The Siegfried Line 1944-45: Battles on the German Frontier
The Siegfried Line campaign was one of the most frustrating and bloody series of battles fought by the US Army in Northwest Europe during World War II (1939-1945).
In order to break through the German-Belgian border north of the Ardennes and eventually reach the Rhine, the First and Ninth divisions of the US Army dispersed themselves along the German Siegfried Line.
The campaign kicked off in earnest in late September with the encirclement and eventual capture of Aachen, the first major German city to fall to the Allies. The paths to the Roer included not only the heavily urbanized area northeast of this city, but also the Hurtgen Forest along its southeastern flank. While a costly battle to seize the city continued throughout October, fighting also began in the forested area with initial attacks towards Schmidt.
The German offensive to the south in the Ardennes derailed the Siegfried campaign for nearly two months and proved to be extremely costly. However, with Operation Grenade in February 1945, Ninth Army were finally propelled over the Roer River and were able to seize the vital Roer dams.
Providing extensive coverage of the battle for Aachen and the fighting that ensued in the Hurtgen Forest, this title brings to life the Siegfried Line campaign which witnessed the US Army's most bitter fighting and set the stage for the final assault on the Rhine, leading the way into the heart of Germany.
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THE CAMPAIGN IN RETROSPECT
116th Panzer Division 12th VGD 1st Infantry Division 2/26th Infantry 21st Army Group 22nd Infantry 275th Infantry Division 28th Division 2nd Armored Division 30th Division 3rd Armored 4th Infantry Division 5th Armored Division 7th Army 81st Corps 9th Panzer Division Aachen corridor advance Allied antitank gun Ardennes offensive arrived assault guns attack autumn of 1944 BATTLE OF AACHEN Brandenberger campaign captured casualties Combat Command counterattack days of fighting December Diiren finally flank front Geilenkirchen German artillery German defenses German frontier German infantry Grenadier Regiment Grosshau halted heavy Hiirtgen Hodges Hurtgen fighting Hurtgen forest Hurtgenwald Infantry Regiment Kall ravine Kampfgruppe Kommerscheidt M4 tanks machine-gun NARA November 16 November 29 October Operation Queen Panzergrenadier Regiment positions push reinforcements River Roer Rundstedt Schill Line Schmidt September 1944 Siegfried Line Stolberg corridor tactical Tank Battalion tank support Task Force terrain town troops VII Corps Vossenack Wehrmacht Westwall Westwall bunkers Wurselen XIX Corps
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