AK-47: The Weapon that Changed the Face of War by Larry Kahaner
By Larry Kahaner
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Additional resources for AK-47: The Weapon that Changed the Face of War
The European NATO nations believed that the day of intermediate rounds had come, and their struggle with the United States for a smaller standardized round left the world of reason and entered the realm of nationalism. With the United States being the most powerful nation in the world, and the force that had defeated the Axis powers, the Europeans faced an uphill fight. The large round became the cause célebrè for the Americans and a point upon which they seemed unwilling to yield.
When Kalashnikov and the driver heard the automatic fire they ducked into some bushes, then crawled back to the men they had left behind. When they arrived, they saw German motorcycles with sidecars just disappearing around a turn. The scene was horrifying. Soldiers were lying zigzagged in the truck bed where they had been shot. Others, who had tried to escape, lay in the dirt road. Some of them, seconds from death, screamed in agony as they expired. Kalashnikov vomited at the sight of the mutilated men.
The army with these ingredients was almost guaranteed success. So it was no surprise that blitzkrieg became Germany’s main strategy during its invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941, and soldiers, including Kalashnikov, suffered its brutal effects. Because the two countries were supposedly allies, and had even carved up Poland between themselves several years earlier, the unexpected nature of the attack and its lightning force crushed Soviet ground forces immediately. Through city after city, town after town, superbly trained and highly disciplined German units advanced, quickly annihilating Soviet armies and civilians in their path.