|Great Siberian Ice March|
|Part of Russian Civil War|
Retreat of the White Army (Nov. 1919 - March 1920).
|Commanders and leaders|
The Great Siberian Ice march (Russian: Великий Сибирский Ледяной поход, Velikiy Sibirskiy Ledyanoy pokhod) was the name given to the 2000-kilometer winter retreat of Admiral Kolchak's Siberian Army from Omsk to Chita, in the course of the Russian Civil War between 14 November 1919 and March 1920.
Russian is an East Slavic language, which is official in the Russian Federation, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, as well as being widely used throughout Eastern Europe, the Baltic states, the Caucasus and Central Asia. It was the de facto language of the Soviet Union until its dissolution on 25 December 1991. Although, nowadays, nearly three decades after the breakup of the Soviet Union, Russian is used in official capacity or in public life in all the post-Soviet nation-states, as well as in Israel and Mongolia, the rise of state-specific varieties of this language tends to be strongly denied in Russia, in line with the Russian World ideology.
The Siberian Army was an anti-Bolshevik army during the Russian Civil War, which fought from June 1918 – July 1919 in Siberia – Ural Region.
Omsk is a city and the administrative center of Omsk Oblast, Russia, located in southwestern Siberia 2,236 kilometers (1,389 mi) from Moscow. With a population of 1,154,116, it is Russia's second-largest city east of the Ural Mountains after Novosibirsk, and seventh by size nationally. Omsk acts as an essential transport node, serving as a train station for Trans-Siberian Railway and as a staging post for the Irtysh River.
General Vladimir Kappel, who was appointed to this position in mid-December 1919, led the retreat. After his death from pneumonia on 26 January 1920, General Sergei Wojciechowski took command of the troops. Admiral Kolchak travelled ahead by train to Irkutsk but was halted by Czechoslovak troops in December and handed over to Left SR troops in Irkutsk on 14 January, which executed him on 7 February 1920.
Vladimir Oskarovich Kappel was a White Russian military leader.
Sergei Wojciechowski was a Colonel of the Russian Army, Major-General in the White movement, and Czechoslovak Army general. Russian and Czechoslovakian military commander, Major-General and one of the leaders of the White movement in Siberia. Participant of the Great Siberian Ice March.
In the summer of 1919, the Red Army had gained a great victory against Kolchak's Army. The White forces re-established a line along the Tobol and the Ishim rivers to temporarily halt the Red Army, which was faced by an Advance on Moscow from the South by Anton Denikin's White Army. by the autumn, Denikin had been defeated and the Red Army was able to direct reinforcements back to the Eastern Front. The Reds broke through on the Tobol River in mid-October and by November the White forces were falling back towards Omsk in a disorganised mass. Omsk was conquered by the Reds on 14 November 1919.
The Counteroffensive of Eastern Front was an episode of the Russian Civil War.
Tobol is a river and the main tributary of the Irtysh. Its length is 1,660 km (1,030 mi), and the area of its drainage basin is 395,000 km2 (153,000 sq mi).
The Advance on Moscow was a military campaign of the White Armed Forces of South Russia (AFSR), launched against the RSFSR in July 1919 during the Russian Civil War. The goal of the campaign was the capture of Moscow, which, according to the chief of the White Army Anton Denikin, would play a decisive role in the outcome of the Civil War and bring the Whites closer to the final victory. After initial successes, in which the city of Oryol (Orel) at only 360 km from Moscow was taken, Denikin's overextended Army was decisively defeated in a series of battles in October and November 1919.
The retreat began after the heavy defeats of the White Army in the Omsk operation and in the Novonikolaevsk Operation in November–December 1919. The army, led by General Kappel, retreated along the Trans-Siberian Railway, using the available trains to transport the wounded. They were followed on their heels by the 5th Red Army under the command of Genrich Eiche.
The 5th Army was a field army of the Red Army during the Russian Civil War. The 5th Army was formed four times. The first formation was between the beginning of March 1918 and April as a reaction to the Austro-German occupation of Ukraine. The second formation was created between April 1918 and 23 June 1918 to defend Tsaritsyn, the third formation between August 16, 1918 and September 6, 1922, as a part of the Eastern Front and the fourth formation between November 16, 1922 and June 1924 in the Far East.
Henrich Christoforovich Eiche — served in World War I as an officer in the Russian Imperial Army, and in 1917 was elected Chairman of the Military Revolutionary Committee of his regiment. He was a Soviet military commander, military historian, and held leading civil posts.
The White retreat was complicated by numerous insurgencies in the cities where they had to pass and attacks by partisan detachments, and was further aggravated by the fierce Siberian frost. After the series of defeats, the White troops were in a demoralized state, centralized supply was paralyzed, replenishment not received, and the discipline dropped dramatically.
In these circumstances, the appointment as commander of the Army of General Kappel, who enjoyed unlimited trust and prestige amongst Kolchak's troops, was the first step to avoid the disintegration of the entire Kolchak army. Only the 2nd Army came under his command, as communication with the 1st and 3rd armies had been lost. Control of the railway was in the hands of the Czechoslovak Legion, as a result of which parts of General Kappel's Army were deprived of the opportunity to use the railway. They were also harassed by partisan troops under command of Alexander Kravchenko and Peter Efimovich Schetinkin.
The Czechoslovak Legion were volunteer armed forces composed predominantly of Czechs with a small number of Slovaks fighting together with the Entente powers during World War I. Their goal was to win the support of the Allied Powers for the independence of Bohemia and Moravia from the Austrian Empire and of Slovak territories from the Kingdom of Hungary, which were then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. With the help of émigré intellectuals and politicians such as the Czech Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk and the Slovak Milan Rastislav Štefánik, they grew into a force of over 100,000 strong.
Alexander Diomidovich Kravchenko was a Russian revolutionary, agronomist and partisan who fought against Admiral Kolchak's White forces in Siberia in 1919 during the Russian Civil War.
The pursuing Red 5th Army took Tomsk on 20 December 1919 and Krasnoyarsk on 7 January 1920,
Tomsk is a city and the administrative center of Tomsk Oblast in Russia, located on the Tom River. The city's population was 524,669 (2010 Census); 487,838 (2002 Census); 501,963 (1989 Census).
Krasnoyarsk is a city and the administrative center of Krasnoyarsk Krai, Russia, located on the Yenisei River. It is the third-largest city in Siberia after Novosibirsk and Omsk, with a population of 1,035,528 as of the 2010 Census. Krasnoyarsk is an important junction of the Trans-Siberian Railway and one of Russia's largest producers of aluminium.
Vladimir Kappel's 2nd Army came to a halt on the shore of Lake Baikal near Irkutsk in January 1920. With the Red Army in hot pursuit, the White 2nd Army (the Kappelevtsy), had to escape eastwards to Chita across the frozen Lake Baikal in sub-zero temperatures. About 30,000 White Army soldiers, their families and all their possessions as well as the Tsar's gold, made their way across the lake to Transbaikalia.
The bloodiest campaign battles occurred at the villages of Yakovlevka, Birulka, and Gruznovskaya, as well as the city of Barguzin.
As the Arctic winds blew unobstructed across the lake, many in the army and their families froze to death. Their bodies remained frozen on the lake in a kind of tableau throughout the winter of 1919–20. With the advent of spring, the frozen corpses and all their possessions disappeared in 5,000 feet of water. Kappel himself was struck by frostbite and pneumonia while leading his survivors along a frozen river in temperatures of -40 °C (-40 °F); he died on 26 January.
The survivors of the March found a safe haven in Chita, the capital of Eastern Okraina, a territory under control of Kolchak's successor Grigory Mikhaylovich Semyonov, who was supported by a significant Japanese military presence.
The Central Committee of the Russian Communist Party issued an order not to advance any further beyond Irkutsk, to avoid a military conflict with Japan, at a moment when the main threat for the young Soviet State was in Europe (Poland).
The Russian Civil War was a multi-party war in the former Russian Empire immediately after the two Russian Revolutions of 1917, as many factions vied to determine Russia's political future. The two largest combatant groups were the Red Army, fighting for the Bolshevik form of socialism led by Vladimir Lenin, and the loosely allied forces known as the White Army, which included diverse interests favoring political monarchism, economic capitalism and alternative forms of socialism, each with democratic and antidemocratic variants. In addition, rival militant socialists and nonideological Green armies fought against both the Bolsheviks and the Whites. Eight foreign nations intervened against the Red Army, notably the former Allied military forces from the World War and the pro-German armies. The Red Army eventually defeated the White Armed Forces of South Russia in Ukraine and the army led by Admiral Aleksandr Kolchak to the east in Siberia in 1919. The remains of the White forces commanded by Pyotr Nikolayevich Wrangel were beaten in Crimea and evacuated in late 1920. Lesser battles of the war continued on the periphery for two more years, and minor skirmishes with the remnants of the White forces in the Far East continued well into 1923. The war ended in 1923 in the sense that Bolshevik communist control of the newly formed Soviet Union was now assured, although armed national resistance in Central Asia was not completely crushed until 1934. There were an estimated 7,000,000–12,000,000 casualties during the war, mostly civilians. The Russian Civil War has been described by some as the greatest national catastrophe that Europe had yet seen.
The White movement and its military arm the White Army, also known as the White Guard, the White Guardsmen or simply the Whites, was a loose confederation of anti-communist forces that fought the Communist Bolsheviks, also known as the Reds, in the Russian Civil War (1917–1922/1923) and to a lesser extent continued operating as militarized associations insurrectionists both outside and within Russian borders in Siberia until roughly World War II (1939–1945).
Grigory Mikhaylovich Semyonov, or Semenov, was a Japanese-supported leader of the White movement in Transbaikal and beyond from December 1917 to November 1920, Lieutenant General and Ataman of Baikal Cossacks (1919).
Polish 5th Siberian Rifle Division was a Polish military unit formed in 1919 in Russia during World War I. The division fought during the Polish-Bolshevik War, but as it was attached to the White Russian formations, it is considered to have fought more in the Russian Civil War. Its tradition was continued in the Polish Army as the 30th Infantry Division.
The Siberian Intervention or Siberian Expedition of 1918–1922 was the dispatch of troops of the Entente powers to the Russian Maritime Provinces as part of a larger effort by the western powers and Japan and China to support White Russian forces against Soviet Russia and its allies during the Russian Civil War. The Imperial Japanese Army continued to occupy Siberia even after other Allied forces withdrew in 1920.
Anatoly Nikolayevich Pepelyayev was a White Russian general who led the Siberian armies of Admiral Kolchak during the Russian Civil War. His elder brother Viktor Pepelyayev served as Prime Minister in Kolchak's government.
The White movement in Transbaikal was a period of the confrontation between the Soviets and the Whites over dominance in Transbaikal from December 1917 to November 1920.
Borys Rostislavovich Khreschatytsky was a general of the Russian Empire. He commanded the Ukrainian troops in the Far East (1918–1924).
The Admiral is a 2008 biopic about Alexander Kolchak, a vice-admiral in the Imperial Russian Navy and leader of the anti-communist White Movement during the Russian Civil War. The film also depicts the love triangle between the Admiral, his wife, and the poet Anna Timiryova.
Biryulka is a rural locality in Kachugsky District of Irkutsk Oblast, Russia, located on the Lena River near its headwaters northwest of Lake Baikal.
The White Terror in Russia refers to the organized violence and mass killings carried out by the White Army during the Russian Civil War (1917–23). It began after the Bolsheviks seized power in November 1917, and continued until the defeat of the White Army at the hands of the Red Army. The White Army fought the Red Army for power, which engaged in its own Red Terror. According to some Russian historians, the White Terror was a series of premeditated actions directed by their leaders, although this view is contested by others. Estimates for those killed in the White Terror vary, from between 20,000 and 100,000 people as well as much higher estimates of 300,000 deaths.
The Revolt of the Czechoslovak Legion was the armed actions of the Czechoslovak Legions in the Russian Civil War against Bolshevik authorities during May – August, 1918, in Volga, Siberia and Ural regions. This event made possible the anti-Bolshevik activity of the Committee of Members of the Constituent Assembly.
Alexander Vasilyevich Kolchak KB was an Imperial Russian admiral, military leader and polar explorer who served in the Imperial Russian Navy, who fought in the Russo-Japanese War and the First World War. During the Russian Civil War, he established an anti-communist government in Siberia—later the Provisional All-Russian Government—and was recognised as the "Supreme Leader and Commander-in-Chief of All Russian Land and Sea Forces" by the other leaders of the White movement from 1918 to 1920. His government was based in Omsk, in southwestern Siberia.
The 1st Middle Siberian Corps was one of the main formations of the Siberian Army during the Russian Civil War. It was created on June 12, 1918, under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Anatoly Pepelyayev.
Sergey Afanasyevich Taskin was a Russian political figure of the first quarter of the 20th century, a constitutional democrat. Member of the White movement. Transbaikalian Cossack.
The Starving March was the retreat of the Orenburg Independent Army under command of generals Alexander Dutov and Andrei Bakic in the winter of 1919–1920 from the area around Kokchetav over Sergiopol, through Kazakhstan towards Semirechye on the Kazakh-Chinese border.
The Ural Separate Army was a military formation of the White Army during the Russian Civil War, which operated in the Volga region and the Southern Urals and was formed on December 28, 1918 from units of the Ural Cossack Army and other military units within the Urals Region.