Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

Polish Renault against Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

The Poles wanted to revive the Yelno-noble, and the Reds - to return the former territories of the Russian Empire. The former had French Renault tanks, and the latter had selective cavalry and armored trains. What came out of this confrontation and how the Polish fighting vehicles turned out to be ... turned out to be in Afghanistan.

The First World War ended, but did not become calmer in Europe. In the expanses of the Russian Empire raging civil war. From the "prison of nations" split off the national territories, which became independent countries.

Redistribution of bear hams and the new Rzeczpospolita "from sea to sea"

According to the Brest – Litovsk Treaty, the territory of the Kingdom of Poland, the Baltic States and other lands fell under the authority of Germany. But on the quiet, the Teutons grabbed more land for themselves - they occupied Ukraine and Belarus, cutting off even more hunk from the former empire.

“What are we eating today? Russian bear ham! ", - mocked the German press
Only the Germans did not have long to celebrate. The feast ended with a November hangover in the Compiegne forest.

Hans packed things and were loaded into teplushki to Berlin, and the white and red and Poles tried to fill the resulting vacuum. Last of all, led by Józef Pilsudski, it was impatient to restore what was possible within the borders of 1772: from sea to sea and with the sphere of influence from “Finland to the Caucasus Mountains”.

Lenin, in his turn, dreamed of making Poland Soviet, and then Germany “testing out”.

In the meantime, Soviet republics arose in Bavaria and Slovakia, and in Hungary there was a civil war between their own red and white. The specter of communism loomed before Europe.

Naturally, this did not suit the Entente, in the countries of which it was also not enough satisfied with the results of the world massacre. And France and the United States decided to put on Poland, which could become a barrier to the "red threat" and export of the revolution.

Military advisers went to Poland (including the young de Gaulle). And also rifles, thousands of machine guns, hundreds of cannons, airplanes, ammunition and lots of other military equipment.

Britain preferred to supply the White Guards, led by Denikin.

In January 1919, the Poles took Vilna. A Polish – Soviet front was formed on the territory of Lithuania and the Belarusian People’s Republic. In the summer, Minsk and Bobruisk were captured. Not the least role in this was played by the 70,000th “Blue Army” by Jozef Haller, formed in France from ethnic Poles from around the world.

You have Lupus. On Bobruisk, Panov!

Among the units of Haller’s army (a colleague of Jozef Pilsudski and the former commander of one of the brigades of the Polish Legion), arrived in June, was the 1st Polish Tank Regiment equipped with Renault fighting vehicles FT – 17. The formation of the regiment and training of tankers took place in France since March 1919. Half of the crews were Polish, half - French.

The division consisted of five tank companies with 24 cars each (16 cannon-guns and eight machine-guns) each, as well as tractors, motorcycles, cars and bicycles, and more than 800 personnel.

Renault FT modèle 1917 - the most massive tank of the First World War, released over 3,800 units. The first in the history of the layout of the tank, which would later be called a classic: had a rotating turret with weapons in the center of the hull, rear engine and transmission, the driver was in front. Renault played an important role on the Western Front.Armed with either a 37-mm short-barreled gun or a gun "Gochkiss". Radiation vehicles and self-propelled artillery systems with 75-mm Schneider howitzers were created on the basis of the FT-17. Renault set trends and became a role model for a number of tank-building schools.

The combat debut of Polish tankers took place in August. The “Armored Squad”, consisting of two dozen combat vehicles of the 2nd company, unloaded near Bobruisk to support the offensive of the 1st Great Infantry Division. On the march, one of the “foreign cars” quickly discovered the Tao of Russian roads: the bridge failed, and the armored unit was permanently stuck in the creek. But it was only the first bell. The debut shot almost ended in embarrassment. Four of the five platoon cars were stuck on the marshy banks of the Lupus River. Saved offensive only successful actions of another unit - Renault forced a water barrier and went red in the flank, forcing them to retire.

However, nothing surprising for the realities of the First World in this was not. It was considered normal if at least half of the machines reach enemy positions without breaking and sticking along the way.
According to some information, Soviet armored forces took part in the battle - two gun armored cars “Garford” and a machine gun “Austin” from the 10th auto armor detachment of the Red Army.Since the Garford's firepower (one three-inch mountain cannon and three Maxim machine guns) was essentially wheeled tanks, this battle can be counted as the first Soviet-Polish tank battle. Though it ended dry on the armored units.

After a few months of being in Poland, the long-awaited demob order was issued to the majority of Gallic tankers. Without hesitation, they put on their parachute accents and in October, not without pleasure, said “orevoire” to the honorable Poles, who often wanted to spit on the orders of French officers. Only a small number of advisers remained - so a couple of mouths had to be cut due to a shortage of staff.

Tanks against armored trains and tanks instead of armored trains

After the capture of Bobruisk tanks were transferred under Dvinsk (now Daugavpils in Latvia). On September 28, 1919, the three Renault supporting infantry pressed the Bolsheviks. But the bridgehead on the Western Dvina could not be destroyed.

The next day, two Polish tank platoons with infantry were knocked down from the positions by the red rifle regiment. But then a Soviet armored train No. 4, commanded by the future tank marshal Yakov Fedorenko, jumped out of the boxing like a damn.Four mountain three-inch towers and 16 "Maxims". Serious strength.

The armored train covered fire from all the trunks of the retreating Red Army.

One of the three-inch grenades got directly into the engine of the Polish Renault, but, much to the happiness of the crew, it did not explode. But the other FT – 17 armored train infatuated itself with a direct hit into the trash.

In the autumn, the front was established along the Dvina, and the Polish tankers went back, losing two cars - both in a battle with an armored train.

As pans panzer pursued Budyonny

Another 40 vehicles involved in the battles with a few Russian troops of the South-Western Front, who fought against the Poles and the whites at the same time. At first, the superior Red forces attacked and even captured Kiev without a fight. But then the famous First Cavalry Army of Budyonny, one of the most powerful mobile units of the Red Army, came to help. In it were not only brave cavalrymen, but also 48 guns, six armored trains and 12 aircraft (about 17 thousand soldiers in total).

Without thinking twice, the Budennovsk team attacked Kazatin and with a whooping and whistle rushed to the panes to the rear. Low-speed “Renault” could not keep up at this pace of events, and the resources of the vehicles were exhausted (the tanks did not get from the factory,but we still managed to ride in France), because FT-17 was often installed on railway platforms and used as ersatz-armored trains.

Once, for three days, the little sad tanchiki unsuccessfully chased the Budennovsk cavalry. We walked 80 kilometers, but didn't find anyone. Yes, and lost on the march most of the cars broken. How could they keep up with a maximum speed not exceeding jogging? Thus, they anticipated the sad practice of the mechanized corps of the Red Army in the summer of 1941, who were striving to counter the strikes of the German tank groups.

But in July, the tanks of one of the Polish companies, to their misfortune, nevertheless met with Budyonnovtsy.

Word of Semen Mikhailovich:

“From the north, along a highway, shrouded in a cloud of dust and accompanied by infantry, six enemy tanks marched. And along the railway line three armored trains were moving. Tanks made an impression. Here, on the Polish front, the horsemen saw them for the first time. ”

Konarmeytsy, perhaps, for the first time saw the tanks, but for the Red Army such machines were not news. In the spring of the 19th near Odessa, the Red Army soldiers captured four Renault with French crews, two of these tanks later became part of the Special Forces Armored Division. The White Guard "diamonds" and "Wippet" fought near Tsaritsyn, Poltava and in Tavria."Reno" were in the army of Yudenich in the North-West. On the Polish front, a tank detachment of the Reds acted - one Mk V and three Renault.

The commander ordered to open fire on armored vehicles and prepare a reserve brigade for a counterattack.

The guns were rolled out just between the highway and the railway tracks, one of the guns was right on the embankment. The first projectile hit the engine of the head armored train and blew up the boiler. Another three-inch tank hit. The rest of the "Renault" performed a 180-degree turn and got out. After the delivery of the Brody tanks left for Lodz to re-form. With the exception of two, which, by the results of the battles, turned out to be red.

In early August, like the entire Polish army, tankers were chased by a no-hare. Zholnyora (infantry. - Approx. Ed.) "Did not go for the tanks." And when they managed to press the Soviet infantry against the Seret River, the Bolsheviks turned on the cheat code again in the form of a field battery with grenades. Three of the five “Renault” were hit.

Meanwhile, in Belarus, the 1st tank company of 20 vehicles entered into confrontation with the Western Front of the Red Army. In Grodno, they suffered a fiasco and five tanks got red.

Separate vehicles attempted to restrain the offensive outburst of the 3rd Cavalry Corps of Guy, both with attacks on their own and from the platforms, but they could not change the situation.In August, cars from the front were recalled for the defense of Warsaw.

"Miracle on the Vistula" and Kampfroup

The case for young Poland smelled of kerosene. "Red Bonaparte" Tukhachevsky rushed to the capital. Few doubted that it was over for the Poles. Tanks razdergivali to stop breakthroughs.

Realizing that the use of individual armored units and platoons does not give the desired result, the former Renault assembled and included in the Kampfroup (strike squad - Ed.) Major Novitsky. Combat vehicles and three armored trains with infantry recaptured Minsk – Mazovian. This operation became part of a counterstrike, which the Poles were able to cut the stretched and thinned troops of the Reds. Pilsudski achieved a double advantage and defeated the southern wing of the 16th Army. Then the breathing incense of the Renault was again placed on the platforms and abandoned in order to cut off the far third 3rd cavalry.

Within days, the Red Army had turned from the winner into a loser, rapidly rolling back. The losses of the Red Army were enormous - up to 25 thousand killed and wounded, 65 thousand prisoners. More than 30 thousand fighters, being cut off from their own, crossed the border of Germany and were interned.The first cavalry advanced from Lviv too late and did not have time to help the defeated troops of the Western Front.

The last attack of Polish tankers in this war happened in Lviv in September.

The history of the Polish tank regiment continued unexpectedly. In 2012, Kabul presented Poland with the FT – 17, which was once in service with the Afghan army. According to the official version, it was one of those seven that captured the Red Army. Three of them were presented by the USSR to Afghanistan in the 1930s.

This is how bizarrely sometimes history jokes, including with tanks. And, although many have doubts about the authenticity of the official version, as the cinematic Semyon Mikhailovich Budyonny used to say, “if you do not lie, you will not tell it nicely”.

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  • Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

    Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

    Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

    Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

    Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

    Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

    Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

    Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

    Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

    Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains

    Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains Polish Reno vs Budyonny cavalry and red armored trains