The 2nd Proletarian Shock Brigade


Soldiers of the Second Proletarian Brigade march through eastern Bosnia, July 1943.

The Second Proletarian People's Liberation Strike Brigade, also the Second Serbian Brigade, was formed by order of the Supreme Staff of the People's Liberation Army and Partisan Detachments of Yugoslavia on March 1, 1942, in Čajniče, by fighters from the Užice, Čačak and Second Šumadija Partisan Detachments. On the day of its formation, it had four battalions with about 1,000 fighters.


The first commander of the brigade was Ratko Sofijanic, a national hero, political commissar Milinko Kusic, a national hero, and the party leader and deputy political commissar Spasenija Cana Babovic, a national hero.


Ratko Sofijanic commander of the 2nd Proletarian Brigade

The Second Proletarian NOU Brigade covered about 24,000 kilometers on its war journey. About 15,000 fighters from all over Yugoslavia fought in its ranks. It destroyed about 62,000 enemy soldiers. She gave a large number of leading cadres, as well as 48 national heroes. Among them is Petar Lekovic, the first national hero of Yugoslavia.


Together with the First Proletarian Brigade, it played a major role in creating the operational units of the Yugoslav People's Army.


Petar Lekovic, the First People's Hero of Yugoslavia.

She was awarded the Order of National Liberation, the Order of the Partisan Star, the Order of Brotherhood and Unity, and the Order of Courage. On the occasion of the fifteenth anniversary of the Battle of Sutjeska, in June 1958, she was awarded the Order of the People's Hero.

The Fighting Path of the Second Proletarian


Until the formation of the Second Proletarian Division on November 1, 1942, the Second Proletarian Brigade was under the direct command of the Supreme Staff. In March and the first half of April, it operated in eastern Bosnia. It captured Borike, liberated Vlasenica, Bratunac, Milići, Srebrenica, and Drinjača; then she fought in Romania and took part in attacks on Ustasha strongholds in Rogatica and Han-Pijesak. In the second half of April, part of its forces carried out a successful attack on the Ustasha stronghold of Borac in Herzegovina.


A battalion of the 2nd Proletarian Brigade, Sandzak, 1943.

During the Third Enemy Offensive, she had very difficult tasks, first, she fought around Čajniče, Goražde, Foča, in the Pljevlja sector, and in the first half of June she fought hard with the Chetniks on Durmitor and Gat, near Gacko.

It was part of the Brigade Strike Group, which, under the direct command of the Supreme Commander, set out for western Bosnia on June 24, 1942. She fought around Kalinovik, took part in the demolition of the Sarajevo-Mostar railway, in the capture of Tarčin and Pazarić, then in the battles in the sectors of Travnik, Donji Vakuf, and Bugojno. From the end of July to the middle of October 1942, she fought a large number of difficult battles. Together with the Fourth Proletarian, the Tenth Herzegovinian, and First Krajina, she took part in the attack on Kupres. She also took part in the liberation of Jajce on September 25, 1942.


Cropped map describing the Third Enemy Offensive in occupied Yugoslavia (eastern Bosnia, Montenegro and Herzegovina 20 April to mid-June 1942)

On October 17, in Drvar, she received the Proletarian flag from the Supreme Commander of the NOP and NOVJ, Josip Broz Tito. From then until the beginning of the battle on the Neretva, it operated around Bosanski Grahov, Livno, Kupres, Duvno, and in the Knin region. It carried out a counterattack against the Italian division "Sassari" and the Chetniks from October 26 to 28 and cleared the Knin region of Chetniks and Ustashas. She fought for Livno from December 5 to 15 and attacked Kupres.

Battle of the Neretva

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At the end of January, she fought fierce battles near Knin and Strmica. From then until the forcing of the Neretva, she fought for Imotski and Posušje (February 9 and 10, 1943), penetrated the Neretva valley, captured Drežnica, and Grabovo 16/17. February, where the battalion of the "Murđe" division stood out and broke up. Together with eight other brigades, she took part in the counterattack near Gornji Vakuf and stood out in particular (broke the battalion of the 717th German Division). These successes saved the wounded and eased the position of the People's Liberation Army forces on the Neretva.


Partisan counterattack at Gornji Vakuf

In the offensive efforts of the Main Operational Group from the Neretva, the brigade fought hard with the Chetniks near Krsac, on Prenja, near Bijela, Boracko Lake, Glavatičevo, Obija, and Kalinovik. In April, she took part in the fighting on the Drina. Its two battalions, together with the Fourth and Fifth Proletarian Brigades, took part in the battles on Javorka, near Nikšić, on May 1 and 2, 1943, when Italian and Chetnik forces of several battalions were defeated.

Battle of Sutjeska

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During the battle of Sutjeska, she took part in an attempt to break through the southeast of Foča on May 24 and 25, and from then until June 10, she fought hard on Vučevo, Koshur, near Suha, Bare, and Košuta. Its success on Vučevo and Košuta is one of the most important battles in this battle.


The Battle of Sutjeska

With this communication, she broke through to the north by fighting, she liberated Olovo, 24/25. June, and two days later she took part in the liberation of Kladanj. From then until the beginning of September, he worked around Tuzla and on the mountain Ozren. He took part in breaking up strong Chetnik and other forces.

Campaign  to Serbia


From this territory, she moved to the Foča region, then to Sandžak. She liberated Foča (September 3/4), Pljevlja (September 22), Prijepolje; so she participated in the liberation of Bijelo Polje, Berane, and Kolašin. She liberated Priboj and moved to Serbia. For a month, she fought on Zlatibor and other places. On December 4, near Prijepolje, she suffered heavy losses in a fierce, sudden battle. She moved to Serbia again, and in December 1943 and January 1944 she fought several battles on Zlatibor, for Ivanjica, near Arilje, in the region of Priboj and other places.


Third Serbian Brigade on Zlatibor, January 1944.

In mid-March 1944, as part of the Strike Group, the division again penetrated Serbia. From then until May 21, she fought almost incessantly in western Serbia and Sandzak (Rudo, Zlatibor, Ivanjica, Kaona, Povlen), but was forced to withdraw to Montenegro.

Final operations


In June and July 1944, she fought in the Andrijevica sector. Among other things, she participated in the Andrijevic operation. In the penetration of the Operational Group, the division from Montenegro to Serbia took part in the battles on the Peshterska plateau and on the Ibar. In August, he worked on Kopaonik, in Župa, Rasina, and around Kuršumlija, where he excelled in defeating Chetniks. In September, he took part in the battles on the Ibar, near Požega and Gornji Milanovac.


The Second Serbian Brigade during the Battle of the Neretva in 1943.

She participated in the Belgrade operation, where she stood out. From then until the end of December, she worked on the Srem front. In February and March 1945, she took part in the battles on the Drina (Banja Koviljača and Loznica). In April, she took part in the liberation of eastern Bosnia (Bijeljina, Brcko, Samac), and then in the fighting in Slavonia, and then in Majevica.



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