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Why Stalin pardoned General Lukin, who collaborated with the Germans
Why Stalin pardoned General Lukin, who collaborated with the Germans
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During the reign of Joseph Stalin, and for minor sins, heads from high-ranking military officials could fly, not to mention being in German captivity. Captivity was often automatically considered a betrayal, for which they were punished as a serious crime, sent to be shot or for many years in prison. The Soviet military leader, Lieutenant General Mikhail Lukin spent almost four years in captivity, but on Stalin's personal order, no investigation was carried out against him - the case was limited to verification, without further prosecution.

How Lukin Mikhail Fedorovich rose to the rank of general

The military commandant of Moscow M.F. Lukin, the commander of the troops of the Moscow Military District I.P. Belov, the chairman of the Moscow City Council N.A. 1935 year

Mikhail Fedorovich Lukin was from a family of ordinary peasants, about whom detailed reliable information has not even survived. It is only known that their son - the future Soviet general - was born in the village of Polukhtino, Tver province on November 6 (18), 1892 and graduated from four classes of primary school. In the fall of 1913, after being drafted into the tsarist army, the young man began military service as a gunner. During the First World War, he, as a proven fighter, was sent to study at the school of warrant officers. Already in the position of a junior officer, Lukin, once again hitting the front line, received three military orders - saints: Anna, Stanislav 3rd class. and Vladimir 4th Art. After demobilization in November 1917, Mikhail, having worked for a short time as a railway instructor in the capital, joined the ranks of the Red Army.

In 1918, in the direction of the leadership, he underwent intelligence courses, after which he took an active part in the flaring up Civil War. Member of the Communist Party since the end of the summer of 1919, fought on the fronts of the Caucasian, southeastern and southern directions. At the end of the winter of 1920, Lukin was wounded: having recovered, he continued to fight, commanding a brigade of the 11th Infantry Division by the end of 1920. During this period, two Orders of the Red Banner were awarded.

By the summer of 1937, Mikhail managed to take courses organized by the Military Academy of the Red Army. Frunze to improve the higher command personnel, and receive an appointment to the post of head in one of the departments of the Main Directorate of the Red Army. In April 1935, Lukin was chosen to act as the military commandant of Moscow. In the midst of mass repressions, he was removed from office and, after a severe reprimand, was sent to serve as deputy chief of staff of the Siberian Military District in Novosibirsk. The next appointment of Mikhail Fedorovich happened in the summer of 1940, when he was entrusted with the command of the 16th Army of the Siberian Military District.

How Lukin was captured and how he managed to get out of hell and pass the SMERSH check

Lukin was captured in 1941

The general, along with the remnants of the command staff, was captured on October 15, 1941 during the German encirclement, having been unconscious for almost two days before. He was taken to a prisoner of war camp in serious condition due to a serious wound in the leg and arm, which on the 23rd had to be amputated in the field hospital.

After his release at the end of April 1945 by the American allies, Lukin underwent a series of checks by the NKVD. During repeated interrogations, it turned out that, having been captured, he gave the Nazis important information about the deployment of troops, and also expressed anti-Soviet opinions about the punitive system in the USSR and the forced collectivization of agriculture. In addition, it became known about the "slanderous" conversations of the military leader, with references to members of the Soviet government and leaders of the country's Communist Party.

Major General Ponedelin, freed together with Lukin, was shot in 1950 only for passing information on the location of the Red Army units to the Germans - without any discrediting talk to the USSR. Nevertheless, nothing of the kind happened in the case of Lukin. Colonel-General Abakumov, who at that time was Beria's deputy, wrote to Stalin: “With regard to Lieutenant-General MF Lukin, there is material about his anti-Soviet activities. But, taking into account that after being wounded, he turned into a cripple, during the check it was not possible to obtain any supporting information. Therefore, I consider it permissible to release General Lukin, ensuring that he is under surveillance."

What did the captive Lukin talk about with Vlasov?

Vlasov called on Lukin to join the ROA, but the general refused

In 1970, a book was published in Germany with the memoirs of Wilfried Strick-Strickfeldt, a white émigré who served as a captain in Nazi units during World War II. In it, a former citizen of the Russian Empire mentioned the meetings and conversations between General Vlasov and the captive Lukin. According to Shtrik-Shtrikfeldt, Vlasov repeatedly offered the Soviet army commander to join the organizers of the Russian Liberation Army (ROA), but invariably received a refusal from the army commander.

At the same time, according to the book, the captive general said that he did not believe in the desire of the Germans to really liberate the Russian people, and not to use it for the good of Germany. As Lukin stated, guarantees are needed that the Nazis will allow the creation of a national Russian government and abandon the policy of destroying the country. By publishing such statements of a major military leader, the author made it clear that Lukin, like the Germans, believed that the communist government enslaved the Russian people. Mikhail Fedorovich himself could not agree or deny the information - the book was not published earlier than in the year of his death.

Why Lukin was considered harmless in the USSR, and for what reason Stalin refused to execute the general

Stalin considered Lukin not a dangerous, "devoted person."

Perhaps about the anti-Soviet statements of the lieutenant general, Stalin was aware long before his release. However, one should not assume that people were destroyed only for the words discrediting the authorities, spoken, moreover, in an extreme situation. Most likely, it was important for the leader to find out if Lukin was connected with any conspirators among the military ranks. Such information was not found, therefore, on the report of Abakumov, a Stalinist resolution appeared on the restoration of Lukin's military rank, with a note: "Do not infringe on the service … A devoted person …".

After which Mikhail Fedorovich was not only released, but also offered a teaching position at military courses in Moscow. Lukin refused. In the future, no repressions were carried out against the general: the only thing was that after losing his party card in captivity, he was able to recover in the party only in 1956.

After Stalin's death, the party elite of the USSR gradually began to corrupt. Blat, bribery and other negative aspects of the Soviet system arose. With this in the USSR they tried to fight, reaching the representatives of the upper elite.

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