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Program Information
State Of The City reports
Interview with Captain T. Moffatt Burriss, I-company, 504th regiment, 82nd Airborne division
Weekly Program
 Bristol Broadband Co-operative  Contact Contributor
http://bcfm.org.uk/2012/03/16/17/friday-drivetime-62/15420
The Battle For Arnhem – A Bridge Quite Near – recent revelations that show Field Marshal Montgomery’s Operation Market Garden, in September 1944, aimed at severing German supply lines on the Western Front should have worked. It was early morning in Holland on Sunday 17th September 1944 and as the gliders and paratroopers poured down along a sixty mile corridor to hold the bridges. The furthest bridge from the front line at Arnhem became the focus of attention as and the biggest airborne operation in history unfolded. Was it really ‘A Bridge Too Far’ as the title of Cornelius Ryan’s book and Robert E. Levine’s famous film imply? Or could the tanks and ground troops of XXX corps have gotten through to relieve the surrounded British paratroopers? With Arnhem only 10 kilometres, a 30 minute drive away and a virtually clear road ahead – General Horrocks’ M4 Sherman tanks inexplicably halted for 17 hours. By the time the tanks started rolling at lunchtime the next day British paratroopers had run out of ammunition, been forced to surrender and German Panzer 5 & Tiger tank reinforcements had arrived to block the way. The Nijmegen bridgehead was established around 19:00hrs, 3 hours later, at 22:00hrs that evening the British were forced to surrender at the Arnhem bridge. So paratroopers of the 1st Airborne division at Arnhem bridge may have been relieved in the nick of time and war in Europe could have been over six months earlier, by Christmas 1944. We look at Cornelius Ryan’s book ‘A Bridge Too Far’ as well as Joseph E. Levine’s film of the same name. Interviews with: Captain T. Moffatt Burriss, author of ‘Strike and Hold’ who was commander of i-company, 504th regiment, 82nd Airborne division during the legendary Waal river crossing; Robert Kershaw author of ‘It Never Snows In September’ who interviewed 10th SS Panzer Division Brigadeführer Heinz Harmel, commander of the German defence of the Nijmegen and Arnhem bridges; Major Tony Hibbert who was a senior officer of 2nd batallion 1st brigade, British 1st Airborne division at the Arnhem bridge; Tim Lynch author of ‘Operation Market Garden: The Legend of the Waal Crossing’; Sir Brian Urquhart, army intelligence officer in the run-up to the operation he was critical of it and transferred before it began… but later became Deputy Secretary General of the newly formed United Nations.

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