XIII Ustasha Brigade (XIII. Stajači Djelatni Sdrug)
by H.L. deZeng IV

Formed 20 November 1944 with HQ in Privlaka/10 km S of Vinkovci in Syrmia. Many of the cadre personnel for its formation came from the II Ustasha Brigade which was located in the same area. (1)

Operational History


1 Dec 44: just 10 days after it was ordered formed, the Brigade was incorporated into the new 3d Croatian Infantry Division (HQ in Vinkovci). Brig. HQ and headquarters elements moved to Vinkovci shortly after formation.


(see 3d Croatian Infantry Division for additional information).
Jan – Apr 45: said by the Croatians to have been heavily engaged in the Vinkovci – Otok – Vrbanja – Brčko area, but by all accounts, the fighting was static along the front in Syrmia amd south Slavonia until the Partisans opened their spring offensive on 4-5 April. Several defensive lines had been constructed of inter-locking bunker positions and most offensive activity was in the form of patrols and probes that rarely exceeded battalion-size. The Soviet 68th Rifle Corps was along this front until it was replaced by the Bulgarian 3d and 8th Divisions on 22 December. Further, the II, III and IV Battalions were local garrison troops who defended their towns and the roads and rail lines in their immediate vicinity. Only the Brigade’s I Bn. was fit for serious offensive and defensive fighting.
4-25 Apr 45: 1st and 3d Armies JA in a combined strength of 180,000 opened Marshal Tito’s final offensive to take Syrmia and Slavonia and destroy the defending German XXXIV. Armeekorps, which deployed a mixed German-Croatian force of around 100,000 troops. The key town of Vinkovci was abandoned by the Brigade and 3d Croatian Inf. Div. on 12 April and what was left of these forces withdrew northwest toward Zagreb, which the Brigade reached on 20 April. In the last days of the month it was consolidated with XVI Ustasha Brigade.


Ust. Dopukovnik Petar Pavić (20 Nov 1944? - Apr 1945?)


II Territorial Corps (20 Nov 1944 - 30 Nov 1944)

Order of battle (1 Dec 1944)

Brigade HQ and headquarters elements and HQ Co. in Privlaka
I Bn. (ex-VI and XVI Ustasha Bns.) in Privlaka
II Bn. (ex-Ustasha Garrison Bn. Vinkovci) in Vinkovci
III Bn. (ex-Ustasha Garrison Bn. Županja) in Županja
IV Bn. (ex-Ustasha Garrison Bn. Djakovo) in Djakovo


1. Colić 1979, p.160; [Vojnoistorijski institute] - Zbornik dokumenata I podataka o narodnooslobodilačkom ratu jugoslovenskih naroda. Tom IV/31, p.824; Drina (Madrid), br.2 (1963), pp.35-37; NARA WashDC: RG 242 (T-311 roll 184/1141); RG 331 (roll 447-B).

Reference material on this unit

- None known at this time -