A Sherman tank from the Canadian 27th Tank Regiment rolls through the shattered, deserted streets of Caen after the Germans pulled out. The British/Canadians lost thousands of men and 300-500 tanks. The delay in securing Caen badly damaged Montgomery’s reputation among the Allies.

European Theater

The European Theater of Operations (ETO) during World War II is generally regarded as the area of military confrontation between the Allied powers and Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy. The European Theater encompassed the Atlantic, Mediterranean, Eastern Front, Western Front, and Arctic areas of operation.

European Theater

Hitler’s Bold Attack at Mortain

By David H. Lippman

For once, the ULTRA message came late. Normally, the decoding machines and hard-working British cryptographers at Bletchley Park had an abundance of German Army messages to go through, but in the first days in August 1944, the German panzer divisions had gone to radio silence, which suggested they were going to attack, but not in which direction. Read more

European Theater

The Film and Battle of San Pietro

By Michael E. Haskew

The monotonous rattle and snap of the film projector provided a steady accompaniment to the images flickering across the screen in the darkened room. Read more

U.S. Army Rangers

European Theater

Colonel William O. Darby and the U.S. Army Rangers

By William E. Welsh

On the morning of Friday, February 18, 1944, fresh groups of German panzergrenadiers backed by tanks swept south from their defensive positions at Anzio and overran American forward positions at Aprilia, eight miles north of the landing beaches. Read more

Waffen SS in Berlin

European Theater

Hitler’s Waffen-SS and the Last Battle in Berlin

By Christopher Miskimon

In the predawn hours of April 24, 1945, SS-Brigadeführer Gustav Krukenberg received orders from Army Group Vistula defending Berlin to immediately lead the remnants of the 57th Battalion of the 33rd Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS Charlemagne from its staging area at the SS training camp at Neustrelitz to the German capital. Read more

European Theater

D-Day Assault on Juno Beach

By Nathan N. Prefer

Most students of World War II know that there were five invasion beaches included in Operation Overlord, the invasion of northwestern Europe, on June 6, 1944. Read more

The "Devil's Brigade," or 1st Special Service Force, gained its place in history with daring WWII exploits in combat in France and Italy.

European Theater

What the Devil’s Brigade Did in World War II

By Michael D. Hull

When General George C. Marshall visited London in April 1942, the new chief of the British Combined Operations Command, Lord Louis Mountbatten, introduced him to a “very odd-looking individual … [who] talks well and may have an important contribution to make.” Read more