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Accounting 101


18th Army Command
Operational Department
December 8th, 1943

Reports on the number of destroyed tanks

1. Precise reports on destroyed or knocked out tanks are of great importance for evaluating the combat strength of Russian tank units and estimation of success during defense. Not every hit on a tank destroys it. Reports need to differentiate:

  1. Destroyed tanks
  2. Knocked out tanks
  3. Tanks destroyed by the Luftwaffe
Tanks are counted as destroyed when they are disabled at our defensive lines or behind them.
Tanks are counted as destroyed if it's on fire, exploding, fell apart, or if the turret was knocked off. Tanks that can still drive away or move after being hit do not count.
2. Take note of the following:
  1. Prisoners report that the Russians burn smoke bombs to create the illusion of a burning tank (each tank carries 5-6 bombs that burn for 2 minutes).
  2. As a rule, a tank that burned up burns for several hours and its ammunition detonates completely. A brief fire is either a trick or was put out. Such a tank was not destroyed and in most cases is not immobilized, as such do not report on these tanks.
3. Knocked out tanks at or behind our lines of defense must be destroyed to stop the enemy from towing them away if they break through.

Tanks knocked out in front of our lines of defense need to be destroyed if possible. If this is not possible, keep them under artillery and heavy weapons fire for as long as ammunition supplies allow in order to prevent the enemy from capturing them."

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