"One of the bloodiest battles of the Great Patriotic War": 80 years ago the Battle of Rzhev ended
On March 31, 1943, the Battle of Rzhev ended. The Red Army completely cut off the Rzhev-Vyazma salient, which the Nazis could use as a springboard for a new offensive against Moscow. Fierce fighting in the area of Rzhev lasted more than a year. Hitler's positions in the area were extremely convenient for defense, so the German troops retreated only after the threat of complete encirclement arose, as had previously happened at Stalingrad. The exact number of fatalities on both sides has not yet been reliably established. According to some historians, the Battle of Rzhev was the bloodiest battle of the Great Patriotic War, surpassing even the battles of Stalingrad in terms of losses.