On a frigid December morning on the Ardennes Range. An erie moonlit fog covers the land. Thousands of sleeping Allied soldiers are awakened by the buzzing of artillery shells and enemy mortars crashing near their resting places. The Battle of the Bulge will forever be one of the most influential battles of World War II.
At around 5:30 AM, on December 6, 1944, a report of strange flickering lights on the German front line came into Allied headquarters from a lone American sentry at the front of the allied lines. Seconds after, the scream of hundreds of artillery cannons and mortars blasted into the camps of sleeping Allied forces. Troops bounced out of bed and jumped into foxholes and bunkers to better defend from the German offensive. (Goolrick/Tanner 48)
The Battle of the Bulge was the largest battle of any war to take place in Western Europe. The countries that sat positioned near the front lines of the battle were Luxembourg, France, Belgium, Germany and parts of the Netherlands.The Allies front lines sat near the border of Belgium and stretched down to France and Luxembourg. The Germans were positioned near the German Border, right outside of the territory controlled by the Allies.
Back about a month before the battle started. Handfuls of German soldiers, who spoke fluently in the English language, disguised themselves as Allied soldiers. These men went around changing road signs, spreading rumors, and causing uncontrolled havoc behind enemy lines.
The United States Army was led by General Dwight Eisenhower. Eisenhower gained the rank of general just before he was informed of the attack by the Germans. Germany was led by none other than Adolf Hitler. The whole purpose behind the
war was to bring an end to the Holocaust. Hitlers plan was to drive through the center of the allied forces to get to the port of Antwerp, Belgium. The battle was referred to, by the Germans, as the Ardennes Offensive. In their attempt to split the allied forces, Hitler’s men created a large bulge in the allied front lines, hence the name “The Battle of the bulge”. (History Learning Site)
Hitler had three main armies that were active during the battle. The Sixth Panzer army was to lead the attack and capture Antwerp. The Fifth Panzer army’s goal was to push through the center of the allied forces and drive into Brussels. The Seventh Panzer army tried to attack from the southern end of the battlefront to push back the allied forces to clear a straight shot into Brussels for the Fifth army. Hitler also had a fifteenth Panzer army in reserve to defend against a United States counter attack. (History Learning Site)
An account of the situations faced by the Allied forces went as follows. During the beginning of battle, at the southern end of the battlefield, the soldiers in the fourth infantry division, which had suffered nearly six thousand casualties earlier that year, were being forced back by the German assault. A group of 60...