GO NAVY BEAT ARMY

GO NAVY BEAT ARMY

'87 Sir

Thirty years of service ----USNA Class of 1987 '87 Sir

Monday, December 16, 2013

Today is an important anniversary...that has nothing to do with Obama

Today marks the anniversary of the German surprise attack in the Ardennes in 1944...the beginning of the Battle of the Bulge.  I have blogged about this particular battle before and my personal connection with it.

Not a whole lot more to add...however, I seemed to have missed my usual book recommendations.


 Charles B. MacDonald, who was a participant in the battle, has written the standard volume on the battle.  Detailed, comprehensive, and very well written, it is probably the best single volume on the battle to date.  AND, since it was written after the existence of the ULTRA program was reveled , it offers a more complete picture of the level of Allied intelligence failure to detect the German buildup for the offensive.
 Dr. McManus has written a number of excellent volumes on the American Army after D-Day.  This book offers a different perspective on the battle, detailing the valiant stand by the American Infantry Divisions stationed in the Ardennes as they were virtually destroyed delaying the initial German attack.  Despite being massively outnumbered and outgunned, these desperate bands of GIs made the stands at Bastogne and St. Vith possible.
A hard to find little volume, this collection of essays, edited by one of my favorite alternate history authors, looks at different ways the battle could have unfolded.  Written by some of the best military historians today, these essays examines changes to the role of the British and Canadians, the German 7th Army and even a different ending to Operation Market-Garden that would have actually prevented the battle.  Available second hand or on Kindle, it's a great little volume for the serious student of the battle.




That's about it.  I always try to remember December 16, 1944.  Ol' Winston Churchill said it best:


I have seen it suggested that the terrific battle which has been proceeding since 16th December on the American front is an Anglo-American battle. In fact, however, the United States troops have done almost all the fighting and have suffered almost all the losses. They have suffered losses almost equal to those on both sides in the battle of Gettysburg. Only one British Army Corps has been engaged in this action. All the rest of the 30 or more divisions, which have been fighting continuously for the last month are United States troops. The Americans have engaged 30 or 40 men for every one we have engaged, and they have lost 60 to 80 men for every one of ours.

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