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Lt General Pavel Belov. WW 2 mag article

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  • Lt General Pavel Belov. WW 2 mag article

    Proved Horses were not thing of the past during winter while german tanks were snowed in. Tied up 7 German divisions, raised havoc behind german lines, & made it back to Russian lines.



    Pavel Belov, General
    (1897-1962)

    Belov was born in 1897 in Shuya village, Vladimir region. A son of an employee, he graduated from primary college and had to start working early because of his father’s death. In 1916 he joined a hussar regiment, and in 1918 – Red Army. The Civil war he finished as a commander of a cavalry troop. In 1933 Belov graduated from the Frunze Military Academy.

    Major-General Belov met the Great patriotic war in Bessarabia as the Commander of 2nd Cavalry Corps. In stubborn fightings Belov’s cavalry did the best to contain the enemy, but had to retreat from the Prut River to Belgorod. Then Belov’s cavalry was transferred to Moscow area. In 1941 Belov’s Corps played a large part in crushing the Germans in Tula direction. The Army of Guderian was smashed by Belov’s Guards Corps, reinforced with tank and rifle divisions. Soviet troops, commanded by Belov, not only stopped the Germans but also threw the enemy back to the south. Successful offensive actions of Belov’s cavalry helped 50th Army to defend Tula. The attacks of Belov’s Corps and following counter-offensives of the West front Armies weakened the Guderian’s army and the Germans were not able to renew the attacks Moscow and Tula.

    In 1942 Belov has been appointed the Commander of 61st Army. He led his army from Orel to Berlin. Boldness of plans, resoluteness and persistence of their realizations were typical of Belov’s operations. Belov worked for taking care of his people, taught them to fight prudently. Belov was given the rank of the Hero of Soviet Union; he was rewarded with medals and orders. After the war Belov was at the head of commands, led the Voluntary Association of Assistance to Army, Aviation and Fleet.

    Belov died in Moscow in 1962.
    Last edited by Purple fang; 21 Jul 07, 13:31.

  • #2
    The attacks of Belov’s Corps and following counter-offensives of the West front Armies weakened the Guderian’s army and the Germans were not able to renew the attacks Moscow and Tula.


    This is quite a statement. The question of "did he save Moscow"? arises.

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    • #3
      His exploits were quite interesting, one thing that has always bothered me was how well Dovator would have done if he had survived to finish the war. Pliev also did an excellent job in command of a cavalry mechanized group later on in the war.
      "This isn't Paris, you will not get through here with a Marching Parade!" Defenders of Stalingrad
      "Man is the only animal that deals in that atrocity of atrocities, War. He is the only one that gathers his brethren about him and goes forth in cold blood and calm pulse to exterminate his kind. He is the only animal that for sordid wages will march out... and help to slaughter strangers of his own species who have done him no harm and with whom he has no quarrel.... And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood off his hands and works for "the universal brotherhood of man" - with his mouth". Mark Twain
      "It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.” Voltaire

      Comment


      • #4
        When I think of the cavalry commanders, Pliev comes to mind as the top candidate. He finished the war leading a cav-mech group in the Manchurian Campaign.

        How the cav-mech corps were tactically and operationally employed is interesting--they leveraged poor terrain to facilitate the advance of other forces. Pliev was known among the German commanders and they were aware when he was in their sector.

        rna
        Last edited by R.N. Armstrong; 21 Jul 07, 14:18.
        Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

        Comment


        • #5
          Upon reflection, I cannot understand why WWII would highlight Belov versus Pliev for the cavalry dimension. Pliev was Twice a Hero of the Soviet Union.

          Began the war as a Colonel, cdr 50th Cav Div. Conducted raids, 300 kms in swamp area near Smolensk. In November '41 he Cav division was redesignated 3rd Gds Cav Div. In Dec 41, he commanded the 2nd Gds Cav Corps with a tank brigade and 5 ski battalions.

          In Jan 42, his corps in the Western Front operated with the 20th Army. As cdr of the 5th GCC at Kharkov May 1942, he was caught in the encirclement and got out!!! He fought on the southern flank against the 14th and 16th Pz Divs.

          Aug 42 cdr 3rd GCC, 63rd Army, fought around Stalingrad.

          I don't have an immediate handle on where he was in 1943.
          Does receive his first Hero of the SU in April '44.
          In June '44, he has a Casv-Mech group consisting of the 4th GCC and 1st GMC in the lst Belorussian Front.

          Cmds the 1st Gds Cav_mech Group January '45, receives his second Hero that month.

          Participates in the Budapest operation with 6th GTA.

          And as mentioned previously, led his cav-mech group in the Transbaikal Front in the Manchurian Campaign.

          Post-war he rose to command the Northern Caucasus MD from 1958 - 1968.
          rna
          Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

          Comment


          • #6
            I think Cavalry Mechanized groups were a very smart creation on the part of the Red Army, especially considering the terrain conditions they found themselves in throughout a large portion of the campaign. Yet, can you recall who lead other Cav Mech groups? I'm more than sure there was more than one.
            "This isn't Paris, you will not get through here with a Marching Parade!" Defenders of Stalingrad
            "Man is the only animal that deals in that atrocity of atrocities, War. He is the only one that gathers his brethren about him and goes forth in cold blood and calm pulse to exterminate his kind. He is the only animal that for sordid wages will march out... and help to slaughter strangers of his own species who have done him no harm and with whom he has no quarrel.... And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood off his hands and works for "the universal brotherhood of man" - with his mouth". Mark Twain
            "It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.” Voltaire

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Kunikov View Post
              I think Cavalry Mechanized groups were a very smart creation on the part of the Red Army, especially considering the terrain conditions they found themselves in throughout a large portion of the campaign. Yet, can you recall who lead other Cav Mech groups? I'm more than sure there was more than one.
              Agree, the cav-mech corps was an example of Russian pragmatism. The cav-mech groups did not start to form until summer of 1943 and did not take off until mid-1944. It seems during this period there were a number of commitments of cav corps and mech/tank corps in tandem without a designated commander and staff--the command and control must have come from Front staff. But when expenditure was made for a cav-mech group with cdr and staff some of the better known commanders were Filippov, M.I. Kazakov, V.V. Kryukov, S.V. Sokolov and S.I. Gorshkov. Probably the best overview for cavalry and cav-mech operations is Soshnikov's "Sovetskaya Kavaleriya",M: Voenizdat, 1984.

              rna
              Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

              Comment


              • #8
                That makes sense, in 1943 I can still see the Red Army experimenting with formations like a cavalry mech group to see what it could accomplish. And creating them on the spot, for an upcoming operation, from the front staff would be the way to go.
                "This isn't Paris, you will not get through here with a Marching Parade!" Defenders of Stalingrad
                "Man is the only animal that deals in that atrocity of atrocities, War. He is the only one that gathers his brethren about him and goes forth in cold blood and calm pulse to exterminate his kind. He is the only animal that for sordid wages will march out... and help to slaughter strangers of his own species who have done him no harm and with whom he has no quarrel.... And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood off his hands and works for "the universal brotherhood of man" - with his mouth". Mark Twain
                "It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.” Voltaire

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Kunikov View Post
                  That makes sense, in 1943 I can still see the Red Army experimenting with formations like a cavalry mech group to see what it could accomplish. And creating them on the spot, for an upcoming operation, from the front staff would be the way to go.
                  In fact, Pliev had a short role as Deputy cdr in an early 5th TA configuration, so he was in on the ground floor with the early experimentation.
                  Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by R.N. Armstrong View Post
                    In fact, Pliev had a short role as Deputy cdr in an early 5th TA configuration, so he was in on the ground floor with the early experimentation.
                    Very interesting, it also explains how he was able to control both mech and cavalry formations.
                    "This isn't Paris, you will not get through here with a Marching Parade!" Defenders of Stalingrad
                    "Man is the only animal that deals in that atrocity of atrocities, War. He is the only one that gathers his brethren about him and goes forth in cold blood and calm pulse to exterminate his kind. He is the only animal that for sordid wages will march out... and help to slaughter strangers of his own species who have done him no harm and with whom he has no quarrel.... And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood off his hands and works for "the universal brotherhood of man" - with his mouth". Mark Twain
                    "It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.” Voltaire

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Kunikov View Post
                      Very interesting, it also explains how he was able to control both mech and cavalry formations.
                      When his 2nd GCC had a tank bde and five ski bns, I think the commander and his staff had to have an agile mind-set to coordinate and execute a mission with horses, tanks, and skiers. And, since that was in Dec 1941, they had to do it with minimal radio communications capability. Consequently, the rates of flow of the troops and the rates of flow of information between echelons and among formations were ingredients for chaos. Pliev was probably the perfect figure when they began working the new tank armies and using cavalry units with tank formations.
                      Last edited by R.N. Armstrong; 22 Jul 07, 15:16.
                      Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by R.N. Armstrong View Post
                        When his 2nd GCC had a tank bde and five ski bns, I think the commander and his staff had to have an agile mind-set to coordinate and execute a mission with horses, tanks, and skiers. And, since that was in Dec 1941, they had to do it with minimal radio communications capability. Consequently, the rates of flow of the troops and the rates of flow of information between echelons and among formations were ingredients for chaos. Pliev was probably the perfect figure when they began working the new tank armies and using cavalry units with tank formations.
                        Perhaps your next book should be on Cavalry Mechanized units and their effects on the war on the Eastern Front ?
                        "This isn't Paris, you will not get through here with a Marching Parade!" Defenders of Stalingrad
                        "Man is the only animal that deals in that atrocity of atrocities, War. He is the only one that gathers his brethren about him and goes forth in cold blood and calm pulse to exterminate his kind. He is the only animal that for sordid wages will march out... and help to slaughter strangers of his own species who have done him no harm and with whom he has no quarrel.... And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood off his hands and works for "the universal brotherhood of man" - with his mouth". Mark Twain
                        "It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.” Voltaire

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Kunikov View Post
                          Perhaps your next book should be on Cavalry Mechanized units and their effects on the war on the Eastern Front ?
                          If not a good article somewhere, maybe ACG with a front cover photo of Pliev in his cossack dress.
                          Leadership is the ability to rise above conventional wisdom.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by R.N. Armstrong View Post
                            If not a good article somewhere, maybe ACG with a front cover photo of Pliev in his cossack dress.
                            As pointed out I'm also quite interested in Dovator's career...a good book on Soviet cavalry operations, cavalry formations and their commanders would probably be well received as well. A sub topic would undoubtedly be the Cavalry Mech Groups later deployed in the war.
                            "This isn't Paris, you will not get through here with a Marching Parade!" Defenders of Stalingrad
                            "Man is the only animal that deals in that atrocity of atrocities, War. He is the only one that gathers his brethren about him and goes forth in cold blood and calm pulse to exterminate his kind. He is the only animal that for sordid wages will march out... and help to slaughter strangers of his own species who have done him no harm and with whom he has no quarrel.... And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood off his hands and works for "the universal brotherhood of man" - with his mouth". Mark Twain
                            "It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.” Voltaire

                            Comment

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