Document Source: Supreme Allied Headquarters Archival Document, Original Communiques of the Supreme Commander, European Theater of Operations

Communique Number 207 – 01 November 1944

Heavy fighting went on all day yesterday on the causeway linking Zuid Beveland and the Island of Walcheren. Between Oudenbosch and Breda, we have reached the line of the Mark River. Crossing have been made due north of Oudenbosch and on the main road to Dordrecht, northwest of Breda. Northeast of Ousterhout, our forces have continued to make good progress. We have reached the Meuse River north of Capelle. Raamsdonk, Sprang and Waalwijk have been taken and we are in the outskirts of Waspik. In southeastern Holland, there has been heavy fighting in the vicinity of Liesel. The enemy has been driven from the town. Although weather curtailed their activities over the greater part of the battle areas, fighter bombers attacked a supply dump to the northwest of Saarburg. One fighter is missing. In the afternoon, heavy bombers escorted by fighters, attacked the synthetic oil plant at Bottrop in the Ruhr. One bomber is missing.

Last night, heavy bombers in strength attacked Köln; this bombing was preceded by an attack on the city by light bombers. Heavy artillery exchanges took place north of Baccarat. Our troops have entered Saint-Benoît, east of Rambervillers, against stubborn resistance. East of Bruyères, the village of Les Poulières was freed.

Communique Number 208 – 02 November 1944

Allied forces landed yesterday morning on the Walcheren Island and have made good progress. Two beachheads are firmly established. Some miles of the coast and a large part of the town of Flushing are in our hands. At Flushing, an army commando was successfully landed under cover of bombardment from the south shore of the Scheldt Estuary. At Westkapelle, Royal Marines secured a beachhead under cover of long-range bombardment by the HMS Warsprite, HMS Erebus and HMS Roberts, and close bombardment by a squadron of support craft. Preparing the way for these landings, light bombers during the night of Tuesday-Wednesday attacked enemy gun positions and strong points on Walcheren.

At daylight yesterday, fighter bombers renewed the attack on gun positions and strong points, and struck at enemy troop movements. While fighters provided cover for our land and sea forces, no enemy opposition was encountered in the air and none of our aircraft is missing from the operations. Heavy fighting continues at the western end of the Beveland-Walcheren Causeway. In the Scheldt Pocket, our troops are fighting in Knokke. Sluis and Westkapelle have been cleared of the enemy. There has been stiff fighting in the area of our crossings over the Mark River. Farther east, we have increased our hold on the south bank of the Meuse River, in the Capelle area. We have made further progress east and southeast of Liesel. Transportation targets in Holland were hit by fighter bombers.

Objectives in the Ruhr were attacked in the afternoon by heavy bombers escorted by fighters. In the late evening, a strong force of heavy bombers attacked, through clouds, the industrial and railway center of Oberhausen in the Ruhr, and light bombers hit Köln and Berlin. Communications, rail transport and power facilities in the Rhineland and the Saar were the objectives for fighter bombers. Other formations hit a dam near Dieuze. North of Nancy, our forces have cleared the enemy from Létricourt and Abaucourt. Our units made gains southeast of Lunéville and freed the villages of Buriville, Hablainville and Azerailles. Substantial gains also were made in the wooded country southeast of Rambervillers.

Communique Number 209 – 03 November 1944

Progress on the Island of Walcheren continues. Allied forces moving from Westkapelle have now by-passed Domburg, while others have reached a point within two miles of Flushing. Fighting continues in Flushing itself and at the western end of the Walcheren Causeway. All resistance in the area of Knokk and Zeebrugge has ceased. Fighters and fighter bombers attacked enemy troops and positions in the region of Knokke during yesterday morning. Coastal guns and strong points on the Walcheren Island were also attacked, and close support was given to our ground forces north of Breda.

In southern Holland, bridges, locomotives and barges were attacked and rail lines cut. In the Meijel area, allied troops advanced to within 2000 yards of the town. Our troops, attacking in the Hürtgen sector after heavy artillery preparation, made gains of 2500 yards. The town of Vossenack, one and one-half miles south of Hürtgen was taken, and our drive is continuing against stiffening resistance. A factory south of Bonn and an airfield to the east of Trier were targets for fighter bombers, which also attacked locomotives and freight cars and cut rail lines in the Köln and Düsseldorf areas. Heavy bombers, escorted by fighters, attacked the synthetic oil plant at Homberg in the Ruhr. Three enemy aircraft were shot down. Four heavy bombers and three fighters are missing.

Five rail bridges behind the enemy lines were the targets for medium and light bombers; the bridges attacked were in the Moselle River Valley at Konz-Karthaus, Ehrang, and Bullay, over the Nette River at Mayen, and over the Erft River at Euskirchen. The medium bombers were escorted by fighters. Last night, more than 1000 aircraft were over western Germany with Düsseldorf as the main objective. Light bombers attacked Osnabrück. In France, Baccarat in the Vosges Foothills has been freed and the villages of Gélacourt and Deneuvre, near Baccarat, are in our hands. Gains also were made farther south where the village of La Bourgonce was taken against heavy resistance. In the Moselotte River bend our positions have been improved.

Communique Number 210 – 04 November 1944

On the Island of Walcheren, allied troops have cleared Domburg of the enemy. The regimental command of the enemy troops in Flushing was captured yesterday, but there still is some resistance in the northern part of the town and mopping-up continues in the docks area. To the west of Flushing our troops have joined with forces advancing along the coast from Westkapelle. Early yesterday morning, allied units from Zuid Beveland landed on the east side of the island and have made good progress. Gun positions and strong points near Middelburg were bombed and strafed by fighter bombers. The build-up of supplies on Walcheren Island is being satisfactorily maintained.

During the earlier stages of the landing operation, the Royal Navy gave support to the land forces by bombardment of enemy guns and positions and the landings were successfully completed in spite of severe opposition from enemy batteries. North of Oudenbosch, our bridgehead over the Mark River has been widened and deepened. Northwest of Oosterhout the two bridgeheads established earlier have merged, and our troops have advanced to the vicinity of Den Hout in spite of heavy opposition. Concentrations of enemy troops and military buildings north of Breda were attacked by fighter bombers. Road and rail transport in Holland and the Ruhr were the targets for other fighter bombers. Northeast of Weert, the enemy has been driven out of an area between the Bois-le-Duc Canal and the Noorder Canal.

Southeast of Aachen, fighter bombers, in close support of our ground forces, attacked enemy units and tanks. Our forces made small gains south of Vossenack against moderate to heavy resistance and have entered the town of Schmidt, two miles to the southeast. In the forest southwest of Vossenack, we are clearing out pillboxes against stubborn opposition. Communications in the Rhine River Valley and westward to the enemy line, and in the Moselle River Valley were attacked by medium, light and fighter bombers. Among the targets were seven bridges and a railway tunnel. Additional gains have been made in the Baccarat sector where the village of Reherrey has been freed. East of Remiremont, Vagney, and several nearby villages have been freed. Down south, north of Menton, heights overlooking the italian frontier has been taken without resistance.

Communique Number 211 – 05 November 1944

Flushing is now clear of the enemy, and allied forces have made some gains north of the town. Our units which landed on the east side of the Walcheren Island have now joined with our troops at the west end of the causeway. On the Dutch mainland, Steinbergen, Nieuw, Vossemeer and Kladde have been freed. Our bridgehead over the Mark River north of Oudenbosch has been enlarged and we are within a mile of Klundert. Enemy troop movements in this area were attacked by fighters and fighter bombers. Rocket-firing fighters destroyed enemy observation posts at Dinteloord and strafed defense positions.

Fighter bombers also attacked an ammunition dump at Zevenbergen. In the Oosterhout sector, our bridgehead has expanded to the north where we are within a mile of Geertruidenberg. Wagenberg has been freed and good gains have been made further west. Fighter bombers, striking deeper into Holland, bombed and strafed an ordnance factory at Utrecht. Other fighter bombers and fighters, operating over a wide area of Holland and the Ruhr, went for rail and water transport and cut rail communications in some 40 places. Medium and light bombers, with fighter cover, attacked a road and rail bridge over the Meuse River at Venlo. To the west of Venlo, our ground forces continued to advances eastward along the Noorder Canal and some progress has been made farther to the north.

An enemy counter-attack in the vicinity of Schmidt, from which we had been forced to withdraw, was repulsed yesterday afternoon, and our troops are again making progress towards Schmidt. Pillboxes are being mopped-up in the area west and northwest of the town, which was dive-bombed and strafed by our fighter bombers yesterday. In the area of Hürtgen, we continued to make slow progress against mines, infantry and artillery. Less than half a mile to the southeast our advance is meeting strong resistance from tanks and infantry. East of Aachen, medium and light bombers, attacking in waves, bombed enemy strong points at Eschweiler. Fighters and fighter bombers went for railway yards at Düren, Hamm and Brühl; an airfield west of Neuss, and an ammunition dump at Lechenich, southwest of Köln.

Other targets for fighter bombers were rail bridges at Baal (Hückelhoven), northeast of Aachen, and at Bergheim, west of Köln. Yesterday afternoon, heavy bombers with fighter escort, attacked the industrial town of Solingen, a few miles south of the Ruhr. In the evening, heavy bombers in very great strength, went again to Germany with Bochum in the Ruhr as the main target. Medium and light bombers attacked ordnance supply depots near Trier. In France, in the Lunéville sector, slight gains were made northeast of Manonviller. Our troops are mopping-up resistance pockets in the Baccarat area and in the Vosges heights southwest of Gérardmer.

Communique Number 212 – 06 November 1944

Excellent progress has been made in western Holland. Allied forces are approaching the line of the Meuse River and the Hollands Diep River. Heusden, Geertruidenberg, Klundert and Dinteloord were cleared of enemy and we are operating in the Island of Tholen and on the Sint Philipsland Isthmus. On Walcheren, progress was made northeast of Domburg. Nieuwland was freed and we are within 1000 yards of Middelburg to the south. Fighters and fighter bombers gave support to our forces in this area. Other fighters and fighter bombers attacked troop concentrations, strong points, ammunition dumps and flak positions in the Dunkirk area.

Rail lines in northern and eastern Holland were cut. In southeastern Holland, heavy fighting continues in the Meijel area. In the areas of Aachen, Bonn, Kaiserslautern and Viersen, fighter bombers attacked dumps and military buildings. Our forces have made small gains in the Hürtgen Forest sector against stubborn resistance. Extensive mine fields covered by artillery and small arms fire hindered our progress southwest of the town of Hürtgen and our units near Kommerscheidt, three-fourths of a mile northwest of Schmidt, continued to meet strong pressure from tank, infantry, and artillery fire. Mopping-up continued in the forest approximately one mile west of Schmidt. Our fighter bombers attacked tanks and troops near Schmidt.

Other fighter bombers attacked airfields near Halle, Crailsheim and Sachsenhausen and a Dam near Fritzlar. Rails were cut at several places in the Rhineland; rail yards near Düsseldorf were bombed, and an ammunition train south of Kassel was blown up. Medium and light bombers, using pathfinder technique, attacked an ordnance depot at Homburg. Four enemy aircraft were shot down and 34 destroyed on the ground. Seven of our aircraft are missing.

During the afternoon, escorted heavy bombers attacked the industrial town of Solingen, just south of the Ruhr. One bomber is missing. In the Moselle River Valley, our units freed Berg, on the Moselle River, eight miles northeast of Thionville. Farther south, our troops maintained their progress in the Baccarat sector and have taken the village of Sainte-Barbe.

Communique Number 213 – 07 November 1944

On the Walcheren Island, allied troops have taken Middelburg and after cutting the road between there and Veere, have freed Veere itself. Other units are fighting their way northeastward from the Domburg area. Gains on the Dutch mainland have taken our troops to the outskirts of Willemstad and fighting continues on the approaches to the Moerdijk bridges, which have been blown by the enemy. Communications and supply lines in Holland and over the Dutch-German frontier were attacked yesterday by fighter bombers. Targets included railway yards at Utrecht and Gouda and railway tracks over widespread areas of northern and eastern Holland. Rocket-firing fighters hit military buildings east of Zutphen.

Our units continued to meet strong opposition in the Hürtgen Forest. A German counter-attack was repulsed west of Hürtgen, but a thrust by enemy infantry and tanks on Vossenack forced us to withdraw a short distance in the town. The enemy attack was contained and our units resumed the offensive to regain their former positions. We made small gains two miles west of Schmidt against heavy opposition. Fighter bombers, supporting our ground units in the Schmidt area, made a series of attacks on the enemy troops and armored units. They also bombed and strafed military buildings northeast of Geilenkirchen and hit targets at Jülich and fuel and ammunition dumps at Düren. Other fighter bombers attacked communications and transport in the Rhineland and elsewhere in Germany. Gelsenkirchen was bombed during the afternoon by a very strong force of escorted heavy bombers, five of which are missing.

In the evening, other heavy bombers attacked Koblenz. East of Lunéville, the village of Herbéviller was taken. Our units have freed several additional towns north and southeast of Baccarat. These include Vacqueville, Bertrichamps, Lachapelle, Saint-Remy, Nompatelize and La Salle. New gains were made against stubborn resistance in the Vosges heights west of Gerardmer. In the Maritime Alps, we have made gains at several points and now hold the high ground along the Italian Border.

Communique Number 214 – 08 November 1944

With the freeing of Willemstad, allied forces now hold the entire south shore of the Hollands Diep River and the Meuse River with the exception of an area and east of the destroyed Moerdijk bridges where a small isolated force of the enemy is still holding out. On Walcheren, fighting is continuing northeast of Domburg. Gun positions in this area were hit by rocket-firing fighters. Elsewhere on the island, resistance has ceased. Two military buildings in Dunkerque were destroyed yesterday in attacks by rocket-firing fighters. Air attacks in enemy communications were continued. Fighter bombers cut railway lines in the areas of Amersfoort, Apeldoorn and Zwolle. A railway bridge at Goch, an oil storage tank and railway buildings at Emmerich were hit by rocket-firing fighters and fighter bombers.

Railway lines were cut in several other places along the Dutch-German frontier. Action continues in the Hürtgen Forest sector with a little change in positions. Fighting still is in progress in the village of Vossenack. Farther south, we have repulsed two counter-attacks from the vicinity of Schmidt. West of Schmidt our units improved their positions and mopped-up pockets of resistance. Enemy defense positions near Schmidt were attacked by fighter bombers. Other targets were buildings, railway lines and bridges in the Ruhr. Rain slowed ground operations in the Lunéville-Remiremont sector. A strong counter-attack was repulsed west of Gerardmer after stiff fighting.

Communique Number 215 – 09 November 1944

On Walcheren Island, allied forces have freed Vrouwenpolder, only a few pockets of resistance are holding out and mopping-up continues. There has been bitter fighting for the Moerdijk bridge approaches. We penetrated the concrete defenses and made some advances in the face of fierce opposition. The enemy has been driven out of the area east of the town. Gun positions at Dunkerque were attacked yesterday by rocket-firing fighters. Fighter bombers continued the attacks on transportation targets in Holland, principally in the Utrecht area. Rail tracks were cut in numerous places and motor transport destroyed.

The railway station and factory at Weeze, south of Goch, and strong points north and south of the Reichswald Forest, were attacked by rocket-firing fighters. Fighter bombers attacked the communications center of Geilenkirchen, where many fires were started, bridges near Düsseldorf and Köln, and a rail yard near Euskirchen. Locomotives and freight cars in the Rhineland were also attacked. Airfields at Wiesbaden and Sachsenheim were hit by fighter bombers. In the Hütgen Forest sector, our forces are attacking against strong enemy pressure, and are gaining ground slowly in the area south of Vossenack. Gains have been made against very heavy resistance southwest of the town of Hürtgen. West of Schmidt enemy pockets are being mopped up.

In the Seille River Valley, our units made gains east and northeast of Nancy after an artillery preparation yesterday morning. The following towns northeast and east of Nancy have been freed: Aulnois-sur-Seille, Mailly-sur-Seille, Fresnes-en-Saulnois, Malaucourt, Jalaucourt, Moncourt and Bezange. Between Nancy and Metz, nine enemy command posts were bombed and fighter bombers, supporting our ground forces in the area east of Pont-à-Mousson, bombed gun positions and troop concentrations]. North of Baccarat the enemy has been cleared from Migneville. Gains have been made in the wooded area west of Saint-Dié and we have taken the village of Les Baraques.

Several enemy counter-attacks were repulsed in the Vosges Mountains southwest of Gerardmer. Eight enemy aircraft were shot down and two destroyed on the ground in tactical air operations yesterday. Seven of our aircraft are missing. Yesterday morning, heavy bombers attacked the synthetic oil plant at Homburg in the Ruhr. Fighters escorted the bombers and flew supporting sweeps. From this operation one bomber and one fighter are missing.

Communique Number 216 – 10 November 1944

Allied forces are advancing east of the Moselle River Valley in the Metz-Nancy sector and units are now in the vicinity of Viviers, 17 miles east of Pont-à-Mousson. Our operations yesterday were supported by heavy, medium and fighter bombers in very great strength. Enemy troops, strong points, artillery, transport and communications were bombed and strafed. In the area southeast of Pont-à-Mousson, our units have reached Morville-lès-Vic east of the Seille River and are in the forest two and one-half miles north of the Forêt de Grémecey. Northeast of Pont-à-Mousson, our forces have passed through Cheminot and are making gains beyond the town.

Farther north, we have made some progress across the Moselle River northeast of Thionville. Bitter fighting continues in the Hürtgen area and our units have made local gains against heavy resistance west of Schmidt and in the area southwest of the town of Hürtgen. In Vossenack, our units consolidated and improved their positions. Objectives in the Ruhr were attacked by escorted heavy bombers, two of which are missing. In southwestern Holland, resistance has ceased on the approaches to the Moerdijk bridges and on the Walcheren Island. Rocket-firing fighters attacked gun positions and strong points in Dunkerque. In the Lunéville sector, the enemy reinforced his forward positions and intensified his artillery fire.

Northwest of Saint-Dié, the village of Deyfossé in the Meurthe River Valley has been taken. To the south, our advance has reached the eastern edge of the Forêt Domaniale de Champ where resistance continues to be heavy.

Communique Number 217 – 11 November 1944

Allied forces continued their advance in the Metz-Nancy sector against light to moderate resistance yesterday. Château-Salins has been freed and our units have pushed on to Amelécourt and Dampont. The Delme Ridge, six miles east of Nomeny, has been reached. We have also reached Vigny and Secourt east of Louvigny. Small gains have been made in the area of Maizières-lès-Metz. Fighter bombers attacked enemy positions east of Metz.

In the Moselle River bridgehead northeast of Thionville, we have made gains south and east of Kœnigsmacker and have repulsed a minor counter-attack east of the town. In the Hürtgen area, our units continued their attack against heavy resistance from dug-in enemy positions. Many mines are being encountered. A counter-attack was repulsed in this sector. West of Schmidt, we have made progress and are clearing pillboxes. In the area north of Aachen and west of Köln, fighter bombers went for freight yards, railway lines, roundhouses and trains. Among fighter bomber targets were a freight yard at Ameln, a roundhouse three miles south of Jülich, two trains at Wegberg and a railway control station at Rheindahlen.

Other fighter bombers targeted the rail and road in the center of Baal, starting a number of fires, and a warehouse near Erkelenz was also attacked. An enemy strong point north of the Reischwald Forest and a factory at Weeze were hit by rocket-firing fighters. Fighters and fighter bombers supported ground operations and continued attacks on enemy communications in eastern Holland and across the frontier into Germany. Rocket-firing fighters attacked a railway junction south of Emmerich. In the Meurthe River Valley, slight gains were made northwest of Saint-Dié. The villages of Le Ménil and Biarville have been taken. A local counter-attack was repulsed east of Bruyères, and in the Vosges, enemy attempts to infiltrate were frustrated.

Communique Number 218 – 12 November 1944

Allied forces attacking in the Metz-Nancy sector continued to make progress. Our armored units have advanced to Haboudange, seven miles northeast of Château-Salins, and infantry elements are clearing Gerbécourt, on the eastern edge of the Château-Salins Forest. Southeast of Metz, the villages of Béchy and Tragny have been freed, and our units have reached Remilly and Sanry-sur-Nied. In the Hürtgen sector, our forces west of Schmidt are making slow progress in cleaning out pillboxes against heavy mortar and machine gun fire.

Fighter bombers supporting our ground forces in the regions of Nancy, Château-Salins, Metz, Thionville and Montenach heavily attacked strong points, gun positions, tanks, troop concentrations and motor transport. edium bombers attacked strong points and gun concentrations northeast of Aachen. Other medium bombers attacked rail bridges at Sinzig, Euskirchen Ahrweiler and Mayen. Fighter bombers went for rail targets in Germany around Gelsenkirchen, Trier, Euskirchen and Köln. Transportation targets in Holland were attacked by fighter bombers and rocket-firing fighters with rail tracks, bridges and trains as the principal targets. Three bridges at Woerden, Zwolle and Nijkerk were attacked, and rail tracks, chiefly in the areas of Utrecht, Arnhem, Zwolle and Zutphen were cut. Loaded trains in the Amersfoort area were successfully attacked. Other targets were located at Sneek and ferries on the lower Rhine River and the Meuse River. Medium bombers went for rail targets at Oldenzaal and Roermond.

Two enemy aircraft were shot down and eight of ours are missing. Heavy bombers, escorted by fighters, yesterday afternoon attacked the synthetic oil plant at Castrop-Rauxel in the Ruhr. None of our aircraft is missing from this operation. In the Lunéville-Bruyères area gains were made at many points and several more towns have been occupied. Our troops have reached the Meurthe River between Raon-l’Étape and Saint-Dié. Farther south the Forêt de Mortagne and the Forêt Domaniale de Champ have been virtually cleared of the enemy. In the Vosges heights our positions were improved.

Communique Number 219 – 13 November 1944

Allied forces continued to advance in the Nancy-Metz area with thrusts to the east of Pont-à-Mousson. Armor and infantry units have reached the villages of Conthil and Lidrezing approximately seven miles north of Dieuze. Other units are in Château-Bréhain, Dalhain and Vaxy, north of Château-Salins. Armored elements have crossed the Nied River river and are in Herny, three miles east of Han-sur-Nied. In the Koenigsmacker area our infantry has restored its line after a counter-attack, and a newly-won bridgehead across the Moselle River below Thionville was reinforced. Farther south, small advances were made west of Saint-Dié and east of Bruyères. The villages of La Bolle and Les Moitresses have been taken. Adverse weather yesterday restricted our air operations.

Communique Number 220 – 14 November 1944

Allied forces continued to advance yesterday north and south of Metz. Our armor is astride the rail line southeast of Metz in the vicinity of Herny and Baudrecourt. Infantry units have reached Herny and are a mile northeast of Ancerville. The following towns are in allied hands: Corny, on the Moselle River; Pommerieux, Verney and Liehon, southeast of Corny. Our units are in the Forêt de Bride at Haut de Kœking and also are north of the Forêt de Château-Salins. A Fort, northeast of Thionville, has been cleared. Gains of approximately two miles were made in the sector east of Lunéville, despite strong resistance and hampering snow. Leintrey was freed.

Farther south, the village of Montigny was taken. Southeast of Baccarat an enemy counter-attack was broken up by our artillery which inflicted severe casualties. Substantial gains were also made southeast of Bruyères where the villages of Aumontzey and Champdray were freed, and nearby high ground was occupied. Activity in Holland was restricted to patrolling and artillery duels in bad weather. Air operations were again restricted by weather.

Communique Number 221 – 15 November 1944

Allied forces attacked in the sector east of Weert against moderate opposition. The village of Nederweert-Eind was freed and bridgeheads were established over the Noorderplas Canal and the Wessem Canal. In the Metz sector our forces have repulsed counter-attacks and have increased pressure on the city from the north and south. Bridgeheads across the Moselle River in the Koenigsmacker and Thionville areas have been joined. Our units have reached Freching and Kuntzig, and patrols are in the vicinity of Lemestroff. Other forces have taken Orny and are in the Bois de l’Hopital. We have reached the Destry-Baronville area northwest of Dieuze. Northeast of Baccarat, gains up to approximately two miles were made against light opposition. East of Bruyères the enemy was forced to withdraw more than a mile and Granges-sur-Vologne and several nearby villages were freed. In the Belfort sector, limited gains were made against stiff resistance along the flooded Doubs River. Weather severely restricted air operations.

Communique Number 222 – 16 November 1944

Allied forces continued to advance in the Weert area yesterday, pushing forward to a depth of 7000 yards despite difficult roads and enemy mines. Transportation targets and gun positions in the Thionville area were attacked by a small number of fighter bombers. In this sector our ground forces cleared Illange, and further south Fèves and Quaraille have been liberated. We have repulsed counter-attacks in the Eincheville-Landroff area. Our forces are in Morhange, Baronville and Guébling, and other units have reached the marsal area and the village of Haraucourt. Northeast of Baccarat our troops freed Sainte-Pôle after hard fighting. in this sector, the enemy holds commanding ground and our progress is slow. Constant pressure continued to force a slow enemy withdrawal southeast of Bruyères.

In the Belfort sector, our troops advanced several miles in the Doubs River area. A number of villages have been liberated including Marvelise, Montenois, Lougres, Écot, and Écurcey. Several hundred prisoners have been taken. A synthetic oil plant at Dortmund was attacked by escorted heavy bombers. Berlin was hit by a force of light bombers yesterday evening.

Communique Number 223 – 17 November 1944

The allied advance towards the maas in southeastern Holland continued yesterday. Opposition was light and fighter bombers gave support by attacking enemy positions west of Venlo. We have taken Wessem and are within a mile of Roermond. Three miles farther north, Buggenum has been freed, while other troops have reached the Omleidingskanaal in the Broekhide area. Contact has been established between the forces south of the Noorder Canal and the troops which captured Meijel.

In the Geilenkirchen sector, our units launched attacks and made gains of several thousand yards. Be are in Floverich and Immendorf. These operations were preceded and supported by air attacks in very great strength by heavy, medium and fighter bombers. In support of our ground forces in the Geilenkirchen area, fighter bombers attacked at least 12 German towns and bombed and strafed dug-in enemy troops, gun positions and communications. in the Düren-Eschweiler area, 1200 heavy bombers, escorted by 480 fighters, attacked enemy strong points, field batteries and anti-aircraft guns. Some of the escorting fighters also strafed enemy transport in the Frankfurt and Giessen region. Bombing generally was in adverse weather, although some crews reported seeing good results through breaks in the clouds. Medium bombers, none of which is missing, hit gun positions at Echtz and Luchem, east of Eschweiler. Another force of heavy bombers, numbering 1150 with an escort of 250 fighters, struck at the towns of Düren, Jülich and Heinsberg, immediately behind the enemy lines. The bombing was controlled throughout by master bombers, who claim that all attacks were highly concentrated.

Striking deeper into Germany, other fighter bombers attacked railway targets in the vicinity of Köln. Eight fighters and fighter bombers are missing from the day’s operations. Further south, our forces continued the attack, enlarging the Moselle River bridgeheads. We have troops in the vicinity of Monneren, Lacroix and Metzervisse in the Thionville area. Stuckange is in our hands and our forces are in Augny and Marly, south of Metz. in the Blâmont-Saint Dié area, resistance was moderate but progress was slow. Saint Dié and several other villages in the path of our advance were set afire by the enemy and many explosions were heard. In the approaches to the Belfort Gap, the momentum of our drive was maintained. Several towns have been freed north and south of the Doubs River.

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