Monday 9 November 2015

PTRD vs Ferdinand

"To the chief of the operations department of the 25th Corps HQ

Anti-tank rifles are ineffective against new German SPGs and heavy tanks. For example, during the battles of December 14th-15th, 1943, AT rifle units were engaged to fight counterattacking Ferdinand SPGs. The Ferdinand's armour could not be damaged with AT rifle fire, and only several direct hits to the tracks forced the SPGs to depart from the trenches and maneuver with the goal of not showing their flank, even though no instances of serious damage to the tracks by AT rifle fire was observed.

Until the battles of December 14th-15th, AT rifle crews were not used in battle for their intended purpose. AT rifle fire was used against dug in enemies, to destroy his machineguns, and for suppression of direct fire guns.

Until new AT measures arrive that are capable of dealing with new SPGs and heavy tanks, keep AT platoons and companies at the regimental level. Due to the relatively low weight of the AT rifles, they can quickly be moved to threatened sections of the front to be used against enemy light and medium tanks, dugouts, and be used in AT defenses.

Operations Department Chief, Major Alekseev."

Via altyn73.


  1. I wonder what Ferdinands they were fighting? Per German records 12/13/1943 PzJgRgt 656 with Abteilungen 653 and 216 was tranferred out of Army Group South area for refreshing.

  2. You can find missrecognition at all fronts, western allies saw a lot of Tigers which weren't Tigers, Germans saw IS2s were there only were T34-85s...
    But the best of all is how those ubersoldiers cheated even at their internal documents, once a Jagdpanther destroyed 16 enemy tanks in a tankless front...

    1. Or Bolshevik childern's stories of captured tank killing 1 Panther tank, 4 PzIV tanks, 17 cannons, 27 mortars, 32 cars, 180 enemy soldiers and officers.

    2. That's peanuts compared to your average SS ubermensch tanker's record. Why is this a children's story while SS kill claims are realistic and believable?

    3. Peter, while there are of course instances of German exaggerations, German records are still incredibly much more reliable than Russian ones.

      The performance of Russian units were often so poor that the officers in charge felt the need to inflate the enemy numbers to explain away their huge losses. If not, they risked being put before a firing squad.

    4. More reliable in what? Accuracy? Find something from 1944 more accurate from german side than this:

    5. Unknown, the red army had commissars in all his units. It was impossible for a commander to cheat in his informs. Just in front of them there were some people, they thought they were a superior race of ubersoldiers and they were using "unbeatable wonder machines" (at least this was what you could read in their manuals). Guess how they tried to justify to their Führer they were losing the war against "iliterate communist subhumans".

    6. “Unknown, the red army had commissars in all his units. It was impossible for a commander to cheat in his informs.”

      It works in just the opposite way. The structure of Soviet military theory is the Marxist perception that war is an extension of politics. If there is failure in battle it is a not just a failure of the commander, or his men. It is a reflection on the fabric of Communism. No political officer is going to allow a report pointing to a failure of Communism.

    7. Bad logic. If your theory was correct Soviet would never assimilate and perfectionate German technology and tactics, they would continue fighting the same way as the first day of the war.
      Soviets were more open minded than occidental propaganda wants to make us to think.

    8. Commissars have nothing to do with it. A military unit isn't some kind of separate element that exists in a vacuum. If you claimed that you won a glorious victory and defeated many enemies, a trophy gathering unit is going to be sent to the battlefield to inspect the wrecks and recover them, award money will be sent out to the victors, you will be expected to file some award orders. What will happen when the commission shows up and finds no tanks (or very few tanks) on the battlefield? Then you are found to be stealing from the Motherland, which even in peace time is a very grave offense. In wartime, that's a bullet to the back of your head.

      Similarly, if you underreport your losses, you will still get money and resources for the troops you claim did not die. The next time your unit is inspected, your deception will be found, and once again, that's theft. Boom, you're dead.

      "Hurr the Soviets are all liars" is a ridiculous proposition. An army that lies to itself cannot win wars.

    9. "An army that lies to itself cannot win wars."

      Very true. Case in point, the Japanese.

    10. "An army that lies to itself cannot win wars."
      They can and they did. They only have to out number, out produce and sometimes out fight the enemy. Plus it helps if they have plenty of friends and other side is led by a fool. Lying about your achievements has it's cost but in the mathematics of war it is only a factor. . It can be dealt with if other things go its way. A country that liquidates the cream of its officer corps in 1937-1938, Ежовщина, cannot win wars. Or one would of thought.

    11. The price of *that* particular piece of genius (plus all the other politically motivated hobbling of the military) became only too clear already in the Winter War, and almost fatally so during Barbarossa. A major reason it took the Soviets so long to turn the tide was specifically the fact they essentially had to train a whole new senior officer corps from near scratch "under fire", so to speak.

      And given that the whole debacle had basically been motivated by rank distrust of the military by the political leadership (which is rather common for totalitarian regimes), I'd like to see you elaborate a bit on why they'd then tolerate rank lying through the teeth by the former?

    12. “I'd like to see you elaborate a bit on why they'd then tolerate rank lying through the teeth by the former?”
      Well I could reply with what they usually do on this site with some absolutist reductiones ad absurdum like "They always tell the entire truth about mission failure because they want to be shot.” or “there is never failure in Soviet battles“. The most likely answer is no one has to know.

      Let me give you an example and you can try to explain it:
      At Soviet controlled Mcensk on the Zusha River the Germans entered the city under cover of a snow storm and captured intact guns, tanks and a handful of BM-13 Katyusha rocket launchers which Lelushenko was made responsible for with his life. That’s what he said in his story after the war. A loss of Katyusha in 1941 would mean a bullet to the head.

    13. That's an awfully convoluted way of saying you can't.

      And, uh, what's the point of that second section supposed to be?

    14. "what's the point of that second section supposed to be"

      Maybe its too abstract? It means the commissars or other officers failed to notify their superiors of the loss of the BM-13s. If they did then a bullet to Lelushenko's head.
      So it shows the naivete in assuming that failures are always fully reported.

    15. So you say a superior told Lelushenko to defend a very inportant BM-13 otherways he will be executed and that superior forgot to check if his order was accomplished.
      You are clearly missinforming or lying us, what about the operators of that rocket launcher, it's target designators, all the intendence chain, the troops it should defend, the units close to or stationed at Mcensk, the commanders of those units and the units close to them when that rocket launcher received the order to fire and nothing happened...
      German lied when they were losing the war and the more they were losing the more they lied. Admit the evidence, it's childish to use the logic you are using to negate it.

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