Transcaucasian Front

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Transcaucasian Front or Transcaucasus Front (Russian: Закавказский Фронт) was a front of the Red Army during the Second World War. This sense of the term is not identical with the more general usage of military front which indicates a geographic area in wartime, although a Soviet Front may operate within designated boundaries.

The Transcaucasus Front describes two distinct organizations during the war. The first version was created on August 23, 1941 from the Transcaucasus Military District, which was apparently originally formed in 1922. The boundary of the Front extended along the border with Turkey and along the Black Sea coast from Batumi to Tuapse. It was commanded by Lieutenant-General Dmitri T. Kozlov (Козлов Дмитрий Тимофеевич) from August 1941 to December 1941. On June 22, 1941, when the German invasion started, the TCMD included the 3rd, 24th, and 40th Rifle Corps, the 28th Mechanised Corps, two cavalry divisions (the 17th Mountain and the 24th) and three separate rifle divisions (the 63rd, 76th, and 77th.[1] Also part of the District were three fortified regions and District troops, which included artillery and NKVD frontier units.

The initial Front organization incorporated the four Soviet armies stationed in the district in June 1941: the 45th and 46th on the border with Turkey and the 44th and 47th on the border with Iran. On August 25, 1941 troops from the Front entered Iran according to the Soviet-Iran Treaty of Friendship of February 21, 1921, which eliminated the direct threat to the Baku oil fields.

Order of Battle, Invasion of Iran, 1941

Here is the Soviet OOB for the 25th of August 1941:[2]

44th Army (Major General A.A. Khaldejev)

  • 20th Mountain Rifle Division
  • 77th Mountain Rifle Division
  • 17th Cavalry Division
  • 24th Tank Regiment

47th Army (Major General V.V. Novikov)

  • 63rd Mountain Rifle Division
  • 76th Mountain Rifle Division
  • 236th Rifle Division
  • 6th Tank Division
  • 54th Tank Division
  • 13th Motorcycle Regiment

53rd Army (invaded Iran from Turkmenistan, Turkestan Military District on the 27th of August)

In November 1941 the 51st Army joined the front after being evacuated from the Crimea. The Transcaucasus Front was briefly renamed the Caucasus Front on December 30, 1941. The second version of this front was again created from the Transcaucasus Military District on May 15, 1942 and continued in existence until its reorganization as the Tbilisi Military District on August 25, 1945 after the end of the war. It was commanded by General Ivan V. Tyulenev, and included the 4th and 58th Armies at various periods.