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101st Airborne Stephen Smith

101st Airborne By Stephen Smith

101st Airborne by Stephen Smith

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101st Airborne Summary

101st Airborne: Market Garden 1944 by Stephen Smith

After its operations in the Cotentin and around Carentan, the 101st was withdrawn from the lines in late June and sailed back to England on LSTs in July. After several false alerts, they invaded by air again into the Netherlands on September 17, 1944, part of the airborne element of Operation 'Market Garden'. The mission was to hold open Hell's Highway so that land forces could advance safely to Arnhem. Operation 'Market Garden' is a strongly debated subject among WW2 historians: was it a brave attempt to end the war early that foundered for being a bridge too far, or was it, rather, an ill-conceived waste of resources that should have been used on another front? With hindsight, there's no doubt that the operation was a daring - if not risky - attempt to attack deep into enemy territory proposed by a general often disparaged for being too conservative. But at the beginning of September, it seemed to the Allied commanders that the enemy was disorganized; it had lost many men, huge numbers of vehicles, and had retreated helter-skelter through France and Belgium. In reality, the Germans had already started brilliant fire brigade reorganization and would soon have an effective defence throughout the Netherlands. The 101st parachuted right into the middle of enemy territory and north of Eindhoven. They met little resistance to begin with and captured most of their initial objectives by the end of 17 September. But the Germans managed to demolish the division's primary objective, a bridge over the Wilhelmina Canal at Son, forcing the 101st to attempt to capture a similar bridge a few kilometers away at best. They found the approach blocked but continued to hold territory enabling engineers to rebuild the demolished bridge. Other divisional units continued moving to the south and eventually reached the northern end of Eindhoven. In the following days they successfully defended the town of Veghel but failed to take the city of Helmond. As Operation 'Market Garden' progressed, the rest of the 101st Airborne Division joined the 82nd Airborne Division on the island to the north of Nijmegen. The Screaming Eagles saw seventy-two days of fierce round-the-clock fighting against crack German troops and showed their fighting ability and tenacity.

101st Airborne Reviews

They are lavishly illustrated...good value for money and are recommended. * Fortress Studies Journal *
These books are great for all ages but the younger me would have loved them and each volume is an ideal present for the history mad youth in your family. * War History Online *
An interesting book with the historical story and numerous illustrations which will be an invaluable guide if you are thinking of visiting the battlefield today, and if you have been a fan of Band of Brothers of course. * Military *

About Stephen Smith

Simon Forty has worked in military and history publishing as editor and author for over 40 years. Following in his father's footsteps he concentrates on highly illustrated books that combine historic material with modern photography, much of it by long-time collaborator Leo Marriott.

Additional information

101st Airborne: Market Garden 1944 by Stephen Smith
Casemate Publishers
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
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Customer Reviews - 101st Airborne