Daily LIFT #290
The Smolensk Hero City Monument in Moscow -- Daily LIFT #290
On August 7th, 1943, the Red Army's West Front launched an offensive against the Nazi forces centered around the city of Smolensk. This offensive came in the wake of the Red Army's critical victories at Stalingrad and Kursk that turned the tide in the east against the fascist invaders.
Early in the war, Soviet forces in Smolensk played a critical role in slowing down the German drive on Moscow -- a role that many historians feel directly contributed to them being stopped at the city's gates in December, 1941.
After several weeks of intense fighting, on September 25, 1943, the Red Army liberated Smolensk. In 1985 Smolensk was added to the list of twelve "Hero Cities of the Soviet Union" which include Leningrad and Sevastopol.