Operation Market Garden from 17–25 September 1944, was an unsuccessful Allied military operation, fought in the Netherlands and Germany in the World War II. It was the largest airborne operation up to that time. Delivering over 34.600 men of the 101st under General Maxwell Davenport Taylor, 82nd under General James “Slim Jim” Gavin and 1st Airborne Division Major-General Roy Urqhart who died on 13 December 1988, aged 87 years and the Polish Brigade under General Stanislaw Sosabovski. 14.589 troops were landed by glider and 20,011 by parachute. Gliders also brought in 1.736 vehicles and 263 artillery pieces. 3.342 tons of ammunition and other supplies were brought by glider and parachute drop
Field Marshal Bernard “Monty” Montgomery’s goal was to force an entry into Germany over the Lower Rhine. He wanted to circumvent the northern end of the Siegfried Line and this required the operation to seize the bridges across the Maas River and two arms of the Rhine, the Waal and the Lower Rhine as well as several smaller canals and tributaries. Crossing the Lower Rhine would allow the Allies to encircle Germany’s industrial heartland in the Ruhr from the north. It made large-scale use of airborne forces, whose tactical objectives were to secure the bridges and allow a rapid advance by armoured units into Northern Germany.
Market: airborne forces of Lieutenant General Lewis Hyde Brereton’sFirst Allied Airborne Army to seize bridges and other terrain, under tactical command of 1st Airborne Corps under Lieutenant-General Frederick Browning who died from a coronary at Menabilly on 14 March 1965, age 68 and
Garden: ground forces of the Second Army to move north spearheaded by XXX Corps under Lieutenant-General Brian Horrocks. Several bridges between my hometown of Eindhoven and Nijmegen were captured at the beginning of the operation but Lieutenant-General Brian Horrocks XXX Corps ground force advance was delayed by the demolition of a bridge over the Wilhelmina Canal, an extremely overstretched supply line at Son, drop zone for the, and failure to capture the main road bridge over the river Waal before 20 September. At Arnhem, the British 1st Airborne Division countered far stronger resistance than anticipated. On 5 September, the German Feldmarschall Walter Model‘ s forces were bolstered by the arrival of the II SS Panzer Corps, which consisted of the 9th SS Panzer Division Hohenstaufen under SS Oberführer Walter Harzel and 10th SS Panzer Division Frundsberg under SS Brigadeführer Heinz Harmel, under the high command of SS Obergruppenführer Wilhelm Bittrich. The Corps had been reduced to approximately 6.000–7.000 men, 20–30% of its original strength in the course of continuous action since late June including in the Falaise pocket In the ensuing battle, only a small British force managed to hold one end of the Arnhem road bridge and after the ground forces failed to relieve them, they were overrun on 21 September. The rest of the division, trapped in a small pocket west of the bridge, had to be evacuated on 25 September. The Allies had failed to cross the Rhine in sufficient force and the river remained a barrier to their advance until offensives at Remagen, Oppenheim, Rees and Wesel in March 1945. The failure of Market Garden ended Allied expectations of finishing the war by Christmas 1944.
Over 18.000 Allied personnel died or became captured, while the Germans suffered 13.000 casualties. Generalmajor Friedrich Kussin was the first German General to be killed in battle in Oosterbeek closeby the Allied drop zone.