Meretskov was Chief of General Staff at the start of the war but was soon superseded by ZHUKOV. In the Russo- Finnish war he had commanded an army on the Vyborg flank and led the breakthrough of the Mannerheim Line. He again made a name for himself as Commander of the Volkhov Front in the defense of Leningrad from 1941-44. He is said to have saved Leningrad in December 1941 by driving the Germans out of the town of Tikhvin, thereby keeping supply lines open. In January he and General GOVOROV broke the German Blockade and reestablished railway lines from Moscow to Leningrad. In February 1944, Meretskov was appointed Commander of the Karelian Front to drive the Germans out of Finland. He had by this time lost touch with STALIN and was out of favor. In August 1945 he was given command of the 1st Far Eastern Front.