In the Sea of Japan, in the Peter the Great Bay, about one kilometer from Vladivostok, lies the Russky Island, also known as Kazakevich Island. A piece of land with an area of 97 square kilometers is notable for the fact that there is a coastal fortification system - the Voroshilov battery, which in the Soviet Union had only one analogue - the coastal battery in the city of Sevastopol. It's time to learn more about this fortification.
Vladivostok is an extremely important point for Russia. Beginning in 1897, it was the only Pacific port with rail links to the rest of the country. It is for this reason that the defense of Vladivostok has always been extremely important. They began to strengthen Vladivostok during the time of tsarist Russia and before the outbreak of the First World War. The fortification system then consisted of 16 forts, 18 separate bastions and 50 coastal batteries. During the years of the revolution and civil war, the coastal fortification system fell into decay. At the same time, relations with Japan in the new Soviet regime were as tense as in the tsarist. In 1929, the situation once again escalated, as a result of which a decision was made to urgently restore the fortification system.
In the 1930s, the Soviet Union was actively building fortifications throughout the Far Eastern region. The reason for this was the Japanese aggression against China and Korea. The basis of protection from the sea was also formed by coastal batteries, which relied primarily on the still pre-revolutionary heavy guns of 180 mm caliber. However, since the First World War, ships and artillery systems have made a big step forward, and therefore the Soviet command wisely decided to increase the firepower of coastal batteries, adding new 305 mm caliber to the old 180-mm cannons. The first tower battery of the new design appeared on the Russky Island.
The towers for the battery were borrowed from the battleship Mikhail Frunze (Poltava), which had been afloat since 1914 and was expelled from the fleet in 1919 due to a fire on board. Two middle towers were removed from the ship at once. Both were sent to Vladivostok. It was decided to place batteries just to the west of Novik Bay, and they did it so cleverly that the guns did not dominate the area. From the sea it was impossible to determine exactly where the fire was coming from. In addition, the battery on the island was equipped with a decoy system in case of shelling. Around the towers, special charges were laid, the detonation of which could be carried out from the command post of the battery. Such explosions did not harm the battery itself, but they simulated the detonation of the ammunition rack, which made the enemy think that he had already destroyed the fortification system with a successful shot.
The new battery received the index number 981. The construction of the complex was completed in 1934. By 1941, the last work on the site was completed - the construction of four observation posts. At the same time, the battery did not become either the only one or the largest of those that guarded Vladivostok. In the 1930s, several more objects were created: three batteries of 356 mm caliber and three more batteries of 305 mm caliber. The garrison of each consisted of 300-400 people, of which 75 were the calculation of one battery. Each tower battery was dug into the ground and had thick reinforced concrete walls up to 4 meters. The battery roof was 2.8 meters thick. Such a layer of concrete made it possible to withstand any Japanese calibers of the time.
In addition to the tower itself, there was a crew quarters underground, a power station, a cellar for powder caps and an ammunition depot. The main command post was at a distance of 1-1.5 km from the batteries. As for the Russky Island, it was hidden in Mount Vyatlin. Each tower had 600 rounds of ammunition. The most serious - 470-kilogram guns - could throw at a distance of up to 23 km.
The Voroshilov battery did not have to fight. The Japanese operation of 1938 on Lake Khasan and 1939 on the Khalkhin-Gol River failed. It did not work to cut off Primorye from the rest of the USSR until the beginning of World War II. And any landing operation directly next to Vladivostok, due to the system of fortifications and difficult terrain, even seemed to the Japanese to be outright suicide.
Continuing the topic, read about who is Marshal Vauban: a man for whom there were no impregnable fortresses.