The Soviet Winter Offensive Takes the KALUGA to MOSCOW Line – Winter 1942/3

292 Infantry Division Watch the Soviet Advanceiv

292 Infantry Division watches the first Soviet wave attack

KALUGA sat on the northern bank of the OKA River, and straddled the main rail line to BRYANSK. As the Soviet advance ground remorselessly west, only 17 Infantry Division and the reduced 12 Infantry Division stood in their path. Along the south bank of the OKA, from SERPUKHOV to KALUGA, 292 Infantry Division kept an uneasy watch, expecting the massed infantry forces to  swing south at any moment. They did not.

The River OKA today, looking east, from Google Map

As the first wave of Soviet divisions hit the advanced positions, the commanding German General took the bold decision to conduct an active defence, forgoeing the dubious protection of his hasty defences. The Soviet Steamroller crashed into the line, shuddered and recoiled with losses. 38 and 54 Rifle Divisions were in the front wave, locked into a desperate struggle with no thought of retreat.

38 Rifle Division Pushes 12 Infantry Division Back onto their Line of Communication

38 Rifle Division Pushes 12 Infantry Division Back onto its Line of Communication

The Soviets continued to reinforce their attacks, pushing 57 Rifle Division into the front line, in some cases, over the corpses of their fallen comrades. As the pressure mounted, the Germans grudgingly gave ground, hoping all the while that their rear echelons were clear of the line of communication, and were heading towards safer rear areas to reorganise.

57 Rifle Division Forces the divisional Boundary Between 12 and 17 Rifle Divisions

57 Rifle Division Forces the divisional Boundary Between 12 and 17 Infantry Divisions

Determined counterattacks ensured that the Soviets were unable to press their advantage following local successes, but eventually the weight of numbers told, as 40  and 47 Rifle Divisions rolled forward in a third wave to push 17 Infantry Division out of KALUGA

Soviet Rifle Division Closes on KALUGA

47 Soviet Rifle Division Closes on KALUGA

Game Notes:

YesthatPhil took the Germans, and gifted me the rather nice diecst Austin  ambulance.

Will took the Soviets and played a very historical “keep advancing, and give me another division, the first three are broken!

There are a mix of players’ troops. As usual, the nice ones belong to Phil.

In this game, I am using ammo markers to represent pins, because I wanted to see what they would look like en-masse.

 

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