Sturmartillerie de la Waffen-SS Hohenstaufen

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magazine 39-45 HS 18 batailles & temoignages, Galicien, Normandy, Arnhem

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Sturmartillerie de la Waffen-SS Hohenstaufen

Hors serie batailles & temoignages 18

The fourth volume of this series on the Sturmgeschütze of the Waffen-SS deals with two famous armored divisions, formed at the beginning of the winter of 1942/1943: the 9. SS-Panzer-Division “Hohenstaufen” and 10. SS-Panzer-Division <<Frundsberg”, assembled for a time in the II. SS-Panzer-Korps of General Wilhelm Bittrich. Initially intended to intervene against an Allied landing on the Atlantic Wall, they actually had their first joint engagement in April 1944 on the Eastern Front, in Galicia. At that time, Hohenstaufen and Frundsberg each had two companies of assault guns assembled within the 1st battalion of their tank regiments: the 7. and 8. (StuG.) Kompanien of SS-Panzer-Regimenter 9 and 10. SS-Sturmgeschütz-Abteilungen 9 and 10 were disbanded at the end of 1943. However, the history of these assault guns deserves to be evoked in detail, because of the numerous feats of arms in which they took part during the battles in Galicia, then those, even more terrible, of the summer of 1944 in the Normandy hell (with, among others, the fierce battles of the Odon, the very famous Hill 112, or those of the Virois bocage). There, the StuG. 40 of these divisions achieved successes worthy of Panzer IV units and even Panther and Tiger heavy tanks (they are often engaged side by side). Until the last weeks of the conflict, albeit in different theatres from the autumn of 1944, the assault gun crews of SS-Pz.Rgt. 9 and 10 fought mercilessly, before having to lay down their arms in the spring of 1945, in Austria for the “Hohenstaufen>>> and in Saxony for the “Frundsberg”.

Despite the rather early dissolution of the Sturmgeschütz-Abteilung (at the end of 1943, even before the division’s baptism of fire), the StuG. III will retain an important place in the ” Hohenstaufen ” : they will fully equip the 7th and 8th companies of the 2nd mixed battalion of the SS-Panzer-Regiment 9.

These formidable machines were pitted against Soviet tanks in Galicia in April 1944 – during the German attempt to unblock Tarnopol – and brilliantly two and a half months later on the Normandy Invasionsfront . Alongside the Panzer IVs of the same battalion, later the Panthers of the I. Abteilung of the  SS-Pz.Rgt.9 or the Tigers of the s.SS-Pz.Abt. 102, the assault gun crews of the ” Hohenstaufen ” did not disappoint against the British west of Cheux, then around the famous Hill 112, later south of Caen and in the bocage north-east of Vire. During the summer of 1944, their scores were sometimes higher than those of the Panzer IV, V and VI.

Decimated, the Sturmgeschütze of the 9. SS-Pz.Div. were reborn in time to take part in the Wacht am Rhein operation in mid-December 1944 (on St. Vith or Bastogne), then in the face of the Red Army’s steamroller in western Hungary, before having to lay down their arms in the Austrian Alps.    

The

author has endeavoured to publish unpublished photographs and documents, with precise biographies of the main officers linked to the division’s assault guns: Rolf Tammling – former Sturmartllierist of the “Das Reich”, a close comrade of Teddy Telkamp –, Rudolf Rettberg, Kurt Rennert, Magnus Flor, Bernhard Bauer or the commander of the SS-Pz.Rgt.9 Otto Meyer, not to mention the division commander Silvester Stadler.

Editions Heimdal Hors serie batailles & temoignages

Weight0.430 kg
Dimensions0.5 × 21 × 29 cm
Condition

Good

Language

French

Publisher

Editions Heimdal

PublishDate

2023

Pagecount

96

Binding

Perfect Bound

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