The Cold War was to begin only a few years later, and relations between the two countries remain tense to this day.
But a colored photograph from 1945 shows smiling American and Russian troops celebrating the end of the Second World War.
The photo is part of a stunning series that was meticulously collected to bring the conflict back to life.
Photographer Julius Jääskeläinen from Visby, Sweden, spent countless hours researching, restoring, and coloring black and white images from the battle for Europe.
Now he has collected a fascinating collection of war photos that bring history to modern times.
Some serve as a grim reminder of the horrors of war with one showing a man reduced to skin and bones in a concentration camp while another shows children prepare machine guns in Leningrad.
Mr. Jääskeläinen (20) said that by coloring photos & he could close the distance between history and himself.
American and Soviet troops meet in Griebo, Germany, at the end of the war in 1945. A more celebrated meeting of the two armies is Elbe Day on April 25, 1945. That was the day that Soviet and American troops met at the Elbe, near Torgau in Germany, an important step towards the end of the Second World War in Europe. The Soviets, advancing from the East, and the Americans, advancing from the West, met, meaning that the two powers had effectively cut Germany in two. Jääskeläinen said about his process: & # 39; Before actually adding a color, I do as much research as possible, such as which uniforms people wear or which clothing colors were popular in this region. The actual color of course takes the most time & # 39;
Two girls assembling machine guns during the Siege of Leningrad in 1943. The siege was a lengthy military blockade undertaken by the Axis Powers. It started on September 9, 1941, when the last road to the city was cut. The siege was not lifted until January 27, 1944, 872 days after it started. It was one of the longest and most destructive sieges in history, and possibly the most costly victims. 414,148 children were evacuated during the siege. Speaking of the color process, photographer Julius Jääskeläinen said: & It removes a layer of separation between you and the photo. Things seem much more realistic to me when I see it in color and many others have said the same thing, which makes me feel like I'm really doing something of value & # 39;
A German volunteer who enjoys a drink in Kursk, Russia in 1943. Although it is unclear exactly when the photo was taken, the Battle of Kursk between German and Soviet troops on the eastern front near Kursk (280 miles southwest of Moscow) took place in July and August 1943. It was significant because it was the first time in the Second World War, a German strategic offensive was stopped before it could break through enemy defenses. Jääskeläinen said: & I used to see events like the Second World War in a wider circle, but working hundreds of hours with hundreds of photos really gave me a more individual look & # 39;
A man after being released from the Ebensee concentration camp in Austria on 8 May 1945. The camp was established by the SS to build tunnels in 1943 for armament near the town of Ebensee. It held a total of 27,278 male prisoners from 1943. until 1945. Between 8,500 and 11,000 prisoners died in the camp, mostly from hunger or malnutrition. Political prisoners were the most common and prisoners came from many different countries. The photographer added that the transformation of the photos is an exhausting process, whereby even a simple photo takes an hour, while complex images may require several sessions of several days.
Luftwaffe Major Clemens Graf von Schönborn-Wiesentheid in the field. He was killed in a plane crash in Sofia, Bulgaria on August 30, 1944. He was a German Air Force officer in command of Air Command Arad and the 77th Dive Bomber Wing (StG 77) during the Axis-led invasion of Yugoslavia into the war. He planned to attend a meeting of the General Staff when his plane crashed for unknown reasons and he was killed. The photographer said: “I always like to think about the life of the person in the photos that I color. Sometimes they wear their wedding rings, so I know they had a wife and I wonder if they ever returned to their wife or did they leave a widow? They will certainly become more recognizable in this way for me & # 39;
German troops move through a burning village on the eastern front. The Eastern Front was a battlefield between the European Axis Powers and Finland against the Soviet Union, Poland and other Allies. It included Central Europe, Eastern Europe, Northeastern Europe (Baltic States) and Southeastern Europe (Balkans) from 22 June 1941 to 9 May 1945. The battles on the Eastern Front were considered unprecedented in their savagery. The front was also the site of almost all extermination camps, death marches and ghettos. Of the estimated 70-85 million deaths attributed to the Second World War, around 30 million occurred on the Eastern Front. The photographer said: & # 39; I always start by cleaning the image. If you are confronted with such old photos, there is undoubtedly some damage.
Victory Soviet troops on top of the Nazi earthworm basket bunker in Poland. The Regenwurmlager was an extensive underground system of fortifications, built in the 1920s and 1940s near the town of Meseritz, close to the Polish border. The underground system consisted of 50 armored and reinforced concrete wooden houses, more than 20 miles of underground tunnels, 17 freight stations of the metro, a system of dams, drawbridges and waterways
German engineers work at Immola Airfield, Finland, on July 2, 1944. Both before and during World War II, the airport served as the basis for the Finnish Air Force. During the Second World War, German leader Adolf Hitler visited Immola on 4 June 1942 to congratulate C. G. E. Mannerheim, the Marshal of Finland, on his 75th birthday. Finland entered the fight against the USSR during the war with Germany. It depended on food, fuel and armament shipments from Germany. Speaking of the photos that he had to retouch, Jääskeläinen said: & # 39; Sometimes it's just small scratches that can be easily repaired with a few mouse clicks, then there is serious damage that needs to be repaired manually, which can take hours need to tidy up & # 39;
Captain Yuri Belov and Lieutenant Nikolai Sergeyevich Davidenko on the Champs de Elysses in Paris, 1943. They had the responsibility to organize conferences for supporters of the Russian liberation movement and the Russian liberation army in Europe occupied by Germany. These conferences were held throughout occupied Europe without the permission of the Supreme Wehrmacht command, which led the Nazi forces to get rid of them. Belov was a Russian emigrant who lived in Paris before the war and worked as a taxi driver, while Davidenko was a former Red Army officer before joining ROA
9th US Army Sergeant George A. Kaufman replaces an & # 39; Adolf-Hitler-Straße & # 39; sign with a hand-made & # 39; Roosevelt Boulevard & # 39; plate in Krefeld, Germany, March 9, 1945. The city of Krefeld was hit hard by the Second World War. On June 21, 1943, large British bombs destroyed large parts of the east of the city and a fire town devoured most of the city center. On March 3, 1945, American troops entered Krefeld. During the cold war, the city hosted the 16th Signal Regiment of the Royal Corps of Signals of the United Kingdom stationed in Bradbury Barracks. Jääskeläinen said: & # 39; All colors have their own layer in Photoshop and the number of layers per image varies dramatically – one can just have 20 layers while another has more than 200 & # 39;
Five Luftwaffe officers somewhere in North Africa in 1941. In North Africa and the Mediterranean, the Luftwaffe mainly saw action in support of ground operations carried out by General Erwin Rommel's African Corps. The Afrika Korps fought from February 1941 to May 1943 in North Africa. Jääskeläinen added: & # 39; When all the colors are in place, I finish a few things. This means that I just play around with the saturation, vividness, brightness, contrast, etc. Until I am happy with the result & # 39;
Members of the Polish Independent Highland Brigade took their oath in 1940 in Malestroit, France. The Polish Independent Highland Brigade was a Polish military unit established in France in 1939, following the fall of Poland, as part of the Polish army in France. It had about 5,000 soldiers trained in mountain warfare and was led by General Zygmunt Szyszko-Bohusz. It is named after the Podhale region in southern Poland. After the onset of hostilities on the western front, the brigade was withdrawn to France, where it fought in the defense of Brittany. After it was dissolved, some of his soldiers were evacuated to Britain and Egypt, while others joined the French resistance
A cannon mounted on a German Panzerkampfwagen in the Soviet Union in 1942. Germany developed various tank designs during its war campaign. In his southern campaigns in the Soviet Union, the Germans captured 625,000 prisoners of the Red Army in July and August 1942 alone. At the end of 1942, Germany occupied more than half of European Russia, including 40 percent of the population in 80 million and around 2,500,000 square kilometers (Soviet Union) Soviet territory
Drie ontvangers van de medaille 'Voor de verdediging van Leningrad' werden in 1943 in de Russische stad geëerd. Ze werden beloond voor hun acties tijdens het beleg van Leningrad, dat algemeen wordt gezien als een van de grootste belegeringen ooit. Tegen december 1942 werden 2.105 kannibalen in de stad gearresteerd. Ze waren onderverdeeld in twee juridische categorieën: lijketende (trupoyedstvo) en persoon-etende (lyudoyedstvo). De laatstgenoemden werden gewoonlijk neergeschoten terwijl de eerstgenoemden naar de gevangenis werden gestuurd. Gezien het feit dat het beleg 872 dagen duurde en de honger hoog was, was kannibalisme relatief zeldzaam. Voor studenten geschiedenis zijn zijn resultaten fascinerend, maar Jääskeläinen heeft er persoonlijk baat bij gehad de foto's ook te transformeren. 'Kleurvorming is echt een positieve factor in mijn leven geweest,' he said
Een groep Duitse soldaten die hun respect betuigt aan een gevallen kameraad. Het is onduidelijk waar of wanneer de foto is genomen. 5.53 miljoen Duitse soldaten werden gedood in de Tweede Wereldoorlog, terwijl ergens tussen 6.6 en 8.8 miljoen Duitse mensen in totaal werden gedood. Jääskeläinen zei over zijn project: 'Ik heb heel wat fantastische mensen over de hele wereld leren kennen en ik ben erg blij dat ik besloot het een kans te geven'
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