3/7/1917 The Kerensky Offensive comes unstuck #1917Live

Russia’s Kerensky Offensive (named after the War Minister) started well. After a heavy artillery bombardment the infantry went forward to find the enemy trenches largely abandoned. But the Germans had not run away; forewarned of the offensive they had just retreated to their second line trenches. Once the Russians found themselves facing the main enemy defence lines the Russian advance stalled. The assault troops have mostly not been as well trained as those who tool part in Brusilov‘s offensive last year. More crucially they have lost any commitment to the war and are extremely loth to put themselves at risk of death.

Some units continue to press on. The Women’s Battalion of Death penetrates the German second line of defence, as do some other specially trained assault units. But without the support of the rest of the army they are unable to hold their positions. When the Germans begin to counterattack the Russian army starts to collapse, with officers powerless to stop their men retreating and risking their lives if they even try.

image source:

Still image from the film Battalion (Wargaming Miscellany)

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