The advance would be executed from the Orel salient to the north of Kursk and from Belgorod to the south. The most powerful elements of the German attack force, however, were concentrated on the southern flank of the Kursk salient, where Generalfeldmarschall Erich von Manstein had command of SS-Obergruppenführer Paul Hausser's II.SS-Panzerkorps. It was to form the spearhead of Generaloberst Hoth's 4.Panzer-Armee when final orders were issued for the initial assault. The SS-Panzergrenadier-Divisions Leibstandarte SS, Das Reich and the Totenkopf were deployed next to each other. Each of the SS-Panzergrenadier-Regiments was given a Soviet strongpoint as an objective and were to attack simultaneously to batter through the Soviet defence lines. On July 5 1943, the Wehrmacht launched Unternehmen Zitadelle. Image: SS-Panzergrenadiers march forward during the opening phases of Operation Citadel. Commons: Bundesarchiv. External link: Die Deutsche Wochenschau

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