Tuesday 3 January 2023

Goliath Demolition Vehicle

 "Artillery HQ, 49th Army
August 12th, 1943

To Chiefs of Staff and Commanders of Artillery Regiments

In order to combat our tanks, dugouts, and pillboxes on the Central and Volkhov Fronts, the enemy is using torpedo tankettes and suffocating yellow-green smoke that is created by means of burning a special powder.

I attach characteristics of these types of German weapons.

Brief characteristics of the torpedo tankette and means of combat against it:

  • Combat weight: 200 kg
  • Explosive filler: 70 kg
    The charge is located in the center of the tankette's hull.
  • Length: 1.5 m
  • Width: 0.83 m
  • Height: 0.52 m
  • Clearance: 0.16 m
  • Speed: 0.2 kph
The tankette has an electric transmission. Power supply: two 12V batteries. The drive sprockets in the front are driven by electric motors powered by batteries. In the rear part of the hull there is a spindle with a three wire electric cable up to 1.3 km in length.

The torpedo tankette is driven remotely using an electric remote control from a tank or from behind cover. It can also turn and reverse when moving. The explosive filler is set off by a detonator with an electric capsule that can be triggered by the controller. The torpedo tankette is hard to detect due to its small size.

  1. Destroy them with small arms and automatic weapons at any effective range with ordinary bullets, but the best effect is achieved when using armour piercing incendiary bullets.
  2. Destroy them with anti-tank rifles, high caliber machine guns, and artillery with direct fire.
  3. Tank destroyer teams can destroy them with Molotov cocktails or grenades at ranges no closer than 25-50 meters from cover. Additionally, cut off the electric cable trailing behind the tankette.
Do not in any case drive over the tankette to avoid an explosion. Work with rifle and sapper units to combat the torpedo tankettes.

The powder and countermeasures:

The powder in a special package is thrown at the tank. It strikes the armour and ignites, emitting a suffocating yellow-green smoke that attacks the respiratory organs. A gas mask can protect against the suffocating gas. In case of these attacks, it is necessary to establish cooperation between neighbouring tanks and support units to combat tank destroyer teams.

Immediately report on the use of torpedo tankettes and powder by the enemy and on countermeasures against them to the Artillery HQ of the Army and neighbouring tank units.

Chief of Staff of Artillery of the 43rd Army, Colonel Medvedev
Chief of Intelligence of the Chief of Staff of Artillery, Guards Major Alishevskiy"

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