The British and Canadian Airborne Crossing of the Rhine
By (author) Tim Saunders
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Operation Varsity by Tim Saunders
Book DescriptionIn Spring 1945 the outcome of the war was ritually certain but the mighty River Rhine still stood in the way of the Allies. Eisenhower's strategy was to guarantee a crossing in the Ruhr area by allocating the main effort to Montgomery's 21st Army Group. Monty's task was to envelope and take out the last German war production and open the way onto the North German Plain. On the morning of 24 March 1945 the Normandy veterans of 6th British Airborne Division were to land just three to six miles in front of XII Corps, within supporting distance of their artillery, with the aim of linking up with the ground forces on day one. First in were the two parachute brigades, who benefited from the numbing effect of the Allied bombardment but by the time 6th Airlanding Brigade came in aboard their gliders, the German anti-aircraft gunners were recovering and, on the DZs, resisting and even counter-attacking the British and Canadian paratroopers. Casualties were heavy, not least because the Airlanding Brigade were gliding in amidst an armoured kampfgruppe. Despite their presence, the glider infantry of the Ox and Bucks and the Ulster Rifles took their bridges and the Devons fought a desperate battle for the key village of Hammelkeln. By evening, despite heavy losses, General Bols's 6th Airborne Division had linked-up with XII Corps, the airborne objectives had been taken and the gateway onto the North German Plain and final victory was open.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9781844156016
(216mm x 135mm x 15mm)
Imprint: Pen & Sword Battleground
Publisher: Pen & Sword Books Ltd
Publish Date: 20-Sep-2007
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Tim Saunders
Commandos and Rangers, Hardback (March 2010)
By 1944 the Commandos and the US Rangers had proved their worth, taking on special tasks & some particularly heavy fighting in both Sicily & in Italy. Now returned from the Mediterranean for D-Day, the Commandos & Rangers were selected for largely independent tasks, ideal for the commandos' special skills, temperament & training.
Operation Plunder and Varsity, Paperback (January 2006)View all books by Tim Saunders
By late March 1945, Second British Army and Ninth US Army were poised to carry out an assault. In the British part of the operations, Montgomery's best assault divisions were assembled to carry out the British and Canadian part of the attack between Emmerich and Wesel.
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