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Despite being cold and weary, some reconnaissance troops of the 87th Infantry Division (Patton’s Third Army) can smile as they march through Bihain, Belgium, to attack German troops dug in beyond the town, January 1945.

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Patton’s Fateful Verdun Meeting

By Kevin M. Hymel

On the morning of December 19, Lieutenant General George S. Patton, Jr., prepared his Third Army for a battle raging north of him—the Battle of the Bulge. Read more

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War Through an Artist’s Eyes

By Howard Brodie

Newspaper artist Howard Brodie enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1942, soon joining the combat artist program. He was sent by Yank magazine to capture his impressions of the war with a pencil during the Guadalcanal campaign and then the fighting in Europe. Read more

Because retreating German forces had to be able to pass through their own Siegfried Line, passageways such as this one, which had steel girders blocking the gap, were necessary. Here, men of Company E, 358th Regiment, 90th Infantry Division, move unhindered through one of these gaps, January 12, 1945.

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Siegfried Line: Breaking the Dragon’s Teeth

By Allyn Vannoy

As the battalion officers surveyed the terrain before them, they must have been worried about the men who would have to cross it—the 300 yards of open ground to the banks of the Saar River lined with barbed-wire, concrete pillboxes, anti-vehicle “dragon’s teeth,” and reinforced with minefields in depth known as the Westwall or, more commonly, the “Siegfried Line.” Read more

Armored recovery vehicles (ARVs) retrieve a damaged tank near Beggendorf, Germany. ARVs were typically built on a tank chassis and hoisting cranes in place of a gun turret.

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Combat Command: Glory in the Wrenches

By Allyn Vannoy

The U.S. Army’s drive across France and Belgium during the late summer and fall of 1944 was made possible by the support of the logistics and maintenance personnel that performed their duties magnificently—but received little credit or glory. Read more

A Polish fighter of the Grazyna Company of the Harnas Battalion stands watch within the ruins of Warsaw’s Church of the Holy Cross. The outnumbered Polish Home Army launched a determined revolt against their German occupiers, but was ultimately defeated.

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Warsaw Rising: The Battle for Poland’s Capital

By Peter Zablocki

Polish General Tadeusz “Bor” Komorowski knew the fight for the Old Town Warsaw was over. His last hope—and that of his army—was to slip out unnoticed and move the headquarters position to the town center. Read more

Under Van Deman, the Military Intelligence Section had wide powers of intelligence collection and investigation.

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Famous Military Spies: Ralph Van Deman

By Peter Kross

In the long history of American military intelligence, the names that come to mind most often are those of Nathan Hale, Benedict Arnold, Herbert Yardley, and William Donovan. Read more

During an inspection tour of OSS headquarters in New Delhi, General William, "Wild Bill" Donovan stands fifth from the left. To Donovan's right is Colonel John Coughtlin, commander of the New Delhi unit. Elizabeth McIntosh stands third on Donovan's right.

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Inside the OSS: An Interview With Elizabeth P. McIntosh

By Bob Bergin

The Office of Strategic Services (OSS) was America’s first strategic intelligence organization. President Franklin D. Roosevelt authorized its establishment on June 13, 1942, six months after World War II began, to collect and analyze strategic intelligence and to conduct special services, including subversion, sabotage, and psychological warfare. Read more

French Foreign Legion reinforcements parachute into Dien Bien Phu on March 16, 1954, two weeks before the massive Communist assault on the main camp.

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Five Hills at Dien Bien Phu

By John Walker

It began with the now-familiar sound, like thunder, coming from the hills to the northeast of the entrenched camp, as hidden Viet Minh mortar and artillery sites began raining destruction down upon the French fortifications in the Dien Bien Phu valley. Read more