The goal of the Russian winter offensive of early 1944 was to finally and forever lift the siege of Leningrad by pushing the Germans back from the city outskirts. The 2nd Shock Army launched itself from the Oranienbaum bridgehead and after a few days had broken through the German defenses, causing the 16th Army to fall back. The Russians began a sluggish pursuit with the goal of reaching and taking the key city of Krasnogvadeisk by the 22nd in order to cut off the German retreat. Skillful defense slowed the attackers though, and the battle of Krasnogvadeisk began in earnest on the 25th. The Russians pushed hard into the western side of the city but ran into a line of anti-tank guns supported by Tiger tanks.