Vladimir Triandafillov

Vladimir Kiriakovitch Triandafillov (Russian: Влади́мир Кириа́кович Триандафи́ллов; 14 March 1894 – 12 July 1931) was a Soviet military commander and theoretician considered by many to be the "father of Soviet operational art".

Vladimir Kiriakovitch Triandafillov
Born(1894-03-14)14 March 1894
Kars, Russian Empire (today Turkey)
Died12 July 1931(1931-07-12) (aged 37)
Moscow, Soviet Union
Allegiance Russian Empire (1914–1917)
 Soviet Union (1917–1931)
Years of service1914–1931
Commands heldRed Army
Battles/warsWorld War I
Russian Civil War
AwardsOrder of the Red Banner


He was born on 14 March 1894 in Magaradzhik village in Kars Oblast, then in the Russian Empire (today in Mağaracık, Turkey) of Pontic Greek parents. The family name derives from triantáfyllo, τριαντάφυλλο, Modern Greek for the rose flower. His family had moved to Russia. Graduating from the Moscow Praporshchik School in 1915, he served in the Russian Army in World War I, earning the rank of captain. During the Russian Civil War, he rose in rank up to brigade commander while fighting on various fronts. He became a member of the Russian Communist Party (b) in 1919.[1]

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 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.[2] 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.

Vladimir Triandafillov was killed in an aircraft crash on 12 July 1931 and was buried in the Kremlin Wall Necropolis. The quality of his work was realised late during World War II, when Georgy Zhukov said that his success was due to closely following Triandafillov's deep operations doctrine.[citation needed]


  1. ^ B. J. C. McKercher; Michael A. Hennessey (1996). The Operational Art: Developments in the Theories of War. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 71. ISBN 9780275953058.
  2. ^ Allan R. Millett; Williamson Murray (2009). A War to Be Won: Fighting the Second World War. Belknap Press. p. 20.

Further readingEdit

  • 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.
Military offices
Preceded by Chief of the Staff of the Red Army
May 1931 – 12 July 1931
Succeeded by