Operation Gallop

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Operation Gallop
Part of the Eastern Front of World War II
Date29 January – 18 February 1943
Result Partial Soviet victory
 Germany  Soviet Union
Commanders and leaders
Nazi Germany Erich von Manstein Soviet Union Nikolai Vatutin

Initial strength [1]

  • 160,000 men
  • 160 tanks

Initial strength[1]

  • 325,000 men
  • 362 tanks

Operation Gallop (Russian: Операция Скачок, romanised: Operatsiya Skachok) was a Soviet Army operation on the Eastern Front of World War II during World War II. The operation was part of a series of counteroffensives after the encirclement of Stalingrad following the German Summer offensive in 1942; the Soviet High Command expected a collapse of the German frontline in Southern Russia / Northeast Ukraine and launched a number of counteroffensives to exploit the weak German situation. The operation was launched on 29 January in conjunction with Operation Star and aimed against Voroshilovgrad, Donetsk and then towards the Sea of Azov to cut off all German forces east of Donetsk, it was conducted by the Southwestern Front, commanded by Nikolai Fyodorovich Vatutin. The offensive was initially successful as the Soviets broke through the weak German lines; the Germans were pushed back to a line west of Voroshilovgrad.[2][3]

In face of a total collapse in the south the German command arranged a number of reorganisations and created a new Army Group South out of the shattered forces of the old Army Group A, B and Don under the command of Erich von Manstein; the Soviet offensives, initially successful, ultimately outran their supply lines, and during a counteroffensive at Kharkov, the Germans were able to regain the momentum. The result would be a last German strategic offensive at Kursk.[2][3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Glantz 1991, p. 89.
  2. ^ a b Glantz (1995), pp. 143–147.
  3. ^ a b Nipe (2000), pp. 54–64, 67ff, 100.


  • Glantz, David M. (1991). From the Don to the Dnepr: Soviet Offensive Operations, December 1942 – August 1943. New York: Routledge. ISBN 978-1-135-18130-7.
  • Glantz, David M. (1995). When Titans Clashed: How the Red Army Stopped Hitler. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas. ISBN 0-70060-899-0.
  • Nipe, George M. Jr. (2000). Last Victory in Russia: The SS-Panzerkorps and Manstein's Kharkov Counteroffensive—February–March 1943. Atglen, PA: Schiffer Publishing. ISBN 0-76431-186-7.