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The Royal Yugoslav Army was the armed force of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenesmarker and later the Kingdom of Yugoslaviamarker from the state's formation until the force's surrender to the Axis powers on April 17 1941.

Shortly before the Axis invasion of Yugoslavia, the army staged a coup against the Serbian Yugoslav monarchy on March 26.

The force was known for its domination by ethnic Serbs. At the time of the force's final surrender, the vast majority of its head command and field army generals were Serbs, especially since other ethnic groups choose to join the occupators. Also, it is interesting to note that Serbs were the only ethnic group that fought against the Nazi occupators, thus leading to Serbs comprising an overwhelming part of the Yugoslav Army.

April 1941 Campaign

Formed after World War I, the Royal Yugoslav Army was still largely equipped with weapons and material from that era, although some modernization with Czech equipment and vehicles had begun. Of about 7,000 artillery pieces, many were aged and horse-drawn, but about 4,000 were relatively modern, including 800 anti-tank guns. There were also about 1,900 modern mortars and 250 anti-aircraft guns. All of these arms were imported, from different sources, which meant that the various models often lacked proper repair and maintenance facilities.The only mechanized units were 6 motorized infantry battalions in the 3 cavalry divisions, 6 motorized artillery regiments, two tank battalions equipped with 110 tanks, one of which had Renault FT-17s models of WW 1 origin and the other 54 modern French Renault R35 tanks, plus an independent tank company with 8 Czech SI-D tank destroyers. Some 1,000 trucks for military purposes had been imported from the United States of Americamarker in the months just preceding the invasion .

Fully mobilized, the Royal Yugoslav Army could have put 28 infantry divisions, 3 cavalry divisions, and 35 independent regiments in the field. Of the independent regiments, 16 were in frontier fortifications and 19 were organized as combined regiments, or "Odred", around the size of a reinforced brigade. Each Odred had one to three infantry regiments and one to three artillery battalions, with three organised as "alpine" units. The German attack, however, caught the army still mobilizing, and only some 11 divisions were in their planned defense positions at the start of the invasion. The units were filled to between 70 and 90 percent of their strength as mobilization was not completed. The strength of the Royal Yugoslav Army was about 1,200,000 as the German invasion got underway .

The Royal Yugoslav Army was organized into three army groups and the coastal defense troops. The 3rd Army Group was the strongest with the 3rd, 3rd Territorial, 5th and 6th Armies defending the borders with Romania, Bulgaria and Albania. The 2nd Army Group with the 1st and 2nd Armies, defended the region between the Iron Gatesmarker and the Drava River. The 1st Army Group with the 4th and 7th Armies, composed mainly of Croatian troops, was in Croatia and Slovenia defending the Italian, German (Austrian) and Hungarian frontiers..

The strength of each "Army" amounted to little more than a corps, with the 3 Army Groups consisting of the units deployed as follows; The 3rd Army Group's 3rd Army consisted of 4 infantry divisions and one cavalry odred; the 3rd Territorial Army with 3 infantry divisions and one independent motorized artillery regiment; the 5th Army with 4 infantry divisions, 1 cavalry division, 2 odred and one independent motorized artillery regiment and the 6th Army with 3 infantry divisions, the 2 Royal Guards brigades (odred) and 3 infantry odred. The 2nd Army Group's 1st Army had 1 infantry and 1 cavalry divisions, 3 odred and 6 frontier defence regiments; the 2nd Army had 3 infantry divisions and 1 frontier defence regiment. Finally, the 1st Army Group consisted of the 4th Army, with 3 infantry divisions and one odred, whilst the 7th Army had 2 infantry divisions, 1 cavalry division, 3 mountain odred, 2 infantry odred and 9 frontier defence regiments. The Strategic, "Supreme Command" Reserve in Bosniamarker comprised 4 infantry divisions, 4 independent infantry regiments, 1 tank battalion, 2 motorized engineer battalions, 2 motorized heavy artillery regiments, 15 independent artillery battalions and 2 independent anti-aircraft artillery battalions. The Coastal Defence Force, on the Adriaticmarker opposite Zadarmarker comprised 1 infantry division and 2 odred, in addition to fortress brigades and anti-aircraft units at Sibenikmarker and Kotormarker.

Order of battle

  • Supreme Command Reserves
    • 1st "Cerska" Infantry Division
      • 6th Infantry Regiment
      • 27th Infantry Regiment
      • 66th Infantry Regiment
      • 1st Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 33rd "Lička" Infantry Division
      • 44th Infantry Regiment
      • 91st Infantry Regiment
      • 106th Infantry Regiment
      • 33rd Artillery Regiment
      • 33rd Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 44th "Unska" Infantry Division
      • 26th Infantry Regiment
      • 55th Infantry Regiment
      • 121st Infantry Regiment
      • 44th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 47th "Dinarska" Infantry Division
      • 13th Infantry Regiment
      • 84th Infantry Regiment
      • 119th Infantry Regiment
      • 47th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • 47th Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • 47th Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 1st Armored Battalion
      • 1st Squadron
      • 2nd Squadron
      • 3rd Squadron
    • Reserve
      • 22nd Infantry Regiment
      • 37th Infantry Regiment
      • 47th Infantry Regiment
      • 48th Infantry Regiment
    • 1st motorized Engineer Regiment
    • 2nd motorized Engineer Regiment
    • 111th Heavy (motorized) Artillery Regiment
    • 112th Heavy (motorized) Artillery Regiment
    • 1-15th Independent Artillery Battalions
    • 9th Anti-aircraft Battalion
    • 10th Anti-aircraft Battalion
    • 7-11th Anti-aircraft Company's


Independent Units

  • 5th Independent Army
    • 8th "Krajinska" Infantry Division
      • 9th Infantry Regiment
      • 74th Infantry Regiment
      • 76th Infantry Regiment
      • 8th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 9th "Timočka" Infantry Division
      • 14th Infantry Regiment
      • 20th Infantry Regiment
      • 75th Infantry Regiment
      • 9th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 34th "Toplička" Infantry Division
      • 3rd Infantry Regiment
      • 12th Infantry Regiment
      • 16th Infantry Regiment
      • 34th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 50th "Drinska" Infantry Division
      • 5th Infantry Regiment
      • 63rd Infantry Regiment
      • 65th Infantry Regiment
      • 50th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 2nd Cavalry Division
      • 1st Cavalry Regiment
      • 7th Cavalry Regiment
      • 2nd Artillery Battalion
      • 2nd (motorized) Infantry Battalion
      • 2nd Motorcycle Battalion
      • 2nd Engineer Squadron
      • 2nd Anti-aircraft Squadron
    • 113th Heavy (motorized) Artillery Regiment
    • 5th Anti-aircraft Battalion
    • 5th Anti-aircraft Company
  • 6th Independent Army
    • 3rd "Dunavska" Infantry Division
      • 8th Infantry Regiment
      • 18th Infantry Regiment
      • 57th Infantry Regiment
      • 3rd Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 49th "Sremska" Infantry Division
      • 2nd Infantry Regiment
      • 7th Infantry Regiment
      • 70th Infantry Regiment
      • 49th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • "Savski" Squad
      • 1st Guards Infantry Regiment
      • Guards Artillery Regiment
      • 101st Heavy (motorized) Artillery Regiment
      • 102nd Heavy (motorized) Artillery Regiment
    • "Banatski" Squad
      • 4th Infantry Regiment
      • 8th Cavalry Regiment
      • 1st Guards Cavalry Regiment
      • 2nd Guards Cavalry Regiment
      • Guards Horse Artillery Battalion
      • I/49th Artillery Battalion
    • 5th Cavalry Regiment
    • 71st Cavalry Regiment
    • 6th Anti-aircraft Battalion


  • Costal Army
    • 12th "Jadranska" Infantry Division
      • 11th Infantry Regiment
      • 54th Infantry Regiment
      • 83rd Infantry Regiment
      • 12th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • Šibenik Command
    • Boka Kotorska Command
    • 147th Infantry Regiment - Sibenik
    • 150th Infantry Regiment - Boka Kotorska (Cattaro)
    • 151st Infantry Regiment - Boka Kotorska (Cattaro)
    • I/114th Heavy (motorized) Artillery Regiment
    • 8th Anti-aircraft Battalion
    • 6th Anti-aircraft Company


1st Army Group

  • 4th Army
    • 27th "Savska" Infantry Division
      • 35th Infantry Regiment
      • 53rd Infantry Regiment
      • 104th Infantry Regiment
      • 27th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 40th "Slavonska" Infantry Division
      • 42nd Infantry Regiment
      • 43rd Infantry Regiment
      • 108th Infantry Regiment
      • 40th Artillery Regiment
      • 47th Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 42nd "Murska" Infantry Division
      • 36th Infantry Regiment
      • 105th Infantry Regiment
      • 126th Infantry Regiment
      • 42nd Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 81st Cavalry Regiment
    • 81st Army Artillery Regiment
    • 4th Anti-aircraft Battalion
    • 4th Army Anti-aircraft Company
  • 7th Army
    • 32nd "Triglavska" Infantry Division
      • 39th Infantry Regiment
      • 40th Infantry Regiment
      • 110th Infantry Regiment
      • 32nd Artillery Battalion
    • 38th "Dravska" Infantry Division
      • 45th Infantry Regiment
      • 112th Infantry Regiment
      • 128th Infantry Regiment
      • 38th Artillery Regiment
      • 38th Machinegun Battalion
      • 38th Replacement Regiment
    • "Risnjacki" Alpine Squad
      • 2nd Alpine Regiment
      • 5th Alpine Artillery Battalion
    • "Triglavski" Alpine Squad
      • 1st Alpine Regiment
      • 4th Alpine Artillery Battalion
    • 71st Army Artillery Regiment
    • 7th Anti-aircraft Battalion
  • Army reserve
    • 1st Cavalry Division
      • 2nd Cavalry Regiment
      • 8th Cavalry Regiment
      • 1st Artillery Battalion
      • 1st (motorized) Infantry Battalion
      • 1st Motorcycle Battalion
      • 1st Engineer Squadron
      • 1st Anti-aircraft Squadron


2nd Army Group

  • 1st Army
    • 7th "Potiska" Infantry Division
      • 25th Infantry Regiment
      • 34th Infantry Regiment
      • 51st Infantry Regiment
      • 7th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 3rd Cavalry Division
      • 3rd Cavalry Regiment
      • 51st Cavalry Regiment
      • 66th Cavalry Regiment
      • 3rd Artillery Battalion
      • 3rd (motorized) Infantry Battalion
      • 3rd Motorcycle Battalion
      • 3rd Engineer Squadron
      • 3rd Anti-aircraft Squadron
    • 56th Army Artillery Regiment
    • 1st Anti-aircraft Battalion
    • 1st Army Anti-aircraft Company
  • 2nd Army
    • 30th "Osjecka" Infantry Division
      • 17th Infantry Regiment
      • 41st Infantry Regiment
      • 64th Infantry Regiment
      • 30th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 17th "Vrbaska" Infantry Division
      • 33rd Infantry Regiment
      • 89th Infantry Regiment
      • 90th Infantry Regiment
      • 17th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 10th "Bosanska" Infantry Division
      • 10th Infantry Regiment
      • 15th Infantry Regiment
      • 60th Infantry Regiment
      • 10th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 76th Cavalry Regiment
    • 76th Army Artillery Regiment
    • 2nd Anti-aircraft Battalion
    • 2nd Army Anti-aircraft Company


3rd Army Group

  • 3rd Army
    • 13th "Hercegovacka" Infantry Division
      • 29th Infantry Regiment
      • 32nd Infantry Regiment
      • 85th Infantry Regiment
      • 13th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 15th "Zetska" Infantry Division
      • 38th Infantry Regiment
      • 61st Infantry Regiment
      • 87th Infantry Regiment
      • 15th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 25th "Vardarska" Infantry Division
      • 21st Infantry Regiment
      • 46th Infantry Regiment
      • 50th Infantry Regiment
      • 25th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 31st "Kosovska" Infantry Division
      • 30th Infantry Regiment
      • 31st Infantry Regiment
      • 56th Infantry Regiment
      • 31st Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 66th Army Artillery Regiment
    • 3rd Anti-aircraft Battalion
    • 3rd Army Anti-aircraft Company
  • 3rd Territorial Army
    • 5th "Šumadiska" Infantry Division
      • 19th Infantry Regiment
      • 59th Infantry Regiment
      • 72nd Infantry Regiment
      • 5th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 20th "Bregalnička" Infantry Division
      • 23rd Infantry Regiment
      • 28th Infantry Regiment
      • 49th Infantry Regiment
      • 20th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 46th "Moravska" Infantry Division
      • 1st Infantry Regiment
      • 62nd Infantry Regiment
      • 92nd Infantry Regiment
      • 46th Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company
    • 114th Heavy (motorized) Artillery Regiment
  • Army reserve
    • 22nd "Ibarska" Infantry Division
      • 4th Infantry Regiment
      • 24th Infantry Regiment
      • 58th Infantry Regiment
      • 22nd Artillery Regiment
      • Cavalry Battalion
      • Engineer Battalion
      • Anti-tank company
      • Machinegun company
      • Anti-Aircraft company


Flags

Image:Flag of rank of Marshal of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.svg| Standard of the rank of Army Marshal.Image:Standard of Army General of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.svg|Standard of the rank of Army General.Image:Standard of Division General of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.svg|Standard of the rank of Division General.Image:Standard of Brigade General of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.svg|Standard of the rank of Brigade General.

Operational experience



See also



References

  • Geschichte des Zweiten Weltkrieges Vol. 3, A. A. Gretschko, Berlin: Militärverlag der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik, 1977.
  • Tomasevich, Jozo. War and Revolution in Yugoslavia 1941-1945: The Chetniks. Stanford, Cal., London, Oxford University Press, 1975.
  • Fatutta, F. and Covelli, L. 1941: Attack on Yugoslavia in The International Magazine of Armies & Weapons, Year IV - Nos. 15 and 17, January and May 1975, Lugano, Switzerland.
  1. Coup on March 27th 1941
  2. Yugoslav Army, April 1941
  3. Tomasevich, 1975, p. 59.
  4. Fatutta, et al., 1975.
  5. Geschichte, pp. 317-318
  6. Fatutta, et al., 1975. p.52.



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