The results of the cavalry battles of the Old World. H. 4

Thus, a cursory review of the cavalry’s combat activities, and even in the tactically especially difficult conditions of the combat operations of the Western Front of the First World War, where powerful equipment was used most actively, suggests that the role and importance of cavalry during the maneuver period of war remained unchanged - only the techniques changed its use in accordance with the conditions of modern battle, characterized by the power of fire. Power and range weapons, complicating the operational work of the cavalry, did not reduce its value. But productive operative work of cavalry is possible only when the cavalry showed tactical independence - in accordance with the situation of the modern battle, using both mobility and firepower.

The considered cases of the use of army cavalry say that if the powerful fire equipment had an adverse effect on the cavalry’s combat work, then the most important reason for the unsuccessful actions of the latter should be considered the inept use of cavalry by the high command. The use of cavalry by the high command should correspond to the peculiarities of this kind of troops. "Cavalry is a delicate type of weapon," says 1918, the French cavalry charter. "Restoring it is difficult and time consuming. Therefore, it cannot be sacrificed for command impatience if the situation is such that its special qualities cannot be fully utilized."

The Germans did not understand this, having reduced the cavalry divisions. But after the war, having admitted their mistake, they restored their cavalry formations (see Equestrian army of the Kaiser. H. 2).

The French, reducing the relative size of the cavalry (from 7% to 3% of the armed forces), increased its firepower. If at the beginning of the war cavalry divisions had only one division of light field 75-mm guns, i.e., 12 guns, then by 1918 each squadron had 6 light machine guns, the cavalry regiment had 2 machine-gun divisions, the cavalry division had a group armed with machine guns, and the cavalry corps had one regiment of 75-mm field guns (two divisions, i.e., 24 guns) and one division of 105-mm guns.

The results of the cavalry battles of the Old World. H. 4

In 1920-s. The squadron consisted of 4 cavalry (32 rifles and 2 light machine guns) and 1 machine guns (4 machine guns) platoons. Cavalry regiments (for 4 squadron) were reduced to brigades (2 regiments in each). Part of the brigade was reduced to cavalry divisions - in each 3072 rifles, 192 light machine guns, 96 machine guns. Divisions were assigned: battalion of scooters, 2 of 75-gun divisions (24 guns), 1 squad of scooters, 1 squadron (only in a separate division), 1 telegraph and radio telegraph team, 1 squadron, 105 squadron, XNUMX squadron, XNUMX squadron, XNUMX telegraph and radio telegraph, and The cavalry corps was attached to XNUMX-mm guns, squadrons, tractors and wireless telegraph with a more powerful station.

Thus, the cavalry has not lost its value. Interesting in this regard are the thoughts expressed by the French General Lacroix in an article entitled “Reflections on Cavalry”, February 1922: “The World War showed how diverse and important tasks cavalry can perform when circumstances permit it. In all such cases, the French cavalry performed them brilliantly; There is no doubt that in the future she will have many occasions to show her prowess and show all the qualities she traditionally prides herself on. It is not useless to dwell on the role of cavalry in a war, in view of the fact that many are inclined to consider it already obsolete or find that, at least, its role has narrowed considerably. With such a view can not agree. If the participation of cavalry in battles has changed depending on the new tactical methods of action and new means, then the basic nature of the tasks it performs is preserved. ”

General Lacroix referred to the instructions of Marshal A. Petain (member of the French Supreme Military Council and Cavalry Inspector) of August 3 1919, based on the experience of world war. It was noted that the distinguishing feature of cavalry is: 1) the ability to quickly overcome the space and carry with him powerful firearms; 2) Great maneuvering ability. Her new organization provides her with the power of fire, not burdening her, for she retains for her cavalry her intrinsic mobility and ability to move quickly, that is, she retains for her those basic qualities that none of the other genera troops. The power of the fire was given to cavalry in the same way as it was achieved in the infantry - by adding guns to it. Large cavalry organisms attached powerful artillery. Because of this, the tactics of cavalry can and should be based on combining mobility with the power of fire.

It was noted that the fire was the main and decisive factor in the cavalry battle. Formerly, the decisive importance in this battle was attributed solely to the shock that completed the maneuver, skillfully used in relation to the conditions of the terrain thanks to the eye gauge and the tactical understanding of the cavalry commander. Now this value has passed to the fire, but still the cavalry chief has the former basic properties of cavalry - flexibility and speed, which provide suddenness, this important success factor. Given the increased firepower of the cavalry, the role of the latter in battle expanded. And Lacroix considers the various tasks of cavalry, among which are: reconnaissance (in a maneuverable war), guarding, deterring the enemy, closing the front gaps, creating a curtain, mobile reserve function, acting on communications and pursuing the enemy.

The strength of the cavalry rests on close cooperation with other military branches. And the examples of World War I emphasize the need for close interaction primarily with mobile forces - such as Tanks and armored cars (Amiens operation) and aviation (Palestinian operation).

And General Lacroix ends his article on the role of cavalry in the modern conditions of war with the following words: “The cavalry was supposed to make sacrifices caused by the new organization of the army, for they are inevitable and are required by the experience of world war. But nevertheless, with the means she had given her, which made her capable of both attack and defense, she remained a living branch of the army, faithful to her glorious traditions and ready, if circumstances require, to give her a new shine. ”

Thus, during the First World War, the Germans actually lost their cavalry, the French reduced and turned into a mobile reserve - a means to fill the front gaps, and the British and Russians - retained the importance of cavalry as a tool for developing operational success.

The post-war role of cavalry is best described by the words of F. Berngardi: “In a certain sense, the times of Seidlitz have passed irrevocably and with its means it will no longer be possible to win a single battle. But we will remain faithful to his spirit if, under the conditions and with the means of our time, we strive for higher achievements. ”

Describing the importance of cavalry in the conditions of the modern war of the 1 quarter of the 20 century, it is impossible not to recall the brilliant use of cavalry by the Turks during the Greco-Turkish war of 1921 - 1922.

As we mentioned, the 3's defeat of the Turkish armies in the Palestinian theater of operations in September, 1918 was the result of vigorous action and skillful use of the English cavalry, thrown to develop the success achieved.

Taught by the difficult military lessons of the past war, the Turks realized and felt the importance of cavalry as a powerful means of developing success - and showed great energy in the formation and preparation of their new cavalry.

The most acute was the question of horse composition. Despite financial difficulties, the Turks acquired 3 thousand horse horses from the French. The measure is temporary, and the Turks show energy by creating horse plants. So, open 01. 06. 1921 The Anatolian Stud Farm was under the personal patronage of Mustafa Kemal, and members of V.N.T.T., the council of commissars participated in the case, wali, mutesarfs and commanders.

The headquarters of the 1 Army, headed by Kemal Pasha (1), Comrade Aralov (2), Ismet Pasha (3) and Comrade Abilov (4). Sat down Guy in Anatolia, April 1922

Since the formation of large masses of army cavalry took time, the Turks in the first period of the war used cavalry by small detachments - attacking the staging lines, railways and transports in the rear of the Greek troops.

Such small horse units acted most successfully in May 1921.

15. 05. 1921, after the capture of Bigadić, one such flying unit cut the line of the Ushak-Alasheir railroad in the Greek rear, while another blew up a tunnel along the Aydin-Smyrna railway line, interrupting the rail link with the right flank. In mid-May, another detachment approached the Aydin-Smyrna railroad and attacked the Greeks, seizing a large transport with ammunition.

Finally, the Turks destroy the bridge and tunnel on the important railway Panderma-Smyrna - at st. Soma The interruption of the normal functioning of the railways in the rear of the Greek troops put them in a difficult position, forcing them to begin the formation of camel transports.

These dashing raids brought great concern to the ranks of the Greek army and contributed to the rapid advance of the Kemalian forces along the Belicesri-Kiresiun-Manissa line. The Turks acquired a system of fortified positions on the approaches to Smyrna. Finally, the Greek High Command ordered the evacuation of Smyrna.

Subsequently, the creation of strong army cavalry in the Kemalist army led to tremendous success - the result of which was the destruction of Greek troops by the fall of 1922. In the last offensive operation - August 25 - September 10 - we see the skillful use of Turkish cavalry. This completed the campaign a bright victory for the Turks.

In preparation for the operation, the Turks created the 3 army cavalry groups.

The northern group of 2's cavalry divisions (3 and 9) was assigned to the 1 army - and acted on the right flank of Bilecik. The southern group (also 2 Cavalry Division) was attached to the 2 Army at Afiun-Kara-Gisara, and the 3-I and the largest group under the command of a talented cavalry commander Fahreddin Pasha was concentrated at Denezli, behind the line of Turkish position.

The Turkish offensive, secretly and carefully prepared and brilliantly implemented by the 25 of August, brought great success. Afiun-Kara-Hissar and Bilecik were taken on September 2, and after the 3-day battles west of Afiun-Kara-Gissar, the Turks rejected the Greeks to Usak.

This is where the cavalry showed itself.

The southern group developed the success of the onslaught of the 2 Army, rushed into the gates of the broken through front and quickly occupied Tumplupinar, the nearest Greek base, capturing 2 Greek divisions that were engaged in combat operations in the quarters. This group captured 600 officers, 12000 soldiers, 11 airplanes and 2000 machine guns. 4 September, a group captured Usak.

The northern group acted no less brilliantly: after breaking through the front and seizing Bilendzhik, the 1 cavalry, developing success, captured Bruce and Panderma.

The main group under the command of Fakhreddin-Pasha moved from Denezli to Alashegir. She captured the reserves of the Greeks, together with the commander-in-chief, General Trikulis, and rushed at Smyrna. September 8 avant-garde division of the group approached the city. And 10-th in the city entered the rest of the cavalry of Fahreddin-Pasha.

The equestrian corps of Fahreddin Pasha ("Turkish Budyonny") on the Greek-Turkish front. April 1922

The lightning advance of the Turkish cavalry led to the almost complete destruction of the Greek army. The 2 / 3 squadron of the latter was captured, the 3 corps were destroyed, several officers with headquarters were captured.

Skillful use of army cavalry brought the Turks a complete victory.

In the period of August 25 - September 10, the entire western Anatolia (more than 100 thousand sq. Km) was captured. The main success was achieved thanks to the cavalry, once again demonstrating how its skillful use can turn success into victory. No wonder Field Marshal D. Haig, speaking of the role of the modern cavalry, said that perhaps other branches of the army were winning victories, but "only cavalry can convince us that it is worth working to win them."

The ending should ...
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  1. +7
    26 July 2018 08: 32
    Very interesting
    In fact, after all, the Turkish cavalry in the Greek-Turkish war solved a tough strategic task. Akin to the cavalry of the Red Army in the Civil.
  2. +4
    26 July 2018 09: 12
    In principle, it is: every weapon is as good as it is used well.
  3. +4
    26 July 2018 09: 17
    Our advisers were not weak among the Turks, and as I understand it, the merit in building a powerful Turkish army cavalry is largely theirs.
  4. +3
    26 July 2018 10: 38
    The trends in the development of cavalry at the beginning of the 20th century, for all their inconsistency, are very interesting. The proportions of the combination of shock and firepower with traditional mobility were the subject of the search for optimal forms on the part of the commands of the leading military powers.
    Thank you
  5. +3
    26 July 2018 18: 40
    Interesting material, a rare subject - cavalry affairs in the Greek-Turkish war, thanks to the author! Although His Majesty the machine gun has already come to the battlefields ...
  6. +2
    26 July 2018 23: 40
    Sorry for the Greeks
    The lack of full-fledged PMV experience failed. And the Turks lived up to the saying - for one beaten they give two unbeaten)

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