Losses in the Battle of Kursk

Battle-weary comrades of the Waffen-SS
Kursk salient July 1943
The Battle of Prokhorovka has been hailed by Soviet as a great victory. Soviet propaganda claimed more Tigers destroyed during the battle than the actual number engaged in the whole Operation Zitadelle. Soviet Chief Marshal Rotmistrov's alleged comment "The Tigers are burning!" is definitely a wild exaggeration. According to microfilm at the U.S. National Archives in Washington 15 Panzerkampfwagen Tigers were damaged on July 12 1943; 7 Tigers at Prokhorovka and 8 elsewhere on the Southern Front. All were returned to service by July 18 1943. According to Russian military historian Grigoriy Krivosheyev Soviet casualties at Kursk during Operation Zitadelle were 177,874 (70,330 killed). According to German historian Karl-Heinz Frieser, Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS units suffered 54,182 casualties, including 10,996 killed and missing. Despite the remarkable efforts of the Wehrmacht and the Waffen-SS Panzer Divisions during July and August 1943, the Third Reich found itself in a strategic retreat for the remainder of the campaign in the east. Top image: Battle-weary Waffen-SS troops during the Battle of Kursk. Bottom image: The battlefield grave of an Waffen-SS Machine Gunner. Public domain.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous21/4/18

    Soviet armored losses were staggering during their suicidal assaults upon the SS panzers at or around Prokhorovka. Despite the ultimate strategic outcome for the Germans, the Battle of Prochorovka was tremendous, one-sided tactical victory for the Waffen-SS panzers.