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A different spring of 1943 on the Eastern Front?

Discussion in 'Eastern Europe October 1939 to February 1943' started by jebib, Dec 6, 2012.

  1. jebib

    jebib recruit

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    I recently watched a program on the History Channel that reviewed the Kursk Campaign in Summer 1943. The narrative strongly suggested to me that after Von Manstein retook Kharkov in February he was in an excellent position to resume some kind of offensive with the sheparded armour of Guderian would have yielded much better results than what happened. Has this been the subject of any discussion in the past and are there any comments on it now? Respectfully,
     
  2. belasar

    belasar Court Jester Staff Member

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    Welcome to the forum. Kursk has perhaps more than one thread and you could begin your search there.
     
  3. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    I've seen it discussed but I'm not sure on this forum and I don't think in a thread of it's own. You might want to search over on the axishistory forum as well. As I recall the proposition was debateable.
     
  4. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    I will echo belsar's welcome. I also agree that you should use the Search function to see some threads on Kursk and von Manstein. There are lots of them.
     
  5. steverodgers801

    steverodgers801 Member

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    Actually in short, no the German army was not ready to continue the offence.
     
  6. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    The spring offensive ended in mud after Kharkov. The operation was first hoped to be going on after the mud was gone late April early May, but was postponed again and again, mostly due to Hitler´s wish to have new weapons in the battle I recall. But there is a massive Kursk thread where this is discussed in more detail.
     
  7. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    The Germans could have gone past Kharkov and continue attacking and 'clean' the city afterwards. However they made a straight attack to Kharkov and conquered it with possibly unnecessary losses. I somehow think this was a Hitler order.
     
  8. green slime

    green slime Member

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    On 7 March, Manstein made the decision to press on towards Kharkov, despite the coming of the spring thaw. Instead of attacking east of Kharkov, Manstein decided to orient the attack towards the west of Kharkov and then encircle it from the north.

    Between 8–9 March, the SS Panzer Corps completed its drive north, splitting the 69th and 40th Soviet Armies, and on 9 March it turned east to complete its encirclement. Despite attempts by the Stavka to curtail the German advance by throwing in the freshly released 19th Rifle Division and 186th Tank Brigade, the German drive continued.

    On 9 March, the Soviet 40th Army counterattacked against the Großdeutschland Division in a final attempt to restore communications with the 3rd Tank Army. This counterattack was caught by the expansion of the German offensive towards Kharkov on 10 March. That same day, the 4th Panzer Army issued orders to the SS Panzer Corps to take Kharkov as soon as possible, prompting Hausser to order an immediate attack on the city by the three SS Panzer divisions. The Das Reich would come from the West, the LSSAH would attack from north, and the Totenkopf would provide a protective screen along the north and northwestern flanks. Despite attempts by General Hoth to order Hausser to stick to the original plan, the SS Panzer Corps' commander decided to continue with his own plan of attack on the city, although Soviet defenses forced him to postpone the attack until the next day. Manstein issued an order to continue outflanking the city, although leaving room for a potential attack on Kharkov if there was little Soviet resistance, but Hausser decided to disregard the order and continue with his own assault.
    -wikipedia
    No, no Hitler order. Just Hausser leading the Waffen-SS.
     
  9. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Interesting that in the first place the waffen-ss panzer corps were in Kharkov and Hitler said they cannot withdraw. If the Red Army had surrounded the SS corps it would have been the end of AGS. Hausser gave the order to retreat and thus saved the tank units. Hitler had given the order to shoot the officer who Leaves the troops from Kharkov. So Häusser instead was confirmed a hero. What a change... kph
     
  10. Jesica

    Jesica New Member

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    Something similar happened to Weidling some years after.
     

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