of forces on the Northwest direction.
|Northwest Front (Russian)||Group of armies "North" (Germans)||Ratio|
|Guns and mortars||7467||8348||1:1,1|
had the rather significant superiority in force and some in artillery, but
conceded in tanks and aircraft. However is direct in 50 kms to a frontier strip
settled down only eight Soviet divisions, and ten were in 50-100 kms from
border. The promotion of the Soviet armies to border began from middle of June,
but by June 22 to finish this process was not possible.
group of armies "North" in structure of two armies and one panzer
group — all 23 infantry, three motorized and three panzer divisions, was weakest
of three groups of armies. It was supposed, that it will destroy Russian forces
in Pribaltic and, having grasped the Baltic ports, and then Leningrad and Kronstadt,
will deprive the Baltic navy of its bases. There was also a duly support of
mobile connections of group of armies "Centre" coming on Smolensk.
The group of armies "North" aspired first of all to advance forward
by mobile connections of a strong right wing as soon as possible to reach area
Opochki, to prevent a withdrawal of Russian armies from Pribaltic and to create
the precondition for the subsequent fast offensive to Leningrad.
border line in Pribaltic forced to concentrate Germans forces group of armies at
East Prussia on both banks of the Neman river and did not give any opportunities for the planned
encirclement from area of
seven Soviet divisions stood on border with East Prussia. Others
settled down by separate groups around of Vilnius, Kaunas, Shaulyay and
further in rear up to area Opochki, Pskov. To this it is necessary to add,
that Pribaltic countrys were considered Russian
only as politic unreliable protection, in which they did
not assume of a resolute defense.
such conditions encirclement of Soviet forces from the south and destruction
it was possible to carry out only under extremely favorable circumstances. With
this purpose 16th German Army of the general - colonel Bush has received a task
to develop offensive on both sides of road on Daugavpils and to the north,
and 4th Panzer Group - to come in the same direction to the north of the
river Neman, 18th Army- the main impact lengthways road Tilzit- Riga on Riga.
Fights in Pribaltic
Battle of Leningrad
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