- Point of Interest
- Veerweg 5, 6862 VW Oosterbeek, Pays-Bas
Operation Market Garden managed to liberate a large part of the Netherlands, but failed in its main objective: outmaneuvering the Germans with a surprise crossing of the Rhine. The Nijmegen-Groesbeek area, conquered during Market Garden, remained in Allied hands and served as a springboard for the successful Rhineland Offensive in February 1945.
Operation Market Garden, the campaign to outflank the German defenses along the Rhine (the Westwall) and ensure a swift advance into heartland Germany, came to sobering conclusion on 25 September 1944. With the failure to capture the bridge over the Rhine in Arnhem the operation fell short of its main objective.
The last part of the operation was the unhoped-for evacuation of the remaining British and Polish paratroopers, stuck in desperate positions on the northern bank of the Rhine. In the night of 25 September 2.398 British and Polish soldiers withdrew across the river and back into friendly territory. Operation Market Garden had been a highly ambitious operation. In the end it failed due to weather conditions, communication problems and the surprisingly strong German opposition near Arnhem. The seemingly broken German army, forced to retreat from France in a hurry, had by September 1944 managed to regain itself and establish a robust line of defense along the Rhine in Germany and The Netherlands.
As a consequence the Allied forces were left with no other option than a frontal and costly assault on the German border defenses. This attack would take place in February 1945 under the code name of Operation Veritable, part of the Rhineland Offensive. The operation was launched from the Nijmegen-Groesbeek area and the province of Limburg, both bordering on Germany and captured by the Allies in September 1944.
Hans Kuik was born on 19 November 1926. Together with his older brother, Bert, he witnessed the attack on and occupation of the Netherlands by German forces in May 1940. Both decided to join an underground resistance group called the ‘Rolls Royce Club’.
Operation Market Garden
Operation Market Garden was one of the largest Allied operations of the Second World War. It aimed to secure the bridges over the rivers Maas (Meuse), Waal and Rhine in the Netherlands in order to outflank the heavy German defences of the Siegfried Line and to insure a swift advance towards Berlin.
82nd Airborne Division
From 1943 to 1945, the 82nd U.S. Airborne Division was deployed in all of the important operations in western Europe. It took part in military operations in Italy, France, the Netherlands and Belgium as well as on the territory of the German Reich. After the war it was stationed in Berlin as part of the occupying forces.
Christiaan Lindemans was a Dutch resistance member and escape line organizer, who turned a double agent for the German intelligence service in 1944. He provided the German intelligence agency with important information about Operation Market Garden on 15 September, two days before the operation would take place.
Karl-Heinz Kracht was a 19 year old German corporal, who first saw action during the Battle of Arnhem. He was the loader of a Panzer III tank, which took part in the attacks on the British positions at the north end of the Rhine bridge at Arnhem.
During the Second World War 6 million Jews were murdered across Europe by the German occupiers. Rose Jakobs was a Jewish girl who went into hiding during the occupation of the Netherlands. Like Anne Frank she wrote a diary. She was one of the few Jews that survived. Unfortunately she was killed by a bomb fragment just after the liberation of Nijmegen.
Towards the German capitulation in the Netherlands
In May 1940 the Netherlands was occupied by German forces. It would take five years before they could be ousted. The final drive to liberate the whole country was launched in February 1945 after the so-called ‘Hunger Winter’ had led to 20.000 fatalities in the still occupied territory.
Venray Commonwealth War Cemetery
The War Cemetery in Venray, in the province of Limburg, contains 692 Commonwealth burials of the Second World War, 30 of them unidentified, and one Polish burial. The town of Venray was liberated by Allied troops in the middle of October 1944.
Museum Wings of Liberation
In September 1944 the main operation for the Netherlans of World War II occurs, Operation Market Garden, which eventually led to the liberation. In the Museum, the occupation, the oppression and the final liberation are extensively exposed. Travel in time with authentic military equipment and beautiful dioramas. Also explore the vehicles, displays, a 3D movie, pictures and experience how it feels like to be a pilot during a flight simulation!