Thursday, 4 September 2014

Trophy Battalion

In 1942, things were tough for the USSR in terms of tanks supplies. The following document illustrates the condition of many armoured units pretty well:


"To the Kalinin Front Military Council

The 29th Army includes the 143rd, 159th, and 129th Independent Tank Battalions. In reality, these units are not combat capable due to a lack of vehicles, and only exist in the army on paper. On February 16th, 1942, the condition of the aforementioned tank battalions was as follows:

Unit
Vehicle
Allotted
Claimed
Counted
Of those counted
Of those disabled
Functional
Disabled
No contact
Medium repairs
Major repairs
143rd OTB
KV
5
4
4
-
2
2
2
-
T-34
11
4
4
-
4
-
3
1
T-60
20
2
2
-
1
1
1
-
Total
36
10
10
-
7
3
6
1
159th OTB
KV
5
5
5
-
5
-
2
2
T-34
11
6
6
-
5
1
3
-
T-60
20
10
10
-
8
2
2
1
Total
36
21
21
-
18
3
7
5
129th OTB
KV
5
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
T-34
11
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
T-60
20
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
Captured medium
-
2
2
-
2
-
2
-
Captured light
-
10
10
-
10
-
10
-
Total
36
12
12
-
12
-
12
-

Total
108
43
43
-
37
6
25
6

The table paints a grim picture. The entire Army has lost its armoured forces, with the 129th OTB losing all domestic vehicle permanently. 6 vehicles are missing, likely lost. The battalions have kept their records well, not a single unclaimed vehicle is present or claimed vehicle lost. 37 vehicles are disabled, with most needing medium repairs, and a few needing major repairs. Damage to an additional 6 vehicles has not yet been evaluated.

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