The Second World War became one of the largest armed conflicts in the history of mankind, in which millions of soldiers and hundreds of thousands of pieces of equipment, including tens of thousands of tanks, took part. However, like any other war, the Second World War ended, and it was necessary to do something with a huge amount of various weapons and weapons that remained after it. Let's find out what fate befell Soviet tanks during the war.
The Second World War became a clash between the military machines of the leading countries, their ideologies, intelligence agencies and even social structures. But none of this really matters as much as the collision of economies. And the Soviet economy was able to prove its superiority over the united European economy. Of course, you can remember Lend-Lease, but not everyone knows that the bulk of the deliveries went after the "Big Break" in 1943. There was a reason for this - the Americans did not want to support the country, which, in their opinion, was about to lose, because then all the transferred resources and values would fall (with a high degree of probability) into the hands of the Nazis. So in the end, the Soviet economy turned out to be more efficient, despite all the difficulties it faced in 1941.
Interesting fact: In 1945, the German colonel (later General) Eike Middeldorf, commissioned by American intelligence, wrote a description of the Soviet troops in order to get an idea of the potential enemy of the United States in the event of World War III. In his report, Middeldorf paid special attention to the Soviet industry, pointing out that until the factories of the USSR are destroyed, it will be very difficult to defeat the country in a protracted war. In particular, the colonel believed that one of the reasons for Germany's defeat in the war was the failure of the Barbarossa plan, within the framework of which the Germans failed to quickly capture or destroy the leading enterprises of the Soviet Union.
And so, at the time of 1945, the Red Army included about 60 thousand tanks of various models, including a number of vehicles from the Allied countries. There were more than 35 thousand T-34 tanks alone in the army. What happened to all this technology after the war ended? In fact, large-scale disarmament did not take place. This is because already in 1945, the Second World War smoothly spilled over into the Cold War.
By the "order" of Winston Churchill, back in 1945, the British headquarters developed Operation Unthinkable, within which it was proposed to strike at the USSR with the help of new American nuclear weapons, and then carry out an offensive deep into Soviet territory with British forces, American, as well as the restored German army (from the number of German prisoners of war held by the allies). However, the presence of the Soviet group of forces in Western Europe made the start of the Third World War impossible. Even with the success of the first atomic bombings, within the first month of the conflict, the Allies would have lost all airports from which they could bomb the European part of the Soviet Union. In addition, there was also a group of Soviet troops in the Far East that had just destroyed the remnants of the Japanese army, violating neutrality. Thus, the Second World War spilled over thanks to (including) Soviet tanks in Europe not into the Third World War, but into the cold one.
Interesting fact: Japan's surrender was not signed because of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The dropping of nuclear bombs by the Americans was nothing more than a political declaration and demonstration of a new type of weapon. It was intended primarily for the USSR. The surrender of Japan was primarily due to the destruction of the Kwantung Army, which was stationed in Manchuria. The Soviet-Japanese War began in August 1945 and ended in September. Hiroshima and Nagasaki were bombed on 9 August. Japan surrendered on September 2, only after losing its last troops. Most of the industrial centers of the Land of the Rising Sun were destroyed by American strategic aviation by the spring of 1945 without any nuclear weapons.
So, in 1945, Soviet tanks did not become unnecessary at all, but remained in the active forces. A significant part of the armored vehicles was in Western Europe, as well as in the Far East. At the same time, the equipment that fell into disrepair was disposed of throughout the Second World War. Unsuitable for war, but still capable of driving, tanks in 1945 were partially equipped with agricultural machinery and sent to collective farms. A significant part of the cars was sent to the rear for conservation.
In subsequent years, new types of tanks were created in the USSR, which gradually replaced obsolete vehicles. In this case, the fate of the tanks was also very different. Unsuitable for repair cars were sent for recycling. Others went on conservation and were later "donated" to the socialist countries or the allies of the USSR in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Some of the mothballed tanks were also scrapped when they finally lost their relevance. Some vehicles were deprived of weapons and turrets, turning into tractors.
Continuing the topic, read about why are there Japanese soldiers on the caps World War II, such long "ears".