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Digital Archive International History Declassified

1980

MILITARY EXERCISE REPORT OF THE DECISION OF THE COMMANDER OF THE MARITIME FRONT FOR AN OFFENSIVE OPERATION

This document was made possible with support from the Leon Levy Foundation

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    A note to the Chief of Staff of the GDR People's Navy, this document assesses the enemy position and military capabilities in the Baltic Sea, the Jutland Peninsula, and the North Sea. The document notes that the NATO forces are capable of delivering nuclear weapons. The stated objective of the exercise is to remove the enemy's nuclear weapons capabilities, to defeat enemy forces defending the Jutland Peninsula, and thereby to create conditions under which Warsaw Pact forces may then reach the North Sea.
    "Military Exercise Report of the Decision of the Commander of the Maritime Front for an Offensive Operation," 1980, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Institute of National Remembrance (IPNBU). Translated for CWIHP by Gary Goldberg. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/114266
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    https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/114266

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Secret

Copy Nº [left blank]

[Handwritten:] to the Chief of Staff of

the GDR People's Navy - Rostock

Exercise

[Original Polish receipt and

declassification stamps]

REPORT OF THE DECISION OF THE COMMANDER

OF THE MARITIME FRONT FOR AN OFFENSIVE OPERATION

1. The enemy has [the following] in the zone of impending operations of the Maritime Front:

- a large formation of ground forces of the Baltic Approaches (the OAK, the Zeeland [one word illegible], and individual infantry brigades);

- reinforcement formations and units (the 2nd ehdimp [Marine Expeditionary Division] ((US)) and the 2nd ombr [Independent Mechanized Brigade] (of the Browns).

This group might contain:

- 73 means of delivering nuclear weapons (including 57 pieces of nuclear artillery);

- about 700 tanks and 1000 [field] guns and mortars;

- about 950 pieces of anti-tank equipment;

- four Natsk [SIC, probably Nike] and 12 Hawk SAM batteries.

The operations of ground forces are supported by tactical aviation of the OVVS [combined air forces] in the Baltic Approaches and also the aircraft of the British and American air forces with about 470 aircraft, of which 153 are nuclear-capable. The maritime flank of the ground forces is supported by the combined FRG and Danish navies consisting of about 250 ships.

For the PDO of the Danish islands the enemy might use:

- air forces: [numbers corrected by hand:] 160 fighter-bombers, about 40 carrier aircraft, and also about [3]0 air defense fighters;

- naval forces: three KUG [surface strike groups] and four KPUG [ship hunter-killer groups];

- ground forces consisting of: the Zeeland mpd, four opbr, and about 120 local defense companies.

In the area of the assault group's operations the enemy might have: one to two pbr, one or two opb [independent machinegun battalions], and also more than 20 rmo [local defense companies].

[The following] needs to be taken into account during the landing and crossing of the assault force by sea:

- nuclear strikes on the assault force's landing areas;

- air strikes of about 60 aircraft during the approach of the assault group to the islands;

- rapid mining of the shore in beach landing areas (up to 4500 mines);

- the effect of about 30 missile and torpedo boats.

Especially strong PDO needs to be expected during the landing of the assault group on the island of ZEELAND. Enemy reserves of one to two pbr might be employed in a counterattack in the RINGSTED-[FRESLE] sectors or RINGSTED-FAXE.

The total of the Zeeland grouping might be 16 means of delivering nuclear weapons [inserted by hand: "including four 'NG [[expansion unknown]]'], about 150 tanks, 420 field guns and mortars ([presuming] 81 mm), and also about 250 pieces of anti-tank equipment [inserted by hand: "including about 100 Cobra PTURS [anti-tank guided missiles]").

2. PURPOSE OF THE OPERATION

To defeat enemy forces defending the JUTLAND Peninsula and the islands of the Jutland Straits. To take [one word indistinct, probably "Denmark"] out of combat operations, creating the conditions for the OBF to reach the North Sea.


INTENTION:

To destroy and [one word indistinct, possibly "suppress"] enemy nuclear weapons and the command and control system in SCHLESWIG-HOLSTEIN with a mass air strike and artillery fire. Defeat the main forces of the YuAK and the enemy's operational reserves with a strike of the main forces of the front in the direction of SCHWERIN, FLENSBURG, SKAGEN and also [one word indistinct, possibly "blockade"] the agglomeration in the city of HAMBURG. Force the [KIEL] Canal from the march with the operations of the airborne assault forces and the MOG [expansion unknown, possibly "Mobile Operations Group"] of the 30th Army and in the immediate objective seize the line VEJLE-EJSBERG by 27 January and seize the island of FYN with the forces of a motorized rifle division.

[Translator's note: the author consistently uses "Kilovsky" instead of "Kil'sky" throughout the document as the adjectival form of "Kiel"]

In the next objective commit the front MOG consisting of the [word instinct, probably 31st [Army] less the 51st md in the direction of VEJEN, GIORING [possibly GORDING], seize the northern [one word indistinct, possibly "cape"] of the JUTLAND Peninsula. Defeat the enemy interventionary forces with the forces of the 30th Army and by the end of 1 February seize the JUTLAND Peninsula and switch to PDO.

Allocate forces composed of the 50th MDD, 53rd VDD, 51st MD and the [number indistinct, possibly 436th opmp to seize the islands of ZEELAND, LOLLAND, FALSTER, LANGELAND, and [Møn].

Seize the islands of FALSTER, LOLLAND, LANGELAND, and [Møn] with the forces of the 50th MDD and in coordination with the OBF. Seize the island of ZEELAND in two days, 27-28 January, with the forces of the 53rd VDD, the 51st md, and the 463rd opmp.

3. With this object, in the immediate objective of the 30th Army (41st, 42nd, 43rd, and 46th MD, 44th and 45th TD) break through the enemy defense in the [SCHÖNBERG] sector 7 km north of [SCHÖNEBERG] with the 13th gabr and the 14th pabr and the forces of the main grouping composed of three divisions, including one TD. With a strike in the direction of [REHNA], NEUMÜNSTER, KROPP and with the forces of one MD in the direction of RASTOW, [one word indistinct], north of HAMBURG and in coordination with part of the forces of the 20th Tank Army, defeat the main forces of the OKA and force the [KIEL] Canal from the march and on day 3-4 of the operation seize the line [KRONSKGAGEN],[ SIC, probably KRONSHAGEN], [RENDSTER], MELDORF. The city of HAMBURG is blockaded with the forces of one MD.

Seize the line TRAVEMÜNDE, excluding BAD OLDESLOE, BÜCHEN by the end of the first day of the operation.

The subsequent mission is to defeat the enemy operational reserves and seize the line VEJLE, EJSBERG by a strike in the direction of RENDSTER, [one word indistinct] by the end of 2[7] January.

Then continue the offensive in the direction of BILLUND, [one word indistinct].

The breakthrough of the enemy defense in the direction of a linear attack [lineynyj udar] is supported by the fire of the 42nd ad and in a second direction by the fire of the 22nd ad.

The 31st Army (47th MD, 48th TD) with the 14th pabr as an operational maneuver group is committed from the line VEJLE, BREDSTEN and by operations in the direction of VAMRUP [SIC, probably VAMDRUP], GIORING [SIC] destroys enemy interventionary forces north of the cape of the JUTLAND Peninsula and shifts to anti-landing defense.

On 25 January the 50th [M]DD in coordination with the forces of the Combined Baltic Fleet seizes the islands FALSTER, LOLLAND, and LANGELAND.

On the morning of 27 January the 53rd VDD lands on the island of ZEELAND in the area southwest of RINSTED [SIC, probably RINGSTED] and seizes the island in coordination with the 51st MD and the 436th opmp.

The 51st MD with the 436th opmp are to land an assault group on the island of Zeeland on 27 January in the Nævsted, Korsør sector, and is to destroy the enemy defending the island in coordination with the OBF and the 53rd VDD and seize it by the end of 28 January.

The 49th TD, the front reserve, is moving in the direction of the main strike of the 30th Army.

The missile troops of the front are to be held in readiness to launch the first nuclear strike at the moment nuclear ammunition is received.

The air forces of the Maritime Front are to be used when [the following] operations are conducted:

- to accomplish the immediate objective, 179 p/v [regimental sorties, SIC];

- to accomplish the subsequent objective, 70.5 p/v;

- to support the assault landing group, 55.5 p/v;

- in reserve, 33 p/v.

When carrying out the immediate objective of the front with the forces of fighter aviation from the air alert zone protect the grouping of the 30th Army's troops and also the rear facilities with a total of 36 p/v; destroy and seize enemy targets by strike aircraft with the aid of classic means of destruction and a total of 56 p/v. Perform 20 p/v to conduct reconnaissance on behalf of the troops of the front and aviation. Use transport helicopters to carry tactical assault groups to the area of the [KIEL] Canal.

Protect the commitment of the 31st Army and its operations with fighter aircraft and a total of 12 p/v when carrying out the next objective of the front; destroy enemy targets with strike aircraft with the aid of classic means of destruction and a total of 14 p/v; conduct reconnaissance of enemy troops with reconnaissance aircraft and a total of 11 p/v. Use transport helicopters to land tactical assault groups on the island of ZEELAND. Allocate 12 p/v [of] fighter aircraft from three air alert zones to support the assault group for its protection, 24 p/v of strike aircraft to destroy targets on the islands, and 8 p/v of reconnaissance aircraft to conduct reconnaissance.

Hold 6 p/v of fighter aircraft, 5 p/v of fighter-bombers, 5 p/v of reconnaissance aircraft, and 17 p/v of various types of helicopters in reserve.

Air defense forces of the PF comprising the 13th zrr/zbr [middle letter typed over; from context, a radiotechnical regiment], 14th zrp, and the 9th IAD [Fighter Division], the zbr [Translator's note: if "SAM brigade" was intended, the correct abbreviation is "zrbr"] of the 30th and 31st Armies in coordination with the 13th DZO [expansion unknown] of the GDR, and the Polish 12th Air Defense Corps are to concentrate the main effort in the immediate objective for the protection of:

- the troops of the 30th Army entering to battle;

- the commitment of the MOG of the 30th Army;

- troops during the forcing of the [KIEL] Canal.

In addition the reinforcement will be directed to protect nuclear-capable aircraft of Ya. OO. F [SIC, "nuclear weapons of the front"?] and the ARB.

In the subsequent objective the main effort of the front air defense is to be concentrated on protecting the [KIEL] Canal and also the D.Ya.O [expansion unknown, but probably also nuclear weapons-related] resources.

The air defense resources of the Army and formations are to protect the commitment of the F MOG [possibly "Front Mobile Operations Group"] (of the 31st Army) and troops during the forcing of water barriers, and also the missile and artillery groupings.

When loading the troops onto landing ships the air defense resources of the formations are to concentrate [their] main effort in the area of loading and the formation of the assault force at sea in coordination with the 13th DZO GDR, 9th IAD, and OBF.

During the transit of the assault force by sea and the flight of the air assault force the fighter aircraft of the 9th IAD, 13th DZO GDR, Polish 12th Air Defense Corps, the OBF, and the air defense resources of the naval amphibious assault formations, and also the assigned air defense forces of the assault landing force are to concentrate the main effort on protection of both the amphibious and air assault forces in the area of deployment [razvitiya - SIC].

During the battle to land and accomplish the immediate objective the main effort of the protection of formations of naval forces and organic resources [by] IA will be concentrated to protect the troops in the first stage of the struggle to seize the coastal areas of the islands of LOLLAND and FALSTER, and then the island of ZEELAND.

The engineer troops of the front support the forcing and mineclearing of the [KIEL] Canal, prepare areas to embark an amphibious assault force, and maintain supply and evacuation roads.

4. Command and control of the large formations and formations of the Maritime Front is to be provided from CP['s], ZKP['s], and TKP['s] [rear control post] in the forming-up area by radiorelay and landline communications links and also via GDR government cable networks; during the operation [it is to be provided] in the main and auxiliary radiorelay-landline communications arteries to the entire depth of the mission by relocating front CP['s] and ZKP['s].  

The CP is in the forming-up area 5 km north of NEUBRANDENBURG and has been operating since 1900 20 January.

CP['s] during the operation is at TRAPPENKAKR [SIC, possibly TRAPPENKAMP], HADERSLEV.

A VPU is being deployed in the area of SWINOUJSCIE [deletion and correction made by hand] WARNEMÜNDE for command and control of the airborne-amphibious assault operation.

[handwritten:]

Commanding General of the PF

/signature/

General of Brigade [S. Vytychok]

[The heading of a Secret exercise-related telegram to the Chief of Staff of the Soviet Baltic Fleet is at the bottom of the last page]