Voronezh-Kastornensk operation

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Voronezh-Kastornensk operation
Part of World War II
Date January 24–February 17, 1943
Location Voronezh, Soviet Union
Result Soviet victory
 Soviet Union
Commanders and leaders
Maximilian von Weichs
Hans von Salmuth
Aleksandr Vasilevsky
Filipp Golikov
Max Reyter
327,900 men, 960 tanks 987,000 men, 2,100 tanks
Casualties and losses
91,000 KIA
143 tanks,
765 artilerry pieces,
2,300 trucks[1]
13,876 KIA.[2]

The 1943 battle of Voronezh or Voronezh-Kastornensk operation (often credited in Russian as the liberation of Voronezh (освобождение Воронежа)) was a Soviet counter-offensive on the Eastern Front of World War II on recapturing the city of Voronezh during January 1943.

It took place between 24 January and 17 February 1943, as 4th phase of the general Soviet Winter-offensive of 1942-1943, immediately following the Ostrogozhsk-Rossoshansk operation.

The Axis had captured Voronezh in a 1942 battle, and the 2nd German Army occupied this important bridgehead over the Don, together with Hungarian troops that had escaped the destruction of the Hungarian 2nd Army during the Ostrogozhsk-Rossoshansk operation.

The Red Army executed a new pincer movement in difficult winter conditions. From the south, the troops of the Voronezh Front under command of General Golikov attacked, in collaboration with the left flank of the Bryansk Front under General Max Reyter, which attacked from the north.[3]

The Germans, attacked on both flanks, were forced into a retreat in the middle of the Russian winter. Their losses were considerable and the 2nd German Army only narrowly escaped destruction, leaving a big gap in the Axis frontline. It opened for the Soviets the way to Kursk, which would be liberated during Operation Star, and also threatened the important bastion of Orel.


  1. ^ Казаков Михаил Ильич, Над картой былых сражений. — М.: Воениздат, 1971. Дороги наступления/Дальше — на Касторное.
  2. ^ Г. Ф. Кривошеев, Россия и СССР в войнах XX века-Потери вооруженных сил-Статистическое исследование,Москва,Олма,2001
  3. ^ John Erickson, The road to Berlin, Cassel, 1983 ; AA.VV., L'URSS nella seconda guerra mondiale, volume III, CEI, 1978.
This article incorporates information from the equivalent article on the Italian Wikipedia.