A letter written by Yuri Petrenko.

Kharkov, August 22, 1943

Dearest Natasha,

We've finally reached Kharkov. Thankfully, the 5th Guards Tank Army was reinforced and I was able to rejoin my comrades on the ground. We have been attached to a large force that has amassed on the edge of the city. Today we reclaim Kharkov for Mother Russia. We are to move as quickly as possible and capture the central train station so that our comrades may arrive and reinforce the strike force. Vassili and Sgt. Antonov have a grim look on their faces that is very unnerving; perhaps they know something I don't.


[On the Outskirts of Kharkov]

[August 22, 1943]

[1235 hrs]

Russian soldiers advance towards the city of Kharkov.

Antonov: Advance! Advance! No stopping! Don't fall back!

The soldiers fire on the buildings with German soldiers inside.

Antonov: Keep firing! Don't let up! Keep them pinned down!

Russian tanks fire on the buildings, allowing the soldiers to advance.

Antonov: Follow those tanks! Forward! Advance!

The squad moves forward where German anti-tank emplacements fire on them.

Antonov: Anti-tank guns! Yuri, Miesha, over here!

Yuri and Korolov regroup with Antonov outside a destroyed building.

Antonov: Get into this building and find a spotting position, where you can direct our counter-fire.

Korolov: Right away, comrade sergeant.

Yuri and Korolov go upstairs. Korolov takes out his radio.

Korolov: Ok, I am ready, Yuri. Give me the coordinates.

Yuri looks into his binoculars and finds an area for the artillery.

Korolov: Fire mission battery, target: grid 535 465, over.

The area is hit with Russian artillery.

Korolov: Let's move. There are more targets up ahead!

Yuri and Korolov leave the house and go back outside. They reach an underground portion of a destroyed building.

Korolov: We need to get up to the 3rd floor.

Yuri and Korolov go to the 3rd floor of the building, and Korolov takes out his radio.

Korolov: Yuri, hurry up! I am waiting!

Yuri uses his binoculars to find an area for the artillery.

Korolov: Fire mission battery, target: grid 537 467, over.

The area is hit with Russian artillery. Yuri and Korolov go downstairs and Korolov kicks a door open to exit.

Antonov: Good job, comrades. They've got more guns up ahead. Move to a forward position and continue spotting.

They leave the building and enter another. A Panzer fires from outside.

Korolov: Enemy tank there... behind that blown out wall.

Korolov takes out his radio.

Korolov: Ok, I am ready, Yuri. Give me the coordinates.

Yuri uses his binoculars to find a target for artillery.

Korolov: Fire mission battery, target: grid 539 468, over.

Russian artillery destroys the Panzer. The blast from the artillery also makes a hole in the wall for the soldiers to leave.

Antonov: Well done, comrades. Rejoin the main force, to advance into the city.

The soldiers go back outside and down a road with Russian tanks. They regroup with more Russian soldiers including Antonov, and a Tiger rolls towards them.

Korolov: Tiger in the street! Yuri, find a Panzerfaust to take it out!

Yuri destroys the Tiger, allowing them to move up. A Russian tank fires into a wall in a building.

Antonov: Bull's eye! Follow me. We'll head north through those buildings.

The group enters through the hole and make it to the square. They clear the area.

Antonov: Square is secured. Continue south through those buildings.

They enter the destroyed buildings ahead.

Antonov: Yuri, Vassili, Miesha, check out the rest of the building. Meet us back here when you are done.

The three continue on through the building. They clear it out and regroup with the others outside and move through another building.

Antonov: Eyes on the windows... stay alert!

The Russian soldiers have a firefight with Germans in an adjacent building.

Antonov: Keep firing! Don't get your ass shot off!

Eventually, a German tank will roll into the area.

Korolov: They got a tank through! Down! Stay down! Flank left!

Antonov: Yuri, get that panzerfaust and take that damn thing out! How many are there? They must be breeding in there!

Yuri shoots the tank with panzerfausts, destroying it. The area is cleared out of German soldiers.

Antonov: Let's get out of here. The devil can have this place...