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Russian Combat Methods in World War II (Historical Study Department of the Army Pamphlet No. 20-230)

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Russian Combat Methods in World War II

(Historical Study Department of the Army Pamphlet No. 20-230)

  • German Report Series
    • Dept. of the Army, Washington, D.C., November 1, 1950
      • 134 pages
      • 9 maps
        • General Reference Map
        • Timoshenko Plan
        • Battle in the Dnepr-Berezina Triangle, Gomel Pocket
        • Russian Attacks Against the Bridgehead of Porechye
        • The Meeting Engagement Near Plavskoye
        • Russian Counterattacks Near Vyazma
        • The Russian Fifth Tank Army in the Attack on Kharkov
        • Russian Defense Against German Breakthrough of the Leningrad Line
        • Russian Defense Against German Relief Thrust on Stalingrad
  • Free PDF download
This pamphlet was prepared by a committee of former German officers at the EUCOM Historical Division Interrogation Enclosure, Neustadt, Germany, in late 1947 and early 1948. All of these officers, none of which were identified by name, had extensive experience on the eastern front during the period 1941-45. The principal author, for example, commanded in succession a panzer division, a corps, a panzer army, and an army group.
 
The "Introduction" and "Conclusions" to this study present the views of the German author without interpretation by American personnel. Throughout this pamphlet, Russian combat methods are evaluated in terms of German combat doctrine, and Russian staff methods are compared to those of the German General Staff. Tactical examples in the text were carefully dated, and an effort was made to indicate the progress of the Russian Army in overcoming the weaknesses noted in the early stages of the war.
 
In the preparation of this revised edition (this was originally published as MS #T-22 "Peculiarities of Russian Warfare" by the Historical Division, Special Staff, U.S. Army, in June 1949), the German text was retranslated, and certain changes in typography and chapter titles were made to improve clarity and facilitate its use. The revised edition was considered to be just as reliable and sound as the text prepared by the German committee.
 
Contents
  • Preface

  • Introduction

  • The Russian Soldier and Russian Conduct of Battle

    • Peculiarities of the Russian Soldier

    • The Russian Command Echelons

    • The Commissar

    • The Combat Arms

      • Infantry

      • Artillery

      • Armored Forces

      • Horse Cavalry

    • Russian Battle Techniques

    • Russia as a Theater of Operations

  • Peculiarities of Russian Tactics

    • General

    • Reconnaissance and Security

    • Offense

      • Winter: the Preferred Season

      • The Employment of Mass

      • Development of Russian Offensive Tactics

      • The Use of Armor

    • Defense

      • General

      • Use of Mines

      • Conduct of Battle

    • Retreat and Delaying Engagements

    • Combat Under Unusual Conditions

      • Fighting in Towns and Villages

      • Forest Fighting

      • Fighting Beside Rivers, Swamps, and Lakes

      • Fighting in Darkness and Inclement Weather

    • Camouflage, Deception, and Propaganda

      • Camouflage

      • Deception

      • Propaganda

  • The Red Air Force

    • A Luftwaffe Evaluation

    • A Ground Force Evaluation

      • Tactical Employment

      • Combat Techniques

  • Partisan Warfare

    • Partisan Combat Methods

    • Defense Against Partisan Activities

      • Passive Anti-partisan Measures

      • Active Anti-partisan Measures

    • Non-Russian Partisans

  • Conclusions

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