10. Croatian Infantry Division
- Published: 09 February 2013 09 February 2013
- Last Updated: 09 February 2013 09 February 2013
(10. Hrvatska Pješačka Divizija)
by H.L. deZeng IV
Ordered formed on or about 1 December 1944 with Division HQ in Bihać. There was a small German liaison team (DVK 310) assigned to the Division for coordination purposes. It was considered by the Germans, Partisans and Allies as being understrength, inadequately equipped and armed, and with very poor morale. The average strength in December was around 3,500, but it fell off considerably after that. (1)
Dec 44 – Mar 45: Div. responsible for the Vel.Skočaj – Bihać – Ostrozac – Bos.Novi area and was tactically under German XV. Gebirgskorps. During December, January and February it engaged in relatively uneventful small unit actions with enemy forces in its operating area.
Mar 45: early in the morning of 20 March, Partisan 4th Army commenced a powerful attack to liberate Bihać and advance along the valley of the Una toward Bos.Novi. Following a week of intense defensive fighting along with elements of German 373. Inf.Div. and 104. Jäger-Div., the last defenders pulled out of Bihać on 28 March and began withdrawing up the valley. The cost to the Division was high: II Bn./10th Jäger Brig. and the VIII Artillery Gp. were completely destroyed while VII Ustasha Brigade suffered heavy losses.
Apr 45: by the first week in April the remnants of the Division was around Otoka, approximately 48 km NE of Bihać, and in the last week of the month they were attempting to assemble in the Sisak area. The few survivors are believed to have then been absorbed into other units as reinforcements.
General Ivan Tomašević (c. 1 Dec 1944 - c. Mar 1945)
Pukovnik Dušan Rajković (c. Mar 1945 - May 1945)
I Territorial Corps (c. 1 Dec 1944 - c. 15 Mar 1945)
V Ustasha Corps (c. 15 Mar 1945 - May 1945)
Order of battle (Dec 1944)
Div. HQ in Bihać
VII Ustasha Brigade (3 battalions)
10th Jäger Brigade (4 battalions)
I Assault Bn.
VIII Artillery Gp.
Later, 10th Jäger was reduced from 4 to 2 battalions and I Assault Bn. lost its separate identity and became the Reconnaissance Bn./10th Croatian Inf.Div.
1. AVII Beograd, kut. 134a, reg.br. 3/1; [Vojnoistorijski institute]. Zbornik dokumenata I podataka o narodnooslobodilačkom ratu jugoslovenskih naroda, Tom V/36, p.530; XI/4, pp.60, 315-18, 344-49 and 816-18; [Vojnoistorijski institute]. Hronologija oslobodilačke borbe naroda jugoslavije 1941-1945, p.1083; NARA WashDC: RG 226 (OSS intelligence documents Nos. 109636, 110433 and 126034); RG 242 (T-311 roll 184/1141; roll 185/65, 166 and 530).
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