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Historical Battle - References and Suggestions for future battles


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Ajatcho #1 Posted Feb 08 2011 - 15:38

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Battle of Arracourt

The Battle of Arracourt was a World War II clash of U.S. and German armored forces near the town of Arracourt , Lorraine, France, during September 18–29, 1944. The German Fifth Panzer Army had as its objective the recapture of Lunéville and the collapse of the U.S. XII Corps bridgehead over the Moselle River at Dieulouard. Having a local superiority in troops and tanks, the German tankers foresaw a sharp defeat of the defending 4th Armored Division. Against German expectations, the 4th Armored Division thoroughly defeated two Panzer brigades and elements of two Panzer divisions.

The cause of the heavy losses for the Germans was the disjointed nature of the attack, and the poor tactical deployment of the German AFVs (Armored Fighting Vehicles) in the heavy fog and rolling terrain of the battlefield, which allowed the American tanks (mainly 75mm M4 Shermans, and a few M5A1 Stuart light tanks), M18 tank destroyers, and 155mm artillery units to maneuver and stay hidden until the German AFVs (the majority of which were Panther tanks) had closed within range. It was this tactical situation, a combination of defensive ambushes, fire and maneuver tactics, and excellent use of the terrain to establish superior firing positions, which allowed the 4th Armored Division to negate the superior armor and firepower of the German AFVs. Allied air power had also hampered the arrival of the German panzer units and disrupted close coordination between the units in the attack. Some of the panzer units originally slated to be in the counterattack never made it to the battle as they suffered heavy casualties whilst en route in separate encounters with other Allied forces.

Despite an impressive strength on paper, the German 5th Panzer Army order of battle was only 182 tanks (75 Mark IVs and 107 Mark Vs, although they had an additional 80 armored fighting vehicles such as assault guns). Although, at full strength, the 4th Armored Division would have fielded 263 tanks, 77 of these were M5 Stuart light tanks that were no match for German tanks or assault guns of 1944. The 4th Armored Division also had an attached tank destroyer battalion that at full strength would have had 36 M18 tank destroyers. Assuming the 4th Armored Division was at full strength in armored fighting vehicles, the 4th Armored Division strength as compared to the mechanized elements of the 5th Panzer Army were 1.1 to 1 in manpower, 1 to 1 in armored fighting vehicles not counting the ineffective M5 light tanks, perhaps 1 to 1 in artillery tubes and overwhelmingly in the air.

During the first few days of this battle, poor weather had prevented the use of any close air support, but starting on September 21, P-47s of the 405th Fighter Group were able to begin a series of attacks which contributed to the further destruction of the German panzer units.

Through the month of September, Patton's Third Army had continued creeping towards Germany despite orders to the contrary, but on September 22, he was informed that his fuel supplies were being restricted and he would have to shift to a defensive posture.

The final tally for the battle was as follows:

Of the 262 tanks and assault guns deployed by the German units in the week of fighting near Arracourt, 86 were destroyed, 114 were damaged or broken down, and only 62 were operational at the end of the month. The 4th Armored Division, which had borne the brunt of the Arracourt tank fighting, lost 41 M4 medium tanks and 7 M5A1 light tanks during the whole month of September, and casualties had been 225 killed and 648 wounded.
The great irony of the Battle of Arracourt is that the Germans believed, despite their heavy losses, that they had succeeded in their objective of stopping the advance of General George Patton's Third Army, as the Third Army had stopped advancing. Major General Friedrich von Mellenthin, Chief of Staff of the Fifth Panzer Army, summarized the situation:

Quite apart from Hitler's orders, our attacks on the XIIth Corps at Gremecey and Arracourt appeared to have some justification. When Balck took over Army Group G on 21 September it looked as though the Americans were determined to force their way through to the Saar and the Rhine, and General Patton might well have done so if he had been given a free hand. At that time the West Wall was still unmanned, and no effective defense could have been made there. From our point of view there was much to be said for counterattacking the spearheads of the XIIth Corps to discourage the Americans from advancing farther. Although our attacks were very costly it appeared at the time that they had achieved their purpose, and had effectively checked the American Third Army.
In fact, Patton was compelled to halt by Eisenhower's order of 22 September. The Supreme Allied Commander had decided to accept Montgomery's proposal to make the main effort on the northern flank, clear the approaches to Antwerp, and try to capture the Ruhr before winter. Third U.S. Army received categorical orders to stand on the defensive. The rights and wrongs of this strategy do not concern me, but it certainly simplified the problems of Army Group G. We were given a few weeks' grace to rebuild our battered forces and get ready to meet the next onslaught.

The Battle of Arracourt thus occurred during the time that the rapid advance of Patton's Third Army through France was stopped short of entering Germany by General Eisenhower's decision to divert Allied fuel supplies to other Allied forces north of Patton's Third Army, as well as to General Bernard Montgomery's Operation Market Garden, a mostly British attack towards the bridge over the Rhine river at Arnhem, which failed. The delay allowed the German Army to regroup for their defense of the German border at the Siegfried Line.

Hitler, however, was less than pleased with the results of the German offensive and relieved the commander of Army Group G, Johannes Blaskowitz. Since the U.S. victory at Arracourt proved to have no strategic value for the Allies, the tank-to-tank action there had long been ignored by historians or simply lumped together with the rest of Patton's campaign in the Lorraine and was not even generally known as a named battle until recent debates on the relative merits of Allied tanks versus German tanks in World War II resurrected interest in this action. The Battle of Arracourt was the largest tank battle involving U.S. forces in the Western Front until the Battle of the Bulge and has been used as an example of how the tactical situation and quality of the tank crews were far more important factors in determining the outcome of a tank battle than the technical merits of the tanks involved.

Edited by Ajatcho, Apr 22 2013 - 15:15.


GroundTrooper #2 Posted Feb 08 2011 - 16:02

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Shouldnt such a post be placed in the historic discussion section.

Unless ofc u intend to try arrange a battle like ZorinWarfield has done with great success.

ZorinWarfield #3 Posted Feb 08 2011 - 16:41

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View PostGroundTrooper, on Feb 08 2011 - 16:02, said:

Shouldnt such a post be placed in the historic discussion section.

Unless ofc u intend to try arrange a battle like ZorinWarfield has done with great success.

I take it he is suggesting this scenario for us to implement in a future installement.

@Ajatcho: Thanks for the summary.As soon as we have access to the US TD line we will start working on a mission like this or even try to recreate exactly this battle.  :Smile_honoring:

Ajatcho #4 Posted Feb 09 2011 - 15:28

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View PostZorinWarfield, on Feb 08 2011 - 16:41, said:

I take it he is suggesting this scenario for us to implement in a future installement.

@Ajatcho: Thanks for the summary.As soon as we have access to the US TD line we will start working on a mission like this or even try to recreate exactly this battle.  :Smile_honoring:

well thank you I hope it would work very nicely

Ajatcho #5 Posted Feb 09 2011 - 15:40

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Well to much details in here so her is the summary

The Battle of the Bulge (also known as the Ardennes Offensive and the Von Rundstedt Offensive) (16 December 1944 – 25 January 1945) was a major German offensive (die Ardennenoffensive), launched toward the end of World War II through the densely forested Ardennes Mountains region of Wallonia in Belgium, hence its French name (Bataille des Ardennes), and France and Luxembourg on the Western Front. The Wehrmacht's code name for the offensive was Unternehmen Wacht am Rhein ("Operation Watch on the Rhine"), after the German patriotic hymn Die Wacht am Rhein. This German offensive was officially named the Ardennes-Alsace campaign by the U.S. Army, but it is known to the English-speaking general public simply as the Battle of the Bulge, the "bulge" being the initial incursion the Germans put into the Allies' line of advance, as seen in maps presented in contemporary newspapers.

The German offensive was supported by several subordinate operations known as Unternehmen Bodenplatte, Greif, and Währung. Germany's goal for these operations was to split the British and American Allied line in half, capturing Antwerp, Belgium, and then proceed to encircle and destroy four Allied armies, forcing the Western Allies to negotiate a peace treaty in the Axis Powers' favor. Once accomplished, Hitler could return his attention and the bulk of his forces to the Soviet armies in the east.

The offensive was planned with the utmost secrecy, minimizing radio traffic and moving troops and equipment under cover of darkness. Although ULTRA suggested a possible attack and the Third U.S. Army's intelligence staff predicted a major German offensive, the Allies were still caught by surprise. This was achieved by a combination of Allied overconfidence, preoccupation with their own offensive plans, and poor aerial reconnaissance.

Near-complete surprise against a weakly defended section of the Allied line was achieved during heavy overcast weather, which grounded the Allies' overwhelmingly superior air forces. Fierce resistance, particularly around the key town of Bastogne, and terrain favoring the defenders threw the German timetable behind schedule. Allied reinforcements, including General George Patton's Third Army, and improving weather conditions, which permitted air attacks on German forces and supply lines, sealed the failure of the offensive.

In the wake of the defeat, many experienced German units were left severely depleted of men and equipment as survivors retreated to the defenses of the Siegfried Line. For the Americans, with about 500,000 to 840,000 men committed and some 70,000 to 89,000 casualties, including 19,000 killed, the Battle of the Bulge was the largest and bloodiest battle that they fought in World War II.

well it comprise mostly on the Third army (Gen.Patton) mostly Armored divsion was sent to battle

Strength
Western Allies

840,000+ men,
1,300 medium tanks, plus tank destroyers,
394 artillery guns

German

200,000 – 500,000 men
1,800 tanks
1,900 artillery guns

heavyweapons #6 Posted Feb 10 2011 - 04:32

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CAN I JOIN IM STILL LOOKING FOR A CLAN PLEAS  :(

Da7K #7 Posted Feb 10 2011 - 09:46

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View PostAjatcho, on Feb 09 2011 - 15:28, said:

well thank you I hope it would work very nicely
i think you should make a "Historical Battle Suggestions" Thread and post your suggestions there

Ajatcho #8 Posted Feb 10 2011 - 12:21

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View PostDa7K, on Feb 10 2011 - 09:46, said:

i think you should make a "Historical Battle Suggestions" Thread and post your suggestions there

this is a suggestion to be made duh :P

Ajatcho #9 Posted Feb 11 2011 - 14:44

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Operation Cobra was the codename for an offensive launched by the First United States Army eight weeks after the D-Day landings, during the Normandy Campaign of World War II. American Lieutenant General Omar Bradley's intention was to take advantage of the German preoccupation with British and Canadian activity around the town of Caen, and punch through the German defenses penning in his troops while his opponent was distracted and unbalanced. Once a corridor had been created, the First Army would then be able to advance into Brittany, rolling up the German flanks and freeing itself of the constraints imposed by operating in the Norman bocage countryside. After a slow start the offensive gathered momentum, and German resistance collapsed as scattered remnants of broken units fought to escape to the Seine. Lacking the resources to cope with the situation, the German response was ineffectual, and the entire Normandy front soon collapsed. Operation Cobra, together with concurrent offensives by the Second British and First Canadian Armies, was decisive in securing an Allied victory in the Normandy Campaign.

Having been delayed several times by poor weather, Operation Cobra commenced on 25 July with a concentrated aerial bombardment from thousands of Allied aircraft. Supporting offensives had drawn the bulk of German armored reserves towards the British and Canadian sector, and coupled with the general lack of men and materiel available to the Germans, it was impossible for them to form successive lines of defense. Units of VII Corps led the initial two-division assault while other First Army corps mounted supporting attacks designed to pin German units in place. Progress was slow on the first day, but opposition started to crumble once the defensive crust had been broken. By 27 July most organized resistance had been overcome, and VII and VIII Corps were advancing rapidly, isolating the Cotentin peninsula.

By 31 July, XIX Corps had destroyed the last forces opposing the First Army, and Bradley's troops were finally freed from the bocage. Reinforcements were moved west by Marshal Günther von Kluge and employed in various counterattacks, the largest of which (codenamed Operation Lüttich) was launched on 7 August between Mortain and Avranches. Although this led to the bloodiest phase of the battle, it was mounted by already exhausted and understrength units and had little effect other than to further deplete von Kluge's forces. On 8 August, troops of the newly activated Third United States Army captured the city of Le Mans, formerly the German Seventh Army's headquarters. Operation Cobra transformed the high-intensity infantry combat of Normandy into rapid maneuver warfare, and led to the creation of the Falaise pocket and the loss of the German position in northwestern France.

dee_dan #10 Posted Feb 11 2011 - 14:58

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nice history info.... i just knew about this operation right now.... :Smile_honoring:

bigredgiant #11 Posted Feb 12 2011 - 06:59

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while having historical battles is good, gives you the player the chance to play in the battle that actually took place, and with the tactics you use in the map arena see if you can duplicate or completely change how the battle goes, but another battle format, one that might already be in the works is a World War 2 battle map.  What i mean by this is implimenting all the battles that took place in World War 2 where there is one map and all the players wishing to participate in the battle can join, and each battle that takes place is based on the actual time line, with historically accurate tanks used for that particular battle.  What this basically means, the tanks used in these battles will be the actual tanks used during that time, making the game a bit more challenging but at the same time very fun.
     This is only a suggestion, but one i hope you will look at when and if you decide to impliment historical battles into WoT.  With the mentioning of a global map for clan wars for holding territories, the map for the historical battles could be done in the same manner.

jihashi #12 Posted Mar 01 2011 - 11:17

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I was reminded earlier today by a coworker who also shares my interest and passion in regards to WWII era tanks and battles. One of our most frequent discussions involved the Battle of Kursk. Now, if I remember right, it was around the year 1943 when the Germans attempted to invade Russia. A stupid move on Germany's part as agreed to by the both of us. I looked up several references in regards to this battle. I'll just save the time and copy and paste it here. Let me first say that I did not write this. Alot of it I do agree sounds alot like conjecture. But one thing can be agreed on as far as historical references go. Both the Germans and the Russians, at the same time, had the plan to knock out one another's supply lines. Both sides ended up spiraling inwards towards each other. After the first few days they ceased calling in air support due to all the smoke, dust, and lack of visibility for the pilots to be able to identify who was who. Those tanks that weren't dead yet, but had run out of ammo, fuel or both, had their crews run up to the enemy tank, and either: 1. hijack the enemy tank to be used against the other side, 2. attempt to disable the tank by the use of hand grenades tossed into the crew hatches. So, I won't bore you with other meaningless details. Read on:

The Battle of Kursk: Myths and Reality


Spoiler                     

Yes, I chose to include the other references here from the same page. You can find the orrigional here: http://www.uni.edu/~licari/citadel.htm
There are several others you can access as well. Either way, I believe this would make for a great battle map. If rumor serves, I heard somewhere in here that there will be a persistant world. Which would be awesome to see that included as a battle we can all participate in.

Lert #13 Posted Mar 01 2011 - 12:02

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Needs some re-formatting, the tables are unreadable.

TankWarcraft #14 Posted Mar 01 2011 - 12:50

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Awful long post for a such long detail statistics....

Ehre #15 Posted Mar 01 2011 - 13:42

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nyet, nyet, nyet!

we all know that glorious soviet army and glorious soviet tanks wiped the germans clean not only in kursk but everywhere right into berlin.

glorious soviet tanks are superior to inferior german machines. we all know that all german tanks have big holes in mantlet, slow speed, broken guns, paper armor, and burn easily.

also, special intelligence reports from kublinka show that german tank mudguards can be shot to inflict maximum damage!

that is why WOT is historically correct!

da, da, da! glory be to the motherland.

http://no.europanetw...-propaganda.jpg

Aenir_bEPU #16 Posted Mar 01 2011 - 22:22

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All I saw was a massive wall of text with a series of random numbers.

ImBobDole #17 Posted Mar 06 2011 - 18:51

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Awesome man just watched half of this episode of Greatest Tank Battles. They estimated the battle to be 5000 tanks strong with 1500 on the German side and 3000 on the Russian side. Tanks on top of tanks ramming each other, massive wall of Tigers, and even talks about how they stopped the air strikes because of all the "dust and smoke generated from the burning husks of tanks"

Thank you for enlightening Bob Dole on this battle and disproving all of those myths.

Slacker #18 Posted Mar 07 2011 - 05:21

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I just read germany invaded russia in 1943 and stopped reading this. Your talking historical battles and you do not even know the start date of operation barbarossa? WTF?

F34rmen00bz #19 Posted Mar 07 2011 - 20:54

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View PostSlacker, on Mar 07 2011 - 05:21, said:

I just read germany invaded russia in 1943 and stopped reading this. Your talking historical battles and you do not even know the start date of operation barbarossa? WTF?

I think he was saying that the Battle of Kursk happened in 1943, which technically, the Germans were still trying to invade Russia then :P.

FryaDuck #20 Posted Mar 07 2011 - 23:04

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View Postjihashi, on Mar 01 2011 - 11:17, said:

Now, if I remember right, it was around the year 1943 when the Germans attempted to invade Russia.


View PostF34rmen00bz, on Mar 07 2011 - 20:54, said:

I think he was saying that the Battle of Kursk happened in 1943, which technically, the Germans were still trying to invade Russia then :P.

Stop making excuses and liberal interpretations. He wrote, as I've quoted, that the Germans attempted to invade Russia around 1943. His Vagueness does not belong in historical discussion. The facts are that the Germans did invade the USSR on 21 June 1941.

jhashi,for what it's worth and I loath to do it, go read the wikipedia entry Battle of Kursk. It's certainly better referenced than your obscure page by Licari




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