Neerpelt bridge

Neerpelt Bridge
Neerpelt bridge start of operation Market Garden

The original bridge had been destroyed by the Belgian Army in 1940, but the Germans had constructed a wooden Pontoon bridge to the west of it. This bridge was taken on the evening of 10 September 1944 by the Irish Guards under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel J.O.E Vandeleur. While the Welsh Guards engaged the German forces around Hechtel, the Irish Guards advanced rapidly north-east through the villages of Eksel, Overpelt and Neerpelt, and launched their combined infantry-tank assault, with artillery support, from the grounds of the zinc processing factory in Overpelt. They succeeding in taking the bridge undamaged.

Rouen

Rouen sky

On 30 May 1944, the city was heavily bombed. The cathedral again (in 1940 it already suffered fire damage) fell prey to the flames and architectural damage was considerable. The inhabitants tried throughout the night to extinguish the fire. The cathedral could be saved but the Saint-Maclou (church) was in ashes. After the landing of the Allies, the German troops were still in the city. The bridges over the Seine were blown up and they could not leave.

Rouen Court House

On 30 August the Germans were the Canadians finally expelled from the city, for their retreat, they crossed the harbor installations still on fire. The toll was high after the war, more than 3,000 people were killed and 10,000 houses were in ashes.

Read more

Point du Hoc

Point du Hoc mapAt Pointe du Hoc (often spelled as its Parisian French name “Pointe du Hoe” in official Army documents), the Germans had built, as part of the Atlantic Wall, six casemates to house a battery of captured French 155mm guns. With Pointe Du Hoc situated between Utah Beach to the west and Omaha Beach to the east, these guns threatened Allied landings on both beaches, risking heavy casualties in the landing forces.

Although there were several bombardments from the air and by naval guns, intelligence reports assumed that the fortifications were too strong, and would also require attack by ground forces. The U.S. 2nd Ranger Battalion was therefore given the task of destroying the strongpoint early on D-Day.

Point du Hoc on D-Day

Pompei

On 29 Septmber 1943 the Allied Forces captured Pompei. This photo is taken on the main road ‘Via Lepanto’ comming from the beaches facing inlands.

Taken from the corner from the main road ‘Via Lepanto’ and the smaller road ‘Traversa Somma’. Today Pompeii reaches the sea.

Pomei 1943 then and now
Pomei 1943 then and now

Salerno

salerneo_cemetery

The main invasion at Salerno by the U.S. 5th Army – began on 9 September, and in order to secure surprise, the decision had been taken to assault without preliminary naval or aerial bombardment. However, tactical surprise was not achieved, as the naval commanders had predicted. As the first wave of the U.S. 36th Infantry Division approached the shore at Paestum a loudspeaker from the landing area proclaimed in English: “Come on in and give up. We have you covered.” The Allied troops attacked nonetheless.

On the road to Salerno the Rangers met no opposition and with support from the guns of HMS Ledbury seized their mountain pass objectives while the Commandos, from No. 2 Commando and No. 41 (Royal Marine) Commando, were also unopposed and secured the high ground on each side of the road through the La Molina Pass on the main route from Salerno to Naples. At first light units of No. 2 Commando moved towards Salerno and pushed back a small force of tanks and armoured cars from 16th Panzer Reconnaissance battalion

Unexpectedly the half-track drove around the corner in the dark in Vietri and was quickly taken under fire by No. 8 Section of Q Troop. The driver and the others who sat in the front seat were killed. The dozen Germans in the back were all captured.

Vietri 01_past
Intercepted German half-track, in Vietri, that pulls a trailer with a 21cm cannon from the direction of Salerno.
Vietri 01 present
Read more
1 6 7 8 9