Despite not having been informed of the planning and launching of “Barbarossa”, Mussolini immediately offered to send troops to Russia to support his Axis “partner”. A corps-sized force was accepted by the Germans and the 62,000 strong Corpo Spedzione Italiano in Russia (CSIR) was sent under the command of Lt.-Gen. Messe. In early August, the first units of the CSIR, mainly from the “Pasubio” semi-motorized division, were ready to enter the line, during the German-Hungarian drive on the Black Sea port of Nikolaiev. The vanguard of the division, under Col. Chiaramonti, first encountered Soviet rearguard units along the Bug River on the 11th August. The following day, the regiment stumbled on more serious resistance around the Jasnaja Poljana village. Then, following heavy fighting, the Italians repulsed the Russian riflemen.
Attacker: Axis (3a Compagnia (reinforced), 80° Reggimento Fanteria "Roma" and elements of Infanterie Regiment 47)
Defender: Russian (Reinforced elements of the 469th Rifle Regiment)