The Battle Of Hurtgen Forest

Overview

The U.S. Army regards the Hurtgen Forest as one of the most desperate battles it has ever fought. Flanking the key German city of Aachen, the forest was one of the formidable natural barriers interspersed with German fortifications in the West Wall in September 1944.

The first complete account of the longest battle ever fought by the U.S. Army which took place during World War II on the Belgian-German border.

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Overview

The U.S. Army regards the Hurtgen Forest as one of the most desperate battles it has ever fought. Flanking the key German city of Aachen, the forest was one of the formidable natural barriers interspersed with German fortifications in the West Wall in September 1944.

The first complete account of the longest battle ever fought by the U.S. Army which took place during World War II on the Belgian-German border.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
From September 1944 to February '45, in the longest battle ever fought by the U.S. Army, division after division were sent into the Hurtgen Forest on the Belgian-German border. By the time the smoke cleared, nearly 30,000 GIs had been killed or wounded. Whiting makes it painfully clear that the battle of Hurtgen was unnecessary and had more to do with the maintenance of high-level reputations than strategic imperatives. He argues that Hurtgen was the forerunner of an attitude that became pervasive in Vietnam, where ``generals were still throwing away the lives of their young soliders with the same careless abandon.'' Whiting ( Bloody Aachen ) describes the battle with a sure hand; there is plenty of heroism on these pages, but little glory. As he points out, the only soldier of Hurtgen remembered today is ``the one who ran away'': Pvt. Eddie Slovik, the first American soldier executed for desertion since the Civil War. Photos. (Apr.)
Library Journal
Thirty thousand American troops, many of them green recruits, were killed or wounded during the bitter six-month battle for the Hurtgen Forest in 1944-45. Ten American divisions were decimated in the 50-square mile dank, freezing forest, which was thickly sown with German defenses and troops. Yet the battle was unnecessary; the forest had no strategic or military value. American generals, most of whom had never bothered to view the battlefield, had made a terrible error. But in order to save their reputations and careers, they sent thousands of young men to their deaths. Whiting, a first-rate military historian and writer, has finally exposed this 40-year coverup. Essential for World War II collections.-- Stanley Itkin, Hillside P.L., New Hyde Park, N.Y.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781580970556
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press
  • Publication date: 11/22/2000
  • Pages: 316
  • Sales rank: 706,071
  • Product dimensions: 0.88 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 9.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Charles Whiting served with a reconnaisance outfit in WWII and has since become one of the premier historians of the war. Among his many best-selling works are Patton, The Last Assault, and Death on a Distant Frontier. He currently lives in York, England.

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