Παρασκευή, 17 Ιουνίου 2016

2000: T-34 With German Markings Pulled From Bog After 60 years!


 
 


This Russian-built T34 tank was captured by the Germans and marked and used as their own. This one was either stuck during battle or ditched during the German retreat to keep it from falling back into Russian hands.
In the eastern part of Estonia, on the narrow 50km wide Narva front, fierce battles were fought from February to September of 1944. It is estimated that over 100,000 men were killed and over 300,000 were wounded in this fighting. After this tank was used by the Germans it is believed that they drove it into the lake on purpose to prevent it from being taken and used by the advancing Red Army.
The tank was in the lake at a depth of 12 meters with 6 meters of peat and silt above it. Over a two week period, divers from the local diving club washed away silt above the tank. After it was pulled from the bog and on dry land again the ammunition, 116 pieces in total, was removed from the tank and it was taken to the war museum in the nearby village of Gorodenko. There it was possible to start the diesel engine without installing any spare parts!

As of 2007 the restoration has been completed and the tank is now on display.
The recovery video of this tank is truly amazing, you will see both the surprise and the joy on the faces when the tank reemerges above the water for the first time in over 60 years!

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