Ghosts of the ETO: American Tactical Deception Units in the European Theater, 1944 - 1945

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Casemate, Aug 20, 2007 - History - 358 pages
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No history of the war in Europe has ever taken into account the actions of the men of the US 23rd Special Troops. These men took part in over 22 deception operations against the German Army. Some of these operations had tremendous impact upon how the battles in Europe were fought. The men who participated in these actions were sworn to secrecy for 50 years, and are only now willing to talk about their role.

The 23rd was composed of four main units. A signal deception unit to broadcast fake radio signals, an engineer camouflage unit to set up rubber dummies of tanks and trucks, a combat engineer unit to construct emplacements and provide local security, and a sonic deception company. The sonic unit was developed to fool German listening posts by playing audio recordings of various sounds, such as tanks moving up or bridges being built.

The 23rd was the only tactical deception unit of the American Army in World War ll combining all aspects of deception. This book also covers the birthplace of sonic deception: the Army Experimental Station at Pine Camp; and their smaller sister unit, the 3133rd Sonic Deception company that saw action for 14 days in Italy.

Jonathan Gawne is a leading military historian and is the author of the best selling Spearheading D Day and The US Army Photo Album (both published by Histoire & Collections and available from Casemate) as well as books in the Greenhill Books “GI Series”. He has contributed articles to numerous military magazines. He lives in Framingham, MA.

 

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Contents

Preface
2
Military Deception
5
Developments in the United States
17
On to England
33
France and Operation ELEPHANT
45
Sonic Deception
63
Operation BRITTANY
83
Operation BREST
97
Operation METZII
191
Operation LEGLISE
197
Operation FLAXWEILER
203
Operation STEINSEL
207
Operation LANDONVILLERS
211
Operation WHIPSAW
217
Operation MERZIG
221
Operation BOUZONVILLE
231

Operation BETTEMBOURG
109
Operation WILTZ
121
Artillery Operation VASELINE and Propaganda
129
Operation DALLAS
137
Operation ELSENBORN
145
Operation CASANOVA
155
Operation KOBLENZ and the Bulge
165
Operation KODAK
179
Operation METZI
185
The 3133rd and the War in Italy
261
Wars End and DP Camps
279
After the War
291
The Correct Name of the 23rd
297
Tables of Organization
304
Original Poop Sheets
310
Glossary
319
Index
335
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Jonathan Gawne writes books and articles about the U.S. Army in WW1 and WW2.

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