Max Payload wrote: ↑
06 Oct 2020 17:10
July 1942 – Ostheer manpower 2,847,000 (excluding northern Norway/Finland).
That figure is from Müller-Hillebrand IIRC and is possibly somewhat high. The actual Iststärke of the Ostheer on 1 July was 2,734,000, according to AL1574-55 and 65 Handakten OrgAbt. A September 1942 note in the OrgAbt KTB-Anlagen gives an even lower figure of 2,730,000, and also states that this includes “aller Kräfte in den rückwärtigen Heeresgebieten und in den Gebieten der Reichskommisariate (in den Kommisariaten sind 99,500 Mann”. Finally, a figure of 2,635,000 for the main front, with 212,000 men in the Ostgebiete, was given in RH20-11/430, 11.7.42, 21.7.42, 1.8.42.
July 1943 – Ostheer manpower 3,115,000 (excluding XX Mtn Army in northern Norway/Finland).
That may be Müller-Hillebrand again I think? I am not sure what the original source was and it may be a typo. 3,005,000 is given in Handakten OrgAbt., though this is not date-specific and may refer to an average during the month or strength at some point later than 1 July. , A figure of 3,138,000 is given for 1 July in NARA, T78, R411, F6379644. AMO SSR, Fonds 6598, Liste 12450, Akte 305, Bl. 12, Bl. 14, Bl. 19, Bl. 23, MI14/442-27 „Entwicklung der Iststärke des Ostheeres“, OrgAbt 18941/44, 7.9.44, but it includes Waffen-SS and LW, deducting those gives 2,939,000.
Increase of 9.4% year on year.
9.02% if you take the figures for both years from the Handakten OrgAbt, but that wasn't what was so bad. In late July 1943, a Führer-Notiz issued by OKH on personnel development in the Feldheer between 1 July 1942 and 1 July 1943 showed that Abgänge had exceeded Zugänge by roughly 300,000 – that without taking into account the losses at Stalingrad and Tunisia (which was of little consequence in this report, because the divisions there had all been destroyed, so had an effective Fehl of 100%
). The only time in the period where there had been a positive balance - Zugänge exceeding Abgänge was March, April, and June 1943 when every effort had been made to reinforce units for the proposed counteroffensive. Nevertheless, on 1 July 1943 the units of the Feldheer still had a Fehl of 220,000, which about 5% of the Iststärke. Only seven Infanterie-Divisionen in the Ostheer still fielded nine battalions, and 37 fielded 8 battalions, the rest, 156 divisions, had only seven battalions or fewer according to MI14/650-3148 „Zusammenstellung der Divisionen mit 8 und mehr Btl. nach H.Gr. und AOK“, OrgAbt KTB-Anlagen 25.7.43.