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5 de diciembre de 1944

5 de diciembre de 1944


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5 de diciembre de 1944

Diciembre de 1944

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> Enero

Grecia

Atenas es patrullada por tropas británicas para protegerse de los disturbios del EAM

Frente occidental

Las tropas estadounidenses avanzan en un frente de treinta millas dentro de Alemania



5 de diciembre de 1944 - Historia

B. Cambios en la organización - (1) 21 de diciembre de 1944, reld fr atchmt a 190th VA Gp y adjunto a 187th VA Op, según VOCG, V Corps.

C. Fuerza, comisionado y alistado -
(1) Al comienzo del período - 27 Oh 2 WO, 542 EM
(2) Al final del período - 27 Oh 2 WO, 539 EM

    (1) El 31 de diciembre de 1944, la batería de servicio, la sección de personal de Bn y los detalles de cada una de las baterías que disparaban se trasladaron a las proximidades de Florencia, Bélgica, para establecer una instalación escalonada trasera.

El capitán GEORGE L. WILSON, uno de los observadores aéreos del batallón, y el teniente DALE H. BRENEMAN, piloto de enlace, tuvieron un día de campo. Se ajustaron a cinco baterías enemigas. El 190º FA Bn disparó cuatro de estas misiones y el 997º FA Bn disparó la quinta. Se informó que todos los ajustes fueron efectivos. Btry C disparó 196 rondas de las 216 rondas gastadas por el bn. El Med Det le dio inoculaciones para el tifus y la fiebre tifoidea a Btry B.

Los Btrys A y B se adelantaron a posiciones en las proximidades del área ocupada por Btry C varios días antes. La naturaleza del terreno, siendo estas posiciones en un área densamente boscosa, requirió la tala de muchos árboles para reducir la elevación mínima para varios cañones. Solo 74 rondas fueron disparadas por el bn, la mayoría de las cuales fueron de interdicción.

Se envió un destacamento de ingenieros, equipados con sierras eléctricas, a las baterías A y B para ayudarlos a mejorar sus posiciones. Estas áreas adquirieron la apariencia temporal de campamentos madereros en lugar de posiciones de armas, con los gritos de los hombres resonando por todo el bosque. El capitán HAGEN, Bn S-2, registró B Btry en un punto base en la ciudad de Schmidt. Esta fue una de las pocas veces que el bn se registró desde un OP terrestre. Aproximadamente 14.30 horas, los aviones enemigos estuvieron activos sobre nuestro sector y la batería Charley informó haber sido ametrallada. Sin embargo, no se mantuvieron vínculos casuales

Se recibieron tarjetas navideñas para distribuir a las baterías de parte de los populares y apreciados Capellanes MC SWEEN y MC CRORY con sus felicitaciones. Btry C continuó haciendo la mayor parte de los disparos del batallón.

S / Sargento Ira H. Lear que se perdió en el hospital como resultado de un bombardeo enemigo cuando el bn estaba en Cerisy la Foret, Francia, en julio, fue reasignado y se unió a Btry C desde el 3er Repl Depot en Verviers, Bélgica. CPL Henry A. Winterscheidt, computadora de Btry C y durante mucho tiempo miembro del Equipo de Dirección de Incendios de bn fue ascendido al grado de S / Sgt. S / Sargento Theodore L. Saunders. Mess Sargent de Hq Btry, abs sk en el hospital fue retirado de la asignación, Col HILL, nuestro comandante de grupo, era un visitante en el Bn CP.

El Capitán JEPTHA S. DAVIS, JR., Oficial de Bn Mtr, visitó el Bn CP para discutir el acondicionamiento invernal de los vehículos en el Bn, luego de lo cual el Mayor PERHAM, Bn Ex O, hizo un recorrido de inspección de las baterías con el propósito de inspeccionar el mantenimiento del material y las condiciones de vida del personal.

El Capitán HANCOCK, de la sección G-5 del Primer Ejército, llegó para recoger valiosas pinturas presentes en las casas ocupadas por el Cuartel General de Bn. Estas pinturas, presuntamente robadas por el enemigo, se guardarían para su custodia en espera de su redistribución a sus propietarios. Tec 5 Hilton H. Hobby, un cocinero en Btry C, abs sk en el hospital, fue retirado de la asignación.

El capitán GEORGE L. WILSON y el primer teniente CLARENCE T. EMBODY, nuestros observadores aéreos, recibieron la medalla de Oak Leaf Cluster al aire, según GO # 78, Hq V Corps, dtd 3 de diciembre de 1944. Las presentaciones fueron realizadas por el coronel HILL, 190 ° FA GP Commander, en la sede de Gp. Durante los primeros ocho días del mes, el bn disparó 1605 rondas y el capitán MILLER, Bn S-4 había extraído 1207 rondas del ASP.

Se ha observado que, con el habitual ingenio de los soldados, los hombres del bn han construido casas de troncos para su protección y comodidad que serían un mérito para sus antepasados ​​pioneros. Prácticamente todas estas casas se calientan de una forma u otra y muchas de ellas están amuebladas con bastante ingenio. Las inclemencias del tiempo, lo que provocó una mala observación, mantuvo los disparos del batallón al mínimo, solo 90 disparos en este día. Pvt Rossie B. Hall, Btry C, fue ascendido al grado de Cpl.

El teniente primero WILLIAM G. ROLF y el teniente primero RONALD N. FISHBACK, junto con 9 soldados del batallón, regresaron de París, donde habían disfrutado de un pase de recreo de 48 horas. Pvt Clifford E. Millas, Hq Btry, Pvt Daniel V. Cotter, Btry A, Pfc Freeman C Woodard, Btry B y Pvt Charles K. Norris Btry C, fueron colocados en Ds con el 3D Tank Destroyer Op para servir como Policía del Gobierno Militar. T / Sargento James M. Gibbs, Bn Personnel NCO, los llevó a Spa, Bélgica, donde se presentaron para el servicio.

Además del OP en Germeter, Alemania, el batallón estableció dos OP más en las cercanías de Lammersdorf, Alemania. El objeto al establecer estas instalaciones era asegurar una observación más amplia en este sector para las operaciones propuestas. Fueron identificados como Baker y Charley OP, respectivamente, y estaban atendidos por personal de estas unidades. Tec 4 Harold H. Lloyd, perdido en el hospital mientras el bn estaba en posiciones en Bullingen, Bélgica, el 11 de octubre, fue reasignado y se unió a Service Battery desde el 3er Depósito de Repl. PFC Albert H. Heitzenrater y Pvt Robert E. Beuth de Btry C fueron promovidos a Cpl y Tec 5 respectivamente.

La dirección de disparo de los cañones se modificó para permitir que el bn cubriera un sector de fuego más amplio. El capitán RALPH KURTRIGHT, un oficial de la 78ª División, que había sido trasladado a nuestro sector, sorprendió a su hermano, el teniente 1º JAMES E. KURTRIGHT, Asst Bn Com O, al pasar al Cp para una breve visita. Los dos hermanos no se habían visto en dos años. La actividad de la bomba de zumbido alcanzó un nuevo récord en esta fecha, y se informó de una alrededor de media hora durante el día y la noche.

El Capitán NAPPEAR, de First Army Ordnance, estaba en el área para recoger una almohadilla obturadora que el bn había estado usando. Esta almohadilla se estaba utilizando como parte de un experimento en el que el capitán había estado trabajando durante algún tiempo. Resultó ser mucho más sustancial que nuestras almohadillas ordinarias, mostrando muy poco o ningún desgaste después del disparo de varios cientos de rondas. Entre las 00.20 horas y las 14.00 horas, el Capitán MILLER, Bn 5-4, a cargo de un tren de municiones, sacó y transportó 1294 rondas de puntería a las baterías. El bn gastó 983 rondas. sobre incendios de preparación e interdicción durante este período de 24 horas. Tec 5 Allen B. Canady, Hq Btry, fue ascendido al grado de Tec 4. CWO LEONARD MASSOTH, Bn Personnel Ayudante y Pvt. Donald S. Martin, Secretario de personal, hizo un viaje al Hospital General 16 en Lieja, Bélgica para recoger al sargento Presumir, de Btry C, que estaba siendo devuelto al servicio.

En este día Tec 5 Harry 0. Whitman, Btry B. y Pvt James M. Heim, Btry C, se eliminaron de assgmt a bn. PFC Allan B. Smith, Btry C fue evacuado a 382d Collecting Co. como una casualidad de batalla. Resultó herido cuando el retroceso de uno de los obuses lo golpeó en el pecho al perder el equilibrio en el barro alrededor del arma. El teniente ENBODY y el teniente FENNER se ajustaron muy eficazmente a una batería enemiga de un CP aéreo. PFC George Meeks, Btry B, fue ascendido al grado de Cpl. El Med Det le dio inoculaciones de tifoidea y tifus a Btry C.

El primer teniente KURTRIGHT, que estaba al mando del Germeter OP, informó de un considerable movimiento vehicular enemigo en la carretera que va hacia el suroeste de la ciudad de Schmidt. Se hizo un ajuste en la carretera, pero no se presentaron más objetivos a partir de entonces y no se realizaron disparos adicionales. La imagen "Laura" protagonizada por Gene Tierney fue mostrada en Roetgen por la sección de Servicio Especial 190 ° FA Gp y se hicieron arreglos para que el personal del batallón asistiera. El batallón sacó 700 rondas de municiones de la ASP.

Comenzando aproximadamente a las 05.40 horas y continuando durante aproximadamente 2 horas, se dirigió fuego de artillería enemiga en las cercanías de nuestras posiciones. El Capitán HAGEN, Bn S-2, partió hacia el Cuartel General de Operaciones de la 190ª FL, donde había sido puesto en servicio temporal. Después del anochecer, hubo una considerable actividad aérea enemiga sobre el área y se lanzaron muchas bengalas y bombas. No hubo víctimas. Se sacaron cuatrocientas rondas de munición para el batallón.

PFC Willie S. Tolison, quien se perdió en el hospital como resultado de las heridas sufridas por la explosión del cañón en B Brty mientras el batallón estaba en posición cerca de Cerisy la Foret, Francia, en julio, fue reasignado y se unió a su antigua batería. Esta noche aviones enemigos estaban sobre el área y se lanzaron bengalas. Posteriormente, atendiendo a un informe del cuartel general superior, el batallón recibió instrucciones de duplicar su guardia de seguridad y estar alerta a los paracaidistas enemigos.

Hubo una considerable actividad aérea en el sector esta fecha, Cpl Merl Dyson, ametralladora de Btry B, gastó 90 rondas de .50 cal. munición contra un ME 109 de vuelo bajo que estaba bombardeando su posición y reportó varios impactos. Sin embargo, el avión no fue destruido. En las primeras horas de la mañana se lanzaron bombas aéreas, supuestamente antipersonal, cerca de la zona de A Btry. Aproximadamente a las 1000 horas, un proyectil AA de 40 mm que no había explotado en el aire explotó al impactar en los árboles inmediatamente encima de la tienda S-1 en el área de la batería de servicio. No se produjeron lesiones ni daños. Un servidor Oh de avanzada de la 8ª División ajustó Btry B en tres cañones enemigos de 105 mm. Con el gasto de 27 rondas, los tres cañones y un edificio cercano que albergaba a los equipos de tiro fueron completamente destruidos. Una vez finalizada la misión, el observador informó por teléfono que los resultados fueron perfectos. La recepción por cable fue deficiente y cuando se le pidió que hablara más alto, el observador respondió: "No puedo, estoy en primera línea". Este incidente permite una apreciación más profunda del papel desempeñado por el observador de avanzada de infantería.

Como resultado de la actividad aérea enemiga sobre el sector este día, PFC Joe T. Blair de la batería de servicio, recibió una leve lesión en la cabeza que luego fue diagnosticada como una conmoción cerebral leve. Fue evacuado al hospital para recibir tratamiento. Un avión enemigo fue derribado en las inmediaciones del Hq Btry aproximadamente a las 16.00 horas. Btry C, en virtud de ser la única batería en posición de Disparar en el sector por el que se estaba realizando el contraataque enemigo, gastó 597 disparos en las cercanías de Monchau durante este período de veinticuatro horas. Pvt Terry Evans. Btry A, ausente enfermo fue retirado de la asignación.

Los capitanes LANDES, VUNCK, COON y SEIBERT asistieron a una reunión de comandantes de batería en el cuartel general de Bn, donde el teniente coronel MORAWETZ les dio una imagen clara de la situación en nuestro sur en relación con la reciente ofensiva a gran escala lanzada por el enemigo en esa área. También hizo hincapié en la necesidad de un guardia de seguridad fuerte y destacó la necesidad de una estrecha cooperación con las demás unidades de nuestro sector a este respecto. Las inclemencias del tiempo mantuvieron nuestra sección de aire en tierra y todos los disparos se dirigieron desde los OP terrestres

El batallón fue relevado de la asignación al 190 ° FA Gp y adjunto al 187 ° FA Gp en esta fecha, según VOCG, V Corps. No estábamos asociados con el 793. ° Batallón FA, una organización que había formado parte de nuestro equipo en Fort Ord, California, en marzo de 1942. Elementos del Noveno Ejército al mando del General SIMPSON, habían sido trasladados a nuestro sector para fortalecer aún más nuestro frente y el 793 era uno de estos conjuntos. Se renovaron muchos viejos conocidos en las dos unidades y middot General SIMPSON estuvo al mando de la 35.a División en Camp Robinson, Ark., Donde muchos de nuestros hombres recibieron su entrenamiento básico.

Este día estuvo marcado por una actividad considerable entre nuestro PC y la nueva sede del Grupo. Fue más o menos un proceso de familiarización con nuestro nuevo grupo y asegurar la información sobre su SOP. Prácticamente todos los oficiales del personal visitaron la sede de GP en este día. En este día no se recibieron misiones de fuego, salvo las de interdicción normal.

El Capitán WHITE, CO Btry A, 460th AAA Bn, que apoya a nuestro Bn en este sector, visitó el PC para conocer la situación. La organización del Capitán BLANCO ha estado vinculada a nosotros desde que estábamos en Cerisy Ia Foret en Francia, y siempre hemos recibido el más alto tipo de cooperación y coordinación de ellos. Durante la semana que terminó a esta hora, el Bn extrajo 3901 rondas de municiones y gastó 2719 rondas.

Once hombres de Hq Btry, tres de Sv Btry y tres de Med Det recibieron regalos de Navidad de sus respectivos comandantes de batería en forma de ascensos al grado de Primera Clase Privada. Estas promociones fueron posibles gracias a un nuevo cambio en las Regulaciones del Ejército sin tener en cuenta los T / Os. Era la víspera de Navidad y, en general, todos los pensamientos eran del hogar y de los seres queridos. Sin embargo, había poco del espíritu navideño habitual entre las tropas, pero entre las fuerzas del Comando Aéreo Aliado y los equipos de artillería pesada de la AGF, el enemigo recibió literalmente un cuarto de "obsequios" con los cumplidos personales de cada miembro de las Fuerzas Armadas un recordatorio de que sólo a través de la paz en la tierra puede existir un espíritu de buena voluntad hacia los hombres.

Tácticamente, las cosas estaban tranquilas el día de Navidad. Todas las baterías disfrutaron de una gran cena de pavos con todos los adornos y la única actividad enemiga durante el día fue el ametrallamiento de Btry B por un JU 88 de vuelo bajo. No hubo bajas y 110 rondas de .50 cal. se gastaron municiones para repeler el avión. Nuestros observadores realizaron tres vuelos de reconocimiento aéreo de rutina y se disparó una misión de ajuste contra un pilibox enemigo. Se informó que el fuego fue efectivo.

Veintidós hombres de Btry C y trece de Btry B fueron promovidos al grado de Primera Clase Privada. PFC Precio de Carltor E., perdido en el hospital mientras el bn estaba en posición en Cordey, Francia, en agosto y Pvt Wilbur D. Tipton perdido en el hospital de Cerisy-la-Foret, Francia, y Pvt John E. Fletcher. perdidos en el hospital de Vire, Francia, todos fueron reasignados y se unieron a sus viejos atuendos en esta fecha. Se llevó a cabo una reunión de Comandantes de Batería en el cuartel general de bn y se introdujo el tema de un plan para la defensa del sector. Como resultado de esta reunión se formaron escuadrones en todo el BN con el propósito de establecer posiciones defensivas estratégicas y bloqueos de carreteras efectivos para ser ocupados en caso de un posible contraataque enemigo a través de nuestro
zona.

La observación de nuestro Germeter OP fue buena en este día y se lanzaron tres misiones de ajuste durante el período. Dos de estas misiones se dispararon durante el día y se dirigieron a los fortines enemigos. La tercera misión se disparó durante la noche. Era una noche clara de luna y alrededor de las 12.30 horas, el Capitán LANDES, nuestro observador durante este período, recogió una columna de vehículos enemigos que avanzaban en dirección suroeste desde Schmidt. El capitán notificó al bn FDC y solicitó permiso para adaptarse. Se concedió el permiso y se gastaron siete rondas en la misión. El efecto fue cuestionable en lo que respecta a los daños, sin embargo, no se informó de más tráfico en el área sobre la que se dispararon durante el resto de la noche. Una misión efectiva de ajuste en un pastillero enemigo también fue dirigida desde un Air OP durante el día y este vuelo marcó la misión de combate número 230 realizada por nuestros Pilotos de Enlace.

Diecinueve hombres de Btry A fueron promovidos al grado de Primera Clase Privada. El teniente coronel MC LEER, Ex O, 187th Fa Gp, fue un visitante en el Bn CP. Describió los últimos acontecimientos sobre la situación y también nos informó que la 75.a División, nuestros antiguos vecinos de Ft. Leonardwood, Missouri, estaban ahora en Francia.

El Mayor Perham, junto con el Teniente Coronel MC LEER de la 187a División de Asuntos Exteriores, hicieron un recorrido de inspección de las baterías y descubrieron que los hombres habían aumentado enormemente sus comodidades personales con la adición de los catres de lona y los sacos de cama recientemente emitidos. También señalaron que las continuas temperaturas frías y heladas estaban mejorando la eficiencia operativa en todo el batallón. El clima, aunque un poco desagradable, era muy preferible al barro y la lluvia que habían estado obstaculizando nuestras operaciones durante meses.

Después de regresar de una reunión en el cuartel general, el coronel MORAWETZ, el capitán MILLER, el primer teniente TAUTGES y el primer teniente TEMPLE partieron en reconocimiento hacia posiciones alternativas para las baterías de disparo en las cercanías de Kittinus, Bélgica. También seleccionaron posiciones cerca de Florencia, Bélgica, para el establecimiento de un escalón de retaguardia compuesto por Sv Btry, la Sección de Personal Bn y suficiente personal de cada una de las baterías que disparaban para formar un tren de armado de batallón. Estos puestos fueron seleccionados para ser ocupados en caso de que fuera necesario retirarse de los puestos actuales. Sin embargo, se decidió que Sv Btry y los elementos seleccionados para el escalón trasero se trasladarían a la nueva área al día siguiente.


Segunda Guerra Mundial hoy: 5 de diciembre

1939
Duros combates en Karelia, Finlandia.

Dos submarinos polacos escapan del Mar Báltico para unirse a la Royal Navy.

1940
La enmienda de paz ILP de McGovern es rechazada por la Cámara de los Comunes, 341 votos contra 4.

El borrador del plan alemán para la Operación Invasión de Rusia & # 8216Otto & # 8217 se presenta a Hitler.

El almirante William Leahy toma juramento como embajador de Estados Unidos en Vichy, Francia.

1941
El acorazado USS Arizona llega a Pearl Harbor.

USS Lexington sale con aviones de la Marina hacia Midway, sin dejar portaaviones en Pearl Harbor.

James J. Kilroy de Boston contratado en Fore River Shipyard, Quincy MA para verificar el trabajo de los remachadores, su marca "Kilroy Was Here" en los barcos se vuelve legendaria.

Gran Bretaña declara la guerra a Finlandia, Hungría y Rumania.

Con las fuerzas principales del Grupo de Ejércitos Centro a solo 19 millas de Moscú, Hitler abandona la ofensiva para el invierno y acepta algunas retiradas locales a un terreno más defensivo. Zhukov lanza una contraofensiva a través del alto Volga helado en el área de Kalinin, para el noroeste de Moscú. Utiliza el Frente Kalinin de Konev & # 8217 para este propósito, pero a pesar del frío severo y el agotamiento de las tropas alemanas, sus fuerzas encuentran una resistencia severa, y solo el 31 Ejército disfruta de algún éxito mientras avanza hacia Turginovo. Hungría declara la guerra a Gran Bretaña. Rumania declara la guerra a Gran Bretaña.

Para montar un ataque final contra las fuerzas británicas alrededor de Bir El Gobi, Rommel ordena la evacuación de la parte este del perímetro de Tobruk, pero el ataque fracasa.

Se informó oficialmente que la flota japonesa se movía hacia el sur.

1943
Se monta la primera incursión japonesa a la luz del día en Calcuta y se informa de muchos muertos.

Los aviones de combate P-51 Mustang primero escoltan a la Octava Fuerza Aérea de EE. UU. En misiones de bombardeo, lo que amplía el rango de incursiones.

Aviones japoneses bombardean Calcuta (350 muertos), incluidos los aeródromos de la Décima Fuerza Aérea de EE. UU. (500 bajas).

1944
El Tercer Ejército de los Estados Unidos avanza hacia Alemania a lo largo de un frente de 30 millas.

El Octavo Ejército británico toma Ravenna y corta el enlace ferroviario a Bolonia.

Malinovsky ataca con dos ejércitos desde el noreste de Budapest y hace un avance de 60 millas en ocho días.

Estados Unidos lanza una ofensiva final sobre Leyte en Filipinas y se adentra en el Valle de Ormoc.

Barco de la victoria SS Victoria de Roble Rojo comisionado en la Marina de los EE. UU. como barco de municiones en Richmond, CA (actualmente en el Parque Nacional Rosie the Riveter WWII Home Front, Richmond, CA).

1945
Seis aviones de la Armada de los Estados Unidos desaparecen en el “Triángulo de las Bermudas”, creando su reputación.


Teniente Coronel Jacobson Informe de combate 5 de diciembre de 1944

El informe de combate mecanografiado del teniente coronel Jacobson el 5 de diciembre de 1944, en el que reclamó sus dos primeras victorias aéreas.

"Estaba volando Newcross White Two, 1 Sección A en una misión de escolta de bombarderos al área de Berlín. Justo al noroeste del objetivo, en las cercanías de Neuruppin, estábamos a 27.000 pies, en dirección noreste, cuando el Mayor Arthur F. Jeffrey, Newcross El líder de la Sección A, llamó a una formación de Fw 190 y Me 109 a 2.000 pies por debajo de nosotros, conduciendo hacia el noroeste. Siguiendo órdenes, dejamos caer tanques y nos volvimos a atacar.

"Nos sumergimos a través de un grupo de aproximadamente 15 Me 109, dispersando su formación, y luego nos acercamos a 40 más Fw 190 ligeramente por debajo de la primera formación. Nos movimos desde atrás y el Mayor Jeffrey, cuyo ala estaba volando, atacó a uno, así que me moví hacia la derecha y me coloqué en otro 190. Abrí fuego desde las seis en punto, ligeramente alto, a 300 yardas, y le di una ráfaga de aproximadamente dos segundos, observando algunos golpes en el ala izquierda.

"El alemán no tomó ninguna acción evasiva en absoluto, y me sorprendí cuando se deshizo de su paracaídas casi de inmediato. Me levanté en un ala y lo vi rodar hacia la derecha y escapar, pero no vi su paracaídas abierto.

"Todavía estaba en formación con el Mayor Jeffrey y lo vi moverse hacia mí, así que me moví hacia la derecha de nuevo y me posicioné para un ataque contra un Fw 190 que se había desprendido de la formación enemiga en un suave giro a la izquierda.

"Me acerqué a 300 yardas y abrí fuego desde la popa justo por encima de su estela. Todas mis armas no disparaban y tuve que sostener el timón derecho para mantener la bola centrada. Disparé una ráfaga de dos segundos y no noté ningún golpe , pero el piloto hizo estallar su paracaídas de inmediato y cayó por el lado derecho. El paracaídas casi me golpeó cuando pasó. No esperé a ver si su paracaídas se abría, pero seguí al Mayor Jeffrey, que había hecho un movimiento hacia la izquierda. .

"Afirmo que dos Fw 190 fueron destruidos." Munición gastada: 632 cartuchos API calibre 50 [Incendiario perforador de armaduras] ".

En una entrevista de radio transmitida desde Londres, cuando el entrevistador le preguntó al teniente coronel Jacobson sobre la "emoción" del combate, respondió: "Bueno, por supuesto que existe la tensión de competir con su objetivo consigo mismo como prima".

El teniente coronel Jacobson voló en el 434 ° Escuadrón en el 479 ° FG con base en Wattisham, Inglaterra. Número de base F377.


5 imágenes imperdibles de la 4.a División de Infantería durante la Batalla de las Ardenas

En diciembre, la 4a División de Infantería se trasladó a Luxemburgo, solo para enfrentarse a la ofensiva de invierno de las Ardenas del ejército alemán y la ofensiva de las Ardenas de invierno a partir del 16 de diciembre de 1944. Aunque sus líneas estaban abolladas, logró mantener a los alemanes en Dickweiler, Osweiler, y parcialmente en el área de Berdorf. Se las arreglaron heroicamente para evitar que los alemanes se abrieran paso y esperaron a que llegara la 5ª División. El 12º Regimiento de Infantería fue severamente aniquilado en los procesos. La 4ª División de Infantería contraatacó en enero a través del Sauer en Moestroff, invadió las posiciones alemanas en Fouhren y Vianden.

Un soldado de la 4.a División de Infantería carga un lanzacohetes de 3,5 pulgadas (también conocido como "bazooka") dentro de una casa en ruinas durante la ofensiva alemana, a principios de diciembre de 1944.


Durante la Contraofensiva de las Ardenas de la Batalla de las Ardenas, dos soldados estadounidenses de la 4.a División de Infantería de la 4.a División de Infantería de EE. La izquierda es PFC. Clinton Calvert de Baynard, Nebraska, y a la derecha es Cpl. Roy Swisher de Washington, D.C. Cerca de Goesdorf, Wiltz, Luxemburgo. Diciembre de 1944.

Un soldado vestido de blanco del 8º Regimiento, 4ª División de Infantería, con jóvenes prisioneros alemanes capturados durante los combates en el sector del río Sauer.

Las tropas de la 4a División de Infantería atraviesan un puente de Bailey mientras están bajo fuego enemigo cerca de Moesdorf, Luxemburgo, el 21 de enero de 1945.

El 21 de enero de 1945, los soldados del 8 ° Regimiento de Infantería de los EE. UU., 4 ° División de Infantería se mueven con cautela a través de la ciudad de Moesdorf, Luxemburgo.

¿Está interesado en aprender más sobre la 4ª División de Infantería? Haga clic en la portada del libro a continuación para solicitar las memorias de George Wilson, el comandante de la Compañía F, 22º Regimiento, 4ª División de Infantería. Memorias de Wilson & # 8217 Si sobrevives: desde Normandía hasta la Batalla de las Ardenas y el final de la Segunda Guerra Mundial, un oficial estadounidense y la fascinante historia real n. ° 8217 es una cuenta excelente que te agarrará de la lengua y te llevará de regreso a los campos de batalla de Word War 2.


El chico de la historia

En diciembre de 1944, en medio de la Segunda Guerra Mundial, se creó el nuevo rango de oficial de cinco estrellas, que permite a los generales y almirantes colocar un total de cinco estrellas en sus uniformes y banderas. En total, cuatro generales del Ejército, cuatro almirantes de la Armada y un general de la Fuerza Aérea han ocupado este rango.

George Washington tiene el rango más alto en la historia militar de los Estados Unidos, "General de los ejércitos de los Estados Unidos" (nótese el uso plural de "ejércitos") que fue otorgado póstumamente. El general John "Black Jack" Pershing recibió el título de "General de los ejércitos de los Estados Unidos", pero solo lució cuatro estrellas. Por un acto del Congreso (Resolución Conjunta del Congreso, Ley Pública 94-479 ) en 1976, se decía que George Washington "tenía precedencia sobre todos los demás grados del ejército, pasados ​​y presentes". Después de la Guerra Civil de los Estados Unidos, el Congreso creó el rango de "General del Ejército". En 1866, el general Ulysses S. Grant recibió este título. Tras el retiro de Grant del ejército en 1869, el general William T. Sherman siguió a Grant en esta oficina. En 1888, el general Philip H. Sheridan fue ascendido de teniente general a general del ejército, y ocupó ese cargo hasta su muerte.

Después de la Guerra Hispanoamericana y la completa destrucción de la flota española por el almirante George Dewey, fue ascendido al rango especial de Almirante de la Armada por una ley del Congreso en 1903. La fecha de su rango se fijó retroactivamente en 1899. Dewey es el único oficial naval en la historia de Estados Unidos al que se le ha otorgado el rango de Almirante de la Armada.

En tiempos más modernos, notables figuras militares para lograr cuatro estrellas rango incluye:

General Joseph Stillwell (Ejército), General Carl Spaatz (Fuerza Aérea), General George S. Patton (Ejército), Almirante Raymond A. Spruance (Marina), Almirante Husband E. Kimmel (Marina), General Mathew B. Ridgway (Ejército) , General Hoyt S. Vandenberg (Fuerza Aérea), General Curtis E. LeMay (Fuerza Aérea), Almirante Hyman Rickover (Marina), General William Westmoreland (Ejército), Almirante John S. McCain Jr. (Marina), General Creighton W. Abrams Jr. (Ejército), General Alexander Haig (Ejército), General Norman Schwartzkopf (Ejército), General Colin Powell (Ejército), General Wesley Clark (Ejército), General Tommy Franks (Ejército), General David H. Petraeus (Ejército), General Stanley McChrystal (Ejército), General Ann Dunwoody (Ejército-1era general femenina de 4 estrellas), General Peter Chiarelli (Ejército), General James Mattis (Marines), General John F.Kelly (Marines), General Maryanne Miller (Fuerza Aérea), General Mark A. Milley (Ejército)

Los generales de cinco estrellas del ejército: General George C. Marshall

General Douglas MacArthur

General Dwight D. Eisenhower

General Omar N. Bradley

Almirantes de la flota de cinco estrellas de la Armada:

Almirante William D. Leahy

Almirante Ernest J. King

Almirante Chester Nimitz

Almirante William F. "Bull" Halsey


Masacre en Malmedy durante la Batalla de las Ardenas

La encantadora ciudad belga de Malmédy siempre estará asociada con la masacre más infame de las tropas estadounidenses en la Segunda Guerra Mundial. Y, sin embargo, de no haber sido por la presencia de un corresponsal de Associated Press allí a principios de enero de 1945, es dudoso que este terrible incidente hubiera alcanzado alguna vez notoriedad internacional. & # 8216 Los nazis convirtieron las ametralladoras en los prisioneros de guerra GI, escribió Hal Boyle en su enero de 1945 Estrellas y rayas artículo, y de ese primer relato gráfico surgió una plétora de libros y artículos sobre la llamada Masacre de Malmédy. Pocos de estos relatos se basan en hechos y la mayoría son embellecidos e inexactos.

Es poco probable que sepamos alguna vez la secuencia precisa de los hechos ocurridos en el cruce de Baugnez, cerca de Malmédy, el 17 de diciembre de 1944, o las razones de los mismos. El secreto está en los culpables y los muertos. Sin embargo, se conocen muchos hechos corroborados y un análisis cuidadoso de estos hechos puede acercarnos a la verdad de lo sucedido.

El 16 de diciembre de 1944, el día en que comenzó la gran ofensiva de Adolf Hitler en las Ardenas, al capitán Leon Scarborough, oficial al mando de la Batería B del 285 ° Batallón de Observación de Artillería de Campaña, se le informó que su batería iba a ser transferida del VII Cuerpo al VIII Cuerpo a las 0600. horas al día siguiente y que debía presentarse en su nueva sede en St. Vith en las Ardenas. Antes de dejar Schevenhutte, cerca de Aquisgrán, Alemania, Scarborough instruyó al teniente Ksidzek, su oficial ejecutivo, que trasladara la unidad a la nueva área el día 17. Scarborough se llevó a cinco miembros de la batería con él. Un camión de señalización de ruta comandado por el teniente Gier debía preceder a la batería unas dos horas con otros cinco hombres.

Al llegar al cuartel general de artillería del VIII Cuerpo a las 0900 del día 17, se le dijo a Scarborough que se registrara con el 16º Batallón de Observación de Artillería de Campaña para una encuesta y otros datos relacionados con su nueva área de operaciones. Luego debía informar al cuartel general de artillería de la 4ª División de Infantería en Luxemburgo. Dejó instrucciones para que su batería fuera redirigida para unirse a él.

La batería B salió de Schevenhutte a las 0800 del día 17. El convoy constaba de 30 jeeps, porta armas y camiones de dos toneladas y media, y estaba dividido en dos series: la primera dirigida por el teniente Virgil Lary y la segunda por el teniente Perry Reardon. Por razones desconocidas, el oficial ejecutivo del batallón # 8217, el capitán Roger Mills, acompañó a la batería y viajó en el jeep principal con Lary. Otros dos miembros de la Batería del Cuartel General, un sargento técnico y un cabo médico, también estaban adscritos a la Batería B. Por qué Lary y no el teniente Ksidzek dirigían el convoy es un misterio. Ksidzek viajaba en uno de los camiones en la parte trasera de la columna.

La parte inicial del viaje pasó por Eynatten y Eupen, y luego, justo al norte de Malmédy, la batería pasó por Baraque Michel, un área de páramos altos que fue la zona de caída designada para una operación de paracaídas alemana diseñada para interrumpir los refuerzos estadounidenses. del Norte. Esta operación, conocida como Greif, estaba al mando del famoso coronel Friedrich von der Heydte. Es tristemente irónico que si los paracaidistas hubieran aterrizado según lo planeado y no hubieran estado dispersos en un área amplia, la Batería B se hubiera visto obligada a tomar una ruta diferente y la masacre nunca hubiera sucedido. Tal como estaban las cosas, la batería llegó a Malmédy sin incidentes alrededor de las 12.15 y encontró varias series del Comando de Combate R de la 7ª División Blindada cruzando la ciudad de norte a sur en su camino a St. Vith. El camión de señalización de rutas de la Batería B ya había pasado.

En el extremo este de Malmédy en la carretera principal N-23 St. Vith, el jeep principal fue detenido por un ingeniero, el teniente coronel David Pergrin. Su batallón de combate de ingenieros 291 había estado estacionado en la zona desde principios de noviembre, y aunque la mayoría de las tropas en Malmédy se habían desplazado hacia el oeste frente a la ofensiva alemana, Pergrin había decidido quedarse y defender el vital centro de carreteras hasta que los refuerzos. podría llegar. Solo tenía una compañía de ingenieros a su disposición. El resto de su batallón estaba disperso por el norte de las Ardenas en diversas tareas de acondicionamiento para el invierno. Sus pedidos de refuerzos habían caído en saco roto.

Pergrin no tenía idea del alcance de la fuerza del enemigo, pero una de sus propias patrullas en jeep le había advertido que una columna blindada alemana se acercaba al área al sureste de Malmédy. He therefore warned Captain Mills and Lieutenant Lary not to proceed in that direction, and advised them to turn around and go to St. Vith via Stavelot, Trois Ponts and Vielsalm. But the artillery officers would not listen. They had their orders, their place on a designated route and, perhaps most important of all, they knew that two of the men with the route-marker truck were farther down that route and that they were due to pick them up. Ignoring Pergrin’s warning, the battery proceeded on its way. However, four vehicles at the rear of the convoy did not follow immediately. Owing to the sickness of a corporal who appeared to have food poisoning, Ksidzek in the battery commander’s car, the battery maintenance and wire trucks and the route markers’ pickup truck diverted to the 44th Evacuation Hospital in Malmédy to obtain medical treatment. These four vehicles carried a total of 27 men.

Preceding the Battery B convoy on the N-23 was an ambulance of the 575th Ambulance Company, returning to its base in Waimes after a visit to the 44th Evacuation Hospital. Following it were four more ambulances, three from the 575th and one from the 546th Company.

The junction of the N-23 and N-32, less than two miles southeast of Malmédy, was known locally as the Baugnez crossroads. Since it was the junction of five roads, the Americans called it Five Points. Standing at the crossroads at about midday on December 17 was a Battery B route marker and a military policeman whose job was to direct the remaining serials of the 7th Armored Division. The only buildings near the crossroads in those days were the Café Bodarwé, on the southwest side of the junction with two farms beyond it, another farm on the north side and two small houses on the east side of the N-23–one 150 yards and the other just over half a mile south of Five Points.

At about 1245 the military policeman and route marker waved Mills and Lary’s jeep through Five Points in the direction of Ligneuville and St. Vith. The visibility was good, the temperature just above zero and there was no snow on the ground except for a light covering in places untouched by the sun. Shortly after this, with the lead jeep about half a mile south of the crossroads and the last vehicle of the battery just short of the Café Bodarwé, the column came under fire from two German tanks some 800 to 1,000 yards to its east. These tanks were the point of Kampfgruppe (KGr.) Peiper, the leading formation of the 1st SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler. This division, the premier in the Waffen SS, together with its twin, the 12th SS Panzer Division Hitlerjugend, had been given the honor of spearheading the Sixth Panzer Army’s attack toward the Meuse River. They were the only formations in the Wehrmacht to bear the Führer‘s name, and they enjoyed a fearsome reputation–both had already been accused of various war crimes and of killing prisoners in cold blood.

The commander of KGr. Peiper was SS Lt. Col. Joachim Peiper, a former adjutant to Heinrich Himmler and holder of the Knight’s Cross with Oak Leaves. Through his service in France and on the Eastern Front he was renowned as a brilliant soldier and commander, but on this particular day he was tired and frustrated. Due to tougher than expected opposition by the U.S. 99th Infantry Division against the formations ordered to create a gap for his 117 tanks, 149 armored personnel carriers, 24 artillery pieces and some 40 anti-aircraft guns, he was already more than 12 hours behind schedule. Peiper had so far suffered few casualties, but his lead element, under the command of SS Lieutenant Werner Sternebeck, had been reduced from its original seven tanks and a platoon of engineers in halftracks to two Panzerkampfwagen (PzKw.) Mk. IV tanks and two halftracks.

As Sternebeck moved north on the road from Thirimont to Bagatelle on the N-32, he saw the Battery B convoy moving south on the N-23 to his left. It was an inviting target, and he immediately opened fire with his own 75mm gun and ordered his accompanying tank to do the same. Each tank fired about five or six rounds and then, on Peiper’s order, moved as fast as possible to Bagatelle, where they turned left and proceeded to Five Points, then turned left again onto the N-23. There they were confronted by the abandoned vehicles of the American convoy–some burning, some shot up, others in the ditch or crashed into each other. The exact number of vehicles along the road is unknown, but many were fit enough for use by the Germans after the incident.

After turning onto the N-23 Sternebeck’s PzKw. Mk. IV moved south, pushing abandoned vehicles out of the way and firing its machine guns at the ditches in which most of the Americans had taken cover. Sternebeck told the author that he did this to encourage the GIs to surrender and, since the Americans had no heavy weapons at their disposal, the tactic soon worked. He then waved his arm in the usual manner to indicate to the surrendering Americans that they were to march back down the road toward Five Points, and halted his tank near the head of the convoy to await further orders. These were not long in coming. Peiper was furious at the delay the incident had caused, and, after transferring to his infantry commander’s halftrack, he drove up to Sternebeck and ordered him in no uncertain terms to move on toward Ligneuville. Then, together with a PzKw. Mk. V Panther tank and the halftracks of the 11th SS Panzergrenadier Company, Peiper followed Sternebeck. The time was about 1330 hours.

While the survivors of Battery B were being assembled in a field immediately adjacent to, and south of, the Café Bodarwé, three trucks from Company B of the 86th Engineer Battalion came up the hill from Malmédy and, after halting behind the ambulances at the rear of Battery B, were fired on by the Germans. Five of the men in these trucks managed to get away, although one of them was wounded and a sixth was captured.

The last four Battery B vehicles under the command of Ksidzek, having dropped off the sick corporal, also approached Baugnez at about this time, but they heard the shooting and realized they were running into trouble. Ksidzek wisely turned around and got back to Malmédy without loss.

By about 1400, 113 Americans had been assembled in the field by the Café. They included 90 members of the 285th Field Artillery Observation Battalion (all except three from Battery B), 10 men from the five ambulances, the military policeman who had been on traffic duty at Five Points, the 86th Battalion engineer and 11 men who had been captured by KGr. Peiper before reaching Baugnez–eight from the 32nd Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, two from the 200th Field Artillery Battalion and a sergeant from the 23rd Infantry Regiment.

In addition to these 113 prisoners, a further 26 men were involved in this tragic meeting with KGr. Peiper. The most fortunate were five members of Battery B who managed to escape from the front of the convoy, and another from the last truck who succeeded in hiding until he was able to make a safe getaway. Four more, plus three men from the 32nd Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, were forced to drive some of the serviceable American vehicles for the Germans and became POWs. However, 11 Battery B men were killed either during the initial clash or in unknown circumstances–their bodies were not found until February and April 1945–and in addition, two men from the 197th Anti-Aircraft Artillery Battalion were killed when their jeep, which was presumably in front of the Battery B convoy, ran into Sternebeck’s vehicles just to the east of Five Points. According to a young Belgian boy who witnessed the incident, they were shot in cold blood after being ordered out of the ditch in which they were hiding.

At approximately 1415, soldiers of KGr. Peiper opened fire on the American prisoners in the field next to the Café. The entire episode lasted no more than about 15 minutes. While the shooting was taking place, vehicles of the Kampfgruppe continued to drive past on the N-23. By 1500 Baugnez was quiet, and it was shortly after this, and certainly before 1600 hours, that 61 Americans who somehow were still alive in the field of death next to the Café attempted their escape. Unfortunately, there were still a few Germans in the vicinity, and they opened fire as the escapees ran to the west and northwest. At least 15 were killed. Three more died later, and one was never seen again.

Lieutenant Colonel Pergrin, standing outside his headquarters in a house in eastern Malmédy, heard the firing by Sternebeck’s tanks and guessed that that little FAOB outfit must have run into that column of German tanks. Sometime around 1500 he decided to make a reconnaissance toward Baugnez to investigate the noise. After passing through one of the eight roadblocks his men had mounted on all the approaches into Malmédy, Pergrin and one of his sergeants dismounted from their jeep at Geromont and continued on foot in a southerly direction. Suddenly they encountered three of the escapees from Five Points. They were hysterical and kept shouting, The Germans killed everybody! Pergrin rushed them back to Malmédy, and at 1640 sent a message to the chief engineer officer at First Army headquarters saying there had been some sort of massacre of American prisoners near Malmédy.

The bodies of those who had died at Five Points on December 17 lay in what became a virtual no man’s land from that day until January 14, 1945. Despite the fact that there was clear evidence from the many survivors that some sort massacre had taken place, the Americans made no attempt to recover the bodies before the 30th Infantry Division retook the area.

By a strange quirk of fate it was one of Pergrin’s engineer companies that, with the aid of mine detectors, uncovered the snow-covered bodies of 71 victims of the massacre. Then, between January 14 and 16, Major Giacento Morrone, Captain Joseph Kurcz and Captain John Snyder, all doctors at the 44th Evacuation Hospital, carried out autopsies on the bodies, which were frozen stiff and fully clothed on arrival at the hospital. The vast majority still had rings, watches, money and other valuables on them, which contradicts the statements of most survivors who said the Germans stole everything worthwhile from them before they were driven into the field. An analysis of the reports, all extremely disturbing to read, shows that 43 of the bodies had gunshot wounds to the head, at least three had suffered severe blows to the head, three had been crushed, two had received some form of first aid before death and nine still had their arms raised above their heads. It should be noted, however, that both before and during the American advance from Malmédy in January 1945, artillery from both sides hit the Baugnez area, and the autopsies confirm that at least 15 of the bodies had been hit by shell and mortar fragments after death. There is also evidence to show that in at least five cases eyes had been removed from their sockets–and in one case the report suggests that the man was still alive when this happened. While anything is possible, it seems unlikely that even the most depraved or crazed soldier would carry out such an act and, as often happens when bodies are left for long periods in the open, crows or similar birds of prey were the more likely culprits. What is certain is that terrible and usually fatal injuries were administered to the victims at close range.

Today there are 84 names on the Belgian memorial at the Baugnez crossroads. Some are misspelled, and Private Louis Vairo’s name was mistakenly deleted a few years ago. The name of Private Delbert Johnson of the 526th Armored Infantry Battalion appears on the memorial, but this is also a mistake–he was not present at Five Points on December 17, but was killed in the same area during an attack toward Hedomont on January 3, 1945. Not surprisingly, when his body was found on January 14 it was assumed that he was a victim of the massacre. This mistake and the fact that men from seven units other than the 285th Field Artillery Observation Battalion were recovered from Five Points have led to the suggestion that bodies unconnected with this incident were deliberately placed in the field by U.S. authorities after December 17. This is one of a number of spurious arguments presented by Nazi apologists over the years in their efforts to prove that no massacre took place or that, at the very least, the Americans tried to make the incident look much worse than it really was.

The Malmédy Massacre continues to provoke as much argument today as it did during the subsequent war crimes trial at Dachau in 1946. Most Americans take the view that it was probably a premeditated act or at best a spur of the moment shooting of defenseless men. Those Germans who were involved and others who take an interest in the affair, and various pro-Nazi American and European writers, naturally attempt to provide some sort of justification for the shooting.

Twenty-one American survivors made statements to U.S. authorities in Malmédy on December 17, the same day as the massacre, and on the following day–long before there was any possibility of collusion or anybody putting ideas into their heads. They all told essentially the same story: After surrendering to a German armored column and being disarmed, they were assembled in a field just south of the crossroads. The Germans then opened fire on them with machine guns and rifles. In most cases, the survivors mentioned two pistol shots before the main shooting started. They said that soldiers then entered the field and shot anyone who showed any signs of life and that many of the bodies were kicked or prodded in order to get a response. Following this, the German column continued to drive past, with some of the vehicle crews taking potshots at the bodies lying in the field. All but one of the survivors insisted that no attempt to escape had been made before the Germans opened fire, and that the escape attempt came at a much later stage when they thought the Germans had left the area.

Media interest in the affair, particularly in later years, has led to this relatively simple story being embellished, even by some of the victims. One survivor told the author in 1989 that he saw SS General Josef Sepp Dietrich, commander of the Sixth Panzer Army, goose-stepping past the massacre field as the Americans stood there. And the only surviving officer, Virgil Lary, talked of Tiger tanks, 88mm guns and large numbers of tanks forcing his men to surrender. Such exaggerations inevitably played into the hands of those who wished to cast doubt on the survivors’ original version of events.

Apart from some minor inconsistencies, such as Lieutenant Lary saying on December 18 that after escaping from the field he got a lift into Malmédy in a truck, but later changing his story to one of two Belgian women helping him to get there on foot aided by a makeshift crutch, the only real point in contention is whether or not there was any attempt to escape that might have caused the Germans to open fire.

Peiper himself, as previously stated, had allegedly left the Baugnez area before the shooting started. After the war he described how he had seen three groups of Americans before he moved on to Ligneuville–those with their hands up, those lying on the ground and in the ditches either dead or pretending to be dead, and a third group who, after pretending to be dead, got up and tried to run to nearby woods. He said his men fired warning shots at the latter two groups.

Most German apologists, and certainly many former members of Leibstandarte, subscribe to the explanation given by Peiper’s adjutant, Hans Gruhle, who said that there was a gap of about 10 minutes between Sternebeck and the command group leaving Baugnez and the arrival of the first elements of the main body of the Kampfgruppe. During this time the Americans were left to their own devices and, since they were not marching toward the east as would have been expected of normal POWs, the newly arrived elements mistook them for a combat unit and opened fire. How Gruhle could have known what happened on that tragic afternoon, however, is a mystery since he was allegedly traveling at or near the rear of the column!

With the passing of time this story, too, has been embellished to a point where the surrendered Americans, having recovered their weapons, actually opened fire on the main body of the Kampfgruppe. It is hard to comprehend how supposedly intelligent people can advance a theory that green and terrified soldiers who had already surrendered would pick up their rifles and pistols–they had nothing larger–which hardened Waffen SS soldiers had left lying around, in order to engage tanks and halftracks.

On the other side of the coin, many Americans subscribe to the theory that orders had been issued at the highest level that no U.S. prisoners were to be taken and that the offensive was to be conducted in a wave of terror. This latter point is correct. Hitler used those words in an address to his senior commanders only four days before the attack. However, the fact that Peiper’s men sent scores of prisoners to the rear in the normal manner during their advance earlier on the 17th belies the no-prisoners theory, and attempts by the Americans to produce written evidence of such an order for use at the Dachau war crimes trial came to nothing.

It has to be noted that Peiper’s men faced a very real problem in deciding what to do with the large number of prisoners taken in the Baugnez area. According to all German reports, Peiper was in a hurry to get to Ligneuville and capture the U.S. headquarters there, and he ordered the rest of the Kampfgruppe to follow up as quickly as possible. Faced with mounting delays and an irate commander, what were those at the crossroads to do with the prisoners? Armored columns had no spare manpower to look after POWs, and none of the follow-up infantry formations were anywhere near Five Points at the time. More than 100 men, even if they have surrendered and been disarmed, cannot be left to their own devices for long. Nor could they be ordered to start marching to the rear into captivity, as is usual in such circumstances, because there was a simple problem of geography. Peiper had penetrated the American lines on a very narrow front–a single road–and this meant that as far as the Germans were concerned the enemy lay along the N-23 to the northwest in Malmédy, the N-32 to the northeast in Waimes and the N-23 to the south in Ligneuville. There was therefore no road along which they could order the prisoners to set off. And it was more than possible that American combat units would move south out of Malmédy at any moment.

A combination of all these factors–an angry SS lieutenant colonel in a hurry, no spare men to guard the prisoners, no easily available route to the rear and the possibility of American combat troops arriving at any moment–must have created a nightmare scenario for the officer in charge. It is therefore quite possible that he decided to take the simplest and most practical way out of his dilemma by giving an order to shoot the prisoners. And it is certainly possible that Peiper himself gave such an order before he moved on. But if it was not Peiper, who could it have been? Among those present at Baugnez at the relevant time, there are several possibilities: Major Werner Poetschke, commander of Peiper’s 1st SS Panzer Battalion Lieutenant Erich Rumpf, commander of the 9th SS Panzer Pioneer Company Lieutenant Franz Sievers, commander of the 3rd SS Pioneer Company and, in view of his later statements about events at the crossroads, it would be unwise to exclude Peiper’s adjutant, Gruhle. There are even some, such as Lieutenant Friedrich Christ, commander of the 2nd SS Panzer Company, and a Sergeant Beutner of the 3rd SS Pioneers, who were later accused by their own comrades of having given orders to open fire on the prisoners.

But what of the possibility that the Germans opened fire on the prisoners because there was an escape attempt? It is after all legal to shoot at escaping POWs, and there is evidence to support this theory. In October 1945 one of the American survivors, in a sworn statement countersigned by one of the chief prosecuting officers, Lieutenant Raphael Schumacker, and witnessed by Sergeant Frank Holtham, said: I decided to try to get away and walked slowly northwardly, but upon reaching a little dirt road or lane decided not to cross the lane or go around it. Sergeant Stabulis, Flack and I were together on this proposition. We turned around, slowly retraced our steps….The group of soldiers in front of me were standing still and I walked slowly southwardly towards the fence at the south end of the field, more or less using the men in front as concealment. I know that Sergeant Stabulis and Pfc Flack were behind me. About two-thirds of the way towards the fence there were no more men to provide concealment so when I reached this point I ran towards the fence as hard as I could, crawled through it and turned to my right and headed for the woods west of the field as fast as I could. Machine gun fire was opened up at me but I was lucky enough to make it to the woods without getting hit and was picked up by the 30th Division a couple of days later….I would like to add that as I came out from behind the crowd into the clear and headed for the south fence, two single shots were fired, which were either pistol or rifle in my opinion.

Flack’s body was found in the field with a bullet hole in the head. Stabulis’ body was not found until April 15, 1945, but since it was more than half a mile south of the field, his initial escape bid was presumably successful.

It would seem therefore that there was a minimum of one successful escape from the field before the main shooting started, in addition to the five men who got away from the front of the Battery B convoy soon after it came under fire from Sternebeck’s tanks. It is also clear from various survivors’ testimonies that there was quite a lot of movement and jostling in the field before the shooting started, and that once the first pistol shots rang out, several men attempted to push their way to the rear of the group. A number of survivors mentioned an American officer shouting, Stand fast!

In summary, it can be said that there is no evidence to support the idea of a premeditated massacre–particularly in view of the fact that over half the Americans in the field survived both the main shooting and the administration of coup de grâce shots by the Germans who entered the field. Nor is it reasonable to suggest that the main body of the Kampfgruppe mistook the men in the field for a fresh combat unit, or that there was a mass escape attempt that caused the Germans to open fire.

So how do we explain the shootings at the Baugnez crossroads on December 17, 1944? There seem to be only two reasonable explanations. The first is that it started in response to a specific escape attempt. Someone saw two or three Americans make the break described in a sworn statement made to Lieutenant Schumacker in October 1945 that person then opened fire and this in turn caused a commotion in the field as some of the prisoners tried to push through their comrades to the west. But this movement, and the fact that at least one and probably two Americans had by then escaped from the field, only exacerbated the situation, and other Germans in the vicinity then fired. Even if this theory is accepted, however, it in no way excuses the deliberate killing of wounded prisoners by those Germans who then entered the field.

The other explanation is that faced with the problem of what to do with so many prisoners, someone made a deliberate decision to shoot them. And it is significant that the majority of the American survivors spoke of a single German taking deliberate aim with his pistol and then firing two shots at the prisoners. The sheer number of Americans in the field and the fact that they were standing in a group meant that many were physically shielded by the bodies of their comrades. This explanation would then require that, after the main shooting, it was necessary to send soldiers into the field to finish off the survivors.

On May 16, 1946, Peiper and 70 members of his Kampfgruppe, plus his army commander, chief of staff and corps commander, were arraigned before a U.S. military court in the former concentration camp at Dachau, charged that they did willfully, deliberately and wrongfully permit, encourage, aid, abet and participate in the killing, shooting, ill treatment, abuse and torture of members of the armed forces of the United States of America. The location chosen for the trial and the number of defendants was clearly significant, and it surprised no one when all the Germans were found guilty. The court of six American officers presided over by a brigadier general took an average of less than three minutes to consider each case. Forty-three of the defendants, including Peiper, Christ, Rumpf, Sievers and Sternebeck, were sentenced to death by hanging (Poetschke had been killed in March 1945), 22 to life imprisonment and the rest to between 10 and 20 years. The Law of the Victors, as it has been called in postwar Germany, had prevailed. But none of the death sentences was ever carried out, and all the prisoners had been released by Christmas 1956. Peiper was the last to leave prison. Sadly, incomplete and rushed investigations, suspicions about the methods used to obtain confessions, and inadequate or flawed evidence ensured that guilty men escaped proper punishment, and there can be little doubt that some innocent men were punished during the trial. In the final analysis, justice itself became another casualty of the incident.

This article was written by Michael Reynolds and originally appeared in the February 2003 issue of Segunda Guerra Mundial magazine. For more great articles subscribe to Segunda Guerra Mundial magazine today!


The hunting Panther


The Jagdpanther is one of the most iconic tank destroyers of World War 2. Based on the Panther chassis, the famous tank destroyer was produced from 1943 up until the end of the war in 1945. Mechanically more reliable than the Ferdinand/Elephant and the Köningstiger, armed with the 88 mm (3.5 inch) Pak 43 “Panzerknacker” and with 80 mm of 55 degree sloped armour (this presented 138 mm of thickness of armour to a shell fired horizontally at the front of the Jagdpanther) it was a formidable opponent for any tank at the time. During the war, over 400 tanks were produced, seeing action on both the Eastern and the Western European fronts. After the war, captured Jagdpanthers were used by the French army, along with Panthers and other German tanks, up until the 1950’s. Overall,the Jagdpanther was a great mix of mobility, firepower and armor. Today, only 10 of the tank destroyers are left, spread across various museums worldwide.


On This Day In Wyoming History: The Book

In addition to being the frequent blogger here, I'm also the author of On This Day In Wyoming History, a book cataloging the daily history of Wyoming. More on that book can be discovered by following the link.

I'm also the author of a number of articles that have been published by various journals, including The Wyoming Lawyer and Rural Heritage. Topics of my published articles range from legal and agricultural topics to historical topics.


French children salvaging food from the cars of a wrecked train climb on a Moselle River railway bridge destroyed by the retreating Germans in France on Dec. 5, 1944. [2306 x 1854]

It's interesting that the kid on the right appears to be wearing a German army rucksack.

Photos like this remind me of how fortunate I am. When I would be hungry and complain about starving when i was a kid, my father would always say "you don't know what starving is." He was right.

I need to show this to my kids today, notice kids - he wasn't texting, he didn't have a phone, his house was likely in shambles, he probably didn't eat 3 meals a day, or have indoor heat set at 72. This is why we should all have gratitude in our lives everyday.

you should also show pics of french soldiers fighting during WW1 and WW2 to american kids so they would not call them "Cheese-eating surrender monkeys" like their parents do, it's pretty disrespectful for a country like France who lost more men in the 4 years of WW1 than the US has lost in every war combined throught its existence.


Community Reviews

As a habitual non-fiction reader, subject matter sells me on a book usually as much as the prose style or the writer. And therefore, one of my biggest pet peeves with any book is when it promises to be about a subject and then doesn&apost really deliver on that promise. Such is the case with Jay Winik&aposs new historical text, which would like you to believe it will be about the monumental epoch-altering events of the last full year of the Second World War.

And to be fair, Winik does provide a fair degr As a habitual non-fiction reader, subject matter sells me on a book usually as much as the prose style or the writer. And therefore, one of my biggest pet peeves with any book is when it promises to be about a subject and then doesn't really deliver on that promise. Such is the case with Jay Winik's new historical text, which would like you to believe it will be about the monumental epoch-altering events of the last full year of the Second World War.

And to be fair, Winik does provide a fair degree of information about the year in question. He is particularly detailed on the subject of Operation Overlord (the less well-known name for the D-Day invasion), and on the growing efforts, both within and without Washington, to get the Roosevelt administration to acknowledge and publicly act against the atrocities then being committed in the Nazi death camps. Winik's prose is strong, and he provides skillful thumbnail portraits of numerous influential figures of the era, including Henry Morgenthau, Roosevelt's influential secretary of the treasure, and Eduard Schulte, a German industrialist who was among the first to warn the world of what was going on in the wooded wastes of Nazi-occupied Poland and elsewhere. Winik particularly evokes the never-ending monotonous march towards death in Auschwitz by constantly returning, "on and on," to the trains rolling into the camps, packed suffocatingly with their never-to-leave cargo.

The problem is, for a book about 1944, not much of it is actually about 1944. Winik spends chapters on FDR's childhood and upbringing (and don't let the subtitle fool you, either though Winik does a nice job contrasting FDR's singular mission with his failing health, the president nevertheless disappears from the book for dozens of pages at a time), the rise of Hitler and Nazism, uprisings in the Warsaw ghetto, and Rudolf Vrba's rare and successful escape from Auschwitz. All interesting, yes. But none of it happened in the year this book is supposed to be about. In fact, once you get to the D-Day invasion, the rest of the year is more or less rushed through in roughly the book's last 75 pages. In the meantime, the writer dwells on the violence at Normandy and the numberless horrors of the camps with a degree of detail that at times borders on the sadistic. I understand learning history so you are not doomed to repeat it, but the relentless details almost make it feel like that repetition itself is a form of doom.

I think that Winik had a number of things he wished to say about the war, the Holocaust, and FDR, but could not find a framing device for them that worked, so he shoehorned them into this half-accurate "1944" framework. It's not a badly written book, but if you want a book about the events of 1944 and nothing else, you're not going to get it here. . more

Joe Absolutely agree. This year I’m reading WW II related books chronologically to coincide with the 75th anniversary of events from 1944. I had a gap bet Absolutely agree. This year I’m reading WW II related books chronologically to coincide with the 75th anniversary of events from 1944. I had a gap between Big Week and Marianas campaign events before reading a book on Overlord, so I pulled 1944 off the shelf. I figured it was a survey of events from 1944, like previous books I’ve read on 1940 and 1942, but I was very disappointed.

I would estimate that 75% of content described events before or after 1944–mostly before. And well over half the content was dedicated to the horrific events surrounding the Final Solution. I have no issue with this coverage as part of events in 1944. But there were so many other important events related to the war, the home front, politics, etc., that were either not covered or very lightly covered. At times I felt like I was being misled into reading a book about the Holocaust and that the author had an agenda to promote. I certainly hope that’s not the case, but it certainly felt that way.

If you want to read a well written and grisly book about the Holocaust and the response if world leaders, this is a great read. If you’re looking for a broad survey of key events from 1944, look elsewhere.

The book was well researched and very well written, so I finished it. But the title is extremely misleading. . more
May 15, 2019 04:52AM

According to Jay Winik, the author of two bestselling works of history, APRIL, 1865 and THE GREAT UPHEAVAL, during World War II every three seconds someone died. This should not be surprising based on the myriad of books that have been written about the war that fostered mass killing on a scale that had never been seen before. The Nazis perpetuated the industrialization of death almost until they ran out of victims. In the skies the combatants laid waste to civilian areas fostering terror and de According to Jay Winik, the author of two bestselling works of history, APRIL, 1865 and THE GREAT UPHEAVAL, during World War II every three seconds someone died. This should not be surprising based on the myriad of books that have been written about the war that fostered mass killing on a scale that had never been seen before. The Nazis perpetuated the industrialization of death almost until they ran out of victims. In the skies the combatants laid waste to civilian areas fostering terror and destruction unknown to mankind before the war. It is with this backdrop that Winik tells the story of World War II focusing on the role of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s decision making and his inability or refusal to lift a finger to assist the victims of Hitler’s Final Solution until it was too late. The book is entitled 1944: FDR AND THE YEAR THAT CHANGED HISTORY, but the title is misleading, because instead of focusing on the watershed year of 1944, the book seems to be a comprehensive synthesis of the wartime events that the author chooses to concentrate on. Winik opens his narrative by describing the Teheran Conference of November, 1943 which most historians argue was the most important wartime conference as the major outline of post war decision making took place. Here we meet Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin, before Winik switches to the massive allied bombardment of Berlin that would shatter the faith of the German people in their government, as it could no longer protect them from the developing superiority of allied might.

The author offers very little if anything that is new dealing with the war. Its strength lies in its synthesis of the massive secondary literature that the war has produced. Winik has mined a voluminous amount of material, but very little of it is primary and one must ask the question what purpose does the book have if it adds little that is not already familiar for bibliophiles of the war? I believe the author’s goal is to produce a general history of the conflict that allows the reader inside some of the most important decisions related to the war. Winik writes in an engrossing manner that creates a narrative that is accurate with sound analysis of the major characters and events discussed. The monograph is not presented in chronological order as the author organizes the book by concentrating on the period that surrounds the Teheran Conference of November, 1943 through D-Day and its immediate aftermath for the first 40% of the narrative, and then he shifts his focus on to the Final Solution that by D-Day was almost complete. Most of the decisions involving major battles are discussed in depth ranging from D-Day, the invasions of North Africa and Sicily, to biographies of lesser known characters like, Rabbi Stephen Wise, a leader of the American Jewish community, but also a friend of FDR Rudolph Vrba and Eduard Schulte who smuggled out evidence of the Holocaust as early as November 1942 and made their mission in life to notify the west what was transpiring in the concentration camps with the hope that it would prod the allies to take action to stop it, or at least, lessen its impact.

Much of the narrative deals with the history of Auschwitz and its devastating impact on European Jewry, and Roosevelt’s refusal to take any concrete action to mitigate what was occurring, despite the evidence that he was presented. Winik delves deep into the policies of the State Department, which carried an air of anti-Semitism throughout the war. The attitude of the likes of Breckenridge Long are discussed and how they openly sought to prevent any Jewish immigration to the United States. When the issue of possibly bombing Auschwitz is raised we meet John J. McCloy who at first was in charge of rounding up Japanese-Americans and routing them to “relocation centers” in the United States, and is in charge of American strategic bombing in Europe who refuses to consider any air missions over Auschwitz arguing it was not feasible, when in fact allied planes were bombing in the region and had accidentally hit the camp in late 1944. Roosevelt was a political animal and refused to use any of his political capital, no matter how much pressure to assist the Jews. FDR was fully aware of what was taking place in the camps and did create some window dressing toward the end of the war with the creation of the War Refugees Board that did save lives, but had it been implemented two years earlier might have saved hundreds of thousands of lives.

Much of Winik’s descriptions and analysis has been written before and he has the habit of discussing a particular topic with an overreliance on a particular secondary source. A number of these works appear repeatedly, i.e. Martin Gilbert’s Auschwitz and the Allies, David Wyman’s THE ABANDONMENT OF THE JEWS, Richard Breitman and Alan J. Lichtman’s FDR AND THE JEWS, James MacGregor Burns’ SOLDIER OF FREEDOM, and Ian Kershaw’s two volume biography of Hitler. There are a number of areas where Winik’s sources have been replaced by more recent monographs of which he should be familiar, i.e., when discussing Hitler’s invasion of Russia in June, 1941 the main source seems to be Kershaw, but David Murphy’s WHAT STALIN KNEW, Andrew Roberts’ STALIN’S WARS, and Evan Mawdsley’s THUNDER IN THE EAST would have enhanced the discussion. In addition, there are many instances when endnotes were not available, leaving the reader to wonder what they have just read is based on.

To Winik’s credit his integration of the state of FDR’s health throughout the book is very important. We see a Roosevelt who is clearly dying at a time when many momentous decisions must be made, but the president feels that he was in office when the war began, and he must complete his task. The effect of FDR’s health on decision making and the carrying out of policy has tremendous implications for the history of the time period. One of the more interesting aspects of Winik’s approach to his subject matter is how he repeatedly assimilates the plight of the Jews with other facets of the war. It seems that no matter the situation the author finds a way to link the Holocaust to other unfolding decisions and events, particularly during 1944 and after. The author also does a superb job describing the human element in his narrative. The plight and fears of deportees to Auschwitz, the anxiety of soldiers as they prepare for Operation Overlord, the chain smoking General Eisenhower as he awaits news of battles, and the fears and hopes of FDR on the eve of D-Day are enlightening and provide the reader tremendous insights into historical moments.

To sum up, if Winik’s goal was to write a general history of the Second World War, centering on the role of Franklin Roosevelt he is very successful as the book is readable and in many areas captivating for the reader. If his goal was to add an important new interpretation of the wartime decision making centering on FDR and 1944 as the turning point in the war, I believe he has failed. Overall, this is an excellent book for the general reader, but for those who are quite knowledgeable about World War II you might be disappointed.
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Ver el vídeo: El Desembarco de Normandía. Día D. (Septiembre 2022).


Comentarios:

  1. Tlacaelel

    Probablemente estoy equivocado.

  2. Ban

    Gran frase y oportuno

  3. Galantyne

    Sorprendentemente, información valiosa

  4. Lorencz

    lo empapaste)))))

  5. Egomas

    Hitler Super

  6. Mealcoluim

    No está presente en absoluto. Lo sé.

  7. Meztit

    Vivamos.

  8. Mukinos

    Soy un gran admirador de Cognac. Amo tanto a Cognac que me permite beberlo no más de dos veces al año. ¡Qué fan soy! ¡Esto debería ser una celebración!



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