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Casualties of Operation Market Garden.

17-09-2019

Allies forces suffered more casualties in Market Garden than in the mammoth invasion of Normandy. Most historians agree that in the twenty four hours period of D-Day, June 6, 1944,  total Allied losses reached an estimated 10.000-12.000. In the nine days of Market Garden combined losses-airborne and ground forces-in killed, wounded and missing amounted to more than 17.000.

British casualties were the highest: 13.226. Urquhart’s, 1st British Airborne Division  was almost completely destroyed. In the 10.005 Arnhem forces, which included the Polish 1st Independent Para Brigade  under command of Colonel Stanislaw Franchiszek. Sosabowski.

    and glider pilots, casualties totaled 7.578, In addition to the figure RAF pilot and crew losses cause to another 294, making a total in wounded, dead and missing of 7.872.

Brian Gwynne Horrock’s  XXX Corps  lost 1.480 and the British 8th and 12th Corps another 3.874.

American losses, including glider pilots and IX Troop Carrier Command, are put at 3.974. General James Maurice “Slim Jim” Gavin‘s   82nd Airborne Division  and General Maxwell Davenport Taylor‘s

 101st Airborne Division , 2.118; and air crew losses 424.

Complete German figures remain unknown but in Arnhem and Oosterbeek admitted casualties came to 3.300 including 1.300 dead. However in the entire Market Garden battle area, Walter Model‘s   losses were much higher. While no figure breakdown in available for the number of enemy killed, wounded and missing, from the breakout at Neerpelt, then along the corridor in battle at Nijmegen, Grave, Veghel, Best and my hometown Eindhoven, after interviewing German commanders, as SS Obergruppenführer, Kommandeur der II SS Panzerkorps, Wilhelm “Willi” Bittrich 

 , SS Brigadeführer, commander of the 10th SS Panzer Division “Frundsberg” Arthur Heinrich “Heinz” Harmel    and SS Oberführer. commander of the 9th SS Panzer Division ” Hohenstaufen”, Walter Harzer 

 , it would conservatively estimate that Army Group B lost at least another 7500- 10.000 men, of which perhaps a quarter were killed.

What were our Dutch civilian casualties ?. No one can say. Deaths in Arnhem and Oosterbeek are said to have been low, less than 500  but no one knows with any any certainly. I have heard casualties figures-that is, dead, wounded or missing- given as high as 10.000 in the entire Operation Market-Garden campaign and as a result of the forcible evacuation of the Arnhem sector together with deprivation and starvation in the terrible winter that followed the attack.

 

 

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