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Gunther

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PostSubject: Red Army Infantry Forces   Fri May 27, 2011 10:51 am

The Red Army infantry Division of 1941 was a lumbering, under equipped, poorly trained entity, whose paper strength was rarely equivalent to its actual disposition. Despite the experience gained during the Spanish Civil War, the border conflict with Japan and the war with Finland, the bulk of its forces had still to see action. Stalin's purges of the officer Corps during the late 1930's had decimated its ranks, depriving the Army of experienced commanders. Worse still the new commanders that had replaced them, were restricted from commanding their units by political officers who were attached to watch over them. Despite these early failings, the greatest success of the Red Army was its ability to reinvent itself. Despite its huge losses in 1941/42, it gradually learned the harsh lessons and adapted itself into a more efficient and formidable fighting force. By the end of the war, the Red Army had evolved into a gargantuan force, with over five hundred Infantry Divisions alone. These infantry Divisions were constantly reorganized throughout the campaign on the eastern Front to mold them into a more effective fighting force.

The Rifle Division

The Rifle Division in 1941 consisted of a Divisional Headquarters, with its own security Platoon, three infantry Regiments, a transport Company equipped with thirteen trucks and the Divisional support elements.

Support elements within the Division included a reconnaissance Battalion, consisting of a motorized rifle Company carried in nine trucks, an armored car Company equipped with ten, BA-10 armored cars and a light tank Company equipped with five T-38 tankettes.

Other support elements included the Divisional artillery Regiment, consisting of two field Battalions, each with two Gun Batteries, equipped with four 76mm F-22 USV guns and one howitzer Battery, equipped with four 122mm M30 howitzers. In addition there was a howitzer Regiment, consisting of two light Battalions, each with three Batteries of four 122mm M30 howitzers and one medium Battalion, with three Batteries of four 152mm M1938 howitzers. In 1942, the strength of the Regiment was increased to three Battalions, but the third Battalion consisted of only one 76mm Battery. In late 1944, the Regiment was reorganized for the final time. It was comprised of five 76mm F-22 USV Batteries, one 122mm Battery and one 120mm mortar Battery. Each battery was equipped with four weapons.

The Divisional anti tank Battalion was equipped with twelve 45mm M1937 guns, in three Batteries. From 1943 onwards, the anti tank Battalions were gradually re-armed with the more modern 76mm Zis-3 guns.

The Divisional anti aircraft Battalion was comprised of two light Batteries, each equipped with four 37mm 72K M1939 guns and a heavy Battery equipped with four 76mm 61K M1931 guns and was supported by a fire control section.

The pioneer Battalion was comprised of three Companies, including a bridging Platoon capable of creating a 110m long, 3-ton bridge.

The chemical Company was comprised of a decontamination platoon, and a flamethrower platoon, equipped with 30 backpack flamethrowers, grouped into three platoons, each with three 8-man squads.

Other support elements included a medical Battalion and a motor transport Battalion, comprised of an ammunition Platoon, a POL Platoon and a repair Platoon. The motor transport Battalion maintained a total of 120 trucks.

The Division's three Infantry Regiments were each comprised of a Regimental HQ, including both horse mounted and infantry reconnaissance Platoons, three infantry Battalions, a signal Company, an anti tank Battery which was comprised of three platoons, each equipped with two 45mm M1937 guns, an infantry gun Battalion, also of three Platoons and each quipped with two 76mm M1927 guns, a heavy mortar Battery, which operated four 120mm M1938 mortars, an anti aircraft Company, equipped with three quad mounted 7.62mm 4M M1931 machine guns and six 12.7mm DShK machine guns, and a pioneer Company consisting of two pioneer Platoons and a chemical Platoon.

The Rifle Battalion

The Russian rifle Battalion of June 1941, was composed of a Battalion Headquarters, formed by a Battalion Commander, his staff officers and a political officer. The HQ group also included a signal Platoon to maintain radio, wire and telephone communications, an anti tank Platoon, equipped with two 45mm M1937 guns, a supply Platoon which was entirely reliant on horses and wagons and a medical Detachment.

Support elements within the Battalion consisted of a machine gun Company, which was comprised of a Company HQ and three Platoons, each equipped with four M1910 Maxim machine guns and a mortar Company comprising of a Company HQ and three Platoons, each equipped with a pair of PM-41 82mm mortars.

The Battalion's three Rifle Companies each comprised of a Company HQ, three Rifle Platoons, a Medical Detachment and a Machine Gun Platoon equipped with a pair of M1910 Maxims.

The three Rifle Platoons each consisted of a Platoon HQ with an Officer, Sergeant and runner and a Light Mortar Squad, which was led by an NCO, with a gunner and two ammunition bearers. The squad was equipped with a single 50mm light mortar.

The four Rifle Squads within each Platoon were comprised of 11 men. On paper this should have been a remarkably well-armed unit. It comprised an NCO with a rifle, two men equipped for close combat with PPD sub machine guns, a large rifle element of six men, all armed with either the Mosin-Nagant or occasionally the SVT 40, and a gunner and loader for the Squad's single light machine gun, the Degtaryev DP. The severe losses suffered in the immediate aftermath of the German invasion saw manpower within the Rifle Battalions reduced in July 1941, in an attempt to reorganize them into an effective fighting force.

The Signals, Medical and Supply Platoons were all reduced in strength. The Anti Tank Gun Platoon was deleted entirely, denuding the Battalion of what minimal defense they could offer. The Mortar Company was reduced to a single Platoon of just two 82mm tubes, and then even this was deleted.

Within the Rifle Companies, the integral Machine Gun Platoon was deleted, as was the 50mm mortar Squad in each Rifle Platoon. Worse still, there were insufficient DP light machine guns available to arm all four Squads, so only two were issued per Platoon, leaving two Squads devoid of any automatic firepower. The issue of PPsh 41 SMG's was also cutback. In addition each Rifle Company now received its own Political Officer.

It was obvious that the reductions imposed could only be a temporary measure while the Army as a whole attempted to stabilize itself. Gradually, the trend was reversed, and the Battalion became a more capable unit again.

Beginning in late 1941, enough LMG's were found to equip three Squads per Platoon, though manpower shortages probably made the creation of a fourth Squad academic in most cases. By early 1942, every Rifle Squad had its own LMG again. A new weapon, in the form of an Anti Tank Rifle, was also added. The weapon had been available in limited supply in 1941, however ammunition for it was not. The Battalion received sixteen of them in an anti-tank rifle Company of 48 men.

In mid 1942 a new table of organization was issued. The Mortar Company was reinstated, consisting of twelve 82mm tubes in an ungainly six Platoons. The Machine Gun Company lost one gun per Platoon, for a reduced total of nine. Each Rifle Company also received a 50mm mortar Platoon serving four tubes. The Rifle Squads within the Platoons were reduced to nine men, consisting of a commander with a SMG, a gunner and loader serving the DP light machine gun, and six riflemen. The PPsh 41 sub machine gun was by now available in large numbers.

At the end of 1942 several further amendments were made. Within the Rifle Squads, two Squads per Platoon were issued with a second DP light machine gun for a total of six in the Platoon. At Company level, the Mortar Platoon was reduced to seven men serving two tubes, while a four man Squad manning a Maxim machine gun were added. Of more importance, the Battalion finally received its own anti-tank guns, albeit only the 45mm, with two small Squads each serving a single gun.

The Motor Rifle Battalion

The motor rifle Battalion, were the Desant* troops, riding with or in close proximity of the tanks they supported and deploying on foot during the assault, before jumping back onto their mounts to renew the advance. The support elements of the Battalion would be mainly truck borne to enable them to keep up with the rapid movement of the armored forces they were tasked with supporting. The Battalion was a very lean formation and was provided with the bare minimum of support elements required to help it achieve its tasks.

The Battalion was comprised of a Battalion Headquarters with a small medical Detachment and a signals Platoon. In mid 1942, three armored cars, of varying types were added as a light reconnaissance arm. The remainder of the Battalion was formed by three Rifle Companies, a mortar Platoon, equipped with six PM-41 82mm mortars, a machine gun Platoon, equipped with six DP LMG's, an anti tank Platoon equipped with two 45mm M1937 guns and a supply Platoon.

Of the three rifle Companies, one was a submachine gun Company which rode with the tanks and two were truck borne rifle Companies.

The submachine gun Company was comprised of a Company HQ and three rifle Platoons, each formed from a Platoon HQ and three 8-man squads, all riflemen being equipped with the PPsh-41 sub machine gun. From 1943 onwards, the number of men in the rifle squad was increased to ten.

The rifle Companies were comprised of a Company HQ with a medical squad, and three rifle platoons each formed from a Platoon HQ and three 8-man squads.

The Motorized Infantry Battalion

The motorized infantry Battalion was a truck borne unit, equipped with around sixty motor vehicles. It was very similar to the rifle Battalion of mid 1942 described previously. The major differences were as follows: Each of its three Rifle Companies deployed three Platoons of four Squads, with one DP LMG each. The 50mm mortar Platoon was replaced by a two-gun machine gun Platoon. Initially, there was no integral machine gun Company, but later one was added serving nine weapons. The mortar Company was equipped with six 82mm tubes and the anti tank Battery was equipped with four 45mm guns.


* Tank desant (Russian: танковый десант, tankovyy desant) is a military combined arms tactic, where infantry soldiers ride into an attack on tanks, then dismount to fight on foot in the final phase of the assault. Desant (from the French: descendre, to disembark) is a Russian general term for airborne or parachute drops, and naval infantry amphibious landings operations.

_________________
US Army 1982 - 1985
MOS: 76Y10
Units: 4th AG Co. (PP) & HHC 2/36 IN, 3AD

MA Army NG 1985 -2003
Captain, Infantry
Units: 2nd Battalion, 104th Infantry
1st Battalion, 104th Infantry
26th Infantry Brigade
HHC, 29th Infantry Division (L)

Deployments: Operation Joint Forge
Location: Bosnia-Herzegovina
Position: Battle Captain, Current Ops G3
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PostSubject: Re: Red Army Infantry Forces   Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:58 pm

The Rifle Battalion
June 1941

Battalion Headquarters, formed by a Battalion Commander, his staff officers and a political officer.
signal Platoon
anti tank Platoon, 2x 45mm M1937 guns
supply Platoon ( horses and wagons)
medical Detachment.

machine gun Company,
Company HQ
3x MG Platoons, (4x M1910 Maxim machine guns)

mortar Company
Company HQ
3x Platoons (2x PM-41 82mm mortars

3x Rifle Companies
Company HQ
3x Rifle Platoons
Medical Detachment
Machine Gun Platoon (2x M1910 Maxims)

Rifle Platoon
Platoon HQ ( Officer, Sergeant and runner)
Light Mortar Squad, (NCO, gunner & two ammo bearers 1x 50mm light mortar)
4x Rifle Squads

Rifle Squad (11 men)
NCO with a rifle
2x sub machine guns
6x Riflemen (Mosin-Nagant or SVT 40)
LMGunner Degtaryev DP
LMG Loader


July 1941 changes:
Anti Tank Gun Platoon was deleted
The Mortar Company was reduced to a single Platoon of just two 82mm tubes, and then deleted.

Rifle Company Changes:
Machine Gun Platoon was deleted,
50mm mortar Squad in each Rifle Platoon - deleted
Only 2 squads per platoon had a DP LMG team.
each Rifle Company now received its own Political Officer.
November, 1941 Changes:
3 squads per platoon now has a LMG team
Due to manpower shortages, often times the 4th squad was not manned.

February, 1942 Changes:
every Rifle Squad had its own LMG again.
an anti-tank rifle Company of 48 men & sixteen Anti Tank Rifle added to the battalion.

July, 1942 Changes:
The Mortar Company was reinstated (12x 82mm tubes in 6x Platoons)
The Machine Gun Company lost one gun per Platoon, (9 MG teams)
Each Rifle Company also received a 50mm mortar Platoon serving four tubes
The Rifle Squads within the Platoons were reduced to nine men, (commander with a SMG, a gunner and loader serving the DP light machine gun, and six riflemen. The PPsh 41 sub machine gun was by now available in large numbers.)

November, 1942 Changes:
Rifle Squads, two Squads per Platoon were issued a second DP light machine gun
Company level, the Mortar Platoon was reduced to seven men serving two tubes
a four man Squad manning a Maxim machine gun were added.
Battalion received its own anti-tank guns (2x small 45mm gun Squads)
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PostSubject: Re: Red Army Infantry Forces   Fri Aug 12, 2011 10:49 am

The Motorized Infantry Battalion

The motorized infantry Battalion was a truck borne unit, equipped with around sixty motor vehicles. It was very similar to the rifle Battalion of mid 1942 described previously. The major differences were as follows: Each of its three Rifle Companies deployed three Platoons of four Squads, with one DP LMG each. The 50mm mortar Platoon was replaced by a two-gun machine gun Platoon. Initially, there was no integral machine gun Company, but later one was added serving nine weapons. The mortar Company was equipped with six 82mm tubes and the anti tank Battery was equipped with four 45mm guns.

_________________
US Army 1982 - 1985
MOS: 76Y10
Units: 4th AG Co. (PP) & HHC 2/36 IN, 3AD

MA Army NG 1985 -2003
Captain, Infantry
Units: 2nd Battalion, 104th Infantry
1st Battalion, 104th Infantry
26th Infantry Brigade
HHC, 29th Infantry Division (L)

Deployments: Operation Joint Forge
Location: Bosnia-Herzegovina
Position: Battle Captain, Current Ops G3
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PostSubject: Re: Red Army Infantry Forces   Fri Aug 12, 2011 10:51 am

1942
The Motor Rifle Battalion

The motor rifle Battalion, were the Desant* troops, riding with or in close proximity of the tanks they supported and deploying on foot during the assault, before jumping back onto their mounts to renew the advance.

Headquarters Company
a small medical Detachment
a signals Platoon.
Light Recon platoon (3x armored cars)
mortar Platoon (6x PM-41 82mm mortars)
MG Platoon (6x DP LMG's)
AT Platoon (2x 45mm M1937 guns)
a supply Platoon

SMG Company (Rode on Tanks)
Company HQ
3x SMG Platoons

SMG Platoon:
Platoon HQ
3x squads

SMG Squad:
1x NCO - PPsh-41 SMG
7x SMGunners - PPsh-41 SMG

2x Rifle Companies (traveled in trucks)
Company HQ
a medical squad
3x rifle platoons

Rifle Platoon:
Platoon HQ
3x squads

Rifle Squad:
1x NCO - Rifle
7x Riflemen - Rifle

1943 Changes:
The SMG Squad is increased to 10 men.




* Tank desant (Russian: танковый десант, tankovyy desant) is a military combined arms tactic, where infantry soldiers ride into an attack on tanks, then dismount to fight on foot in the final phase of the assault. Desant (from the French: descendre, to disembark) is a Russian general term for airborne or parachute drops, and naval infantry amphibious landings operations.

_________________
US Army 1982 - 1985
MOS: 76Y10
Units: 4th AG Co. (PP) & HHC 2/36 IN, 3AD

MA Army NG 1985 -2003
Captain, Infantry
Units: 2nd Battalion, 104th Infantry
1st Battalion, 104th Infantry
26th Infantry Brigade
HHC, 29th Infantry Division (L)

Deployments: Operation Joint Forge
Location: Bosnia-Herzegovina
Position: Battle Captain, Current Ops G3
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PostSubject: Re: Red Army Infantry Forces   Fri Aug 12, 2011 2:41 pm

The Rifle Division

Divisional Headquarters Company (Rifle Platoon)
3x infantry Regiments
Transport Company (13x trucks)
Reconnaissance Battalion
Divisional artillery Regiment
howitzer Regiment
Divisional anti tank Battalion
Divisional anti aircraft Battalion
pioneer Battalion
chemical Company
medical Battalion
motor transport Battalion

Reconnaissance Battalion
Battalion Headquarters Company
1x Motorized rifle Company (nine trucks)
1x Armored car Company (10x BA-10 armored cars)
1x Light tank Company (5x T-38 tankettes)


Divisional artillery Regiment
Regimental Headquarters Battery
2x Field Artillery Battalions

FA Battalion
Battalion Headquarters Battery
2x Gun Batteries (4x 76mm F-22 USV guns)
1x Howitzer Battery (4x 122mm M30 howitzers)
1x Medium Battalion (4x 152mm M1938 howitzers)


Howitzer Regiment
Regimental Headquarters Battery
2x Light Artillery Battalions

Light Artillery Battalion
Battalion Headquarters Battery
2x Batteries (4x 122mm M30 howitzers)

Medium Battalion
Battalion Headquarters Battery
3x Batteries (4x 152mm M1938 howitzers)


Divisional anti tank Battalion
Battalion Headquarters Company
3x AT Batteries (4x 45mm M1937 guns)

Divisional anti aircraft Battalion
Battalion Headquarters Battery (incl. fire control section)
2x Light Batteries (4x 37mm 72K M1939 guns)
1x Heavy Battery (4x 76mm 61K M1931 guns)

pioneer Battalion
Battalion Headquarters Company (incl. bridging Platoon capable of creating a 110m long, 3-ton bridge.
3x Pioneer Companies

chemical Company
Company HQs
Decontamination platoon
3x Flamethrower platoon (30x backpack flamethrowers)

Flamethrower Platoon
Plt HQs
3x Flamethrower Squads

Flamethrower Squad
NCO - Rifle
3x Flamethrowers
2x Riflemen
2x SMGunners

*1 squad per platoon had 4 Flamethrowers and only 1 SMGunner.


motor transport Battalion
ammunition Platoon
POL Platoon
repair Platoon.



1942 Changes:
The Divisional Artillery Regiment was increased to three Battalions, but the third Battalion consisted of only one 76mm Battery.

1943 Changes:
The anti tank Battalions were re-armed with the 76mm Zis-3 guns.

October, 1944 Changes:
The Divisional Artillery Regiment comprised of 5x 76mm F-22 USV Batteries, one 122mm Battery and one 120mm mortar Battery. Each battery was equipped with four weapons.


_________________
US Army 1982 - 1985
MOS: 76Y10
Units: 4th AG Co. (PP) & HHC 2/36 IN, 3AD

MA Army NG 1985 -2003
Captain, Infantry
Units: 2nd Battalion, 104th Infantry
1st Battalion, 104th Infantry
26th Infantry Brigade
HHC, 29th Infantry Division (L)

Deployments: Operation Joint Forge
Location: Bosnia-Herzegovina
Position: Battle Captain, Current Ops G3
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