The capacity of the KV (Kliment Voroshilov) heavy tanks
German General Reinhardt, commander of the 41st PzKorp, regarding the battle
of the Dubissa river on June 23rd 1941, between 80 BT tanks and 20 KVs of
2nd Soviet armoured division, and the entire 6th PzDiv equipped with PzKpfw IVs and PzKpfw 35(t):
"One hundred of our tanks, which about a third were PzKpfw IV, occupied
their positions against a counter-strike. Part of our forces met the enemy
frontaly, but most of them were in their flanks. They hit the steel monsters
from the three sides, but the attempts to destroy them were unsuccessful. By
the contrary, it were our tanks the ones who were knocked-out. After a long
struggle with the Soviet giants, the German armoured units began to
withdraw trying to avoid the aniquilation. [...] One of them [the KVs]
get close to a panzer who was stuck in a moody brook. Without
hesitation, the black monster just roll over it, crushing it completely. At
that time, arrived a German howitzer of 105 mm; its commander, seeing the
aproximation of enemy tanks, ordered to open a continue fire, without
causing any damage. One of them [the KVs] get close to 100m of the
howitzer, which fired again, and its grenate hit the tank with all its
strenght. The tanks stopped as hit by a lightning. "We made it!" thought the
gunners. "Yes, we made it!!!", told the captain of the piece. But the
expresson in their faces suddenly changed when one of them shouted: "It's
moving again!!". There was no doubt when the shining caterpillar get close
to the howitzer and crushed it as a toy, keep on moving later as nothing would happened."
In that battle, the KVs of the 2nd Armoured Division claimed to destroy 40
panzers and 40 guns (most of them anti-tank guns of 37 mm, crushed the same way that the howitzer).
The general Morgunov (commander of the armoured forces in Ukrane in 1941) reported:
"It must be noted the good work made by the 4th, 8th and 15th Mechanized
Corps, that demostrated that a single KV was equal to 10-14 enemy tanks in combat."
The General Konstantin Rokossovsky said in his memoirs in 1941:
"The tanks KV left the enemy literally shocked. They resist the fire of any
type of cannon which the German tanks would be armed. But, what a image
offered when they came back from combat! Their armour were full of holes
for everywhere, and sometimes even the cannons were perforated."
About end of July 1941, Lt.General A. Yeremenko sent a reports to D.G.Pavlov, commander of the Western Front:
"In the sector of the 107th Division, we sent a KV to silence an
enemy anti-tank battery. It [the KV] crushed the artillery, it went all over
upwards and downwards the emplacements of the enemy guns, it was hit more
than 200 times, but the armour wasn't penetrated, even when it was hit by guns of every type."