Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Red Army Tank Tactics

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #31
    And the same episode described by the combat history of the 23 Panzerdivision
    At 06.00 hours Kampfgruppe von Heydebreck moved out to the north from the Klykoff area as a part of Panzer-Regiment 11. Ten minutes later, numerous enemy tanks, accompanied by weak infantry forces mounted on them, appeared in front of Shestakoff and entered the village be crossing over the frozen Akssai. The enemy infantry was turned back in close combat, and six T-34 fell victim to antitank guns firing at pointblank range, despite the fact that the tanks were maneuvering skillfully. When the six tanks were knocked out, the enemy force pulled back.

    Comment


    • #32
      Artyom interesting posts. My experience through the years has shown the difficulty of matching combatant memoirs and official reports. I recall my first awareness of this difficulty was raised when I read accounts, both in English, from a Union and an opposing Confederate regiments on Cemetery ridge. The accounts were so different that one could not believe they were on the same battlefield.

      Official reports tend to exaggerate outcomes as much as individual memoirs and can vary depending on the army. Glantz in his reconstruction of battles on the eastern front relies heavily on German situations maps and Soviet memoirs/schematics with recent Red Army archive reports releases.

      The Russian account in post #30 above claims 60 German tanks. By mid-December, I do not think there were many panzer divisions with 60 operational tanks, especially if they were not SS panzer units. In Dec '42, Balck's 11th PzD had between 20-25 operational tanks for its Chir River battles.

      Just checked Jentz's Panzer Truppen: 23rd PzD had 40 operational tanks on 18 November 1942.
      Last edited by R.N. Armstrong; 07 Dec 18, 06:54.
      Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

      Comment


      • #33
        Glantz in his "Endgame at Stalingrad Book Two: Dec 1942-Feb 1943" has the 23rd PzD strength of 20 operational tanks on Dec 21. He notes earlier the 23rd PzD had been worn down to 30 tanks (4 Pz-II, 17 Pz-III and 9 Pz-IV) by Dec 11.
        Last edited by R.N. Armstrong; 07 Dec 18, 07:30.
        Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

        Comment


        • #34
          To my point on comparative analysis when working through historical documents and secondary accounts, Glantz illustrates his methodology in "Endgame at Stalingrad":

          "Several Soviet sources complement German accounts of the action on 16 December" [23rd PzD against 51st Army's 302nd RD supported by 13th Mech Corps];

          "Substantiating Raus's [cdr, 6th PzD] account of the fighting on 16 December, 4th Mechanized Corps' history asserts that LVII PzK attacked in the....";

          In the fighting on 17 December, "Raus proudly declared, "Two infantry battalions had gained a victory that had been denied two panzer regiments on the previous day."
          "Here, however, the memory of the 6th Panzer's commander fails him once again. German sources and records, as well as Soviet sources, contend that Raus's panzer division did not capture Verkhne-Kumskii until midday on 19 December. General Doerr [Chief of German Liaison Staff to 4th Rumanian Army], for example, challenges Raus's claims and highlights the precarious situation as the LVII PzK's panzer forces diminished and new Soviet forces reached the battlefield..."
          Last edited by R.N. Armstrong; 08 Dec 18, 06:46.
          Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

          Comment


          • #35
            23 Panzerdivision started the attack with about 100 operational tanks:
            https://forum.axishistory.com/viewto...79446#p1979446
            very soon it was reduced to 2 or 3 dozens. In particular, on the evening of 16 December the reported operational strength was 31 tanks and 9 self-propelled anti-tank guns:
            http://www.maparchive.ru/images/phoc...umb_l_0638.jpg

            Anyway, what attracted my attention is a typical character of this episode. The same story with limited groups of tanks making this isolated Balaklava charges and being overwhelmed in close-combat despite personal courage was repeating itself again and again. Also a deficient coordination between Soviet tanks and infantry is obvious from both Soviet and German accounts. Another conspicuous fact is that Soviet units waited for the dawn to start an attack. Later in the war having more experience they would probably launch an attack at night.

            Comment


            • #36
              Originally posted by Artyom_A View Post
              23 Panzerdivision started the attack with about 100 operational tanks:
              https://forum.axishistory.com/viewto...79446#p1979446
              very soon it was reduced to 2 or 3 dozens. In particular, on the evening of 16 December the reported operational strength was 31 tanks and 9 self-propelled anti-tank guns:
              http://www.maparchive.ru/images/phoc...umb_l_0638.jpg

              Anyway, what attracted my attention is a typical character of this episode. The same story with limited groups of tanks making this isolated Balaklava charges and being overwhelmed in close-combat despite personal courage was repeating itself again and again. Also a deficient coordination between Soviet tanks and infantry is obvious from both Soviet and German accounts. Another conspicuous fact is that Soviet units waited for the dawn to start an attack. Later in the war having more experience they would probably launch an attack at night.
              Appreciate your tactical assessment. My point on the 23rd PzD operational tank strength was by Dec 17, it could not have been 60 tanks as reported by the Soviet tank regt.

              The AxisHistory post does not cite the source if the count of 97 tank count is really operational only (I see the author says operational) or operational & mechanical--such readiness could vary in unit counts.
              Last edited by R.N. Armstrong; 08 Dec 18, 10:14.
              Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

              Comment


              • #37
                A German appraisal
                Enemy tank are employed in a more massed manner than before and have their mutual actions with infantry better organized.
                A tank attack frequently follows after an artillery preparation and increased mortars' activity.
                The following features are typical for Russian tank actions:
                1. Frequently they are employed in an artillery manner, especially in open terrain. Well concealed tanks engage either villages and shelters or resistance nests from a large distance or support their attacking infantry with aimed fire.
                2. Group actions with infantry which closely follows tanks or rides on them. Several tanks in the first line concentrically attack the resistance center. After that the tanks approach to 600-200 meters to the resistance centers they detected.
                3. When tank are employed in a massed manner (2-3 tank brigades, each with 40-50 tanks), first they conduct reconnaissance to detect anti-tank weapons on the first line. For this end single heavy tanks are moved forward, whereas the bulk of tanks stay about 1500 meters from the main line of resistance. If they meet fire heavy tanks probe the front elsewhere. Only in places where they find a gap in anti-tank defenses they try to break through. The enemy avoids, apparently for fear of close-combat, close terrain and settlements. For the same reason he transports infantry with machine pistols and handgrenades to our positions at high speed - always by groups on several tanks (sometimes in open turret hatches).
                Recently the Russians started to commit the bulk of their tanks after successful breach of the front for rolling up our flanks and development to the depth.
                From the OKH instruction for construction of fortified positions in the East, October 1943.
                Last edited by Artyom_A; 02 Jan 19, 11:48.

                Comment


                • #38
                  Originally posted by Artyom_A View Post
                  A German appraisal

                  From the OKH instruction for construction of fortified positions in the East, October 1943.
                  That's a interesting find with source and date and some interesting points. The date is in the transition year for the Red Army which had been conducting operational and strategic level offensives from Nov 1942. It was a year that the Red Army had to learn a lot about conducting and sustaining armored operations. Manstein's counterstrikes in the early part of 1943 were sobering lessons.

                  In para 3, I find the observation "The enemy avoids, apparently from fear of close-combat, close terrain and settlements". It was not "apparently from fear", but rather the Soviet armored forces learned to put armored forces into the operational depth, they needed to by-pass population centers, and centers of resistance if close terrain, that would bog-down the penetrating force, giving time for the German forces to respond to a breakthrough.

                  By the end of 1943, the Soviets have built up the tank forces with units allocated to rifle formations for creating the penetration, and separate tank/mech corps as well as tank armies to be used by the operational-level commanders for exploiting the penetration into the operational depth. There were occasions when a forward detachment from these corps and armies would assist in the penetration. This awareness by the OKH in October 1943, was never matched with a corresponding depth in German panzer formations for reserves in the operational depth to match the bulk of tanks pushed through the breaches.

                  It took the Red Army until the operations of summer 1944, to develop sustainment of the advance into the operational depth.
                  Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Originally posted by R.N. Armstrong View Post
                    In para 3, I find the observation "The enemy avoids, apparently from fear of close-combat, close terrain and settlements". It was not "apparently from fear", but rather the Soviet armored forces learned to put armored forces into the operational depth, they needed to by-pass population centers, and centers of resistance if close terrain, that would bog-down the penetrating force, giving time for the German forces to respond to a breakthrough.
                    Frankly, I don't know the language that good to prodice some subtle nuance of translation. Anyway, the meaning behind this part, as I believe, is strictly tactical: tanks either avoid areas with limited observation or seek support of infantry there. The quoted text contains some exotic or even unreliable details (infantry transported in tank hatches) or some anachronistic observations (what were the heavy Soviet tanks in October 1943?). Still I find it interesting since it describes rather cautious and methodical actions very different from Balaklava charges prescribed by Soviet regulations.

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      In para 477, under section: Offensive Against an Inhabited Area, Combat Regulations for Tank and Mechanized Forces, 1944, the regulation notes "When attacking villages tanks are committed under special combat conditions. The tank attack is influenced by limited mobility, limitation of visibility and fields of fire, separate commitment of tank units as well as by obstacles to control. ..."

                      para 478. "As a rule, tanks avoid villages. They must seize the exit and approach roads, if necessary, but also make a direct attack on the village while advancing along the streets."

                      Para 482. "The type of tank commitment is determined by the availability of cover on the approach routes to the village, the type of village defense, and the mission of the tank troops or rifle formation to which the tanks are subordinate."
                      Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        In the Regulation 1944, section: Offensive in wooded Area, para 488. "A tank attack in a forest is characterized by:
                        --limitation of visibility anf fields of fire;
                        --difficulty in finding one's way during movement, when deploying for combat and in other maneuvers;
                        surprise attacks by close combat troops and increased danger from enemy antitank fire and falling into minefields;
                        --increased difficulty in observing friendly units and control."

                        Para 497. "Forested marshland limits the maneuverability of tanks and decreases speed and terrain trafficability."


                        Para 499. "The troop commander, to whom the tanks are subordinate, has to satisfy all the concerns of the tank commanders in securing the tank commitment. He must:
                        --prepare the routes leading to and out of the departure areas;
                        --mark out the attack direction of each tank;
                        --provide each tank with speacial means to enhance trafficability of the terrain(fascine, matting, corduroy carpet, cover shields and beams)."
                        Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          It seems the tactical, as well as the operational level, place emphasis on maneuverability and speed, but those tanks in direct support of infantry and find it necessary in unavoidable terrain situations are not making a "Balakava" charge. By October 1943, Soviet tankers were much more experienced and it is reflected in their combat regulation.
                          Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            It depends. Crews with 2 hours of practical driving and 3 shots fired on training were present even in 1945.
                            There are no Nazis in Ukraine. Idiots

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Originally posted by Emtos View Post
                              It depends. Crews with 2 hours of practical driving and 3 shots fired on training were present even in 1945.
                              Interesting, do you have a source? I'm sure there could be such examples, possibly even at the tanker schools. Still, the leadership, surviving crews and doctrine was more mature than in the summer of 1941 and could work in the green soldiers.
                              Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by R.N. Armstrong View Post

                                Interesting, do you have a source? I'm sure there could be such examples, possibly even at the tanker schools. Still, the leadership, surviving crews and doctrine was more mature than in the summer of 1941 and could work in the green soldiers.
                                http://militera.lib.ru/h/isaev_av7/15.html
                                Прибывшие вместе с новыми танками водители прошли только обучение в учебных танковых полках и имели от 6 до 10 часов практики вождения. При разгрузке с платформ многие из водителей забывали снять горный тормоз, путали передачи. В общем, пополнение производило не лучшее впечатление. Рядом с водителями, прошедшими со своими машинами от Вислы до Одера, а потом до Гдыни, они смотрелись просто детьми.
                                https://rostislavddd.livejournal.com....html#comments
                                По данным отчета командира 41 тбр полковника Корчагина наезд механиков-водителей полученных бригадой тридцатьчетверок составлял всего лишь 3(три) часа. Что еще цветочки на фоне оценки подготовки офицерского состава - " офицерский состав не имел понятия о маневре танка". Как из этого можно догадаться, никакого боевого слаживания танковых взводов и рот в запасных танковых полках реально не производилось, а подготовка наводчиков вряд ли превосходила подготовку мехводов. Что же касается стрелков- радистов, если быть точным радиотелеграфистов-пулеметчиков старших, то три полученные первыми маршевые роты, которыми укомплектовали 1 танковый батальон 41 ТБР капитана К.И.Орловского, имели их только в экипажах командиров взводов и рот, роты принятые позднее - не имели вовсе.
                                There are no Nazis in Ukraine. Idiots

                                Comment

                                Latest Topics

                                Collapse

                                Working...
                                X