The Battle of the Bulge

Early on the misty winter morning of 16 December 1944, over 200,000 German troops and nearly 1,000 tanks launched Adolf Hitler’s last bid to reverse the ebb in his fortunes that had begun when Allied troops landed in France on D-day. Seeking to drive to the English Channel coast and split the Allied armies as they had done in May 1940, the Germans struck in the Ardennes Forest, a seventy-five-mile stretch of the front characterized by dense woods and few roads, held by four inexperienced and battle-worn American divisions stationed there for rest and seasoning

From The US Army.

Today marks the 66th anniversary of the beginning of the largest battle in the US Army’s history.

 

 

In the Ardennes sector, units badly understrength and battered by battle, side by side with green units fresh off the boat, were directly in the path of a juggernaught of nearly unprecedented strength.  They gave ground so grudgingly that by the end of the first day, the German’s timetable was hopelessly disrupted, dooming the offensive from meeting any of its strategic objectives, let alone rupturing the Allied front. They paid a ghastly price to buy precious time.

All hail the Heroes of the Ardennes.

4 thoughts on “The Battle of the Bulge”

  1. There is no doubt that:
    1) the Battle of the Bulge was a critical piece of the war, and
    2) the stand made by Allied troops was nothing short of heroic.

    But that linked article says “to reverse the ebb in his fortunes that had begun when Allied troops landed in France on D-day“. What about North Africa? Italy? The drain being placed on Hitler by the Russians? Getting their asses kicked in the air over England? Losing control of the North Atlantic in ’43? People always seem to treat D-Day as the start of winning the war in Europe – it was actually no such thing.

  2. Today is also the anniversary of the Boston Tea Party… 1773, for those not familiar with Palin’s “Party like it’s 1773” comment.

  3. 66 years ago today, my Uncle Dan’s Sherman thew a tire off of a road wheel. They did not radio for a new one, as you talk as little as possible on the radio, because the Germans were listening. So they got out of the tank, and trotted into a nearby village, hoping to find someone with a field phone, so the could call for someone to bring them a new one. They entered from the west, and the Germans entered from the east. Uncle Dan spent the rest of December hiding in Belgian basements, and wound up with trechfoot so bad that could not get his feet wet anymore, which was an inconvenience for him, as in civilian life, he was a large animal vet. But at least he survived.

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