Eastern Front aficionados? Need assistance!

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Comrade Kaizer

Grizzled Veteran
May 21, 2009
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I really wasn't going to reach out for assistance as recently these forums have hardened me into an audaciously stubborn mule by matter of influence but... I need some help on micro details of open ground battles between the Wehrmacht and the Soviet Army during/between July, 1941 (Near start of Operation Barbarossa) up into September, 1941.

Any details on battles that had taken place on open ground/country side would suffice (Baltics, Ukraine, etc.), but if someone can get me topographic maps and details of battles that toke place on the Ukrainian countryside (most importantly, the approach to Kharkov's outskirts*) that would be fantastic.

I would greatly appreciate the lending hand of anyone willing to educate me further on this very specific request and eastern front time frame.

*I don't need information on the several battles that occurred for Kharkov itself, as I'm very well aware and knowledgeable on these battles through the years of 1941-1943.
 
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Comrade Kaizer

Grizzled Veteran
May 21, 2009
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Thanks, though I'm looking for something a bit less grandiose. Something preferably between Minsk and Smolensk, approaching Kiev or between Kiev and Kharkov.

Understand the Blitzkrieg was in full effect but any open ground skirmishes within the locations above would be ideal. Right now I'm also looking at the Uman Kessel, and after hours of researching (and rampant googling) have come across a great deal of resources.

Yet, a lot of you guys know your stuff and whatever anyone can share here, the education and time would be greatly appreciated.

Especially if you're an RO fan.
 

shadowwill

FNG / Fresh Meat
Jun 14, 2007
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Here are some fantastic resources I use:

Russian Maps
http://www.wwii-photos-maps.com/home_page_018.htm

German Maps
http://www.wwii-photos-maps.com/home_page_019.htm

With the German ones, click 'Lage Ost 1941' - which will take you to an online storage, with maps categorised by month. These images are near 100mb each but are well worth downloading.

Also this site has a ton of maps organised into date and fronts
http://www.armchairgeneral.com/rkkaww2/maps.htm

And then here you have a large listing of battles by date
http://www.armchairgeneral.com/rkkaww2/battles.htm


Hope that helps you in some way, but be careful, once you start looking into this stuff you can't stop, so interesting studying the maps from both sides.
 

Comrade Kaizer

Grizzled Veteran
May 21, 2009
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Thanks, shadowwill. I actually came across the photo maps site yesterday and contacted the site owner via email concerning some things. Great site.

The other site with the maps I found as well, but for some reason never bookmarked it so thanks for that too.

I've been up eyes glued to the screen for the past couple days looking into this and also with the help of others, have come across a wealth of information today as well. Very interesting point of the early battles of Barbarossa.
 

Rrralphster

FNG / Fresh Meat
Mar 4, 2006
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If there ever was a "blitzkrieg", it ended at the doorstep of Moscow/Leningrad.

I say "If there ever was such a thing as blitzkrieg", because the Germans didn't use the term themselves. Germany didn't have the economy to wage "Blitzkrieg".
Without capturing the western European factories (and their resources), Germany wouldn't even be able to attack Russia...

"Blitzkrieg" is something the media invented, just like "Al Qaida" never used the name "Al Qaida" themselves.

Don't confuse "doctrine" with having a temporary tactical advantage over the enemy.
 

Comrade Kaizer

Grizzled Veteran
May 21, 2009
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If there ever was a "blitzkrieg", it ended at the doorstep of Moscow/Leningrad.

I say "If there ever was such a thing as blitzkrieg", because the Germans didn't use the term themselves. Germany didn't have the economy to wage "Blitzkrieg".
Without capturing the western European factories (and their resources), Germany wouldn't even be able to attack Russia...

"Blitzkrieg" is something the media invented, just like "Al Qaida" never used the name "Al Qaida" themselves.

Don't confuse "doctrine" with having a temporary tactical advantage over the enemy.

Regardless of it being a "media term" or not, since the battles of the Eastern Front are "past tense", years have conditioned this "term" to a particular understanding. Since we're not existing in 1940s Europe, utilizing a broaden "media term" to define a particular set of "military variables", instead of divulging the intricacies and not being able to move on to the climax of understanding between two parties is kind of self-defeating - especially when the "term" itself is irrelevant to the resulting work of the requested discussion.
 

Rrralphster

FNG / Fresh Meat
Mar 4, 2006
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It's not about the term, it's about a "legend".

For Blitzkrieg you need a motorized army. They didn't have the equipment.
The German army even used more horses in the 2nd WW then in WW1.
In 1940, when the Germans occupied the Netherlands, they confiscated millions of bicycles (for blitzkrieg...). We still make jokes about that, in the Netherlands...

Before the invasion of Russia, Germany first needed to get production of French car/truck factories going (never made the expected amount)
This is the main reason why Hitler attacked western Europe.
To outfit his army.

And just because some SS units didn't have enough discipline, and raced ahead in front of the main army, we now live with the legendary term "blitzkrieg"...


Maybe Guderian invented it.... or maybe not. 80% of his book(s) were written by others (without mention)




Blitzkrieg, Schmitzkrieg....
 

Comrade Kaizer

Grizzled Veteran
May 21, 2009
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Seeing as I made this thread for something that is now completely spun off course because your own persistence in educating what is practical, I'm going to state what I wrote in my previous post but in a more simple fashion in hopes that you might understand it. Because I don't think you know what I perceive of the term.

To me, the term Blitzkrieg is a pretense vanity, probably derived as a tool of propaganda. Regardless of it not being considered formal doctrine under the studies of most historians, the term (as I stated prior) has come to itself in this present day as a conditioned understanding of "mobile operations utilizing coordinated combined arms". That's what the average joe commonly interprets the term with and it is used widely, regardless if it is historically incorrect. Basically it is a 73-year-old meme, "lightning war".

Here it is used as a blurb, one word within an entire thread that has absolutely nothing to do with it, yet you are confined to wash its filth from the minds of the ignorant. Lives will change because of your posts, and shrines erected. Truth is the early German victories are due to superior officers in contrast to the Soviets, wiser allocations of man power and machine. Nothing is wrong with the self parody use of the term defining in "simple" form what basically is - the Wehrmacht bested the Soviets in this particular world stage. Why is it okay, you might ask? Because History knows this wasn't no "lightning war", I know it wasn't a lightning war. What I do need to know, is the micro details of skirmishes between and during the various pockets and "boilers" within the early stages of Barbarossa.

The more discrete and vague conflicts that took place between the battles of Minsk and Smolensk, between Kiev and Kharkov... With a preference to the Uman kessel. If you want to bestow some 'ol wisdom on the actual discussion and these locations and skirmishes, than educate me because this is actually what I'm asking for here and genuinely do not and/or know little of. What I don't need and already know is the feverish correction of military histories fantasized concepts, terms and definitions. So I'm going to ask you not to waste space in my thread and either help out with the actual topic or not.
 

Bluehawk

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Feb 13, 2006
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Hamilton, ON