Arnhem
The great airborne battle for the bridges in 1944 by Britain's Number One bestselling historianOn 17 September 1944, General Kurt Student, the founder of Nazi Germany's parachute forces, heard the growing roar of aeroplane engines. He went out on to his balcony above the flat landscape of southern Holland to watch the air armada of Dakotas and gliders carrying the British 1st Airborne and the American 101st and 82nd Airborne divisions. He gazed up in envy at this massive demonstration of paratroop power.Operation Market Garden, the plan to end the war by capturing the bridges leading to the Lower Rhine and beyond, was a bold concept: the Americans thought it unusually bold for Field Marshal Montgomery. But could it ever have worked? The cost of failure was horrendous, above all for the Dutch, who risked everything to help. German reprisals were pitiless and cruel, and lasted until the end of the war.The British fascination with heroic failure has clouded the story of Arnhem in myths. Antony Beevor, using often overlooked sources from Dutch, British, American, Polish and German archives, has reconstructed the terrible reality of the fighting, which General Student himself called 'The Last German Victory'. Yet this book, written in Beevor's inimitable and gripping narrative style, is about much more than a single, dramatic battle. It looks into the very heart of war.

Arnhem Details

TitleArnhem
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseMay 17th, 2018
PublisherViking
ISBN-139780670918669
Rating
GenreHistory, Nonfiction, Military, Military History, War, World War II

Arnhem Review

  • Sean Smart
    January 1, 1970
    A brilliant new history of one of the epic tragedies of the Second World War. As the author states what tempted him to write another history of this well known battle was access to a lot of new materials.Fans of Beevor’s previous works on Stalingrad, Berlin and D Day will not be disappointed but will perhaps feel the frustration and disappointment in the Generals and the planning of this disaster in the making.At one point Beevor writes something like that many of us have pointed out issues and A brilliant new history of one of the epic tragedies of the Second World War. As the author states what tempted him to write another history of this well known battle was access to a lot of new materials.Fans of Beevor’s previous works on Stalingrad, Berlin and D Day will not be disappointed but will perhaps feel the frustration and disappointment in the Generals and the planning of this disaster in the making.At one point Beevor writes something like that many of us have pointed out issues and errors with the plan for example what if the radios worked properly, but it was just a bad plan badly made and should never have happened. I would recommend
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  • Gram
    January 1, 1970
    A highly readable account of the Allied attack on the bridges at Arnhem, in Holland by British 1st Airborne and the American 101st and 82nd Airborne divisions during September 1944. Operation Market Garden, (it was actually two operations - one named Market and the other Garden) was the plan to end the war quickly by capturing the bridges leading to the Lower Rhine and beyond.Long after the event, Field Marshal Montgomery's own biographer described the operation "foolhardy" and, prior to the att A highly readable account of the Allied attack on the bridges at Arnhem, in Holland by British 1st Airborne and the American 101st and 82nd Airborne divisions during September 1944. Operation Market Garden, (it was actually two operations - one named Market and the other Garden) was the plan to end the war quickly by capturing the bridges leading to the Lower Rhine and beyond.Long after the event, Field Marshal Montgomery's own biographer described the operation "foolhardy" and, prior to the attack, one senior Allied officer described it as "a suicide mission". Indeed, the fighting around the various Dutch bridges continued long after even senior British military officers decided that retreat was the only option left.From the start, the plan was likely to fail. Montgomery more or less tricked Eisenhower, commander of all the Allied forces, to let him go ahead. But the British ignored intelligence from the now famed Bletchley Park codebreakers that the Wehrmacht and SS were stronger in that area than they had first thought. They also ignored information from Dutch Army officers and Dutch resistance fighters. Ultimately, Montgomery and his generals were amazed at how quickly the Germans retaliated. Radio communications between various forces in and around Arnhem and back at HQ were poor. A set of plans detailing the attacks on the bridges was discovered by the Germans after the first parachute landings - plans which should never have been on board the glider which carried the American officer to whom they belonged. More bad luck followed. Airborne supplies missed their targets. Tanks and other armour due to support the paratroopers were held up when it was suggested there was no rush to get there. Bad weather prevented vital air support from rocket-firing fighters which could have swung the various battles in favour of the Allies. This unrelenting litany of incompetence and bad luck is only broken by stories of many acts of bravery by Allied soldiers and airmen, civilian and military doctors and nurses and also Dutch resistance fighters and the civilian population. The latter suffered terribly when the Allies evacuated the battlefields. 200,000 were made homeless when their towns and villages were shelled and burned to the ground. 2000 died as a result of bombing, shelling and execution by the Wehrmacht and SS who regarded any resistance as acts of terrorism. The entire debacle also caused a rift between senior British and American officers which lasted for decades afterwards.Incredibly, Montgomery repeatedly referred to Operation Market Garden as "90% successful". Reconstruction of the city of Arnhem took 25 years, being finally completed in 1969. Despite the hardships they endured, the Dutch people never seemed to bear any ill will towards the men who fought there. Meanwhile, however, the British military's "old boy network" ensured that no blame was laid at their door while the Polish general Stanisław Sosabowski, commander of the Polish 1st Independent Parachute Brigade was made into a convenient scapegoat for the failure to take the bridges.But perhaps these events are best summed up by Prince Bernhard, who, on hearing of Montgomery's optimistic assessment of Operation Market Garden is said to have remarked, 'My country cannot afford another Montgomery victory'.
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  • Mark Adkins
    January 1, 1970
    I know what you are thinking, not another book about Operation Market Garden how can there be yet another one. I normally would think the same thing, I look at my book shelves and I can see four books about the operation specifically and then several other books about World War Two in general which of course mention the battle. However, the author, Antony Beevor much like his does with all his books manages to find new information and present it to the reader and the other information which is f I know what you are thinking, not another book about Operation Market Garden how can there be yet another one. I normally would think the same thing, I look at my book shelves and I can see four books about the operation specifically and then several other books about World War Two in general which of course mention the battle. However, the author, Antony Beevor much like his does with all his books manages to find new information and present it to the reader and the other information which is fairly common knowledge he is able to present in an interesting way. You have the events leading up to the operation, the planning (or lack of planning), the rivalry between the various commanders, the actual battles, and then the aftereffects. One of the interesting things in this book is the the accounting of what happened to the poor Dutch citizens after the battle ended and the Allies were forced to withdraw. The author talks about the Dutch famine of 1944-45, otherwise known as the "Hunger Winter" and you feel for the plight of the innocent victims of the war. As a Canadian I also was interested in the fact that he mentioned the role of the Canadian Army in Operation Berlin (the evacuation of the British 1st Airborne Division), most of the time the Canadian Field Engineer Squadrons (the 20th and 23rd) are barely mentioned. In this book he even references some key participants by name. It is a minor thing but something I enjoyed.If you are a fan of military history I recommend this book and in fact the author in general, you will find it an enjoyable and informative read.
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  • Anthony Nesbitt
    January 1, 1970
    https://www.spectator.co.uk/2018/05/a...
  • Rudy Parker
    January 1, 1970
    I really enjoyed 'Stalingrad' as well as a few of Antony Beevor's other History classics. I had an extra level of fascination for this book, since my mother is Dutch, I was born in Eindhoven, and spent a lot of my childhood in the exact area that 'Operation Market Garden' (couldn't they have come up with a more exciting name for this Paratrooper mission?) happened in; Osterbeek, Arnhem, Nijmegen and EDE. It's amazing that not so long ago, a huge battle waged in this quiet area. My favourite part I really enjoyed 'Stalingrad' as well as a few of Antony Beevor's other History classics. I had an extra level of fascination for this book, since my mother is Dutch, I was born in Eindhoven, and spent a lot of my childhood in the exact area that 'Operation Market Garden' (couldn't they have come up with a more exciting name for this Paratrooper mission?) happened in; Osterbeek, Arnhem, Nijmegen and EDE. It's amazing that not so long ago, a huge battle waged in this quiet area. My favourite part was where the retired managing director of the Dutch East India company, had a troop of British soldiers move in. A gun battle ensued and his entire beautiful tennis court was blown up by German shells!Strange to think that not so long ago, Germans were unwanted occupiers of Holland; starving them, shooting them, stealing their property, massacring their Jewish population. It's so important to remember history. I actually enjoyed this book more than Stalingrad, because of the quality of the writing and my personal connection with the area.
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  • Kevin McMahon
    January 1, 1970
    Without any doubt in my mind this is a fabulous book right up there with the author’s book on Stalingrad. This one added a great deal to my knowledge of that battle. Yet again we have the poor leadership of the British Army, namely Montgomery, Browning and Horrocks and what really galled me was their treatment of Sosabowski trying to make him a scapegoat for their pig headedness and then doing the same to Urquhart.First class research and a great telling of this battle from both the allied and G Without any doubt in my mind this is a fabulous book right up there with the author’s book on Stalingrad. This one added a great deal to my knowledge of that battle. Yet again we have the poor leadership of the British Army, namely Montgomery, Browning and Horrocks and what really galled me was their treatment of Sosabowski trying to make him a scapegoat for their pig headedness and then doing the same to Urquhart.First class research and a great telling of this battle from both the allied and German side as well as the support of the Dutch people and the cost to them.Definitely a must read for those interested in WWII
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  • Jeroen Smits
    January 1, 1970
    another great wwii book by anthony beevor
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