Soviet soldier of NKVD, WWII
NKVD, People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs, or the Soviet secret police agency, was the Soviet police and secret police from 1934 to 1943, the police from 1943-46. A forerunner of the KGB, NKVD origin and history is complex and beyond this review. I include some NKVD history at the end of this review.
Armor35 packages this figure in an attractive small top or bottom opening box. The parts are enclosed in a ziplocked baggie.
Inside is a gray resin NKVD agent. Sculpted by Anishchenko Dmitriy, he is cast in five parts: the body head to toes; separate arm and hand with machine gun; two separate hands; separate machine gun barrel. Some uniform items are cast on. The body is attached to a pour block and the arm has a stem cast into the armpit. While the parts are crisply molded, I did spot some minor things to clean up. I noticed only one small area of excess resin to remove between the integral arm and tunic.
This NKVD officer appears to wear the M35 Gymnasterka cotton soviet tunic and breeches with reinforced elbows, knees and cuffs, and boots. They made a wool version that appears to be identical. His tunic is gathered by a leather belt with the brass buckle supporting a spare magazine. He wears a peaked cap.
Scowling facial detail is exceptional: eye lids, mouth, ears. He looks pompous and dour.
Seams are sculpted along the clothes. Branch and rank patches are on the collars. A red star is molded on the cap. The few exposed buttons on the M35 are shown. Some belt detail appears a bit soft. The canteen and ammo magazine are cast as part of the body.
The PPSh-41 is cast into the separate arm and hand, yet the exposed detail is sharp.
painting guidance and instructions
None, other than the box art. You are on your own to find uniform and insignia detail; below I added a link to a replica site. Assembly is straightforward.
ConclusionSoviet Soldier of NKVD
is sharply cast. It features exceptional facial detail and uniform detail. The second hand is appreciated.
Aspects of this model that distract me are the molded canteen and ammo pouch.
Dioramaists and figure modelers of The Great Patriotic War should appreciate this model - just imagine him scrutinizing a group of Red Army soldiers. I recommend this model.
Please tell vendors and retailers that you saw this model here - on Armorama.
Between 1917 and 1954, the USSR’s state security and intelligence agencies were reorganized and renamed a number of times. The first security agency, Vecheka (or Cheka) was formed in December 1917 to investigate counterrevolution and sabotage, but it soon became responsible for imprisoning and executing anyone considered an enemy of the state. In 1922, Cheka was replaced by the GPU. A year later, as the OGPU, the agency helped implement Stalin’s plans to forcibly collectivize agriculture and deport wealthy peasants. The OGPU eventually controlled all security functions within the USSR until it was absorbed into the NKVD (People’s Commissariat of Internal Affairs) in 1934. Picking up the OGPU’s responsibilities, the NKVD oversaw all aspects of internal and state security. It controlled the police, criminal investigation departments, fire brigades, internal troops, and prison guards.
Throughout the 1930s, public anger had been building in the USSR against Stalin and his policies. In 1936, believing his power and position in jeopardy, Stalin took the first steps to purge the country from “anti-Soviet elements,” targeting mostly people in his own party and the military. In this period, known as the Great Terror, the NKVD, led by Nikolai Yezhov, arrested anyone believed to oppose Stalin: certain ethnic groups, religious leaders, and members of other political parties, as well as people who held offices in the government, army, politics, and other such institutions. The Terror reached its peak in 1937–1938 as the NKVD’s arrests of approximately 1.5 million people resulted in show trials, executions, and sentences in the Gulag, the NKVD’s network of forced labor camps. But fewer than half of the detainees were sent to the Gulag ; the majority were arrested, tortured, quickly tried, and shot. Yezhov’s operation carried out these orders with zeal.
By World War II, the NKVD’s responsibility had grown even greater. It now oversaw convoy troops, soldiers guarding industry and state facilities, railroad and engineering corps, operational forces, and penal colonies. Its agents also apprehended army deserters, enforced discipline in the military, and “recruited” new troops. NKVD agents were posted to army units with orders to identify anti-Communists and counterrevolutionaries; army officers who made mistakes knew they could be charged with sabotage or political dissent. A special group of NKVD soldiers were stationed at the front, behind the Soviet battle lines, and tasked to shoot any Red Army troops who tried to retreat. By March 1944, the NKVD had 540,000 men protecting vital state objectives.
As the functional equivalent of Nazi Germany’s Gestapo and SS, the NKVD also had a vast intelligence network abroad that carried out purges in Poland and the Baltic states, mass deportations to Siberia, and executions of suspected spies, draft dodgers, and deserters.
Under Beria’s direction, the NKVD took the lead in securing captured territories so they could be integrated into the Soviet Union. It manipulated elections to give the appearance of popular support for Communist rule, and agents arrested, interrogated, tortured, deported, or murdered local citizens who opposed a Soviet-style system. An estimated 1.5 million Poles, along with four percent of Estonians and two percent of Latvians and Lithuanians, were transported to the NKVD Gulag.*
* PBS. Behind Closed Doors: Stalin’s Spies and Secret Police
. www.pbs.org/behindcloseddoors/in-depth/stalins-spies.html. n.d.