The Battle for the Castle

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The wights breaching the castle walls is an inevitability. Even if the battle was run by truly great military minds, all of the barricades, ranged weapons, and cavalry would only delay the inescapable end. The defense within the castle walls really seemed like the absolute bare minimum, an afterthought with the exception of the noble Lyanna Mormont, may she rest in power.

One of the advantages that the living have inside the castle walls is knowing the layout. This would have been a great opportunity to reintroduce the idea of bottle-necking the enemy and picking them off in smaller numbers. The show took us inside the castle as Arya ran through halls and found herself in not one but two large empty-ish rooms.

Theoretically, windows and doorways could have been bricked off so that you could lure the wights in through one door, and put your back against the wall of the other near the only other exit. And since you should never underestimate your enemy, he would strongly recommend going ahead and adding flammable material and objects to these rooms, so that once it becomes too overwhelmed by wights, they would be able to set it on fire and make their exit. Imagine if Brienne, Jamie, and Podrick had used their ever present back-against-the-wall skills in that arena.

As my source explained:. While the defenders at Winterfell did at least assign command to each element of their formation, Brienne commanding the left flank, Jorah taking charge of the Dothraki, Grey Worm leading the Unsullied, they lacked a central command element which would oversee the entirety of the battle. It turns out that Sansa was wrong. Tyrion would have been able to do more than die if he was outside of the crypt. Tyrion has already proven his ability to think on his feet in times of stress and chaos, which is a skill that was greatly missed at the Battle of Winterfell.

With the two lead commanders waiting on the sidelines with dragons, and no central sub-commander on the battlefield, the armies protecting Winterfell were little more than small groups of people fighting next to each other instead of with each other. One of those is some form of communication. The second thing would be to not have your sub-commanders on the front lines.

It may be a heroic idea, but they are statistically more likely to die first and if all of the leadership is killed in the first wave, the troops have no one to turn to. The wights individually might be brainless, but they are all controlled by one very powerful, very intelligent, and very ruthless mind.

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While they seem chaotic, they are quite possibly one of the most organized armies to ever exist. Major Gangel, meanwhile, had rolled into Kufstein with a huge white flag fluttering from his vehicle. That was when 1st Lt. Wallace S. William T. Rushford, Cpl. Edward J. Szymcyk, Cpl. Seiner, and Pfc. Herbert G.

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William E. Elliot and Sgt. Glenn E. There was only one substantial bridge over the small river that bisected the valley, and Lee discovered that the SS had wired it with demolition charges. By this time Lee could see his objective just over four miles ahead, and he ordered his driver to move out carefully.

His caution was justified: within minutes, the Sherman rounded a curve in the road and almost drove over a squad of SS troops trying to set up a roadblock.

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The former prisoners had been expecting a column of armor supported by masses of heavily armed American soldiers. What they got was a lone tank, seven Americans, and—to their chagrin—a truckload of armed Germans. While Gangel went out of his way to be polite and accommodating to the French, Lee was apparently his typically brash self. Crude or not, Lee knew his job. Within minutes of arriving at Castle Itter he had compiled a list of the French notables, positioned the Sherman in front of the main gate so it could command the road, and began rustling up food and bunks for his hungry, tired men.

After a brief round of celebratory toasts with the French, Lee, Basse, Gangel, and the young SS officer from the village set off to scout defensive positions and talk over strategy. Whether they had come specifically to eliminate the French VIPs or had just decided to wipe out the small Allied force in their midst remains unclear, but the result was the same.

The shooting from both sides remained desultory until dawn, but with first light things turned serious.

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Machine guns pounded the exterior walls and blew out the narrow windows of the central housing block. Szymcyk jumped from the tank and ran to cover behind the castle gate just before its gas tanks blew, turning the Sherman into an inferno. The destruction of Besotten Jenny signaled the start of a general attack. Others began scrambling up the hill on the west, trying to reach the relative cover of the lower walls.

Nonetheless, fire from the SS troops and the still-concealed 88 killed several of the Wehrmacht men and wounded several others. By this time, Maj.

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From that vantage point they could clearly see the battle raging around the castle. But the small party soon grew. By the time it reached the bridge, lead reconnaissance elements of Lt. Marvin J. Before setting off with the reinforcements, Kramers attempted to raise Lee by radio.

Battle for Castle Itter | Prisoners, Defenders, Significance, & Facts |

Picking up a telephone, he simply called the castle. Kramers was soon speaking with Lee, who reported that the SS fire was increasing and the defenders were running perilously low on ammunition. Kramers told him help was coming and jumped back in the jeep with Lutten, Levin, and Schwab. The four roared off in pursuit of the nd Infantry tanks and halftracks, which had set off toward the castle with Boche Buster in the lead.

By noon the American-German force was almost out of ammunition. They would use their few remaining rounds of ammunition, their bayonets, and—if necessary—their fists to make the SS men fight for every stairwell, every hallway, every floor. Securing the agreement of Weygand and Gamelin, both of whom had deferred to the young American throughout the battle despite their own exalted ranks, Lee began pulling defenders off the walls and shepherding the French toward the keep. Just before three in the afternoon, a squad of men was settling into position to fire an antitank rocket at the front gate when the sound of automatic weapons and tank guns behind them in the village signaled a radical change in the tactical situation.

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Seconds later, the SS attackers began melting into the surrounding woods. The battle for Castle Itter was over. Later, as members of the rescue force began removing the dead and caring for the wounded, the French notables were driven off in hastily requisitioned automobiles. They were on their way to Innsbruck to be suitably feted by a succession of senior Allied officers, after which Reynaud, Daladier, and the rest would return to France to resume their careers—and, undoubtedly, their acrimonious political disagreements.

The seven Americans and the surviving Wehrmacht soldiers all piled unceremoniously into the back of a two-and-a-half-ton truck for the ride back to Kufstein.

The Battle for the Castle The Battle for the Castle
The Battle for the Castle The Battle for the Castle
The Battle for the Castle The Battle for the Castle
The Battle for the Castle The Battle for the Castle
The Battle for the Castle The Battle for the Castle
The Battle for the Castle The Battle for the Castle
The Battle for the Castle The Battle for the Castle
The Battle for the Castle The Battle for the Castle

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