Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Women Snipers of the Soviet Union * 70

Generally,  most countries armies have snipers who are men. The US army, The German army and the Imperial army of Japan had only men as snipers. Snipers, as we all know, are long range riflemen who pick up high-value military targets of the enemy from a distance, using a rifle with a telescope.
 However, there is an exception to the rule of only men as snipers. The credit for this goes to the Soviet Army which during the Second World War trained women as sharpshooters and snipers. Many of these women covered themselves with glory and one can only muse on the awesome determination and iron will of these women.

Coming down to figures 800,000 women served in the Russian army during World War II. Out of these nearly 200,000 were decorated and 89 of them received the highest military honor  Hero of the Soviet Union. With so many women on the front the Soviet Officer, class selected some of the best as snipers. They were duly trained  and  did excellent service on the front as they stalked the high-value targets and shot them dead.
The Russian army employed women snipers extensively  and many of them made a name  as snipers. Notables  is Nina Alexeyevna Lobkovskaya and the Ukrainian Lyudmila Pavichenko. The latter is credited with over 300 kills. Lyudmila became  somewhat of a celebrity and on a visit to the USA was received by President Roosevelt.

 Women snipers of the Russian army  served a specific purpose and were adept at handling the heavy rifle with telescopic sight.   The Germans were surprised that Russian women were sharp shooters as no German woman was ever conscripted as a soldier or a sniper.

Many Russian army women teamed up with men snipers and that did lead to sex, but that is accepted in war time as a known hazard. Russsian army women snipers have a carved a page for themselves in the military history of the world.