Blocking Kampfgruppe Peiper

Author: Frank van Lunteren
Publisher: Casemate
ISBN: 1612003141
Format: PDF, Kindle
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In December 1944 an enormous German army group crashed through the thin American line in the Ardennes forest. Caught by surprise, the Allies were initially only able to throw two divisions of paratroopers to buttress the collapseÑthe 82nd Airborne, which was rushed to the area of St. Vith, and the 101st, which was trucked to Bastogne. After their successful campaign in Holland, Colonel Reuben TuckerÕs elite 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment was resting and refitting in France when news came of the German breakthrough. Most dangerous to the Allies was the German spearhead of the 1st SS Panzer Division led by Jochen Peiper, which aimed to sever the Allied front. The 504th was committed to block the SS advance, and within 48 hours of their arrival Colonel TuckerÕs paratroopers were attacking the SS-Panzergrenadiers of PeiperÕs battlegroup, eventually forcing them to withdraw. More ferocious fighting ensued as follow-up German units forced a U.S. retreat from St. Vith. In adverse weather conditions against the German 9th SS Panzer and 3rd FallschirmjŠger Divisions, the 504th lived up to itÕs regimental motto--Strike and Hold. Although some rifle companies were whittled down to less than 50 paratroopers, the Americans doggedly fought on until victory was achieved. Moving quotations of letters to the next-of-kin provide insight into the impact of their deaths both on the battlefield and homefront.? In this work Van Lunteren provides a fascinating, close-in view of the 504th P.I.R. during the Battle of the Bulge as well as its gallant sacrifice. Using never before published diaries, letters, battle reports and interviews with over 100 veterans, a comprehensive account is painted of a triumphant U.S. regiment in one of the fiercest fought campaigns in the history of the U.S. Army.

The Ardennes 1944 1945

Author: Christer Bergstrom
Publisher: Casemate / Vaktel Forlag
ISBN: 161200315X
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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In December 1944, just as World War II appeared to be winding down, Hitler shocked the world with a powerful German counteroffensive that cracked the center of the American front. The attack came through the Ardennes, the hilly and forested area in eastern Belgium and Luxembourg that the Allies had considered a “quiet” sector. Instead, for the second time in the war, the Germans used it as a stealthy avenue of approach for their panzers. Much of U.S. First Army was overrun, and thousands of prisoners were taken as the Germans forged a 50-mile “bulge” into the Allied front. But in one small town, Bastogne, American paratroopers, together with remnants of tank units, offered dogged resistance. Meanwhile the rest of Eisenhower’s “broad front” strategy came to a halt as Patton, from the south, and Hodges, from the north, converged on the enemy incursion. Yet it would take an epic, six-week-long winter battle, the bloodiest in the history of the U.S. Army, before the Germans were finally pushed back. Christer Bergström has interviewed veterans, gone through huge amounts of archive material, and performed on-the-spot research in the area. The result is a large amount of previously unpublished material and new findings, including reevaluations of tank and personnel casualties and the most accurate picture yet of what really transpired. The Ardennes Offensive has often been described from the American point of view; however, this balanced book devotes equal attention to the perspectives of both sides. With nearly 400 photos, numerous maps, and 32 superb color profiles of combat vehicles and aircraft, it provides perhaps the most comprehensive look at the battle yet published.