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In late 1944 under extreme pressure on both the Eastern and Western fronts, Hitler realized he needed to force the Allies into negotiating a truce thereby saving Germany from total defeat.
Using the Christmas period to enhance the vital element of surprise, he ordered a devastating attack through the rugged and mountainous Ardenne region with the key Allied port of Antwerp as the objective. This book, with its extensive text and rare and unpublished photographs with detailed captions, tells the story of the Waffen-SS offensive, known as `Wacht am Rhein` (Watch on the Rhine).
These formidable SS armoured units with supporting Wehrmacht divisions initially achieved dramatic success making full use of the harsh winter conditions and terrain.
Gradually the Allies regained the upper hand on the attackers who were increasingly suffering from lack of reinforcements and resupplies.
After defeat at the pivotal battle of Bastonge, remaining Waffen-SS units withdrew and were transferred back to the Eastern Front.
As described in this classic Images of War book, the Fuhrer's gamble so nearly paid off and the ruthless fighting spirit of the elite Waffen-SS divisions caused the Allied command serious concern.
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