Friday 12 September 1941
The day starts off well in Army Group North. The Luftwaffe has spent the last couple of days softening up the Leningrad defenses, and a morning attack by 1 Panzer Division (Lieutenant General Friedrich Kirchner) makes good progress. The panzers advance through Krasnoe Selo and are only stopped at the southwestern suburb of Pulkovo. Prospects for an advance into the built-up areas of Leningrad look good. With no chance of effective resupply by the Soviets, the city should fall without too much trouble.
|Soviet troops surrender to the Germans, 12 September 1941.|
Leningrad will be starved into submission.And, just like that, the attack on Leningrad is over.
Field Marshal von Leeb is furious. He telephones OKH Chief of Staff General Franz Halder and insists "vehemently" that he be allowed to capture Leningrad. Halder lamely notes in his daily war diary:
Of course, we shall always give him the means to bring his operation to a successful close, but the build-up for the new operation in Center must have priority.There actually is no "of course" about it. Everyone knows that once sent away, armored troops are a long time coming back, especially from an operation on Moscow that is sure to draw rabid Soviet defensive fighting.
In the Army Group Center sector, General Guderian's Panzer Group 2 continues its breakout from the Desna River and drives further south to Kiev. The Soviets evacuate Chernigov, just north of Kiev, in the face of Guderian's onslaught.
In the Army Group South sector, General von Kleist also continues his drive east of Kiev from Kremenchug in the south. The Romanians also renew their attack on Odessa, where they have been stalled for several weeks.
There is one glimmer of hope for the Soviets. Unexpectedly, a light snow falls across much of the front. The panzer crews, frustrated by the mud created as the snow melts, break off their attacks.
|Schobert and his pilot prepare to fly off to their fate, 12 September 1941.|
September 1, 1941: Two Years In
September 2, 1941: Germans Pushed Back at Yelnya
September 3, 1941: FDR Refuses to Meet with Japanese
September 4, 1941: Hitler Furious at Guderian
September 5, 1941: Germans Evacuate Yelnya
September 6, 1941: Japan Prepares for War
September 7, 1941: Hitler Orders Drive on Moscow
September 8, 1941: Leningrad Cut Off
September 9, 1941: Germans Attack Leningrad
September 10, 1941: Guderian Busts Loose
September 11, 1941: Convoy SC-42 Destruction
September 12, 1941: Starve Leningrad!
September 13, 1941: Zhukov at Leningrad
September 14, 1941: Germany's Growing Casualties
September 15, 1941: Sorge Warns Stalin Again
September 16, 1941: Soviets Encircled at Kiev
September 17, 1941: Iran Conquest Completed
September 18, 1941: Focke-Wulf Fw 190 in Action
September 19, 1941: Germans Take Kiev
September 20, 1941: Death at Kiev
September 21, 1941: Raging Soviet Paranoia
September 22, 1941: Defense of Nickel Mines
September 23, 1941: Air Attacks on Leningrad
September 24, 1941: Japanese Spying Intensifies
September 25, 1941: Manstein at the Crimea
September 26, 1941: Kiev Pocket Eliminated
September 27, 1941: Massacre at Eišiškės
September 28, 1941: Ted Williams Hits .400
September 29, 1941: Babi Yar Massacre
September 30, 1941: Operation Typhoon Begins