OKH organisational planning for 42/43

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Aida1
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OKH organisational planning for 42/43

Post by Aida1 » 13 Feb 2020 16:26

"Organisationsabteilung 08/09/1942
Nr 922/42 g.K Chefs
Concerns: Organisational planning for winter 42/43


I. Basics
1. The objective of the planning after the end of the summer campaign is:
a) Create the conditions to provide for the year 1943 a possibly high number of personnel and material fully operational and sufficiently mobile units and coresponding Army units .
b) Increase the defensive strength of secondary fronts and secondary theatres of war by improved equipment with weapons, better utilization of the available men for the operation in combat with the weapon and the building of reserves
c) Organisationally integrate and exploit all weapons available from Industrial production according to their nature.

2) All plannings have to take into account the inalterable fact that the estimated manpower level of the field army of 1.11.1942 which is 18% under the Soll with a 800.000 men deficit , cannot be increased.
3) To maintain the actual Soll and organisation of the army without taking into account the deficit, would conceal the image of the real strength of the army to the command and is unbearable for the troop over time.
The army organisation must be adapted to the number of men which is available in the army and which can probably be maintained until the autumn of 1943.
To this end, firstly a noticeable reduction of the need of men can be attained by scrapping all personnel which is not necessary for command, combat and supply and by using prisoners of war for german personnel to free men for combat.
In addition to this the structure of the army is to be adapted to the available manpower."

to be continued

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Aida1
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Re: OKH organisational planning for 42/43

Post by Aida1 » 13 Feb 2020 20:01

" 4. The command of operations and the exploitation of favourable opportunities on defense fronts will be made easier by the creation of a unified combat-capable and mobile division type .
The most obvious organisational solution for the balance between 'Apparatus' and combat strength would be the reduction of the structure of the army by disbandment of divisions. This solution was rejected by the Führer for reasons which will not be discussed here.
An equal distribution of the available manpower over all currently available units would lead to weakening the combat strength of the
attack divisions and consequently diminish their endurance.
Besides the measures possible through general manpower savings, this method would reduce the inf combat strength of all units by 30-35% ; a not acceptable solution.
Similarly, a sufficient operational ability of units cannot be achieved through an equal distribution of available movement means.
It is therefore necessary through organisational measures to concentrate manpower and movement means even more than in 1942 on these units which are intended for mobile operations.
The resulting fixing of command on the long term cannot be avoided just as in summer 1942. The mobility of command on the defensive fronts can however be improved by building higly strong intervention units strongly armed with heavy weapons.

II. Intentions and proposals
A. General manpower savings
The review carried out the last weeks by the Organisations Abteilung in collaboration with O.Qu and the weapon generals has shown that around 250.000 men can be saved by reducing the K.St.N and use of prisoners of war. From these 60% mst be replaced by prisoners of war or own auxiliary personnel.
This saving can be achieved in the following way:
1.Infantry
Reduction of staffs. Abolition or reduction of Kp and platoon troops heavy weapons, abolition of the assistant platoon commander of the inf company, reduction of the supply NCO's in all units.
Occupying of all drivers positions in supply services by prisoners of war."

to be continued

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Re: OKH organisational planning for 42/43

Post by Aida1 » 14 Feb 2020 20:08

"2) artillery
The scrapping of individual NCO's and men in the K.St.N now valid (each battery between 4 and 10)
Discontinuance of the weather troops at the art regt staffs(except pz artillery regiments) and taking over of its tasks by the weather troops of the le.B.Abtlgn.
Abolition of the printing troop with the regt staff and allocation to the artillery commander staffs .
Use of prisoners of war in supply troops. Attempts to make further savings through building 6 gun batteries or conversion of horse drawn art batteries in big batteries are ongoing at the moment , but will have no effect for the missions of the army in 1943.

3. Engineers
Saving of not absolutely needed motorcyclists, clerks, and drivers.Replacement of individual drivers and craftsmen by prisoners of war.
Reducing the strength of the building,roadbuidling and light cyclist roadbuidling btn (as already done) by 20-25 %.
Use of prisoners of war in building columns and material echelons.

4. Mobile troops
Scrapping of individual runners and NCO's and men for example, reduction the number of heavy machinegun groups in cyclist and cavalry squadrons, replacement of craftsmen , locksmiths, assistant armourers and similar through prisoners of war.
Scrapping of the light recce columns with motorcycle btln and their allocation supply echelons in the combat supply column of the btln.

5. Signal troops
Reduction of all K.St.N by 10% .The use of the then still available will be left to the unit commanders depending on the mission. For a part(about 50%) the personnel saved can be replaced by prisoners of war."

to be continued

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Re: OKH organisational planning for 42/43

Post by Aida1 » 15 Feb 2020 21:51

"7. Railway engineers
Same reductions as with engineers

8.Supply troops
Through partial conversion to immobility, reduction of the command apparatus(merging small supply units)and more use of prisoners of war savings are intended. Detailed results are not yet presented.

The solutions seem bearable .They mean no reduction in combat power and available weapons(except cyclist and cav squadrons). The mobility is in no way influenced. The working power of the engineers is guaranteed.

B. Organisational changes within the units.
(the hereafter mentioned numbers relate to the whole field army except Panzer Armee Afrika)

1) Inf div
The objective of the reorganisation of the inf div is to conserve a high number of full 3 regt inf div.
In detail the calculations yield:
a) 40 full inf div of the first order, of which probably 23 fully refitted
b) 40 two regt limited refitted inf div of the second order . In this are included the inf div which are already changed to 2 regt(in total 16)
To maintain the framework of the still existing inf regts at the reforming of the former 3 regt inf div, the batlns of the former third regts will be integrated in the two other two inf regts.
In the regimental units , the number of weapons of the 3 regt div will be maintained.
To these divisons join 14 inf div 15. Welle. It is intended to convert the divisons 15.Welle used in the west to immobile Festungs div.
The other divisons 15.Welle maintain their former structure.
c) 54 trench div
In these div, whose structure will conform to that of the inf div of the second- order, a substantial saving will be achieved by a profound reduction of the means of movement. A reduction of the combat strength of the infantry in these divisons is envisaged by
the removing of the personnel of the former pz.B troops, one man each in the inf sections and individual crews of heavy weapons.
This reduction of the combat strength is bearable in pure positional tasks; it can be compensated by captured weapons and heavy trench weapons. In the judgement of the possibilties for the use of these divisions, it is to taken into account that 60-70% of the trucks and horses are deleted. These divisons are therefore only capable of a mobile defense in a limited tactical framework.
It was dispensed with transferring the supply of these units to the Gen.Kdo because a tangible saving cannot be achieved anymore with the limited strength of the supply troops in these div."

to be continued

Max Payload
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Re: OKH organisational planning for 42/43

Post by Max Payload » 21 Feb 2020 15:28

Thanks for posting these memos. They are interesting source documents.

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Re: OKH organisational planning for 42/43

Post by Aida1 » 27 Feb 2020 13:14

Planning continued

" d) 8 intervention div
The intervention div are built from existing inf div. They should give the commands of defensive fronts a means to use a troop well equipped with high quality weapons on the focal points of the defensive figthing. They should less bring a strengthening of the infantry combat strength , but more combine the heavy weapons which are particularly needed to strengthen the defensive power of the frontline inf units. The certainly wished for motorisation which goes beyond these proposals ,is not possible.
The creation of the intervention divisions gives at the same time the possibility to create new Flak abt., Sturmgeschütz abt. and Werfer Abt. in addition to the existing Army troops , without degrading the strength of the actual Army artillery . This way the demands of the Op Abt are accomodated.
Through the organisational means envisaged under a) to d) the manpower needs of the field army can be reduced by 350.000 German men.

2) Jäger and mountain div.
The structure and number of men remains largely as before.
It is envisaged to transform the 97. Jäger div into a mountain div.and fully refit one Jäger div(101).
Of the mountain div 1. and 4. are planned to be refitted.

3) Mobile div

Besides Pz AOK Africa can be maintained as fully mobile 10 mobile units inclusive GrD and LAH.
To what extent the full structure of all mobile units can be maintained, depends on the number of inf div needed for operations. It seems bearable, besides 25. and 27. Pz , to reduce part of the mobile units to a lower strength. For this purpose it is proposed to reduce the Pz Gren brig in 8 pz div to one pz gren rgt of 3 inf btns and in 4 mot div to reduce the 2 inf regt(mot) to 2 inf btns each. This will free another 15.000 men in addition to the savings of B 1 a-d and means the ability to maintain another 5-6 inf div."

to be continued

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Re: OKH organisational planning for 42/43

Post by Aida1 » 27 Feb 2020 14:00

4) The measures proposed under A and B 1-3 reduce the manpower needs of the field army by 600.000 men.

C) Army troops

1) the proposed setting up of intervention div allows to assemble the mass of the sturmgeschütze produced until the spring and the 15 cm Nebelwerfer which are available based on the munition situation into Abteilungen without making use of the existing Army artillery Abteilungen. Further availbable new weapons can also be incorporated in the intervention div.
The Org. Abt therefore proposes in amendment to the former intentions:
a) 3 MG btlns will be transformed in mortar btln (mot) of the new intervention div.
Transformation of 5 inf btlns of former inf div into mortar btln(horsedrawn) of the intervention div

b) transformation of 4 Pz jg Abt into Sturmgeschütz Abt . Probably the re equipping of 5 Pz jg Abt with 8,8 cm Sfl will be possible in the course of 1943.

c) Using 4 Fla Btlns as the core for Flak Abt . Incorporation of the companies of 5 Fle Batlns into Pz div and ID mot .
d) transformation of 3 Army artillery Abt into Werfer Abt(mot) by resorting to Coastal artillery Ostsee and high trajectory Abt
e) switching 60 Brucko B (mot) into equipment units

D Org Abt requests a quick response to the proposals so that the preliminary orders can be given soon particularly concerning the modifications of the K.St.N"

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Re: OKH organisational planning for 42/43

Post by Aida1 » 27 Feb 2020 16:12

"
Op Abt(III) 18.9.1942
Concerns Org Abt Nr 922/42 gK chefs of 8.9.1942


concerns: Organisational planning for winter 42/43


To Org Abt

1) Op Abt agrees in general with the proposals of the Org Abt
As long as the disbandment of divisions is not authorised; the proposed organisation of the field army in divisions of the 1st and 2nd order , position and intervention divisions and the general manpower savings seem -also from a command viewpoint, at this time the most practical road to maintain the fighting strength of the field army at the highest possible level with the manpower stock and the available weapons and moving means.
2) In detail
The following demands are made within the scope of what is possible
a) inf div of the first order
Full motorisation of one engineer company , the light engineer train and a horse drawn train (possibly at the cost of a position division)
Allocation of a field hospital
Substantial allocation of officers,NCO's and men with experience on the eastern front in the west div 13. and 14. Welle earmarked for the use in the east."

To be continued
Last edited by Aida1 on 27 Feb 2020 16:31, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: OKH organisational planning for 42/43

Post by Aida1 » 27 Feb 2020 16:30

" b) inf div of the second order
Conversion of part of the engineer btlns to 2 kp of which one on bicycles
c) position div
When possible make do with a mixed signals company instead of a Nachrichten Abteilung
Dispense with a mot train in favour of the divisions of the first order

d) intervention div
Changing of the designation because the division is primarily suited for defense because of its equipment with heavy weapons.
Proposal :Verfügungs div
Equipment of the heavy artillery Abteilung with tractors.
1 engineer company if possible mot , or else on bicycles.
A fuel train will be necessary

e) mot , mountain and jäger div

to be determined

f) Army troops
Including Geb AOK 20 there are only 10 H.PzJg Abt
As before it will be necessary to keep these in the hands of the higher command as a mobile reserve in addition to the Sturmgeschütz Abteilungen and to be brought as soon as possible at the full equipment (Sfl) to start with Army Group B.
At the Bridging trains B the full motorisation of 100 trains is necessary.
In general the better equipment of engineer companies with heavy weapons of all categories and the artillery with MG seems necessary."

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