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XHR

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***Awarded Weekly AAR Showcase on August 22nd, 2009 ***
***Awarded WritAAR of the week on September 7th, 2009 ***
***Awarded Best Character Writer of the Week on November 2nd, 2009 ***
* Runner-Up Favourite HOI History Book AAR ACA 2009/QIII *

A Germany 1941 HOI2: DDA AAR with focus on the eastern front.
(Version used 1.3a + Arma 1.3 Beta 2 + GIP 0.8)
Scenario: 1941 (that is, no preparation of mine before June 22nd, 1941 possible!)
Style: Narrative/History book AAR with pics and maps.
Settings: Very Hard / Aggressive (changed to Hard / Aggressive from August 1st onward)
Gaming style: Use my predefined OOB with different army groups and armies somewhat realistically. To quote The Hyphenated1: 'There are no reloads, game edits or house rules aside from “roleplaying” as opposed to “power-gaming”.'

I will use my own OOB (see below) and nearly all units will start Barbarossa with reduced ORG (that is with 50%-70% maxOrg) due to reassignment of units and new leaders.

This is my first AAR so I hope you will like it :)

Please if you read anything in here just drop a comment and let me know (does not really matter if you have caught up or just read a single update - comments are very welcome ;)). I spend many hours writing this and your feedback is really important to me!

Also note: All pictures are under public domain or creative commons license as far as I know and are taken from the Bundesarchiv and Wikipedia if not stated otherwise.


Table of contents


June 1941


July 1941

August 1941


Featured units


Portraits


 
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OOB from North to South: June 22, 1941, 0000 hours


Northern Front (28 divisions)

Heeresgruppe Nord (FM Wilhelm Keitel)
  • 1. Armee (General Strauss) – Memel
  • 2. Armee (FM von Brauchitsch) – Königsberg, as are the following units
  • III. AK (Lt. Gen Barckhausen)
  • IV. AK (Lt. Gen Bertram)
  • L. Korps (Lt. Gen von Axthelm) - Elbing
4. Panzergruppe (FM von Böhm-Ermolli, deceased, replaced by Feldmarschall von Rundstedt) – Königsberg, as are the following units
  • 4. PzKorps (Lt. Gen von Mackensen)
  • 5. PzKorps (Lt. Gen von Hubicki)
  • Reserven 4. PG (Lt. Gen Veiel replaced by Lt. Gen von Salmuth) - Torun

Central Front (62 divisions)
Heeresgruppe Mitte (FM von Kluge)
  • 3. Armee (Gen Behlendorff) – Lomza, as as are the following units
  • 4. Armee (Gen von Küchler)
  • 5. Armee (Gen Geyr von Schweppenburg)
  • II. AK (Lt. Gen Paulus)
  • I. AK (Lt. Gen von Berg) – Warsaw
  • 6. Armee (Gen. Carl Heinrich von Stülpnagel) – Lublin, as as are the following units
  • 7. Armee (Gen. von Roques)
  • 8. Armee (Gen. von Rabenau)
  • Reserven HG Mitte (Lt. Gen Gollwitzer)
  • H.Kdo.XXXV (Lt. Gen Heitz) – Lodz
2. Panzergruppe (FM von Reichenau) – Lublin
  • 1. PzKorps (Lt. Gen Hausser)
  • 2. PzKorps (Gen Rommel)
  • 3. PzKorps (Lt. Gen Model)
3. Panzergruppe (FM von Leeb) – Lomza
  • 6. PzKorps (Gen von Manstein)
  • 7. PzKorps (Gen von Kleist)

Southern Front (51 German divisions plus 40 allied divisons)
Heeresgruppe Süd (Gen Köstring)
  • 10. Armee (Gen Otto von Stülpnagel) – Zamosc, as as are the following units
  • 12. Armee (Gen von Schröder)
  • 13. Armee (Gen von Chappuis)
  • V. AK (Lt. Gen Straube)
  • 9. Armee (Gen Busch) – Cracow, as as is the following unit
  • XXVI. AK (Gen Böhme)
  • 17. Armee (Gen Heissmeyer) – Przemysl
  • XXXXIX. Geb. Korps (Lt. Gen Dietl) – Presov
  • 11. Armee (Gen Jacob) – Bacau
1. Panzergruppe (FM von Witzleben) - Zamosc
  • 10. PzKorps (Gen Guderian)
  • 11. PzKorps (Gen Stumme)
  • 12. PzKorps (Lt. Gen Nehring)
Allied forces under direct command
  • Slovak combat group (Malar) with a total of 2 divisions
  • Romanian Army (Antonescu) with a total of 21 divisions
  • Hungarian Army (Jàny) with a total of 10 divisions
  • Bulgarian Army (Lukov) with a total of 7 divisions
 
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XHR

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Prelude (22nd June 1941,0000 hours) – The Grand Plan


German tanks move into position for the attack

Everything was quiet on the eastern front, midnight on June 22nd, 1941. The Germans along the Russian border however were far from sleeping. Operation Barbarossa was about to begin and the orders had already been issued. OKW had separated the force of the Wehrmacht into three Army Groups (Heeresgruppen): Nord, Mitte and Süd.
Heeresgruppe Nord had to take Riga during the first phase and move on to capture Leningrad before the winter. The terrain was difficult – hills, dense woods and swamps had to be overcome and the Russian defenders always had the option to retreat behind the Daugava river and mount a fierce defense. Speed would be of essential, something Field Marshall Keitel knew all too well.
He had ordered the 1. Armee to attack Jegalva to cut off the Russian troops in Nazirbe and secure the bridges across the Daugava south of Riga.
General Strauss of the 1. Armee would have to do this without any support from the 4. Panzergruppe (4. PG) and had only five infantry divisons to enforce a breakthrough against Malyshevs two armored divisions defending Jegalva. It was a difficult task but the Field Marshall was sure the 1. Armee could handle it.

Further to the South the major breakthrough through the Russian front had been ordered to the bulk of the Heeresgruppe Nord. FM von Brauchitsch was to attack Alytus from the positions around Königsberg with the 2. Armee and the III. and IV. Armeekorps (AK). 12 divisions should break the Russian line and advance to Kaunas while the PzKorps of the 4. Panzergruppe should push through and reach Grodno.


The plan for the initial stage of "Operation Barbarossa"

This would be crucial as the Heeregruppe Mitte was expected to crush the enemy in the marches of Bielsk and advance to Slonim. Although FM von Kluge of the Heeregruppe Mitte had expressed his concerns to Hitler that the tanks of the 3. Panzergruppe would never be able to push through this difficult terrain fast enough to encircle the Russians, the Führer had given precise orders.
Heeresgruppe Mitte would cross the Bug river and capture Bielsk. Period. Later on the Heeresgruppe would be able to capture Minsk, then Smolensk and could be in Moscow before the first snow. It would be perfect – or so the Führer thought.

In the South Kiev was the price to be claimed. The breakthrough would be made around Lvov and once done the Panzergruppen 1 and 2 would blitz to Kiev. This threat would force the whole Russian army threatening Romania to retreat. As long as that could not be done, the positions behind the Danube river and the Sereth river had to be held and with counterattacks of the 11. Armee the Russians would be kept busy.

Oh yes, it was well planned. But as a great general once said: “No plan survives the first contact with the enemy”. It was war in Eastern Europe and the Germans did not know yet that the times of Blitzkrieg warfare with easy victories was over.
 
Last edited:

unmerged(51002)

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To war then!

Darkness and despair shall spread across this Earth!
 

Myth

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The objectives seem sound for your first thrusts. How you go about taking them, however, is totally different. Let's see what the Soviets think of your plans. ;)
 

XHR

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The objectives seem sound for your first thrusts. How you go about taking them, however, is totally different. Let's see what the Soviets think of your plans. ;)
Yeah, you are right. They planned differently :eek:
Posting my update in a minute.
 

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“Dawai! Dawai!” - The Russians make the first move


Soldiers of the 257. Infantriedivision outside Presov marching to their positions

The phone in the Headquarter of the 4. Panzergruppe rang. Major Schmidt quickly picked it up. “Yes?” He paled. “That is not possible! Our attack has not started yet!” He hung up and turned to Field Marshall von Böhm-Ermolli who had looked up in astonishment upon the reaction of his communication officer. The Field Marshall stood next to a big table full of maps with various symbols, arrows and markers that had been set up to plan the attack of the 4. Panzergruppe. Schmitt quickly explained.
“Iwan must have had better reconnaissance then we thought, Feldmarschall. Our thin front in Torun is under attack. General Veiel with our reserves put up a defense but is outnumbered. And worse – he will probably not be able to reinforce our attack on Kaunas as planned.”
Von Böhm-Ermolli nodded, took a deep breath and sighed. “Well, we will have to react. Order the reserves to dig in. Veiel has the 3rd Waffen-SS division and the 58th division. The enemy in this area can attack with up to 7 divisions. Call Field Marshall Keitel from Heeresgruppe Nord, and ask for whatever he can spare to reinforce Torun.”
Thus, the L. AK from Elbing was ordered to head South instead of North to Memel to help the reserves. It would remain to be seen, if they arrived in time to support Veiel and his troops.

It was not the only surprise this night. Far in the south, the Red Army had seized the initiative and simultaneously attacked the weak spot in the Heeresgruppe Süd: the Hungarian Border. General Dietl held Presov and the surrounding hills with just three meager divisions and the Russians well knew that. General Trubnikov threw the full force of 9 divisions against him, including four mountain specialist divisions. The attack was initiated at 0100 hours with a artillery barrage and soon after the “Hurrä! Hurrä!” screams of more than 90000 Russian voices could be heard. But General Dietl would not retreat. He knew that Presov was the cornerstone between the Romanian front and the Central Front and his soldiers knew it, too.
It would be a bloody fighting in the hills.
 
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Myth

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Wow, the Soviets are really on the ball this time. :p
 

unmerged(51002)

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That always annoys me, the USSR attacks Torun in 41 no matter what you do. Those guys are FAST if they can make an attack AS SOON AS GERMANY DECLARES WAR :rolleyes:
 

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That always annoys me, the USSR attacks Torun in 41 no matter what you do. Those guys are FAST if they can make an attack AS SOON AS GERMANY DECLARES WAR :rolleyes:
I always felt the same way about this. Normally I fend them off but this time is ...err... harder somehow :D
 

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Stukas!


Stukas of the VIII. Fliegerkorps above the russian-polish Border

The siren of the divebombers shrieked horrifying as the Stukas of the VIII. Fliegerkorps attacked the enemy. The Luftwaffe was well prepared to support the initial attack but it had come as a surprise to General der Luftwaffe von Greim and his I., III. and VIII. Fliegerkorps in Königsberg that this attack was from the Russians and they were to hinder it. The bombers delivered into the attacking divisions and the Russians suffered heavy casualties. But it just was not enough. Desaster struck the first time at 1100 hours as the 58th motorized Division was overrun. Ill-prepared for defense and demoralized by the Russian attack they turned and fled northwest, sweeping the still resisting 3. Waffen-SS division with them. General Veiel had failed to defend Torun just 6 hours before the L. AK should reach him.
As the news reached the Wolfsschanze, Hitler exploded with anger and screamed like a madman: “Russians will reach GERMAN SOIL??? Move those panzers!!!”
“Those panzers” where the tanks of the 5th PzKorps under General von Hubicki and “those panzers” would be missed otherplace. And it yould take them nearly 2 days to reach Torun. The Feldmarschall von Böhm-Ermolli, on the other side of the phone tried to reason with the Führer but to no avail. The hole would be plugged with panzers.

In Romania, the situation had also worsened. The Russians had achieved another victory not even a day in “Barbarossa”. A breakthrough at Braila, just north of Bukarest. While the Romanians threw their available reserves (6. Corps) into the breach the 11. Armee under Jacob was ordered to attack across the river. The Russians would have to be forced to divert forces to this front or Romania was in serious danger.

Dietl in Presov still held the hills against overwhelming odds at midday and the 8. Corps (Romanian Cavalry) was on it's way to the rescue, as well as the Slovakians. It seemed they would survive the day.

Elsewhere on the Ostfront everything went along quite nicely for the Wehrmacht. At 0600 hours the Heeresgruppen Nord, Mitte and Süd had achieved their breakthroughs nearly at the same time at Alytus, Bielsk and Lvov and the tanks were rolling. The russian steppe was ahead of them.
 
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Myth

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It already sounds like two salients will be forming. One around Torun, the other in Romania. That said, salients can lead to some handy encirclements...;)
 

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It already sounds like two salients will be forming. One around Torun, the other in Romania. That said, salients can lead to some handy encirclements...;)
Absolutely. But, as I wrote, there is unfortunately the German High Command in the Wolfsschanze and the 5. PzKorps has already been sent there :(
 

Kurt_Steiner

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Feb 12, 2005
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It's obvious that those Commies are a pack of uncivilized people. If they had proper manners, they will now that their duty as attacked is to defend, not to attack. Also, their knowledge of history is pitiful...

:D:D:D
 

XHR

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It's obvious that those Commies are a pack of uncivilized people. If they had proper manners, they will now that their duty as attacked is to defend, not to attack. Also, their knowledge of history is pitiful...

:D:D:D
:rofl: that is so true. But you never know how the Führer will react to those attacks so the outcome is a little more unpredictable... this time... ;)

Make a guess: Who will be the first General to be assigned garrison duty in Norway? :D
 

unmerged(51002)

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:rofl: that is so true. But you never know how the Führer will react to those attacks so the outcome is a little more unpredictable... this time... ;)

Make a guess: Who will be the first General to be assigned garrison duty in Norway? :D
By the AI? Paulus. It's always Paulus in my games. Clearly a Skill 4 D/LW general is only fit for a garrison division...
 

XHR

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Good bet! But this time it is not possible he is commanding the II. AK in Heeregruppe Mitte. And Rommel is also already assigned :p
 

XHR

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Situation report on the Wehrmacht


Italian tanks in the North African Theatre


Lagebericht des OKW an Wolfsschanze, June 22nd, 1941

As requested here is a complete List of strategic reserves and an overview of the various theatres of war.
MB Belgium and France: 25 Infantrie Divisions in 16 Corps holding the Westwall
MB Norway: 8 Divisions including 3 Gebirgsdivisionen, 2 additional Divisons on their way to be shipped from Stettin to Oslo, fortifications in Narvik are under construction.
MB Balkans and Greece: The theatre is under Italian responsibility, only 3 German Divisions remain
Afrikakorps: We have put the Afrikakorps under Italian command and they have eliminated the encircled forces in Tobruk with minimal losses.
OKW Reserves in Berlin and Cottbus: All reserves have been ordered to reinforce the Ostfront.
15. Armee (Gen Fromm) and
16. Armee (Gen Leeb) were ordered to Königsberg.
9. Panzerkorps (Lt. Gen von Arnim) is currently raised and trained and will probably need at least a month until combat-ready
14. Armee (Feldmarschall List) and
8. PzKorps (Gen Dietrich) are moving to Przemysl.

Signed

Feldmarschall von Bock, OKW
 
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