Let's Build - the CSIR July 41 to March 42

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Andreas
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Let's Build - the CSIR July 41 to March 42

Post by Andreas » 07 Oct 2007 12:24

Corpo di Spedizione Italiano in Russia
(Corpo D'Armata Autotrasportabile)

Italian Expeditionary Corps in Russia
(Motorised Corps)
Commander:
General Giovanni Messe

Large Formations
Motorised Division "Pasubio"
Motorised Division "Torino"
3rd Division Celere "Principe Amedeo Duca d'Aosta" (Cavalry)

Total Strength:
62,000 men
17 Battalions Infantry (12x Line Infantery; 3x Beraglieri; 2x Blackshirt)
7 Battalions of supporting arms
1 Battalion Sappers (assault pioneers) guastatori
14 Independent Companies (2x motorcycle; 4x 81mm mortars; 8x ATG 47/32)
10 Cavalry Squadrons (8x Cavalry Squadrons; 2x Cavalry MG Squadrons) (note - a Squadron is a company-size unit)
4 Squadrons Tank "L" (61 Tanks)
14 Groups Artillery (3x 105/32 with 9 batteries and 36 guns; 2x 100/17 with 6 batteries and 24 guns; 7x 75/27 with 18 batteries and 72 guns; 2x 75/46 AA with 8 batteries and 32 guns)
10 Independent batteries (2x 65/17 with 8 guns total; 8x 20mm AA with 64 guns total)
4 Engineer battalions (1x pioneers (artieri); 1x Communications (collegamenti); 2x bridging)
6 Independent Engineer Companies (3x pioneers; 3x radio)
1 Chemical Battalion
153 81mm mortars
92 ATGs 47/32

Services
30 Field Hospitals; 4 Health Sections; 2 Radiological Ambulances; 1 Dental Technician Unit; 3 Chirurgical Sections; 2 De-gassing sections (bonifica gassati); 1 Disinfection Section; 1 Chemical/Bacteriological/Toxicological Laboratory with anti-rabies centre
6 Food Producing Sections; 1 Bakery Section with Oven; 5 Bakery Squadrons with Oven
2 Veterinary Hospitals for horses
1 Baggage Train Department; 14 Heavy Vehicle Departments; 2 Mixed Vehicle Departments; 1 Light Vehicle Department; 1 Motorised Ambulance Department; 2 Heavy Mobile Vehicle Maintenance Centres; 5 Roadside Repair Groups; 1 Roadside Repair Department
1 Traffic Control Battalion; 1 "Hundred" Traffic Police; 3 Traffic Control Groups; 3 mobile workshops Autofficine (FB: These were mobile workshops, i.e. truck mounted units, (they had specially equipped trucks) whose job was to provide mechanical aid to truck mounted units, following them in their movements.)
1 Special Rear Area Command; 2 Principle Rear Area Commands; 3 Secondary Rear Area Commands; 6 Principle Rear Area Offices; 3 Mobile Territorial Battalions; 1 Garrison Company; 1 Labour Grouping
5 Military Post Offices

Services were under the control of the Special Quartermaster of the CSIR. They were organised in various "Logistical Centre" magazines (or parts of magazines), for the health services, in Commisariates (one each for food, oatmeal, foraging, straw, wood, clothing, and equipment), artillery, engineers (with one semi-stationary and 12 mobile workshops, and vehicles (with workshop).

Artillery Distribution
Comando CSIR
20mm AA - 16 (2 batteries)
75/46 AA - 16 (2 groups with 2 batteries each)
105/32 - 36 (3 Groups with 3 batteries each)

Divisione Pasubio
20mm AA - 16 (2 batteries)
65/17 - 8 (2 escort companies)
75/27 mod. 1911 - 24 (2 Groups with 3 batteries each)
100/17 mod. 1914 - 12 (1 Group with 3 batteries)

Divisione Torino
20mm AA - 16 (2 batteries)
75/27 mod. 1911 - 24 (2 Groups with 3 batteries each)
100/17 mod. 1914 - 12 (1 Group with 3 batteries)

3a Divisione Celere
20mm AA - 16 (2 batteries)
75/27 mod. 1912 - 24 (2 Groups with 3 batteries each)

Total CSIR
220 Guns
47 Batteries

Source: OOB of the CSIR from the official history "Le operazioni delle unità italiane al fronte russo (1941 - 1943)" (Operations of the Italian Units on the Russian Front (1941 - 1943)), 2nd Edition Roma 1993

All the best

Andreas
Last edited by Andreas on 09 Oct 2007 11:04, edited 4 times in total.

Andreas
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Post by Andreas » 07 Oct 2007 12:42

Here is what is already on the Factbook:

http://www.axishistory.com/index.php?id=6261

All the best

Andreas

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Post by FB » 08 Oct 2007 08:36

Bravo!

Just a couple of things, at first glance (and hence probably not 100% reliable).

Gen. Messe assumed Command when the first troops were already on their way to their final destination in Romania. The designed Coprs Commander was in fact Gen Zingales who fell ill in Wien while travelling towards the East in his train, and was consequelntly substituted by Messe. The same Gen Zingales took the place on Gen. Messe and the command of the later XXXV Amy Coprs i.e. the unit which collected, in 1942 when ARMIR was formed, most of the original CSIR units.

Collegamenti: I'm not completely sure that this kind of Eng "speciality" stands for roadbuilding. At first glance I would have said Telephones/telegraphs i.e. communications. Moreover since in 1953, iirc, Esercito Italiano changed the name of its Collegamenti Engineers units from Collegamenti to Trasmissioni (i.e. Transmissions)

75/46 gun was not an ATG per se. It was an AA gun and the units where it was employed were AA Arty units. This means that they were deployed around sensible aerial bombing targets like HQs, bridges, depots etc. But of course when you see a tank coming towards you and you man a 75mm gun, even if it an AA weapon, you'll start fire against it...

This one is really just nitpicking, but since you used a very correct Italian units denomination, I think that 65/17 guns (being Infantry weapons) were in Companies and not in Batteries, iirc. On the contrary, 20mm AA weapons were in AA Arty units, and hence were named Batteries. On the same line it's probably worth to specify that a Cavalry Squadron, in Italian Army, is a company size unit (being the Btl size unit a Gruppo Squadroni).

Best regards

Andreas
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Post by Andreas » 08 Oct 2007 09:17

Thanks a lot FB, I have made the relevant corrections. Collegamenti my wife was not so sure about either :)

Please see also here:

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?t=128699 and

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?t=128733

All the best

Andreas

FB
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Post by FB » 08 Oct 2007 14:18

It's a pleasure, Andreas.

I noticed right now that you put a question mark aside Autofficine. If this is because you are not 100% confident with the given translation (workshops), you can delete it, because workshop is correct.

These were mobile workshops, i.e. truck mounted units, (they had specially equipped trucks) whose job was to provide mechanical aid to truck mounted units, following them in their movements.

Best regards
Last edited by FB on 08 Oct 2007 14:34, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Andreas » 08 Oct 2007 14:21

Thanks again FB - you guessed right, I was not quite certain about the translation.

All the best

Andreas

FB
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Re: Let's Build - the CSIR July 41 to March 42

Post by FB » 09 Oct 2007 10:25

Andreas wrote:...
3a Divisione Celere
20mm AA - 16 (2 batteries)
75/27 mod. 1912 (typo?) - 24 (2 Groups with 3 batteries each)

...

All the best

Andreas
No, correct.

The 75/27 mod. 1912 (or mod. 912 or mod. 12, they are all the same gun) was the standard Cavalry Arty gun.

Best regards
Last edited by FB on 09 Oct 2007 12:10, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Andreas » 09 Oct 2007 11:02

Great, thanks a lot!

All the best

Andreas

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tigre
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Re: Let's Build - the CSIR July 41 to March 42

Post by tigre » 25 Mar 2017 13:07

Hello to all :D; bumping a little this old thread ..............................

Organization, transfer, assembly area.

Immediately after the declaration of war to the former USSR (June 23) the Duce proposed to the Führer the sending of an Italian expeditionary force. This not only for reasons of international prestige, but above all to continue with military cooperation on all fronts after the German intervention in Africa and the Balkans. Hitler's response came on June 30: "I accept with gratitude this generous offer, Duce, to send an Italian Corps and Italian fighter to the Eastern Front."

Even before the Berlin response, the first units of the Expeditionary Corps had already assembled in Cremona. At the end of its constitution, the C.S.I.R. (Corpo di spedizione italiano in Russia), generally had this composition:

A command of Army Corps, that between the directly subordinate formations had three squadrons for aerial observation (61° Gruppo di aviazione Osservazione aerea) and other four of combat (22° Gruppo di aviazione Caccia terrestre), in addition a legion CC.NN. (63a Legione Camicie Nere Tagliamento) as an active contribution of the fascist party in the war against the Soviet Union; Two divisions, "Pasubio" (79° and 80° Rgt. Fanteria and 8° Rgt. Artiglieria) and "Torino" (81° and 82° Rgt Fanteria and 52° Rgt. Artiglieria), so called "autotrasportabili" which did not have a sufficient number of ground transport vehicles, a "Celere" Division (the 3rd, "Principe Amedeo Duca d'Aosta" - PADA) with the 3rd Regiment of Bersaglieri, Cavalry Regiments "Savoia Cavalleria" and " Lancieri di Novara ", a group of light tanks L / 3 and a horse-drawn artillery regiment; Nine elements of support, distributed among the various units of the Expeditionary Force, an Intendance of the East, with various services. A total of 2,900 officers, 58,800 men (non-commissioned officers and troops), 5,500 vehicles, 51 combat aircraft, 22 reconnaissance aircraft and 10 S81 transport aircraft.

The movement began on July 10, 1941: from Rome, the "Torino" Division; from Verona, the divisions "Pasubio" and "Celere"; From Cremona, the Army Corps' Command. The cities of Marmaros Sziget, Felsoviso and Borsa, in eastern Hungary, were reached by rail; Then the divisions continued on their own to Romanian territory to Hormolui, Falticeni and Suceava, while the HQ settled in Botosani. The movement to transport the entire Expeditionary Force lasted 27 days, required the use of 216 trains, divided into five blocks, and ended on August 5.
 
The distance from the railway discharge zone, 80 km deep, to the assembly area was about 280 km. During the transfer, on July 13, the Commander of the Expeditionary Force, General Francesco Zingales, was forced to interrupt the trip and had to be hospitalized in a clinic in Vienna, affected by pulmonary congestion. On July 17 he was replaced by General Giovanni Messe, who arrived directly at Marmaros Sziget. The Expeditionary Aviation Command (Colonel Carlo Drago) was established in Tudora on July 29, 1941.

Sources: http://www.unirr.it/storia/c-s-i-r
http://www.unirr.it/memoria/gallerie-im ... tunno-1941#
http://digilander.libero.it/lacorsainfi ... russia.htm
http://www.ilduce.net/russia.htm
Les Italiens en Russie. 1ère Partie : de la formation du CSIR à la bataille de Petrikovka.

Cheers. Raúl M 8-).
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Re: Let's Build - the CSIR July 41 to March 42

Post by tigre » 01 Apr 2017 21:59

Hello to all :D; more..............................

Between the Dniester and the Bug.

Upon reaching the area of ​​employment, the CSIR became part of the 11th German Army (mixed) of General Von Schobert, deployed between the 17th German Army and the 4th Romanian Army. This great unit of battle had no tanks available, nor a real reserve, and due to the lack of the first, had been in difficulties in front of the resistance of the Soviet troops. In the strategic reserve task, therefore, was engaged the C.S.I.R. which had been concentrated in the Jsvori-Yampol area. The command of the CSIR was located in Botosani.

After crossing the Dniester in several places and having established several bridge heads, the Germans were trying to close the pincers on the Soviet forces that remained relatively stable between the rivers Dniester and Bug. In some places, however, the Russians were putting up a strong resistance, and the Germans needed new forces to fuel the offensive. At the end of July, the CSIR was still organized, but General von Schobert asked General Messe for at least one division for immediate use in the battle.

Through Order of Operations No. 1, General Messe ordered the transfer of Pasubio Division, reinforced by a motorcycle company, to the area of ​​operations.

The movement of the various units, which began on July 30, 1941, was hampered by poor weather conditions; The heavy rain had turned the already disastrous Russian roads into great swamps.

On July 31, 1941, General von Schobert asked the Italian command two artillery groups to support the offensive of the German XXX. AK and warmly required the rapid transfer to the front line of the other elements of the CSIR.

On August 6, after fighting against mud and rain, the elements of the Pasubio Division arrived in Yampol; Meanwhile, the CSIR tactical command was transferred to Olshanka.

Sources: http://www.unirr.it/storia/c-s-i-r
http://www.unirr.it/memoria/gallerie-im ... unno-1941#
http://digilander.libero.it/lacorsainfi ... russia.htm
http://www.ilduce.net/russia.htm
Les Italiens en Russie. 1ère Partie : de la formation du CSIR à la bataille de Petrikovka.

Cheers. Raúl M 8-).
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Re: Let's Build - the CSIR July 41 to March 42

Post by tigre » 09 Apr 2017 03:03

Hello to all :D; more..............................

The Battle of the two Rivers.

The official historiography uses this name to indicate the maneuver carried out by the Germans in August of 1941 to crush the Soviet forces between the rivers Dniester and Bug, in which also participated the Pasubio Division reinforced by the 30º Groupement of artillery and the 1st Motorcycle Company.

In particular, the task of the Pasubio was to reach the Bug river north of Voznessensk, proceed along the right bank of the watercourse to Nikolajev and complete the siege of the Soviet bridgehead. The Pasubio detachments, fighting against bad weather and disastrous roads arrived on August 10 in Voznessensk, to continue the next day to the south. A very violent thunderstorm blocked the march of the detachments, while the vanguard under Colonel Epifanio Chiaramonti could advance another 30 kilometers.

"At 11:30 a.m. on the day 11 c.m. (August) the column under my command (Col. Epifanio Chiaramonti) vanguard of the Division Pasubio, consisting of the organic regiment (80th Regiment of Infantry of Rome), III. Group of the 8th Artillery, the 1st Bersaglieri motorcycle company, the 114th anti-tank guns and the 1st and 3rd mortars .... (about 4,500 men) received the order to press from Woznesensk (Ukraine), where it had stopped in The afternoon of the previous day to resume the march, always like vanguard of the Pasubio along the route Jastreblinovo ...... towards Nikolaiew to stop the enemy "Thus began the war in the history of Colonel Chiaramonti who met the Enemy in Pokrowskoje, intermediate locality and of unpronounceable name, between two rivers. Here the smallest river for the Italians was like the Po.

The Soviets attempted to strike the first columns with artillery and then with machine-gun fire. Colonel Epifanio quickly advanced the Third Artillery Group of Major Rossi to respond to enemy fire and to support the infantrymen's attack. In the fight that followed was mainly engaged the Third Battalion of the 80th Infantry Regiment. The presence of enemy tanks feared the worst, but the prompt response of our artillery forced the enemy to retreat. With the arrival of the other detachments was completed the clearing of the area in which 38 prisoners and other war materials were captured. Two Italians were killed and three wounded. This day also registered the first medal for bravery in Russian land, granted to the Bersaglieri Santino Alfredo Lutri.

The next day, still continuing south, the motorcyclists intercepted other enemy units near the village of Yasnaya Polyana, this time strictly participated in the fighting the First Battalion of the 80th Regiment under Major Moscardini. After a violent exchange of artillery fire and mortars, the enemy threatened to break up, even when he chose to retreat, leaving hundreds dead and many prisoners on the field. From the interrogation of the prisoners it was discovered that before the Italian soldiers was the Soviet 469th Rifle Regiment, reinforced by several mortars and three horse-drawn batteries. From the words of Colonel Chiaramonti:

 "The fight then had unequal characteristics: a battalion, a battery and a mortars company of 81, against a regiment, three batteries, and who knows how many mortars, the opponent has fought hard, and this is shown by his losses. But the infantry of the Pasubio have never been taught to count the enemy, faithful to the order received: forward at any price, in the name of Rome, the proud motto of my 80 "

 The fight on August 12 had cost 15 dead, including two officers, and 82 wounded. General Schobert, Commander of the 11th German Army, sent General Messe a message in which he wrote that the Pasubio had contributed greatly to the victorious action of his army.

Sources: http://www.unirr.it/storia/c-s-i-r
http://www.unirr.it/memoria/gallerie-im ... unno-1941#
http://digilander.libero.it/lacorsainfi ... russia.htm
http://www.ilduce.net/russia.htm
Les Italiens en Russie. 1ère Partie : de la formation du CSIR à la bataille de Petrikovka.

Cheers. Raúl M 8-).
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Re: Let's Build - the CSIR July 41 to March 42

Post by tigre » 16 Apr 2017 14:29

Hello to all :D; more..............................

With the Panzergruppe von Kleist.

From August 14, 1941, the Italian Expeditionary Corps was transferred under the Pz Group von Kleist, in order to protect its left flank during the advance towards the Dnieper and then participate in the offensive across that river. And this was for the simple error of a translator, who when asked what the C.S.I.R. status was, described it as "motoriziert" (motorized) and not "verlauftbar", being simply "autotrasportabile".

On August 15, the Pasubio Division, temporarily assigned to the German III. AK (Mot) moved to the right bank of the Dnieper between the towns of Topilovka and Kryukof, to relieve the SS Wiking Division deployed further south. The relief operations lasted three days, hampered by bad weather and enemy air strikes. After three days of relative calm, the detachments of the Pasubio had to move further south between Koluskino and Verhniednieprovsk, taking turns again with SS Wiking.

In the agenda of August 21 issued by the commander of the III. AK (Mot), General von Mackensen, reported:

"The Third Pz Korps succeeded in the last days, through a fierce fight in attack and defense, in repelling a numerically superior enemy, in a large area at a bridgehead southwest of Dnjepropetrowsk .... The precondition For the rapid advance was created by the SS Wiking Division and the Italian Division Pasubio, which, despite the unfavorable conditions of command, and partly because of the unfavorable situation of the fuel, have overcome with gratifying speed all the difficulties".

Also on 21 August the CSIR air units moved to Krivoj Rog to provide air cover to the bridges and to the units deployed along the Dnieper; In the following days, other motorized departments of the Celere Division, the artillery regiment of the Division Torino and the motorized unit of the Corps also reached the river. At the same time, the elements of the SS Wiking were dedicated to repel the Soviet assaults coming from the northeast, supported by a powerful artillery fire that with extreme precision impacted on the German positions. All the bridges over the river had been destroyed and the troops at the bridgehead were in danger of being isolated: thanks to the sacrifice and heroism of the Italian sappers of the Torino, a bridge's deck of only ten feet was repaired, Which allowed the transfer of materials and communications with the forces deployed on the western shore.

Sources: http://www.unirr.it/storia/c-s-i-r
http://www.unirr.it/memoria/gallerie-im ... unno-1941#
http://digilander.libero.it/lacorsainfi ... russia.htm
http://www.ilduce.net/russia.htm
Les Italiens en Russie. 1ère Partie : de la formation du CSIR à la bataille de Petrikovka.
La battaglia di Petrikowka. Fanti italiani e fanti SS sul fronte russo. Massimiliano Afiero.

Cheers. Raúl M 8-).
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Re: Let's Build - the CSIR July 41 to March 42

Post by tigre » 23 Apr 2017 15:44

Hello to all :D; more..............................

The visit of the Duce (and the Führer) to the Eastern Front.

On August 26, 1941, after joining with Hitler in Rastenburg, Mussolini arrived by air at Brest Litovsk. The next day (27 August) by train the Duce and the Führer arrived at the Headquarters of the Army Group South located in Strychov in the south of Ukraine. On August 28, they arrived by air, first to Uman to the Command Post of General von Rundstedt and then to Tekusha where the Duce met General Messe, and reviewed all the elements of the CSIR.

Sources: http://www.unirr.it/storia/c-s-i-r
http://www.unirr.it/memoria/gallerie-im ... unno-1941#
http://digilander.libero.it/lacorsainfi ... russia.htm
http://www.ilduce.net/russia.htm
Les Italiens en Russie. 1ère Partie : de la formation du CSIR à la bataille de Petrikovka.
La battaglia di Petrikowka. Fanti italiani e fanti SS sul fronte russo. Massimiliano Afiero.
http://www.oldpicz.com/fuhrer-parade-1941/

Cheers. Raúl M 8-).
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Re: Let's Build - the CSIR July 41 to March 42

Post by Kelvin » 27 Apr 2017 07:54

Hello, Tigre, I see the old book map about battle of Kiev by Haupt, the map shows Italian 3rd Celere division and 52th autotransportable division were on the blocking position on southeast side closely with 17.Armee, AFAIK, Italian divisions were nothing to do with this battle. Do you know what are their activies in September 1941 ? Thank

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Re: Let's Build - the CSIR July 41 to March 42

Post by tigre » 30 Apr 2017 19:53

Hello to all :D; here goes something Kelvin (AFAIK the Pasubio Division was securing the right flank of the 17. AOK, I think the XI. AK)..............................

Petrikowka maneuver.

On September 3, after overcoming the usual problems of chronic lack of resources and fuel, the detachments of Pasubio and the Celere Division in front line and of the Torino in the second line, arrived at the Dnieper river together with the units of Panzergruppe Kleist. The German command immediately required the Torino Division in order to defend the southern area of ​​Dniepropetrovsk; More generally the task of the CSIR was to defend the first line along the Dnieper between the 17. German Army (17. AOK) and the III. AK (Mot) of the Panzergruppe von Kleist. On September 7, the Legion of CC.NN. Tagliamento (under dependence of the Celere) relieved the Regiment Lancieri di Novara in the surveillance of a sector on the river where it had its baptism of fire with a balance of 12 fallen in action and 18 wounded.

In early September, the commander of the SS-Wiking Division was ordered to extend the bridgehead to Kamenka. On the night of 6th-7th September the men of the SS-Westland and the SS-Germania regiments began pressing the bag towards Kamenka; The movement, however, was detected by Soviet observers, and so a hail of fire poured on the formations of the SS-Wiking, forcing Steiner to order the suspension of the maneuver. The next day, with the support of the division's artillery fire that neutralized enemy positions, the SS-Westland and SS-Germania battalions succeeded in reaching Kamenka, overrunning the Soviet positions; In the hands of the SS-Wiking remained about 5,000 prisoners, in addition to a large amount of material including several tanks.

On September 15, the German command required General Messe the intervention of the Pasubio Division to protect the right wing of the 17th German Army advancing in the area between Kobeljakj and Poltava. Also on September 15, after the first stop in the front, the troops of the Torino Division had the opportunity to carry out the last strecht of the march route aboard the trucks. Not only had they worn the cardboard soles they came walking with their knees. The Torino Division had marched on foot for 45 days. General Messe said .. "A particular compliment goes to the 81st and 82nd Infantry ... with the constant mirage of the vanishing truck ... its fatigue is a sure test of discipline and resistance."

The Pasubio Division was subordinated to the 17th German Army, while the remaining units of the CSIR constituted, together with the German III. AK Mot (including the 60. ID Mot., the SS-Wiking and the 198. ID) the Mackensen Group, with the objective of defending the Dnieper line from the mouth of the Orel and the Mokraja Sura and collaborating in the consolidation of the Dniepropetrovsk bridgehead. Thus the crossing the river by two German Motorized Corps and the Pasubio, which took place on September 18, marked the beginning of the maneuver.

The Torino Division, reinforced by the 63rd Legion of CC.NN. Tagliamento under Console Nicolò Nicchiarelli and the 2nd anti-tank Battalion was transferred to the bridgehead of Dniepropetrovsk, starting the crossing from September 21 under fire of artillery and aviation of the enemy. Further north the Pasubio Division crossed the river near Derijevka while further to the south the Celere Division stood in defense on the left bank of the Dnieper. With the forces thus deployed, General Messe could finally engage the entire Army Corps in a battle that would surround Soviet forces and exclude any possibility of retreat. By the river the Italians held the "Solinas Group" ("Lancieri di Novara", 1st Battalion of Bersaglieri, 2nd Company of Motorcyclist, a Group of 100/17 and a Mortar battalion), while the 81st Infantry was given the task of cutting off any attempt at enemy infiltration

Sources: http://www.unirr.it/storia/c-s-i-r
http://www.unirr.it/memoria/gallerie-im ... unno-1941#
http://digilander.libero.it/lacorsainfi ... russia.htm
http://www.ilduce.net/russia.htm
Les Italiens en Russie. 1ère Partie : de la formation du CSIR à la bataille de Petrikovka.
La battaglia di Petrikowka. Fanti italiani e fanti SS sul fronte russo. Massimiliano Afiero.
Emme rossa!: Le camicie nere sul fronte russo 1941-1943. Pierluigi Romeo di Colloredo.

Cheers. Raúl M 8-).
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