The Battle East of Elsenborn

William C.C. Cavanagh

 
Publication date:
March 2005
Publisher :
Pen and Sword
Language:
English
No associated books available.

Overview
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The Battle East of Elsenborn closely examines the role of Oberstgruppenfuhrer Joseph 'Sepp' Dietrich's Sixth Panzer Army in the massive German winter counteroffensive. Hitler had tasked Dietrich with making the main effort east of the Elsenborn Ridge and against the positions of the US 99th Infantry Division. Hitler's plan was to reach deep into Allied-held territory and seize the vital port of Antwerp. In the event this daring and desperate counterattack failed but it was a close run thing.

Credit for the outcome must ultimately go to the American soldiers who, some new to combat and others battle-hardened, fought valiantly to blunt the German advance and ultimately bring it to a halt just east of Elsenborn. The book also studies the actions of six individuals who earned the Congressional Medal of Honor, their nation's highest bravery award. It tells of the courageous story of men who believed in their heritage, and who, through their heroic teamwork and dedication, stopped the main effort of the German Sixth Army.

American veterans who participated in this battle remember the events, even after sixty years, as only yesterday. They also remember their compatriots and friends who died in this battle.

The author, has probed into every possible source for factual information. He has studied official after-action reports, histories and unit reports of organizations involved in the battle.

In addition, he has conducted an extensive program of individual contacts, not only with the US Army participants, local villages and resistance fighters, but also with German commanders at various levels in the 3 divisions involved.

Such an ample and widespread research effort has enabled the author to separate fact from fiction.

The author William C. C. Cavanagh acted as principal research assistant to the late Charles B. MacDonald, himself a veteran and former Company Commander in the 2d Infantry Division. Having lived in the Ardennes area for thirteen years, he knows the battlefields intimately and his book A Tour of the Bulge Battlefield was first published by Pen & Sword Books in 2001.