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World War II through the lens of TASS' legendary photographer

March 23, 15:20 UTC+3

Yevgeny Khaldei is the only Soviet photographer who had been photographing the Great Patriotic War over its entire war-ravaged 1,418 days

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Muscovites listening to radio broadcasts about Nazi Germany’s attack on the USSR, 1941
Muscovites listening to radio broadcasts about Nazi Germany’s attack on the USSR, 1941
Muscovites listening to radio broadcasts about Nazi Germany’s attack on the USSR, 1941
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Soviet soldiers repelling a German attack near Murmansk, 1942
Soviet soldiers repelling a German attack near Murmansk, 1942
Soviet soldiers repelling a German attack near Murmansk, 1942
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Pilots from a Black Sea Fleet naval aviation unit having lunch,1943
Pilots from a Black Sea Fleet naval aviation unit having lunch,1943
Pilots from a Black Sea Fleet naval aviation unit having lunch,1943
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
War-torn Murmansk lies in ruins following the enemy’s bombing, 1942
War-torn Murmansk lies in ruins following the enemy’s bombing, 1942
War-torn Murmansk lies in ruins following the enemy’s bombing, 1942
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Soldiers’ helmets piled high somewhere on the Eastern Front, 1941
Soldiers’ helmets piled high somewhere on the Eastern Front, 1941
Soldiers’ helmets piled high somewhere on the Eastern Front, 1941
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
The traitor Tokarev, a Nazi-appointed village elder in Red Army custody awaiting questioning, 1942
The traitor Tokarev, a Nazi-appointed village elder in Red Army custody awaiting questioning, 1942
The traitor Tokarev, a Nazi-appointed village elder in Red Army custody awaiting questioning, 1942
© Yevgeny Khaldei, Pyotr Mekhizev/TASS
Soviet troops move into their firing position, gearing up for battle on the Eastern Front, 1944
Soviet troops move into their firing position, gearing up for battle on the Eastern Front, 1944
Soviet troops move into their firing position, gearing up for battle on the Eastern Front, 1944
© Max Alpert, Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Soviet and British ships meet, 1944
Soviet and British ships meet, 1944
Soviet and British ships meet, 1944
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Red Army's Senior Sergeant Sergey Postevoi, 1945
Red Army's Senior Sergeant Sergey Postevoi, 1945
Red Army's Senior Sergeant Sergey Postevoi, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
German aircraft remains lodged in a Budapest apartment building, 1945
German aircraft remains lodged in a Budapest apartment building, 1945
German aircraft remains lodged in a Budapest apartment building, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Red Army armored personnel carrier patrolling Vienna, 1945
Red Army armored personnel carrier patrolling Vienna, 1945
Red Army armored personnel carrier patrolling Vienna, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Red Army marches on to Vienna, 1945
Red Army marches on to Vienna, 1945
Red Army marches on to Vienna, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Legendary Red Army photographer Yevgeny Khaldei, 1945
Legendary Red Army photographer Yevgeny Khaldei, 1945
Legendary Red Army photographer Yevgeny Khaldei, 1945
© TASS
Meeting of Soviet soldiers in Belgrade, 1944
Meeting of Soviet soldiers in Belgrade, 1944
Meeting of Soviet soldiers in Belgrade, 1944
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Soviet flag of victory flying over Berlin, 1945
Soviet flag of victory flying over Berlin, 1945
Soviet flag of victory flying over Berlin, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Traffic warden Maria Shalnova, Berlin, 1945
Traffic warden Maria Shalnova, Berlin, 1945
Traffic warden Maria Shalnova, Berlin, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Soviet Marshal Georgy Zhukov on horseback during a Victory Parade in Red Square, 1945
Soviet Marshal Georgy Zhukov on horseback during a Victory Parade in Red Square, 1945
Soviet Marshal Georgy Zhukov on horseback during a Victory Parade in Red Square, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Reichmarshall Hermann Goering and Hitler's deputy leader Rudolf Hess in the dock at the Nuremburg trials, 1945
Reichmarshall Hermann Goering and Hitler's deputy leader Rudolf Hess in the dock at the Nuremburg trials, 1945
Reichmarshall Hermann Goering and Hitler's deputy leader Rudolf Hess in the dock at the Nuremburg trials, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
A session of the international Nuremberg trials against Hitler’s leading henchmen accused of numerous war crimes and crimes against humanity during World War II, 1945
A session of the international Nuremberg trials against Hitler’s leading henchmen accused of numerous war crimes and crimes against humanity during World War II, 1945
A session of the international Nuremberg trials against Hitler’s leading henchmen accused of numerous war crimes and crimes against humanity during World War II, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
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Muscovites listening to radio broadcasts about Nazi Germany’s attack on the USSR, 1941
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Soviet soldiers repelling a German attack near Murmansk, 1942
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Pilots from a Black Sea Fleet naval aviation unit having lunch,1943
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
War-torn Murmansk lies in ruins following the enemy’s bombing, 1942
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Soldiers’ helmets piled high somewhere on the Eastern Front, 1941
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
The traitor Tokarev, a Nazi-appointed village elder in Red Army custody awaiting questioning, 1942
© Yevgeny Khaldei, Pyotr Mekhizev/TASS
Soviet troops move into their firing position, gearing up for battle on the Eastern Front, 1944
© Max Alpert, Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Soviet and British ships meet, 1944
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Red Army's Senior Sergeant Sergey Postevoi, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
German aircraft remains lodged in a Budapest apartment building, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Red Army armored personnel carrier patrolling Vienna, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Red Army marches on to Vienna, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Legendary Red Army photographer Yevgeny Khaldei, 1945
© TASS
Meeting of Soviet soldiers in Belgrade, 1944
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Soviet flag of victory flying over Berlin, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Traffic warden Maria Shalnova, Berlin, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Soviet Marshal Georgy Zhukov on horseback during a Victory Parade in Red Square, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
Reichmarshall Hermann Goering and Hitler's deputy leader Rudolf Hess in the dock at the Nuremburg trials, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS
A session of the international Nuremberg trials against Hitler’s leading henchmen accused of numerous war crimes and crimes against humanity during World War II, 1945
© Yevgeny Khaldei/TASS

Yevgeny Khaidei, one of the most famous war photographers of his time, was born on March 23, 1917. Originally, the boy’s name was Yefim, but later his colleagues started calling him Yevgeny as it was more common to the Russian ear than his Jewish birth name. 

Khaldei is the only Soviet photographer who had been photographing the Great Patriotic War over its entire war-ravaged 1,418 days. 

When the need arose to send a photographer to Potsdam and Nuremberg, it was Khaidei who the Soviet leadership wanted there. 

During the Nuremberg trial three of his photos were submitted as proof of the Nazi’s crimes. There are the photos of the desolate Sevastopol, the burned houses of Murmansk and victims in the courtyard of a Rostov prison. 

A Jewish boy, whose father and sisters were killed by the Gestapo, was photographing the bloody atrocities carried out by the Nazi war criminals. 

Many people used to ask him: how could a simple mechanic like him who only had a 7-grade school education take such amazing pictures? Khaldei answered that it all came from his heart. He said he had always wanted to take photos in such a way so that people would be interested in his work not only today, but tomorrow and the day after tomorrow. 
That is why though all these years people are still fascinated by the photos he had made with his ‘Leica’.

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