A man with an unkind expression on his face, looking at you from a photograph with a squint and as if suspicious, Philip Ivanovich Golikov, a favorite of Joseph Stalin, as he is often called, had a surprisingly long career: he was both commander and chief of special services. He had every reason to become Stalin's favorite - his biography indicates all the necessary qualities. So, for example, being in the composition of the units of special purpose, in other words, punitive detachments, he suppressed anti-Bolshevik peasant uprisings.
After the end of the Civil War, Golikov went up the career ladder in the army. In September 1939, he already commanded the 6th Army. When the rank of general was introduced in the Red Army, Golikov became a lieutenant-general, and in the same year he was appointed head of the GRU. It was the 1940th. In fact, he had to restore this department, decimated by the Stalinist purges.
Commander of the 95th Infantry Regiment of the 32nd Infantry Division Philipp Ivanovich Golikov, 1933
However, in the intelligence itself, Golikov seemed to be partly an amateur - he called the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact allegedly "the product of the comrade Stalin's dialectical genius." How it ended his activities as head of the GRU is well known: the Soviet Union was not ready for war.
In October 1941, Golikov returned to the army, took command of the 10th army, which participated in the defense of Moscow in the winter of 1941-1942. Later he commanded the 4th Shock Army, and then the Voronezh Front. Golikov was deputy commander of the Stalingrad front, and from April 1943, he was head of the personnel department of the Red Army and deputy people's commissar of defense.
Ivan Maisky, Philip Golikov and Nikolai Kharlamov (left to right). London 1941
At the end of the war he had an honorable role: he was assigned to organize the forcible repatriation of former Soviet prisoners of war and prisoners of German camps in the USSR. Marshal of the Soviet Union Golikov became in 1961.