7th Armored Division in Ardennes

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Lipton
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7th Armored Division in Ardennes

Post by Lipton » 17 Jul 2004 20:36

Timo Worst wrote:I'm still at a loss. 7th Armoured fought against the Leibstandarte in the Ardennes? Where and when was that???
John Keegan in his Second World War and Tim Newark in Turning the Tide of War writes that elements of 7th Division from U.S. 9. Army were engaged in heavy fighting with 1. SS "LSSAH" near St. Vith in 17.12. 1944. 7th played one of the main roles in repelling the 6. Panzer Army SS away from the American fuel depots.
And what about 285th Field Artillery Battalion near Baugnes? This unit was part of 7th Division, or am I wrong?

Timo
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Post by Timo » 18 Jul 2004 08:38

Sorry, my reply should had red: "7th Armoured fought against the Leibstandarte in Stavelot? Where and when was that??"

True, CCR stopped KG Hansen near St. Vith on 17.12.1944. Colonel Matthews was killed in this short but fierce action. On their way south a small part of CCR detoured over Stavelot whilst others chose to detour by the way of Verviers and Spa. The 7th Armoured divisional artillery saw itself blocked at Baugnez. During the night the columns of 7th Armoured and LSSAH missed eachother but in the morning of 18.12. a battery of AA guns found itself in the middle of the battle for Stavelot. But after one hour they turned west for Trois-Ponts and on to Vielsalm. But we should not overestimate the part of 7th Armoured at that moment. One AA battery saw action in Stavelot for just one hour.

The "repelling the 6. Panzer Army SS away from the American fuel depots" is a myth, including any part played by the 7th Armoured. Peiper (or any other LSSAH commander for that matter) didn't know there was a depot and didn't send a force up that road to capture it.

Major Paul J. Solis, 526th Armored Infantry Battalion, had ordered his troops to withdraw when Peipers tanks had got across the Stavelot Bridge on 18.12.1944, and most went out on the Malmédy road. Solis, meanwhile, took two rifle squads and the AT-gun he had positioned to block the minor Francorchamps road and made straight for the fuel dump. Under the impression that German tanks were right behind him, he urged the detachment of Belgian troops guarding the dump to get on with setting fire to it. The tale of the "fiery road-block" was of no relevance where Peiper did not even attempt to send a light reconnaissance in that direction. When elements of the 117th Regiment (30th ID), approaching Stavelot by this back road later that morning to reinforce the defense of Stavelot, arrived in the area, a stop was put to the burning although not before 145,000 gallons of petrol had been consumed in the conflagration. 7th Armoured wasn't anywere near the depot.

Timo
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Post by Timo » 18 Jul 2004 17:56

Anyway, better to continue the discussion in the original thread...

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... 8&start=15

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