Sunday, 12 May 2013

Guardsmen in the Fall, Part 7: Battle at Belgorod

"7. Battle at Belgorod

On October 20th, the main forces of the brigade were at Tamarovka and Volhovets. The brigade received an order to fortify in the region of Tamarovka and not to let the enemy reach Belgorod. The brigade had two platoons of T-34s and one platoon of T-40s at its disposal. As of the morning of October 21st, the brigade occupied:
  • Tamarovka, with two platoons of tanks and a company of motorized infantry
  • Height 221.8, a battalion of motorized infantry, missing one company
The terrain was flat, without forests, but very bumpy. The roads were muddy, and difficult for wheeled transport. The weather was cloudy.

A column was spotted on the road from Borisovka to Belgorod, through Blizhniy. The column was attacked with tanks, AT guns, and infantry, as a result of which the enemy lost:
  • Tanks: 2
  • Vehicles: 16
  • Infantry: a platoon
At 17:00, the enemy attacked height 221.8, and took it. We brought in reinforcements, and counterattacked. After a long and bitter battle, the brigade fortified 500 meters east of height 221.8. The enemy lost:
  • Tanks: 5
  • Guns: 4
  • Aircraft: 1
  • Infantry: a company
Our losses:
  • 5 T-34s, all towed successfully
  • Killed: 32
  • Wounded: 44
An infantry division approached from Tamarovka and Streletskoye, and began an attack on Volhovets. 3 KV tanks, coming to reinforce the brigade at height 221.8, met the advance guard and began combat. The advance guard was destroyed, and the rest scattered.

The enemy, supported by AT gun, machine gun, and mortar fire, assaulted the infantry and tanks at height 221.8. A small group of tanks and AT guns held out until nightfall. After nightfall, elements of the brigade were moved to the eastern shore of the river Donets. The enemy, over three days of battle, lost:
  • Tanks: 14
  • Guns: 6
  • Mortars: 2
  • Tractors: 1
  • Vehicles: 15
  • Infantry: a battalion"

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