18th Machine Gun Artillery Division

  (Redirected from 184th Rifle Division)

The 18th Machine Gun Artillery Division is a division of the Russian Ground Forces.

184th Rifle Division (II) (1941–1946)
18th Machine Gun Artillery Division (1946–1949; 1978–present)
Sleeve patch of the 18th Machine Gun Artillery Division.svg
Active1941–1949; 1978–present
CountrySoviet Union (until 1991)
Russia (since 1992)
AllegianceRussian Ground Forces
Typefortification artillery formation
Part ofEastern Military District
Garrison/HQGoryachiye Klyuchi, Kurilsky District, Sakhalin Oblast
Nickname(s)Dukhovshchinskaya (Духовщинская)
EngagementsBattle of Kursk,[1]
Battle of Stalingrad,[2]
Battle of Smolensk,[3]
Third Battle of Kharkov,[4]
Dukhovshchina–Demidov Offensive[5]

First formationEdit

It was first formed as the 184th Red Banner Rifle Division (Russian: 184-я Краснознамëнная стрелковая дивизия, abbreviated: 184-я сд) which was a Soviet Red Army division during World War II (1920s till 1940 – 2nd Division of Lithuania).[6] It was with 29th Rifle Corps of 11th Army on June 22, 1941, as part of the Baltic Military District. Most of the soldiers rebelled and joined the cause of the Lithuanian Activist Front.[7] Some of its remnants went to make up the Second Formation of the 16th Rifle Division.

Second formationEdit

Its Second Formation was activated in October 1941, a redesignation of the 4th NKVD Rifle Division, which had been active in the Crimea since September 1941. The Division fought as part of the 62nd Army during the Battle of Stalingrad under Colonel Koida from July 17 to September 15, 1942.[8]

Among the most notable division members was Roza Shanina. On July 12, 1944, the division occupied Trakai jointly with the 45th Rifle Corps. During the East Prussian Offensive, the division hoisted the flag of the Soviet Union on the Soviet state border.[9] It was then transferred to the Far East and fought as part of 45th Rifle Corps, 5th Army, during the invasion of Manchuria.[10]

During the war the division was part of the 2nd Guards Corps (39th Army), 3rd Tank Army, 5th Army, 62nd Army. It disbanded in 1945-46.[11]

Some 12 men of the 184th Division were awarded the title Hero of the Soviet Union, among them Vasily Zaitsev.[12]

109th Fortified Region had been serving in the Far East. Circa 1946 it became the 18th Machine Gun Artillery Brigade.[13]

On June 8, 1946, on the basis of the 184th Rifle Division and the 18th Machine Gun Artillery Brigade, the 18th Machine-Gun Artillery Division was created in Primorski Krai, comprising the:

  • 38th,
  • 40th,
  • and 49th Machine-Gun Artillery Regiments.

It was disbanded in 1949.[14]

Third formationEdit

The division was reformed in mid-May 1978 in Knyaze-Volkonskoye, Khabarovsk Krai, without inheriting the lineage of the previous formation.[15] It was transferred to the Kuril Islands during the summer of 1978.

Defence of the Kuril IslandsEdit

The main responsibility for the defence of the Kuril Islands falls to the 18th Machine Gun Artillery Division of the Eastern Military District. The headquarters of the Division are located in Goryachiye Klyuchi on the Iturup Island. It also has garrisons on Kunashir Island and Shikotan Island.[16] The 18th Artillery Division was previously the only division-strength military formation remaining in the Armed Forces of Russia, along with the 201st Military Base in Tajikistan.[17] The division's aging infrastructure is in need of overhaul.[18] There are also Border Guard Service troops stationed on the islands.[19][20]

According to RIA Novosti military analyst Ilya Kramnik, the 18th Artillery Division is unlikely to be able to defend the Islands by itself from an attack.[21] In case of attack by Japan, the Russian forces on the Kuril Islands are expected to hold out for only one to four days unless they receive support.[22]

Russia is planning to start construction of two new military posts in 2013. By late 2011 the islands airfields were being refurbished.[23] Also in 2011, it was reported that the K-300P Bastion-P system was being deployed in the islands.[24] The division became part of the 68th Army Corps in 2014.[25]

Name Date
Kombrig (later Major General) Vladas Karvelis August 30, 1940 – May 1941
Colonel Vasily Abramov August–December 1941
Major-General Stanislav Poplavsky January–March 1942
Colonel Samuil Koyda March 15, 1942 – January 18, 1943; February 11 – March 1, 1943
Major Pavel Galuza January 23 – February 10, 1943
Colonel Stepan Khoteyev March 18 – May 23, 1943
Colonel Samuil Tsukaryov May 24 – December 12, 1943
Colonel Aleksandr Belov December 13, 1943 – June 1, 1944
Major-General Basan Gorodovikov June 10 – December 11, 1944; February 19 – September 3, 1945
Colonel Ivan Mayskiy December 12, 1944 – January 15, 1945
Major-General Rakhim Maksutov January 17 – February 18, 1945


  1. ^ "Kursk1943.mil.ru". Archived from the original on 2012-08-05. Retrieved 2006-11-23.
  2. ^ "RusFront.media2000.ru". Archived from the original on 2003-07-24. Retrieved 2006-11-23.
  3. ^ WarHeroes.ru
  4. ^ "All.Kharkov.ua". Archived from the original on 2007-09-01. Retrieved 2006-11-24.
  5. ^ RKKA.ru
  6. ^ Stasys Knezys. Lietuvos kariuomenės naikinimas (1940 m. birželio 15 d.–1941 m.)
  7. ^ Первые дни войны 5-ой танковой дивизии - часть третья - Правда.Ру
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2001-07-16. Retrieved 2008-01-25.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ WarHeroes.ru
  10. ^ Niehorster, Leo. "5th Army, 1st Far Eastern Front, Far East Command, 9 August 1945". niehorster.org. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  11. ^ Feskov et al 2013, 147.
  12. ^ Ostreyko, G.A. (August 1987). "184th Rifle Division's Role in Kaunas Operation". Soviet Union Military History Journal. 8: 34.
  13. ^ Feskov 2013, 155.
  14. ^ Feskov et al 2013, 156.
  15. ^ Holm, Michael. "18th Machine-Gun Artillery Division". www.ww2.dk. Retrieved 19 January 2017.
  16. ^ "Russian defense minister visits garrisons in South Kurils (Part 2)". Interfax. 2011-02-04. Archived from the original on 2015-11-17.
  17. ^ "Russia's Army Reform Enters New Stage". Moscow Defense Brief. Centre for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies.
  18. ^ "Russia May Deploy Rockets on Southern Kurils". Reuters. 2011-02-11.
  19. ^ "Backgrounder: Importance of Southern Kuril Islands – Xinhua". Xinhua.[permanent dead link]
  20. ^ http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2011-02/04/c_13719152.htm
  21. ^ "Russia to boost Kuril defense to ward off war". RIA Novosti. 2011-02-11.
  22. ^ "Will Russia be able to defend Kuril Islands if Japan attacks?". Pravda.ru. 2011-02-09.
  23. ^ rian.ru
  24. ^ "Russia to deploy Bastion coastal missile systems at Kurils". Rusnavy.com. 2011-02-03. Retrieved 2013-09-03.
  25. ^ Mukhin, Vladimir (21 April 2014). "КАРТ-БЛАНШ. Курилам придают военно-стратегический облик" [Carte Blanche: Kuriles get strategic military character]. Nezavisimaya Gazeta (in Russian). Retrieved 18 March 2017.
  • Feskov, V.I.; Golikov, V.I.; Kalashnikov, K.A.; Slugin, S.A. (2013). Вооруженные силы СССР после Второй Мировой войны: от Красной Армии к Советской [The Armed Forces of the USSR after World War II: From the Red Army to the Soviet: Part 1 Land Forces] (in Russian). Tomsk: Scientific and Technical Literature Publishing. ISBN 9785895035306.