Between December 16, 1944 and January 15, 1945, American forces found
themselves entrenched in the heavily forested Ardennes region of
Belgium, France, and Luxembourg defending against an advancing German
army amid freezing temperatures, deep snow, and dense fog.
Operation Herbstnebel - Autumn Mist - was a massive German
counter-offensive that stunned the Allies in its scope and intensity.
In the end, the 40-day long Battle of the Bulge, as it has come to be
called, was the bloodiest battle fought by U.S. forces in World War II,
and indeed the largest land battle in American history. Before
effectively halting the German advance, some 89,000 of the 610,000
American servicemen committed to the campaign had become casualties,
including 19,000 killed.
|In Snow and Steel,
Caddick-Adams draws on interviews with over 100 participants of the
campaign, as well as archival material from both German and US sources,
to offer an engagingly written and thorough reassessment of the
and directed by
Hitler himself - against the advice of his generals - the Ardennes
offensive was the last major German offensive on the Western Front. In
the wake of the defeat, many experienced German units were left
severely depleted of men and equipment. Its last reserve squandered,
these irreplaceable losses would hasten the end of the war.
Snow and Steel
The Battle of the Bulge, 1944-45
by Peter Caddick-Adams
Oxford University Press, 2014