No pain no gain – but unfortunately unnecessary pain when the obvious dangers are ignored. Politicians suffer no pain – you do.

23rd June, 1941 : The Germans make spectacular progress. In Army Group North’s sector the 56th Armoured Corps ( General Manstein) of the IV Panzergruppe (Hoepner) has crossed the important Ariogala viaduct over the river Dubysa in Latvia, 50 miles from their starting point. In the central sector Guderian’s tanks (XXIV Armoured Corps , General von Schweppenburg, and XLVII Armoured Corps, General Lemelsen) have stormed across the river Bug above and bellow Brest-Litovsk and consolidated at Kobrin and Pruzhany, 40 and 45 miles from the frontier, while those of General Hoth (LXII Armoured Corps, General Kuntzen, and XXXIX Armoured Corps, General Schmidt) have captured Merech and Alytus, taking the bridges on the Niemen intact after an advance of 55 miles. In the southern sector, south of the river Pripet, Kleist’s I Panzergruppe has made more modest progress; there is a strong concentration of Russian troops (56 divisions, including 16 armoured divisions) on their front.

barbarossaChaos reigns in the headquarters of the Russian formations, not helped by directives from the general staff that reveals of the facts of the situation, such as one sent to the headquarters of south-wester front ordering the forces there to launch a major offensive and retake Lublin, 30 miles behind the enemy lines, within 24 hours.

About Ludwig von Gress

Born in communist Europe, interested in defence matters on a macro scale, with a cavalry “devil may care spirit” from his grandfather and cautious effectiveness of asymmetric warfare approach from his guerilla father. He sometimes despairs that he may be the only one taking the defence of Australia seriously.
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