Germans set up pontoon bridge near Kiev, 1941

germans kiev

German forces photographed while building a bridge over the Dnieper river near Kiev in September 1941. The crossing was set up in just 24 hours and acted as a replacement for the main bridge, which had been destroyed by retreating Soviet troops and can be seen in the top left of the image.

The First Battle of Kiev, fought between August 23rd and September 26th 1941, was part of the initial successful Blietzkrieg advance during Hitler’s Operation Barbarossa.

The battle is considered to be the largest encirclement in military history by number of surrounded troops. More than 450.000 Soviet soldiers were encircled in the Kiev area by the Wehrmacht, and the Soviet army suffered over 700.000 casualties.

The city of Kiev remained occupied by German forces until October-November 1943, when the Wehrmacht was compelled to retreat during the second large battle for the current Ukrainian capital.

Book suggestions ⤵️

📖 Kiev 1941 (David Stahel, 2011)

📖 Eastern Inferno: Journals of a German Panzerjäger on the Eastern Front, 1941-1943 (Hans Roth, Christine Alexander – editor, Mason Kunze – editor, 2010)

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