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StieliAlpha

Polish Cavalry Charge

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2 hours ago, StieliAlpha said:

Big surprise: It sounds history was quite different from what we remember from the movies.

By the time WW II rolled around there was very little true cavalry combat going on with troopers fighting from the saddle. So-called cavalry fought mostly as dragoons, riding up to the battle but then dismounting to fight on foot as infantry. I suppose they could be more truly described as mounted infantry, but that name never seems to have stuck. Probably lacked the glamour of the older term.

Michae

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11 hours ago, ncc1701e said:

Oh no - again this legend of a cavalry charge assaulting panzers... ☹️

Well, sometimes it helps to read first. 🤔

The bottom line of the article is, that those charges did not exist, resp cavalry-armor clashes happened only by chance, when cavalry bumped into armor by accident. Like in the Battle of Krojtani, based on which German propaganda shaped the legend.

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StieliAlpha,

No sweat. Here's aresome English language accounst. EAch provides additional perspectives on what happened and why. Also of note is that POlish cavalry charged 21 times during the brief war. One of those wasn't planned to be against tanks, but that's how it turned out because of smoke. This had zero to do with the infamous German lie. Would love to know what the casualties were from the Polish cavalry attack on that exposed German infantry battalion--well before any Panzers showed up.

This tiny piece tells us where, provides some context, has a map and some pics
https://worldhistoryproject.org/1939/9/1/charge-at-krojanty
This much longer article provides considerable context, talks about what really happened, why, and what the Germans did to distort the truth to their advantage.
https://polamjournal.com/Library/APHistory/Cavalry_Myth/cavalry_myth.html

Here we learn about how the Polish cavalry was trained, its combat background and the courage of the CO, who pitted 250 cavalry against some 715 Germans, a force with 27 LMGs and 524 rifles. So rapidly did the cavalry pounce on the Germans they barely got off any shots from their LMGs. This also details later actions of the Polish Cavalry.
https://www.historyanswers.co.uk/history-of-war/polish-cavalry-vs-german-tanks-the-lies-the-betrayal-and-the-unlikely-truth/

German infantry battalion structure for 1939 is the leftmost column on page 9 here.
http://www.bayonetstrength.uk/GermanArmy/GerInfBn/Org of the German Inf Bn 1938-45.pdf


Regards,

John Kettler


 

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On 9/2/2019 at 9:35 AM, StieliAlpha said:

Well, sometimes it helps to read first. 🤔

The bottom line of the article is, that those charges did not exist, resp cavalry-armor clashes happened only by chance, when cavalry bumped into armor by accident. Like in the Battle of Krojtani, based on which German propaganda shaped the legend.

Yes, we are on the same page. that's why I call that a legend. Unfortunately, in the collective imagination, some legends persist... 

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On 9/7/2019 at 10:23 PM, John Kettler said:

StieliAlpha,

No sweat. Here's aresome English language accounst. EAch provides additional perspectives on what happened and why. Also of note is that POlish cavalry charged 21 times during the brief war. One of those wasn't planned to be against tanks, but that's how it turned out because of smoke. This had zero to do with the infamous German lie. Would love to know what the casualties were from the Polish cavalry attack on that exposed German infantry battalion--well before any Panzers showed up.

This tiny piece tells us where, provides some context, has a map and some pics
https://worldhistoryproject.org/1939/9/1/charge-at-krojanty
This much longer article provides considerable context, talks about what really happened, why, and what the Germans did to distort the truth to their advantage.
https://polamjournal.com/Library/APHistory/Cavalry_Myth/cavalry_myth.html

Here we learn about how the Polish cavalry was trained, its combat background and the courage of the CO, who pitted 250 cavalry against some 715 Germans, a force with 27 LMGs and 524 rifles. So rapidly did the cavalry pounce on the Germans they barely got off any shots from their LMGs. This also details later actions of the Polish Cavalry.
https://www.historyanswers.co.uk/history-of-war/polish-cavalry-vs-german-tanks-the-lies-the-betrayal-and-the-unlikely-truth/

German infantry battalion structure for 1939 is the leftmost column on page 9 here.
http://www.bayonetstrength.uk/GermanArmy/GerInfBn/Org of the German Inf Bn 1938-45.pdf


Regards,

John Kettler


 

It sounds like Markus Pöhlmann, a German historian, did a serious research on the topic quite recently. Unfortunately, I could not find his paper in the Internet, only some references to his works and the corresponding case study in his book about the developement of mechanized  warfare in Germany.

Edited by StieliAlpha

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