Battle of the Scheldt

Battle Of The Scheldt

Military Conflict
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Battle of the Scheldt

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The Battle of the Scheldt was a series of military operations of the First Canadian Army, led by Lieutenant General Guy Simonds. The battle took place in northern Belgium and southwestern Netherlands during World War II from 2 October-8 November 1944

By September 1944, it had become urgent for the Allies to clear both banks of the Scheldt estuary in order to open the port of Antwerp to Allied shipping, thus easing logistical burdens in their supply lines stretching hundreds of miles from Normandy eastward to the Siegfried Line. Since the Allied forces had landed in Normandy, France on D-Day, 6 June 1944, the British Second Army had pushed forward into the Low Countries and captured Brussels and Antwerp, the latter with its ports still intact. But the advance halted with the British in possession of Antwerp, while the Germans still controlled the Scheldt Estuary.

Nothing was done about the blocked Antwerp ports during September because most of the strained Allied resources were allocated to Operation Market Garden, a bold plan for a single thrust into Germany which began on 17 September. In the meantime, German forces in the Scheldt were able to deploy to meet them.

In early October, after Market Garden had failed with heavy losses, Allied forces led by the First Canadian Army set out to bring the Antwerp ports under control. But the...
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