Than the capture of Brest fortress Germans in 1939 differed from the assault 1941

History 23/01/20 Picture of Peter Krivonogova Than the capture of Brest fortress Germans in 1939 differed from the assault 1941

the Legendary Brest fortress during the great Patriotic war was right on the shore of the bug river which was the border between the USSR and Germany. In the event of war part of the fortress in the fighting was inevitable. The Germans had to attack, though outdated, but still powerful Russian rock twice.

First assault

the Fortress was protected by not only the red army in the summer of 1941, but the Polish soldiers and officers in September 1939. The defense was commanded by General Konstantin Plisovsky, a former officer of the Russian Imperial army. 19 corps of Heinz Guderian approached Brest on September 14. Tanks and infantry of the Wehrmacht tried to storm the fortress on the run, but the gate of the poles installed the old light tanks “Reno” given to Poland by France, which did not allow the Germans to break through. Good job and Polish the arrows. One sniper killed the adjutant of Guderian.

For the next three days the poles repulsed seven major attacks by the Germans (two years later the Russians will last twice as long poles). They were preceded by powerful artillery fire. After three days of defense Plisovsky ordered the surviving soldiers of the garrison to retreat from the fortress to the Terespol. Only then the Germans were able to get close, and then to take the Citadel. Soon the poles lost the war, poles were captured by the Germans, and part of the red army (including Plisovsky executed in 1940). The fortress the Germans gave the Soviet Union. The irony of history – the Wehrmacht conquered Brest for the Soviet Union to again step on the “rake” and get stuck at the fortress in 2 years.

the Second assault

on the first day of war with Germany against the Soviet Union on 22 June 1941, the Germans in 4 hours and 45 minutes in the morning storming of the Brest fortress. The assault force crossed the bug river, whose width at this place was about 50 meters and turned out to be Russian walls. Several units, using the suddenness of his attack, almost immediately rushed to the Central island and seized the old Catholic Church and dining room. At this point, the defenders confusion and stunning effect the sudden attacks of the Nazis, gathered and began to beat the invaders. The assault team of the 45th division of the Wehrmacht, trapped in the fortress, was destroyed. The onslaught of this division, specially prepared to capture fortresses, the soldiers (about 3.5 thousand persons), who failed on the first day to leave the fortress through the North gate, held back a week (until June 29). Then another three weeks of individual singles like the famous heroic major Gavrilov hid in basements from time to time making forays and killing unwary Germans.

After the first attempt to take Brest and heavy losses, the Germans realized that the new massive frontal assault will cost them dearly. They changed tactics and acted more cautious, focusing on the destructive power of artillery, action and sappers, flamethrowers and bombs. So, on June 24, after the brutal shelling and air raids was captured by the Germans Terespol and Volyn fortifications. But this was only because the remains of the garrison went to the other building – Kobrin and to the Citadel. As the historian Vladimir Beshanov (“Brest fortress”, Moscow, 2009), many days (until June 29) held Fort and Eastern Fort. To him it was simply impossible to approach to a distance shot (i.e., 600-700 meters). The Germans had to reset polutoratonny a bomb on an ammunition dump, which blew the third reason (“horseshoe”) of the Fort, and the garrison was left not only without water, but without weapons, forcing the defenders to surrender.

couldn’t the Germans come close to the 5th Fort of the fortress before its walls there was a moat ten metres wide (and other fortified walls), and the space in front of the Fort great shootplanned for several hundred meters. As the Germans forced its garrison to surrender, is still unknown (probably the garrison ended all the ammo). Where the invaders were trying to get to the fortress after a shelling, the ground was covered with their corpses, floated the dead Germans in the ditches (in just a week, the Nazis lost at the fortress more than 1,100 dead and wounded).

none of the assault failed until, until the fortress is in ruins, and the last surviving red army soldiers herded in the basements. Soviet soldiers returned to the fortress only three years later, in July 1944.

Konstantin Dmitriev

© Russian Seven

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