Cherkassy-Korsun Pocket

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The Battle of the Cherkassy-Korsun Pocket took place in Ukraine in early 1944. In January of that year, Soviet forces led by Generals Ivan Konev and Nikolai Vatutin surrounded German forces, which included an SS division, near the town of Korsun. Rescue attacks by other German forces failed. In February, General Stemmerman, who commanded the trapped German soldiers, ordered his men to break out through the Soviet positions. The German soldiers moved on foot through snowdrifts and across flooded rivers to reach safety. They were attacked by Soviet soldiers on horseback and using tanks and suffered terrible losses. However, many Germans did escape to safety. Soviet historians claimed that the Germans suffered over 50,000 casualties. German historians claim that the number of German casualties was only 19,000. Ivan Konev was promoted to Marshal of the Soviet Union after the battle. General Stemmerman was killed during the breakout.