Kharkiv under the Nazi Occupation

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Kharkiv as many other cities in the western part in the USSR was occupied by the Nazi army in the WWII. It was a big industrial and populated city in the Soviet Ukraine, and so it was very important for German army to have it as soon as possible.

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The German troops entered the city on 25 October, 1941, and the Red army tried to regain it several times. Kharkiv remained under the occupation for a year and a four months, and at last it was liberated in February 1943, though, not for long. It was taken by the enemy soon and the Soviet army set it free only in August 23, 1943. This photos show how was the live under Nazi in a city, which for some time used to be the capital of Ukraine.


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Photo credits – all photos

31 thoughts on “Kharkiv under the Nazi Occupation”

    • Wow — calling someone out for geographic ignorance when (1) the site is called Englishrussia, not EnglishRussiaUkraineXistan, and (2) he/she doesn’t realize that “Americans” covers an entire hemisphere, and compounding it with some nice name-calling! Way to go, eh?

      • Dear Mr. Magellan,

        “the site is called Englishrussia, not EnglishRussiaUkraineXistan”
        Figuring at that time it was Soviet Ukraine (Which it says in the topic) and Russia was under the Soviet Union at the same time I think it’s relevant on a site called EnglishRussia. He was specifically calling them as Drunk Russians which they are Ukrainians!

        “, and (2) he/she doesn’t realize that “Americans” covers an entire hemisphere and compounding it with some nice name-calling! Way to go, eh”

        What? Lost me there! When he generalised Russians as being Drunks it’s not name calling I suppose? I was answering his stereotype of referring to Russians as Drunks with another common stereotype of Americans (which is the General term referring to people from the States and not Canada, South America, etc..).

        Grasping at straws are we?

        • I must apologize for my poor grammar. I live in Estonia and nobody in the developed world speaks my pointless language 🙁

      • I am American and I am VERY into geography. Here is a little lesson:

        There are 2 continents in the western hemisphere: “NORTH AMERICA” and “SOUTH AMERICA”. There is no continent called “AMERICA”.

        There are 23 countries on the continent of North America which includes the southern region that is commonly refered to as “CENTRAL AMERICA”.

        In practise, residents of 3 coutries; Canada, Mexico and The United States of America are called “NORTH AMERICANS”. Residents of the other 20 countries (and the southern parts of Mexico) are called “CENTRAL AMERICANS”.

        Residents of the country “The United States of America” are called “AMERICANS”. Mexicans and Canadians both call us “AMERICANS” and to my knowledge neither group wishes to be called “AMERICAN”. Notice that Vorjay stated that he was Canadian and North American. I can tell by his comment that he would not like you to confuse him with being “American”.

        I am both a “North American” and an “American”.

  1. Those monolithic government buildings in the last picture are still there. They are shown three-dimensionally in Google Earth.

    • From what I have read the city was all but destroyed allthough not totally wasted like Stalingrad. Kharkov changed hands 4 times always with heavy fighting involved. It’s estimated that 300 thousand people died due to malnutrition and disease as a result.

      Yet another episode Russia and Slavs have no obligation to be thankful for to the west.

  2. Colourising of these pics in my opinion gives a better perspective of it all.
    Correct me if i am wrong, but didn’t the ukrainians welcome the germans with open arms?

    • The most evil man of the 20th century was Joseph Stalin. Hitler can lern from Stalin, peoiple who live in Russia or Central Europe like me(im from Poland) know that

      • Stalin killed his people by forcing them to dig canals in the gulag to make the Soviet Union a superpower.

        Hitler tried to exterminate the jewish race and conquer the world while thinking his people were the master race of the third reich which would last for 1000 years.

        Perhapse both men are equal!

      • If you are really believe that Stalin killed “only” 10 million during his power then you are clearly defending Stalin or you just don’t have your facts straight.

  3. The first wrecked PzKw III belonged to 3rd Panzerdivision and the photo can be dated to summer 1943.
    Although it is possible the photos were originally taken using color film, I think they were colorized later. IIRC, WWII Agfachrome had noticeable shift towards red, which is not present here.

  4. A response to “CBEH”, who seems surprised to see color photos from this period — Color film long antedates this period, and Kodachrome slides have been available since 1935. The latter were even available in 4×5 sheets, which produced images far better than available from most modern cameras. I can’t guess on the basis of these images what sort of film was used (American? German? Russian?), but the existence of quality color images from WWII does not surprise me.

    And a response to the various bigots who comment on these pages — illuminates a large and vibrant country which is not much known in Western Europe and the Americas. I admire the ingenuity, the engineering skill, the spirit of the people shown. I sympathize with them in their hardships. Use these images as an opportunity to witness our common humanity, you gain nothing by being horrible to each other.

  5. A note to CZenda — if color negatives or slides were passed through a decent scanner, the resulting images could have been color corrected at the same time. (Digital ROC does wonders in these cases).

    I think these were true color photos. They look real to me, and I also note that the red in the nazi flags is very subdued. I think somebody coloring by hand would have been tempted to make them lurid.

  6. I like the willcome sign on the corner and the Shrine in the Window with adolfs picture. To bad I can’t read the Ucranien signs, but I bet that the are propagada about the real enemy, the Jew. Adolf came as the liberator to Charkow. People up to this day have it all wrong about Adolf. A little research would doo the commentators good. Looking at the pictures I can tell that the people where glad that the Germans arrived. The soldiers are not even armed, this could only mean, that they did not have to be afaid. Live was better under the Germans and live got back to normal in no time flat.

  7. shows pictures of the Nazi occupation of the old capital of Ukraine under this website maybe show Moscow under occupation under a Polish website to make it fair


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