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ORDER TO FORCES OF WEST FRONT No.072

Secret

29 November 1941
Active Army

From the instructions "Concerning methods of combating heavy Soviet tanks," captured from the Germans, it is clear that the following are the principal measures of combating our tanks:

1. Artillery suppression of our tanks at their start positions [assembly areas].

2. During the advance of our tanks-firing at them with direct lay from individually designated guns, especially antiaircraft guns, from long ranges.

3. Combat with our heavy tanks by specially prepared shock detachments.

For the purpose of paralyzing these measures, I ORDER:

1. Carefully camouflage both the tank and the tracks leading toward it in start positions [assembly areas].

2. Always support the advance of tanks with artillery fire using the method of fire barrages at enemy antitank weapons at the moment that these weapons commence firing.

3. Tanks will attack in not less than two echelons.

4. During the attack each heavy tank will be accompanied by a platoon of infantry assigned for its protection, with the mission to destroy both individual persons as well as enemy groups that are approaching the tank.

5. By 5.12.41 the instruction "CONCERNING METHODS OF COMBATING HEAVY SOVIET TANKS" will be discussed with the command elements of all branches of troops.

COMMANDER OF FORCES OF WEST FRONT ARMY GENERAL
/ZHUKOV/

MEMBER OF WEST FRONT MILITARY COUNCIL
/BULGANIN/

CHIEF OF STAFF OF WEST FRONT LIEUTENANT GENERAL
/SOKOLOVSKIY/



Translated by:
James F. Gebhardt
Sources:
TsAMO, collection 208, index 2511, item 19, sheets 48-9. True copy.

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