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> 67. Military Preparations
dragos
Posted: February 18, 2007 04:17 pm
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by Colonel (r ) Gheorghe Tinca

Beside the constitutional factor and the political one, an important role in the preparations for Romania's joining the United Nations Coalition was played by the military factor. Pointing out this fact, prof. Gamillscheg, the former director of the Institute for Romanian-German Cultural Relations, wrote: "One cannot forget the activity of a restrained group of men which, even being less known by the public opinion, were meanwhile more important in the development of the events at that time; I was referring myself to the Romanian General Headquarters' officials and to the Romanian superior officers who took the principal decisions".

The action made by the Romanian generals and officers in connection with King Mihai I and the members of the principal political parties, coalesced in the National Democratic Bloc was undertaken in the context when they all knew the fact that Marshal Antonescu had the same major task: joining the United Nations, in the most advantageous circumstances for the country. The military action was also determined by another fact: the Romanians understood that the Germans were not capable to assure the restoration of the integrity of their national territory on the Dniester river and to take into account Romanian people's interest. Due to these circumstances, the leaders of the main political parties from the opposition's side tried to direct "the dis-contentments registered in the Army's circles" as a report of the Romanian Intelligence Service noticed in May 1943 - towards a military action, and also towards "the change of the political regime" - as C. I. C. Bratianu recognized in September 1944.

The importance attributed to the military factor by the organizers of the August 23, 1944 act had as a result the fact that the military representatives participated in all numerous meetings which had preceded this event, including the ones that took part at the Royal Palace; they had contacted before some big units and units' commanders. In the same line we may put also the intentions of the representatives of the Royal Palace and of the political parties, members of the N.D.B., to send clandestinely to Moscow, by air, 1-2 officers for the purpose of discussing the military coordination measures with the Soviet Command, in case that the truce was to be concluded, as the officials of Great Britain and U.S.A. had suggested by the end of May 1944.

At the discussions that took place, as an analysis of the ratio of forces and of the German High Command's intentions concerning Romania was made, the final conclusion was that the main strike should have been planned in the Bucharest area and in the Valea Prahovei region. The success of the military operations in these two zones could have assured not only the liquida-tion of a few important groups of German forces within the country, but also the control over the main communication roads the Bucharest-Brasov axis which had a strategic importance for massing together the troops northwards of the Meridional Carpathian Mountains, with the view of starting the operation for the liberation of the north-western part of Romania's territory.

In the same time with the conception of the definite plan of action, the Romanian General Headquarters carried out a few measures that were needful for the settlement of a state of facts favourable for launching the operation, from which we mention: the "Cosma" Operation, that has made possible a precise knowledge of the situation of effectives and of the German troops disposition in the Romanian territory, since July 12, 1944; the extension of the activity in the Romanian training centres and in the military schools, with the view to maintain within the country an important number of forces, which were to enter in the shortest time the fights against German troops; the delaying of the orders that should have sent the recruit units nearby the line of the front; the retaining of the military forces in the capital's area, where the main German Commands were disposed, directly connected with Prahova Valley region, thus assuring, in case of emergency, the freedom of action in the principal political, economical and administrative center of the country; the drawing up of the synteses and bulletins referring to the superiority of forces on the United Nations Coalition's side and to the general development of the military actions in the different theatres of war.


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