"He who has not fought the Germans does not know war". - British Military Aphorism

Visitors to this site since 17th September 2004

Defending Arnhem

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WANTED: Any original Photos, Documents, Death Cards, Wehrpass or Soldbuchs, Uniforms, Award Documents and Feldpost letters from units that fought in Arnhem are sort. If you are selling or just willing to share information such as Veteran stories from Veterans or their families then please contact me via this website.


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  Latest Update - 30th Mar 2014

Welcome to Defending Arnhem - A website about the German Involvement in the Battle of Arnhem. This site is a dedicated source of information for both the professional researcher and those who just wish to understand a little more about the battle from the other side's point-of-view. The scope of this site is the 17th - 26th September 1944 and includes the fighting against the British 1st Airborne Division in and around Arnhem, Oosterbeek, Wolfheze and Renkum. It also covers the defensive battles in the Betuwe, north of the Waal river, against the Allied advance of XXX Corps and against the 1st Polish Independent Parachute Brigade around Driel. This will cover the defence by the 9th and 10th SS Panzer Divisions as well as the defensive line set up west of Driel to stop a possible allied advance to capture other Bridges over the Rhine.

Arnhem was strategic in the defence of the German Front with the town lying on the last natural barrier - The Rhine River. When Operation 'Market Garden' started, the Germans knew very quickly into the battle that the bridges were a key objective of the allied plans and as such threw every available reinforcement into Arnhem. Waffen-SS, Luftwaffe, Heer, Kriegsmarine and  Arbeitsdienst fought side by side against the elite British Airborne Division and Polish Paratroopers and after 10 days of fighting, they won the day. This of course was not without loss as the Germans suffered heavy casualties in the process. This battle was a hollow victory as the common German soldier knew the war was already lost in September 1944.

Very little research has been done on the German side of the battle with only a handful of references being printed. However what the Germans were able to achieve in this battle against seasoned professionals needs to be written. Obersturmbannführer Walter Harzer, commander of the 9th SS Panzer Division 'Hohenstaufen' after the battle, said it best: "It is with personal pride that I regard this German victory, because it was achieved not by regular units, but by railway workers, Arbeitsdienst and Luftwaffe personnel as well, who had never been trained for infantry work and were actually unsuitable for house-to-house fighting."

It is a pleasure to present to you - 'Defending Arnhem'.


Destroyed Vehicle Database

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Defending Arnhem has two databases available. The first is the Destroyed Vehicles Database which details every known German Vehicle that was destroyed during the Battle of Arnhem.

Stories from the Ground

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A number of historians are searching the Battlefields of Arnhem to reunite relatives with missing soldiers. During their searches they find some interesting pieces of equipment that tells a wonderful story.

Then and Now

A collection of photos comparing Arnhem of 1944 to today.

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© Defending Arnhem 2004 - 2014

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Award Winners

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This section aims to highlight a selection of individuals who won some of Germany's highest awards for their efforts during the Battle of Arnhem achieving the unexpected against the elite British 1st Airborne Division.

 

A Soldier's Memorial

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It is estimated that over 2000 german soldiers were killed during the battle. This section aims to highlight the German Casualties as a result of the Battle of Arnhem.

 

Research Centre

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Defending Arnhem has available a research centre to assist family members and researchers to find out further information on a particular German Relative or Friend that fought in the Battle of Arnhem.

 

Veteran Accounts

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I have been fortunate enough to correspond over the years with either Veterans who fought at Arnhem or family members' of veterans who fought at the Battle of Arnhem.

 


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