The war demanded rapid and dramatic changes in the whole way of life of the country. Overcoming the confusion, the party organs began sending out directives on the need to restructure the industry to a military way and evacuation of enterprises from the front zone.
Fascists managed to seize the territory, which was home to 40% of the population of the USSR. 63% of coal was extracted, 58% of steel was produced. In the occupied areas were located defense enterprises and machine-building plants, which were the basis of the country’s defense industry.
The first blows to the fascists managed to push the Soviet economy back to the level of the 1930s.
The State Defense Committee (GKO), concentrated in its hands full power and led the restructuring of the economy in a military way. He exercised control over the fulfillment of military orders, the evacuation of enterprises, the population, and others.
Only on July 3, 1941 Stalin came to himself and addressed
the people with a speech, which he began with the words “Brothers and Sisters.” He described the severity of the situation and the tragedy of what happened.
The patriotism of the people largely compensated for the miscalculations made by the supreme power.
Stalin perfectly understood that the outcome of the war depended on the industrial and military potential of the country. The working day was extended to 11 hours with a six-day workweek, mandatory overtime work was introduced, holidays were canceled, and sanctions were imposed for violators of labor discipline.
School children and pensioners stood up to the machines. June 29, 1941 Sovnarkom of the USSR and the Central Committee of the CPSU (b) formulated the slogan “Everything for the front, everything for victory!”, Which determined the life of the country during the war years.
In December 1941, all workers of military factories were declared mobilized and assigned to specific enterprises.
The continuing offensive of the fascists and the loss of vast territories forced the evacuation of industrial enterprises
and people into the interior of the country.
By the middle of 1942, to the east, more than 10 million people and 2,500 enterprises had been moved. Often, work at the plants began immediately after unloading in the field, in the absence of communications and hulls.
The construction of new industrial facilities was accelerated. During the first years of the war, 850 military enterprises were commissioned.
Supercentralization in the management of the economy made it possible to mobilize all efforts and recover from the shock of the first defeats, organize industrial production and provide the front with the necessary quantity of military equipment.
By the end of 1941 it was possible to stop the fall in industrial production, and by the end of 1942 the USSR had outstripped Germany in the quantity and quality of the military equipment produced. Monthly military factories supplied the front with 2,100 aircraft and 2,000 tanks.
In 1941, the development was completed and the serial production of the Katyusha mortar units was launched, a modernized light tank T-34 appeared, the latest models of aviation equipment. The maximum production of military equipment was achieved in 1944.
Thanks to the heroic efforts of the population of the USSR, for the first time in world history, the industry of a huge power was transferred to a considerable distance and in the shortest time allowed production to the front.
Millions of Soviet people showed patriotism, endurance, showed an example of labor exploits. In the front-line regions, the population helped the army in equipping firing points, old men and women dug anti-tank trenches and trenches. Formed a popular militia.
Throughout the country, funds were collected for the defense fund. Citizens at their own expense bought weapons for the front. Active participation in this took the Russian Orthodox Church and representatives of other faiths.