.jpg (258388 bytes)Elets offensive operation 1941, 6-16.12. The main purpose of Soviet was surround and  destroy a group of  German forces in Eletsk area, further to put impact in rear of 2nd German Tank Army. In result Eletsk offensive operation forces of the right wing of Southwestern Front, advanced on 80-100 kms, liquidated eletsk ledge, have surrounded and have destroyed more than two German divisions.

The Germans continued press on 13th Soviet Army and, defensed to the north, 3rd Army of the general Kreyzer. To the south, in Kastornoy direction, German 9th Panzer and 16th Motorized Division  was not possible to advance forward. The military council of Southwestern Front has decided to rout German eletsk group, that would improve a situation and on the Western Front. In rear of 13th Soviet Army in Terbuny area, created Cavalry-Mechanized Group from reserves of front, under command of the general  F.Y.Kostenko (5th Cavalry Corps, 1st Guards Rifle Division, 129th Tank and 34th Motorized brigades). 

Counteroffensive against German 2nd Field Army began on the northern flank of Soviet 13th Army by actions of mobile group of the general K.S.Moskalenko, which has delayed ememy's forces. From a boundary of Efremov city, German formations was attacked by Soviet 3rd army. The main impact was put by forces of F.Y.Kostenko. The occurrence on December 7, of this Soviet group of forces was complete unexpectedness for German command. 5th Cavalry Corps and 1st Guard Rifle Division broke in flank and rear of an enemy grouping in a general direction on Eletsk and to the west. 34th Motorized Brigade was thrown on Livny for deep encirclement of the opponent. In this time Soviet 13th Army came on the southwest. All this threatened with a complete encirclement of a German grouping. In fights in area of city Eletsk were completely rout two German field division (45th of the general Materner and 95th of the general Sikst fon Armin). The Germans has lost on a field of fight: 12 thousand killed and wounded. December 12, cavalry of the general Kruchenkin rout German Corps Staff. The surrounded German forces tried to punch themselves a way on the west, furiously attacking Soviet 3th and 32th Cavalry Divisions. December 15, the commander of German 134th Field Division the general Kohenhausen personally lead surrounded forces on break. Cavalry have resisted, the general was died in this attack which has stayed Germans have surrendered.  The chief German Commander sadly written down: " command of armies on line front between Tula and Kursk has sufferred bankruptcy "

Map of Soviet offensive in Elets operation (145 KB)

Since December 18, the Bryansk Front in structure of 61st, 3rd and 13th Armies was reconstructed. Commander of front was the general-colonel Cherevichenko. Having rearranged the forces, he moved its in offensive, and to the beginning of January the Bryansk Front has left on a line Verhovye-Belev-Mtsensk-Livny.


                                                                       [on main] [back]