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(11/11) Battlefield II The Battle for Caen World War II

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Uploaded on Apr 8, 2009

World War II Videos




The defeat of the German forces at the Falaise Gap in August 1944 was the culmination of an effort that had begun the previous June, when British, U.S. and Canadian troops stormed the Normandy beaches during Operation Overlord. Then followed the bloody fighting for the all-important city of Caen.
The Falaise Gap was an area between Argentan and Falaise, southeast of Caen. For the Germans, it represented an escape route from the advancing Allied troops, who threatened to trap the 7th Army, 5th Panzer Army and Panzergruppe Eberbach. The Canadian 1st and British 2nd Armies had finally broken out from Caen after weeks of hard and bitter fighting which had stalled the entire Normandy invasion. At the same time, the US 1st and 3rd Armies had forced their way off the Normandy beaches and were rapidly heading towards Falaise from the north and the east.
The fighting in the lanes and fields was intense, as the Allies battled hard to overcome determined resistance by some 80,000 German troops. With so many men and weapons on the ground, it is not surprising they were eventually undone by fierce artillery fire from three sides and by constant attacks from the air.
The Gap was closed on 19th August, leaving only a small pocket of German resistance that was overrun on 21st August. The German losses were catastrophic 10,000 killed, 50,000 taken prisoner, nearly 600 tanks and assault guns destroyed, and 7,500 vehicles lost.
Featuring fascinating archive footage from all over the world, this episode includes a review of the political and military situation before the battle, portraits of leaders and commanders, an explanation of weapons and tactics, as well as the story of the battle itself. Vivid computer-generated maps place The Battle For Caen in the context of the war as a whole providing viewers with a highly comprehensive and entertaining story.

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