Attack on the Rhineland

The winter of 1944: British Field Marshal Montgomery is planning a large-scale operation to conquer the left bank of the Rhine. In just a month and a half, the army grows to almost 500,000 soldiers. It is the largest Allied attack since Normandy on the smallest battlefield! Early February 1945, the thaw sets in and tanks get stuck in the rain and mud. Operation Veritable turns into a mud bath.

Operation Veritable is the code name for the Allied advance to Germany on 8 February 1945. Due to days of rain and strong German resistance, the advance is slow.

By the end of 1944, the Netherlands has been liberated up to the great rivers. The only place where the British army can enter Germany without crossing a river is in the area of Nijmegen. British Field Marshal Montgomery plans a large-scale operation to conquer the left bank of the Rhine. It is the biggest attack since Normandy for the Brits and the Canadians and on the smallest battlefield. At the beginning of February 1945, almost half a million men with more than 1000 artillery guns and 34,000 vehicles on a ten kilometres front line are ready for the attack. Montgomery hopes to reach the Rhine quickly by attacking over frozen, wintery terrain. The attack starts with a gigantic artillery bombardment, which stuns the defenders, but it is thawing so much that the operation turns into one big mud bath. (source:

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View the story about Operation Veritable

Route Water as a Weapon – Rinderen

In October 1944 the German troops decide to flood a large part of the Dutch-German border area to avert an attack from the Allies. In December 1944, when the water in the Rhine is at a high, German soldiers use heavy explosives to make a hole in the dyke in Driel. Their actions cause a huge flood which has grave consequences for the people living there, the warring factions and a few barge owners. In early February of 1945, dykes in the vicinity of Kleve in Germany are blown up, but, fortunately, do not stop the Allied advance.

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Experience ‘Gelderland Remembers’ at the following events

1 Aug - 31 Dec

‘De Vergeten Executie’ – Audiotour

Audio tour through Sonsbeek park about 'The Forgotten Execution' during WWII.

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