Military Review

From offensive to defense. The battle of Lyubachev enters a new phase

So, the advance of the strike group of the 8 Army was unsuccessful (see 8 Army strike group tragedy).

Adjutant General A. A. Brusilov for the map

A. A. Brusilov tried to shift the blame for the unsuccessful offensive of the strike group of his army and the heavy losses in its units to the poor preparation of these formations, since they arrived from another front. Moreover, the general assigns to these corps a certain share of responsibility for the premature fall of Przemysl. So, he writes in his memoirs that when 2 attacked the aforementioned corps from Lubachev to the south-west, a frontal attack of the enemy was obtained, which had many machine guns and huge artillery, while the advancing neither machine guns nor guns had enough, and even an artillery attack , which was supposed to prepare an infantry attack and support the latter, due to a lack of shells could not take place. The general writes that it could be said in advance that this untimely and insufficient fist, launched in an inappropriate place, will not produce tangible results. As noted by A. A. Brusilov, these 2 corps were of "very high fighting qualities," but, oddly enough, "poorly trained, like most of the troops that arrived to us from the north, and they made an attack not very harsh. Shortly after this attack, Przemysl fell ... ” One gets the impression that it was not the 8 Army command that was responsible for this attack, but someone else. A. A. Brusilov writes about these events as if he was only an outside observer. Let us leave this to the conscience of the honored commander.

The end of the offensive phase of the battle of Lyubachev

The attack of the strike group of the 8 Army was drowned. The offensive of the 3 Army was also unable to realize its goal - by delivering a deep blow to the enemy’s rear, to restore the situation on the river. San and help the 8 Army to stay in Przemysl.

The offensive at Lyubachev expanded the Russian bridgehead on the left bank of the lower reaches of the river. San, restored the situation from Pregendzel to the mouth of the river. Lyubachevka, but did not allow to seize the bridgehead on the right bank of the Sana'a - from the mouth of the river. Lyubachevka, between the river. R. San and Lyubachevka. The enemy managed to concentrate significant forces and firmly strengthen.

Limited tactical success during the offensive at Lubachev was achieved at a high cost - by pulling reserve corps into the battle (the 14 Army in the 3 Army and the 2 Caucasian Army in the 8 Army). The combat strength of the remaining corps was significantly reduced.

The failure of the offensive operation by Lyubachev and the abandonment of Przemysl had a disintegrating effect on the structure of the South-Western Front. Changing operational and strategic tasks and priorities, a new alignment of forces in Galicia and southeastern Poland led to the fact that the front was divided into 2 groups: one - the 4 and 3 armies - based on Lublin, the other - 8 , 11-I and 9-I Army - based on the Kiev Military District.

The operation near Lyubachev 19 - 22 in May is indicative of fierce oncoming battles, successful for the Russian troops, and the manifestation of the highest valor on the part of soldiers and officers of the Russian imperial army.

From a tactical point of view, the limited maneuverability of the formations of the South-Western Front and the poverty in the sphere of material and technical support of the Russian troops had a great influence on the unsuccessful outcome of the offensive operation. A participant in the operation wrote that Russian counterattacks and offensive operations, deprived of the support of the necessary artillery fire, develop either very slowly or not at all, encountering the enemy’s fire curtain and artificial obstacles not destroyed by artillery fire. The adversary uses this slowness to develop his strike in other directions. And by quickly achieving success in other areas, the enemy creates a new environment, in the presence of which the expediency of continuing the attack undertaken by the Russians either completely disappears or even creates the danger of a deterioration in the general situation.

From offensive to defense. The battle of Lyubachev enters a new phase

In fact, the offensive at Lyubachev is a battle for Przemysl. The idea itself - by active actions on an adjacent sector of the front to distract the enemy's attention from the assault on the fortress - was absolutely true. The fortress during the First World War could survive only thanks to the success of the field forces. But the same situation was repeated as during the battles at Radymno - the actions of the quantitatively and qualitatively weak Russian 3 Army did not lead to a significant change in the operational-strategic frontier on the South-Western Front. the setting. The effect of the blow, despite the tactical successes of the Russian troops, was minimal, and did not affect the fate of the fortress. The enemy did not begin to transfer additional troops to the offensive zone of the 3 Army, nor did he suspend the assault on Przemysl. As during the battles at Radymno, the enemy ignored the tactical defeat of one of his army (the Austro-Hungarian 4) in order to achieve a strategic goal. As a result, a small area of ​​the left bank of the river was captured. San, but due to an even greater weakening of the troops of the Southwestern Front - primarily the 3 Army. The enemy, covering herself from this army by Austrian troops, dealt the main blow to the Russian 8 Army, using its best formations for this operation - the corps of the German 11 Army. And by May 22, Russian troops left Przemysl. Having solved the strategic task, the enemy began to supplant the remaining armies of the South-Western Front - successively delivering attacks on the 3, 11, and then the 9 armies.

Lyubachev defense

During the defensive battles at Lubachev on 30 in May - 3 on June 1915, the main enemy of the Russian troops was the German 11 Army, Colonel General A. von Mackensen. By the end of May, it received significant reinforcements and included: the German Consolidated (56 and 119 I infantry divisions; commander - Major General K. von Behr); 10 Army (19 and 20 I Infantry Divisions; commander - General of Infantry O. von Emmich), 22 I (43 and 44 I Reserve, 107 I Infantry Divisions; commander - General Cavalry E G.N. von Falkengine); Guards (1 and 2 I Guards Infantry Divisions; commander - General of the Infantry K. F. von Plettenberg); 41th reserve (81th and 82th reserve divisions; commander - infantry general G. von Francois) corps; Austro-Hungarian 6th Army Corps (39th Honored Infantry and 12th Infantry Divisions; commander - Field Marshal-Lieutenant A.F. Arz von Straussenburg).

In the ranks of the enemy are the 1th Guards Field Artillery Regiment, the Guards Corps of the German 11th Army. 1915 Propulsion The Parade of the Guards Corps, infantry general K.F. von Plettenberg and the chief of the 1th Guards Infantry Division, Major General Prince Eithel Friedrich of Prussia, take the parade. New York Public Library

From May 23 to May 29, the adversary remained passive and improved his position.

But on 7 hours of the 30 on May, he opened a strong artillery fire on the right flank of the 24 Army (48 I Infantry Division) and the left flank of the 3 Caucasian Army (52 I Infantry Division) corps. At 9 o'clock in the morning the enemy launched an offensive, especially actively - at Monasterzh, Melnik and between Zaponts and Shmule.

After fierce battles, in the evening of May 30, the 52th Infantry Division moved north, occupying the Senyava-Tsedyly front, and the 48th Infantry Division was pushed north from the river. Lyubachevka - on the Tsedyly line - 189 height. With the support of the reserves of the 48 Infantry Division, it was again possible to occupy the Tsedyly-Veremetsk front.

To be continued ...
Articles from this series:
8 Army strike group tragedy
Lyubachev battles, May-June of 1915
Final battle for the Radymnensky key to Przemysl
Senyava 1915. Perfect night attack
Bloody Radymno. Gunners, cavalry and plastuy on the path of the "rink" A. Mackensen
Battle of Radymno. First round
Final of the Battle of Yaroslav. Will we hold on to Sana'a?
The struggle for the initiative in the battle of Yaroslav. Two counterattacks
The apogee of the 1915 battle of the year near Yaroslav. Canceled order of Radko-Dmitriev
Heavy May Day under Yaroslav
Battle of Yaroslav. Key position of the Third Army
Battle of a Polish city with a Russian name. CH 1. Bridgehead at Yaroslav
The 3 Caucasian Corps is on the path of a strategic hurricane. Part of 4. Calculations and prospects
The 3 Caucasian Corps is on the path of a strategic hurricane. Part of 3. Day of disaster
The 3 Caucasian Corps is on the path of a strategic hurricane. Part of 2. The backbone of the army group
The 3 Caucasian Corps is on the path of a strategic hurricane. Part of 1. Elite entered into battle
Under the blow "ram" Mackensen

Subscribe to our Telegram channel, regularly additional information about the special operation in Ukraine, a large amount of information, videos, something that does not fall on the site:

Dear reader, to leave comments on the publication, you must sign in.
  1. Dalton
    Dalton 18 October 2019 05: 53
    The transition from offensive to defense is fraught with the fact that the initiative passes to the enemy, but the situation is ripe
    1. heavy division
      heavy division 18 October 2019 06: 20
      What can you do?
  2. heavy division
    heavy division 18 October 2019 06: 21
    Combined operation, very interesting
  3. Olgovich
    Olgovich 18 October 2019 07: 05
    One gets the impression that it was not the 8th Army command that was responsible for this attack, but someone else. A. A. Brusilov writes about these events as if he was only an outside observer. Let us leave this to the conscience of the honored commander.

    His usual practice: victory is his merit (although he only voiced the ideas developed by his headquarters), like defeat, anyone is to blame, but not him. Deserved? No.
    1. Hunghuz
      Hunghuz 18 October 2019 07: 34
      Be that as it may, this episode is a dark spot in the general’s career. However, in fairness, such spots can be found in most generals
      1. Olgovich
        Olgovich 18 October 2019 07: 37
        Quote: Hunghouse
        dark spot in the career of a general

        A senseless disastrous "Kovel meat grinder" - whose merit? Also his.
        1. Hunghuz
          Hunghuz 18 October 2019 09: 21
          Yes, and a quick departure to the Gorodok position with the surrender of Przemysl, also his
    2. Kronos
      Kronos 18 October 2019 22: 46
      Etozh your tactic Olgovich as everything good is so in the Russian Empire and anyone is to blame for its shortcomings only it is not all bad as it is the USSR
  4. Hunghuz
    Hunghuz 18 October 2019 07: 35
    Now the Germans are banking with the Austrians
  5. migrant
    migrant 18 October 2019 09: 23
    With unflagging attention, I am following the development of this important operation. Thanks to the author.
    1. Reptiloid
      Reptiloid 19 October 2019 10: 50
      Quote: Migrant
      With unflagging attention, I am following the development of this important operation. Thanks to the author.

      From the bottom of my heart I join these words. hi
  6. Trapperxnumx
    Trapperxnumx 18 October 2019 16: 30
    The more I learn about Brusilov, the worse the opinion of him becomes.
    1. Dalton
      Dalton 18 October 2019 17: 28
      The esteemed Dmitry probably does not know the ideal commanders.
      But yes, I personally set such generals as P. A. Pleve and N. N. Yudenich to put him higher
  7. Grandfather Barsik
    Grandfather Barsik 18 October 2019 21: 22
    Great-grandfather fought in the year 15 Poland
    Bright memory
    Eternal memory to all who fell for their homeland !!
  8. Ekzutor
    Ekzutor 19 October 2019 14: 38
    As one lady rightly wrote, such courses need to be introduced to the history textbook at school!
  9. Kapitan a
    Kapitan a 20 October 2019 00: 28
    In truth, victories have many fathers, and only defeats are always orphans. It is a pity that Brusilova does not paint this act. Could fail to blame on the Germans, such as there are more and they are stronger ...
    1. Adjutant
      Adjutant 20 October 2019 18: 13
      And even better - on the Germans with the Austrians))
  10. migrant
    migrant 21 October 2019 08: 42
    Always for surgery, a fracture is very important and dangerous. We look forward to continuing.
  11. Dalton
    Dalton 22 October 2019 17: 02
    Though not the topic, but here is such an interesting nuance

    That is, during these years, all five allegedly visited (or stayed) in Vienna, visiting their favorite cafes (indicated on the map). Everyone’s favorite cafes are different, but theoretically there was an opportunity to meet.
    They knew the canals where to walk wink ))
  12. The comment was deleted.