Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

German campaigns and battles 1919-1945.

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Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Sat Sep 08, 2012 8:28 am

Hello to all :D; something more to share.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

German forces.

Given the great success of Fall Gelb, the Fall Braun (offensive of Army Group C) was reduced to two small Offensive: Tiger (1 AOK by the Sarre) and Luchs (7 AOK across the Rhine), the latter later changed its denomination by Kleiner Bär.

On May 28, 1940, General Dollmann knew about the forces at his disposal, will has on hand the 554 ID (General Freiherr von Hirschberg), the 555 ID (General Henrici), the 556 ID (General von Berg) and the 557 ID (General Kuprion). There were assigned four others infantry divisions: the 218 ID (from Poland), the 221 ID (from Austria), the 239 ID (from Poland) and the 213 ID (from Poland, of the Army Reserve). The start date of the operation was set for June 8, but on May 31, 1940 Generaloberst v. Leeb reported that the offensive was postponed until June 12 and that would also take part the 6 GD under General Schörner, although it will operate in the Vosges after crossing the Rhine.

The Rhine River would be crossed between Schoenau and Neuf-Brisach, in a stretch of 30 kilometers. The mighty river has here a width of 225 meters and a current greater than 3.5 m / s. To the west of the river itself there are two streams: the Biesheimer Rhine and Rhine-Rhone canal. The land between the Rhine and the mountain ranges was flat and forested.

Image
http://batailles-1939-1940.historyboard ... leiner-bar

Sources: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Sat Sep 15, 2012 4:38 am

Hello to all :D; something more.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

German forces.

The main effort will be carried out by the XXVII. AK (Gen. Alfred Wäger) and its two divisions, the 218. ID (Gen. Waldemar Freiherr Grote) and 221. ID (Gen. Johann Pflugbeil). From north to south the crossing will be developed as follows:

218. ID : a battalion of the IR 397 (Oberst von Busse) will cross from the western side of Weisveil to the south of Schoenau. Two battalions of the IR 386 (Oberst Manitius) from west of Wyhlen, landing on Mackenheim;

221 ID: two battalions of the IR 360 (Oberst Klockenbring) will cross before the old bridge of Limburg; these units together with those of Manitius will attack in the sector of I/42e RIF (Cdt. Coulomb). Two battalions of the IR 350 (Oberst Koch) on the sector adjacent to the road to Artzenheim, defended by the II/42e RIF (Cdt. Gagneux).

The Höheres Kommando z.b.V. XXXIII (General Georg Brandt) with the 239 ID (General Neuling) was to cover the southern flank of Kleiner Bär. Two battalions of the IR 444 (Oberst Hacker), supported by a battalion of engineers will win the shore in the area between Artzenheim and Baltzenheim in the sector of II/42e RIF. Two battalions of the IR 327 (Oberst von Drebber) and a battalion of engineers which were at the height of Kunheim in the sector of 9th BCPyr (Battalion of Hunters of the Pyrenees, Cdt. Ninous). Finally, Brandt chose another regiment of the 554. ID, the choice fell on the IR 623 (Oberst Franz Vaterrodt), which will be used against Vieux-Brisach. If the plan succeeds, the regiment was to built a bridge through which the 556. ID was to move toward Neuf-Brisach, defended by the I./28e RIF (Cdt. Chappey).

Also the XXV. AK of General Karl Ritter von Prager has a role to play in Kleiner Bär. The 557. ID was to play two diversionary attacks around Strasbourg; the first by simulating an attack north of Wantzenau, about 20 km from the city and the second to the south, near Rhinau. The 555. ID will also perform a distraction by an apparent attack north of Strasbourg, while actually conducted an attack in the south. The final plan established that truck columns march down the road with the lights on, while the artillery would open fire. But the IR 633 of Oberstleutnant Wordt? was to attack on Rhinau with the III/IR.633 of Hptm Glattenberg as vanguard, followed by the II. / IR 633 of Oberstleutnant Kissel and the I. / IR 633 of Maj. Hoffmeister.

Sources: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by Paulus II » Fri Sep 21, 2012 11:18 pm

Hello Tigre.

In support of your story about Kleiner Bär I add these foto's.
The caption in the newspapers they appeared in (the Südkurier and the Anzeiger) says the guns are 28cm SK\L 40 Kurze Bruno Kanone (E) but I'm sure they both are 28 cm SK\L 42 Schwere Bruno Kanone (E). Since only two of these guns were produced that can only mean that Eisenbahnbatterie 689 operated in this area.
One gun is placed just north of the trainstation in Lörrach and the other a few kilometers away outside the village of Steinen. Both towns are in the extreme southwest corner of Germany only a few kilometers from the Swiss city of Basel.
All foto's are said to have been taken on 17 june 1940 which means they are firing in support of the troops crossing the Rhine. Also it is mentioned that they are probably firing on the city of Mulhouse which fell to the Germans on the 18th and is easily within range for these guns.

Image

Image

Image

saludos,

Paul

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Sat Sep 22, 2012 2:46 am

Hello to all :D; thanks for those greats pictures Paul..Impresionantes (superb) :up:. Now something more.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

French forces.

Against the German 7 AOK deployed the 8th French Army of General Laure (had relieved General Garchery from May 20, 1940) with the following dispositive:

• XXIII CA (General Misserey) with the 104 DIF (Colmar, General Couse) and the 105 DIF (Mulhouse, General Didio) and, in support the 54th DI of General Coradin;
• XXXXIV CA (General Tencé) with the SF Altkirch (General Salvan) and the 63rd DI of General Parvy;
• XXXXV CA (General Daille) with only the 12 RIF and a Spahi brigade; on June 7, 1940, received the 57 DI. The 67th DI of General Boutignon was considered a reserve that moved constantly back and forth through Alsace.

General Laure located in his CP at Giromagny, was convinced that the German offensive would be about Colmar and Mulhouse. The French know at the time that the election of General Dollmann focused in Colmar. The defensive sectors of both fortress divisions are almost identical with a wooded area of ​​3-5 kilometers wide behind which there is a dam and farmland beyond. For the sector ran the road Basel - Strasbourg parallel to the river Rhine. In the sector of the 105 DIF was the Canal Rhône - Rhine and between that channel and Mulhouse the thick forest of Hardt; there the General Didio gathered 25 artillery batteries. In the area of ​​ the 104 DIF ran a tributary of the Rhine, the Ill and behind it, the foothills of the Vosges.

Sources: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Sat Sep 29, 2012 1:48 am

Hello to all :D; thanks for those greats pictures Paul..Impresionantes (superb) . Now something more.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

Preparations.

On June 9, 1940, General Vallée (103e DIF) knew, as reported by air reconnaissance, about large concentrations of German troops on the Rhine at the opposite zone of Colmar. As a result, the 62nd DI (General Guillonniere, on June 12 would be succeeded by Colonel de Mortemart de Boisse) withdrew from the subsector of Erstein to the rear in order to be used as a reserve. Not only the 34 RIF should occupy the positions of the 62 DI on the Rhine but the instruction battalions of the 103rd DIF. All units must be in position on June 10, 1940.

It was ordered to unleash artillery concentrations on German assembly areas to disrupt their movement. On June 11, 1940, from 02:00 hours began a bombardment which lasted two hours, fired some 7,900 shells, including 4000 of 75 mm. Provisionally were respected towns and railway lines being bombarded those points where had been concentrated boats, pontoons and troops suspected in the mouth of the Kinzig, the warehouses at the port of Kehl, and the bridge Gerstheim through the swampy areas around Rhinau. The German artillery did not respond.

Image
View of the Upper Rhine sector………………
http://www.militaria321.com/auktion/599 ... -im-Westen

Sources: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by John W. Howard » Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:00 pm

Another interesting thread Raul!! Hear El Tigre roar!!
John W. Howard

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Sat Oct 06, 2012 5:20 am

Hello to all :D; thanks for your support John :up:... Now something more.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

Preparations.

The following night, the bombardment was resumed on Rhinau at 01:42 hours. During the night from 12 to 13 June 1940 between 2:17 hours and 3:27 hours a new French bombardment, it were shot 4500 rounds without German response.

On the night from 13 to 14 June 1940 the 103 DIF was moved from the Rhine in order to establish an anti-tank defensive position on the line Chaumont and Nuits-sous-Ravier, but the order came too late for Guderian's tanks already had reached Chaumont and were heading towards Langres.

The north sector of Colmar was assigned to the 242 RI (Col. Bouchon) which deployed two battalions in the first line: the I. / 242 RI (Cdt Dallennes) and the II. / 242 RI (Cdt Bravan) while the III. / 242 RI (Cdt Boyer) was reserve of the 104 DIF. To the south were deployed two battalions of the 42 RIF (Col. Fonlupt); the I. / 42 RIF (Cdt Coulomb) and the II. / 42 RIF (Cdt Gagneux). At height of Nuef-Brisach was the 28 RIF (Lt.Col. Roman) with two battalions on the river, the I. / 28 RIF (Cdt Chappey) and the II. / 28 RIF (Cdt Mercier). The 104 DIF also had the 5th Half-Brigade of Hunters of the Pyrenees with the 9 BCPyr between the 42 RIF and the 28 RIF, and the 10 BCPyr on the boundary with the 105 DIF.

Image
Defensive positions on the Rhine margin.......................

Sources: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Sat Oct 13, 2012 4:16 am

Hello to all :D; something more.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

The offensive.

On June 15, 1940 at 10:00 hours erupted the fire support and 300 pieces of artillery went into action, this support as expected, was short-lived, massive and brutal. The assault boats are launched into the water carrying the first wave of 239 ID (500 men and 60 machine guns) which crossed in six trips; of the 218 ID got across 320 men and 40 machine guns in four trips and from the 221 ID 560 men and 70 machine guns.

In front of Vieux-Brisach crossed the IR 623 (Oberst Vaterrodt) and the first wave boats were attacked by the only battery of 75 mm of the 104 DIF resulting several of them destroyed. Halfway through the cruise the boats of IR 397 (Oberst Busse) were attacked from the batteries of the casemate of Schönau, suffering 46 missing and 100 wounded. In the other regiments there were also several casualties: the IR 386 (Oberst Manitius) 33 missing; the IR 360 (Oberst Klockenbring) twenty missing and IR 350 (Oberst Koch) only 11 missing.

Image

Sources: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Tue Oct 23, 2012 12:01 pm

Hello to all :D; something more.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

The offensive.

In the Bulge of Rhinau the CP of the XXV AK (General v. Prager) was installed in the school of Ettenheim. The assault troops had taken its position the night before and the first wave of the 557 ID, composed of the IR 633 (Oberstleutnant Schüler) was divided into three assault groups (one x battalion); behind followed the IR 634 (Oberstleutnant Dr. Franek). Further back were the IR 624 and IR 625 of the 555 ID.

At 13:00 hours unleashed a violent bombardment against the French positions and shortly afterwards jumped off the first wave with the III. / IR 633; there were no motor assault boats here but dinghies hence the troops had to paddle to the other shore. About 40 boats were stuck on a sandbar in the river and represent an easy target, luckily there was no reaction from the opponent and those boats could overcome the obstacle. Around 15:30 hours the troops of the III. / IR 633 and the I. / IR 633 established bridgeheads on the west bank of the Rhine. The casemate AP 14, Rhinau-north and Rhinau-center were surrounded and only Rhinau-sur offered resistance.

Image
Generalleutnant Artur Schmitt, in February 1940 he commanded the IR 626 of the 555. ID with the rank of Oberst.

Sources: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Sat Oct 27, 2012 6:00 am

Hello to all :D; something more.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

The offensive.

On June 15, 1940 in the afternoon took place several French counterattacks and within the sector of 9 BCPyr (239 ID) were reoccupied the small forts G 24 and 25. In the field of the 28 RIF (554 ID) the French occupied again the bunkers Ochsenkopf-north and south, but during the night Ochsenkopf south was abandoned. In the sector of 42 RIF (221 ​​ID) resists the fort B-105 under Lieutenant Wiss, but it is surrounded, a counterattack led by Lieutenant Senter failed and the officer was killed. Shortly afterwards Lt. Wiss ceased the resistance in order to avoid unnecessary casualties among his men.

In the area of II. / 42 RIF fell the strongpoint of Rheinmühlen and and the defense of Artzenheim was in danger, as a general line the IR 360 reached the Rhine embankment but few elements can progress further. At 17:00 hours on the front of Rhinau, fell the fortress of Ziegelhof creating a gap in the defense of the 104 DIF, where the Germans can break the front, but the IR 633 of Oberst Schüler did not take this opportunity.

Image
Bunker at Neuf-Brisach.........................

Fuentes: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

Saludos. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:41 am

Hello to all :D; something more.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

The offensive.

At dawn on June 16, 1940 the Rhinau bridgehead was reinforced and the IR 633 moved its three battalions there: the IR 634 will begin to cross from 03:00 hours onwards with large delays due to crew fatigue of the assault boats.

In the sector of the 218 ID, the IR 397 was in front of Schoenau and Artolsheim, while the IR 386 threatened Markolsheim. In the sector of the 221. ID, it had established two beachheads, the IR 360 in Limbourg, where the assault troops of Leutnant Leupold have tried to occupy three times the PA of Rosenweierhof being rejected by the artillery and machine guns fire of the I . / 42 RIF; the IR 350 was against Artzenheim.

At dawn of this day the heavy weapons could cross the Rhine over a pontoon bridge and the 88mm guns supported the attack of the battalions of the IR 360, which was also supported by the Stukas, hence by evening the unit could advance up to the Rhine - Rhone Canal and eliminate the French fortifications.

Image
Fights inland, after passing the first line of resistance ............

Sources: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:05 am

Hello to all :D; something more.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

The offensive.

In the sector of the Höhere Kommando XXXIII the situation was not brilliant and after suffering heavy losses, the IR 623 was able to hold in front of the 28 RIF. The 239 ID crossed without suffering too many losses but the IR 327 could not progress beyond the bridgehead limits. The I. / IR 444 attacked three times towards Baltzenheim and was always rejected. The divisional sappers built a war bridge of 12 tons over the Rhine and there crossed the bulk of the division followed by the 556 ID, which was to attack in Neuf-Brisach direction. The Group Mack was to push against Belfort and finally the IR 372 of the 239 ID.

Image
Pontoon bridge laid by the sappers of the Pi Btl 658.............

Image
One of the captured bunkers ...................

Sources: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Sat Nov 17, 2012 5:18 am

Hello to all :D; the end.......................

The offensive in the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine was crossed in wide front east of Colmar.

The offensive.

On June 17, 1940 in the sector of Rhinau, three assault groups of the III. / IR 633 (Hauptmann Glattenberg) took the bunker Neuergraben (Sarg. Chef Arnaud) clearing the way for the 557. ID.

Finally the IR 360 successfully crossed the Rhine - Rhone Canal and then conquered Marckolsheim with its II. Battalion leading the main attack. At 06:00 hours the artillery fire began and at 08:00 hours the Company of Oberleutnant Behrens reduced the resistance nests while the Company of Oberleutnant Fechner crossed the canal in rubber boats. Later an assault group walked down through the main street of Marckolsheim and hoisted the flag with the swastika in the church tower, the fight was over.

Further south in the sector of the 28 RIF at 08:00 hours the troops of the IR 623 entered Biesheim, finding many white flags hanging from windows and half an hour later fell Neuf-Brisach.

Image
After crossing the Rhine, the advance continued inward ............

Image
Giving the city's key to the victors? ..................

Sources: http://www.specialcamp11.co.uk/Generall ... chmitt.htm
http://users.skynet.be/fa101291/operati ... -rijn.html
ORIG Fotoalbum 112 Fotos Balkaneinsatz 1941 Panzer Bunker Sturmgeschütz. eBay Auction. (11. Feb. 201219:37:34 MEZ).

It's all folks. Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: Kleiner Bär - Upper Rhine 1940.

Post by tigre » Mon Nov 23, 2015 9:50 am

Hello to all :D; just one photo.......................

Crossing the Rhine around Breisach.

Source: 288) Photo 1940 bei Breisach - Übergang über den Rhein - zerstörte Brücke. eBay Auction.

Cheers. Raul M 8).
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Breisach, view of the destroyed bridge over the Rhine.........................
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Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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