Before MUD – FIM Motocross World Championship there was Rasputitsa

The rasputitsa refers to the biannual seasons when unpaved roads become difficult to traverse in parts of Belarus, Russia and Ukraine. The word may be translated as the “quagmire season” because during this period the large flatlands become extremely muddy and marshy, as do most unpaved roads. The term applies to both the “spring rasputitsa” […]

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Germans actually studied the partisan resistance in the East and West

SS-Obergruppenführer Erich von dem Bach-Zelewski Prussian staff officers in the mold of von Moltke-vian military outlook looked at irregular warfare with contempt but not the generation of German officer corps who faced a different kind of threat to Germany at the end of WWI. Hans-Adolf Prützmann was the generation of German officers that were involved […]

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Marines in China 1945-49 – Operation Beleaguer

A Marine Corps Grumman F7F-3N Tigercat at Peking’s Nan Yuan Airfield in December 1945. When World War II came to its abrupt atomic end in the summer of 1945, few paid much attention to Mao Tse-tung and his Chinese Communists. They seemed, as John Lewis Gaddis has written, “little more than an obscure group of […]

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BATTLE OF DNIEPER, (AUGUST 13-SEPTEMBER 22, 1943)

One of several massive, rolling offensives that together retook western Ukraine from the Germans by April 1944. An initial thrust was launched toward the lower Dnieper on August 13, 1943. This was intended to take advantage of RUMIANTSEV and the Donbass offensive operation elsewhere on the Eastern Front, while preceding the awkwardly named Offensive in […]

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“The Prestige Objective” Part I

The interaction between strategic ends and means is no more obscure when cities are concerned than in any other form of warfare. Sometimes, this interaction is much faster, more intense, and more immediate than it might be if a city were not involved. The battle for Berlin in early 1945 illustrates this interaction as few […]

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“The Prestige Objective” Part II

The main axis of the Soviet attack was to begin from Marshal Zhukov’s bridgehead on the Oder River at Kustrin, which was due east and pointed directly at Berlin. As circumstances permitted, the two other Fronts, the Second Belorussian and the First Ukrainian, would converge on the city from the northeast and south, respectively. On […]

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Kiev City defensive operation of 1941

During the opening phase of World War II Kiev was defended by troops of the Southwestern Front commanded by M. P. Kirponos. The German offensive of the “South” army group was commanded by General-Fieldmarshal G. Rundstedt. The initial battles in the western part of Ukraine took place between June and the beginning of July, during […]

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BAGRATION OPERATION

Operation Bagration: Battle of Witebsk, Development 22nd – 26th June 1944, 2200. Operation Bagration: Pocket of Minsk, Development June 29 1944, 1000 PM – July 03 1944, 1000 PM Development of the Bobruisk operation during soviet offensive Operation Bagration from June 24, 1944, 0400 AM to June 27, 1944, 0900 PM Final stage of Bobruisk […]

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Allied Axis in ‘Operation Blau’ (Blue)

Romanians take a break on the Don River. Italian 8th Army or Italian Army in Russia. A Hungarian Turan I Model 1940 medium tank from the 2nd Tank Division on the Eastern front. ‘Operation Blau’ (Blue) was the codename for the German campaign. Charged with its implementation was Army Group South, commanded by Field Marshal […]

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Manstein’s [Backhand] Counterattack 1943

German Panzer IV tanks at Kharkov, 1943. German armored personnel carrier advancing through the Sumskaya street of Kharkov, March 1943. OREL-BRIANSK OFFENSIVE OPERATION (FEBRUARY 25-MARCH 23, 1943) At the head of a redesignated Army Group South in February 1943, Manstein broke into the Soviet flank when Joseph Stalin pressed the Stavka into an overextended reach […]

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