1. leichte Panzer-Division - Polenfeldzug

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Domen123
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1. leichte Panzer-Division - Polenfeldzug

Post by Domen123 » Sat May 23, 2009 8:43 am

A very interesting post posted by Wojtek_84 on Polish DWS forum:

http://www.dws.org.pl/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=122996

This post reveals that Germans had got very serious problems with logistics during the Polish Campaign of 1939 - especially during its later phases. Wojtek 84 quotes some aspects of the report of Stauffenberg quoted by Peter Hoffmann in his book "Stauffenberg: A Family History, 1905–1944".

Stauffenberg was serving in 1. lei.Pz.Div. during the Polish Campaign. He was complaining especially about:

- lack of roads, which could be used by supply services of the division (usually they had got one road, sometimes they were sharing it with another division - during pre-war military exercises division always had got 2 or more roads)
- reports concerning supplies were becoming obsolescent before proper services could even receive them
- during the whole campaign division was not receiving required amounts of ammunition, food and fuel
- there was shortage of spare parts, to gain them they had to dismantle them from destroyed vehicles
- there were no supplements or reinforcements of vehicles and weapons (and division suffered heavy casualties)
- during fast assaults division had to get supplies from army magazines in too big distances from the frontline
- nobody on any level of organization knew anything about localization and contents of magazines
- officers of quartermastery sometimes even used to pull out their pistols while arguing about fuel in magazines
- they were receiving only 50% of fuel which was being used up - without captured fuel division would have had to stop
- hardly any truck of the division was able to move in off-road areas
- in quartermastery companies there were still such functions like for example a gardener

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- there were no supplements or reinforcements of vehicles and weapons (and division suffered heavy casualties)
Casualties of the division in Poland:

Starke an Panzern (number of tanks):

Beim Ausrucken - 65 Pz II, 120 Pz 35(t), 41 Pz IV = 226
Beim Einrucken - 57 Pz II, 43 Pz 35(t), 32 Pz IV = 132 (including both operational and not operational tanks)
Totalverluste (tanks written-off) - 8 Pz II, 77 Pz 35(t) i 9 Pz IV = 94

Casualties of II./Panzer-Regiment 11. from this division in Poland:

Beim Ausrucken / Beim Einrucken / Totalverluste:

Pz 35(t):

Stabskompanie - 7 / 0 / 7
5. Kompanie - 17 / 14 / 3
6. Kompanie - 0 / 0 / 0
7. Kompanie - 17 / 11 / 6

Total: 41 / 25 / 16

Pz IV:

Stabskompanie - 0 / 0 / 0
5. Kompanie - 0 / 0 / 0
6. Kompanie - 14 / 10 / 4
7. Kompanie - 0 / 0 / 0

Total: 14 / 10 / 4

Pz II:

Stabskompanie - 0 / 0 / 0
5. Kompanie - 5 / 4 / 1
6. Kompanie - 5 / 5 / 0
7. Kompanie - 5 / 4 / 1

Total: 15 / 13 / 2

Sources:

Thomas Jentz, "Panzertruppen 1933 - 1942", pp 104, 134 and 141
Joachim Baschin, "Der Panzerkampfwagen 35(t)"
Vladimír Francev, Charles K. Kliment, "Československá obrněná vozidla 1918 - 1948"

Quotation from "Československá obrněná vozidla 1918 - 1948" about Pz 35(t) tanks in Polenfeldzug:

"[...] These tanks covered over 600 kms in Poland without any considerable or serious technical breakdowns [...]"

Men losses of the division in Poland were at least 305 KIA / MIA (including 22 officers) and at least 575 WIA - over 50% of these casualties was suffered during the last three days of the campaign - 18th, 19th and 20th of September - during the battle between Modlin and Warsaw in Kampinoska Forest. On 21st of September around midday the division was withdrawn from the frontline because of heavy casualties suffered during the previous days - not only in men but especially in equipment - including a lot of cars, trucks, motorcycles and many tanks.

Since 1st of September until 13th of September division lost 132 KIA / MIA and 236 WIA = 368 soldiers. During the battle in Puszcza Kampinoska between 18th and 20th / 21st of September division lost 600 soldiers.

Many soldiers of the division were also captured by Poles, but all of them were later recaptured (for example on 18th of September the whole 7./KSR.4 was captured by Poles, but on 21st of September it returned back to the division).

Best regards!
Peter

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Several photos of Pz IV from 2. Kp. of I./Panzer-Regiment 11. destroyed near Pociecha on 18th of September 1939:

Additional information about Prince Ratibor can be found in our thread on AHF about German officers KIA in Poland:

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... 20&start=0
Prinz von Ratibor Viktor Albrecht Johannes Josef Michael Maria, 12.02.1916, Lt., [Zgf. i. d. 2. Kp./Pz. R. 11], [6. Pz. Brig.], 18.09.1939, VB
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Tank number "2." is this Panzer IV - map was made by Polish soldier who destroyed this tank - Roman Orlik:

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