Byelorussia in Mar 1949. In 1960, he was appointed the Inspector General of the Defence Ministry, which was largely a ceremonial post without much responsibility. In 1961, he became the State Committee Chairman for War Veterans. He was named Hero of the Soviet Union a second time in 1965.   He passed away in Moscow, Russia on 31-03-1970, age 75 and is buried next to Josef Stalin along the Kremlin Wall in Moscow, next to Marshal Konstantin Rokossovski.

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