Life and Fate Read Along, Part 3 Chapter 7

This post, covering Part 3, Chapter 7 is part of The Slavic Literature Pod’s chapter a day read along of Vasily Grossman’s Life and Fate. Learn more about our project here.

November 8th, 1942 — as their troop numbers ebb and their possibilities look thinner by the day, General Vasily Chuikov meets with Gurov, Krylov, Pozharski, Weinrub, and Vasiliev to discuss their options. 

This is not a scene from Vasily Grossman’s Life and Fate. These are the events as Chuikov remembers them in his book The Battle for Stalingrad

“The telephone rang,” Chuikov writes, “and Front H.Q. told us to stand by to receive an order that would shortly be coming through. We all glanced at one another. ‘What can the order be?’ was in all our minds. 

“Suddenly Gurov struck himself on the forehead and said: ‘I know! It’s the order for the big counter-offensive!’

“At midnight it finally came through.” (The Battle for Stalingrad, p. 234)

With that order, the war changes.