November arrived in a flurry of snowstorms and sub-zero temperatures that saw rivers freeze over and digging become difficult, if not impossible. The Soviet attack was not unexpected, but still shocked the entrenched Hungarians and German Landser with its intensity. The first assaults concentrated on the weaker Hungarian sector
Looking North to Kursk.
The Hungarian 12 Inf Div, suffered heavy casualties on the eastern edge of the line, being battered from two directions simultaneously. They held their ground at first, but eventually broke under the pressure. 10 Inf Div likewise held firm for a few vital hours before giving ground. General Lelyushenko judged the moment right to launch 11 Cav. Hungarian morale gave way, with only a hasty counterattack from 16 Pz Div restoring the situation. 101 L held its ground, but found its allies melting away on both flanks.
At this point, General Kleist decided that a full advance to the east of DNEPROPETROVSK would restore the situation. Perhaps he detected hesitancy in the Soviet left flank? Whatever the reason, the whole of XLIV Korps advanced to contact, reasoning that a forward defence would be better than waiting for the enemy to come to them.
10 Pz Div attack eastwards and face a fearsome sight
Soon, the Axis was engaged along the whole length of the line, with air support from both sides duelling for air superiority…. To be continued.