On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive move from 25 July to 31 December 1942). Part 2

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

Despite the measures undertaken at stake, the Wehrmacht had sufficient forces for the development of the simultaneous advent as the Baku-Batumi — Part 1 Panzer and 17th Field Army, and for the capture of the passes of the Head of the Caucasus mountain range — parts of the 49th Mountain Corps (of of the 17th Army). In addition, the German troops were stabbed in the direction of Anapa — Novorossiysk. August 19, fled to the coming of the 17th Army in the direction of Novorossiysk. Russian 47th Army, which kept the defense in this direction, was able to reflect the first blow. But on Aug. 28, and the coming of the Wehrmacht resumed on August 31 took Anapa. As a result, the ships of the Azov Flotilla had to break into the Black Sea.

August 23, German troops fled in the direction of coming to Mozdok, then the defense held the 9th Russian army. August 25 Mozdok was captured. Immediately 23rd Panzer Division attacked on August 25, Cold and took it. Subsequent tests by the band Cold break — Ordzhonikidze of success did not bring. Russian troops, using natural barriers made deeply layered defensive line. First, in September, German forces began to force the Terek and took a small bridgehead on the south bank of the river, September 4 German forces 2 tank and two infantry divisions run to the new coming. The Germans had an advantage in artillery here more than 6 times in the tanks and more than 4 times. But do not have gained great success, having suffered heavy losses due to strikes Russian aviation. September 24 began a new German coming in this direction. Strike force was strengthened by the 5th SS Panzer Division "Viking", which was removed from the Tuapse direction. The Germans were advancing in the direction of Ordzhonikidze and along the railroad Cold — Severe across the plain of the river Sunzha to severe. After four days of fierce fighting, the German troops captured the Terek Planovskoe, Elkhotovo, Illarionovku, but then could not get through Malgobek. All of the growing resistance of Russian troops and the great loss suffered in the fighting near Mozdok and Malgobek Elkhotovo, the Wehrmacht was forced onto the defensive. As a result, the Mozdok-Malgobek defensive operation (1-28 September 1942), the German High Command plans to seize Grozny and Baku oil regions were disrupted.

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

Once fought on Grozny direction battle unfolded in the central part of the Head of the Caucasus mountain range. Initially battle evolved obviously not in favor of the Russian forces — part of the 46th Army ZB, which are poorly prepared defense in the foothills. The Wehrmacht forces specially prepared for combat in the mountainous parts of the criteria — the 49th Mountain Corps housing and 2-Romanian mountain infantry divisions, was able to pretty quickly capture almost all of the passes to the west of Mount Elbrus. August 16 was captured by the Kadar Gorge. August 21 German climbers hoisted the Nazi flag at Mt. It did squad captain of the Grotto of the 1st Mountain Division "Edelweiss". Grotto before the war was in Tyrnyauz and ascended to Elbrus as an engineer-miner, he effortlessly manages to explore the area by providing a detailed account of what he saw. Climbers' Edelvesa "became a national hero in Germany, the titles of newspapers were shouting," We — the owners of Europe! Caucasus conquered! .. ". First, in September German troops occupied Marukhi and sancharskie passes. As a result, there was a danger of German troops to Sukhumi and maritime communications.

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

Captain Grotto.

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

August 21, 1942 the Nazis set up their own flag on Mount Elbrus.

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

Novorossiysk defensive operation (from 19 August to 26 September 1942)

At the time, the German forces attacked the approaches to the harsh, Ordzhonikidze (Vladikavkaz), passes the central part of the Caucasus mountain range, unfolded fight for Novorossiysk. The German command planned to capture and then create Novorossiysk on the Black Sea coast coming toward Tuapse — Sukhumi — Batumi. The attack does strike force from the forces of the 17th German Army — 5th Army Corps and the 3rd Romanian Army — Cavalry Corps in the 5th, 6th and 9th Cavalry Divisions. Already in the process operations strike force was strengthened with 3 infantry divisions of the 11th Army, which was transferred through the Kerch Strait.

Russian command for the defense of Novorossiysk and the Taman Peninsula on August 17 was created Novorossiysk defensive area (NOR) under the supervision of Major General GP Kotov (September 8, Major General AA Grechko). Deputy Kotova Marine was appointed commander of the Azov Flotilla Rear Admiral SG Gorshkov. The structure of the IIA included: 47th army, one infantry division from the 56th Army, the Azov Flotilla, Temryuk, Kerch, Novorossiysk naval base and a summary of the aviation group (of 237 th Air Division and connecting the Black Sea Fleet Air Force). Efforts were made to build a strong line of defense, but by the time the German Advent has been implemented only the smallest part of the activities. Troops NOR, bloodless battles in the past, giving up the Wehrmacht: in manpower in 4 times, artillery and mortars 7 times, the tanks and aircraft in 2 times.

August 19 Wehrmacht crossed coming, striking out towards Abinskaya, Crimea. Supporting strikes were aimed at Temruk and the Taman Peninsula, where the defense kept the numerically small Russian garrison. After fierce battles, of the 47th Army and Marine Corps by August 25, stopped the enemy, not allowing him to go grab Novorossiysk. August 29, having received reinforcements from the direc
tion of Tuapse, the Germans resumed their coming at the cost of huge losses on August 31 took Anapa and went to the coast, cutting off part of the Russian troops on the Taman peninsula. September 3 encircled units were evacuated by sea in Gelendzhik. September 7 Wehrmacht made their way to Novorossiysk, began a ruthless street fighting. The Germans seized the railway station, grain elevator and port. By September 11, the price of the tremendous effort, the enemy was stopped in the south-eastern part of the town. Fighting for Novorossiysk lasted until September 26, the city was almost one hundred percent destroyed. But the German troops were unable to break through to the Tuapse along the coast, and ran over to the defense. The plan coming along the coast of the Black Sea was frustrated.

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

As a result, the second step of the coming German (August 19 — September 29, 1942), the German army won a series of victories, has seized the Taman Peninsula, Head out to the foothills of the Caucasus mountain range, taking some of his passes. But in general reddish Army was able to withstand strong pressure and stop the coming of the enemy and not give him a break on the South Caucasus, to seize parts of the Terrible and Baku to take over the coast of the Black Sea from Novorossiysk to Batumi. The balance of forces in the Caucasus evenly began to change in favor of the Red Army. It promotes and transfer a significant part of the German troops at Stalingrad. German forces suffered heavy losses in people, technology, and were exhausted fighting, has lost some offensive power.

Rate continued to exert an enormous focus on the Caucasus. August 23 from Moscow arrived in Tbilisi term T-bills Beria. He spent a substitute for a number of responsible managers and front-line army control. Steps were taken to improve air reconnaissance. A great deal of work on development of fortifications — defense units, supporting Fri, bunkers, trenches and anti-tank ditches, fencing systems — for the preparation of the collapse of the rocks, the destruction of roads and flooding on the major passes on the Military-Ossetian and Georgian Military Road. On the main crossover routes and roads have been made commandant, who had a total of sappers, the radio station. To counter bypass enemy action were formed special squads of up to companies, reinforced by sappers who could quickly cut off the enemy's probable breakthrough. Also created some mountain infantry troops, numbering company — a battalion, with instructors, climbers, they were sent to the most inaccessible areas, those paths that do not have the ability to reliably cover up, blew up. September 1 Stavka decided in principle organizational decision — the North Caucasus and Transcaucasia were united fronts. The United Front was the title of the Transcaucasus. Management GFR became a base for the Black Sea Group of the Transcaucasian Front. This greatly increased the stability of the Russian defense in the maritime sector of the front.

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

Group aircraft Il-2 of the 7th Guards Ground Attack Aviation Regiment 230th Air Division in the air assault. On the frontal plane Il-2 Captain VB Emelianenko coming Hero Russian Union. North-Caucasian Front.

The failure of the German Advent

Tuapsinskaya defensive operation (from 25 September to 20 December 1942). German command post disaster operations to break through to the South Caucasus in August — September 1942, decided to force the 17th Army under the supervision of Colonel-General Richard Ruoff (more than 162 thousand people, 2,266 guns and mortars, 147 tanks and assault guns, and 350 combat aircraft), again to strike at Tuapse. The defense then held the Black Sea Force Colonel General J. T. Cherevichenko (October ruled the defense Lieutenant General Ivan Petrov), it included the 18th, 56th and 47th Army 5th Air Army ( the number of troops — 109 thousand people, 1152 guns and mortars, 71 aircraft). In addition, there was created a defensive Tuapse district.

On 25 September, after a two-day air strikes and artillery barrage, the German troops fled in coming. Main attack group "Tuapse" (It includes the mountain division and legkopehotnye parts) from Neftegorskaya and auxiliary blow was delivered — from Fry's Key, the Germans were advancing on converging fronts on Shahumian. The purpose of coming was the ambiance and the destruction of the 18th Russian Army Lieutenant — General FV Kamkov, blocking the Black Sea Group of Russian Troops, deprivation of the Black Sea Fleet bases and ports. By September 30, the German-Romanian forces were able to wedge in some areas of defense of the 18th and 56th Armies of 5-10 km. There was a risk of falling Tuapse. Russian commanders organized a series of counter-attacks, and on October 9 the German coming was stopped. In these battles, the Germans lost more than 10 thousand people.

October 14 the German group "Tuapse" renewed offensive. The German troops were applied simultaneous attacks on Shahumyan village gardens. October 17, the Germans captured Shahumian, 56th Army was making the room, there was a threat to the environment of the 18th Army. But the Black Sea group received reinforcements, it changed the balance of power in this regard, on October 23, German troops were stopped, and October 31, fled to the defense.

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

Lookout mountain rangers in the mountains of the Caucasus.

German command brought the reserves and in the middle of November, the Wehrmacht began the third coming on the Tuapse direction, trying to break through the village of St. George Tuapse. The enemy managed to penetrate the defense of the 18th Army of up to 8 km in depth. But this success the German-Romanian forces ended. Strong resistance to Russian troops forced the Germans the brakes. Already 26 November 18th Army defected in coming, striking with 2 strike groups. As at 17 December the German-Romanian group in this area has been broken and thrown across the river Pshish. A huge role in these battles played Aviation — Aircraft 5 th Air Force shot down and killed by a car on the ground 131 enemy active role in the operation took coastal artillery, the Black Sea Fleet and Marine Corps. As a result of this operation to attempt to break the Germans Tuapse was disrupted, the Wehrmacht suffered huge losses and went on the defensive on the whole front of the Transcaucasian Front Black Sea.

On the 70th
anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

Nalchik Ordzhonikidzevskaia-defense operation (October 25 — November 12, 1942). By October 25, the German command was able to secretly regroup 1st Panzer Army and to concentrate its main forces (two tank and one motorized division) on Nalchik direction. The Germans planned to take Ordzhonikidze, then to develop in the direction of the coming severe — Baku and the Georgian Military Highway to Tbilisi.

Then the defense held Northern Group of Forces Lieutenant General II Maslennikov, 9th, 37th, 44th and 58th armies, two separate infantry and one cavalry corps. From the air, the group supported the 4th Air Army. The command of the Northern Group, missed training opponent to the punch, although exploration of the 9th and the 37th Army denunciation of suspicious troop movements of the enemy. Thought that the Germans attach defensive orders. Russian commanders at that time itself has been training for the counter-offensive Malgobekskaya Mozdok-direction (at the site of the 9th Army), where he focused the main forces and reserves. On the strip of Nalchik — Ordzhonikidze defense held weakened past battles and has no tanks, the 37th Army. Therefore, the German command was able to make a 6-kilometer stretch an advantage capable of tremendous breakthrough: a 3-fold in men, 10 times in guns and mortars, tanks from Russian side did not.

Afternoon of October 25, after heavy air and artillery preparation, the German troops fled in coming. The defense of the 37th Army had been broken: October 28 Germans captured Nalchik, and on November 2 broke through the outer defensive line of Ordzhonikidze district, to the final day or capturing Giesel (a suburb of Ordzhonikidze). Russian commanders to stabilize the situation on the Ordzhonikidze direction redeployed some troops from the area of the Terrible. On November 3-4, the Germans concentrated near Gisela up to 150 tanks and tried to develop a success, but of success not have gained. November 5th Russian troops their counterattacks forced the Wehrmacht to defend.

For the German troops in the area Gisela there was a threat environment. Russian commanders took advantage of the moment and the beginning of November 6 counteroffensive, trying to block gizelskuyu group. November 11, Giselle was released, the German group was defeated, was thrown across the river Fiagdon. German troops surround failed, but was thwarted by the Wehrmacht's last attempt to break through to the harsh, Baku, and the South Caucasus.

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

After the end of the Nalchik-Ordzhonikidzevskya defensive operation, Russian commanders organized a counter-attack on the Mozdok direction. November 13 went to advent of the 9th Army. But break through the defense of the German troops failed, Russian troops were only able to break into the German order of a few kilometers, reaching the eastern Preserving the Ardon River and Fiagdon. In late November and early December 1942 troops of the 9th Army repeated the tests coming, but they also did not have of success. In the end, coming to Mozdok direction was postponed until early January 1943.

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

Russian tanker on captured German tank Pz.Kpfw IV Vladikavkaz (at the time — Ordzhonikidze).

Results of a defensive battle for the Caucasus step

During the first step of the battle for the Caucasus, which took place from July to December 1942, the Wehrmacht was headed for great success: were captured by the rich agricultural area of the Don and Kuban, Taman Peninsula, part of the North Caucasus, Head out to the foothills of the Caucasus mountain range, mastering the part passes. But in general, German plan "Edelweiss" was a flop. German forces failed to capture the oil-producing areas of the Terrible and Baku to break into the Caucasus, the Black Sea to take directly to the Turkish border, setting a specific contact with the Turkish troops. Turkey has not acted on the side of Germany. German-Romanian forces suffered heavy losses — about 100 thousand people, the strike group was bled dry. Russian troops completed the main task — to suspend the coming of the enemy on all fronts. The German troops were stopped east of Mozdok, on the outskirts of Ordzhonikidze (Vladikavkaz), mountain passes, the Head of the ridge, in the south-eastern part of Novorossiisk. From Tuapse German-Romanian forces were pushed back.

One of the basic premises of why the German coming in the Caucasus is not headed for its own purposes, it was spraying forces. The German military and political control became more attention to the battle for Stalingrad, was transferred to the 4th Panzer Army and the 3rd Romanian Army. In December, in connection with the German defeat at Stalingrad groups, with the direction of the Caucasus were filmed several German military units, which further weakened the Army Group "A". In the end, the beginning of 1943, Russian troops in the Caucasus have eclipsed the Wehrmacht in numbers of personnel as well as in the art weapons.

One must also take into account the factor of a lot of attention of the General Staff Headquarters and the Caucasus, he also played a huge role in the failure of plans for the German command. Great attention was paid to the restoration of stability of the system of command and control and measures for its improvement. In addition, despite the difficult situation in other parts of the Soviet-German front, the rate of VCG Caucasus has constantly strengthened the freshest troops. Only from July to October 1942 was transferred to the Caucasian front of about 100 thousand people marching replenishment, a significant number of military units, special units, vehicles and weapons.

It should be noted that the fighting in the Caucasus took place in the mountainous terrain of specific criteria that sought by the Red Army development of special forms and methods of struggle against the enemy. Was improved organization and units, created special mountain troops. Parts were reinforced engineering units engineering controls to mountain equipment, vehicles, including a pack got more radio stations. In the process of fighting the enemy got a huge development cooperation with the Army of the Black Sea Fleet and Azov Flotilla. Ships covered ground forces from the flanks, supported the defense and attack the fire naval and coastal artillery, produced anti-landing activities. Of the crew formed connections Marines who covered themselves with immortal glory in the battle for the Caucasus. In addition, the Black Sea Fleet, Azov, the Volga and the Caspian Flotilla played a huge role in the delivery of reinforcements, military cargo, evacuation of the wounded, civilian officials and real values. Thus, during the second half of 1942, the ships and vessels carried more than 200 thousand
people, 250 thousand tons of various cargoes. Russian sailors sank 51 enemy ship, a total displacement of 120 tons.

On the 70th anniversary of the Battle for the Caucasus (defensive phase from July 25 to December 31, 1942).  Part 2

In November 1942, the Wehrmacht offensive ability in the Caucasus were to a large extent exhausted, and the activity of the Red Army on the contrary increased. A turning point in the battle for the Caucasus. The strategic initiative in the Caucasus part of the Soviet-German front was the cross in the hands of the Russian command.

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