By Timothy A. Wray, Combat Studies Institute
This learn examines the evolution of the German Army’s shielding doctrine at the Russian entrance from 1941 to 1945. It starts off via reviewing prewar doctrine as expressed in German box manuals journals. German protective strategies are then traced during the battle, with specific emphasis upon the weather of continuity in German doctrine. This doctrinal evolution is tested in 3 degrees: what substantives adjustments happened, why these adjustments built, and the equipment during which the adjustments have been implement inside of German devices. fundamental assets consulted during this research contain wartime courses of the German military excessive Command (OKH), unit after-action reviews, and different doctrinal fabrics within the German army files assortment, nationwide files.
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This research examines the evolution of the German Army’s shielding doctrine at the Russian entrance from 1941 to 1945. It starts via reviewing prewar doctrine as expressed in German box manuals journals. German protecting ideas are then traced through the warfare, with specific emphasis upon the weather of continuity in German doctrine.
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Additional info for Standing Fast: German Defensive Doctrine On The Russian Front During World War Ii
Also, Army Group Center’s front line trace was defined by its recent offensive advances and therefore was unlikely to provide many terrain advantages for defense. Furthermore, Bock’s warning that no logistical provisions had been made for a prolonged defense were shortly affirmed in battle: German forces lacked the stockpiles of supplies and ammunition necessary for sustained positional warfare. Bock’s worst fears came to pass on 21 August when Hitler stripped Army Group Center of most of its mobile divisions in order to support the attacks toward Leningrad and Kiev.
17 Even though the infantry advance was rapid, infantry units did not receive the same kind of protection from Soviet counterattacks that mobility provided for motorized units. From the beginning of the campaign, Soviet counterblows were almost a daily occurrence for German infantry units. r8 To supply additional protective fire for German infantry units on the march, artillery batteries of various calibers were spaced throughout the march columns. By providing responsive fire support to nearby units, these batteries simplified the otherwise complex problem of fire control for scattered, moving, and occasionally intermixed infantry forces.
A battalion commander in the 238th Infantry Regiment noted that the strength and accuracy of Soviet fire precluded a11 efforts to extend German entrenchments by day, while the necessity of guarding against Soviet infiltration at night prevented the formation of nocturnal work parties. 7” Unable to rely to any great extent on the Elastic Defense principles of depth and local counterattack, the Germans were also hampered in their attempts to shrivel Russian attacks with firepower. 77 With artillery rounds in short supply, the Germans could not afford to conduct counterbattery fire or even counterpreparations against suspected enemy attack concentrations.
Standing Fast: German Defensive Doctrine On The Russian Front During World War Ii by Timothy A. Wray, Combat Studies Institute