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A Bridge Too Far

Discussion in 'Western Europe 1943 - 1945' started by Ron, Oct 30, 2000.

  1. Ron

    Ron Member

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    What was that paratrooper operation after Normandy that the movie "A Bridge Too Far" was based on...was it operation CROSSROADS?
    Anyway, had the operation been a success...how do you think it would have altered the conflict?
    Also if it was this GREAT way to get to germany fast...why wasn't it supported better?
    On another note...WHERE IS EVERYBODY! no one has posted ANYTHING for like a few days...this place is getting boring!
     
  2. COMET

    COMET Member

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    I supose you are talking about Market Garden operation!
    This operation was a very risky operation,but nevertheless very audacious and brilliant.

    the fact is that the main point on this operation was THE TIME! Guards division had to run from belgium to Arnhem in three days or something like that. And they never succeed on it. Specialy because allied forces underestimate the german threat.

    A lot of american movies or american authors blamed Monty's plan. But I think that was a british fault as well as american and specialy tha way in using the 101th d 82th airborne... Well that's my opinion!

    And that's not a boring place!

    COMET
     
  3. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    Operation MarketGarden could have been a success if there had been more Paratroopers and if they had been dropped closer to their proposed landing zones. It was almost impossible at the time to land any armor (which was greatly needed) as the German Lutwaffe (if it was still around) would have gone cherry picking in the middle of the day. It was also impossible to land gliders with a tank each in the middle of the night, without the risk of landing amongst germans, crashing into a house/lake, or into their own sleeping troops.

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    Mussolini

    "Blood alone moves the Wheels of history." Benito Mussolini.

    "What the proletariat needs is a bath of blood." Benito Mussolini, speech in Milan, July 22, 1919

    "Liberty is a duty, not a right"
    --Benito Mussolini
     
  4. Yankee

    Yankee Member

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    And if they hadnt landed ontop of 3 German panzer divisions.
     
  5. COMET

    COMET Member

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    I not agree with mussolini. I don't think the problem was on the paratrooper divisions. Actually most of the jumps were almost perfect (a least the jump of the 101 was a perfect jump cf: Band of Brother book.)

    I really think that the problem was to put the guards division on a so narrow route to join Arnhem. On he other hand the US paratroops had never fight together with british tanks troops...and that caused a lot of troubles.

    Comet
     
  6. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    Despite the act that the jumps might have been perfect, they couldnt have been done at a worse time. Why where the jump sites choosen if they would land amongst Panzers and the like, making it Inf vs Panzers??

    The Para's should have done some training w/ the british forces before hand, so they had a feel for eachother when it came time for battle - trust is a majot plus on the battle field. wasnt the weather also bad so that no Air support could be provided?


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    Mussolini

    "Blood alone moves the Wheels of history." Benito Mussolini.

    "What the proletariat needs is a bath of blood." Benito Mussolini, speech in Milan, July 22, 1919

    "Liberty is a duty, not a right"
    --Benito Mussolini
     
  7. CoWBoY MoRoN

    CoWBoY MoRoN Member

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    Operation CROSSROADS was the name of the nuclear bomb tests in Bikini (1946)! [​IMG] http://www.fas.org/nuke/hew/Usa/Tests/Crossrd.html


    Market Garden could have been a great plan, if only the Germans have been more cooperative... They were not, so Market Garden was a failure (at least in its Arnhem part).
     
  8. C.Evans

    C.Evans Expert

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    Operation Market Garden was insane to begin with. One road for Armor, and poor at best. Plus all the snafus that should have been forseen, like with the long rangr radios and their correct crystals. Then also not having enough aircraft and gliders to send everyone in in one to two drops. Monty, a great general-not!

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  9. Peppy

    Peppy Idi Admin

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    Yeah Monty was crappy, he held up the armies at Normandy and then the bastard has the gall to claim responsibility for the Falaise pocket!!
     
  10. C.Evans

    C.Evans Expert

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    In agreement with you. Plus Monty tried to take all the credit for helping out in the Battle of the Bulge. I wonder what Pattons reaction was when he heard, I bet he wanted to beat-the-living-**** out of Monty. Montys main problems were: After winning ground, he would "tidy" up his lines by, pulling back and vacating captured ground. He was too cautious, and he thought he was a great fieldmarshal. I admit, Monty didnt do too bad a job on the DAK, in Africa but, without the boys from the USA, I dont think his success would have lasted very long. He too would have eventually been sacked by Churchill.
     
  11. mart

    mart Member

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    hmmmmm. I reckon that although the plan was not perfect, it showed great potential. Mistakes were made, but the real reason that the plan failed was simply that the Germans put up a hell of a fight. The SS Panzer division in Arnhem was strongly undergunned, undermanned, and very very combat tired. Still they managed to hold back all attempts by the allies to take the bridge. Same goes for the german units on "hells highway" which did a suberb job in delaying 30 corps advance. Germans had no aircover, no significant reinforcements and little faith already in the outcome of the war.
    Still they put out and whooped allied butt on this one.

    I am glad those germans lost the war, but credit where credit is due guys !!



    [This message has been edited by mart (edited 19 December 2000).]
     
  12. C.Evans

    C.Evans Expert

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    Hello Mart: I agree with what you said. Give the credit thats due to who earned it. First of all, for whatever there is to give out, I would start with the spirited attack and defense that the Red Devils put up in Arnhem. Also to the abilities of the British Commander, John Frost, US General James Gavin and Battalion CO I forget his full name-Major-Julian ???, The Irist Guards Colonel, and Polish general Sosoboski(spelling?) or something like that.

    On the German side, they too had excellent soldiers and leaders. A certain GFM Model, and others.

    Then some of the local population, who did brave things for the allied soldiers.

    I just do not believe the Monty is due any credit at all-except for practically getting the premier British Para Division-destroyed. Monty just got too big for his britches. Taking the credit for allied successes at the Battle of the Bulge, and the mentioned Falise Pocket. Monty was a has-been.

    Sorry for rambeling on.
     
  13. J.Mahoney

    J.Mahoney Member

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    I am Irish and even I cannot stand what a waste of good british soldiers for such a stupid usless battle. I now dislike monty even more.
     
  14. Killjoy

    Killjoy Member

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    Well, after waiting around for that HUGE buildup of materiel/troops and for a few more German supply convoys to be sunk, he should have been able to do even BETTER!
    As for Market Garden...
    Weren't the Allies always at their best when they just slogged along in a fairly "ordinary" manner?
    They always seemed to goof the really ambitious stuff and get a lot more people killed in the process...
    Guess it helps to have more in the way of men & materiel to expend...



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  15. mart

    mart Member

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    exactly Killjoy. If German and Allied units confronting eachother would have the same strength, the Germans would win the battle 9 out of 10 times. Germans were better moraled, better equipped, and under better command. Seeing the scale of the theatre of war in Europe. Market Garden is a good example. Many people call it a unfair fight due to the SS panzer division present. What people forget is that this unit took a severe beating in France, and was only 1/5 of its original strength in both men, officers and equipment. Most other units of the Wehrmacht were inexperienced, hastily put together conscript formations. The allied (airborne)army however, was volunteer based, well equipped, and backed up by airforce, 30 corps and many many paratroopers.

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    *** We shall not retreat, nor shall we surrender. If we cannot stay here alive, we shall stay here dead***
     
  16. Otto

    Otto Rested & Resupplied with MREs. Staff Member WW2|ORG Editor

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    I agree with both Killjoy and mart. The germans were on the whole more effective man for man than than their Allied counterparts. I think however, that the "unfair fight" was in terms of paratroopers running into armor. Even though they outnumbered the germans the paratroops had no real heavy equipment to deal with a Panzer division, even a skeletal one. No matter how you add it up, Infantry versus Armour = a bad day at the office for the footsloggers.
     
  17. Wittmann

    Wittmann Member

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    I agree. If there hadn't been panzerdivisions the plan would have paid of, as the para's would have been able to hold the drop zones. But I must say the attack on Arnhembridge was suisied and de british command was responsable for the losses as they hadn't taken the tank reports by the dutch underground serious. If they had listened, the attack on this brigde might have been cancelled or changed to prevent an unnessesary slaughter.
     
  18. C.Evans

    C.Evans Expert

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    Hello Killjoy: One of the main reasons Monty didnt do even better was because of his vanity. Then he always had a habit of pulling back some of his forces so he could "tidy up" his lines.

    One of the biggest things that seperated him and patton, was the fact that Patton didnt want to have to pay for the same ground twice, Monty evidently was not concerned about that--or so it appears.
     
  19. Chris Ray

    Chris Ray Member

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    What really did it was XXX Corps waiting at the Nijmegen bridge after it was captured on September 21st. Frost and 2 Para were still holding the northern end of the Arnhem bridge on the morning of the 22nd. From Nijmegen to Arnhem is only ten miles - if XXX Corps had got a move on during the 21st they could have taken the Germans on the south of the bridge in the rear.
    Even after Frost was forced to surrender on the 22nd, the Germans were amazed that General Urquart evacuated his remaining 2500 troops across the river. If Sazobosky's Poles had crossed the river and XXX Corps came up the road in good time, they could have turned the German flank.

    Chris Ray
     
  20. C.Evans

    C.Evans Expert

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    Tha main proble like you mentioned was that they were too slow to move. Also with 3 airborn Divs, one Air Brigade and one Armored Brigade, could not have had enough to keep the Germans at bay for too long of a time. Mostly because of logistics and the resupply problems and communications, but also because there were simply many more German units there than allied.
     

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