Pavel I. Batov

Pavel I. Batov (1897 – 1985) was born into a peasant family in the village of Filisovo in the Rybinsk region of the Yaroslavl province. At the age of 18 he became a scout for the 3rd Infantry Regiment of the Life Guards. He joined the Red Army in 1918 and attended the Vystrel Officers' School in 1926, where many future commanders were also being taught, such as Vasilevsky, Christyakov and Katukov. He became a regimental commander in 1933 and fought with the 12th International Brigade during the Spanish Civil War, earning the Orders of Lenin and Red Banner. In early 1938 he was appointed commander of the 3rd Rifle Corps, which took part in the occupation of eastern Poland and the Russo-Finnish War (where he earned another Order of Lenin). In June 1940, he was transferred to command the 9th Separate Rifle Corps stationed in the Crimea and in August became Assistant Commander of the Southern Front's 51st Army. He attempted to defend the Crimea from Army Group South but was forced to evacuate his forces and was given command of the 3rd Army in the Bryansk Front but quickly became Deputy Front Commander. Rokossovsky appreciated that Batov was wasted on staff duties and recommended that he be given an army command. He was appointed to command the 4th Tank Army in the latter stages of the battle for Stalingrad that because of its losses, was converted to a rifle army and renamed the 65th Army. Batov would command this formation until the end of the war. After the Second World War, he commanded the 7th Mechanised Army in Poland and then the 11th Army in the Baltic Military District, followed by the post of First Deputy Commander of the Group of Soviet Forces, Germany. After attending the Voroshilov General Staff Academy, he was appointed as an army commander in the Byelorussian Military District in 1951. He subsequently commanded the Carpathian and Baltic Military Districts (1955 – 59), as well as the Southern Group of Forces in Hungary (1961 – 63) before being appointed as Deputy Chief of Staff of the Soviet Army and Chief of Staff of the Warsaw Pact (1963 – 65). He entered semi-retirement in 1965, wrote his memoirs and various treaties on military theory, dying in April 1985.

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How to cite this article: Antill, P. (27 August 2006), Pavel I. Batov, 27 April 1296, http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/people_batov.html

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