By 21 May the spearhead of the German military offensive in north-western France had reached the English Channel near to the port of Abbéville, closing an armoured noose around the men of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) who found themselves trapped in a narrow salient between the French port of Boulogne and Ostende on the Belgian coast with no prospect of escape except by sea. Vice-Admiral Sir Bertram Ramsay, the hard-bitten flag officer on the Dover station, was handed the Herculean task of organising this evacuation by the Admiralty and a more inspired choice could hardly have been made. His inspirational performance in this role was matched by the heroism of those who took orders from him over the course of the next fortnight as an armada of boats ranging from the large to the ridiculously small was assembled and conveyed across the Channel to pick up the survivors of the Wehrmacht’s attack on the West.
Albert Speer’s appointment as Minister of Armaments in February 1942 brought no immediate, revolutionary change to Germany’s war industry. But Speer had Hitler’s confidence, as much as anyone could ever possess it. He was an optimist at a time when that was a declining quality at high Reich levels. He concentrated on short-term fixes: rationalizing administration, improving use of material, addressing immediate crises. And he faced a major one in tank production.
After Agincourt I
The chivalry of the Black Prince was not for King Henry. That night his high-ranking prisoners had to wait on him at table. The troops took another hopeful look at the French casualties still lying all over the field; anyone who was rich and could walk was rounded up, but the poor and the badly wounded had their throats slit. Next day, laden with plunder from the corpses, the English recommenced their march to Calais, dragging 1,500 prisoners along with them. The rain began again. Wetter and hungrier than ever, the little army reached Calais on 29 October. Here, although the King was fêted rapturously, his men were hardly treated as conquering heroes. Some were even refused entry, while the Calais people charged them such exorbitant prices for food and drink that they were soon cheated out of their loot and rich captives. (Henry kept the great prisoners for himself—he wanted every penny of their ransoms.)
The German Two-Panzer Division Counter-Offensive 7 and 8 June 1944 Part II
The operations of the Battle Group Luck, which consisted of Panzer Grenadier Regiment 125 and 4 Company of Panzer Regiment 22, plus supporting arms, were local counter-attacks with a limited purpose. But the main German operation of 7 June, planned for noon, was a counter-offensive designed to split the beachhead and drive the British and Canadians into the sea. The three remaining tank companies of Oppeln Bronikowski’s Panzer Regiment 22 were already in position. When 12 S.S. Panzer Grenadier Division came into line, they were to attack together. The latter division consisted of the two armoured battalions of S.S. Panzer Regiment 12, and the 25th and 26th S.S. Panzer Grenadier Regiments, plus the normal reconnaissance, engineer, and artillery elements. Leading their march to the front was Kurt Meyer’s battle group, based on his S.S. Panzer Grenadier Regiment 25.
Air Battles Kursk 1943 I
To support this mighty armoured phalanx, the Luftwaffe had assembled 1,800 aircraft, representing some two-thirds of all aircraft available in the east. In support of Ninth Army Luftflotte 4, had allocated 1st Luftwaffe Air Division, while the whole of Luftflotte 6 was available to support the southern thrust. On the crowded airfields around Orel, Belgorod and Kharkov were grouped the Heinkel He 111s and Junkers Ju 88s of KGs 3, 27 and 55; fighter units were drawn from JGs 3, 51, 52 and 54, flying Focke-Wulf Fw 190A-5s and Messerschmitt Bf 109G-6s. Although the Soviet Air force had made great strides, the Luftwaffe still held the edge, both in the quality of its fighters and the expertise of its pilots. Of particular importance, was the first deployment, en masse, of the Schlachtgeschwader units flying Fw 190s and Henschel Hs 129s. ‘Citadel’ also saw the last, widespread use of the Stukagruppen in the classic dive-bomber role.
Counterattack at Arras 1940
By the evening of 20 May, Guderian’s panzer spearheads had reached Abbeville at the mouth of the Somme, and at this point their line was as thinned out as it ever would be. The Germans were vulnerable to a determined counterattack, but the only one that threatened the speeding panzers was by British tanks at Arras on 21 May. The Allies inflicted a stinging reverse on the SS Totenkopf division, but they quickly found themselves blocked by Rommel’s panzers. After a brisk battle, the British were driven back to their original positions and threatened with encirclement.
Portuguese Army 1808-12
Disbanded in the wake of the French invasion by General Jean Andoche Junot in December 1807, the armed forces of Portugal were re-formed under the command of Sir William Beresford, a British general created a marshal in the Portuguese Army, and fought with the British in all the major campaigns of the Peninsular War, forming between a third and a half of the Allied forces that defeated the French.
The Cornuti Seniores were often brigaded with the Brachiati Seniores. The Cornuti were one of the First Palatina unit, founded by Constantine somewhere around 310 AD. They may have originated from the Auxiliaries on the Rhine frontier, and maintained the old-style Palatina structure. The Cornuti are organized into 80-man centuries, and consist of 4 Pedites units and 2 Lanciarii units. This totals a Numerus of 480 men.
The Cornuti (“horned”) was an auxilia palatina unit of the Late Roman army, active in the 4th and 5th century. It was probably related to the Cornuti seniores and the Cornuti iuniores.
According to some scholars, they are depicted on the Arch of Constantine, as the Germanic soldiers who are shown wearing horned helmets. On the relief representing the Battle of Verona (312) they are in the first lines, and they are depicted fighting with the bowmen in the relief of the Battle of the Milvian Bridge.
Following his victory at Bautzen, Napoleon ordered Marshal Nicolas Oudinot to continue the operation against Berlin with the three divisions of his Twelfth Corps. The emperor instructed Oudinot to drive Bülow across the Oder and take the Prussian capital. On 25 May the vanguard of the Twelfth Corps began the march from Bautzen toward Berlin, followed by the main body on the next day. By no means could Oudinot’s force be compared to the impressive army that Ney had led against the Prussian capital only one week earlier. Oudinot’s corps had dwindled during the campaign to a mere 20,000 men. Although equal in numbers to Bülow’s mobile troops, Oudinot’s men possessed one advantage: experience. They had fought at both Lützen and Bautzen.
The Lockheed C-141 Starlifter
The Lockheed C-141 Starlifter, which first flew in December 1961, well in advance of the new management techniques. A high-wing transport powered by four turbofan engines, the C-141 was, in terms of technology, a logical advance from the first generation of jet transports rather than a sudden shattering of previous limits on size or performance. The Starlifter could carry 154 troops a distance of 4,000 miles or accommodate 7,000 cubic feet of cargo. Rollers in the floor of the cargo compartment raised or lowered to facilitate the loading of either flat-bottom pallets or wheeled vehicles through an opening at the rear of the cargo bay. Because the Military Air Transport Service had an immediate need for an intercontinental jet aircraft with a spacious cargo compartment easily accessible from the rear, the C-141 entered service in the spring of 1965, as soon as crews and aircraft became available, even before operational testing was completed.