Tuesday 16 June 2015

Lisow Finisher

Remember that battle in the Lisow direction where a battalion of shiny new King Tigers was stomped into the ground? Isayev wrote that the tanks were falsely identified as Panthers, but perhaps not entirely, as this award order suggests.

"Award Order:
  1. Name: Novikov, Vasiliy Ivanovich
  2. Rank: Guards Lieutenant
  3. Position, unit: tank reconnaissance platoon commander, 3rd Tank Battalion, 53rd Guards Fastov Order of the Red Banner, Order of Bogdan Khmelnitskiy Tank Brigade
    is nominated for the title of Hero of the Soviet Union.
  4. Year of birth: 1921
  5. Nationality: Russian
  6. Party affiliation: VKP(b) candidate
  7. Participation in the civil war and subsequent actions in defense of the USSR and Patriotic War: South Front (February 1942-August 1942), North Caucasus Front (August 1942-December 1942), 1st Baltic Front (February 1944-April 1944), 1st Ukrainian Front since June 15th, 1944.
  8. Wounds or concussions in the Patriotic War: wounded on January 19th, 1945
  9. In the Red Army since: October 1940
  10. Recruited by: Pushkin recruitment office, Moscow oblast
  11. Previous awards: Order of the Red Banner, August 1st 1944
Brief and specific description of the heroism or achievements: as a reconnaissance platoon commander, comrade Novikov demonstrated exceptional bravery and heroism in battle for the Socialist Motherland. during action with his battalion from January 12th, 1945 to January 19th, 1945. During this period, he personally destroyed many enemies and enemy vehicles including 4 tanks: 2 Tigers, 1 Panther, and 1 PzIV. With his gun, he killed about 200 German soldiers and officers

Comrade Novikov was the first to cross the German state border, destroying 4 AT guns, 2 field guns, crushed 5 MG nests, and destroyed up to 50 cars with military cargo.

In battles for Radomsk, he was among the first to burst into the city and captured up to 50 enemy soldiers and officers.

He is worthy of the title of Hero of the Soviet Union."

CAMD RF 33-793756-34

Tiger, King Tiger, close enough. The Panther and PzIV may not have been misidentifications, as the Tiger unit was refilled with whatever was available, including Panthers and PzIVs.

"14 January 1945: 3 tanks of the 2./schwere Panzer-Abteilung 501 fight near Kielce. Several Tigers continue fighting in the following days in the big pocket, but all have to be blown up after running out of fuel. Tiger 323 (Oberfeldwebel Schaffer) breaks through a 12-ton bridge and is abandoned. The remnants of the battalion gather at Griinberg (Silesia). In this area, several crews received surplus armored vehicles (2 Panthers, 3 Panzer IVs, 2 Hornisse tank destroyers and several Hetzer tank destroyers from the maintenance facility at Brieg)."

The rest of the heroisms of Lieutenant Novikov are not confirmed in the German diary, as the unit neglects to make any entries until January 21st.


  1. "Tiger, King Tiger, close enough"
    In one past post you questioned the accuracy of a German report when they didn't get the tank type correct. Do that for Russian reports as well.

    1. Sure, when the German tanks in Soviet reports jump up one or two weight categories like Soviet tanks do in German ones.

    2. Tiger / kingtiger close enough?
      These vehicles look completly different obviously.

    3. Not on paper where some pencil-pusher lumps "Tiger H" and "Tiger B" into one category because effort.

    4. Its completly possible that these Tiger I were Panzer IV actually, this was a common misconception.

      But i dont think you are going to consider that somehow

    5. Here's the plot. At Lisow, Germans and Russians bumped.

      The Germans thought they were fighting Josef Stalin tanks.
      The Russians thought they were fighting Panthers, "Tigers" and Panzer IVs.

      According to the records:
      The Germans *known* to be around the area that day were Tiger IIs.
      The Russians *known* to be around the area that day were T-34/85s.

      Where is the justification for downgrading the "Tigers" to Panzer IVs?

    6. Are you saying the German heavy tank battalion at Lisow was issued PzIVs instead of Tigers and they didn't notice?

    7. The same story again just as under the other topic. Read my comments properly.

    8. What am I supposed to read? The Soviets said they destroyed a bunch of Tigers here. The Germans said they lost a bunch of Tigers here. Everything matches up. Why did you think they were PzIVs?

  2. Yeah, but here the Soviets are underestimating the enemy, while in most cases here the Germans just make up way "worthier" foes than actually present.

    1. At least you can see how strong soviet propaganda was when they misidentificated the tank with impenetrable front for ZIS S-53 as regular Tiger. Or more probably he didnt (person who wrote an award order) care about it.

  3. Good to know the Russians let the rest of the tank brigade sleep in that week.