History 06/02/20 “Vikings” Hitler: why these SS were unable to destroy

the SS Division “Viking” were among the elite of the compounds and was the first in which he served (along with the Germans) foreign volunteers of the “racially acceptable people”, which the Nazis attributed first and foremost representatives of Scandinavian countries. This division has delivered two mutually exclusive “record”. According to Soviet data, it is most of the SS units were completely destroyed during the various operations. But at the same time it was the only SS division, which never left the Eastern front and did not stop fighting.

the Description of the fighting division can be found in a large number of books. In the General works on the history of the SS, e.g., H. Wlliamson “the SS — instrument of terror.” And in books devoted to the division, such as “History of the fifth SS division “Viking”” Rupert Butler, or “SS Division “Viking”. History of the Fifth SS Panzer division 1941-1945″ Wolfgang akunova.

for the First time about the destruction of the division “Viking,” it was reported after the battle for Rostov-on-don in 1941. In the TASS report, “In the last hour”, the division was mentioned among the defeated. From a very pompous description of this battle in the book of I. Bagramyan “thus began the war”, you can see that soldiers of the division “…I found a tomb in the vast expanses of the Donetsk steppe” and now it can be “permanently deleted from the lists.”

In the attack on Rostov division “Viking” covered the flank of the 1st Panzer army, providing the defense in the area about 60 km In the course of the Soviet counterattack held back the advance of the 37th Soviet army successfully withdrew to the line of the Mius river.

In 1942, the division fought in the Caucasus, and after the encirclement of Paulus in Stalingrad, “Viking” was included in the unlocking groups. By the time she was called 5th panzergrenadiere SS division. When the division arrived to the place of fighting, she had not conscientious to break through the defense, and to cover the retreat of his troops. According to Soviet sources, the division in the fighting that Lee has completely lost the combat capability, whether it had been destroyed.

In fact, the division “Viking” was the last ship launched by the so-called “Rostov corridor”. Then she took up defensive positions on the line of the Seversky Donets river, having in its composition of about 15 thousand people and only two dozen operational tanks. Next time this division was among the defeated in the course of the operation “Rumyantsev” (aka the Belgorod-Kharkov offensive operation), although we are talking about complete defeat was not.

5-I panzergrenadiere SS division continued to conduct combat operations in early 1944 got in Korsun-Shevchenko, “pot”, which Western historians called “Cherkasy”. By the time she was reformed into a tank.

In Soviet times, it was claimed that all German troops trapped in the “pot” was destroyed. As written in the book “Memories and reflections” G. K. Zhukov: “…it was a fierce battle for the destruction of the broken columns of German troops, which were largely destroyed and captured. Only a few tanks and armored personnel carriers with generals, officers and SS men managed to escape from the environment…”.

However, of the 60 thousand caught in a “pot” of soldiers to break out of encirclement failed to around 30 thousand, plus another 10 thousand wounded were taken. The basis of the strike group that went to breakthrough, and that was the division “Viking”.

of Course, the losses were enormous. By the 5th SS Panzer division had more than 15 thousand people went on break about 12 thousand, and out of the environment 8278 people.

After this the division was sent to rest and recharge, but instead of resting she was already in March took part in the operation to release Kovel. At that time, remained in service to about 4,000 people, 22 tanks and 17 assault guns, escaped from the “cauldron”. Their increased 16 tanks “Panther”.

Afterthe total remains “Viking” is still sent to the rear. But, unlike other compounds that went on vacation to Germany or France, 5th Panzer remained in Poland and in June took part in the fighting in the Warsaw area. In February 1945, the division was transferred to Hungary where it took part in the attempts to relieve the encircled troops in Budapest.

In the battles for Budapest, according to Soviet sources, the 5th SS Panzer division was again defeated. However, in March 1945 “the Viking” took part in operation “spring Awakening”, we are known as the “Balaton”operation.

during the Vienna offensive operation, the Soviet troops were surrounded by the 3rd SS Panzer division “Totenkopf” and the 5th SS Panzer division “Viking”. Then they were (Soviet sources) have been destroyed in recent times. In fact, both of the division at the last moment escaped from smykovskaya ring.

In may 1945 the division “Viking” was in Styria (Austria). After the news of the German surrender the division commander Karl Ulrich ordered to move in the direction of the territory controlled by American forces. 5th SS Panzer division “Viking”, which retained their combat capability, may 9, surrendered to the Americans near the city of Passau in Germany.

Cyril Shishkin

© Russian Seven

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