Barbarossa

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admfisher
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Invasion

Post by admfisher » 21 Apr 2002 04:15

The soviet union was getting ready to invady the Third Reich? Is that you point Pumpkin?

Tell me what your sources are?
Then you will also tell me if it the soviets were going to invade then how were they beaten so badly in the those first few months?

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Post by Gwynn Compton » 21 Apr 2002 05:16

Yet again I assert that when one invades, one masses formations for the divisions. You don't merely spread them out and launch them all into the fray. Military Dictum is that you have reserve units to take advantage of any oppotunities that are offered by your offensive, yet Russia did not have anywhere the number required to exploit such a situation if it had invaded.

Not only this, but the Red Army was not equipped for an offensive. The scars of the Winter War were still fresh in the mind of Stalin, the Red Army was still in a period of reorganisation. Infact the Red Army lacked trucks, Kulik having ordered them removed and replaced with horse drawn transport.

If anything, what amazes me the most about claims of a Russian invasion of the west I have yet to see a crediable document outlining any such plans.
Stalin was indeed very careful to avoid anything that the Germans might see as a provocation, a reaction that compounded the effect of the German offensive.
This is true, in the months of May and June, the historian John Keegan notes that the Soviet's stuck to the letter of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, rather than quietly begin to strangle the Germans.
Stalin, who had refused to accept the possibility of an invasion until that Saturday afternoon, still remained terrified of provoking Hitler. Goebbels, with some justification, compared him to a rabbit mesmerized by a snake. A succession of reports from frontier guards told of tank engines being warmed up in the woods across the border, of German army engineers constructing bridges across rivers and removing barbed-wire entanglements in front of their positions. The commander of the Kiev Special Military District warned that war would begin in a matter of hours. Reports arrived that in Baltic ports, German ships had suddenly stopped loading and sailed for home. Yet Stalin, the totalitarian dictator, still could not come to terms with the idea that events might be outside his control.
-Antony Beevor, Stalingrad

Why not launch a spoiling attack? If you are ready to invade, you must logically have concentrations of artillery on the front, why not shell the Germans and disrupt their preparations as was to be done at Kursk in 1943? Stalin had been provided by June 13, by the "Lucy" network a complete order of battle, start time, and objectives for Barbarossa. Stalin had all the provacation he needed to invade, yet he didn't. The simple fact is that he wasn't prepared to invade, the Red Army was not ready to invade.

Infact the Red Army did not truly gain the ability to launch a skilled offensive until Operation Uranus in 1942.

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Post by Darrin » 21 Apr 2002 06:50

The rus had almost two years to build fortifications in poland. They were still incomplete at the time of invasion. Rus also had over 1 year to improve the army since finland. I haven't seen any evidnce that rus was going to invade.

The rus had about 170 inf div aranged in roughly three equally spread out lines. Backed up by the mech corps in the area. There were around 220 rus div present that ger ran into in the begining of thier inv (first 3 weeks). Stalin and the rus generals still had an overly optamistic picture of thier mil abilities compared to ger. It would take moths of severe losses to shake this incorrect view. The rus planned to switch over to the couterattack VERY soon after any ger inv. No sov thought the ger would get to smolensk in a little over two months. Zhokov suggested a preemptive attack in 41 but his plan was turned down.

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Document

Post by weiwensg » 21 Apr 2002 12:14

Here is the document

http://history.vif2.ru/library/archives ... ts2_r.html

From People?s Commissar of Defense of USSR
May 1941
Strictly Confidential
1 copy

To the Chairman of People?s Commissars of the USSR Committee, comrade Stalin.

This is our perception of the Strategic Deployment plan in case of war with Germany and its allies.
1. According to the data collected by intelligence directorate of RKKA , Germany, as of now, had deployed 230 infantry divisions, 22 tank divisions, 20 motorized divisions, 8 airborne divisions and 4 cavalry divisions -284 divisions total. Out of this number, as of 4.15.41, deployed on Soviet borders: 86 infantry divisions, 13 tank divisions , 12 motorized divisions , 1 cavalry division ? up to 112 divisions total.
We suppose that, given present political situation, Germany , in case of attack on USSR, could deploy against us up 137 infantry divisions, 19 tank divisions, 15 motorized divisions, 4 cavalry divisions, 5 airborne divisions ? up to 180 divisions total. The remaining 104 divisions most probably would be deployed in this order:
In reserve in the central parts of Germany: 22 infantry divisions, 1 cavalry division, 1 motorized division, 1 airborne division ? 25 divisions total;
In Denmark, Belgium, Holland and France : 40 infantry divisions, 2 cavalry divisions, 1 motorized division, 2 airborne divisions ? 45 divisions total;
In Yugoslavia ? 7 infantry divisions;
In Greece ? 7 infantry divisions, 1 cavalry division ? 8 division total;
Bulgaria ? 3 infantry divisions;
Africa ? 5 infantry divisions, 1 cavalry division, 1 motorized division ? 7 division total;
In Norway ? 9 infantry divisions;

It seems most likely that that the main German grouping, consisting of 76 infantry division, 11 tank division, 8 motorized division, 2 cavalry division, 5 airborne ? up to 100 divisions in total ? would be deployed south of Brest-Demblin line, in order to strike towards Kovel, Rovno, Kiev.

We also anticipate strikes form Eastern Prussia towards Vilno and Riga, and also short concentric blows from Suvalki and Brest towards Volkovisk and Baranovichi.

We also expect attack form the south:
a) in the direction of Zhmerinka ? by Romanian army supported by German divisions
b) in the direction of Munkach, Lvov
c) Sanok, Lvov

Apparent German allies could deploy against USSR: Finland ? up to 20 infantry divisions, Hungary -15 infantry divisions, Romania ? up to 25 infantry divisions.

Summarily, Germany and its allies, could deploy up to 240 divisions against the USSR. Considering the fact that Germany keeps its army fully mobilized, with rear services completely deployed, it has a real chance to prevent our deployment and initiate a surprise attack. In order to prevent that, we consider it mandatory: under no circumstances should initiative pass to German Command, we should preempt the enemy in its deployment and attack Germany army while it is still commencing its deployment and before it could organize the proper front and establish proper interaction between its various arms.

2. The first strategic objective for the RKKA is to defeat the main grouping of German army which are deployed south of Brest ?Demblin line, and reaching the line of Ostrolenka- river Narev ?Lovich-Lodz-Kreicburg- Oppeln ?Olomuc by the 30th day of operations. The next strategic goal is: by the means of the offensive, taken in northern or north-western direction, from the area of Katovice, to inflict defeat on center and Northern flank of German army and to take former Polish territory and territory of Eastern Prussia.

The opening operational step - is to destroy German forces east of Visla and at the direction of Krakow; to reach Visla and Narev and to occupy area around Katovice. In order to achieve that :

a) South-Western Front is to commit the main blow in the direction of Krakow, Katovice ? thus cutting Germany from its southern allies.
b) Commit supporting blow by the forces of left wing of the Western Front in the general direction of Sedlec, Demblin, - the main goal being to pin down enemy?s Warsaw grouping and to assist South -Western Front in defeating enemy forces in the area of Lublin.
c) Conduct active defense against Finland, Eastern Prussia, Hungary, Romania, and, if situation permits, to be ready for the offensive against Romania. To summarize, RKKA will start its offensive with total force of 152 divisions against 100 German. The rest of the State Border should be covered by active defense.
3. Relying on the above suppositions we propose do deploy the Armed Forces of USSR as follows:
I. The Land forces of the Red Army , consisting of 198 rifle divisions, 61 tank division, 31 motorized division, 13 cavalry division , (total of 303 division and 74 artillery regiments of High Command Reserve) are to be deployed as follows:

a) main grouping, consisting of 163 rifle divisions, 58 tank divisions, 30 motorized division, and 7 cavalry division ( 258 division total) and 53 artillery regiments of RGK , to be deployed in the West; out of them - to give Northern, Northwestern, Western and South- Western Fronts - 136 rifle divisions, 44 tank divisions, 23 motorized divisions, 7 cavalry divisions ( total of 210 divisions) and 53 artillery regiments of RGK ; the High Command Reserve, which is to be deployed behind South-Western and Western Fronts is to consist of 27 rifle divisions, 14 tank divisions, 7 motorized divisions ( 48 divisions total).
b) The rest of the forces , consisting of 35 rifle divisions, 3 tank divisions, 1 motorized division, 7 cavalry divisions and 21 artillery regiments of RGK are assign to defend Far ?Eastern, Southern and Northern borders of USSR; out of that number: at the Far East and in Trans-Baikal military district 22 rifle divisions, 3 tank divisions, 1 motorized division, 1 cavalry division and 14 artillery regiments of RGK. In the middle Asia - 2 mountain divisions, 3 cavalry divisions; in Trans-Caucasus region 8 rifle divisions, 2 cavalry divisions and 14 artillery regiments of RGK; for Black Sea coastal defense - 2 rifle divisions; for White Sea costal defense ? 1 rifle division.

II. The Red Army?s air force, consisting of 97 fighter regiments, 75 short-range bomber regiments, 11 air assault regiments, 29 long-range bomber regiments and 6 heavy bomber regiments, is to be deployed as follows

The main grouping, consisting of 66 fighter regiments, 64 short-range bomber regiments, 5 air assault regiments, 25 long range bomber regiments an 5 heavy bomber regiment ? total of 165 air regiments, is to be deployed in the West. Out of this number, Northern, North-Western, Western and South-Western Fronts is to receive: 63 fighter regiments, 64 short range bomber regiments, 5 air assault regiments, 11 long range bomber regiments, 1 heavy bomber regiment ? total of 144 regiments. The High Command reserve is to be positioned behind South-Western and Western Fronts, and to consist of 14 long range bomber regiments and 4 heavy bomber regiments ? total of 21 regiments.

III. The remaining forces, consisting of 31 fighter regiments, 11 short range bomber regiments, 6 air assault regiments, 4 long range bomber regiments, 1 heavy bomber regiment is to defend Far Eastern, Southern and Northern State borders and Moscow. Out of this number: 14 fighter regiments, 9 short range bomber regiments, 5 air assault regiments, 4 long range bomber regiments, 1 heavy bomber regiment is to be deployed in the Far East and Trans-Baikal military district.
SaVO is to receive 1 fighter regiment, 1 air assault regiment.
Trans-Caucasus Military District is to receive 9 fighter regiments, 2 short range bomber regiments.
Archangelsk Military District is to receive 1 fighter regiment.
6 fighter regiments are to be assigned for the defense of Moscow.
In addition to that we currently forming 52 fighter regiments, 30 short range bomber regiments, 4 air assault regiments, 7 long range bomber regiments, and 22 DIS -115 air regiments total. Upon completion these regiments is to be deployed as follows: to the West - 41 fighter regiment, 30 short range bomber regiments, 4 air assault regiments, 5 long range bomber regiments, 14 DIS ? total of 94 regiments. Out of this number to give to the Fronts ? 41 fighter regiment, 33 short range bomber regiment, 6 air assault regiments, 7 DIS ? 87 regiments total. Assign 10 regiments to the Far Eastern Front and Trans-Baikal military district; assign 6 regiments to the Trans-Caucasus Military District; assign 5 fighter regiments for the defense of the Moscow.

4. Forces and objectives of the Fronts currently deploying on the Western direction.
a) Northern Front ? 3 armies consisting of 15 rifle divisions, 4 tank divisions, 2 motorized divisions ? 21 divisions total, 18 aviation regiments, and Northern Fleet; main goal of the Front is the defense of Leningrad, Murmansk, Kirov Railroad, and together with Baltic Fleet to provide total domination of Gulf of Finland. The Front Boundaries are : form the left Ostashkov, Ostrov, Viru, Vilyandi, Gulf of Mutslau, Ezel and Dago. Staff of the Front in Pargolovo.
b) North-Western Front 3 army consisting of 17 rifle divisions 4 tank divisions 2 motorized divisions - 23 divisions total and 18 aviation regiments. The main goal of the Front is to cover directions of Riga and Vilno , to prevent enemy?s intrusion form Eastern Prussia, to defend Ezel and Dago from possible sea assaults. The Front boundaries from the left: Polock, Oshmiani, Druskeniki, Marggrabova, Letnei. Staff of the Front in Ponevezh.
c) Western Front ? 4 armies consisting of 31 rifle divisions, 8 tank divisions, 4 motorized divisions, 2 cavalry divisions, - 45 divisions total and 21 aviation regiments. The goals of the Front are: by defending the line Druskeniki- Ostrolenka, cover the directions of Lida and Belostok. Conduct offensive operation, in support of Southwestern Front blow, by the means of Fronts? left wing in general direction of the Warsaw and Sedlec. To inflict defeat on Warsaw enemy?s grouping, to take Warsaw; in cooperation with South-Western Front to defeat enemy forces in the area of Lublin-Radom. The boundaries of the front from the left: river Pripiat, Pinsk, Vlodava, Demblin, Radom. Staff of the Front in Baranovichi.
d) South-Western Front ? 8 armies consisting of 74 rifle divisions, 28 tank divisions, 15 motorized divisions, 5 cavalry divisions -122 divisions total and 91 aviation regiment. The Front nearest goals are: a) by conducting concentric blow by the Fronts? right wing ? to encircle and destroy the main enemy grouping east of Visla in the are of Lublin.
b) At the same time ,by launching attack form the line Seniava-Peremishl- Lutoviska, to defeat enemy forces at Krakow and Sandomir-Kleck directions. To occupy area around Krakow-Katovice-Kelce, having in mind further offensive in either northern or north-western direction in order to defeat enemy?s Northern wing and to capture former Polish territory as well as territory of Eastern Prussia.
c) To cover borders with Romania and Hungary and to be ready to conduct concentric blows against Romanian army from the area of Kishinev and Chernovici with nearest objective being defeat of Northern Wing of Romanian army and reaching the line river Moldova ? Yassi.


In order to accomplish the above planning it is necessary to conduct the following steps without which it is impossible to conduct surprise attack either in the air or on the ground.
I. conduct secret mobilization disguised as a preparations for big Maneuvers
II. to deploy our forces by the border under the disguise of moving to the summer camps. The High Command reserve should deployed in the first place
III. secretly deploy aviation from remote districts and immediately begin deployment of aviations? rear services.
IV. Under disguise if maneuvers begin deployment of rear services and hospitals.
V. Create High Command Reserve Grouping consisting of 5 armies having 2 armies consisting of 9 rifle divisions, 4 tank divisions, 2 motorized divisions ? 15 divisions total in the area of Viazma, Sichevka, Yelnia, Briansk, Suhinichi.
Having 1 army consisting 4 rifle divisions, 2 tank divisions, 2 motorized divisions ? total of 8 divisions in the area of Vileika, Novogrudsk, Minsk.
Having one army consisting of 6 rifle divisions, 4 tank divisions, 2 motorized divisions -12 divisions total in the area of Shepetovka, Proskurov, Berdichev.
Having 1 army consisting of 8 rifle divisions, 2 tank divisions, 2 motorized divisions in the area of Belaya Cerkov, Zvenigorodka, Cherkassi.

5. Covering of the RKKA deployment
In order to secure our deploying forces from the possible surprise attack it is necessary :
I. To organize solid defense using for it all forces of border districts and almost all aviation which assigned for the deployment in the west.
II. To develop detailed plan for the country?s? air defense and order PVO to be highest state of alert. We already issued orders for the consecutive activities, based on reports previously submitted to you.
III. Construction of the fortified areas along the old and new borders supposed to be speeded up.
6. Navy has received its objectives in accordance with previously submitted reports.
7. Ammunition supplies which is necessary to allocate for the deploying forces:
Ammo: small calibers artillery projectiles: 3 weeks
Medium caliber artillery projectiles: 1 month
Heavy caliber artillery projectiles: 1 month
Mortar shells: 2 weeks.

AA Ammo:
37mm ? 5days
76 mm ? 6 weeks
85 mm ? 11 days

Air force:
HE bombs ? 1 month
AP bombs ? 10 days
Concrete Piercing ? 10 days
Fragmentation ? 1 month
Igniting - 2 weeks

Oil Products:
Gasoline mark B-78 ? 10 days
Gasoline mark B-74 1 month
Gasoline mark B-70 10 weeks
Auto gasoline ? 6 weeks
Diesel fuel ? 1 month

7.We are asking you:

I. To confirm our proposals in regards of RKKA?s strategic deployment
II. Allow us immediately to start secret mobilization
III. Request from People?s Commissariat of Railways speeding up of railway construction ?especially in the direction of Lvov.
IV. Make sure that industry would provide quantities of equipment it promised.
V. To confirm our proposal in regards to new fortified areas construction.
Signed : People?s Commissar of the Defense ? Marshal of the Soviet Union Timoshenko
Chief of General Staff of RKKA General of the Army Zhukov.

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Post by Darrin » 21 Apr 2002 13:45

Gives you a sence of how large and offensivly capable one of the top soviet commanders (Zhukov) thought the red army was in early 41.

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Post by Gwynn Compton » 21 Apr 2002 23:03

While this document does provide an interesting look at a "What if" scenario being provided by the Commissar of Defence, it doesn't actually say that the policy was implimented. Unlike Hitler's Fuhrer Directives which meant the policy was being acted on, this is merely an idea of what the USSR should do if it perceives it is being threatened by Germany, an idea that Stalin refused to accept until the early hours of June 22nd.

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Post by subskipper » 21 Apr 2002 23:15

This article posted by another member holds some of the answers regarding the above document. http://thirdreichforum.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=1704



~Henric Edwards

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Post by Gwynn Compton » 21 Apr 2002 23:30

I was just about to post that here after I read the other article :)

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Post by subskipper » 21 Apr 2002 23:32

Gwynn,

Great minds think alike. ;)



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Post by Darrin » 22 Apr 2002 05:45

Gwynn Compton wrote:While this document does provide an interesting look at a "What if" scenario being provided by the Commissar of Defence, it doesn't actually say that the policy was implimented. Unlike Hitler's Fuhrer Directives which meant the policy was being acted on, this is merely an idea of what the USSR should do if it perceives it is being threatened by Germany, an idea that Stalin refused to accept until the early hours of June 22nd.

It seems that Zhukov thought the army was strong enough to perform this plan. He did not just make it up as some sort of what if planning practice. He was not ordered to do it nor did he recieve it from someone else. It was his idea of what should be done and he chapioned it with staln. Stalin did not acccept the plan nor did he allow preperations for the plan to proceed. Zhukov certainly thought the red army was ready for off action so by def it should have been ready for def action given a short time to prepare. Stalin allowed no time to prepar for off or def.

Even though we see problems and deficancies everywhere we look when we look back at the rus army. Zhukov and others did not. Even though he had to fight a ger force that was 50% higher in rus intel est then turned out to be true. They obiously thought there army was capable of such offensive actions. It seems that the army was wildly optamistic about its own performace ecpactations during the first half of the war even though suffering from many obvious problems still. The rus were not too concerned abourt correcting these deficancies later in the war. To them these problems seem like a minor anyonce that has to be contented with.

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Post by Qvist » 22 Apr 2002 08:05

I'll start to seriously entertain the notion of Soviet attack plans in the summer of 1941 when someone can plausibly reconcile this with the fact that there was no logistical build-up and most Soviet units were understrength and in a low state of readiness.

cheers

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Post by Gwynn Compton » 22 Apr 2002 09:52

Thats exactly the point, the Soviet's weren't planning to attack. Yes certain members of the military establishment believed in a preemptive strike against the Germans, but most realised that the Red Army was not yet ready for war. No offical policy was aimed at launching an invasion in 1941.

The points you've made are over looked by those who wish to believe that the Soviet Union was going to invade in 1941.

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Post by Starinov » 22 Apr 2002 20:56

[quote="Gwynn ComptonNo offical policy was aimed at launching an invasion in 1941.[/quote]

Have you ever heard Stalin saying anything official? And if yes, did he do what he officialy said? Stalin never did what he was officialy saying.

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Post by Oleg Grigoryev » 22 Apr 2002 21:45

Well actually there was a deployment of Soviet forces but it seems that it went along the lines that were different from ones proposed by Zhukov-Timoshenko. (for the refernce see “Report on the deployment of Soviet Forces in Case of War with Germany and its Allies” form June 13 1941 and signed by Vatutin) But Qvist is right than he says that it would be near to impossible to attack in 1941. Moreover Zhukov proposal does not call for the specific date for the attack and keeping in mind the fact that General Staff did not believe that Germans would initiate an attack with serious preparation for winter warfare the proposed preemption could be very well the deed for the distant future. It seems that you people assume that it was planed for summer on the basis that German attack eventually began in summer , but you overestimate the information that Soviet had on their hands.

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Post by Darrin » 22 Apr 2002 22:14

oleg wrote:Well actually there was a deployment of Soviet forces but it seems that it went along the lines that were different from ones proposed by Zhukov-Timoshenko. (for the refernce see “Report on the deployment of Soviet Forces in Case of War with Germany and its Allies” form June 13 1941 and signed by Vatutin) But Qvist is right than he says that it would be near to impossible to attack in 1941. Moreover Zhukov proposal does not call for the specific date for the attack and keeping in mind the fact that General Staff did not believe that Germans would initiate an attack with serious preparation for winter warfare the proposed preemption could be very well the deed for the distant future. It seems that you people assume that it was planed for summer on the basis that German attack eventually began in summer , but you overestimate the information that Soviet had on their hands.

The plan lists current german dispostions in may 41 and probable ger goals. Then suggest that the red army if attacked now will lose but suggests that a preemptive attack would suceed. Taking the initiative, preperation and planning out of the picture. Catching the ger in thier conc att pos vs proper def pos. I would assume the preemptive attack would be during summer of 41. All sov intel pointed towards the ger att in summer 41 to. It was just stalin that ignored it or never got it. I would not assume that Zhukov meant to lauch the premeptive attack any later with out some proof.

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