A. M. Vasilevsky, illustrated biography, C 1991, Planeta Publishing House, Moscow. "Man. Events. Times" series photo album, Russian text; hard-covered with dust jacket, large 9" by 12" format, 200 pages.
The book is in excellent condition. The dust jacket has mild wear and a single small tear, but it is free of soiling or stains. Stamped Ex Libris "Historical Research LLC 1996" to the front endpaper. The internal pages are perfectly clean and crisp, without noticeable age toning or foxing. The book came from a tobacco-free home and has none of the common mildew smell.
The book contains biography of one of the most prominent Soviet military leaders. A son of a poor village priest, Aleksandr Vasilevsky enlisted in the army as a volunteer during WW1 and after graduating from the prestigious Alekseevskoe Military School in Moscow, was commissioned officer in the Imperial Army. Unlike most other Russian officers, he joined the Bolsheviks in 1917, trained the Red troops early during the Civil War, and starting from 1919 took part in the fighting as a regiment commander. In pre-WW2 years, Vasilevsky rose to prominence in the Soviet military while escaping the fate of many other high-ranking commanders eliminated in Stalin's purges.
After the German invasion of the Soviet Union, Vasilevsky served as Red Army Deputy Chief of Staff and was one of the key organizers of the defense of Moscow. In 1942, he replaced the ailing Marshal Shaposhnikov as Chief of General Staff and in this capacity, was involved in planning all major operations such as the counteroffensives in the Battles of Stalingrad and Kursk, 1943-44 offensives in southern Ukraine, and liberation of Crimea. In the last year of the war, he made a big contribution in preparing the Operation Bagration - which effectively destroyed the German Army Group Center - as well as subsequent offensives in Belorussia and the Baltics. He took personal command of the 3rd Belorussian Front (army group) in storming Koenigsberg and in August 1945, commanded the 1st Far Eastern Front in the Soviet Blitz against Japan. A Twice Hero of the Soviet Union and recipient of two Orders of Victory, Vasilevsky retained important posts in the Soviet Armed Forces throughout the post-war years practically until his death in 1977.
The book shows large number of quality contemporary photographs not published elsewhere. An outstanding photo reference for the military buff and historian!