During WW I , the Russians built a fortress on the German-Russian border called the Osowiec Fortress, which was a headache for the Germans. So many times, Germans try to capture Osowiec Fortress but failed to Occupy because of heavy Russian Resistance by Lieutenant Vladimir Karpovich Kotlinsky command. On August 6, 1915, the Garman army tried to achieve the fortress for the last time, and the fight took place in history as the “Attack of the Dead Men”.
Unbreakable Russian against Destructive German
The Germans launched their first attack on September 3, 1914. After six days of artillery bombardment, they confidently pushed the Russian infantry, but all the time, Russian artillery and infantry retreat against German and remain undefeated.
The second attack went from February to March. Now the Germans were very confident about the capture of the fort because this time, they bring their newly-launched heavy 1420mm caliber artillery arsenal, which was named “Big Bertha Cannon”, because of its destructive power.
Most of the German artillery and air bombardment continued for a month without pushing the infantry, hoping that the Russians would surrender if they could not survive the war. Although a month-long artillery attack despite severe damage to the fort and casualties, Russian infantry prevented the German troops from conquering the fort. Also, The German army was forced to retreat.
You must be Wondering about the morale of the Russian army ??? Then listen to the next one.
Final Battle : The Attack of the dead Man
The German troops under the Marshal Paul von Hindenburg launched a new third plan on July 3, which is widely discussed in history. They come up with chemical weapons this time. They think the morale of the Russian troops has been completely broken due to the previous two exhausted attacks.
This time, german equip their soldiers with gas mask. On August 6, german marshal waits for favorable wind conditions, and then with thirty gas batteries and thirty artillery guns begin to attack. Due to the toxic battery of toxic chlorine and bromine gas, dark green clouds enter the Osowiec Fortress, and the castle became a darkened fort.
On the other hand, between this dark and poisonous gas, the shell of thirty-three Big Bertha cannons continued to fall upon the castle. The gas was so toxic that grass in that area was blackened, and the leaves of the tree turned yellow.
Russian copper made guns and artillery burst loudly as a result of massive chlorine gas reaction and became unusable. In a few minutes, the fort becomes a dead castle. The Russian companies of the 9th,10th,11th, and 12th began to march into the poisonous gas shortly afterward.
After the gas was cleared, about 7000 infantry of 14 battalions of the German troops headed for the fort. The Germans army suddenly heard a shout from somewhere near the bunker when they were approaching at the castle. That time german troops were not ready for what they saw.
Despite the gas attack, around 100 soldiers of the 8th and 13th Company remained live and survived at the fort. The 100 Russian retreats against german soldiers with what they have gotten (especially the bayonet).
But what was scary for the Germans was that you can’t call those one hundred soldiers fully alive. they were half dead already. All Russian soldiers had wound stains on the body because of Chemical gas reactions. Their face was totally Distorted. With each breath, blood was coming out of their mouth and wound even some Fragmented lung lump Burning in chlorine.
The scene was so scary that the Germans started fleeing instead of attacking, They were so shocked that they fell themselves on the brink of a trench on their way to escape. 14 battalions were disbanded immediately for this shocking attack. The Russians charged and proceeded up to the German artillery position . and forced the resistance-less artillery forces to retreat. Russian soldier morale and loyalty to command are widely discussed throughout the world. The following day, the incident was found in various newspapers in the headline titled “The Attack of the Dead Man”
Two weeks after the incident, the remaining soldiers were rescued and treated. The soldiers kept their positions in the fort until being rescued, despite the severe gas burn with Acute painful wounds. Next to them, there were Distorted corpses of their beloved warriors. Actually, the bunker was a castle of death.
Watch the music video based on the attack of the dead men ww1 by sabaton :
Attack of the dead men lyrics from Sabaton official website :
Read Another historic Operation done by US Secret mission : Operation Paperclip