Operation Burdock

This was a German operation against partisans in the area of Kletnya within the German-occupied western part of the USSR (1 January 1943).

The partisan forces in this area operated under the direct control of the Soviet high command, and in this instance had been directed to cut the Germans' exposed lines of communication with Generalfeldmarschall Günther von Kluge’s Heeresgruppe ‘Mitte’ in the area to the south-west of Bryansk. This was part of the Soviet plan for General Konstantin K. Rokossovsky’s Central Front to cut off a substantial part of Heeresgruppe ‘Mitte’ with a northward punch from the Bryansk-Orel salient.

The Soviet offensive had begun on 25 February 1943 but failed in its strategic objective as Generaloberst Walter Weiss’s 2nd Army secured an excellent German stop line between Sumy and Rylsk.