Much has been written about the capture of Fort Eben Emael Belgium by German paratroopers, on May 10, 1940. This operation marked the first use of gliders and shaped charges, while proved possible drop paratroopers behind enemy lines. The training, secret, accuracy and speed, in addition to the element of surprise, these men became lethal, causing chaos among Belgian soldiers. However, it should be stressed that these paratroopers were part of a larger group: The Sturmablteilung Koch (Koch Assault Group), the elite of the Luftwaffe in 1940, whose mission was not only to take Eben Emael, but also the three bridges over the Alberto canal near: Veldwezelt, Vroenhoven and Kanne. The success of the attack on Belgium and France would depend on the rapid conquest of those bridges. The aim of this book is to show how it was planned and carried out the assault on the Albert Canal bridges. All this not only through a supported text documents, records and evidence, but also by many photos never published until now. Every detail, from the creation of the Koch Assault Group, until the final attack, has been closely scrutinized by reference to the best sources, as well as testimonies of Belgian and German soldiers. About the authors: Oscar Gonzalez Lopez has a degree in Philosophy and teaches History and Philosophy. As a military historian his research has focused on the Fallschirmjager as well as the Spanish volunteers in the German Army during the Second World War, through close contact with many former veterans. Amongst other books, he has published Fallschirmjager at the Gran Sasso and German Paratroops in Scandinavia. He lives in Spain. Thomas Steinke studied at the Otto-von-Guericke University in Magdeburg, Germany. He takes part in the ‘Volksbund Dr. Kriegsgraberfursorge’, being involved in the search and care of German War graves of the Second World War, as well as in educational activities whose main goal is to improve the mutual and peaceful understanding amongst the European people. The focus of his studies has long been German paratroopers, in particular the members of the Sturmabteilung Koch and the LL-Sturmregiment. Ian Tannahill holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree from the University of Queensland, Australia, and is a registered patent and trade mark attorney. His interest in the Fallschirmjager was sparked by an article he read as a teenager on the fall of the fortress of Eben Emael. His contact with former German paratroopers ignited a desire within Ian to tell the world about the capture of the Albert Kanal bridges by the Fallschirmjager and glider pilots of Sturmabteilung Koch.
SILENT ATTACK The Taking of the Bridges at Veldwezelt, Vorenhoven and Kanne in Belgium by German Paratroops, 10 May 1940
Outstanding book taken from both the German and Belgian sides. This is a very objective account of the Fallschirmjager in early WW2. Story centres on those units that did not attack Fort Eben Emael, but instead took the bridges needed by the Germans to invade Belgium over the Albert Canal at the same time. Training, the run-up to the attack, and the bridge assaults are covered. The attention to detail of the authors, alongside the very good collection of period photographs in this title are a unbeatable combination.