1st Guards Assault Aviation Corps

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The 1st Guards Assault Aviation Corps ('1st Gv shak' ) was a military formation of the Red Air Force during the Second World War, and of the Soviet Air Force until 1949. It was then renamed the 60th Guards Assault Aviation Corps, and was active until its disbandment in 1956.[1] Its primary aircraft was the Ilyushin Il-2 'Sturmovik'.

1st Guards Assault Aviation Corps
(1944–49)
1st Assault Aviation Corps
(1942–44)
Active1942–49
CountrySoviet Union
BranchSoviet Air Force
TypeAviation corps
EngagementsWorld War II
DecorationsOrder of the Red Banner Order of the Red Banner

Order of Suvorov 2nd Class Order of Suvorov

Order of Kutuzov 2nd Class Order of Kutuzov
Battle honoursKirovograd
Berlin
Commanders
Notable
commanders
Vasily Ryazanov

DesignationsEdit

  • 1st Assault Aviation Corps
  • 1st Kirovograd Assault Aviation Corps (1942–44)
  • 1st Guards Kirovograd Assault Aviation Corps[2]
  • 1st Guards Kirovograd-Berlin Red Banner Orders of Suvorov and Kutuzov Assault Aviation Corps (1944–49)
  • 60th Guards Assault Aviation Corps (1949–56)

FormationEdit

The 1st Assault Aviation Corps was formed by an NKO Order dated September 10, 1942, from the 2nd Fighter Aviation Army.[3] Part of the order establishing the corps said:

  • 1. Establish and keep in reserve of the Supreme Command:
  • b) 1st Assault Aviation Corps as part: Office of the Air Shtat No. 015/281, 121st Communications Battalion Shtat 015/215, 292nd, 290th and 266th Assault Aviation Divisions, each composed of three assault and one fighter aviation regiments with 32 aircraft each.
  • 1st Assault Aviation Corps stationed in Yurkino district, Dmitrov.
  • 3. Three squadrons are part of each of the fighter and assault aviation regiments, consisting of two flights with four aircraft and two aircraft for the squadron commander and commissar. The regimental headquarters have two aircraft for the use of the regimental commander and commissar.
  •  
    An Ilyushin Il-2 of the type flown by the corps
    4. 1st and 2nd Fighter and the 1st Bomber Air Army - disband. Personnel and equipment used to staff the formed air corps.
  • 5. Air Corps to be included as part of the army ....
  • 11. Assign the following to the corps: as the commander of the 1st Assault Aviation Corps Major General of Aviation Vasily Georgyevich Ryazanov, as the commander of the 290th Assault Aviation Division Lieutenant Colonel Mironenko PI, as the commander of the 263rd Bomber Aviation Division Colonel Dobysh FI, as the commander of the 266th Assault Aviation Division Lieutenant Colonel Radyakina FG[3]

World War IIEdit

In the Battle of Kursk (Operation Citadel), General Vasily Ryazanov became a master in the use of attack aircraft en masse, developing and improving the tactics of Il-2 operations in co-ordination with infantry, artillery and armored troops. Il-2s at Kursk used the "circle of death" tactic: up to eight Sturmoviks formed a defensive circle, each plane protecting the one ahead with its forward machine guns, while individual Il-2s took turns leaving the circle, attacking a target, and rejoining the circle.[4] Ryazanov was later awarded the Gold Star of Hero of Soviet Union twice, and the 1st Assault Aircraft Corps under his command became the first unit to be awarded the honorific title of Guards.[5] In 1943, one loss corresponded to 26 Sturmovik sorties. About half of those lost were shot down by fighters, the rest falling to anti-aircraft fire.[5]

Part of the 'Operational Army'Edit

The 1st Assault Aviation Corps was part of the 'operational army' (in combat) from October 17, 1942 to February 5, 1944, a period of 477 days. The corps was still part of the 'operational army' after its elevation to Guards status and remained in combat until 11 May 1945. The corps thus spent 937 days in combat.[6]

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Holm, Michael (2015). "1st Guards Bomber Aviation Division". Soviet Armed Forces 1945-91. Retrieved April 18, 2016.
  2. ^ NKO Order number 016 of February 5, 1944
  3. ^ a b NKO Order number 00196 of September 10, 1942
  4. ^ Wetterhan, Ralph (May 2015). "Kursk". Air & Space Magazine. Smithsonian Institution. Retrieved January 21, 2016.
  5. ^ a b Gordon 2008, p. 296.
  6. ^ Perechen No. 4, Part X

ReferencesEdit