106-ID (1/422), Schlausenbach, December 1944

Operations : 1st Bn, 422nd Infantry Regiment
106th Infantry Division – In the Vicinity of Schlausenbach (GER)
December 10 to December 19 1944

During the period from Sep 1944 to Dec 1944 many changes in the disposition of the troops along the front were made in preparation for continuing the advance to the east. By Dec 9, VIII Corps, First Army had taken over the positions of V Corps along the Schnee Eifel with the mission of conducting an aggressive defense and be prepared to advance on Cologne on order. This was a sector extending from Monschau (Germany), on the extreme north to a point where the Moselle River crosses the Franco-German boundary at the northeast corner of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. This sector comprised a front of approximately 100 miles. Since there had been very little enemy activity, either than minor patrols, and it was known that the Germans were using this sector for indoctrinating green troops to the sounds of battle, it was dubbed the quiet sector. This sector was defended by a Task Force and three infantry divisions abreast. The 2nd Infantry Division on the north occupied a salient in the Siegfried Line along the high wooded Schnee Eifel Ridge. Task Force X was attached to the 2nd Division and occupied a five miles front north of the Schnee Eifel positions and maintained contact with the 99th Infantry Division of V Corps on its left. The 28th Infantry Division defended the center section along the Our River on the right of the 2nd Infantry Division and the 83rd Infantry Division defended the southern part of the sector along the Our River to its confluence with the Moselle River and thence up the Moselle to the boundary between VIII and XX Corps of the Third US Army. The 9th Armored Division, with no combat experience, was in Corps reserve and was rotating its infantry units in division front lines to gain combat experience.

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101-A/D (401-GIR), December 25 1944

Operations : 1st Plat, B Co, 401st Glider Infantry
101st Airborne Division, Bastogne, Belgium, Dec 25 1944

(Personal Experience of a Platoon Leader)
Capt John T. O’Halloran

In late autumn of 1944, as the Allied Armies approached the formidable defenses of Western Germany, Allied strategy for penetrating these defenses was molded. The Allies would continue the offensive, striking the enemy at the Ruhr and Saar. In carrying out these separate offensive thrusts it would be necessary to hold thinly some sectors of the front in order to build up strength at the attack points. Before this decision was finally consummated, the Allied High Command carefully considered the capabilities of the enemy. It was felt by Gen Dwight D. Eisenhower, Supreme Allied Commander, that before Germany submitted to total defeat she would concentrate her every effort in an attempt to regain the initiative lost with the Allied landings in Normandy. The conclusion reached was that this attempt would, in all probability, be made in the Ardennes sector.

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