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Leningradacha Vedha by Michael Jones

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``All offers of surrender from Leningrad must be rejected,`` ordered Adolf Hitler on September 22, 1941, as Operation Barbarossa unfolded. ``The problem of housing and feeding the people cannot and should not be solved by us. In this struggle for survival, we have no interest in keeping even a proportion of the city`s population alive.`` During the 900-day siege of Leningrad, the German High Command deliberately planned to eradicate the city`s population through starvation. By the time the siege ended in January 1944, more than a million people had died. Those who survived would be marked permanently by what they endured as the city descended into chaos. In Leningrad, military historian Michael Jones tells the human story of this epic siege. Drawing on newly available eyewitness accounts and diaries, he exposes the true horror of the ordeal - including stories long-suppressed by the Soviets of looting, criminal gangs, and cannibalism. But he also explores the immense psychological resources on which citizens of Leningrad drew to survive against desperate odds. At the height of the siege, for instance, an extraordinary live performance of Shostakovich`s Seventh Symphony profoundly strengthened the city`s will to resist. When besieging German troops heard its defiant broadcast one remarked: ``We began to understand we would never take Leningrad.`` A riveting account of one of the most harrowing sieges in world history, Leningrad pays tribute to the astonishing power of the human will in the face of even the most dire catastrophe.