How can you resist the shock of the enemy, if he has already started coming? If you have not guessed the direction of impact, or defense can not stand? A more effective means against the advancing enemy counter-attacks are the flanks.
Such a strategy practiced the Wehrmacht and of the Red Army in the duration of the war. Choosing between a passive defense and coming, we must realize that it is a choice between the waste of effort and ability in defense and their ability to izderzhat, having received the opportunity to win in the coming of the enemy.
And success coming, counterattacks and defense is dependent on the density of troops and competent conducting campaigns — the talent, experience, skills management. When there is no solid defense, can carry so-called. "Deterrent effect", a good-quality examples of such actions are slugging 316 Panfilov Division (later the 8th Guards Division). Division defended not a solid front, and the directions of the road. She exhibited the barrier, the Germans stopped unfolded order, thrashed, found rather weak position, pressed forward, part of the division departed for the next limit. The Wehrmacht lost time. Since 1075 the regiment fought divisions 16-18 October 1941: at the time of impact Wehrmacht continuous trench dug first, second, discontinuous, height and localities prepared for radial defense, put 4,000 rpm, 4 km dug anti-tank ditch. First blow regiment stood on the subsequent day the Wehrmacht found a rather weak spot and broke through the defense, the regiment retreated to a new limit, which made the other parts of the division. Division could not stop the enemy, but held back his head, the enemy was losing time and resources.
The experience of the First World War
It is generally believed that the First World War the defense was stronger coming. But it is not quite so, the problem was not a breakthrough defense — and it broke through the Germans on the Western and Eastern fronts, and the troops of the Entente. The problem was the development of the operational tactical breakthrough. Breaking through a gap in the enemy's defense, it was necessary to enter the operating room, but so far applied to many hours of artillery strike, dolamyvali resistance divisions defending this stretch, the enemy pulled up reserves inflicted counterattacks. The coming of steam.
Thus, the coming of the Germans in Verdun 9:00 loaded artillery strikes, for the 4th day or later broke through the 1 st and 2 nd line of defense the French, but then came the French reserves, and the coming of the German ran out of steam. But at the end of the war found new ways to break the enemy's defenses — the tanks and assault groups. In May 1918, in the Chemin des Dames artillery strike reduced to 2 hours and 40 minutes, and entered into combat assault groups, the front broke through for 10 days at 78 km in length and depth of 60 km.
Assault groups were selected to positions of the enemy, they threw grenades, flamethrowers burned. They seeped deep into the enemy's defense, attack from the flanks and rear destroy pockets of resistance. In other words, the development of breakthrough strong defense was worked out in the First World War.
In the 30 years the Germans completed the strategy of the assault groups armored units and regimental artillery. It is clear that by the second world war have increased dramatically the ability of aircraft, it is now also able to apply the defensive side of significant harm.
Army received funds not only to break the defense, and to enter the operating room. Unexpected blow artillery, aircraft, tanks blow broke through the defense. Injected into the breach independent armored, motorized units, be successfully used and "obsolete" cavalry units, they have the strength to deal with the enemy reserves, using the advantage of agility and initiative. Artillery, as in the First World War was still the primary means of oppression defense, that's why it was called "the god of war." Without artillery tanks could not operate perfectly, breaking through the enemy's defenses.
Shot of the heavy German 240-mm howitzers at the positions of the Russian troops in the area Perekopa.
Examples of relevant activities of the Red Army offensive
A number of operations of the Red Army were unsuccessful in terms tasks that were formulated in the orders, but it did not prevent them to break some plans of the enemy.
— At the end of September 1941 the Wehrmacht commanders decided to focus on the complete capture of the Crimea, replacing the German troops on the front of the Dnieper to the Sea of Azov in the main Romanian divisions. Mountain Corps L. Kuebler began a march towards the Crimea, our southern front of the 9th and 18th armies at this time struck, the Romanian division did not survive the impact. To restore the position of the body had to be returned, eventually the body stuck in the Nogai steppe. It got the best of Sevastopol, the fighting around the town ran across the stage position, the Germans did not have the strength to break the resistance of defending the city parts.
— Acts of the 2nd Shock Army of Leningrad got enough fame thanks to her commander — Vlasov. The main problem of the troops defending Leningrad was shortage of forces and means for defense, although a narrow front favored the defense. But in order to keep the city running smoothly needed to stuff their ammunition, food, etc. Abilities "Road of Life" was limited.
Leningrad and Volkhov fronts constrained significant forces of the Wehrmacht, the Germans wanted to free up for other operations. Command of the Wehrmacht was preparing an operation to capture Leningrad: Hitler's directive number 45 dated 23 July 1942 Army Group "North". According to her assault had to finish no later than the beginning of September. In support of the Army Group "North" stood 11th Army stein, freed after the assault on Sevastopol. Her relax and recharge after transferred to the North. The operation was the title of "Northern Lights."
The military council has prepared a plan for the Volkhov Front Sinyavinskaya operation. The main role was to play tribute to the 8th Army, supporting — 2nd Shock Army. August 27, she began Reddish Army broke through the defenses of the 18th German Army, Manstein instead of the assault on Leningrad had to recover the situation, to the south of Lake Ladoga battle unfolded. In the course of the coming of the languid fighting the Red Army halted, after the arrival of the other divisions of the 11th Army Germans launched a counteroffensive. It was organized from the north and from the south, wedged to cut t
roops by September 21, the Wehrmacht managed to surround the part of the Red Army. An attempt to release as a diversionary strike Leningrad front, repelled. Not encircled were sitting on the ground and assaulted while trying to break through. To kill them in the thick forests, the Wehrmacht had to pull away from Leningrad artillery and aviation. By the 2nd October fighting in the boiler have been completed.
The Wehrmacht successfully parried, the 2nd Shock Army was destroyed, but the division of the 11th Army Manstein suffered significant losses, spent a large part of ammunition, which were intended for the assault of Leningrad.
Russian commanders, according to the memoirs of the control operation Sinyavinskaya K. Meretskov, did not realize that the Wehrmacht was preparing an operation to storm the Leningrad did not understand about the transfer of significant forces from the Crimean peninsula, focusing on additional large air force and artillery. In general and the command of the Wehrmacht did not understand about the upcoming Russian operations. Both sides were able to keep their plans secret, using measures of misinformation, masking, covertly moving forces.
Beat the 11th German Army was likely to be fatal in Leningrad. Storm of Leningrad was averted strike Volkhov front, with such tasks was not offensive prepared in a common plane of the Red Army's offensive strategy.
After this battle the 11th Army were transferred to the South, there was heavy fighting.
To sum up: passive act army disastrous for her, even break through the strong defense and develop offensive. Command of the Red Army in the years 1941-1943 made true that the counter-attacked and pursued the offensive act. Another issue that is often not strong enough, smart enough to develop a success or attach. It was the realization that every effort should strive to seize the strategic initiative. Defensive strategy is disastrous in terms of morale, it keeps the fighter and commander in "limbo" state of uncertainty. Suffice it to recall the Russian army in 1812 — she sought the battlefield, complete retreat. All our best (Sviatoslav, Alexander Nevsky, A. Suvorov, Ushakov, etc.) and not ours (Hannibal, Alexander the Great, Napoleon) military leaders prefer coming defense.
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