Kiev Defence Operation as a factor

Discussion in 'The Eastern Front' started by Gerard, May 3, 2006.

  1. AMVAS

    AMVAS Senior Member

    Amazing that 50,000 troops can be considered a fraction.o_O

    I meant 2,742,881 men in the RKKA in action
    and the other figure was given for the units, which were not engaged in combat (inner and Eastern military districts)
  2. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Back to Keiv and the turn away from Moscow.
    Brian Taylor in "Barbarossa to Berlin" Vol 1 says Hitler was right to defeat the enemy army.
    He says Hitler spread his forces so thin they could only achieve one target at the expense of others. Germany lacked adequate reserves for both operations and targets they set themselves.

    I still think they were right to destroy the army in the field. Once they had done that the the advance to the capital should be easy, look at France.

    Just that the Russians in 1941 weren't the French in 1940.
  3. AMVAS

    AMVAS Senior Member


    I still think they were right to destroy the army in the field. Once they had done that the the advance to the capital should be easy, look at France.

    Just that the Russians in 1941 weren't the French in 1940.

    Yes, destroying of armed forces is more impotant than capturing territory. Indeed if there are no army taking territory is only a matter of time.

  4. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Just got to this bit in Panzer Leader by Heinz Guderian.
    He says that he and most of the German Army were ready to go to Moscow and didn't want to turn towards kiev.
    They expected him to advance with worn out units that needed re-enforcments, rest and repair.
    What's more they took the XLVI Panzer Korps away from his Panzer Group which weakened his over stretched force.
    Guderian gives a good explaination on why they should have carried on to Moscow.
  5. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Revisiting an old thread, I know.
    Just re-reading Barbarossa by Glantz.
    He mentions that the fighting around Smolensk had an impact on Hitler , causing him to rethink his plans.
    As the Soviets put up such a strong resistance to the advance by Army Group Centre & the Moscow axis the Germans then would make it's main effort north to Leningrad & Kiev in the south.
  6. Gerard

    Gerard Seelow/Prora

    As the Soviets put up such a strong resistance to the advance by Army Group Centre & the Moscow axis the Germans then would make it's main effort north to Leningrad & Kiev in the south.
    Is this before the commencement of Operation Typhoon?
  7. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    One of the points you have to consider is the geo-political factor in regards to the Ukraine, when the Germans arrived they were greeted as liberators in many cases - only to throw the political advantage away by their treatment of the locals through the German political ideology. In the 20's and 30s there had been much represssion in the Ukraine by the Soviets who were classed by many as an occupying force.
  8. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Can find the exact page where I read that but just found this on page 141 on Glantz Barbarossa.

    Pursuant to Hitler's directive , on 16th September Bock, the commander of Army Group Centre , issued his directive for the capture of Moscow and assigned the codename 'Typhoon' to the operation. While Hitler orderd two thrusts toward Moscow (by Third and Fourth Panzer Groups) , Bock capitalized on the recent Kiev victory by adding a third , an advance by Guderian's Second Panzer Group from Shotska through Orel towards Moscow from the southeast. Guderian's thrust offered the opportunity to carry out a second major encirclement operation against Soviet forces deployed in the Briansk region . If successful , the three-pronged advance would completely liquidate all three Red Army Fronts (Western, Reserve and Briansk) defending the approaches to Moscow , leaving the city utterly defenceless.
  9. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Going back to Smolensk for a moment, just looked this up in When Titans Clashed by Glantz & House page 61.

    As a vivid illustration of increasingly tenacious Soviet resistance along the Smolnsk-Moscow axis , beginning on 30 August , Soviet forces delievered incessant blows against the German's El'na bridgehead, finally forcing them to relinquish the position by 8 September.
    In September , in part because of the growing Soviet resistance on the Moscow axis, the main German effort turned south to clear the Ukraine....

    The momentum of the Blitzkrieg was slipping away, not only because of the hesitation of the German high command but also because of the stubborn resistance of the Soviet troops.
  10. Gerard

    Gerard Seelow/Prora

    Exactly!! Well said Owen. What is sometimes lost in the whole story of Barbarossa was the resistance of the Soviet Troops. Guderian and Kershaw both describe the hard fighting in an effort to close the Kiev Pocket. They didnt simply give up. They made the Germans pay for all the victories they gained.
  11. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Hot air manufacturer

    Ooooh, a Zombie Thread :D I'm at work so I can't contribute much. Let me just say that the hundreds of thousands of casualties (will get the figure later) the Wehrmacht suffered in Barbarossa were not caused by boredom.
  12. L J

    L J Senior Member

    the Germans were already that weakened at the end of august,that an advance to Moscow was impossible(whatever Guderian may argue,btw ,when he was writing in 1951 PL,the aim was to prove that,if Hitler had listened to him,Germany could win the war :very classic)
    the Germans had lost
    in june :41000
    in july:165000
    in august :190000
    =in 10 weeks :400000 men + some 100000 sick .
    They also had lost 1200 tanks(only 100 were replaced),25000 trucks,135000 horses,some 2100 ATG,11000 MG,12000 MP,...
    And the production ? Disastrous
    For the MG the deficit (to the losses) was 11%%,for the 3.7cmPAK :90 %,
  13. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    70 years ago Kiev itself was taken by units of the 6 Armee.
    Just thought I'd bump this thread to remind us what was going on in the East 70 years ago.
  14. stolpi

    stolpi Well-Known Member

    I'm about to delve into Glantz' two Volume "Barbarossa Derailed, the battle for Smolensk 10 July - 10 Sept 1941".

    Any thoughts about this work?
  15. Gerard

    Gerard Seelow/Prora

    I haven't read it Stolpi but it's a book I wanted to read.
  16. stolpi

    stolpi Well-Known Member

    Hi Gerard - Do you know of any books covering the opening phase of Barbarossa (the border battles) in some detail and objectively deal with the Russian side as well.

    I have Glantz' Operation Barbarossa, but it's not so detailed. Also read Paul Carell's "Unternehmen Barbarossa" (English title: Hitler goes East), but it's mainly written from the German point of view.

    I've been looking for the Ziemke's serie about the War in the East, but it seems that there is no volume covering the opening phase of Barbarossa. I only found from Moscow to Stalingrad (late 1941 to 1942) and Stalingrad to Berlin (1942 - 1945).
  17. Gerard

    Gerard Seelow/Prora

    Hi Stolpi, If you are looking for a good read about the Great Patriotic War, then I would recommend John Erickson's "The Road to Stalingrad", which is very comprehensive and deals with the opening phase of the war very well. It also covers the pre war years, showing the effects of the Purges and the race by Stalin to re-arm the Soviet army.

    Another book which I found really interesting and covered the initial battles very well was this:
    Now a lot of it is from the German side, but it gives a lot of information from the Tactical end of things as opposed to the Strategic, which is Erickson's area. I would also suggest that you have a browse around this section of the forum. For example Owen started a great thread on the race to seize the Ariogola Viaduct at the start of the war:

    There is also good info out there on the Soviet defence of Brest-Litovsk, Kershaw mentions it in the above book.

    As an aside, I am aware that some people are not fans of Kershaw's book (I dont think the market Garden boys rate him too highly) but in my opinion "war without Garlands" is a fine book.
    stolpi likes this.

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