Battle-road of 2. Panzer-Division (and armor casualties given, if I know them):01.09.1939:Spytkowice area:
The Panzerbrigade advances fast and reaches Spytkowice. Around noon I./Pz.Rgt.3 is subordinated to Schtz.Brig.1 for the attack on the heights north of Spytkowice.
The Reconnaissance-platoon reports the bridges of the road Spytkowice – Jordanow destroyed and mined. Engineers build crossings and mark them with flags.
The planed attack on the heights of Wysoka and Kralowany (I./PR.3, 2 rifle companies) in the afternoon is postponed to the next morning because of the starting dusk and rumours about attacking enemy tanks.02.09.1939:Wysoka
- "Das Gefecht von Wysoka"
- division suffers one of first combat casualties in the Polish Campaign and they are yet heavy. Over 30 tanks are lost - most of them from 1st and 3rd companies of I./PR.3. At least around 45 - 50 German soldiers are Killed in Action.Jordanów
- around 30 more tanks lost.03.09.1939:Lubień
– strong Polish counterattacks of 10. Motorized Brigade and Armored Train 51Sucha
- strong Polish counterattacks of 10. MB and Armored Train 51.Naprawa
- Polish defence of 10. psk from 10. MB is heavilly shaken and starts to break. Reserve squadron of rtm. Tomkiewicz and company of Vickers E tanks counterattack and reject German forces. Situation is saved.
During that day Germans report: "The [XXII] Korps advances very slow because of enemy resistance in the difficult terrain (mountain, woods)."04.09.1939:Wadowice
- Wadowice (place of birth of pope John Paul II) are captured by the Germans.Kalwaria Zebrzydowska
- Corps advances across an undamaged bridge at Kalwarja to the east.Kasina Wielka
– strong Polish counterattacks of 10. Motorized Brigade. Polish forces attack units of two German divisions - 4. Leichte-Division and 2. Panzer-Division. Counterattacking units are: 24. uhlan regiment (motorized), company of Vickers E tanks, reconnaissance dyon, Anti-Tank dyon (mot.) (without one battery), motorized artillery dyon (without one battery), sappers battalion. Enemy forces are rejected and repulsed as far as to Mszana Dolna
region (Mszana Dolna is recaptured), with heavy casualties for the enemy.
XXII Panzer-Korps plans to attack towards Tyslinice and Skawina on the 5.Sept.05.09.1939:Pcim
– at sunrise battalion KOP “Wilejka” attacks enemy forces near Pcim by surprise and inflicts heavy losses to the enemy. Germans send reinforcements to Pcim to save the situation.
10 psk from 10. Motorized Brigade counterattacks German reinforcements at Pcim, Germans send next reinforcements and Polish regiment have to withdraw.Myślenice
- units of 7. Infanterie-Division, 2. Panzer-Division and 3. Mountain Division attack towards Myślenice in the morning and encounter resistance of Polish 12. infantry regiment – regiment is rejected and Myślenice are captured in the evening.Mountain exits east of Myslenice
- XXII Panzer-Corps reports to be involved in fightings at the mountain exits east of Myslenice.Myślenicka Road
- strong counterattacks of 10. Motorized Brigade along Myślenicka Road.
In the evening Germans seize Pcim
and attack towards Bochnia
– on direction Bochnia – Tarnów - Rzeszów – river San, as OKW ordered in “Fall 5 September”.
In the evening of 5. September Polish air reconnaissance reports that 2. Panzer-Division is in area Lipnica – Łątka – Zakliczyn – Wróblowice
. Enemy tanks advancing in area Lipnica.06.09.1939:Area Pcim - Myślenice - Bochnia:
Advancing on direction Bochnia
– Tarnów – Rzeszów – river San, as was ordered yesterday. Attacking towards Bochnia – Nowy Wiśnicz
, encountering fierce resistance of withdrawing Polish units: 10. Motorized Brigade and 21. Infantry Division. Polish units withdraw slowly and are slowing down German advances. But the Polish units are constantly being pushed to the north by the German units, because the majority of the Polish units had to withdraw in the north-eastern direction because German units are pushing from the south-west - and because of that Polish frontline at the southern parts of the southern wing is becoming weaker and weaker.
Pz.Rgt.3 reports that: I./PR.3 is advancing behind Pz.Rgt.4 within the brigade and is subordinated to Kampfgruppe Stollbrock (K2) in the afternoon for the attack on Bochnia.
At 17:40 Germans report: I./PR.3 starts to attack left of the road Gdów – Bochnia
with 3rd company leading, 4th company following as reserve. On the last heights shortly before Bochnia the commander of the Kampfgruppe stops the attack because of the darkness. The Abteilung is withdrawn back and takes a defense line with the infantry.
During the day 2. Panzer-Division and parts of 4. Leichte-Division are slowly advancing in the north due to strong Polish resistance. 4. Leichte-Division is attacking more to the south than 2. Panzer-Division, towards Tarnów
. Parts of 2. Panzer-Division attacking together with it in the south. Finally German foces are stopped and repulsed in the battle of Nowy Wiśnicz, near Bochnia, which lasted for the whole day untill sunset.Nowy Wiśnicz (near Bochnia)
- during the whole day 10. Motorized Brigade is rejecting and repulsing constant enemy Panzer-attacks of 2. Panzer-Division and 4. Leichte-Division inflicting huge losses to the enemy - especcialy armor casualties of German units were very high. Especcialy units of 2. Panzer-Division suffered huge losses in the battle of Nowy Wiśnicz. Major part of the Polish brigade was rejecting enemy attacks and holding defensive lines during the battle, while 121. company of light tanks (armed with 13 Vickers E tanks) was counterattacking and repulsing German forces at most endangered sections of the frontline. 121. company of light tanks lost only 1 Vickers E during this battle. Other AFV-s of the brigade stayed in reserve - they would have been used if the Germans had crushed the Polish defensive lines, but it didn't happen. Only in several places Germans managed to breake through the Polish defensive lines, but were immediately repulsed and rejected by counterattacks of 121. company of light tanks."The battle of Nowy Wiśnicz - succes of general Maczek's conception of Motorized Brigade":http://pl.youtube.com/watch?v=W9t2PIUxu ... re=relatedArea Tarnów - Dunajec river:
Part of 4. Leichte-Division and some parts of 2. Panzer-Division are attacking Polish 24. Infantry Division near Tarnów. Polish 24. Infantry Division has not ended concentration yet – divisional artillery has not arrived to the division yet, the division has no artillery.
Despite that, the division resists strong and stop German attacks. But Germans attack several times and manage to capture small bridgehead on the eastern bank of the Dunajec river at Zakliczyn
. Then Germans attack from Zakliczyn towards Wróblowice
– straight on wing of 24. Infantry Division.
24. ID manage to repulse German attack on its wing at Wróblowice and reject German units.
In the evening płk. Bolesław Krzyżanowski, commander of 24. Infantry Division, thinks he can resist at the Dunajec line also during the next day and hopes divisional artillery will finally arrive.07.09.1939:
is captured in the evening of 07.09.1939 by the German units of 4. Leichte-Division after fierce fighting against strong resistance of Polish units from 24. Infantry Division in the morning and early afternoon.
But in the late afternoon there was no any resistance of the Polish units, which simply stopped the battle and withdrawed - German forces marched behind them and captured Tarnów without any further combats, in the evening of 7. September.
Polish division withdrawed because it received order from commander of Army "Małopolska" - general Kazimierz Fabrycy - he ordered the division to withdraw from Dunajec line towards the east. This was a terrible mistake !
Units of Operational Group "Boruta" from Army "Cracow" haven't yet reached the Dunajec line - it should have been defended by 24. Infantry Division untill these units of Army "Cracow" crosses it and withdraws to the eastern bank of the river Dunajec ! But 24. Infantry Division had been ordered to withdraw before it happened !Area Bochnia:
Pz.Abw.Abt.38: 2.Kp. fighting at Bochnia.
2.Pz.Div. is stopped by destroyed bridge across the Rawa at Bochnia.Bochnia
is seized by the German forces during the day.
When Bochnia and Tarnów
are captured by the German forces, this - DE FACTO
- means, that the Polish defensive at the southern wing of Army "Cracow" - which was becoming weaker and weaker for the last few days, because the majority of the Polish forces were being constantly pushed back towards the North-East by the German forces - is now outflanked at last. Road to the south - to the Dunajec river - is finally open for the German forces.RACE TO DUNAJEC River STARTS
- when the southern wing of the Polish frontline is finally pushed north far enough, that the Germans can now finally make a detour round it
from the south, they will now try to cut-off the Polish forces of Operational Group "Boruta"
from Army "Cracow" which are advancing towards Dunajec, by attacking them from the south, before they will manage to reach Dunajec line - which is still supposed to be the next Polish defensive line. But the road to Dunajec is open for Germans, and Dunajec line is not defended by any major Polish forces now, after 24. Infantry Division have been ordered to withdraw from its defensive positions along Dunajec river, near Tarnów.- German 2. Panzer-Division reports
II./PR.3 is marching towards Tarnow via Bochnia
and is stopped by destroyed bridges at Tarnow. At 13:00 the 5th company is directly east of Wojnicz
, Stab, 8th and 6th company are 3km west of Wojnicz on the road. Rgt.Stab/Pz.Rgt.3 is on the marketplace Wojnicz.
A message dropped by a recon-aircraft informs the divsision that enemy forces march east and cross the Dunajec at Biskupice.
In the evening the division forms Kampfgruppe Thoma (II./PR.3, I./S.R.2, 2./A.R.74, 1./Pz.Abw.Abt.38). The Kpfgr. has order to take the bridge across the Dunjaec at Biscupice and establish a bridgehead on the eastern bank. Oberst v.Thoma orally gives the order on the marketplace of Wojnicz
. The 6th, 8th company and the light platoon receive the attack order orally on the road. Because the regiment orders immediate start because of the starting darkness the platoon commanders are not well informed about the plans.
Already at Wojnicz
the 5th company receives order to start as forward element and push towards Radlow
. At Komorow group Wassow of Pi.Btl.38 is under heavy enemy pressure and cut off. After the 5th company received the radio call for help it was allowed by the Abteilung to turn towards Komorow without informing the regiment. Because of the following engagements and the breakdown of the radio connection the 5th company cannot follow to Biscupice in the night.
18:20 the II./PR.3 starts to attack with signal platoon, light platoon, 8th company and advances via Debina, Letowice, Bogumilowice to Dwudniaki
north where elements of A.A.5 are in position and give short information about AT- and MG-fire from Radlow-south. In the meantime it got dark.
Immediately elements of 8th company and the light platoon start to advance on Radlow west to the road. Elements of the 8th company pass Radlow in the west under heavy AT-gun fire from Radlow-west while the rest and the light platoon push into the town taking out several enemy machineguns.
The marketplace of Radlow was crowded with polish support vehicles and soldiers. After they are asked to surrender the start to flee and fire with mortars. The resistance is broken by machinegun- and KwK-fire. The following infantry of Kpfgr.Thoma takes hundreds of prisoners during the night and captures lot of weapons and vehicles.
------------------------------------------Radłów was captured by the German units before the sunset, but soon one Polish infantry regiment – 4. pspodh. commanded by ppłk. dypl. Bronisław Warzybok – made a counterattack and recaptured Radłów, repulsing German units from it – German reports from ww2 day by day does not mention about it as we can see.
Anyway - during the night Radłow was attacked again by the Germans – big amount of tanks from 2. Panzer-Division was also attacking there -, who forced Bronisław Warzybok and his regiment to withdraw, and recaptured the town.
Polish 21. Mountain Division was repulsed as far as to region Wał – Ruda – Biskupice Radłowskie, where Polish 6. Infantry Division was crossing the Dunajec river.
Despite the darkness the regimental commander orders to continue to the Dunajec bridges.
The II./PR.3 starts to advance on the road to Biskupice and turns northeast at Fw.Szatanowka to reach the bridges.
Shortly before the tanks reach the bridge it is blown up and burns the whole night. Attempts to move the tanks through the river fail during the night. Because of the constant explosions of ammo in Biskupice the Kpfgr. decides not to clear the viallge in the night.
--------------------------German tanks reached Biskupice at 19:30 - at this time over 1/3 of Polish 6. Infantry Division - including 16. infantry regiment (but with one artillery battery only), some units of 21. Mountain Division (including the whole 21. light artillery regiment with I. dyon, II. dyon and III. dyon) and one KOP Infantry Regiment (under command of ppłk. Wójcik) had already crossed the river and were on its eastern bank.
Until 21:00 following units reached the area Biskupice – Rgts.Stab PR.3, II./PR.3 with Recon-platoon without 5th company, elements of I./SR.2. The regimental HQ and II./PR.3 at the Dunajec bridge.According to prisoners
just small elements of the polish forces were able to cross the bridge and are still in the forests 4km west of Biskupice.
--------------------------Prisoners were lying.
Apart from units of Operational Group "Boruta" which crossed the river in Biskupice untill 19:30 on 07.09.1939, the following units crossed it during the night - but of course they had to cross it in different places, because the only bridge in Biskupice was destroyed:
In Biskupice region: 4. pspodh. Infantry regiment, 202. infantry regiment
In Otfinowo region: 12. infantry regiment, several other units
In Nieciecza region: IV. Heavy Machine Guns battalion, I. Artillery dyon of 6. light artillery regiment
Around noon of 08.09.1939:
In Wietrzychowice region: 20. infantry regiment, 3. pspodh. Infantry regiment
Kpfgr.Thoma prepares for the night with 6./PR.3 at the west of Biskupice about 1km west of the road Radlow – Biskupice to the northwets and west, then 8./PR.3 to the southwest in the area 1km west of Punkt 201. The light platoon defends north on the dam near the bridge. The regimental HQ is located directly south of the bridge.
Until 2:00 the enemy fires on the area south of Biskupice.
-----------------------10. Motorized Brigade:Polish 10. Motorized Brigade received an order to immediately march to Rzeszów during that day - 07.09.1939.08.09.1939:Tarnów area:
Pz.Abw.Abt.38: 2.Kp. fighting at Tarnow-Osello.Kolbuszowa area:
One platoon of 1.Kp. attached to S.R.2 fighting in Kolbuscowa.
Also a lot of other German units were fighting in Kolbuszowa area that day - among them 2. company of 2. Kradschutzen Battalion
from 2. Panzer-Division:
In only one of numerous combats fought during that day in this area - combat which took place somewhere along the road Sędziszewo - Kolbuszowa
- this one single company lost 12 soldiers KIA.- German reports - http://chrito.users1.50megs.com/1939/sep/8sept39.htm :
XXII.A.K.: is advancing and reaches Tarnow
with forward units.
Around 02:45 enemy forces open fire on the Kpfgr. [Kampfgruppe Thoma = (II./PR.3, I./S.R.2, 2./A.R.74, 1./Pz.Abw.Abt.38) - Domen]
. in Biscupice [BISKUPICE RADŁOWSKIE - Domen].
Strong enemy forces are spotted coming out of the near wood. The enemy closes in the terrain which provides much cover and reach the outskirts of Biscupice. Enemy AT-guns and artillery start to fire on the tanks that are clearly visible in the light of fires in the village. At 05:00 the tanks start to counter attack the polish forces. The attack split up into several local engagements tank against AT-guns. The leader tank was hit three times and the Abt.Kdr. and his crew is killed. Also the commanders of 6./PR.3 and 8./PR.3 and the Abt.Adjutant are wounded. As the ammo was getting low the tanks had to withdraw to the road Radlow – Biscupice. The tanks built a hedgehog defense and waited for the withdrawing infantry from Biskupice
. Then the rest of the Kampfgruppe mounted on the remaining six tanks was able to push through enemy forces to Radlow. The Kampfgruppe lost 51 men, 19 missed and 93 wounded. 21 tanks and 2 command tanks were destroyed.
Elements of 2.Pz.Div. cross the Dunajec at Tarnow and push northwest towards Bisupice – Zabno.
Orders: Crossing the Dunajec near Tarnow and pushing northwest towards the area Biscupice – Zabo to destroy all enemy forces to help own forces on the westbank of the Dunajec near Biscupice.
Kradschtz.Kp. Weike was attached to the tanks 2 km south of Zabo. After passing Zabo the lead spots an enemy column marching from west to east.
We attacked at once and destroyed the enemy M.G.-Kp. within minutes. The Kradschtz. collected the remainders of the polish unit. 14 heavy M.G., horses and vehicles were captured. 40 – 50 Polish soldiers surrendered.
Because the AA5 was fallen back Olt. Gomille and Weike decided to take the bridge across the canal 300m east of Targowiko to prevent the enemy from destroying it.
From there they got order to advance with one platoon PzKpfw.IV ahead followed by Kradschtz., rest of tank Kp. and than the rest of the Kradschtz.Kp.
At 13.00 they reach the soutwestern entrance of Olesno 800m west of the church. The first platoon advanced to the rail-crossing 800m east of the church. The rest entered the village from South and West.
Suddenly machinegunfire started followed by artillery. The PzKpfw.IV spotted an enemy battery that started to join the attack. The tanks attack and destroy the enemy battery.
Again prisoners and weapons were captured. A Major and a Oberleutnant were taken prisoner.
II./Pz.Rgt.3: At 2:45 the enemy fire out of the forests west of Biskupice increases and 6th company reports enemy movements also in the western part of Biskupice. The company retreats to the road Radlow – Biskupice where the infantry receives heavy enemy fire. A german AT-gun is lost at the west of Biskupice.
3:30 polish forces covered by high potatoe and cornfields advance on the road Radlow – Biskupice.
3:45 Biskupice except the eastern part with the bridge is in enemy hands. Directly firing artillery and AT-guns attack the tanks of II./PR.3.
5:00 Obstlt.Baumgart leads a counterattack with elements of 8th, 6th company and the light platoon to stop the advancing enemy and take out heavy wepaons in the forests. The tank of Obstlt.Baumgart receives three AT-gun hits killing Baumgart, N.O.Olt.Dr.Hild and the driver. After the commanders of the 6th, 8th and the Abteilungsadjutant are wounded the attack changes to several individual, unccordinated attacks. The attack fails and after most tanks are out of ammo they retreat back to the road Radlow – Biscupice at 8:30.
In the meantime a small number of enemies crosses the Dunajec and reaches the dam south of Biskupice on the westbank.
Directly south of the bridge the tanks of the regimental HQ, individual vehicles and the recon-platoon sets up a hedgehog defense which stands strong against enemy attacks and provides cover for the infantry. Under the command of the v.Thoma these forces break out with the last ammo and fuel reserves and reach Radlow.
10:00 Six remaining vehicles under the command of v.Thoma attack towards Biskupice again and finally clear the area from enemy troops.
The I./Pz.Rgt.3 advances west of Wola Radlowska.
Large numbers of captured equipment and hundreds of polish soldiers.
Losses of II./PR.3: 18 KIA (2 officers), 21 WIA, 2 MIA.
Vehicle losses of II./PR.3:
10 PzKpfwg.I, 9 PzKpfwg.II, 2 PzKpfwg.IV, 2 PzBefWg. [- all of them were destroyed
, as was written above; only amount of destroyed - not all lost - tanks, is given here - Domen]
Losses of I./S.R.2: 33 KIA (1 officer), 72 WIA, 17 MIA.
--------------------------------During that day – 08.09.1939 – apart from units listed before, the following units of Operational Group “Boruta” crossed Dunajec line:
Infantry regiments: 3., 4., 21.
Other artillery units of 6. and 21. Infantry Divisions (all units, which haven’t crossed the river before)
Divisional cavalry of 6. Infantry Division
Different rear and reserve units, and some smaller unitsAfter battles along central Dunajec line:
Casualties, which were suffered by Operational Group “Boruta” – were heavy (among these casualties – few hundreds prisoners captured by Germans), due to several serious mistakes of the Polish high command:
- too early withdrawal of 24. Infantry Division from the Dunajec line and Tarnów, due to order given by general Kazimierz Fabrycy.
- Moving 10. Motorized Brigade (which previously stopped and repulsed all German attacks in region near Bochnia in a day-long, bloody battle) towards Rzeszów via Radomyśl Wielki – due to orders which it received (maybe these orders were good, but they were given too early).
Anyway – thanks to determination of soldiers and command abilities of commander of 21. Infantry Division – general Józef Kustroń – the whole Operational Group “Boruta” – and also – most endangered on 7/8 September – 21. Infantry Division from this operational group – managed to cross the Dunajec river and save the situation – which had been very dangerous.
But still Polish forces are not in a very easy situation – because Polish plans of establishing new defensive line along Dunajec river failed (mainly due to those unlucky orders, and heavy pressure of enemy fast units) – and to the next big river – Wisłok – Operational Group “Boruta” has got 45 kilometres to march. To the river San, which is east of Wisłok – 100 kilometres. Another big “race” is beginning.09.09.1939:........ POST UNDER CONSTRUCTION ........