Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Tough IS-2

"During the fighting for Roben, having broken enemy resistance by the end of March 23rd, 1945, the brigade approached Roben proper. On the night from March 23rd to March 24th, units of the brigade occupied the eastern outskirts of Roben. During the night and the day of March 24th, the brigade fought to clear Roben from enemy submachinegunners. By 12:00 on March 24th, Roben was cleared completely.

The enemy occupied the dominant terrain to the north-west and west of Roben and opened fire with artillery, not letting our tanks group up on the western outskirts of Roben for further action.

The brigade commander made a decision: leave the assigned SPGs for covering fire, move around Roben with the main forces, and head to Bratsch.

The brigade left Roben to complete the task. By that point, the enemy had concentrated infantry and up to 16 armoured vehicles south-west of Roben. When our tanks left Roben, they counterattacked. infantry from the 24th and 26th Guards Motorized Brigade did not hold and left Roben. On the corps commander's orders, the tanks turned back and suddenly attacked Roben from the south and south-east, knocking the enemy out. The positions were restored by 17:00. Until the end of the day, the brigade fought south-west and west of Roben. By 21:00 of March 24th, the brigade completely concentrated in Roben. During the night, the brigade did not fight, but performed refuelling, restocking, and maintenance. 

IS tank with 16 dents from enemy shells. The tank commander, Guards Junior Lieutenant Neelov, destroyed 3 enemy tanks, 2 enemy SPGs, and 7 enemy guns with this tank.

Our IS-2 tanks fought actively in these battles. Brave tankers went into attacks time and time again, crushing with their tracks and shooting up enemy strongholds.

Tank commander Guards Junior Lieutenant Neelov distinguished himself in these battles. With his crew, he was constantly in battle from the start of the offensive on March 15th. Time and time again, he entered uneven battle against the enemy. Having been wounded, Guards Junior Lieutenant Neelov did not leave the battlefield, and was only sent to the hospital during battles for Rusin, when he was severely injured. Guards Junior Lieutenant Neelov destroyed 3 tanks, 2 SPGs, 7 guns, and up to 100 enemy soldiers and officers. His tank had 16 dents from enemy artillery shells, but did not leave the battlefield even once. 

The brigade destroyed many tanks and SPGs during the battles for Rusin and Roben. Many were also captured intact."

Intact enemy SPG captured at Roben.

Knocked out enemy SPG at Rusin.

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