“No! This alliance must not become reality! It is of utter strategic importance that France does not ally with the Russian Tsar!”
- Kaiser Wilhelm II, Emperor of Germany
It was these words that were the first step on the path that brought the world to where it is today – bitter, angered and merciless. With these words, Kaiser Wilhelm II sponsored the revolutionary movement Narodnaya Volya, with the sole goal of toppling the Russian Empire, thus unknowingly condemning hundreds of thousands from both sides to death.
In place of the Russian Empire came the Soviet Union – a nation centered on the belief that communism is the only way to world peace and equality. A nation that saw the European states and empires as decadent, decayed - a complete antithesis to everything that communism stood for. A society that was an affront which could no longer be tolerated and had to be shown the true way.
Thus, under the pretext that the Soviet Union had an obligation to all proletariat in the world did the Red Army invade Europe. On the night of August 1935, hundreds of thousands of Soviet soldiers and vehicles, grouped in three armies, crossed the border between the recently founded European Alliance and the Soviet Union. The now combined European armies, though unsurprised as they had been preparing for this inevitable clash, were none the less ill-equipped to handle a war on this scale. This war shattered the idea of gentleman’s combat in the battle of Budapest.
The Red Army was pressing hard for the capitals of the eastern countries in the European alliance, sweeping aside all opposition in its path. The Europeans had been on the defensive, falling back before the unchecked might of the Red Tide. The world was changing for them; the colonies in Latin America and Africa had rebelled and seceded, former allies had abandoned them. European High Command was determined to make a stand at Budapest. Should the Soviets carry the day, Austria, Italy and South Eastern Europe could be cut off.
With roughly two million soldiers on both sides, the Battle of Budapest turned into carnage of unimaginable proportions. The Soviet soldiers were hurling themselves into the battle with their European counterparts who were responding to the assaults with grim determination. The sky was darkened from flak and burning zeppelins and aircraft were seen falling from the sky in great balls of fire. Soviet armored divisions were closing around the city ready to encircle the defenders. This would have been a disaster for the European forces, and it was only with the introduction of the still experimental Siege Tanks that the crisis was averted. An entire armored division of the “Earth Shaker” Siege Tanks were hastily dispatched to the battle and managed to inflict such heavy casualties on Soviet armor and morale that the Red Army was forced to retreat. Victory was achieved… but at a terrible price – roughly 500,000 soldiers had lost their lives in the three month long battle. The “Pearl of the Danube” was shattered and devastated beyond recognition.
And for all that, this was only the first great battle of many more to come!