Monday, March 22, 2010

Unternehmen: Wacht am Rhein. The failure of the Ardennes offensive sped up the final victory

Thursday, 18 March 2010. The newapaper "Day" #16.
The upcoming anniversary of the final victory of the allies in WWII encourages us to once again review its various stages. Back in the summer of 1941, victory seemed so distant that many thought it to be impossible. However, in winter of 1944-45 it was no longer just a shared desire but an event that was inevitably approaching. Germany had been defeated on all the fronts. However, there are no easy victories in war and the winter of that year proved it. The enemy was close to being defeated, but still dangerous. This was clear both on the Eastern and Western fronts, near Budapest and near the Ardennes Mountains. The Wehrmacht’s last large-scale offensive against the Allies in Belgium, in December, 1944, became the stuff of numerous myths and legends. Soviet propaganda was busy covering up the difficult situation in which the allies were at that time, and there was a great deal of confusion because of the German subversive actions. At the same time they stressed how helpful the Red Army’s offensive against Poland was, as if it really was of any help. They belittled Allies’ contribution to the general victory only because they wanted to hide their own problems and limitations. As usual the reality was quite different.

The whole article is available at