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It is said, “Cherkassy was no military victory – but was not our salvation from certain destruction a kind of victory?” Fought from January 24till February 16 1944, the Battle of the Korsun-Cherkassy Pocket involved 60,000 German troops and 70 armored vehicles squeezed in a desperate cauldron (kessel in German) by Red Army troops. At the time, the Russians were confidently predicting a second Stalingrad. In the event, an effort was organized to relieve the beleaguered German troops now consumed with “kessel fever”. Amidst fierce fighting and scenes of carnage, perhaps 36,000 German soldiers managed to break out through a tenuous bridgehead termed “Hell’s Gate”.
Dragon’s newest 1/35 scale figure set recalls this dramatic battle on the Eastern Front. The set presents four panzergrenadier figures from a reconnaissance unit clad in a typically varied collection of winter gear, including an officer wearing a fur cap with one earflap folded down. The individual figures are vividly posed and sharply detailed as they conduct a recon operation and field briefing as they search for an escape route from the Cherkassy cauldron. Obviously, the figures are suitable for modeling any winter operation, and as suggested by the box-top artwork, they would fit nicely in a scene with Dragon’s 1/35 scale Sd.Kfz. 250 halftrack.