Operation Market Garden - Was it a Tactical Disaster? - Page 2




 
--
 
September 24th, 2004  
spymaster
 

Topic: Hm


Excellent plan well conceived by Monty, one of the greatest generals of WW2.
However, everything that could go wrong did go wrong. Weather, comm, intelligence, choice of landing zones, OC getting lost at a critical phase, Patton stealing fuel when ordered by Eisenhower not to, German reserves reacting quicker than the British could move etc I could go on
It led to a salient leading 60 miles nowhere even though Monty claimed it was 90% successful
It was a bold operation, flawed but well worth a try.
Read any of the books by Urquhart, Frost, Hacket, Powell et al - all participants and they will all say it was worth a bash
May 30th, 2005  
Dean
 
 
You can call it a tactical disaster due to the fact that it was a defeat and that the British 1st Airborne Division paid for it with many lives. I do think that it was a defeat, but I also think that in the scope of WW 2, it was not a disaster. The victories that the Americans and Brits won by taking the bridges at Nijmegen (sp?) and Eindvoven were rendered useless by the fact that the Germans held the bridge at Arnhem. As the plan had called for the creation of a corridor that the Allies could use to cross the Rhine into Germany, the loss at Arnhem rendered the other victories useless. The allies ended up with a corridor that led nowhere.
It was a good idea, but I think that there were too many variables to try to control. The plan called for taking and holding one or two highways, and six bridges, creating a single easy to cut corridor. While the German forces in the immediate area were inadequate to deal with the planned attak, the resting German Panzer division changed the equation of forces in the Arnhem area. Personally, I believe that even if the Panzers had not been there, the corridor would have been cut sooner rather than later by other formations. Would it have shortened the war? Personally, I doubt it, but that's another thread.

Dean.
May 30th, 2005  
Zucchini
 
Within the context of WW2 military capabilities, it exposed the inherent flaws of prevailing offensive theory.
--
May 30th, 2005  
craig
 
Operation market garden failed for 2 reasons. Lack of backing from up above. I know I will cop a heap of shit for this however I am not pro British or anti american but the fact remains the British polish and american paratroops were given little or no aircover and there was so much in fighting and glory hunting going on by Generals to make 1 last push for glory or fame. They played politics with mens lives. Many US generals I believe wanted the plan to fail to give them that bit more power during surrender. Only 7 to 10 % of available allied airpower was given to such major which could have ended the war in 1944 (maybe) It was worth the risk but not supported correctly. Even Monty said the this operation would have succeded dispite my mistakes if it had been given the air support it diserved. That and General Alexander refusing to believe that photo recon showed german tanks in the area. Proof of my theory battle of the ruhr pocket useless waste of life Hetrzen forest just to name a few after Market garden
August 1st, 2005  
LeEnfield
 
 
This is one of those things that is full of ifs and buts, had the attack taken place ten days earlier then there would not have been an SS Division from the Eastern Front there for reequipping and it would have been a walk over. If they decided to drop the troops closer to the Arnhem bridge rather than ten miles away they would have got there before the Germans would have been able to concentrate their forces. If the relief force had kept to the schedule then it would have been different story. If is only little word but has such big connotations
August 6th, 2005  
Young Winston
 
 

Topic: Re: Hm


Quote:
Originally Posted by spymaster
Excellent plan well conceived by Monty, one of the greatest generals of WW2.
However, everything that could go wrong did go wrong. Weather, comm, intelligence, choice of landing zones, OC getting lost at a critical phase, Patton stealing fuel when ordered by Eisenhower not to, German reserves reacting quicker than the British could move etc I could go on
It led to a salient leading 60 miles nowhere even though Monty claimed it was 90% successful
It was a bold operation, flawed but well worth a try.
Read any of the books by Urquhart, Frost, Hacket, Powell et al - all participants and they will all say it was worth a bash
Can you give me a source on where it says Patton "stole fuel"?
July 29th, 2009  
MontyB
 
 
I guess I am going to necro this thread because I have a question about Market Garden, was Market Gardens failure Montgomery's planning or was it 30 Corps failure for being too cautious in its relief efforts?
July 30th, 2009  
03USMC
 
 
I'd say planning, not poor planning or lack of planning but incomplete planning.

Market Garden was hastily planned and executed, there were factors that were not well thought out such as communication.

30 Corps was slow but I think this traces back to planning. The route used by 30 Corps was only useable on the improved roads had 30 Corps tried to go overland it would have bogged down , the surrounding area being close to the water table and unable to sustain massive armor formations. So they were stuck following roads, which slowed them and telegraphed their movement.
July 30th, 2009  
A Can of Man
 
 
Except for cities, typical Dutch terrain looks like:


July 30th, 2009  
Apansson
 
Agreed, the Dutch terrain doesnt lend itself easily to fast armoured movement. Any defender with an inch of determination can make life very hard for the attacker. 30 corps might not get a commendation for the most determined and well executed offensive of the war, but I doubt any formation would had done a heck of a lot better.

The plan was a bit too ambitious and hastily executed with many "doh" moments like the failure to get proper communications set up, or the lack of interest in the reports of german armour near Arnhem.

Yet had it been done quicker, say some 10 days as LeeEnfield suggested earlier, it might have worked, German forces in the area were in quite a disarray even then. The real ****-up behind all this might be failure to catch von Zangens 15:th army in its escape from Pas de Calais in earlier phase of operations. The German ability to rebuild a good defense even from forces thought battered & dead made a good show of itself in Market Garden.