Night Drop- The American Airborne Invasion of Normandy - Page 2




 
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February 7th, 2005  
Young Winston
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doppleganger
Quote:
Originally Posted by aussiejohn
The quality of the German fighting forces in the area was mixed to say the least.
If you're referring to the battle in question then yes it was. Even the elite Panzer and SS Panzer formations there were not of the quality normally expected of such units. These units had been sent to the West to be rebuilt, from scratch in some cases, and found themselves earmarked for Western operations, which had never been intended initially. Due to Germany's chronic manpower shortage their once highly trained manpower was supplemented by Luftwaffe personnel who no longer had planes to fly and with foreign and underage/overage recruits. The US, Canadian and British forces by contrast were consistently of high quality.
Doppleganger, could you tell me what German units were defending Carentan?

In Marshall's book, Nightdrop, he gives a great account of the Carentan fight. It appears that what saved the day was US artillery. Otherwise the 101st guys were about to withdraw. They fought bravely but were getting a hammering on the causeway and the hedgrow country beyond Bridge No.4 on the Madeliene.

I can't remember much of this in Band of Brother episode on Carentan but I haven't seen it for about 3 years.
February 8th, 2005  
Doppleganger
 
 
As also sent to you in a PM.

As far as I can make out it was it was 2nd Company, 2nd SS Panzer Division "Das Reich" and 6th Regiment Fallschirmjager "Green Devils". On the face of it sounds like very good German troops and the Fallschirmjager were, although they lacked heavy weaponry being essentially lightly armed infantry. The Officers and some of the NCOs of Das Reich were also very good but most of their men were ill-trained and green, as Das Reich had only recently been sent to Normandy for refit and repair after fierce fighting on the Eastern Front. By this time, many German combat replacements were receiving only 1 week's basic training before joining their units! This is not to belittle the efforts of the US 82nd and 101st who were very good units and performed very well in battle.

Cheers.
February 8th, 2005  
Zucchini
 
2nd SS Panzer Regiment.


[url]http://www.dasreich.ca/fritz_anec2.html[url]


I like reading the personal accounts.
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February 8th, 2005  
Big_Z
 
 
I wonder what the outcome would be if the 82nd and an elite German infantry unit went face to face after both units were equally battle hardened. Man for man? The Germans would had obviously slaughtered us at the beginning of the war.
February 8th, 2005  
Strongbow
 
 
So Das Reich was the 2nd SS Panzer Division. They did some bad stuff in France. If they were at Carentan I can now understand why it was such a nasty fight.
February 8th, 2005  
MadeInChina
 
definelty german ss units wouldve won

they had more experience, the stereotypical image that defines a german soldier as superior than others. plus, the germans were armed with very good arms, SG44s, mp40s and potatomashers

iuno about us paratrooper performance, anyone care to give me some detail on that?
February 8th, 2005  
Zucchini
 
This link has a listing of German armies in Normandy.

As I said in another thread, my Uncle's battalion faced off with the 3rd Parachute Division at Hill 192.

http://www.valourandhorror.com/DB/BACK/Gm_div_nrmdy.htm
February 8th, 2005  
Doppleganger
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AA
definelty german ss units wouldve won

they had more experience, the stereotypical image that defines a german soldier as superior than others. plus, the germans were armed with very good arms, SG44s, mp40s and potatomashers

iuno about us paratrooper performance, anyone care to give me some detail on that?
Some historians think that one of the reason why German units continued to perform very well despite their level of quality and training gradually going down after 1942 was the MG-42 machine gun, one of the best weapons of WW2. Today the Bundeswehr uses the MG-3, which is almost identical.

Don't forget that not all SS units were elite. The units formed towards the end of the war were nothing like the same quality as the very best units such as Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler, Totenkopf and Das Reich. Also, the best Army (Heer) units were just as good as the best SS divisions.
February 8th, 2005  
Charge 7
 
 
The US made M60 machinegun is also a direct descendant of the MG-42.
February 8th, 2005  
A Can of Man
 
 
With ROF greatly reduced.