Vladimir Triandafillov
Vladimir Kiriakovitch Triandafillov was a Soviet military commander and theoretician.


He was born on March 14, 1894 in Magaradzhik in Kars (in today's Turkey
Turkey , known officially as the Republic of Turkey , is a Eurasian country located in Western Asia and in East Thrace in Southeastern Europe...

) of Pontic Greek parents. The family name derives from triantáfyllo, Modern Greek
Modern Greek
Modern Greek refers to the varieties of the Greek language spoken in the modern era. The beginning of the "modern" period of the language is often symbolically assigned to the fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453, even though that date marks no clear linguistic boundary and many characteristic...

 for the rose
A rose is a woody perennial of the genus Rosa, within the family Rosaceae. There are over 100 species. They form a group of erect shrubs, and climbing or trailing plants, with stems that are often armed with sharp prickles. Flowers are large and showy, in colours ranging from white through yellows...

 flower. His family moved to Russia. Graduating from the praporshchik
Praporshchik is a rank in the Russian military.-Imperial Russia:Praporshchik was originally a name of a junior commissioned officer rank in the military of the Russian Empire equivalent to ensign...

 school in 1915, he served in the Russian Army in World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

, earning the rank of captain. During the Russian Civil War
Russian Civil War
The Russian Civil War was a multi-party war that occurred within the former Russian Empire after the Russian provisional government collapsed to the Soviets, under the domination of the Bolshevik party. Soviet forces first assumed power in Petrograd The Russian Civil War (1917–1923) was a...

, he rose in rank up to brigade commander while fighting on various fronts. In 1923, he was appointed chief of the Operations Directions of the Soviet General Staff and Deputy Chief of the General Staff.

Vladimir Triandafillov was the author of two fundamental military doctrine works: Scale of the operations of modern armies, published in 1926 and Characteristics of the operations of the modern armies, published in 1929. In these two works, he elaborated his deep operations
Deep operations
Deep battle was a military theory developed by the Soviet Union for its armed forces during the 1920s and 1930s. It was developed by a number of influential military writers, such as Vladimir Triandafillov and Mikhail Tukhachevsky who endeavoured to create a military strategy with its own...

 theory about the future warfare. The objective of a "deep operation" was to attack the enemy simultaneously throughout the depth of his ground force to induce a catastrophic failure in his defensive system. Highly mobile formations would then exploit this failure by breaking into the deep rear of the enemy and destroying his ability to rebuild his defenses. His cousin Stillian Triandafillov was the director of the NKVD
The People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs was the public and secret police organization of the Soviet Union that directly executed the rule of power of the Soviets, including political repression, during the era of Joseph Stalin....

 during the Stalin period. He was exiled to Siberia and was executed by the changing Stalin regime.

Vladimir was killed in an aircraft crash on July 12, 1931 and was buried in the Kremlin Wall Necropolis
Kremlin Wall Necropolis
Burials in the Kremlin Wall Necropolis in Moscow began in November 1917, when 240 pro-Bolshevik victims of the October Revolution were buried in mass graves on Red Square. It is centered on both sides of Lenin's Mausoleum, initially built in wood in 1924 and rebuilt in granite in 1929–1930...

. The quality of his work was realised late during World War II, when Zhukov, the general that defeated the German army said that his success was due to closely following Triandafyllov's (deep operation) doctrine.

Recommended reading

  • K.A. Zalessky, Stalin's empire (biographic dictionary), Moscow, Veche, 2000
  • Great Soviet Encyclopedia, Moscow, 1969 — 1978
  • Triandafillov, Vladimir, Kipp, Jacob W., (trans.), The Nature of the Operations of Modern Armies (Cass Series on the Soviet Study of War, 5), Routledge, 1st edition, 1994
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