Tuesday, September 23, 2014


This is coolbert:

Continuing with the comments of General William Depuy: [all thanks to the Isegoria.net web site]

That advance from the Normandy beachhead in those days immediately in the aftermath of 6 June slow-going, American advantages in tanks, artillery, and tactical aviation close-air-support negated to a large extent, the combat traditional light infantry versus other light infantry.

The hedgerows of Normandy offering excellent terrain for the defense, the German defender having every advantage in the world, accentuated by their combat methodology!

"First Action in the Hedgerows of Normandy"

"Gen. DePuy explains his first action in the hedgerows of Normandy, when he was a young captain"

"'A lot of work was done on trying to analyze the way the Germans defended. We finally did figure it out. The Germans would assign a squad to a terrain compartment. In other words, one series of hedgerowed fields like checkerboards. The Germans would put about two men on the first hedgerow, usually near the corners. The next hedgerow back would be their main position, and the third hedgerow back would be their reserve position. So, when you started the attack, the first two guys would knock off one or two of the attackers and slow things down. Then you had to go over the top of that hedgerow in the face of the main position. You suffered more casualties, and normally, that ended the attack.'"

Good German troops with extraordinary organic firepower and using the terrain of the hedgerows to their advantage making for a formidable adversary.

These tactics and methodology of the German also NOT apparently due to intense and careful planning. Ad hoc tactics adapting to the situation and doing so in and exemplary manner.

From an acknowledged and experienced combat authority we have this comment:

"It was ad hoc, initially, as they had no expectations that they would be defending that portion of France from a sea invasion.  The first forces assigned to defend the region on the beaches were cobbled-together divisions of the disabled and impressed foreign soldiers . . . The reserve forces that came within hours/days were experienced troops, any or even most with Eastern front experience. They were the ones who could conduct maneuver warfare and began the real hedgerow defenses when they arrived and recognized 'good ground' . . . They hadn't prepared for the bocage battlefield but knew how to improvise immediately thanks to experience and good training."


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