Oob Fall Blau, June 28 1942

Discussions on WW2 in Eastern Europe.
kosta
Member
Posts: 74
Joined: 23 Nov 2004 06:05
Location: usa, akron

Post by kosta » 21 Oct 2005 13:40

Hi Lars:
Only the 45th Army was left in the Transcaucasus MD, and then the Iranian Group.
This MD was drawn on heavily in the Fall of 1941, to hold Rostov.
This left very little for 1942.
The Central Asian MD was also drawn on to hold the Cauacasus Passes.
Units crossed the Caspian at Baku and Makhachkala to join the Front.

User avatar
Lars
Member
Posts: 608
Joined: 24 Nov 2004 16:58
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark

Post by Lars » 21 Oct 2005 14:00

Excellent.

I suppose that if Baku was under siege it would have been possible to ship an even larger number of troops across the Caspian Sea to Baku from the Cental Asian MD and from the Stavka reserve?

BTW, is your source(s) available in English?

kosta
Member
Posts: 74
Joined: 23 Nov 2004 06:05
Location: usa, akron

Post by kosta » 24 Oct 2005 03:47

It would have been very difficult to cross the Caspian Sea, if the Germans had made it to Baku. Airpower would
make it a very costly crossing! They would have been able to draw on units from those MDs, but they would have been newly formed.

The source of most of the information I gave you is from BSSA, the order of battle of the Soviet Army in WW11.
Russian is very easy to understand, and with a list of the abbreviations converted to English, would make it a picnic!
It is a very valuable resource, providing a monthly list of most of the units in the RKKA, including the rear areas.
Having that info then allows you to figure out what units were newly raised, destoryed, and moved!
This is a lot of work, but very rewarding.

User avatar
Lars
Member
Posts: 608
Joined: 24 Nov 2004 16:58
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark

Post by Lars » 25 Oct 2005 13:11

kosta wrote:It would have been very difficult to cross the Caspian Sea, if the Germans had made it to Baku. Airpower would
make it a very costly crossing! They would have been able to draw on units from those MDs, but they would have been newly formed.

The source of most of the information I gave you is from BSSA, the order of battle of the Soviet Army in WW11.
Russian is very easy to understand, and with a list of the abbreviations converted to English, would make it a picnic!
It is a very valuable resource, providing a monthly list of most of the units in the RKKA, including the rear areas.
Having that info then allows you to figure out what units were newly raised, destoryed, and moved!
This is a lot of work, but very rewarding.


Exellent Kosta.

What is BSSA? Something Sovietsky Sajous Something? I can´t read Russian but perhaps I should buy my first book in Russian on this one...

Why would it have been particular difficult to slip Soviet troops into Baku? It was notoriusly difficult to sink ships from the air in 1942. The Caspian Sea is quite narrow and the Soviets must have had a naval flotilla on the Caspian Sea. The Soviets managed to slip in supplies to Sevastopol in the first half of 1942 under conditions very favorable to the Luftwaffe. If Baku came under siege, it would be during the fall of 1942 when the Luftwaffe was attritioned while the VVS enjoyed its historical come back due to the lend-lease suppllies from Iran.

User avatar
Steen Ammentorp
Member
Posts: 3172
Joined: 13 Mar 2002 12:48
Location: Denmark

Post by Steen Ammentorp » 25 Oct 2005 13:40

My apologies for not returning to this thread any sooner. My source for the above mentioned armies attached to North Caucasian front is Mehner & Jaroslav's 'Armee unter den Roten Stern' which however does not give exact dates for their attachment to the front.

Is it possible to get hold of Boevoi sostav Sovetskoi Armii except in microform (at $210)?

Kind Regards
Steen Ammentorp
The Generals of World War II

kosta
Member
Posts: 74
Joined: 23 Nov 2004 06:05
Location: usa, akron

Post by kosta » 26 Oct 2005 03:29

It would have been possible to send units across the Caspian Sea, but you have to look at the situation first.
By this time what was left of the oil fields would mostly have been already destroyed, or in disrepair.
If the German Army was near Baku, the Soviet Army would have been in great danger of being overrun or cut off
and destroyed in the Transcaucasus. Just look at a map to see the geography that would dictate just that.
Why would you want to send more units into this kind of environment, just to lose them also?
The Caspian is much wider than any of those other operations mentioned, Sevastopol was mainly reinforced from Novorossiysk by following the coast, and not open water. The losses would have been devastating, and the Caspian
Flotilla small.
Most of all if the oil was not of use, I believe that they would have torched it on the German approach, other Fronts
would have been more important and gotten those precious Reserves first.
Just my opinion.

As was written in my post earlier, BSSA=Order of Battle of Soviet Army in WW11

User avatar
Lars
Member
Posts: 608
Joined: 24 Nov 2004 16:58
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark

Post by Lars » 27 Oct 2005 10:06

kosta wrote:It would have been possible to send units across the Caspian Sea, but you have to look at the situation first.
By this time what was left of the oil fields would mostly have been already destroyed, or in disrepair.
If the German Army was near Baku, the Soviet Army would have been in great danger of being overrun or cut off
and destroyed in the Transcaucasus. Just look at a map to see the geography that would dictate just that.
Why would you want to send more units into this kind of environment, just to lose them also?
The Caspian is much wider than any of those other operations mentioned, Sevastopol was mainly reinforced from Novorossiysk by following the coast, and not open water. The losses would have been devastating, and the Caspian
Flotilla small.
Most of all if the oil was not of use, I believe that they would have torched it on the German approach, other Fronts
would have been more important and gotten those precious Reserves first.
Just my opinion.

As was written in my post earlier, BSSA=Order of Battle of Soviet Army in WW11


Kosta,

Fair objections. However, I believe that the Soviets would cling to Baku at any price for as long as possible. Not because of the Soviet´s own oil supply but to deny it to the Germans. I agree that the Baku oil fields would be destroyed by the Soviets themselves. The destruction was in fact well underway by August 1942 and drilling equipment and oil workers were shipped to the oil fields of "2nd Baku" in the Russian interrior. 2nd Baku failed to deliver during the war in spite of the "hype" but that is another topic entirely.

Re the cut off thing: The Soviet forces would of course be cut off in the Causasus as there would be no land-link to Astrakhan. However, this would not be a complete disaster. The Soviets could withdraw south towards the Soviet conctrolled border with Iran. Also I believe that the British would beef up the retreating Soviets with a division or two and, perhaps more important, with the RAF.

Re Distances: The distance across the Caspian Sea from Krasnovodsk to Baku isn´t greater than the distance from Novorossiysk to Sevastopol. And the supply line to Sevastopol passed along the Axis controlled shore-line of the Crimea. So I fail to see much of a difference there.

I´m merely speculating here, but perhaps the greatest difference would have been in the speed of a convoy and its protection. On the Black Sea the Soviet naval and commercial fleet had fast ocean going ships while the ships on the Caspian were slower, cargo heavy ships some just a little more advanced that large river barges. Also, the flak guns of the Soviet Black Sea fleet made any Luftwaffe attack on ships there risky while the Soviet naval flotilla on the Caspian Sea couldn´t throw nearly the same amount of lead into the air. OTOH, the Axis had some naval presence in the Black Sea. On the Caspian Sea there would be no surface threat to Soviet ships. So the verdict is still out, IMO.

Return to “WW2 in Eastern Europe”