Tagged: German

“NUTS!” The Battle of the Bulge ended Today — 71 years ago.

unnamed“Gen. Anthony Clement McAuliffe:  NUTS !”

The Battle of the Bulge ended today, January 25th – 71 years ago.
General Anthony Clement McAuliffe commanding the U.S. Army’s beleaguered and surrounded 101st Airborne Division during World War II’s Battle of the Bulge, is best remembered for uttering a single word. McAuliffe received a German surrender ultimatum to surrender or be destroyed. “Nuts!” he replied, and that became a lasting symbol of American courage and determination under fire. (Military.com).

In WWII history the Battle of the Bulge (16 December 1944 – 25 January 1945) was a major German offensive campaign launched through the densely forested Ardennes region of Wallonia in Belgium, France, and Luxembourg on the Western Front toward the end of World War II in Europe.

Different forces referred to the battle by different names. The Germans referred to it officially as Unternehmen Wacht am Rhein (“Operation Watch on the Rhine”) or usually Ardennen-offensive or Rundstedt-Offensive, while the French named it the Bataille des Ardennes (“Battle of the Ardennes”). The Allies called it the Ardennes Counteroffensive. The phrase “Battle of the Bulge” was coined by contemporary press to describe the way the Allied front line bulged inward on wartime news maps and became the most widely used name for the battle. Read more »

A WWII Happy New Year

In WWII one of the most highly decorated USAAF Fighter Groups was the 352nd Fighter Group. It was composed of three squadrons; the 328th, 486th, and 487th Fighter Squadrons. The Fighter Group was based in Bodney, England. However, due to the intensity of combat operations in and around Belgium, the Fighter Group moved to a remote airfield (with the designation of “Y-29”) near Asch, Belgium. That move took place in December 1944.

The intent was to support the Battle of the Bulge which was happening not far away from “Y-29,” but bad weather prevented them from providing a lot of help at the time. However, the German Luftwaffe wasn’t to be slowed down. It was preparing for a New Year’s Day party at the expense of the Americans. The operation was designated as “Operation Bodenplatte,” which meant “ground place,” or to put the heal of their boot and grind into the ground the USAAF.

At 9:15 in the morning of January 1st, 1945 as the German aircraft from Jagdgeschwader 11 commenced with Operation Bodenplatte, American fighters lifted off the airfield Y-29 and one of the most intense air battles of the war in the European Theater took place. Although of 17 airfields hit by the Germans in that operation which caused some damage, the battle over “Y-29” would end with 24 fighters of the Luftwaffe shot down. And what were the loses for the Americans? Despite a couple of American fighters showing battle damage, not one American pilot was lost. It was an American Happy New year!

The story can be found on Wikipedia, other internet sites, and You Tube. Read more »