TM-E 30-451 Handbook on German Military Forces

[DISCLAIMER: The following text is taken from the U.S. War Department Technical Manual, TM-E 30-451: Handbook on German Military Forces published in March 1945. — Figures and illustrations are not reproduced, see source details. — As with all wartime intelligence information, data may be incomplete or inaccurate. No attempt has been made to update or correct the text. — Any views or opinions expressed do not necessarily represent those of the website.]



3. General Headquarters

a. FORTRESS BRIGADE (Festungsbrigade). Independent static infantry brigades.

b. FORTRESS REGIMENT (Festungsregiment). Regimental staffs controlling fortress battalions.

c. FORTRESS BATTALIONS (Festungsbataillon). Static infantry battalions employed in the defense of fixed fortifications. It consists largely of Landesschützen personnel. It often is attached for tactical purposes to divisions operating in the same combat area.

d. PERMANENT FORTRESS BATTALION (Festungsstammabteilung). Formed as a cadre personnel, it is attached to corps manning fortifications in coastal sectors and now is found in the Westwall defenses. The battalions carry the Roman numeral of the corps to which they are attached, but also have been identified with Arabic numbers in the 300 series. These units may occur as Festungsstammregimenter (permanent fortress regiments) or as Festungsstammkompanie (permanent fortress companies) depending on the size of the sector to which they are assigned.

e. MACHINE-GUN BATTALION (Maschinengewehrbataillon). The independent machine-gun battalion consists of three companies equipped with heavy machine guns and bazookas and a heavy weapons company. It probably has been redesignated fortress machine-gun battalion.

f. FORTRESS MACHINE-GUN BATTALION (Festungs-Maschinengewehrbataillon). These static machine-gun battalions are composed largely of Landesschützen personnel. Their organization is similar to a Maschinengewehrbataillon except for the mobility.

g. SUPER-HEAVY MACHINE-GUN BATTALION (Überschweres Maschinengewehrbataillon). Organization of this battalion is probably similar to that of the Maschinengewehrbataillon. It is equipped with 20-mm and 37-mm antiaircraft guns and bazookas.

h. LIGHT ANTIAIRCRAFT BATTALION (Flabataillon). This consists of light antiaircraft companies organized similarly to those found organically in the infantry divisions. It is believed that many light antiaircraft battalions have been reformed and redesignated super-heavy machine-gun battalions and are being employed as mobile defense units of fortified zones.

i. TANK DESTRUCTION BATTALION (Panzerverstörer Bataillon). This battalion is equipped with bazookas and other infantry antitank weapons.

j. HEAVY MORTAR BATTALION (Schweres Granatwerferbataillon). This consists of three companies. Each company has twelve heavy mortars (120-mm).

k: ALPINE INFANTRY BATTALION (Hochgebirgsbataillon). The personnel of this battalion is especially trained for warfare in high terrain and mountain climbing.

l. LOCAL DEFENSE (Landesschützen) REGIMENT AND BATTALION. A local defense regiment controls a varying number of battalions which are composed of two to six companies. The average company strength is 150, and total battalion strength may vary between 400 and 900. These units originally were employed for guard duties at vital installations and as support for the military administration in occupied territories.

m. SECURITY REGIMENT AND BATTALION (Sicherungsregiment). Numerous Landesschützen battalions have received additional transportation and equipment and been redesignated security battalions (Sicherungsbataillone). While the strength of these battalions varies, similarly to that of the local defense battalions, Figures 85 and 86 show an average security battalion as it may be encountered in the field.

Several such battalions may be controlled by a security regiment which usually is attached to commanders of army groups or army rear areas.

n. For a complete list of all infantry and security units see the "Order of Battle of the German Army", March 1945 edition.


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