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The Rhine Crossing (Paperback)

WWII Berlin 1945 WWII Battlefield Guides Battlefield Guidebooks

By Andrew Rawson
Imprint: Battleground
Series: Battleground Books: WWII
ISBN: 9781844152322
Published: 28th February 2005
Last Released: 1st August 2007



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By Spring 1945, with the Russians closing fast on Berlin from the East, the US and British Armies of Patton and Montgomery were faced with one major hurdle, the Rhine. Heavily defended by the Nazis, this obstacle would only be crossed by a massive operation requiring meticulous planning and bold execution.The resulting operation involving 29 divisions was outstandingly successful. This book follows the river crossings by 30th and 79th US Divisions, codenamed Operation FLASHPOINT and the airdrop by 17th US Airborne Division (VARSITY). While covering quite different sectors, this book can be read in conjunction with its sister volumes "Operation Varsity" and "Operation Plunder", by Tim Saunders.

One of three books in the Battleground series about the Rhine Crossing of March 1945, focusing on the landing of the 17th Airborne Division and the crossing of the 9th US Army, in what was the last great set piece operation carried out by the western Allies during the Second World War. The 9th Army quickly secured a foothold on the eastern bank against relatively little opposition and made steady progress towards the airborne troops, who, landing on heavily defended drop zones overlooked by anti-aircraft weapons, had a much more eventful experience, but despite very heavy casualties were able to secure all of their objectives within a few hours. As with all books in the Battleground series, the concise narrative succeeds in cramming an impressive amount of detailed information, first hand accounts, as well as a great many photographs and maps, into a remarkably small space. As such while it can be used solely as a battlefield guide, it also makes for an easy to read and surprisingly comprehensive introduction to the subject.

Pegasus Archive, Mark Hickman
 Andrew Rawson

About Andrew Rawson

Andrew Rawson is a freelance writer who has written over twenty-five military history books. He has written eight books for Pen & Sword’s ‘Battleground Europe’ series and three reference books for The History Press ‘Handbook’ series. He has edited Eyes Only: The Top Secret Correspondence between Marshall and Eisenhower and Organizing Victory: The War Conferences 1941–1945. He has also written a campaign volume of the British Army’s battles in 1914, 1915 and 1916. He has a master’s degree with Birmingham University’s history department. Andrew lives in Mallorca, Spain.

Americans find intact bridge over Rhine

7th March 1945

In a major coup for the Allied war effort, U.S. Army forces reach the Rhine River at the small German town of Remagen, and find the Ludendorff Bridge still standing. Nazi leader Adolf Hitler planned on using the Rhine as a formidable natural obstacle against the advancing Allied troops, and ordered all bridges across the river destroyed. German troops were preparing to blow up the Ludendorff Bridge when American forces captured it on March 7 under heavy fire.

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