Monday, May 3, 2010

The Battle of Arnhem

The battle of Arnhem in 1944 was a bold attempt to end World War Two by Christmas. A carpet of paratroopers would capture major bridges at Eindhoven, Nijmegen and Arnhem while the tanks of XXX Corps linked up with them and drove into the Ruhr region of Germany. Unfortunately things did not go to plan and while the paratroopers did their part, XXX Corps could not get past Nijmegen and help the British paratroopers around Arnhem bridge.
The British paratroopers were led by General R E Urquhart who has written an amazing first hand account of the battle called Arnhem. Written with style, good humour and intelligence, Arnhem is a fascinating look at a battle from a major participants point of view. Urquhart describes what was going on around him with an easy to read prose, while also showing that he has thought about the battle by analyzing decisions he made, or incidents that could have gone differently. He is also quick to mention mistakes he made and highlight the bravery of the soldiers around him.

Arnhem is a great read and worth tracking down if you want to know more about this battle and what it was like fighting in it.

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