Battle of Riga

Battle of Riga

September 15 – 30 1944

Veterans who participated: Moisei Chernoguz,  Leonid FeldmanDavid FishermanLeonid Sheinker,  Isaak Zarembo

 

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The Liberation of Riga was part of a larger Baltic Offensive launched by the Red Army in late 1944. Building off the success of Operation Bagration in the summer, which cleared German troops out of Belarus, The Red Army continued moving north. A smaller, southward moving force that had just liberated Estonia was also advancing towards Latvia. Soviet forces began bombarding the city on September 17th, and the German retreat began on September 26th. The Red Army had cut off the Baltic states from the rest of Europe by October 10th. The final German retreat from Riga began October 6th, and they had completely exited the city by the 12th, but these troops were unable to return to Germany. Soviet troops entered Riga on October 13th.

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Nazi plane destroyed in Riga

The Soviet troops in the south fought through most of Latvia, culminating in The Battle of Memel from October 5th-22nd 1944. They forced the remaining Axis forces into The Kurland Pocket, cutting them off from the rest of the army, where they continued to fight until the formal end of the war in May 1945. Both the northern and southern marching Soviet forces are credited with liberating Latvia, though only a portion of the soldiers were actually in Riga.

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Celebration after the Liberation of Riga