The Third Battle of Kharkov (Donets Campaign)

SS-Oberstgruppenführer Sepp Dietrich
Hitler demanded the immediate recapture of Kharkov. He insisted that the SS-Panzerkorps be used to launch an immediate counterattack to regain Kharkov. The SS-Panzergrenadier-Division Totenkopf's arrivel was imminent and the Führer maintained that, thus reinforced, the SS-Panzerkorps should have no trouble in throwing the Soviets out. The Germans were able to amass around 70,000 men against the 346,000 Red Army personnel that were involved in the defense of Kharkov after the beginning of the German counterstroke. Image: Commander SS-Oberstgruppenführer Josef Sepp Dietrich visiting SS-Obersturmbannführer Kurt Meyer's headquarters in the Kharkov area in February 1943. Also seen in the picture is SS-Oberscharführer Jupp Steinbüchel and Stabsoffizier SS-Hauptsturmführer Rudolf Fend. Photograph probably taken by SS-Untersturmführer and Kriegsberichter Franz Roth who labeled the film as Raum Charkow. The war correspondent Franz Roth himself were shot through his lungs on February 21 1943 near Krasnohrad in the Kharkiv Oblast. He died from the wounds on March 17 1943. Commons: Bundesarchiv.

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