Yakov Smushkevich


Yakov Smushkevich (1902-1941) – Commander-in-Chief of the Soviet Air Force, twice awarded Hero of the Soviet Union, the country’s highest award. During the Spanish Civil War of 1936-39 he was known under a nickname of General Douglas. Luftwaffe Marshal Hermann Göring offered a reward of one million Reichmarks for his head.

Fifteen days before the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union, Smushkevich, recovering from surgery at a hospital, was arrested on an order from Stalin. He was executed without trial a few months later.

Lev Razumovsky made this portrait in 1990 to pay tribute to the courageous man.

On 17 August 2008, a monument in bronze was placed at the cemetery of the Russian Aviation Academy near Moscow

памятник Смушкевичу, глина, профиль
памятник Смушкевичу, бронза