Aachen – Book Review
Aachen: The U.S. Armyâ€™s Battle for Charlemagneâ€™s City in World War II by Robert W. Baumer (Stackpole Books, 2015). Baumerâ€™s outstanding new examination of â€œBloody Aachenâ€ details all of the horrific October 2-21, 1944 battle fought by GIs to capture the first major German city in World War IIâ€™s European Theater.With the formidable defenses of the ancient city and its surrounding area fully incorporated into the Germansâ€™ daunted Siegfried Line fortifications, Hitler ordered Aachen defended â€œto the last man and bullet.â€ The author describes how GIs endured, then triumphed, in the â€œbrutal fields of deathâ€ created by the street-to-street, building-to-building urban combat.
Jerry D. Morelock, PhD, Colonel, U.S. Army ret. is the former Editor in Chief of Armchair General magazine. Currently, he is Editor at Large, World History Group (historynet.com). His latest book is â€œGenerals of the Bulge: Leadership in the U.S. Armyâ€™s Greatest Battleâ€ (Stackpole Books, March 2015).