(Arriving at Berdichev in July, 1941)
After the group of armies “South” has grasped East Galitsiya and Western Ukraine in the beginning of July, it could again begin performance. 6th German Army and 1st Panzer Group stood at the Slutch river, having in rear 17th German Army, which only was still tightened to the Zbruch river. 11th German Army and the Romanians were in Bukovina and in the north part of Bessarabiya.
If now it was possible according to the initial plan quickly to advance by the left wing to Kiev and then to put impact in the southeast direction, there would be an opportunity to cut off and destroy Soviet forces act against 17th and 11th German Armies, and also against the Romanian, before these forces will have time to depart behind the Dnieper river. It was necessary also to execute the further requirement of the directive about strategic expansion: as soon as possible to grasp ferries through the Dnieper in area of Kiev and to the south for continuation of operations on an opposite bank of the river.
July 5, on the north wing of group of armies “South” have take the offensive by 6th Army and 1st Panzer Group. ” The Stalin Line” was broken through in Novgorod-Volynsk area and to the south, the tanks in some days have reached Berdichev and Zhitomir. It seemed, the tank group at last has left on operative open space; the group of armies already has put to it task to grasp Uman, as suddenly here, as it frequently happened in many places of East front, the Soviet armies order active actions against flanks of Panzer Group. Has passed more than week, while it with the help of 6th Army could advance to Belaya Tserkov’.
July, 6. Counterstrokes of 6th Soviet Army on Lubare are unsuccessful. Formations of 6th Army are exhausted. Would believe are expedient to strengthen due to the right wing of Southern Front, units of 6th Army, by two divisions, having concentrated their marching order in area Kalinovki.
July, 7. On the received data, German tanks have broken through fortification at Novy Miropol’…. To the commander of Southern Front put forward immediately 16th Mechanized Corps on Berdichev and render reserves of Southwest Front in destruction of the opponent.
July, 8. The opponent has broken to Berdichev. Threat of deep break of German forces into rear of the main forces of Southwest Front has compelled command of front to enter 16th Mechanized Corps from march in process of their approach.
July 6, 17th German Army began offensive through the Zbruch river, by July 15 has broken through “Stalin line” in Bar area and to July 18 has grasped bridgehead on the South Bug river at Vinnitsa. More to the right through Mogilyovs on Baltu the north flank of 11th German Army together with Romanian 3rd Army advanced. South flank of 11th Army and 4th Romanian Army came through Kishinev and Balta to the Dniester river.
July, 17. 1941. With a view of reduction line of Southern Front and creation of more favourable grouping of forces of Southern and Southwest Front the Soviet High Command has ordered:
1. The left wing of Southern Front in structure of 25, 51, 150, 95th Rifle Divisions and 2nd Cavalry Corps to allocate behind the Dniepr river and strongly occupy for defense fortification areas- Rybninsky and Tiraspolsky.
2. Due to reduction of front with a withdrawal on a new boundary in area Uman’ – create strong group of front reserves in structure of 18th and 2nd Mechanized Corps and two rifle divisions. 18th and 2nd M.C. remove in area Uman’ immediately.
July, 18. With a view of creation of the most favourable grouping on the left wing of Southwest Front the Soviet High Command has ordered:
1. 6th and 12th Armies remove on a boundary the Bely Tserkov’, Tetiev, Kitay Gorod, Gayseen….
4. Simultaneously by forces of 27th, 6th and 64th Rifle Corps conduct resolute offensive with the purpose of exit on front Zhitomir, Kazatin, Tetiev for impact in flank against 6th German Army.
In day of Soviet withdrawal, Germans managed to break through covering Soviet units on a joint with the neighbour at the left and develop impact on Zhmerinka. This German offensive as it was found out later, put themselves the purpose by impact of 1st Panzer Group in Belaya Tserkov’ area to Uman and forces of 17th Army from Bar, Mogilyov – Podolsk area also in the general direction to Uman, surround two Soviet armies. However it was not possible to them. In due time begun counterstroke of Soviet front reserves on Panzer Group has broken a plan of the enemy. Offensive of 17th Army also was suspended by efforts of Soviet forces of 12th Army. The important role in these fights counterstroke has played forces of 18th Army. In result Soviet formations had an opportunity is organized depart and occupy defense on the specified boundary, having restored communication with formations of 18th Army of Southern Front.
More to the right through Mogilyov on Balta moved northern flank of German 11th Army together with Romanian 3rd Army promoted. Southern flank of 11th army and 4th Romanian Army came through Kishinev and Balta to the Dnestr river. Thus, now all group of armies “South” conducted offensive.
Having made at night withdrawal on an intermediate boundary, forces of 12th Soviet Army in close interaction with 6th and 18th Armies make fierce fights with formations of 17th German Army. Using the mobility, the opponent has made roundabout maneuver and has grasped the basic boundary intended for Soviet defense on flanks. To destroy the broken German grouping, Soviet 8th Mechanized Corps of general M.G.Snegov was allocated. Offensive have appointed to July, 22. Simultaneously with the purpose of simplification position of 26th Army of new formation from area Borodjanki has struck in flank of bypassing grouping in a direction Belaya Tserkov’, Ostraya Mogila.
Counterstroke of Soviet 26th Army has held down the main forces of fascists and has detained their progress on the southeast. The big role has played also 2nd Mechanized Corps of general J.V.Novosel’skoy, which July, 21 here was put forward by command of front on boundary Lukashevka and has created mobile defense.
July 23, forces of Southwest Front 6th and 12th Armies were incorporated by the order of the commander under the command of general P.G.Ponedelin.
July, 25. The Soviet High Command authorizes the decision on immediate removal 6th and 12th Armies on boundary Tal’noye, Hristinovka with submission of their commander by Southern Front.
With support of 6th German Army 1st Panzer Group came on Uman’ direction. The centre of 6th Army gradually replaced formations of 1st Panzer Group left to the south of Kiev for covering of the left flank, so last could increase force of impact. When July 27, the left flank of 17th Army has struck deeply in rear and in flank Russian, began to appear contours of Uman’ encirclement.
From July 26 till July 30, Soviet 6th and 12th Armies covered from three sides, make heavy defensive fights with superior forces of the enemy and move on a boundary Novo Arhangel’sk, Krasnopolk having in the centre of the operative defense city of Uman’.
August 2, to the north of Pervomayskiy the south flank of 17th German Army put forward and has incorporated by advance guard with Panzer Group formations. The encirclement of Soviet forces was completed.
Attempt of the Soviet counterstroke on August 5, from area Korsun’ in direction Zvenigorodka, Uman’ with the purpose rendering assistance and creations of a united front with Southern Front has not managed to 6th and 12th Armies.
By August 8, the grouping of the Soviet armies in area Pervomaysk, Novoarhangelsk, Uman was liquidated. It were the significant forces of 6th and 12th Armies-about fifteen rifle and five tank divisions. In the report of German High Command from August 8 was informed, that German have taken in captivity 103 thousand Soviet soldiers, were grasped 317 tanks and 858 guns.